Author Topic: The L5R Loan Offer  (Read 8637 times)

Lord_of_Apathy

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The L5R Loan Offer
« on: August 18, 2016, 04:20:38 PM »
So I just listened to the GenCon 2016 Wrapup podcast and heard Ross comment that he is not interested in running L5R because he has too many of his own games he still needs to run, but might try to convince Aaron to run it  but that would fail since there are no robots in the setting.  At this I remembered the alternate timeline in the setting with  rules for Rokugan in Space!!!  Which gave me the image of an Aaron run mash up of Samurai and Cyroks.  I don't know whether to be horrified or laugh for hours on end.

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Twisting H

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Re: The L5R Loan Offer
« Reply #1 on: August 18, 2016, 09:07:56 PM »
FYI   One Shot has a very good L5R adventure up. 

System seems clunky though and very lethal combat wise.  Haven't analyzed it however.

http://oneshotpodcast.com/podcasts/one-shot/92-legend-of-five-rings-rings-part-1/

Lord_of_Apathy

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Re: The L5R Loan Offer
« Reply #2 on: August 19, 2016, 08:55:16 AM »
It never felt clunky when I was playing but the Roll-Keep system is definitely a different feel from most other systems I have played. Combat  does have a potentially high lethality factor but L5R is not intended to be a "one fight a night" game. I played the muscle character a long running campaign which lasted a couple of years, granted there were periods that we had to take a month or two hiatus due  to conflicting schedules, I can recall at most 5 or 6 sessions where combat occured. Mostly it was investigative and political interactions.

Cthuluzord

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Re: The L5R Loan Offer
« Reply #3 on: August 19, 2016, 01:15:25 PM »
I'd be interested to read some L5R. If I'm honest, "samurai" is probably my all time favorite film genre of anything. I've read the Hagakure, The Book of Five Rings, Rashomon, etc. I'm the kind of nerd that has a favorite in the Samurai trilogy (II, of course), owns all the Shogun Assassin films and the complete Lone Wolf and Cub manga line (along with Samurai Executioner), and has seen Hari Kiri as both the original and remake. I love me some samurai stuff, is what I'm saying.

But I don't think we'd ever get a campaign out of it for the following reasons.

  • I've not seen the system yet, but there's a lot of reaction to it that makes me skeptical. d20, in general, infuriates me in lengthy amounts of play. I'd have to check the rules in depth, but I couldn't run something for long with the crunch of any system that would be called d20 by most people. I mean, maybe L5R just uses a d20 and there the similarities end, but I'm hesitant.
  • There seems to be A LOT of world lore in it. I'm not sure I want my samurai fighting anything except other samurai in the Edo period; not to mention a bunch of scorpion Oni or whatever the fuck. Then there's the fictional political intrigue amongst all the fictional the clans...I'd probably throw all that out and start fresh. I mean, if we're already making things up, I'd prefer getting the fun doing it myself and having some room to breath. In general, the more established as setting is, the less I'm interested (with the notable exception of EP's "maybe it is, maybe it isn't" setting design). This means the system would have to be good enough to save from the lore (which I don't know), and I'd be disappointing everyone that wants to hear L5R (which are the only people that would listen, because the game is old and won't attract those "new hotness" hits
  • The japanophile urge amongst RPPR members varies wildly. You wanna talk Sengoku period history? I'm totally IN...but Aaron, Tom, and Ross tune out once I talk about how many koku your prefecture owes in taxes that season. Wanna go all anime? Shaun and Aaron will break down the door to get into that game...and I will quietly sneak out the back. Want to do no more than name a character something from outside the a judeo-christian tradition? Jason will look at his phone for twenty sessions rather than engage. Ross, David, and I will be all about modern Tokyo espionage...Tom will make a forger/sniper. Finding a group of players that would give a damn about L5R to play at all, no to mention a campaign, would be a dicey prospect.

So I don't think it's going to happen. I'm really excited for "Reflections" and other games that might map on to the tropes of samurai genre without so much baggage, but I haven't found something to make me really advocate for it. And even if I did, that would be no guarantee. As Ross mentioned, we just have too damned many games to play as is. I'm lucky when I can get a spot to run anything, so it needs to be something everyone has an equal amount of engagement in.

Lord_of_Apathy

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Re: The L5R Loan Offer
« Reply #4 on: August 19, 2016, 03:15:27 PM »
1. It's not a d20 system it uses a d10 die pool system...

2. You really only have to use as much lore as you want. For me playing in an established world that is lore heavy is normally more enjoyable than playing in generic world where I have nothing but mechanics to base a concept around since I have more details to inspire me.  But I can totally understand how some people find lore too restrictive.  If I was going to throw anything out of half the games I love playing it would be magic systems cause its too much work to keep track of as either a GM or a Player. But half the players in my groups love magic in games for the toolbox approach they offer to solving problems.

3. Yeah I got nothing here... When listening to the actual plays I envy the RPP crew and your ability to run not only amazing campaigns that come to a narrative end, something that never happens in my home games, but satisfying short adventures in multiple game systems and settings.

PirateLawyer

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Re: The L5R Loan Offer
« Reply #5 on: August 19, 2016, 06:02:59 PM »
I will speak up here. Way way back in the dim past - we're talking twenty years ago - I was heavily involved with L5R's CCG and the 1st edition RPG, to the point that I was friends with everyone at AEG and even had informal input into the CCG and the setting because my reading habits and academic interests were significantly Japan-centric. L5R (or, more properly, Rokugan) has a lot going for it as a world; and you can run any kind of campaign you'd care to because the world will encompass it.

I'm wildly oversimplifying, but if you want to run a game that is purely focussed on samurai, L5R has it in spades. Heck, the brilliance of the CCG was that the game encouraged you to identify with one of the clans (think samurai caste noble families) as you competed with other players playing their Clan deck in a struggle for honor and glory. And, obviously, the Imperial favour (or that of the Shogun).

It just so happens the world mashes up all kinds of folklore and magic and what-have-you, and you can pick and choose what elements you'd like to use in your game.

L5R is not too crunchy. The d10 system has plenty of virtues; you can safely ignore the d20 conversion.

Even if you don't end up getting an L5R game to the table, L5R is worth investigating for its own sake.

Gorkamorka

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Re: The L5R Loan Offer
« Reply #6 on: August 20, 2016, 03:47:26 AM »
Has anyone looked at John Wicks Samurai hack of his game Houses of the Blooded.  Called Blood and Honor?

I know his plan was to let people use it to play a samurai game that was mechanically more clan and honour focused and less katana porn then L5R.  But also have it able to run L5R without trouble as well.  It all sounded interesting, but Wicks game mechanics are a bit of hit and miss so I was wondering if anyone had tried it?  And if so, does it work?
Gorkamorka (Fridrik)

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Re: The L5R Loan Offer
« Reply #7 on: August 20, 2016, 02:08:20 PM »
Calling L5R katana porn is, frankly, a pretty ignorant statement.

Gorkamorka

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Re: The L5R Loan Offer
« Reply #8 on: August 20, 2016, 02:51:16 PM »
Calling L5R katana porn is, frankly, a pretty ignorant statement.

No. I played a couple of campaigns.  I stand by my words. That were "...Less katana porn then L5R".  So get of thy high horse and read the actual sentence.
Gorkamorka (Fridrik)

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Re: The L5R Loan Offer
« Reply #9 on: August 20, 2016, 03:39:44 PM »
Calling L5R katana porn is, frankly, a pretty ignorant statement.

No. I played a couple of campaigns.  I stand by my words. That were "...Less katana porn then L5R".  So get of thy high horse and read the actual sentence.

It's one sentence. I assure you I read it thoroughly. Any game can be what you make of it. I would argue that the L5R RPG is not, intrinsically, a game that fetishizes katanas. But if the players and the GM collaborate and make katana porn, that's on them, not the game.

Twisting H

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Re: The L5R Loan Offer
« Reply #10 on: August 22, 2016, 03:12:09 PM »
Suggested Resources:

+ SA L5R thread: http://forums.somethingawful.com/showthread.php?threadid=3352268

+ L5R Free RPG Adventure 4th edition : http://www.l5r.com/files/2012/03/L5R-Free-RPG-Day.pdf

+ Recommended adventure: Heroes of Rokugan 3, module SOB00, New Beginnings.



The japanophile urge amongst RPPR members varies wildly. You wanna talk Sengoku period history? I'm totally IN...but Aaron, Tom, and Ross tune out once I talk about how many koku your prefecture owes in taxes that season.

Do you lean towards a more Japanese version of the management video game Romance of the Three Kingdoms?

Also if you are going to checkout L5R, from reading the SA thread it looks like 4th edition is considered the less broken system.

Lord_of_Apathy

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Re: The L5R Loan Offer
« Reply #11 on: August 23, 2016, 10:11:47 AM »
"Also if you are going to checkout L5R, from reading the SA thread it looks like 4th edition is considered the less broken system."

The collection referenced in my loan offer was the 4th edition. Another nice thing about 4th edition is the modular nature they went with in the release giving you the option of playing at any point in the L5Rs timeline. Some of the historical periods would be more challenging than others to play through depending on how you want to integrate the players but any could be used as a jumping off point to create your own timeline.

RadioactiveBeer

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Re: The L5R Loan Offer
« Reply #12 on: September 07, 2016, 11:20:51 PM »
Also, 4e books are super pretty.

I've run a few campaigns of L5R and, yeah, there's a lot of lore to dig through but like a like of games with rich settings it's very much a matter of which parts you think are cool and important to focus on more than anything.

Often the problem I ran into when coming up with ideas for L5R games was time periods; the metaplot kind of 'starts' around the tenth or twelfth century and then shit gets crazy. So a common technique I had for running games was setting it a couple hundred years ahead of "canon" in a time of nebulous and uneasy peace between all of the Clans, save for the shit I wanted stirred and some of the "fundamental" conflicts (the Crab and Crane hate each other, the Unicorn are weird, the Spider twirl their moustaches etc).

Alternatively, a campaign model I came up with that might be useful revolves around picking one tiny lore strand and saying "fuck the rest of it". This lets you focus tightly on one particular aspect of the setting without getting too overwhelmed. One game I came up with using this principle went like this:: A Minor Clan called the Bat Clan are created relatively recently in the history as thanks to a shaman; the shaman channelled the spirit of the Emperor's sister, allowing him to get closure and say farewell. The shaman, Koumori, is given a previously-uninhabited tropical island in the Islands of Spice and Silk to call his own and set up his castle. The game was about the foundation and establishment of this small clan on a hostile island whose woods are full of carnivores and worse - for the reason Koumori chose that island in particular is because the wall between realms are thin and spirits are common. So a lot of the conflict started very human and small-scale, people struggling to survive in a new place and building relationships, then worked in some more abstract notions of "proving themselves" and carving out the clan's wider identity and role, and then further into the setting's cosmology through the Spirit Realms. But being on a small island out in the ocean we didn't get into inter-clan politics, the Shadowlands and so on.

Adam_Autist

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Re: The L5R Loan Offer
« Reply #13 on: October 13, 2016, 05:24:45 PM »
Quote
There seems to be A LOT of world lore in it. I'm not sure I want my samurai fighting anything except other samurai in the Edo period; not to mention a bunch of scorpion Oni or whatever the fuck. Then there's the fictional political intrigue amongst all the fictional the clans...I'd probably throw all that out and start fresh. I mean, if we're already making things up, I'd prefer getting the fun doing it myself and having some room to breath. In general, the more established as setting is, the less I'm interested (with the notable exception of EP's "maybe it is, maybe it isn't" setting design). This means the system would have to be good enough to save from the lore (which I don't know), and I'd be disappointing everyone that wants to hear L5R (which are the only people that would listen, because the game is old and won't attract those "new hotness" hits

Having this sort of problem with Deadlands right now actually. There was a real thing with late 80s-90s etc games (Shadowrun, Deadlands, white wolf etc) to put way too much detail to allow me to create things of my own in the gaps. Also any setting that has plot armoured NPCs that have to survive until X book ugh (Looking at you Stone, Raven).

Still I have a few weeks to do my thing so that isn't too bad (Still need to smooth out some problematic elements such as the Confedracy and the way DL treats Natives.)

Makes me  appreciate the feats it must have taken for Eclipse World to have so much detail without having to force players/dms to adhere to a canon.

Sorry about the thread hi-jack. Have been having thoughts rattle around my head while I have been playing in someone else' sandpit.