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About DGLaderoute

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  1. Like I said on Discord, he's probably my favorite character to write, ever. And I've written quite a few, both in L5R, and elsewhere. There's a lot of depth to the guy, and every time I get inside his head, I seem to discover a little more of it.
  2. Kuwanan WAS with Uji. At the end of A Night Storm Rages, he left Uji, apparently to return a Lion samurai's swords to his family, and then to head to Toshi Ranbo to confront his sister. Uji stayed at Kyuden Kakita and, well, kinda blew it up.
  3. More generally, the Chancellor would, by custom, ordinarily become the Regent. Of course, the Emperor may dictate otherwise, and that's what happened here--Hantei Jodan named Shoju as Daisetsu's Regent. In Shoju's absence, and lacking any other direction, the position defaults back to the Chancellor, Yoshi (which, if you think about it, gives every incentive for an ambitious Chancellor to do their level best to undermine a Regent and get them ejected from the position!)
  4. As I said on Discord, I don't want to give any more information about Yugure because I don't know what FFG might have planned for him. You just kinda have to take him as he's portrayed in the story, and be left with a number of possibilities. And, yes, the story is deliberately intended to be ambiguous in terms of when it happened. It might be referring to Hotaru; however, it might be referring to another, past Champion. That does a better job of giving it a "ghost story" vibe, I think, than spelling out too much. Also, thank you! Pinch away!
  5. This. SOMEONE has to do the flavor text, and whether it's being extracted from other materials (since one presumes you would want the flavor text to match the card, at least to SOME extent; randomly-placed flavor text that doesn't reflect, or even clashes with what's on the card would actually be worse than having none, I think), or written from scratch, there is a cost--either in money, or in time (which is, ultimately, also money). Personally, I'd love to see flavor text on every card with room for it; I'd love even more for it to be unique flavor text, that adds yet more lore and contributes to the story beats. That would be a big job, though, and it would not be cheap in time and/or money. You really don't get something for nothing.
  6. Understood. That's why I emphasized that this was only really applicable for people that are concerned with the current canon. But for those running games/campaigns, then it's whatever works for them.
  7. I don't want to assume that everyone reading this is necessarily familiar with the distinctions between the old setting, and the current one. Newer players/fans could read this and go, Spider Clan? Huh? What did I miss? It's all part of trying to keep things accessible to both the established AND the new folks.
  8. If you're concerned about current canon, then the Maisuna family of the Crab doesn't exist. This appears to just be a Romanji version of "Mason", as in "stone mason"; it was a Kaiu vassal family in the old lore. When I was writing the Crab novella, and described the Gates of Persistence in the Shinomen Mori, I had them built by Kaiu; in the old lore, it was a Maisuna, but FFG seems quite determined to excise things like that from their current lore. There may be other vassal family names that suffer from the same issue. Of course, if you don't particularly care about the current canon, then by all means carry on, full speed ahead!
  9. I should note that, sometimes, it's worthwhile to deliver an inappropriate, or even an insulting gift. For instance, in the AEG online Winter Court 3 event, the Spider delegation (actually, one of their members, IIRC) offered the Governor of the Imperial Colonies in the former Ivory Kingdoms, Otomo Suikihime, the gift of an elephant tusk. It had apparently been cut off the animal right after it was killed, and delivered, still bloody, to the Court during the gift-giving ceremony. Needless to say, this was a SUPER offensive gift, but it had clearly been delivered with a deliberate purpose. The Spider realized they'd always be the reviled outsiders in the Court, so this gift was actually a message to all the other delegations--basically, if you f**k with us, then we'll f**k you right back, because we don't care about playing nice. The giver (a Spider shohei, I think) was banned from Court for some time, and made to apologize, but the point had been made. Nor did it really hurt the Spider's standing in Court, which was already pretty much bottom-rung, anyway. Incidentally, I should emphasize that this happened in the OLD setting of AEG. In the current, FFG setting, this event--assuming it happens at all, which is pretty unlikely--wouldn't be happening for another 70-ish years. I'm offering it only as an example of how there are circumstances in which a bad gift might suit the giver's particular political agenda.
  10. I absolutely agree that flavor text can be an awesome contribution to the story. Who's going to write it? FFG pays it writers, so the per-word rate would apply to flavor text on cards as much as it does to fiction. Assuming their budget for writing products is pretty much fixed through their fiscal year (and it almost certainly is), then it's a zero-sum game. In other words, how much fiction are you willing to forego, to get the flavor text put on cards?
  11. That's why it's important to not give the Emperor something functional or utilitarian, something "off the shelf" or so generic that it has no true meaning. For instance, a beautiful ikebana flower arrangement or bonsai tree is nice, but unless you actually cultivated and arranged them yourself, in some manner that is personal to you and represents a true effort to provide the Emperor with something unique and meaningful, then it's not a good gift. So, "Your most honored and esteemed majesty, this ikebana arrangement is made from flowers originally cultivated by my grandmother, and arrange in a vase that was given to me by my mother--both of whom died in loyal service to the resplendent Throne during the Blah-blah War..." that sort of thing, is fine. "Your most honored and esteemed majesty, here's a flower arrangement I thought would look nice in your front hall..." eh, not so much. That's why the best gifts for the Emperor are things like poems, stories, songs, hand-crafted works of art, a specially-choreographed dance, that sort of thing. It should be something that clearly shows that you invested time, effort and creativity into it--so the gift is really a reaffirmation of your affection for, and devotion to, the Emperor. Oh, incidentally--if the gift can simultaneously embarrass or insult a political rival in some subtle, but unmistakable way, so much the better. In the Imperial Court, politics infuses gift giving as much as it does anything else!
  12. Whatever gift she gives, it should be something personal, something that reflects the individual giving it, while being unique--for instance, a poem that she wrote describing her journey to Winter Court, an heirloom tea service given to her by her grandmother, an ikebana flower arrangement she did herself, from flowers growing in her own garden, that sort of thing. The more layers of meaning she can incorporate into the gift, the better. She should avoid mundane things (since the Emperor technically "owns" everything the Empire), things that are strictly utilitarian, or things that she might think the Emperor "needs"; none of those things would appropriate, and could be considered quite insulting. Gift-giving is a profoundly important thing in Rokugan, treated with great gravitas. This is especially true for the gifts given at the outset of Winter Court; a good gift that's well-received can greatly increase a samurai's standing in the Court (at least, for a time), while a poorly-received one can dog a delegate through the entire winter, diminishing their influence.
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