I can see why the game is popular, and can even see that the rules are largely internally consistent, if overly detailed. However, what I had in mind was a bit more in the line of gamemastering for a motley group of characters who work for a merchant family, with all of the baggage that went with being such in the Far East. L5R is focused exclusively on samurai clans, and wouldn't allow the flexibility I'd need. And why does the game need to use specialized dice that are hard to find and not exactly inexpensive?
Also, a problem I see with the game is that it is heavily into restricting how much emotion the characters can exhibit at any time, with all sorts of weirdness coming from a buildup of Strife. That might work in L5R, but I was looking at a more cinematic approach, not reenacting a Noh play.
Ah, well, the rulebook still contains a few bits and pieces of useful information, although it reads more like an East Asian version of The Game of Thrones RPG--tons of minutiae that nobody will ever use, to pad the pages and increase the price of the book overall.