The Return of Heian Amakiiro

A while back, I posted about an elf-samurai character concept I created for Dungeons and Dragons, and from this character concept I created a character for Adventurer’s League named Heian Amakiiro (character sheet here). His backstory was based on my own Hamato Island series of adventures. After playing several adventures in Adventurer’s League, I wanted to share some experiences.

As of writing, Heian has reached level 8, and participated in 6 modules, plus 2 DM rewards I got from running adventures for others.

Not surprisingly, the way I expected to play Heian and the way I actually played Heian turned out to be different. I originally wanted a samurai who was more or less capable of both strength-based melee combat (with a katana longsword) and archery. To help with this, I did a magic item trade in Adventurers League to get Gauntlets of Ogre Strength. That way, I was free to focus on developing his dexterity.

But in reality, Heian rarely ever used melee combat. That’s because I kind of stumbled upon a neat trick that made his archery pretty powerful.

At fourth level I took the feat Elven Accuracy. When paired with the samurai sub-archetype and its Fighting Spirit ability this gave me a handy combination. I use Fighting Spirit to give myself advantage on attacks, and with Elven Accuracy, I can re-roll one of those attack dice. This means when I use the two together, I am effectively rolling 3d20.

Further, at level 6, I took another feat, Sharpshooter, since with an effective attack roll of 3d20, I can safely risk taking a -5 attack bonus to hit for +10 damage.

In a recent tier-2 adventure fighting a Hezrou demon, Heian had a round where he attacked 4 times (two attacks + Fighter’s Second Wind ability) and with the combination above hit 3 out of 4 times causing 50+ damage that round!

First Archery of the New Year (Yumi hajime) by Torii Kiyonaga (1787), courtesy of Wikipedia

Heian has become something of a kyūdō master between his Elvish heritage and samurai training.

Further, at level 5, per Adventurer’s League rules, he picked up a +1 longbow, which for flavor reasons I made as a Japanese-style daikyū (大弓) bow.

As a character he has been surprising fun. His samurai benefits as a courtier have been occasionally helpful in role-playing situations and in combat he clears the house.

Part of the fun of playing an unconventional character is discovering combinations and abilities you didn’t foresee. Plus, it makes the character more memorable in the long run.

So here’s to Heian Amakiiro, the best dang (imaginary) elf samurai archer I know! 🧝🏼‍♂️🍂🌸

Published by Doug

🎵Toss a coin to your Buddhist-Philhellenic-D&D-playing-Japanese-studying-dad-joke-telling-Trekker, O Valley of Plentyyy!🎵He/him

Leave a Reply

Please log in using one of these methods to post your comment: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

%d bloggers like this: