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AFrede

Twenty Years of Memories

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During the springtime I was getting excited for the 20th anniversary of L5R this year at GenCon. I was thinking back on my experiences at GenCon, and stories I had read over the years of some of the amazing things that had happened there. I have always been a fan of the history of the game since I only joined in late Gold Edition and missed out on some of the experiences of L5R in earlier eras. A crazy idea started to brew within the depths of my mind, wouldn't it be neat to do an interview with every player that ever won the L5R championship at GenCon. One new article each day in the twenty days leading up to GenCon 2015. So I started doing some research and trying to track people down mostly via Facebook, and other social media outlets. As often happens with most ideas it started to grow and spiral into something bigger. I realized that if I only focused on GenCon I would be ignoring the rest of the L5R scene around the world throughout the years. I have to say that at it's height L5R in Europe was bigger than it ever was in North America and I couldn't reasonably do a series of this scope and exclude a player base that has been fundamental in the success of L5R. 

I decided to expand the series and to interview as many GenCon and European Champions as I could and to include winners from big tournaments in South American and the Pacific Rim. I realized that it might not be realistic to expect to get in touch with every single major tournament winner over the past twenty years so I sought out a few guest interviews to fill in some of the holes. Throughout this process I was enjoying it so much that I reached out to a few others as well with unique viewpoints on L5R throughout the years. The process has been so much fun for me to hear the stories that people have to tell about the game, and to experience L5R through their memories. 

I have to give a huge thanks here to Matt Dalen who ran the Jade Hand site for years and still keeps it up although he is no longer actively archiving. Also I would like to thank everyone over at the Kolat Informant for preserving some of the archives from Steel and Iron, a website that was instrumental in the history of L5R. 

Of course I have to say thanks again to each of the individuals who participated in the interviews for sharing a bit of what makes L5R the best game on the planet, and demonstrating again that the community of this game is incredible. Also to everyone out there that plays L5R and makes the community of this game what it is. These stories are ours, all of ours as a community, and there are so many more waiting to be told.

Instead of just dumping 20+ articles here I thought it would be neat to release them slowly, hosting them on various fansites throughout the next month or so. I was hoping to have them done earlier in the summer and be able to release them in the month leading up to GenCon but real life stepped in and my free time vanished in June and July. 

Many of the sites like the more popular clan boards I can simply post the articles from my account on their forums but I know there are a multitude of other L5R fansites out there and want to give them a chance to participate as well. So if you run or are a member of of a L5R fansite and want to host one of these articles get in touch with me either via PM or email: aaronfrede @ gmail (dot) com 

As they go out I will be providing links to them from this post so you can always check back here to see a master list of sorts. 

In light of everything that has happened with the sale to FFG it is now the actual end of an era for L5R and the start of a new one. I have seen a lot of people posting on facebook with their memories and would like to invite them to catalog them here as well. Simply reply to the post and answer these questions as well as telling us any other interesting stories or tidbits that you can think of. I am super excited for what FFG will do with the license but I also love hearing tales of what L5R means to people and to hear their memories.

 

Name:

Where are you from, tell us about your playgroup?:

How did you hear about or get involved in L5R?

Did you/Do you consider yourself a clan loyalist?

What did you like about or what drew you to your clan of choice?

What was your first L5R tournament experience?

Favorite story or quote from the fiction? Why?

Favorite character? Why?

Best memory or experience you had playing L5R or because of L5R.

Favorite deck that you built or played and why.

Favorite Arc and why.

Favorite Tournament experiences.

Anything else you would like to tell players about L5R at that time, or any stories to bring back some fond memories for old school players or inspire new ones?

 

I hope you enjoy reading these stories and interviews as much as I enjoyed conducting them. The posts will be re-linked when i get back from school this afternoon.

Carry the Fortunes.

Aaron

 

Twenty Years of Memories Master List

 

Twenty Years of Memories: CEO of Rokugan

Twenty Years of Memories: 2014

Twenty Years of Memories: 2013

Twenty Years of Memories: 2012

Twenty Years of Memories: 2009-2011

Twenty Years of Memories: 2008 Part 1

Twenty Years of Memories: 2008 Part 2

Twenty Years of Memories: 2008 Part 3

Twenty Years of Memories: 2007 and 2002

Twenty Years of Memories: 2006

Twenty Years of Memories: 2005

Twenty Years of Memories: 2004 Part 1

Twenty Years of Memories: 2004 Part 2

Twenty Years of Memories: 2003 Part 1

Twenty Years of Memories: 2003 Part 2

Twenty Years of Memories: Tales from a T.O.

Twenty Years of Memories: 2001

Twenty Years of Memories: 2000

Twenty Years of Memories: 1999

Twenty Years of Memories: 1998 Part 1

Twenty Years of Memories: 1998 Part 2

Twenty Years of Memories: 1997

Twenty Years of Memories: 1996

Twenty Years of Memories: The First Historian

Edited by AFrede

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Name: Chris Swales


Where are you from, tell us about your playgroup?: I am from Sacramento, with some great players including the lead designer. 


How did you hear about or get involved in L5R? I started back in college in the early 200's during the start of samurai when my friend and I randomly asked about L5R and had a store employee tell us about it and teach us the basics. 


Did you/Do you consider yourself a clan loyalist? Started as Nezumi, then dabbled in various Phoenix, scorpion, and now very much a Spider Player


What did you like about or what drew you to your clan of choice? I like that spider are the underdogs, even though they might be evil-ish, they have their own code and live by it. 


What was your first L5R tournament experience? Feeding Hills, at least a hundred people and I got crushed, and loved it. 


Favorite story or quote from the fiction? Why? I've loved almost all the fiction, not sure I could pick one. 


Favorite character? Why? K'Mee experienced, because I love the idea of a ratling finding enlightenment and becoming a monk


Best memory or experience you had playing L5R or because of L5R. In college we would play 4 player L5R games that took hours and had a great time wheeling and dealing with each other for help


Favorite deck that you built or played and why. Spider Fear, which was my first tournament strong deck really. Also loved Chi-death/control with Tairao and Komoru


Favorite Arc and why. Ivory, got me back into the game and the rules and power level were better


Favorite Tournament experiences. Top of Clan in Arizona!


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Name:

 

Where are you from, tell us about your playgroup?

 

I'm Scott in Plano, Texas.  I haven't been in an active playgroup for a while, but the group I was part of brought many competitive players.  (James Balthis for example)

 

 

How did you hear about or get involved in L5R?

 

The first time it was a random game store purchase.

 

Did you/Do you consider yourself a clan loyalist?

 

Scorpion Clan for life!  

 

What did you like about or what drew you to your clan of choice?

 

I've always loved the emphasis on loyalty.  The Way of the Scorpion book hooked me.

 

What was your first L5R tournament experience?

 

I played intensely online from Nigeria after I got out of the Army.  I brought my deck to a local tournament in Dallas while I was visiting from out of country and won it - seemingly from completely out of nowhere.

 

Favorite story or quote from the fiction? Why?

 

Gift of the Emperor where Bayushi Aramoro won back the Scorpion Lands.  Bayushi Kwanchai's epic duel on a burning bridge with the Onisu Fushin.

 

Favorite character? Why?

 

Bayushi Kwanchai.  He was an underdog type who rose to a prominent position.  I also had a hand in building the cult of Kwanchai.

 

Best memory or experience you had playing L5R or because of L5R.

The Gencon LARP where I played Kwanchai.  A local tournament that I TOed based on Strategic L5R.    

 

 

Favorite deck that you built or played and why.

I enjoyed honorable Scorpion military in Gold.  It wasn't as strong as corrupt, but it is what I consider "classic Scorpion".

 

Favorite Arc and why.

Gold.  I was a semi-competitive player back then.  I had more time and money to invest in the game, and it was a big part of my life.

 

Favorite Tournament experiences.

At a tournament where oni summoning Phoenix was the dominant deck type a player across from me arrogantly suggested I concede before the game because he was playing the unstoppable I Give You My Name deck.  He misplayed on the second round by summoning the oni in the Limited phase instead of my Open, and then whined as my (newly acquired) Oni no Tsuburu proceeded to munch all of his provinces unopposed. 

 

 

Anything else you would like to tell players about L5R at that time, or any stories to bring back some fond memories for old school players or inspire new ones?

 

When they say UTZ you yell BONZAI.  Everything else proceeds from there.

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Where are you from, tell us about your playgroup?

I am from Berlin, Germany. My gaming group is more on the RPG side, but some of them also play the crad game, wonder if the LCG might convince the rest to also give the cards a try.

 

How did you hear about or get involved in L5R?

I heard very early on of L5R, at the time I was member in a gaming club, and L5R became an instand hit with many people in the club. I watched them many times play but didn't felt outright compelled to give it a try. Then the RPG came along and the Crane have been what I wanted to play there, which leads to the next question...

 

Did you/Do you consider yourself a clan loyalist?

I love the Crane, I have played characters from every faminly there (even though most often Kakita). And I have visited tournaments, playing the Crane. But I like all of Rokugan (even the Spider), so even the Crane being my clear favourites, I played many other clans as well.

 

What did you like about or what drew you to your clan of choice?

The strive for excellence in all things. The elegance and precision in all aspects of life.

 

What was your first L5R tournament experience?

Since I started with the RPG, and had very strong opinions on various L5R boards, my first tournaments was strange, since it made fast the round who I was, but I had to figure out who everybody else was, so it felt like everybody knows me but I knew nearly nobody. And many people thought of my as being arrogant, that didn't made it easy, but nevertheless I made new friends.

 

Favorite story or quote from the fiction? Why?

I am a sucker for tragic romances, so everything around Doji Hoturi and Bayushi Kachiko, with the stuff about Lady Doji and young Kakita being a close second. When it comes to single quotes however, I have to say I love Yoritomo's "I am my twenty strongest!" Guess I also like the character who are very self-assured...

 

Favorite character? Why?

There are so many! It is like chosing who is your favourite child. Sure, the very confident ones are all in my favourites, and if they have some great romances or some tragidy, then all the better. But I just cannot decide.

 

Best memory or experience you had playing L5R or because of L5R.

Talking with other people about the game was always great, with the weekly fictions it had almost the feel to it as talking about the latest TV episode of a show everybody watches (even though with the quality dipping over the years, that had not happened in quite a time for me now). The setting and the potential the stories had was something one could talk about for hours... until then, I guess I make my own stories with playing the RPG.

 

Favorite deck that you built or played and why.

As long as I can have duels in my decks, I was happy.

 

Favorite Arc and why.

Hard to decide, maybe Gold, that was when I started playing the CCG, and I liked the stories of the four winds.

 

Favorite Tournament experiences.

To watch the players who are clearly better then me, and being amazed what they do with the game. Also, the community is what made the game that great, so the people at the tournaments have been the the thing that made pretty much every tournament a great community experience. Sorry, that I have not a single one event as answer here either.

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Name: Henry

 

Where are you from, tell us about your playgroup?: Fairbanks Alaska. Our playgroup has been kinda dead since Emperor Edition- two other dedicated local players, and sometmes we get people up from Anchorage to bounce off of.

 

How did you hear about or get involved in L5R? I was in Indiana, working at a game store, when Glory of the Empire dropped. Being a nerd, I'd heard about the game before, but this was the first time I really got a look at it. Of the three starters, I decided the Crane were friggin' ninnies, the Crab were a little too brute force but Phoenix....Phoenix kinda had something going.So I started rolling out of the City of Tears. Took me six months to win a game. Didn't care.

 

Did you/Do you consider yourself a clan loyalist? Phoenix. I actually find the Minor Clans to be my favoritefactions in the setting, but of the Great Clans, Phoenix all the way. Not because of the fireballs and the flying and fact that Phoenix women seem to have pioneered miniskirts as a fashion in Rokugan, either.

 

What did you like about or what drew you to your clan of choice? Shiba. The idea that a Kami knelt to a mortal and swore himself and his descendants to the protection of the mortal's followers is pretty powerful. For me, the iconic Phoenix is a Shiba standing firm between their charge and danger. The idea that a clan could value life, but also dish out appalling destruction was also a draw. Frankly, the more I learn about the Phoenix, the more I like them, and despite being neck-deep in the lore, I discover new things all the time... But at the end of the day, the Phoenix own their actions. They accept responsibility for what they do, and they take responsibility for the spiritual defense of the Empire.

 

What was your first L5R tournament experience? Anchorage Kotei, 2010 or so. Pretty sure I came in nearly dead last, too.

 

Favorite story or quote from the fiction? Why? This is insanely tough. I'll get out my perennial whipping boy for favorite story: The War of Dark Fire Part 12, because Munkjin the Yobanjin becomes a fully realized character in the span of eight paragraphs, then dies with no small amount of nobility. But quote?
 

Right now, it's this one, because it sums up why I will always regard the Taint as a fool's choice:

“You might have learned well. The rest of your kind didn't, obviously,” Kuchika said. Looking below him, Sora realized she was right. His disciples had fallen, overwhelmed by their enemy's stronger numbers and dark powers. Only he remained.

“Then they were not worthy. Goodbye, Kokujin Kuchika. I shall encounter you again, when you no longer need to borrow the strength of others.”

 

 

Favorite character? Why? Isawa Taisho or Tonbo Taira, since I created and played them at Winter Court events. ;) In terms of characters created by other people who've shown up in multiple stories doing their thing, probably Isawa Mizuhiko.

 

Best memory or experience you had playing L5R or because of L5R. Losing hours and hours of sleep because Winter Court was on and I had Work To Do.

 

Favorite deck that you built or played and why. My Emperor Edition Inquisitors out of Temple of Purity. An Honor rocket that would simply attack decks that out-rocketed or tried to dishonor it. It was fast, fun, and flexible.

 

Favorite Arc and why. I missed a big chunk of the CCG's early history... I think I liked early Emperor Edition best. But I absolutely loathed late Emperor Edition, so... Early Emperor allowed for insane,cool ideas, but wasn't degenerated into Kalani's Landing/Lizard Wizard nightmare meta.

 

Favorite Tournament experiences. I dunno. I've only attended three kotei, all of them in Anchorage, and the Anchortown boys throw a good event, but I can't really pin down specifics too well. But from the RPG/Winter Court end of things? Dropping the mic as Isawa Taisho at Winter Court 4:
 


Taisho approaches and, having received permission and bowing where appropriate, bows respectfully to the Crab.

"Though the Crab's words are critical of my clan, I do not know how else they could speak. The Crab respect the code of Bushido far too much to be anything but Honest. Any man may speak well of his friends. But a Courageous man will deal honestly with his friends and foes alike. The Phoenix take no offense at the honest words of the Crab- we have been through far too much together for that. If my friend has placed his garden poorly, do I not owe it to him to suggest a better location? Might I not offer guidance, as our friends in the Crab have offered to do? Although I do wish to point out, that the decision to publicize the research in this manner was not the work of our able Asako Courtiers, but a directive from samurai far higher placed in the Celestial Order then this unworthy one. The Jade Champion's orders were clear, after the Unicorn rebuffed her efforts to reach them. She approached the Iuchi, and was turned away, more than once. She approached the Moto, and was turned away. Could Isawa Kaname-dono have tried harder to get through to them on this urgent matter, touching, as it does, upon the execution of her vital duties? It is certainly not my place to say."

Nor is it the place of anyone else in this room except the Chancellor, Regent, or Voice.

"I do not know that the most exquisitely-trained Doji could have done much under the circumstances any differently than our own courtiers did. A samurai does not shirk a duty simply because it is disagreeable to them."

Another pause.

"Now, we are not so foolish as to turn down the offer of training in the techniques sacred to other Clans, and will certainly be taking the Crab up on their most generous offer of training in the school that produced a man like Yasuki Aitoko-shiryo. And any others who wish to take the Crab up on their offer will likewise receive our full, undivided attention."

Taisho turns back to Tono and bows.

"Now, perhaps the words of the Crab are blunt... but in these circumstances, can the Phoenix truly cast stones? But as it occurs to me that we had a petition of very similar character on the first week of Court... from the clan of my future bride, no less..."

He turns his baleful eye upon the gathered courtiers beyond the dais.

"I think I could spare us all a great deal of wasted time... anyone who wholeheartedly endorses the manner in which we, the Phoenix, released our research on the Moto Curse- research which has, unfortunately, withstood every attempt to disprove it- to the wider Empire... please, come up and say so."

A beat.

"Don't all get up at once."

Although really,Winter Court in general... the banter, the in-jokes, the excellent, excellent posts others put up...

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Name: Robert Croy

Where are you from, tell us about your playgroup?:

I am in Michigan. I have started a couple play groups, the largest being the Eastern Michigan University Imperial Court. It has been fun and with some help form AEG I was able to treat the campus like a store, sometimes.

 

How did you hear about or get involved in L5R?

I had become very disenchanted with Magic and was looking for a new card game, as I have been playing card games for 2/3 of my life. I was told about it in the past and my FLGS was hosting a "learn to play" tournament. I was lent a deck my a fellow Scorpion: Adam Mollan.

 

Did you/Do you consider yourself a clan loyalist?

Absolutely. Scorpion. When I first started playing the game I thought about trying other Clans, but the more I played Scorpion the deeper I fell into it.

 

What did you like about or what drew you to your clan of choice?

That we are the necessary bad guys. The original deal between Hantei and Bayushi sold me. Nothing else really matters.

 

What was your first L5R tournament experience?

My first tournament was be getting blown up. I started in EE and was playing stay-at-home Shadowed Estate Dishonor. My first Kotei I took Fallen Dueling out of Scorpion and didn't make the cut. RRRREEEAAAALLLLYYYY pissed off a Lion though with that deck. 

 

Favorite story or quote from the fiction? Why?

"I can swim" Knowing the background of the story sums up the Scorpion so well.

 

Favorite character? Why?

Bayushi Irezu. His card was absolutely bonkers, has the keyword Martyr and was active in the fiction. I am not a fan of Bitter Lies, but I am a fan of Mania

 

Best memory or experience you had playing L5R or because of L5R.

All the times I have gotten people into the game. I have taught SOOO many people. I always sold the story first.

 

Favorite deck that you built or played and why.

My favorite deck was probably EE Brojimbos. The Paragons of Loyalty was a lot of fun. I moved onto LDD Dishonor bomb and played Dishonor in Ivory/20F but nothing ever made me feel so cool as Brojimbos

 

Favorite Arc and why.

Emperor. It was when I started. The crappy part is looking back I can tell how nuts it was. I hated Ivory and bbarely played it and Twenty Festivals felt like a huge lead into Onyx. I was excited for Onyx. If we end here, I definitely had the most fun during Emperor

 

Favorite Tournament experiences.

Top of Clan in Chicagoland 2015

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Where are you from, tell us about your playgroup?:

Belgium. And my playgroup is me, and my pal Yuri. There is almost no play in our local gamestore. So we play casually against each other. Let's hope the LCG will get more players.

 

How did you hear about or get involved in L5R?

Back in the 90's read about it in Inquest. Yuri had a few cards, but I was playing Magic, and in those days I did not have enough money to affored multiple CCGs. I also read a bit in some RPG books i picked up at a sale.Then a few years ago, our LGS had a copy of War of Honor and Emperor edition, and me and my pal decided we should finally get into L5R.

 

Did you/Do you consider yourself a clan loyalist?

Yes. While I like to play several clans in the CCG, I am and Always will be, at heart, a Spider.

 

What did you like about or what drew you to your clan of choice?

Probably what attracted me to Black mana in Magic the gathering. It's a bit hard to explain. Maybe it's just the audacity of these guys. Related to one of the big bads of the setting and barely fighting for good. Also they get all the cool shadowlands monsters and undead. And you are freed from honor ;)

 

Favorite story or quote from the fiction? Why?

Comming back into the setting after several years and finding out that the destroyers actually managed to drive the Crab off the wall. That made me go "what?"

 

Favorite character? Why?

In the 90's: bayushi kachiko, because... Do you have to ask? ;)

Now: Ninube Hajime. For his "... turns his mind to rice pudding" game tekst.

 

Best memory or experience you had playing L5R or because of L5R.

Invading the Scorpion lands with my Mantis only to find the villages deserted (Yuri had had nothing but holdings for a few turns) only for suddenly to get jumped by a bunch of ninja's and their grandmaster. And then spent the rest of the game trying to take him down, and finally winning.

 

Pitting Spider monks against Dragon monks.

 

Favorite deck that you built or played and why.

Spider Clan with lots of monks and weapons. It has some nice synergy between a few cards and it has cheap characters that still pack a punch. Also it's the one that I have played the most with, wich isn't much.

I know it's not a tournament level deck, but in my case it doesn't need to be.

 

Favorite Arc and why.

Destroyer war. Because Kalmima was kinda cool. The Crab getting ovverun made my jaw drop and... oh this little thing... The Spider attained great clan status!

Edited by Robin Graves

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Name: Beau Roudebush

 

Where are you from, tell us about your playgroup?:

I am originally from Dayton, OH. where I picked up L5R during high school with my best friends and his family, I now reside in Madison, IN. where I am the only one who plays so I am teaching my son and my wife.

 

How did you hear about or get involved in L5R?

My best friend and his dad

 

Did you/Do you consider yourself a clan loyalist?

Yes always been Scorpion to the core. in the ccg and rpg. I played other clans in ccg but always had a scorpion deck ready

 

What did you like about or what drew you to your clan of choice?

Part was the colors red and black, also the story of the Scorpion clan coop. was an amazing move by the clan, and of course who cant forget the Ninja lol

 

What was your first L5R tournament experience?

been playing on and off all these 20 years and I still rmember my first tournament didn't do well partially because never knew what Swiss ment(noob at the time). Anyway it was late 90's and it was at Origins in Columbus, OH. The top prizes were clan swords.

 

Favorite story or quote from the fiction? Why?

My favorite story was from the first clan wars novel Scorpion Clan. Love the scorpion and can understand why they are the way they are by reading this novel

 

Favorite character? Why?

Bayushi Kachiko, and because she was a force to be reckoned with, she was as dangerous as she was beautiful

 

Best memory or experience you had playing L5R or because of L5R.

Playing 1st edition L5R RPG Tomb of Iuchiban  with my best friend and our friends. also over the year I have made new friends from different place while being involved in this game.

 

Favorite deck that you built or played and why.

Shadowlands Oni deck. because it was fun and Toku always got eaten

 

Favorite Arc and why.

Would have to say Coils of Madness. Because I got to see Pan Ku again as well as a few other older characters that were no longer around. it got me back into the game.

 

Favorite Tournament experiences

I have only been in a few tournaments during the 20 years but one thing stands out in my mind and can never forget is the story before we play, the UTZ! and the BONZAI!. this gets you pumped up to play. love it every time.

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Where are you from, tell us about your playgroup?:

 

Canberra, Australia. The playgroup here has always been very small - for the longest time, there wasn't even such thing as a formal playgroup, just the occasional group of friends who would play together. Fortunately, the owner of one of our better gaming stores is a diehard Dragon fan, and has stocked L5R through thick and thin, so it's always been possible to get cards. We had a boom- up to 8 players or so every week - in EE, but right now, there's a total of three regular players, including me, but we love it. Naturally, we're not particularly competitive, but we have fun.

 

How did you hear about or get involved in L5R?

 

A guy I knew at school came in one day wearing a Togashi Yokuni t-shirt. Yokuni being awesome, I asked what it was- turns out his father was an L5R player, and that got me into the game, at age 8 or so. I couldn't fully invest into it for a long time afterwards, but I've been following the game to varying degrees ever since.

 

Did you/Do you consider yourself a clan loyalist?

 

Yes. As I have said elsewhere, I used to be a Shadowlands loyalist, until the Spider showed up and the nonhumans fell to the wayside. Been Lion ever since, and never looked back, though I'd have to reconsider my position if Omoni and/or the Tsuno ever showed up again in a meaningful way.

 

What did you like about or what drew you to your clan of choice?

 

I was initially attracted to the Shadowlands thanks to their aesthetic. The flavour quote on the back of the Spawning Grounds deckbox - "They do not march to subjugate or rule Rokugan. They rise to destroy it." - was amazingly awesome to me as a child. I was also drawn to the surprisingly deep characterisation of some of the Shadowlands characters- Omoni, Kyofu, even Daigotsu in the early days, all struck me on account of their 'human' struggle to achieve something for themselves, even while remaining subservient to Jigoku, and implacably opposed to Rokugan. This led to the Tsuno, who epitomised the "unrepentantly evil, but still capable of independent decision-making, and even a kind of honour" theme (as well as looking totally badass). Unfortunately, the Tsuno got axed, and I have disliked the Nezumi ever since. Double-unfortunately, the Spider took over from the Horde - I quite liked the Spider at first (though I was supporting Kyoso and the Maw in the war at the Wall of Bone), but as they became increasingly integrated into Rokugan, without actually jettisoning their attachment to Jigoku and the Taint, I liked them less and less. The Goddesses stories were the final breaking point of my fondness for the Spider.

 

But I remained invested in Rokugan, and as the Spider had displaced the Horde, I had transferred my allegiance to the Lion. I had liked the Lion for a long time, on account of their consistent awesomeness in their interaction with the Tsuno (Matsu Domotai forever), plus Ikoma Tsanuri's glorious death in combat with Akuma no Oni, with such honour that even the Shadowlands couldn't impurify the ground. Plus, with the 'antagonist' faction now gone, the natural switch-up was to the faction that most fully embodied what the setting was all about- the Lion. I read deeply on their lore, got myself a Lion deck, and have loved playing Lion in both the CCG and the RPG ever since.

 

What was your first L5R tournament experience?

 

PacRims 2013, went 3-2 with pure Paragon honour switch (missing out on the final eight after losing to horrendous Shadow Dragon cheese), and won the Suicide Draft tournament. I'd been playing the game for a long, long, time by that stage, but it was my first actual tournament. I enjoyed it, but ultimately prefer casual play with friends, where we can chat about whatever while pushing cardboard around. Harder to do with a total stranger.

 

Favorite story or quote from the fiction? Why?

 

Too many. I've listed a few in the Clan Traditions thread, but it's hard to pick just one. Probably, if forced to choose, I would say my favourite story is A Lion's Honour - because it features Tsuno being awesome, Lion being awesome, and is the closest the setting has ever come to really showing why Honour Is Stronger Than Steel - but to choose any single quote would be unfair to all the other awesome ones.

 

Incidentally, my least favourite story, as a story, is Private Lessons. The virtue of A Lion's Honour was that everyone involved came out of it looking good in their own way. Private Lessons is pure fanservice, that only makes the Crane look good by making the Lion look bad. Destroyer War-era fictions don't count.

 

Favorite character? Why?

 

Omoni. Evil and he knows it, but with redeeming features: his loyalty to Daigotsu (hell, he got him Akkuai-O, via the Shadow Dragon) despite Daigotsu's frequent treatment of him as a glorified pet, his pride in and desire to improve 'his people', his self-awareness, and so on. Probably the best-developed and most sympathetic antagonist character L5R has had, without ever risking crossing the line to becoming a good guy. Otherwise, probably Matsu Ketsui- besides embodying Matsu badassery in a way few have ever done, her relationship with Tsanuri, and resultant relationship with her husband, is a touching reminder of Lion humanity, with the circumstances of her death a symbol of how swiftly fortunes can change. Also, she was around for a long time, so she got more than just a moment or two to shine.

 

Best memory or experience you had playing L5R or because of L5R.

 

Winter Court. Despite my feelings about the latter period of WCIV, rarely have I been happier than when fully wallowing in Rokugan, and only Winter Court can provide that kind of immersion.

 

Favorite deck that you built or played and why.

 

EE Paragon NOPE! deck. Iron Will, Know No Fear, and all the other negation that Paragons had access to in that arc. I remember a game against a Crab Berserker deck - running the Force-based negation suite - in which both of us exhausted all our actions without actually getting any effects to stick. It was a troll deck, and I would never play it against someone I didn't know, but when played with friends, it was great fun.

 

Favorite Arc and why.

 

Lotus or Samurai. Lotus was crazy bonkers, but the CCG was fun if you didn't play competitively (which our group never really has), and I liked Formations. 3e RPG was similarly prone to being overpowered, but there's some enjoyment to be had as long as you don't have any powergamers. Samurai just generally felt like a solid arc to play, and it had one of the stronger overarching storylines.

 

Favorite Tournament experiences.

 

Canberra being a long way away from anywhere that has tournaments, I have only been to the one tournament (so far). Though it was fun, it's hard to pin down any single favourite experience. Possibly the multiplayer tables the day after, with semi-random effects that could jump from table to table. I just wish I'd known the people there better.

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Name:David Hanson

Where are you from, tell us about your playgroup?:

Born in Spain "military parents" I have seen more of the work then most have seen states in the U.S. I currently live in clarksville TN with a small playgroup of 6 to 10 players none sharing a clan except spider lol. I myself am a hard core mantis player thru and thru.

How did you hear about or get involved in L5R?

I started from the beginning 20 years ago in Virginia Beach with a group of guys I was given a crane deck and was hooked from there.

Did you/Do you consider yourself a clan loyalist?

After winning an event back with Yoritomo's Alliance if fell in love with the underdog Mantis and have been loyal ever since.

What did you like about or what drew you to your clan of choice?

The fact that there place was earned not given and no matter the trouble ahead the Mantis weathered it and were stronger for it.

What was your first L5R tournament experience?

That was a long time ago and I was 14 at the time but I do remember facing an old friend and he went to duel Yoritomo and I said you will fail in this futile attempt and when we were done his character was dead and Yoritomo stood over him. =)

Favorite story or quote from the fiction? Why?

This is quite cliche but the phrase I am my 20 strongest will always be my favorite quote as it showed my champion had a heart for his people and did not want to see them destroyed who is willing to sacrifice himself for the survival of his clan.

Favorite character? Why?

Yoritomo, obviously as I stated above he may be hard and brutal at times but he does have a heart for the people.

Best memory or experience you had playing L5R or because of L5R.

My favorite experience is the people the community and family that this game has fostered I can't think of it being replaced by anything.

Favorite deck that you built or played and why.

My favorite deck was my magistrate Aramasu's Legacy it was not what everybody was expecting as most mantis for running the landing. And allowed me to play around with Calvary, navel, and big units with an old raid mechanic.

Favorite Arc and why.

Jade because that's where I help make the Mantis.

Favorite Tournament experiences.

At Gen Con 2014 I was I was in the main event in full costume playing my heart out to almost make the cut and just come short but in turn had many people compliment me on my costume and the constant roleplay I had with others in costume.

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I guess it wouldn't be proper to not contribute my own story here as well.

 

My name is Aaron Frede, I was born and raised in British Columbia, Canada and got into L5R twelve years ago at the end of gold edition. I had been playing Star Wars CCG for many years until it was axed in 2001, I bounced around a couple games until in 2003 I picked up a Phoenix starter at my FLGS and was instantly hooked by the story that was included in the box. I got involved with the local L5R crew and have been playing ever since. 

 

Mt first tournament was a local Saturday tournament at Breakaway games and I distinctly remember getting smoked in every game. Didn't even come close to winning, but i learned a lot, had a lot of fun, and the people were very friendly. 

 

The next year when Diamond Edition rolled out i bought Dragon and Scorpion starters as they were the two clans that interested me most in the setting and I have been a loyal kikage-zumi ever since that day. I think I was drawn to the Dragon because they had a reputation as being enigmatic, distant, yet awe inspiring and scary at the same time. In the original setting the Dragon monks were feared and regarded as wild cards with mystical powers that you couldn't really control. I guess what drew me to Dragon the most was the idea of every individual following their own path, while still being loyal to their lord.

 

There are so many fantastic stories that I could list, the Enlightened Madness series for sure is up there, Hitomi's entire arc was amazing I always thought she was a great character, The Last Ride both parts were awesome, Kurohito's Seppuku is a wonderfully tragic tale. I could go on much longer but I think i will stop there. 

 

As far as favorite quotes though there is a lot of those too but I will keep it to one interaction between Hogai and Satsu in Enlightened Madness, the series that made Hogai forever my favorite character.

 

“There is a difference between a warrior and a killer, Satsu,” Hogai replied. “You are a warrior. I am a killer. Keep me by your side, to guard against your enemies.”

“And why would I want a killer by my side?” Satsu asked.

“So that you can see my example,” Hogai said, “and never become like me.”

 

Hogai was my favorite because he was strong and wild, yet he knew his place. He was willing to sacrifice himself for others because he knew that ultimately he was just a soldier, no more important than anyone else who fought for their lord. This is a common theme for most characters in the setting but it is slightly more unusual in a monk. I also liked that he was a kikage-zumi and had the connection to Hitomi who was also one of my favorites. He was blunt and too the point since he was originally a Crab and didn't mince his words. 

 

Probably one of the best experiences I had because of L5R was the first GenCon our group went to where we got to meet so many other people from around the country and around the world. It was my first taste of the larger L5R community and how amazing it was. So many great laughs on the road and walking around. Sitting around building decks till 3am watching the Band of Brothers marathon.

 

I have two favorite decks that I built, the first one was during Diamond and it was a terrible dueling honor deck that used Shiro Mirumoto so that my Samurai could attach two swords and Blade of Penance. I tried to get both blades on one dude and then bomb out honor, the concept was ok but my construction was poor as i was still a noob back then, however it did let me win my very first game in a tournament, only a year and a half after i started playing L5R. That learning curve, i am still working on being a better player. The second deck was during my second GenCon visit when Test of Enlightenment had just come out. It was Lotus so Dragon was busted and I was doing very well at the Friday grinder.  It was a dueling honor deck that was pretty standard but I ran Itsume as meta to steal other people's Rosoku Sensei's since it counted as a Ring and shut off their ability to use all the busted enlightened guys. At 4-2 I was paired against a mirror match which I ended up losing since he drew into Mirumoto first (back then you could only have 1 copy of a unique on either side of the board), but he asked me about why I was running Itsume. The next day he won at match partly due to having added Itsume to his deck and he went on to win GenCon that year so i was pretty proud of my small contribution. 

 

As far as favorite arc's go, Diamond Edition because of formations, relative balance, and the story was fantastic. Samurai because of how even the playing field was, and also Lotus because everything was so broken and there were so many wild decks running around that you had to try and figure out how to play against to have a shot at beating them.

 

I will always remember the road trips involving L5R. Iron Samurai from Calgary to Saskatoon, playing two koteis in two days on two hours sleep was always a blast. So many great stories from those trips. Taking a camper van out to Calgary and playing L5R in the back on the table for the whole road trip. Road tripping with the Portland crew down to play Strategic L5R at Emeralds in Sacramento was incredible. Strategic is one of my favorite variants of the game and I hope to run a few events of it during the hiatus. All the amazing people that I met through the game, I wouldn't have the awesome Tuesday night gaming crew i have now without L5R. So much amazing hospitality that has been shown to me, sleeping on Leon's floor under the pool table in seattle, in Greg's apartment in Calgary when there were so many of us jammed on the floor you couldn't get up and walk anywhere, Ornatov's awesome upstairs guest bungalow, Murph's house where despite what we said we consistently showed up at 2am and he was always waiting for us. Driving through the night to an event and watching the sun rise over the Rocky Mountains. Other than that just how passionately we would discuss the story on those trips, and how the world just came alive for us. I am so happy to have 12 years of memories of L5R and so excited for what the future under FFG will bring.

Edited by AFrede

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Name: César Campos

 

Where are you from, tell us about your playgroup?:

I am from Santiago, Chile. My playgroup for the CCG was friends and students from the university in which I studied. My current group of RPG consist of pretty much the same friends.

 

How did you hear about or get involved in L5R?

Back when I was studying in the university I was part of an old student group that organized RPG events, tabletop games presentation and/or CCG tourneys. It was in such an event (think DragonCon but a LOT smaller) that a group from the local store where giving away starter decks (I now know that they were giving Gold edition starter 2-month prior to the release of Diamond edition). There, when I got to the front of the looong lane I listened to the quick explanation of the world and finally asked: "Which clan has cool ninjas" (I know, I know, but I was really young back then xD). 

That was the start of my relation with Rokugan, I later delved into the RPG (my group, which at the time was almost 8 year olds, periodically donated pen-and-paper original manuals to the common library of the University) and haven't stopped playing one or the other for 11 years.

 

Did you/Do you consider yourself a clan loyalist?

Absolutely. Scorpion to the core. My fascination with ninjas lasted up until I read the L5R RPG and the Scorpion dedicated source-book. By the end of it I had been converted almost completely to magistrates, bushis and shugenjas.

 

What did you like about or what drew you to your clan of choice?

To be honest, ninjas. Then, when I actually read the setting, the whole story behind the clan was what got me into the clan for real: the necessity for someone to take the honor-hit and do what had to be done. Not the 'I die for you all, remember me' kind of hit, but the 'I will take the bullet and you will not know how close you were to die'. The tragic life of Shoju, the duty displayed by all the heroes of the Scorpion and the grim determination that the glory is for the arrogant, the Scorpion just get the job done.

 

What was your first L5R tournament experience?

It was both awesome, fun and sad. The L5R CCG community is awesome, btw, I participated in my first kotei with a deck of 80% cards bought by my. The rest were obtained from other Scorpions, Dragons and my own friends (Unicorn, Crane, Phoenix and Crab players). It was awesome (I was playing with a mix of bushi and ninjas) but I got elected for a random deck-check and sadly I had a miss-written a card. That left my deck invalid and thus I got disqualified :(.

 

Favorite story or quote from the fiction? Why?

Almost all the stories in Way of the Scorpion. From the story of the two scorpion lovers that preferred to die by each other sword during a duel than to be married to others to how a Crane was duped into seppuku after falling to take a city. The definitive story that marked me and finally pushed over the edge of the cliff, though, is Winter. In it, a Scorpion damnyo manage to force all the Clan damnyos to test just how loyal their samurai are. For this, they will issue a single command to one of their own bodyguards and the ones that refuse or doubt the order will be disqualified:

"Which command will it be?" - the writer ask to the Scorpion damnyo, Bayushi Ujiro.
"I will show it with my own - he responded.
The first, thus, is the Scorpion, Bayushi Shunsen is the elected bodyguard and he sits in from of his lord while he waits for the command.
"Shunsen", Ujiro said.
"My Lord?"
"Kill me"
The Scorpion did not pause. "Yes, my lord". The damnyo's blood splattered all over the place. Then without a pause and before the damnyos body fell, Shunsen fell to his knees, dropped his katana, drew his wakizashi and killed himself with it. (For he has just killed his lord and the only possible outcome for it was for him to seppukku).

PURE WIN! :D.

 

Favorite character? Why?

Shunsen and Ujiro of course, also Soshi Saikaban (founder of the Emerald magistrates). Kachiko, Shoju and Aramaro, Eiji and Kiyo, Sunetra, Yojiro, Paneki, Miyako and his awesome son Bayushi Nitoshi. The reasons are that each and every single one of the represent something of the Scorpion that got my loyalty. They are ruthless and caring, loyal and traitors, pragmatics and idealistic. A really weird description but what I like of Rokugan is the samurai-drama, how this human beings worst enemies are their own insecurities and how they manage to accomplish their duty.

 

Best memory or experience you had playing L5R or because of L5R.

The whole preparation during the Race for the Throne meta-game. Not so much how it ended, or how AEG managed it, but the idea was neat and I really enjoyed trying my best to win it (although AEG didn't really liked that the one clan got that much of an advantage so quickly).

 

Favorite deck that you built or played and why.

The Live-a-court deck. I played, just to win points for the Scorpion, with a deck that told an story. I wrote a fan fic about how a imperial was killed during a winter court and how the whole case was built. I, also, upped the difficulty and tried to build 10 scenes with it, forcing certain conditions (for example, I destroyed my own personality when I had in the board a combination of personalities to shown the 'assassination scene' ). So, in each match, I tried to explain my moves 'And, of course, the magistrate assigned blames Doji no-name(I bow and dishonor my own personality), then he commit seppukku to clean his shame'.
I got stomped(of course), laughed at and I even forced an study of rules to avoid such decks in the future but I had an incredible time.

 

Favorite Arc and why.

Samurai. I started with Diamond and by the time Samurai was on I had already embraced the design. I studied decks and built graphs of gold economy trying to improve my gold curve.

 

Favorite Tournament experiences

Two awesome experiences. My first out-of-the-country tourney Rosario, Argentina, playerbase was awesome(the Argentinean community in general), a prime example of just how the game core functioned across borders. I ate asado, I crashed someone house to sleep and I even got a tour by the city...by perfect strangers who all that knew about my was that I played Scorpion. 
And a custom tourney in which we played atop a map of Rokugan and each player (only 4 per clan) controlled an army. Battles were resolved by playing matches in blocks of 40 minutes with any and all allied forces that came to the same spot.

Edited by Soshi Narumo

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Name:

Yvonne

 

Where are you from, tell us about your playgroup?

I live in a smallish town about 45-50 miles west of St. Louis, Missouri. My current playgroup (thus far) consists of myself and one Friend.

 

How did you hear about or get involved in L5R?

I had seen it advertised in some magazines and couldn't wait to try it. I've always been fascinated by ancient cultures and Asian stuff, in particular. Then, at Archon in '96, they were running demos and giving the decks away. My fiancé and I did the demos and we were hooked. We still played Magic off and on for a little while but soon gave it up completely in favor of L5R. (We also played Mythos, X-Files and Highlander but those soon fell by the wayside, too.)

 

Did you/do you consider yourself a clan loyalist?

No, not really. I'm a ronin at heart and was a rabid Toturi's Army player (while playing other factions sometimes, too) but once TA disbanded  :( there was no regular ronin stronghold to play so, for the purposes of Imperial Assembly voting and such, I chose Dragon. Other than the IA account - now-defunct, I suppose, I'm not particularly loyal to them. I have decks for all but Crab (too brutish for my taste), Crane (though I'm considering them) and Lion (too inflexible and militaristic).

 

What did you like about or what drew you to your clan of choice?

Dragon - they're weird, like me. Also reclusive, like me.  :P And the seeking of enlightenment. That's cool.

Mantis - love the Tsuruchi and their bows. Also the individualism and the clan's rise to Great Clan status without a Kami.

Phoenix - their Love of Peace and Knowledge (they probably should be my main Clan for that reason).

Scorpion - Ninja. Plus, it's fun to be the bad guy, sometimes, or to keep people guessing, at least.  ;)

Spider - I have a Light deck, no Shadowlands, and plan to have a Dark one, too. I like that there are some who aren't (or weren't?) tainted, that there's an element that's sort of good and also, as with the Scorpion, it's just fun to be the bad guy once in awhile.  

Unicorn - their compassion, the way they care about the peasants, their unorthodox ways. Don't like the meat and leather bit, though. 

 

What was your first L5R tournament experience?

Had to have been at Archon in '97. I was playing Toturi's Army. I forgot what my opponent was playing but like, all three of my Togashi Mitsu turned up beautifully and I won the game very quickly.

 

I won the second round, also, but it wasn't a good experience. The person I was playing reminded me to do something I'd been forgetting to do or hadn't realized I could do or something. So, I went ahead and did the thing and, whether it was because of that or not (I don't recall), I went on to win the game. Afterwards, I was sitting there shuffling my cards and stuff and I heard my opponent, who was standing nearby, talking to his friends saying, "I only lost because I was a gentleman (or honorable or something to that effect)". I started to go up and ask them to change my win to a loss but I never did. I still wish I had. (Note: If you're not prepared to lose a game, and not ***** about it later, because you gave your opponent a tip, then don't give out tips;) ) 

 

Favorite story or quote from the fiction?

"Until I understand." ~Togashi

 

Favorite character?

 

Toturi!!!!  :) :)  

 

Best memory or experience you had playing L5R or because of L5R.

My fiancé and I and a couple other people playing L5R all evening long, several times a week, at this huge round table at Hardee's in Union (and playing at other restaurants, too, but Hardee's had the best table for it). Good, good times.  :)  :)  :)  :)  

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Name:

Nicole

Where are you from, tell us about your playgroup?: 

Vienna, Austria
I have various playgroups, since I play the RPG ;-)

How did you hear about or get involved in L5R?

I watched the movie "7 Samurai" and felt like: I wanna GM this for a RPG-group, then I started searching for a RPG where one can play Samurai.

Did you/Do you consider yourself a clan loyalist?
Hmmmm...hard to say...but I love Scorpion and Phoenix

What did you like about or what drew you to your clan of choice?
Since I myself am sort of pacifistic and love to play casters I fell in love with the Phoenix, when I joined a group who wanted to play a Nin...erm...Scorpion-Campaign I fell in love with them too, but I prefer the Shosuro Actors and maybe the Yogo-Wardmasters (haven't played them yet)

What was your first L5R tournament experience?
-

Favorite story or quote from the fiction? Why?

AAAAHHHHHHH... there are way to many cool stories or quotes...but for example I love the stoy about the founding of the Asahina-Family...and the story where the Bayushi-Daimyou tells his General to lose against the Unicorn-Army...and the story where Shiba bends his knee before Isawa...and the "31 Ronin" ...

Favorite character? Why?
hmmm...my own characters I play in the RPG?  ;)  :P

Best memory or experience you had playing L5R or because of L5R.

:D The scene when my Shosuro Actress tried to secretly hand a gift over to her beloved and nearly fell all over him and later he tried to secretly hand a gift over to her in appriciation for her performance, while his father farted due to the poison the Shosuro Infiltrator dropped in his tea because he critized my Actress.  :ph34r:

Favorite deck that you built or played and why.
-

Favorite Arc and why.
-

Favorite Tournament experiences.

-

Anything else you would like to tell players about L5R at that time, or any stories to bring back some fond memories for old school players or inspire new ones?

Uhhh...way too many...hmmm...let's stick with my Shosuro Actress, since I play her at the moment:
First mission was to stop the Lion from attacking the Scorpion-Border, the Soshi-Shugenja (cover name lion's tooth) disguised himself as a traveling herbalist, the Shosuro Actress ( cover name cherryblossom) disguised herself as traveling musician and the Shosuro Infiltrator posed as her younger sister (cver name little sister). One of the Ashigaru watching the gates to the Lion-Village and Camp fell instantly in love with Cherryblossom (we use non-japanese names for heimin and eta, japanese names are Samurai only) and invited her over to dinner with his parents, Cherryblossom hoped for some information and played along. Next day she played some music at the market place and caught the attention of an Akodo-General, who invited her into his tent for 1 koku(!). Cherryblossom accepted the invitation and visited his tent later on, played some music, told stories and asked the General a few innocent questions. She learned that he wanted to settledown in a monastery and this would be his last campaign and that he had a feud the the Matsu-General. The feud started because they both wanted to get the same woman, and Cherryblossom resembled this woman, that's why he invited her. At the same time  Little Sister and Lion's Tooth manipulated the rice stock and the food at the Geishahouse and the prostitutes-house. The next day Cherryblossom "accidently" crossed path with the Matsu-General, followed by a yojimbo provided by the Akodo-Genreal, and he instantly dragged her into his tent where he grabbed a scroll from a shelf, opened it and showed her the (erotic) pictures asking her "which position do you want to try?", went over to the next shelf and pulled out a Kimono resembling one in the pictures "I have the right clothing too". Right at the moment when the Matsu-General (we give him the nickname Matsu-Porno, since he was discribe to use sort of resembling the look of a pimp) started to undress Cherryblossom the Akodo-General came into the tent. The both started to fight right away. When the Ikoma-General asked them what the hell is going on, the explained and demanded a duell over the right to get Cherryblossom. For unknown reasons the head of this campaign allowed the duell to take place at the next morning, right before the Lion were to attack the Scorpion.
You can imagine how the moral of the troops went down.
The next morning the duell took place and rigth at the moment when the swords of the two Generals clashed, we heared an explosion and shortly after Scorpion-Samurai were everywhere. Now no longer in need to pose as a heimin, Cherryblossom let grapped her Sai, let her disguise fall and attacked the next Lion-Samurai, after the Akodo-General won the duell and killed the Matsu-General he came to bring Cherryblossom (now obviously recognisable as a Scorpion-Samurai) to a save place and guarded her back.

The Scorpion won the battle and the Akodo-Genral most likely survived...I wonder what happens if they were to ever meet again...as Samurai...

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Name: Oz Gonzalez

 

Where are you from, tell us about your playgroup?: I'm from a lot of places, but I would say Seattle/Bellevue, USA, at this point. My play group has been meeting weekly(or more) for over 14 years. Anywhere from 2 - 14 people. I'm one of the two jerks responsible for the monster that is Case.

 

How did you hear about or get involved in L5R? Every time I would come home from military leave, in the last 90's, my brother and friends would be playing this. They convinced me to buy a Naga starter from Hidden Emperor, and that was that. We played at a buddy's house, always multi-player or at Neutral Ground in NYC.

 

Did you/Do you consider yourself a clan loyalist? Yes. I was a Naga loyalist for 1-2 years, then a Phoenix one for about 14 Years(always Samurai focused). Last 18 months I played Crab. Also played Ratling for about 18 months, again with the HoR box, so like 5+ years before they were any good :P

 

What did you like about or what drew you to your clan of choice? I chose Phoenix in gold after the Naga went away, because their Samurai looked really weak. I always enjoyed playing clans the way you were not supposed to.

 

What was your first L5R tournament experience? First pre-release was Spirit Wars, in Seattle. First tournament was Everything to Gain 3 I believe, also in Seattle. I played the Nezumi box from Heroes of Rokugan. YEA.

 

Favorite story or quote from the fiction? Why? I loved 2 Phoenix stories. I hated how Shiba Aikune was punked out of the emerald championship in gold arc, but his attitude was all I needed. Also, there was a stand alone story about Asako Hirotsugu that really stayed with me.

 

Favorite character? Why? Shiba Aikune, and Asako Hirotsugu. Aikune was just a walking time bomb. Hirotsugu was a cool and tragic Bloodspeaker.

 

Best memory or experience you had playing L5R or because of L5R. Too many man, almost 20 years of this lol.

 

Favorite deck that you built or played and why. I really liked my City of Remembrance decks. So good and powerful, and the only Phoenix decks that could stand the terribly trinity of Crane Dueling/Mantis Raiding/Khol Wall. Also liked Lion Paragons in early Emperor. Just a pure beatdown.

 

Favorite Arc and why. Lotus. When every other action is powerful, then the playing field is even :P

 

Favorite Tournament experiences. Playing Dan Tibbles in a round of 32 stands out. First attack of the game was a 5 province loss(4 retributions). Making the cut and conceding to people I like stands out too for some reason(Wong, Capaletti, etc lol). Also, once in a Kotei in Vancouver in the early 2000s, I tore my copy of Make a Wish. That was fun :P

 

Anything else you would like to tell players about L5R at that time, or any stories to bring back some fond memories for old school players or inspire new ones? Just that at it's height, no game was better. And I've played over 100 different card games.

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Name: Randy

 

Where are you from, tell us about your playgroup?: I'm from Plymouth, Wisconsin. It's boring, quiet, and only recently got a LGS. My playgroup consists of my roomies- two friends I've known for most of my life. We occasionally incorporate other players, but often it's just the three of this. When we want a larger play experience we seek out pbp games.

 

How did you hear about or get involved in L5R? From a high school teacher. He ran a gaming group once a week and asked if I'd be interested. We played several other RPGs as well, but L5R was the one that really clicked.
 

Did you/Do you consider yourself a clan loyalist? I was a Horde loyalist and kinda became a Spider loyalist by default when the Horde went away. :P I'm a villain loyalist. I believe a great hero absolutely needs a stronger villain. That said, I love all the clans and have played characters from each.

 

What did you like about or what drew you to your clan of choice? See my comments on villains above. Also, when not gaming, I'm a horror writer. The Shadowlands was a natural fit.

 

What was your first L5R tournament experience? Never played in a CCG tourney. I've played the game some, but never been very good at it. The closest I've come to a 'tourney' is playing at WC2.

 

Favorite story or quote from the fiction? Favorite fiction was the Truest Test trilogy. It was one of the few fictions I felt really embodied samurai drama. As far as quotes, there are too many to list.

 

Favorite character? Why? Moto Tsume. Easily one of the darkest and most dangerous villains in L5R history. Want to know why I enjoy him? Read Bearers of Jade. :P

 

Best memory or experience you had playing L5R or because of L5R. Attending my first Gen Con Indy and meeting numerous friends I only knew through the pbp community. I've stayed in touch with many of them and some are amongst my closest friends.

 

Favorite deck that you built or played and why. My first deck was back in the early Horde days playing out of Yogo Junzo's Army. Since I haven't had many, I'm going to label this my favorite. :P

 

Favorite Arc and why. Pre-Coup. So many iconic characters. So many conflicts to get involved in. The clans weren't nearly as involved with one another, giving Rokugan an air of mystery it hasn't had in some time.

 

Favorite Tournament experiences. Watching the finals at Gen Con every year that I'm lucky enough to be in attendance.

 

Anything else you would like to tell players about L5R at that time, or any stories to bring back some fond memories for old school players or inspire new ones? L5R is amazinging. The CCG, the RPG, the Community. All of it. It is, by far, my favorite game to be involved in. When it comes to my stances on this board, I'm all about the players. I want the game to be the best it can be for the people that are trying to enjoy it. This goes for both tabletop play and online play. Hopefully with this jump to FFG, we can see some improvements and a new, better attitude shown toward the L5R playerbase. ^_^


 

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Name: Angus.


 


Where are you from, tell us about your playgroup?: Melbourne, Australia. We have a small-ish but very cool and dedicated L5R group here - unfortunately, RL only allows me to meet and play with them erratically (it's been quite a while since the last time).


 


How did you hear about or get involved in L5R? One of my friends in our RP/MtG group had been looking around at alternative CCGs for us to try, and one day he said he'd come across this game called Legend of the Five Rings that he was interested in trying. His description of its mechanics sounded interesting, so he picked up starter decks for Crane and Unicorn and we tried it out. We misunderstood the rule on a number of important points (like thinking that Terrains remained in play for the entire game... one Rocky Terrain making a province impregnable forever, good times!), but had fun with it nonetheless, stuck with it, and branched out into buying more cards and finding the local L5R community to play with.


 


Did you/Do you consider yourself a clan loyalist? Crane for life!


 


What did you like about or what drew you to your clan of choice? I initially I initially picked up the Crane for the fairly shallow reason that they were a primarily-defensive, control-oriented faction who wore blue and white, I being a die-hard player of Blue-White Control in Magic: the Gathering (my previous CCG of choice). I stayed interested for a few reasons. First, the thing I find most interesting about L5R is the courtly politics - lots of settings do magic, monsters, and people stabbing one another, but not many make politics as big a focus as L5R does. And the Crane are the Clan most invested in that - even the Scorpion, the other big political Clan, have the whole ninja thing taking focus away from it (also, the Scorpion happen to be a perfect fit for an archetype that I hate, so they were never in the running). Second, the style of the Crane in both politics and life in general is a pretty natural fit for the types of character I like to play in RPGs. So, all around, it was an excellent fit.


 


What was your first L5R tournament experience? My first and only tournament experience was going 3-3 at the Turquoise Championship in Melbourne. I had a good time - most of my opponents were lovely people, it's a pretty good win-rate for my first tournament ever, and I felt like I learned a lot from my losses. It's just a shame I didn't have a proper opportunity to make use of those lessons.


 


Favorite story or quote from the fiction? Why? This is a rather tough question, because I frequently find that I enjoy the idea of L5R and its storylines more than the execution, at least when looking at the stories written since I started playing (and my reading of the ones from before is somewhat spotty). I do have a certain soft spot for State of the Clans, Part 5, however, wherein a Phoenix courtier arranged to have a former Crane Champion deified... purely in order to demonstrate to an obnoxious shugenja cousin of hers that she too had the power to "influence the spiritual realm". I was also a big fan of the Sins of the Father series, Kakita Ichigiku and Kitsuki Kinaro doing their buddy-cop thing.


 


Favorite character? Why? This question poses similar difficulties, as memorable characters were just rather thin on the ground when I started following the storyline. I do like Kakita Ichigiku, and as much as her decisions sometimes exasperated me, I have a definite soft spot from Doji Domotai. 


 


Best memory or experience you had playing L5R or because of L5R. Like Gunichi and Idanthyrsus - Winter Court IV, no question. It ate my life for three straight months, and despite having some issues with how the event was run, I don't regret a minute of it. It introduced me to the L5R RPG, made me rethink my opinions of several Clans (most notably the Lion - <3 you, Chikuma and Leiko!) and got me to delve far deeper into the lore of L5R than I'd ever considered doing before.


 


Favorite deck that you built or played and why. I had a blast with my post-banning/errata Akagi scouts deck in Ivory, but the title has to go to my Aerie duelling magistrates deck from EE. It just felt so much more Crane. And unlike the courtier honour rocket decks that I've also played around with, it led to extended back-and-forth battles, which are L5R's biggest mechanical selling point for me.


 


Favorite Arc and why. Having started in Emperor Edition, there's not really a lot to choose from here. Despite the vast array of mechanical problems with Emperor Edition, I mostly avoided the broken decks by virtue of people preferring not to play them (even our resident Mantis fan elected to play oddball stuff like Kitsune Pokemon Honour rather than Kalani's Landing or Aramasu's Legacy for friendly games)


 


Favorite Tournament experiences. Australia isn't exactly a place that makes it easy to attend L5R tournaments, so the Turquoise event sadly remains my only tournament experience.


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Name: Jeremy

 

Where are you from, tell us about your playgroup?: Rocky Mount, NC. I have no local play group, but participate sometimes in Raleigh and attend Kotei in the NC, VA, SC, TN, MD areas. I have also played in several pbp RPGs over the years including Winter Court Kyuden Gotei

 

How did you hear about or get involved in L5R? First go around was at the beginning. I was in High School and trying pretty much every CCG that came out from MtG, Battletech, L5R, Middle Earth, etc. Didn't really play seriously though till around 2005 after I completed my stint in the Navy.

 

Did you/Do you consider yourself a clan loyalist? Absolutely! Life and Soul for the Phoenix!

 

What did you like about or what drew you to your clan of choice? The Shiba Family and their pretty much absolute devotion to the ideals of their founder along with they mysticism that comes with The Phoenix Clan

 

What was your first L5R tournament experience? Just a small local thing in Asheville, NC

 

Favorite story or quote from the fiction? Why? “You run,” Tadaka replied. “I die.” This short quote from Isawa Tadaka from KYD shows the measure of the Phoenix at their greatest which is sacrifice. Everyone thinks of Shiba as the iconic sacrifice and they are right. They often see the Isawa as uptight and snobbish, which while that is true to a degree both Phoenix Thunders died during their respective Days of Thunder.

 

Favorite character? Why? Shiba Yoshirou, because I got to create him from the ground up as a WC2 homebrew and I was shocked when he appeared in fiction alongside Isawa Ochiai

 

Best memory or experience you had playing L5R or because of L5R. Running a Solving the Riddle tournament in Asheville, NC and seeing how far AEG, the L5R artists, and the player community would go to support a charitable cause.

 

Favorite deck that you built or played and why. End of Emperor Edition using the L2P blank Phoenix box to get 6th place at a name an item event. My games lasted half an hour tops (usually half that) and victory was quite consistent. Not to mention the look on my opponents face when they saw the box I was playing lol.

 

Favorite Arc and why. I don't really have one, they all had something that was good about them and flawed. Even Emperor which is often dumped on I had some hilarious moments like the one already stated. Story wise I have always been partial to KYD which isn't so much an arc, but still awesome.

 

Favorite Tournament experiences. Meeting other players even went as far as a St Louis Kotei where I bumped into quite a few WC2 players along with The Angry Crab. Met several Story Team members and have always enjoyed the atmosphere fostered by the L5R community.

 

Anything else you would like to tell players about L5R at that time, or any stories to bring back some fond memories for old school players or inspire new ones? Well I wouldn't consider myself old school as I just tinkered with the game at the beginning never even playing a tournament till Samurai Edition. I have not even made it to a GenCon as yet, though 2017 looks to be the year. All I can say is L5R is as interesting and immersive as you want it to be the only limits are those you set for yourself. There are many facets to the CCG and RPG that should they endure the transition and translate to the FFG version of the games will be fun and interesting. Between the story, mechanics, and community these things all come together to create the best hobby I have been involved in. It is not perfect as nothing relying on people ever is, but it was never a waste of time and always fulfilling if not at the moment then certainly in reflection.

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Name: Joseph

 

Where are you from, tell us about your playgroup?:

Texas, currently no playgroup, as most of them recently moved away.

 

How did you hear about or get involved in L5R?

My playgroup introduced me to it back in 1995, I got to play through the Clan War arc, and had a blast playing in local tournaments back then. I would not play in my first Kotei until much later in 2006.

 

Did you/Do you consider yourself a clan loyalist?

Yes, I am pretty much a Unicorn/Ki-Rin purist, I rarely play any other clan, not even just for fun, and always Unicorn at any sort of tournament.

 

What did you like about or what drew you to your clan of choice?

Horses, and the Clan's colors, purple and white are my alma-mater. According to my Mom, and my Aunts, "horse" was the first word I ever spoke in my life at the age of twenty months. I have loved horses ever since.

 

What was your first L5R tournament experience?

It was just a local tournament held, and sponsored by Grandslam Comics in Fort Worth. I had built a special deck for the tournament. The game gets down to just two of us, Lion Speed Deck vs an Altered Pony Express Deck. My opponents turn starts, I am thinking about the sixth or seventh turn of the game. I am down to three provinces, he has two left, and a personality face up in each. He calls an attack phase. Assigns his attacking infantry all marching down at one province. I am like ok, assign two token defenders. He plays a sneak, and kills one of my defending people. I block supply lines his towering unit. He kills my remaining defender. I refugee his second unit. His remaining unit is not large enough to crush the province. I play Ring of Earth(Which is my 4th Ring in play now). He plays a forced march on his Tower unit, and crushes my undefended province. We are both at two provinces. I play a counter attack, and bring all my units at my third province into a new attack phase before he can dynasty. He defends with everyone not bowed out at one province. I send just enough force to take the undefended province, and assign almost everyone else at his defended province where he was protecting his Clan Champion Matsu Tsuko. I call the undefended province to resolve first, we both pass, it falls, on to his last remaining province, and most likely the game deciding battle. I play a sneak attack, and Shinjo Hanari shoots his one ranged follower he has left. He uses the favor to send Shinjo Yokatsu home. I play Contentious Terrain. He Superior Tactics my Terrain, and plays Accessible Terrain. We do a few rounds of force bumps, I utilize his Accessible to bring Yokatsu back in, great fun. Then he realizes he is at a lower force total, and will lose his army, and province, so he destroyed his own terrain, and played Entrapping Terrain. I used a Small Farm to pay the Oracle of Earth to destroy his Terrain, and play an indestructible Deadly Ground! The number of cards I destroy at resolution shoots me up to 42 honor, I get to play the Ring of Water as a reaction to the battle resolution, and it is his last province. I was so elated I felt like I had just achieved a triple victory condition win. Then the TO says, "No, you have a military win. First his final, and last province is destroyed, military win, the Ring of Water never actually enters play, and the game is over before your next turn even though now would be your turn." I have spent twenty years off, and on trying to replicate that victory without much success. Then I saw the look on my opponents face. I did say this was a local game shop tourney, and there was only one prize up for grabs to the winner. I yielded the prize over to the Lion player, and said, "Good game." Later we became friends, and had many rematches.

 

Favorite story or quote from the fiction? Why?

"I will not allow men to die for no other purpose than to serve pride. But I will drive myself into the grave before I allow the Empire to be swallowed by the dark tide of evil rising against us." - Shinjo Yokatsu

This told me that we as the Unicorn stood for compassion, we understood the responsibility of our pledge to protect the people. We would walk or ride in the light of Tengoku, and preserve life, and honour. We were Shepherds of Life. That struck a chord in my heart strings, that everyone mattered from Clan Champion all the way down to the Ashiguru Farmer. No life was useless, or to be wasted. Honour is Life.

 

Favorite character? Why?

Shinjo Yokatsu, see above.

 

Best memory or experience you had playing L5R or because of L5R.

Making friends, and helping teach others how to play, then watching them excel beyond my own skills at the game.

 

Favorite deck that you built or played and why.

Read the above tournament experience, a military Pony Express deck altered to also be able to manage an enlightenment victory.

 

Favorite Arc and why.

Clan War, because it is where I started in the game.

 

Favorite Tournament experiences.

My first Kotei in 2006, I attended the Orlando Kotei with friends from my local game shop. I made swiss, and went into elimination because we had too many make the cut. I beat out a Ratling Swarm Deck with a Battle Maiden Honor-Switch Deck to go into Top 16, and was eliminated by a Scorpion Control Deck designed specifically to work best in a match up against Honor-Switch, secondly against Military. Afterwards we all had Steak-N-Lobster at a local restaurant, and got back home at wee hours of the morning after laughing over our mishaps at the Kotei.

  

Anything else you would like to tell players about L5R at that time, or any stories to bring back some fond memories for old school players or inspire new ones?

I think it has been said many times throughout the years of Legend of the Five Rings, the people, the community of players, volunteers, organizers is the best, a family of sorts. Utz! BONZAI!!! 

Edited by Shinjo Yosama

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Name: 


Joe


 


Where are you from, tell us about your playgroup?:


I'm from Southern California, and, when i first started playing in Diamond Edition, I played with a group at the game store I frequented. After an absence from the game, I took it up again in Celestial Edition with a bunch of veteran players at a different store.


 


How did you hear about or get involved in L5R?


I first got involved by playing the D20 version of the RPG. After doing more research into the world of Rokugan, I got into the card game in the hopes that I would be able to affect the world in some way. Eventually, I also began playing the original system for the RPG.


 


Did you/Do you consider yourself a clan loyalist?


At first, I was a Dragon Clan loyalist, but the more I found out about the game, the more I branched out. I primarily play Dragon Clan, but I also occasionally build Scorpion and Crane decks.


 


What did you like about or what drew you to your clan of choice?


At first it was the Mirumoto family and their penchant for using two swords in combat (I really like the idea of using two swords in combat), but, the more I learned about them, the more I came to realize that they were the philosophers of the Empire, a subject I majored in in college.


 


What was your first L5R tournament experience?


My first tournament experience was at the 2004 SoCal GenCon. While I did not get past the qualifiers, I still had a lot of fun playing.


 


What is your favorite story or quote from the fiction? Why?


If the enemy strikes first, kill him. If you strike first, kill him. If you both strike at once, kill him.


This quote is from the treatise on KenjutsuNiten, written by Mirumoto Hojatsu, adoptive son of Mirumoto. To the Mirumoto family, victory is a mindset, not a goal; if you know you're going to win, then you will. It's hard for me to put into words why this quote is my favorite; describing such an abstract feeling is a daunting task to begin with, so, suffice to say that it resonates with me very strongly.


 


As for actual stories, I like the booklet that came with the Dawn of the Empire set. Reading about the founding of the Empire was pretty cool, especially since you get to hear about some of the most famous heroes of the Empire.


 


Favorite character? Why?


I like Mirumoto since he's the founder of his family and a veritable badass, but if I were to be really honest, I like Mirumoto Kenzo more. He started his life as a samurai at a huge disadvantage and became one of the Dragon Clan's most tragic heroes. The son of a disgraced and banished samurai, Kenzo went on to distinguish himself on numerous occasions. He led the Nemuranai Hunters, helped defend Gisei Toshi from Iuchiban's army, and fought valiantly in the War of Dark Fire and the Destroyer War. However, along the way, he acquired the Bloodsword, Ambition, and the Shamesword, Fury, believed to contain the soul of his dead father. A lesser man would have succumbed to the power of one of those evil swords, but he was able to resist them both for years. his ultimate fate wasn't reveled, but I would like to think that he died a bitter but honorable man.


 


Best memory or experience you had playing L5R or because of L5R.


The best experience I had playing the game was at SoCal GenCon '05. I had two wins during the qualifiers, one being an Honor Victory, the other being my only Enlightenment victory ever. While I went 2 - 7, I still felt accomplished with my 2 wins.


 


The best experiences I had because of the game were all the friends I've met. I'm still friends with many of the people I met through the game, and they are, by far, some of the most awesome people I've met.


 


Favorite deck that you built or played and why.


i have two decks that can rightly be called my favorites. Back in the latter half of Diamond Edition, I built this weird, janky dueling deck that could win by military, honor and enlightenment. it centered around Togashi Satsu and Hoshi Chuichi, putting an Ancient Sword on both of them, then buffing them repeatedly. It was fun and funny when i got it to work.


 


My other favorite deck is my Kensai deck from Celestial Edition and Emperor Edition. I called it the "Kensai Nope" deck because of the sheer amount of negation I had in it, not to mention the sheer amount of destruction in it as well. It was hard to deal with once it got going.


 


Favorite Arc and why.


I like the Celestial Arc. It was a very tumultuous time in the  Empire, a time where all clans had to cooperate in order to survive the onslaught of Kali-Ma's Destroyer army. I wasn't playing the game during some of the more existential threats, so that is what I choose.


 


Favorite Tournament experiences.


See above.


 


Anything else you would like to tell players about L5R at that time, or any stories to bring back some fond memories for old school players or inspire new ones?


I don't have fond memories that I share with many people in this community, mainly because I didn't know very many people at the time I experienced them. Mostly, I remember having a good time at each and every event I went to, and, most recently, the people I met at each one. In the end, it is the people that I enjoyed most of all; it is the people that made L5R what it was, and what it will hopefully continue to be as we look towards the future of this game.

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Where are you from, tell us about your playgroup?: I am from Manila, Philippines. I play L5R Legacy mostly with a bunch of other old school players.


How did you hear about or get involved in L5R? I discovered it from a copy of Inquest Magazine way back in college with awesome art from Matt Wilson. I was playing Magic the Gathering but I was too late getting into it to have acquired dual lands for cheap.


Did you/Do you consider yourself a clan loyalist? I pledge allegiance to the Unicorn. But I like to bring my Toturi's Army ashigaru blitz deck to tourneys.


What did you like about or what drew you to your clan of choice? I like the idea of outmaneuvering my opponents with my dudes on horses. And I was born on the year of the horse, 1978.


What was your first L5R tournament experience? It was in a (now defunct) shop in Baguio City called "Dragon's Den". Back in college, I used to hang out there with friends to play Diablo 2, Starcraft, Magic and L5R.


Favorite story or quote from the fiction? Why? Shiryo no Shinjo flavor text: Do not let your mind be clouded by what is proper. Let your mind be cleared by what is right.


Favorite character? Why? Otaku Kamoko


Best memory or experience you had playing L5R or because of L5R. Trading cards with Chris Bergstrom when he visited Baguio. he was running a monk honor deck.


Favorite deck that you built or played and why. Toturi Ashigaru Blitz. I still got to optimize it as new ashigaru cards got printed.


Favorite Arc and why. Lotus because of the power level. What pansies call "broken" I call exciting.


Favorite Tournament experiences. I mostly only joined Legacy tourneys in the past few years.


Anything else you would like to tell players about L5R at that time, or any stories to bring back some fond memories for old school players or inspire new ones?


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The series is now concluded and all the links should be active, Hopefully these sites stay up but if not I will try to stay on top of re-linking them here on the FFG site.

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