Tuesday, 8 January 2013

Some AW / L5R archetypes


A good scout is never surprised: When you Defy Danger in rural areas, roll+Sagacious instead of roll+Bold.

Pass without trace: When you hide in rural areas, or cover your tracks to evade pursuers, take +1 to your Defy Danger roll.

Observe the enemy's position: When you Read the Situation while observing your enemies, and act on the MC's answers, take +2 rather than +1.

Follow the path: When you track, hunt of follow the trail of someone who has gone before you - whether animal prey, your enemy, or in search of a lost comrade - roll+Sagacious. On a 7+, you follow their trail until some major obstacle blocks you - perhaps the trail suddenly ends, or the party being tracked arrives at a city, or a river blocks your path. On a 10+, your MC will tell you what happened here (eg they boarded a boat; someone was waiting here with horses, they split up and two went one way, while three went the other way). In either case, make another roll to continue tracking if circumstances allow.


Concealment is second nature: When you hide yourself from sight, take +1 to your Defy Danger roll.

Poison!: You start with 1D3 doses of any of the following poisons, and when you have a spare few hours, and the right ingredients, you can make another 1D3 doses of a particular poison. Each dose, when administered, causes the following effect:

  • Dripping Poison: Trickled down a thread into the mouth of a sleeping enemy, this poison causes 2 harm (ap) and affects the person with a -1 to Strong for the next 24 hours.
  • Fire Biter: When added to a weapon, wounds caused by it always generate terrible harm. This can be in addition to the terrible harm which you may choose on a good Fight roll.
  • Night Milk: When ingested, this poison causes deep sleep within ten minutes, and lasts for 6 hours or until the person afflicted is roused with vigor.

Acrobatic Strike: When you Fight, roll+Bold rather than roll+Strong.

Ghost in the Night: When you need to get away, roll+Sagacious and name your escape route. On a 10+, you get there unscathed. On a 7+, you get there but not without cost - you leave something behind, take a 2 harm wound or give away your identity (your MC will tell you which).


Magistrate's Papers: When acting in an official capacity in an investigation, take a +1 to Read a person.

Ongoing Investigations: When you act on the MC's answers after Reading a situation or Reading a person, take +2 rather than +1.

Do you know who I am?: When using your official position to Threaten, roll+Sagacious rather than roll+Strong.

At your disposal: With rank comes perks: You start with Post with Aides. If you choose the Post with Aides move later, take +1 to your Aides rolls.


Craft Object: You are skilled in creating a certain type of objects (weapons, armor, paintings, cabinets, buildings etc). Each session, roll+Elegant. On a 7+ you create a nice looking usable object of the type you specialize in. On a 10+ you create a masterpiece that can be sold for 1 wealth above its normal value.

Patron: You have a patron who allows you to concentrate on your art. Each session, you may choose whether to receive 1 wealth or 1 favor from him or her. 

A study in scarlet: When you closely observe an item of the type you specialize in, you can learn one thing about it - who made it, whether it has any peculiar properties, who it was made for, etc.

A dangerous flaw: When you observe an object of the type you specialize in for a short while, you may spot a flaw or weakness in its design. Take +1 forward when using this flaw or weak spot against your target. Examples: You note that the armor your enemy is wearing was a weak spot to the left of the chest - add +1 in your Fight roll against that opponent; You notice that the foundations of the building are sagging a little in a certain point; destroying that corner post will bring the entire building down on a successful roll+Strong move; The new vase that the Crane courtier is showing off dos not follow the proper color palette, point this out and take +1 in your next Negotiate at Court roll to cause them loss of face.


Fists of Steel: When you fight unarmed or with small weapons, add +1 Harm.

I recognize your style, and can overcome it: When you Read a person after watching them Fight, take +2 forward when acting on what you learn rather than +1.

As tough as steel: When you Fight unarmored, you always count as having 1 armor.

Large and imposing: When you Threaten someone and use your size and build to do so, take +1.

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