Ideal subscription dates

Since the price increase has now come, I thought I’d point this out here in a public service post once more:

Exceptional Friendship runs for 31 days. This means you can always get 3 Exceptional Stories for the price of one subscription if your timing is impeccable.

The dates when you should subscribe in 2023 are:

March 29th
June 28th
September 27th
December 27th

Example: if you subscribe right now (it is still the 29th where I am), you unlock the current ES “A Bright Future”, the one that comes out tomorrow, and the one that will be released on April 27th, because your Exceptional Friendship will run 31 days until April 29th. Don’t forget to cancel before then!

ES are always released on the last Thursday of a month, around noon London time. This means you have about 12 hours left to cash in on all three stories! If you subscribe shortly after that deadline, you’ll only get two stories even though you’ll pay the same amount.

This has been the case ever since Exceptional Friendship was introduced and I think it is a very fair service by Failbetter for players who are short on cash or - like me - have several accounts and don’t see the point in keeping them all subscribed at the same time.

To make this even clearer: this way you get three Exceptional Stories for 7.50 GBP / 8.50 EUR / 9.00 USD.
If you miss out on an Exceptional Story because you weren’t subscribed at the time, you’ll have to buy it for 45 Fate, which right now equals 12.69 GBP / 14.54 EUR / 15.47 USD. For one story!

This is why, if you’re interested in Exceptional Stories at all, you should always get them via subscription!


Thanks for the dates to do this. I’m surprised they haven’t come forward with any more information about the EF+ (Exceptionaler Friendship?) tier. Obviously they’re still working out the particulars, but seems like something they should have had ready to go when they upped the prices in general.

I’m not willing to pay 45 Fate per story to get the ones I’ve missed, so I’m looking forward to the EF+ concept.

I’m very interested in how that will work out as well because the current concept obviously puts everyone who hasn’t been around forever at a serious disadvantage.

I joined a few months before Exceptional Friendship was introduced in 2015 and in all that time missed the subscription deadline only once (and yes, having to cough up the 45 Fate for that one hurt). I’ve played every ES there ever was, and I did so by this exact method, juggling subscriptions between accounts.

If I had joined at any point since, I’d certainly be put off by having to pay so much for every single old story. I hope they get the new concept right!

There have been a couple of instances when “bundles” of 3 stories at a discount were offered, but of course that only works if you’ve not played any of the ones on offer. Maybe a “pick 3 for a special price” would be an alternative.
I place a high value on the extra cards and the 40 turns, but often don’t really fancy playing the ES twice within a short period of time for two paid accounts. So an option allowing the “rights” to an ES to be boxed up, handed to an urchin and passed on would be way cool.


I would never pay any money for that alone tbh. I regard the extra cards and actions as a cool bonus while subscribed but without Exceptional Stories I wouldn’t regard subscription worthwhile at all.

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What about April 27th? This is the day where a new exceptional story comes out (last Thursday of each month), but if you subscribe in the small hours before they replace the old story with the new one, I’m pretty sure you can get three stories.

That would work for March, April & May, yes.

But your next subscription date would then be in late July (three months later). And then you’d only get two stories because August 31st happens to be a Thursday this year.

It doesn’t work for every 3-month-combination. The ones I’ve posted above are the only ones guaranteed to work this way.


If you wait until June 28 you’ll miss the next three months. The true ideal dates are

  1. Today
  2. Tomorrow
  3. Day after that

This will maximize the number of days of Exceptional Friendship you have. Every day you wait is another day of being limited to 20 actions and six cards

I’m being silly, of course. But if you want the current story, you must subscribe before the end of April, so :man_shrugging: