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Mirumoto School Ability

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How is that ability legit ? at rank 4 it basically give the opponent a double disadvantage when he wants to attack you in melee, every round.

are disadvantages so weak that the Mirumoto ability is balanced ?

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43 minutes ago, Avatar111 said:

How is that ability legit ? at rank 4 it basically give the opponent a double disadvantage when he wants to attack you in melee, every round.

are disadvantages so weak that the Mirumoto ability is balanced ?

Frankly, no.

I wouldn't have minded so much if you needed two weapons drawn to use Twin Heavens techniques, but the fact you can use it bare-handed is irksome to me.

Basically, you're trading a 4-dice reroll against anyone attacking you in return for not using a two-handed grip on your katana, and not being able to use your wakizashi for Spinning Blades if you have it (which you really, really should, being Mirumoto...).

It's an incredible defensive school for one-on-one swordfights, even at rank 1 or 2. Whilst it's not their natural ring to operate in (family and clan pushes them towards fire), an air-stance high rank Mirumoto Niten Adept is a stone-cold bugger to try and hit with a strike action. Throw in a guard action and it just becomes ridiculous.

 

Ironically, given that I know it's a technique you fixate on a bit, one of the best logical counters is Coiling Serpent Strike - you don't actually have to hit, it can't take away opportunities (and rerolling success results should logically generate more opportunities), and if your opponent has 'expended' one sword to Ward, then pinning the other one with Coiling Serpent leaves them standing there like a lemon for a turn with a useless weapon in each hand.

Edited by Magnus Grendel

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there is always/often a counter to everything.

and coiling serpent being SO strong with RAW makes it a must have for almost all samurai.

and definitely, the mirumoto ability should NOT be usable with bare hands, that is just ridiculous lol.

but i still feel that the ability is pretty strong unless you find a way to not attack mirumoto. i was just wondering if anybody tested that with lets say a rank 4 mirumoto. i feel it can become ****. 4 reroll IS equivalent to having 2 disadvantages... quite nasty for a "every round" thing.

 

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In my opinion, the only thing missing from the Mirumoto Swordsmaster tech is the requirement of double-wielding a wakizashi and a katana. Otherwise, I think this is the power level every school tech should be at: a major game-changer and something everyone should keep in mind or run into uncomfortable surprises. 

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Just now, AtoMaki said:

In my opinion, the only thing missing from the Mirumoto Swordsmaster tech is the requirement of double-wielding a wakizashi and a katana. Otherwise, I think this is the power level every school tech should be at: a major game-changer and something everyone should keep in mind or run into uncomfortable surprises. 

thx. so by removing the "can use it unarmed" then it is fine ? that would make it usable with any 1 handed melee weapon (probably wouldn't need to be wakisashi/katana only but maybe if you give me a good reason, like having a 1 handed snare weapon or any other shenanigan. 

i also made iaijutsu cuts only usable if you have 2 free hands. which is more realistic, plus makes it a bit harder to juggle 2 weapons like crazy. but that is a personal preference, not like a "fix".

 

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9 minutes ago, Avatar111 said:

thx. so by removing the "can use it unarmed" then it is fine ?

No, it must be specified that the school tech only works if the character dual-wields a katana and a wakizashi. No other weapon combination is allowed. 

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7 minutes ago, AtoMaki said:

No, it must be specified that the school tech only works if the character dual-wields a katana and a wakizashi. No other weapon combination is allowed. 

is there any reason that you wouldn't allow anything but katana / wakisashi ?

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4 minutes ago, AtoMaki said:

I feel like the school tech is a little unfocused without this restriction. 

ok, so its not for mechanical reason (like making it unusable unarmed which is clearly a mechanical "nerf"), your decision is more style wise. though not making it usable with a knife or a snaring 1 hand weapon is probably a slight nerf.

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15 hours ago, AtoMaki said:

I feel like the school tech is a little unfocused without this restriction. 

It is the archetypical Twin Heavens weapon pairing - the daisho is the classic samurai weapon, after all.

Besides which, Mirumoto is essentially "the other" classic duelling school alongside Kakita (albeit in theory "duel-wielding blender" versus "one perfect cut")

You might not require it to be a daisho, but you should at least be pushing it towards classic samurai blades. At the very least I think using it with an empty hand seems harsh

 

16 hours ago, Avatar111 said:

i was just wondering if anybody tested that with lets say a rank 4 mirumoto

The mirumoto school was shown off in a preview about halfway through the beta. The general consensus to the school ability was "You bloody what?". Especially since the original version didn't stop you using the weapon the following round, either.

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Just now, Franwax said:

Look, I’m a great magician! I can trap your razor sharp blade with my left hand!

And for our next number, I will parry a tetsubo swing with my jaw!!

*Applause*

Indeed.

Don't get me wrong, trapping a blade with your hand as part of a parry combination was something we were taught in a sword class I did once at university.

BUT critically that was European Wars-of-the-Roses era broadsword, which means (a) whilst sharp it was only sharp for the top foot or so of the blade and (b) I would be wearing a bloody metal gauntlet. Trying the same thing with bare hands on what's essentially a hand-and-half scimitar seems like a great way to loose fingers.

And yes, the initial beta version didn't mandate 'hands' so you could do a twin-heavens trap on a descending no-dachi blade with your bite attack.

Hands up anyone who can see that going wrong.

 

 

 

Anyone?

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Allright.

General concensus seems to be that the mirumoto ability should not be usable with bare hands, and that even with that restriction, it is still one of, if not the best, melee combat ability for a starting school.

I also added that Iai cut techniques can only be executed if you have both your hands free (though you can still draw a second razor edged sword with opportunities).

Thx for all the insights and that great anime clip.

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The thing about the massive reroll is that it is the most effective when you need to take exactly 1 success down to make the opponent miss. At higher ranks, the sheer volume of reroll is as likely to help the opponent as it is to hinder them - they are going to be ending up with excess successes anyway, and at this point you are approaching the critical mass of rerolls where you are quite likely to gift them a crit or explosion as you are to make them miss. A lot of its effectiveness also depends on the Opportunity abilities available to a given NPC.

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14 minutes ago, WHW said:

The thing about the massive reroll is that it is the most effective when you need to take exactly 1 success down to make the opponent miss. At higher ranks, the sheer volume of reroll is as likely to help the opponent as it is to hinder them - they are going to be ending up with excess successes anyway, and at this point you are approaching the critical mass of rerolls where you are quite likely to gift them a crit or explosion as you are to make them miss. A lot of its effectiveness also depends on the Opportunity abilities available to a given NPC.

so would you say disadvantages can be good ? that is opening a mega can of worm. we have to trust the fact that the designers know, that average wise, a reroll of a success or explosion is a "disadvantage".

sure, there is always the possibility you end up with a better roll. but a lot of the time, it is worst. mostly when you are forced to reroll an explosion.

anyway, nobody here totally blew a fuse over the power level of the ability (edit, even if it is in fact, at rank 4, like giving anyone who attacks you in melee a double disadvantage, thats something that would cost 2 void point under normal rules i think). it seems like the main concern is using it with empty hand which makes it a bit too versatile and narratively weak since then the dragon could use one katana only and use his "two-sword" ability...

Edited by Avatar111

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13 minutes ago, Avatar111 said:

a lot of the time, it is worst. mostly when you are forced to reroll an explosion.

This. Regardless of anything else, forcing a reroll is great for removing explosive successes from the pool.

A success becoming an opportunity, or an explosive success, or another normal success isn't that big a deal, and there aren't that many blank results. But a lot of really critical rolls rely on at least one die in your pool being either explosive success or success/opportunity, and losing them can bugger your chances over big-time.

If you've had to spend a turn or more setting that up with Centre actions, Striking as Air, or whatever, that's going to be doubly annoying....

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The big deal is not Ward and its re-rolls, because it happens before choosing kept dice and you can leave your Explosions alone as long as you have enough Successes to spare - that is, after a certain point, you are going to have tons of Successes to spare. There is a lot of leeway here when you are making 8k4+ rolls.

The problem is Trap aka "Nice Air Stance you have there. It would be too bad if I... negated it completely." This can spin out of control very quickly with clever use of Guard. 

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it is a good ability overall, and the reroll is still a big deal, at rank 2 you are basically telling your opponent "well, its like if you had a disadvantage on all your melee checks, whatever the ring you use". that can't be bad!

and yeah, it can reduce TN makes it more versatile too. which is good.

it is impossible but to see this ability as anything but the best 1v1 melee ability in the game at the moment (for a starting school ability). is it "OP" ? dunno, but it sure is strong as **** as is.
removing the ability to use it with a free hand and making iai cuts needing both hands free to perform kind of tone it down about where it should be.



and, while we're at it, what do you guys have to say about that cheese; a sheated knife and iai crossing cut kata.

crossing cut kata with the sheated knife (making it deal more damage than a katana, and with range 1-2), auto-sheat the knife after the iai cut because of concealable quality for next turn crossing cut again in whatever stance you want.

i'm starting to be slightly concerned with Crossing Cut Kata... It might be a bit too good for a Tn2. but opinions are welcome.

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Didn't see it while glancing over the thread, but can you use the mastery ability and school ability in the same turn?

The way it's written it seems no, but wasn't 100% sure. If you have to choose between using abilities might help some with balance. Though the choice is between 1opp secondary strike and rerolling 6 successes is still pretty strong.

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5 hours ago, Arolem said:

Didn't see it while glancing over the thread, but can you use the mastery ability and school ability in the same turn?

Depends on the order.

If you have your turn first, you can strike with your katana, then use Heart of the Dragon to strike with your Wakizashi, then in your opponent's turn use Way of the Dragon to Ward against a strike with your Wakizashi.

If your opponent goes first (or the fight goes on for several rounds...), then if you Way of the Dragon to Ward against a strike with your Wakizashi first, Way of the Dragon's restriction: "You cannot choose this weapon for Attack actions until the end of your next turn" will stop you using it for Heart of the Dragon, because the attack with Heart of the Dragon is explicitly a free Strike Action, you're now prohibited from selecting your Wakizashi for.

 

(You can probably assume a Rank 6 Mirumoto Twin Heavens Master will probably be going first, though....)

Edited by Magnus Grendel

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49 minutes ago, Magnus Grendel said:

If your opponent goes first (or the fight goes on for several rounds...), then if you Way of the Dragon to Ward against a strike with your Wakizashi first, Way of the Dragon's restriction: "You cannot choose this weapon for Attack actions until the end of your next turn" will stop you using it for Heart of the Dragon, because the attack with Heart of the Dragon is explicitly a free Strike Action, you're now prohibited from selecting your Wakizashi for.

 

Let's say you have [Katana of Fire] invocation (from Stolen Knowledge ancestry or the Priest title or some such)

Barring you pissing off the kami, could you conjure the blade (and strike immediately with opp), and hit with wakizashi (per heart of the dragon).

Then ward with the fire Katana and drop it, conjuring another one to strike with (again, with opp)?

Even if you risk upsetting your fire kami you'd probably be able to do it once or twice before it fizzles and you gotta make amends.

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22 minutes ago, Arolem said:

Barring you pissing off the kami, could you conjure the blade (and strike immediately with opp), and hit with wakizashi (per heart of the dragon).

  • Katana of fire is your action.
    • Succeeding conjures a katana
    • If you have * on the check, you may conjure a pair of katana
    • If you have a second * on the check, you may immediately perform a free strike action with one of the new weapons
      • The strike action is a martial arts melee check.
        • If you have * on the check, you may immediately perform another free strike action with the other new weapon.

So far, so good.

22 minutes ago, Arolem said:

Then ward with the fire Katana and drop it, conjuring another one to strike with (again, with opp)?

  • The Katana is to all intents and purposes a 'real' weapon, so yes, you can use it to Trap or Ward with Way of the Dragon.
    • You cannot then select it in your turn to strike with.
  • When you set your stance, you may drop any number of weapons.
    • Katana of fire ceases to exist as soon as it leaves your grip.
  • If you want to conjure another one to strike with, you need to perform the Theology check again. You can create one blade with a check, and a second with an opportunity only on that check.
    • That said, if you can pass the check with **, you can 'dismiss' the existing blades, create two more, strike with one, heart of the dragon and strike with the other, and repeat ad infinitum, getting two strike attacks per turn whilst trapping or warding if you keep rolling * on your first strike action.

Is it an impressive trick? Yes. It's visually impressive and very powerful.

Is there a downside?

  • You'll need the Stolen Knowledge heritage - as you noted - which means your Mirumoto starts at -5 Honour - and you'll probably want to take the proffered rank of Theology at character creation or on the curriculum at Rank 3. Not a big impact on a Rank 6 character but potentially more of an issue earlier in the character's life.
  • Compared to someone playing human kitchen-aid blender with 'mundane' swords (who can strike just as quickly or ward & trap, but not both), you need to pass an extra TN1 Fire theology check with two opportunities every turn - not that hard for a rank 6 Twin Heavens Master but since you dismiss the old blades before making the check for the new ones, if you screw up the roll you're going to be unarmed for the turn, and/or stood in Dangerous Terrain.
  • You can only do this in Fire Stance, and added to that the conjured Katana both have the Wargear quality. That means you're making three fire stance checks per turn, adding an extra strife on each strike if you keep any. You're going to hit your composure very quickly!
Edited by Magnus Grendel

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The term "weapon" should be use strictly, otherwise Mirumoto might as well carry 5 katana and iai cut all the time, and/or concealable weapons.

I certainly wouldnt allow that cheese.

If he uses his ability to ward or trap, to then he should not use a secondary attack whatever the cause is (school mastery, spinning blade or what not)

I'm pretty sure that is how it is intended otherwise there is a ton of cheese you can do...(iai cuts, conceleable/summon weapon...)

Definitely not letting that happen! Thats like opening the possibilities of a ton of abuses.

Edited by Avatar111

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Most combat NPCs also will sport a combat related Advantage, which matters quite a lot, depending on how the GM rules it - the Ward is not a Disadvantage per se, so it won't cancel out the Advantage; the strict reading would be that 4 rank Mirumoto Warding against Advantage-wielding foe would get to assign total of 6 rerolls spread over 2 effects (so you could overlap it and reroll 2 dice twice) - which should on average get you about 3 successes and an explosion. I can see a lot of GMs (and we do that for quickness sake) using the Advantage vs Disadvantage rules for it, making the final reroll 2 instead of 4 or 6, making the Advantage cancel 2 dice worth of rerolls as it would do with a Disadvantage. 
Either way, the ability isn't as oppressive as it looks on paper - it mostly leads to normalizing the results, so it can possibly save you from outlier blow out kept hand like full suite of explosions, but unless you are fighting against someone either incompetent or you are stacking TN debuffs (Air Stance, Wounds, Dazed), it wont really generate many misses. This is mostly a consequence of 2TN Strikes - good fighters will suffer from excess of successes, and will use them to protect their Explosions and will actually enjoy potential conversion of Successes to Opportunities. 
Ward might be quite effective if the NPCs start getting high TN special attacks similar to Heartpiercing Strike, but the trend currently seems to be giving NPCs powerful opportunity options, like that gaijin captains "Damage the opponent and then run away 2 range bands" ability, and non-checks special actions like "Get them Fools!" or Oni's bellow (which also are good ways to skip a turn to remove Dazed and play around Coiling Serpents). 
From our experience, the powerful part of Mirumoto was definitely the Trap ability, though in the end, we ended up feeling that Kakita was simply more practical due to being more proactive and enabling a lot of different tactics by pushing up certain weapon choices into really attractive stat setups. The defining Mirumoto power play is the Trap followed up by Heartpiercing Strike...which is cool, but you need to note that you are doing it with one-handed grip katana (so the TN you just reduced will be spent catching up to what a 2h crit would be anyway).  
Mirumoto is nice, but TBH in practice Kakita, Akodo and Shiba all felt more useful and versatile than the "please hit me so I can activate my special ability" Mirumoto. 

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