Assembling a Skeleton (Guide)/Recipes

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This table is included in the Skeleton Guide, but can also be bookmarked separately for players who want just want a reference sheet, without the accompanying strategy guide.


Home Comforts[edit]

Besides selling skeletons, you also can Preserve Your Skeleton for Home Use, making it a Home Comfort. Since Approximate Value of Your Skeleton in Pennies basically doesn't matter here (minimal requirements are 100–300), the following recipes present the cheapest ways for obtaining specific Home Comforts.

In addition to the skeleton and some Home Comfort-specific costs, each item also costs one Annings' Complete and Reliable Kit, which you can buy for 125 x Hinterland Scrip at the Upper River Exchange.

Relatively Plausible Curator Skeleton[edit]

The skeleton must be a Curator, which requires that you have Connected: The Masters 3+, and a skeleton with exactly 1 x Skull, 2 x Arms, 2 x Legs and 2 x Wings. It cannot have any Fins or Tails. The skeleton also needs 4+ Menace, no Antiquity and less than 5 x Implausibility.

This recipe does not require any seasonal items, and doesn't require adding joints. The hardest part to acquire is the Ribcage, which requires access to the Below-Stairs of Helicon House.

Diorama of a Prehistoric Hunter[edit]

The skeleton must be a Humanoid, which requires a Torso Style of 10–20, and exactly 1 x Skull, 2 x Arms and 2 x Legs. It cannot have any Wings, Fins or Tails. The skeleton also needs 3+ Antiquity and no Amalgamy.

The home comfort also costs 10 x Unprovenanced Artefacts, 20 x Ambiguous Eoliths and 100 x Bone Fragments.

Gear-driven Skeletal Monkey[edit]

The skeleton must be a Monkey, which requires a Torso Style of 10–20, and exactly 1 x Skull, 4 x Arms and 1 x Tail. It cannot have any Legs, Wings or Fins. The skeleton also needs 3+ Amalgamy and no Antiquity.

The home comfort also costs 5 or 15 x Whirring Contraptions (Having the Albino Rat saves you 10) and 3000 x Nevercold Brass Slivers.

Regally Re-embodied Bird of Prey[edit]

The skeleton must be a Bird, which requires that you have a Study of Avian Anatomies, and a skeleton with a Torso Style of 20 or above and exactly 2 x Legs and 2 x Wings. It cannot have any Arms or Fins. It can have 0 or 1 Tails, but it is best to have 0 to not incur an extra Tailfeather cost. The skeleton also needs 3+ Antiquity and no Menace.

The home comfort also costs 100 x Royal-Blue Feathers and 100 x Silk Scraps, and, if it has a tail, 20 x Tailfeathers Brilliant as Flame.

Anatomically Accurate Batrachian Bench[edit]

The skeleton must be an Amphibian, which requires that you have an Account of Frogs etc. The skeleton need a Torso Style of 20 or above and exactly 1 x Skull, exactly 4 x Legs and no Tails. It cannot have any Arms, Wings or Fins. The skeleton also needs 3+ Amalgamy and no Menace.

The home comfort also costs 100 x Relics of the Fourth City.

Other Recipes[edit]

Unless specifically stated, the following recipes do not have the skeletons declared as a Chimera. Declaring it as a Chimera leads to a spike in Self-Evident Implausibility that can be troublesome and expensive to deal with.

Avoiding Exhaustion[edit]

These recipes are intended to avoid accruing any Bone Market Exhaustion, while using parts that are as cheap as possible.

Please note that as of 8th September 2021, the formulas for the Teller of Terrors, Tentacled Entrepreneur and Investment-Minded Ambassador have changed; as such, the skeletons below may be suboptimal or cause Exhaustion.

Coral-Coiled Cockatrice[edit]

Like the above, this recipe is intended to reach a target maximum of 18 from the multiplicative product of Amalgamy with Antiquity; the intended customer is still the Zailor. As for the factors, Amalgamy and Antiquity switch numbers.

  • Thorned Ribcage: Ditto.
  • Skull in Coral
  • Tomb-Lion's Tail: Install this early to chance the roll, if it is not 100%. Maybe you could abort or alter the build if you fail, but this must succeed for the recipe to be viable.
  • Helical Thighbone(s): Install these next. If you successfully install one, then this is all you need. If you fail the first leg, try to install another; if you fail both, this recipe cannot be pursued any further.
  • Wing of a Young Terror Bird(s): At least one, or both wings if both legs have to be Helical. This/These should bring Antiquity to 3.
    • Albatross Wing: The other wing, if you prefer to raise the value of the skeleton to as high as possible. One of the legs must be a Jurassic Femur if you take this option.
  • Declare your (Skeleton Type) a completed Bird


Knock-Kneed Newt[edit]

This recipe will produce a versatile reptile with 9 x Amalgamy, 2 x Antiquity, and 2 x Menace. Both a Zailor with Particular Interests and A Rubbery Collector will pay 18 secondary rewards, just below the threshold of generating Bone Market Exhaustion.

Attaching Helical Thighbones is not automatic until you have Shapeling Arts 10. If you fail one of the first three thighbones, there are ways to recover the recipe to target 6 x Amalgamy, and either 3 x Antiquity, or 3 x Menace, which will produce the same pay-out of 18. Failing the last roll will result in a pay-out of only 16, and failing two rolls is difficult to recover from.

Exhausting Recipes[edit]

These recipes intend to raise secondary qualities while raising Bone Market Exhaustion, but with the target of maximizing gains while minimizing Exhaustion accumulation.

That said, these recipes have high ratios of primary gains to secondary gains though, and will require the expenditure of a lot of resources. You should only consider these if you need a lot of the resources from the primary gains in addition to the resources from the secondary gain.

Also, most of these use the Skeleton with Seven Necks. Be prepared to visit the lab or Balmoral a lot.

Due to the aforementioned changes, some of these skeletons are now suboptimal or much more Exhausting. Numbers have been updated.

Lopsided Lizard[edit]

This recipe is intended to reach a target maximum of 7 x Amalgamy for sale to the Tentacled Entrepreneur, which maximizes the rewards for one point of Bone Market Exhaustion.

Mr Twists[edit]

This is a skeleton made with the intention of having maximized Amalgamy, without having to resort to a Skeleton with Seven Necks, in order to sell to the Tentacled Entrepreneur. This will require Shapeling Arts challenges, so train this skill first.

This recipe should reach Amalgamy 11, which will maximize the pay-out while keeping your Bone Market Exhaustion at 4 levels, which will be cleared by Time, the Healer.

Warped Warbler[edit]

It should be obvious by now that the Skeleton with Seven Necks is one of the best ribcages for racking up a lot of the secondary qualities. Of course, you will have to get it through a lengthy lab project, painting, or adventuring in the Balmoral woods. That said, the following recipe attempts to reach target values of Amalgamy, while maximizing Value.

That should give you up to 14 x Amalgamy for selling to the Tentacled Entrepreneur. This will give seven levels of Bone Market Exhaustion. Because of quadratic scaling, one more point of Amalgamy will give nine levels of Exhaustion.

Ancient Armored Avian[edit]

This is like the above, but some Plated Skulls are swapped with Horned Skulls. This is trickier than it seems, because the Monstrous Anatomy rolls for the latter skulls are more difficult. That said, the target is 13 x Menace and 3 x Antiquity.

This skeleton is to be sold to the Author of Gothic Tales, thus giving a return of 39 x Carved Ball of Stygian Ivory for 1 level of Bone Market Exhaustion.

You can also replace the Horned Skull or Sabre-toothed Skull with a Doubled Skull for more manageable increases of Menace. Of course, if you do this, the wings must be composed of a Wing of a Young Terror Bird and an Albatross Wing.

Amorphous Armored Avian[edit]

Yes, this is another recipe that is going to use Plated Skulls. Anyway, the target qualities are 13 x Menace and 3 x Amalgamy. Skulls In Coral might be substitutes for Plated Skulls, but the latter has a more reliable and controllable source.

Sell this to the Enthusiast of a Rubbery Menace to get doles of Nightsoil and 39 x Baskets of Rubbery Pies, and just one level of Bone Market Exhaustion.

Less Exhausting Recipes[edit]

Unlike the previous category of recipes, which intend to go for high ratios of primary gains to secondary gains, the following recipes intend for the converse. They take fewer actions to cobble together too. However, they will still incur Exhaustion.

Gigantic Geode Toad[edit]

You want to sell this to the Ambassador. Her Bone Market Exhaustion threshold is the trickiest: 1 level for every 25 units of goods obtained through the secondary quality ( Antiquity, in her case). Since the output is a square of the quality, it is easy to breach thresholds. Thus far, the most optimal target for the quality is 7.

This gives 6 x Antiquity. This leads to 1 level of Exhaustion.

Terrifying Pterodactyl[edit]

You want to sell this to the Author of Gothic Tales. The target is 6 x Menace and 6 x Antiquity.

Caducean Raptor[edit]

You want to sell this to the Rubbery Collector. The target is 6 x Amalgamy and 6 x Menace.

The limbs to be used depend on the outcomes of the installation of the skull and tail. If both are successes:

If both are failures, i.e. you have only 4 levels of Menace, then:

If either is a failure, i.e. you have 5 levels of Menace, then go for 7 levels of Amalgamy with these:

Savage Sunfish[edit]

You also want to sell this to the Rubbery Collector. The target is 5 x Amalgamy and 7 x Menace.

Exhibition Recipes[edit]

Most skeletons are meant to be sold as soon as they are cobbled together, but some have use beyond being sold immediately. The following recipes and their suggested usage would require the player to hold the skeleton without disposing/selling it. Therefore, the onus on the recipe designs is that they should be quick to set-up.

Zealous Ichthyosaurus[edit]

The Leviathan Frame is already a doozy to get, but it's the quickest way to quickly convert one of the ribcages that you already have into a pious monstrosity – assuming that you keep a diverse range of them in reserve.

You don't need a skeleton declaration for this one.

At this time of writing, the best use for this skeleton is for sitting at Burrow-Infra-Mump with a statue to a custom-made saint, waiting for the opportunity to profit from this skeleton.


Pre-Railway Skeletons[edit]

Midgame Rubbery Saint[edit]

This skeleton is designed to let pre-Railway players save time and echoes when obtaining the Nightsoil of the Bazaar from the Tentacled Servant required for the Laboratory equipment upgrade, while minimizing reliance on opportunity cards: each skeleton sells for 208-213 Nightsoil (slightly more than half the amount needed) and only requires a single opportunity card.

Attaching the Bright Brass Skull and the Knotted Humerus are both Mithridacy challenges so you will have an easier time selling this if you have already gained some Mithridacy from the Waswood in Parabola; additionally the challenge on the Humerus will be easier if you take care to attach it before all the other limbs.

Midgame Antique Bone Sculpture[edit]

This skeleton is designed to let players at the start of the Railway save time when obtaining the Bessemer Steel Ingot from the Enthusiast of the Ancient World required for Railway Steel. With some effort, each skeleton can sell for around 250 steel with probably close to 10 implausibility for a Shadowy 450 challenge.

Essentially, you need:

The profit in Bessemer Steel Ingot is dependent on the bones used. A quick reference:

For reference you need around 700 steel for 30 tracks. This is a little less than 3 skeletons at 250 Steel each.

Brass Lollipop[edit]

This skeleton allows you to easily transfer Echoes to Bone Fragments or Hinterland Scrip. This could be useful to get Parabolan Orange-apples for Ivory Femurs in order to make high value skeletons with other skeleton recipes, or in order to get scrip to exchange for a Sabre-toothed Skull, which adds the same value as a brass skull, but doesn't add implausibility. This could be useful when making skeletons with high implausibility like the sculpture above. It can also be done for building the station in Ealing Gardens.

You need:

Stupendous Statues[edit]

These skeletons are meant for the Colourful Phantasist, and should be possible with no access to Parabola. You will want to focus on Implausibility and either Antiquity or Amalgamy. This is one of few ways for pre-Railway players to benefit from exhaustion.

Start with the following parts:

Antiquity:

(Provides Memory of Light and Knob of Scintillack)

Amalgamy:

(Provides Hinterland Scrip and Slim Volume of Bazaarine Poetry)

Menace:

(Provides Solacefruit and Carved Ball of Stygian Ivory)

And end with Declare your (Skeleton Type) a completed Chimera.

This should give you at least 5 Implausibility and 4 of the other quality for 21 bonus items, but may give a lot more, especially if your advanced stats are low.

Leviathan Acquisition[edit]

This skeleton has an Approximate Value of Your Skeleton in Pennies of exactly 30,000 for obtaining the Leviathan Frame from the Carpenter's Granddaughter. There are other ways to do so, but the following are the least Action-intensive. However, the methods use Ivory Femurs, so there might be considerable Implausibility, if you fail the rolls to install them.

That said, the Carpenter's Granddaughter has the stiffest Shadowy challenge of all skeleton-buyers. Failing that will cause you to lose her card too.

When you need big bones...[edit]

At 9 Actions and a profit of just 1250 in value difference, this is not a profitable way to get the Frame. You really need a good reason for having one, and at this time of writing, there is no reason to have the Frame other than to build skeletons.

Opulent Saurian[edit]

This is much like the above, but should be done only when the current Zoological Mania: is for Reptiles.

This should give you a tidy sum of 30085, inclusive of the bonus from Zoological Mania:. Turning this in would give a savings of 3900 for 9 actions - very profitable.

Treasure Toad[edit]

Like the above, but for when the mania is for Amphibians. Use the same skulls and ribcage, and the same number of Ivory Femurs, then continue with the following:

Flamboyantly Fiercely Faithful Ancient Amphibian[edit]

This is a rather complicated recipe that requires a lot of equipment swapping, but it reduces the use of the Ivory Femurs.

Sensational Scarab[edit]

This is for when the mania is for Insects. It takes more actions due to the number of legs that have to be attached, but it is still profitable.

Ornamental Ornithorp[edit]

This is for when the mania is for Birds.

Turning this in would give a savings of 3250 for 9 actions - very profitable.

Foot Fascination[edit]

The following Skeletons are meant to be sold to the Enterprising Boot Salesman whenever this buyer is around, with the other goal being profiting off the current mania. Unidentified Thigh Bones should be the main parts here. Of course, they are not going to get much out of Zoological Mania:, but the secondary goal here is fast turnover of skeletons.

Hopefully you have the Iron-Toothed Terror Bird to clean up after. You will be needing a lot of Thorned Ribcages.

Questionable Quadruped[edit]

That's 11 actions, inclusive of the sale. The bonus for a reptile is 815, whereas for an amphibian it is 790. Add the 21 Ostentatious Diamonds to be had, and that is total profit of 1865 or 1840. Tidy profit, for having used low-value legs.

Ambiguous Arthropod[edit]

Do this in Insect week, of course.

That's 13 actions, inclusive of the sale. The bonus is 835, with 51 diamonds, thus leading to a total profit of 3385. Even tidier than the previous recipe, despite the greater number of actions.

It might be worth using mammoth ribcages instead, as these don't need extra actions to clear secondary qualities. Alternatively one might go for human ribcages and make chimeras instead.

Crackpot Export[edit]

The surface-dwellers who purchase bird skeletons through the Dumbwaiter of Balmoral are the only ones who are foolish enough to buy the following recipes. Of course, you will want to sell these when the current Zoological Mania: is for birds.

Septa-Cranial String-Along[edit]

You get a bonus of about 50 . That takes 13 Actions, not counting the trip between Balmoral and London; still a tidy profit.

Extravagant Eight-Headed Hoax[edit]

You get a bonus of 96.50 . That takes 16 Actions, not counting the trip between Balmoral and London; this is a massive profit.

Due to the high implausibility, few buyers would want this. However, if you are willing to spend the resources and Action points to reduce it, and have the Mithridacy to do so, this skeleton can get you a lot of low-tier resources.

Zoomania Recipes[edit]

These recipes use valuable bones and focus on getting the most profit from active zoomania. Indeed, this World quality is needed to have the following recipes be profitable in terms of profit per Action.

Pelagic to Paraplegic[edit]

This recipe is done on Reptile week.

That would be 6 Actions (including the Action for the sale), for a skeleton value of 50750 and a bonus of 5075 - very profitable. Recommended buyer is the Author of Gothic Tales.

Big Bounteous Beetle[edit]

This recipe is of course done on Insect week.

That would lead to a bonus of approximately 12038, and minus that with 2250 (the cost of adding limb sockets) for a net value increase of 9788 - still very profitable. Suggested buyers are those that want Amalgamy, due to the increase of that quality from adding the sockets.

Swapping the skull for a skull with value of 6250 leads to a bonus of 11475, for a net increase of 9225. The difference of 563 in return for 2 points of Bone Market Exhaustion is not that great, considering that each point of that quality is associated with a profit of approximately 5000 pennies. Thus, consider using Custom-Engraved Skulls only when Time the Healer is about to come and you haven't maxed out your Exhaustion yet.

Wind-Sailing Insect[edit]

This recipe is also done on Insect week.

That would lead to a bonus of 11250, and minus that with 3500 (the cost of adding limb sockets) for a net value increase of 7750 - not as profitable as the above recipe (though getting the Prismatic Frame in the first place might already be profitable enough). Suggested buyers are those that want Amalgamy, due to the increase of that quality from adding the sockets and the wing.

Ominously Osseous Octo-cranial Crane[edit]

For when the week is for Birds, of course.

Unsorted Recipes[edit]

The following recipes have yet to be categorized.

Fragment Farming[edit]

This deliberately-incomplete skeleton is meant to convert Echoes into Bone Fragments by intentionally failing the Dangerous check during disassembly. Additional parts are optional and implausibility is not a concern since we're not selling this skeleton. There is a risk that you get Whispered Hints instead by succeeding the check, though. Fortunately, the base skeleton (the only part that can't be bought directly) is never consumed upon disassembly whether you succeed or fail, so you can always start again so long as you have the Echoes to afford skulls.

It should be obvious that you will want to do this with your character's Dangerous rating as low as possible. Items that penalize Dangerous (such as the Talkative Rattus Faber) will be useful so that you don't have to resort to something more permanent. This is more reliable for lower-end characters, however; high-end ones would have about 55% chance of "success" even with Dangerous-reducing equipment.

The Frog of Faith and the Reverent Reptile[edit]

You make this skeleton to sell to the Bohemian Sculptress. Keep in mind that the skeleton must not have any Antiquity.

Such a calcified congregation would bless you with at least 5 Counter-church Theology points, more if you use the other ribcage. This should net you a lot of Rumours of the Upper River. And flowers, of course.

But really, there are more efficient and less troublesome ways of getting the Rumours.

Beatific Bird[edit]

If you still insist on using skeletons to get the Rumours, but you don't want to risk failed Mithridacy rolls or go through the tedium of getting the holy thigh bones, then use this build:

Heuvelmans' Nightmare[edit]

If you make this, you intend to have it sold to the Rubbery Collector.

If you succeed in all of the rolls, you should have around 10 x Menace and 8 x Amalgamy. You would be having a lot of Rubbery Pies, but keep in mind that there will be Bone Market Exhaustion.