Total War Three Kingdoms Heroes Guide


Total War: Three Kingdoms has hundreds of heroes in the game. Many of these, however, are your generic, non-historical additions. However, there’s still quite a number of actual historical officers who lived and ruled at the time. Heroes that die in Total War: Three Kingdoms are gone for good.

Heroes with a golden nameplate are considered legendary. They have slightly better stats, and they may even offer more perks when assigned to positions. The most important factor though would be resiliency. Legendary heroes can suffer more “wounds” before they’re outright killed.

Heroes also have a “satisfaction” mechanic. Basically, it’s their loyalty to you. Satisfaction may increase or decrease because of random events, length of time spent together in the same location or army, the need for higher positions in your government, or hero traits. For instance, if there’s a big red “X” mark for two people in the same city or army, it means they’re not getting along well. This can lead to dissatisfaction for both.

Hero Classes Or Archetypes

As mentioned, the philosophy of Wu Xing plays a major role, as the elements and color-coding are present:

Commanders (earth/yellow) provide decent bonuses to melee cavalry, faction opinion, and peasant income via the focus on the Authority stat (hero satisfaction and unit morale).

Vanguards (fire/red) focus on shock cavalry, for the most part, speed, and blitzing through enemy lines. They also focus more on the Instinct stat (melee damage and recruitment cost discounts).

Champions (wood/green) are your duelists who can be very tough to beat in straight up fights, with boosts to spearmen and food production. They focus on the Resolve stat (health increase and population growth).

Sentinels (metal/grey) are front-liners who can take loads of damage while playing defensively. They focus on swordsmen and shielded infantry, industry boosts, and the Expertise stat (construction cost discounts and melee evasion).

Strategists (water/blue) are tactical geniuses who handle commerce/trade assignments, with a knack for boosting archer units and siege weapons. Strategists should have a high Cunning stat (ammunition increase and military supplies).

Each hero class in Romance Mode will have unique skills. For instance, Commanders can use a buff that blocks arrows, Vanguards have an AoE smite attack, and Strategists can improve (or debuff) ability cooldowns.

How to Increase Hero Rank

As your heroes gain experience, they will gain levels that earn you points to invest in certain skills. When a hero has leveled up, you will be able to see an up arrow in the bottom left of their hero portraits.

Right click on the hero which will bring up the Hero panel. Now click the Skills tab where you can unlock a skill that will give your hero certain skills or abilities. Applying Skills to the hero will increase their rank.

Each skill will have a color that corresponds to one of the attributes from the list above. These Skills are important as they give your heroes special abilities to use in battle or to increase their performance on the campaign map.

Best Skills for Heroes

As you gain levels, you will want to make sure you are selecting skills that will best suit your hero. Every hero in the game can have skills that increase their abilities. You can choose each skill before you apply, and read their details when you hover over a skill.

Skills trees differ according to a hero’s class, granting them bonuses and new abilities related to their role and function in campaign and battle. There are also skills which grant improvements to attributes other than their key attribute, so the player has a choice in shaping their development and abilities and broadening their effectiveness outside their core class role.

Skills may grant new passive or active abilities in battle, enhance a hero’s attributes, bring bonuses to specific unit types in their retinue or army, or improve aspects of their campaign presence. You can mouse over each skill in their skills tree to scrutinize its effects before choosing where to spend a hero’s skill points.

For example, if you have a Sentinel hero, he will have an emphasis on Expertise. If your hero is a Legendary hero, it will have attributes that play into his grander part in the Romance of the Three Kingdoms.

Legendary heroes gain experience at a faster rate than normal heroes. Reaching 100 in any attribute can turn a normal hero into a Legendary hero

Every hero will gain the primary attribute of their class, plus secondary or even tertiary attribute depending on their background. Each attribute will affect a military benefit and a campaign benefit.

It’s best to keep in mind that all attributes help out any hero despite their class or background. If you are having trouble with the satisfaction of a Vanguard hero, increasing their authority can help you in this matter. Or if you have a Champion that has a lot of archers in their retinue, then Cunning skill will aid by increasing their ammunition reserves.

Hero Relationships

As heroes become embroiled in the same events, or hold positions in close-proximity working environments such as armies, your court, or the administrational office of a commandery, they can develop positive or negative relationships with one another. These relationships can influence their satisfaction and performance in battle. You can view a hero’s relationships under the relations tab in the hero panel.

Any of your heroes can form a relationship with another hero, and these can form when localized events happen involving them both.  There are many events that are varied from battle outcomes, duel outcomes, even interruptions, diplomatic acts between your faction leaders, appoint or recall from an administrational or ministerial role, etc.

Once a relationship is formed, a hero’s traits can enhance harmony or disharmony between the two individuals. Resonant traits between heroes, or traits in a hero that another respects, may promote harmony. Dissonant traits between heroes, or a trait in a hero that another dislikes, can promote disharmony.

These fluctuations cause relationships to deepen. Heroes’ attitudes towards others in close-proximity working environments are indicated by speech-bubbles over their portraits, displaying ticks or crosses if they’re working with someone they particularly like or dislike.

A hero’s relationships can alter their capabilities in battle. If a hero is rivals with another in the same battle – whether friendly or the enemy – he will act more aggressively, gaining bonuses to his fighting abilities. Likewise, if a hero has a friend in his army or the enemy’s, both will mutually gain defensive bonuses. If one falls, however, the other will enter a state of rage – they will gain large combat bonuses and become uncontrollable for a period.

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Total War Three Kingdoms Heroes Guide


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