Romance of the Three Kingdoms (video game series)

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Romance of the Three Kingdoms for the Nintendo Entertainment System

Romance of the Three Kingdoms (三國志 San guo zhi?, lit. "Records of Three Empires"), or Sangokushi in Japanese, is a series of turn-based tactical role-playing simulation grand strategy wargames produced by Koei.[1][2] Originating from Japan in 1985, twelve installments of the game have been published in Japan, Taiwan, China, South Korea and North America to date. While the game's title as it was released in English refers to the historical novel Romance of the Three Kingdoms (三國演義) by Luo Guanzhong, the title as it was released in Japan and Chinese regions refers to the historical text Records of the Three Kingdoms (三國志) by Chen Shou.

Overview[edit]

The series are based on the romanticized Romance of the Three Kingdoms novel and the historical text Records of the Three Kingdoms, the storyline takes place during the Han Dynasty in China with many warring factions that included the Shu Han, Cao Wei and Eastern Wu kingdoms. Gameplay revolves around managing numerical statistics, each representing an attribute of a city or a character. A city is described by statistics such as stored grain supplies, vulnerability to disasters such as floods and earthquakes, treasury funds, domestic affairs and populace loyalty. Characters are numerically characterized by their leadership abilities, melee prowess, intellects and loyalty, as well as special traits of even magical abilities that can be called upon whether during wartime, diplomacy or domestic affairs. Players can increase these numbers before waging war on neighbouring territories or intending diplomatic efforts.

While generally presented as a turn-based strategy game, the seventh, eighth and tenth editions offer role-playing features, allowing the player to play as a rank-and-file character instead of leading a kingdom.

Several spin-offs based on the series include the tactical action video game Dynasty Warriors, Dynasty Tactics which is a hybrid of Dynasty Warriors and Romance of the Three Kingdoms, as well as the three tactical-game novels Sangokushi Eiketsuden (Liu Bei), Sangokushi Koumeiden (Zhuge Liang), and Sangokushi Sousouden (Cao Cao).

List of games in the series[edit]

The games are sorted according to platform. The release dates provided are for original Japanese releases.

Amiga

MSX

  • Romance of Three Kingdoms

MSX2

  • Romance of Three Kingdoms (different from MSX1 version)
  • Romance of Three Kingdoms II

NES

SNES

Genesis

Sega 32X

Sega Saturn

PlayStation

Dreamcast

PlayStation 2

PlayStation 3

PlayStation Portable

PlayStation Vita

PC

Wii

Wii U

Game Boy

  • Sangokushi (1992)

Game Boy Color

Game Boy Advance

WonderSwan

DS

3DS

Mobile phones

  • Sangokushi
  • Sangokushi 2
  • Sangokushi Mobile
  • Sangokushi Mobile 2
  • Sangokushi Mobile 3

iOS

  • Romance of the Three Kingdom Touch (2009)
  • Romance of the Three Kingdom 2 (2010)
  • Dynasty Kingdoms (2013)

Reception[edit]

Several years after its Japanese release, Sangokushi received positive critical reception in North America when it was released there in 1988. In Computer Gaming World, the game was reviewed by Dungeons & Dragons creator Dave Arneson, who wrote that it is "a great historical simulation and will keep players at their keyboards for many a night in order to win their empires. It has economics, intrigue, bribery, covert action, diplomacy, war, and more! There are many ways beyond simple conquest to accomplish one's goals." He concluded: "I most heartily recommend Romance to all serious game players out there."[3]

In December 1989, Computer Gaming World readers gave it an average rating of 8.96 out of 10, making it the magazine's 13th highest user-rated game at the time.[4] In 1990 and 1993 surveys of historical strategy and war games, the magazine gave Romance of the Three Kingdoms three-plus stars out of five.[5][6]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Romance of the Three Kingdoms, Encyclopædia Britannica
  2. ^ "Romance of the Three Kingdoms". Legendra. Retrieved 2011-03-01. 
  3. ^ Dave Arneson (September 1988). "Romance of the Three Kingdoms". Computer Gaming World (51): 12–3, 31, 34{{inconsistent citations}} 
  4. ^ Ardai, Charles (December 1989). "The Top Ten Games". Computer Gaming World. p. 52. Retrieved 29 October 2014. 
  5. ^ Brooks, M. Evan (October 1990). "Computer Strategy and Wargames: Pre-20th Century". Computer Gaming World. p. 11. Retrieved 16 November 2013. 
  6. ^ Brooks, M. Evan (1993-06). "An Annotated Listing of Pre-20th Century Wargames". Computer Gaming World. p. 136. Retrieved 7 July 2014.  Check date values in: |date= (help)

External links[edit]