With the free browser interactive narrative game Fallen London, developer Failbetter Games first introduced us to a world rather different from our own, where the city of London has fallen into the Neath, an enormous cavern far under the surface of the Earth. Pirates sail the Unterzee, mysterious Rubbery Men walk the streets, thieves and criminals are everywhere, and what remains of Victorian London society struggles to survive amidst this chaos.
In 2015, the Fallen London universe expanded with Sunless Sea, a roguelike / role-playing game hybrid spinoff for PC and later PlayStation 4 and Nintendo Switch. This was followed by Sunless Skies in 2019, described as a "Gothic horror role-playing game."
Now, Failbetter has announced that yet another game is joining the Fallen London franchise: a romance and exploration-focused game entitled Mask of the Rose, also featuring the subtitle A Fallen London Romance. Mask is set in 1862, shortly after London's fall, and will feature the protagonist adjusting to life in the Neath while becoming closer to the fellow residents of their boarding house. Characters introduced in the game's official announcement and teaser include Archie, a medical student, Griselda, an assistant of the mysterious "Masters," Harjit, a constable, and Horatia, the house's landlady.
Similar to Fallen London, Mask of the Rose will focus on both exploring the world of the Neath and solving mysteries, with romance playing a larger role than in any previous Failbetter titles. The synopsis mentions an investigation of the underwater ruins of Parliament and a murder mystery where the victim testifies at their own trial as possible plot elements featured in the game.
Mask of the Rose will be funded via Kickstarter, with the fundraiser opening sometime in February 2021.
Will you be able to help the people of London Underground find love? Will you find love yourself - or will you succumb to the perils of the Neath? Find out when Mask of the Rose launches next year.
Watch the teaser trailer here: