What's this Lu Bu worship that I see all over the place?

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Unread postby Jordan » Fri May 05, 2006 5:49 am

I'd say that video games have way more than a 75% influence. Bump that number up to at least 85%, if not quite a bit more than that. For the record I think Lu Bu was a decent fighter historically and also a good general. I like the guy personally and feel that he may be a bit overrated but he still wasn't that bad. I disagree that he was a 'coward' and some of the other insults directed at him mentioned although especially that he was a 'coward.' I never really saw him back down from a fight unless he was absolutely beaten. If that makes him a coward though then I guess most of the characters of this time, including anybody who ever retreated from a battle, is a coward.

I never liked him just because of his behavior in his last hours, and that he really didn't represent any cause, just reckless narcissism.


In the Zizhi Tongjian by Sima Guang it says that Lu Bu wanted his soldiers to slice off his head when the situation at Xia Pi became absolutely desperate. But when they disagreed, Lu Bu went to Cao Cao to try to enter his service. Then Liu Bei had to be a jerk (note: I do not dislike Liu Bei but I do dislike how he betrayed Lu Bu here) and advise Cao Cao not to let Lu Bu live. I agree though that Lu Bu was reckless though.
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Unread postby Kong Wen » Fri May 05, 2006 5:55 am

The problem with Lu Bu was that he wasn't suited to ruling, but he thought he was (and indeed almost insisted upon it). Normally, not being suited to ruling is not that bad. Zhang Fei wasn't suited to ruling, and he was a relatively successful (and half-decent) general. Lu Bu seemed to always want to be in charge, though, and revelled in it when he was in charge (see the Ji Ling vs. Liu Bei incident).

He may or may not have been a coward. He may or may not have been a fighting machine. Liu Bei may or may not have "betrayed" him. Lu Bu may or may not have honestly intended to support the Han. The bottom line is that he was inconsistent, reckless, misguided, and lacked a uniform vision for what he wanted to accomplish.
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Unread postby Dong Zhou » Fri May 05, 2006 7:36 am

I'm a fan of Lu Bu, he was a comptent general and renowned warrior but he lacked the politcally sttability to be a ruler. The constent changing of allies doomed him but there a few moments that make him shine in my eyes

1) accepted defeat and surrendering, the whole bit that comes after that including offering his head to his servants
2) Gao Shun's reprimand to Lu Bu which was accepted but Lu Bu realised he couldn't act upon it.
3) fighting as Li Jue's men swarmed over the walls.

I just like him but not becuase he is a killing machine but the more human aspects of his career.
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Unread postby GanNing » Fri May 05, 2006 4:08 pm

Terranigma Freak wrote:
The novel portrays him as pretty tough as well, at least until he begs for his life.


He didn't just beg for his life, he backstabbed plenty of people as well. Don't forget that he begged Cao Cao's troops to treat so he can think about surrending, until Chen Gong shot an arrow at Cao Cao's hat. He also ignores good advice when it counts and a terrible leader.


Quite right on that account. Although I do think that maybe he could have surrendered had Chen Gong not shot the arrow. In any case he had no one to blame for his failure but himself.

I guess I like Lu Bu because I see potential. And with games like RTK you get to play out that potential.
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Unread postby GanNing » Fri May 05, 2006 4:10 pm

Kong Wen wrote:
GanNing wrote:
Kong Wen wrote:Video games, 100%.

I'd say 75% games 25% novel.

The novel portrays him as pretty tough as well, at least until he begs for his life.

Yeah, his semi-loyal tough-guy image in the novel is going to have something to do with people liking him, in specific instances. I was talking more about the widespread, general sentiment that "Lu Bu rawks." Without the video games, there would still be Lu Bu fans here and there, but it wouldn't be anything close to the kind of scale it's at because of DW, for example.

That's the only reason I weight the influence of the video games so highly. They take Lu Bu fandom to a whole new level.


With Dynasty Warriors I agree. My first exposure video game wise was RTK IV, so I noticed him but not much else. I actually hate his portrayal in the DW games, it makes him out to be the idiot god warrior.
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Unread postby GanNing » Fri May 05, 2006 4:20 pm

The bottom line is that he was inconsistent, reckless, misguided, and lacked a uniform vision for what he wanted to accomplish.[/quote]

I think that pretty much sums it up. I don't think he wanted to conquer the land or restore the Han or anything like that. He just wanted some territory to rule and Chen Gong just wanted to use him as a tool to destroy Cao Cao.
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Unread postby GanNing » Fri May 05, 2006 4:24 pm

Dong Zhou wrote:I'm a fan of Lu Bu, he was a comptent general and renowned warrior but he lacked the politcally sttability to be a ruler. The constent changing of allies doomed him but there a few moments that make him shine in my eyes

1) accepted defeat and surrendering, the whole bit that comes after that including offering his head to his servants
2) Gao Shun's reprimand to Lu Bu which was accepted but Lu Bu realised he couldn't act upon it.
3) fighting as Li Jue's men swarmed over the walls.

I just like him but not becuase he is a killing machine but the more human aspects of his career.


Hmm, I don't really know that much about the first 2 examples you gave. Do have some sources I could check that out at?
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Unread postby Dong Zhou » Fri May 05, 2006 4:30 pm

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Unread postby GanNing » Sat May 06, 2006 12:16 am

Dong Zhou wrote:SGZ on this site and http://www.anu.edu.au/asianstudies/decrespigny/


Thanks for showing me that. I especially liked that after a failed attempt by Yuan Shao to kill Lu Bu he locked his gates closed to protect himself.

This is a good example of how I think the books build him up. A ruler who has most if not all of the north of China under his control and he locks up his main gates to defend himself from one man.

Probably not true in real life, but it makes for good reading.
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Unread postby James » Sat May 06, 2006 1:10 am

Hmm… you know, taking a serious look at it, I think the novel has more to do with this than people are giving credit. It was, in fact, the novel that led both Capcom and Koei to turn Lü Bu into the super warrior that they portray. If we look back into history (we’re talking Asian, here), Lü Bu is also a character that people frequently keep in mind—just not to the extent that they recognized Cao Cao and Liu Bei, for example.

If one reads the entries in the novel relative to Lü Bu they will find that he is presented as a god of combat. He slaughters just about everyone he faces, and it even took Liu Bei, Guan Yu, and Zhang Fei—main characters of the novel—just to make him retreat (they couldn’t kill him). Lü Bu is a major character in the pre-Three Kingdoms portion of the novel, and he plays a major role in the struggles of major characters such as Cao Cao.

I suggest that, even the novel taken out of the picture, Lü Bu would hold a very heavy weight in terms of recognition. He would probably be classed with Guan Yu or Zhang Fei in terms of combat ability (not commander ability).

Why so much excitement? If we didn’t have games in the picture, only the sort of people who read 3,000 page novels would form a view, and I suggest they would be more interested in characters such as Cao Cao, Sima Yi, Zhou Yu, etc. Games change this. We have younger people paying attention now—the same sort that love Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, Batman, and GI Joe. What’s not to love in the badass known as Lü Bu? I know I would have loved him more when I was younger!
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