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Roleplay reason for kensai going throwing dagger

I m searching for good roleplay reason for such a choice for my kensai. But it seems to me more a pp choice rather than a justifiable one..

Comments

  • DJKajuruDJKajuru Member Posts: 3,282
    You could reskin the class and see it as some kind of ninja .

    JuliusBorisovBlackravenOrlonKronsteen
  • Lord_TansheronLord_Tansheron Member Posts: 4,198
    Guts from Berserk (manga).
    Not to be a nitpick, but isn't Guts not only armored but ridiculously so (the Berserker Armor he eventually gets being literally a reason for the manga's title)? Doesn't seem very Kensai to me.

  • JuliusBorisovJuliusBorisov Member, Administrator, Moderator, Developer Posts: 21,628
    Guts from Berserk (manga).
    Not to be a nitpick, but isn't Guts not only armored but ridiculously so (the Berserker Armor he eventually gets being literally a reason for the manga's title)? Doesn't seem very Kensai to me.

    I tried to find a Japanese-inspired (considering the ken-sai aspect) fighter with daggers.

  • KamigoroshiKamigoroshi Member Posts: 5,876
    "Gotta carry a knife inside my boots. Sick of getting disarmed all the time."
    The practical sided of things: having tons of throwing daggers ready at hand makes getting disarmed but a trivial annoyance.

  • Lord_TansheronLord_Tansheron Member Posts: 4,198
    I tried to find a Japanese-inspired (considering the ken-sai aspect) fighter with daggers.
    Well, it's KENsai after all - a sword saint, not a dagger saint (and let's ignore the fact it really should be called kensEi).

    But terminology aside, I suppose this would fit with the whole ninja/shinobi imagination, since they're usually depicted as unarmored (as opposed to D&D rogues, who wear leather armor - something some samurai also did) and well versed in all manner of throwing weapons, including the dagger-like kunai (though that's believed to have been more tool than weapon). The popular-culture version of the ninja is almost entirely fictitious, of course, but it fits the (equally fictitious) D&D kensai not too badly.

    In short, it's not entirely inconceivable a kensai would combine lack of armor with a throwing weapon, and since it's all made up anyway there's little to stop you from justifying it with your own personal spin on the kit. I find it generally works best if you fit class and kit to the character, rather than the other way round - it may not be entirely in line with the rules all the time, but maybe when you're RPing the RP is more important.

    I am very fond of the CHA 3 Bard I once made, who was an absolutely repulsive savage from a tribe that happened to have a tradition of hereditary village storyteller and to their great misfortune it fell to the most uncouth (and utterly tone-deaf) brute imaginable. Had WAY more fun playing that than some generic charm-your-pants-off Bard with CHA 18, and let the rules be damned.

    JuliusBorisovAerakar
  • KamigoroshiKamigoroshi Member Posts: 5,876
    Well, it's KENsai after all - a sword saint, not a dagger saint (and let's ignore the fact it really should be called kensEi).
    The Japanese word Ken (剣) inside the title Kensei (剣聖) really just means "blade". As in the bladed part of any cutting tool or weapon. Be it swords, daggers, kukris, naginatas, or bayonets. Even spear tips are known as Ken for the same reason. Similarly, both the words Ha (刃) and Katana (刀) describe blades rather than a specific kind of weapon.

    So for a Kensai (剣才) (which loosely translates as Genius with Blades) playthrough, any bladed weapon no matter their size should be fair game from a historical perspective. Alas, clubs and other bludgeon weapons are just not lore-friendly and thus a clear "out" for such a character.

    JuliusBorisovStummvonBordwehrAerakar
  • ChroniclerChronicler Member Posts: 1,337
    As far as weapons go, the powergaming reason pretty much is the roleplaying reason.

    Weapons are tools. People choose them because they want to accomplish some task. You don't need some backstory about how your dead wife had a dagger fetish and this is how you honor her or whatever. You just specialized in daggers because you wanted to do what daggers do.

    Aerakar
  • Lord_TansheronLord_Tansheron Member Posts: 4,198
    The Japanese word Ken (剣) inside the title Kensei (剣聖) really just means "blade".
    This is incorrect. Ken doesn't "just mean blade" - it primarily means sword. If it's translated as "blade", it's still used to refer to swords (as in e.g. "a blade of legend") and not to the particular part of a cutting weapon (as in e.g. "the blade of a knife"), for which 刃 (ha/yaiba) is used instead (which in turn can also refer to swords in a roundabout way, but has the first usage of blade as in edge of a knife/sword/etc.). In any event, the ambiguity present in English between blade in the literal sense and blade as a synecdoche (i.e. using the part of a sword, the blade, to refer to the whole sword itself) is simply not present in ken in Japanese.

    Ken is the generic word for "sword". Anytime someone just refers to some generic sword, that's the word they use. You could specify more with words like katana (刀), and these words are also sometimes used generically, but the number one usage for ken (剣) is simply any kind of sword that's not further specified.

    No Japanese would think that kensei (剣聖) refers to someone dealing with blades as in the edge part of a cutting implement/weapon - their first and strongest assumption would be that it's about swords. That's not to say you couldn't then reveal to them that the particular Kensei in question has a very liberal interpretation of what constitutes a "sword" (cue the outrageous anime plot and design), but it would never be taken to refer to blades rather than swords from the get-go. If that was the intention, the term would specify it in some way (e.g. something like 刃の聖人 or whatever).

    StummvonBordwehr
  • KamigoroshiKamigoroshi Member Posts: 5,876
    Not really, no. The actual word for sword, as in the weapon cathegory itself, is “Tou“ (also written as 刀). Hence why the in the western world known weapon “katana“ is called Nihontou (日本刀) by the Japanese. The same logic applies to Ninjatou (忍者刀) as well. Or why wakizashi are classified as Shoutou (小刀): short swords.

    It's just that the mainstream media, as always, get things royally wrong.

    JuliusBorisovStummvonBordwehr
  • Lord_TansheronLord_Tansheron Member Posts: 4,198
    Not really, no. The actual word for sword, as in the weapon cathegory itself, is “Tou“ (also written as 刀). Hence why the in the western world known weapon “katana“ is called Nihontou (日本刀) by the Japanese. The same logic applies to Ninjatou (忍者刀) as well. Or why wakizashi are classified as Shoutou (小刀): short swords.

    It's just that the mainstream media, as always, get things royally wrong.
    "Tou" is not a standalone word here, it's the Chinese reading (on-yomi) of the character 刀. The Japanese reading (kun-yomi) of the same character is "Katana".

    "Katana" can also be used as a generic word for "sword", however it usually refers to Asian/Japanese-style swords and wouldn't normally be used for other kinds of sword. "Ken" doesn't carry that distinction and is simply a generic word for any sword not further specified.

    "Ken" is a little special in that its on-yomi is frequently used even if the character stands on its own, while the associated kun-yomi, which is "tsurugi", is now somewhat archaic (mostly associated with the Kusanagi-no-Tsurugi 草薙の剣, also called Ame-no-Murakumo-no-Tsurugi 天叢雲剣, a legendary sword that is one of the three Imperial Regalia of Japan).

    If you pick any random person off the street in Japan and show them a picture of a (Western) sword and ask them what they'd call this, 99.9% would say "Ken" (剣).

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