Shikudo

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Shikudo, or the Sentaari staff style, was first practised by the Sentaari monks and was used in conjunction with their Kaido and Telepathy skills. Utilising edgeless weapons, the art form allowed the practitioner to defend themselves as well as strike back against attackers. While several variants existed, the only surviving reference was of the Grove of Winds variant that the Princess Catarin deSangre used to fight Lord Odysseus Rani with during the Tournament of Blades.

The records of the fight between the Princess and the ex-Knight included detailed descriptions of her various forms, from the highly defensive Tykonos form, to the more offensive Willows Shaken by the Wind and Willows in Rain Storm forms.

During that same period, Castomira Brangwin brought about the slow demise of the fighting style. When her Royal Elites stripped the monks of Judgement Mountain of their weapons, the Grandmaster of Flowers meditated for a month upon the dilemma, coming up with the solution in the form of Tekura. The weaponless fighting style freed the monks of the hindrance they were faced with and gradually replaced and phased out the former weapons based variants.

In Chronos, 742 AF, Grandmaster Kevadrin of Judgement Mountain lifted the centuries-old ban on Shikudo. It is now available to the most practised and disciplined masters of Tekura.

Abilities in Shikudo

Ability Description
Path Switch to a new school of study.
Syntax: SCHOOL SWITCH TEKURA
Works on/against: Self
Details:

If you wish to return to your previous studies of Tekura, you may do so. Your progress in the arts of Shikudo shall be remembered and you may return to the Shikudo school later if so desired.

Switching costs 100 lessons and may only be done once every 24 hours.

Combo Combine attacks to devastate your foes.
Syntax: COMBO <target> <attack1> [limb] [attack2] [limb] [attack3] [limb]
Tykonos A highly defensive form.
Syntax: ADOPT TYKONOS FORM
Extra Information: Transitions: Willows Shaken by the Wind
Attacks: THRUST, SWEEP, RISINGKICK
Details:

The forms of Shikudo are the backbone of the art. You can only be in one form at a time, though you may flow between the forms at opportune moments, once you further your studies. Many of the Shikudo strikes may only be performed in certain forms, and each form conveys its own set of benefits upon the practitioner.

The Tykonos form is primarily a defensive form, and you will find yourself able to divert damage more easily when in this form.

Thrust The most basic of strikes.
Syntax: THRUST <limb>
Details:

The most basic of strikes, deliver a thrust to a limb with your staff.

Note that this ability along with all other Shikudo strikes and kicks must be performed in a combination. See AB SHIKUDO COMBO for details.

Gripping Hold fast to your staff against all odds.
Syntax: GRIP
RELAX GRIP
Works on/against: Self
Details:

By gripping tightly with your hands, prevent your staff from being knocked out of your hands.

Shatter Brush aside the shields of your foes.
Syntax: SHATTER
Works on/against: Adventurers and denizens
Details:

Smash magical shields with a single blow of your staff. This ability is unique among all Shikudo techniques in that it can be performed in the flow of any one of the forms.

Willow A form which emphasises speed.
Syntax: ADOPT WILLOW FORM
Extra Information: Transitions: Willows in Rain Storm
Attacks: DART, SWEEP, HIRU, FLASHHEEL, HIRAKU
Details:

Willows Shaken by the Wind is the Shikudo form which emphasises speed. All Shikudo strikes and kicks performed in this form shall be faster than normal, and you will be so fast that you may even knock arrows out of the air as they seek you, providing you are wielding your staff.

Dart A swift strike to snap bones.
Syntax: DART <limb>
Details:

Sacrificing damage, you may deliver a swift thrust to a limb with your staff.

Note that this ability along with all other Shikudo strikes and kicks must be performed in a combination. See AB SHIKUDO COMBO for details.

Kata The true art of Shikudo.
Syntax: TRANSITION TO <form> FORM
Details:

A kata is a series of strikes that chain together to form a greater whole. Each time you perform a strike or kick it becomes part of your kata. The primary benefit of kata chains is that once you have built a kata chain of sufficient length(*) you may TRANSITION TO THE <form> FORM, to immediately transition into that form(**). Transitioning will reset your kata chain..

However, if you maintain a kata chain for too long (i.e. by staying in the same form overly long) you increase your chance of stumbling and failing your kata. This is catastrophic for the Shikudo practitioner, as it not only resets your kata chain but also puts you completely out of your current form and back into the basic Shikudo form (Tykonos). This can be the moment when fights are lost. The Tykonos form is exempt from this, as the technique is specifically designed to be able to maintain a kata chain indefinitely. Naturally, it is a far more limited form in terms of viable strikes or kicks due to this fact.

* A kata chain of sufficient length is a chain consisting of at least 5 actions.

** Note that you can only transition in this way to forms listed as valid transitions for that form (see AB <form> for valid options). You must of course also have studied that form in Shikudo.

Flashheel A swift kick to damage joints.
Syntax: FLASHHEEL <LEFT|RIGHT>
Details:

The joints are the most vulnerable part of a limb. By targeting the knees with this kick, you will be able to break said limb with a single blow, crippling your foe.

Note that this ability along with all other Shikudo strikes and kicks must be performed in a combination. See AB SHIKUDO COMBO for details.

Sweep A prone opponent is at their most vulnerable.
Syntax: SWEEP
Details:

Using your staff, you may sweep someone off their feet. Note that this consumes both of your arm balances, so may not be combined with other strike attacks (though it may be combined with a kick).

Note that this ability along with all other Shikudo strikes and kicks must be performed in a combination. See AB SHIKUDO COMBO for details.

Hiraku Some people simply talk too much.
Syntax: HIRAKU
Details:

Aim a strike at the face of your foe with your staff, shattering teeth and making it impossible for them to eat(*). If they are also prone, they will be stunned for a short time.

* They will be afflicted with anorexia.

Rain Countless drops to conquer mountains.
Syntax: ADOPT RAIN FORM
Extra Information: Transitions: Tykonos, Live Oak
Attacks: RUKU, KURO, HIRU, FRONTKICK
Details:

The form of Willows in Rain Storm is an offensive form, but reliant on repeated strikes rather than powerful blows. You may perform kata chains of twice the normal length when in this form before risking stumbling out of form, and as said kata chain grows longer the damage you deal shall increase.

Additionally, your equilibrium recovery shall be significantly increased when in this form.

Hiru Rattle their skull with a strike from your staff.
Syntax: HIRU
Details:

Deliver a blow to your foe's head with your staff. This will give them dizziness; if they are prone, it will also black them out for a short time.

Ruku Numb the ribs or arms with a swift blow from your staff.
Syntax: RUKU <TORSO|LEFT|RIGHT>
Details:

Aiming blows at the arms or torso of a foe can have various effects. If you target the arms they will become numbed, ruining motor control and afflicting the target with clumsiness (or healthleech if the target already has clumsiness). If you strike the ribs of your foe, you'll inflict enough pain that they will begin to sweat profusely, afflicting them with slickness.

Frontkick Bring them down to the ground.
Syntax: FRONTKICK <LEFT|RIGHT>
Details:

This straight kick may be targeted at either arm, arming to strike the vulnerable nerve clusters just below the shoulder. The blow is powerful enough that it will throw the target off their feet if it connects, proning them.

Note that this ability along with all other Shikudo strikes and kicks must be performed in a combination. See AB SHIKUDO COMBO for details.

Kuro A lower strike to numb the legs.
Syntax: KURO <LEFT|RIGHT>
Details:

By targeting the muscles in your foe's legs, you may weaken them severely, afflicting said target with weariness.

Oak Unbent, unbroken.
Syntax: ADOPT OAK FORM
Extra Information: Transitions: Willows Shaken by the Wind, Gaital
Attacks: LIVESTRIKE, NERVESTRIKE, RUKU, RISINGKICK, KURO
Details:

The form of the Live Oak is based around dealing powerful blows. All Shikudo strikes and kicks performed during this form shall do increased damage.

Livestrike Rob them of breath with a single blow.
Syntax: LIVESTRIKE
Details:

A powerful thrust aimed at the solar plexus, this staff attack will rob your target of breath, delivering asthma.

Note that this ability along with all other Shikudo strikes and kicks must be performed in a combination. See AB SHIKUDO COMBO for details.

Risingkick A high kick targeting the head or torso.
Syntax: RISINGKICK <HEAD|TORSO>
Details:

This high kick can be aimed at the head or torso. If aimed at the head of a prone opponent, it shall stun them for a short time. Likewise, if aimed at the torso of someone suffering internal trauma, it shall also stun them.

Nervestrike Deny them control.
Syntax: NERVESTRIKE
Details:

A precise strike to the side of the neck with your staff will paralyse your foe, leaving them unable to act.

Note that this ability along with all other Shikudo strikes and kicks must be performed in a combination. See AB SHIKUDO COMBO for details.

Gaital The deceptive form of legend.
Syntax: ADOPT GAITAL FORM
Extra Information: Transitions: Willows in Rain Storm, Unrelenting Storm
Attacks: NEEDLE, SPINKICK, SWEEP, RUKU, FLASHHEEL, KURO
Details:

While in this deceptive form your instinct will guide you to such a degree that your foe will have no hope of predicting your attacks. Indeed, your skill will be so great that your attacks shall simply slide through attempts to parry them.

Attrition The death of a thousand strikes.
Details:

The Sentaari masters of old could strike someone with minimal force but with major results. Indeed, many enemies that these grandmasters would encounter would find themselves incapacitated without a single bone broken or drop of blood spilled.

By appending LIGHT after a staff strike in a combination, that attack shall not deal any limb damage, but the health damage and affliction shall still be delivered (if applicable). Note that this only applies to staff attacks, you may not deliver light kicks. An example: THRUST LIGHT HEAD, NERVESTRIKE LIGHT, etc.

Needle Rob them of breath.
Syntax: NEEDLE
Details:

A precision strike against the throat, you may crush someone's windpipe with a single thrust of your weapon.

Note that this ability along with all other Shikudo strikes and kicks must be performed in a combination. See AB SHIKUDO COMBO for details.

Spinkick A crushing kick backed up by momentum.
Syntax: SPINKICK
Details:

This powerful kick will strike a target's torso if they're on their feet or their head if they are sprawled upon the ground. In the event you strike your foes head, they will take significantly more damage.

Maelstrom A form of death.
Syntax: ADOPT MAELSTROM FORM
Extra Information: Transitions: Live Oak
Attacks: RUKU, RISINGKICK, SWEEP, CRESCENT
Details:

The form of the Unrelenting Storm is the most rarely taught of the Shikudo Forms, as it is both exceptionally difficult to master and intended for primarily one purpose: to deal with those who can only be dissuaded by death. All Shikudo strikes and kicks that successfully deal damage(*) shall generate Kai energy when in this form, providing you are within the meditative state granted by a Kai Trance. Additionally, the more kai that you possess, the higher your resistance to damage will be.

* Attacks that are parried or otherwise blocked will not generate Kai energy.

Hyperfocus A single opportunity is enough.
Syntax: HYPERFOCUS <limb|NONE>
Details:

By hyperfocussing upon a specific limb, you will be able to identify gaps in your target's defence, avoiding all attempts to parry strikes against that limb. However, focus of this nature comes with a cost: though you will be able to bypass parry attempts, your strike on the hyperfocussed limb shall only deal half as much damage to that limb as normal.

Crescent The deadly Kai-enhanced kick.
Syntax: CRESCENT
Details:

This kick may only be performed against a foe who lies prone. If that foe has half their health or less, your Kai-enhanced kick shall slay them instantly; if they do not, they will manage to dodge this kick, in which event your recovery time shall be greatly increased.

Dispatch Beware an angered Shikudo practitioner.
Syntax: DISPATCH|INCAPACITATE <target> [form]
Details:

Though much of the Shikudo style is based upon not delivering fatal blows, sometimes there are few other options. If your foe is prone with a damaged head and windpipe, you may dispatch them with a single blow of your staff, ending their life instantly. In the event that you believe that death is not necessary, you may instead INCAPACITATE your foe, stunning them for a great length of time rather than ending their life.

Note that this ability is unique among the Shikudo strikes: it is performed outside of a combination and may be used regardless of your form. You may also specify a form when carrying out the act, which you will immediately flow into if your dispatch is successful, regardless of any other limitations.