The Bugei

Description: Almost anyone with enough the ability and strength can practice the martial arts, however only a few have the willpower and discipline to rise above the common practitioners and become true martial artists. Bugei seek to perfect their art for a variety of reasons both malevolent and benign. One may seek to use it to gain dominance over others while another seeks mastery of the martial arts to achieve inner peace. Regardless of his actual goals all Bugei are constantly seeking tests of their skills and chances to advance their knowledge.

To become a Bugei a charachter must be a single classed fighter with a minimum Strength of 12, Dexerity of 14, Constitution of 12, and a Wisdom of 14. They may be of any alignement but are usually either lawful or neutral.

Role: Bugei are constantly searching for ways to expand their style and rarely stay in one place for more than a few months. The rare Bugei who does settle down into one town is usually too old to travel any longer or have been given a job offer they cannot refuse. Bugei often hire themselves off as mercenaries as it helps them in two ways: it provides them with a form of maintaining themselves and it allows them to face a plethora of opponents in battle, enable them to expand their skill in the martial arts.

Though Bugei are typically found in and around the area of the Mizunohito reigon or the nation of Nishi-Yama, it is not uncommon for them to wander farther afield to Neul or beyond in order to learn about other fighting styles, and how to defeat them. One famous Bugei from Nishi-Yama is Mitsutada, a dwarf from Nishi-Yama who has made a name for himself in the Tural reigon working for the rulers of various cities and towns acting as a highly honorable mercenary. He is also a marvel for the local warriors who have never seen his style fo training before. If he ever does quit being a mercenary he will have enough requests for training to be able to live well for the rest of his life.

Weapon Proficencies: Bonus: The Bugei starts off knowing the basics in one Martial Arts style. Reccomended: Further proficencies in Martial Arts, weapon proficencies appropriate to a particular proficency.

Nonweapon Proficencies: Bonus: None. Reccomended: Style Analysis(Complete Ninja's Handbook, p. 38), Cooking, Etiquette, Blind-fighting, Hunting, Survival.

Equipment: Bugei usually carry as little equipment as possible in order to avoid slowing themselves down. In addition to that armor is typically more of a hindrance to a Bugei than it is a benefit so that also reduces the amount they carry(see special disadvantages).

Special Benefits: The Bugei are masters of all martial arts and receive a bonus weapon proficencies every 3 levels which can only be used for Martial Arts special maneveurs or basic styles. Due to a Bugei's ability at dodging blows through misdirection and positioning their base Armor Class improves by one point at each even level. A Bugei is also able to ignore the Weapons in Defense rule, since he is trained in dealing with armed enemies.

Special Hinderances: Do to their intense concentration on combat, Bugei get one less nonweapon proficecny then normal at the start. Bugei are so used to fighting unarmored that they are penalized when wearing armor by having the total protection of the armor reduced by one level and its weight increased by one encumbrance level. Any weapon used without proficency suffers a -4 penalty to hit.

Wealth Options: Bugei start with 3d4x10 gp but must spend all but 10 gp before play begins.

Races: Any of the oriental races and dwarves(from Nishi-Yama) may be Bugei.

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