Country of Origin: Cathay
Dojo: Khajuraho (Large)
Founded: 553 AUC
Description: Ying Sun is a dangerous martial art, based on the attacks of hawks and other wild predators. It does not limit its moves to those considered sporting or even honorable in most societies, but rather focuses on directly attacking an opponent’s vulnerable areas and pressure points. The style was originally developed in Tashil, but over time, teachers of Ying Sun migrated to Tiakhar where it is now the predominant martial art among nobles and land-based military.
The originators of this style spent much of their time in the mountains of Tashil observing wild animals to find new moves to mimic. They developed variations on both brutally short and long attack rhythms that can be extremely effective. However, if an opponent can detect the pattern in a practitioner’s style, he can anticipate these moves.
Basic Curriculum: Dirty Fighting, Hunter
Knacks: Corps-á-Corps, Exploit Weakness (Ying Sun), Eye Gouge, Head Butt, Throat Strike
New Swordsman Knack: Eye Gouge. This attack is designed to blind your opponent temporarily. In order to use it, you must have at least one empty hand. You declare that you are using an Eye Gouge, and then roll using this Knack instead of your normal Attack Knack. If the attack is successful, it inflicts the normal 0k1 Wounds (a bare-handed attack) and forces your target to increase his next Action die by 1, plus 1 for every Raise you took on the roll. If this increases that Action die higher than 10, the Action die is discarded. This is the same as the Eye Gouge Knack found in the Dirty Fighting Skill, but it is considered a Basic Knack for students of Ying Sun.
New Swordsman Knack: Head Butt. This is an unarmed attack that causes a great deal of damage to your opponent, at the expense of hurting yourself as well. This attack can be used in place of an ordinary attack, or when you are in a Grapple or Bind with your target (it doesn’t matter if you are being grappled or if you are grappling him). If the attack is successful, it inflicts a barehanded 3k1 attack on your opponent, and a bare-handed 1k1 attack on yourself (remember to add your Brawn to both). If your opponent takes a Dramatic Wound as a result of the Head Butt, and is grappling you, his hold is broken. This is the same as the Head Butt Knack found in the Dirty Fighting Skill, but it is considered a Basic Knack for students of Ying Sun.
New Swordsman Knack: Throat Strike. Using this Knack, you strike your opponent squarely across the throat. You declare that you are making a Throat Strike, and roll to attack using this Knack. The TN to hit your opponent is raised by 15 when using this Knack, but if it’s successful (and not avoided with Active Defense) you inflict an automatic Dramatic Wound to your target, rather than rolling for damage. This is the same as the Throat Strike Knack found in the Dirty Fighting Skill, but it is considered a Basic Knack for students of Ying Sun.
Apprentice: Apprentices have learned that while a striking falcon has little opportunity for defense, an enemy cannot strike what it cannot see. They receive one Free Raise per Mastery Level on all attacks made using the Eye Gouge Knack.
Apprentices of Ying Sun spend a great deal of time in the forests of Tashil and Tiakhar, observing predators in their natural surroundings. As a result, instead of membership in the Swordsman’s Guild, they receive two extra Ranks in the Basic Knacks of their choice under the Hunter Skill.
Journeyman: Journeymen of the style have witnessed territorial disputes between two proud males of one antlered species or another, and have incorporated elements of the beasts’ attacks into their fighting techniques. When using the Head Butt Knack, Journeymen may choose to inflict a 4k2 attack on their opponent, at the cost of suffering 2k1 Flesh Wounds themselves. Both of these Damage Rolls are increased by Brawn. The TN to hit both you and your opponent drops to 5 until the end of the next Phase, or the end of the Round (whichever comes first).
Master: Masters of Ying Sun have learned to deal with their opponents the way the falcon deals with a serpent: a crippling strike to the serpent’s neck. They have learned the “Snake Defeating Hand” technique, a grasping Throat Strike which leaves the opponent virtually helpless against the Master’s relentless assault. To make this attack, he spends an Action Die and rolls Finesse + Throat Strike, calling as many extra Raises as he likes. If successful, the attack inflicts an automatic Dramatic Wound, plus additional damage as a regular barehanded attack (triggering a Wound Check as usual). For each extra Raise taken on the Throat Strike attack (unless it is used to increase damage, for a Called Shot, or for some other purpose), the Master may immediately spend an Action Die from later in the Round to make an Eye Gouge, Head Butt, Kick, or regular Dirty Fighting Attack.