Country of Origin: Cathay
Dojo: Bandar Serai
Founded: 1557 AD
Description: The pirates of Tiakhar are the most feared slavers in all of Cathay. Their vessels attack unwary ships at sea, and very few of their victims are ever heard from again. Through the generations, they have refined the procedure for boarding a vessel and capturing its crew and passengers into a streamlined routine, which allows them to complete their cruel and dangerous task with as little difficulty as possible.
The Jasni family of Tiakhar codified this method into an art and runs a training center where they teach young officers who wish to impress their captains. This School instructs its students in leadership and swordsmanship. Its students make exclusive use of the kastane: an ornate fencing weapon of superior craftsmanship which has the Blade Heavy and Quality Weapon modifications.
Since the main focus of the school is to capture the enemy instead of dueling or slaying him (or her), students of this style do not learn any especially damaging attacks. This “soft” philosophy is the main weakness of the style.
Basic Curriculum: Captain, Fencing
Knacks: Boarding, Corps-á-Corps, Disarm (Fencing), Exploit Weakness (Jasni), Leadership
New Swordsman Knack: Leadership. Once you’ve used the Incitation Knack to make the men believe in you, this Knack will help you live up to their expectations. You can determine which tasks each man is best capable of, and give them advice on how better to do them without getting in the way. This Knack is used (mostly) with the mass-combat rules, which your GM has in his Guide. This is the same as the Leadership Knack found in the Captain Skill, but it is considered a Basic Knack for students of Jasni.
Apprentice: Apprentices of Jasni quickly learn to compensate for the rolling motion of the sea and the weight of their signature blades while fighting. They may use their Balance Knack in place of their Parry (Fencing) Knack while using a kastane, and they may disregard the Action Die penalty associated with the kastane’s blade-heavy manufacture.
Apprentices receive Membership in the Tiakhar Volunteer Navy for free, rather than membership in the Swordsman’s Guild.
Journeyman: Journeymen of the Jasni style almost never lose their balance. They add an extra Kept Die (+1k1) to all rolls involving the Balance Knack, including Active Defenses.
Journeymen also learn to lead a boarding party that makes short work of taking captives. When their vessel performs a boarding action against another vessel, they may choose to take part in the boarding. If they do, they may consider any of the defender’s losses as captives taken rather than as casualties. These captives are quickly sent below decks of the Journeyman’s own vessel during the course of the boarding action.
Master: The Master’s fearsome reputation as a member of the Volunteer Navy increases his Fear Rating by two, or gives him a Fear Rating of two if he did not have one before. In addition, if a Master takes part in a boarding, the die he rolls when using the Boarding Action table explodes if he rolls a ten.