A Scholar of the Correspondence (Guide)
This page contains details about Fallen London Actions.
A Scholar of the Correspondence quality represents your knowledge in the otherworldly language of the Correspondence and the ability to call on this exotic power. Its levels reach a maximum at 21. The CP needed to raise a single level is the same as the level it's reaching, as with most qualities. In short, it is referred to as SotC.
Raising A Scholar of the Correspondence
Unlocking the first level - Guest Lecturer
To gain the first level the Expedition to the Tomb of Seven must be completed, in The Forgotten Quarter. This is naturally part of the progression of the Watchful Making Your Name story-line, A Name in Seven Secret Alphabets. This gains a Set of Correspondence Stones which, when researched a bit, rewards with the first level of SotC and progresses the Making your Name story. This is the only way to start gaining SotC, without the first level you cannot progress.
Onwards from level 1 - Smouldering Academic
- Level 1-2: What's that? on the Beneath the Neath! ride at Mrs Plenty's Carnival (+1 CP, up to level 3)
- Level 1-2: (Don't.) In your dreams, you hear a voice echoing hollowly each night in The Forgotten Quarter when Seeking Curios and Secrets but only at specific Airs (+1 CP, up to level 3)
- Level 1-6: Look for more evidence of the Correspondence in the ruins in The Forgotten Quarter when Seeking Curios and Secrets but only at specific Airs (+1 CP, up to level 7)
- Level 1-6: Rare success at a Learned discourse, part of the Term Passing... carousel at The University (+0 CP, rare: +1 CP, up to level 7)
- Level 1-6: (Card) A present from the Solitary Glim-sculptor if you finished the University story-line and haven't bought access to Flute Street (+1 CP, up to level 7)
- Level 1-9: Somewhat challenging music, when writing Correspondence symphonies at The Empress' Court (+1 CP, up to level 10)
- Level 1-9: 50% Luck challenge, A merry wager, part of the Term Passing... carousel at The University (50% luck-based +1 CP, up to level 10)
- Level 1-9: Something perilous from Opening a Bundle of Oddities at high bundle values. For more info see Bundle of Oddities (Guide) (+1 CP, up to level 10)
- Level 1-9: (FATE) (Card) One of the options on the card of the Corresponding Ocelot (+1 CP, up to level 10)
- Level 1-9: (FATE) (Card) 50% Luck challenge, one of the options on the card of the Bifurcated Owl (+5 CP, up to level 10)
- Level 1-9: (One-time) Choosing a specific option when finishing the case of the Solitary Glim-sculptor (+3 CP, up to level 10)
- Level 1-9: (One-time) Choosing a specific option when finishing the story of the Face-Tailor (+3 CP, up to level 10, limit assumed)
- Level 1-9: (One-time) One of the epilogue options if you choose to frame the Cryptozoologist at the end of the University case (+1 CP, up to level 10, limit assumed)
- Level 3-9: (Rare Card) Look Closer from The Skin of the Bazaar (Only drawn in the Bazaar Side-streets) (+1 CP, up to level 10)
- Level 1-14: (CHRISTMAS) Examine it through your Semiotic Monocle (SotC Challenge, +1 CP on success, up to level 15) using Unusual Pail of So-Called Snow
- Level 10-14: (CHRISTMAS) Write a monograph on it...in it (SotC Challenge, +2-14 CP, up to level 15), only available with the Correspondent profession effectively requiring SotC 10. Using Unusual Pail of So-Called Snow
- Level 1-20: (Social Action) (Carefully) read a flame-proof missive in Your Social Engagements, requires a Correspondent contact to Compile notes on the Correspondence and send them to you as a Flame-proof Missive (variable CP gain, more CP the less you have, up to level 21)
- Level 5-20: Perhaps you can remember something useful at Use Correspondence Plaques to expand your knowledge of the Correspondence in Shadowy Dealings at the University (+1 CP, rare: +3 CP, up to level 21)
The recommended way is to raise to level 7 using Look for more evidence of the Correspondence in the ruins and A present from the Solitary Glim-sculptor, then write Correspondence symphonies at The Empress' Court to reach level 10. (This requires exactly 27 symphonies! On the bright side this gives 810 Echoes worth of Moon-Pearls.)
Alternatively asking other players with the Correspondent profession for help can speed the process up greatly, as the letters they can send can give more CP the less you have (it's a random range, you can still get only 1 at times), making reaching level 10 quite fast. When short on Academic friends, The Fallen London subreddit , and the official forums  are both great places to find helpful people.
You can also use the The University Method (detailed below) from level 5, but due to it's expensiveness, the above options are recommended for reaching level 10.
Going beyond level 10 - The Searing Road
The only reliable way to push SotC further after level 10 is either burning plaques at the University or letters from Correspondents. The University gives +1 CP at a time (with the University option having a rare success to give +3 (the rare success chance is assumed around 2%)) while the letters give a random amount, between 1 CP and an upper limit which is determined by how much SotC you already have. They always provide at least 1 CP, and possible more, but the range deteriorates to only 1 at higher levels (around level 15).
Both methods also require increasing amounts of Watchful, peaking at 300 (modified) for the University, and 200 (base) for the letters to reach the final, 21st level.
|CP to 21||216||210||203||195||186||176||165||153||140||126||111||95||78||60||41||21|
|CP to 20||195||189||182||174||165||155||144||132||119||105||90||74||57||39||20|
|CP to 19||175||169||162||154||145||135||124||112||99||85||70||54||37||19|
|CP to 18||156||150||143||135||126||116||105||93||80||66||51||35||18|
|CP to 17||138||132||125||117||108||98||87||75||62||48||33||17|
|CP to 16||121||115||108||100||91||81||70||58||45||31||16|
|CP to 15||105||99||92||84||75||65||54||42||29||15|
|CP to 14||90||84||77||69||60||50||39||27||14|
|CP to 13||76||70||63||55||46||36||25||13|
|CP to 12||63||57||50||42||33||23||12|
|CP to 11||51||45||38||30||21||11|
|CP to 10||40||34||27||19||10|
(Remember that this table (and the ones below) work with whole levels. You could be at level 7 but have 3 CP already towards the next level. In that case, if you aim for 21, you only need 203-3=200 CP.)
Before continuing, take a look at what higher levels are actually used for and then make sure you have the determination needed and your goals set before attempting!
The Letter Method - Excellent Combination
Receiving a Flame-proof Missive from other players with the Correspondent profession is an easy and cheap way of raising SotC, and even allows you to slip out of getting 300 Watchful if you aim for level 21. They take a single action to read, but also gives 4 CP Wounds on average (1-7 CP). You can use them to get the last level or two, if you can't reach 300 Watchful. (Also, while not set in stone, it is considered polite to somehow repay the helping Correspondents if they require it.)
These letters are meant to have a chance of giving more CP the less you have, helping to reach level 10 quicker with help. You always gain CP on a range of 1 to an upper limit, said limit is determined only by your current sotC level. (Exact deterioration rate is currently unknown.) This upper limit is gradually reduced to 1 at around level 15, meaning you always gain only 1 CP/letter afterwards.
This method also require increasing amount of Watchful but here it's a base stat requirement. You need 200 base Watchful to reach 21 SotC. The formula is your current SotC level * 10 is the amount of Base Watchful needed to get any CP from a letter.
A Flame-proof Missive requires from the sender:
- 5 x F.F. Gebrandt's Flame-Resilient Paper
- 2 x Extraordinary Implication
- 2 x Volume of Collated Research
Only the receiving end benefits from SotC gain. (But the sender gains a good amount of Corresponding... for their work and, possibly, your grateful gifts for their help!)
Since the bonus CP disappears around level 15, getting to 21 by only using these letter would require a lot of corresponding. For this reason, it is advised to use the The University Method until the final levels. Of course, if you have the means and friends necessary to receive an extraordinary amount of letters there's no one to stop you!
The University Method - Reliable Grinding
Use Correspondence Plaques to expand your knowledge of the Correspondence at Shadowy Dealings at the University. Gives 1 CP/action, and 3 CP Wounds on average (1-5 CP), with a rare success giving +3 CP.
(Needed to push beyond that level, for example to push beyond level 14 and reach level 15, you need 240)
This is only available after reaching level 5, but is unadvised to use before level 10 due to it's expensiveness. The other options to reach 10 are cheaper, this is mainly for getting higher than 10.
Correspondence Plaques and the other goodies
The resources. Each single CP requires:
This means you need increasing amounts of Correspondence Plaques. You will need as much Screams and Implications as CP. As for plaques:
Note: None of the calculations below rely on the rare success.
|Plaques to 21||3040||3010||2968||2912||2840||2750||2640||2508||2352||2170||1960||1720||1448||1142||800||420|
|Plaques to 20||2620||2590||2548||2492||2420||2330||2220||2088||1932||1750||1540||1300||1028||722||380|
|Plaques to 19||2240||2210||2168||2112||2040||1950||1840||1708||1552||1370||1160||920||648||342|
|Plaques to 18||1898||1868||1826||1770||1698||1608||1498||1366||1210||1028||818||578||306|
|Plaques to 17||1592||1562||1520||1464||1392||1302||1192||1060||904||722||512||272|
|Plaques to 16||1320||1290||1248||1192||1120||1030||920||788||632||450||240|
|Plaques to 15||1080||1050||1008||952||880||790||680||548||392||210|
|Plaques to 14||870||840||798||742||670||580||470||338||182|
|Plaques to 13||688||658||616||560||488||398||288||156|
|Plaques to 12||532||502||460||404||332||242||132|
|Plaques to 11||400||370||328||272||200||110|
|Plaques to 10||290||260||218||162||90|
All of the 3 resources needed can be acquired from Journals of Infamy:
Publishing a Newspaper takes 18.5 actions (take a look at the respective guide), and if you can reach 217 (modified) Shadowy, with a High Outlandish Edition the payout is not just 118 x Journal of Infamy but also 4 x Extraordinary Implication, speeding up the process. Due to Newspaper mechanics, the required 104 x Outlandish Copy is only reachable if you opened a station at Jericho Locks (the second station). If you haven't, go with other types of copies, whichever one you can get most of, as the Journal gain scales with the amount of copies you gather. If you have high enough Shadowy, the lost extra Implications won't make too big a difference.
You don't strictly need 217 (modified) Shadowy for this to work. The Newspaper works in a way that the amount of Journals you get scales with the amount of copy you gathered. If you fail a few checks, you still get a good amount of Journals, and this process simply takes longer.
The approximate amount of publishes needed to acquire the needed materials can be seen here if you had none of the resources to being with (NoP stand for Number of Publishes), provided you have 217 Shadowy, and always publish the Most Outlandish Edition, taking into account the excess generation of Correspondence Plaques when up-converting and the extra Implications from the Newspaper:
|NoP to 21||38||37||37||36||34||33||32||30||28||25||23||20||17||13||10||6|
|NoP to 20||34||33||32||31||30||29||27||25||23||21||18||16||12||9||5|
|NoP to 19||29||28||28||27||26||24||23||21||19||17||14||11||8||5|
|NoP to 18||25||25||24||23||22||21||19||17||15||13||11||8||4|
|NoP to 17||22||22||21||20||19||17||16||14||12||10||7||4|
|NoP to 16||19||19||17||17||16||14||12||11||9||6||4|
|NoP to 15||16||15||15||14||13||12||10||8||6||4|
|NoP to 14||13||13||12||11||10||9||7||5||3|
|NoP to 13||12||10||10||9||8||6||5||3|
|NoP to 12||9||9||8||7||6||4||3|
|NoP to 11||8||7||6||5||4||3|
|NoP to 10||6||6||5||3||2|
(This assumes having 217 Shadowy and that the resources are piled up to the limit and turned in all at once and you started with nothing. Otherwise, the actual act of using them provides 10 x Maniac's Prayer which could potentiality be turned into Correspondence Plaques or even Aeolian Screams, and this isn't taken into account.)
The combined action cost of publishing, converting, and cashing-in to reach a desired level from a specific whole starting point can be seen below (again, provided that the Shadowy requirements are met, and Outlandish Editions are being used):
|Actions to 21||1030||1002.5||993.5||964||914||881.5||847||793||735||660.5||601.5||521||438.5||336.5||253||147|
|Actions to 20||921||894.5||868||837.5||807||773.5||721.5||667.5||609.5||553.5||474||413||313||229.5||124.5|
|Actions to 19||797.5||770||762||732.5||701||649||615.5||561.5||504.5||446.5||368||288.5||207||122.5|
|Actions to 18||693.5||684.5||658||628.5||597||564.5||511.5||457.5||399.5||343.5||283.5||204||103|
|Actions to 17||609||603||574.5||544||513.5||461.5||428||373||318||259||181.5||102|
|Actions to 16||529.5||520.5||473.5||462.5||432||382||327||291.5||235.5||160||99|
|Actions to 15||449||421.5||413.5||383||352.5||319||267||212||155||98|
|Actions to 14||369.5||363.5||334||304.5||273||240.5||188.5||133.5||78.5|
|Actions to 13||331||285||277||246.5||216||165||130.5||77.5|
|Actions to 12||257.5||248.5||219||191.5||160||109||74.5|
|Actions to 11||221||194.5||166||135.5||106||73.5|
|Actions to 10||167||160||131.5||83.5||52|
(The .5 actions come from getting 2 x Whirring Contraptions from Wilmot's End in the Searching out a Missing Woman carousel for the newspaper. It takes 11 actions to get 2 Contraptions, so it takes 5.5 actions to get a single one (on paper). So the true action cost can be made by adding 5.5 to the numbers that end with .5)
(For comparison a full day in reality is 144 actions if you use all of them.)
While these numbers are accurate for the mentioned conditions, they don't take into account that you have to deal with Wounds occasionally. It is simply to give you an idea about the length of this process.
Converting Journal of Infamy into Extraordinary Implication also costs 5 CP Connected: Benthic, but those can be acquire en masse using Endowment of a University Fellowship. The cost of of these few actions are not represented in the above table.
If you lack the Shadowy to reliably reach 104 copy, it will, obviously, take more publishes and thus, actions.
As mentioned, raising SotC this way requires more (modified) Watchful each time a new SotC level is reached, capping at a whopping 300 to reach the final, 21st level. This is quite the challenge in itself, likely requiring the use of more than one Mood card due to the sheer amount of actions. Take a look at Watchful Items and perhaps even Raising Attribute Caps (Guide) to figure out how you could achieve this, but some tips are shown below. Remember that the Mood counts as a hat! Good news is, this is simply the requirement and the challenge itself always stays the same, at Broad 150.
And if you're absolutely certain you cannot reach 300 Watchful even with a Mood, and lack the patience to either get the needed items or raise your Watchful cap, there is still a way. Take a look at The Letter Method.
It is possible to reach 300 without having the Overgoat, spending Fate, completing an Ambition, relying on Seasonal items or having a Watchful Destiny. However this requires:
- The Preternaturally Intent Mood
- Being either a Monster-Hunter or a Correspondent for their respective Weapons ( A Notched Bone Harpoon or A Pot of Violant Ink)
- Base Watchful of 218 (must have reached Station VIII) (Remember that this is only for the above mentioned conditions! Can be lowered if you have the Overgoat, Seasonal or Fate-locked items, a Watchful Destiny or The Great Game (Affiliation) at 40 Renown: The Great Game. Having a matching Destiny and the Philosophically Perfect Partnership Spouse will already reduce the limit to 212, cancelling the requirement to reach Station VIII (or even open the first station).)
- Having 25 Renown: Revolutionaries for the item, Language of Laces
- Access to The Court of the Wakeful Eye for The Minister of State Affairs
- CASH MONEY TO BUY the MOST DAZZLING GARMENTS AND MITTS AVAILABLE TO any RESPECTABLE AND WELL-TO-DO CITIZEN of the BAZAAR'S FIFTH CITY!
Gaining 300 without the Mood is also possible with the right combination of Destinies, Seasonal items, and Fate locked goodies, all without specific completed Ambition items!
|Requirements||-Goat -Seasonal -Destiny -Ambition||-Goat -Seasonal -Ambition||-Mood -Ambition|
|Min base Watchful||218||212||200|
|Hat||Preternaturally Intent (mood)||Preternaturally Intent (mood)||Fancy Glasses / Cream / Face / Toppest Hat|
|Clothing||Smock'o Pockets||Smock'o Pockets||Smock'o Pockets|
|Gloves||Insatiable Glove||Insatiable Glove||Insatiable Glove|
|Weapon||Violant Ink / 'Poon||Violant Ink / 'Poon||Violant Ink / 'Poon|
|Boots||Language of Laces||Language of Laces||Language of Laces|
|Companion||The Minister of State Affairs||The Minister of State Affairs||Übergoat FATE|
|Destiny||-||Gleam / The Memory / The Revelation||Gleam / The Memory / The Revelation|
|Affiliation||Newspaper / Orphans||Newspaper / Orphans||The Great Game|
|Transport||-||-||Weasel-Infested Velocipede FATE CHRISTMAS|
|Home Comfort||Voluminous Library||Voluminous Library||Cloud-filled Sphere FATE ELECTION|
|Spouse||Brainy Duo / Player / Model / Bones||Brainy Duo||Brainy Duo|
(Having the Brainy Duo Spouse negates the need to have either a Newspaper or an Orphanage in the first column.)
In the likely event that you can't reach 300 Watchful without a Mood there's another inconvenience encountered near the end. Wounds gain and action costs. Just going from 20 to 21 takes 21 actions while also hurting a lot (3 CP on average). This means that even when starting from perfect health, you'll likely be dead after only gaining 12 CP SotC. Mood cards are Rare and only last for an hour, so needing to wait for more is not exactly pleasant when being so close to greatness! You'll need to count your actions and effectively take care of your Wounds to maximize each Mood. Be sure to wait for all your actions to regenerate before activating the Mood, and you gain an additional 5-6 actions while the Mood itself lasts. Take a look at Wounds Loss to figure out your healing options, some of the best are picked out here, and also some tips for maxing actions:
Maximizing Wounds Loss
- A Magnificent Feast from Christmas. If you have this in your pantry from the last Lacre-season, this could be a perfect time to effectively use it. Not only does it evaporate all your wounds, it also gives 10 extra actions!
- (FATE) The Rare Card of the Slavering Dream-Hound cures all Wounds with a bit of bonus Piece of Rostygold! If you have the Hound, you can hold onto the card until the need arises!
- Using 2 x Professional Perk to Lose half your Wounds. Not an efficient way of using Perk Points, but it comes in handy here.
- Attend to Your Health in your Parabolan Base-Camp, -3, or -6 CP if you have a bowl of Parabolan Orange-apples at hand. This also requires some Exotic Qualities and an action to enter the camp itself.
- Take a moment to tend your wounds when brawling with dockers is a mid-level Dangerous check, giving -3 CP, and -2 even if you fail. This is probably the best reliable option without outside help, unless you amass Parabolan Orange-apples and can guarantee the checks in your Parabolan Base-Camp.
- A acquaintance offering you help is the best reliable option if available. Allows to lose 6 CP of Wounds per action if a friend is constantly cooperating. (Drink the medicine they bring for the best effect.)
- A Firkin of Hesperidean Cider is unlikely to be in possession, but takes care of the problem entirely, healing you completely in 2 actions.
- You can also fully heal yourself using FATE from F.F. Gebrandt's Tincture of Vigour, or A Restorative card. (The card is cheaper, but the tincture is always available.)
- A Magnificent Feast, as mentioned before, gives +10 actions.
- Darkdrop Coffee gives +10 actions while also adding a single CP of Wounds.
- A Gift of Time provided by Time, the Healer each week can be held onto to give +10 actions.
- Being an Exceptional Friend doubles your pool of actions, allowing for a head start of 40 instead of 20.
- You can buy actions with FATE if you're desperate.
Using A Scholar of the Correspondence
(Ambition uses are not included)
Most notable uses
- Level 10 is required to Become a Correspondent
- Having level 21 is one option for gaining London's Nerves, part of the path to becoming a Paramount Presence.
- Invite guests from the observatory to a symposium at your Cottage by the Observatory becomes 100% at level 17
- With level 21, you can build a statue of yourself, as Pre-eminent Scholar of the Correspondence at Jericho Locks
- Many SotC challenges are impossible to 100%, so reaching the maximum level of 21 gives the highest achievable success rate
- CHRISTMAS Examine it through your Semiotic Monocle from Unusual Pail of So-Called Snow becomes 100% at level 10
- FEAST OF THE ROSE Getting a Correspondence tattoo requires level 10
- When SMEN, it can be sacrificed for faster progression
Specific levels required
(Naturally, higher levels permit the ones requiring lower than them.)
- Level 1
- Reading letters sent by Correspondents
- Starting the Uncovering Secrets Framed in Gold story
- Unlocking an option to start SMEN and an early option right after beginning
- One of the options when Asking Madame Shoshana to cast your horoscope
- On the road to becoming a PoSI, can be the cause of your importance
- The 1 and 50 conversions when using Maniac's Prayers (The 500 conversion doesn't use it)
- Drawing The Skin of the Bazaar, a rare card found only in the Bazaar Side-streets, also used for one of the options on said card
- Enabling a new option on a card when on holiday in the Tomb-Colonies
- The ability to invite the Shivering Relicker for some warm cocoa
- Gaining the The Formula for Empyrean Redolence from Mr Hearts and beginning the Theological Husbandry stories (FATE-locked)
- Beginning your Tales of the University
- Unlocking an option on a card when visiting The Mirror-Marches
- Reaping the academic benefits in The Forgotten Quarter
- Composing symphonies in the Correspondence
- An option at one point in the Wars of Illusion
- Talking about spiders at your Cottage by the Observatory
- Understanding the wind when out on the The Sea of Voices
- Gaining secrets in The Forgotten Quarter
- Asking the devils about it at your Guest Room at the Brass Embassy
- Regaining certain stones if misplaced
- Gaining Virginia's unfortunate attention
- Noticing hidden signs when riding a cart Beneath the Neath!
- Getting a certain visitor at Hallowmas
- Level 3
- Can replace one of the requirements when designing your Zubmarine
- Unlocking one of the options when choosing A Rainbow of Offerings, a free gift after becoming a PoSI
- Drawing a red-bordered card when in A state of some confusion
- Choosing a better option on the rare card, The Skin of the Bazaar
- Unlocking one of the choices when finishing the story of the Face-Tailor
- Level 4, 9 and 16
- Can be used when SMEN
- Level 5
- Level 7
- Entering a non-existent Lighthouse
- Lever 10
- Level 15
- Swear the oath to become a Steward of the Discordance, by the Hurlers.
- Level 21
Challenges based on
Some challenges simply cannot be done with 100% success, as SotC 25 is unreachable. This is to be accepted!
- Level 6
- Level 9
- Examine a curious package after The Efficient Commissioner interrupts the other work of the GHR (Broad, 100% at 15)
- Level 10
- Presenting a symposium at your Cottage by the Observatory (Broad, 100% at 17)
- Steeping a Dark-Dewed Cherry Liqueur at Station VIII (Broad, 100% at 17)
- Persuading a tower to move at Station VIII (Narrow, 100% at 14)
- Reading the language on the Standing Stones in the Hurlers (first time) (Broad, 100% at 17)
- Drawing on your Knowledge of the Correspondence when researching anything with Correspondence Focus in the University Lab (Broad, 100% at 17)
- Level 15
- Talking with a Tower at Moulin (Broad, 100% at 25)
- Disobeying a warning and examining a stone (Broad, 100% at 25)
- Reading the language on the Standing Stones in the Hurlers (after the first time, has three variants, (2), (3)) (Broad, 100% at 25))
- Not researching the Correspondence in the Adulterine Castle (Broad, 100% at 25)
- CHRISTMAS Writing a monograph in snow? (Only for Correspondents) (Broad, 100% at 25)
- Level 18
- Advising a sliotar in a game of hurling (Broad, 100% at 30)
- Varying Difficulty