The "What If" Thread

Join the Romance of the Three Kingdoms discussion with our resident Scholars. Topics relating to the novel and history are both welcome. Don't forget to check the Forum Rules before posting.
Kongming’s Archives: Romance of the Three Kingdoms
Three Kingdoms Officer Biographies
Three Kingdoms Officer Encyclopedia
Scholars of Shen Zhou Search Tool

Re: The "What If" Thread

Unread postby waywardauthor » Wed Jul 26, 2017 3:33 am

PeanutButterToast wrote:Ok, so Liu Bei dies, Zhuge Liang swears he will serve Liu Shan loyally, and Liu Feng is already dead right? So what if Liu Shan died in an accident or something after his ascension? He was 16 at the time, wasn't he?

Liu Shan has two younger brothers, so Yong or Li takes over if Shan hasn't had a son yet. It is unlikely that anyone would usurp the children of Liu Bei.
Alone I lean under the wispy shade of an aged tree,
Scornfully I raise to parted lips a cup of warm wine,
Longingly I cast an empty vessel aside those exposed roots,
And leave behind forgotten memories and forsaken dreams.
User avatar
waywardauthor
Scholar
 
Posts: 333
Joined: Sat Feb 06, 2016 11:27 am

Re: The "What If" Thread

Unread postby DragonAtma » Wed Jul 26, 2017 3:40 am

Then his younger brother Liu Yong takes over. Liu Yong is hit by a bizarrely timed meteor? Then their younger brother Liu Li takes over. Liu Li trips and falls off a cliff? Then I assume Liu Lin, son of Liu Feng takes over.

Really, while the novel only shows two people, by 220 there were more.
Unless I specifically say otherwise, assume I am talking about historical Three Kingdoms, and not the novel.

In memory of my beloved cats, Anastasia (9/30/06-9/18/17, illness) and Josephine (1/19/06-9/23/17, cancer).
DragonAtma
Scholar of Shen Zhou
 
Posts: 1032
Joined: Wed Aug 15, 2012 2:19 pm
Location: Long Island, NY

Re: The "What If" Thread

Unread postby Lord_Cao_Cao » Mon Dec 18, 2017 5:39 pm

Time to revive this topic.

What if Liu Bei was the unfortunate general to die at Yan ford instead of Wen Chou? What would probably happen to his former officer core?
User avatar
Lord_Cao_Cao
Scholar of Shen Zhou
 
Posts: 1358
Joined: Sun Mar 21, 2010 9:14 am
Location: Germany

Re: The "What If" Thread

Unread postby Sun Fin » Mon Dec 18, 2017 6:01 pm

They'll probably get sucked in to Yuan Shao's force. As competent as Zhang Fei and Zhao Yun were to later prove themselves to be I don't see them being able to save Shao's force. However If Cao Cao is still desperate to recruit Guan Yu they may be spared in an attempt to win him over. So my guess is that they'll eventually end up serving Cao Cao.
Have a question about a book or academic article before you buy it? Maybe I have it!
Check out my library here for a list of Chinese history resources I have on hand!
User avatar
Sun Fin
Librarian of Shen Zhou
 
Posts: 7665
Joined: Sat Nov 10, 2007 9:20 pm
Location: Vicar Factory

Re: The "What If" Thread

Unread postby VinnyYooo » Fri Dec 22, 2017 1:08 am

Sun Fin wrote:They'll probably get sucked in to Yuan Shao's force. As competent as Zhang Fei and Zhao Yun were to later prove themselves to be I don't see them being able to save Shao's force. However If Cao Cao is still desperate to recruit Guan Yu they may be spared in an attempt to win him over. So my guess is that they'll eventually end up serving Cao Cao.


I think that's a fair assumption. But Zhang Fei and Zhao Yun will be a considerable addition to Yuan Shao's force (at least Zhao Yun from a leadership point). So I don't know if he will be so easily wiped out by Cao Cao. You're right, Guan Yu is likely to stay with Cao Cao. I think he'd get along with Xun Yu and other Han loyalists in Cao's camp.
VinnyYooo
Tyro
 
Posts: 15
Joined: Wed Dec 20, 2017 1:55 pm

Re: The "What If" Thread

Unread postby DragonAtma » Fri Dec 22, 2017 2:05 am

I disagree with their presence helping Yuan Shao for two reasons:

(1) Yuan Shao's main battle against Cao Cao -- the battle of Guandu -- he lost because he was unwilling to listen to advice. If he had Zhang Fei and Zhao Yun, it'd just mean two more people that he ignored and, possible, two more people scapegoated and forced to switch to Cao Cao's side.
(2) Yuan Shao's force's collapse was from the split between Yuan Shang and Yuan Tan -- and, again, neither Zhang Fei nor Zhao Yun would affect Yuan Shao's poor decision. It could lead to Liu Bei's force outright being split in two (some supporting Yuan Tan and others supporting Yuan Shang), and again, it could lead to them really joining Cao Cao (as Lu Xiang and Lu Kuang did) when Yuan Tan fake-joined him.
Unless I specifically say otherwise, assume I am talking about historical Three Kingdoms, and not the novel.

In memory of my beloved cats, Anastasia (9/30/06-9/18/17, illness) and Josephine (1/19/06-9/23/17, cancer).
DragonAtma
Scholar of Shen Zhou
 
Posts: 1032
Joined: Wed Aug 15, 2012 2:19 pm
Location: Long Island, NY

Re: The "What If" Thread

Unread postby VinnyYooo » Fri Dec 22, 2017 7:49 am

I dunno, I'm somewhat skeptical with the view that Yuan Shao was simply a bad leader all around. You've got to have some extraordinary skill to pacify Northern China, defeat Gongsun Zan and unite 18 high-ranking noblemen to push Dong Zhuo out of Luoyang (obv not in that order). This would involve some degree of effective people management. Also, we're talking about the same guy that would've saved He Jin from demise (had he been listened to). Sure the decision to fight Cao Cao at Guandu ended in disaster, but at the beginning, it could've gone either way - and Guo Tu had good reasonings for believing he could've wiped Cao Cao out. I think there's a chance that Zhang Fei and Zhao Yun could've been used effectively by Yuan Shao.

Yes, I agree picking a woosy pretty boy over his 1st born was a bad decision (and of course, Shao made some very bad decisions - I'm not denying this). But not even the most brilliant men were immune to making bad decisions on succession. Remember Cao Cao initially favoured Zhi over Pi (and don't forget Chong); and Sun Quan screwed over his kingdom over succession too. So the succession thing is neither here nor there and isn't necessarily indicative of his decision making competence.

In any case Shao was well and truly over after Guandu - the succession thing was just the final nail on the coffin. Shao had nothing on Yuan Shu when it comes to bouncing back after defeat. Shao wouldn't have died so early had he not lost then. Using Zhao Yun and Zhang Fei effectively could've prevented this.
VinnyYooo
Tyro
 
Posts: 15
Joined: Wed Dec 20, 2017 1:55 pm

Re: The "What If" Thread

Unread postby Sun Fin » Fri Dec 22, 2017 8:32 am

I agree Yuan Shao had shown a degree of competence up until this moment.

His advice to He Jin had largely been solid although it was his idea to invite the generals from the border - ie Dong Zhuo. As for leading the coalition, he was put in that role due to his family name, other than the Imperial line the Yuan's were probably the most prestigious family in the land. Then that coalition just sat still other than Sun Jian who single-handedly scared Dong Zhuo out of Luoyang. Cao Cao also attempted to go to battle and was crushed. Yuan Shao's campaign against Gongsun Zan/Han Fu, the man who was in theory his boss, was impressive.

Anyway we tend to think that Yuan Shao was going senile by the time of Guan Du. His decision making just went down the pan after fighting Gongsun Zan but before Cao Cao. He had some good advisers who made decent suggestions but he utterly ignored them so I don't see what another few generals would achieve. Although at this point Zhang Fei and Zhao Yun were likely Colonel's or majors rather than generals.
Last edited by Sun Fin on Fri Dec 22, 2017 4:55 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Have a question about a book or academic article before you buy it? Maybe I have it!
Check out my library here for a list of Chinese history resources I have on hand!
User avatar
Sun Fin
Librarian of Shen Zhou
 
Posts: 7665
Joined: Sat Nov 10, 2007 9:20 pm
Location: Vicar Factory

Re: The "What If" Thread

Unread postby Dong Zhou » Fri Dec 22, 2017 10:37 am

Welcome to the forum VinnyYooo

I think you are overselling Yuan Shao's achievement as Sun Fin says and I don't think most here would say Yuan Shao was a bad leaders. Guan Du doesn't nesccerally mean Yuan Shao was incompetent but Yuan Shao was "merely" an able warlord, one with considerable skill but also big flaws throughout his career, vs probably the best 3kingdom warlord. Against the very best, being good is not always enough, there is debate on who actually was the bigger power going into Guan Du and possibly Yuan Shao was going into decline. Certainly by Guan Du, Yuan Shao's people management had gone badly wrong (loss of his best general Qu Yi, infighting leading to demoting his best adviser, constant infighting during the camapign, the succession mess up) around that time.

Of the issues that plagued Yuan Shao, I don't see Zhang Fei and Zhao Yun (who would have been fairly low rank at this point) making the difference.
User avatar
Dong Zhou
A-Dou
A-Dou
 
Posts: 16778
Joined: Sun Apr 10, 2005 12:32 pm
Location: "Now we must die. May Your Majesty maintain yourself"

Re: The "What If" Thread

Unread postby VinnyYooo » Fri Dec 22, 2017 1:29 pm

Yuh - I think that's probably a fair assessment. I think how he's depicted tends to highlight his flaws more so than his abilities, which isn't fair. This is maybe because of the very high expectations people had on him at the beginning of the period - because of his name and family background. I'm also a bit skeptical about the way that Yuan Shu is portrayed, which tends to be a bit two-dimensional.

Anyway, I forgot to take into account Zhang Fei and Zhao Yun's ranks. Ok, I guess they wouldn't have been quite as useful without Liu Bei being there. Well, unless they lop the heads off Cao's valuable generals in a duel or two.
VinnyYooo
Tyro
 
Posts: 15
Joined: Wed Dec 20, 2017 1:55 pm

PreviousNext

Return to Sanguo Yanyi Symposium

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 3 guests

Copyright © 2002–2008 Kongming’s Archives. All Rights Reserved