- Why did you write Daishō?
After the success of In Her Majesty’s Name, which we were commissioned to write by Osprey Wargames, we decided to work together again on a period we both loved – medieval, mythical Japan.
- How hard is it to learn this game?
Most players have a firm grasp of the mechanics after just one game, and by the third all they need to play is the reference sheet and their buntai roster. We believe is creating simple mechanics that still give you plenty of options.
Note: Craig has the memory of a distracted goldfish. Anything more complicated than this and he is utterly lost 🙂
- What do I need to play?
A space about three feet or a metre square, some terrain and about a dozen figures each. Oh, and don’t forget a tape measure and a single ten-sided die. Honestly, the more terrain the better.
The game plays just as well on larger tables, but the games will necessarily take longer.
- How long does it take to play a game?
Depending on the scenario and the size of the forces involved, between forty-five minutes and a couple of hours.
- Are you tied to a single manufacturer’s figure range?
Not at all. We encourage you to use any figures you like as there are so many excellent samurai ranges out there at the moment. We are really looking forwards to seeing people’s buntai and their creature conversions.
That said we are good friends with Nick and his stalwart crew at North Star Miniatures and just love their work. You can see many of their figures pictured throughout the rule book.
- Where can I get Benkei, the half-oni monk figure from?
Nowhere currently. It is a unique figure was sculpted for us by a friend, the very talented Duncan Louca. You can see more of his work here [https://www.facebook.com/shadowminiatures?fref=ts].
- Do we have to use the buntai (companies) listed in the rule book?
No, not at all.
We have included a full and open points system in the book, along with a lot more weapons, armour, equipment and creatures than are used in the published buntai, precisely so you can devise your own. The buntai in the rule book cover many of the better-known types to give you a head start, and a few odd ones like the Kabuki-mono to give you an idea of where you can take this.
- Can you play with more than two people?
We have found during play testing that you can play a fun game with three or even four players, though the games do take longer.
- Will I need counters or special dice?
The game can be played with a single ten-sided die though most players like to have their own.
Some players like to use counters to keep track of what they are doing, especially during larger games. Though those with memories better than Craig’s don’t seem to have any trouble doing without.
- Will there be an errata sheet?
We hope not. We have gone over the manuscript with a fine toothcomb and specialist software. Also three reviewers, the Merry Nit-pickers, have had the manuscript to review prior to us sending it to be printed.
If you do see something that we have missed, got wrong or is confusing, please let us know.
Note: In keeping with the genre, one of our reviewers shall then be directed to commit seppuku.
- What happens if I have a rules query?
Well, you can add a comment to this page of the Daishō blog and we will answer it. We also maintain an active web presence on Facebook [https://www.facebook.com/groups/1668152890087837/] and on the Lead Adventure forums’ Far Eastern Adventures board [http://www.lead-adventure.de/index.php?board=86.0]. We love to hear from players and are always happy to help out.
Note: Good queries may well end up in the Rules FAQ’s so that others can benefit from them.
- If I have a cool idea/addition for Daishō, can I publish it on my blog/website?
Absolutely. We’d love to hear about it and, if it is good, or bad, or as mad as a bag of bakemono, we may publicise it here and on other places on the web (see 11 above).
We would be grateful though if you added a link back to this blog so your readers can come and see what we have to offer here as well.
Note: If you don’t have anywhere to publish it, and we like it, we may offer to host it for you here.
- I love your rules, can I adapt them to my own setting?
As long as it is for your own use please go right ahead. We support player creativity.
However, if you publish any of our copyrighted material without our permission* we may well come for you one dark night.
If you try to sell any of our copyrighted material as your own we will send ninjas, lawyers or possibly Harvey Keitel.
* More than the extracts allowed under copyright law for reviews etc.
- What is your attitude to reviews of your game?
We welcome them, good, bad or indifferent. How are we to improve our writing if we don’t find out what people like and what they don’t? So please feel free to post links to them here and in the other places we mentioned in 11 above.
- I have found a scanned copy of your book on a download site. What do I do?
Please tell us as soon as you can. We shall then visit that site with a cease and desist order.
Although we do not make our living from these books (we’d have to live in a cardboard box and eat road kill to survive on the money we make from them) we shall defend our copyright to the death.
Note: Each book we sell helps to fund the next project.
- Are you planning to write any more rule books in this or other genres/periods?
We are currently working on Blood Eagle, skirmish wargaming in the mythical Dark Ages. This will once more use the same core rules but adapted to reflect this uniquely heroic and savage period.
- Shall you be demonstrating the game at any shows this year?
The game was launched at Salute 2015, where we manned a stand with two participation boards on it.
We will be attending a number of other British shows during the year and will advertise these here on the blog once we have confirmation from the organisers.
We are afraid that this is all in the UK mostly because, as much as we’d love to, we can’t afford to fly to Europe, America, Canada, Australia or Middle Earth.
If you would like to put on a Daishō demo or participation game at a show near you please let us know. We shall publicise the hell out of it and help you in any other way we can.
- What about the film rights?
Akiro Kurosawa chose not to option them, and we haven’t heard back from Keanu Reeves’ agent yet.
- Are you afraid of upsetting or offending people with the racial/social stereotypes included in this book?
If we didn’t offend anybody with the truly dreadful Victorian imperial/colonial stereotyping we displayed in IHMN, we believe that we’re probably on safe ground here.
However, if you haven’t been offended by us yet don’t worry, we shall get around to you as soon as we can.
- Is a sense of humour required to play this game?
If you read 18 and 19 above with a straight face then this game might not be for you.
- How do you answer accusations of historical inaccuracy?
We refer the accusers to Lord Gojira, Oni Overlord and a close personal friend of the authors.
Note: see FAQ 20 above.
- Can I get a signed copy of the rules from you guys?
We are happy to sign books at shows but please do not send books to us or our distributor as we cannot guarantee (or afford) to send them back.
- Would you say this game is suitable for children?
In terms of rules complexity certainly. We know of people who play this game’s predecessor IHMN with their eight year old kids. However, the decision to allow your child to play this game remains with you.
We are not responsible if they then beat you in every game and begin muttering darkly in Japanese.
- How does this game differ from Osprey’s Ronin?
If you like the style and feel of Ronin I’d say stick with it. Craig Woodfield has written an excellent game there. Osprey even prevailed upon him to write a few supernatural elements for their website.
We believe though that it does not cover the entire breadth of Japanese warfare as the Japanese themselves saw it. In the period that both our games cover people really believed in Kami, Oni and Bakemono and this is what we set out to create in Daishō.