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Labyrinthe Forum _ Yellow Paper _ New player - Blade Master build

Posted by: Stele Feb 4 2016, 12:09 AM

Apologies if this is the wrong forum, could really do with a 'new player' section.

After a month at Labyrinthe I've tried a 'tester' character but would like to try out my tabletop RPG favourite, a B skill Blade Master.

The problem is after going over the rules I'm a little underwhelmed.

- Can't use a shield (obviously) but in Labyrinthe that's HUGE as no one is scared to crowd you whilst taking a few hits. In reality no-one is going to rush in to take down Miyamoto Musashi because he doesn't have armour or a shield.

- No way to buy as 1st class Warrior (unlike Archer, Budoka, Monk, Paladin and Unholy Champion) to pick up skills to fill in defensive gaps (eg Master of Celerity from a quick scan of the Warrior Handbook).

- a Kensai born in the West can't take a tradition but one born in the East can. Personally I would have loved to take Monastic which seems balanced and completely in keeping with the background.

Hopefully I've missed something, can someone post me an example of a viable Blade Master build?

Cheers

Martin

Posted by: Jasper Feb 4 2016, 01:07 AM

Hi
As you may have heard the books are all being updated and I suspect you'll find that it will soon be possible to play an Imperial Kensai/Blademaster and have a Tradition.

Kensai already buy as Warrior (which the other subclass mostly don't), but yes, there is no standard 1st class Warrior add-on. It would probably be possible to get the 1st class warrior abilities which Kensai can't already buy if you really wanted them, but iirc they are mostly on fairly high tables so you don't need to worry for a while.

Yes, a B class Kensai is not as tough as a Warrior with a sword and shield. This was intentional as the class was introduced for people who wanted a challenge.

My advice is to get Forearm Parry as early as possible (it isn't standard - what I would do is multiclass to some sort of Budoka variant which gave me 60/20 base life and forearm parry whilst using a B class weapon). My other advice is to not exclusively use a 5' long greatsword and not spend all your points on damage grades because no-one takes a blind bit of notice. My other other advice is to make friends with someone who can and will heal you.

(My real, sensible advice is to play a Warrior instead - the roleplay can be exactly the same but you can use a shield if/when you have to and have lots more life)



J

Posted by: Stele Feb 4 2016, 01:35 AM

QUOTE(Jasper @ Feb 4 2016, 01:07 AM) *
Kensai already buy as Warrior (which the other subclass mostly don't), but yes, there is no standard 1st class Warrior add-on.


Ok have I got this right? Buying as Warrior 2nd class (Kensai) you buy any post 8th skill listed as 'Warrior', but not as 'Warrior 1st class'? that's not too bad.


QUOTE(Jasper @ Feb 4 2016, 01:07 AM) *
(My real, sensible advice is to play a Warrior instead - the roleplay can be exactly the same but you can use a shield if/when you have to and have lots more life)
J


That's a shame really.

Posted by: Jasper Feb 4 2016, 02:51 AM

QUOTE(Stele @ Feb 4 2016, 01:35 AM) *
Ok have I got this right? Buying as Warrior 2nd class (Kensai) you buy any post 8th skill listed as 'Warrior', but not as 'Warrior 1st class'? that's not too bad.


That's right.

QUOTE(Stele @ Feb 4 2016, 01:35 AM) *
That's a shame really.


I agree and have 10,000+pts worth of B class Kensai and Warrior to prove it. It's partly the reality of fighting with rubber sticks instead of real swords*, partly that Kensai stats are intentionally bad and partly that the high-fantasy, high-hit nature of the system means that you rarely take down a monster in a single hit.


J
*actually it's mostly this

Posted by: Elferrick Feb 4 2016, 07:55 AM

Jasper has really hit the nail on the head with his advice. Kensai are fun but the challenge is making them cool too. Also remember that at lower levels (per 3k) your really fleshing out your character and making a name for yourself. As with the Monk I'll be playing on the same game, I have ideas for the long term but must remember that he is only a novice and not the grandmaster my mind keeps seeing him as. As said above, find people to work alongside, and a helpful priest is always welcome.
Lastly if you play the character as blademaster should be played. With flair and true kenjutsu then the monsters will play along with it. (I found this with my oriental Warlock) rather than the tap tap tap of a rubber sword that has half the weight and none of the balance of the real thing.

Whatever you decide, have fun with it and remember that people are here to help.

Posted by: Abel Feb 4 2016, 09:42 AM

QUOTE(Stele @ Feb 4 2016, 12:09 AM) *
Apologies if this is the wrong forum, could really do with a 'new player' section.

After a month at Labyrinthe I've tried a 'tester' character but would like to try out my tabletop RPG favourite, a B skill Blade Master.

The problem is after going over the rules I'm a little underwhelmed.

- Can't use a shield (obviously) but in Labyrinthe that's HUGE as no one is scared to crowd you whilst taking a few hits. In reality no-one is going to rush in to take down Miyamoto Musashi because he doesn't have armour or a shield.

This is a big one in Laby, no shield is a concern, but if you're going B Class it's not a worry, you can't use a shield in conjuction with B Class anyway. Parry versatility (30 points) and Forearm parry (requires yellow paper) is the only option in this way.
QUOTE(Stele @ Feb 4 2016, 12:09 AM) *
- No way to buy as 1st class Warrior (unlike Archer, Budoka, Monk, Paladin and Unholy Champion) to pick up skills to fill in defensive gaps (eg Master of Celerity from a quick scan of the Warrior Handbook).

To be fair not a massive amount of thing you really want to buy from 1st class anyway, as a lot involves the need for plate/chain shields etc.
QUOTE(Stele @ Feb 4 2016, 12:09 AM) *
- a Kensai born in the West can't take a tradition but one born in the East can. Personally I would have loved to take Monastic which seems balanced and completely in keeping with the background.

There is a great community of Oriental characters (with a very dramatic plot, thanks Sonof) going around at the moment, and two oriental clans to join, that will get you going with equipment you may need, just shout about and one of us will happily assist you, the only downside is the requirement for the accent, but most of us have got this to a "semi" non-offensive point now smile.gif
QUOTE(Stele @ Feb 4 2016, 12:09 AM) *
Hopefully I've missed something, can someone post me an example of a viable Blade Master build?

Cheers

Martin

When playing a Kensai, you need to accept you won't be a "front-liner", or you will very quickly find yourself on the receiving end of a restore to life. They are a bit too squishy and AC come hard as they are limited to what they can wear. It's take quite alot of points to get anywhere near the toughness of other warrior type, but to balance this out they are indeed "glass canons" able to easily throw out big numbers when hitting things, but as has been said many time, it requires the monster to understand that you just cut it in two rather than playing until they feel like dying, almost everyone who has played this type of character(myself included) have come up against this wall and it is very frustrating. Don't get me wrong they are great to play when things go well, but be ready for the dark side of B Class. if you need anyadvice on where to go with it, I have quite alot of stuff on kensai (as many others do) and I am happy to share it.

Posted by: Stele Feb 4 2016, 01:40 PM

QUOTE(Jasper @ Feb 4 2016, 01:07 AM) *
(My real, sensible advice is to play a Warrior instead - the roleplay can be exactly the same but you can use a shield if/when you have to and have lots more life)
J


Thanks for the advice everyone.

Am I right in saying that Warrior can do everything Kensai can do (but abilities like 'Six' come later at 5.25k instead of 3k)?

The only abilities I can find that Kensai has but Warrior doesn't are Yadomejutsu and the Kensai/Duelist version of Combat Mastery, is that right?

Posted by: ChrisAndrews Feb 4 2016, 01:57 PM

QUOTE(Stele @ Feb 4 2016, 01:40 PM) *
Thanks for the advice everyone.

Am I right in saying that Warrior can do everything Kensai can do (but abilities like 'Six' come later at 5.25k instead of 3k)?

The only abilities I can find that Kensai has but Warrior doesn't are Yadomejutsu and the Kensai/Duelist version of Combat Mastery, is that right?


Pretty much.

Kensai tend to have better access to non-standards that relate to damage grades but a 1st class warrior can do just as well whilst having better life & a shield for when things go wrong. Lee, the GSM, is playing a totally standard B class warrior to prove it can be done and seems to do fine - has high enough damage grades to really make a difference but can still drop down to a broad sword + shield when needed.

Chris

Posted by: Estarriol Feb 4 2016, 02:04 PM

QUOTE(Stele @ Feb 4 2016, 01:40 PM) *
Thanks for the advice everyone.

Am I right in saying that Warrior can do everything Kensai can do (but abilities like 'Six' come later at 5.25k instead of 3k)?

The only abilities I can find that Kensai has but Warrior doesn't are Yadomejutsu and the Kensai/Duelist version of Combat Mastery, is that right?


I would have similar advice as everyone else. Kensai are a "hard mode" class and I really wouldn't recommend them for new players. There are all sorts of issues with being a glass cannon in this system unfortunately (at least, one that doesn't have get-out-of-jail-free abilities).

I have a first class warrior who has effectively multiclassed Kensai (it's all nonstandard stuff actually but is effectively what I just said). The difference in "sword expertise" between a 1st Class Warrior gone B-class battlemaster and weaponmaster in sword is small already, doubly so if they've also multiclassed Kensai and I'd argue almost meaninglessly small if they've gone to 8th level Kensai. You'll have a much easier time surviving that way as the 1st class warrior buy as has better options for life and damage reductions.

Regarding Jasper's point about not using a greatsword all the time, I'd very much agree. In general bastard swords are better in the caves and greatswords are more fun on overlands. I have a points app to be able to use all my kensai stuff with a bastard sword or a greatsword, depending on which one I walk onto dungeon with (again, not quite worded like that but amounts to that), which I'd recommend as a good option, and with Lee as GSM you probably won't have to spend hundreds of points on it the way I did. smile.gif

Posted by: Abel Feb 4 2016, 09:14 PM

QUOTE(ChrisAndrews @ Feb 4 2016, 01:57 PM) *
Pretty much.

Kensai tend to have better access to non-standards that relate to damage grades but a 1st class warrior can do just as well whilst having better life & a shield for when things go wrong. Lee, the GSM, is playing a totally standard B class warrior to prove it can be done and seems to do fine - has high enough damage grades to really make a difference but can still drop down to a broad sword + shield when needed.

Chris

surely if he proves it, then Kensai really need an overhaul

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