Ancestral Relics: concept cover
So the next supplement for Kaidan that I am working on is a PDF book on Ancestral Relics - something similar to Weapons of Legacy from 3.5. In my opinion Weapons of Legacy, the concept as a magic item that progresses with the levels of the character wielding it - is a great idea, however the execution of that idea, IMO, was poorly done. I don't care for the 'rituals' involved in activating the powers.
In my Ancestral Relics concept these are items (not limited to weapons) of near artifact quality with 10 powers each, activated at 1st and every other level up to 19th. Each power, by Kaidan rules, has a required minimum Honor score. Honor being of 10 levels (1 is the lowest, 10 the highest), thus maintain one's honor and acquiring more points is a goal for the PC, as well as the PC wielding an ancestral relic.
Ancestral Relics have activation triggers in the form of some roleplay/combat action at each interval. For example to empower one's ancestral sword to a +1 power may require defeating a house enemy that is equal to your hit dice. While a diplomat's folding fan ancestral relic might require convincing your lord to acquiess to your point of view.
Rite Publishing has a couple of series publications called the 101 and the 30 series. Steve's 101 series are things like 101 1st level spells, while his 30 series are things like 30 magical cloaks. Rather than trying to come up with 101 ancestral relics, 30 is a better fit.
My only issue now is Steve likes to optimize sales by keeping the creation cost as low as possible and he would prefer to find a stock art collection of Japanese objects and base development of what exists. I think as common as feudal Japan objects are for art pieces, many needed objects just won't be found. So I am trying to convince to utiilize my illustration to cover what we cannot find - but he isn't convinced yet.
Here is my proposed cover design for 30 Ancestral Relics including a cover illustration by me. I see it as something that might be called the Helm of Jigoku (Jigoku being Hell in Buddhist cosmology.)
Object illustrations complete!
So I finally had time to finish my needed Japanese objects for my Ancestral Relics PDF book. I decided to create 8 objects which would be the appropriate number for 30 page book, though this PDF certainly isn't 30 pages, so it would make for something like an illustration every 2 pages. I prefer too many versus not enough.
Objects include: a folding fan, katana, kusarigama (chain kama), a saddle, a biwa (mandolin), flute, noh theater mask and the kabuto war helmet.