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Wednesday, March 6, 2013

Sūn Jiān 孙坚

Posted by Ricky Chua On 1:52 PM 4 comments
Translated description:
"Emperor of Vigorous Combat 武烈帝 (wǔ liè dì)"

Wikipedia link: Sun Jian Wiki

Who is he:
Best known as the father of Sun Ce 孙策, Sun Quan 孙权 and Sun Shang Xiang 孙尚香, Sun Jian was one of the warlords who took part in the early coalition against Dong Zhuo 董卓. In fact, Dong Zhuo and Sun Jian were bitter enemies even before Dong Zhuo took control of the imperial family. One significant event in the life of Sun Jian was finding the imperial seal in a well in the palace ruins at Luo Yang 洛阳. Sun Jian wanted to keep the seal for himself and, thus, control huge power within his grasps. Unfortunately for him, he was betrayed and Yuan Shao 袁绍, then the leader of the coalition, confronted Sun Jian. Sun Jian vehemently denied having the seal, but Yuan Shao was convinced he was lying. Yuan Shao sent Liu Biao 刘表 to intercept Sun Jian, and it was under Liu Biao that Sun Jian's life met an abrupt end.

Character ability: "Lingering Spirit 英魂 (yīng hún)"
In the beginning of every turn, you can carry out either of the options listed below if you are not at maximum health (X represents the number of units of health you have lost thus far). Pick one other player to carry out one of the following options:

1. Draw X cards, then discard 1 card.

2. Draw 1 card, then discard X cards.

Limited to one use per turn.

Ability's relation to story:
The name "Lingering Spirit" should not be taken literally, but instead metaphorically describes Sun Jian's contribution to destroying Dong Zhuo. Being the first in the coalition of 18 warlords to attack Dong Zhuo, Sun Jian almost lost his life to Hua Xiong 华雄, but his initial strike was enough to cower Dong Zhuo and dampen his army's morale. Even after Sun Jian's death, the lessons learnt in his early attacks against Dong Zhuo served Dong Zhuo's enemies well. Thus there is a link to the ability with Sun Jian suffering damage first, yet able to leverage on that to assist his team mates or disconcert his opponents.

Additional info based on story:
1. Most famous achievement - Giving the incompetent Yuan Shu 袁术 a piece of his mind. Yuan Shu knew that Sun Jian was to accomplish big things after the coalition disbanded, and thus sought to suppress him by denying him of supplies (Yuan Shu controlled the logistics of the coalition). Sun Jian told Yuan Shu that he spearheaded the coalition's attack not only to remove Dong Zhuo but also to avenge the Yuan family, and yet Yuan Shu chose not to aid him. Yuan Shu was deeply shamed after this "scolding" and promptly resumed supplies to Sun Jian.

2. Cause of death - Killed in an ambush by Huang Zu 黄祖. After Liu Biao intercepted Sun Jian, Sun Jian managed to fend off Liu Biao and his general, Huang Zu. As Huang Zu retreated, Sun Jian gave chase but fell victim to an ambush where arrows shot out from all directions. Sun Jian was caught in the line of fire and died under fatal arrow wounds at the age of 36. When Sun Quan established the Kingdom of Sun Wu 孙吴, Sun Jian was posthumously given the title of "Emperor of Vigorous Combat".

FAQ and Disambiguation

1. How is the second option useful?

Ans: For the second, if he's at 1 health, he could force someone to draw a card and then discard three. It could potentially be very good to temporarily stop harassment or to set up for someone with an Ancient Scimitar or for offensive card characters like Zhang Fei or Huang Zhong.

2. Does Sun Jian ability activate at the start of every player's turn? Or only his turn?

Ans: It is only activated at the start of Sun Jian's turn.

3. If the target player does not have enough on-hand cards to discard ( less than X after drawing 1 card) , must this player also discard his equipment cards(if any)?

Ans: Yes the person will be forced to discard equipped cards if there are no  more on-hand cards.

4. What if the targeted player has not enough cards (both on hand and equipped) to discard after draw one card ,(eg he has zero on hand and equipped card) ?

Ans: When the player has zero cards left , nothing further happens. Eg, the player only has 1 card . Sun Jian forces player to draw 1 ,discard 3 .The player draws 1 from the deck, then discard the 2 cards he now has to become zero. Though he needs to discard 1more , he does not need to owe that 1 card.

5. Can Sun Jian use his abilities on himself?

Ans: No it must be used on another player.


  1. If, for example, Sun Shang Xiang with many hand cards gets to draw 3 and discard 1, can she choose to discard her equipment instead of her hand cards?

    1. yes she can, therefore she can draw 2 extra cards by activate warrior lady

  2. Can someone make use of this ability to discard cards in their judgement zone?

  3. Yes, she can discard equipment too.
    No, he can't discard Ration Depleted or Acedia.


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