Inari's Judgement available during Gen Con



Tricksters of the spirit world? Mystical creatures, making life difficult for ordinary folk? Warriors against the darkness? Malevolent beasts of the night who commit heinous acts? Envoys of the gods of the forest and the fields? Harvesters of others' sorrow and misfortune? The list is as long as the Takashi clan's achievements or the Ito clan's duplicity.
Precisely who or what they are is moot, as they are now in Jwar dispensing their brand of bloody justice.
Kota came first and was alone for many, many years. She was known for her sense of mischief toward samurai and villagers alike, evading capture from the wiliest of hunters.
Her mission was to better understand this anomaly called the Isles of Jwar. Kota discovered many curiosities applicable only to Jwar at that precise moment in time. Kota came across Ikiryo upon her travels and realised her for the abomination she is. Kota sent for her den-brother Kyuubi, who specialises in removing wayward Shugenja, who deviate from their path. Not only was Ikiryo far more potent than anticipated, but the Kitsune had not yet had the misfortune of dealing with the Risen or Kairai either. The hunt to eradicate them from Jwar continues.
The Kitsune believe that every living being must follow their path, destiny, and natural behaviour. For example, Eldest Brother, an Oni, but one that has assimilated himself amongst humanity instead of raging through the worlds with his Oni brothers and sisters. He has deviated from his path and thus is targeted by the Kitsune for judgment. Eldest Brother is marked for death. This applies to everything: spirits, humans, tengu, and even the Kitsune. Kota herself, the first of her kind in Jwar, has a death sentence on her head because she fights against the Oni on the side of the Temple of Ro-Kan to preserve human life. The others see this as an abomination; Oni, as wicked and evil as they are, are merely following their nature.




Just as Kyuubi specialises in correcting those Shugenja who do not follow their dharma, Takeru focuses on the undead. She has a hatred for them seldom witnessed in others of her kind and has found ingenious ways to eradicate them. The dead should stay dead; anything else is against nature.
Takeru's familiarity and comfort in her fox form give her a great advantage when tracking prey and moving long distances unseen, as few Kitsune have the facility that Takeru does in fox form. She also fashions specialist daggers built to deal with her specific foe.
Always wanting to help others and knowing how difficult the Kairai are to deal with, Takeru likes to 'misplace' these daggers on shrines or easy-to-find places outside hamlets or villages about to be attacked.



It is no secret that Juko did not like the role given to him; never wanting to harm anyone or pass judgement, he did his best to stay out of the Kitsune's machinations. Music is his life, and he would rather while away the days than be dispensing justice on wayward beings.
However, Juko was politely advised that by doing this, he was failing to follow his own path and that death would be an inevitability if he did not change his course.
He took it upon himself to find a way to balance his beliefs with his given destiny. He found this when he was able to use his music to correct a wayward kami, corrupted by an evil shugenja. 
It is rare for kami to fall from their correct dharma. Their very nature is to exemplify their anima. Kami of wind move, fly and leap. Kami of the earth endure, persist and grow. Even some kami representing dark concepts, such as The Wraith, are true to their natures, however abhorrent.
Usually, an outside force corrupts a kami, so Juko takes up the most challenging task of not just removing them but purifying and correcting the corrupted kami. Juko can reach into a kami and touch its very anima with his music, and if he is strong enough, he can cleanse them of their taint and set them back to their correct course.



When the Kitsune scouts find a soul they feel has strayed from its dharma, a judge is called. Kuoto can see the fate the soul should have as well as its current path. She will confront the soul, glamoured to appear larger and imposing, and offer it the final choices. For each option, the soul will either begin to right its path or be corrected.
Though she may weep for the loss she inflicts, if the soul will not change, Kyoto will give her final verdict. Follow the path or death.
These choices are reflected in her Ki Feats. First, she will ask the soul to meditate on its actions (Use a Focus Action), and if they do not, she forces them to act correctly (The Control Marker).
Next, she decrees the path the soul should take by choosing its following action. Finally, she can offer one last chance, act correctly (Control Marker) or be sentenced to death. While she has the usual Kitsune trickery in melee (Dodge and Feint), she isn't a combat model but should be able to defend herself well enough.
Kyoto doesn't use her fox form all the time; she would say that she uses it wisely and judiciously and not to excess. You will notice in the game that she begins in Fox Form, but unlike Kota, a young and vivacious scout kitsune, she cannot switch back and forth mid-battle.



The Queen does not have to justify herself to you!
Well... you have been good, so she will reward you with a brief look at her abilities. Tengoko leads the Kitsune, at least those in her area of influence. Her beauty and presence are often too much for ordinary men to take, and they cannot raise a hand against her. The Queen is nigh impervious to harm and rarely leaves her celestial palace except to pronounce sentence on a wayward Kitsune.
For Temple players, a dedicated Opposed Ki user is rare (In fact, so rare that she only appears in the Kitsune Theme List so as not to spoil the faction identity of the main Temple Faction), so when they get one, it should be unique. Tengoko certainly is that.
Curse Fate and Seduction are excellent Ki Feats, well known to Bushido players. With these alone, she can influence your game enough to be worth her Rice Cost. Majesty is remarkable, however, a regal aura of beauty, power and righteousness so overwhelming it becomes impossible to raise a hand against her. On top of this, Ishin Denshin is indeed a rule that will keep players interested in odd tactics for some time.

The White-Faced Fox


Few interact with The White Faced Fox; even Queen Tengoko does not converse with or command this Kitsune. The White Face has existed for a long time, and she appears only when a Kitsune has been found straying from their correct dharma. Once Tengoko passes judgement, nothing could prevent their fate. Now that the White Face has been seen in the Jwar Isles, it bodes ill. Wearing a blindfold, so she does not have to witness the pain and death she must cause to her own kind, she hunts them nonetheless. She can avoid even the enhanced and mystical senses of the Kitsune and strikes by severing their connection to Inari - their chief spirit- and their Ki before moving in for the finishing blow. None have ever survived being hunted by The White Faced Fox.

The Nine-Tailed Fox


The Nine-Tailed Fox is not a Kitsune. It is an avatar of Inari himself. While this form may seem to exhibit only a coincidental effect on its surroundings, this is one of the higher kami, a Minister of Heaven in control of his part of the natural world. The Kitsune affectionately refer to him as "Nine Tails"; he often appears to help the Kitsune where they are in over their heads in some situation. The support he offers a warband, however, is hard to miss. He can offer a lot of rerolls to the warband and is fast enough to get them where you need them.

The Warband


The box comes with the Followers of Inari Theme.
Always ready to ruin a well-laid plan with mischief, the Kitsune really cause opponents to think over their use of Pass Tokens. Just a few can erase all the work your opponent has done to damage your models.
The rerolls also combine with the near-ubiquitous Feint, Dodge traits and Nine Tails' rerolls to ensure you always out-roll your opponent.
There is another benefit of the Theme, which you see from the other cards.
In this Theme, you get these four Tests for free and can choose to use them to gain an advantage through the game. Be careful, however, as the Kitsune always reparates to the falsely accused, and you could give them a benefit they need just at the right time!
As you can imagine, this warband can be fast. You get where you need to quickly in Fox Forms and then Shapeshift to use the combat and opposed ki abilities.
Kitsune favour early scoring scenarios, getting there well before the opponent and then defending against counterattack. Being trapped in Zones and unable to utilise their mobility is a more challenging match.

Kitsune do have access to both good fighters, a good archer and incredible Opposed Ki feats. However, all of them are designed to need either a lot of Ki investment or the many reroll sources.
You need to ensure those resources are used in the right place when needed, or you can easily get outclassed.
An excellent example of this is The White Faced Fox's Adept Trait. This powerful trait can give you an extra melee bonus but will usually require you to boost her Melee stat. Similarly, the Opposed Ki models may need to Boost their Ki Stat to ensure the feat goes off.
You can use many of the Kitsune in a Temple Warband when not playing the Followers of Inari Theme. Bastions of the Mountain can use any good melee models to bolster the Villager's abilities. Depending on the amount of Rice you have available. It may be, however, that the best place for the Kitsune is in a mixed Ordered for Battle list. The "Silver Bullet" nature of the Kitsune (Specialising in specific opponents) means the sideboard helps them. A Warband of Monks, Villagers and Kitsune with the option to swap out for the best kitsune option for the opponent you are facing.


Finally, as an added bonus, this new box comes with a second theme. The long-awaited Minkan Denshō. This is essentially "Temple without Monks or Villagers". It's an exciting theme with all the animals, yokai, and the like Temple have access to. This is a more narrative theme than others; the benefits are designed to show how the link to the world's spirits is helping the natural creatures and yokai, with their Kami allies, or perhaps to show how this warband is somehow not even real…

The new box is available at Gen Con and on the Website while GenCon is on. 
A full retail release will happen at a later date.