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  1. That was a lot of good information, thank you! I guess until more information is revealed, for the purposes of simplicity, I'll have the Kolat have access to meishodo (at least until they release contradictory lore)! Do you guys know of anyone who does synopsis' of the L5R books? I'm interested in the content, but still on the fence about buying the novellas. But it sounds like there could be some very pertinent lore in the aforementioned book!
  2. @Magnus Grendel: Yeah, I knew those 'less desirable' jobs were maintained by the heimin (did you mean hinin?). But as you said, I never considered more carefully the implications of having that society in the background (masters with apprentices, people with families, etc.). It makes a lot more sense now! Thanks! So I kept thinking about our temple priest and wanted to look more into the Kolat. I found something interesting, but it's information from a previous edition since it's from the L5R wiki (I'm thinking it's 1e, but really have no idea of any edition besides 5e). But in it it says, "It was also the Kolat that made sure the Unicorn learned meishodo, a form of gaijin magic which did not use the kami, but the Elements themselves." So I'm inferring this means that the Kolat extend outside of Rokugan itself? I had initially thought that it was a purely Rokugan secret society, but if that was the case, how could they, having become so completely gaijin-intolerant, have learned meishodo in the first place? If the Unicorn returned to the empire with meishodo, doesn't that mean that Kolat agents were already within the Unicorn (continuing to teach them meishodo) upon their return? If that's the case, then like a virulent disease, the Kolat spread throughout the empire with the Unicorn essentially becoming patient zero-- right? Anywho, I may just use the fact that the Kolat have precedence for knowing meishodo (which makes the lives of their priests and shugenja a lot easier!). However, since @DGLaderoute made such a compelling roleplaying argument for Odayaka the Priest, I may keep that idea in the vein of him/her being the "strange Kolat who tries to balance his worship of the kami with their duties."
  3. I may very well simply use what you've written here for the character! Thanks a lot for that! It's too bad (for the priest, not for RPing purposes though!) that he is forced into walking such a fine line. If he were closer to Unicorn lands, as an undercover Kolat agent, I could say he simply learned how to use Meishodo to create the illusion of himself still being 'blessed' by the kami! But in a little shrine hidden near the border of Scorpion and Lion territory? Not likely 😂.
  4. Just this, really. It seems to me that if you're trying to dismantle an organization or government from within, the higher up you are, the more easily attainable this becomes.
  5. @Scrivener Spills Thanks, glad you enjoyed them! That's a very interesting distinction regarding the Kolat and the PLS I hadn't considered! Maybe I could have them split things up or something. "You most certainly are welcome to try and break The Wheel and attempt to bring Shinsei back! However, in the mean time, leave Ningen-do matters to the Kolat." 😉 You're right about the Adopted Peasant. Maybe I'll show pity on them and have them take it for their 3rd flaw disadvantage-- which I have a feeling they'll get, since they're only 15 honor points away. In my mind, those 15 points of honor won't last long with a character like this! 🤣 As for a second cell, that's a good point! I guess I'll need to start drafting some ideas on just how far Karō Katsuyama's reach extends! But do you think he has enough clout being simply the Karō of a vassal family? Or should I have him promoted to a vassal daimyō? 🤨 Thanks again for your suggestions, Scrivener!
  6. @DGLaderoute: Thanks for that information! I didn't realize the burakumin were more of an isolated, unwanted caste that had a whole culture of their own behind the scenes! I must have somehow missed that when they mentioned that somewhere in the Core/EE! That's pretty different than my initial few of them. So as it stands, I won't bother changing anything. As you said though, I couldn't figure out how you could subjugate such a large group of people. But if they have their own society behind the scenes that the bushi and heinin don't really see, then it begins to make a lot more sense! Great! Glad these two thoughts seem to work out well then! I definitely felt the same (that they could potentially be linked together down the line) and hopefully we get some foreshadowing on this! As for Odayaka the Kolat Priest, I'm still a little fuzzy on the relationships between kami and mortals, I guess. So if the kami of a shrine is pleased through worship and offerings, they can make their will manifest in devoted mortals. By doing so a lay priest (non-shugenja) can bless fields, sanctify ritual spaces, practice auguries, create omamori, etc. So I guess I'm wondering, if the Kolat Priest is working against the kami as an end goal, would the kami of the shrine even care? If they do care, then they won't bless the priest which means they suddenly fall out of favor, none of their field blessings, omamori, etc., work anymore and now the priest's cover could be potentially blown. Am I making sense? 🤨 Curious to what your take on this is. And again, thanks for your insight!
  7. Hey guys, I need help hammering out a background for a Kolat Saboteur Conspirator! Keep in mind, I only learned what ‘Rokugan’ or ‘L5R’ even was about a month ago. So thanks for your patience and feel free to correct any misconceptions I may have! Also, I’m treating the PLS as the front-end / “store-front” to the Kolat, while the Kolat themselves are the back-end guys who restock the shelves at night (don't ask where the product comes from!). Basically the “store-front” is the "safe" way to gauge someone’s interest in the Kolat, without drawing attention to yourself (unless you’re in Phoenix lands)! This is a bit of a read, so thanks in advance if you manage to get through it! Alternatively, you can skip the backstory, and just try answering my questions below. Edit: Okay, even though my questions are outside of the spoiler brackets, they're still inside the entire 'spoiler backstory.' No, I haven't been a serious poster on FFG since we switched over to the new forum system years ago! So just find the underlined/bolded section in the spoiler for my questions. Thanks!
  8. This is some really great advice, @Hydraxus! Thanks a lot! There are a lot of things I hadn't considered here. Good call on the father being at the same status level as the others, not sure why that slipped my mind-- but I really like the idea that he was offered as a 'gift' for his seer-like abilities and even the thought of it being an underhanded insult! The father naturally bears the shame of his son being blind and even the discovery of him being (and becoming) a shugenja isn't enough to appease that as he had a very romanticized dream of what having a son would be like. Yoriki probably have to already be samurai-- which also slipped my mind. Perhaps maybe instead it was the a promise of being promoted to yoriki when he became samurai by his sensei / father? As for the villainous manipulator, I love the idea that its a test meant to be failed in order to force him to commit seppuku-- truly ingenious! I may seriously incorporate this! But who or what position in Rokugan would have that kind of clout anyway 🤨? Thanks for all of these suggestions! They helped me learn a bit more about Rokugan's political mechanics and refined our character's backstory!
  9. This actually reminds me of the Miraluka from Star Wars! The whole, "blind but able to see 'Force' radiating off like an aura from individuals." That may even be what they were going for-- especially since they took the "Sixth Sense" advantage and wear a white silken blindfold!-- but naturally that only works on supernatural forces and not humans. Hopefully his "Keen Awareness" will be enough to offset the major disadvantage of being blind during the tournament! Being brand new to the system, I've been trying to figure this out myself! From what I've gathered, the Emerald Magistrates can't rely on the defunct Jade Magisterial Offices and work with other Great Clans who have sects dedicated to the hunting down Maho-tsukai. So it stands to reason that perhaps they saw his sixth sense and shugenja abilities as a potential asset. Not to mention his father would be appeased by having his son die in a worthwhile occupation and in defense of the Empire (thereby restoring any honor lost by having a disabled child in the Imperial Family). Speaking of which, the Astrologer's father is also an EM (albeit a neutral contact since they don't get along). It's possible that the dad used his status as leverage to have his son become a yoriki in-training to a different, newly minted EM, right? If this isn't plausible, or you have some other ideas, let me know! As I said, I'm totally new to Rokugan, so I've had to rack my brain pretty hard to get us this far! 🤣 I was told "Zatoichi the Swordsman Becomes a Wizard," was the inspiration. 😂
  10. Glad you asked this question, because one of my PCs asked me this question only a few days ago! Emerald Empire mentions that even the Imperial Families have to undergo gempuku, so that alone gives a legitimate reason for them to attend the Topaz Championship. Though for reasons that @DGLaderoute already mentioned, it's probably pretty uncommon. But hey, PCs are "uncommon" people anyway, right? Anyway, the PC in question had this idea of a Miya becoming a Seppun Astrologer and then being shifted into a yoriki in-training for an Emerald Magistrate. I'm thinking this sounds fine and I'm sure I can conjure up a reason for them to be in the upcoming Topaz Championship-- but suddenly they drop a bomb-shell by taking the 'Blindness' disadvantage. My mind reels. It's tough enough to think of a reason for a member of the Imperial Family to get into the Topaz Championship, but a blind one at that? Pfffft. @Nheko, I'm curious if you had a PC interested in playing an Imperial Family member during the Beginner's Kit scenario? If you did, how did you guys thematically fit them into the tournament? As for us, here's what we came up with if you were wondering! 😉
  11. You make a good point there! They probably should have used a different title, because there is a lot of legend and precedence setup for that specific story, which in turn sets up lofty expectations. And those expectations, well... they would've been difficult for anyone to pull off, I imagine! As to L5R, I can't see why it isn't! There aren't many IPs to contest it either, so I feel like the big sumo in the room needs to throw his weight around and make sure everyone knows he's the grand champion of the franchise, before some young upstart appears out of nowhere and steals their thunder!
  12. This is really my issue here! Great points (minus the unnecessary quip at 47 Ronin-- I liked that movie 😆)! I just got into the series for the first time after playing the L5R RPG Beginner's Box with my friends last month. Suddenly, I found myself jumping online and purchasing the entire L5R RPG line in one-go! So obviously I've been bitten by the L5R bug, and seemingly the RPG line isn't enough for me. Even after reading the Core, EE, and Shadowlands back to back (taking a brain break before CoS since my mind is basically drowning in the lore at this point 😅)-- I want more! Now that I'm interested in getting into the only other option, the LCG (and quite willing to drop the $$$ necessary to get into it since the lore+art is crazy awesome), I can't find a single FLGS within a 30 mile radius that even hosts L5R LCG on their calendar events for me to learn/play (this is a minimum of 8 different shops, people)! Which makes me wonder if the FLGS around me even have the cards for sale, at this point? And if they don't sell the game, then that most likely means people around me aren't even playing the LCG anymore. So if my FLGS aren't pushing the product, and people aren't buying the cards anymore, there's no way I'm going to find players to play against, or people to teach me this somewhat intimidating LCG. So now I'm kind of stuck... Which then makes me wonder, why the **** spend $100-200 to start an LCG that no one around me is going to be playing? If I had some alternative outlet like any of the above, especially a digital version, a la Steam's LotR: ACG to throw money at (no commutes to FLGS, always players to be found online, etc.,) that would be awesome! Because at this point, I'm holding onto hope that they'll just release a digital game and I can buy stuff there, instead of spending money on cards that will just collect dust (and some days gone through to admire artwork)! Honestly, I buy more Arkham Horror/LotR LCG and Imperial Assault products because of the Co-Op aspects of the game (mainly because its always easier to convince people to try, for some reason). So if the game had a Semi Co-Op/Full Co-Op option (either through another game that did this or an optional expansion pack), I would also ****** that up in a heartbeat! Point being, I can't be the only person like this, right? I would imagine you guys all want more from this IP! But by not doing more with it (or at least letting the community know you guys are working on something else-- FFG is losing an opportunity to grow L5R and in the process, make more money. Having said all of that... give me what I want!!! More L5R stuff to buy!!! 🤣
  13. Core, Pg 171, "A Jump Pack requires the Pilot (Personal) skill to operate effectively. An Astartes Jump Pack allows for a safe, guided fall from any height, and any number of short jumps. Such jumps allow the Battle-Brother to double his Base Movement and travel in any direction without regard for obstacles. For all other purposes, he counts as having taken the appropriate Movement action." Table 1-3 shows your base movement (pg 27). If you had a Space Marine with a base Agility of 41, he would have 5 Half Move, 10 Full Move, 15 Charge and 30 Run (Note that the Space Marine’s Power Armour improves his normal Agility Bonus for calculating movement rate by 1). Whenever a player chooses one of those actions, they double their movement. If your player chose to charge an enemy and has an Astartes Jump Pack equipped, he is able to charge 30 metres.
  14. I currently am running a variant of Final Sanction myself and have a comment to add and also a question regarding Hordes in melee (: Firstly, my commentary: My initial battle ran the same way, when they first encountered the Rebel Hordes. My Librarian single-handedly sliced away at a Rebel Leader who was wielding a Chainsword. Even though the Leader landed hits on him twice, the damage was totally unable to pierce his armor (even remotely). They mopped up the rest of the Rebels without too much of a fuss, but the Assault Marine took a few hits after engaging in melee with a 50 magnitude horde (that +2d10 damage adds up fast!). Nothing too bloody though. But honestly, throw your Hordes into melee… they'll become a bit more dangerous and will actually be able to inflict a decent amount of damage. "Great!" I thought… now they are getting overly confident and will begin to underestimate their enemies! In their second excursion, they did just that and the Librarian paid dearly for it, as he now has 2 critical damage and the party is without an Apothecary! But I'll be helping them out in that aspect next session (: Anyway, my point in case is that Hordes can be quite scary (even wielding "Crude Weapons") when you mass them against even a Space Marine. Their melee damage points can add up very quickly. If you're not against rolling in secret, then maybe allow them to roll the needed 25 or under Weapon Skill at least a few times so that you can add some tension in the battle. Yes, it's fun to decimate waves of enemies, but it is boring if there is not some sort of risk involved. Anywho, on Page 33 of The Final Sanction, it states that the PDF Base is under siege and that the Rebels have brought in "Siege Guns." I don't know what that quite refers to, but I decided to make them Autocannons >=D! The mistake my Librarian made was that there were 3 groups of men armed with Autocannons and not being entirely familiar with the game, he decided to charge towards one. He couldn't make it in one round, but would in two. Two of them shot at him with full-auto. The first one missed, but the second one hit (only once though, no degrees of success). The stats for an Autocannon are listed in the supplement, "Rites of Battle." They are: Range 300m, Heavy, S/2/5, 4d10+5 I, Pen 4, Clip 200. It isn't too surprising to think of Autocannons being used either, since they see a lot of use in Imperial Guard regiments (or so I've read). Anywho, you can imagine a 4d10+5 with Penetration 4 hurt him pretty dang badly. I rolled kinda average-ish but still managed to hit him for 16 damage in a single shot. Now, keep in mind, in retrospect, I may have gone just a little overboard (whoops! hahah!). But I taught my players a valuable lesson (myself a different one!) and one they will NEVER forget: NEVER underestimate an enemy, especially one with a heavy weapons emplacement meant for "sieging"! Any opponent can be dangerous, given the right rolls or opportunity! That being said, the next turn he completely obliterated the autocannon after pushing a force power and nearly one-shotted a nearby horde. Just keep in mind that your campaign should be about "attrition" (at least, that is how I am running mine). They may be able to get away from a few battles here and there with just a minor scratch or two, but those scratches will start to add up (especially with how fast-paced the campaign is--they can't afford to rest). Anywho, if all else fails, just wait until you're able to sneak in a Genestealer or two and just make sure (at least, as well as you can) that they get the jump on the Space Marines (+30 against unaware targets makes a massive difference!). You'd be amazed what a difference getting caught with your pants down can do to a party in a PnP game! Okay, now my questions about Hordes: Flamers/Grenades used vs Hordes in Melee - Would the "AoE" nature of the attack inflict damage upon the nearby Space Marine as well? Thematically and mechanically, how do you have a "swarm" of enemies all attacking a single target relentlessly? I'm currently using a few figurines placed on a black-painted cardboard circle (CD sized+shaped) to represent my hordes. But this question came up in our last session. I currently ruled that the AoE doesn't hit the Space Marine just for time-consumption sake. I'm actually trying to figure out how to make this work though in regards to friendly fire (which is always a possibility in my games). Should the (we use minis) Space Marine model be actually caught in the "center" of the circle, if he gets thrown into melee with the enemy horde? Being that flamers shoot in a cone shape, we're also wondering if we have two hordes engaged in melee with a nearby Space Marine, if it is possible to hit BOTH hordes in a single flamer shot? I would rule no, because I just can't realistically imagine a flamethrower having that kind of reach--the kind it would take to flame 20-40 chumps in a single spray (okay… maybe a heavy flamer?). Thanks, and good luck with your campaign!
  15. Uuuugh… the quote things are messed up… oh well -_-0. This be her! http://www.games-workshop.com/gws/catalog/productDetail.jsp?prodId=prod1300026a - She is just a Sister Superior with a Chainsword and Plasma Pistol. I was actually tempted to get a Seraphim and have that be the character I was creating, but I just loved the way the Sister Superior looked with that bad-arse (and iconic!) Sabbat-pattern helmet! I'm still not sure what Order she should belong to… I was thinking about Order of the Ardent Shroud (there is a Blood Angel in the group and I was thinking of having her be a Veteran of the Third War Armageddon and have her take the Rival talent for 'Blood Angels' since she witnessed the atrocities they committed first hand; this way I could force him to RP!--he's usually the silent-killing type xD). My other thought was Sacred Rose (love the color scheme and Selena Agna!!!) or Order of Our Martyred Lady (my personal favorite Order and also has my favorite Saint--but honestly, I'm a little sick of painting black figurines, since we just colored our Deathwatch squad!). Lynata said: Ironically, as the Saint begins its crusade of holy terror, the struggle becomes more orderly and the once-fanatical masses begin to deprive the entity of the emotion it requires to sustain itself, until at some point in time it has to return to the Immaterium, either to be absorbed by other daemons (as we are told in Codex fluff happens constantly) or to reappear at a later time if the requirements for its appearance are met again. Ah! I've never read that, but it makes sense then since Saint Celestine appeared during a pivotal moment in The Promethean War to aid the Order of the Ebon Chalice, but disappeared almost as quickly as she came. That's good to know! Lynata said: On the other hand, given that the servo-skull was used by an Inquisitor, perhaps it could possess the necessary knowledge after all - or at the very least is somewhat more likely to do so than a Sister Hospitaller, who would be forced to improvise. I would probably still assign a penalty to the skull simply to represent the lack of proper tools and drugs to care for Astartes, but it's better than not having any healer at all! My thoughts exactly! I was definitely going to impart a penalty to the servo-skull and also (probably) not allow him to heal critical injuries. Would it just be Servo-Skull stats as listed, with a +20 Medicae modifier? Lynata said: Don't feel compelled to have the Sister Superior there at any cost, though. The character needs a purpose or at least a justification for her presence, lest it may seem strange. Given that she was in the Inquisitor's retinue, however, I suppose it makes sense for her to try to track him down - and in doing so team up with the Marines. No, no! I've DM'd/GM'd for awhile, I know not to pull such silliness! And her tracking down the Inquisitor is exactly why she would be with the group (momentarily). I'll have her leave them after the mission is accomplished and they shall meet her again during the Rising Tempest campaign, where she may be a valuable spokesperson for the squad or a terrible hindrance to them (depending on how they RP with her!). Lynata said: …or a normal Sister Superior with a boltgun and chainsword (not actively seeking out close combat, but not shying back from it either, and switching to the blade once enemies attempt to charge your ranged fighters). Still being an adept in All-Things-Sister-Related, what exactly is the role of a Sister Superior (besides a Sergeant equivalent)? I'm going to have her offer whatever insights she may have during tactical discussions (where appropriate), but naturally she can't control the Deathwatch party, nor do I want her to overshadow the current Ultramarine squad leader. I think we were discussing that she would be spec'd up as a Tactical Marine, so they might have a lot of overlapping skills (and she also won't start with the awesome Bolter w/ Fire Selector x_x). I'm just not entirely sure what her role should be within the group (ranged support, melee or just a mix, whenever either seems appropriate) since she isn't specialized like a Seraphim or Retributor. Additionally, the Ultramarine loves to carry around his flamer and light things up and I'm not sure the group needs another one, even though that is a common hallmark of the Sisters of Battle ! Though your last comment about the Combi-weapon is probably the way I'll go, now that you mention it! Thanks again for the help! I'm going to introduce her in the groups third session, so I'll let you know how things go!
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