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Eugene Earnshaw

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  1. So if you are playing against a keeper scorpion, you need to be more careful about your honor and bid lower. What is artificial about that? That is just how games work. This game right now NEEDS more potential punishment for aggressive bidding. Bidding is only fun if there are risks to dropping low. It makes people prioritize the air ring more. All things considered, it increases the interactivity of the game, not decreases it. 5 bids all day every day are boring as anything, so dishonor/honor victories need to be a threat to make bidding interactive and interesting.
  2. Making a story choice is one of the prerogatives of tournament success in L5R. If Brad's intention had been to saddle Scorpion with a subpar choice it would have been annoying, but even then the clan could have prevented by having someone else do better than him. However, the intention of preventing an NPE is very different, and mechanically seeker of void is very strong. So the clan has nothing to complain about. Furthermore, interesting storylines and conflicts make the game more enjoyable for everyone. The game as a whole and the storyline in particular is much more entertaining if we don't insist that bad things never happen to our chosen clan. Bad stuff happening to your clan is what drives story and provides heroic characters an opportunity to struggle to fix things. Nothing is bad, really, about someone infiltrating the clan: it is, in my opinion, just a fun cool thing, and people should roll with it.
  3. There certainly is political tension between centralization vs. devolving authority. I think this should be emphasized much more than it has been, but in the original timeline, the Gozuku replaced the effective power with the emperor with the interference of several clan daimyo. Realistically, clan Daimyo will want to accumulate power for themselves. Feudal societies always feel a pull towards decentralization coming from the nobility and a centralization pull coming from the ruler. This has nothing directly to do with personal relationships. I have never see this depicted outside of weird little aspects of the Kolat, but in an empire as large and developed as Rokugan, one would expect there to be a merchant/artisan class that would want more power. In Europe this became the political division between conservatives and liberals (conservatives representing the aristocracy), and Rokugan ought to have something like it, since trade and manufacture are depicted as pretty advanced and there are some large cities.
  4. No, it's a reskin of Boggle. The Rokugan stuff is just some flavour they threw in on top of the basic gameplay of rolling dice with letters on the sides.
  5. This was my suggestion from an earlier thread on the same topic: Bidding: All players bid secretly and simultaneously. Then the players are paired. Players are always paired with the player either to their left or right. If there is an odd number, a 'leftover' player is chosen, whose bid is compared with a default bid of 3. The other pairings are determined automatically once the leftover player is known. If the same player is selected to be leftover in consecutive rounds, the selection is redone. If there is an even number of players, a coin flip can determine whether the first player pairs left or right, and this determines the rest of the pairings. Victory: the game ends when any player reaches 25 honor or 0 honor, or when any stronghold is destroyed. If the game ends through a player being eliminated, the player to their right is the winner. Rings: 2 sets of rings are used (10 total). No player may declare both attacks using the same ring if that ring was claimed during their first attack, even if another ring of the same type would otherwise be available. The exception is if a card effect makes the same physical ring they attacked with available again. The rules below are to impose a bit of order on things: for a more anything goes experience the above rules are sufficient. Attacks: Players may attack the player to their left without restriction. An attack against a player not to the left is a 'special' attack. Only one special attack may be declared against each player per turn. This means that once a player has had a special attack declared against them, no one else may declare a special attack against them for the rest of the turn. Aid: Each player may recieve aid on defence from one other player once per turn. Both players must agree. For that conflict, the aiding player's characters may be assigned on defence. Aid is agreed to after the attack is declared. An aiding player may also play cards that specify that they must be used by a defending player or when defending your provinces as if one of their provinces was being attacked.
  6. I think sometimes Spider is used as a shorthand for 'Samurai inside Rokugan secretly serving Fu Leng/being tainted and evil.' That is always a part of the setting and is good and appropriate. I also think former spider players can get behind that. But the Spider Clan as a recognized major clan that serves Fu Leng and is part of Rokugani society: that is not happening again. And rightfully so. i am very excited about the imperial family being corrupted by Jigoku. It can provide a very good justification for everything descending into an entertaining level of destruction and badness. It also fits with the original storyline, but can potentially develop in a more prolonged and interesting way. I would like to see the imperial family actively causing trouble, not just poisoned/totally possessed.
  7. No, if Meishodo had been banned Rokugan would have had 1000 years of peace and happiness and all the subsequent story prizes would be about who marries who.
  8. I think the main thing relevant to the coup was the Koi pond section. It had 2 distinct messages that I see: 1. Small changes have ripple effects that can change anything. We have already seen small changes, and these can cause ripples that mean nothing in the old timeline is guaranteed, coup included. 2. The fish adjust to his finger. Changes are adjusted to and accommodated: certain events are likely to recur. This has broader implications than just the COup, but with reference to the coup, it indicates that something along similar lines could still happen. This is further supported by the discussion at the end: both Shoju and Kachiko I read as sincerely rejecting the possibility for the moment, but both are aware that it could perhaps be done.
  9. There is no requirement that attachments must be to a character you control. See, for example, cloud the mind, which ordinarily you will attach to an opponent's character. Pacifism is another example. When control of a character changes, the attachments remain attached to them and under the control of their original controller. It isn't all that complicated.
  10. I think it will read " Action: If you are less honourable than another player, bow this stronghold -- take 1 honor from that player.
  11. Proper use of statistical ideas requires that we understand their limitations. So for example, you say that a subset of characters should still follow the average or mode of the population. That would only be true if they were a random sample of the population. But they are not. Pretending they are a random sample is an idealization that is likely to be misleading. Why is it likely to be misleading? Because the characters put into play, and the characters put into decks, are consciously chosen in order to maximize the chances of winning a game. Therefore any systematic disadvantages in the card pool are likely to be minimized in the actual sample characters that are used. Let me illustrate with an example. Suppose that it is advantageous to winning to have balanced political and military skill. This may or may not be true, but it's just an example, so bear with me. If this is true, it would be crazy to use the average stats of the card pool to predict anything. Why? Because when people build decks, and when they bring out characters, they will try to balance the political and military skill of their characters, because they want to win, meaning that those values in play will be BIASED samples of the personality base. Making inference about gameplay from the personality averages will be useless, because there is a biasing factor that tends to smooth out the skill differences between clans in actual play. The main constraint the card pool provides in this scenario is any limits it puts on the ability of players to achieve the optimal equal military-political ratio. I think we had a similar disagreement about statistics in another thread about duelling. I'm not objecting with the use of statistics in appropriate contexts. It is just that there are various circumstances that make it inappropriate to draw the standard inferences from data. One of those is where the sample is not actually random. If the sample is chosen from the population in a way that causally depends on individual values of the represented variable, then the sample will not be predictable based on the statistical properties of the population. So, for example, predicting the heights of professional basketball players based on the distribution of heights in the population is doomed to failure, because above average height is a positive causal influence on being a professional basketball player. That is the idea I have been getting at here.
  12. Venerable historian is BOSS. What don't you like about 4 pol for 2 fate with an honor gain on leaving play? If you aren't staying ahead in honor, your Obstinate Recruits are worthless too. I mean, you don't HAVE to play so your best cards are good. But it's a good idea.
  13. You are missing the point. Yes, the average values of military and political skill give us a bit of information. My point is that the information they give is almost useless. About the only thing they tell us is that certain clans will tend to have a slight advantage in certain kinds of conflicts against certain opponents. This is not nothing, but it is not much. For example, the disparity between Lion and Crane in political and military conflicts, respectively, has as much to do with their strongholds as with their personalities. These skill values are NOT "realized across a large number of games, across a large number of board states". What is realised are the actual skill values of characters that are brought into play on a turn-to-turn basis. This is a subset of the characters included in decks, which is itself a subset of all the characters printed for the clan. Averaging up the skill values for each clan does not tell you much about the skill values that are realised in game, which is what matters. Not only that, as I explained, they are often actively misleading. It is misleading to say that, for example, Honored General's political skill is 1, because IN PRACTICE it is 3. Yes, this is due to an action on the character, but since the action is triggered every time the character is brought into play, to fail to account for it in an evaluation of the baseline political skill of the clan gives you an incorrect understanding of how the clan plays. Analysis based on these values that goes much beyond 'in the crab-crane matchup, crab will have some advantage in Military and Crane in political' is not likely to be very helpful.
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