Kongming’s Archives –> Three Kingdoms II –> FAQs and Walkthroughs Author: KR Zhang; FAQ: three_kingdoms_ii.txt; Ver. 1.81

                 By: KR Zhang (yanzhang@fas.harvard.edu)

                           V. 1.81 (9/09/03)


                       (BEST VIEWED WITH WORDPAD)

The latest version is always at www.gamefaqs.com.

                     I NEED HELP! SEND ME MAIL! HEH...


Table of Contents

1. News - updates for each update

2. Commands - each command in the game in full detail

3. Lost Chapters of War - Tips, tricks, and strategy

4. Generals - Comprehensive list of important generals in the game

5. Advice - Advice given by advisors

6. Philosophy - What I learned from this game



1.00 Most of the stuff done tonight. Did the whole Commands section, the

     Playing with Fire section, and some of the generals section.

1.50 Preparing to put the fire section into a separate FAQ for war (It

     would be too long) and added advice from advisors and a few generals.

1.60 I actually updated it! Added more generals... Matthew James gave

     a LOT of help too... including how to cheat death!

1.70 Update and stuff. Added many items. Changed format a bit.

1.71 Changed email

1.80 Changed email AGAIN

     Added some info by Dan Holder (amon_101@mailcity.com)

                        Zhang Liao (m_cauthon@hotmail.com)

1.81 Changed email one more time. Added a philosophy section. Analytical

     gamers and/or future game designers might want to take a look.

     Added interesting notes on the Betrayal command.


  Romance of the Three Kingdoms II for SNES and Genesis is a very well

written strategy/SIM game. Done by the company KOEI, it reflects actual

information on the feuding "Three Kingdoms" era in Chinese History as

many warlords clash for power. Will you be one of these warlords and

take over China? Or will you end in defeat and be laughed at by your 

computer opponents? 


-                    C  O  M  M  A  N  D  S                        -


TA = Takes an action

HO = Home province commands only

Commands   Category                        USE


-          -        -   This is either used to "spy" information in 

- Province -  VIEW  -   another province, or to look at your own.

-          -        -   (TA for enemy province)


-          -        -   This one looks at specific information for a

- General  -  VIEW  -   general in your province, and of course a

-          -        -   headshot. 


-          -        -   This one looks at information for the

- Summ. 1  -  VIEW  -   generals in the current province for Loyalty,

-          -        -   Age, Intelligence, Charm, and War.


-          -        -   This one looks at information for the

- Summ. 2  -  VIEW  -   generals in the current province for Years,

-          -        -   Soldiers, Skill, and Arms.


-          -        -   Lets a general hire a number of soldiers. Each

-   Hire   -  ARMY  -   soldier will need 10 gold and 1 rice for payment.

-          -        -   (TA)


-          -        -   Lets a general assign a number of soldiers. 

-  Assign  -  ARMY  -   HIREing does this automatically. Up to 100 

-          -        -   soldiers for a general. (TA)


-          -        -   Lets generals increase the soldier's Skill

-   Train  -  ARMY  -   by training all of them. Skills rank from

-          -        -   1 to 100. (TA, uses WAR)


-          -        -   Lets up to 5 generals attack an enemy province

-    War   -  ARMY  -   nearby. An amount of gold and rice should be

-          -        -   brought. This will also be done for reinforcements

-          -        -   and a joint attack. (TA)


-          -        -   Lets generals be added to the kingdom. The home

-          -        -   province can recruit generals from any province

-          -        -   and any province can recruit local Free Generals.

-          -        -   This could be done by four ways in decreasing

-          -        -   chance of success: 

- Recruit  -  PEPL  -   1. Personal Appeal, a personal visit;

-          -        -      by the ruler/governor (takes his action); 

-          -        -   2. Horse, a bribe of one horse;

-          -        -   3. Gold, a bribe of 100 gold;

-          -        -   4. Letter, free bribe, heh.

-          -        -   (TA, uses CHARM)


-          -        -   Lets a general search for Free Generals within

-  Search  -  PEPL  -   the province. It is a one-time search or fail

-          -        -   mission. (TA, uses CHARM)


-          -        -   Lets a general assume the position of Governor

-  Appoint -  PEPL  -   or Advisor. An advisor must have Intelligence >= 80

-          -        -   and will give advice. (HO)


-          -        -   Fires a general from his/her current position

-  Dismiss -  PEPL  -   as advisor, or fires a general right away.

-          -        -   (HO)


-          -        -   Lets the AI control a province. It could be

- Delegate -  PEPL  -   done in many different forms. Experiment.

-          -        -   (HO)


-          -        -   Rewards a general with a horse or up to 100 gold.

-  Reward  -  PEPL  -   Horses works better overall. If it is the home

-          -        -   province, Writings could be given to raise 

-          -        -   Intelligence. (TA, uses CHARM of governor)


-          -        -   Lets a general sell rice and get gold. This

-Sell Rice -  TRDE  -   is good in Winter, bad in Fall and otherwise

-          -        -   average. (TA)


-          -        -   Lets a general buy rice with gold. This

- Buy Rice -  TRDE  -   is bad in Winter, good in Fall and otherwise

-          -        -   average. (TA)


-          -        -   Lets a general buy horses for 100 gold each.

-Buy Horse -  TRDE  -   These work better than gold usually and

-          -        -   can not be sold back. (TA)


-          -        -   Lets a general buy arms for himself (up to 100)

- Buy Arms -  TRDE  -   at 1 gold each. It makes the soldiers fight

-          -        -   considerably stronger. (TA)


-          -        -   Lets generals develop land for a good harvest

-   Land   -IN. AFF.-   of rice in Fall. Can use up to 100 gold each

-          -        -   and can develop up to 100. (TA, uses INTELLIGENCE)


-          -        -   Lets generals develop dams for good protection

-   Flood  -IN. AFF.-   against floods. Can use up to 100 gold each

-          -        -   and can develop up to 100. (TA, uses INTELLIGENCE)


-          -        -   Lets generals give rice to people to increase

-   Give   -IN. AFF.-   the people's loyalty. Can use up to 100 rice each

-          -        -   and can raise up to 100. (TA, uses CHARM)


-          -        -   An emergency action getting immediate gold and

-   Tax    -IN. AFF.-   rice but lowering trust and people's loyalty.

-          -        -   This is not very good.  (TA for the governor)


-          -        -   Lets a general try to ally with a rival

-   Ally   -  DIPL  -   warlord. This will mean less battles, joint attacks

-          -        -   and similar good things. (TA, uses CHARM)


-          -        -   Lets a general try to ask an allied warlord

-   Joint  -  DIPL  -   to joint attack a neighboring province 

-          -        -   Just use the War command. (TA, uses CHARM)

-          -        -   

-          -        -   Dan Holder pointed out that the joint attack can be used

-          -        -   both the month the pact was made, or the next

-          -        -   month.


-          -        -   This should be chosen very carefully. Your daughter

-   Marry  -  DIPL  -   will be married to another warlord, which will

-          -        -   lower hostility drastically. (TA, uses CHARM)


-          -        -   Lets a general try to give a gift (up to 1000 gold)

-   Gift   -  DIPL  -   to a warlord. This will mean less hostility

-          -        -   and possible alliance. (TA, uses CHARM)


-          -        -   Wipes out an alliance. Raises hostility but

-  Cancel  -  DIPL  -   should be used at fear of losing trust for

-          -        -   attacking an ally.


-          -        -   Lets a general try to tell a warlord to surrender.

-  Threat  -  DIPL  -   This seldom works and is the only way to recruit 

-          -        -   a warlord. (TA, uses CHARM)


-          -        -   Hides a loyal general in another province. In 

-          -        -   battle, the general will switch at beginning giving

-   Hide   -  SPY   -   a good advantage (especially if he/she acquired

-          -        -   a good amount of soldiers). The spys could be

-          -        -   VERIFIED to see if they are still loyal.


-          -        -   Lets two generals to try to make two warlords 

-          -        -   attack each other. This had seldom worked for

- Rvl. Tgs.-  SPY   -   me, even with an Int. 100 and an Int. 99 general.

-          -        -   It seems to be effective if used well, though.

-          -        -   (TA, uses INTELLIGENCE)


-          -        -   Lets a general try to tell a general to get

-Tiger Wolf-  SPY   -   ambitious and revolt. This is usually very cool

-          -        -   and satisfying. (TA, uses CHARM)


-          -        -   Lets a general try to tell a general to betray

- Betrayal -  SPY   -   his ruler in combat and convert to the other

-          -        -   side. (TA, uses CHARM)

-          -        -  

-          -        -   One of my interesting notes on this is that the

-          -        -   general doesn't have to convert to the side that

-          -        -   used the Betrayal command on him. One time, I

-          -        -   told Zhang He to betray Sun Quan, and Cao Cao

-          -        -   attacked Sun Quan. Zhang He betrayed Sun Quan and

-          -        -   joined Cao Cao... oh well.


-          -        -   Lets a general try to lower the loyalty of 

- Forgery  -  SPY   -   a general by forging suspcious letters to trick

-          -        -   his master. (TA, uses INTELLIGENCE)


-          -        -   Let several generals move to a nearby province

- Generals -  MOVE  -   carrying gold, rice and soldiers.

-          -        -   (TA)


-          -        -   Let a general move goods to another province

-   Goods  -  MOVE  -   carrying gold and rice

-          -        -   (TA, uses WAR for some strange reason)



-                L O S T   C H A P T E R S   O F   W A R                   -



-Me, Yan Zhang/CronoT/KR Zhang/whatever ^_^-


Taming the Flames


  Fire can be a very useful asset in battle. Using fire alone I have

won battles with odds of 6:1 easily (reminds me of the great war

Zhuge Liang and Zhou Yu planned at Chi Bi, or "Wall of Fire"). Fire

seems to depend on INTELLIGENCE, so I carry a few good civil officers

with me to battle at all times. However, fire is very dependent on

weather and terrain. 

  Fire can be accessed with the "Fire Trick" attack. Then, it will spread

in the dirction of the wind on any type of terrain except for water, and

lasts until a storm hits (very frequently, sadly). If timed correctly, a

good fire might spread across the whole playing field surrounding your


  Fire should be used strategically. Many provinces have their castles

surrounded by unpassible mountains, making it easy to defend against

for soldiers -- but not fire. Finding the right time and sending down

a wave of fire will burn the soldiers in the "protection" of the

mountains, making them not able to escape the area if only one or two

generals block the narrow escapes. When the fire is first laid on a 

troop, it will do a slight 1 or 2 damage armywise, BUT, if the general

can not escape next turn (surrounded by fire, hint hint) he must try

to escape (at a good chance of being captured) or stay in the fire, doing

a massive 10 to 20 damage, possibling killing him on the spot. If fire

by any chance, ever spreads on the enemy castle, the enemy general leaving

might be forced to Charge, making him 2 units from the castle and giving

you a chance to claim it next turn, winning quickly.

  Fire is also what I use for "scouting". Many defensive provinces would

put generals in forests, letting them ambush your units as you go by. This

could easily be prevented by sending fire into the forest (hey, fire DOES

burn), and making them run out vunerable to attack. Aren't I great?

  But, fire is not only a good offensive tactic, but a good defense also.

One battle, I had Zhang fei with 20 soldiers and some general with 10 in

a castle, and Cao Cao came rampaging with 300 ~ 400 soldiers to remove

my possession of that castle. Well, the wind was right and the heavens

were with us, as I easily flicked a few fireseeds at the direction of the

attackers. The land was a narrow strip so the raging fire blocked their path

for 30 days, allowing me to send reinforcements next turn.

  Overall, never forget what fire can do, and always bring a couple

of smart people with you. It is rumoured that Zhuge Liang never fails

a fire trick in the sun and at nonwater terrain.

The Secret of Writings


  I have often pondered why giving writings will sometimes work and 

sometimes fail. Then, after research, I finally understood the algorithm 

that giving writings use! It is very simple actually. It can raise a 

general's INT by 1, up to (I - 1), where I is the intelligence of your

advisor! So, if you have Zhang Zhao (Int. 95), you can raise anyone's

intelligence up to 94. And if you have Zhuge Liang, any general can receive

a 99 intelligence level (but never the magical, perfect 100... sigh).

How to use those Civil Officers


  This strategy tells you how to use those smart guys that just sit around.

A few prequisites exist here: a really good advisor (Zhuge Liang is perfect

for this, if you can't get him, then one with Int. of at least 95), a

good capital (with many adjacent vassal provinces), and a good many number

of officers.

  One, divide those civil officers (the ones with Int. more than 80, and

War less than 70) into groups. Preferibly, you have some for war (using

fire, read the "Taming the Fire" section); some for governors (the best

governors have high charm, which seems to go hand in hand with intelligence

for some reason. Try to put as less as possible civil officers into this

area and use generals with only high charm such as Sun Qian in this

category.); and the rest (hopefully more than five)... are your Chinese

style "engineers".

  Two, send these "engineers" into the capital, where your ruler and

your advisor is. This step usually takes 1~3 months, and is not that hard

(hopefully). Make a mental list of priority, with the generals with the

highest intelligence at the top of the line.

  Three, put the top "engineer" into training, and I'm talking about giving

writings as reward. Rack his intelligence up to the highest it can go

(read the "Secret of Writings" for this) and send him to a nearby province.

Do this every turn.

  Four, in the provinces with these generals, develop land like mad. right 

before each January and July, let the generals with high charm in those

provinces give to the people. Meanwhile, let other "engineers" reinforce

this or other provinces. Step three should still be active every turn.

  Five, do this with every general with ability, and your provinces will

all have land ratings of 100. After getting people's loyalty up, you will

get so much taxes and food every half year that some places reach the max

of 30,000 in a matter of years. Your economy will flow so smoothly

that you can instantly hire as many soldiers as you want each turn. This

may not sound too exciting, but trust me, when you play on hard mode (or

even if you are not) you will be surprised at how much wealthier you are

and how much easier it is to prepare armed forces, bribe, ally, gift, and

everything else. It really pays off.


-Matthew James-


Defense Made Easy


   When you have a province that you know you just can't defend, 

either due to lack of resources or having just invaded another province 

with all your troops, just use a governer, and 1 or 2 followers with no 

troop support. (The optional second general is for requsting 

reinforcements if you have the rice, and are by a particularly loyal 

ally.)  When you get attacked, then you place the governer on one side 

of another general, both without troops, and then wait for the enemy to 

come.  Since you have no troops, they'll probably send in only 1 general 

with what they think will be enough troops.  Well, the enemy general 

gets there, just remain on the other side of the follower general of 

yours, and move acordingly.  Since the enemy is right next to your 

follower, he can only move 1 space, and won't be able to attack you're 

leader.  If you keep moving, then the enemy will remain chasing you for 

a long time, and allow you to either reinforce, or move in with more 

supplies to keep the enemy engaged for another month or more.  This only 

works when you're not next to the castle, and out in the open.  It works 

best in the water.  (I once ran like this for 1 year with Han Dang and 

Han Hao with Sun Ce as my ruler when Yuan Shu invaded, and kept a really 

crappy buffer zone off my rice belt with this place.  It was province 


Employing the Plague


   I'm also rather fond of waiting for a plague to come, then moving 

in when the enemy's troops are all recovering from it, and getting a ton 

of new troops after I win, because of the ill generals not being able to 

fight.  At it's best when Liu Zhang has over 1000 troops in his home 

province, and he isn't armed.  I once to fight only him when this 

happened, and got 800+ troops fully trained, and a few fully armed.  A 

rather pleasing addition to my army, even if their generals hated me.

The Province of Treasures


   Oh, another interesting fact: when you invade province 10, and you 

win, you automatically get war spoils.  Simply put, my brothers and I 

got into a habit of just taking local rulers around Loyang, and then 

proceeded to invade with our most expendable general.  We then used the 

spoils to either make Lu Bu 100 in two categories, or make another 100 

advisor, etc.  

To Cheat Death


   When you have a general who sees a falling star with it's evil 

omen, (meaning that general is going to die) simply invade another place

with him in December, one month before the end of the year, and stay in 

that place for the duration of the month, protracting the siege until 

the next year.  That general will live for the next year. A neat trick 

for keeping Zhou Yu or Huang Zhong alive for that extra year or two when 

you need their abilities for just a bit longer.


-Dan Holder (amon_101@mailcity.com)-


Bulls will not Understand Harps


  Something else I noticed was in the "Recruit" section under "Commands". 

The methods of recruiting vary depending on the general's attributes you're 

looking to recruit. "Personal Appeal" works best on those with high 

intelligence, "Horse" works best on those with high war, "Letter" works 

best on those with high charm, and "Gold" is just a cover-all. It comes in 

second to the above in each instance, but is the most balanced method.    

Power of Espionage


  On spies, they really have two purposes. The main one is to cause 

disruption among the other generals, by spreading rumors which affects the 

other general's loyalty. It will cause their loyalty to drop every month. 

The other is that they can be bribed back over to your side when you invade.

Why Have only one Advisor?


  Using Writings. Double the speed at which intelligence increases by first 

giving writings to a general in your home province until he's at the maximum 

capable for him, then move him to an adjacent province. Then next turn, have 

your current advisor give writings, then change your advisor to the one you 

just moved. Have him give writings. Next month, change your advisor back to 

your original, then rinse/lather repeat.


- Zhang Liao (m_cauthon@hotmail.com) -


Upsets in Battle


  If a general with a lower war score beats a general with a higher war score 

in personal combat his war score will increase. I have seen it jump as much 

as 7 points. If you attack a weak province with a good general in it, attempt 

an upset. If you lose the match you will still win the war and get your 

general back! My man Zhang Liao seems to upset the most, as well as Sun Quan. 

  My personal take: If general A with War X defeats B with war Y, Y > X, then

X seems to become (X + Y) / 2, rounded down (or up? I forgot which). So when 

my Liu Bei defeated Lu Bu in single combat, his 70 war became (100 + 70) / 2 

= 85. So my advice to those of you who uses the tank strategy (pick the 5 best

generals, get train/arms/men to 100, and tank through the enemy) is to take 4

tanks and one "man-in-training" (so if you had Liu Bei, take Guan Yu, Zhang Fei,

Zhao Yun, Ma Chao/Zhuge Liang depending on if you want a strategist or fighter,

and someone like Liu Feng. Each battle let Liu Feng fight if the highest general

only has war about 70-80 or so. You can easily improve his war ability to the 

80-90 range after a few trips.


-                               G E N E R A L S                           -


  A ruler is only as good as his men. Well, here are a list of able

(and not able) men in Romance of the Three Kingdoms II. They will be in



                    - T O P   O F   T H E   R O S T E R -


The Best General:



-Cao Cao - Int: 95 - War: 91 - Charm: 95 -


  Even in the story he was one of the best rulers. He was good at many

things and easily took all of the northern part of China, having the

power of Heaven with him after getting power from the young emperor. He

is good in every aspect and if you play him, he will have many able


Best in Categories:



-Lu Bu - Int: - War: 100  - Charm: -


  The best fighter there is. In history, he killed his father twice,

once killing Ding Yuan for money to go to Dong Zhuo, but then killing

Dong Zhuo for another bribe. This reflects him in the game for his 

unstablility. He will change sides when bribed 50% of time no matter

WHAT loyalty he is, and his loyalty will drop constantly. Sigh... he is

an awesome fighter though.


-Liu Bei - Int: 85 - War: 70 - Charm: 99 -


  There is no charm 100 in this game. Although Liu Bei is an emperor, he

is the best charmer in the game. In history, he started as just a shoe

maker and advanced to emperor level by acquiring the best generals. He

truly deserves such a good charm. Most good generals in the game are

under his command.


-Zhuge Liang - Int: 100 - War: 65 - Charm: 98 -


  The best strategist of all time. His strategies and ruses were second

to none as he loyalty and tirelessly serves for Liu Bei's cause. He is

a master of fire attacks and his advice will NEVER go wrong. With a high

charm, he is also a good recruiter, making him a very good general.

Tiger Generals (Good fighters under Liu Bei):


  These were the five best of Liu Bei's fighters. they were undefeatable

  in single combat and remained loyal to Liu Bei at all times.


-Guan Yu - Int: 83 - War: 99 - Charm: 91 -


  Liu Bei's young sworn brother. He is the head of the Tiger Generals and

wields the mighty Black Dragon sword in combat. He loves fighting and

reading books, and is known for his beautiful beard. A true hero of the



-Zhang Fei - Int: 32 - War: 99 - Charm: 35 -


  An even younger sworn brother. He loves combat even more that Guan Yu

but is very rash. He shows strong intelligence at times but is usually

known as a unrationalized and barbaric man.


-Zhao Yun - Int: 85 - War: 99 - Charm: 92 -


  A brave general. He was under Yuan Shao then Gongsun Zan, and finally

found Liu Bei again after Gongsun Zan died. He was "full of courage" and

risked his life several times to save Liu Bei and his son Liu Chan. These

risks included running into several thousand men single-handed. One of the

best balanced generals in the whole game.


-Ma Chao - Int: 42 - War: 98  - Charm: 60 -


  He is the youngest of the group and was a formidable fighter at even

17. With his father Ma Teng they defeated many of Cao Cao's men. when

Ma Teng was killed by Cao Cao's strategy he escaped to Zhang Lu. He fought

Xu Zhu for over 300 bouts at a tie. Then, when fighting Liu Bei, fought

Zhang Fei for a few hundred bouts also at a tie. Later, he went to Liu Bei 

for his virtue and set many victories.


-Huang Zhong - Int: 66 - War: 96 - Charm: 83 -


  The oldest of the group and the weakest. Although he was old, he was

very skilled in single combat. He fought Guan Yu for many bouts without

losing. His archery skills were praised to be: "able to shoot through

a willow branch one thousand steps away" and served under Liu Bei

diligently. He died when he was angry at his peers calling him "old" and

rode out into battle by himself.

The Tiger Team (Cao Cao's personal guard)


  For Liu Bei there was the Tiger Generals, for Cao Cao there were the

  Tiger Team. These two men were also among the best warriors and protected

  Cao Cao closely.


-Xu Zhu - Int: - War: 98  - Charm:    -


  A formidable man. He was very big in size and served Cao Cao with a loyal

heart. In his servantship he held many victories. Once, meeting Ma Chao

on the battlefield, he fought him for 300 or so bouts without tiring. Even

the arrogant Ma Chao was surprised at this.


-Dian Wei - Int: - War: 97  - Charm:  -


  This was also a very loyal general. He was invincible with his twin spears

and died fighting alone defending Cao Cao's tent. He recieved many arrows

but stood on. Even after he fell dead, the enemy soldiers were afraid to

approach his dead body.


            - S H U   -   L I U   B E I ' S   D O M A I N -




  Shu is known for its "Peace with the people" and has the best generals

  out of all kingdoms in this game. Warriors are no exception... besides

  the almost invincible Tiger Generals, Shu still has many more in ample



-Guan Ping - Int: 70 - War: 82 - Charm: 75 -


-Guan Xing - Int: 69 - War: 90 - Charm: 70 -


-Guan Suo  - Int: 68 - War: 91 - Charm: 69 -


-Zhang Bao - Int: 35 - War: 93 - Charm: 54 -


  The sons of Liu Bei's brothers, Guan Yu and Zhang Fei. Each were highly

skilled in battle, although Guan Ping was also learned in many other 

qualities. (Guan Ping was also an adopted son) Guan Xing and Zhang Bao

were "Guan Yu and Zhang Fei reborn" in the eyes of Liu Bei and defeated

many enemies at the command of Liu Bei.


-Ma Dai - Int: 49 - War: 83 - Charm: 54 -


  Ma Chao's brother. Went with his brother in many battles and became a

favorite general of Zhuge Liang. Zhuge Liang left with Ma Dai the plan

of killing Wei Yan.


-Wei Yan - Int: 48 - War: 94 - Charm: 58 - (Ambitious)


  Second greatest traitor under Lu Bu. He even betrayed me when he had

a 99 loyalty! His loyalty will drop constantly, and is ambitious. In the

story, he revolted after Zhuge Liang died, but Zhuge Liang set up a plan

before his death to kill Wei Yan... it worked. (NOTE: Ambitious means that

he is often a good target for the Tiger-Wolf command)

Civil Officers


  Again, Shu has the best generals in the civil, peaceful area. Having

  both of the leaders of the Intelligence (Zhuge Liang) and Charm (Liu Bei)

  categories, Shu has a lot more generals on the academic side.


-Sun Qian - Int: 78 - War: 37 - Charm: 91 -


  This general has been under Liu Bei for a long time. He has been a

loyal follower and is skilled at rhetorics. His best use is as a diplomat.


-Pang Tong - Int: 98 - War:  - Charm: 87 -


  Called the "Pheonix Fledgling", he was up there with Zhuge Liang. He

died in history when he did not heed Zhuge Liang's warning about attacking

Liu Zhang. He died young, and when he did Liu Bei suffered a great loss.


-Ma Liang - Int: 91 - War: 43 - Charm: 83 -


-Ma Xu    - Int: 80 - War: 75 - Charm: 70 -(Ambitious)


  The oldest and the youngest of the five brothers of the second Ma clan in

Jing Zhou. Ma Liang was an able tactician and Ma Xu knew of many strategies

and ruses. However, Ma Xu was too self-confident and arrogant and lost

an important battle at Jie Ting for Zhuge Liang, causing Shu's defeat there

and almost costing Zhuge Liang's life. He was executed according to

military law.


-Deng Zhi - Int: 85 - War: 54 - Charm: 93 -


  One of the best diplomatic emissaries of Shu, ranking up there with Sun

Qian. He sealed an alliance between Wu and Shu, and accompanied Zhao Yun

in many battles.


                 - W U   -   S U N   Q U A N ' S   L A N D -


  Wu is the least described kingdom of the Three Kingdoms Era. It had a

  natural land protection, but was not really in abundance of good 

  generals. There are a few exceptions, though.


-                              A D V I C E                                -


  These were advice given during the game, and I will explain their meanings

  also. Some are important but the others were not.


-General Comments-


  These are general strategy advice made, which tells you important tips

  on war and peace.

"The Han dynasty is decayed beyond repair..."

"Han's royal family might rise again...

  I thought these two symbolized Liu Bei's power in general at that time

in the game (Liu Bei being the Han decendant), but it turns out that I have

gotten the same advice twice by Zhuge Liang in the same month. (I was 

saving and restoring to get a list of advice) So I don't know.

"A thorn bush is no place for a phoenix - you need more territory"


"You needn't use a Sledgehammer to kill a fly"

  Do not take too many troops into an easily won battle and leave the home

province scarcily defended. I consider this nice advice.

"Remember despair turns cowards into brave men"

  Old proverb... I don't know how it affects the game though. An army with

more soldiers will lose more men per round than one with less?

"The virtuous ruler succeeds where others have failed"

  Be virtuous. When the others break alliances to attack and things, be

nice and stay loyal and just. People will like you better. Your trust will

steadily go up in scale too... this is the exact way Liu Bei made such a

great kingdom starting as a shoe seller.

"Since ancient times, peace has been more profitable than war"

  If you not get into warfare, you will get rich quicker. THEN you

attack others, hehe.

"Foolish is the ruler who relies on force above wisdom"

  Self-explanatory. Plan each attack, and understand that the enemies are

not pushovers sometimes. And build up forces first before taking much


"A good plan is to attack a mind - a poor one is to attack a castle"

  Face it - it is easier to defeat a province by letting generals

betray their master. 

"Even the fastest horses are useless if not allowed to run"

  Why have a strong general and not use him? If he is a genius, make him 

your advisor. If he is intelligent, let him work on development. If he is

charming, let him do recruit/searching work. If he is strong, let him go

to the front line! Every general, no matter how bad or good, has a use.

"Sometimes the strength of enemies can be turned against them"

  Heh, this shows itself so much. I always keep high charm officers in

governor or commander of armies, and if the other side has any officers 

with low loyalty, I just bribe them. They lose an army and I gain one, 

right in their territory! What I usually do is convert Lu Bu and just 

charge the other guy's castle. If Lu Bu gets caught by them, good! I use

him again next battle. :)

"A clever man selects his master the way a bird selects his tree"

  A good proverb of the old days of China, but how does it affect the 

game? Hmm... I have yet to find out.

"Do not neglect the needs of your people"

  Watch that People's Loyalty stat. If it gets low (below 50 is a warning,

below 20 is... very bad), you might get a revolt! It will damage everything

in the province, make you lose soldiers and population, as well as lower

some generals' loyalty stats.

"Able men as as difficult to find as pearls"

  A true statement. It is very hard to find good men at anything (Stats

over 90), to find prodigies (Stats over 95) is an even harder task.


-Specific Comments-


  A little more useful than general comments, these tell about specific

  characters or items in the game.

"Lu Bu is strong, but he can't be trusted"

"Lu Bu's strength is unequaled"

"Lu Bu is as rare in men as Red Hare is among horses"

  These describe the legendary general Lu Bu. It basically means Lu Bu 

can't be trusted (read the GENERALS section), but he is very strong, the

strongest in the game, in fact.

"Chao Yun thrives on danger"

  Don't see any meaning for this. Chao Yun is a misspelling of Zhao Yun,

by the way. I think it means he will always stay loyal no matter how

bad the situation is or something.

"Cao Cao leads well, but other rulers don't trust him"

"Cao Cao would rather betray the world than let the world betray him"

"Cao Cao is able enough to rule the world but wicked enough to destroy it"

  Cao Cao's personality in a nutshell. He WILL break a lot of alliances

to get land, so don't depend on him. I suggest getting him out of your way 

in the beginning, as he grows in power rapidly and is very good in every


"The Ma brothers show proper respect"

  Ma Chao and Ma Dai? Maybe it is because of their undying loyalty or


"You need Hidden Dragon's strength"

  Telling you about Zhuge Liang (THE MAN!), the only general with 100%

correct advice. If you get him, the internal and external affairs would

be very easy. The problem is, even Zhuge Liang himself gives you this

advice. :)

"The mighty Black Dragon Sword was fashioned by Guan Yu"

"He who wields the Luminous Sword fares well on the battlefield"

  Describes two good weapons you can get as war spoils. They are both

powerful. The former belonged to Guan Yu and the latter Cao Cao (which

does not mean they automatically have it)

"The steed known as Red Hare is as swift as the wind"

"The rider of Red Hare or Black Lightning can not be caught"

  Describes two horses you can get as war spoils, Red Hare and Black

Lightning. I do not yet know what they do exactly. 

(Dan Holder says that the riders of these horses can not be caught during


"With Hua Tuo's Medical Book, injuries can be healed in a month"

  Another item in the game, Hua Tuo was a expert physician and had a 

medical book written. If you get this item, you have nothing more to fear

against plagues.

"He who finds Meng De's new treatise will gain intellect"

  The treatise of Cao Cao (Meng De) will increase intelligence if given

to a general. Now you can have 2 Zhuge Liangs. That would rock.

"If you give a general a beautiful Jewel, his charm will increase"

  You can collect Jewels as war spoils. they raise Charm of a general. This

is the ONLY way I know of to raise charm, outside of getting the ruler's

charm to 100 with the Hereditary Seal.



-Conditional Comments-


  I consider these the most useful. They only appear when certain events

  or prequisites are met, and gives you warning or planning time.

"Province *** is weak - let's attack now while we have the chance!"

"Province *** could be taken with little effort..."

  Hmm... what does it sound like? These advice means that a province nearby

can become yours quite easily.

"*** can't be trusted"

  I'm not sure. Either some fool gave the general a forged note or targetted

him for BETRAYAL.

"I suspect that *** in province *** has high ambitions..."

"I suspect that *** in province *** has rebellous intent..."

"I suspect that *** in province *** grows ambitious..."

"I suspect that *** in province *** is plotting something..."

  All of these say the same thing. If your advisor says this, it is the

best time (or the only time?) to use the Tiger Wolf command on that

governor. Watch the flag burn next month! This is pretty much always a

good time to use it, unless the govenor is yours (heh) or if the governor

was someone you wanted to recruit.

"There seems to be generals of ability within this province"

  SEARCH. There will be one or more good free generals found.

"Province *** is a menace. Let's plot against them!"

"*** is preparing to attack us. We must be careful!"

  Be aware that a nearby warlord is preparing troops in his province. This

will possibly mean you are going to get attacked. Action: hire, train, buy


"*** still has no advisor"

"*** has assumed the position of ***'s advisor"

  The former tells you that a warlord has no generals of intelligence over

80! Hence, if you want a good advisor, don't get it from him. The latter

basically tells you who is the advisor of a certain warlord. If you see

Zhuge Liang, you know who to attack. ^_^


-Decisive Comments-


  These comments are not given each turn but each time you want to

  take an action. If you have Zhuge Liang, (or any general with a 100

  Intel rating) only correct answers will be given. These come in pairs

  as the "yes" answer followed by the "no" answer.

"We will seize the advantage in war"

"The soldiers have trained sufficiently"

  These are the comments for the TRAIN command. 

"The general would be honored"

"That general will not readily join us"

  These are the comments for the RECRUIT command. 

"Very clever! We will surely find someone"

"I doubt we'll find anyone good"

  These are the comments for the SEARCH command.

"You'll win even greater loyalty"

"That will not earn loyalty" 

"The more one learns, the better one can serve"

"You can't hope for more improvement"

  These are the comments for the REWARD command. The first pair is for 

rewarding Gold or Horse. The second pair is for Writings.

"This alliance is bound to succeed"

"This alliance is doomed to fail"

  These are the comments for the ALLY command. 

"This is our best chance for victory"

"They'll probably refuse"

  These are the comments for the JOINT command. 

"A marriage would cement things nicely"

"A refusal would disgrace us"

  These are the comments for the MARRY command. 

"Stop now... I fear this will end badly"

"They will surely fall for our plot"

  These are the comments for the RIVAL TIGERS command. 

"Bold plan... war will go well for us"

"I foresee problems with this plan"

  These are the comments for the BETRAYAL command.


-                       P H I L O S O P H Y                               -


  I gotta play this game to learn something. I guess KOEI made a big mistake

in releasing this game inside the United States - the cultural background,

while of interest to the more educated Japanese (and people with more interest

in an Asian neighbor's culture), is almost totally ignored by Americans,

especially gamers. While KOEI does have a loyal following, it is indeed

small in the United states. My point on this is... know your audience.

  So now, that mistake out of the way, what makes this game good? I suppose

it looks at one side of military strategy that is almost completely nonexistent

from any other company's games even to this day - personnel management. 

Maybe it is just the romanticism of the Three Kingdoms Era or the days of

the Warring Kingdoms in Japan, but the Japanese, Chinese, and Korean love their

historical characters! Civil War buffs, with their images of the great Lee, Longstreet,

and the other figures of the war tend to be very discouraged at games where

these generals with unique personalities are replaced by generic units only

differing in numbers and morale. Sid Meier comes close, but who else does anything

remotely similar as KOEI, who by now the 9th installment of the Three Kingdoms have

half-body images of everybody in the game as well as a historical description

of every general that is viewable with a click of the mouse?

  Some people, like me, want to get a little learning out of games. It is college

now, and I had wasted a lot of time in the old days. This "edutainment" thing, like

number Munchers or Carmen Sandiego games might sound dorky, but hey. Maybe

some of us actually want that.

  As for the rest, I guess alternative history is what makes our dream. We want

to be a great warlord in these times and lead our armies to victory, or even better,

be a unique NEW warlord (which this game allows) who enters teh stage of 

history to make a name that has never appeared in any historical record.

  we can dream on. But Romance of the Three Kingdoms is there to stay, and it

is the definition of this genre, games of strategy on a personnel level that must

be played to be understood.


All copyrighted things by KOEI, blah blah. I'm not using this for profit

whatsoever. All the written stuff are done as hard work by me, KR Zhang, 

and if you want to use them better mail me at cronot@erols.com.