So far, I'm very intrigued.
First, let's address the dice concerns. I like FFG Star Wars, although I've never bought the special dice. There's a lovely free website that rolls and tallies your result for you, and I'm sure the same will exist for this new version L5R. Otherwise, I can buy the app for less than a normal set of dice would cost. I know people really crave that physical sensation of rolling dice, but that's just not important to me.
Here's what I like. This ruleset is really focusing in on the emotional conflicts that drive good samuari stories. The clash of duty and personal desire. The difference between what is proper and what is effective. I adore that stuff, and yes, you can have those things in your stories without mechanical incentive, but by having the mechanics reinforce and drive those themes, they become much more present and important.
I like how school advancement is handled. The worksheets might seem cumbersome, but that advancement method better fits with the story of what's going on than the previous method of totalling everything on your sheet to determine your insight.
Like Star Wars, the rules don't read as elegant. The core mechanic is simple, but there's so many little moving parts that I expect players to wrestle with a learning curve before it clicks.
What I don't like. I know this is a beta so it's imcomplete, but it's ridiculous not to have at least one Bushi school for each Clan. I'm sure the completed product will have more schools, but that was really jarring for me.
Still, I like the direction this game is going and will almost certainly buy in when it's available. I'm also going to try to run a couple of demo sessions with folks experienced with FFG Star Wars, just to see how it works at the table, but I haven't done so at time of writing this review.
[4 of 5 Stars!]