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Suzume Tomonori

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  1. But more on topic, while I think it’s true that having different attachment template types was more flavorful, from a rules perspective the FFG version is more streamlined and easier to remember, as attachments now have any requirements or exceptions written on the card. Grasp of Earth can only attach to shugenja, which is how old spells worked, but it works within the same rules of other attachments. Old L5R also had attachments like ancestors, which were like followers but not and had slightly different rules. I like FFGs approach where I can confirm those unique rules or differences just by looking at the card, but your mileage may vary.
  2. Unless they changed it in a later edition, personal honor (a stat sort of like glory now) didn’t limit the number of followers, but followers had a personal honor requirement sometimes, so some followers wouldn’t attach to characters with low personal honor. I believe the personal honor requirement was removed near the end of the game’s life, though.
  3. Attempting to reduce a term to a one-word translation results in a loss of important context, nuance, and meaning.
  4. I know the core rulebook hasn't shipped quite yet, but with the beginner set already out, I was wondering if anyone could say what has changed system-wise, if anything, from the Beta to the final release. Looking online and in this thread it seems like the basic system is the same, but I was wondering if there were parts that were fine-tuned to run smoother or in a more balanced way since the last beta update. My biggest concerns with the beta were mostly rulebook organization and look-up related, but I figure those issues will be solved with a proper product release (and I'm terrible at finding things in digital formats quickly; I still much prefer paper books.) I also felt like sometimes we were missing something that made the system come together smoothly, though I couldn't tell if it was an actual rules problem or something that would get smoothed out as we played more and got familiar with the system and how it was supposed to work. We got a few rules wrong the first few sessions, and then some of the rules changed slightly so we kept getting confused. And by we I mean me, because my players could never be bothered to actually read the rules (but this is often true.) Of course, the real question I have for the Core release is whether or not there are rules for playing Sparrow Clan...
  5. I'm referring to the Japanese term, not the English translations. But like I said, its usage in L5R is not really wrong, just somewhat limited (I may be mistaken, but I was to the understanding that it specifically refers to corrupt blood magic in L5R.) However, think it is a stretch to use the Japanese term shugenja to mean priest. The point I'm making is that in Japanese it is a mountain ascetic, which means someone who has removed themselves from society in order to engage in their religious practice. L5R shugenja (for the most part) are quite the opposite; they remain firmly involved in society and most of them enjoy prestige within their clan as a result of their abilities. I also would not consider a mountain ascetic to be synonymous with a priest, as the latter implies an involvement with the lay people or a congregation while the former implies a withdrawal from society.
  6. You are correct in that the Japanese shugenja is a mountain ascetic, which is kind of my point; it is something quite different from the L5R shugenja (and would not connotate magic powers.) Maho-tsukai more or less works, save that in Rokugan it clearly means a magician using a sort of dark, forbidden, evil magic, whereas in contemporary Japanese it’s a very neutral term for a wizard; both the Wizard of Oz and Harry Potter are maho-tsukai.
  7. At the same time, it appears that they may have someone on staff (or someone on staff knows a person who's helping them out) that at least has some knowledge of Japanese; assigning ateji at all would require at least some knowledge. There are also certain terminology changes in the new version of the RPG that imply at least a bit of Japanese knowledge (for example, they changed the lowest caste name to "burakumin," though that is problematic in different ways.) The more I think about it, the ateji approach to the family names in the RPG lends a sort of Hokkaido feel to them. A lot of place names in Hokkaido are just kanji assigned phonetically to the old Ainu names for the places, so while they are in theory readable, they don't sound or feel the same as central Japanese surnames do. It would be kind of cool in a way if this was an intentional move on FFG's part to make the setting more "Rokugani" and less "Japanese," but I'm not sure it's intentional. Ultimately, I think it's more that FFG neither has the resources or inclination to make the names and terminology "authentically" Japanese. Some of the basic setting terminology ("shugenja" and "maho-tsukai" come to mind) is so well established in the setting that changing them would result in opposition from fans, and the same holds true for the names. It would be interesting to know how the original creators of L5R 20 years ago came up with some of the family names. Where did they get Akodo from? Was Mirumoto supposed to be Miyamoto? If FFG had that information (and I doubt they did) they could have tried to redo a lot of the names, but again, I think a large part of the fan base would be opposed to changing the names of setting iconic characters such as Akodo Toturi unless they just went ahead and changed the character completely. Incidentally, author Marie Brennan (who does some L5R work) made an interesting blog post about the use of Japanese in L5R: https://www.swantower.com/essays/craft/pleaser-dont-doed-thising/
  8. I enjoy this thread everytime it shows up. The company that publishes the LCG in China (Emperor Penguin games) appears to have gone through and turned all the names into Japanese kanji then used those for the card titles. The database is here: http://l5rcard.emperorpenguingames.com/ I don’t read or speak Chinese, but I have enough Japanese knowledge to pick out the unique named characters from the “title” non-uniques. I thought this was the “official” list of kanji for the families until the RPG beginner set came out. The family names in the RPG are largely different than the ones Emperor Penguin Games came up with, and to be honest, I kind of like the Emperor Penguin Games names better on the whole. They feel more “Japanese,” like either someone really good at Japanese (maybe even a native speaker) came up with them. Take Togashi: EPG: 富樫 (existing Japanese surname) FFG’s RPG: 竜蛾仕 (doesn’t show up in Jim Breen’s name dictionary, feels like ateji) Or Shinjo: EPG: 新条 (one of the numerous existing Japanese surnames for Shinjō, simplifying 條 to 条) FFG’s RPG: 心助 (could not find as a word or surname on Jim Breen’s; likely to be read as given name “Shinsuke”) And Hida: EPG: 樋田 (existing Japanese surname) FFG’s RPG: 避打 (again, feels like ateji) For a lot of names like Akodo there is no actual Japanese equivalent, so ateji (phonetically assigning kanji to individual sounds) is the only choice. It’s possible FFG wanted to make the names consistent in this way; i.e. they may have decided if you have to ateji some of them, might as well ateji all of them. But then the given names like Hida Sugi’s “杉” and Isawa Aki’s “秋” are normal non-ateji readings, which gives a bit of inconsistency.
  9. I think I should start a thread called “Are Unicorn Good Now?” and see if the discussion focuses on an app for L5R.
  10. I guess it would depend on what the app does. Implementing the app for X-wing removed point costs from the physical cards, meaning you must use the app to make legal teams to play what you thought was a purely physical board game. If an L5R app was something similar, where, say, influence costs were removed from the physical cards and the values were shifted over time so that the app would be required to splash cards in my deck, then I’d say no thank you.
  11. I would add that (at least for Gold / Diamond / Lotus when I played) the cards in the sets for the second half of each arc were “dual-bugged” to be legal in the next arc as well. This meant that the set with the shortest length of legality would be the last, single-bugged, expansion of the first half of the arc, and those cards would be legal for about a year or year and a half (and more importantly, at least through the next Kotei season and worlds,) though they would br eligible for reprint in the next base set. But cards from sets in the second half of the arc would remain legal until the end of the next arc, so usually two or three years.
  12. I think it would be cool if there was a product supporting a solo version of the game (as I have no local scene and I’m lucky if I can arrange a game a month with a friend) but I’m not holding my breath for such a product. L5R is a one-on-one competive game at the core of the rule set, and I don’t know how much demand for a solo version would exist. But thinking about it is making me consider trying to make a house rules solo variant. Hmm ...
  13. I’ve never played Net Runner so forgice my ignorance, but is the Terminal Directive expansion still played competitively against another player? Does it have an option for solo / co-operative play or does it just add a campaign aspect to the normal game experience?
  14. Does Toshi Ranbo have no element, or am I just failing to recognize the symbol? Is it a “non-element” symbol?
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