Most ninja guilds are headed by a single jōnin, or high ninja. Acting as the jōnin’s lieutenants are several chūnin, or middle ninja. Reporting to the chūnin are the majority of guild members, known as genin, or low ninja.
The rules by which ninja guilds operate are called ninpō. While each guild has its own rules and codes, all ninpō share a prohibition against revealing the secrets of the guild or of the daimyō that employs them.
Ninja very rarely leave their guilds. Even those that retire or take up the life of a monk are still considered to be a valuable part of the ninja family. In rare cases, and only with the permission of her jōnin, a ninja may sever all ties with her guild to pursue another life.
Those that leave a guild without permission are referred to as nukenin, or fugitive ninja, and are hunted down and killed.
Jōnin: Yasuda Mitsurugi
The Jade Fist ninja guild is the foremost trafficker of tainted objects in Tsurukoku. They are rivals with the Kiriko-shū and Senryu-shū guilds, since both operate primarily within Itō city. Jade Fist ninja are shrewd negotiators and skilled burglars.
Jōnin: Kaga Kageru
The Kaga ninja are the most populous ninja guild in eastern Tsurukoku. They are based primarily in the Kurosawa and Watanabe lands, with much smaller operations in the Umeda lands. Kaga ninja train in squad-based tactics and infiltration.
The Mist Tiger guild is comprised of some of the most notorious assassins in Tsurukoku. Their ability to infiltrate well-guarded compounds is legendary.
Jōnin: Shizuhata Yumi
The Tiger Lily ninja guild acts as the eyes and ears of the Shogun. They are a primarily female guild that specializes in infiltrating the courts of daimyō throughout Tsurukoku. The Oniyuri ninja place great emphasis on social interaction skills.
Jōnin: Ake Junzō
The Red Hand ninja operate primarily within the lands of Itō and Aono. Many are employed by the shogun as an army of secret enforcers. The Red Hand operate more like an organized crime syndicate than ninja, using extortion, intimidation, blackmail and violence to enforce the will of the Shogun.
The Inner Dragon ninja guild operates mainly within the capital city of Itō, serving various wealthy masters. They are rivals with the Jade Fist and Kiriko-shū guilds. The Senryu-shū guild routinely trains its genin in the study of ki. Most of its members possess supernatural powers in some form or another.