So, why are there so few watchful boots here?

Dig around the wiki for a while. Realized that there are only two watchful boot, one from advent calendar, the other from the &quotProtégé of a Mysterious Benefactor&quot story.

Which actually means that story is very imbalanced. You get a +2 shadowy hat, +2 dangerous weapon, +2 persuasive weapon, or +2 watchful boot from it. And You can get warm amber (+2 per weapon) almost instantly, shadowy and dangerous items are straightforward, but you have to wait for a year before getting another watchful boot?

Edit: I’m not complaining or anything, just curious.
edited by zbr308 on 9/2/2014

I’m new at this, but I wonder if equipment scaling may differ - and thus appear imbalanced to us just now - by design? There are also for example, quite few high level Persuasive &quotweapons&quot (is my drum such a weapon? laughs) in the bazaar I believe. I’m not sure about storyline drops.

But is it easier to pick up Watchful other ways? I’ve read some saying Persuasive simply isn’t a very fast track to pursue and I can’t say about that myself. I can say I’ve taken Watchful on more by and by, only equipped two or three items that support it… And already my Watchful is about half my Persuasive as I’ve just recently met the Barrister.

It can be possible to land a nice early very Watchful pet, too…
edited by Lavessa on 8/29/2014
edited by Lavessa on 8/29/2014

Come to think of it, my equipment bonus for Watchful has been higher than the one I had for Persuasive much of the time at these low levels. I had fewer Watchful things actually on me, but the ones I had seem to have added quite a lot.

The drum is the highest level persuasive weapon that isn’t from a profession as far as I know.

But yeah, the mysterious benefactor storyline’s rewards seem oddly unbalanced, because at the moment the boots never obsolete but everything else does very quickly.

[quote=WormApotheote]The drum is the highest level persuasive weapon that isn’t from a profession as far as I know.

But yeah, the mysterious benefactor storyline’s rewards seem oddly unbalanced, because at the moment the boots never obsolete but everything else does very quickly.[/quote]

Well, the meticulously altered stocking is an improvement over the mirror-polished shoes.

Well obsolete only if you’re playing around Christmas :P

I’d be hesitant to get too worried about balance in Fallen London. There aren’t many ways for a pair of shoes to make you more intelligent or observant; I imagine that is the reason that there aren’t many Watchful boots.

I would love to get another pair of Watchful boots. Wearing a Christmas stocking feels a bit ridiculous.

Especially during this time of year.

[quote=Asfodella]Wearing a Christmas stocking feels a bit ridiculous.[/quote]I suspect that the stocking is intended to feel a bit ridiculous. Sort of like a price one has to pay in order to get those 1 or 3 extra levels of Watchful. Sort of like: &quotHere is a ridiculous fulfilment of your ridiculous requests for Watchful boots. Wear if you dare!&quot :)

Watchful foot ware, if you think about it, is a laughably ridiculous concept and must remain a &quotrarity&quot for the sake of common decency if not sanity.
For starters, the Mirror-Polished Shoes; In reality these would only sever limited practical purpose, only seeing use from extremely conspicuous &quotspies&quot and/or perverts. Yes they allow you to &quotsee&quot more, but how useful can what you see with them really be? Although, in London’s case, I suppose some might find it useful to know if a particularly handsome lady is in fact a particularly handsome man with interesting clothing choices, or some rubbery oddity, or a shockingly coordinated trope of rats… although through the most distasteful way possible.
I suppose they could be useful for looking around corners, yet even then, shoes polished to a mirror finish are almost to strange for their own good.
Then there are the stockings. In their description it says how truly &quotalien&quot they are, in concept and execution.
I digress. Foot ware that &quotincreases&quot one’s Watchful capabilities make as much sense as drooling gloves increasing one’s Shadowy characteristics…

I hardly think the equipment has to make functional sense, if you mean can it reach out and manage things on its own? But it’s entirely possible for designers to include stuff more stereotypically associated with people of Watchful tastes or occupations. Not that eyes in one’s boot would be beyond the scope of a setting like Fallen London, either…

Anyway, I still suspect it’s more of an idea of different sorts of leaps for different attribute tracks.

Watchful clothing is a ridiculous concept in general. I can understand how some of the more “unnatural” articles of clothing, such as the clothes-colony, or Fourth City rags, add to your observation skills, but the idea of a maidservant’s uniform making you more intelligent is absurd.

The item bonuses are a trifle inconsistent, because are thematic in nature - a morning-suit gives a Watchful bonus because it’s the sort of clothing that educated professionals wear - while others are entirely literal - shiny shoes give a Watchful bonus because you can use them as tiny mirrors.

(Also, given how often servant’s uniforms are used as disguises in the story - and its own flavour text - I would have expected the Maidservant’s Uniform to be Shadowy rather than Watchful.)

Taking the maidservant example, it does’t help make you more intelligent, but it might help you snoop around in a place where you might not otherwise be welcome.

Games have simplified mechanisms to make them fun and to make them producible. You can point at the seems if you want, but ignoring the cracks and enjoying the setting is fine too.

Or, after posting, what Sir Fred said.
edited by RandomWalker on 9/1/2014

I’d say that maids may well have to be rather Watchful even when they’re not secretly infiltrators. They have to pay close attention to the whims of their employers, and spot tiny specks of dust so they’ll know where to clean.

Using the same rules for footwear is kind of tricky though, because there aren’t very many Watchful occupations or activities that are connected to particular footwear. And anything that makes a person walk quietly in order to overhear conversations would first and foremost be Shadowy, wouldn’t it?

I am reminded of a certain Commander Sir Samuel Vimes of Discworld fame who, in the novel Night Watch, could in fact READ the street through his very thin-soled boots. Perhaps a stretch, but it does suggest a certain perceptiveness FL has associated with the Watchful statistic.

It’s worth noting also that the watchful gloves and hats are literally alive; so why couldn’t we import Polythremic boots or something?

Polythrem footwear went out of style five years ago. It may had something to do with people running into all sort of trouble while wearing them. Then again, maybe not. Fashion. Personally, I don’t get it. But I am sure if we give it a couple of years, they will appear on the market again, people have short memory. If you are desperate, wait for Christmas, it’s not so far away now.

Seriously, it’s just couple of points. By the time you run out of other options to increase watchful, it will not matter. And watchful has always been slightly harder to increase than other stats. Nobody says all stats should be perfectly balanced.

Watchful is treated slightly different from all the other stats; failure raises its associated menace at a much earlier level (~25) than the others (~36). On the other hand, it has the only “grindable” source of second chances that I’m aware of, in the second part of the University storyline, so technically it might be the easiest to max out?