Date: February 1, 2012
The Kazekage arranges a little event to show just how effective the protective fields for the third-round tournaments will be.
"First Promotion Exams - A Simple Demonstration"
Sunadome Arena, Sunagakure
In the Sunadome Arena, a decent-sized crowd has gathered for an advertised event. It's not really the start of the much-anticipated tournament which will be the climax of the promotion exams, in fact there won't even be any actual fighting. But it is related to that event, and it promises to be an interesting spectacle of its own sort.
Down in the ring, Kokoroe Sousa, the Kazekage, enters accompanied by a small contingent of other ninja. "Thank you for coming to today's demonstration," Sousa calls out to the audience. "As most of you are likely aware, Sunagakure possesses protective field techniques which can render even legendary ninja battles somewhat less than lethal for the participants. These fields were used during the First World Ninja Competition in Kusagakure. Today, I would like to demonstrate the advances we have gained in these techniques since that time."
While Sousa continues speaking, technicians activate the protective field around the arena. "It is now virtually impossible to inflict serious injury within the protective fields, while at the same time the essential effects of attacks made remain largely undiminished. This will allow for combat which is an accurate reflection of the full capabilities of the contestants while preventing incident to — "
The Kazekage is literally cut off by one of his attendants stabbing him in the back! Another one hefts a huge club and swings it mightily, knocking Sousa clear across the ring. A third dashes after him and spouts a stream of white-hot flame at the spot where Sousa lands. For a few seconds there is only the shocked murmurings of the crowd and the crackling of the fire…then Sousa walks calmly out of the blaze, sooty but largely unharmed. "But perhaps you will understand that better than my ramblings," he remarks. Laughter and cheers greet the the somewhat theatrical demonstration.
Sousa bows, then raises a hand for quiet. "Of course, the more erudite amongst you may be thinking that attempting to damage one of Sunagakure's most elite ninja is hardly a fitting test of this arena's protective capabilities. Perhaps that tricky Kazekage used some defensive technique to minimize his hurt. Perhaps he's simply tough enough to endure it even if the fields haven't improved that much. This sort of thinking could go on forever, but we've prepared another demonstration which should be satisfactory to all but the most skeptical of minds."
From the contingent of ninja, a small boy steps forward. "This is Morumotto-san. He is a recent graduate of our ninja academy, just promoted to the rank of genin. His performance has been satisfactory, but thus far he has yet to distinguish himself besides being brave enough to volunteer for this occasion." Sousa raises his hands into the air, and an intermittent crackling of electricity comes from them. "Let's see now…adjust for wind, contours of the stadium, increased humidity from human presence…Morumotto-san, would you please move five paces to your left? Now two paces toward me…no no, not quite that far, back a little — perfect!"
The stadium reverberates with the blast of a lightning strike experienced at close range, specifically on the exact spot where Morumotto was standing. The boy himself is blasted into the far wall of the protective field, then drops to the ground in a smoking heap. The other ninja move to check on him, but Sousa's voice halts them. "Stop! He's fine, and quite capable of getting up on his own. Aren't you, Morumotto-san?"
For a moment, nothing happens…then Morumotto does indeed roll over and push himself, if a bit shakily, onto his feet. "How do you feel, Morumotto-san?" Sousa queries. "Uh…kinda buzzy." @.@ "Did it hurt?" "Um, yeah." "But not too much?" "Yeah, I'll live." "Thank you, Morumotto-san. You've done a splendid job."
Sousa turns back to the crowd. "As you can see, even the most lethal of techniques can be endured by even a genin-class ninja within this field with no lasting effect. In this environment, we will observe the furthest reaches of our promotion candidates' battle potential without any fear of death or injury!"
OOC: The first time we used the damage-dampening fields in the First World Ninja Tournament, I failed to be explicit enough about just how effective they were. X) People were still hesitant to use their most ultra-powerful attacks, and sometimes RPed being battered to a less-than-combat-worthy state by the end of a match. I don't wish to call anyone's RP from back then inaccurate, but I do want matches in the protective fields to be wholly uninhibited moving forward, and the IC time that has passed since the first use of the fields gives me an excuse to say they've improved. n.n
As a rough guideline, the fields will cut any IC damage down to a quarter of what the combat system says. This means that if you go all the way down to 0 health system-wise, you're still at three-quarters health IC, which is about where a friendly spar might end. You'll still be knocked around with just as much force, stunned for as long, even feel crippling pain for just long enough for it to be effective…it just won't do any permanent damage. You're free to negotiate with your opponent for any match-end condition you want (zero health, half health, etc.), and when you hit it, the match will be over because the IC judges called it, not because you couldn't keep fighting. Let's all have fun with those high-impact attacks your Kage wouldn't normally let you use. :D