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Tetsuhiko

Imperials will be the new Spiders (Predictions/Hopes)

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21 minutes ago, Kuni Katsuyoshi said:

I agree.

Sotorii may be old enough for the 'birds and bees', but that doesn't necessarily make him post-gempukku. If he was he'd probably be emperor already, and his brother an Otomo or Seppun. But that's not a hard and fast tradition so ....*shrug*

You become an emperor when the former emperor dies, not after your gempukku. Historically, some kings and emperor even outlived their children and passed the title to their grandchild instead

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You become an Emperor when the old one resigns. See: Iweko and her sons.

Interestingly, in China, you had very specific ways to address your Emperor (not using their name, bowing, and stuff). One of such My-Dad-Resigned-Now-I-Rule emperors was shaken after his parents met him for the first time after his ascend to rulership, and started following the proper protocol (otherwise would be respect-less). Caught between a hammer and a hard place (Parental respect screaming "YOU SHOULD BE ONE BOWING BEFORE YOUR PARENTS YOU LITTLE SCUM" vs THIS IS THE WAY OF ETIQUETTE), he stormed out of the room, and by the time he came back, he created a special "post" and "function" for such imperial parents to take upon, which made them retain the respect of their previous function (so they would speak like equals, but he would bow because of his respect, not because of law) while abandoning all actual ruling-things.

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30 minutes ago, Tetsuhiko said:

You become an emperor when the former emperor dies, not after your gempukku. Historically, some kings and emperor even outlived their children and passed the title to their grandchild instead

Doesn't work this way in Rokugan. Often (but not necessarily always) The emperor would step down when his heir reached his gempukku . And all siblings of the new emperor would join the Otomo or Seppun families.

Doesn't mean THIS emperor hasn't decided to stick around a little longer, but that's where my reasoning is coming from

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24 minutes ago, Kuni Katsuyoshi said:

Doesn't work this way in Rokugan. Often (but not necessarily always) The emperor would step down when his heir reached his gempukku .

Wait, seriously? It's (old) canon that the majority of the Hantei emperors ascended the throne when they were like, fourteen?

I would only buy that if it were a cloistered rule situation. Otherwise, routinely chucking out a few decades of experience in favor of a wet-behind-the-ears kid is a phenomenally stupid way to run things.

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11 minutes ago, Kinzen said:

Wait, seriously? It's (old) canon that the majority of the Hantei emperors ascended the throne when they were like, fourteen?

I would only buy that if it were a cloistered rule situation. Otherwise, routinely chucking out a few decades of experience in favor of a wet-behind-the-ears kid is a phenomenally stupid way to run things.

That's probably what the Imperial Chancellor and the  Imperial Advisor are for (among other things).

As to it's ridiculousness *shrug* YMMV.

With a traditional retirement age of 40, I can see the heir making to his 20's without ascending. Beyond that..doubtful.

Edited by Kuni Katsuyoshi

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13 minutes ago, Kuni Katsuyoshi said:

That's probably what the Imperial Chancellor and the  Imperial Advisor are for (among other things).

As to it's ridiculousness *shrug* YMMV.

With a traditional retirement age of 40, I can see the heir making to his 20's without ascending. Beyond that..doubtful.

If you retire at 40, and your kid makes it through their gempukku when they're about 14 (which is often quoted as the average age), you didn't have kids until you were 26. That seems, shall we say, deeply unlikely. And while 40 may be a common age for retirement, for a samurai who has always benefited from the absolute best in nutrition and health care and so forth and therefore will almost always be in prime health, it's a waste of your experience. It privileges youth over the wisdom of age, which is the exact opposite of the cultural model Rokugan is based on.

. . . unless -- and this may be what you're getting at with your Chancellor and Advisor -- the Emperor is really nothing more than a figurehead, at which point it's advantageous to shuffle the experienced one out of the way as soon as there's a naive replacement available. But the "figurehead Emperor" thing is exactly what went on with the Gozoku, and that was kind of a big deal. So no, I don't buy that this was standard operating procedure in old canon. Or rather, if it was stated to be canon, then I'm adding it to the list of "whoever wrote that didn't really know what they were talking about."

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9 minutes ago, Kinzen said:

If you retire at 40, and your kid makes it through their gempukku when they're about 14 (which is often quoted as the average age), you didn't have kids until you were 26. That seems, shall we say, deeply unlikely. And while 40 may be a common age for retirement, for a samurai who has always benefited from the absolute best in nutrition and health care and so forth and therefore will almost always be in prime health, it's a waste of your experience. It privileges youth over the wisdom of age, which is the exact opposite of the cultural model Rokugan is based on.

. . . unless -- and this may be what you're getting at with your Chancellor and Advisor -- the Emperor is really nothing more than a figurehead, at which point it's advantageous to shuffle the experienced one out of the way as soon as there's a naive replacement available. But the "figurehead Emperor" thing is exactly what went on with the Gozoku, and that was kind of a big deal. So no, I don't buy that this was standard operating procedure in old canon. Or rather, if it was stated to be canon, then I'm adding it to the list of "whoever wrote that didn't really know what they were talking about."

'Retirement wasn't for health reasons. It was to lay down the burden of being a samurai and (usually ) become a monk and live a life of contemplation and scholarship.

One would imagine being a (non-figurehead) emperor would be stressful.

While the Crab scoff at retirement, other clans like the Crane don't. And just because they're monks doesn't mean they have no influence.

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28 minutes ago, Kinzen said:

If you retire at 40, and your kid makes it through their gempukku when they're about 14 (which is often quoted as the average age), you didn't have kids until you were 26. That seems, shall we say, deeply unlikely. And while 40 may be a common age for retirement, for a samurai who has always benefited from the absolute best in nutrition and health care and so forth and therefore will almost always be in prime health, it's a waste of your experience. It privileges youth over the wisdom of age, which is the exact opposite of the cultural model Rokugan is based on.

. . . unless -- and this may be what you're getting at with your Chancellor and Advisor -- the Emperor is really nothing more than a figurehead, at which point it's advantageous to shuffle the experienced one out of the way as soon as there's a naive replacement available. But the "figurehead Emperor" thing is exactly what went on with the Gozoku, and that was kind of a big deal. So no, I don't buy that this was standard operating procedure in old canon. Or rather, if it was stated to be canon, then I'm adding it to the list of "whoever wrote that didn't really know what they were talking about."

Addendum;

 As much as I like the Gozoku period as a setting, (it's actually one of my favorite historical eras) I simply meant even if a young emperor HAD'NT been training his whole life for the job. He would have advisors to help.

 

 

Edited by Kuni Katsuyoshi

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4 hours ago, Tetsuhiko said:

Well, all of the possibilities could be something you do over a lot of years. They don't have to happen quickly. In fact, they work better if they happen over a long period of time. Get to know the characters, see their fall into darkness, set them up as credible villains over a long period of time, with reasonable excuses for villainy instead of treating them as villains of the week.

No offense intended, but AEG struggled to do that since the Shadowlands became the Spider. The complaints about favoritism and plot armor for the Spider never stopped.

Speaking personally, namedropping Shahai is the first thing FFG's done that's seriously concerned me. While I agree that the Spider players deserve their clan back, I dread the thought of Daigotsu's return if he bears any resemblance to the AEG version.

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The great thing about Emperors and other types of monarchs is that they can change the rules if they really want to.  If an Emperor feels it is best to retire earlier, and for his heir to supplant him in the official position while he still retains his own influence then he can do this.  Likewise if an Emperor doesn't trust the heir to take over (or hasn't quite decided who the heir will be) yet they could easily decide to stay on longer.

Tradition is honored, but also bucked by these characters and there is a long history of stories of where these changes have been good or bad.  I think you can't rightly say "because it has been this way, it must be this way" but rather you can say "this is how we understood it to be done."  When the Emperor plans otherwise, you aren't in a position to really disagree.

That said - when the Emperor retires, and how easily an Emperor can change tradition depends highly on how much influence that Emperor actually holds.  Kinzen made a great point that if the Emperor is forced into retirement on the gempukku of the heir apparent this system would serve puppet masters who seek to rule through the Emperor's name by controlling and shaping the young mind before it is even fully aware of its own mind.

I would love it if the Spider came back - IF - they were done well.  The way the Spider existed as a Great Clan of tainted people in a cast of both Great and minor clans who have spent 1000 years fighting the taint was just too much of a conflict in my mind...  The idea of a secret Spider organization that seeks to honor Fu Leng that crosses personalities of all clans into their web sounds so much better.  It almost sounds like a more refined bloodspeaker storyline, and they could ditch a lot of the random maho crap for it.

Edited by shosuko

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Just now, SirEuain said:

No offense intended, but AEG struggled to do that since the Shadowlands became the Spider. The complaints about favoritism and plot armor for the Spider never stopped.

Speaking personally, namedropping Shahai is the first thing FFG's done that's seriously concerned me. While I agree that the Spider players deserve their clan back, I dread the thought of Daigotsu's return if he bears any resemblance to the AEG version.

Which is why I think it will be something totally different 

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6 minutes ago, shosuko said:

The great thing about Emperor's and other types of monarchy is that they can change the rules if they really want to.  If an Emperor feels it is best to retire earlier, and for his heir to supplant him in the official position while he still retains his own influence then he can do this.  Likewise if an Emperor doesn't trust the heir to take over (or hasn't quite decided who the heir will be) yet they could easily decide to stay on longer.

Tradition is honored, but also bucked by these characters and there is a long history of stories of where these changes have been good or bad.  I think you can't rightly say "because it has been this way, it must be this way" but rather you can say "this is how we understood it to be done."  When the Emperor plans otherwise, you aren't in a position to really judge.

That said - when the Emperor retires, and how easily an Emperor can change tradition depends highly on how much influence that Emperor actually holds.  Kinzen made a great point that if the Emperor is forced to retirement on the gempukku of the heir apparent this system would serve puppet masters who seek to rule through the Emperor's name by controlling and shaping the young mind before it is even fully aware of its own mind.

I would love it if the Spider came back - IF - they were done well.  The way the Spider existed as a Great Clan of tainted people in a cast of both Great and minor clans who have spent 1000 years fighting the taint was just too much of a conflict in my mind...  The idea of a secret Spider organization that seeks to honor Fu Leng that crosses personalities of all clans into their web sounds so much better.  

The puppet master idea relies on the puppet being unable to see or cut the strings. Gozoku aside, you would think that's something a prince would be taught to recognize and deal with.

Edited by Kuni Katsuyoshi

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1 hour ago, Kuni Katsuyoshi said:

'Retirement wasn't for health reasons. It was to lay down the burden of being a samurai and (usually ) become a monk and live a life of contemplation and scholarship.

One would imagine being a (non-figurehead) emperor would be stressful.

"The time had come for him to lay down the burden of his duty" sounds like the Rokugani equivalent of a politician's ouster being explained as "he's retiring to spend more time with his family." Any self-respecting and honorable samurai would be utterly shamed to announce that his job is too stressful and he'd like to quit now; he retires when he's no longer able to perform his duties well, when he screws up, or when his lord no longer has need of him.

. . . also, one would imagine being an emperor (figurehead or otherwise) is luxurious and grants access to any diversion you might want. I have a hard time buying that dozens of emperors were eager to give that up for the austere hardship of a monastery -- especially if they had the option of escaping their stress by letting their advisers run the show while they went on enjoying the pleasures of imperial life.

 

58 minutes ago, Kuni Katsuyoshi said:

 As much as I like the Gozoku period as a setting, (it's actually one of my favorite historical eras) I simply meant even if a young emperor HAD'NT been training his whole life for the job. He would have advisors to help.

 

28 minutes ago, Kuni Katsuyoshi said:

The puppet master idea relies on the puppet being unable to see or cut the strings. Gozoku aside, you would think that's something a prince would be taught to recognize and deal with.

I feel like you might be overestimating the amount of training a future emperor might get. In some time periods and places of real history they got a lot of education, but in other cases they got basically none. (Especially if they weren't expected to be the heir.) And I think it's old!canon that most Rokugani emperors were trained as bushi, which I don't imagine gives you a lot of tools for noticing when you're being manipulated and robbed of power.

In fact, one of the easiest ways to wind up a figurehead? Is to rely on advisors to compensate for your own lack of experience.

Edited by Kinzen
added last graf

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28 minutes ago, Kinzen said:

 

I feel like you might be overestimating the amount of training a future emperor might get. In some time periods and places of real history they got a lot of education, but in other cases they got basically none. (Especially if they weren't expected to be the heir.) And I think it's old!canon that most Rokugani emperors were trained as bushi, which I don't imagine gives you a lot of tools for noticing when you're being manipulated and robbed of power.

In fact, one of the easiest ways to wind up a figurehead? Is to rely on advisors to compensate for your own lack of experience.

Overestimating? It's possible, but , the Crane don't seem have any problems doing both politics and martial endeavors.

 

Edited by Kuni Katsuyoshi

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1 hour ago, Kuni Katsuyoshi said:

The puppet master idea relies on the puppet being unable to see or cut the strings. Gozoku aside, you would think that's something a prince would be taught to recognize and deal with.

A prince would be taught what the prince's tutors and advisers want him to be taught.  These tutors may not be picked and guided by the ruler, and may be in control of any who seek to manipulate the heir.  Further - the prince may come to realize they are only a figurehead and may fight against it, that knowledge does not immediately dissolve the situation. 

Edited by shosuko

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47 minutes ago, Kinzen said:

"The time had come for him to lay down the burden of his duty" sounds like the Rokugani equivalent of a politician's ouster being explained as "he's retiring to spend more time with his family." Any self-respecting and honorable samurai would be utterly shamed to announce that his job is too stressful and he'd like to quit now; he retires when he's no longer able to perform his duties well, when he screws up, or when his lord no longer has need of him.

. . . also, one would imagine being an emperor (figurehead or otherwise) is luxurious and grants access to any diversion you might want. I have a hard time buying that dozens of emperors were eager to give that up for the austere hardship of a monastery -- especially if they had the option of escaping their stress by letting their advisers run the show while they went on enjoying the pleasures of imperial life.

 

Retirement is first offered at 40, and there is no shame associated with it. In fact retirement is a cause for a celebration. At 60 it becomes shameful NOT to retire.

 

 

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1 minute ago, shosuko said:

A prince would be taught what the prince's tutors and advisers want him to be taught.  This may or may not include the games of politics and manipulations.  Further - the prince may come to realize they are only a figurehead and may fight against it, that knowledge does not immediately dissolve the situation. 

It's the first and most important step though.

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3 minutes ago, Kuni Katsuyoshi said:

Retirement is first offered at 40, and there is no shame associated with it. In fact retirement is a cause for a celebration. At 60 it becomes shameful NOT to retire.

Offered. That's the key word. Who is there that can pressure the Emperor to give up the throne that early, in exchange for a plain robe and plain rice? If he wants to take it, no problem . . . but again, I have a hard time believing most of them wanted that badly enough to do so at the first opportunity.

At 60, sure. By then, even if you had didn't have kids until 26, your heir is now 34 instead of 14, and has twenty years of courtly experience under their obi. They're more than ready to take the reins.

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7 minutes ago, Kinzen said:

Offered. That's the key word. Who is there that can pressure the Emperor to give up the throne that early, in exchange for a plain robe and plain rice? If he wants to take it, no problem . . . but again, I have a hard time believing most of them wanted that badly enough to do so at the first opportunity.

At 60, sure. By then, even if you had didn't have kids until 26, your heir is now 34 instead of 14, and has twenty years of courtly experience under their obi. They're more than ready to take the reins.

No argument here.??

I looked for any quotables regarding when emperor retires and I've come up blank. So, I'm probably wrong in my initial thinking re: gempukku/abdication.

However I still believe retired emperor is more common than dead emperor when it comes to crowning a new one. 

Edited by Kuni Katsuyoshi

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2 hours ago, shosuko said:

I would love it if the Spider came back - IF - they were done well.  The way the Spider existed as a Great Clan of tainted people in a cast of both Great and minor clans who have spent 1000 years fighting the taint was just too much of a conflict in my mind...  The idea of a secret Spider organization that seeks to honor Fu Leng that crosses personalities of all clans into their web sounds so much better.  It almost sounds like a more refined bloodspeaker storyline, and they could ditch a lot of the random maho crap for it.

 

1 hour ago, Wintersong said:

Spider Clan should me more of a really hidden thing like the Kolat. Having presence in the different clans and working in their own twisted benefit. Or get their own dark empire in the shadowlands. Evil guys living openly and (grudgingly) accepted by the rest of Rokugan... er... no?

No offense, but the Kolat weren't handled well, either. On average, once every five years or so players could do something to the Kolat, while Kolat corruption (like all forms of corruption) came and went on the whims of AEG. When the Scorpion were finally allowed to attack the Kolat, the Kolat had their stronghold sacked, their most powerful artifact seized, and a third of their leadership slaughtered, and all it amounted to in the story was that the Kolat kept going and the Scorpion drooled all over themselves when dealing with the Oni's Eye.

Having an internal threat like the pre-exposure Spider or the Kolat only works when it's an unexpected threat. When it becomes ongoing, the threat no longer is because the bad guys are just so awesome, it's because the clans are staffed by idiots. See also how the Spider, after their exposure, barely changed their methods, and nobody was the wiser -- not the Scorpion or Crab, who were actively looking for an excuse to fight the Spider, not the Lion who found clear proof of their ongoing corruption, and not the Dragon who literally had keeping the Spider in line as their primary purpose.

Turning the Spider into a hidden presence only works in the short term, as the clans who'd love nothing more than to slaughter every last Spider would not be allowed. Unless FFG lets them,  the Spider still has plot armor and the other clans still look foolish.

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