A party is a group of 1-4 knights adventuring in a gate.
There is relatively little to no penalty for traveling in a party. Everyone will receive the same amount of crowns and heat as if they were traveling solo. However, Monsters will become more durable to hits from players when the party is larger.
Starting or Joining a Party
Knights can start or join a party by going to an active gate in the Arcade, standing in front of the control panel and using their "Attack" button. They will have to choose what tier to start in. Some tiers will be grayed out if the Spiral Warden does not deem you experienced enough to travel to that tier.
After choosing a tier, players can choose to join a party, or to create one. An option highlighted in dark blue means that is the current option selected.
Knights can also join certain parties via the social menu as described in the next section.
Join a Party
If you find that you always want to start a new party when one is not available to join, you can uncheck the box in the Prompts tab of your options.
You can see what parties are available by using the Party Finder button.
If a friend or guildmate is in a party that allows friends or guild members and has available space, then you will be able to click on that knight's name in your social panel and select "Join" to be in the same party. If you do not have tier clearance for that tier, you will need an invitation to the party as the "Join" option will not be available.
Start a Party
Create a party according to your specifications. These include:
- Create Public Party: Choose this if you are not picky about who joins your party.
- Create Private Party: Choose this if you want your party to be restricted to only friends and guild members.
- Play Solo: Choose this if you want to play alone.
While you are in a party down in the Clockworks, you will not be able to change your equipment unless you are in the Clockworks Party Lobby, Clockwork Terminal, or using an Arsenal Station. A message will be seen at the top of the character window whenever your equipment is locked due to this.
Inviting and Booting Members
Depending on the party settings, members can invite other players to join the party. Party members cannot invite another person if the party is full or if the party leader locked the party. In that case, only the party leader can invite other players (up to a maximum of four members in a group). Knights that do not have clearance for that tier will need an invitation to join. Invitations cannot be sent while in a Treasure Vault or an end boss (Royal Jelly or Lord Vanaduke) level.
At any time, while in the Clockworks, a knight may choose to separate from a party. Simply open the party menu and choose "Go Solo". Choosing to adventure alone will bring a knight to a new instance of the Gate in the same spot where "Go Solo" was selected and in the same state of completion (party buttons triggered will remain so). Remember that there are some draw-backs to going solo: any heat or crowns collected on that depth so far and items on still the ground will be erased.
Party Members Menu
Each knight in the party will appear in the party menu list in the top left corner of the screen displaying a knight's health below their name and portrait. You can click on a party member's portrait to bring up the character menu. In addition to its usual functions, you can also use the character menu to grant defeated knights a Spark of Life.
Picking up Objects
Spiral Knights is designed to be a cooperative game. For most objects found in the Clockworks, party members do not compete, but rather collaborate, in picking them up.
When a knight picks up loot, it disappears from his or her display, but remains on the displays of the other knights until they pick it up. Each crown or token gained is applied immediately; even if a knight doesn't finish the level, they still keep the crown or token. Unlike crowns and tokens, heat is not immediately applied. Knights keeps the heat that they have gained only when reaching the lift at the end of the level. At that time, an animation appears showing the heat being applied to the knight's equipment.
Each party member may carry one mineral at a time. Like heat, minerals are applied to the knight only when the level is completed.
Single vs. Multi-Player Parties
When there are multiple knights in a party, the monsters faced are somewhat more difficult. Each party member adds to every monster's health, whether it be Lord Vanaduke or a lowly Jelly. In a Graveyard there is always one Phantom per knight and in Candlestick Keep there is always one Grimalkin per knight.
Knights traveling together can benefit from teamwork:
- Knights can revive fallen comrades using their own Spark of Life
- As long as at least one knight makes it through the level to the lift, the entire party makes it through the level. If the surviving knight goes down at the lift, then all party members go down. The fallen party members do not gain heat from the level, and will automatically use their Emergency Revive upon beginning the next depth.
- There are various tactical advantages. For example, a knight can free a comrade trapped in a block of ice, and one knight can lure a monster while another knight attacks it from behind. By having multiple knights, the party can in aggregate have a more varied assortment of weapons. For example, the party can have swords dealing multiple kinds of damage, guns dealing multiple status effects, etc. Although monsters have more health in multi-player adventures, the damage from multiple knights easily outweighs that extra health.
- More knights in a party means more minerals picked up to feed your pet.
Some players prefer to travel alone. Other than reduced monster health, there is no reason to play solo.