You know there are plenty of reasons to hate the Crane. They have good duelist. They have good courtiers. Their bushi are fairly decent as well. So, yeah I can understand why people would hate the Crane. I suppose the Kakita Artisan will just be one more reason to hate on the Crane.
The Yang to the Shosuro Actor's Yin, the Kakita Artisan makes a strong addition to most parties. They will sign extremely well when backed with a Kakita Bushi or a Doji Courtier. But in general for a school whose primary focus isn't politics but art it's got some very good political teeth. Having a Kakita Artisan can make some aspects of an adventuring party easier (gift giving for the win).
The game has its fair share of schools that allow for more artistic pursuits. The Shiba Artisan, Tsi Smith, Shosuro Actor all let you be artistic for your clan. But in the realm of art the Kakita is king. At least to me anyway :).
The Kakita Artisan also gets some very nice support in the form of Paths and Advanced Schools. Overall I expect Crane fans to be very pleased with what is offered.
Kakita Artisan (Artisan)
Unlike their occasional rivals among the Shiba, the Kakita Artisans do not confine themselves merely to the creation of physical art such as paintings or books of poetry. The Artisan Academy devotes itself to the study of every sort of art, whether it is performance-based or creation-based, and studies not only the ways of art but also the ways in which such art may be turned to the service of the Crane Clan.
Rank Four: Undying Name
Your art is now so magnificent that you can make and break the reputations of others by depicting or referencing them in your work. You may create a piece of art referring to another person by rolling [chosen art]/Awareness at a TN equal to 20 plus 5x their Glory Rank. With a success,
you may either increase (if your art is complimentary) or decrease (if it is critical) their Glory by up to 5 points, plus an additional 5 points for every Raise you make on the roll. You may call two additional Raises to inflict a gain of Infamy on the target instead of a Glory change.
You may not target the same person with this technique more than once every six months. Furthermore, persons of high station cannot have their reputations damaged by artists lacking in prestige – the target’s Status Rank cannot exceed your Glory or Status Rank (whichever is higher).
Kakita Naomi – Crane Storyteller
Kakita Naomi is said to be one of the best storytellers alive. The wit and humor in her poems and stories are the stuff of legends. Her tales have even moved the Crab Champion to tears, though many do not remind the Champion of this.
Naomi is a favorite in the courts of Rokugan, being sought after each winter to entertain and enthrall the host guest. She even has a standing invitation to the Emperors imperial court each winter. She even holds the position of honored guest when visiting the Imperial City.
Her rivalry with the Scorpion playwright Shosuro Sakuya is notorious. While the source of their animosity is unknown it is rumored that in their youth the pair were lovers until Naomi was bethrowed to another.
Naomi does not like her husband. She feels he is barely above being a barbarian. His only saving grace was that he came from the Ide family and not the Moto. She spends as much time as possible away from her husband, touring the empire and giving stirring performances to honor the Crane and its allies.
Naomi’s favorite stories and poems focus around the conflict between love and duty. She has also captivated many a court with gripping tales of honor in the face of great adversity. Naomi is sharp witted and equally sharp tongued. When not entertaining a court she can often be found deeply involved in a conversation of some nature.
School/Rank Kakita Artisan 5
Skills: Calligraphy 4, Courtier 4, Games: Sadane 6, Etiquette (Conversation, Courtesy) 4, Sincerity (Honesty) 4, Artisan: Poetry 6, Perform: Oratory 6, Perform: Storytelling 6, Perform: Song 4 Tea Ceremony 5, Lore: Heraldry 4, Lore: History 3, Lore: Crane Clan 4
Advantages: Fame (3) Kharmic Tie (3 Shosuro Sakuya) Voice (3)
Disadvantages: Contrary (3) Sworn Enemy (5 Shosuro Sakuya) True Love (3 Shosuro Sakuya)
Techniques: Soul of the Artisan, The Souls Dreams, Free the Spirit, Undying Name, A Gift Beyond Price