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How can we apply the principles of Sun Tzu in this game?

RoboticolRoboticol monkelandRegistered Users Posts: 1
edited December 2021 in General Discussion


Probably the most applicable philosophy for this game


So, as a Warhammer II player. I have been getting into the philosophy of Sun Tzu quite a bit.
But here is my question, are all the philosophies of Sun Tzu applicable in this game? Do they even work? Does the first image apply to the game somehow with AI?

These are some of the questions I have. Feel free to answer them in!
Post edited by BillyRuffian on
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  • MasterSayo01MasterSayo01 Registered Users Posts: 661
    This is the wrong forum!

    You must this posted at this forum (see the link).

    https://forums.totalwar.com/categories/feedback-and-suggestions
    For the Empire Reikland! Long live Emperor Karl Franz!


  • philosofoolphilosofool Senior Member Registered Users Posts: 1,147

    This is the wrong forum!

    You must this posted at this forum (see the link).

    https://forums.totalwar.com/categories/feedback-and-suggestions

    Not really. It’s a strategy game, so you can apply principles. Sure, it feels like it belongs with 3k but you could try here.
  • kratostatickratostatic Registered Users Posts: 1,011
    Appear strong where you are weak and the opposite is hugely common - the whole "strong army in ambush ahead of unprotected settlement/weak army" tactic.
  • philosofoolphilosofool Senior Member Registered Users Posts: 1,147
    I wouldn’t.

    The quote in the passage in the image boils down to saying that if you know yourself, all outcomes are fine. This is junk if your goals are the normal ones like achievements and winning.

    I would however love to see the forum post that goes like this: “I realized that I’m a dishonest troll but loyal to my tribe, so when AI Kroq Gar dropped a full stack of SEM on me (Queek) on turn 38, I had no fear and it was fine. I think more players just need to know themselves.”
  • wunderb0rwunderb0r Junior Member Registered Users Posts: 1,091



    You must this posted at this forum (see the link).

    could you try that again?
    ( ͠° ͟ʖ ͡°)
  • YannirYannir Registered Users Posts: 2,163
    They are vague enough to be perceived as true. Like astrology.

    Sun Tzu, like most philosophy, has more in common with poetry than measurable skills in warfare. I do think Sun Tzu himself could back up this philosophy with actual skill and experience in warfare. However, for the average Joe, it's about as useful as a flower. Pretty, but not enough to block an incoming blade.
    Ugh, I have spoken.
  • LaindeshLaindesh Junior Member Registered Users Posts: 4,693
    The first tactic works with setting ambushes and tricking the AI to attack your apparant weaker force.

    The 2nd tactic always applies as knowing the circumstances and situation of your enemy is always important, or they may catch you off guard or get you into wars with other factions.
  • philosofoolphilosofool Senior Member Registered Users Posts: 1,147
    Yannir said:

    They are vague enough to be perceived as true. Like astrology.

    Sun Tzu, like most philosophy, has more in common with poetry than measurable skills in warfare. I do think Sun Tzu himself could back up this philosophy with actual skill and experience in warfare. However, for the average Joe, it's about as useful as a flower. Pretty, but not enough to block an incoming blade.

    This is a misunderstanding of philosophy, but yeah. Also, Sun Tzu -> not really philosophy.
  • YannirYannir Registered Users Posts: 2,163

    Yannir said:

    They are vague enough to be perceived as true. Like astrology.

    Sun Tzu, like most philosophy, has more in common with poetry than measurable skills in warfare. I do think Sun Tzu himself could back up this philosophy with actual skill and experience in warfare. However, for the average Joe, it's about as useful as a flower. Pretty, but not enough to block an incoming blade.

    This is a misunderstanding of philosophy, but yeah. Also, Sun Tzu -> not really philosophy.
    I'm aware, but for the purposes of this conversation it's true enough.
    Ugh, I have spoken.
  • GloatingSwineGloatingSwine Registered Users Posts: 1,779


    The quote in the passage in the image boils down to saying that if you know yourself, all outcomes are fine. This is junk if your goals are the normal ones like achievements and winning.

    No, it doesn't.

    What it is actually saying (in the context of all the preceding paragraphs not in the image) is that if you know the capabilities and disposition of your army and those of the enemy, and the temper and capabilities of the opposing general, you will not be defeated in battle because you will never offer the opponent a battle where you would be defeated.

    (The rest of the paragraph is "If you know yourself but not the enemy, for every victory gained you will also suffer a defeat. If you know neither the enemy nor yourself, you will succumb in every battle.")


    Though the real lesson you can take from Sun Tzu and apply to Total War Warhammer is from the following:
    11. What the ancients called a clever fighter is one who not only wins, but excels in winning with ease.

    12. Hence his victories bring him neither reputation for wisdom nor credit for courage.

    13. He wins his battles by making no mistakes. Making no mistakes is what establishes the certainty of victory, for it means conquering an enemy that is already defeated.

    14. Hence the skillful fighter puts himself into a position which makes defeat impossible, and does not miss the moment for defeating the enemy.

    15. Thus it is that in war the victorious strategist only seeks battle after the victory has been won, whereas he who is destined to defeat first fights and afterwards looks for victory.
    Yep, that's Sun Tzu telling you to cheese like it's going out of style. First seek victory, then only when the enemy has no hope of success then engage him in battle.
  • drogarito92drogarito92 Registered Users Posts: 1,164
    According to Sun Tzu, conventional war is the dumbest war. So let's bring forth nukes, biological and chemical weapons! YES-YES
  • GloatingSwineGloatingSwine Registered Users Posts: 1,779
    To be fair according to Sun Tzu the worst thing to do is besiege a walled city, because back in his day that didn't make the AI go full potato.
  • davedave1124davedave1124 Senior Member Registered Users Posts: 20,476
    Know yourself: understand the strengths and weaknesses of your faction

    Know your enemy: understand the strengths and weaknesses of their faction

    If you consider the above then you are using Sun Tzu to make good decisions, on a basic level sure, but I can’t imagine many games that can reflect reality so well.
  • Jman5Jman5 Registered Users Posts: 2,003


    The quote in the passage in the image boils down to saying that if you know yourself, all outcomes are fine. This is junk if your goals are the normal ones like achievements and winning.

    No, it doesn't.

    What it is actually saying (in the context of all the preceding paragraphs not in the image) is that if you know the capabilities and disposition of your army and those of the enemy, and the temper and capabilities of the opposing general, you will not be defeated in battle because you will never offer the opponent a battle where you would be defeated.

    (The rest of the paragraph is "If you know yourself but not the enemy, for every victory gained you will also suffer a defeat. If you know neither the enemy nor yourself, you will succumb in every battle.")


    Though the real lesson you can take from Sun Tzu and apply to Total War Warhammer is from the following:
    11. What the ancients called a clever fighter is one who not only wins, but excels in winning with ease.

    12. Hence his victories bring him neither reputation for wisdom nor credit for courage.

    13. He wins his battles by making no mistakes. Making no mistakes is what establishes the certainty of victory, for it means conquering an enemy that is already defeated.

    14. Hence the skillful fighter puts himself into a position which makes defeat impossible, and does not miss the moment for defeating the enemy.

    15. Thus it is that in war the victorious strategist only seeks battle after the victory has been won, whereas he who is destined to defeat first fights and afterwards looks for victory.
    Yep, that's Sun Tzu telling you to cheese like it's going out of style. First seek victory, then only when the enemy has no hope of success then engage him in battle.

    Sun Tzu is talking about a real life war with real people, real resources and real stakes on the line. Of course you should do everything you can to make it as one-sided as possible. However, Total War is a game. In a game, there are no stakes and the purpose is to have fun. Now if cheesing is fun for you, then that's great, but people shouldn't feel like that is the way you're supposed to play.
  • endurendur Registered Users Posts: 4,183
    Laindesh said:

    The first tactic works with setting ambushes and tricking the AI to attack your apparant weaker force.

    The 2nd tactic always applies as knowing the circumstances and situation of your enemy is always important, or they may catch you off guard or get you into wars with other factions.

    I agree with the above.

    First example: have a weak force recruiting troops, have a stronger force in ambush in between the weak force and the enemy.

    Second example, knowing your capabilities and the enemy's capabilites, you know the likely result of the battle. In a way, the battle screen that shows the AR outcome provides you info. Knowing what your forces are capable of provides more info.
  • Rubz2293Rubz2293 Registered Users Posts: 575
    There's a Youtube channel called Legendoftotalwar that might help you with that.

    I'm pretty sure Sun Tzu would be an advocate for doomstacks, magic and general cheesing.
  • MasterSayo01MasterSayo01 Registered Users Posts: 661

    This is the wrong forum!

    You must this posted at this forum (see the link).

    https://forums.totalwar.com/categories/feedback-and-suggestions

    Not really. It’s a strategy game, so you can apply principles. Sure, it feels like it belongs with 3k but you could try here.
    The gamer Roboticol has posted this 1st at the forum Warhammer 2 campaign/ battle bug(s) report and the moderator move this to the forum "General discussion". :/

    That's why I type this: wrong forum etc.. :*

    So, for me was this the right forum "feedback/ suggestion", but the moderator decides to move to this forum. :/

    For the Empire Reikland! Long live Emperor Karl Franz!


  • ArneSoArneSo Hamburg, Germany Registered Users Posts: 34,880
    Wrong forum boyo.
    Nurgle is love, Nurgle is life
  • wunderb0rwunderb0r Junior Member Registered Users Posts: 1,091
    ArneSo said:

    Wrong forum boyo.

    why
    ( ͠° ͟ʖ ͡°)
  • ArneSoArneSo Hamburg, Germany Registered Users Posts: 34,880
    wunderb0r said:

    ArneSo said:

    Wrong forum boyo.

    why
    This is not the 3k forum.
    Nurgle is love, Nurgle is life
  • AxiosXiphosAxiosXiphos Junior Member Registered Users Posts: 9,056
    edited December 2021
    I've read the whole tome. A surprisingly short read and less a guide to war then a book of phrases. Still I do recommend giving it a shot; there is some wisdom in there that might not 'change your life' but at least make you wonder at how applicable many of the phrases are to modern everyday life.

    My favourite was the concept of viewing strengths as weaknesses and weaknesses as strengths. You don't defeat a person / challenge by finding the easiest way to approach it - but instead by finding the hardest thing and making it easy.
  • wunderb0rwunderb0r Junior Member Registered Users Posts: 1,091
    ArneSo said:

    wunderb0r said:

    ArneSo said:

    Wrong forum boyo.

    why
    This is not the 3k forum.
    is the OP talking about 3K?
    ( ͠° ͟ʖ ͡°)
  • ArneSoArneSo Hamburg, Germany Registered Users Posts: 34,880
    wunderb0r said:

    ArneSo said:

    wunderb0r said:

    ArneSo said:

    Wrong forum boyo.

    why
    This is not the 3k forum.
    is the OP talking about 3K?
    It appears so. It definitely isn’t about WH.
    Nurgle is love, Nurgle is life
  • wunderb0rwunderb0r Junior Member Registered Users Posts: 1,091
    ArneSo said:

    wunderb0r said:

    ArneSo said:

    wunderb0r said:

    ArneSo said:

    Wrong forum boyo.

    why
    This is not the 3k forum.
    is the OP talking about 3K?
    It appears so. It definitely isn’t about WH.
    Roboticol said:



    So, as a Warhammer II player. I have been getting into the philosophy of Sun Tzu quite a bit.
    But here is my question, are all the philosophies of Sun Tzu applicable in this game? Do they even work? Does the first image apply to the game somehow with AI?



    at this point it seems like you just want to point fingers and go "wroooong"
    ( ͠° ͟ʖ ͡°)
  • Tempus_fugitTempus_fugit Senior Member Registered Users Posts: 1,391
    edited December 2021

    To be fair according to Sun Tzu the worst thing to do is besiege a walled city, because back in his day that didn't make the AI go full potato.

    "If you lay siege to a town, you will exhaust your strength. ... Then no man, however wise, will be able to avert the consequences that must ensue… In war, then, let your great object be victory, not lengthy campaigns." - Sun Tzu

    He got it bang on for TWWH, I would say. Even warning about the exhausting part.
    There is no time but the present. – S:TW Hojo, R:TW Brutii/Germania/Alemanni(BI), Med2: Venice, S2: Oda, R2: Julia/Boii/Suebi/Lusitani, Attila: Geats/Garamantians, WH: All factions VH, Wood Elves on L. TWWH2: Lizardmen, Dark Elves, Skaven, Khalida, High Elves, Vampirates. ME: Khalida, Vampire Counts, Carcasonne, Wood Elves
  • SillybillySillybilly Registered Users Posts: 286
    Jman5 said:


    The quote in the passage in the image boils down to saying that if you know yourself, all outcomes are fine. This is junk if your goals are the normal ones like achievements and winning.

    No, it doesn't.

    What it is actually saying (in the context of all the preceding paragraphs not in the image) is that if you know the capabilities and disposition of your army and those of the enemy, and the temper and capabilities of the opposing general, you will not be defeated in battle because you will never offer the opponent a battle where you would be defeated.

    (The rest of the paragraph is "If you know yourself but not the enemy, for every victory gained you will also suffer a defeat. If you know neither the enemy nor yourself, you will succumb in every battle.")


    Though the real lesson you can take from Sun Tzu and apply to Total War Warhammer is from the following:
    11. What the ancients called a clever fighter is one who not only wins, but excels in winning with ease.

    12. Hence his victories bring him neither reputation for wisdom nor credit for courage.

    13. He wins his battles by making no mistakes. Making no mistakes is what establishes the certainty of victory, for it means conquering an enemy that is already defeated.

    14. Hence the skillful fighter puts himself into a position which makes defeat impossible, and does not miss the moment for defeating the enemy.

    15. Thus it is that in war the victorious strategist only seeks battle after the victory has been won, whereas he who is destined to defeat first fights and afterwards looks for victory.
    Yep, that's Sun Tzu telling you to cheese like it's going out of style. First seek victory, then only when the enemy has no hope of success then engage him in battle.
    Sun Tzu is talking about a real life war with real people, real resources and real stakes on the line. Of course you should do everything you can to make it as one-sided as possible. However, Total War is a game. In a game, there are no stakes and the purpose is to have fun. Now if cheesing is fun for you, then that's great, but people shouldn't feel like that is the way you're supposed to play.


    Who said anything about a right way to play? Sun Tzu is talking about winning and in the most efficient way possible. It may not be the ‘right’ way to play but it is absolutely correct that cheesing is the way to go from Sun Tzu’s perspective. That has nothing to do with people enjoying the game though.
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