All advantages reprinted w/out permission from the main source book and supplements to the L5R RPG (1st edition, now out of print)



A Heart of Vengeance (Way of the Scorpion)

3 points

Pick a clan, any clan (should be a Great Clan). For some reason or another, members of that clan will always draw your wrath. Whenever you are using any skill against a member of that clan, you always keep an additional die.

Absolute Direction (L5R RPG)

1 point

This character never gets lost. He adds two dice to any rolls involving direction, mapping, or finding his way out of a Shadowlands crypt.

Allies (L5R RPG)


You are connected. For every 2 points you spend on Allies, you can gain a single Minor Ally, and for every 4 you can gain a Major Ally. Minor Allies are folks you can get you legal things like food, shelter and perhaps a small amount of money. A Major Ally can get you things that are slightly less easy to acquire - like fake travel papers, audience with a daimyo or a quick midnight ride out of the Province.

Ambidextrous (L5R RPG)

3 points

This character may use both hands without penalty. Any character who does not invest in Ambidexterity rolls two fewer dice when using his off-hand.

Balance (Way of the Lion)

4 points

You have the ability to remain neutral - even level-headed - regardless of your inner emotional state. You ignore any comments designed to taunt you or make you react. In game terms, this means you ignore any modifiers to your Honor roll. Also, during Iaijutsu duels, you may raise a number of times up to your Void + 2. Matsu characters may not purchase this advantage.

Benten's Blessing (L5R RPG)

3 points
2 for Crane

People are attracted to you. It may be your looks or your charm, or it may be both. You just have that certain "something." Whenever you make a roll involving persuasion, keep an additional die (two if they are attracted to you already).

Blackmail (L5R RPG)

Glory of blackmailee

You have a bit of information, or evidence, that you can hold over someone's head. Because of this information, you can gain advantages over the guilty party. The cost of this advantage is equal to the Glory Rank of the individual. This advantage costs one point less than usual for Scorpion Clan characters. Keep in mind that no one likes to be blackmailed...

Bland (Way of the Phoenix)

2 points

Characters who bland by nature tend to be unassuming, quiet folk with average build and features. Because they are not striking in any way, it is easy to forget their name and appearance. They have no real distinguishing features, and many people simply look away when they pass nearby. Being bland is both an advantage and a disadvantage; someone who is bland has a greater chance of being ignored when disguised or not wishing to be noticed, but they also have a smaller chance of being noticed for recognition or award by their daimyo.

Blissful Betrothal (Kyuden Kakita)

3 points

Your character is betrothed, and couldn't be happier about it. Maybe your spouse is rich or well-connected, or maybe you're just lucky enough to have found true love. For one reason or another, the marriage works to benefit of both sides. You gain a significant political connection to your betrothed's family, and may purchase one of the following Advantages for two points less: Gentry, Wealth, Social Position, Ear of the Emperor, True Friend (with your betrothed only), or Kharmic Tie (with your betrothed only). Note that you do not receive either of these benefits until after the wedding ceremony, which will take place within one year. Of course, such a wonderful match doesn't come without its drawbacks. You'll have to see to your spouse's welfare, and disgruntled suitors may eye your happy new home with jealousy. Be on your guard.

Blood of Osono-wo (Way of the Crab)

3 points

You are a descendent of the great Osano-Wo, the Crab warrior whose stamina and battle fury rivaled that of the elements themselves. His blood has rendered you resistant to cold, heat, and extremes of temperature. You cannot be harmed by any naturally occurring weather-related phenomena and always succeed at any Stamina checks involving temperature changes.

Bloodlines (L5R RPG)

5 points
Kitsu only

You are the confluence of several pivotal bloodlines within the clan. The voices of your ancestors come to you without effort, at times to the point of annoyance. All spells and abilities involving any of your clan's ancestors directly keep an additional two dice, and Ancestors cost you only half their original value in Character Points. Your ancestors check up on you from time to time, however, and they frequently drop in at inconvenient times.

Cadence (Way of the Crane)

3 points
Crane only

This is the secret language of the Crane artisans, capable of encoding detailed information into song, speech, or painting. Certain mythological figures have meanings which can be deciphered by those who have been taught the Cadence. It is never taught to a non-Crane, lest their enemies learn the secret of their exceptional abilities of information gathering. This advantage can be bought during play if the GM decides a willing Crane mentor can be found.

Chosen by the Oracles (Way of the Phoenix)

5 points

Occasionally, a child is noticed by the Oracles and guided gently through their life. While this does not mean that the person so chosen is destined to become the next Oracle, it means that the Oracle takes a definite interest in their life and well-being - to the point of interfering when the individual is not doing as the Oracle thinks best. Because the Oracles are mystical, barely-human creatures, their idea of "best" and "worst" can be very different from our own, and their meddling can be a double-edged sword.

Clan Background (Way of the Shinsei)

1 point

You have some connection to a clan, and may take its special skills. This advantage is for non-clan members only (monks and ronin, for example).

Clear Thinker (L5R RPG)

2 points

It isn't easy to trick you. Whenever another character tries to confuse, befuddle, or lie to you, add 10 to their TN.

Combat Reflexes (Way of the Lion)

6 points

After initiative is rolled, you may switch places with the character whose action is directly before yours. For example, if you are third in line for actions this turn, you may switch places with the person who is second. That person becomes third in line.

Correspondence (Kyuden Kakita)

1 point

You have become friends with someone else in Rokugan, though you've never met. Pick a character in another clan as your correspondent, or let your GM pick one. The two of you write letters to one another often, keeping one another abreast of current events in your respective domains. Not only does this provide a great source of information about unknown areas of Rokugan, but if your letters are well-written, your correspondent may come to consider you a close ally or confidant. There is only one drawback: if you take longer than a week to reply to one of your correspondent's letters, even once, this advantage is lost permanently. You may reestablish communication with your correspondent, but something fundamental in your relationship has been lost, and you will never become true friends or allies without some significant effort on your part.

Crab Hands (Way of the Crab)

8 points

You have a familiarity with many forms of weapons, and can wield most of them with some degree of effectiveness. You fight with any weapons you do not have a skill ranking in as if you had a skill Ranking of 1. This is not a "substitute" for regular skill Ranks, and all weapons skills must still be purchased as normal. Example: Hida Shitoki has the Crab Hands advantage, a Kenjutsu Rank 3, and no Subojutsu Rank. He fights as if he had a Kenjutsu Rank 3 and a Subojutsu Rank 1. If he purchases Subojutsu through experience, he will still fight as if he had Rank 1.

Crafty (Way of the Scorpion)

3 points

Quite simply, you are very good at being bad. You are considered to have at least one Rank in all Low skills, even skills for which you have not yet purchased a Rank. If, however, you wish to buy a Low skill you do not have, you must purchase Rank 1 with Experience Points as normal.

Dangerous Beauty (Kyuden Seppun)

2 points
1 for Scorpion

This is a very different advantage from Benten's Blessing. A woman (or man) with Dangerous Beauty rolls three additional dice for the purposes of seduction and other less-than-honorable temptations.
A character who wishes to purchase both Benten's Blessing and Dangerous Beauty must pay an additional 3 Character Points on top of the total advantage price (a total of 8 points, or 7 points for Scorpion and Crane characters).

Daredevil (Way of the Phoenix)

4 points

People who take the Daredevil advantage are simply more capable of surviving incredible odds. Whenever this character does something risky, or performs an impossible feat, the GM secretly rolls a die. If the die roll is even, the character receives a +10 bonus to their roll (unknown to the player) for that feat. Otherwise, there is no benefit from this advantage.

Darling of the Court (Kyuden Kakita)

4 points

Recently, you did something clever or heroic and the Emperor thanked you personally, to your surprise. You never met or spoke with the Emperor again. Still, the countless courtiers and Imperial hangers-on have begun to harry you at ever turn, hoping that some of the Emperor's favor will rub off on them. It's a bit of an annoyance at times, but you have to admit it's fun to be popular. For the next six months, your Glory is effectively two Ranks higher in social situations, and you may spend 2 experience points to take any of your sycophants as a permanent Minor Ally (there is no limit to the number of times you may do this, if you have enough experience points to spend). After six months, this Advantage goes away forever. The Minor Allies you purchases remain loyal, but they no longer hang on your every word as they did. Everyone just seems to forget your name. Fame is fleeting. Make the best of it.

Death Trance (L5R RPG)

3 points
2 for Lion

This samurai understands that death has no hold over him, and has taken the philosophy of bushido to heart. When he faces death, he enters into a thoughtless trance that gives him great courage in the face of adversity. A character with Death Trance automatically succeeds any Fear test.

Different School (L5R RPG)

5 points
7 for Minor Clan

This character did not go to his Clan's bushi or shugenja school, but was instead an "exchange student" at another Clan's school. This requires the prospective student's family to cash in a number of favors, and may have some effect on other's perception of him; a Crab bushi who studied at the Kakita school would almost certainly be mocked by his cousins. This advantage may only be taken once.

Ear of the Emperor (Way of the Scorpion)

5 points

The PC has a (semi-)direct line to the Imperial court, whether through familial connections, favors, social or political influence, or simple respect. The terms of the connection must be clearly defined before a PC with this advantage can be brought into play, but once it is, the PC may invoke it at any time, gaining a bonus to their dice rolled in Awareness when "suggesting" things to those in the Imperial Court. And the best part of this advantage is that, depending on the circumstances, the PC might not even need to be present in the courts when it is proposed, relying instead on easily-manipulated third parties to insinuate the desired information.

Elemental Attunement (Way of the Dragon)

1 point
Mirumoto bushi only

The bushi has spent many years of training with shugenja. Now he is attuned to the shifts, ebbs, and flows of elemental energy. With a successful Awareness roll (TN set by GM), the bushi may detect the use of magic in the immediate area.

Elemental Attunement (Way of the Phoenix)

6 points

Characters with this advantage have a bonus to their use of one element, and a detriment to their use of another. A shugenja who is "aligned" with one element is said to "resist" another. Earth and Air resist each other, as do Fire and Water. For example, a character with an Elemental Attunement to Fire gains a -5 to all TNs when he is using that form of magic, but a +5 TN to all Water spells. If an Earth-Attuned character is being attacked by Earth, his TN to be hit is considered +5, while if they are being targeted by Air, the TN is reduced by 5.

Elemental Convergence (Way of the Phoenix)

6 points
Ishiken only

Unlike a standard Innate Ability, this advantage allows a Void shugenja to use a Void spell a number of times per day equal to their Void Rank without it counting toward their total available Void spells. This is accomplished through a dedicated regimen of constant practice and application, in which the character studies the complexities of that single method and its various uses. As every Void method can result in hundreds of possible effects, this process often takes years to accomplish, and only one Void spell may ever be considered an Innate Void Ability for any character.
Mastery of a Void spell will not grant this advantage - only the standard benefit of the PC no longer requiring the scroll to cast it. Also, the common Innate Ability advantage may still be purchased or acquired during play for Void spells, and this has the same effect for them as for common spells.

Favor Tables (Way of the Crane)

3 points per rank

(Note - these favors may differ from those offered in the 2nd Ed. version of the Way of the Crane.) This advantage allows the character to begin the game with a few favors "in his pocket." These favors need to be given a good history and background, and must be appropriate to the concept of the character itself. Purchase of this advantage grants the character one initial roll on the favor tables. It may be purchased up to three times per character. The point cost for this advantage is the table's rank (1-5) x3.

Rank 12 Koku; One item of Fine quality; A pony; Safe (escorted) travel to a major city or palace; Meditative study (+5 to insight); A tutor to teach you lore appropriate to a clan (Crab: Lore: Shadowlands, Crane: Lore: Myth and Legends, Dragon: Lore: History, Lion: Lore: Bushido, Phoenix: Lore: Shugenja, Scorpion: Lore: Ninja, Unicorn: Lore: Burning Sands etc); Information on some well-known topic or commonly understood science.
Rank 25 Koku; A night with a fine geisha or courtesan; One item of Excellent quality; a horse; Someone offers to champion you in your next duel; a minor fetish from the Asahina shugenja; You are asked to visit the corut of a noble family (+1 Glory box); You are offered the chance to perform some notable service (+2 Glory boxes); A shugenja will cast a spell of your choice; Next major battle, you will be placed in position to gain a Heroic Opportunity; You learn a skill or (+1 to a skill) from a craftsman of a major Clan: (suggested skills) Crab: Weaponsmith, Crane: Courtier, Dragon: Shintao, Lion: Battle, Phoenix: Meditation, Scorpion: Sincerity, Unicorn: Horsemanship).
Rank 310 Koku; Rehonor a dishonored person or ronin; Gain an audience with a minor daimyo; Gain the Patron Advantage for no point cost, at any time in the game - however, no person can have more than one patron at any time; The Crab offer a guide into the Shadowlands; A Crane artisan will create an artistic masterpiece in your honor (+3 Honor boxes); A Kitsuki magistrate will investigate something for you; A Lion bushi will searve as your bodyguard for a period of months; A Unicorn steed; The Scorpion offer to embarrass/slander someone under your directives; A blessing is placed upon you from a great Monk of the Brotherhood - gain one Free Raise to be used in your next adventure; You are given the title hatamoto (honored advisor) or the rank gunzo (sergeant) (+2 Glory boxes); The Agasha offer you a potion; The Shosuro offer you a mild poison; An Asahina shugenja will make you a minor fetish of your specifications (cost: 10 koku, 1 week to create); You are asked to perform a minor service for the Champion of your Clan (when completed, +3 Glory boxes).
Rank 420 Koku; One item of Exceptional quality; You have the opportunity to marry a daimyo's daughter, and gain the Major Ally Advantage (any clan, whichever one you marry into); Somone unknown to you feels they owe you an obligation, and will repay unexpectedly in the furture; The Asahina ask you to be the bearer of a major nemuranai; Gain a Minor Ally in the clan of your choice; One of your Clan members (of common origin) comes and asks to serve you as a personal aide and retainer; A Fine quality fetish created to your specifications, no cost; Position as a magistrate to your Clan (+ 5 Glory boxes).
Rank 530 Koku; Prominent magic item; Minor magic item made to your specifications (GM to determine cost); Position as a Magistrate for the Emerald Emerald (+1 Glory Rank); A prominent member of your Clan (but not a daimyo or other lord) offers to perform a minor service to you, at your request; You are given the opportunity to prove yourself to theIse Zumi of the Dragon Clan - if successful in their test, you will recieve a tattoo; A significant service from the Crab, Scorpion, Lion, or Unicorn Clan - including troops, information, or safe passage.

Forbidden Knowledge (Way of the Phoenix)

1-10 points
Phoenix only

This advantage is a form of the Inheritance advantage from the basic RPG. However, other than inheriting a physical item or ability, the character has some secret knowledge which should be kept secret from the rest of Rokugan. Because of the reclusive nature of the Phoenix, family secrets are passed only from one member of the household to another as death comes to the original holder of the secret. Such secrets are considered to be the most precious knowledge a member of that family can hold. Each family is publicly known (within their clan) to have this secret, although the majority of Rokugan does not know. This information is jealously guarded by the Phoenix Clan.
This knowledge can be anything from the true ritual to summon an Oni to the location of a Black Scroll, or knowledge of a hidden maho rite dating back to the Tribe of Isawa, before the Empire came to Gisei Toshi. For each point spent on this advantage, the character's secret is more potentially damaging to him and his clan, and he will be more seriously watched by his clan. In any case, members of his clan should be informed that they know he is a holder of some Forbidden Knowledge; NPCs tend to treat the character differently - better or worse, depending on the NPC.

Full-Blood Kitsu Ancestry (Way of the Lion)

6 points
Kitsu Sodan-Senzo only

Kitsu may not Commune or Summon ancestors without this advantage. Only full-blood Kitsu, who carry the essence of the original Kitsu race within them, may attend the Kitsu Sodan-Senzo School.
The gift is powerful, but comes with a terrible price. Full-blooded Kitsu may never cast shugenja spells of any kind, nor may they learn Techniques. Only the effects granted them by their natural talents are available to them.

Gaijin Gear (Way of the Unicorn)

2 points
Unicorn only

You start the game with a piece of gaijin equipment of your chose. See Appendix 2 of Way of the Unicorn for what is available. You may only purchase this once.

Gentry (Kyuden Seppun)


Gentry is too lengthy of an advantage for me to detail here. If you are interested in playing a samurai with villages, holdings, or followers, I advise that you examine the Gentry advantage within Kyuden Seppun, page 95.

Great Destiny (L5R RPG)

5 points

When this character was born, it may have been that the stars were aligned just right, or a birthmark was in just the right shape, but the ancestors smiled and a Destiny was created for this child. The great wheel moves this character slowly and surely towards this destiny. If this character takes damage that would kill him, he is reduced instead to a single Wound at the Unconscious Level. The Seven Fortunes will only protect a character in this manner once per story. The GM will decide what the Great Destiny is, but need never reveal it to the character. Once the Destiny has been fulfilled, these points are turned into another advantage of the GM's choice.

Great Potential (Kyuden Kakita)

3, 8, or 10 points

Pick one of your character's skills. The character is a natural talent in this area, and will one day be a master. When using this skill, the character may make any number of raises, unlimited by his Void. This advantage provides no free raises. Taking Great Potential for any bugei skill, even if it is also considered part of another skill group, costs 8 points. Taking this advantage for any other skill costs only 3 points. For 10 points, a shugenja character may purchase this advantage for a single element, for use only when casting spells from that element. A character may only purchase this advantage once.

Half-Blood Kitsu Ancestry (Way of the Lion)

3 points
Kitsu shugenja only

Kitsu may not perform any Ancestral Magic without this advantage or Full-Blood Kitsu Ancestry. Half-Blood Kitsu may only Sense ancestors (see the rules for sensing ancestors under Kitsu Sodan-Senzo).
Half-Blood Kitsu may not attend the Kitsu Sodan-Senzo School. If they attend the Kitsu Shugenja School, their beginning spells are restricted. Instead of receiving 3 Water, 2 Fire, and 1 Earth, they receive 2 Water and 1 Fire. This represents the fact that the character has split his studies, and cannot perform either to its full extent. The shugenja may learn new spells thereafter; however, they may never learn how to Commune or Summon ancestors.
Half-Blood Kitsu who do not attend the Kitsu Shugenja School lose their connection to their ancestors, and may no longer Sense them.

Hands of Stone (Way of the Crab)

5 points

Crab jiujutsu combat techniques are brutal in the extreme, and make good use of the Hida's great size. But you are a prodigy even by their standards. In bare-handed combat, you make keep 2 dice of damage instead of just 1.

Heartless (Way of the Scorpion)

2 points

All attempts to woo or sway your heart to pleas of compassion, love, or courtesy fall on deaf ears. Any appeal to your heart shall find it made of stone. Any skills used with Awareness in such an attempt (such as Seduction, Poetry, Acting, or Sincerity) need to raise twice in order to be successful.

Heisho (Bearers of Jade)

2 points

Every day of his life, the character expects to die. This is similar to the Death Trance Advantage in that it grants immunity to the Fear power. In addition, the character gets a free Raise for noticing traps, concealed weapons, and other dangers. The problem is, the character is numb and tends to accepts what comes rather than planning ways out. They have a +5 TN to all TNs to detect lies or convince another of their sincerity.

Higher Purpose (L5R RPG)

2 points

You have dedicated yourself to a single goal, a single objective. Whenever you take a step toward achieving your Higher Purpose, you gain an extra Experience Point at the end of the session.

Imperial Spouse (Kyuden Seppun)

2 points

In rare cases, a member of the Seppun or Otomo families marries someone of the Seven Clans, and chooses to join the household of their spouse. Having an Imperial Cousin as a wife or husband is a mixed blessing - they will certainly know the events of the Imperial Court, even as far away as the Phoenix or Crab lands (letters from the Emperor's family travel rapidly). Also, they will be able to secure invitations, audiences with the Imperial Advisors or daimyos of the Imperial Houses, or extra koku and supplies for troubled times. However, if an Imperial wife is in danger, the families of the Emperor may choose to take direct action, without considering the wishes of the husband, his clan, or their alliances. Although she has changed her name to suit her wedding, a Seppun is always a Seppun. Thus, the character may be constantly plagued by well-wishers, sycophants, and threats from the Imperial Families as they make certain that "our cousin is well-treated."

Inheritance (L5R RPG)


You have been given an ancestral item of some sort. This item has been carried by your ancestors and its spirit has become more powerful than a normal item. The cost in points and the nature of the item must be agreed upon with the GM, but even a minor magical item would cost 2 or 3 points. A Clan's Ancestral Weapon or Armor might cost 20 points or more.

Innate Ability (L5R RPG)

3 points

When a shugenja has gained mastery over a spell, he is able to complete the incredibly complex sequence of motions and meditations that are required to appease the spirits and manipulate the elements without the aid of a scroll. For 3 points, a shugenja can begin the game with one spell as an Innate Ability. The shugenja no longer needs to have the spell scroll in front of him to cast the spell. If the shugenja casts the spell from a scroll anyway, the spell is even easier and the shugenja is given a Free Raise. A shugenja can have any number of spells mastered as Innate Abilities, but cannot memorize a spell unless his Ring Rank plus his School Rank is equal to or greater than the Mastery Level of the spell.

Inner Gift (Way of the Crane)

6 points

The character with Inner Gift has been blessed with an uncontrollable talent, perhaps empathy, precognition, or the ability to sense when danger is near. It is up to the GM to let the character know when their Gift activates, and what that means to the current situation. A character with the Inner Gift of precognition, for example, might have a series of dreams about a bloody knife, only to wake up one morning and find their dearest friend has been assassinated. A character with empathy might be able to tell when someone is lying to them, or a character with a Gift of psychometry (reading emotions from objects) might gain a flash of insight when they pick up a samurai's katana. The Gift must be clearly defined at the time a character purchases this advantage. The Gifts a character can choose from are: precognition, animal speech, psychometry, and empathy. For more Inner Gifts, please see Command Mind, Creature Awareness, Danger Sense, Shared Senses, and Spatial Awareness, below.

Inner Gift: Command Mind (Way of the Naga)

6 points
5 for Naga

This effect requires no roll, simply a mental command and a single Action. Only one target may be affected. Otherwise, it produces the same effect as the spell of the same name (see L5R RPG, page 150).

Inner Gift: Creature Awareness (Way of the Naga)

6 points
5 for Naga

Using this Gift, the character is aware of all living things with an Awareness of 2 or more within his own Awareness in feet, multiplied by 10. Obstacles, organic or not, are ignored for the purposes of this ability.

Inner Gift: Danger Sense (Way of the Naga)

6 points
5 for Naga

The character with this Inner Gift cannot be ambushed, regardless of the circumstances or the skills of his opponents. He will always be aware of coming attack, and at the very least be able to roll for Indicative.

Inner Gift: Shared Senses (Way of the Naga)

6 points
5 for Naga

The character is able to link his five senses with those of another person or Naga (humans may only use this ability with humans, and Naga only with other Naga). This effect lasts for one hour, and may only be used once between cycles of sleep.

Inner Gift: Spatial Awareness (Way of the Naga)

6 points
5 for Naga

The character is always familiar with the surrounding terrain (out to his Perception x150 feet), even when blinded.

Irreproachable (Way of the Unicorn)

1 point per rank

You are devoted to your word. For each point you spend on this advantage, you add +5 TN to your ability to resist seduction and bribery attempts. You may not purchase Greed or Lechery.

Ishiken-do (Way of the Phoenix)

5 points
Isawa shugenja only

This advantage is required of all Isawa who wish to become Void shugenja. It is the basic latent ability all candidates for ishi status possess, allowing them to reach out into the Realm of the Void and see the myriad patterns swirling between the four Elements most shugenja associate with. Most importantly, this allows them to comprehend what they are seeing. Should a person ever by exposed to the Realm of Void without this advantage, the subtle eddies of Void would either be invisible to them, or would drive them insane.

Kaiu Sword (Way of the Crab)

5 points

You have inherited one of the fabled Kaiu katana, a magnificent weapon which has been in your family's hands for generations. It keeps an extra die of damage (3k3), but it must never leave your side. If anyone outside of your family touches the blade, you lose 1 Honor point. If you ever actually lose the sword, you lose two Honor Ranks permanently.

Kakita Blade (Way of the Crane)

8 points
4 for Crane

Kakita blades are the finest swords in the Empire, thinner and more flexible than ordinary katana. A character who carries a Kakita sword has prestige, and draws attention. A character can begin the game with a Kakita blade only under certain circumstances. Kakita blades are rarely given to youths, and only under very special circumstances is one allowed to leave Crane lands. These blades are rarely given to non-Crane characters. A Kakita blade rolls and keeps one extra die when striking hit an opponent, and allows its user to reroll a single damage die during an iaijutsu duel.

Kharmic Tie (L5R RPG)

1-5 points

The Rokugani believe in reincarnation, that every soul lives a hundred thousand lifetimes. When you meet someone, the relationship(s) you've had in past lives influence your reaction to them in this life. You feel uneasy around the people you've had bad relationships with, while you feel comfortable around those you've had good relationships with.
If you purchase a Kharmic Tie, your character has found someone they are connected to from a past life. Your relationship depends on the amount of points you invest in this advantage. For every point you invest, you may, once per game session, roll an additional die when you are fighting for or protecting your tie. You do not get to keep the additional dice you roll.

Large (L5R RPG)

2 points
1 for Crab

You are big. The average Rokugani is approximately 5'6" to 5'8" tall. You are anywhere from 6' to 6'3". This is both an advantage and a disadvantage. Whenever you engage in social situations, you roll one less die. However, all damage rolls are at +1 die.

Leadership (Way of the Lion)

7 points
4 for Lion

A character with the Leadership advantage is able to bestow limited benefits on those who follow him. If another character is following a Leader, he is able to use some of his Leader's skills. Whenever a character is following a Leader's example (performing the same action as the leader), he automatically gains a bonus Rank in that skill. If the character does not have the skill, then he performs as if he had Rank 1. The Leader's skill must be higher than those who follow him, and must be at least Rank 3 in order for his followers to gain this bonus.

Luck (L5R RPG)

3, 6, or 9 points

For every level of Luck, you may re-roll one unsuccessful roll during a session.

Magic Resistance (L5R RPG)

2, 4, or 6 points

For some reason or another, you are highly resistant to spell effects. For every two points spent on Magic Resistance, any spells that target you add 5 to their TN.

Meek (Kyuden Kakita)

5 points
2 for Miya

Try as you might, you just don't look very threatening. Unless you're having a serious effect upon combat, opponents won't attack you until they've disposed of all your allies first. If you're not attacking, casting spells, or holding any offensive weapons, they might not bother to attack you at all. Your demeanor is so non-threatening that you may roll an extra die on all rolls involving diplomacy or negotiation, even if you're simply begging for your life. This skill is particularly useful for Miya shisha, for whom an intimidating appearance is an impediment. This Advantage in no way prevents anyone from questioning, capturing, or verbally harassing the character. In most non-Miya bushi families (the Hida and Matsu in particular), meekness is often seen as a curse or a grievous error in one's upbringing.

Multiple Schools (Way of the Crane)

5 points

This is an unusual advantage, in that it can only be bought after a bushi (and only a bushi and only to another bushi school) has progressed beyond Rank 1 in his School. GM permitting, this advantage lets the player switch schools without losing his old techniques.
When the bushi switches schools, his old Techniques are "frozen." He won't learn any further techniques from his old school, but he'll begin learning new techniques in his new school immediately. As soon as he gains permission to begin training at the new school, he more-or-less immediately learns the Rank 1 Technique (GM's discretion on the length of training necessary, but probably not longer than 3 to 6 game months). The bushi then begins gaining Techniques in his new school as his Insight goes up, just as usual.
Example: Doji Kuwanan buys the Different School advantage and immediately begins training at the Akodo school under Akodo Toturi. After he has gained enough Insight to learn the second Technique, he buys Multiple Schools, returns home to attend the Daidoji school, and learns the first-Rank Daidoji Technique instead. When he attains enough Insight to learn a new Technique, he learns the second Rank Daidoji Technique. He doesn't learn the second or third Rank Akodo Techniques, since he's no longer at that school. Kuwanan now knows the first rank Akodo Technique (and will never advance again in that school), and the first and second Rank Daidoji Techniques. Even though he has the Insight of a third Rank bushi, he doesn't know the Rank 3 Technique for either school.

Musha Shugyo (Way of the Wolf)

4 points

The "ronin" is actually a bushi on a musha shugyo, a warrior pilgrimage. The bushi has, for a time, left behind the ways of his clan to seek wisdom through experiencing the fighting styles of samurai throughout the Empire. Everyone the bushi encounters during his journey will treat him as a clan ronin. Although not frequently practiced, most Great Clans respect the tradition of the musha shugyo and believe that it can only strengthen the resolve of a young warrior. Most pilgrimages last a minimum of one year and can only be ended with the completion of an act of incredible skill and prowess set by the ronin's former sensei. The character is treated as a Clan Ronin, and suffers all the social disadvantages and prejudices that accompany such a position. When the character feels that he has learned all he can from his wandering, he may return to his clan and resume his study. This advantage may only be taken by Clan Ronin

Noble Birth (Way of the Dragon)

3 points
Monk only

Players of the L5R CCG will notice that, in the card game, the Ise zumi are considered samurai. It's true that many samurai climb up Togashi Mountain and throw away their heritage for enlightenment, but some still retain their social status.
By default, Ise zumi characters are not considered samurai. They are monks, and fall between heimin and samurai in the Celestial Order. Ise zumi who wish to retain their samurai status must take this advantage.

Patron (Way of the Wolf)

  Ronin only

A samurai in a position of authority (most likely a city governor, but possibly a provincial daimyo) has noticed the ronin and appreciates his skill and discretion. From time to time, when a suitable duty arises, this individual contacts the ronin regarding employment. Although the task in question will be difficult and possibly even life-threatening, the ronin will be well compensated for his work A ronin who successfully completes such a duty also gains Glory points equal to his Patron's Glory Rank. The GM is the final authority on whether or not a given task performed for the Patron is sufficient to warrant the reward of Glory. The cost of this Advantage is equal to the Glory Rank of the Patron, rounding up. Any Glory Rank exceeding 6.0 rounds down to 6 points; the ronin can not receive more than 6 Glory points per successful assignment This Advantage is only available to ronin, since samurai of the clans gain Glory from their lords without the need for such an Advantage.

Patron (Way of the Crane)

1-5 points
Artisan only

Someone of importance has taken an interest in you. Not to be confused with the Allies advantage, a Patron expects a certain amount of reciprocal trade for their gifts. The Patron will call upon the character from time to time, expecting some great work of art or a creation to celebrate the Patron's latest achievement. However, such works will undoubtedly be circulated among the patron's followers, and this may cause a certain amount of fame and jealousy. This is similar to the Sensei advantage in the basic RPG, but it differs in two ways. One, the patron may not know anything about the art itself, and may therefore be simply an admirer rather than a teacher; and two, the Patron seeks to advance the character's political and artistic career by displaying the artisan's masterpieces in courts and public gatherings. Of course, in exchange for this, the artisan is expected to create masterpieces which flatter their Patron and give them glory. The artisan is also expected to perform at the request of their patron, whenever the Patron has need for the artisan's services.
The more points an artisan spends on a Patron, the more powerful and influential their Patron will be - and the more often the Patron will call upon the artisan to perform their art.

Perfect Balance (L5R RPG)

2 points

You roll an additional die whenever performing actions involving balance.

Personal Mon (Way of the Wolf)

1 point

Any ronin may choose to adopt a mon to represent himself, although many ronin are too preoccupied with matters of survival to bother doing so. Of the mon worn by ronin, the vast majority go totally unnoticed by the samurai of the clans. This roninŐs mon, however, is different. Its design is eye-catching and has a quiet symbolism that appeals to the sensibilities of the samurai soul. There is no immediate mechanical benefit for the ronin, but upon the completion of every ten successful assignments undertaken by the ronin, he gains a permanent Free Raise to use in every social situation with a potential employer.

Precise Memory (Way of the Wolf)

3 points

Make an Intelligence roll with TN 20 to completely memorize something seen, read or heard.

Precise Memory (Way of the Crane)

3 points

The character has a phenomenal ability to memorize facts, figures, and written material. Their mind records information easily, but this does not make them infallible. Neither does it give them any unusual ability to understand the information, nor learn new skills or languages. Characters wishing to remember something intricate, or precisely memorize large amounts of information, must make a simple Intelligence roll at a TN of 20. More complex information may require a higher TN to memorize.

Provincial Hero (Way of the Wolf)

4 points

Through years of hard work and devotion, the ronin has achieved a degree of acceptance in one particular region of Rokugan. The peasantry there looks to the ronin as a hero and friend for his actions, and the local magistrates choose to ignore him so long as his behavior is not outlandish or extreme. While in this region (which may be a single large city or a sprawling rural area with half a dozen tiny villages), the ronin will always find some degree of employment, no matter how meager. Protecting a caravan, serving as a bouncer at a sake house, or enforcing the rulings of a village headman all fall in this category. Note that this does not mean the ronin is paid for his labor, but rather receives free room and board. For many ronin, that is a far greater reward than koku. Ronin who are Provincial Heroes are among those most likely to be offered the opportunity to swear fealty to a clan or family.

Quick (L5R RPG)

3 points

You're just faster than other folks. When determining Initiative, roll two dice and keep the higher.

Quick Healer (L5R RPG)

3 points

You heal wounds as if your Stamina were one Rank higher.

Ratling Ally (Way of the Crab)

2 points

You have a friend among the Nezumi, one who will help you in time of need. He can act as liaison between you and tribe, provide accurate information on the surrounding landscape, or even assist you in covert tasks like scouting or hiding from oni. You should design a name for your Ratling friend (see L5R RPG page 195, or The Book of the Shadowlands for more information), as well as a reason why the two of you are connected. While other Rokugani may look upon you with distrust for having such a tie, the Crab Clan knows your real value and will treat you with respect.

Read Lips (L5R RPG)

2 points

With a successful Perception roll, you can read the lips of anyone you can see.

Sacrosanct (Kyuden Kakita)

10 points

You may only take this Advantage if your character has a starting Honor Rank of 3 or higher. Due to a great service you performed for the Hantei in the past, you are now under the Emperor's protection. This blessing remains so long as your Honor remains at 3 or above, and you do nothing to defame or dishonor the Emperor. In the meantime, attacking you or your immediate family is tantamount to attacking the Hantei himself. Any person who strikes you in combat before you strike them loses five boxes of Honor for every Wound Level they inflict. Anyone who knocks you unconscious or kills you loses a full rank of Glory, no matter their station. Only an Imperial decree can reverse or negate either of these effects. In return, you have sworn your utter and devoted loyalty to the Emperor.

Sage (Way of the Shinsei)

2 points

Books and knowledge are nearly as important to you as food and water. It is well known you are a seeker of wisdom and words, and many come to you when they want to know about the past and present Your devotion to the texts has given you an excellent memory for the events they record and the lessons they impart. All Lore and History rolls you make roll and keep one additional die.

Sensei (L5R RPG)

1, 3, or 5 points

You and your Sensei have developed a bond that makes you inseparable. You would do anything to protect your Sensei and his school, and he would do the same. The cost of a Sensei depends on his skill. Your Sensei will not be able to accompany you on journeys (he has responsibilities, after all), but he will be able to assist you in other ways.

1 point: A Sensei with moderate skill (Rank 1 or 2)
3 points: A Sensei with great skill (Rank 3 or 4)
5 points: A Sensei of legendary skill (Rank 5)

Servant (L5R RPG, 2nd Ed.)


Normally, a samurai has a single servant who manages his home and general needs. If you wish to have more servants than that, you can purchase it with this Advantage. You should not have more than your Glory x 3 servants. Monks may not have servants.

1 Point:Eta
2 Points:Stablehand, personal attendant
3 Points:Groom, bonge armorer*, bonge weaponsmith*
4 Points:Bonge scribe, spy (both are rare)
*: Makes repairs, but may not manufacture new equipment
Clan/Family Discounts
Crab:A bonge weaponsmith costs 1 point.
Crane:Up to three personal attendants at 1 point each.
Kitsuki:May have an eta for free
Lion:A bonge armorer costs 1 point.
Phoenix:A scribe costs 3 points.
Scorpion:A spy costs 3 points.
Unicorn:A groom costs 1 point.

Silent (Way of the Wolf)

3 points

Although unpleasant, the harsh realities of a ronin's life sometimes result in beneficial side effects. The unfortunate necessities of hunting for food and evading the grasp of magistrates often trains a ronin to move very quietly when the need arises. The character rolls one extra die on Stealth tests.

Social Position (L5R RPG)

5 points per rank

A character who has additional Social Position gains a bonus to their Glory, and therefore to their position within Rokugani society. This can come from being closely related to a daimyo (or the Emperor himself), or possibly from having a great omen appear when you were born, etc. The player should note exactly how this advantage is gained.

Standing Invitation (L5R RPG)

2 points
1 for Imperial

For your family's past accomplishments, you have earned a standing invitation to the annual Winter Court for yourself and your retinue (up to six persons). Thought this is a great honor, remember that you are representing your family and your clan. A dishonor or accident on your part will shame everyone at home as well as yourself.

Storm Legion (Way of the Minor Clans)

4 points

To be a member of the Storm Legion of the Mantis is as much a responsibility as it is an Advantage, for it confers responsibility and absolute loyalty to the Mantis Clan above all else. A character with this Advantage can never take the Different School or Multiple Schools Advantages, nor can they take the Black Sheep Disadvantage or reduce their starting Glory.
In exchange, a member of the Storm Legion need never question the loyalty of a Mantis Clan member. No person born of Mantis blood, or formally adopted into the Mantis, will - or can - betray them. It simply can't happen. In fact, a Mantis Clan member must spend a Void point in order to lie to a memeber of the Storm Legion, and further, must treat a member of the Storm Legion as if they were one full Glory rank higher than they truly are. Lastly, they automatically gain one point in the Gentry Advantage, allowing them a small stipend of koku per year.

Strength of the Earth (L5R RPG)

2, 4, or 8 points

A character who has the Strength of the Earth may ignore some effects of Wound Levels on their rolls. The Wound Rank penalty is decreased by one die for every level of Strength of the Earth.

Student of Water (Way of the Shinsei)

5 points

While many generals seek to improve their position on the battlefield, you take a slightly different approach. Instead of looking at to take advantage of your enemy's mistakes, you look for ways to encourage him to stumble. Whenever your opponent rolls on the Battle Table (and you are not in the Reserves), you may adjust his total by exactly three points in either directions.

Tactician (Way of the Lion)

5 points
3 for Akodo

You've been trained in the art of warfare by the Akodo War College, and you know how to look for opportunities in the clamor of battle. Whenever you roll on the battle table (and you are not in the Reserves), you may modify your final roll by 3 points, up or down (i.e. a roll of 13 can become either 10 or 16).

True Friend (L5R RPG)


True friendship is a rare commodity in Rokugan. You and your NPC friend have gone through much together, and would do anything for each other. Having such a friend is a blessing, but also demands great devotion and loyalty. The cost for a True Friend depends on his influence and his devotion.
Influence :

1 point:A character of minor influence (a samurai without land or political position)
3 points:A character of some influence (a samurai with land and/or political position)
5 points:A character of great influence (a daimyo with land and political position)

1 point:Your friend would go out of his way for you, but would not risk family honor.
3 points:Your friend would risk family honor to aid you, but would do so secretly.
5 points:Your friend would do anything to aid you.

Tutor (Way of the Shinsei)


You are a mentor to several students who come to learn from you. These students are usually seeking your knowledge in a Skill, but with GM's approval, it can be in School Techniques. You gain one student for each point you spend on this Advantage (up to 5 points), whom you may call upon once per session in an appropriate manner. As you are their teacher, they have little choice to refuse you, but you are expected to have time to teach them or gain the reputation of a worthless sensei.

Voice (L5R RPG)

2 points

A character with Voice has 1 additional die for any rolls involving speaking.

Way of the Land (L5R RPG)

2 points
1 for Unicorn

You know your home Province like the back of your hand. You never get lost and know all the best travel routes. Characters may also purchase this advantage for other Provinces.

Wealthy (Way of the Crane)

1-10 points

For each point a character spends on this advantage, they begin with two additional koku.