Friday, April 4, 2008

Himura's Justice

That particular name is a place-holder.

I was reading the section on nemuranai in the L5R rules and it addressed how nemuranai are empowered by the kami within the object. Since the kami come in one of the four elements or void, the effects that a nemuranai could produce were distributed among the elements.

After reading the different mechanical effects assigned to each element, I thought about a weapon and armor combo with the appropriate weapon or armor property from each element (the armor would grant a bonus to initiative from air and damage reduction from earth; the katana would gain a bonus to damage rolled from fire and a bonus to damage kept from water).

Then I thought about a unique power for an element. The scene of a Crab (in this case, a Himura bushi) being insulted by a Crane courtier at a court. The Himura really wanted to defend his honor against the courtier but the Crane was allowed to choose a champion. He had a Daidoji yojimbo who faced the Crab in a duel. However, the Himura's anger was so potent that when he struck at the Daidoji yojimbo, the blow passed through him on the whim of the air kami and struck the Crane courtier who was standing at the edge of the dueling circle directly behind him. Both the courtier and his yojimbo died in the single stroke of the blade.

That was a cool unique weapon property and I immediately thought about using it in D&D. You just allow the strike to also target the next creature immediately opposite your initial target from you within X feet. Suddenly you have a spear or a longsword that, in the right circumstances, attacks two creatures (you could even go more cinematic with it and allow the sword strike to apply in a line or cone area of effect).

In fact, having just now thought that up, it would be a pretty cool 4e power.

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