Using Connections

Cashing in Connections

Unless otherwise noted, you need Connected: 15 to cash in connections.

Connection Location Reward Connection Loss Echo Value Notes
Bohemian The Shuttered Palace 120 x Drop of Prisoner's Honey -120 CP 2.4 echoes
Criminals The Flit 720 x Moon-pearl -120 CP 7.2 echoes Only via Opportunity Card.
Hell The Forgotten Quarter 240 x Nevercold Brass Sliver -120 CP 2.4 echoes
Revolutionaries The Flit 30 x Proscribed Material -120 CP 28.8 echoes Only via Opportunity Card. One of the highest-value actions in the game. Advances the Liberation of Night (+1 CP).
Rubbery Men The Forgotten Quarter 240 x Deep Amber -120 CP 2.4 echoes
Society The Shuttered Palace 120 x Greyfields 1882 -120 CP 2.4 echoes
Society The Shuttered Palace +20 CP The Duchess -40 CP Other Requires Connected 9.
Society The Empress' Court 4 x London Street Sign -500 CP 10 echoes Requires Connected 32. Adds Suspicion (+1 CP).
The Church The Shuttered Palace 240 x Foxfire Candle Stub -120 CP 2.4 echoes
The Constables The Shuttered Palace 80 x Surface Currency -120 CP 2.4 echoes
The Docks Wolfstack Docks 240 x Glim -120 CP 2.4 echoes
The Great Game Wolfstack Docks 120 x Cryptic Clues -120 CP 2.4 echoes
The Widow Wolfstack Docks 240 x Jade Fragment -120 CP 2.4 echoes
The Tomb-Colonies The Forgotten Quarter 120 x Primordial Shriek -120 CP 2.4 echoes
Urchins The Flit 20 Certifiable Scrap + Bundle of Oddities 215 (215+?) -120 CP Other Only via Opportunity Card. High value due to Scrap.

Raising Connections in general

Connections can be raised easily to 10 at the Carnival, except for Unusual Connections that are not the Duchess. Masters can be raised, but will more likely get lowered. Criminals can go up to 15.
In "The Big Top", you can raise Bohemian, The Church, Constables, Hell, Society, The Tomb-Colonies, and The Widow by 30 CP for 2 actions — albeit with skill challenges that are tough for a new character. You will need fairly high Persuasive and to have attended the Ambassador's Ball to have access to Society at all.
"The Sideshows" have no skill requirements but take more actions; 10 CP per 2 actions for Criminals and Docks, 12 CP per 2 actions for Rubbery and Urchines, 20 CP per 2 actions for Duchess and Great Game, and 20 CP per 3 actions for Revolutionaries.

You can buy Connection items to raise most Connections from 10 to 20, except for Unusual Connections that are not Benthic/Summerset. Usually, this takes three actions and gives 75 CP in exchange for 1.5 Echoes worth of items.
The Society Connection item (Entry in Slowcake's Exceptionals) is required to gain Notability; the Docks item (Pewter Tankard) is the best way to grind Docks to cash in for Expedition supplies. The Urchins item (Rookery Password) is slightly more expensive, but the best way of raising Urchins to cash in for increasing Orphanage scheme. The Tomb Colonies item (Diary of the Dead) is needed for upgrading Shadowy Raven Advisors and for gaining Fecund Amber in the Nadir. The Benthic/Summerset item (Endowment of a University Fellowship) can be used at Connected 1, and can also be used to cash in Benthic/Summerset connection once it reaches 10.
The Rubbery item (Pulsating Amber) is very inefficient, at barely over half the connection value for the same cost. The Criminals item (Skeleton Key) is redundant with the Carnival, locking at 15.

You can also use conflict cards to raise and lower connections. Most conflict cards let you trade 15 CP with one faction for 30 CP with the other, and many give other rewards on top (and sometimes menaces or menace reductions). The exceptions are Docks/Widow (30 each) and Criminals/Constables (50 each), which give valuable items with a significant decrease in one or both Connections.

Connections in detail

Connected: Criminals is one of the first Connections you can get, available in New Newgate via the "Start a brawl" card, and when visiting either Repentant Forger or Sardonic Music Hall Singer acquaintances.
In New Newgate Prison: Having Connected: Criminals 2 unlocks the "University of Crime" card - a useless card so it may be worth avoiding Connected: Criminals to improve your odds of drawing a good card. Connected: Criminals 3 unlocks a suspicion reducing option on the "Stuttering fence", while Connected: Criminals 20 unlocks the "A Grass" option on "The talkative gaoler" - this completely removes all suspicion and Connected: Criminals. However as it's possible to remove all suspicion with the "The new cell" and "The passing dirigible" cards, this means spending 210+ change points to save a single action - only worth it if the cards have been very unkind.
Once you are a person of some importance, you will want this connection at 20 to unlock the gaining a criminal reputation storylet, which leads to gaining a Gang of Hoodlums, the best source of casing in the game at high Shadowy.
Also, once you're a POSI, you can easy grind both Shadowy and Criminals by using either the risk-free POSI Casing option or the Gang of Hoodlums, then cashing Casing in via "Sell information" to gain both Criminals connections and Shadowy CP. This is capped at 50.
If you need Magnificent Diamonds, it is highly worth raising this connection to 30 to use the "Pugilism and Politics" option on the "An Implausible Penance" card. Beating up a Minister gains 2 Magnificent Diamonds at the cost of all 30 connected levels. This is invaluable for creating a zubmarine.
It can also be cashed in on a card drawn in The Flit for a higher-than-average value; worth considering if you don't want Scrap (Urchins), or to advance the Liberation of Night (Revolutionaries).
Connected: Criminals has a conflict card with Connected: Constables, but it only unlocks if both connections are at 50, and is Very Infrequent. However, it cannot be discarded (except by standard deck-clearing methods such as using the Pickpocket's Promenade, or going to the Nadir).

Connected: Bohemian is also available early on (especially via the Acquaintance: Repentant Forger) and Connected: Bohemian 10 unlocks the "A rather decadent evening" card. This card is an excellent source of Confident Smiles and so very useful early in the game. The card is both a Persuasive and Connected challenge; succeeding in the Connected challenge greatly increases your rewards, but at the cost of about 3 times as much Connected: Bohemian.
Connected: Bohemian has a conflict card with Connected: Church, so it is preferable to keep one of the two below 10.

Connected: Urchins is highly valuable if you are either grinding Certifiable Scrap, or running an Orphanage. If you want Scrap, you need to draw cards in The Flit, so you can cash in this connection for 20 Certifiable Scrap. If you are using an Orphanage for Making Waves (or to get the Laconic Prodigy), the most cost-efficient way is to cash in Connected: Urchins to raise your Scheme.
A decent way to raise this connection above 20 in a pinch (above what a Rookery Password will get you) is to have no Connected Pet and draw the "A scuffle in the street" card in Veilgarden, and favor the Urchin.
Urchins has conflicts with three other groups - Hell, The Docks and The Widow. If you are trying to clear your deck and have no need for the options above, Connected: Urchins may be best avoided.

Connected: Society is one of the best Connections available. It's worth noting that the "The Ways of the Shuttered Palace" allows travel to the Shuttered Palace: once there Connected: Society can be traded for Greyfields 1882, which in turn can be spent to buy permanent access to the palace. Connected: Society can be spent to access the Court, but this is expensive; it is usually better to spend Connected: The Duchess for Court access. (If you must use Connected: Society, then trade it in for Connected: Duchess using the "Call in favours at the Shuttered Palace"/'Curry favour with the Duchess' storylet, as this is more cost effective than spending it directly). Once in Court, Connected: Society can be spent to gain London Street Signs (one of which can be spent to gain access to the Forgotten Quarter). Connected: Society is easily increased in Court, in particular using the "Attend to matters of romance/Attend courtly functions", "Tea at Court" and "Someone else's scandal" options. Once you are Carving Out a Reputation at Court "You have rivals" requires Connected: Society 50.
Connected: Society is also the best option for building a Scheme to generate Making Waves with a Salon; it's easier to grind than Connected: Bohemian and has a more reliable effect.
Having over 100 in this connection will also allow you to cash in connection points on the Slowcake's Amaneunsis card for Making Waves.
If you do not have access to Court, then attending one of the Duchess' salons and being erudite is an excellent way to grind this connection, though it does not provide any other benefits, unlike the Court options.
The only conflict card is with the Tomb Colonies.

Connected: The Great Game unlocks the "On the Trail of the Cheesemonger" and An Agent Of The Cheesemonger storylines; also the "A new piece in the Game" card. It can be gained early via the "A parliament of bats" card. Level 5 is needed for the "Riding Your Velocipede" card, which provides 70 Cryptic Clues and in turn increases your Connected (to a maximum of 15). Level 10 is required to access Wilmot's End. Only conflict card is with The Church; once you have a Velocipede, it's worth increasing Connected: The Great Game to 11 (+5 change points) and then taking the conflict card - dropping Connected: The Great Game costs nothing as you will rebuild it with Velocipede cards, and you will gain one of each of the 2nd chances (capped at 20 for each stat).

Connected: Revolutionaries is another valuable Connection. Level 5 unlocks the Revolutionary Firebrand storyline, while level 15 unlocks "The people's art" when Carving Out a Reputation at Court. It can be cashed in on a card drawn in The Flit for 28.8 echoes — one of the highest-value actions in the game, but be forewarned it will advance the Liberation of Night (this of yet has no in-game effect, but perhaps serious roleplaying & future connotations; of course, maybe this is something you want). The only conflict card is with the Rubbery Men.

Connected: The Constables comes into its' own late in the game, where level 30 is one of the unlocks for the velocipede squad, and one the velocipede squad action is a Connected: The Constables challenge. Conflicts with Rubbery Men (as normal) and Criminals (but only at level 50 at Very Infrequent frequency).

Connected: Hell is primarily useful for grinding souls; The "Unfinished Business in Spite./The prince of…" storylet provides an average of 50+ souls and is unlocked by Connected: Hell 10. This is especially useful for those engaged in the (Fate only) Trade of Souls storyline (on either side). At 5, Connected: Hell unlocks the "Stealth Watch Repair" card in Watchmaker's Hill: a card whose value increases depending on which Rat companions you possess. The Connection also unlocks a number of miscellaneous things, such as the 5-card upgrade to the Brass Embassy lodgings, cheaper methods of starting a Newspaper, and unlocking two (also Fate-locked) Companions.
However, there are many cards of little use that are unlocked by this Connection, so avoiding it may improve your deck. Conflicts with The Church and Urchins.

Connected: The Docks 20 is most directly useful as the best source for Expedition Supplies in the Forgotten Quarter. It can also be useful when Acquiring A Ship, reducing the cost of hiring a crew. Has conflict cards with the The Widow (but only at level 30) and Urchins. One of the rewards from the "A tournament of weasels!" lucky result.

Connected: Rubbery Men 1 unlocks the "A limping figure in a top hat beckons" card; it's only action (unlocked with Connected: Rubbery Men 5) is a reasonable source of Sudden Insights and occasional source of Warm Amber. However, it has conflict cards with the Constables, Revolutionaries and Tomb Colonies, so keep below level 10.

Connected: Tomb Colonies has conflict cards with Society and Rubbery Men. Connected: Tomb Colonies 5 unlocks the 'The music of the tomb' storylet when creating a masterpiece in Court; not useful otherwise, not even when in the Tomb Colonies!

Connected: Church is useful in the 4th Coil of the Labyrinth of Tigers; however this can be easily increase up to level 100 with the "Into the Fourth Coil/Scout out the Fourth Coil" option when you first arrive, so there is scant point in increasing it beforehand. Even the "Mortification of the flesh!" option when Carving Out a Reputation at Court doesn't require Connected: Church. You do need level 5 to murder a vicar when Attending To The Needs Of A Singular Plant - and if your Connected: Church exceeds 10, there is no penalty for doing so. Once you are a person of some importance, you will want this connection at 20 for an unlock in the making friends among god's editors storylet.

Connected: The Widow has conflict cards with the Docks (at level 30 in each) and the Urchins. It's not usually useful and can be avoided to improve your deck. When needed, it can easily be raised various storylets in Spite (notably offering the Widow advice if you have some connection already).

Unusual Connections

Connected: the Duchess. Acquired in the palace, the Duchess can grant you access to the Court comparatively cheaply, losing about 30 change points (compared to 210 change points with Connected: Society). The Duchess disapproves of mistreatment of cats, so it is best to resolve any "Pass the cat" experiments before seeking her favour. Be prepared to temporarily lose most of this Connection if you join the Young Stags (only applicable during the joining process). This Connection has story links in both the Labyrinth and the university.

Connected: the Masters is incredibly rare and expensive, but not very useful. Most storylets granting this Connection cap out at level 1 or 2, making pursuing the Masters pointless. Those who wish to engage in this fruitless endeavour should begin with the An Occasional Guest at Mr Wines' Revels storyline, as it has the lowest level caps. Other small benefits are scattered through the game. Halloween and Christmas are the best times to raise this connection; otherwise, once you have run out of game content, then the "A libraryette for Mr Pages" card provides a single point of this Connection for a cost of 10,000 Proscribed Material, or the slightly cheaper price of 5 x Blackmail Material, 5 x Uncanny Incunabulum, 80 x Touching Love Story, and 20 x Collated Research.

Connected: Benthic and Connected: Summerset - engage in the bitter rivalry of the university's colleges! Well, maybe not so bitter. These Connections open up new options when Term Passing… reaches 8. Fortunately these Connections are very easily increased: new arrivals at the university should repeatedly use the "Enjoying the pace of academic life"/'Perhaps you might read a book today' storylet as in addition to increasing these Connections and providing material rewards, the storylet reduces Nightmares. Early on in the University storyline, you can also cash in Summerset to reduce Wounds ("Feasting at Summerset"), and a high connection will let you seduce the Provost at the Feast of the World for Greyfields First Sporing, Black Wings Absinthe, and some Scandal. Even after being expelled from university these connections will be very useful when Embarking on a Voyage of Scientific Discovery.

Connected: Glass and Connected: Shroud. After becoming Embroiled in the Wars of Illusion at the Flit these Connections open up in Mahogany Hall. While they open up several storylets, it appears that the bulk of the Wars of Illusion has yet to be written.

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