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Shiba Gunichi

Interesting Times in Rokugan

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Crane is still in need of supplies.

If this imperial decree means the Lion-Crane conflict ends, then they will either push their claim to Yasuki-lands (which would require some cost/gain analysis), or use their diplomatic support as a bargaining chip to get supplies (which is very much their MO). And who is in most need of support in Rokugans courts if not Unicorn? 

Not saying it is a immediate match. Crane could very much try to put their support behind Lion or any other clan, but Unicorns need for diplomatic allies and Cranes need for supplies would align.

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Unicorn is not positioned to supply Crane. Unicorn offered Crane two things: (1) supporting Crane control of Toshi Ranbo in court and (2) pulling Lion forces away from the Crane-Lion conflict. Scorpion’s ascent neutralizes both and changes Crane’s position: Lion is no longer their main antogonist, Scorpion is. Crane needs to improve relations with Lion or risk Lion getting closer to Scorpion. Unicorn remains Lion’s main antagonist; continuing friendly relations with Unicorn will poison Lion against Crane.

Edited by Manchu

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1 hour ago, Manchu said:

Unicorn is not positioned to supply Crane. Unicorn offered Crane two things: (1) supporting Crane control of Toshi Ranbo in court and (2) pulling Lion forces away from the Crane-Lion conflict. Scorpion’s ascent neutralizes both and changes Crane’s position: Lion is no longer their main antogonist, Scorpion is. Crane needs to improve relations with Lion or risk Lion getting closer to Scorpion. Unicorn remains Lion’s main antagonist; continuing friendly relations with Unicorn will poison Lion against Crane.

Yeah history would suggest Lion/Crane coming together is very unlikely since the Crane have next to nothing to actually offer the Lion as this point.  That said the same can be said of Lion/Scorpion aside from the enemy of my enemy is my friend.  Its the Lion/Phoenix that the Crane need to be worried about. 

Crane should really have been working to mend fences with the Crab, perhaps by offering them use of manpower to help in tending fields to boost crop production and maintaining neutral/friendly relations with them.

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Turning Toshi Ranbo over to the Scorpion is a blessing in disguise for the Crane. The last thing the Crane need in the middle of food shortages is the responsibility of feeding a big bustling city. Cities consume considerably more food than they produce, and while what they do produce is invaluable-- the Crane also likely has those things in fairly good supply as things stand.

And it should also dispense with tensions between the Crane and Lion all together.

Looking south of the wall would just be silly-- that is clear on the other side of Crab territory. They would need to get cooperation from the Crab before utilizing any allies that could possibly be there.

No, no... 

If I were to suggest anything to the Crane, it would be to look across the sea to the East to that nice island where the people have a solid fishing fleet and connections to suppliers who might be able to ship them some foods not typically seen in Rokugan, and given they are known to do anything for a bit of Koku and some allies with political influence, which the Crane likely do have in good supply-- that would be the ideal place for the Crane to look for help.

Especially if, for reasons I cannot even begin to imagine, the Phoenix do decide to assist further Lion aggression towards the Crane. Afterall, those islanders aren't known to get on too well with either the Phoenix at all if memory serves me correctly.

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1 hour ago, TheHobgoblyn said:

Turning Toshi Ranbo over to the Scorpion is a blessing in disguise for the Crane. The last thing the Crane need in the middle of food shortages is the responsibility of feeding a big bustling city. Cities consume considerably more food than they produce, and while what they do produce is invaluable-- the Crane also likely has those things in fairly good supply as things stand.

And it should also dispense with tensions between the Crane and Lion all together.

Looking south of the wall would just be silly-- that is clear on the other side of Crab territory. They would need to get cooperation from the Crab before utilizing any allies that could possibly be there.

No, no... 

If I were to suggest anything to the Crane, it would be to look across the sea to the East to that nice island where the people have a solid fishing fleet and connections to suppliers who might be able to ship them some foods not typically seen in Rokugan, and given they are known to do anything for a bit of Koku and some allies with political influence, which the Crane likely do have in good supply-- that would be the ideal place for the Crane to look for help.

Especially if, for reasons I cannot even begin to imagine, the Phoenix do decide to assist further Lion aggression towards the Crane. Afterall, those islanders aren't known to get on too well with either the Phoenix at all if memory serves me correctly.

Except that the whole reason the Crane occupied Toshi Ranbo in the first place was to secure the surrounding farm lands which were needed to offset the coastal lands they lost use of due to the Tsunami.  As for approaching the Mantis at this point the Crane have nothing to offer them as their is no way they would ever support them rising to Great Clan status.

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3 hours ago, Schmoozies said:

Except that the whole reason the Crane occupied Toshi Ranbo in the first place was to secure the surrounding farm lands which were needed to offset the coastal lands they lost use of due to the Tsunami.  As for approaching the Mantis at this point the Crane have nothing to offer them as their is no way they would ever support them rising to Great Clan status.

Is someone in the setting advocating for the Mantis to obtain the status of a Great Clan? I don't recall anyone--including Yoritomo--ever suggesting that. I'm flagging this for the benefit of newer fans of the setting, or those who might not follow the story closely. Yes, the Mantis became a Great Clan in the previous version of the story, but no one should take it as a given that they will become, or even seek to become a Great Clan this time around. To be clear, I'm not saying they will or they won't (because I honestly don't know; again, that's up to FFG), but I think it's important not to simply assume they will, or create that impression for others. This means that if the Crane were to approach the Mantis for assistance of some sort, there could be all sorts of reasons it wouldn't work out...but, at least at the time I write this, supporting or not supporting the Mantis becoming a GC wouldn't be one of them.

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21 minutes ago, DGLaderoute said:

Is someone in the setting advocating for the Mantis to obtain the status of a Great Clan? I don't recall anyone--including Yoritomo--ever suggesting that. I'm flagging this for the benefit of newer fans of the setting, or those who might not follow the story closely. Yes, the Mantis became a Great Clan in the previous version of the story, but no one should take it as a given that they will become, or even seek to become a Great Clan this time around. To be clear, I'm not saying they will or they won't (because I honestly don't know; again, that's up to FFG), but I think it's important not to simply assume they will, or create that impression for others. This means that if the Crane were to approach the Mantis for assistance of some sort, there could be all sorts of reasons it wouldn't work out...but, at least at the time I write this, supporting or not supporting the Mantis becoming a GC wouldn't be one of them.

I mean he didn't specifically say "We seek to become a Great Clan," but quoting from Beneath, Below, Beyond

Quote

“I spoke earlier of divisions, and how they should not be so common. My clan sees little value between the minor clans and the great ones, of captain and sailor—when the wave breaks upon the deck, it pulls at my feet, same as any commoner’s. And my station will not save me if we founder in a storm.

“But I cannot be a leader and not strive for greater for my people. Our founder came from a great clan, and I would see that same greatness for we, his descendants, to prove we are worthy of his blood. But simply saying it does not make it so.” His eyes bored into Taka’s, dark as an oncoming storm. “The Mantis require a great ally to help us make this claim, to argue for our cause with the Emperor, or my hopes are for nothing.”

it's pretty unambiguous that that is what he is implying.

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5 hours ago, Schmoozies said:

Except that the whole reason the Crane occupied Toshi Ranbo in the first place was to secure the surrounding farm lands which were needed to offset the coastal lands they lost use of due to the Tsunami.  As for approaching the Mantis at this point the Crane have nothing to offer them as their is no way they would ever support them rising to Great Clan status.

A great journey begins with a single step...

The Crane may not support the Mantis's long term goals, but before the Mantis could aim for anything so ambitious, they first need to be recognized as a real political entity. In exchange for saving them, the Crane would at least be able to advocate for them to have a voice in courts as even that is something they do not currently have.

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12 hours ago, Schmoozies said:

Yeah history would suggest Lion/Crane coming together is very unlikely since the Crane have next to nothing to actually offer the Lion as this point.  That said the same can be said of Lion/Scorpion aside from the enemy of my enemy is my friend.  Its the Lion/Phoenix that the Crane need to be worried about.

You and Manchu raise a valid point. With no valid claim in Lion lands, hostilities might calm down, but the Lion will not be able to support the Crane. If Toturi declared his support, in any form, of the clan that recently killed his brother the Matsu and Ikoma will revolt. Aside from that, the Lion have nothing to gain with supporting the Crane. Meanwhile the Lions Champion is married to the Phoenix, positioning them for an alliance.

The Crane might try to gain indirect support of the Lion by gaining the support of Phoenix, but what could the Crane offer the Phoenix that they would want? 

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14 hours ago, shineyorkboy said:

There's probably no stopping the Lion and Scorpion from getting closer. They just have too much in common. They're both a bunch of backstabbing, two-faced liars.

As of Tiger Stalks His Prey, the two clans will have to work together; with one Clan Champion as Lord General and Chief Magistrate, and another as Imperial Regent, if they don't manage to get closer the Empire will tear itself to bloody rags without any outside party needing to get in on the act.

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2 hours ago, Manchu said:

The Phoenix are always eager to be taken more seriously at court.

AEG's fumbling of what was supposed to be an area of strength for the Phoenix aside, the fact is, the Crane seldom did the Phoenix much good in court in the old lore.

 

And in the current lore, who do the Phoenix most benefit from political leverage against? The Unicorn. How awkward for the Unicorn-chummy Crane.

Edited by Shiba Gunichi

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6 hours ago, TheHobgoblyn said:

A great journey begins with a single step...

The Crane may not support the Mantis's long term goals, but before the Mantis could aim for anything so ambitious, they first need to be recognized as a real political entity. In exchange for saving them, the Crane would at least be able to advocate for them to have a voice in courts as even that is something they do not currently have.

The Crane doing an about face to support them after the advocating they have been doing against the Mantis "Pirates" that have been terrorizing their coast is very unlikely.  The Mantis have their current agreement with the Crab which appears to be working well for both, and there are better avenues to approach than the Crane.  Honestly the Lion (through the Ikoma) are actually a better choice for the Mantis as they can play up their founders Matsu ancestry to forge relations, and they are an irritant on Lion's traditional enemy so can serve as a proxy army now that the Imperial Decree on Toshi Ranbo is set to "cool" tensions between the two clans.

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7 hours ago, shineyorkboy said:

I mean he didn't specifically say "We seek to become a Great Clan," but quoting from Beneath, Below, Beyond

it's pretty unambiguous that that is what he is implying.

Beat me to it, but yeah the implied subtext is we are taking what we feel is ours, and **** the opinion of others as to our worthiness we have the same blood of a Kami as the other great clans (and in fact if the Thunder Dragon story is still true we are, like our Crab Cousins, one of the only clans twice blessed by Celestial entities).  Unless the plan is to go full Rokugan 2k in which case bring on the Diamond Empire.

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9 hours ago, shineyorkboy said:

I mean he didn't specifically say "We seek to become a Great Clan," but quoting from Beneath, Below, Beyond

it's pretty unambiguous that that is what he is implying.

Um...okay, that's fair enough. I'd forgotten that Yoritomo actually DID kinda angle towards the idea of GC status in this piece; that's what I get for not doing a bit of research before posting in the wee hours.  Mea culpa.

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4 hours ago, Schmoozies said:

Beat me to it, but yeah the implied subtext is we are taking what we feel is ours, and **** the opinion of others as to our worthiness we have the same blood of a Kami as the other great clans (and in fact if the Thunder Dragon story is still true we are, like our Crab Cousins, one of the only clans twice blessed by Celestial entities).  Unless the plan is to go full Rokugan 2k in which case bring on the Diamond Empire.

Many clans can claim that one or another Minor Clans came from them, but back in the day, the Crab alone could claim that a Great Clan was descended from them.

I mean, Lion could try that same argument, but Kaimetsu-Uo was born into the Crab Clan as son of a Crab Clan Champion before his mother made him abandon them. Though, I do suppose the mother being the boss does give the Lion/Matsu a claim to it...

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I think jumping straight to the Mantis Clan being named a great clan is too big of a step to even aim for at this time.

Rokugan has been running with 7 (okay, 6 for a while while the Kirin took a vacation) for 1100 years. And the whole definition of "Great Clan" is the descendants, close allies and vassals from one of the Kami whose descendants aren't sitting on the Throne or controlling the forces of the underworld. The Mantis just don't match that definition.

But, they are numerous and strong enough to perhaps deserve greater political recognition as an entity within the empire.

And, no, I don't think a "minor clan alliance" under Yoritomo makes any sense. What minor clans there are tend to be so far from the Mantis Isles that any communication, much less shared concerns and interests, is just utterly non-existent. The Badger or whatever don't have much to do with the Mantis.

You know-- maybe they could start with getting a proper family name?

Edited by TheHobgoblyn

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4 hours ago, Schmoozies said:

Beat me to it, but yeah the implied subtext is we are taking what we feel is ours, and **** the opinion of others as to our worthiness we have the same blood of a Kami as the other great clans (and in fact if the Thunder Dragon story is still true we are, like our Crab Cousins, one of the only clans twice blessed by Celestial entities).  Unless the plan is to go full Rokugan 2k in which case bring on the Diamond Empire.

Hey, far be it from me to try to stand in the way of the aspirations of anyone in Rokugan to strive for what they want! (Well, unless the story requires it, of course).

However, if by the "Thunder Dragon story" you mean that the Thunder Dragon surrendered its place in Tengoku to make a place for Yoritomo then...no. First of all, Yoritomo is obviously very much in Ningen-do, making the Crane miserable. Secondly, that wouldn't even happen for 50+ years (I think Yoritomo ascended to the Heavens, in the old lore, around 1170; the Thunder Dragon thing happened sometime after that...and it's 1123 in the new lore). Now, all of that may happen again, or something like it, or nothing like it at all. As has been said before, anything in the old canon up to 1123 should be taken as "it happened unless FFG says otherwise", but everything after 1123 is currently "an undiscovered country".

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26 minutes ago, DGLaderoute said:

Hey, far be it from me to try to stand in the way of the aspirations of anyone in Rokugan to strive for what they want! (Well, unless the story requires it, of course).

However, if by the "Thunder Dragon story" you mean that the Thunder Dragon surrendered its place in Tengoku to make a place for Yoritomo then...no. First of all, Yoritomo is obviously very much in Ningen-do, making the Crane miserable. Secondly, that wouldn't even happen for 50+ years (I think Yoritomo ascended to the Heavens, in the old lore, around 1170; the Thunder Dragon thing happened sometime after that...and it's 1123 in the new lore). Now, all of that may happen again, or something like it, or nothing like it at all. As has been said before, anything in the old canon up to 1123 should be taken as "it happened unless FFG says otherwise", but everything after 1123 is currently "an undiscovered country".

Actually I meant the Thunder Dragon who descended from the heavens to comfort the Kami Hida after he lost his wife and first son who was the original Crab Thunder and gave up her immortality to become his second wife and the mother of his son and eventual heir Hida Osuna-Wo.  The Mantis being descended from Osuna-Wo's son Kaimetsu-Uo can claim the Heritage of both the Thunder Dragon and Hida.

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39 minutes ago, TheHobgoblyn said:

I think jumping straight to the Mantis Clan being named a great clan is too big of a step to even aim for at this time.

Rokugan has been running with 7 (okay, 6 for a while while the Kirin took a vacation) for 1100 years. And the whole definition of "Great Clan" is the descendants, close allies and vassals from one of the Kami whose descendants aren't sitting on the Throne or controlling the forces of the underworld. The Mantis just don't match that definition.

Are you unaware of the history of the Mantis? Because the line of Yoritomo can (at least in previous AEG history, and FFG has not said anything to contradict it) be traced directly back to Hida.

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9 minutes ago, Schmoozies said:

Actually I meant the Thunder Dragon who descended from the heavens to comfort the Kami Hida after he lost his wife and first son who was the original Crab Thunder and gave up her immortality to become his second wife and the mother of his son and eventual heir Hida Osuna-Wo.  The Mantis being descended from Osuna-Wo's son Kaimetsu-Uo can claim the Heritage of both the Thunder Dragon and Hida.

Ah, ok. Well, per above, unless and until something comes along to contradict this, then you can take it as having happened in the current lore.

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