Chapter 1 of Learning L5R
Playing the Crane Clan

Welcome to Rokugan! Learning L5R is a series of videos and blogs to help you jump straight into the action of the Legend of the Five Rings LCG as soon as you get your Core Sets. If you are new to the Learning L5R series, we recommend that you start by reading Chapter 1: A How to Play Guide for New L5R Players.

L5R Crane Clan - Trademark FFG

The Crane Clan

Known for their beauty and grace, the Crane Clan dominate political discussion in Rokugan with unmatched technique. Do not let their political prowess fool you, however – though not impressive in open war, members of the Crane Clan are legendary for their dueling abilities.

Below is an intermediate deck list built from three Core Sets. The deck imports a few critical cards from the Dragon Clan in accordance with the Influence mechanic found in the rulebook. If you would like to construct a more basic Crane Clan deck for your first few games,we recommend watching the Core Set Deck Building video in Chapter 1: A How to Play Guide for New L5R Players.

Stronghold: Shizuka Toshi

Entrenched Position (Earth)
Rally to the Cause (Water)
Night Raid (Fire)
Manicured Garden (Air)
Shameful Display (Void)

Dynasty Deck:
2 x Asahina Artisan
3 x Otomo Courtier
3 x Seppun Guardsman
3 x Doni Whisperer
3 x Savvy Politician
3 x Daidoji Nerishma
3 x Doni Gift Giver
3 x Brash Samurai
3 x Doni Challenger
3 x Kakita Asami
3 x Kakita Kaezin
3 x Asahina Storyteller
3 x Doji Hotaru
2 x Favorable Ground

Conflict Deck:
2 x Let Go (2 influence each)
3 x Tatooed Wanderer (2 influence each)
3 x Way of the Crane
3 x For Shame!
3 x Banzai!
3 x Admit Defeat
2 x Steward of Law
3 x Political Rival
3 x Outwit
2 x Voice of Honor
3 x The Perfect Gift
3 x Court Games
3 x Assassination
3 x Spies at Court
1 x Good Omen

Known for their political strength, the Crane Clan is rivaled only by the Scorpion clan in the politics of Rokugan. Their stronghold ability, which allows them to bow a character with two or less political skill during a political conflict, is easily one of the most potent out of the Core Set. They also sport the highest average political skill across all of their characters.

Crane focuses on honorable politics (if there is such a thing!). Characters like Savvy Politician and Asahina Storyteller are central to this theme, letting you more easily honor your characters and then gain a serious benefit when they leave play. Their conflict deck takes this idea even further, with cards like Way of the Crane allowing you to honor any Crane character with no strings attached. Crane also has access to one of the few event cancels in the game, Voice of Honor, which is only playable if you have more honorable characters than your opponent – so that should always be a consideration.


As you might expect, a clan that spends so much time at court has a deck that is full of Courtier characters. This gives them access to the standard suite of events that only work with Courtiers, including Court Games, For Shame!, and Outwit. Crane can also reasonably play Spies at Court, a card that requires you to dishonor one of your own characters in order to discard two cards from an opponent’s hand! Since they so commonly have honored characters, the cost of dishonoring a character is often much less painful.

Whether they are pressuring their opponent’s honor or ensuring they can play their most potent cards, the Crane Clan tends to favor the Fire ring above the rest. Naturally, when Fire becomes a priority, Air is often right behind it. While it does not yet seem feasible to achieve an honor victory in the game, we expect this to become a real possibility in the future. Keep an eye out for cards that might open up with avenue of victory for Crane!

Want to see how this deck plays in an actual game? Check out our gameplay video below, where the Crane Clan takes on Scorpion!

Next up, we give an overview of the Dragon Clan!

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If you have any questions, please comment below and we will be happy to help!

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