Total War: Three Kingdoms

Everything about Vassalization is weird in this game. You can also hit the magical “Yuan Shao” moment yourself really easily, because the AI takes vassal power into account as your power during negotiations, which means once you have 3-4 vassals, your military might looks unbeatable and most of the AI will become your vassals with nothing more than a “guarantee autonomy” thrown in.

They still won’t generally be of any use to you in wars (for whatever reason most of the AI will just sit at your capital even if you tell them to go to war and they are loyal and like you. I’ve had a few random AI vassal armies like Gongsun and Liu Bei actually do stuff, but it seems like the non-expanding AI’s are content to just camp out at my palace. But even if they are worthless outside of the 20% of their income you get, you still win the game without having to capture their little handful of territories.

Oh, and there are certain AI’s that will just rebel against being a vassal every time as far as I can tell, Cao Cao and Yuan Shu most infamously. They do generally wait until your armies are further than one move away from their capital before doing so, but it’s still a hopeless venture.

tl;dr - Despite a great many diplomacy improvements, the vassal system in general just needs some sweet lovin from the devs.

What’s also annoying about vassal swarm wars is that its asymmetrical. You can try declaring war on a vassal to pull the master in. But for some reason the order of operations seems to be the master declaring war on your vassals first (before you), forcing you to once again be the one declaring war individually on their other vassals.

So you can’t even pull the same trick back!

There are other weird shit with vassals and coalitions and wars as well. For example, if you declare a coalition/alliance war against a vassal…then the master doesn’t get pulled in for ??? reasons. Well, not immediately, the vassal can then ask for it later.

For the Cao Cao’s fans here:

Yeah I know. It’s the mail and news from last year. But it’s still awesome if the archaeologists could definitively prove it as Cao Cao’s remains.

I’m about halfway through the Penguin abridged edition. It’s been edited down to about 650 pages. I believe this translation keeps every chapter in the book to maintain the overarching story, but omits most of the battles and shortens the dialogue. The whole book is written / translated in the present tense. This was frustrating at first, but I gotta say it’s simple and easy to read.

Well, I’ll no doubt regret it, but I’ve got the 4 volume box set sitting on my desk, so guess I’m committed to the long version. I’m in a summer 100 hour library reading contest with my kiddo, so I’m putting in a concentrated bit of effort at the moment, when I finish the ridiculously wordy first three volumes of Sanderson’s Stormlight Archive a friend convinced me was worth reading (it’s OK) I’ll turn my attention to 3k.

You no doubt made the smarter call. ;)

The full edition is about 1500 pages. I’m not sure an abridged edition is worth it, specially given this is an “important” work and will probably give more to the reader than just the “facts”.

(I’m halfway through my 3-volume full text edition and there are certainly a lot of very nice passages and scenes amidst the barrages of names and battles)

Im at ep 13 of 80something of the 3K tv series. Its so good. so smart. So very very Chinese too.

I rate it higher than game of thrones tbh. Ok the fights suck and theres no sexytimes but damn do those plots get thick!

Is it available via streaming anywhere, or did you buy it?

It’s been more than 20 years since I read the book, would be fun to brush up.

That’s the one. I fi d it refreshingly sincere and smart.

It also has a couple of truly virtuous characters in it like Liu Bei. After all the darkness and grey morality of contemporary western fantasy i find that a compelling return.

While goody-two-shoes might not be the most interesting character in himself, his virtue gives a measuring point to examine the less virtuous ones by.

By being flatly lawful good, Liu Bei offers great perspective to the wrinkles of CaoCao and Lü Bü characters.

I like virtue ethics. It is one of the oldest ethical philosophies in the west and seems to be mostly forgotten. Or perhaps it hasn’t but our heroes embody virtues like greed, opportunism and self-interest.

I’m enjoying it as well, but I can’t find Episode 6.


The amazing thing was that on the sarcophagus were carved in relief images of two cattle, finally putting a long standing question to rest.



So who’s the best autoresolve player? Maybe Liu Bei with double stacks of militia? I get really tired and unable to finish campaigns.

Game has nice sunset skyboxes

…uh, I don’t think the lighting in the third one was from the sunset.

I couldn’t agree more. Top 10 movie list for me.

Moving 100 ahead past the 3K period to the Fall of the Jin period, the dynasty that succeeded the Han. Never trust Sima Yi!