A few months have passed, but things seem to finally be on their way. This past Saturday, I pulled together friends and acquaintances, and laid the groundwork for a new Legend of the Five Rings campaign! I’ll be acting as the GM, and I have four players, two of whom I’ve never played with before, but they are both at least somewhat experienced role-players. At any rate, it won’t be anything new for them.
The campaign I’m going to run is going to have a number of odd tricks that I’m trying out. The first, and most major, is that in addition to the main group of PCs, there will be several other groups of characters run by the players that we’ll jump to on occasion. Part of the point of this is that the main group will be comprised of characters from a variety of Clans. These “cut scenes,” as one player described them, will each be about a group made up of a single Clan. This way, players get a glimpse of how things look from behind the very different viewpoints of the various Clans. The second point of this concept is that there is a lot going on in Rokugan at any one time. I’ve always struggled with getting the party involved with various events. Now, I don’t need to figure it out. The main PCs continue their storyline, but we jump to another group that could conceivably be involved, and the players get to experience it. I offered to create pregenerated characters for these jumps, but the players decided they would rather create them themselves. So we ended the night with the players creating a group of Crab Clan characters for the first jump into the game this coming Saturday.
We also discussed what ideas they had for their main characters. I asked for several ideas from each of them, and over the next few weeks, I’ll be talking to each of the players about their choices and how they’d fit in to the campaign I have planned, as well as how they’d mesh as a party. But to give an idea (for those of you who know anything about L5R), here’s a list of the concepts these four players came up with:
- Mirumoto bushi (Dragon Clan)
- Mantis shugenja (playing before the Mantis were a Great Clan, so no standard shugenja school, probably going to take one of the ronin shugenja options offered in Enemies of the Empire)
- Kakita bushi (Crane Clan)
- Hiruma scout (Crab Clan)
- Kitsuki investigator (Dragon Clan)
- Lion Deathseeker (Lion Clan)
- Tsi smith (Oriole Clan — one of the ways I tweaked the setting to make things easier on me included slight timeline changes)
- Mantis bushi (sort of… the character would be from the Crab’s Yasuki family, but trained by the Mantis)
- Kitsu shugenja (Lion Clan)
- Shiba yojimbo (Phoenix Clan)
- Togashi ise zumi (Dragon Clan)
- Bayushi courtier or bushi… mixed skill set either way (Scorpion Clan)
- Utaku Battle Maiden (Unicorn Clan)
- Kitsune shugenja (Fox Clan)
Fourteen different options from four players. I already see a few that I’m going to discourage, as well as a few that I will be encouraging. Now that things are getting underway, expect this site to become a little more active.