Custom NPC Battle Royal! [5th Edition, Challenge ends 03/30/2020]

  • Creator
  • #3918

    Good day GMs of L5R RPG! We have a challenge for you!
    There’s a woefully slim amount of custom NPCs out there,
    so let’s post some of our own and let’s make a game out of it:

    NPC with the most likes (- dislikes) will be the winner in this challenge.

    Your NPC must qualify with the following:

    • Must be an Adversary
    • Must have a unique ability
    • Must have a description

    Notice, the rules do not necessitate that you have a “balanced” NPC, but if you’d like to learn how to estimate Encounter Ranks properly you can use the math outlined in this post.

    Resources to help with NPC creation:

    Excel NPC creator tool

    NPC face cards

    Happy creating! Challenge Ends 03/30/2020!

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  • Author
    • #4271
      Honor: 34
      Glory: 43

      Bayushi Sachiyo

      The Scorpion Clan are respected and feared for their relentless cunning. Their ability to use deceit and treachery as weapons coated in the venomous honey of lies has made them into a potent force across the breadth of Rokugan, and few are the samurai who would a member of that clan lightly. The ideal Scorpion is intelligent, patient, loyal and ruthless. Even those who fall short, willingly or unwillingly, acknowledge that the goal of the clan is to strive for these attributes.

      And then… there is Sachiyo.

      The only daughter of a prominent Yogo shugenja and a prestigious courtier, people expected great things from Sachiyo. As she approache adulthood, her beauty and charm had several ranking clan members believe that she was going to be one of the distinguished samurai of her generation.

      That was of course before she was quietly removed from the Yogo school due to lack of talent. Then, less quietly, removed from the Shoshuro school for lack of patience. Then, loudly, expelled from the Bayushi school for lack of decorum.

      Lazy, impatient, impetuous, treacherous, easily-bored and flippant in equal measure, Sachiyo turned out to be a disaster wherever she went. Even now, in her early twenties, she in unmarried in spite of her family connections, without title, and without formal duties. Instead she is shuffled around from court to court, positioned where her natural chaos causes the least harm to the clan and the most harm to their enemies. Courtiers with an ear to the ground know that her arrival to a court is a sure sign that the Scorpion no longer have anything of value to add, and instead are seeking to set off a social bomb without provoking outright war. Thus Sachiyo wanders through a series of provincial postings, backwaters cities, and lonely waystations, using her charm and beauty to sucker others for her own amusement before inevitably being ejected from the premises.

      Unbeknownst to her handlers, Sachiyo’s boredom with her lot in life has recently taken a dangerous new turn. A mysterious stranger she shared sake with during one of her journeys on the road has taught her a few minor maho rituals, tricks that she now experiments with in her copious spare time. She still has enough self-preservation to hide the cuts on her arms where she practices her techniques, and she has thus far avoided the Taint, but it is only a matter of time before her inclination toward recklessness spells disaster.

      Earth 2 Air 3 Water 3 Fire 3 Void 1
      Endurance 8 Composure 12 Focus 6 Vigilance 3
      Artisan 2 Martial 0 Scholar 2 Social 3 Trade 2

      Demeanor: Mischievous (Fire +2, Air -2)

      Honor: 25 Glory: 15 Status: 35

      Advantages: Dangerous Allure (Fire, Interpersonal, Social), Sly Charm (Water, Interpersonal, Social)
      Disadvantages: Disdain for Sincerity (Void, Flaw, Mental), Reckless (Earth, Flaw, Mental), Whispers of Failure (Fire, Interpersonal, Infamy)

      Wakizashi: Range 0-1, Damage 3, Deadliness 5/7, Ceremonial, Razor-Edged
      Gear (equipped): Extravagant robes (Physical 1, Ceremonial)
      Gear (other): Go set, dice, jug of sake, jug of Tainted water, Rokugani pony


      Shameless Provocation (Shuji): Once per scene, Sachiyo may make a Social (Fire) check targeting one character in the scene. The TN is equal to the target’s honor rank (to a minimum of 1). If she succeeds, the target suffers 3 strife, plus 1 strife per bonus success. If this causes a target to become Compromised, Sachiyo removes 3 strife from herself.

      Whispering Winds (Shuji): Once per session as an action, Sachiyo may make a Social (Air) check targeting one character in the scene. The TN is equal to 6 minus the target’s glory rank (to a minimum of 1). If she succeeds, Sachiyo learns a rumor about the target. 2 Opportunity: Sachiyo learns one of the target’s advantages or disadvantages of the target’s choice.

      Fanning the Flames (Shuji): When making a Social skill (Fire) check, Sachiyo may spend Opportunity in the following way: Fire Opportunity: One target gains the Dazed condition.

      Dark Reflection (Maho): Activation: As a Support action, Sachiyo may make a TN 2 Scholar (Water) check targeting a person, object, or location she has encountered before. Effects: If Sachiyo succeeds, she scries upon a chosen person or location. However, the image is distorted: one minor detail within it is always incorrect, reflecting instead her fears or desires.

      • #4286
        Susumu Chusei (CBass)
        Honor: 42
        Glory: 19

        Seems like a fun character! I could see them being a love interest who the PC tries to save from Maho, who runs away as feelings get too intense. Or, perhaps they are downtrodden, tired of being thrown away, ready to go do something to “prove them all wrong”. Very cool, you get my +1 for sure.


    • #3958
      Shinjo Turk
      Honor: 20
      Glory: 37


      At rural Inns and Way stations, gossip and rumor speak of Shichirou. Described as a tall, bulky ronin, always wearing Jingasa, wandering less traveled roads. Those few who have encountered him describe him as having an aura of dread about him, many peasants give him room and board in their inns out of fear. Shichirou is outwardly rude to any Samurai he encounters, goading them into challenging him to a duel. Shichirou will always fight these duels to the death, and will attempt to slay any Samurai that is defeat. Once Shichirou has slayed his opponent, he will disappear for months at a time, reappearing in a different region, looking for someone else to Challenge


      Earth 3, Air 3, Water 3, Fire 4, Void 2

      Endurance 14, Composure 12, Focus 7, Vigilance 3

      Martial 5, Scholar 1, Social 1, Trade 2

      Demeanor – Intense (Air +2, Water -2)

      Advantages – Killer Instinct (Fire) [Martial, Mental]

      Disadvantages – Unnecessarily Rude (Water) [Social, Interpersonal]


      Katana: Range 1, Damage 4, Deadliness 5/7, Ceremonial, Razor-Edged

      Gear (Equipped): Wakizashi, worn traveler’s robes (Physical 2, Mundane), straw hat




      School of the Wolf

      Once per round, when an Attack action check targeting Schichiro succeeds, Schichiro may suffer 3 fatigue to change the target to another character (other than the attacker) at range 0–1 of himself.

      Striking as Fire

      When performing an Attack action (Fire) check, Schichiro may spend (Opp) as follows:
      Fire (1)+: Increase the severity of any critical strike dealt as part of this attack by 2 per (1) spent this way.

      Words Cut Deeper than Steel

      Schichiro has an almost supernatural knowledge on how to insult a Samurai into goading them to challenge him. Once per scene, Schichiro makes a deep insult toward the Samurai that Honor demands must be answered. A Character targetted this way must either Challenge Schichiro to a Duel, or lose Glory equal to their Glory Rank times 2

      The Taste is Satisfied

      After a scene ends where Schichiro has slain a Samurai with his own blade, Schichiro departs. All Attempts to discover his whereabouts have his TN Increase by 3.

      • #4007
        Susumu Chusei (CBass)
        Honor: 115
        Glory: 35

        Interesting villainous character, I can see them being a rare recurring character who spells death for someone every time they show up. The PCs knowing that every time their paths cross it’s a “now or never” crisis. If Shichiro escapes this only means more victims will suffer.

    • #4404
      Susumu Chusei (CBass)
      Honor: 42
      Glory: 19

      This competition is closed, congratulations to Nate and Shinjo Turk for winning with a tie!

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