Taming a Lion
Preview the Non-Lion Cards in The Emperor's Legion
The Lion are the right hand of the Emperor, their skill unmatched on the battlefield. It would be foolish of the other Great Clans to not have counter-measures, to have samurai who specialize in disrupting the Lion Clan’s battlefield tactics, to outsmart them and take whatever advantage they can against the Emperor’s masters of war and battle.
The Emperor’s Legion spotlights the Lion Clan with 78 new cards (three copies of twenty-five different cards and one copy each of three different cards) for Legend of the Five Rings: The Card Game. However, the pack also contains several neutral cards as well as one new character for the other six Great Clans of Rokugan.
Push and Pull
If you’re to defeat the Lion on the battlefield, you’ll have to manipulate these conflicts to your advantage. The Unicorn and Crab understand that this tactic can be a key to victory. Yasuki Hikaru (The Emperor’s Legion, 14) can completely turn the tide of a conflict by focusing on your opponent’s most skilled samurai and removing them from the conflict. The character is simply moved home, but the absence of a character like Akodo Toturi (Core Set, 79) from a conflict can deflate your opponent’s forces, leading to a successful defense for the mighty Crab.
The Unicorn can disrupt Lion plans in a different way. Moto Ariq (The Emperor's Legion, 16) is a three cost character that can pull an opposing samurai into a conflict. The Lion are methodical, sending the appropriate amount of forces to each battle, and holding back their strongest samurai for the most opportune time. Moto Ariq disrupts these plans by forcing a Samurai into a conflict. By harpooning your opponent’s best samurai into an insignificant conflict, you can open their defenses for a brutal counterattack from the Unicorn.
Of course, superior strategy isn’t the only strength of the Lion. Reverence for their past allows mystic Shugenja to commune with the dead, who can aid them in conflicts through cards like Guidance of the Ancestors (Core Set, 162). While this is an effective trick, Kitsuki Kāgi (The Emperor’s Legion, 27) can cut this advantage out from under them. By removing cards from their discard pile, the Lion have no history to call upon, and must face the might of the Dragon Clan alone.
The Lion also find strength in number, utilizing low-cost samurai to overwhelm their foe. However, such a straightforward strategy is open to manipulation. Isawa Tsuke (The Emperor’s Legion, 16) amplifies the power of the Fire ring, able to honor multiple characters at a time. However, if you choose to dishonor a character with the power of the ring, you also dishonor each other foe with that character’s cost. As the Lion often rely on low cost-samurai to fill out their ranks, you can consistently get more use out of the Fire ring by dishonoring Lion Clan samurai who share a cost. With a heavy focus on themes of honor, these disgraced samurai will not be nearly as effective as their brethren, allowing the Phoenix to dominate the Lion while they struggle with their sense of honor.
The Emperor’s Legion also contains three copies of three neutral cards that can slot into a wide variety of decks.
The Caravan Guard (The Emperor’s Legion, 19) is one of the most powerful 1-cost characters in the game, available to clans with the Keeper role. However, as a Ronin, his loyalty does not come without cost. If you want to use this skilled Bushi to attack a province, it will cost you one fate. Though this additional cost can add up, the Caravan Guard can be a valuable asset when the Great Clans come to blows.
Similarly, clans who have chosen a Seeker role also get access to a new Ronin. The Insolent Outcast (The Emperor’s Legion, 20) does not have an impressive skillset at first glance, but his power grows when your opponent begins to honor their forces. If you are facing a clan like the Lion, Crane, or Phoenix, the Insolent Outcast can begin to stand against even their mightiest samurai as the game progresses.
The final neutral cards rewards decks fielding many samurai at a time. Those Who Serve (The Emperor’s Legion, 28) provides a discount on samurai you play during the dynasty phase. Playing one samurai will not provide a fate discount, but the more samurai you can play through cards like Staging Ground (Core Set, 80) allows you a deeper discount. A well-timed Those Who Serve can completely change your fortune in conflict. An empty field can quickly become populated with some of your most loyal samurai.
The Field of Battle
Though the Lion dominate the field of battle, they are not infallible. Over hundreds of years, the Great Clans have adapted to their overwhelming strategies and developed tactics that bring the mighty legion to their knees. Will you wield these powerful tools and meet the Lion on the field of battle?
Discover bold new strategies in The Emperor’s Legion (L5C27), available now for pre-order from your local retailer or our website with free shipping in the continental United States!
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