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Shisumo's Untitled Campaign

Game Master Shisumo


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I've got the mechanical stuff done. I'm getting the backstory to work out right now. I think I've made a backstory for Crane guy that is just as interesting as Dragon man.

Cheliax

I'm wondering is this would be enough.

For DM Shisumo

Spoiler:

Heichi Takagi

Heichi grew up in the heart of the small Boar Clan. The Boar are a minor clan, that is famous for their weapon craftsmanship, but with little influence or power in Rokugan. Takagi himself is the epitome of the Boar Bushi wielding his Mai Chong with deadly power.

Heichi was working as a yojimbo for a Boar Courtier at the Crab lands when they heard the news of the Emerald Champion was marching against the Boar, Takagi's rage and fury were great but not enough to escape the Crab lands after such “generous offer” by their host to remain until everything was settled. Not long after news came of the Boar Clan being destroyed with Emerald Magistrate “advising” Takagi and the other Boar Clan survivor to not claim their heritage, the Crab took them in as one of their one but Takagi refused to relinquish the Heichi name but remained in the Crab lands defending the Kaiu Wall to die with honor and as a Boar Bushi. Takagi eventually found his death in one of the many skirmishes with the shadowlands and now his spirit was sent to Yomi as with all his Blessed Ancestors.

Peace in Yomi was disturbed when an Emperor Toturi asked for help against the Shadow that was threatening to consume Rokugan. All the spirits as well as Takagi agreed that they will once again draw their swords to fight the real and only enemy of Rokugan. Takagi marched with great heroes and ancestors towards Oblivion Gate that opened for them to join the battle where everyone fought desperately to destroy the Shadow. Takagi fought to the best of his ability with creatures of the shadowlands but by the time he reached the actual battle in the inner city it was all over. In the aftermath of the war Takagi was left with no place to go as the Boar Clan was no more.

The Phoenix Clan created a ritual to severe the connection between those returned spirits and the spirit realm that was a gift to those like Takagi that survived the Battle of Oblivion's Gate and that remained in Rokugan.

Now Takagi bowed down to serve Toturi I as he is the rightful Emperor and set his sights into restoring the Boar Clan''s honor and lands.


Deiros:
That's a perfectly adequate background (with one small issue, that I will get to in a moment). The biggest issue you'll need to settle with yourself is that, while Takagi might well consider himself a Heichi and a Boar, the rest of the Empire considers the Clan long-dead, and would likely view Takagi as little better than a ronin - one with noble aspirations, perhaps, but with no daimyo to offer his fealty to, still pretty much a wave-man. If that's not where he wants to be, Takagi could perhaps swear to the Crab, with an eye toward once again reclaiming the Heichi name eventually - he could so by trying to re-establish the Boar Clan (a massive project likely to extend the entirely length of the HoR3 campaign), or by re-creating the Heichi as a family within the Crab, either a vassal family (tricky, but possible) or a great family (much, much more difficult). Either way, you're welcome to start with the first Rank of the Boar School - we'll figure out where you go afterward from there.

Now, about the small issue: the write-up of the Spirit War in Imperial Histories is in conflict with just about every other thing that's ever been written about the conflict with regard to the timing of the Phoenix ritual that strips a spirit of its other-Realm nature. Everything else claimed it came late in the war, almost right at the end - IH suddenly saying, "no, it predates the conflict" really kind of throws everything off. (I know, I know - AEG is contradicting itself? Unheard of!) Since we started our campaign before IH came out, we're sticking with what came before, so you'll need to take Touched by the Realm (Yomi) to reflect your spirit nature. Note that the HoR3 campaign does not use the spirit rules in IH either, just because they're rather crazy powerful. Instead, you're basically just required to take either Touched by the Realm or Cursed by the Realm, and the rest is flavor.

Andoran

Been talking with ultrafennec (he's my brother), and he's having some trouble putting a concept together. He may just take my duelist, while I make a court shugenja. Asahina crane power go! Just give me until tomorrow night and I can get it done.


I was just looking over Seijuro, and I wanted to make sure you know that the Kakita don't get to use Iaijutsu instead of Kenjutsu for their katana attacks in 4E...?

A shugenja would be very, very useful.

Andoran

Pathfinder Comics Subscriber; Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Card Game, Companion, Modules, Pawns, Roleplaying Game Subscriber

Tunos: character looks good, although your Air is only 2 (suspect that's a typo anyway). As long as you are aware that you're going to run into a *lot* of issues with your own Clan - most Isawa will treat you as ronin at best - you're good to go.


So yeah, I've been having trouble with concept right now, but I actually just stumbled across the Kitsu again, and I rather like the idea of spellcasters with otherwordly heritage, so..I'm gonna try to throw that one together really quick. Hopefully I won't screw anything up too badly.

Never played a shugenja before, but there's a first time for everything.

Andoran

Yes, I know. It's part of the backstory. Wanted some torment involved, his heart stuck between his pacifistic ideals and his duty to defeat his lord's enemies. He seeks a rather more philosophical mastery of the sword. He aspires to be kenshinzen, not to fight great enemies but because he sees them as the ultimate expression of kakita's philosophy behind swordsmanship.


That plus Soft Hearted is going to give you fits when you actually have to get your bushi on - but if you're down, I'm down.

Andoran

Yes, I know. I'm already cringing at only keeping two dice on an attack. I just figured if I was going to be bad at it, that I'd be really bad at it.

Soft-Hearted mainly depends on how you intend to play it. I take it to mean I can't actually strike a killing blow. If you intend to play it as I have trouble attacking people at all, I might need to reconsider. I don't want to be stuck in combat, just handicapped.


No, you can attack people, but I will definitely be looking for you to be keeping low dice on your damage rolls quite frequently. "Attack to wound/maim" is just fine - but it's still likely to bite you in the @$$. That's not the GM talking, just the math...


Kay, posted this lady up.

Too bad we haven't had rules for playing Sodan Senzo since 2nd Edition L5R days. That's really more of my concept, but I'll work with what's available on short notice lol.

Cheliax

DM Shisumo

Spoiler:

So basically I just get the Touched by the Yomi but has no mechanical effect, or point cost just for fluff reason since they are strong then?

Yeah AEG "never" contradicts itself lol.

Will probably still attempt the massive task of restoring the Boar Clan to their former glory and if it seems to hard will probably just end up joining the Crab and be a vassal family. It is still a huge undertaking and I will also get the disadvantage of "ronin" since that is what I will be socially speaking.


You are indeed right - my Air should only be 2 but it won't let me edit for some reason.

As the campaign progresses I'll be focusing pretty heavily on the Air ring. The reason my stats fell the way they did at start was so I could take a hit and also be decent at iaijutsu dueling.

As experience flows I'll probably make Air 3 my first priority.

I'm fine with the Isawa treating me like crap - that's how I had anticipated it basically. I expect he'll find himself much more welcome among the Shiba.


Kitsu Airi wrote:

Kay, posted this lady up.

Too bad we haven't had rules for playing Sodan Senzo since 2nd Edition L5R days. That's really more of my concept, but I'll work with what's available on short notice lol.

Actually, sodan-senzo fially just showed up in Imperial Histories as an Advanced School, one you basically can't enter before Insight Rank 4. If you are wanting to head that way eventually, that's something we can work on as we go, but for the moment, you'd be stuck as an ordinary Kitsu shugenja regardless. By the by, who's Haunting you?


Well Takagi is ready for review but still altering a thing or two maybe.


Haven't decided on the Haunting yet. Probably someone who derides Airi's lecherous tendencies. And Sodan-Senzo being a thing again is sweet, because I do wanna head that way.


Deiros wrote:

DM Shisumo

** spoiler omitted **

Deiros:
You have to either purchase Touched by Yomi for its full point cost (and get its benefit) or take Cursed by Yomi for the extra XP (and take the penalties); doing so basically represents the "cost" of being a returned spirit for the campaign's purposes. You get the mechanical effects and pay the mechanical price, and then we add onto it the fluff that you are a returned spirit. Does that make sense? None of the other benefits or disavantages of being a returned spirit listed in Imperial Histories or anywhere else actually apply, just the effects of the Touched or Cursed qualities.

If the cost of Touched by Yomi is what's bugging you, Touched by Meido is cheaper, and there's nothing dishonorable about being from the Realm of Waiting. Cursed by Yomi is cheaper still...

EDIT: Just looked over Takagi - he can't be from Gaki-do, because pretty much all gaki are irrevocably insane. Your options are pretty much Meido, Yomi, Tengoku, and Toshigoku.


Changes made to Takagi and hopefully everything is good unless I can think of another proper advantage/disadvantage to add ^^


Takagi looks good to me.


Tunos, if you could make an alternate profile for your character, you're pretty much good to go as well.


Sounds good - I'll throw the backstory up tomorrow.

Andoran

Keeping low damage dice I'm quite fine with. Most duels are to first blood, and I've at least always been of the opinion that keeping the lowest dice and slicing a cheek, i.e., is a great example of how excellent my control is.

If I actually hit anyone, then yes I'll keep middle to low damage dice. It will likely depend upon why I'm fighting the opponent at the time. If I'm acting as yojimbo, then I'll likely keep slightly higher dice, though certainly not the highest. Otherwise, lowest dice. Could make lethal duels a problem, unless I succeed at that willpower roll and attempt to bring a more peaceable swift death to my opponent.

Basically, I built Seijuro as a heavily duelist focused character, with some backup court skills. While Lore: Bushido and Meditation are both flavorful, they are also obviously requirements for Kenshinzen, so I added the Artisan: Poetry to give some more flavor, and because it seems that so many actual samurai were wannabe poets. I wanted him to feel somewhere between Musashi and Basho.

DM Shisumo, if you like, I can post my answers to the 20 questions as part of the backstory. I actually made it all the way to 32. Could be somewhat illuminating.


Please do. I'm always excited to see that kind of stuff.

We're shaping up to be ready to start tomorrow. Look for a discussion and game thread to go live sometime tomorrow afternoon.

Andoran

Questions 1-5:

1. The legacy of beauty and honor my ancestors created makes me a member of the Crane Clan. I uphold that legacy today.
2. Descended from the Kami Doji, my family seeks beauty in all things, both within and without. I seek beauty in a poem, as well as in my own soul. I create something beautiful with my sword, expressing the depths of my soul with each strike.
3. I have studied many long years at the Kakita family's dojo for the sword. It has taught me how to wield a blade, but more importantly it has taught me how to wield it with honor. My soul and my sword begin a journey together this day. I seek perfection of my craft: a single perfect strike.
4. My hair is white, as many Crane wear it. I keep it in a high horse tail unless I am within my own home. I wear the colors of may family proudly, blue upon white. I keep the mon of my school over my heart, and the mon of my family over my sword arm. I have heard some say I am unreadable, but perhaps they have simply not put forth the effort required. I am certainly not antisocial, so I have yet to offend anyone.
5. Some would sell you their Duty as the truth of their desires, but it is not so. Without forgetting Courtesy, I will say that Duty holds less importance for me. I seek to show Honor, Courage, and Sincerity through my philosophy and swordsmanship. My motivation lies between my desire to uphold the honor of Kakita's technique, and my desire to find inner harmony.

I'll get the rest up tonight.

Andoran

Questions continued:

6. It is strange to say, but the one I trust most in this world is my greatest rival. I first met Mirumoto Ariko-san at the Topaz Championship some 9 years past. At that time we were still both foolish youngsters, our heads full of glory dreams and the rightness of our styles. We very nearly came to blows over an argument of form within minutes of meeting each other. We finished the argument during the iai tournament. She defeated me that day. I think that was when I began to understand that my technique was not infallible. I certainly wouldn't say that her Twin Fang style is better than my Hidden Wave style, but I will say that her swordsmanship is excellent. She wields her blades with pure intent, and great honor. Over these years we have met 9 more times, challenging each other as we did that day. I believe our current record stands even, 5 matches each. I feel that our next meeting will be quite spectacular.
7. My strengths? Honor, courtesy, and a swift blade. I am dedicated to understanding the way of the sword as a whole. My weaknesses are less clear. At times, I think my determination has led me astray, and I must admit that I can be goaded into a duel against my better judgment.
8. Duty, Honor, Courage, Sincerity, Courtesy, Compassion, and Honesty. These are the traits that measure the spirit of a samurai. At least, that's what the Lion tell us. I have no qualm with Bushido, but I also do not believe that it must be taken literally. A samurai cannot fulfill every facet of bushido. We are only human. I have taken to heart Honor, Courage, and Sincerity. These guide my hand, as Compassion guides my heart, for I wish harm upon no one. Duty and Courtesy are part of the demands of samurai life, and while certainly important, I do not follow them as fully as those already mentioned.
9. Our clan? We are great, though far less perfect than they would have others believe. My meditations have led me to certain truths, and the Crane are far from the sole proprietors of wisdom. What we do have, however, are swift swords, dedicated hearts, and masterful hands. For me, these are enough, and I am glad of it.
10. I have yet to be offered a marriage. I think my family and my clan are waiting for me to make something greater of myself before they make any offers. I cannot say that the current state of things displeases me, as a wife would certainly impede my ability to practice.
11. My prejudices? As in, what I think, rather than my clan? Well to start, the Unicorn are rather uncouth for Rokugani. I would not go so far as to call them gaijin, but the customs they follow are far from proper. Let them stay far from my home, and I will be glad. Worse though, is the Mantis. It is not that they raise their heads above their stations, plenty of samurai have done that. It is that they so disdain the sword! At least the Tsuruchi make use of a samurai's weapon, but those Yoritomo! How they can stand to dirty their hands with the weapons of peasants, I simply don't know. I would rather stand on the Wall than wield a kama.
12. My loyalty? Beyond my family, my clan, and of course our divine emperor, I suppose it would go to Doji Hanagiri-san. I began my service in the hands of a magistrate, but there were...disagreements between us. Let us say that I did not always have the manners I now display. My family managed to mitigate the impending disaster, and I found myself assigned as yojimbo to Hanagiri-san. In reality, I think she was intended to teach me the finer points of samurai life. She succeeded quite well, despite my initial misgivings. My sword still proved useful, and my heart grew to appreciate the arts that she possessed. For teaching me to recognize my own faults, Hanagiri-san has my loyalty.
13. My greatest pleasure in life comes not from my blade, but from activities like poetry, or the tea ceremony. Things which let me meditate upon the truths shown by nature are my joys. In contrast, the activity which I enjoy least is the Scorpions' favored court game, Sadane. Demanding that we tiptoe around insulting people is demeaning, and unworthy of a samurai.
14. While I do not have the inner peace of a monk, I have commendable patience. My hands rest where they ought to be, and nowhere else.
15. I have always attempted to keep myself centered, instead of letting emotion rule me. However, I am not perfect. At times my pride overtakes my sense. At least my anger does not rule me like some brash Lion.
16. If I had a subordinate, I would think that I would deal fairly with them. However, the expectations placed upon superiors often leaves them with little choice in matters. I imagine that many are forced to take actions that honor demands, when their hearts would do otherwise.
17. My childhood was one of duality: at home, I would spend time being trained for the court, and the blade. During winter, however, as my mother and father left for court elsewhere, I was often left in the care of my uncle, who had retired from service during my early years, and become a monk in the temples of the Asahina. It was there that I learned how to calm my soul, and where I finally understood the precious nature of life. It was there that my growing strength as a swordsman was tempered with wisdom and compassion. These days, I make what time I can to visit my uncle, especially if I am in Crane lands during winter. To him, I owe very much.
18. My greatest ambition is to one day stand among the exalted ranks of the Kenshinzen. To be among such accomplished masters of Kakita's technique would be an immense honor.
19. My ancestors guide my blade. The kami guided theirs. In this way, I see the influence of the Fortunes, and the wisdom of Shintao. Though no scholar, I try to live in their spirit.
20. Everyone must face their death at some point. If I had my choice, I would fall in a duel to defend the honor of my clan. Past that, I would choose to die in battle, defending my home.
21. My most immediate goal is to defeat my rival, once and for all. A more long term goal is to find that most illusive path, where the sword and the soul become one. On that road lies the truth of the Single Strike.
22. It embarrasses me to admit it, but I have no confidence in my ability to wield a blade in battle. To defend honor in a duel is one thing, but to take up arms with the intent to kill? I do not think I can do it.
23. With so many of our ancestors returned to our world, the courts will be overturned in a single season. Doji-san will have her work cut out for her. I think we are all in for a great surprise.
24. In my few moments of free time, I drink tea and view our gardens. On the road, I clean my sword and compose poetry for the view from my window.
25. A single koku? I suppose I would purchase fine tea, or perhaps a book.
26. Heimin are meant to serve us, are they not? Each person has their place. They serve, we rule. To fall from one's place in the Celestial Order is an affront to the kami.
27.My dear mother is Doji Sayaka, an artisan of great repute amongst those who practice ikebana. She was once of the Phoenix, I am told. It is likely where my own pacifistic nature comes from. My father is Doji Arumosu, a courtier who serves among the daimyo's retinue. My only sibling is a younger sister. She is a very perceptive young woman, and is currently enrolled in our family's school for magistrates.
28. There is no greater reward I desire than peace. Who needs a grand sword, or fine kimono, when you can instead be blessed with an insight into the fundamental nature of the universe? The chance to remove the demands of my post for even a moment in order to contemplate my place in the world is a great relief. It is often where my poetry comes from.
29. My blade is slightly curved, resembling the curve of the horizon as it meets the ocean. It is corded in white and blue, alternating on each side. The saya is a bright white, and at its end depicts a crane entering flight on a beach at sunset.
30. The wisdom of Shinsei is a great boon for any samurai. The simple truths he discovered astound me each day.
31. Once, I awoke in winter to find a perfect snowfall outside the inn I was staying at. Its perfection struck me in such a way that I instantly understood that no matter how perfect my bladework might be, its perfection would never rival this moment. The peace I felt as my own expectations for myself dissolved away pierced me to the core. The memory I carry of this moment is my greatest possession.


Hey guys, my wife came down with an illness today, so my schedule underwent some serious rearranging. I'm hoping to get things started tomorrow instead now.

Cheliax

no problems, good health and quick recovery.


No worries - I didn't get my backstory started because my friends introduced me to Minecraft on Friday night and I spen the weekend building a castle...and digging a moat...and filling the moat with water...and building a lake house...and two bridges to span the moat...and an automated gate...and a secret underground tunnel to a hidden lagoon.


And the discussion thread and gameplay threads are live! See the tabs at the top of the page for the links!


Do you guys still have room/need another player?


We're still just getting things movinkg - we can probably work another player in. What did you have in mind?


1 person marked this as a favorite.
DM Shisumo wrote:
We're still just getting things movinkg - we can probably work another player in. What did you have in mind?

I was looking to bring in a Miya Herald since it seemed their was a lack of courtiers.

Cheliax

Yes there is actually, even tho there are 2 bushi that can "do some courtier" work but not as good as a trained one.


A Miya would be fine - technically they, like ronin, Minor Clans and returned spirits are Restricted, but mostly it's just a matter of wanting to keep tabs on how many Imperial PCs there are.


DM Shisumo wrote:
A Miya would be fine - technically they, like ronin, Minor Clans and returned spirits are Restricted, but mostly it's just a matter of wanting to keep tabs on how many Imperial PCs there are.

Alright cool ill get to work then.

Taldor RPG Superstar 2009 Top 32

Ah, too bad I missed this... have fun, you all.


Oh, hey TN! Like I told Jinchi, we're not full and we're not far enough in that we couldn't get another player or two onboard. I'd love to have you back for this one too!

Taldor RPG Superstar 2009 Top 32

Well, real life kind of threw a wrench into it, with me taking sick (bad enough to stay home...) and all. :) Still, thanks for your kind words.

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