Hi, all. Just wanted to leave this here. I wrote a game called Kaigaku, which is an OSR retroclone based on Black Hack. Only this game has samurai! Think L5R meets D&D with a bit of a science-y twist. There's also a free version with no art and fewer rules!
Thanks for posting, discosoup, and welcome to the forum.
I'm a big fan of 1st edition L5R as a system for old school sandboxes, using only the main rulebook, the GM Survival Guide and the Book of the Shadowlands (what would we call that in OSR terms, the "3 Large Black Books"?), so this is up my alley. I'll give it a look at post a review here when I can.
Just dropping in to say I've picked up the PDF on sale. I've read the free starter rules already, and enjoyed them. I still plan on reviewing the full rules once I get a chance to read them.
From the free rules, my main observations are:
1. It appears to borrow most heavily from L5R as opposed to Kara-Tur, Bushido or other Orient-inspired games/settings. In fact, I'd even describe it specifically as a Black Hack conversion of L5R, with the serial numbers filed off.
2. The conversion is largely a good one, with some clever retooling of combat schools and techniques to bring that flavour into a D&D style game.
3. There were some aspects of the basic, general rules that I didn't care for (can't quite remember which, it's been several months), but all were actually issues I have with the Black Hack rules in general, so that can't be helped. No point shooting the messenger there.
4. The book is very well put together and beautiful to read, though the full colour formatting will limit you to PDFs if you don't want to shell out for a fairly expensive hard copy, or waste all your ink printing it out on paper heavy enough to take all that colour.
Overall I'd recommend the free rules to anyone interested in porting over the L5R clan system into D&D, or even just adding some Japanese myth-infused monsters. It didn't quite cover all of the topics I'd expect from a legendary Asia RPG, but I expect that's what the full rules are for. Certainly the list of extra topics looks promising.