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AK_Aramis

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  1. Like
    AK_Aramis got a reaction from Tenebrae in Disadvantages and Rings   
    Your scale is a very narrow slice of the range out there. Further, I think you're conflating "mechanical complexity" with "Tactical precision"
    FFG Star Wars (SW) is heavily mechanical - in 12 point arial, I filled a page with just the corebook's opportunity and triumph spends, not counting ones unique to various talents. Mechanical limits on what talents one can take, and when they can be taken, with prerequisites so complex than only the graphical flowcharts make them playable.
    SW can be played in a very mechanically light, GM driven narrative mode... but that literally means ignoring more than half the actual rules. It's actually pretty damned crunchy, despite not using a grid. Its tactical precision is low; it utterly lacks support for use of tactical minis and relies heavily upon "Theater of the Mind" . In terms of rules interactions per unit playtime, it's a dead heat with AD&D 2E and/or D&D 5E.
    L5R is mechanically less complex - fewer constraints upon current action choices due to rules-covered situational states, fewer mechanical outcomes from given states, fewer variant/divergent mechanics, fewer action types calling for mechanical use, and fewer variations on those resolutions than D&D 5E or FFG Star Wars.. We have one unified dice mechanic (same as SW){same as D&D 5), two types of dice (less than SW's 7 kinds){vs D&Ds 20), 4 symbols (vs SW's 8){numerical results for D&D}, 4 total advantage/disadvantage mechanics (vs SW none){D&D 5 has no such mechanic, and the same term is used for a different kind of mechanic), two mechanical types of talent (vs SW's roughly 10){vs D&D's roughly 6-7); 7 types of non-dead damage state (vs SW's 20 or so){vs D&D 5e's 4, one of which s purely descriptive), and of those 7, 3 are already using the disadvantage mechanics (SW's are about 10 mechanics, and, since no disadvantages exist, they're essentially new mechanics). Psychological states number 4 in L5R5 (conflated with stun damage in SW), Conditions and Qualities number about 30 in both L5R5 and SW, and about 20 in D&D5.
    L5R 5 has more defined than D&D 5e in mechanical terms, but those are less complex individually than D&D ones, use fewer overall mechanical types, and are defined in such a way that they can be used in a "purely silent manner"... that is, RAW, you, the player, can see clearly when they apply if the GM isn't allowing outside uses.
    FFG SW is mechanically far more complex - more rules and more interactions between those rules, and more rules per roll involved.
    None of the mentioned games are notably different on expected and average number of mechanical interactions per game-play-hour. Where they differ is in how many different rules are touched on for a single check, and how many mechanical decisiosn need to be made once the roll is committed.
    D&D 5E, once the roll is made, it's made. Further mechanical interaction by that player is solely the constraint/deconstraint of the target, and or the damage or conditions affected. THe target may get to make a roll to avoid effects in many cases.
    FFG SW, once the roll is made, there usually is opportunity to spend or threat to spend, plus the possibility of triumph or despair, and for a significant subset of rolls, force symbols to spend.
    L5R 5 has several post roll decisions: rerolls, keeps, explosive keeps, opportunity spends, additional targets and/or special effects
    L5R 5 is more complex only on the rolls' meaningful decisions; the rest of the game is simpler than either D&D5E or FFG Star Wars.
    (Then again, WEG d6 SW was simpler still than all three, but even more mechanical interactions per hour... Faster resolution means more resolutions per hour. Savage Worlds, likewise, is quick. All 4 mentioned games are heavy on mechanical interactions. Compare this to Fiasco - where mechanical interactions are about 4-6 per player for an entire session... and are short to boot. FFG's End of the World likewise is mechanically lighter even than d6 SW or Savage Worlds.)
  2. Like
    AK_Aramis got a reaction from Tenebrae in Battle in the Mind kata   
    The second opp spend is for gaining technique information.  It's the one that matters; the other is just a bonus.
    For a Scorpion, this technique allows doing a recon on a foe, by insulting them, drawing a duel, and lasting through initiative; concede turn 1, and make the apology, If the do no accept the concession, they lose a pile of honor, and if they kill you, major honor and glory hits. Remember - Scorpion live or die by duty. The duty gain is doubled for doing one's duty, and halved for Honor and Righteousness, so the honor-point loss for admitting a breach of etiquette is halved, as is the one for lying (if he needed to) in the insult. For a typical scorpion (honor in the low 30's), the duty gain exceeds the loss for honor and righteousness.  
    Likewise, one can use it in "friendly" duel by asking for mahō.
    The other use, the one you specifically ask about, is not a worthless bonus, either - but one used for a very specific purpose: forcing the hand.
    While it's not great if you're facing a stranger... if you know his highest rings, pick high & void. Either he picks void (and cannot center) or picks the high ring, and that tells you he's likely to center. 
    Also - not all duels need be actually fought. For first strike, first blood, or incapacity, one can admit defeat without honor loss (but still a glory hit).
    Plus, it's only a rank 2, it's not supposed to be earth shattering. (Well, unless his high ring is Earth.) 
     
     
  3. Like
    AK_Aramis got a reaction from UnitOmega in Questions before getting started   
    Coinage in medieval societies is usually valued upon the metal value — thus being "specie" — Feudal japan was almost unique in backing it with a commodity rather than simply using it as specie. (some pacific islanders used scrip of their own, as well, and equally as durable. Quipu in the South American traditions are essentially record books...)
    Scrip is a technical term meaning that it's (1) not issued by a central government, and (2) valued as a token, not as specie.  Specie is coin valued for its precious metal content, and containing a face value in purity and mass. The markings are a promise of purity of the coinmetal, NOT in a backing of something else. Fiat means the unit has no backing thing of value, and is not itself valued at metal value. Proper coinage is government issued, or at least government ordered..
    L5R (3e and 5e both) specify 5 bu per koku, and that puts it right about 3 Tō, or 2.5 US bushels. Also, the Koku about 150 kg dry...
  4. Haha
    AK_Aramis got a reaction from Avatar111 in The Value of Composure   
    You are making the same error Avatar111 did in reading my post. I never claimed momentum was to be used. I stated fire ring social rolls. Those aren't for the momentum - they are for the access to the inflict strife opportunity spend.
    So swhile you're both right about the rule, you're both attempting to refute a claim that exists only in your delusion.
  5. Like
    AK_Aramis got a reaction from P'an Ku in Earth stance and crit   
    It doesn't block strife, increased critical severity spends (if the hit would do a crit anyway), nor penalties to hit next turn.
    Note also: it doesn't prevent crits by hitting you while incapacitated, nor those specified in the core success of the technique, such as Jade Strike. (but if a PC is subject to Jade Strike working on them, something has gone seriously wrong...  )
  6. Like
    AK_Aramis got a reaction from Victarion13 in Sourcebook Predictions   
    SOmeone asked during the beta, and the response was that LBS was not part of the sale.
  7. Like
    AK_Aramis reacted to deraforia in Earth stance and crit   
    Earth stance does prevent your opponent from spending opportunities to inflict a critical strike. It applies to all Attack action checks and all Scheme action checks. They cannot spend opportunities to inflict critical strikes or conditions.
  8. Like
    AK_Aramis got a reaction from UnitOmega in The Value of Composure   
    A lot depends upon scene lengths - the reset to half is much more generous when the scenes are shorter.
    Composure of 6 SHOULD be twitchy. They should also be spending opp to reduce strife taken. It's 1:1 on strife  on the same roll.
    Or, they should be predictable - using one good stat - often void - so they can avoid taking strife.
     
  9. Like
    AK_Aramis got a reaction from Seraph1m in Entangling Terrain/Movement action?   
    Concur with both Franwax and Nameless ronin. Note that the movement action is an additional 1 (no roll) or  (rolled) 1+BS/2 bands, so even difficult terrain can get 2 bands. See p. 264, Maneuver action and Summary of a Skirmish Turn sidebar.
    But also note: many talent-actions are movement type; those all take it as well, such as Fowing Water Strike (p 175, Attack & Movement)  Heartpiercing Strike (p176 Attack & Movement).
    As yet, I've seen no terrain inherently requiring a roll to move through. 
  10. Confused
    AK_Aramis got a reaction from Avatar111 in Shikigami mechanics. This is broken by RAW   
    There's no such thing as a technique you can never use...
    Open ending allows (at really long odds) even a ring 1 to trigger a TN 6...
    unlikely, but doable.
  11. Haha
    AK_Aramis got a reaction from Avatar111 in Dueling Question?   
    IMGroups, Predict has turned several duels in play as it triggered finishing strikes.
  12. Like
    AK_Aramis reacted to tamdrik in Togashi Monk Discussion   
    Er, no, there are plenty of uses of "profile" that don't refer to unarmed attacks.  The first use of the word "profile" is actually referring to the "Humble Peasant profile", and weapons have profiles, too (e.g., "An improvised weapon uses the most similar weapon profile (often a club or a knife)...").  And I use the wording "unarmed [attack] profile" (with brackets) because it is sometimes phrased that way ("unarmed attack profile" vs. "unarmed profile") in the book.  If you want to suggest that's a wholly separate and distinct thing from "unarmed profile", then I don't even really know what to say to that.
  13. Sad
    AK_Aramis got a reaction from Avatar111 in Samurai Heritage   
    Or another skill being pushed to 4. 
  14. Like
    AK_Aramis got a reaction from KveldUlfr in Samurai Heritage   
    If you find them boring, it's because you're not working the background into play.
    Someone who picks "Ruthless Victor" as an ancestor should be reacting to it - either embracing it, or explicitly rejecting it, or possibly in-play struggling over it. NPCs should, if they know the lineage, make reference to it.
    Elevated for service means expectations will either be higher (Following the footsteps) or lower (You always fail to live up to your ancestors).
    Each of them has RP potential. If anything, Imperial Lineage is the LEAST interesting of the bunch. And the least powerful. It prevents outright attempts to kill you by anyone who isn't higher status. Killing PC's is itself a boring option, so it's usually irrelevant. Unless the party is, like one of my groups, pursuing a course of autocracide to clean out the Kolat... (Following on from the BB and the DLC follow-on... they realized the Ruby Champion was Kolat, and publicly accuser her, with testimony against her in writing, causing her to publicly flee... and they cut her down as she did. They're now negotiating with Winter Court to not be terminated themselves... They also ended the BB Adventure with a capture of the bad-guy, and the Bayushi PC becoming the Topaz Champion. When the corebook came out, they regenerated the folio characters as full corebook characters. Funny, but an adventure you claim was boring and unmemmorable has been for 2 different groups, very different and rather memorable... as was the 1E version the once I've run it. Totally different every time.)
    The 2nd collumn of the table isn't surplus material. It is RP Hooks and backstory inspiration. Every bit as important as the 3rd and 4th columns.
  15. Like
    AK_Aramis got a reaction from Magnus Grendel in Samurai Heritage   
    If you find them boring, it's because you're not working the background into play.
    Someone who picks "Ruthless Victor" as an ancestor should be reacting to it - either embracing it, or explicitly rejecting it, or possibly in-play struggling over it. NPCs should, if they know the lineage, make reference to it.
    Elevated for service means expectations will either be higher (Following the footsteps) or lower (You always fail to live up to your ancestors).
    Each of them has RP potential. If anything, Imperial Lineage is the LEAST interesting of the bunch. And the least powerful. It prevents outright attempts to kill you by anyone who isn't higher status. Killing PC's is itself a boring option, so it's usually irrelevant. Unless the party is, like one of my groups, pursuing a course of autocracide to clean out the Kolat... (Following on from the BB and the DLC follow-on... they realized the Ruby Champion was Kolat, and publicly accuser her, with testimony against her in writing, causing her to publicly flee... and they cut her down as she did. They're now negotiating with Winter Court to not be terminated themselves... They also ended the BB Adventure with a capture of the bad-guy, and the Bayushi PC becoming the Topaz Champion. When the corebook came out, they regenerated the folio characters as full corebook characters. Funny, but an adventure you claim was boring and unmemmorable has been for 2 different groups, very different and rather memorable... as was the 1E version the once I've run it. Totally different every time.)
    The 2nd collumn of the table isn't surplus material. It is RP Hooks and backstory inspiration. Every bit as important as the 3rd and 4th columns.
  16. Like
    AK_Aramis got a reaction from Hida Jitenno in Samurai Heritage   
    Given that it's roll twice and pick for the roll method (p 96)...
    I'll allow picking but certain ones won't be allowed to be picked. Like Imperial Heritage or Nemurani.
  17. Like
    AK_Aramis got a reaction from Magnus Grendel in Begginer Box if you've got Core Rules?   
    The things that make it worthwhile:
    The Map. The 8x10 map in the corebook as a full 17x22 is really nice the Palace of the Emerald Champion map. Also really nice. The tokens. Nifty PC/NPC tokens The adventure is well paced for new players, so-so for players with other RPG experience. 
    ¤ As a "grab and go" adventure, I've seen far worse.
    ¤ It's a rewrite of the 1E corebook's adventure. My players considered it memorable, and had great fun with it.
    Note that the point totals issue is one where it's not well spelled out, but there's plenty written on that in other threads.
    It also makes a key implicit exemplar: A training or testing montage is ONE scene, not many.

     
  18. Like
    AK_Aramis got a reaction from Victarion13 in The most Korean place in Rokugan   
    And yet, the Crane are, as a clan,  the ones most likely to bleach and/or dye their hair, wear heavy makeup, and use clothing as more than just weather and identity protection...
  19. Like
    AK_Aramis got a reaction from Victarion13 in Invocations and Stolen Knowledge   
    Having invocations doesn't make one a shugenja. Being a shugenja assures one can learn invocations.
    A allowing B isn't the same as B allowing A.
    Also, anyone can attempt to Importune. Only shugenja are likely to be allowed to make the roll to succeed.
    And, IMO, to be a shugenja, your school needs the tag.
  20. Like
    AK_Aramis got a reaction from Black_Rabbit_Inle in The most Korean place in Rokugan   
    And yet, the Crane are, as a clan,  the ones most likely to bleach and/or dye their hair, wear heavy makeup, and use clothing as more than just weather and identity protection...
  21. Like
    AK_Aramis got a reaction from Void Crane in Samurai Heritage   
    Given that it's roll twice and pick for the roll method (p 96)...
    I'll allow picking but certain ones won't be allowed to be picked. Like Imperial Heritage or Nemurani.
  22. Like
    AK_Aramis got a reaction from Void Crane in A word on Currency   
    Well, it wasn't an issue in 1st edition. The prices, while not of need used by samurai, were present for the GM to use as a baseline, and for the samurai to know what he can and should get away with ... and for rōnin and for traveling samurai.
    See, a traveling samurai's lord is expected to compensate the local for the traveler's  expenses. It's a matter of politeness to pay as you go when outside of your lord's land. It makes life easier for both daimyō. It makes the Dōshin's life easier - he doesn't need to track what you owe. It makes the peasant's life easier, too - he doesn't have to beg for the daimyō to repay him your expenses. Therefore, it's polite.
    And if samurai society is any one thing, it's polite. 2-shaku to  3-shaku razors on every samurai's hip, and jitte or sai on every doshin's... politeness is what keeps one skin whole... A rude samurai may be treated as if drunk by the dōshin - it's less embarrassing to be accused of being drunk than to be accused of theft, or of being an enemy.  Sure, the peasants (except those who are dōshin) will politely ignore a rude samurai, but the dōshin won't.
    A rude samurai is a problem for the local lord, and the dōshin are the beat cops... 
    Why? Because if the samurai are rude to the peasants, the peasants become upset. When enough become upset, they rebell. Being impolite to your daimyō's peasants is thus being impolite to your daimyō, and also being a traitor. A rude traveling samurai is more of a problem - is he a rōnin? Is he an enemy? Is he a disguised oni? Why is he sowing discontent? Is he a wandering murderer? Or a psychotic duelist looking to provoke a duel? 
    The dōshin needs to know. The dōshin needs to know if you're allowed to be there - so his daimyō can bill your daimyō if needed, and because without permission, you're axiomatically an enemy. Now, a local rōnin who turns out when the hue and cry goes up, and who doesn't rob, steal, etc, and pays for his meals? The dōshin need not trouble the daimyō... unless asked. The traveler paying his own way with papers is a footnote. The rude traveler, or the drunkard, or the broke one, because of the hostility to the samurai caste they can create, they are a problem to send the runner to the yoriki, and the yoriki to inform the daimyō.
    Fundamentally, one can extrapolate to rudeness by samurai being treason, because it undermines the empire's social structure. Sure, that's hyperbole... 
    Paying one's way when traveling is thus a politeness that avoids overreactions, and makes both peasant and local daimyō pleased to see the samurai. Even if he's a rōnin.
    Offering to help when a hue and cry goes up is also a politeness. 
    Defusing the hostile samurai is a politeness - not just to him, but to the peasants, the daimyō, all the locals, and the emperor and all samurai.
    Being polite is a samurai's duty. Not inconveniencing the locals is part of that. Paying one's way on the road is polite.
  23. Like
    AK_Aramis reacted to Franwax in Prone condition question   
    There are indeed quite a few ways to “combo” nicely between party members. Another one is the use of the Shuji sensational distraction in combat. Why would lower vigilance on a target be any good in a fight? Just ask your friend with Iaijutsu cut: rising blade or Spinning blades style  !
    Or Disorient someone with Tempest of Air to open them up to the guy with Veiled Menace style...
  24. Like
    AK_Aramis got a reaction from Suzume Chikahisa in A word on Currency   
    I think so - most of the sources I can find run 1600-1800. Definitely survived into Meiji's reign. And most of what I've read said the customary was more like 60% of the Kokudaka. 50% was the lowest I saw referenced. But I don't have access to Japanese language sources. 
    Likewise, the gokenin/lesser daimyō line was 10,000 kokudaka... (it's worth noting that that's  一万 石高 = 1 man kokudaka... be the equivalent of saying 1k in English... as the Japanese use 4 decimal places, rather than 3, per grouping/naming house for numerals. If you had 1 or more man kokudaka, you were a daimyåo.)
  25. Haha
    AK_Aramis reacted to Kaiju in Roleplaying vs. Roll Playing   
    If I was a bushi and my GM is throwing a big earth ring, yoroi armor, tetsubo wielding earth kata using opponent at me, I would either use my own, hopefully even bigger Hida buddy, or I would look for supernatural damage (maybe I have a monk friend, or a shugenja, or even some maho). If I am the GM and my player is a decked-out Hida camping in earth stance etc., I ll certainly go with a shugenja of some sort ,or a monster with the ability to destroy armor. In general, destroying armor is achievable if you know whats coming.
    In either case, the player should consider whether combat is really the avenue to solve this.
    Now, I know what you REALLY wanted to ask me is how to beat the maxed out bushi in a PvP situation (that never occurs) with no GM around and just a maxed out Hida sitting there. While it ll never come up in a normal group (i ve had these questions asked for various maxed-out jedi/marauder variants in SWRPG), if we get cheesy, I would go for the following:
    Moto in air stance with decent air, the shield/shortspear combo from the Mantis book and firebiter poison for when he finally tires of never hitting me and me just moving around doing whatever I came here to do. I can target whatever I need to out of range and thus apply my school technique to him. Alternatively, I just get a friendly shugenja (or some oil + fire) to apply the burning condition. Or I take a high water char with, say, a bow and arrows and just kite him endlessly. Also works with high water, range 2 weapon and the water kata that allows me to add water ring to the damage, which is more than his armor can absorb. Then use extra move + opportunity move + free step as needed to stay out of range. Or if we want to continue the cheese, I can cast maho. All of this isnt even figuring in the possibility of racking up his Strife till he unmasks and retreats. 
    The thing is, you are looking at a situation that only happens if both GM and players force it to happen. You played the SW RPG, right? Characters in that game cannot reasonably fight each other, because whoever goes first just oneshots their opponent most of the time. The same goes for many other games, not the least of them DnD 4th. PCs are made with rules that arent intended to fight against each other.
    I have honestly not had a situation where any player (or me as a player) had no recourse but fight a maxed out tank NPC made by applying player rules, having the best gear, and there not being any alternative to this course of action. 
    L5R is, at least in my groups interpretation of the setting, much more about avoiding combat, or manipulating the circumstances of the combat encounter, than it is about grid-based tactical fighting. I just like the fact that if it comes to combat, its not just a series of rolls.
    EDIT: What I mean when I say I love the tactical nature is that once I understood the system, I can create encounters, fights, opponents or situations which reward clever tactics, confront players with new circumstances and problems, and I can intentionally play smarter or less smart for atmosphere, balance or just fun purposes. And all that without needing to even get into monsters, supernatural beings or outright NPC-only mechanics. Players can feel they outsmarted, outfought and outthought their opponents, and didnt just throw their DPS build against the stat-block of the monster and it turned out to be enough.
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