Crab – Koten
“Fight monsters long enough and you become a monster yourself. Fight a Crab long enough and you become dead.” – Kihei, the Ronin Swordsman.
Koten is perhaps the most foreboding place in all of Rokugan. It is the place where the Crab remember their fallen heroes, where the victories of the past are recortded for eternity. Sadly, the tales of Crab heroes are seldom happy and as the greatest enemies of the Shadowlands, Crab samurai seldom leave behind much in the way of remains to commerate them.
But what the Crab lack in glory and mementos, they do not lack in courage. Every name engraved upon the walls of Koten bears witness to another hero who gave his live and soul for the Empire. Every tale the monks tell inspires the children of Hida to new greatness. With the spirits of such great heroes standing beside them, how can the Crab fail?
As Fu Leng, enemy of all the Crab stand for, prepares the final assault on the Celestial Heavens a battle cry echoes through the halls of Koten. The Crab must prepare to defend the Empire as no one else can.
They will never surrender.
They will not fail.
They are the Crab.
Mantis – Castle of the Wasp
“I knew a few bandits who crossed paths with the Tsuruchi bounty hunters once. I never found out what became of them. I was smart enough not to ask.” – Kihei, the Ronin Swordsman
Few outside the Tsuruchi family have ever seen Kyuden Ashinagabachi, and for good reason. Well seperated from their Mantis brethren on the Islands of Spice and Silk, the Tsuruchi have learned to survive on their own, in the midst of potential conflict. Their master archers are feared throughout the Emoire. Those who dare anger the Tsauruchi had best run far and fast, as few survive once their arrows find flight.
As conflict tears the Mantis apart from within, it falls to the Tsuruchi to play a critical role. The family is divided in their support of both Mantis Champions. The one who can win over the swift archers of Kyuden Ashinagabachi will have a distinct advantage in the conflict to come.
But will it be the Wasp who bring the divided Mantis Clan back to unity once again?
Or will they be torn apart in the process?
Ratling – Tch’rtch Warrens
“Nezumi are theiving beasts with no sense of honor except loyalty to their fellow beasts. I do admire them so.” – Kihei, the Ronin Swordsman.
Among the Nezumi race, there are special individuals called the Tch’tch, or Remembers. These Remembers speak of a time when the Nezumi race ruled all of what is now the Shadowlands. Then came what the Remembers call “The Terrible Day When Air Became Fire and Heaven Fell From Its Perch to Crush Our Glorious Home Beneath Its Blackened Corpse.” On this day, a terrible beast fell from the sky and eradicated the Nezumi Empire.
The Nezumi later learned to call that beast Fu Leng. They learned to fear him and his minions. They learned to hide between the cracks in the Shadowlands. They learned to survive. For centuries their race has run from the beasts of the Shadowlands. Fighting was never an option, except for the foolish or insane.
Now, the Nezumi wonder if the time has come to change. The humans have fought the Shadowlands, and the humans have won. Are the Nezumi so much weaker?
Has the time come to rebuild the Empire Fu Leng destroyed finally dawned?
The time has come to fight!