DDC 2007: Walls Crumble, Honor Endures

DDC is next month, and once again, the Jade Lantern is co-hosting an event. The extended description follows:

Walls Crumble, Honor Endures

In the late summer of the 15th year of the 17th Hantei Emperor, Toma Sieko, daimyo of the Iron Cobra, pressed his clan’s advantage against Makira Toji, the aging daimyo of Raven Clan. With the siege of Kyuden Raven underway, Toji-sama comes to terms with the fate of his Clan.

What do loyal samurai do when surrounded without by a fierce enemy, and weighed down within by an incompetent lord? Read the rest of this entry »

In the Land of the Crane

The monk has been very impressed with the new Land of the Crane setting for True 20:

“The Land of the Crane setting can be found in the True20 Worlds of Adventure book published by Green Ronin Publishing. The Land of the Crane is a fantasy setting inspired by the folklore and mythology of feudal Japan.”

Land of the Crane is produced by Amalara. It was one of the Green Ronin setting contest winner for the True 20 rpg, and is one of the first licensed True 20 properties on the market. The 28 pages published in Green Ronin’s Worlds of Adventure are very accessible to players familiar with samurai-themed games as well as those new to the genre. Amalara has already released two free supplements: a glossary and a calendar.

Even more exciting (to this monk, at least) is the publication of our Castle of the Mountain Goblins article, and the announcement of the monk’s writing a samurai /code of bushido supplement for Land of the Crane.

The Gift of Earth Summer Tour

The monks have been somewhat busy with the “Gift of Earth” Summer Tour. In this case, the production has been run twice. The first was a 24 person event at Dundracon this past Feburary. More recently was the (first) ConQuest – Sacramento, where we had 12 players.

A Gift of Earth” is extremely open-ened in play, there is a good chance it will be the model for the 2007 Dundracon game. This assumes it does not appear sooner.

As always, a sincere domo arigato to all the generous players out there!

Of the Mountain Witch

The Monk picked up Mountain Witch on an expedition recently. A game by Timothy Kleinert, Mountain Witch is a dark samurai fantasy about trust, betrayal, and confronting one’s fate. From timfire publishing’s website:

A group of ronin samurai are hired for a simple yet terrifying task—to assault and kill O-Yanma, the dreaded Mountain Witch of Mount Fuji. But regretful pasts and dark fate conspire against the mission, testing both the courage and loyalty of the samurai.

When every heart holds betrayal, who can you trust?

Mountain Witch is an interesting roleplaying game, and one that’s of interest to L5R players. Read the rest of this entry »

DDC 2006: A Gift of Earth

Dundracon is just a few short months away, and the Jade Lantern will once again be co-hosting another L5R event. Below is the draft extended description of the event.

A Gift of Earth

The Emperor’s prize would greatly enhance the reputation of your small clan. But others seek the honor. Minor clans, great clans, even bureaucrats. To whom will the Emperor’s favor go?

Opportunity and Danger are two sides of the same coin. The Emperor, the Great Hantei, has unvielded the presence of a new silver mine. Located in the Biwa Valley, this silver mine requires stewardship, most likely drawn from one of the minor clans with lands along the Valley. It would greatly enhance the prestige of your clan to win this stewardship, but others seek the honor. Minor clans, great clans, even bureaucrats. Who will gain the Emperor’s favor? Read the rest of this entry »

Flawless Victory

I recently found some time to retreat and read through the new L5R 3rd edition. I settled in for a nice long read and drank more than a few cups of tea while doing so. My reading of the book has only fully reinforced my initial impression: the 3rd edition is magnificent! The entire package is a significant upgrade of the production values of the earlier books, with full color throughout, an outstanding selection of artwork, and a sizable array of content. End to end this was an impressive package. Perhaps a bit light on some of the GM’s advice, and of course I saw a typo or two, but really, just an outstanding job and a very worthy book.

If you’re a fan of L5R or the genre, I recommend the Legends of the Five Rings: 3rd edition book without reservation.

DDC 2005: Test of Might

A huge thank you to all twenty-three of the players who took part in this year’s Dundracon event, as well as my co-GM, of course. I had a wonderful time running the game, and already look forward to running next February’s game.

For those who did not have the chance to attend the event, the extended program description (from the GM notes) was:

“As winter turns to spring, the time for campaigning draws near. Armor is cleaned, weapons polished, and stores counted. The Crab Daimyo has declared a Shiken no Isei (”Test of Might”) to decide which of his Bushi-Ryu will have his favor and which of the bushi-students show the greatest promise for battles ahead.”

The end of the story has both less and more to do with the fall of Hiruma Castle than it does the Test of Might.

The Event

Thanks to the nice folks at DDC, we had a seminar room for our event, which was slated for 14 players. The seminar room is a nice sized private suite, and can handle the size of the groups we wind up running. It also has it’s own bathroom and quasi-kitchenette, two doors, and they have about five or six long tables and plenty of chairs. Luckily – we needed all of them. We ran through 23 player this year, taking on everyone who showed up, ad I recall. Read the rest of this entry »

Greetings and Apologies

Greetings and apologies to our visitors and friends. As you may have noticed, our once strong House has been pulled down by the hands of fate. We are in the process of restoring the site, and ask your patience and forgiveness.

… and yes, the color will return to something more … green.

Warmest regards,

The Monk of the House of the Jade Lantern

The Soundtrack

We’ve received quite a few requests for the soundtrack(s) used at the Jade Lantern sponsored games, such as our DundraCon events. For your enjoyment, the Monk gladly provides his current L5R iPod/iTunes playlist:

Artist / Album
Melan-ryu, Kimpu-ryu, Tozan-ryu, Ikuta-ryu and Kikusue-ryu / Japanese Masterpieces For The Shakuhachi
Zumi-Kai Original Instrumental Group / Koto Music Of Japan
Kohachiro Miyata / Shakuhachi – The Japanese Flute
Richard Stagg/ Shakuhachi: the japanese flute
Kitaro / Mandala
Kodo / Best Of Kodo
Kitaro / Sacred Journey of Kukai
Tony Scott / Music for Zen Meditation
Richard Warner / The Spirit of the Tao Te Ching

Kodo’s drumming is excellent, and was used to nice effect in the Lion-centric game of Lion at Honor’s Gate, at DunDraCon. In general, the Monk prefers Shakuhachi in the background as a default. Koto music is good for court scenes, but can become grating to some for extended duration.

One of the early articles in Behind the Mempo, Water Music, is centered around some music recommendations for L5R and like games.

DDC 2003: Lion at Autumn’s Gate

Another enjoyable ‘Con. Our event this year was a change from the prior two years’ Scorpion-based games. This year, we proudly presented “Lion at Autumn’s Gates”:

“Lion at Autumn’s Gate. The castle may be breached, but honor shall remain intact. This is a proper end for a bushi of your status. You will meet the enemy at the gates, and make them pay dearly for every step. Your name will be remembered.”

A two GM event scheduled for a total of 12 players (6 and 6), our Satursday evening, 8pm start time (prime time, as they say) saw a large waiting list of hopefuls. I hate to turn away folks from a game … and so, grew my portion to 11! Luckily, I always prepare more PCs than needed. The total event ran for 6 hours, and I believe was enjoyed by all. The House of the Jade Lantern salutes our players – the bold Matsu bushi and the esteemed and honors Ikoma bards – and of course, our brilliant co-GM, Wayne!

As in the prior two years, the GMs were:

Brian Isikoff: Master of the Jade Lantern, author of the “12 Diplomats of Bayushi Risako” event at DunDracon ’99, and the co-author of the “Eaters of Sin” events at DunDracon ’01 and ’02.

Wayne Ogle: GM of a regular L5R campaign on the North Bay, as well as the author and GM for the epic “Anvil of Despair” events at DunDracon ’99 and ’00, and the co-author of the “Eaters of Sin” events at DunDracon DC ’01 and ’02 .

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