EE The Player

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The player

Player keywords, abilities and values

Clan alignment

A player’s Clan alignment, for example “Scorpion Clan” or “Unicorn Clan,” is the same as his or her Stronghold’s.

A player using an unaligned Stronghold (one with no Clan alignment) has no Clan alignment. An unaligned player does not have the same Clan alignment as unaligned Personalities.

Effects that say “You are an [X] Clan player.” give the player that Clan alignment.

Legal Clan alignments in Emperor Edition are:

  • Crab Clan
  • Crane Clan
  • Dragon Clan
  • Lion Clan
  • Mantis Clan
  • Phoenix Clan
  • Scorpion Clan
  • Spider Clan
  • Unicorn Clan

Other Clan alignments given by effects only exist in games where those effects apply.

Example 1: The Forgotten Temple is an unaligned Stronghold and its player has no Clan alignment.

Example 2: An unaligned Stronghold gives the Panda Clan alignment to its player. This makes “Panda Clan” a Clan alignment in games where this stronghold is in play, but it is not a Clan alignment in other games.

Family Honor

A player’s Family Honor, or Honor for short, represents the respect and integrity he or she is seen to have in the Imperial Court. It may rise and fall over the course of the game. A player is responsible for keeping an accurate record of his or her Family Honor that the other player can check. Players may also confirm their opponents' Family Honor by keeping their own record.

A player’s starting Family Honor is taken from his or her Stronghold's Starting Family Honor stat.

Family Honor is a numerical value that follows different rules than card stats. Family Honor may have a negative value. Also, because Family Honor is marked in the game, changes to it do not have a duration; they are instantaneous.

If an Honor gain or loss is reduced or increased by another effect, the reduction or increase is not itself counted as an Honor gain or loss.

Reduction of an Honor gain cannot turn it into a loss, nor can reduction of a loss turn it into a gain; the minimum value of a gain or loss is zero. Losses are expressed in positive numbers even though their ultimate effect is to reduce Honor.

An Honor gain of 0 points is not considered an Honor gain for things that check whether a gain happened. Likewise, an Honor loss of 0 points is not considered an Honor loss for such purposes. Reduction of an Honor gain or loss to 0 points may effectively prevent it. See Timing. Each separate Honor loss or gain happens all at once. EXCEPTION: Some effects may check for a specific amount of “total Honor” gained or lost during a certain period. These effects keep a running tally of relevant Honor changes. If a multi-point Honor change would take the total above the specific amount, the change is split into two gains or losses. The gain or loss that takes the total to the specific amount is separate from, and comes before, the gain or loss in excess of the specific amount. This splitting happens at the “when” timing point of the Honor gain or loss.
Example: An action says in part: “From now until the turn ends, after a player gains 5 total Honor from his own card effects, negate his further gains from such effects.” During that period, the player gains 1 point of Honor (total gain = 1), then 2 points from a different effect (total gain = 3), then 3 points from a third effect. Because the third effect takes the total over 5, it is split into a gain of 2 points (total gain = 5), and a gain of 1 point. The gain of 1 point is negated.

References to "points of Family Honor" assume a positive Family Honor value.
Example: Matsu Misato's Ranged 3 Attack, which gains "+1 strength for every 10 points of Family Honor you have," does not gain any strength when you are at -10 Family Honor.

Maximum hand size

A player starts with a maximum hand size of 8, referring to the number of cards he or she allowed to keep in hand at the end of the End Phase. A player with no maximum hand size has an effectively infinite maximum hand size.

Maximum hand size is a stat of the player and follows the rules about EE_Card_features#Stats. {ADDED 9 June 2012]

Player abilities

Players may gain abilities and traits from effects. The following is a reminder list of the abilities players start the game with. Some of these actions are known by a special game term, in parentheses below, which also can refer to the Personality performing it.

Example: A Personality performing Lobby is “lobbying,” as well as performing a Lobby action.

(Equip) Repeatable Limited: Choose your performing Personality and target an attachment card in your hand: Attach it to him, paying all costs.
(Equip) Repeatable Battle: Choose your performing unbowed opposed Shugenja and target a Spell in your hand: Attach it to him, paying all costs. You may take an additional action to use a Battle ability on that Spell.

Both the Limited and Battle ability are Equip abilities.

(Lobby) Political Limited: If you have higher Family Honor than each other player, bow your performing Personality with 1 Personal Honor or higher: Take the Imperial Favor.
Favor Political Limited: Discard the Imperial Favor and a card: Draw a card.
Favor Political Battle: Discard the Imperial Favor and target an attacking enemy Personality: Move him home.
(Tactical Advantage) Repeatable Tactical Battle: Discard a card and choose your performing Tactician Personality: Give him a Force bonus equal to the Focus Value of the discarded card.
This action can only give one Force bonus per turn to each Tactician due to the rule about performing Tactical actions (see Tactician).
(Order Seppuku) Repeatable Open: Target a dishonorable Courtier, Samurai, or Shugenja Personality you control: He commits seppuku.
In the above ability, the Personality does not perform the seppuku, by the rules on performing.
(Conquest) Reaction: After a battle resolution ends, choose your performing attacking Conqueror Personality at that battlefield: Straighten his unit. It will not bow from the battle’s resolution.
(Proclaim) Reaction: After you bring a Personality in your province with your Clan alignment into play without Clan discount, if it is your turn: Gain Honor equal to his base Personal Honor.
(Naval Invasion) Reaction: After engaging, once per battle, if you are the Attacker and your current army has more Naval cards than the side oppos¬ing it, choose your performing Naval Personality: You have the first opportunity to take a Battle action, which he must perform.
In cases where multiple cards perform a Battle action, only one need be Naval.
(Kharmic) Repeatable Limited, pay 2 gold: Discard a Kharmic card from your hand to draw a card.
(Kharmic) Repeatable Limited, pay 2 gold: Discard a face-up Kharmic card from your province, refilling the province face-up.

Players winning and losing

L5R has a number of different victory conditions that reflect different paths to mastering the world of Rokugan or eliminating other players from contention.

Honor victory

An Honor victory represents overwhelming political acclaim in the Imperial Courts. At the point when a player’s turn begins (that is, prior to anything triggered "after the turn begins"), if that player has 40 or more Family Honor, he or she wins through an Honor Victory.

Military loss/victory

A Military victory represents the destruction of your last adversary’s last base of support. A player loses immediately after his or her last Province is destroyed (see Provinces), and is then eliminated from the game.

When two players are in a game (including the later stages of a game that started with more players), and one player loses this way, the last remaining player has won a Military Victory. This is considered a Military Victory even if the last province was destroyed by some other means than battle resolution.

Dishonor loss/victory

A player can lose by Dishonor, representing his or her faction being expelled from Rokugani society for offenses against honor. If a player’s Family Honor ever becomes –20 or below, the player loses the game at the beginning of his or her next End Phase, even if he or she returns to -19 or higher Family Honor.

When two or more players are in a game and a player loses in this way, if there is only one remaining player, he or she has won a Dishonor Victory.

Enlightenment victory

Enlightenment victory represents finding a path of insight beyond the material world, reflecting on experience in war and peace through the philosophies of the Five Elements. A player wins through an Enlightenment Victory after the start of one of his or her turns if he or she has in play five Ring cards, each with a different element keyword, and each of which last entered play by its own text (as opposed to other effects that can put a Ring into play).

Special victory conditions

Cards in the game may give other conditions of winning or losing. Winning by one of these cards, or because one of them caused the last remaining other player to lose, is designated by the title of that card.

Player elimination

If a player loses the game and two or more players remain, all cards from the eliminated player’s play deck are removed from the game (regardless of who controls them), all created cards under his control are removed from the game, all his remaining Provinces leave the game (without literally being destroyed), and he leaves the game. An eliminated player’s tokens that are still in play after this, as well as his created cards that are controlled by other players, remain in play.

If an attacker is eliminated in the middle of a series of battles, the player to his left determines the order remaining battles will resolve in.

Effects generated by eliminated players’ cards or actions persist for their normal duration. For effects that will end during some future turn of the eliminated player, end them after the previous remaining player’s turn and before the next remaining player’s turn.

Turn order

Turn order proceeds to the left. If no order or starting player is specified for a sequence of occurrences affecting different players, they are carried out in turn order, starting with the active player.

If an effect alters which player goes first in an action round (for example, taking battle actions in a battle), turn order proceeds leftwards from him or her.

The play deck

The “play deck” is the set of cards chosen by the player with which to play the game. It actually consists of two decks – one of black-backed Dynasty cards, one of green-backed Fate cards – a Stronghold, and versions of the starting Holdings Border Keep and Bamboo Harvesters. These cards are chosen according to a format.

L5R has a standard competitive format, Emperor 40/40 (referring to current base set and the minimum number of cards in the Dynasty and Fate decks, respectively), and a number of alternate formats.

L5R has a standard competitive format organized around the current base set, Emperor 40/40. The two numbers refer to the minimum number of cards in the Dynasty and Fate decks, respectively.

Unless format rules or a card specifically state otherwise, all play decks must be constructed according to the following two general rules:

  • No more than one copy of each Unique card, by card title, may be included in the play deck.
  • No more than three copies of any non-Unique card, by card title, may be included in a play deck.

EXCEPTION: Other than the special cards Border Keep and Bamboo Harvesters, cards with the same title but different Experienced levels (including non-experienced versions) count as different cards for deck construction.

If a card or card type “does not count against deck construction limits,” its existence in the deck does not count towards the minimum deck count required by the format. In practice this means the deck has to contain more cards than the stated minimum.

In Emperor 40/40 format:

  • All cards in a play deck must be Emperor legal – their most recent printing must have the Emperor expansion symbol.
  • Older printings of cards that have been reprinted with the Emperor expansion symbol may be used in a deck, but are always played by the stats and text of their most recent printing, following cardinal rule 2.
  • If an Emperor Edition legal card has the “Soul of [X]” keyword, showing that it is a renamed version of an older card, then the older card specifically named by the keyword may be used as a proxy for the EE legal card. The proxy is played with the title, stats and text of the EE legal version. If the proxy card itself is a “Soul of” and refers back to an even older card, the older card may not be used as an EE legal proxy; only cards directly named by Emperor legal “Soul of” cards may be proxied.
  • The Dynasty and Fate deck each must contain a minimum of 40 cards.

Rules for formats other than Emperor 40/40 are listed under the Alternate Format Rules section.


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