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blut_und_glas

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  1. Extrapolating from the heritage table in the beta, my current guess is that the new game will handle estates as equipment. Incidentally, that table already allows you to run a character with land holdings under the beta rules - it is just that there are no further mechanics attached to it yet, other than you being able to start with it (and select qualities for it, of which no estate-specific ones are available as of yet).
  2. As an aside, what I do miss from the character creation as presented in the beta is at least a short mention of wrap-up techniques, such as encapsulating the freshly created character in a two word description as might appear as the title of a card, were they to appear in the card instead of the role playing game. (Although my personal preference for this is to use Haiku, that particular method is not something I would expect from the game.)
  3. What kind of conversion do you have in mind? Specifically, what degrees of conformity to the new rules and similarity to the old charcter do you aim for?
  4. Is the price meant to be 2 koku (i.e., double that of non-sanctified ceremonial robes) as given in the table?
  5. I see your point, but please note that the base for this proposal was to take the issue described by @Drudenfusz and then try to mechanically resolve it as requested in the OP. With that in mind, I stand by a conflicted gauge mechanism as the most direct (and in my personal opinion also the best) way to realize this. I agree but I disagree with your proposal for the actual tracks and their tie-ins. First off, when I read the beta rules for the first time, I actually assumed Virtues and Flaws were meant to be Passions and Anxieties as this seemed the natural traits to put there. Only on a second (or more probably third, to be honest) did I notice that these were their own entries in the dis-/advantage lists and was less than thrilled with that realization. So I am with you on the point that Passions and Anxieties could figure here prominently, but as the OP did not seem to take issue with this, I kept the type of dis-/advantage as per the beta standard in the initial conflicted gauge proposal. Secondly, if want to indeed focus even more on Ninjo and Giri, I see no reason to step away from the idea of a conflicted gauge. If anything, it seems even more fitting. What I would step away from instead is the notion of measuring Glory and Honor. So, instead of having two tracks (or one conflicted one) for Honor and Glory with Ninjo and Giri somehow related to one or both of them, I would instead have the mechanical side of the Ninjo-Giri conflict play out directly on a single conflicted gauge. The question for moving in either direction on this gauge is no longer whether an act is honorable, glorious or any combination of the above, but whether it means that you put your duty above your desire/belief or vice versa. Or to phrase it a bit differently, the question moves from "What (did you do)?" to "Why (did you do it)?". With that we would arrive at a gauge looking something like this: Ninjo/Giri Advantages/Disadvantages N50 3 Passion and 3 Infamy/Flaw N40-49 N30-39 2 Passion and 2 Infamy/Flaw N20-29 1 Passion and 1 Infamy/Flaw N10-19 N1-9 Balance G1-9 G10-19 G20-29 1 Fame/Virtue and 1 Anxiety G30-39 2 Fame/Virtue and 2 Anxiety G40-49 G50 3 Fame/Virtue and 3 Anxiety I threw virtue/flaw in with fame/infamy, as in such a model, I feel that a character who is self-less and dutyful to such an extent as to gain bonus advantages, may be perceived not only as especially famous but could also be seen as a paragon of samurai ideals. The conflict is no longer between being virtuous or famous but being either or both of those and being who you want to be, loving whom (or what) you wish to love.
  6. If you want that, the obvious way to go about this would be to simply collapse the separate Glory and Honor tracks into a single conflicting gauge, with high Glory on the one and high Glory on the other end. Ending up with something like this (after slightly shifting around the values which trigger the additional dis-/advantages to align with each other): Honor Glory Advantages/Disadvantages 100 0 3 Infamy and 3 Virtue 90-99 1-9 80-89 10-19 2 Infamy and 2 Virtue 70-79 20-29 1 Infamy and 1 Virtue 60-69 30-39 50-59 40-49 40-49 50-59 30-39 60-69 20-29 70-79 1 Fame and 1 Flaw 10-19 80-89 2 Fame and 2 Flaw 1-9 90-99 0 100 3 Fame and 3 Flaw Which I would probably transform into a more readable (in my opinion) single number format, like this: Honor/Glory Advantages/Disadvantages H50 3 Infamy and 3 Virtue H40-49 H30-39 2 Infamy and 1 Virtue H20-29 1 Infamy and 1 Virtue H10-19 H1-9 Balance G1-9 G10-19 G20-29 1 Fame and 1 Flaw G30-39 2 Fame and 2 Flaw G40-49 G50 3 Fame and 3 Flaw You then attach Ninjo to one end of the gauge and Giri to the other (you might even make the choice which of the two goes to which end part of character creation), which automatically means that the two will be in conflict and pulling you in different directions. Final note: If an act would increase (or decrease) both your Honor and your Glory (or your Ninjo and your Giri) at the same time, the gauge stays in place. You are being pulled into two directions at once, but - being the great samurai you are - stoically stay your course...
  7. The game of 20 questions seems to be one of the aspects of the current beta rules that get talked about a lot here on the forums. Mostly, in my impression, by pointing out perceived flaws with it, such as it being too restrictive or too cumbersome. Personnally, I find neither to be the case. I do have my own criticism of it, but that focuses on there being too many questions which are non-restrictive, i.e., questions which do not force you to make specific mechanical adjustments to your character, empty questions. Below is my take on how these empty questions might be "filled" by adding mechanical aspects to them. I threw in my opinions on the other questions for good measure, though that was mostly done to help myself with structuring my thoughts. Now, I originally put this together based on the initial beta rules (pre-update). I chose to let my initial thoughts stand but appended them (where applicable) with additional ideas/reactions following yesterday's release of the first update. Question 1 This gives us our clan, along with in-built stats. Great. Question 2 Family, again with associated stats. Question 3 School, which is in itself a collection of game effects and also determines our starting gear and some further stat bonuses. Question 4 How do we stand out? Answer: By gaining a final Ring increase. Wonderful. Question 5 This gives us our initial Giri. Good enough, giving its intended role in setting up dramatic conflicts and driving the ebb and flow of Honor, Glory and Status. Question 6 Ninjo, as the second half of the Giri-Ninjo pair. Good so far, same as above. Question 7 Opinion about one's clan, with associated Glory or skill increases. Nice combination there (though I personally feel that having all clans have two [or more] skills to choose from would be a bit better - at the moment the Crab stand out like a good thumb on an otherwise sore hand). The update goes one step further than I did in the parantheses above, just making this any one skill (which the character does not yet possess) without limitations based on clan. Now, that is a huge step in the wrong direction in my opinion (also, just lazy). The original version told us something about our Clan and their outlook and how we could relate to that, by virtue of using a closed list (though having just one entry on the list was maybe not optimal). Now, we stand at pick anything, then make something up. By the same logic, we could have Question 1 read something like "Choose a Ring and increase it by +1. Think about how this Ring increase relates to your Clan." Question 8 Feelings about Bushido, giving either Honor or a choice of skill increase. Again, well done. Question 9 Greatest accomplishment and a Distinction to match. Others have pointed out the risk of a disconnect here, as the Distinctions do not necessarily lend themselves well to be woven into accomplishments, but to me this appears very solid. Question 10 What holds our character back? An Adversity probably, which is just what we get. Fitting. Question 11 Feeling at peace, linked to a Passion. (NB: Great mental images to be had here, so far probably the best question in regard to an evocative wording in my opinion and by quite a wide margin.) Question 12 Fear and Anxiety. Did someone feel clever when naming this? Anyway, straightforward combination (though quite a bit less inspiring than the preceding question due to that very straight forwardness if you ask me). Question 13 Who have we learned from the most, with "the most" meaning either an extra advantage or an extra disadvantage (with a skill tagged onto it, though the disadvantage appears the more interesting bit). Question 14 A striking detail about our character. And nothing to go along with it, making this the first of the empty questions. "Striking detail" is something that appears as a fitting description for many of the sample Distinctions and Adversities, so this might be an easy fix to fill this question. The update went with a piece of equipment instead - so something physical, fitting in with the idea of a striking detail. This feels like a nice change from the traits we collected up to now, though at the same time it also feels like a bit of a missed opportunity to shine yet further light on the person instead of the things they surround themselves with. Question 15 Reaction to stressful situations, i.e., outbursts. I am sitting on the fence with this one as it does tie in with mechanics but it does not really give the character anything as no matter what we do at this point, when the time comes for an actual outburst to happen we are back to choosing (or building) a manifestation (and effect) for thatt specific situation. Maybe give the character's default outburst defined at this stage some slight bonus? Like burning off an extra 1 Strife, whenever the default outburst is chosen? Unfortunately, the update does nothing to help with the emptiness of this question and even makes the proposed quick fix unworkable as Unmasking now resets Strife to 0 anyway. Maybe have the default Unmasking regenerate a Void Point or give an extra XP or something in a similar vein. Bears further thought (a bonus not to our own character but to witnesses of our Unmasking might also be an idea). Question 16 Pre-existing relationships! ...or non-existing relationships, as far as mechanics are concerned... So, we have a whole basketload of mechanical elements dealing with relationships, status, interaction - and yet none of them make an appearance under this question? Easy addition would probably be to just once more dig into the (dis-)advantages. Unfortunately, while we do have a ready-made type identifiying which of them fit best under this heading, as not all Interpersonal (dis-)advantages tie neatly into the idea of pre-existing relationships, but ones like Ally, Blackmail, both Betrothals and so on definitely do. Maybe make this a choice between either gaining +5 Status or choosing both an advantage and a disadvantage from the applicable ones. The update offers its own take on a mechanical side to this question, and like before, it is equipment once more. Definitely a possibility, though I really have to say that to me this does not read as the most natural fit for the question. Question 17 What our character's parents think of them. Nice question, unfortunately also an empty one. Which in a setting so dominated by notions of family and lineage appears odd. We could again go with (dis-)advantages (they are just so flexible!), in which case we could probably make this the counterpart to the question 16 sketch above, making another limited list to choose both an advantage and a disadvantage from or to gain +5 either on Honor or on Glory. On the other hand (again because the advantages and disadvantages are so well suited for all of this), we may slowly be risking to overload our characters with traits. So what other mechanical effect could we tag onto our parents' opinion of us? How about manipulating Derived Attributes instead? We gain either +1 Resilience or +1 Composure, depending on how our parents' brought us up and think of us now. The update hands out an extra skill instead. Workable, though to me at least also a bit less inspiring than the Resilience/Composure thing. Question 18 Our honored ancestor! Complete with honored ancestry table. Nice, though it does feel strange to have this as the only random part of character creation. Maybe either throw in some more random elements for other questions as well or have an option to choose a heritage (which might get tricky with the heritages currently presented do to the potentially decisive bonuses hidden away in the less probably corners of the current table). Lo and behold! The updated added that very option for choosing heritages. Question 19 A name. And no effect. Quick fix: As we are named for our ancestor and we currently make two heritage rolls under question 18, just move one of the two rolls here, and have the choice which roll to take happen during question 19. However, this obviously does not go together with free selection of heritage. Question 20 Our death. Our meaningless, meaningless death. "This has no mechanical implications" - honestly? That was the point at which I very nearly put down the beta rules and decided not to bother with it anymore. A game of - supposedly - "samurai drama", a heavely (narrative) mechanics ladden game of samurai drama, and death is supposed ot have "no mechanical implications"? Totally useless! So, salvage options: After loading all of the other empty questions with mechanics, we just might consider not to add anything here, making death stand out on the basis that it is the only thing here without an added mechanic. That would be pretty much a cop-out, though. A simple option would be to hand out a minor bonus on Glory, Honor or Status, with a rationale running along lines of a glorious death in battle, laying down our life in the direct service of our lord, or a death being talked about for years to come or something like that. An involved option could be to craft something like the heritag table, giving some 10 different death scenario outlines with various effects tagged on. Seeing that Void Points already play into death (what with Last-Ditch Effort), we might harness that connection, and have our ideal death (our death wish?) somehow interact with Void Points. That might be positive, negative or maybe even both. Perhaps we cannot spend Void Points on Last-Ditch Effort when confronted with the death we envisioned all along - after all, this is how it was always meant to end, wasn't it? Or we gain a free use of Last-Ditch Effort the first time (or even the first time every session) that we face a death not of our own choosing - not being meant to happen like this and so on. Or maybe we immediately gain a Void Point when entering a scene that matches our idea of our death scene, but we may then not spend any on Last-Ditch Effort (basically meaning we can throw around some more techniques or Seize the Moment). The update still refuses to give us anything here. Totally useless.
  8. Not something I routinely use, but from time to time I play around with splicing yet a bit more Japan into Rokugan. Namely by making Rokugan into an island and - here comes the mythology bit - borrowing the concept of the land beneath the sea found in some tales for the Shadowlands, i.e., the Shadowlands exist beneath the waves (and the Wall stands upon the beach, making the Crabs fit into this version quite nicely).
  9. Double-post due to beta rules update. Well played, FFG! In the new version, they removed the paragraph break between the effects, making it into a single effects.
  10. Certainly. But does the danger imposed by such gossip extend to the mechanical side of things, e.g., will characters who did not witness the outburst but only heard the gossip be able to use techniques which require a target's traits to be "known" against the character?
  11. That is certainly part of it, but it is also a question of degrees. During an Intrigue, your courtier successfully completes a Discern Someone's Qualities objective. Through intense scheming and at great personal risks, he learns that Hida Tomoe is indeed a Crab of distinctly Large Stature. My bushi is not present during the scene in which this information is revealed. Later on, your courtier and my bushi take a stroll during a stone garden together. This is a narrative scene. While talking, your courtier reveals to my bushi what he recently uncovered about Hida Tomoe. Yet later on, Hida Tomoe and my bushi face off in a conflict against one another. Your courtier is not present in this scene. Is Hida Tomoe's Large Stature advantage known to my bushi? (And was that transfer of information, irregardless of whether it qualifies as knowledge for my bushi or not, acquired in-game or through metagaming, in your understanding?)
  12. A full and correct reference would possibly have looked a bit less forced. (Also goes for the "recent findings", @Teveshszat) But I have to say, I do like how this picks up my sanity-shattering theme from up-thread again.
  13. The Discern Someone’s Qualities social objective lets a character learn game information about a target, such as advantages or disadvantages. These are then known to the character. Similarly, the Expose a Weakness outburst gives away information about the character, letting others learn a disadvantage. There are a few additional clearly defined options to learn (and subsequently know) a character's traits. Are these meant to present a the only options to earn such knowledge? Or are other ways of gaining knowledge considered permissible? E.g., one character passing on information learned via such an option to another character who did not (or could not) use it during a narrative scene, or deducing traits from observation ("when first introduced Hida Tomoe was described as being a giant standing out even amongst the other members of the Crab delegation - also, she was noted to be able to easily reach the stuff on the top of the shelf in the storage closet, just as descibed in the first bullett of the Large Stature distinction, and she just got to re-roll two dice on that Labor [Earth] check, too - I deduce she actually possessess the Large Stature distinction")?
  14. Well, given the title and original direction of the thread we are in, the one obvious issue with it is that it leads to a sudden increase in the number of (comparatively also quite weighty) options. Without out-of-clan schools we go from choosing between 7 options to choosing between 2-5 options to choosing between 2 options, while with out-of-clan schools we go from 7 to 2-5 to 14. Then again, this does require one to accept the original notion that the number of options presented is off-putting to (new) players. (Also, it leaves untouched the field of advantages and disadvantages, which are even more numerous while at the same time being mechanically more involved than families [though less than schools].)
  15. It certainly can be an attractive option. Although it might turn out to be some sort of cop-out as it adds no interesting/new information or details to the scene. To circumvent that, maybe you could have it so that the player has to reveal something about their own character (why do they need to calm themselves before entering this scene) if they choose that option? Anyway, if the option is in, then the question is whether the amount of Strife should be changed. If we assume the current amount (3) is balanced against the current Assessment checks, are the new effects better (automatic success) or worse (no opportunity to roll Opportunities :P) than the current version? Or are they about the same? My first instinct would be to consider them worse...
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