Superior Tactics #35: Soshi Jomyako

Scorpion secrets
Missing emperor? Not us.
Your samurai left

This week, Andrew Getting (known as Chimizu in some circles) reveals some secrets of a shugenja slated to play an interesting role in the upcoming story. He speaks of none other than

Soshi Jomyako - Common Personality (HB) - 1F - 2C - -HR - 5G - 1PH
Scorpion Clan Shugenja.
Limited: Bow Jomyako and lose 1 Honor. Target a Province in play and name a card. The card in the Province is revealed (if face down). If you named the card, it is discarded. Otherwise, it remains face up.

There are those of you who wonder why I like Jomyako. Trust me, it's not worth e-mailing me just to hear chest-beating. Let's say that, from the beginning, I've had more knowledge of Jomyako, both in stats and in story, than most.

Anyway, Jomyako's a quintessential Scorpion: below average stats, but with a very good ability, with some very useful applications. Let's start with some of the basic combos:

Abandoning the Fortunes: Sets your opponents up good and hard.

Plans Within Plans: For those awkward moments when your opponent can break you with a new Personality or Holding.

Seer: This promo card allows for a less reliable, but more selective variant of Norikazu Sensei's abilities.

Shiryo no Shosuro: Bow one of your nameless plebes to guarantee that you can hit whatever you feel like. [Ninja Spy works well too. -- ed.]

Yodin Sensei: Jomyako targets the province, not a Personality within it. With Yodin Sensei's effects, most players will keep one or two Personalities waiting in the wings. Judicious use of Jomyako will slowly mill their decks of Personalities, another twist of the screw that is Yodin Sensei.

That's fine for most gamers, but then there are those of us, the vicious, malevolent bastards who notice that, though her ability is both less honorable and less reliable than Bayushi Aramoro's, the dissimilarities do not end there.

Regions and Events: These card types have an annoying habit of going off (or not) and leaving a face-down province in their wake. Unlike Bayushi Aramoro, Soshi Jomyako doesn't always force a discard. Bow Jomyako and target one of your own provinces. Name a card (favorites include "Pikachu," "Time Walk," "Captain Reis," "Charlie Landers," and the ever-popular "How to Play Poker"), and you've got access to one extra card during Dynasty. Normally, this doesn't increase speed too much. [My personal favorite is Pearl of Wisdom. -- ed.]

The Bayushi Provinces: Bring out your Ninja. Bow Jomyako to get rid of chaff and/or turn over your face-down cards. Bring out your Ninja. Using Shiryo no Shosuro is almost overkill. Almost. (Note that, despite the BP ability being capable of worming around Yodin Sensei's Personality restriction, most Ninja are useful for their ability to target a Personality). Shiryo no Yogo, Alliance, and Ninja Strongholds also help.

The Seer, Part 2: Remember how I said Jomyako/Seer is a Norikazu substitute? That combo can double as a substitute Akuai with Kachiko's Kiss and Troll Raiders.

Of course, this isn't all there is to Jomyako, but that's a Superior Tactics for another day.

[Additional: I just want to re-emphasize having Jomyako exchange face down cards for face up ones. In exchange for the one honor loss, you receive 33% to 100% more resources available that turn. And a shugenja innate ability to boot. This is especially nice if you're using Essence of Air and encounter something unhelpful in the initial revelation. Unless you have dynasty-searching methods, the loss is no worse than shuffling the lost card to the bottom of your deck. Jomyako and her identical twin can perform this service on a localized target, replacing an unwanted card and the top card of your deck for a new face up card.

Joining the crew for 3G for cheap, Jomyako is a solid Scorpion Shugenja. Of course, Soshi Bantaro, Yogo Shidachi, and Soshi Jujun are all just as useful. Perhaps the Scorpion have a Shiba Technique up one of their countless sleeves? She's certainly a good candidate for other clans that want to hear Secrets on the Wind. -- ed.]

Card text copyright FRPG, 1995-2000.
Article text copyright Andrew Getting, 2000, edited by Trevor Stone.

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