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omnicrone

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  1. Let's see: Hida Defender: too strong for Rank 4 Hiruma Scout: fine for Rank 4 (horse slayers!) Kaiu Engineer: fine (Razor-Edged Tetsubos!) Kuni Purifier: too strong if Shadowlands/Bloodspeaker campaign, otherwise fine Yasuki Merchant: too strong Asahina Artificer: too strong (free nemuranai wtf) Daidoji Iron Warrior: too strong (with Crescent Moon Style) Doji Diplomat: probably fine Kakita Duelist: probably too strong Agasha Mystic: strong, but not that strong Kitsuki Investigator: fine I guess Mirumoto Niten: hahaha, too strong Togashi Monk: too strong Akodo Commander: too strong Ikoma Bard: fine Kitsu Medium: too strong (extra character wtf) Matsu Berserker: too strong Asako Loremester: fine Isawa Elementalist: too strong (2 spells wtf) Shiba Guardian: much like the Daidoji, too strong Kaito Shrine Keeper: like Kuni Bayushi Manipulator: strong Shosuro Infiltrator: strong Soshi Illusionist: Exalted Lore skill shenanigans? probably fine tho Yogo Wardmaster: like Agasha Ide Trader: probably fine Iuchi Meishodo: probably broken even at Rank 6 Moto Conqueror: too strong Shinjo Outrider: videogames taught me that this is how horses actually work, can't understand why this would be a capstone ability ? Utaku Battle Maiden: a slightly better version of Hiruma's School Ability, probably fine then Worldly Ronin: cap-breaks! Although boring, this is one of the better Rank 6 skills so probably busted getting this early
  2. omnicrone

    Prone

    Unless for someone who want to do 2 actions on Water stance, though, who the **** would do that I'm not sure.
  3. If you are as powerful as her you are off the hook.
  4. It really need to be stressed how much Scorpion are strict with Duty and Loyalty. No clan is as adamantly strict and requires a blind adherence to a tenet of Bushido as the Scorpion are with Loyalty, maybe only Crab and Courage comes close. Not even Lion with Honor or Crane with Courtesy are as strict: a Lion/Crane samurai is usually forgiven by their peers to commit a trifling/minor breach of their main tenet to avoid making a massive breach of some other tenet. A Scorpion is dead (or worse than that) if he ever shows disloyalty to his lord, family, clan or (worst yet) to the Empire, however minor, for any reason whatsoever. There is no noble reason for a Scorpion be disloyal in the eyes of the clan and his fate is probably sealed as soon as any palpable sign of disloyalty from him becomes known.
  5. omnicrone

    Prone

    You need to perform an action in your turn. Even doing nothing counts as an action in the system since a turn doesn't end until the character performs their action(s).
  6. That's the case, but it is easy for scorpion samurai to fall down into the "Bushido is dumb" when they start with that perspective. As long as they are loyal, the clan will not care much if a scorpion samurai truly holds Bushido in high regard or not, but if "Bushido is dumb" devolves into "Duty and loyalty is dumb", that scorpion is gone. He'll be considered lucky if the clan just kills him off.
  7. The experience at my table was a little deviant: For fresh/rank 1 characters hitting attacks is not that easy, even with your best ring, as most starting characters roll WBBB. Because of that Air stance had much, much better mileage than Earth. Even finishing strikes are far from a guaranteed hit at the start (especially against Air stancers), unless you use Rising Blade. A lot of duels in my table were decided on finishing strikes and counter-finishing strikes and some of them missed. I'm following the rules on Water stance quite literally: your second action cannot have a check, so no prepare + strike on first turn. This makes Iai cut key to win duels as you cannot attack on turn 1 on Iaijutsu duels without an Iai cut. It also seems to make duels more interesting. My table is now getting at rank 2. The Mirumoto is now really far above the rest of characters for first strike/first blood/sparring duels since his school skill is really good, if not broken, in duels and his kit is excellent for a duelist: he has a Fire/Void/Earth build with both Iai cuts (he keeps Rising Blade ready to roll with the Wakizashi just in case the opponent strifes out) and Warrior's Resolve. The Ikoma was at the start a good duelist but he is falling behind because he also need to be a good courtier (his Giri) and is mostly spending his XP on that end. The Utaku, the other bushi in the group, is a Water/Earth monster and very strong on skirmishes even without the horse, but she sucks at duels (that doesn't involve her being mounted on her horse): she is too slow (3 Focus), has no Iai Cut (and will never get one) and her two good rings aren't that hot for duels because of really passive opportunities spends, though she at least has Warrior's Resolve. The only Taryu-jiai we had was really dope. Fire invocations and their Burning condition are really good for winning (though that can be blocked with Earth). The weapon summoning invocations seems to be the most powerful of the bunch for starting characters since they are more damaging than the direct damage invocations at the start (also, Katana of fire can burn people even on a missed strike). Most duels at my table were first strike during the topaz championship or friendly sparring. The only real duel we had was one the Mirumoto fought as the champion of the Doji after she was challenged, as part of her plan, by a ronin mercenary hired as muscle for a corrupt Otomo. The duel was to first blood, but the Mirumoto accidentally killed him, which put them in some hot water (unresolved as of right now).
  8. The best rings to start at 3 are, in order, Water -> Fire -> Earth -> Air -> Void for similar reasons as @AtoMaki pointed out. The best rings to focus on your career, however, is a tricky question, especially for Shugenja. The best bet is to first start with a balanced approach trying to bring all rings to 3 or at least some flavor of a 33332 spread. Shugenja should focus on Void a tad even if it doesn't have any Invocations, because Void rules: Though the ring to go for that 5 later on? Any of them is fine, but keep the following in mind: Air: Has the best/most versatile invocation set, is the best ring to fight at range (which is something Shugenja usually do) and has decent usage/approaches/opportunities with Scholar/Social/Artisan skills. Highly recommended ring to focus on for Shugenja. Fire: Most invocations can cause Burning, which is one of the best debuffs to apply on enemies, but invocations are usually not that useful outside of combat. Either way, has some pretty powerful invocations like Armor of Radiance. Also has decent approaches/usage/opps with most skills. Earth: Probably the worst invocation set unless it is a Shadowlands campaign, but a decent ring to stay safe in conflicts (Air is better at this though). Good support ring for helping others, but not very good at accomplishing things on its own. Water: Almost as good as Air for invocations and the best ring for strife and fatigue management. It's approaches/opps (especially on Scholar) although good aren't as immediate as Air, however. Earth is probably the worst ring for Shugenja and the one that should be dumped if you are looking to optimize. Air-Water should be focused and Void should be as high as you can justify getting it later on. But don't sleep/dump Fire since it is a good ring. The starting spreads above are good. 33332 with 2 Earth should probably become your focus for ranks 1-3, then, you should bump either Air/Void or Water/Void depending on what Invocation set you liked more and how you are liking to play your character.
  9. The two opps effect for Battle in the Mind is very situational. It can be useful for duels where you know exactly the opponent's plan or you are really afraid of some non-Void Shuji/ring specific Kata they could whip out on turn 1 and ruin your own duel strategy. It is interesting that this kata is amazing for a Taryu-Jiai, but only the Kuni has access to it. Great perk for them I guess, not that Taryu-Jiai are common enough to justify the purchase though. In PvE, the secondary opp spend is good since, let's be real, only a very douchy DM will not relay an NPC's most relevant techniques to the duel with that opp usage. This will probably help a player adjust their dueling strategy (ie. opponent has Warrior/Courtier Resolve) based on what techniques they learn. All in all though, not one of the best Kata for duelists at Rank 3, and considering it is a duel exclusive Kata... well... it is not a good purchase for optimized builds.
  10. This. If you look at the curriculum without taking into consideration Privileged Accesses and/or individual Techniques they seem odd, but taking it holistically, even odd ones like the Iuchi are actually really appropriate. We have to consider the fact that there aren't many techniques of a given element at higher ranks, which means most "Rank 1-3 Techniques" on a curriculum are actually "go back to study some Rank 1 of things that aren't our main focus and come back later". What I am mostly fearing is when we finally get lot's of techniques on later splatbooks is if we are going to receive "updated/expanded curricula" for schools. I hope we do, but if we don't, well, we can houserule them I guess.
  11. Your Active/Inactive solution is best. I will probably copy it. Let's see what Titles we'll get from Emerald Empire and if that will be relevant.
  12. I think Titles are a much better way of dealing with Alternate Paths and Advanced Schools from previous editions. The only thing I think is wholly unnecessary and I've already houseruled out in my table is that a character may only have one unfinished title at a time. This really gimps people that could possibly end up with two titles in quick succession. Examp´le: Kuroiban into Jade Magistrate/Legionnaire (if they exist), or vice versa, should happen a lot among the Scorpion and wouldn't work RAW. I think Daidoji Harriers should be an entire basic (Shinobi) school, since they differ a lot from the bushi of that same family. I'd not like to have things that differ too much from the main school of a given family to become titles (ie. Shosuro Actors, Kakita Artisans, Ikoma Lion's Shadow, Doji Magistrates, etc), I would rather have them as separate schools. However, some things that were separate schools in previous editions can very well work as titles in 5E: Hida Berserker, Hida Pragmatist, Mirumoto Taoist Swordsman, Akodo Elite Spearman, Moto Vindicators, etc. since they actually don't differ that much from their family's basic school.
  13. Reminder that the Bat Clan's whole gimmick in previous editions was sending messages to faraway places via magic. Their most powerful shugenja could send messages from their lands in the Mantis archipelago all the way to Toshi Ranbo and vice versa.
  14. I can easily see Mirumotos using this at high ranks, but with one of the opps used to ready the Wakizashi during Crossing-Cut. Not optimal, but so flashy that I as a DM would award a glory bonus if they win after doing that trick. Also, remember that incapacitating peeps in later ranks can be "countered" by Warrior's Resolve. A well placed Warrior/Courtier Resolve may decide a tight duel and people shouldn't sleep on schools that have any of those as starting Techniques. Also diligent duelists should get both at some point.
  15. And as with most things a samurai does, unmasking can be both dishonorable and honorable. Having a fit and challenging another samurai to a duel for mistreating peasants from another lord is dishonorable in a lot of ways, but also is an uphold of compassion. If you are an Unicorn you might even get a net positive in honor by doing something like this, since what you are upholding is something you value
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