It is 2000 years since the fall of the Kami and creation of mankind, the beginning of the great Empire that is Rokugan.
It is 1000 years since the Clan War and the ultimate defeat of the dark god, Fu Leng and the beginning of the Jade Empire.
It is 100 years since the Shadow Wars, the rise of the great and terrible Oni Master, Akuma.The entire world still recovers from the terrible war that follows and the wounds it left, especially Rokugan. For many, the battle is not over yet. Though the technology of the new Diamond Empire is more powerful than ever, it's army is weak, it's people disheartened, and much of its history has been lost. Many struggle to recover what is left, and many struggle to replace what is left with an entirely new world order.
Still, the Great Clans remain. Here is the general status of the great clans and factions of the Legend of the Five Rings card game in the Diamond Empire.
The Brotherhood of Shinsei - still the religious and philosophical foundation of Rokugan, the monks of Shinsei struggle the hardest to recover the old traditions, attempting to reconcile them with the new ways. This has met with some resistance, for many Rokugani have abandoned the teachings of Shinsei and the Tao, in particular those members of the fledgling Church of the Shadow Samurai. Some monks have adjusted better than others, becoming televangelists and spiritual leaders, while others have receded into seclusion entirely, waiting for this fragile new world to destroy itself.
The Crab Clan - still defenders of the Empire, they are among the few who still consider the minions of the Shadowlands a serious threat. They know that what happened with Fu Leng and Akuma can happen again. They are a highly mobile strike force, scouring all of Rokugan for signs of the taint and protecting the Phoenix, their brothers in arms against the Shadow. The Crab are still known for their bluntness and utter dedication to their duty. They use more modern weaponry than any other clan, for the Kaiu engineers are the greatest gunsmiths and weapons engineers in the world. Unfortunately, their dependence upon technology has caused them to lose touch with their spiritual traditions, and very few Crab are capable of using magic in these times.
The Crane Clan - the left hand of the Emperor controls the courts and politics of the Empire to a far lesser degree. They have found the modern world to their liking, for the advent of computers has expanded their economical resources a thousand fold. The Kakita Academy now trains the greatest computer programmers in the world, and are in high demand around the world (although the Cranes only sell technology that, to them, is already obsolete). Most of the Cranes, especially the Asahina maintain a strong hold on their tradition, and pay tribute to the Kami and their ancestors, but many of the younger Crane have been seduced by the power of big business and have little time for the past.
The Dragon Clan - sacrificed itself in the final battle against Akuma. It is believed that the Mirumuto, Agasha, Togashi, and Hitomi families were utterly annihilated in their final gambit to banish the Oni Master forever. The Kitsuki still remain, though their status as a "Great Clan" is more out of respect to their lost brethren than due to any real power in the Empire. The Kitsuki detectives are now a special attache to the Unicorn Clan, taking on the most difficult and unsolvable cases.
The Kolat - These shadow conspirators found themselves exposed, systematically rooted out, and destroyed some time ago. Their power base and operatives were broken, their leaders publicly executed. Still, rumors abound of the return of the Kolat, in an altogether different form...
The Lion Clan - the right hand of the Emperor struggles to bring glory to the Empire in a shrinking world. With the size of their clan and their armies significantly reduced by the Shadow War, the Lion are forced to find new ways to bring glory to their family, their clan, and their Emperor. Thus, they have broken into movies and television. The Kitsuki are among the greatest action movie directors in the world. The Ikoma are now reporters and news journalists (the new historians). And the Akodo... the Akodo have returned, after a fashion.
The Mantis Clan - the Royal Family. When the last Jade Emperor was struck down by Akuma's lieutenants, it was a Yoritomo who picked up the Imperial Banner and continued the march against the darkness. Thus the Yoritomo Dynasty was begun, leading to the current Emperor, Yoritomo VI. The Mantis have well adjusted to their new position of power and prestige. The great leaps in Rokugani technology over the last century have given the Mantis a great feeling of superiority over the other, "lesser" nations. Despite the small size of the army of Rokugan, some among the Mantis have begun to turn their eyes greedily upon the other nations.
The Naga - were perhaps the hardest hit by the Shadow War. Well aware of the Naga's powers against the denizens of the Shadowlands, Akuma created a great disease that spread through the Akasha, twisting and mutating the race, slaughtering Naga by the thousands. The Qamar saved his people the only way he could - by returning them to sleep in the depths of the Shinomen Forest. Recently, however, sightings of snake-like creatures have been increasing, but these creatures look very different than the Naga that Rokugan knows...
The Ninja - Legends still persist of the Dark Path of Shadow, the Lying Darkness, an evil that has nothing to do with Jigoku or the Shadowlands. Some have learned to harness this power for great feats of stealth and agility. These are the true ninja, assassins, midnight warriors of Rokugan. The Dark Path was believed defeated for a time, but some individuals claim they can hear it calling them. These are the new ninja. Is their power truly an extension of the Dark Path, or some other evil altoghther?
The Phoenix Clan - have replenished their number well since the Second Day of Thunder. They are not as strong in magic as they once more, but they have more than made up for this deficiency by combining their magic with technology in a fashion few can understand. Their technical wizardry is symbolized by the legions of Phoenix gyrocopters regularly seen patrolling the large cities of Rokugan. It was the Phoenix who sealed the Festering Pit once and for all after the Dragon made their sacrifice, and now it is the Phoenix who work to see that the seal is maintained. Working closely with the Crab, it is their duty to see that there is no reoccurrence of the terrors that wracked the world a century ago. The majority of the Phoenix Clan now inhabit what was once the Shadowlands.
Ratlings - The ancient race known as the Nezumi have been allies of the Crab since the days of Hiruma Kazuma. Now, however, all of Rokugan owes them a debt of gratitude. Not everyone is so willing to repay this debt, unfortunately.
The Scorpion Clan - the underhand of the Empire once again, as they always should have been. The Scorpion have embraced the modern world like no one else. As concepts such as honor and bushido seem to become more and more outdated, the Scorpion become more and more the norm. The Lion struggle to adjust. The Crane argue amongst themselves that they will not adjust. The Scorpion have already adjusted. Though most perceive their clan as nothing more than base criminals and gangsters, this is merely the facade that the Scorpions wish the world to see. In the service of their beloved Emperor, they have become the most pervasive and sinister intelligence organization in the world.
Toturi's Army - with no more Toturi Emperors, the smattering of ronin and wanderers who banded together to save the world for the better has been long forgotten. By most.
The Unicorn Clan - the police force of the Empire. Unicorn Magistrates are still the fastest cavalry in the world, though they do most of their traveling via automobile and motorcycle these days. After 1200 years, the Unicorn are no longer the outsider barbarians they once were considered by most of Rokugan. They have adjusted well, combining their knowledge of the gaijin with the traditions of Rokugan. They are highly utilized as diplomats and ambassadors in relations with foreign countries.
The Shadowlands Horde - is believed to be no more. The Festering Pit has been sealed. Akuma, the last Oni Master, was destroyed and banished forever. The Shadowlands themselves are free of the Taint, though they are barren and lifeless. But if the Pit has been sealed, why are there still cases of tainted monsters appearing in the remotest areas of Rokugan? Why are there so many unexplained murders in the city which the Crab and Phoenix will not allow the Unicorn to investigate? And why is the Kaiu Wall still patrolled regularly?
The Zokujin - Held underfoot by the slavery and subjugation of the Lion Clan for centuries, the creatures known to most only as Rock Goblins have begun to protest for their rights. Will these simple creatures succeed, or will they become a footnote to Rokugan's proud history like the now extinct Kitsu and the Kenku races?
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