Ronin on the Wall
The Empire of Rokugan
Rokugani society is based on a clan structure, with seven so-called “Great Clans”, as well as a number of minor clans. Great Clans are made up of several family lines, each with their own general purpose within the clan. Minor clans, on the other hand, generally only have one family. Each clan also has areas of land bequeathed by the emperor under their control. The emperor retains ownership off all lands, however, and the clans essentially rent the lands they use by paying taxes annually.
The Crab Clan is considered the least cultured or courtly of all the clans. Their duty is to guard the wall that separates the empire of Rokugan from the foul and tainted Shadowlands. Families of the Crab Clan are: Hida, Hiruma, Kaiu, Kuni, Toritaka, Yasuki. Colors of the Crab are grey and dark blue.
The Crane Clan is considered the most artistic of all the clans. They are the Emperor’s Left Hand. They are known throughout the empire for their trained courtiers and duelists. The families of the Crane Clan are: Asahina, Daidoji, Doji, Kakita, Yasuki. The Crane’s colors are white and light blue.
The Dragon Clan controls the mountains to the north of the empire. They are aloof and removed from the affairs of the empire. Families of the Dragon include: Hoshi, Kitsuki, Mirumoto, Tamori, Togashi, and formerly the Agasha (the Agasha have since joined the Phoenix). The colors of the Dragon Clan are emerald green and gold.
The Lion Clan is known as a very aggressive and honor-driven clan. They are the Emperor’s Right Hand, personally defending his causes above all else. Lion families are: Akodo, Ikoma, Kitsu, Matsu. The Lion Clan uses brown and yellow as their colors.
The Phoenix Clan is known as the most skilled with magic in the empire. They have schools of magic associated with each element, including the empire’s only school dealing with Void magic. Phoenix families are: Agasha, Asako, Isawa, Shiba. The Phoenix’ colors are red and orange.
The Scorpion Clan is known as the Underhand of the Emperor. They are known for their courtiers’ abilities. Their ninja are so well trained that they are not known of at all. It is a Scorpion tradition to always be masked, or face painted. The families of the Scorpion are Bayushi, Shosuro, Soshi, and Yogo. The Scorpion colors are dark red and black.
The Unicorn Clan is known for their cavalry and horsemanship. They are considered barbarians by the other clans because the clan as a whole spent nearly 800 of the last thousand years outside of the empire. Families of the Unicorn are: Moto, Horiuchi, Ide, Iuchi, Shinjo, Utaku (formerly Otaku). The Unicorn’s colors are purple and white.
There are many minor clans in Rokugan — clans that have been formed since the birth of the empire by those other than the seven Kami. New clans are not founded lightly. The founders of these clans generally performed some extraordinarily valiant deed or favor for the Empire. Some of the Minor clans are: Hare Clan, Ox Clan, Sparrow Clan, Monkey Clan, Tortoise Clan, Bat Clan, Oriole Clan, Dragonfly Clan.
The Mantis Clan is one of the more powerful minor clans, owing to its seafaring ability and dominance of trade (especially fine silks). The Mantis Clan is growing in power as it petitions other minor clans to band together under its banner. The clan’s ultimate goal is to be recognized as a Great Clan, which would be a significant accomplishment as the (current) requirement for recognition as a Great Clan is having been created by one of the kami at the founding of Rokugan. Mantis families (each a former minor clan) are: Moshi, Tsuruchi, Yoritomo. The Mantis favor silver and green as their colors
The Imperial Families are the families of the Emperor and his closest followers. Though not a clan unto themselves, they can wield much power (though non-emperor members just as often have little power). The original Imperial line was founded by the Kami Hantei, and the families by his followers Seppun and Otomo. Miya was granted a family less than a century later. The Imperial Families are: Hantei, Miya, Otomo, Seppun.