Ye Olde Character Sheet #1: Yon Hyo

In this new series I'll talk a bit about old character sheets I kept hidden in a box somewhere. They may be old characters of my own, or of one of my players, or they may have come in my possession through other means. Anyway.

This one is about Yon Hyo. He was an AD&D first edition monk, played by my best friend from primary school. Together with him I discovered role playing, and together with him I bought my first set of Basic D&D. The Moldvay booklet. Yon Hyo was my friends major hero, which he played through the last years of high school, and the first year of University (or College, if you will). He built his own stronghold, named “the beach boy castle”, and he slew dragons and rescued fair maidens. He even married a fair maiden he rescued, and that was that – we hardly role played beyond that, because hey, we were just teenage guys!

Yon Hyo was cool. I suppose that was what my friend wanted him to be, and I helped him out as a DM. That's why he was a monk – like Bruce Lee – because that was probably the coolest class available in AD&D. Open hand attacks, thief like skills, falling great distances unharmed, calming animals, fake death, and so on. With glee my friend examined the rulebook which new powers he would gain on the next level. Looking back he was a real power player. At that time, I thought – we thought – that was the way the game was to be played.

I cannot remember if the 18 strength and 18 dexterity were rolled up with 3d6. I don't think so. I think it was one of a long series of characters made with 4d6 rolls, drop the lowest die, and rearrange the scores at will. I couldn't explain the constitution score of 11 otherwise.

Charisma was fairly much a dump stat, and so was alignment. Sure, Yon Hyo lists Lawful Good. But he was Lawful Neutral at best, more like True Neutral, or even Neutral Evil at times. Strangely enough I think my friend eventually cared more about Yon Hyo strictly following alignment than I did as a game master. So in the end he did become more and more lawful good, and he also fought less and less. He went pacifist.

We loved D&D, we tried to fathom AD&D (and failed), and we made up the rules if we didn't understand the rulebooks. Yon Hyo reached somewhere around 10th level, at which time he renamed himself Tien Lung (heavenly dragon). That was after this character sheet. And then he lost a few levels in a vampire attack, or something alike. I think that kind of killed my friends joy in playing. Interest waned, and while my friend went on to real life – or was it? - and dating, I went on to other campaigns and game systems. Including my own.

The sheet by the way was designed by me, redesigned by another friend and copied in Rome, Italy – on a school outing – while we lived in the Netherlands. Photocopying in Rome at that time proved to be fairly cheap – 10 cents a copy in 1983 or so.

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