Embroiled in the Wars of Illusion (Guide)
Level 0: The Heights of Chicanery
The Wars of Illusion story begins in The Flit at A Name Whispered in Darkness 6 in the storylet The Heights of Chicanery. There is a secret world beyond what you’ve already discovered about The Flit, and to uncover it, you start with what worked before: following couriers and finding out what they know.
Increasing Embroiled in the Wars of Illusion to 2 requires rare successes on particular options from The Heights of Chicanery, some of which require certain levels of Seeking... and/or Investigating... to access.
You can use the options in The Tricks of the Courier's Trade to build Investigating... and Shadowing Couriers to build Seeking.... (Alternatively, if you have other sources for Investigating... and/or Seeking..., you can use those storylets to build them up and then spend them here.)
The following options give Embroiled on a rare success (+1 CP, except for Dropping the Eaves, which awards +2 CP).
|The Heights of Chicanery||Raid a Message-Drop||5||4|
|The Heights of Chicanery||Intercept a Message||5||4|
|The Heights of Chicanery||Dropping the Eaves||85|
|The Tricks of the Courier's Trade||Spy on the couriers||85||+2 CP||+1 CP|
|The Tricks of the Courier's Trade||Spy on those who supply them||90||+3 CP|
|Shadowing Couriers||Follow at a distance||85||+2 CP||+1 CP|
|Shadowing Couriers||Follow closely||90||+3 CP|
Level 2: Wars of Illusion
Once you've gotten Embroiled to level 2 (a total of 3 CP worth of rare successes), a new option appears under The Heights of Chicanery titled Making Your Name: Wars of Illusion. This redirects to the main Flit storylet Wars of Illusion.
Level 6: Bats and Cats
To progress from here and unlock the Bats and Cats option What is going on with these people?, you need to raise all of these qualities to 5: Making Use of Bats, Making Use of Cats, Investigating..., and Seeking...
Making Use of Bats and Cats
The following options from Bats and Cats allow you to raise Making Use of:
Spending Bats and Cats
You can also spend your Bats and Cats qualities in the following storylets for rewards. Note, however, that all these actions reset those progress qualities on success, meaning you'll have to build them up again to satisfy the above requirements for unlocking What is going on with these people?
- Spending Making Use of Bats
- Spending Making Use of Cats
Success tends to award Cryptic Clues and Rostygold. Additionally, Track a bat heading towards Veilgarden and Follow up a tip-off grant 3 CP of Embroiled on a rare success. Failure tends to lose you Bats, Cats, Seeking..., and/or Investigating..., and to raise Suspicion.
Once you unlock What is Going on with These People? in the Bats and Cats storylet, you will be redirected to a storylet with the option Convoluted like a weasel. This is a Shadowy 95 challenge; failure will subtract 5 CP of each of the tracking qualities, and success will set Embroiled to 9 and A Name Whispered in Darkness to 7.
Level 9: Make More Use of Bats and Cats
A storylet now appears in The Flit called Make More Use of Bats. Or Cats. Here you can choose whether to work with the bats or the cats — though, as the game informs you, the choice isn't permanent at this point. (Ultimately, siding with the bats will align you with The Glass later in the story, while choosing the cats will align you with The Shroud.)
Level 10: Choosing a Side
Your choice also unlocks a new Flit storylet, either Working with the Bats or Working with the Cats. (You can unlock the other as well by raising its Making Use quality to 1 on the Bats and Cats storylet.)
The following cards may also appear in your opportunity deck during this section of the story, and give Cryptic Clues and/or Seeking... on success. Additionally, the option Anything but that on A Theosophistical Enquiry gives 2 CP of Plagued by a Popular Song.
- A Theosophistical Enquiry
- A Theosophistical Discussion
- A Theosophistical Debate
- A Geological Expedition
- A Philosophical Commission
- A Theosophistical Development
- A Theosophistical Excursion
- A Theosophistical Séance
- A Theosophistical Decision
- A Theosophistical Occasion
- A Theosophistical Profit
- A Theosophistical Persuasion
When you're ready to progress, Gain the full trust of the bats or Cement your place with the cats. Both require Shadowy 97 to be unlocked, and the challenge level is Shadowy 101 (but thankfully, you don't lose Bats or Cats CP on a failure).
Level 15: Mahogany Hall
To continue the storyline, you need to unlock the route to Mahogany Hall, which will now appear in the Spite area of your map. ( Mahogany Hall can also be unlocked temporarily, or permanently for 5 FATE, from the opportunity card The Ways of Mahogany Hall.)
When you reach Mahogany Hall, you will be welcomed to either the Glass or the Shroud, and once more get the chance to rethink your allegiance. If you choose to play both sides, your Embroiled will be reset to 9, and you can play through that part of the storyline again (note that this option results in +3 CP Subtle (up to level 10) and is repeatable if you choose the same side again). If you choose to remain loyal to your side, Embroiled will be set to 20 and you can continue with the story from here.
Level 20: An Illusion or a Séance
|Increasing Connected: Shroud||Shroud||Glass|
|Hold your own séance?||exactly 1|
|The mystic arts||2–5|
|Before the grand séance||6–14||exactly 0|
|Become a double agent for the Shroud||6–9||6–9|
|Watching the Grand Illusion||6–10||0–6|
|Sabotaging an illusion||11–14||6|
|Final preparations for the grand séance||15|
|Increasing Connected: Glass||Glass||Shroud|
|Star in your own illusion?||exactly 1|
|The magic of the theatre||2–5|
|Before the grand illusion||6–14||exactly 0|
|Become a double agent for the Glass||6–9||6–9|
|Sabotaging a séance||11–14||6|
|Final preparations for the grand illusion||15|
Up to a point, you can continue playing both sides and raise both Connected qualities. However, to progress to the final stage of your performance, you have to choose one of the options in the associated Before the [performance], Become a double agent, or Sabotaging storylets that cements your alliance with your chosen faction and raises the associated Connected to 15. This will unlock the Final preparations storylet for your chosen side. That storylet will raise your Connected to 16 and set Embroiled to 25, unlocking a new storylet for the final performance.
Level 25: The Performance
It's time to put on your big séance or illusion. In either case, it's a Shadowy 113 challenge, and success raises your Connected to 20.
- The grand séance! (unlocked with Connected: Shroud 16)
- The Most Daring Feat of Illusion and Escapology! (unlocked with Connected: Glass 16)