Am I prepping a campaign for Yoon-Suin?
Why, yes, yes I am.
There’s so much to write about this marvelous book. But for now, I’m just so thrilled to be using it–and so happy with the results so far, I’m posting just to say, “Yay!”
My Lamentations of the Flame Princes campaign is still on hiatus for a few more weeks.
We’re currently playing Unknown Armies, 3rd edition, being Refereed by another player in the group. But he’s out of town this week. So I offered to run something Monday night.
I had thought to run something like The Pale Lady as a one shot. (Which looks great, by the way.) But I realized I’d soon be neck-deep in Weird Fantasy 17th-Century nightmares once my campaign was back up and running and wanted to offer my players something with a different tone.
And since I haven’t been able to stop thinking about Yoon-Suin since I read it…
I had originally thought I’d be using Whitehack to run the setting. But time will be tight (one night, that’s it) and didn’t want to have to ease the Players into a whole new rules set. Moreover, I remembered something Geoffrey McKinney said during a podcast interview when talking about Carcosa: “The best system to play Carcosa with is the one you’re used to.” And since I’ve been running Lamentations of the Flame Princess, that’s what I’ll use.
If you’re interested, I’ve created a booklet for creating Players Characters using the rules for LotFP in the setting of Yoon-Suin. You can find it here. It’s my hope I can send it out tomorrow (Sunday) and have the Players have characters ready before the game on Monday night. Probably won’t happen, but we’ll see.
If you read the booklet, you’ll notice I’m futzing with the magic. For Magicians (which is what Magic-Users are called in Yoon-Suin), I’m switching out the typical level-based spell lists and replacing them with Wonder & Wickedness from Lost Pages. (Print + PDF copy of W&W here. PDF only copy here.) Wonder & Wickedness rebuilds the cancan magic system into seven disciplines (Diabolism, Elementalism, and so on.) The trick is, spells are not split up by level. Any Magician can cast any of the spells… but each spell becomes more powerful the more powerful the Magician becomes.
For Yoon-Suin, I want the magic to feel fresh and strange. This seems a way into doing that.
As for Holy Men (which is what Clerics are called in Yoon-Suin) different gods have different aspects (appearance) and spheres of influence (sex, the sun, love, disease, and so on). There are countless gods in the setting, and I want the fact a Holy Man chooses one god instead of another to matter. Now, again, I had planned on using Whitehack, which has a luscious improvisatory magic system. But, again, I didn’t wan to overload players with new system details and an utterly novel setting all in a one shot.
So, the variation for Holy Men is that if you cast a spell while in a situation within the sphere of influence of your god, you don’t burn your spell. And, if it’s an edge case, the Player makes a Save vs. Magic for his spell, and if he succeeds, it isn’t burned off. Note that this isn’t the sphere of influence of the spell. What is at stake is the context within which the spell is cast. Thus, I’m not limiting the spells a Holy Man can cast because of his god. But I’m encouraging him to see the world through the lens of his god’s sphere of influence. He can choose what he wants his limits and risks to be.
I’ll post more as I go. There is so much to discuss about how the book is formatted, how it reveals the setting to the Referee, how useful it is to helping create situation and adventures, how the whole thing is built not to dump a lot of data about a fictional world on me, but always keep me focused on delivering the goods to my Players so they can engage the world through their characters… but that can wait.
I’m posting right now because I’m already very happy with the ideas and campaign details the well thought out tables of Yoon-Suin is helping me generate.