June Exceptional Story: Déjà Vu

Exceptional Story for June: Déjà Vu

“What am I looking for at the Portinari? Inspiration, you might think. But it’s more in the nature of not giving up. I’ve been feeling about London the same way I’ve been feeling about my watercolours: like I should move on.”

The venerable Portinari Dance Hall is failing – again! – and it’s up to you to inject some life into the old place. Reimagine the establishment in a grand overhaul, and shepherd it through a fractious opening night. Uncover the hopes and aspirations of the patrons that seek respite beneath its roof. Are all dreams destined to fade with time? Can any of these dreams be saved? And, more importantly, should they?


All Exceptional Friends receive:

  • A new Exceptional Story every month
  • Memories of a Tale from each story to spend on exclusive companions and items
  • A second candle (up to 40 actions at once)
  • An expanded opportunity deck: ten cards instead of six
  • Three additional outfit slots
  • Access to the House of Chimes, including monthly gameplay perks

Enhanced Exceptional Friends receive all of the above, plus:

  • A past story, or two resets of stories you’ve played from a monthly menu
  • Memories of a Tale from every past story or reset
  • Extra monthly perks in the House of Chimes
  • Three seven-action refreshes per month

This one is SUPER weird.

I kindof love it.

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I think I kind of blew this one. :-/ I should have mapped the directions? (I can’t do this IRL! LOL) I never got the spectacles either, my own fault I guess.

I also don’t have the spectacles, I’m just kinda enjoying the intrigue.


Sooooo, how much would you recommend this one if someone, say, wanted to try his first exceptional story and didn’t know which to buy?

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If you want to BUY an exceptional story rather than sub to the Exceptional Friendship I don’t think this is available yet.

But for ME, from what stories I have played, my top recommendations for a first story on backlog would be The Bloody Wallpaper (Chandler Groover) or The Stripes of Wrath (Gavin Inglis), both from fairly recently. I like this one but I’m not sure, unless you’re a silverer and are really invested in parabola, that it’s a good introductory ES.


I really liked all the art stuff! I just kept feeling there was something deeper I kept missing, with all the hints about the spectacles and Parabola and bats and dancing. I thought if I reduced all my menaces I’d get there, but I ran out of time. But my gameplay is terrible anyway.


Thanks my dude! I’ll try one of those if I have the money since I’m not economically independent

I’m not a silverer and my interest in parabola isn’t that great.

Don’t be so harsh on yourself, my dude! Firstly FL really isn’t that much of a gameplay focused game, and even if it was, as someone who used to say he’s shit at video games, I can guarantee you aren’t as bad as you think you are.


Everyone recommrnds The Gift, which is because it’s FANTASTIC. (I haven’t played that many ES though!)


Okay, thanks! I’ll write that one down as a possibility, too.

This is just bc the bulk of the story is in parabola and the spectacles are the tool of silverers, who work in parabola. It’s just a tie in for the tier 3 profession that relates to the story.

This is because the bulk of the story is in a messed up fading dream.

This is a bit more interesting and speculative! So meta analysis below under a blur.

This story starts with the dance club, right? And the proprietor is somewhat obsessed with recapturing this beautiful place that was lost in the fall. The dramatist is obsessed with the theater venerating what was before. The painter misses the surface colors enough to buy a potentially deadly box of surface light every year on her birthday.

I think it is safe to say that the themes of this ES deal with a clinging to the past, and certainly a longing for how things were before the fall. I believe that, with that in mind, the bats in the dream represented the masters stealing the city away from the dreamers. Everything in the dream was about an end of some sort; the train was departing at 1899 (the year we’ve been stuck in for years now), the dead philanthropist who built the hospital, the end of the relationship with the argument. I think the dream was a nightmare where they almost get the London they are still invariably longing for, unable to just let go of it, and yet even at the end, the Masters come and steal it away.

That’s my read on the story anyways.



I thought I was supposed to get them! Now that makes sense.

Your analysis is really beautiful. That makes a lot of sense, too.



I may wish to add a little something, The Gift isn’t actually an Exceptional story, and as such isn’t priced the same way. It is a little cheaper than most ESs. Still probably worth a buy, (I didn’t like it myself but I am definitely in the minority with that opinion) but I just love being pedantic.


Yep, this. It’s technically one of the stories tied to Christmas (we usually get a new one every year or so).


o-kay, thanks john! also thanks everybody else that is/will respond to my question, your all so helpful.

Loving the possible ending choices.

I invested and am very gay and chose the stygian colourist just in case she’s marriagable next feast of the rose, but would LOVE to know what happens if you leave the colourist and dramatist together.


I chose her too! I couldn’t resist.


I’m having a problem. I did the Hospital story before I encountered the beggar, and now I can’t advance because I can’t do the beggar’s story if I did the hospital story first. I have done all of the healing storylets (Wounds, Suspicion, Nightmares, and Scandal) What do I do now?

Nover mind; I have found a way to advance. Thanks.

If you go through the Exceptional Story catalogue on the Fate page, all the stories marked by a little golden star are fan favourites - (meaning that they have been rated very highly by the general player base in surveys).
So I can recommend those.