Wednesday, 8 August 2012

Tuesday Night Yoon-Suin: Session 5

[I've mostly avoided Actual Plays in the past, but I've decided it would be nice to have a log of my ongoing Yoon-Suin campaign for posterity's sake, and this is as good a place to keep it as any. It's largely for my own benefit because I know Actual Plays are incredibly dull 99% of the time unless you were at the table. I've not kept it for the first 4 sessions, but will do so from now on.]

Adventurers Present: 

  • Marich, Level 1 Human Magic-User [played by David]
  • Anil, Level 1 Human Cleric (eunuch) [played by Patrick]
  • Eki Ulele, Level 1 Slug-man Magic-User [played by Nathan]
  • Retainers: Asha (spear-wielding ex-whore), Surya (sabre and short bow), Bam (sabre and short bow)
In the previous sessions, the adventurers Damodar, Marich and Eki Ulele had sought employment with Nepsydaz, a sage at the guild of sages, who had paid them 500 gold pieces each for bringing them the Old King, a mad eunuch roaming the forests to the South of Silaish Vo. This they had done, after employing some peasants to help them, seeking the aid of a monkey-faced Mountain Spirit, and tangling with Renaudip and Binod, two rival adventurers they eventually killed. They also discovered a clay automaton hiding in the Old Watchtower, who it is said was created by Gulvedra, an arch-mage who lives far to the South - and they also irked Ui Yi, Eki Ulele's father/mother, from whom they stole horses.

After this, they had begun to explore the ancient Dwarf citadel of Sangmenzhang, discovering a group of strange almost-humans they later learned were called Hohools. These they killed, and recovered some treasures, although they lost Damodar [Patrick's first PC] and their cleric henchman, Sanjam. In return they rescued a poor kidnapped eunuch named Anil [Patrick's next PC], a cleric of Manpac, god of mazes. Back in Silaish Vo they secreted their treasures in their lodgings at the Madrassa of Arcanea, after avoiding the Oligarch's tax men.

They returned to Sangmenzhang forthwith with new recruits, and tangled with some bandits on the way who they learned were led by a man named Manesh. In the citadel they encountered dwarf skeletons and discovered a vast underground lake filled with luminous jellyfish, which they traversed with a bamboo raft. Here, they fought with carnivorous lungfish and lost another of their retainers, the lowly Dev. Chased by a giant slug, they were then herded deeper into Sangmenzhang...

The session began with the players in a small room containing bones and rags and a large hole in the ceiling, which they established with the use of mirrors contained some sort of crustacean or insectoid being. Avoiding this hole, they left the room heading south, and discovered a long corridor with two rooms leading off it. The first of these was a circular pit-room decorated with murals that were mostly eroded by water damage, but seemed to depict dwarves in combat. The second, a little further along, was empty save for ancient bird bones covering the floor: in the ceiling was a long, narrow shaft leading up hundreds of feet to the outside world.

At the end of the corridor they discovered a cave which opened up onto the mountainside. This cave contained four Feathered Men: scrawny humans with wings for arms and beaks for mouths, who were apparently using this cave as a launch pad to the outside world. After a brief fight Eki Ulele was left unconscious but two of the Feathered Men were dead; one managed to fly free and make his escape, while another, injured, managed to climb down the mountainside from the cave mouth to safety in the tree-line. With Eki Ulele unable to continue the party returned to the shaft room, where they made camp for the night, barricading the door.

During the night their sleep was disturbed by more Feathered Men, who came looking for their missing fellows. They charged down the door and in a sharp exchange one of the Feathered Men was killed; the rest fled and the party re-barricaded the door. After a time it became clear the other Feathered Men were busy with some ruse outside; the party charged from the room to discover an effort to smoke them out. They fought a running battle back to the mountainside cave, where they killed six Feathered Men in total. But brave Surya's head was clubbed in by the enemy leader and he was slain. Marich and Anil mutilated the Feathered Man corpses and hung them from the mountainside as a warning to others.

With Eki Ulele eventually recovered, they pressed on, and discovered the treasure of the Feathered Men: 800 gold pieces in metallic urns. These urns, coated with poison, nearly killed the foolhardy Eki Ulele, and again the party was forced to retreat, climbing down the mountainside from the cave opening and working their way back to Sangmenzhang's entrance.

There, they discovered that their mule, Eko, who they had left outside, had been stolen. They immediately assumed Manesh's bandits were the culprits. After resting to lick their wounds they followed the trail of the stolen mule and after a day's travel discovered a secluded waterfall and river - Manesh's lair. Here, they ambushed a pair of wandering bandits and after killing one, tortured the other to reveal that Manesh's gang had 9 members. 

Without further planning, they hatched a scheme to bring Manesh and his men out from their cave lair behind the waterfall. This involved pretending to be the members of the bandit patrol they had ambushed - a ruse which was almost immediately foiled when a password was demanded. The party taunted Manesh with the further torturing of their captive. Six bandits sallied from the cave and a vicious fight ensued. Anil was sorely wounded and rendered unconscious, while Bam and Asha were slain, and all the six bandits killed (with Eki Ulele slicing the throats of three who Marich had cast into magical sleep). 

A standoff followed as Eki Ulele tried to distract Manesh the bandit chief and his two remaining men while Marich dragged Anil deep into the forest to safety. After some cat and mouse evasion in the dark, Eki Ulele too managed to make his escape, though in a different direction to Marich and Anil. Scattered and bloodied, the party rested in their separate locations, wondering how they might reunite.

The next day, Marich and Anil rested in an improvised bivouac. Eki Ulele, however, was set upon in the forest by giant bees and stung to death. And thus the session ended.


  1. I often enjoy "actual plays" where (as here) the writing is good and the play is interesting. I continue to be intrigued and impressed by Yoon-Suin. Very well done.

  2. Any maps or do you rely on verbal description?

    1. I use a lot of maps during play, but usually scrawl them on an A4 pad I bring along.

      Of course, I have my own maps of the dungeon and regional hex maps, but I don't show them to the players.

  3. I actually enjoy actual play reports as well. Thanks for the post, glad we will be seeing more of this world.

  4. Actual play reports are always appreciated, especially when they give an insight into an excellent campaign. I'm too young to have experienced the early Ed Greenwood Forgotten Realms articles in Dragon, but I get a similar feeling here reading about Yoon-Suin to what people talk about with those early Realms articles, the sense of glimpsing into a deep, living fantasy world. Thanks for sharing!