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Ok, I admit that I've failed somewhere before. But anyway welcome. Just a brief intro on what you should expect here:
1. Football. Not gonna post much of that any soon since season is over. :S
2. Anime, Games, etc. Just abt anything conceivable under the Japanese radar barring anything and everything Rule 34. Now that's illegal. Period. -.-;
3. Music. Everything to do with it is listed under the tab.
5. Unacceptable humour: Anything and everything is fair game here. As long as I don't get rounded up by the ISA. -.-'

6.
The Known World=Fantasy world building in process. I: Used to be glossary, now devoted to random rambling; II: Character Concepts; III: Lore.
7. der Wolf=my Fictionpress account under the moniker Tsumujikaze no Soujutsu. A Ranger's Tale is hosted under this page. :)
8. New section now upped. Maybe I should also gun for upping A Ranger's Tale here since I do have this funny feeling that traffic coming to here is way more than whatever I'll get in FP.

Statement of intent: Everything said here is a figment of personal opinion, be it me or anybody commenting. I try to be responsible, but my parents=/=parents of the world.

@Druid of Luhn: Crap. Should have remembered far earlier to give you the credit for your CSS text box code. :(

A/N: But sadly, it seems that your CSS text box code has now been halved efficiency wise. :(

That most important note I should have added: Any images posted in this blog are NOT my own stuff. I got them from Google image search, I don't earn any shit by being a thief and liar. Those responsible for the pictures, rest assured that you all are great artists in your own regards. Sadly, we all know what limited space means in terms of posting.

Latest Note: Changed alignment for my page widgets due to my worry that I can't centre align the thing.

Note on A Ranger's Tale: In case any complaining fella wants to have a legal case with me, let this be known that A Ranger's Tale is rated M by default. I've upped the swearing and somewhat a bit on the dark/gritty factor. You all have been warned, let no little boy and girl enter the forbidden realm.

Latest on ART: A Ranger's Tale now starting to kick back in gear. But I really hate the insanely fluctuating climate here in S'pore.

P.S: Oh, and one more thing. Vid below is yet another ideal OP for A Ranger's Tale.

Monday, 26 November 2012

Dude, where's my war?

“若不用陆伯言,则东吴休矣!” ~阚泽
Background
[初,先主忿孙权之袭关羽,将东征,秋七月,遂帅诸军伐吴。孙权遣书请和,先主盛怒不许,吴将陆议、李异、刘阿等屯巫、秭归;将军吴班、冯习自巫攻破异等,军次秭归,武陵五谿蛮夷遣使请兵。] 
《三国志:先主传

[At the beginning, the First Lord was angered by Sun Quan's decision to attack Guan Yu, hence his decision to attack eastbound. During the seventh month of autumn, Liu Bei led his generals and armies to declare war on Wu. Sun Quan's plea for truce went to deaf ears as the Wu generals Lu Yi, Li Sheng, Liu E, etc stationed themselves in the vincity of Wu, Zi Gui; (Shu) generals Wu Ban and Feng Xi defeated Sheng and the rest as the (Shu) forces reached Zi Gui with Liu Bei sending forth emissaries to recruit soldiers from the minority tribes along the five streams of Wu Ling]
《Record of the Three Kingdoms: Account of the First Lord》

Sun Quan's Leo Messi
[陆逊字伯言,吴郡吴人也。本名仪,世江东大族。逊少孤,随从祖庐江太守康在官。]
《三国志:陆逊传

[Lu Xun styled Boyan, a local native of the Wu county. Originally named Yi, he was part of a famed clan in the region of Jiangdong. Orphaned since young, Xun followed his paternal relative Kang who was the Grand Administrator of Lujiang as a fellow official]
《Record of the Three Kingdoms: Account of Lu Xun》

Deployment SOP
[二年春正月,先主军还秭归,将军吴班、陈式水军屯夷陵,夹江东西岸。]
《三国志:先主传

[During the spring of the second year (of Zhang Wu), the First Lord returned to Zi Gui as generals Wu Ban, Chen Shi led the navy encampment at Yiling in order to occupy either side of Jiangdong's western river coast]
《Record of the Three Kingdoms: Account of the First Lord》


[黄武元年,刘备率大众来向西界,权命逊为大都督、假节,督朱然、潘璋、宋谦、韩当、徐盛、鲜于丹、孙桓等五万人拒之。]
《三国志:陆逊传

[During the first year of Huang Wu, Liu Bei led a great army towards the western borders. (Sun) Quan made Xun as the Grand Commander cum de-facto envoy in order to lead Zhu Ran, Pan Zhang, Song Qian, Han Dang, Xu Sheng, Xianyu Dan, Sun Huan and the rest to repel the invaders with fifty thousand men.]
《Record of the Three Kingdoms: Account of Lu Xun》

Analysis: The location of Yiling is basically just in front of the Wu region with Zi Gui wedged in between, i.e. the Shu forces actually defeated the Wu army stationed at Wu before reaching Zi Gui with Yiling at most forefront so as to speak. The moment where Sun Quan set down his holy orders to Lu Xun was during the first year of Cao Pi's reign (i.e. the Huang Chu [黄初] calender). Coincidentally (or maybe not), Liu Bei declared his own hegemony in the form of Shu Han soon after. Interestingly enough, the Huang Chu calender was preceded by the Yan Kang [延康] calender, both which were instilled during AD 220 while Liu Bei setting up shop was one year later i.e. AD221. The Zhang Wu [章武] calender was set up within the Shu Han hegemony upon everything made official. As for the first year of Huang Wu, it was during AD222. More famously known as the first year of the Battle of Xiaoting (猇亭之战), i.e. better known as the Battle of Yiling (夷陵之战). And that damned war lasted only for a year. Why? Because Sun Zi (author of that most famous Art of War logic) had always been a cynical pacifist from the heart. i.e. he's an advocate of ending wars asap because... well you know everyone tend to say that civilians are the only innocent party and they're actually the greatest majority. >.<

Shu Han's KPI: Wu Ban and Chen Shi managed to reach Yiling, but did they hit the jackpot? Yiling had always been the bulwark between the Yi Province (益州) and the Jing Province (荆州) now owned by Sun Quan only because Guan Yu was actually stupid enough to be owned by Lu Xun's Almighty-Art-Thou bluff letter during the former's beef with Cao Ren (曹仁), much better known as the Battle of Fan City (樊城之战). Total victory for Guan Yu? Yep he was man enough to execute that Pang De (庞徳) who refused to repent while Yu Jin (于禁) decided that repentance was now at hand. For whatever reasons unwritten by Chen Shou despite the history of Cao Wei being the most clear cut out of all the three sub-volumes i.e. Book of Wei (魏书) , Book of Shu (蜀书) and Book of Wu (吴书), nobody knows why a man of steel like Yu Jin could raise the white flag. Even Cao Cao's only reaction affordable was a WTF lament. (“吾知禁三十年,何意临危处难,反不如庞德邪!”).

Okay, I'm digressing here since we all know how Guan Yu managed to drown one entire big ass army due to shit outta luck climate itself (水淹七军). But what I'm trying to say is this: Is Yiling that easy to take down? Having fifty thousand guys was one thing, telling them to sit back and suck thumb being quite another. Most notably though was the fact that all the major blokes under that little upstart (who might have looked weirdly like some Korean boyband member during the most recent SM Town Live Tour III) were decorated soldiers. In particularly, Han Dang, being one of the surviving generals serving under Sun Jian (孙坚) and Sun Ce (孙策) beforehand was the default laojiao (i.e. veteran in Singlish) with Xu Sheng managing to pull off that orjiao expression (i.e. Bad-Badtz-maru's raspberry special) far later on against Cao Pi's equally, if not bigger ass army (okay not that long anyway. Soon after the conclusion of this battle that is).

Siege SOP
[二月,先主自秭归率诸将进军,缘山截岭,于夷道猇亭驻营,自佷山佷,音恒。]
《三国志:先主传


[During the second month, the First Lord led his troops from Zi Gui unto Xiaoting situated along the path of Yi(ling) with the encampments situated against the back of echoing mountains.]
《Record of the Three Kingdoms: Account of the First Lord》


[备从巫峡、建平连围至夷陵界,立数十屯...]
《三国志:陆逊传

[(Liu) Bei deployed tens of encampment linking from the Wu valley and Jianping unto the boundaries of Yiling...]
《Record of the Three Kingdoms: Account of Lu Xun》

Analysis: Everything must upgrade, upgrade lah! Therefore...

[通武陵,遣侍中马良安慰五谿蛮夷,咸相率响应。]
《三国志:先主传

[Via Wuling, (Liu Bei) sent the Grand Chamberlain Ma Liang to negotiate with the minority tribes of the five streams and they responded positively.]
《Record of the Three Kingdoms: Account of the First Lord》

Shu Han's KPI: Confirmed upgrade liao...

Sun Wu's KPI:
[当御备时,诸将军或是孙策时旧将,或公室贵戚,各自矜恃,不相听从。]
《三国志:陆逊传

[Upon defending against Liu Bei, the generals at that time were either veterans under the late Sun Ce or the nobility themselves. All full of themselves, everyone refused to obey.]
《Record of the Three Kingdoms: Account of Lu Xun》

Analysis: Grade D for Disunited

[逊案剑曰:"刘备天下知名,曹操所惮,今在境界,此强对也。诸君并荷国恩,当相辑睦,共剪此虏,上报所受,而不相顺,非所谓也。仆虽书生,受命主上。国家所以屈诸君使相承望者,以仆有尺寸可称,能忍辱负重故也。各在其事,岂复得辞! 军令有常,不可犯矣。"]
《三国志:陆逊传

[Xun gripped his sword and declared: "Liu Bei is renowned throughout, even Cao Caois wary of him. Indeed a dangerous adversary has come to our borders. All of us must be united because we've truly benefited from our country. Hence it's natural for us to cut off this enemy together to repay our gratitude and not fight against each other. Although I as a vassal am merely a scholar, yet I'm still under the orders of our lord. Why the country can bequeath such all of you under me is down to my willingness to endure shame and humility. Everyone has his own task, why make up excuses repeatedly? The military law can never be changed, hence do not challenge it."]
《Record of the Three Kingdoms: Account of Lu Xun》

Lu Xun's KPI: A+ for eloquence.

The Real SOP
[先遣吴班将数千人于平地立营,欲以挑战。诸将皆欲击之,逊曰:"此必有谲,且观之。"]
《三国志:陆逊传

[(Liu Bei) first sent Wu Ban leading a force few thousand strong in an attempt to stage a challenge. All generals desired to attack the enemy, yet Xun said: "There must be trickery hidden within. Let us continue to observe."]
《Record of the Three Kingdoms: Account of Lu Xun》

Lu Xun's KPI: Graded F. Because everybody believed their common decision should graded A+ instead.

[诸将并欲迎击备,逊以为不可,曰:“备举军东下,锐气始盛,且乘高守险,难可卒攻,攻之纵下,犹难尽克,若有不利,损我大势,非小故也。今但且奖厉将士,广施方略,以观其变。若此间是平原旷野,当恐有颠沛交驰之忧,今缘山行军,势不得展,自当罢于木石之间,徐制其弊耳。”诸将不解,以为逊畏之,各怀愤恨。]
《三国志:陆逊传

[All insisted on attacking Bei, only Xun decided against it, saying: "Bei's army morale is on the rise ever since coming down eastbound. Moreover, he has a defensive advantage upon merit of high ground, hence we cannot attack recklessly. Should we commit our forces without success, we will lose every momentum and such is no small matter. Now we must encourage and reward the soldiers and consider every strategic option in order to look out for any change in situation. Should the very terrain is that of plains and wilderness, we must be wary of any unwanted confusion upon engagement. But now that they are crossing the mountains, they won't be able to build up their momentum any more. Thus, their option to be deployed within rocky forests in order to attack us silently." The generals however did not understand, only believing Xun to be a coward, hence their respective anger.]
《Record of the Three Kingdoms: Account of Lu Xun》

Lu Xun's KPI: Still graded F. Because the only difference between the rest and the truly politically incorrect is this:

[镇北将军黄权督江北诸军,与吴军相拒于夷陵道。]
《三国志:先主传

[The General Who Guards The North, Huang Quan supervised the forces at Jiangbei to stage a standoff against the Wu army at the pathway of Yiling.]
《Record of the Three Kingdoms: Account of the First Lord》

Shu Han's KPI: Only a B. Because...

[将东伐吴,权谏曰:“吴人悍战,又水军顺流,进易退难,臣请为先驱以当寇,陛下宜为后镇。”先主不从,以权为镇北将军,督江北军以防魏师。]
三国志:黄权传》

[...upon planning to invade Eastern Wu, Quan advised: "The Wu soldiers are valorous and upon embarking downstream, it will be easy to advance but difficult to retreat. Therefore I humbly beseech my lord to entrust upon me the task of vanguard to screen the frontline while Your Majesty stay at the back." The First Lord refused as he instilled Quan as the General Who Guards The North in order to lead the Jiangbei troops against any surprise attack from the Wei army.]
《Record of the Three Kingdoms: Account of Huang Quan》

Huang Quan's KPI: Graded S for Sibehsuay.

Year end bonus lai liao lor!!!!
[备知其计不可,乃引伏兵八千,从谷中出。逊曰:"所以不听诸君击班者,揣之必有巧故也。"]
《三国志:陆逊传

[Bei knew his ploy was foiled, hence leading out from the valley eight thousand men otherwise intended as ambush troops. Xun stated: "And this is why I refused to listen to your gracious advice, for i knew there must be a reason behind."]
《Record of the Three Kingdoms: Account of Lu Xun》

Lu Xun's KPI: From D to F. Now from F confirm upgraded to B. Of course B means boleh (Malay for can/able to/possible) lah!

But firstly, a mini cross examination
["夷陵要害,国之关限,虽为易得,亦复易失。失之非徒损一郡之地,荆州可忧。今日争之,当令必谐。备干天常,不守窟穴,而敢自送。臣虽不材,凭奉威灵,以顺讨逆,破坏在近。寻备前后行军,多败少成。推此论之,不足为戚。臣初嫌之,水陆俱进,今反舍船就步,处处结营,察其布置,必无他变。伏愿至尊高枕,不以为念也。"]

["Yiling is utmost vital to the country as a pass. Although we gained it easily, we can just as easily lose it. What is truly at stake is not merely a county's land, but the entire Jing Province as well. Now we must fight for this very ground. Bei is an exceptional talent, yet he dared to commit his troops without fortifying the caves. Though I might not be talented enough, yet we can still achieve victory via going with the flow. Upon analysing Bei's army movement before and after, very little has been achieved with a far more lack in success incurred. From my judgment, everything is now unworthy of being feared. Your humble vassal was once wary upon the enemy advancing via river and land. Yet by abandoning the ships and going by foot while building multiple encampments, I know nothing has changed due to the nature of formation. I hereby beseech my lord to rest peacefully, for there is nothing to be worried about."]
- Lu Xun say one, who confirm?
X
["攻备当在初,今乃令人五六百里,相衔持经七八月,其诸要害皆以固守,击之必无利矣。"]

["We should have attacked Bei at the very beginning. Now that he had commanded his men to stand their ground five to six hundred li away with seven months or eight passed by, we won't gain anything advantage by attacking since the enemy are still defending the vital ground."]
- Longzong (Hokkien dialect for everybody) say one, all confirm!
X
["备是猾虏,更尝事多,其军始集,思虑精专,未可干也。今住己久,不得我便,兵疲意沮,计不复生,掎角此寇,正在今日。"]

["Bei is a crafty villain with vast experience. Knowing the nature of his forces together with his strategic acumen, it will be futile to do so. Now that they've stayed for long without gaining a leverage over us, morale is at a new low as his ploys can never be repeated. Now is the moment to route this enemy."]
- Lu Xun very boh-hosei (Singlish for not being on/cool) one leh! Follow the rest lah!

See who get bonus first...

[乃先攻一营,不利。诸将皆曰:"空杀兵耳。"]

[Upon failure in attacking one of the camps, the generals all said: "Indeed a waste of effort."]
- Now longzong make noise liao...

[逊曰:"吾已晓破之之术。"乃敕各持一把茅,以火攻拔之。一尔势成,通率诸军同时俱攻,斩张南、冯习及胡王沙靡柯等首,破其四十余营。备将杜路、刘宁等穷逼请降。备升马鞍山,陈兵自绕。逊督促诸军四面蹙之,土崩瓦解,死者万数。]

[Xun replied: "I now know the way to vanquish the enemy." Hence ordering every troop to hold a handful of hay in order to route them by fire. The flames swiftly gained dominance as all the forces attack at the same time. The likes of Zhang Nan, Feng Xi and the Hu lord Shamo'ke were slain as more than forty encampments were breached. The generals Du Lu, Liu Ning surrendered due to unavoidable circumstances while Liu Bei rallied the survivors and elevate them to on a defensive position atop Mount Ma'an. Xun commanded the army to induce a massive landslide where ten thousands perished as a result]


[备因夜遁,驿人自担烧铙铠断后,仅得入白帝城。其舟船器械,水步军资,一时略尽,尸骸漂流,塞江而下。备大惭恚,曰:"吾乃为逊所折辱,岂非天邪!"]

[Bei escaped throughout the night with the local sentries burning the equipment in order to prevent pursuit. Only by then did Liu Bei managed to escape into the city of Baidi. All combat resources were lost as bodies of the dead congested the river. Liu Bei was extremely ashamed, lamenting: "I was never humiliated by Heaven's jinx, but rather Xun himself!"]

Final appraisal on the KPI

Sega removed the Sangokushi Taisen 3 OST tracks from YouTube. Just like how Sony play their hand. But am I complaining? Well, here's my answer to the question: