Weekly Fallen London Questions, 21/06/2021

Questions, questions, questions here!

Why do you wait until the day after the date in the subject line? :cool:

I was going to hazard a guess that it’s a timezone thing — but that would imply Diptych is in [checks notes] GMT+14 — which is barely plausible (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/UTC%2B14:00).

On a tangential note, I learned that there is an island named Starbuck (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Starbuck_Island) — which is sadly named after a whaler rather than a starfighter pilot. I’d better stop there or I’ll spend the whole day down a wikihole.

New question: why does the post editor offer a gorram HTML option that doesn’t work?
edited by Dagforth on 6/23/2021

Oh, wow - was Starbuck from Moby Dick named after the Starbuck whaling family?

Oh, yeah, and, I’m not quite GMT +14, but I am pretty GMT +, so I tend to wait a bit so I don’t get people asking why I’m posting the Monday thread on Sunday. And sometimes I wait a little bit longer because I’ve fallen asleep and missed a whole afternoon.
edited by Diptych on 6/23/2021

A language question from a non-native speaker.

In the “What’s your next work?” storylet we have the following options:

  • Write poetry
  • Complete a novel
  • Write and stage a play
  • Write a song and have it performed
  • Compose a symphony and have it performed
  • The ballet
  • Stage an Opera
  • A Film!
  • An innovation of fashion!

I get, more or less, why poetry comes without an article (it’s non-countable, probably).
But why does the ballet come with “the”, while literally every other option comes with “a”?

I don’t think there’s any good reason for that. &quotWrite poetry&quot makes sense, because the player could be writing one long poem, or a book of shorter poems - &quotpoetry&quot covers both. For consistency’s sake, though, it would probably make more sense if the list was something like:

  • Write poetry
  • Complete a novel
  • Write and stage a play
  • Write and stage a ballet
  • Write a song and have it performed
  • Compose a symphony and have it performed
  • Compose an opera and have it performed
  • Produce and show a film
  • Design and show an innovation of fashion

It might just be the writer mixing things up. Ballet is both countable and uncountable, though it also has a secondary plural form in ballets. This plural form is used when referring to multiple ballet performances. I.e. &quotSwan Lake and The Nutcracker are timeless ballets.&quot I believe you could also refer to opera in the same way.

As an aside, the options aren’t necessarily direct answers to the question &quotWhat’s your next work?&quot You could reply to such a question with, &quota film!&quot or, &quotan innovation of fashion!&quot but you could never answer with, &quotwrite a song and have it performed.&quot

It’s more about presenting a path to the player than making grammatical sense.

EDIT: Darn, beaten to it while researching.
edited by Mulligan on 6/24/2021

Not beaten to it at all - our two comments contained completely different information, so both combined to provide a more complete answer!

Two questions:

  1. Do characteristics like “The Hunt is On” only affect outcomes in whole numbers? Like, is 15 and a half better than just 15, or must I get to 16 for the probability of success to change?

  2. Spouses: is it best (for the stats) to marry another player? Does it matter if they are a POSI or not? I am considering marrying my humble alt, but there is a pleasing role-play NPC option.

Without spending Fate, another player is clearly the best option

  1. Incremental changes don’t alter the probability of a check, only whole numbers.

  2. Like PJ said, players spouses are the best option for people who don’t want to spend fate. However, my advice would be to go with whatever you think is more interesting to you. The single point stat increases become less and less valuable as you progress the game, so you might as well do what you think is fun or fitting.

There are several NPC spouses that do not require fate. There’s a tasty-looking palaeontologist, for one thing. And some model or other. Or you could marry the “whole damn lot of them” and have done.

My character was married to another player for quite some time, but when that person dropped out of the game for a while, I switched to NPC spouses (of which there have been a few). The switch did not have any noticeable impact on gameplay. In the end I just went with the one that I thought best fitted my character from a role-playing perspective.

[quote=PJ]Category:Spouse - Fallen London Wiki

Without spending Fate, another player is clearly the best option[/quote]

Cool. Thank you. I am trying to avoid too many spoilers, so I’m cautious about the wiki. I am fairly obsessively curious so it’s hard to stop once I start.

I think I shall marry my alt when I get back from Zee. Opposites attract, you know - Miranda is shadowy & persuasive, while the good Dr Blueleg is watchful and dangerous. At least we’re both magnanimous hedonists :)