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Everything posted by Schmiegel

  1. You were correct. I sent the question to FFG and got this reply (from Grace): "When face up, Rage makes it so the player cannot prevent damage. If another player has an ability or card effect that could prevent damage dealt to the Rage player, Rage does not effect them and the damage can be prevented that way. However, a player who has a face up Rage cannot use guard to prevent damage dealt to any other player either."
  2. I would add that I believe even Elite enemies cannot be provoked when stunned, and also cannot counterattack. You're not going to kill every enemy. I have found this harp to be very helpful at times.
  3. Elite enemies don’t become exhausted when they counterattack. Non elite do.
  4. I think the reason it is stated as 4 facedown damage and fear is because you can discard a combination of the two (definitely a total of 4), and not exclusively just one or the other.
  5. I've almost certainly missed something painfully obvious.. Possible spoiler alert. (If you want to be surprised by the conditions in The City of Archives, stop reading here.. ) In the setup instructions for The City of Archives, you're told to remove all unique Item assets, but there is no mention of allies. On the face of it, that would suggest that your allies accompany you there. Is that supposed to be the takeaway? (I've searched this forum for the subject but I never have any luck with the search feature on this site..). How do people play this? Bring the allies along? Thanks!
  6. Thank you Klatschi! That's not confusing and is actually just the information I was looking for. And thank you for the welcome, as well! At the end of the day, I now see that I bumbled into deeper water than I expected to be in. There is really quite a bit of work involved in being the GM. Way more than just being a player. It's not so much that I mind that, but more like I didn't really fully understand where/how to focus my attention, leading to all of these stupid questions I've been posting on this forum. Thank you again for the helpful and detailed response!
  7. Continuing with the investigations questions.... In the first two beginner adventures, there is red text that should be read verbatim to the PCs, and there is a great deal of other informational text that is written in black. What is the best way to present the information presented in black? A lot of it just has to be paraphrased or narrated. But presenting all of it in that fashion is just sort of reading the players a story, without making them earn anything.. So there has to be a balance. Is using NPCs in some fashion (that isn't clearly stated in the adventure instructions) a good tactic for revealing key information directly? In some instances, it's made clear how this is supposed to happen in the adventure. But for the most part, it's not clear, at least to me.. What are some other mechanisms people might use, or have used perhaps, to relay some of these key facts without simply reading them to the players? Thank you!
  8. Spoiler alert: Anyone who is playing as a PC in the In the Palace of the Emerald Champion adventure should not read any further. I'm a greenhorn GM just now reaching the investigation phase, at the castle, of Satsume's death. (The PCs arrived at the castle at the end of our last session, after their approximately 8-day journey to get there, which went pretty well, in my opinion. But this particular transition point is entirely a horse of a different color..) I'm hoping someone might be willing to share "best practices", or ideas or a process that worked well from a GM perspective. I remain a bit vague as to how I'm going to go about running the PC's investigations. And after reading the conclusion of the adventure, I now see that there isn't even necessarily a black and white resolution to it that has been scripted, which doesn't really help, at least in my case. I had expected the adventure to be less open ended, so I'm concerned about exactly how I'm going to run the investigation side with relatively little to work with, if that makes any sense.. Do you just make stuff up? And it's not that there's nothing to work with, of course. But how did you go about pushing the investigation forward? What process might you have used to reveal necessary information to the PCs? How many sessions did you play once the adventure arrived at the castle phase? Any thoughts or ideas are welcome, as I'm feeling kind of short in that department at the moment. Thanks for any help!
  9. All good points, thanks Sidescroller. I should have been more clear. My question was should I reveal the NPC's demeanor values, that is, the ring values (plus and minus values to the check based on demeanor), not the TN of the check. It's my understanding that the TN of the check does need to be revealed. If it isn't, the PC gains a Void point.
  10. Good idea, thanks Avatar111. That seems perfect. One of my players suggested that very thing, in fact, but we surmised that it should kick in after missing meals for two days. (It didn't come up, they killed the Rampaging Boars and ate them..).
  11. Hypothetically...let's say the PCs lose all their rations to scavenging boars and are then forced to hunt in the evening for food for the night, and fail. What should be the appropriate consequences for that?
  12. Just wondering if anybody has run this scene in Palace of the Emerald Champion...and if there was anything that worked particularly well. I'm a novice GM, with L5R being my first shot at it, and I'm still kind of finding my way. I had expected this adventure to be scripted out in much more detail, it's way more open ended than I expected. I had thought most role playing adventures included a lot more detail for the GM to be guided by, but perhaps not. Any clever ideas for a Rampaging Boar scene would be wildly appreciated!
  13. Good thoughts, thanks Avatar111! Just trying to figure out the specifics of how to run the scene.. I was going to have the PCs encounter the hostile herd while they were out searching for their missing possessions.
  14. Another in a series of dumb questions... My understanding is that Demeanor applies to Social skill checks. So I'm trying to grasp why a Rampaging Boar (found in In the Palace of the Emerald Champion adventure - page 17) would be given a demeanor and how that would be applied. The PCs likely response to a confrontation with a Rampaging Boar is more than likely to be to attack and try to kill it. How specifically does the boar's demeanor impact that interaction? Is it applied when the PCs attack the boar? I presume PCs should not be pre-informed as to the nature of the boar's demeanor, but would need to find it out as the scene further develops.... Thank you for any help!!
  15. Thanks eScoub, that's a good suggestion, I appreciate it.
  16. Thank you for more excellent information! We missed our session last Thursday night, due to bad weather, and I'm heading out of town tomorrow so we'll miss that session too. When we're back, it will be a continuation of Palace of the Emerald Champion. One encouraging thing, for me, was that one of the players has bought the core rule book, so he apparently has "bought in". So now we have three of four players with a core rule book at home, and the fourth with a pdf copy. I've read the entire adventure over. I'm not totally clear on how much I should leave the players on their own when they're investigating the death of Satsume, and how much I should reveal to them of the text in black. That's been an area where I've struggled somewhat in both adventures we've played so far. Also, oftentimes a TN with a specific check will be listed. For example, in the last paragraph on page 25 of In the Palace of the Emerald Champion, it says "any PC who makes a TN 3 Courtesy or Games check (Water 2, Earth 2, Fire 5) correctly places the blame on the least politically connected individual involved, solving the matter and gaining a smile..." Should I be revealing the exact details of the check that is required in this case, or wait for the players to correctly identify that a TN Courtesy or Games check is the option they need to select without any help from me? I'm not sure they would get that if I didn't give them an assist..
  17. Thank you, UnitOmega! That's a very interesting and entertaining explanation. Actually, I was beginning to slowly understand after reading the previous responses and then articulating my own response to those (thinking out loud, counting on fingers sort of thing....). Kind of like an energy saving light bulb very slowly turning on and producing muted light. I'd have to say your explanation completely wraps it up! Essentially I had to rethink my approach to how the fatigue/damage system works. You guys are most helpful!
  18. Sorry.....I tried to "quote" Franwax but it didn't work the way I expected it to, and all I did was make a mess. (I've never tried the quoting thing previously and obviously don't understand how to do it...). But anyway, I do see why you'd want to ignore damage and just take a 3 crit instead. However I'm not getting why that happens. Implicit in this equation must be a rule that spending the Void point allows you to totally ignore the damage component. Intuitively, it seems like giving up and not defending would still end up with you taking the damage and therefore probably becoming incapacitated. Obviously that's not how it works though, and I was looking for the rule book entry that explained that.. So just to confirm what is probably the obvious, by using this option, the character takes zero damage (even though they're not defending), and "only" takes the crit value instead. I guess that must be because the character is saving the fatigue (i.e. not "bothering" to spend it to defend to mitigate the damage..). Thank you for your patience and responses!! I'm trying to understand it so I can logically explain it to "my players". When I'm stammering around and not giving a coherent explanation for something this major, I lose what little credibility I do have as a GM. One of my players is already complaining that the rule set for L5R role playing is extremely complex (we've only completed three sessions of actual game play).
  19. I'm not understanding the rule about spending a Void point to "voluntarily not defend" and thereby take a Critical Strike to "gain a tactical advantage". (Pg. 268 of the core rule book, under Defending Against Damage). If you don't defend, you don't spend any fatigue to mitigate the damage. Wouldn't you then take all the damage? How then would you avoid being Incapacitated? There must be some passage somewhere in the rule book that explains this...but I can't find it. For one thing, I thought the only way to AVOID being incapacitated was to spend fatigue to defend against it. So if you simply opt NOT to spend fatigue, how is that helping? And therefore, how is there any "tactical advantage" to that..? I must be missing something painfully obvious. Won't be the first time, or the last. "Shattering Parry" (pg. 36, core rule book) is apparently quite separate from the above. (This is where you may spend 1 Void point to dramatically intercept an attack with your weapon to increase the chance of survival, which is also referenced on pg. 270, although in that pg. 270 sidebar there is no mention of spending a Void point.)
  20. Thank you, once again! Reading your commentary, I can't help but wonder...where did you learn all this exactly? Not that I could ever hope to possess such a level of knowledge. It's amazingly helpful. We played our introductory session of In the Palace of the Emerald Champion, and covered the encounters with the farmer/bandits, tengu and the goblin attack on the merchants. My overriding takeaway from the experience was that, as GM, I was way too slow and clunky in managing the conflicts. The players were patient, and when I apologized, replied that they could have "spent more time learning the game themselves". (Not sure exactly how they're going to do that without buying the books...). Compared to other role playing games I've participated in, this was much slower moving since I felt very inefficient in managing the various details of conflicts. I thought it was still fun, but...I need to figure out a way to get better. I'm thinking I'll create kind of a crude "flow chart" document to list each step in the skirmish process, from rolling for initiative, to administering critical strikes, and everything in between that I can think of, all on one sheet, and distribute it to the players as well. Maybe that will help. One detail that I need to administer better is spending opportunity for NPCs. It was challenge enough to interpret the dice in a system that is still new to me. I ended up just ignoring the opportunity results that the NPCs rolled. Investigating that further, I see that many of the NPCs listed at the back of the core rule book don't have any mechanisms for spending opportunity, while others do have that feature specified in black and white. (I realize that spending opportunity can be an open ended proposition, but as the GM running NPCs, I kind of had my hands full without worrying about how I'm going to apply that aspect of it - which felt like I was kind of "wasting opportunity", pun intended...because I, well, WAS.) I'm considering preparing some ways for NPCs to spend opportunity ahead of time, as part of my pre-game preparations. Do GMs do that? Since some of the listed NPCs do have means of spending their opportunity results already specified, perhaps it's not appropriate to alter the game further by making up my own. (And I realize I can use the examples of opportunity table on page 328 of the core rule book for further guidance as well.) At the end of the day, I'm just hoping that continued repetitions will have a positive effect on my ability to manage conflict scenes. The other aspect that jumps out is unmasking. I get the concept behind it, it's a means for PCs to rid themselves of all strife, all at once, when they've become compromised. I was considering the way that I would explain this mechanic to the players, and I didn't find the examples provided in the core rule book to be all that helpful, so to this point, I've avoided that part of the game. So much to learn..
  21. That's excellent advice about a multiplayer quest making little sense when only one character's ninjo is involved. You're absolutely right, thank you! Good to head that mistake off at the pass. Magnus, my son and I were playing L5R the card game by cell phone last night, and I described the tremendous assistance you provide people, including me, on this forum. He commented that you could be considered a bodhisattva on this particular plane of existence, which sounds pretty accurate to me. Our group is playing again tonight, just starting the Palace of the Emerald Champion second beginner adventure. I'm reasonably confident when it comes to handling the encounters, but much less so in the area of "what do you do for eight days while on the way to the palace"? Encounters will take up a few moments in time. How do GM's deal with the in-between time? Do you just skip over it narratively until the next encounter. I really have no clue how to bridge those gaps. Do I let the players drive that part of the story? What happens when they come up with something that I'm absolutely unprepared for..?
  22. Thank you so much for the incredibly clear clarifications! Almost alliterative.. We're on the verge of actually getting this next adventure started started, of all things. Thursday night was spent (nearly) getting character creation concluded. It was a productive session, and it was definitely a positive that it was done cooperatively. What we have is a Crab bushi, Hida Defender school; a Crab shugenja, Kuni Purifier school, a Crane courtier, Doji Diplomat school, and a Scorpion shugenja; Soshi Illusionist school. They were each given a bonus 10 xp to spend, to reflect the time that had been put into playing the Topaz championship, even though these are all new characters.. The guy playing the Crab shugenja would have preferred a Crab Witch Hunter school, as he'd prefer to hunt users of Maho. But there appears to be no such thing, so he will settle for the Kuni Purifier school. He didn't make a big deal out of it. Still, I'm wondering if there might be a way to somehow substitute a Witch Hunter school for the purifier school, by a house ruling machination.. The Crane courtier has a couple of interesting character aspects....extremely flirtatious and loves saki. There should be some opportunity to create some complications from that. Any clever ideas are welcome. Also, and even more interesting...he stated that he has a secret desire to track down a forbidden Maho tome. That desire synergizes rather well with an idea I had for a side adventure. Previously, my idea was to have the characters embark on a quest to recover an ancestral sword from a sinister and barely accessible shrine location, possibly deep in the mountains, and where they would need to undertake an Indiana Jones- like foray into a cave or underground labyrinth beneath the shrine itself. I'm actually kind of excited about that prospect, as corny and cliched as it may sound. However I can change the object of the quest easily to the forbidden tome that the courtier seeks.
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