Menaces (Guide)

From Fallen London Wiki

Menaces are generally troublesome qualities increased by certain actions. When their levels get too high, something unpleasant may happen.


Sometimes, when failing challenges (or even when succeeding), you get qualities called Menaces. The higher a menace gets, the more unpleasant things start happening. The main menaces increase the same way as other qualities: it takes 1 CP to raise a menace to level 1, another 2 CP to raise it to level 2, etc.

Each menace tends to be associated with a certain Attribute — for example, you're more likely to get Nightmares while doing Watchful things. If a menace reaches level 8, the consequences send you to a penalty location, where you'll have to reduce that menace in order to escape.

Watchful gains Nightmares which lead to A state of some confusion or The Mirror-Marches.
Owl.pngSidebarnightmares.pngMad.png or Parabola.png

Shadowy gains Suspicion which leads to New Newgate Prison — again!

Dangerous gains Wounds which lead to A boat trip.

Persuasive gains Scandal which leads to Disgraced exile in the Tomb-Colonies.

In general, you want to keep your menaces as low as possible. But there may also be times when you'll need to raise a menace on purpose. Don't worry — the effects (probably) won't be permanent. (A major exception is being sent to New Newgate Prison, which raises your criminal record.) Since most cards and storylets in the penalty locations provide opportunities to reduce the relevant menace, it can be significantly easier to reduce the menace there than in London.

Note that there are certain locations that are exempt from Menace-related movement:



Nightmares are becoming a problem. Some nights you hardly dare sleep. If this reaches 5, bad things may begin to happen. Don't let it reach 8.

Nightmares tend to come from Owl.png Watchful actions, though another notable (if unreliable) source is the variety of opportunity cards about recurring dreams.

Reaching Nightmares 5 causes the appearance of a non-discardable opportunity card, A merry gentleman, which will disappear only once Nightmares drops to 4 or less. If you hit Nightmares 8, you will be sent to either Parabola.png The Mirror-Marches (if you have at least Mirror.png 1 x Memory of Light) or Mad.png A state of some confusion (if you don't).

Reducing Nightmares[edit]

Social actions:


Semi-reliable opportunity cards in London:


Equipped items:

Increasing Nightmares[edit]



Equipped items:



Scandal is getting out of hand. If this reaches 8, something bad may happen.

Scandal tends to come from Fox.png Persuasive actions. If it hits 8, you will be sent to Scandal.png Disgraced exile in the Tomb-Colonies.

Reducing Scandal[edit]

Social actions:


Semi-reliable opportunity cards in London:


Increasing Scandal[edit]



Equipped items:



Suspicious activities are beginning to draw the attention of the law. If this reaches 8, something bad may happen.

Suspicion tends to come from Sidebarshadowy.png Shadowy actions. If it hits 8, you will be sent to Prison.png New Newgate Prison - again! Returning to prison gives you A Criminal Record, and if that quality reaches 4, Nikolas & Sons Instant Ablution Absolution will no longer reduce your Suspicion.

Reducing Suspicion[edit]

Social actions:


Semi-reliable opportunity cards in London:


Equipped items:

Increasing Suspicion[edit]


Equipped items:



Wounds are becoming troublesome. At 8, they may become fatal. Which would be inconvenient.

Wounds tend to come from Bear.png Dangerous actions, and once they reach 8, you are sent on Death.png A boat trip.

Reducing Wounds[edit]

Social actions:


Semi-reliable opportunity cards in London:


Equipped items:

Increasing Wounds[edit]


Less common menaces[edit]

Some menaces are associated exclusively with certain locations or stories. These tend to increase or decrease a level at a time, rather than by CP.

A Turncoat[edit]


A Turncoat is primarily increased by switching sides during A Boxful of Intrigue, based on whether your Map.png A Power in Waiting quality is set to A Guardian of the Realm or The Conscience of Empire. (This is initially set in the storylet The Troubles So Far: choosing Those who govern sets it to The Conscience of Empire, while choosing Those who are governed sets it to A Guardian of the Realm.)

The only way to reduce A Turncoat is the storylet The Traitor's Feast, which only unlocks at A Turncoat 4 (and also requires Sidebarshadowy.png Shadowy 120 and Box2.png A Survivor of the Affair of the Box 12).

To avoid gaining A Turncoat during A Boxful of Intrigue, choose the option listed below your side on these storylets, which will also gain CP in Flag.png Empire's Kingmaker:

Storylet Caperers.png A Guardian of the Realm Master2.png The Conscience of Empire
An Agent of the Masters Help cover up the sordid business Expose him to the newspapers
The Course of Love Help keep them together Keep its agents at bay
Doing the Rounds Tell them the truth Lie to them
Encryption of a Sort See that the messages arrive safely Intercept the messages
A Night of Desperate Ambushes Wade in with the neddy men Defend Spite from the neddy men
A Strong Box Tell the gentlemen in blue about any plans for robbery you hear about Tell your larcenous colleagues when the strong-box will be moved
The Unionist Join the hunt Help her escape

A Turncoat can also increase during the Family and Law story if you switch sides between the Cheery Man and the Last Constable.

Finally, it can increase in these other storylets:

A Place of Greater Safety[edit]


A Place of Greater Safety is specific to the A Carriage, A Conversation, A Light Caper, part of the Heart.png Family and Law story. While you have this quality, you cannot ask questions of your carriage-mate or raise Cagedwoman.png Destination Approaching. It is set to 1 in Accept the Last Constable's offer if you favoured the Last Constable, or Accept if you favoured the Cheery Man, and has a chance to be set to 3 whenever you ask a question on the A Carriage, A Conversation, A Light Caper cards.

Reducing Plagued: A Place of Greater Safety is reduced with three options from the A Carriage, A Conversation, A Light Caper cards. Both factions:

Faction-specific cards (The mechanical effects are the same, the only difference is description.)

Attracting Attention in the Orphanage[edit]

Attracting Attention in the Orphanage is specific to Lightfingers.png Ambition: Light Fingers! and is gained through failure at various actions while exploring the orphanage. Once gained, this menace is only lost upon Escape or by reaching the failure state. If this menace reaches 6, it triggers the autofire storylet Discovered! which sets Wounds to 6 (even if it was higher) and your location to A small, velvet lined box.

Inciting a Simian Revenge?[edit]

Inciting a Simian Revenge? is specific to the Topsy King branch of Heartsdesire.png Ambition: Heart's Desire!



Irrigo is a menace gained while exploring the Caveofthenadir.png Cave of the Nadir, and the amount you accrue determines what Attribute penalties are inflicted as you leave. If this menace reaches 10, you are forced out of the Cave via the storylet Drowning in violet.

For more information on the Cave expedition, see Cave of the Nadir (Guide).


Noise is acquired by failing at certain actions while Engaged in a Case:, as well as when asking for help with certain favours. It is only eliminated upon resolving a case, but so far there are no recorded effects from having too much noise. Maybe this will change in the future?

Orthos is Coming![edit]

Orthos is Coming! increases while doing actions at Island1.png Bullbone Island, Corpsecageisland.png Corpsecage Island, or Gruntingfen.png Grunting Fen. When it reaches 10, Orthos catches up to you, and you have to leave the location.

Plagued by a Popular Song[edit]


Plagued by a Popular Song is specific to Mahoganyhall.png Mahogany Hall. If it reaches 5, a storylet auto-fires in that location that causes one of your weasels (an Araby Fighting-Weasel, or a Lucky Weasel if you don't have a fighting weasel), or an unlucky nearby weasel, to explode.

Reducing Plagued:

Troubled Waters[edit]


Troubled Waters is a menace gained at zee. Higher levels of this menace make Approaching Journey's End more difficult.

For more information on how Troubled Waters affects zailing, refer to Zailing (Guide).

Unaccountably Peckish[edit]

Unaccountably Peckish is associated with Seeking Mr. Eaten's Name. If you are not pursuing this story, you will want to eliminate this menace in order to stop drawing associated cards.

Reducing UP