|Battle of Itsukushima|
|Motonari Mōri||Harukata Sue|
The Battle of Itsukushima (厳島の戦い) is one of the monumental battles in Motonari's career. Despite facing an army approximately four times larger than his own, Motonari was able to win the conflict with a mere 3,000. Many historians accept the possibility that the Mōri would have been wiped out if they had lost the battle, thus leading it to be informally dubbed "Motonari's Okehazama".
The battle is also historically significant for Itsukushima, as the island is heralded as a holy land in which "the gods rest" and no living being is allowed to die. It is one of the few battles recorded to have taken place on the island itself. The giant torii gates have been destroyed many times, but the ones currently standing today were funded by Taira no Kiyomori.
Role in GamesEdit
The battle made its Samurai Warriors debut in Samurai Warriors Chronicles. The player's character aids Motonari and Takamoto Mōri in fighting off the Sue army. This is the only main stage where the player is given three characters as opposed to four.
The stage made its first appearance in the Warriors franchises in Warriors Orochi 2. During the Wu storyline, this is where Yoshitsune separates from his allies' main force to impetuously fight his rival.
With little manpower for their side, Sun Quan calls for an alternative method to deal with the massive Orochi army. Yoshitsune recalls that the battlefield has a shrine that worships a water god, leading Motochika Chosokabe to suspect that Kiyomori manipulated the tide to his favor. They head towards the shrine to pray for the tide to return and wash away the Orochi forces.
Meanwhile, Kiyomori leads a relentless assault, summoning many waves of enemies to attack Sun Quan. The generals leading the charge includes Lu Bu and Diao Chan. Motochika and Yoshitsune are also ambushed on their way towards the shrine but are assisted by Sun Ce's reinforcements. While the brothers reunite, the two warriors continue to the shrine and succeed in their mission. If the player has not beaten them, only Lu Bu, Diao Chan, Kiyomori and his guards will remain. Though he defeats his rival, Kiyomori and his followers see the battle as a minor setback and pull back. Sun Ce and Da Qiao later joins Wu to fight against Orochi.
The battlefield appears once more as a dream stage for Zhao Yun, Yukimura, and Yoshihiro. The trio band together to save Liu Bei and his innocent followers from the swarming Orochi army. Once they strike fear into their foes, they are given the task to escort the peasants to safety. During this time, Dong Zhuo, Kojiro, and Kotarō appear to oppose them. When they are routed, Yukimura urges Liu Bei to retreat and they head for the lower right shrine area. Awaiting them there is Masamune who is confident that his riflemen can stop their "outdated" weaponry. After his defeat, the final step of their journey is blocked by Lu Bu and Tadakatsu. Both warriors stun Liu Bei with their integrity and must be beaten for his escape to succeed.
Although not in the main Warriors Orochi 3 story, it has serves as a battlefield for DLC stages. In the Defense of Itsukushima, Motonari, Gan Ning and Dian Wei must protect the Mōri homeland. The Monkey Hunt has Sanzang and other Mystic officers trying to capture Sun Wukong.
In Ultimate, it serves as the final stage for Chapter 6. Players must go through the poison mist to defeat the sorcerer while protecting Fu Xi and Kaguya. After removing the poison mist, they will have to battle Tamamo and Da Ji.
Mōri Motonari: Chikai no SanshiEdit
Mouri Motonari: Chikai no Sanshi has the players encounter the battle in chapter 12. The player has the option of recruiting the Murakami navy to assist during the battle. Takeyoshi Murakami will reject the Mōri if Motonari doesn't want to use a navy and will refuse to offer aid. Alternatively, the player encounter the Murakami navy as enemies during the battle. Should the player negotiate to only have their service for one day, the Murakami navy will accept. A special movie showing the navy's arrival occurs to signal the negotiation's success.
Motonari's regiment starts in the far eastern side of the map. He and his forces are advised to reinforce the Mōri battalion standing guard at Miyao Castle (center of the map). Once these foot troops are united, they can then march towards Harukata's position in the northwestern corner. The player can simultaneously order Michiyasu Kurushima to intercept Takakane Hironaka's navy. If the Murakami navy are present, they can make the seafaring sections of the battle much easier. Since they are controlled by the game's AI, they can proceed with their offensive attacks and Michiyasu can provide assistance.
In the event that the Murakami are present, the player's main concern should be protecting Miyao Castle. The onslaught of enemy troops can prove to be hazardous for the Mōri defenders and they will get overwhelmed if they are ignored. Once the center is pacified, the Murakami pirates will have likely devastated the Hironaka navy by this time. This creates a clear path for Motonari and his troops towards Harukata's station. If the player is quick enough, they can even perform a pincer on the enemy navy. Since there are plenty of enemy troops on the field, this is an ideal battle for leveling units. The Murakami will also become the Mōri's allies for the rest of the game.
Itsukushima is very hard to win without the Murakami navy's assistance. Michiyasu will likely be overwhelmed and Motonari will need to separate his forces to deal with the threats at land and sea. If the player is lucky enough to avoid contact with the enemy navy in the center, they can sneak their strongest warriors near Harukata and exert their officer skills to claim victory. However, this method is incredibly risky and has a tiny chance of success. The most difficult aspect of this scenario is defending both of the Mōri's castles on the map from the larger enemy army. Skilled players may choose this scenario if they wish to test the limits of their current army.
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