There’re 5 Mondays this month, so how about something different? When I’m not writing, editing, reading, or painting, I’m most certainly gaming. I love games of all sorts, and I always have. So, here’s a steampunky game that I utterly adore!
Fallen London (or Echo Bazaar) by Failbetter Games is one of my favorite games of all time. It’s a free, browser based RPG that uses a card and action system. The game play is simple and very easy to pick up, and the action system (10 usable actions that recharge over an hour or so of real time) keeps you from playing it for too long at once … which I do anyway.
But it’s the story that makes it marvelous. Victorian London has been stolen by bats and stashed in a murky, shadowy underground world. This beautifully Gothic and absinthe drowned city is densely populated by poets, jewel thieves, revolutionaries, secret societies led by cheesemongers, mysterious Masters of the Echo Bazaar, squid people, secret baring cats, and pirates of the Unterzee. Each action you take in this game is presented as a tiny story, which often link together into grand adventures. Even the items that you use for currency are things like whisper secrets, manic’s prayers, and stolen kisses.
I’ve been playing this game for about 3 or 4 years now, off and on. I’ve gained favor with the Empress, with my eurodite poetry and plays, and been gloriously banded from the court for being a literary badass unafraid of stodgy imperialists. I married a jewel thief who showers my in diamonds and sometime we still go out snatching shiny things together. I became an honored friend of the poets of Veilgarden and wrote a science fiction novel that shook the very foundation of Fallen London. I’m friendly with the squid people, and I’ve tutored a golem into high society. I also funded, built, and now captain my own Zubmarine on zailing adventures across the zeven zees. Honestly, I hit the ceiling on this game about a year ago and had to wait for them to write more before I could play again. But now, I’ve got a whole new bunch of stuff to do!
If you like steampunk, victoriana, great writing, and cheeky humor, you will love this fantastic game. The art is great and very moody. The characters are wonderful and surprisingly well rounded considering that you only see them in tiny story-lets. Even the items you get to collect and use are clever and hilarious. I once received a Counterfeit Head of John the Baptist which I’ve never used because it’s just too weird to be without. I just can say enough about this game.
Go join right now and start your own adventure into the fogy streets of Fallen London! And if you want to join me there, I go by the name Skye Blue. Click on the cameo to see my game profile. I’d be delighted to add anyone to my colorful cast of delicious friends.