Part 134: Mechanics Talk 9 - Emergency Level and TrumpetsMechanics Talk 9: Emergency Level and Trumpets
WARNING: Absolutely none of this mechanics update actually matters unless you really want to make your game play cool music at will.
Way back in update 5 I did a little bit of talking about the warning system, by which I mean I linked this page from the in-game manual:
What I didn't mention then was how the game determines what trumpet we're on. To do this, the game uses a danger level. The level is a point scale that goes from 0 to 100. At 10+ points, a First Trumpet sounds. Once we hit 50+ points, a Second Trumpet sounds. If we get up to 80+ points on the scale, a Third Trumpet begins instead. The danger level drops by 1 every 15 seconds that pass in game, and when the level gets back below 10 the trumpet will end. Trumpets can only increase, we can't go back from a Second Trumpet to a First Trumpet.
The danger level goes up in two main ways. The first is when Agents die or panic. An Agent death is worth 4 points, and a panic is worth 2.
The second is when an Abnormality or Ordeal breaches or spawns. Abnormalities are worth a certain number of points, as shown on the table here:
ZAYINs have a on-breach danger of 5 points, but since they don't breach it will never matter.
Whenever an Ordeal spawns or an Abnormality breaches, the danger points of that Abnormality are divided by the number of departments in the facility, and the leftover number is added to the score. For instance, right now a TETH breaking out would be worth 20/3=6.67 points, not enough to trigger a First Trumpet unless it kills someone. A HE breaking out or spawning, on the other hand, is 40/3=13.33 points, enough to kick things into a trumpet. There are a couple exceptions to this rule, and I'll cover them when they show up, but the system is actually quite simple.
Since we still have time, on to a bit of trivia! There's a Fourth Trumpet within the game's code, called EmergencyLevel.CHAOS. It's not implemented and has no associated danger level, but if the code is altered to allow for it to be triggered it works just fine and plays the Third Trumpet song instead of having its own custom music.
I have a screenshot of it courtesy of discord user IvoryVaimon-the first person I'm aware of to have discovered this. Here is the photo, but be warned that it is from a much later-game facility. While most of the text isn't readable, it could spoil a few Abnormality and Ordeal designs. It's believed that the Fourth Trumpet was originally supposed to be a game over state, but was never fully implemented since it wouldn't make sense given our ability to rewind time and redo a day being an explicit game mechanic.
Speaking of trumpets, there are also three more mentioned in the artbook, which goes more in-depth on a variety of in-world topics.
They actually HAVE an 'oops we just caused the apocalypse' trumpet.
I love this game so much.