Soul Trade, for opponents?

I would greatly appreciate some advice from other players.

Reading this topic and others, I gather that the Soul Trade is widely agreed to be the most important Fate-locked content, and that it opens new content all over London, especially the 4th coil of the Labyrinth, which is an area I’m especially interested in. I’ve also picked up clues that it’s possible to make choices within the storyline that demonstrate opposition to the soul trade (rather than gleeful involvement in it, which is what I’d always imagined was the sole point of opening the story).

So my question is this: Is it possible to pursue the Soul Trade storyline - in character - as someone who is strongly opposed to the trade? I understand that I can end up carrying a shepherd’s timepiece rather than a spirifer’s fork, but I’d like to know how far I would need to compromise my character’s principles en route. In particular, is it possible to avoid stealing souls and trading them, and yet still pursue and conclude the storyline?

If it’s not okay to discuss this content in public because it’s Fate-locked I’d be very grateful for advice by PM. Thanks!

You can play the story all the way through as either a spirifer or a shepherd - if you want to oppose the trade from the start, then you don’t need to ever trade a single soul.

Thanks, Sir Fred. I am much obliged for your help.

I’ve played the story. I’m not at all regretful about it. It’s meaningful, and central to the lore. Also it gives me the opportunity to take a stance against the soul trade. Hopefully, I’ll be able to actually return some souls eventually.

However, I am a little surprised by the amount of content. I was expecting more. Following the shortest and simplest of quests, I received my timepiece in no time flat. By comparison, the Flute Street story was really substantial. The amount of gameplay unlocked by Empyrean Redolence was also much larger. Even the little Miniature Menace story took up more of my game time than the Soul Trade.

The most significant aspect for me so far has been reaching the conclusion of the Regretful Soldier’s story - which I’m pretty certain was partly unlocked by access to the House of Chimes.

A question for people who’ve played both sides of the story. Would you say it’s balanced in terms of the amount of content for spirifers and shepherds?
edited by Edmund Winterset on 8/22/2014

The trick with the Soul Trade is that no one story unlocked by it is very long, but it unlocks small stories all over the place. Your neighbours, the University, the House of Chimes… Soul Trade options just keep popping up. And, yes, the two paths are pretty much balanced.

That’s good to know - I’ll look forward to being surprised. I’m banned from the University unfortunately, but I’ll go and find out how my neighbours are getting along. Thanks.