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LucaCherstich

Zanbato???

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I've seen that you put "Zanbato" and not "Nodachi" or "Odachi".

Maybe I'm just exagerating and definitively I need to read this pdf better ...

... but if this change in "names" implies a strengtheining of the "High Fantasy-Manga-anime" style and a further diminition of the "Kurosawa/Chambara/Jidaeki" styles...thank you, I'm not interested in this game.

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19 minutes ago, Vutall said:

A Zanbato is traditionally an anti-cavalry sword and has basis in real life and isn't just an anime trope. Functionally speaking, it is about the same size as an Odachi.

Anticavalry as "nodachi" to a certain segrete also is...

I know what you say and I know that the two things are roughly (to a certain degree) meant to imply the same thing.

Nevertheless, careful chosing of words in narrative rpgs is important and, for certain, in popular culture the words "Zanbato" and "nodachi" evoke different things.

 

Edited by LucaCherstich

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I can understand that. I would say that L5R certainly does not have an overwhelming Anime feeling to it though. It's much more grounded (well, as grounded as a mishmash of Japanese Chinese, Korean, Mongolian, etc magical samurai can be)

Definitely read through some of the stories from the LCG if you haven't yet to see some more of the setting. Follow this link and click on Fictions at the bottom:

https://www.fantasyflightgames.com/en/products/legend-of-the-five-rings-the-card-game/

 

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Thank you for the suggestion. I'll try.

But my problem is that if one tries with "google images" the word "Zanbato" recalls more anime-things than "nodachi".

Cultural evocation (whether conscious or unconscious) are important and if this is a clue of what are the cultural preferences and cultural backgrounds of the new authors....thanks a lot.

I'm not interested in this Rokugan.

I know that I'm maybe exaggerating some pre-cobceptions but through the years I've seen the "kurosawa-inspired" part of L5R being diminished in favour of the high fantasy part...and I just fear that this new game will make things even more "anime-like".

I just hope that I'm wrong and that I'm just exaggerating.

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True Zanbato is more something you see in Koei's Samurai Warrior than in a Kurosawa.

 

Luca I in some way see the same things. A kinda shift towards Anime feeling. Discreet yet pernicious (like the taint :) ).

 

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6 hours ago, Vutall said:

A Zanbato is traditionally an anti-cavalry sword and has basis in real life

From what I understand, there's never been any use of the term "Zanbato" in a primary source.  While it is widely understood that the odachi/nodachi were mostly ceremonial, the "anti-cavalry sword" is almost entirely a fictional concoction, with the only historical analog being the Chinese zhanmadao. Both swords would have also been anachronistic to the sword-making techniques used in the setting's iconic weapons (katana and wakizashi), given that they predate those weapons by several hundred years.  It's like saying a gladius fits into an early medieval setting simply because they were both manufactured in Europe when swords were a thing.

 

This is changing the name of a thing for the sake of being different.  There's little historical justification to it.

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14 minutes ago, VaeVictis said:

This is changing the name of a thing for the sake of being different.  There's little historical justification to it.

And this is a setting where Large bodied Samurai fight demons.

I can fully see the Zhan Ma Dao (pronounced Zanbato in the capital) as a Crab wall sword (note that it is not Razor-Edged) with the Nodachi/Odachi being infantry great swords.

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Just now, Ultimatecalibur said:

And this is a setting where Large bodied Samurai fight demons.

 

 

Eh.  The "this is a fantasy setting" argument is a non-starter.  One could just as easily justify laser guns and teleportation devices by the same logic.

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L5R is often confused within its own historical contexts. For example, with the swords, there is no progression from kusanagi style tsurugi sword to heian era tachi to a single katana in the muromachi to the katana and wakizashi in the momoyama and then into the edo. The kami descend with katana in hand and that seems to work out for about a thousand years.

and that's pretty much okay.

L5R is more mythic than historical. There's a lot of baggage with that, of course that we can go round and round about. I think overall the current focus of L5R is going to be on pathos driven internal drama than constipation induced martial prowess (I've got my eye on you Akira Toriyama!)

Despite inclusion of the term zanbato L5R has actually made an effort to pull back on anime influences in its art and storytelling in recent years. Exhibit A is a comparison between the celestial edition card "rejuvenating vapors" (whose artist stopped working for AEG after that edition) and the new card art for Akodo Toturi. Less anime, more Chinese drama.

Plenty of samurai style stories.

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7 minutes ago, WildKnight said:

 

Eh.  The "this is a fantasy setting" argument is a non-starter.  One could just as easily justify laser guns and teleportation devices by the same logic.

Your slippery slope is really bad.

The Zhan Ma Dao was a real Chinese weapon and I don't see people complaining about either of the Chinese crossbows.

Edited by Ultimatecalibur

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Just now, Ultimatecalibur said:

Your slippery slope is really bad.

 

I'm familiar with the concept of the Slippery Slope in logic, but when you sole justification for something is that the setting is fantastic, it opens up a pretty broad array of possibilities.  I suppose it would have been better if I'd gone with something more thematic but equally undesirable, but I stand by my point.

The question, as far as I'm concerned, is not whether the setting's fantastic nature allows for something, but whether that addition is thematically appropriate.

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Just now, WildKnight said:

I'm familiar with the concept of the Slippery Slope in logic, but when you sole justification for something is that the setting is fantastic, it opens up a pretty broad array of possibilities.  I suppose it would have been better if I'd gone with something more thematic but equally undesirable, but I stand by my point.

The question, as far as I'm concerned, is not whether the setting's fantastic nature allows for something, but whether that addition is thematically appropriate.

I feel it is. It gives the Crab more appropriate wall weapons besides the Tetsubo and Otsuchi.

The problem seems to be you are assuming the Zanbato is Cloud's buster sword instead of this:

Zhanmadao.jpg

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32 minutes ago, Ultimatecalibur said:

I can fully see the Zhan Ma Dao (pronounced Zanbato in the capital) as a Crab wall sword (note that it is not Razor-Edged) with the Nodachi/Odachi being infantry great swords.

So, obviously this is not on purpose or anything, but it's funny that your statements are the inverse of how a zanbato would be included in Rokugan. "Zanbato" is written with three characters that mean "horse slaying sword". They would be uniquely suited to the wide open spaces of a field where cavalry are used and there fire probably really bad on the Wall. Meanwhile an odachi sounds great for Wall defense.

In other news, a zanbato- horse slaying sword, nodachi - field sword, and odachi/daito/uchigatana - great sword are all different things. Daikatana is not a real word.

Also, zanbato is the Yamato pronunciation of Zhanmadao and therefore more likely to be used in the provinces, where the latter is going to come up in poetry, official documents, and snooty imperial conversation while making bad sadane jokes.

Edited by Aedo
Needed more Japanese sword words

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2 minutes ago, Aedo said:

So, obviously this is not on purpose or anything, but it's funny that your statements are the inverse of how a zanbato would be included in Rokugan. "Zanbato" is written with three characters that mean "horse slaying sword". They would be uniquely suited to the wide open spaces of a field where cavalry are used and there fire probably really bad on the Wall. Meanwhile an odachi sounds great for Wall defense.

In other news, a zanbato- horse slaying sword, nodachi - field sword, and odachi/uchigatana - great sword are all different things. Daikatana is not a real word.

Considering that Rokugan has a culture where they pretty much directly refuse to talk about the Shadowlands, everyone else calling a sword designed to kill oni a "horse cutting sword" make sense. Also sets up a subtle insult towards any Crab that brings one to a battle between samurai armies over a Odachi or Nodachi.

"That fool brought a sword only good for slaughtering horses to a battlefield."

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I don't have any real problem with its inclusion. I think it's silly, but it's not overly problematic.  I was merely pointing out that replacing the Nodachi with the Zanbato is a clear case of "Look what I Wiki'd! Isn't it special?" and there's no historical reason for replacing the Nodachi, which has existed in the setting since the oldest days of the card game (I believe it was in the first expansion and several later core sets).  It's clear that the game designers want to add more Chinese influence to the game to try and make it less Sengoku Japan.  Mileage will certainly vary as to what individual people think of that. Rokugan has clearly been Mostly Japanese with a little bit of Other East Asian Flavor to round it out.


Personally, to me it seems that if the katana is revered as being handed down by the gods, the reason why the nodachi would be at the forefront of BigSword examples in the setting is because of its similarity to that weapon.  It's a logical progression.  Inserting a random Chinese sword into the lore in its place seems haphazard. It's like the game designers are just trying to show off how much East Asian history they know. "Look, it's a chokutō!  That lesser-known Japanese straight-bladed sword from earlier centuries in Japan!"  At least the chokutō has actual historical examples surviving in something other than anime and video games.

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2 hours ago, Ultimatecalibur said:

I feel it is. It gives the Crab more appropriate wall weapons besides the Tetsubo and Otsuchi.

The problem seems to be you are assuming the Zanbato is Cloud's buster sword instead of this:

Zhanmadao.jpg

 

...  I said nothing whatsoever about the sword.  I ONLY spoke to your use of "its a fictional setting" as an argument.

I do agree with the OP's statement that words matter, and the choice of words here is sketchy, but I don't care about the inclusion of the weapon itself at all.  The Nodachi was in previous editions

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1 hour ago, VaeVictis said:

I don't have any real problem with its inclusion. I think it's silly, but it's not overly problematic.  I was merely pointing out that replacing the Nodachi with the Zanbato is a clear case of "Look what I Wiki'd! Isn't it special?" and there's no historical reason for replacing the Nodachi, which has existed in the setting since the oldest days of the card game (I believe it was in the first expansion and several later core sets).  It's clear that the game designers want to add more Chinese influence to the game to try and make it less Sengoku Japan.  Mileage will certainly vary as to what individual people think of that. Rokugan has clearly been Mostly Japanese with a little bit of Other East Asian Flavor to round it out.

Please note my first post in this thread.

The beta weapon list is not necessarily the complete weapon list and is most likely intended to be used for testing purposes.

The inclusion of the Zanbato does not prevent the core list from including the Odachi/Nodachi, Nagamaki, Ono, Daikyu or Kunai/Shuriken other currently unlisted weapons. The Core book will also likely have descriptions and add weapon types to make it more obvious that certain weapons work with certain Kata and Kiho.

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Of all the things I'm eh on, this isn't one of them.  The difference between a nodachi and a zanbato seems pretty clear and valuable.  The nodachi can break against armor, the zanbato doesn't.  That alone makes it a good idea for the Crab to keep them in service.

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