The Legend of the Five Rings living card game looks like a samurai dream

20 April 2017
l5c01_anc_cardfan_1-22220.png Legend of the Five Rings
Reimagining of ‘90s CCG and RPG due out this August

After more than a year of teasing, Fantasy Flight has finally taken the wraps off its living card game reimagining of Legend of the Five Rings – and, boy, are we excited to get our hands on it.

Legend of Five Rings: The Card Game is, as it sounds, a reboot of the 1990s collectible card game and RPG.

Fantasy Flight picked up the rights to the series from AEG in late 2015, bringing the long-lived CCG to an end after two decades and announcing its plans to bring the world of fighting samurai back as a living card game akin to its Lord of the Rings, Game of Thrones, Arkham Horror and Android Netrunner titles, meaning cards will be offered in pre-defined expansions rather than randomised boosters. Fantasy Flight points out that you’ll need up to three copies of the core set to collect the full sets of three cards permitted in a deck.

Players take on the roles of clans in the land of Rokugan, acquiring characters and holdings from a dynasty deck and executing battle orders with a separate deck of conflict cards. A match begins with players laying out five provinces and populating four of them, with the five defined as the important stronghold, which the opponent is attempting to conquer.

An interesting mechanic is the concept of ‘fate’, which acts as both a currency to purchase new characters and a timer mechanism. When played, characters can be given any amount of fate on them, but lose fate at the end of each round – when they run out of fate, they leave the battlefield.

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Following Fantasy Flight’s love of dials in games such as X-Wing and the recent Runewars, Legend of the Five Rings will similar have an honour dial, which is used by players at the beginning of each round to secretly determine how many conflict cards they will draw – when revealed, the player with the higher bid must pay the other player honour before drawing their cards.

Battles include both political and military clashes, while victory can be claimed by breaking your rival’s stronghold, acquiring 25 honour or by your opponent losing all of their honour.

There’s a more detailed run-through of the gameplay and lore for you to peruse on Fantasy Flight’s site, but given how well Arkham Horror’s living card game turned out (not to mention our love of samurai), we’re very much on board.

Legend of the Five Rings: The Card Game will launch at Gen Con this August, hitting shops towards the close of the year.


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