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About Alphast

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  1. Despite losing most of my games, I had a good time seeing a lot of old friends and even making new ones.
  2. A bit late to the party maybe, but here is my piece: Name: Jean-Baptiste (aka Kakita Kasukaru) Where are you from, tell us about your playgroup? I am a French guy but I've lived in various countries (most notably the Netherlands, England and now Greece). I participated in expending the play group in Southern Holland at the time I used to live there. Now I'm part of the Athens group. It's one of the nicest bunch you can imagine: always ready to help you with cards or tactics. And they have deadly tsipouro. How did you hear about or get involved in L5R? A friend of mine in Lyon talked to me about the RPG. We used to read Yoshikawa's books too, translated of course. And I remember reading the old AEG fictions in English. But I did not play at the time. After moving to the NL in 2001, I was invited to play the RPG (1st Ed) by a guy in my play group in Gouda. I accepted enthusiastically. After a while I started mastering as well (3rd Edition). Frustrated by the inability of RPG players to significantly influence this living setting, I took on the CCG at the end of Samurai, learning in the Rotterdam CCG group. I kept playing both RPG and CCG (and Love Letter Rokugan) since then. Did you/Do you consider yourself a clan loyalist? Yes, without a doubt. I am a true Crane: politics and culture first, but backed up by fast deadly steel. What did you like about or what drew you to your clan of choice? Politics and art? What's not to like? There is a certain attraction to a charming and polite aesthete who can still cut your head off in one perfect draw... What was your first L5R tournament experience? My first tournament experience was the Lille Kotei in France in 2009 I think. I had a blast there, even though I lost a LOT of games against a lot of good players. Favorite story or quote from the fiction? Why? My absolute favorite quote is one from a Kolat about the Crane: "The Crane have better food, better entertainment, and the charming custom of killing their enemies in broad daylight, in front of witnesses" (Shiba Yoma). Favorite character? Why? I liked Kakita Noritoshi. The doomed "badass" type that can kill one of the best ninjas through a wall, because she had killed his beloved wife, that was something. And what an end to his life!! Also he had flaws. He was not perfect: he was human and you could feel his pain. And the mistakes he made. Best memory or experience you had playing L5R or because of L5R. Simple: moving from one country to another and always having a group of friends waiting for you, that's priceless. I know I'm not the only one who changed country for work or love and just could rely on the community to help integrate. Favorite deck that you built or played and why. My favorite deck used to be a Scout honor deck at the start of Celestial. That deck was a thing of beauty, mechanically. Everything worked with the rest. It wasn't a super fast honor runner, but it could slaughter military decks in defence. Favorite Arc and why. Celestial. I preferred the duelling rules then. Even though the focus effects were too overpowered, at least the duelling rules made deckbuilding interesting and duelling decks feared. Now it's just boring and a bit useless. Favorite Tournament experiences. Getting to the EU Championship in Dublin. That was an absolute top experience of friendliness, great games and even the thrill of playing at the 1st table for one game during the second chance tournament. It didn't last, but it was intense. Anything else you would like to tell players about L5R at that time, or any stories to bring back some fond memories for old school players or inspire new ones? Not much to say but that this game used to be one of the best there is. Not because of great mechanics or super design. But because you always had the feeling to be part of the family. And the RPG is probably the only one which inspired me to write actual poetry.
  3. I find it refreshing that Shawn, Max, Fred or Robert come and discuss with us about this, tbh. Yes, it might be a bit uncomfortable, but what do we prefer? There is no painless way of discussing this. Obviously, we all know that they were all working under seriously complicated circumstances. Shawn has mentioned this already, I believe (tell me if I'm wrong) and it's clear that any problem there has been with either story or continuity can not only be put under their responsibility. And we have to remember they were, to my knowledge, doing this either as volunteers or as a side job at best. I also remember that they were all quite open to discussion, which I will always be grateful about. This said, I think there is no harm or disrespect in asking FFG to consider very seriously who they would rehire if any and give our opinion as future customers about the process. The fictions is what kept many of us engaged over the year (and I am saying this as a compliment to this team and the previous ones) and I believe it's fair to say that it's more at the core identity of this game(s) than even its mechanics, its victory conditions and what not...
  4. I'd say yes, but only in a very broad way, and with much more control by FFG than AEG had.
  5. Back to the duel thing: maybe instead of being a game action it could be somehow directly tied to a victory condition? Like: military dueling lets you avoid the battle (since your champion defeated the other army's champion) and thus advances directly your military victory (or denies it to your opponent). Or the honor dueling would let you win the court battle and advance your honor condition directly (or your dishonor if that's a thing). And maybe you could even have element balance duels which would directly advance the enlightenment condition. Duels would be much rarer in a game, but occur at a decisive/surprise moment.
  6. As far as I am concerned, I would be super happy if they keep Fred Wan and Robert Denton. As for the others, fine if they can be in too. But these two are the ones I would be keeping if I had to take the decision.
  7. I certainly hope he is able to finish it, for whoever is paying him or will. I also hope that FFG keeps some kind of Story Team for the game (it's after all the main interest of L5R) and that Robert Denton a.k.a. Spooky is in that team (or better, leads it).
  8. When I started, I was not playing the CCG but the RPG. So I chose Crane based on the idea that awesome sword fighters with a soul for art was a great concept. I never looked back. Honor is stronger than steel. So when I started the CCG (back in Samurai) and wanted to pick a starter, I bought a Crane one. I fell in love with the honor running, control and duelling mechanics.
  9. Crane player here, Alphast, aka Kakita Kasukaru reporting for duty. Saluting our new Imperial family... Utz AEG! Banzai FFG!
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