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Saturday, November 19, 2011

Zhēn Jī 甄姬

Posted by Ricky Chua On 3:09 PM No comments
What's with the cartoon?
Just a cuter version of the thigh-revealing peakaboo that was the original portrait.

Who is she:
An extremely beautiful woman with smarts and capability, Zhen Ji was Cao Pi 曹丕's first wife. The word 姬 is a title for "lady". Thus her real name is not Zhen Ji, but rather Zhen Luo 甄洛. Her life was a down-hill rollercoaster of misfortune and victimization. She lost her father at the age of 2, was married to Yuan Shao 袁绍's son Yuan Xi 袁熙, but was forcefully remarried to Cao Pi after he became obsessed with her beauty. After giving birth to Cao Rui 曹睿, she fell out of favor with Cao Pi due to rumours and bad-mouthing from his concubine, Guo Nu Wang 郭女王. Zhen Ji never did manage to win back Cao Pi's favor. Instead, the bad-mouthing from Guo Nu Wang became worse. Zhen Ji paid the ultimate price when Cao Pi, poisoned by Guo Nu Wang's words, forced Zhen Ji to commit suicide.

Character ability 1: "Impetus for War 倾国 (qīng guó)"
Every on-hand card that is a "club" or a "spade" suit can be used as DODGE 闪 at any time.

Character ability 2: "Goddess Luo 洛神 (luò shén)"
At the beginning of the turn (before judgement phase for any time-delay tool cards), Zhen Ji can choose to flip a judgement card. If the judgement card is a black-suited card ("clubs" or "spades"), she can keep the card as an on-hand card and she can continue to flip over another judgement card. Once the judgement card is red-suited card, the ability ends and she cannot keep that red-suited card.

Important note: This ability takes precedence BEFORE the judgement of time-delay tool cards (such as LIGHTNING).

It is perfectly possible for Zhen Ji to amass over 10 cards in a row using this ability, provided it is a string of consecutive black-suited cards. It is also perfectly possible to amass none at all if the very first card is red-suited.

Note that after the ability ends, Zhen Ji can still draw 2 more cards from the deck as per normal. (Yes she will have a shit load of cards if she's lucky!)


Ability's relation to story:
"Impetus to war" is not linked to the story. Though we know that Cao Pi peeled her from Yuan Xi, she was not the reason Cao Cao destroyed Yuan Shao and family. This ability is probably centered around game mechanics than history. "Goddess Luo" stems from a poem written by Cao Zhi 曹植, Cao Pi's brother, known as "Goddess of the Luo River 洛水之神", apparently praising the goddess for her ethereal beauty, intelligence and capability. It is rumoured that Cao Zhi had an affair with Zhen Ji.

Additional info based on story:
1. Most famous achievement - Giving birth to the man who would become Emperor of Wei, Cao Rui. This became the sore point that eventually led to her death, because Guo Nu Wang poisoned Cao Pi into believing that Cao Rui is not his child but Yuan Xi's.

2. Cause of death - Suicide... but more likely forced than willing. The exact method of death is unclear, but one story goes that Cao Pi personally handed her a glass of poison to drink. Zhen Ji knows full well what it means, so after drinking but before the poison takes effect, she cleans the glass. This is so as to protect Cao Pi's reputation, since for an emperor to murder his own wife is detrimental to his reign.

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