Hidden Forest (MM)

Shinomen Mori (MM) was a large and dense forest located in south western Rokugan. Most of the forest was found in Crab Clan lands, although a part stretched along the southern Unicorn Clan border. Tradition and folklore regarded the forest as a strongly mystical place. [1]

Ecology[edit | edit source]

Shinomen Mori

It was wild and unspoiled land, home of wild beasts with a rich and extremely diversified flora: birch, willow, maple, and oak were the most common trees. In the northern part of Shinomen Mori, cypress, juniper, fir, maple [2] spruce, and hemlock trees were common. At the southern edge maple, oak, elm, [3] teaks, balsas, willows, and birches were mixed with fruit trees as plum and cherry. [2]

Features[edit | edit source]

The Edge of Shinomen Forest

The River of the Sky weaved through the forest. In some places, it vanished below the ground, only to reappear several miles later. To the far north of the forest the waters of the river cascaded over a series of rocks and down into a clear pond. Along a broken cobblestone road near the center of the forest stood a cliffside glade. Four tremendous bridges crossed between the sheer cliffs, giving access to the lush forest of the secluded vale. A small series of creeks and brooks were known as the Estuaries of the Snake because of their coiling and labyrinthine nature. [4]

Shishomen[edit | edit source]

'Shishomen' was the Naga word for 'homeland', and it was used to call the Rokugani Shinomen Mori, the ancestral home of the Naga. [5] The Shishomen during the awakening of the Naga covered less than one-third the amount of territory that it once held, which bordered to east to the humans that pre-dated the Fall of the Kami and to the west with the Burning Sands. [6] During the Day of Wrath three quarters of the Naga race was destroyed, [7] and lands that once had been a lush land was barren, becoming a desert. [8]

History[edit | edit source]

Shinomen Forest

The forest was not well explored for a variety of reasons. The primary one being that it is home to the bulk of the slumbering Naga race and was well guarded by the Naga who had remained awake. It also hold a strong connection to the spirit realm Chikushudo, and many wanderers had found themselves suddenly no longer in Ningen-do. Prior to the first awakening of the Naga, even less was known of the forest, as it was generally avoided by all but the Fox Clan. The ruins of the ancient Naga cities were the only signs that it was once the centre of an empire, and only the very foolish would dare to explore very deep into the woods. Even the Naga did not claim to know all of its secrets. [1]

Shinomen in the mist

In 815, the Naga were temporarily awakened by the destruction of a clutch of eggs by a band of Shadowlands creatures. They quickly crushed the invading force, but the remains of the army formed a tainted marsh within the forest. [9]

First awakenings[edit | edit source]

In 1122 Naga were seen by a farmer of the Falcon, who lived in the farmlands nearby. [10]

Forest set to Fire[edit | edit source]

When the Naga returned in 1132 from the Siege of Sleeping Mountain to help again the Crab, they were attacked by enraged Crab forces, because they considered a betrayal their flee from Shiro Hiruma. The Naga retreated to the Shinomen Forest and the Hida commander ordered the forest set to fire. [11] [12]

Next Great Sleep[edit | edit source]

In 1134 Naga planned the next Great Sleep. With a spell they would start a skein in the Heart of the Shinomen Forest. Once the skein matured the Heart would be sealed away from the world, allowing the Great Sleep could not be disturbed. [13]

Tsuno and the Naga[edit | edit source]

Warrens of the Shinomen

In the 12th century the Tsuno began capturing naga cities, torturing the sleeping Naga to use their pain create connections with the Realm of Slaughter. They used this connection with the realm they lived in to travel to other places in the Mortal Realm, attacking by surprise and quickly retreating. Toturi Tsudao, advised by Naka Tokei, pursued the beasts in the Shinomen with the First Imperial Legion. [14] [15] [16]

Nezumi[edit | edit source]

The Nezumi also dwelt in the depths of the Shinomen. In 1167 the One Tribe claimed part of it as their territory. [17] The unicorn attacked them to drive the Nezumi from the forest. [18]

Spider Clan[edit | edit source]

Shinomen Marsh and a Spider hut

Following the creation of the Spider Clan, Daigotsu ordered his followers to build the Spider's Lair hidden deep in the forest, from which to weave their web. [19] Following the rise of the Empress Iweko I the Spider's masquerade was known by her and the Empress' Chosen. [20] The Spider were later attacked and driven out by the Shogun Moto Jin-sahn in 1170, but not before they started a severely damaging forest fire. Daigotsu's followers retreated to a second hidden fortress to avoid pursuit. [21] A magical rain summoned by the Phoenix saved three quarters of the forest. [22]

Ashalan attack[edit | edit source]

In 1170 vassals of the Ashalan appeared in the Western Steppes bearing toward the Shinomen. They attacked a Unicorn unit who crossed their path. [23]

External Links[edit | edit source]

Shinomen Forest


  1. 1.0 1.1 Legend of the Five Rings; Third Edition, p. 304
  2. 2.0 2.1 Emerald Empire; Fourth Edition, p. 22
  3. Book of Earth, p. 126
  4. Clan War: Desperate Journey, pp. 28-29
  5. Way of the Naga, p. 6
  6. Way of the Naga, p. 23
  7. Legend of the Burning Sands Roleplaying Game, p. 112
  8. Kingdom in the Sun], by Patrick Kapera
  9. Legend of the Five Rings; Third Edition, p. 15
  10. Winter Court: Kyuden Seppun, p. 83
  11. Hidden Emperor, p. 42
  12. Deep Forest (Honor Bound flavor)
  13. Legacy of the Naga, Part 1, by Edward Bolme
  14. To Live By the Sword, by Shawn Carman
  15. Aid of the Grand Master (Dark Allies flavor)
  16. Gift of the Water Dragon (Dark Allies flavor)
  17. Dawn of Lotus, The Nezumi, by Shawn Carman
  18. Forest Cleansing (Path of Hope flavor)
  19. Dawn of the Spider (Imperial Herald v2#21)
  20. A New Empire, Part II, by Rusty Priske, Brian Yoon, and Shawn Carman
  21. Vacant Throne, p. 133
  22. Glory of the Empire, Part II, by Rusty Priske and Nancy Sauer
  23. Incursions, by Rusty Priske

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