Help me to like Sun Ce

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Re: Help me to like Sun Ce

Unread postby Dong Zhou » Sun Jun 21, 2015 11:41 am

The latter year talent drain would be awhile after Liu Bei's death.

I agree with LiuBeiwasGreat in that Liu Bei, would also add Liu Biao, were the warlords that rose from the worst positions.

What I would add with Sun Ce is that, aside from the general "warlords have to be a bit of a git" thing, Sun Ce does usually seem a nice man. As long as he doesn't feel insecure
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Re: Help me to like Sun Ce

Unread postby Jolt » Sun Jun 21, 2015 4:46 pm

I disagree in both cases.

Liu Bei had multiple attempts at trying to consolidate his domain, and failed multiple times, constantly having to run and switch sides, before his success, which owed in large part due to the concessions of Sun Quan, which in turn allowed him to amass enough of a force to have a successful conquest of Yi.

Liu Biao had been nominated by Dong Zhuo/Han authorities as Inspector of Jing, which, since the region wasn't quite up in rebellion, he had as much formal authority from the start as he could get. True, he came to the region with few connections that we know of, and can certain qualify as someone who carved out a domain from nothing.

Yuan Shao might have had the gentry on his side, but theoretical support isn't very helpful when you're returning to your appointed commandery with (As far as we know) few troops and no supplies whatsoever, and need to cross through an ambivalent Provincial Governor, nominated by Dong Zhuo.

Sun Ce had a paltry force, and was standing up to much superior odds.

The same happened to Yuan Shao against Han Fu.
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Re: Help me to like Sun Ce

Unread postby LiuBeiwasGreat » Sun Jun 21, 2015 7:56 pm

Jolt wrote:I disagree in both cases.

Liu Bei had multiple attempts at trying to consolidate his domain, and failed multiple times, constantly having to run and switch sides, before his success, which owed in large part due to the concessions of Sun Quan, which in turn allowed him to amass enough of a force to have a successful conquest of Yi.

Liu Biao had been nominated by Dong Zhuo/Han authorities as Inspector of Jing, which, since the region wasn't quite up in rebellion, he had as much formal authority from the start as he could get. True, he came to the region with few connections that we know of, and can certain qualify as someone who carved out a domain from nothing.

Yuan Shao might have had the gentry on his side, but theoretical support isn't very helpful when you're returning to your appointed commandery with (As far as we know) few troops and no supplies whatsoever, and need to cross through an ambivalent Provincial Governor, nominated by Dong Zhuo.

Sun Ce had a paltry force, and was standing up to much superior odds.

The same happened to Yuan Shao against Han Fu.


The main part I will disagree with you is that Sun Ce never had to face the same quality of opponents that Liu Bei did. Liu Bei faced off against Yuan Shao, Cao Cao, Lu Bu, and Yuan Shu. Yes he lost many of the battles against these opponents however he usually at a disadvantage when it came to numbers, and officer quality. At the same time Liu Bei won battles against Yuan Shao's forces, he defeated Cao Cao's officers several times (usually at a numerical disadvantage)
At the same time Sun Ce won the majority of his battles, he started out with a small amount of veteran officers and soldiers. He faced off against opponents who while some had more soldiers then him were nothing in comparison to the quality of opponents that Liu Bei faced. Liu Yao, Wang Ling, etc were far weaker then any of the opponents that Liu Bei faced.

While we cannot truly predict how some warlords would have fared if they switched places, I cannot imagine Liu Bei failing to conquer the south against the same opponents that Sun Ce faced, and I don't think that Sun Ce would have fared much better against the opponents that Liu Bei faced if they switched places.
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Re: Help me to like Sun Ce

Unread postby Zyzyfer » Mon Jun 22, 2015 7:50 am

Bassaga wrote:I like the whole Sun family. I even like the whole Wu roster of heroes. Well, almost. Zhou Yu depresses me, but I can still enjoy him.

But man, Sun Ce. From what I remember in the book, he marries a hot girl, fights good, beats a guy to death for nothing, and dies. In the games he's super cocky. I guess his 2010 show portrayal doesn't irk me, but besides that, he always rubs me the wrong way. I want to like him, but it's just never worked.

What can you share that would endear that rascal Bofu to me?


I, too, used to find him very overrated, mainly because the novel paints him as being very brash (particularly the Yu Ji/Gan Ji part), and because he was never tested against some of the more famous leaders of the period. Plus, there's the topic that occasionally comes up on here of whether the army that Chen Deng repelled was personally led by Sun Ce or not, and what that would mean for his ability as a commander. Lastly, it goes without saying that Wu in general is treated like a third wheel on a bicycle in the novel; they are just kind of there, creating bothersome situations that Wei and Shu are forced to contend with.

But reading Generals of the South went a long way to changing my opinion of him. I highly suggest giving it a read when you have some free time if you want to cultivate your view of the kingdom of Wu as a whole.

My main takeaways after reading it were:

- He is extremely charismatic, and amazing at surrounding himself with men of talent. Although the novel gives him a reputation of being something like a murderous psychopath of sorts, he was actually a pretty forgiving dude. Hua Xin is stuck in my mind for some reason, although I might have him mixed up with something else. Anyway, I got this "hometown hero returns to unanimous cheers" vibe from him, he really comes across as magnetic and magnanimous based on de Crespigny's observations.

- He really did basically gather an army from scratch. While he had several of his father's former commanders potentially at his behest, it's not like Yuan Shu gave him a proper army to go down and deal with the guys in Yang. GotS - I think literally - says that, everywhere he went, people flocked to him and joined his cause.

Whatever else can be observed about Sun Ce, those are two clear signs of a true leader destined to be a big mover and shaker.
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Re: Help me to like Sun Ce

Unread postby DragonAtma » Mon Jun 22, 2015 8:25 am

Sun Ce faced one major opponent, Taishi Ci. IIRC, some sources have Taishi Ci basically doing the same thing Sun Ce did (and becoming a credible threat); the only reason Taishi Ci lost is that Taishi Ci started later than Sun Ce and, therefore, had a weaker force.
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Help me to like Sun Ce

Unread postby Sun Fin » Mon Jun 22, 2015 10:59 am

Also Sun Ce trusted people. Look at the way he treated Taishi Ci. They'd been at war and even fought one of those elusive duel thingies. Once Ce won and captured him Taishi Ci offered to go and recruit the bandits to fight for Sun Ce. Sun Ce agreed and sent him off despite all of this advisers saying he was crazy to trust someone who he had been fighting against so recently. Well Taishi Ci came back and Sun Ce was proven right showing that he had great judgement and an ability to trust.

Despite being the biggest Ce fan on this board (I doubt anyone will contest that :lol: ) I do need to draw out his weakness which Dong has alluded to. Sun Ce seems fairly insecure. Against other military and political leaders which were areas he knew he excelled in he found it easy to trust (ie Taishi Ci, Sun Ben etc) but in fields where he was less confident in his own ability he seems to have been having his authority undermined. The most famous example is Yu Ji who was a religious leader but there was also a scholar whose name I've forgotten who Sun Ce fell out with.

Ultimately though Sun Ce wasn't perfect but he is without a doubt the warlord I'd have wanted to have followed from the era for all the reasons the others have picked up on.

Now for the point everyone else has ignored... How can you dislike Zhou Yu? And if you wanna pick someone to dislike from Wu either go for the cruel and murderous pirate Gan Ning or Sun Quan who had Lu Xun executed as well as ordering a massacre.
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Re: Help me to like Sun Ce

Unread postby Dong Zhou » Mon Jun 22, 2015 12:42 pm

Quan wrestled hand to hand with tigers and burnt down the door of his main adviser, the man was the living definition of epic :wink:

Why does Zhou Yu depress you Bassaga?
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Re: Help me to like Sun Ce

Unread postby DragonAtma » Mon Jun 22, 2015 12:53 pm

...if you want to dislike someone from Wu, I recommend Cen Hun and Sun Hao. >_>

Lu Yi would be up there too (he doesn't seem to have a KMA entry, although Lu Dai's bio mentions him).
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Re: Help me to like Sun Ce

Unread postby LiuBeiwasGreat » Mon Jun 22, 2015 1:58 pm

Dong Zhou wrote:Quan wrestled hand to hand with tigers and burnt down the door of his main adviser, the man was the living definition of epic :wink:

Why does Zhou Yu depress you Bassaga?


Didn't a poster long ago show that Sun Quan fought tigers while sealed up in a iron cage and with a spear? :P

Hey, I may criticize both Sun Ce and Sun Quan but I will never deny that both men had tons of talent and proved themselves many times over that they were worthy of their fame.
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Re: Help me to like Sun Ce

Unread postby Zyzyfer » Wed Jun 24, 2015 1:19 am

LiuBeiwasGreat wrote:Didn't a poster long ago show that Sun Quan fought tigers while sealed up in a iron cage and with a spear? :P


Actually it was space tigers, in orbit around the sun, and Sun Quan was equipped with a mere toothpick.

Sun Fin wrote:Now for the point everyone else has ignored... How can you dislike Zhou Yu? And if you wanna pick someone to dislike from Wu either go for the cruel and murderous pirate Gan Ning or Sun Quan who had Lu Xun executed as well as ordering a massacre.


Not that this was directed at me. But actually, I kind of liked Zhou Yu more before I learned about what he was like historically. At least novel Zhou Yu, flaws and all, was kind of exciting in a way. The historical guy was just too much of a goody-two-shoes, plus it seems like key bits of his novel prowess (in the absence of Zhuge Liang, anyway) was siphoned off of Lu Fan and Huang Gai.

Considering how Wu has a tendency to have the most...interesting...characters out of the three kingdoms, Zhou Yu not being a raging jealousy-monster actually brought him down a bit in terms of fun. :twisted:
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