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Go to the Legend of the Five Rings page
Go to the Legend of the Five Rings page

Legend of the Five Rings

98 out of 107 gamers thought this was helpful

So this “review” is completely biased. I make no claims otherwise, so read with caution…

17 years ago I was playing games a Gamemasters in Memphis, TN. Star Wars RPG, a little Magic, etc. Then a new game appeared, “Legend of the Five Rings”. I was intrigued by the characters, and the idea that I would be able to represent them in events, and do more than simply win a promo, I could affect the story.

So what began then became an ongoing love of the game, that brought me to make my first trip to Gen Con, travel to Kotei (regional L5R events) and cultivate a group of friends in the game that are still with me to this day. I even started an online community “Save the Ogres” to protect those noble creatures… by convincing nearly all 250+ players to include at least one ogre in their deck at Gen Con 2000, the story team was convinced that the beasts would survive into the future of the game. I had teamed up with Buttonmen to create promotional ogre buttons for all that took part. That level of interaction, something I could do that didn’t even relate to my ability to play the game, is something that I’ve seen hundreds of players do across the years. The game is truly an experience, with a rich world of amazing and engaging characters that are unlike any other game out there.

After several more years, I put my resume in to AEG. Most incredibly, I was hired! After 2 years I was put in charge of L5R, this game I loved so dearly. You want to talk about a dream come true? Easily the 5th best day of my life (Wife and three kids come first of course!). I endeavored with an amazing team to bring the game even more to the masses. We introduced Clan councils that gave all players of a Clan a voice in their future. Honor contests including poster design, creative writing, and more, and most of all charity drives and helping the less fortunate around the world. All these contribute still to the ongoing story of Legend of the Five Rings.

When you play L5R, you are no longer just a single player against everyone else in the world as you are in most games. When you play L5R, you eventually choose one of the nine Clans that most fits you. When you say “I’m a Lion” (or Crane, Dragon, Scorpion, or whoever), you now have a massive network of world-wide Lion Clan players who care deeply about how well you do in the game, will offer rares, and play tips on their fan-forums, as when any Lion wins, all the Lions benefit, both in the story and in the actual cards printed for the game.

And in no other gaming group I’ve known, would I as a player be able to make a simple post on a forum and find a couch to sleep on anywhere in the world! 🙂

L5R is a somewhat complex game, which does take a bit of time to learn, but once you’ve gotten a few games under your belt, you’ll see the incredible amount of rich theme coming through. When you have to order your samurai to commit the “Seppuku” action to avoid an honor loss from your slanderous opponent, you’ll realize you’re not just playing another CCG. And when you have to do such a thing in the top rounds at Gen Con, or a storyline event at your store, you’ll realize you’re doing much more than just winning a game, you’re telling a story that can truly become a part of the ongoing epic storyline that is Legend of the Five Rings.

Go to the Thunderstone: Dragonspire page
38 out of 53 gamers thought this was helpful

So first off, full disclosure, if you can’t tell I work at AEG. I however was NOT on the team for Dragonspire.

What I can say is that the team did a wonderful job on updating the entry level product for Thunderstone. I’m a fan of the game, and the new abilities provided by these cards have that extra bit of oomph that some of the original set cards may have lacked. Not that there was anything wrong with those early cards, they were just somewhat conservative given the new environment of the game.

Dragonspire also saw the introduction of the spiffy XP tokens, that while not groundbreaking, did solve the problem quite a few players had of shuffling their XP cards into their decks! That XP is useful, but it won’t kill a dragon on its own…

Thunderstone has a ton of room for expansion and the team on that project has explored a new avenue with nearly every set that has come out. If you want a game that has continual thoughtful expansion and great re-playability, Thunderstone: Dragonspire is a great place to start.

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