Anyway, one thing I did make sure to add was a few optional ways to run each class. The "Samurai" class need not be a Bushido-following retainer of a feudal lord, but could be a member of the noble class trained for war, an up-and-coming ashigaru (peasant footman), or a warrior-monk without any mystical abilities (Sohei covers warrior-monks with magic in addition to combat skills).
Also, important, is that Samurai who become ronin, and Ronin who swear fealty to a new lord, DON'T change their class, lose abilities, or suffer any penalties. It's all role-play. Someone could even play their Samurai character as a ronin from the start, and vice-versa a Ronin class PC could be a clan or house samurai who just has a more tricksy fighting style.
Possibly confusing, but I prefer encouraging characters to re-fluff the mechanics, and also prefer not limiting events from happening because it might mechanically hinder a player's fun (like a Paladin losing his powers for ending up in a no-win situation).
Disclaimer: the game will not be written with "samurai vs. ninja" as the default play-style. It will be more like "I'm Kikuchiyo from Seven Samurai. You're Sarutobi Sasuke. Together we fight the cast of Ge-ge-ge no Kitaro."
|Miyamoto Musashi, self portrait|