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Crowdsourcing Thirteen Schools [Martial Arts of Wu-Jian]

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  • Crowdsourcing Thirteen Schools [Martial Arts of Wu-Jian]

    So. First real post time, I guess

    Wu-Jian is shaping up to be pretty important to (at least the beginning of) my upcoming DBs game. I rather appreciate its 'Kowloon Walled City except the Triads are all Martial Arts schools' aesthetic. That said, I suspect I will run out of motes well before completing thirteen interesting and distinct-feeling organized crime / martial arts schools. While of course I'm never actually going to need thirteen fully detailed schools, I do like having a pool of material to draw on at need. So, I appeal to you, venerable sages of the internet, for aid!

    Judging from the brief writeups in the Realm (incidentally, I've only read 3e stuff thus far), each of the schools occupies its own social and 'economic' niche, which mostly seems to involve exploiting one of the needs or desires of one of the many, many vulnerable populations in Wu-Jian: Ocean's Endless Slumber preys on sluice farmers; Thousand Waves Break the Shore does tax fraud (?) and steals from the Realm; etc. Each also has a characteristic style, which range from 'intimidation with nonfunctional firewands' (which is hilarious) to seven-limbed flowing murder-movements (less hilarious). So, quite a lot of variety, then.

    I'd prefer to avoid horrific sex trafficking and the like that often characterize real-world organized crime, but otherwise, go crazy.

    Eg: Torment of Purple Corpses is a school of undertakers, morticians, plague doctors, and others who deal with the dead and dying. They control the cemeteries and crematoria of Wu Jian, and the city's necromancers pay a fee to the Corpses for access to the bodies of the unconsecrated dead. Their style, also called Torment of Purple Corpses, is disconcertingly direct and pragmatic, emphasizing continuous offensive motion and killing intent.
    Last edited by Elenian; 11-16-2020, 01:14 AM.

  • #2
    The Eleven Daughters of Grace are a close-knit school of vicious prize fighters, more like a stable of gladiators than a street gang. They prefer fame and money to controlling territory, and as such they wander from place to place across Wu-Jian. The Daughters, or 'Graces,' are an imposing sight when they travel together - ferocious women, tall and muscled, with black sclera and eyes gleaming with malice. The Graces practice a style passed down from a wandering martial artist from the Blessed Isle, called Ten Streams Mantis. In the Realm Ten Streams Mantis is an ancient style from the late Shogunate, and its use is considered antiquated and inefficient. In Wu-Jian, however, the style is fresh and new and its signature techniques - the joint locks of the Mantis, augmented with ground-fighting and bone-breaking holds employing the arms and legs - are new and frightening. Foes unfamiliar with Ten Streams Mantis are quickly trapped in unbreakable holds and broken to pieces. The Graces are unmatched in single combat among the various gangs and schools for now, but if a counter to their style can be found they may be defeated.

    Many gangs are loathe to search, however. They know that the secret to defeating Ten Streams Mantis lies among the other martial traditions of the Blessed Isle, for whom the Ten Streams Mantis was a foe conquered a millennia ago.


    • #3
      The Tempest Hoofers are a group of smugglers and demon hunters that established a presence in most of the docks of Wu-Jian and its neighboring isles. Their smuggling routes through the vertical slums are notoriously hard to track, winding deep into the haunted underground pathways that haven't seen the sun nor been treaded by mortals for decades.
      They make themselves visible on the docks: The Nameless Trading Company, their founders, has long changed its services from transport to protection, guarding merchant ships that pass through the city with their characteristic dance-like martial art, well suited to fighting on constrained spaces and heaving ground such as that of a cramped ship loose in the monsoon - or the deep collapsing slums of Wu-Jian.

      The nameless trading company marks its members on duty with a red satin armband with an incomplete golden dragon-tongue pictogram for "soothing westward winds", a term that is present in almost all sentences of their sailing prayers..
      The Tempest Hoofers don't use such obvious markings, instead they identify themselves with a nonsensical mudra that completes that pictogram into an old realm character for "beckoned storm devils dancing under the sky".

      The Tempest Hoofers don't seem to follow any obvious hierarchy - each cell takes on jobs by its own authority, and interrogated members have never revealed anything substantial about the leader they venerate.

      The Style: The Tempest Hoofers don't put a name to their fighting style - but an accomplished student will identify many of the hallmarks of golden janissary's techniques at the root of theirs. Most could hold their own with any trained militia, but the most accomplished among them could pressure a shikari, a faint depressurization and brass-sounding rumble follows their signature moves. It's a mobile style adapted to unstable ground, with plenty teachings to fight on the ground, quickly rise and move through cramped spaces and closing distance faster than the enemy can react.

      The link to the company: While it's clear to the reader that they are connected, they are adept at covering that. Through bribe, red tape and simple obscurity no investigator ever got anything substantial on them, and the hoofers are left alone by the populace - many benefit from their smuggling, and a few know they can appeal them to hunt ghosts and demons roaming near their houses (a service they often provide free of charge) when the militias fail.
      The Company and the Hoofers both boast mastery at the style, but there are accomplished practitioners everywhere else, uncontested.
      The original tie between Company and Hoofers hails back to a ragara-backed wyld hunt that failed nearly a century ago, when two golden demons fought with blades that wove lightning and rain atop collapsing slum towers. Both repelled the wyld hunt together before resuming their attempts to kill each other, and their shaken followers, members of the company and a rival pirate crew, were the only people to leave that place. None of them ever spoke of the incident, taking that memory to their graves.
      Last edited by Synapse; 11-16-2020, 07:04 AM.

      Check my Exalted homebrew!


      • #4
        Due to a mixture of insanity, a desire to offer the forum something for Christmas and lacking inspiration for the next ship entry for Upon This Dreaming Sea, I

        This might be of use?


        • #5
          These are superb - thank you all.

          Originally posted by Altasaire View Post
          Huh. Well. Thank you very much! I completely missed this thread in my search of the forums.