Even as a young monk in the temple of High River, Shenlong was considered exceptional. What surprised his instructors was the determination he showed to learn the other styles when exposed to them. His brutality was matched by a ruthless cunning that drove him to master every temple style. While he was fully aware of the political power this granted him in the valley, he was not prepared for what would follow.
As dusk fell one day, sunlight blazed from an isolated temple on the valley wall, said to house the Dragon. Shenlong, the only person capable of looking at the searing light, found himself drawn to the ancient building. He walked in alone, emerging the following sunrise as more than a man. He was covered head to toe in tattooed scales, sunlight blazing in his eyes. Where he trod, the ground scorched. A new era in the valley had begun; the Dragon had chosen a new host.
Although he doesn’t look it, Shenlong is thought to be more than eighty years old. The Dragon does not permit its hosts to age, holding them at their physical peak as long as it chooses to inhabit them. While this arrangement is never eternal, Dragonhosts are known to have lived for several centuries. As long as the Dragon has need of a host for his plans, Shenlong will be near immortal. With the Dragon now turning its ancient eyes to Malifaux, his current host has a great deal to do before he becomes tiresome and is cast aside.
Shenlong’s crew comes with seven models, including Shenlong himself. The Monks of High River are brutal combatants with flaming punches and kicks, and they serve Shenlong aside his totems, the less flashy but equally devoted Peasants. The towering Sensei Yu ensures that everyone, monk and peasant alike, is properly trained, no matter how many legs get broken in the process.
Shenlong is the only Ten Thunders Master that does not also belong in another Faction. He is a martial artist who has mastered many styles, allowing him to adapt his battlefield role to your needs. This adaptability allows him to work well with any models.
It is the use of Conditions that makes Shenlong stand out. He uses four different Conditions (Defensive, Focused, Burning, and Poison) to fuel his different martial arts styles. A savvy player is able to increment the Conditions that will be needed, allowing Shenlong to dominate his opponents. Because of this, Shenlong is a master that benefits from foresight and proper planning. Since many of his best actions are on Upgrades and he is able to cycle through Upgrades, knowing which battlefield will most need his assistance will allow Shenlong to maximize his influence on the table.
Shenlong actually has four Limited Upgrades: Low River Style, High River Style, Fermented River Style, and Wandering River Style. By making use of a (0) action, Shenlong can choose which style he needs. Low is a defensive style that utilizes healing. High is an offensive style that can inflict high damage. Fermented is a debuffing style that can flip fate modifiers around. Wandering is a support style that can move models and apply helpful or harmful conditions. Each of these styles benefits from high levels of a specific Condition, and with the right planning Shenlong can control any battle.