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HealOverTime

Your School of Choice?

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I'm curious, which school(s) grab your attention? Do you have meta reasons or personal reasons for your choice and if you houserule something let us know what it is.

 

I myself am only a new player but I'm thinking of the Kuni Purifier or the Asahina Artificer, mostly because they have a kind of respectability or grace to them and invocations seem pretty cool.

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Yeah I'm a sucker for the Kuni Purifier too. Their aesthetics mostly. They seem like the kind of no-nonsense character that I like to play and then suffer through the experience because the character's such a dogmatic hard ***.

Other than that, I'm gonna say the Kakita Duelist. I've always loved swordmanship and the Kakita has the best fashion

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I'm a fan of two main things in terms of characters in L5R, class-wise. Social talents (not too picky, as long as they include something outside of command, depending on the character), and something very steeped in lore and roleplaying opportunities (with the latter including potential for writing supporting fiction). The second is actually pretty easy, most characters can have strong roleplaying moments in all but the most railroaded of campaigns, like: illicitly pursuing romance, conflicts between giri and ninjo, and more. But a few schools (and often their associated families) stand out.

The Soshi Illusionist school, as shugenja/courtier/shinobi have a lot of built-in roleplaying opportunities: blessings, support roles, lots of spiritual/godly/kami interactions, sneaking, spying, negotiating, and more. Add in the ability to cast Invocations silently, an effect that isn't innately powerful, but has a ton of potential to make 'miracles' happen, not to mention being a unique effect (for all its awesomeness, the Yogo ultimately just get more prepared abilities, rather than something unique, and that's true for a number of schools), and they're my current number one.

The Isawa Elementalist school is next, purely because of the high power of their school ability, which allows them to do something very different from the Soshi, huge dramatic set piece castings, better than anyone else. Huge momentous castings are a powerful to playing a shuggie for me, and there's no other school that can do it as reliably as the Isawa.

Hiruma Scout. That school ability is just so strong. The stance swapping alone is strong. I'm probably going to give something similar to the Hare until we get an official version of them, that's how much I like the adaptability represented by the ability. Perfect for characters with a wide breadth of useable rings. It's the only ability in the whole book I like primarily for its mechanical awesomeness. I think it lends itself to dramatic moments in combat as well, which I like (though I'm not likely to run a bushi as a PC, so I'll probably never use it for that effect, at least to its maximum).

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Yup, hiruma ability is a bit too good. Especially that you have it at rank 1.

It needs the nerf bat, not being able to use it in duels/intrigues for a start, is a must.

And then probably some kind of limitation on its usage.

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On ‎12‎/‎1‎/‎2018 at 10:15 PM, Shinjo Koetsu said:

I've always been a fan of the Mirumoto school thematically, although how it has been written up in 3e, 4e and 5e are all vastly different.

This. I love the narrative rivalry between Kakita and Mirumoto, and it doesn't hurt that artwork for both schools look unmitigatedly badass

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This edition has made it really difficult for me to choose, as it has gave such uniqueness to schools that I didn’t feel they had or maybe to be fair to the previous game designers, which some I met and I DO respect, I didn’t see.

So... here I go:

Asahina Shugenja, love their ability applies on the summoning, augmenting and awakening of an object, nailed it with their tradition.

Lion Medium School, how you can narratively represent their ability is really good and the School Mastery is beyond sick, you can become an Ancestor! Just pick a School any School, as in this era anyone could be your ancestor, sick I tell you!!!!

Yogo Shugenja, I have a soft spot for them. I enjoy their school ability and their School Mastery is really useful!

Lion Bard is awesome, great at buffing, debuffing and to add a cherry on top dueling to death...

Mirumoto Two Heavens Adept, my favorite bushi, didn’t disappoint me this edition really good School.

Update: Seppun Palace Guard, my other new favorite Bushi, I do really I like this school! Will love the opportunity to play one of this Bushi.

Edited by Nheko
Updated to include the Seppun Palace Guard

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  Generally I'm a Unicorn Clan man, Although I've never had a chance to play in a campaign I've run 5 campaigns and my "Gamemaster's character" is usually an Otaku Battlemaiden (because I want to represent paladin-like warrior women in the campaign setting). Honestly though, the Unicorn leave me kind of unfulfilled in this edition. I want the Moto Fanatics instead of this "Moto Conquerer" school..  the white clothes/facepaint, chanting the names of their ancestors as they ride into battle, and barbarian rage in their zeal against the shadowlands is what made the Moto cool to me to begin with..  I've really been disappointed with pretty much everything Moto since that school went away.  I like the Ide Emissary school, but the Ide Trader school is trash.. how does it help the unicorn at all?  They don't need any help seeming like honorless dogs who participate in barbaric practices like commerce..  what they need is the Ide Emissary school so there are at least SOME unicorn around who can fit in (and the game would be so much better if there was a "defensive" courtier school available).  The Iuchi school is okay though.

  So I always like the Kuni.. again, white facepaint and zeal against the shadowlands.  The Hiruma seem like they might be O.P. and I've always liked the Hiruma (and Shinjo) scout archetypes.

With all that said, I've also always liked the Ikoma Bards and in the current campaign I'm running, that's what I'm using as the "Gamemaster's character".  I like the idea of Ikoma as "the greatest warrior ever" and his "each scar has a story" personality. The Ikoma are awesome for "we're Lion clan courtiers because someone had to be" personality.  There's also the idea that Ikoma are supposed to Unmask at times, so that others don't have to. Basically Ikoma, his family, and their school are all just pure awesome.

  I usually kinda like the Daidoji and Shiba schools as well.

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Kaito Shrinekeeper is something I really do enjoy this edition. It does some unique things and, to be frank, I'm loving playing my poor neurotic Shrinekeeper in my first 5e game. In addition, I'd say the Soshi Illusionist is very high rank for me, as it's just a really interesting school. It's school ability is a bit odd and sometimes a little situational but very good when it does apply and your very wide collection of options is nice...and lord, that capstone just gets my mind rushing with ideas.

I mean, my favouritest is the Moshi Priestess but that's my own homebrew and thus cheating.

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On 12/5/2018 at 10:59 PM, Black_Rabbit_Inle said:

I want the Moto Fanatics instead of this "Moto Conquerer" school..

I would guess the Core Book presenting Conquerer is more friendly to new players picking up the game. But I do agree that I'm yearning for more weird/extreme schools in the future

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Straight up? Worldly Ronin Bushi.

As a player, I am always drawn towards adjustable platforms for rules interactions, and none matches the WRB for that in the Core Rules. You can go melee, you can go ranged, you can go social, you can do what you want and play it how you wish. Their School Ability allows you to pick and choose your focus as well, giving you a consistent benefit on the Skills you choose. The Mastery Ability gives you a significant mechanical advantage with even further options. Mechanically, the WRB is the Honda Civic of L5R Schools. You can mod it to do whatever you want.

Outside of mechanics, I like the WRB because it is a character who went to the school of hard knocks, who broke with the strict tradition of his family and Clan to study their own path. The individual bucking the trends of tradition is an archetype which resonates with me, and is one of my go to tropes in gaming. I play the Miya Herald who ran off to join a ronin band rather than live a life of luxury. I play the Kitsu Shugenja who is forsaken by the ancestors and winds up getting trained as a priest of the Shi Tien Yen Wang because he can still speak with the dead. I play the D&D fighter who always wanted to be a wizard, and is using his adventuring to fund his education at a wizard college. Add to that that it is the best way to play a Minor Clan at present.

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3 hours ago, sndwurks said:

As a player, I am always drawn towards adjustable platforms for rules interactions, and none matches the WRB for that in the Core Rules.

Very good points, at first I was surprised that there was only one universal option like this but it's really all you need.

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5 hours ago, Horvagab said:

I am ridiculously happy to have Kaiu Engineer in the core book, and I look forward to playing one sometime.

They are also the only school who have a rank 1 access to the crossbow (Oyumi), one of the best ranged weapon in the game.

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The two things I want to play in a samurai character are (1) the ability to hold my own in the frenemy world of the various courts with all their sharp tongues and elbows & (2) the ability to kill someone with my katana when it inevitably all goes pear shaped. You know it’s ending pear shaped. So I want a decent selection of social and knowledge skills to go with my Martail Arts (Melee). No surprise ... the schools that speak the most to me out the gate are the ones that blend bushi and courtier aspects. Cool Kata’s and Shujis please to round them out!

The big three winners for me are the Daidoji Iron Warriors of the Crane, the Shiba Guardians of the Phoenix, and the Worldly Ronin. These are all great platforms for what I want to do. I would lean a little toward the Iron Warrior just because the Crane are “insiders” and wrapped up with their own “angle” in just about any intrigue. That’s fun to role-play (even as you might pull your hair out dealing with all the conflicting demands). But mechanically the others are just as sweet. WR has already been talked about. But how about the Shiba Guardian’s strife negating ability? There is a team player you want on your team!

Honorable mention to the Shosuro Infiltrator. Not very party friendly but weirdly gives what I want. And the Kakita Duelist (though of the Crane Schools I much prefer the Iron Warrior).

Edited by Void Crane
Clarified text. Grammer

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Kuni Purifiers are the best.  Though to be fair all the Crab schools are great :)  For a non-Crab school I think I really like the new Kaito Shrine Keeper school.  That sounds like a fun character to play.  Also being an Ikoma Bard is always fun.  I like that in the new game they can manipulate the Strife mechanic.  Sounds potentially very useful.

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