As I write this, there are two minutes in Halloween left here in Utah, and I’ve just got back from Evermore for my fifth visit. The long and short of it is that I have fully plumbed the depths of what Evermore has to offer and feel like I have a very good idea of what’s going on and how this park works. And how it works it that there just isn’t any kind of finale, not even on Halloween. There was live music and fire dancers and lots of guests in costume, so it’s not like it was a completely typical night, but what there wasn’t was any kind of confrontation phase of the plot. The NPCs seem to be resolving this whole “dark blood” thing almost entirely of their own initiative, making steady progress on a cure with no more assistance from the players past running errands back and forth between the Nettletons and Diet Thurgood the alchemist. To whatever extent there is a climax, it’s gonna be for ten people:
This here is the page explaining that the exclusive “Champion’s quest” – presumably the actual finale to Evermore’s first arc – is going to be reserved for at best ten people (assuming all ten finalists get to go) and determined based on winning a goddamn social media popularity contest. The “champion of Evermore” is the person whose shallow desire to provoke envy from others drives them most fervently to create effective clickbait – and if it’s not, then that’s because by happy accident the sorting process failed to deliver results. Evermore’s reach might be too limited for Darwinian selection to kick in – or maybe not.
On the bright side, I did come away with some sweet loot:
There’s two of the old style Evermore coins in there along with five new ones, four gold and one silver, plus two small gems and a smaller coin. There’s also those little gold nuggets, but I didn’t end up with any of those to spare. Seftis the executioner has got tons of loot to trade, and I’m pretty sure you can get just about any of the treasure atop those cards if you bring him enough of the little gold nuggets. Those five new-style coins I got for trading one of my old-style Evermore coins, as I decided the collection would look better with a bit of variety (I’ve got a third old-style coin – it fell under my desk and I finally got around to retrieving it while writing this post, but after I’d taken the picture).
Underneath you can see the Droch Lorcan, Pooka, and Killian tarot cards from FanX, but the real headline here is the four tarot cards from the Cursed Lore arc (which are probably the same cards you’d get from Magical Lore, but I wouldn’t know – I only ever showed up for the tail end of that when I was early for Cursed Lore). I’m going to be spoiling the Hell out of those cards for archival purposes, but by the time this post goes live the arc is basically over anyway.
The first tarot quest you’ll pick up is the Con Man. This refers to Orram(?) Peele, the gatekeeper, and his son (or maybe it was nephew?) Riley Peele (no relation), who are, I guess, con artists. Other characters have mentioned as much and they are giving out the con man card. Anyway, they’ll ask you to find some gold to pay some debts which…is…a scam? I guess maybe they’re not in debt after all? Or maybe they got into the debts through less noble reasons than Riley’s failed acting career? They’re just asking people to give them money, and then people do. It’s not really a scam so much as just taking advantage of how adventurers work, such that, so long as you call it a quest, you can literally just ask people to give you money and they’ll do so. I got the same card for resolving the spat between Harvey the Ghost and Orram Peele, and that didn’t involve any gold at all (it was before they had the little pyrite nuggets, but it was after they had the smaller Evermore coins, so…?).
The second tarot quest is probably going to be for the Auctioneer. You get this one for helping out Clara Nettleton with the cure, and so far it’s always involved some back and forth between Clara and Diet Thurgood. Most of the actors seem to direct worldwalkers to this quest preferentially, and it definitely does the best job of introducing people to the main problem. Mother Nature (also named Shiri, now, although people still drop references to Mother Nature freely) remains a part of this quest, although she’s still in her corrupt form and is much less forthcoming about the nature of the Fey King than she was before, although it seems to be common knowledge amongst most of the Evermore characters by now. You can also get the Auctioneer by just handing a piece of gold to Clara Nettleton – she’ll say she has nothing to give you in return, but that’s only true in the sense that the Auctioneer card she gives out (well, she directs you to Suds, who gives it out, but he’s fifty feet away, so it’s not like it’s a hike) is a mostly out of character reward.
Neither of the other two tarot quests have a particular order that I can tell, in that both of them are readily apparent if you ask about for them but aren’t immediately obvious the way the first two are. The Maiden I got literally for just handing a gold nugget to a witch named Cordelia. The Hunter I have detailed already, and involves proving skill with a bow or throwing axe, courage by braving the catacomb, and having your fortune told. You can perform the same tasks to become a knight of Evermore, and there’s some implication that the hunters and knights might not always be on the same side, but the knights have no cards to hand out.
Three of these four quests (maybe the Hunter, too, come to think of it) can be resolved by handing out gold, which the druids and acolytes are also collecting. There are lots of little side quests in town that hand out gold. The knights usually have some investigation they need done in exchange for gold – I’ve seen both “find out what the druids are up to” and “figure out why Faldo/Falda isn’t infected by the darkness” and there may have been others. Sir Duffy, the less impressive of the two knights, seems to fairly consistently ask people to fetch him an anti-hex charm, a quest that is both involved and multi-step but also quite entertaining and shows off the personality of a few different characters around town in a fun way. The antique dealer seems like she usually has some kind of quest, but I usually avoid doing them, because she strikes me as untrustworthy. An elf also gave me a gold nugget tonight for something as easy as finding Droch Lorcan (he’s back!) and telling him that elves are better than goblins. He didn’t take too well to it, but hey, easy money.
I think there’s probably a total of five gold nuggets available, because that is the amount that the acolytes ask for. Their information was totally useless last time, though, so I never brought them any, and other characters stated that the acolytes are indeed pretty useless. So far as I can tell, they’re just a money sink (if not a trap). It’s possible that this time they actually did have the plot hook leading to a final confrontation, but I doubt it. In any case, so far as I can tell the only ways to get the Con Man and the Maiden right now are to hand gold off for it, although the Con Man card at the very least used to be accessible through the (now defunct) Harvey the Ghost quest. I suspect the Maiden used to be associated with a proper quest as well.
On the one hand, I had fun with the Evermore story for the most part, despite its lack of conclusion.
On the other hand, hiding that conclusion in an exclusive event accessed by a contest to best manipulate the toxic Hellscape that is social media is such an insult that I’m not sure I want to come back. Like, I wouldn’t care if this contest were for a behind-the-scenes tour and a free ticket, but locking the plot behind it? That’s not cricket.
Back on the first hand: Though the framing suggests otherwise, it’s possible that this “champions of Evermore” thing isn’t actually the climax to the plot, but just a quest that talks up these rando contest winners as super important while pragmatically effecting basically nothing even from an in-universe perspective. That’s not really how it’s being framed – they said that Evermore needs a champion, which suggests that 1) only one person gets to do this (the ten finalists are called finalists and not winners after all) and 2) they’re going to be vital to the defense of Evermore – and everyone else who paid to get in won’t be. But until it actually happens on November 3rd, that’s still up in the air. Since I’ve sworn off going to Evermore on weekends, I probably won’t even see it one way or another. Guess I’ll see if they post anything to Facebook.