Archive for November 28, 2011

After the events of the Kyuden Bayushi Winter Court that was concluded last week, I think it’s about time to give a summary of the various changes and significant events that have occurred that may be of interest to my players.


The Crab are generally unchanged with regards to this Winter Court, mostly due to their non-participative stance.  That said, Akodo Kenji’s rather blatant accusations to the Yasuki have not endeared him to that Family of the Crab.  As such, Akodo Kenji gains the Sworn Enemy Disadvantage.  Akodo Senji on the other hand, has maintained his good relations with the Hida, Kaiu and Toritaka family.


The Crane Clan have lost much of their ability to support the Lion Clan due to a sudden political incident kicked off by Akodo Senji.  His reveal of the Gozoku documents to Doji Kurohito resulted in the Crane Champion’s investigation on his wife, which revealed that she was truly part of the conspiracy.  Kurohito had his wife executed, and recalled his daughter, Doji Kurohito from her schooling with the Lion Clan.  While the Crane will abide by their earlier agreement to provide monetary support to the Clan, the Lion should not expect much else in further assistance until the Crane manage to get themselves sorted out again.  On the other hand, the assistance of Doji Tanitsu, the Imperial Adviser to support the Lion’s case in court means that the Lion Clan owe the Crane a big favor.


Tamori Shaitung, Daimyo of the Tamori Family has gained the position of Master of Earth, as was her ambition after the existing Master of Earth, Isawa Taeruko stepped down, citing personal reasons.  Her association with both Kitsu Tetsumi and Akodo Kenji makes her a valuable ally if she can manage to take some time away from the various political upheavals resulting from the Phoenix Civil War.


Akodo Kenji bargained for the Mantis Clan’s support in the hearing against the Unicorn, offering her a trading post and lower tariffs for trade with the Lion.  The Mantis Ambassador, Yoritomo Yoyonagi fully intends to cash in on this particular favor, and will most likely come back to be a recurring NPC for good or for ill.


With the death of Matsu Nimuro, the Golden Lion, the Clan’s status has been in a state of upheaval.  The Akodo family, led by Akodo Ginawa, are still suspicious of the Ikoma Family after the Ikoma Vassals turned traitor and caused Nimuro’s death.  The Ikoma, led by the interim Champion, Ikoma Otemi are trying to shore up popular support, and placate both the Akodo and the Matsu before the Clan falls into Civil War.  Kitsu Juri of the Kitsu family has been working with Otemi in hopes that he can stabilize the Clan as well.

Akodo Ginawa’s student, Akodo Shigetoshi has been sent to the Unicorn Clan as a hostage, while Matsu Yoshino, Nimuro’s son is currently studying under Akodo Ginawa’s instruction.  The Lion Clan are also looking at what looks like a difficult start for the year with many of their more fertile lands left unharvested or destroyed due to the War.


The Scorpion Clan in general do not have much interaction with the Lion, but Kitsu Tetsumi did speak to Paneki with regards to the Egg of P’an Ku, and the young Sodan-Senzo must now find a way to retrieve the artifact from her adoptive father.  Matsu Hiroto was given scrolls by a mysterious Soshi Umi, which gave him knowledge of how to create and apply the enigmatic Shadow Brands.


The Phoenix Clan were in the midst of a vicious Civil War, and the unwitting actions of Akodo Senji resulted in the execution of Doji Akiko, the Master of Water.  With her dead, the Council was left with only three original members remaining: Isawa Ochiai, the Master of Fire, her brother Isawa Nakamura, the Master of Air and Shiba Ningen, the Master of Void.  Tamori Shaitung was an outsider, and the new interim Master of Water, Shiba Tsuke, was a known sycophant and could not be trusted.


Ide Tadaji, the Ambassador of the Unicorn has stepped down from his position, allowing the young and ambitious Ide Tang to take his place.  Moto Chagatai, having lost all use of his legs, has given up his position as the Clan Champion to a younger Moto Chen.  Chagatai however, retains an advisory position, determined to at least be of some use to the clan should the Unicorn end up facing the Lion once more.

Overall the Empire is at the edge of some major change.  Unrest and old grudges are starting to fester and despite the peaceful mien of the Winter Court, many are beginning to wonder just how long the era of peace will last.


Proto put in a comment in the “What’s Better Than A Proactive GM?” post asking if I had a “How to be a better PC” post.  I’ve tackled aspects of being a better player across multiple posts in the history of this blog, so I figured I’d compile them here on this post for easier access.

Let’s start off with the Character Roles series, where we looked at the aspects of PC roles within the context of the group:

For easing your character into a campaign, or bringing up valuable plot hooks up front and center so your GM is aware of them, here’s a post on Character Submission Formats For Any Game.  If you’re new to the hobby, don’t worry too much on being detailed on mechanics, just bring up the plot hooks and any GM worth his salt should be able to use them.

RPGs are an activity where all participants should be able to contribute input to the outcome of the game.  As such I put particular stress on being able to telling the GM what they want out of the game, so the GM can tailor the game accordingly.

As participants, players also bear the responsibility of being active players, pushing their own plots forward by actions taken in-game in a manner that involves the other players in the fun.  For players who have more confidence and have had time to get acquainted with their play group, they can even step up and give leadership a try.

Finally, players shouldn’t be afraid to tell the GM when the game is no longer fun.  Players have as much right (and responsibility) as the GM to take steps to prevent a game from dying due to lack of interest, and the only way to do so is to talk to the GM and tell them about it.

I think I’ve addressed several issues with regards to Player-side issues in these posts, but I’m absolutely certain that I haven’t covered everything.  If there’s something that you guys would like me to write about, feel free to add your questions in the comments, and I’ll try to put up a post or two about the issues you bring up.