Ever since I first had a computer that could play games the Total War series has been a staple in my PC gaming collection. With only a few exceptions I have made a point to collect every Total War game as it was released since Medieval: Total War. Among the list of games that I am playing right now includes Total War: Three Kingdoms. If you haven’t heard of it Three Kingdoms is a strategy game based in Medieval China during the period known as the Three Kingdom period.
The romance of the Three Kingdoms as it is also known is a period of Chinese history where several warlords fought for the right to become Emperor of China after the fall of the Han dynasty. This story as it is told has many colorful characters with even more colorful turns of fate. Total War: Three Kingdoms affords the opportunity to take control of one of the nations of the warlords as you vie for control of China.
The game is comprised of two types of play. The first is set on a campaign map where you can see territories held by your warlord and other warlords. In this type of play you raise armies, develop your settlements, attack other warlords and their assets, and engage in diplomacy with other warlords. The second mode of play is that of commanding individual armies on the battlefield. When you order an army to attack an enemy asset you have the option to let the computer auto-resolve the outcome of the conflict or to take command of the battle yourself.
I recently started a campaign using the warlord by the name of Sun Jian. He is a rough customer whose faction gains bonuses based on the outcome of battles and sieges. As long as you are able to maintain a steady flow of successful battles it is easy to rack up helpful bonuses that affect your nation. Sun Jian begins his campaign with one province and you are tasked immediately with taking another. This is not difficult to do.
Only a few turns into this campaign you run into a plot line from the Three Kingdoms story. Your warlord Sun Jian is in possession of the Imperial Jade Seal. A neighboring warlord by the name of Liu Biao sends a messenger instructing you to relinquish the prized item. When he does you are given a choice to avoid war with Liu Biao and his vassals by surrendering the seal or you can keep the seal and go to war. I chose to follow the story and keep the seal. Which immediately put me at war with Liu Biao and his vassals.
Knowing that Liu Biao would soon arrive with a substantial army I knew that I had to act quickly so I immediately took my army lead by Sun Jian and invaded one of Liu Biao’s vassals Cai Mao. Cai Mao does not have a very strong army and only one settlement so eliminating him is not difficult. As my army destroy Cai Mao and I make my way further north to attempt to capture land from Liu Biao’s second vassal Huang Zu, Liu Biao’s army appears to lay siege to one of my valuable cities. So I have a tough decision do I continue to attack Huang Zu or turn to try to retake my city…
I ultimately chose to continue my attack and then return to face Liu Biao by himself. This was a gamble because if he continued his assault from the rear I would continue to lose more land, but he decided not to continue his assault which gave me the upper hand! Once I finished conquering Huang Zu I made my way back to retake the lost town and to dispatch Liu Biao from my lands. After several turns I finally made it back and I laid siege to the town…
I decided against an immediate assault and instead opted to let them take attrition damage while they were trapped inside the towns walls. On Liu Biao’s next turn he and his army decided to face me head on by leaving the walls of the town. Ultimately, this is what I wanted to happen. Liu Biao and I had a evenly matched number and types of soldiers. To attack his fortified position would have been suicide! Rather than just tell you, see how the battle goes below!
We gain victory because of a couple things first is that I took a position on top of a very steep hill. So the enemy had to climb the hill and become exhausted before they even get into combat. The second thing is that my archers caused a lot of damage as Liu Biao’s forces closed in allowing me to outmaneuver them because they were in disarray. After that Liu Biao had lost the taste for war and offered peace. He even agreed to give me another territory besides the town that I recaptured just to be sure that I would accept the peace. I agreed for now because I have a greater interest in capturing the lands to my south controlled by the fallen Han faction.
I will continue to post about my conquest of China. I’m certain that much more grand battles will be in store as the campaign continues… Also, when I have been playing I have been Live streaming on Twitch. So follow me on Twitch if you want to watch! I’m open to suggestion when dilemmas arise! https://www.twitch.tv/bloodmanchar