Please note: This article is about the Tortoise Clan Champion. For other uses of the term, please see Taigen (disambiguation).

Kasuga Taigen 
Born: Unknown 
Died: Unknown 
Siblings: Kasuga Shiriko,
Kasuga Eizan 
Children: Kasuga Mino 
Titles: Tortoise Clan Champion

Kasuga Taigen was a Tortoise Clan Champion.

Training Edit

As part of his training in guile, subtlety, and humility, Taigen was a pickpocket and a petty thief when youth. [1]

Demeanor and Appearance Edit

Taigen was a weedy little man who seldom bathed and often forgot to shave. His hair was lank and greasy, missing several front teeth from his many childhood fights. He was greasy, dirty, and spoke with a distinct stutter. Despite his appearance, Taigen had a way of making others listen to him, reasonable and charming. [1]

Clan Champion Edit

Taigen became the Champion after his elder sister, Kasuga Shiriko, chose to forgo her birthright as daimyo in order to continue serving the clan in the field. [2] Taigen had a brother, Kasuga Eizan, and bore a daughter, Kasuga Mino, who was married to Kaiu Sugimoto, the Keeper of Earth. [3]

Four Winds Edit

During the Four Winds struggle Taigen sided with Hantei Naseru, reporting him everything he learned. The Tortoise were regarded as ruffians, and criminals, so he threw his lot to the candidate to the Imperial Throne who better could appreciate the Tortoise spy network. His clan would be doomed with any Emperor who did not understand the importance of the Tortoise's ancestral duty. [1]

Kolat Conspiracy Edit

It was evident the kolat operated in the Imperial City when a Sleeper Agent was uncovered by the Emerald Champion, an assassin sent to kill Naseru. Since then, Taigen sought to root out evidence of the Kolat using all his contacts. One of his allies in this endeavor was an old comrade from the War of Spirits, Moshi Shanegon. Taigen had no idea that Shanegon was Master Coin, and the Kolat Master subtly turned the Tortoise in the wrong direction. [4] Taigen surrounded him by loyal Tortoise Bushi who would weed out the Kolat wherever he found them. [5]

Fall of Otosan Uchi Edit

In 1159 during the Fall of Otosan Uchi Taigen was in the North Hub Village when he met Yogo Koji, the Yogo Daimyo. The Scorpion requested the Tortoise Clan join the incoming Scorpion forces lead by Bayushi Yojiro, and march together in the defense of the Imperial City. [6]

Ruined City Edit

The Tortoise, Wolf Legion, and the Yotsu family did not leave the city, even after it was in ruins. He was visited by the historian Miya Hatori, and his aides Fuzake Sekkou and Otomo Taneji. [7]

Alliance of the Minor Clans Edit

In 1165 Taigen created the Alliance of Minor Clans with the help of Kitsuki Mizuochi, [3] to give the Minor Clans a voice in the Imperial Court. [8] Taigen was designated the ambassador of the Alliance at Toshi Ranbo. [3]

Gozoku Edit

Taigen held a meeting with the Alliance representatives in the Smiling Tortoise sake house. He loobied to intervene in favor of the Dragon in the War of the Rich Frog. They also agreed to hunt bloodspeaker cells, being Iuchiban a threat to the Empire. When he left the assembly visited Kakita Munemori almost immediately thereafter. His brother had followed him in secret, and feared if Taigen embraced the Gozoku could harm him. [3]

Mino's Wedding Edit

In 1166 Taigen and the Crab Clan Champion, Hida Kuon, arranged the marriage of Taigen's daughter, Kasuga Mino, with the recently Keeper of Earth, Kaiu Sugimoto. [9]

Plotting an assassination Edit

In 1168 the courtier Kasuga Taman, who was seen as a wicked man for many other clans, attended the Winter Court at Kyuden Otomo. Yoritomo Okuma leaked information from an investigation in an effort to destroy Taman. Taigen plotted to have Okuma assassinated after Winter Court. [10]

Kudo Mura Edit

Taiken worked with Toku Inao to create the seat of power of the Minor Clan Alliance, where the Great Clans could find a member of any Minor Clan. They chose Kudo, with its convenient central location, with the understanding that Inao's youngest daughter Toku Kiyuko would become the city's governor. [11] Taigen began to spend more time there, but he was not especially happy with Kiyuko's appointment as governor, but accepted it as a necessary concession to gain support from the Monkey Clan. [12] When the Lion Clan occupied Kudo Mura, Taigen issued orders to his samurai for Kiyuko to marry a Tortoise and thus bring Kudo Mura under Tortoise control. [11]

Apparent Heir Edit

His brother Eizan would become the next Champion after Taigen. This worried him, because Eizan lacked the concern for the welfare of others. Kasuga was worried about what would happen if his brother ever assume leadership of the Clan, but in 1170 Taigen had a grandson who became his heir. [13]

Seppuku Edit

Like all her predecessors, Empress Iweko I met with the Tortoise Clan Champion soon after her ascension to the Throne. Kasuga Taigen explained his crimes and offered his seppuku and it was rejected as always. Years later Iweko I summoned Taigen to an audience and commanded him to commit seppuku for failing to inform the Empire of neither the Army of Dark Fire nor the Destroyers, both external threats. [14]

Legacy Edit

His grandson Kasuga Masaji was the Tortoise Champion in the late 12th century. [15]

See also Edit

Preceded by:
Tortoise Clan Champion
c. 1159
Succeeded by:


  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 Secrets of the Mantis, p. 77
  2. Way of the Ninja, p. 66
  3. 3.0 3.1 3.2 3.3 Minor Complications, by Rich Wulf
  4. Secrets of the Mantis, pp. 77-78
  5. Four Winds, p. 186
  6. Battle for Otosan Uchi, Part 2, by Rich Wulf and Shawn Carman
  7. Secrets of the Mantis, pp. 69-70
  8. Rise of the Tortoise (GenCon 2004 Challenge Booth Results)
  9. Duty, Like a Mountain, by Rich Wulf
  10. Winter Court Kyuden Otomo 1168, p. 3
  11. 11.0 11.1 Strongholds of the Empire, p. 166
  12. Masters of Court, p. 168
  13. Fealty and Freedom, p. 100
  14. Secrets of the Empire, p. 99
  15. The Daimyo Project, by C. Thomas Hand, Mari Murdock, and Maxime Lemaire

Tortoise This Tortoise Clan related article is a stub. That means that it has been started, but is incomplete. You can help by adding to the information here.

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