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Main / Skills / Prospecting

Prospecting is a skill used for locating ore veins, flint, and salt in rock when on the surface, and for getting estimations of vein contents while inside a mine. To prospect, activate a pickaxe, right-click a rock tile or vein, and select "Mining > Prospect".

Layout for surface prospecting

|   |   |   |   |   |   |   |
|   |   |   |   |   |   |   |
|   |   |   |   |   |   |   |
|   |   |   | o |   |   |   |
|   |   |   |   |   |   |   |
|   |   |   |   |   |   |   |
|   |   |   |   |   |   |   |

The area in which prospecting works is 7x7 with the player in the middle (the "o" represents the player).


  • Ore veins can't be searched for by prospecting when inside a cave; the player has to be on the surface. Surface prospecting of flint and salt is only for the single tile prospected; nearby flint/salt tiles can't be prospected. For finding veins inside a cave, check out the analysing page.
  • Gems appear randomly during all mining and cannot be prospected.
  • All ores are slightly regional. Thus, if an ore vein is located, it is likely there will be other veins of the same ore type nearby.
  • You can use a tuning fork of metal detection to determine the exact quality and mining operations left on a vein.
  • Prospecting can be done while moving, so long as you do not move too far away (two tiles) from the tile you are currently working on.

Skill levels

Anyone can detect veins within 3 tiles on the surface. At higher skill levels, additional abilities are unlocked (currently affected by the curve on Epic):

  • 20 (Actual epic skill 10.56): Estimate the quality of a vein or rock tile, and detect flint when present
    • Note : Free to play seem to not get get this bonus either when prospecting on a rock surface outside or inside the mines.
  • 40 (Actual epic skill 22.54): Detect salt when present
  • 60 (Actual epic skill 36.75): Estimate the remaining amount of ore in a vein
  • 80 (Actual epic skill 55.28) Exact quality when prospecting a tile underground (overrides prospecting 20 message)
  • 90 (Actual epic skill 68.38) Exact remaining hits (overrides prospecting 60 message)

The same abilities are available when prospecting the vein inside the mine.

Vein quality

Rock tiles and ore veins have a maximum quality level.

  • Poor: 20-29 (can also prospect as "pretty bad")
  • Acceptable: 30-39
  • Normal: 40-59
  • Good: 60-79
  • Very good: 80-94
  • Utmost: 95-99

Vein depletion

If your prospecting skill is over 60 (36.75), prospecting an ore vein will give you an estimate of how much ore is left there. Having over 90 skill will tell you the exact number left.

  • "There is plenty of ore left" (more than 10000)
  • "Only a few weeks mining remain here" (between 5000 and 10000)
  • "The ore is starting to deplete" (between 3000 and 5000)
  • "You should start to prospect for another vein of this ore" (between 1000 and 3000)
  • "The ore will run out soon" (between 100 and 1000)
  • "The ore will run out any hour" (1-100)

Player-made Tools

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Characteristics trained

See: Characteristics


  • Prospector at 50 skill
  • Geologist at 70 skill
  • Goldsniffer at 90 skill
  • I am so Vein at 100 skill


  • Ceilings, walls and floors all give the same skill gain.
  • Quality of pickaxe (and rarity) are the only qualities which change the prospecting timer.

See also