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shosuko

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About shosuko

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  • Birthday 08/11/1981

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  1. I've come back around and am not going to allow this to happen - until they can attach a weapon summon invocation which includes an opportunity spend, at which point I'll give it a green light. Thanks for the discussion ppl!
  2. Is there anything broken about this? Or are you just knee-jerk reacting "they have so much why bother with this?" because the answer to that is simple - my player wants to, and if there are so many arrow + invocation combos, why stop this one unless it somehow overpowers them? Is there something crazy powerful about potentially double critting that I'm not seeing? I think tying it to crit makes sense - that is good feedback - if they are able to defend against the damage it isn't really "hitting" them so the combo could flop, but if they landed a crit that kinda means the arrow is inside them, and that is where it casts Yari of Air... so to me it seems worth doing if the player wants to do it. It states that you resolve the effect where the arrow hit. The effect of the invocation is simply to smite the target with supernatural damage and a resist for disorient. Tying Tempest of Air to the arrow gives you an effective range of 2-5 instead of 2-3 for combining the two actions together.
  3. There was a good discussion about crits and what constitutes a hit that was useful. I think my resolution will be "If it crits then the Yari is summoned inside the target" since that is where it would be... I will probably require 1 OP on the roll for the invocation which would typically be used to allow an immediate Strike action on the other elemental weapons. If they don't crit then the Yari simply pops out nearby, within range of the target if anyone wants to grab it, but otherwise its wasted. Basically this creates a little combo where a Kaito shrine maiden can risk an extra action to get a double crit if they hit, or still miss. Granted - there are no rules dictating that a player would get 2 crits, but neither the Yari or the Yumi are so powerful that I would be concerned with this amount of strength banked off of 2 actions... Is there anything I'm missing about 2 crits @ DLS 3 being amazingly powerful that I would want to prevent a player from taking this over the obvious Tempest of Air arrow which smites for Air Ring + resist Disoriented at TN 4 instead of the 2nd crit?
  4. Kaito Shrine Keeper takes Yari of Air as their rank 1 air invocation. They use their Sacred Arrows school ability to bind it to an arrow. Now they shoot someone with it releasing this spell... What do? Will this summon a yari within the target they hit? Or is there something else which would guide the resolution?
  5. If anything this illustrates why a warrior would want low composure - as your goal would be to fill your strife bar, not to have great capacity for strife. I actually ran into this in a recent session where a Matsu warrior struggled to become enraged, while I've had Scorpion Infiltrators become compromised within the first round of any scene. The flaw is entirely in the concept - Earth is the ultimate passive stat, and as such it fits with endurance - your ability to move on unperturbed even as you are worn down. The facade that composure maintains is not your natural state. It isn't you being yourself, its you masking yourself. It is active camouflage, not a resistance of the natural state. In short, the face you wear, which composure maintains is a complete lie. This is why it fits with Air - the ring of deceit and cleverness. The face you wear is about casting a specific outward appearance - which includes remaining stoic as well as feigning emotion. All this talk about Courtiers not needing composure and why warriors should have so much.. and I fail to understand why bushi types aren't concerned that their warriors have low vigilance - which is the stat which prevents you from being ambushed. It lets you see the traps and pit falls (literally) on the battlefield. Why are warriors denied this stat?
  6. I would imagine the better fix would be to let warriors on the battlefield stop caring about maintaining a composed persona ... Why would a warrior slashing goblins care at all about composure? They're killing things, they're doing what they feel they should be doing. They aren't trying to hide their true emotions behind any civil appearance. Composure is not willpower, or resistance to fear. I believe this is very clear in the book on page 30. If it was willpower than having too much strife would break a character. If it was a fear resist, then strife overrunning your composure would cause your character to flee. Instead it states Also in the description of Strife from the book, pg 29 What might be a better ruling to fix this is to simply allow a warrior to ignore most strife so long as they are fighting honestly against whom they feel they should fight against. Unless people are watching, or they don't believe in the fight they are involved in, just let them ignore most strife. They aren't needing to wear any mask, so why measure the composure of said mask? To me this makes sense - a warrior deals with their problems with their sword. When a person who is used to confronting their opposition with a blade must stand back and use only words they should stumble. Forced to be polite to people they could easily kill is a challenge which makes outbursts like honor challenges and rage fitting. These represent the character acting in a way that says "I'm done with this civil game, lets draw swords and see if you'll still be smiling."
  7. Is it willpower though? The book is pretty explicit that losing composure has nothing to do with losing control of your character. You don't flee battle when you become compromised. You aren't tricked into doing anything. You may find it difficult to function, but that is only because your reserve has run thin... You are still fully emboldened to whatever action you wish to pursue. It also doesn't strictly enforce any glory / honor loss. Every time it mentions glory / honor loss its uses words which indicate possibilities but no certainty. On page 30 of the book - Unmasking 2nd paragraph - Importantly, the player never loses control of their character while unmasking, because the player chooses the shape the character's unmasking takes and the time at which it occurs. Also in the Benefits and Risks of Unmasking - Players and GM's can look to the examples of unmasking in this section for inspiration, or invent their own to fit the scene and character. Continuing on the next page - While such behavior might have a cost in honor or glory... Honestly - and its a point you've gone on about, so again I'm preaching to the choir - but they needed to do more testing with this game. The ever-present mechanic of Strife cripples anyone without Composure. Do we cripple the Bushi after a brilliant attack? Or do we cripple the Courtier after spreading a sweet sweet rumor? The answer to both should be no, yet one of them must suffer with this system. The Warrior gets a good cushion of Composure to work through though, while the Courtier may literally become compromised from 1 round... and all that I've heard people go on about Vigilance as the saving grace of the air ring, and true power of the courtier? Yeah, your vigilance is a 1 when you're compromised... Its not just "hard mode" its literally a built in Achilles heel. Anyone with good Vigilance is going to have moderate composure at best... ---------- idk I'm really hoping a good homebrew system can flesh this out. I think a major thing to tackle is how unmasking and how strife work. I don't like seeing Warriors unable to notice anything, and I don't like courtiers who are unable to keep their cool for more than 1 round of conversation. Imagine if you had to construct a court scene where players are questioning characters, and debating the semantics of law, and attempting to present their case to a judge. How many courtier characters could make it through that? A few rolls... and they sink... It makes me feel this game doesn't respect the court scene, and I play L5R for the court scene! If L5R can't give me moments of tension as players unravel their adventures in front of their superiors, mixing clever lies in with the truth, and countering smears against them... then I'm playing the wrong game. Anyway keep working on what you're doing. I'd still prefer the version where you spread endurance and composure to separate ring pairs.
  8. In what way is it willpower? Besides needing to unmask, are you penalized in other ways such as being forced to flee? Is it just too bound up to every roll for it to be un-needed for any character?
  9. Do you think Water is the courtier ring then? Is the problem perhaps that the book gives air to courtiers when their ring is really water? I think the main problem in my mind is that people think Composure is like Endurance. Like its a resolve to carry on - a fear resist. This is a complete misunderstanding of what "wearing a mask" means. Its not resilience, its deception. We put on a mask, and the mask is a lie. The Scorpion clan even literally wear a mask to symbolize this. People on the battlefield do NOT care about this, people in the courts do. Its a classic trope in Japanese samurai fantasy... Its practically the plot of Sanjuro... I know I'm preaching to the choir with you but Matsu, Hida, and Moto all wear their mind on their sleeve, yet they get 2 stats thrown into composure without even compromising their aggressive build - meanwhile the Crane and Scorpion get a chance at 1 stat into composure IF they pick the right family... Thematically it just fails. The classic L5R face off - the Matsu vs Kakita. Kakita get +1 earth from their school, but are otherwise 0's on both water and earth in construction... The Matsu get 3 stats into composure. Thematically the Crane should want to goad the Lion into solving their dispute with a duel. How is he going to do this with how much composure these "hot heads" get? How is the guy who has 1 stat in composure from chargen is supposedly advantaged by luring the Lion into a duel where becoming compromised could mean death... ? Complete thematic failure. Even if we re-tooled the stat bonuses to give Courtiers water where they may have gained air before, I feel strongly that the thematics just betray the civil vulnerability of a warrior, and the deceptive game antagonists play at court. For me its probably the biggest issue with the game RAW. I cringe seeing my political characters risk unmasking after 1-2 rolls while the warriors are like "sure, I don't care."
  10. What is your reasoning for reverting the stat distribution?
  11. Sure it doesn't... but is this a rule or an exception to a rule? Are Shugenja wholly pacifist with them perhaps grudgingly learning offensive invocations for use primarily against some unholy army? Or are they learning these as a basic part of their studies and perfectly willing to use them on the battlefield? Maybe I could phrase it: When a player says "I want to be a Shugenja" do you think they mean "I want to be a pacifist," or "I want to cast spells?"
  12. I'm not sure what point you're trying to make... but Shugenja don't just dwell on the southern wall...
  13. There are always rules and exceptions. The rule is that dead things are unclean. There are a number of reasons for this to be true, but to keep things simple lets just postulate that touching dead things makes you "unclean." You become clean again by performing cleansing rituals. Page 212 Cleansing Rite - Removes Afflicted condition. Page 271 Afflicted - Basically otherworldly forces are acting against you. Without taking care of it this can lead to spiritual corruption. Touching dead things, or unclean things can leave you open to becoming Afflicted. Now do Shugenja shed blood? Well, they don't swing swords... but a quick read through the invocations ruins the concept that Shugenja are peaceful. That said the Shugenja typically draw their power from the Kami. The Kami can quickly be replaced by the Kansen without the Shugenja meaning it... A little corruption can become a BIG problem so a Shugenja should be much more attentive not just to cleansing but to avoiding things which could corrupt them. I would imagine a bushi wouldn't mind being covered in blood, or even wading through corpses on the battlefield... but a Shugenja would certainly be concerned about these things. I don't know if the Core book goes over Kansen but I know it mentions them in the Afflicted condition. Kansen are basically like Kami except they give more power in exchange for a more real sacrifice. They'll give the power up front to lure the Shugenja into darker deals down the road. While the Kami are typically cajoled into action via rituals and incantations the Kansen are quicker to respond to some bloodshed. http://l5r.wikia.com/wiki/Kansen
  14. On the battlefield maybe... but aren't the Lions the ones who would lash out in court? Perhaps you imagine court as a small scene in a bigger combat-fantasy? I imagine court as a constant occupation. All day you're in meetings, detailing policy, proposing solutions and creating problems - all with the PC Police on high alert. If you act out of turn the whole system can collapse on you. Its an all day every day thing. I kinda wonder what stories you're reading where the Scorpion and Crane fall apart in court? Maybe you can link to some? I would imagine anyone who falls apart fast wouldn't last long in a world where you live and die by the quality of your lie... ----------------------------- I mean its like this - I've worked physical jobs. They are exhausting, and I've seen injury. I've also worked desk jobs, where I'm talking to clients all day long... I'm trying to sooth over their grievances, sounding convincing and empathetic while also not costing the business any money. I've got to be inspirational, guiding them with the vision their purchase will bring. Each person is a number to me, but must feel like they have an emotional commitment from me. I must react to things I've just heard about, and without any research come off as competent and confident. Make statements which leave me open to research and come back, but don't tell them that! Guess which job I found more mentally stressful? Which job would fire me if I shouted F$SK in response to anything? Which job cared about what attitude I was perceived to have? Which required me to control my emotions more? Which required more Composure?
  15. I think this is the key misconception we are arguing with these changes. What the Hida illustrates is an ability to see something horrific and continue fighting. Is this what Composure is supposed to represent? Is Composure the same as Willpower? Allowing us to continue to act when we otherwise would flee in terror? Or is Composure the ability to maintain the mask we wear as "civil people?" If Composure is to represent the willpower to continue to act in spite of seeing horrific things I would expect the accumulation of Strife as representing something unnerving. When your Strife eclipses your Composure I would expect your character to flee, or at least require them to resist fleeing. This means a Bayushi who has never left court would, on the battlefield surely flee before some grotesque being while the Hida may stay and fight. Is that what we get? I don't think so. When our Strife eclipses our Composure we enter a state of Compromised. While Compromised the mechanics allow us to continue to act as we wish, for as long as we want. We are not unnerved by what we see, we're not horrified. We do not flee, and do not need to resist fleeing. We simply cannot keep any dice showing Strife results. At the beginning of a turn where we are compromised we may Unmask. The book describes this as "briefly expressing the true emotions beneath the guise of a perfect samurai that society demands they maintain." It isn't about being emotionally exhausted, or afraid - in fact it is a state of being emotionally charged. When you unmask you gain the benefit of over-performing your next action and lose ALL of your Strife! This does not sound to me like some character who is in fear of the shadowlands beast but a character who can no longer pretend to be nice, or humble when they are really being aggressive or proud. Does a Hida need to wear a mask on the battlefield? Maybe... but not because of the Shadowlands Oni they are confronting. Before that beast they need no societal facade, they can act honestly and directly. However that same Hida who is used to acting honestly in the battlefield, being easily judged by the merits of his actions (did you live today? did you resist the taint? did you route your enemy?) could find it quite difficult being put in a social situation where he must smile, and pretend to be nice to someone who is literally trying to caste him as a brutish lout in a court where his Lord could be forced to put him on the front lines of the next venture beyond the walls... Bored? No... not bored... Completely out of his element in a world where words can force his hand to action, or inaction? Hida should be terrified... How well could someone who is so used to acting honestly adopt a social mask which is essentially one giant lie? I think mechanically there is a problem with this. You can only Unmask once per scene, but you aren't immune to Strife... In your example this would mean the Bayushi is a 1 trick pony. Show up, unmask, and then flee because they would be left compromised if they stayed... Remember Composure isn't just a timer until you unmask, but it is also a very lethal timer after that's happened... Further - I think the Scorpion naturally bend their principles... they do not need to unmask to do it. Every clan works along its philosophy naturally. This means Scorpion may use dishonorable tactics if there is a job that needs to be done. Crane may use political machinations to complete their aims, no matter how brutal, provided no one died. The Lion believe they may march their armies to settle it "honestly" when words fail them... None of these are examples of unmasking. Bend of Principles is more like a Lion unmasking to flee rather than fight to the death, or a Crane unmasking to threaten war amidst a political struggle.
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