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Saturday, October 29, 2011

Mǎ Chāo 马超

Posted by Ricky Chua On 9:31 AM No comments
What's with the cartoon?
Ma Chao's use of horses is legendary, thus it is fitting that they place him atop a couple of horsies. His Roman-looking helmet comes from his original portrait in SanGuoSha.

Who is he:
The valiant general known for his horsemanship and combat ability, Ma Chao is one of Shu Han 蜀汉's 5 greatest generals. Typically depicted riding a horse, he initially led rebellions against Cao Cao 曹操 before eventually finding his place under Liu Bei 刘备. Ma Chao was highly regarded by Zhu Ge Liang 诸葛亮 as an all-rounded civil and military leader.

Character ability 1: "Horsemanship 马术 (mǎ shù)" [Enforced ability]
Ma Chao will always be -1 distance in any range calculations. This means that when he equips a "-1 horse", he will have a physical distance advantage totaling -2.

Character ability 2: "Iron Calvary 铁骑 (tiě jì)"
Whenever Ma Chao uses ATTACK 杀 on any target player, he can choose to flip over one judgement card from the deck. If the judgement card is of a red-suit (hearts and diamonds), the ATTACK cannot be evaded with DODGE 闪.

Ability's relation to story:
His "Horsemanship" ability is a given. Both him and Pang De 庞德 are known for their skilled horsemanship from the moment they appeared in the story. "Iron Calvary", however, is probably just an added skill by the game makers so as to tackle the "dodgy" characters, such as Zhang Jiao 张角 and Zhen Ji 甄姬.

Additional info based on story:
1. Most famous achievement - Probably the uprising he led against Cao Cao, where he very nearly captured Cao Cao alive. Cao Cao retaliated by executing over 100 of Ma Chao's family and extended family members. Though the uprising gave him prominence and respect from the kingdom of Shu Han, the death of hundreds of his family members due to his uprising would haunt him and disgrace him. It even led to an aborted marriage.

2. Cause of death - Ma Chao succumbed to illness and died. In the story version, Liu Bei dies before Ma Chao, however it seems the actual historical version of events was Ma Chao died earlier and even wrote a parting letter to Liu Bei.


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