Words of Steel

Preview Crane Clan Samurai in Masters of the Court


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Throughout the ages, one clan has held dominance over the hallowed halls of the Emerald Empire’s courts. To face a Crane courtier in a battle of wits is to invite death, and the Iron Legion of the Left Hand are just as deadly on the battlefield. The Crane know they are the mightiest clan in Rokugan, and any who stand against them face a group of samurai armed with sharp blades and sharper words. 

Now, the Crane are receiving a set of brand new tools in Masters of the Court, a new Clan Pack for Legend of the Five Rings: The Card Game! Masters of the Court spotlights the Crane Clan with 78 new cards (three copies of twenty-five different cards and one copy each of three different cards). Here, you can look for an emphasis on the Crane’s skilled Duelists, their well-spoken Courtiers, and their ability to lock down their opponents with powerful conflict cards.

Join us today as we preview some of these new Crane Clan tools from Masters of the Court!

For the Glory of Rokugan

Glory is a double-edged blade in the world of Rokugan. While honoring the Crane’s high-glory characters paves the road to victory, dishonor can lead them down a path of ruin. Luckily, the Maker of Keepsakes (Masters of the Court, 7) is in no such danger, as she simply cannot receive dishonored status tokens from any source. With two glory, this Shugenja can easily become a five military, five political skill powerhouse who at worst can be downgraded to her base stats. The trappings of dishonor hold no sway over the Maker of Keepsakes, who will bring the Crane to glory no matter the cost.

As the Clan Pack’s name suggests, the Crane dominate the courts of Rokugan, their army of courtiers cutting down lesser samurai with their words alone, ending conflicts before a single blow is struck. The Benevolent Host (Masters of the Court, 10) is a generous samurai, but as your opponent is lulled into security, they become outnumbered by the Crane. After you play the Benevolent Host, you may put another Courtier in one of your provinces into play, giving them a fate if they cost two or less. There are plenty of valuable targets for this ability, from the upcoming Arbiter of Authority  (Bonds of Blood, 34) to the always popular Guest of Honor  (Core Set, 51). With careful deckbuilding, the Benevolent Host never works alone, overwhelming your opponent with the steel wordsmiths of the Crane.

Masters of the Court contains an ideal target for the Benevolent Host in the form of the Winter Court Hosts (Masters of the Court, 12), a massive six-cost group of Courtiers whose elegance and grace is unparalled in the land of Rokugan. With a massive seven political skill and three glory, the Winter Court Hosts are worth the investment for their skill alone. However, the Winter Court Hosts can also provide additional card draw during conflicts they are participating in, provided you are more honorable than your opponent. With the Winter Court Hosts on the field, you will always have additional gifts for friends and foes alike. 

Gossip and Celebration

Of course your opponent will have their own gifts to provide in the form of brutal conflict cards. If you can anticipate the actions of your foe, you can spread Gossip (Masters of the Court, 22) to ensure your opponent’s plans are always disrupted. Gossip is a limited card that allows you to name a card that your opponent can’t play until the end of the phase. Cards like the Lion Clan's For Greater Glory (Core Set, 168) can be vital to their Great Clan’s success, and Gossip ensures you are safe from these high-impact cards for a short while.

To further push your advantage, the Crane can hold a Festival for the Fortunes  (Masters of the Court, 25). A steep investment, this event honors each character on the field. While this includes your opponent’s characters, careful planning can ensure your clan comes out on top during the festival. At one influence, the Festival for the Fortunes can be an important event in any clan’s deck, including the Phoenix, who often rely on high glory characters to give them the edge in conflicts.

Using their impressive legion of Courtiers, you can press the Crane’s biggest advantage with Courteous Scheming (Masters of the Court, 24). This two-cost event allows you to initiate a political duel, with the winner able to declare an additional political conflict during the phase. This allows the Crane to go all in on their biggest strength and stress your opponent’s political defenses.

Sharp Blades, Sharper Words

Whether they are spreading gossip about their foes or hosting the Winter Court itself, the Crane are a difficult foe to overcome. Will any Great Clan stand up to their might when Masters of the Court releases in the second quarter of 2019?

Serve the Empire with beauty and grace by purchasing Masters of the Court (L5C18), available now for pre-order from your local retailer or our website!

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