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17th Knight

The Big Question - Which Clans Make The Cut?

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My impression of Mr Wick was that he thought "good" writing and GMing were both defined by how much you could make the characters suffer.  The more suffering, the better.

 

http://personal.linkline.com/stevenhoward/never.html

Not necessarily.

 

He was pretty proud of that L5R game he ran where he told everyone it was going to be about fighting Shadowlands on the Wall, and he got mad that one guy made a character who was optimized to fight the Shadowlands on the Wall. So had him go up against an Etiquette (I think) roll his Crab bruiser couldn't make, and to punish him for failing, made him sit out of the game. That character wasn't suffering, he wasn't doing anything, he was suffering way less than if he'd got to fight on the Wall.

 

But he sure did punish the player for having the gall to break the rules that existed only in Wick's head and he never told anyone about.

Edited by Huitzil37

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Regarding the suffering of characters I can understand John Wick somewhat, He mentioned in the one of the old GM sections (not sure if it was the GM screen, or the GM survival guide or another first edition book), that players want the Die Hard experience. And sure some players want that, ince simply winning is boring, but not everybody is playing RPGs for that reason, just like not everybody is going to the cinema to watch action movies. I have to say, my best experiences with RPGs are when I make decisions, and have to deal with the consequences, not when tehy GM just craps on my character and I have to deal with what the GM thinks if fun to throw at the players, but what I want my character to suffer and to go through. So, in a sense, he understands that suffering is interesting in storeies, on the other hand he seems to miss that roleplaying is an interactive hobby and thus requires player agency.

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I'm not going to lie, the day when I heard that John Wick isn't involved with L5R anymore was the day where I started to cautiously look at it again and poke it with a long stick .

As for "seppuku as innate ability for all samurai cards" - this was actually removed from the card game. I don't remember when, but you can't seppuku your samurai at demand anymore. That's what Wheels Within Wheels are for.

EDIT

"Having Die Hard experience" doesn't mean that my character should be beaten over and over again to prove that Honor is impossible to uphold, nor should my grandma npc get killed while my character is helpless and in generally convoluted setup that serves only purpose to make me and my character suffer more. 

Imagine that, for example, my Magistrate character might not want any of this drama Die Hard suffering stuff, and I may prefer to have Poirot Experience. Does this make me a inferior player? 

Many of my characters suffer, and this suffering often comes from my own initative, but it's what I want; and when I want it. Forcing it down my throat is rude. What if someone isn't interested in living the suffering, but solving it? 

Edited by WHW

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I am not quite sure in which threat this came up, but at all the discussion about how to proceed and what to do next.

The idea to move from a time line to a more unspecified setting really grew to me.

 

It would open up possibilities to explore the 1000 years of peace, the time after Onyx or alternate realities like the Togashi Dynasty.

 

So I was thinking which factions would always be available.

 

I think the 7 founding clans are a given.

Even during exile or exploration they were a viable force just not inside Rokugan.

  • Crab Clan
  • Crane Clan
  • Dragon Clan
  • Lion Clan
  • Phoenix Clan
  • Scorpion Clan
  • Unicorn Clan 

And now the two oddball factions:

  • Ningen-do's Finest (That would have been the Mantis most of the time, but could as well be the Brotherhood of Shinsei, the MCA, Toturi's Army, a bunch of upright Ronin, depending on the period you are in. In short a force of heroism and thunder. Perhaps Hero is your alignment best fits this faction.)
  • The Forces of Darkness (And obviously the counterpart. The Shadowlands Horde, the Spider Clan, the Nothing, the Gozoku, the Kolat or some baka gaijins. Again depending on the period explored. Villain is your alignment.)

The idea would be to hop into every period you would like, describe the major conflict there and have a set resolve about this conflict. Either in the year, 650 or 1275. Both Rokugan, different conflicts.

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I would love to see some less-peaceful periods of 1000 Years of peace, because while "not being marched down by FuLeng for 1000 years" is ok, "nothing interesting happening outside of few token incidents" is not. 

 

and one thing about John Wick I forgot to say - if you want to see how would L5R look like without Wick being contained, check Blood&Honour. 

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Regarding the suffering of characters I can understand John Wick somewhat, He mentioned in the one of the old GM sections (not sure if it was the GM screen, or the GM survival guide or another first edition book), that players want the Die Hard experience. And sure some players want that, ince simply winning is boring, but not everybody is playing RPGs for that reason, just like not everybody is going to the cinema to watch action movies. I have to say, my best experiences with RPGs are when I make decisions, and have to deal with the consequences, not when tehy GM just craps on my character and I have to deal with what the GM thinks if fun to throw at the players, but what I want my character to suffer and to go through. So, in a sense, he understands that suffering is interesting in storeies, on the other hand he seems to miss that roleplaying is an interactive hobby and thus requires player agency.

See, he says that this is what players want -- but everything about his behavior indicates he's a narcissist, and that's like exactly the kind of person you cannot trust to assess "Did these people enjoy what I was doing"?

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IIRC, when Wick referred to "the Die-Hard Experience", he was talking about how the best, the most memorable achievements are those that take effort to get. So stuff shouldn't be a simple walk in the park for the characters - the GM should throw actual challenges in their way. These challenges can, of course, be physical (like those of John McClane), but they can also be social (in Winter Court), mental (in an adventure focused on investigation, for example), or spiritual (if your adventure focuses on the kami and spirits).

 

The key here is that those challenges need to be balanced, otherwise you move from Die Hard to the "I'm just an extra in an Aliens movie" experience. And that's no fun at all. This takes some experience to learn how to master, but hey, so does pretty much everything in roleplaying.

Also, giving the players a challenge does not mean you are allowed to crap on their cereal bowl every game session, just for your personal kicks and giggles. This isn't really a matter of experience of GMing or anything related - it's just a matter of what kind of a person you are.

Edited by Bayushi Karyudo

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My impression of Mr Wick was that he thought "good" writing and GMing were both defined by how much you could make the characters suffer.  The more suffering, the better.

 

http://personal.linkline.com/stevenhoward/never.html

Not necessarily.

 

He was pretty proud of that L5R game he ran where he told everyone it was going to be about fighting Shadowlands on the Wall, and he got mad that one guy made a character who was optimized to fight the Shadowlands on the Wall. So had him go up against an Etiquette (I think) roll his Crab bruiser couldn't make, and to punish him for failing, made him sit out of the game. That character wasn't suffering, he wasn't doing anything, he was suffering way less than if he'd got to fight on the Wall.

 

But he sure did punish the player for having the gall to break the rules that existed only in Wick's head and he never told anyone about.

 

 

 

GMs with unspoken rules/expectations... always "fun".

 

Especially when the GM thinks the game is "about the GM", or views the GM-player relationship as adversarial, or thinks his job is to "get" the players. 

 

 

 

IIRC, when Wick referred to "the Die-Hard Experience", he was talking about how the best, the most memorable achievements are those that take effort to get. So stuff shouldn't be a simple walk in the park for the characters - the GM should throw actual challenges in their way. These challenges can, of course, be physical (like those of John McClane), but they can also be social (in Winter Court), mental (in an adventure focused on investigation, for example), or spiritual (if your adventure focuses on the kami and spirits).

 

The key here is that those challenges need to be balanced, otherwise you move from Die Hard to the "I'm just an extra in an Aliens movie" experience. And that's no fun at all. This takes some experience to learn how to master, but hey, so does pretty much everything in roleplaying.

 

Also, giving the players a challenge does not mean you are allowed to crap on their cereal bowl every game session, just for your personal kicks and giggles. This isn't really a matter of experience of GMing or anything related - it's just a matter of what kind of a person you are.

 

My favorite games have always been those focused on the thing that needs to be solved, fixed, overcome, or the like, rather than on making the character's life away from that "job" the focus and challenge.  Compare the "police procedural" vs the "police drama".  The characters in both can be very flat and archetypal, or very well rounded -- the difference is that one is about the crime being solved, and the other is about the people with the crime as a framework. 

 

A player can do a very good job of playing their character, without the game being about making the character -- or indeed the player -- suffer. 

 

 

And the last thing I want in a game, or in fiction, is where the suffering and angst and loss and drama and so on are just being piled on, to the point where it becomes transparent and you can just see that it's all contrived, and that someone has taken the "good characters are defined by flaws!" and "good stories are defined by struggle and pain!" adages and figured "if some is good, more is better!"

Edited by MaxKilljoy

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As a player that pretty much gave up after the Spirit War, I'd like to see the 1000 years of little Clan Wars moved from. In all honesty the devastation and angst the clans create between themselves, there would be little to stop the Yodatai walking up and saying "yoink". I gave up as I got sick of the clan wars to be honest. 

Now mechanically the game should allow wars between clans, because that is what defined l5r for so long. But I for one would like to see strongholds or factions that encompass a range of clans and threats.

Using the existing l5r as a way to imagine this. My thoughts are why not break away the "play style" of the deck from the faction itself. So each player selects their clan as normal, which allows them to then select a stronghold play style. So the "clan" has starting honour, gold production and clan ability. The play style also has gold production, but also prov strength and a weaker "play style" ability. This I suggest can be extended to the "external" threats of Rokugan. Allow each clan to pick a style of corruption so everyone can be the baddie.

Each play style could have 2 non unique and a unique personality, so that boring military guy 2/2 for 4 gold is not repeated 9 times, just once for the military stronghold. Each stronghold could have a number of stronghold aligned personalities tied to that stronghold. IF you want a story element, perhaps the Seppun Ottomo and Miya are at an imperial war, and that certain clans align themselves to these families. Then within this chaos some within the great clans look at options.

These options from outside of Rokugan take notice. And rise up once more. Hopefully the image link to my spreadsheet attached paints the picture.

So for the initial wave, this game could concentrate on the great clans. Then additional waves could explore an external threat and the clans closer aligned to that threat (either for or against). Hopefully people get that what this model tried to do is have the cake and eat it too. Keep the clans at war, allow for more threats to the empire as a whole, and down the track allows for future expansions where two or more great clans "align" under one play style stronghold.

http://postimg.org/image/dyw85jr5n/ 

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So for the initial wave, this game could concentrate on the great clans. Then additional waves could explore an external threat and the clans closer aligned to that threat (either for or against). Hopefully people get that what this model tried to do is have the cake and eat it too. Keep the clans at war, allow for more threats to the empire as a whole, and down the track allows for future expansions where two or more great clans "align" under one play style stronghold.

 

Overall, imo, this will be the most "reasonable" model that FFG will/should follow. Why do I say this? A bottom-up approach is the easiest manner to carry out the initial planning and design of the game, followed by the insertion of additional elements/storyline to the given (designed) clans.

 

Regardless of their approach, I cant in all honesty envision FFG $&@#ing this CCG up, if one draws upon the rich, quite descriptive background of the L5R story.

 

Again, this is imo.  :ph34r:

Edited by Papa Midnight

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Back on the op I also think it would be sensible to restrict the initial amount of clans and perhaps have expansions for extra ones later. Four seems logical to me with perhaps 6 viable permenantly. If I had to pick (and thank heavens I do not) then

 

Lion

Scorpion

Crane

Spider/Shadowlands (generic evil)

 

Expansions perhaps for

 

Crab

Phoenix/Dragon (monks/magic similar)

 

 

I rather hope they succeed with whatever they plan though. I like netrunner but could never get emotionally into the story which is something L5R has in spades. I also like GoT so the company has a good history of making good games.

 

On the other hand they need to make a game that will appear to new players and not the old guard so I expect they will tread on some toes. As such I have no problems with a reset to the past or a reset to the future.

 

I plan on seeing what they do and treating it with an open mind. It would be lovely to have a player base start to rise up locally and look at the positivity of a lot of these threads. Nice to see..

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I think that every clan has in important role into L5R's identity, so I belive that Fantasy Flight will leave the clans as they are. 

About plot or theme... um... this is a point I don't want to think about.

L5R's lore is big. As you people said, those 20 years of gameplay created a rich history that hardly can be paired with any other.

If FF want to continue it, their main objetive must be respect all the work done by AEG. Because that work descrives the game, and it's one of the things that keep us playing.

 

That aside, trying to think it cold...How about a reboot?

It may be sad, but for the old and nostalgic players it could be atractive. 

I mean... It has been a long time since last time we played with Hoturi, Kachiko, Toturi, Tsuko, Kamoko... 

 

Meeting them againd would be great. Think about the oportunity of reviewing all the L5R lore again from the begining in the new gameplay system.

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