August Exceptional Story: The Bloody Wallpaper

This was my first Exceptional Story, and quite the experience. I liked how getting around the hotel didn’t take up actions, which made the entire thing smoother to get through. The writing made me shudder and I mean this as a compliment. I how harbor a hatred for the Northbound Parlimentarian and her guests though. It was incredibly satisfying to yell at the Manager in the end though, even though nothing really came of it

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Just started this tonight and, huh, I was wondering recently whether Failbetter and specifically Chandler Groover would manage one more epic story where everything’s totally new and completely different than every other story before.

No worries, this one’ll do it.

Only complaint is that standard warning before you enter the hotel: You will be occupied for some time.
It should say: You won’t be doing anything else for the next four weeks.

Fair enough, see you on the other side!


This is the kind of ES I really like. I much prefer the ones where it feels like I am actually playing a game and less that I am simply reading a story. This is a spectrum, clearly, but this one felt that it was very far to the side of that spectrum that I like most. Very nicely done.

As usual though, I had little idea of what was going on. FL lore is something that makes my head spin, I can never quite remember all the details of the histories of the cities and other lore matters. and usually miss the references to them. I didn’t mind that, though, as the whole thing was a kind of mad fever-dream anyway, and my confusion seemed to fit the story quite well for once.


I’m in a State of Some Confusion at the moment and reading “the staff are so attentive” is… very different for me now thanks to this story

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Playing this ES right now, does anybody know where The Starving Poet is? I tried every floor and room, but he seems to avoid me.

I can’t quite recall but have you searched the extra floor? The one you can only access with the staff staircase?

Yeah, I did. But I found you can only enter his room while tearing up wallpaper, so the “interaction quality” given is probably a prank on the player.

If you mean the Struggling Artist, he’s in Room 13, of course.

(Which is behind the Rattling Door in the Veils Wing.)

28 days ago I wrote:

Like I said, four weeks. I’m out now, but I’ll never be the same again.

I’m unable to write a coherent review, but I think this story epitomizes Fallen London. Five-star madness.

Just for the record, judging from the size of my text dump file, this one has more text than Flint!