Leisurely await the laborious
Historical Basis (Wikipedia):
Various. There is no direct elaboration on Wikipedia. This is a common tactic employed many times throughout Chinese history. Early mentions are from Sun Zi 孙子 (otherwise spelt "Sun Tze" by western countries) of the famed Sun Zi's Art of War 孙子兵法.
This is one of the most beautiful stratagems throughout all 36 stratagems. I call it beautiful because it is not difficult to use, produces a huge leveraged advantage, and is frankly just pure common sense. Why struggle through a long journey and multiple skirmishes only to wear out your army? The smarter solution would be to let the enemy struggle his way to you!
|Morale would suck-ass with cruddy boots and 20 days without a shower!|
"Sit and Wait" simply means to conserve your energy, supplies, morale, health, etc. and wait in preparation for the weary enemy to arrive. Be warned! "Sit and Wait" is no excuse to procrastinate while the enemy approaches. This stratagem will only work when adequate preparation is done during the wait.
Applied to SGS:
This stratagem is probably best used by the Ruler 主公, since he is the final objective of the bad guys. But before you sit back and have have your cup of tea while the game is on-going, here are some useful scenarios to consider:
Scenario A - You are the Ruler and you have determined that the 2 players sitting immediately on your left and right are assisting you (at least for now). There are 6 players in the game (3 Rebels 反贼 are out there).
Q: Should you employ this tactic "Sit and Wait"?
A: NO!! Heck NOO!!!
The fundamental concept behind this tactic is to wear out the enemy while you stock up. In Scenario A, the enemy will not likely be worn out because (1) they can easily get a long range weapon and strike you directly and (2) one of those adjacent to you is a Defector 内奸 and will start attacking you once the Rebels side becomes too weak and yours too strong.
How then can this tactic be successfully applied? Let's see Scenario B...
Scenario B - Same as scenario A except that your Loyalist 忠臣 is now confirmed and he is a "dismantler" like Gan Ning 甘宁 or Pang De 庞德. The game has been going on for some time now and 3/5 of the deck has been played. Most of the long range weapons have already been discarded or dismantled and you still have a +1 horse guarding you from the Defector.
As unlikely as Scenario B sounds, it actually tends to happen frequently, just that nobody really pays much attention to how many cards have been discarded! Once you have a firm idea that there are not many long range attacks that can threaten you severely, it's time to Sit and Wait!
Scenario C - You are the Ruler and all Rebels have been exterminated. There are 3 other players remaining and 1 of them is the Defector, but nobody is very sure which of the 3 is the rat.
In scenario C, it makes sense to use Sit and Wait. Recuperate any damage you might have. The Defector has an uphill battle and since killing Loyalist has no bonus, the Defector will be completely worn out even if he can kill both Loyalists. By then you would be fully equipped, full health, and ready to just crush him!
This scenario can also be applied to the Defector role with some creativity.
In one of our games, the Defector used Cao Ren 曹仁 and used the ability Entrenched 据守 every round! Nobody really wanted to attack Cao Ren since he always has a thick hand of cards. When the Loyalists was all beat up fending off the Rebels, this Defector easily swooped in and stamped out all the Loyalists, but was clever to leave 2 Rebels still standing. The Ruler suffered the same fate as the Loyalists, getting bogged down and injured clashing 1 against 2 to the Rebels. The Defector mopped up the weakened Rebels and got the extra card rewards and demolished the Ruler all within 1 turn.
Requirements for this Stratagem to work:
- Be unspectacular so as not to attract too much interest to yourself
- A strong analytical mind and foresight