Forgotten Quarter Expeditions (Guide)

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You can start doing expeditions in Base-Camp once you have Set Up Camp in the Forgotten Quarter. This requires a Route to the Forgotten Quarter and will therefore be available to most players at A Name in Seven Secret Alphabets 5.

In order to start with expeditions you also have to Learn the Traditions of the Forgotten Quarter to gain your first point of Archaeologist unlocking the first expedition; this will cost 1 Tale of Terror!!, 250 Cryptic Clues and 1000 Whispered Hints.

Expeditions take the form of three stages: Preparation, Excavation and Loot!



The goal of preparing is to get as many Supplies as possible. The cap is 100, and you can re-use supplies left over from other Expeditions, so there's no need to worry too much about overpreparing. If anything, it's advisable to cap out at 100 before beginning your expedition; there's nothing more embarrassing than failing because you were missing the single unit of supplies needed to arrive at your objective.

Summarized in the table below:

Burly guards and porters
Option Cost Stats for 100% E/S (materials) A/S E/S (est. total)1
Hire Strong-Backed Labour None 1.17 E/S 0.67 A/S 2.85 E/S
Recruit Clay Man labour

(10x at a time)23

None .53 A/S 2.26 E/S
Recruit Clay Man labour

(in bulk)2

Per 2 : None .92 E/S .50 A/S 2.17 E/S
Send an Unfinished Man to Spite None 0 E/S 0.89 A/S 2.22 E/S

1Assumes an opportunity cost of 2.5 EPA
2Visiting the Clay Quarters takes an extra action to get in, so the more labour you can get at a time, the better your efficiency. Examples are given for buying ten labour (spending five Identities Uncovered and five actions in the Clay Quarter), and the ideal limiting case of buying in very large amounts.
3Visiting the Clay Quarters costs 1 x Tale of Terror!! (0.5e) with Mired in Clay ≤ 2, and 2 x Inklings of Identity (0.2e) with Mired in Clay ≥ 3. The above assumes the latter option

For most players, Strong-Backed Labour and Favours: The Docks will be the way to go.

  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 With A Person of Some Importance - it is better to sell these and buy Strong-Backed Labour instead.



Once you've finished up your preparations, you can head out on an Expedition! Once you've chosen your Expedition, you can't go back to get more supplies, so be sure to come prepared. If you run out of Supplies, you'll have to abandon your Expedition, which is a terrible waste. Each of these areas provide different rewards and lore.

The available Expedition areas are:

Your Archaeologist quality cannot be increased beyond level 5.

For training Archaeologist, A thieves' cache and Deep Blue Heaven are recommended. For profit, The tomb of the Silken Thread is recommended.

Archaeologist's and Rivals' Progress[edit]

To complete an Expedition, you'll need to increase your Archaeologist's Progress to the required amount which is equal to the minimum number of supplies needed to start the expedition. There is no point to acquiring more than necessary. It is also important to know that you can leave your Base-Camp to do other things. Although this seems a bit inconsistent with the concept of rivals it is very useful if you are missing an item needed to hinder your rivals (more on this later).

There are three options for progression that are always available. These are all broad Watchful challenges:

Failing the challenge will consume your Supplies at no Progress gain. Each option, success or failure, changes The Airs of the Forgotten Quarter quality. This might unlock rare Airs-dependent cards. Rivals' Progress has a possibility of increasing with each action, with the amount of the increase dependent on which approach was taken and whether or not the result was a failure or a success.

Progress (per Action) = Supplies invested (1,2 or 3) x Chance of success (/ Actions spent; always 1) = S x C

Supplies per Progress = S / P = S / (S x C) = 1 / C (how many supplies you need to spend for each progress only depends on your Watchful stat)

Rivals' progress per own Progress = [Rivals' progress per 1 action] / [own Progress / 1 action] = [RP/A] / [P/A] =  RP / (S x C)

own Progress until 10 Rivals' progress = 9 Rivals' Progress / (Rivals' Progress / own Progress) = 9 / (R/P) = 9 / (RP / (S x C))

We can determine how much progress we can make before our rivals get ten on their own. Note that you start with  Rivals' Progress 1 into the expedition and that these are numbers that are average results. You might get unlucky and gain rivals' progress on more than half of your actions. Nevertheless, you can approximate how a certain expedition will go rival-wise. You can also tell how many extra supplies you need to bring if you don't want to invest in 100 of them.

Approach Watchful Success Chance Progress/ Action Supplies/ Progress Rivals' Progress/ Own Progress Average Progress to 10 RP
Cautious 42 50% 0.5 2.00 0.75 12
50 60% 0.6 1.67 0.58 15
59 70% 0.7 1.43 0.46 19
67 80% 0.8 1.25 0.38 24
75 90% 0.9 1.11 0.31 29
84 100% 1.0 1.00 0.25 36
Bold 84 50% 1.0 2.00 0.50 18
101 60% 1.2 1.67 0.42 22
118 70% 1.4 1.43 0.36 25
134 80% 1.6 1.25 0.31 29
152 90% 1.8 1.11 0.28 32
167 100% 2.0 1.00 0.25 36
Buccaneering 135 50% 1.5 2.00 0.67 14
162 60% 1.8 1.67 0.50 18
189 70% 2.1 1.43 0.38 24
215 80% 2.4 1.25 0.29 31
242 90% 2.7 1.11 0.22 41
267 100% 3.0 1.00 0.17 54

Other options unlock under certain conditions, mostly if The Airs of the Forgotten Quarter are right. The only really interesting one is A sign? which gives you 4 progress without cost or risk of advancing your rivals.

If you run out of supplies you will have to Resupply ending your current attempt and resetting your progress.

The same happens if your  Rivals' Progress reaches 10 and you have to Concede. This however might be averted.

Hindering your Rivals[edit]


Either through the length of your expedition or sheer bad luck, your Rivals' Progress will grow. There are two ways to avoid conceding, though. Both require you to pass a skill challenge. One is the Airs-dependent storylet options that show up every now and then if your rivals' progress is between 3–9. They will reduce your rivals' progress by 2 at the cost of 1 unit of supplies and various items. Note that these are specific to certain characters which needs to be mentioned when you start the expedition.

Should your Rivals' Progress reach 10, you can spend 10 supplies to Confront a Rival. Confronting a named rival will cost 4 actions and end their involvement in the expedition, so you can only do this once per character. Successful countering also drops rivals' progress back to 1, though it doesn't prevent a rival threat to grow up again. If there are no named rivals left, the generic Other Rivals option appears and can be played until you lack the resources to do so.



At the end of certain expeditions you will uncover valuable treasure. For a details on Unpredictable Treasures, check out this guide.

Expedition conclusions are as follows:

Late Mid-Game, Minimized Number of Actions Guide[edit]

The following is a guide for players who have been playing this game for a long, long time, and wish to keep their action point use to a minimum while finding treasure.

Restrictions: To minimize the number of actions that you will need to finish the expedition, follow these restrictions:

  1. No Sudden Insights: Using these means that you will have to factor in the actions which were spent to obtain the Second Chances. This not only extends the number of actions, but also complicates the estimations.
  2. Always use A buccaneering approach: This is obviously the fastest of the three non-luck-dependent ways of accumulating progress. Also, the Rivals' Progress hindrance will only rarely be an issue, as you will outpace your rivals using this method.
  3. Obtain supplies through spending Favours: The Docks gained through opportunity cards: As mentioned earlier in this page, this method of gaining supplies is the most economical and efficient in the long-run. This will be needed in order to squeeze the most profit out of any outcome for the expedition. Alternatively, Strong-Backed Labour from the Underclay can be used.

Watchful requirements: In order to achieve 100% success on A buccaneering approach, you will need to reach 267 Watchful. After all, no Sudden Insights are to be used, and any setback due to failure can dash away a lot of potential profit. Increasing your base Watchful above 200 is recommended, but it's possible without that if you can put an extremely Watchful outfit together.

Number of Actions Points Needed: The number of action points you need is determined using the following stages of the expedition. Note that conservative assumptions are used, with the main one being no occurrence of good luck. You need 30 points of Archaeologist's Progress to end the expedition successfully, and you start with 1.

  • Obtaining Favours: The Docks to be converted into supplies: The expedition nominally needs 30 supplies.
  • Starting the expedition: 1 action
  • Accumulating progress: You will need to use A buccaneering approach several times, possibly followed by one of the other choices. Gaining 29 progress requires 10 actions. Rivals' Progress is not expected to be an issue, if you can pass every Watchful check for accumulating progress.
  • Completing the expedition: 1 Action point to end the expedition successfully.

Modifiers due to good luck: Currently, the only known moment when good luck can occur is during Archaeologist's Progress accumulation.

  • Good luck: If you have good luck, you can score A sign?. This option grants 4 points of Archaeologist's Progress, meaning that 4 crates of supplies are saved. This in turn means that you save Action points which are needed to get the Docks' Favour for these supplies. (You may also save 1 Action point, if the new value is divisible by 3.)
  • It's optimal to take the non-buccaneering action before the very final action of the expedition, so that potential Signs found will have a bigger effect. You need to draw A Sign twice in order for it to save an action on this expedition.

End-game version[edit]

This version assumes Strong-Backed Labour sourced with the Jericho Statue (5 SBL counted as 12.5 E instead of actions)

Supplies are gained at 3 S/A and 0.83 E/S

1 action to start, 1 action to finish, 1 to convert on the rat market and 10 actions and 29 supplies to do the expedition means: 13+9.67 actions + 24.07 E -> 147.5 E 123.43 E / 22.67 actions = 5.44 EPA

This doesn't take into account occasionally drawing the sign.