Forums News and Information Industry News The Coming Dawn: Unicorn Clan, Part 1


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    • Owlbear

    by Randy Green, Jr.

    So, how about that change to Cavalry?

    Ivory Edition will mark a big…no, that’s an understatement…a huge change in the way that Unicorn players play L5R with the loss of the Cavalry Maneuvers Segment. However, the best Unicorn players know that the true power of Cavalry was the ability to pick your battles, flanking an enemy army that defended poorly and pressing that advantage. Mobility has always been the true power of the Unicorn and with Ivory Edition, we can finally get away from just “I assign no infantry” and explore that power.


    Obviously, when we think of mobility, we think of movement and it should be no surprise that the Unicorn Stronghold makes use of a movement action to showcase the power of their Cavalry. As both a Battle and Engage action, the Stronghold truly allows the Unicorn Clan to pick their spots. You assign your army to one province and a small force defends elsewhere. Use the Cavalry Engage to swoop in one unit and the Stronghold to swoop in with another one. Suddenly, that protected troop is in trouble, especially if you have a unit with attached Followers or Items making them harder to defeat.

    Better yet, split your army for two provinces. When your opponent picks their poison, you have two units that can move into the battle that matters. That kind of battle control is very powerful and many a defender will have to think twice when facing the thundering hooves of the Unicorn army.


    In addition to an added province strength, Unicorn gets an interesting extra trait for going second: the ability to Cycle cards in your provinces a second time on your opening turn. While every other clan will see a maximum of 8 Dynasty cards on their first turn, Unicorn players that go second get a chance to see even more, minimizing their risk of having gold production issues and maximizing their chances of seeing the best possible resource start. As Unicorn is often the clan with the most clunky gold scheme, despite having the highest starting gold production, this added ability will help them smooth out their early economy. As economic development is very important in Ivory Edition, this added insurance should prove to be far more vital to Unicorn’s success than it might appear before games are played in the new arc.


    If controlling the battle with Cavalry and the Stronghold isn’t enough, Moto Naleesh adds another wrinkle with the addition of giving Reserve to a Personality in your provinces. The Cavalry waiting over the hill for that reinforcing charge, giving Reserve as an Engage to your Personality adds another potential problem for the opposition, because they have to be aware that there is more force and possibly a battle action incoming.

    If that wasn’t enough, Naleesh is a 4F Tactician, meaning that on her own, she can break most provinces solo. With some of the quality Weapons and Cavalry Followers we’ve seen in the pre-Ivory expansions, it shouldn’t be hard to find some good choices to enhance her unit even further. Finally, the icing on the cake are her traits. A blanket force penalty for Infantry opposition in an environment where Force totals are far more important is not something to overlook and her honor gain is definitely an added bonus if you are interested in switching. With the Stronghold’s ability, the change to Cavalry and Naleesh giving out Reserve, Unicorn really has become the movement clan, or better put… The unpredictable ones.

    Heading into Ivory Edition, Unicorn players are entering a brave new world. The change to Cavalry may cause long-time players some trepidation, but their Stronghold and Champion show that even with that change, the essence of the Unicorn Clan remains and is even more so a clear advantage. They are the most mobile army in Rokugan and have superior Cavalry troops. It’s time to finally show the rest of the Clans what that truly means!

    For the Khan! For Lady Shinjo Reborn!

    The post The Coming Dawn: Unicorn Clan, Part 1 appeared first on Alderac Entertainment Group.

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