At the start of summer, I started a campaign the newest edition of Sunless Horizon. It's currently on hiatus, but we managed to play a couple sessions first. This is a slightly newer edition than the public one, but everything should still make sense. The campaign started with the Response Engine, a funnel-style campaign start.
As a warning, this play report includes depictions of the following: body horror, torture, brainwashing, and violence.
The Instrument - Kahva
I - Mihau
You - Mister Kent
The Meddler - Xenophon of Athens
The four characters dropped into a humid, brightly-lit metal room, with dozens of large tubes attached to the ceiling and a heavy coating of thick, reddish-brown liquid on the floor. However, they hadn't dropped into the same humid room.
I and the Instrument had landed in the eastern Growth Chamber, along with a few other clones, while You and The Meddler had landed in the western with a couple more clones and something else - the Hanged King; a pale crawling creature the size of a bus and with a single immense arm, gnawing desperately on something they couldn't see.
While they choked and spat the growth medium, words projected into their eyes: Please move to the Activation Chamber for infohazard injection and psychological testing. An arrow pointed them south, to a metal sliding door.
along with a one minute timer. After a minute of panic (and obstinacy on the part of the Meddler), culminating in the Instrument shouting "Ten!", they failed the test, and their headsets administered punishment: an electric burning sensation shooting across their faces.
As the second test (O + O, OO + OO, O - O, OO - O) began, You and the Meddler heard an immense crash as something tried to break through the Activation Chamber's door. Both groups passed the test, and were given another cube as the headsets instructed thank you for your cooperation. please face forwards for Registration and every wall flashed white.
The doors unlock, and both groups move into the single Assignment Chamber, meeting each other for the first time. This is also when Mihau's character decides that now that there are four of them, they need names: they name themselves I, Kent's character You, Kahva's character (now muttering constant praises to Keter) the Instrument, and Xenophon's troublemaker the Meddler.
Unsurprisingly, having a character named I and a character named You has wreaked havoc with my narration.
Inside the Assignment Chamber are dozens of opened lockers, and a single breaker box marked with a lightning bolt. The Meddler immediately proves how much they deserve their name by opening the box's front panel and flipping each switch, plunging the room into darkness and opening every door. Then, they sprint to the lockers and loot them as the others try to find their bearings, grabbing a set of clothes and a bottle-sized square battery. As I lunges for the breaker box, the Meddler moves through the southern door into a garbage-filled room. When I turns the power back on, the doors close and a snap echoes through the Response Engine as a door shuts on the Hanged King's arm.
You, I, and the Instrument continue to loot the lockers, finding three sets of paper-like clothes along with a gray nutrient bar and two 30 foot lengths of rope. The Meddler sees that the room he entered is dominated by an immense nest of skin, plastic shards, and rotting meat. Shattered crates, larger than a person, lie strewn around the room.
Another message appears: the Response Engine will be reaching a Black Zone in 3 hours, 2 minutes, 32 seconds, 21 milliseconds. please decelerate the monorail using the control center on the upper level.
The three in the locker room start to hear scratching, and a coughing voice.
"in... i-in, let in. cold, let in, alone?"