Not to be confused with Xun You.
|Force(s):|| Yuan Shao's Forces|
Cao Cao's Forces
|Weapon Type:|| Sword (3~7)|
War fan (7:E)
|First Appearance:||Dynasty Warriors 3|
|Real name:||Xún Yù|
|Style name:|| |
|Chinese name:|| |
Xun Yu (onyomi: Jun Iku) is an advisor to Cao Cao whose talents as a strategist were compared to those of Sima Yi. Xun Yu's relations with Xun You is hazy as records list them as either as nephew and uncle or as cousins. Despite serving under Cao Cao, Xun Yu is known for his loyalty to the Han Dynasty. He is shamed to death by Cao Cao after he openly opposes Cao Cao's acceptance to the rank of Duke of Wei.
He is the winning vote for the Dynasty Warriors 7: Empires Strategist edit character. In Famitsu's first most wanted character poll, he ranked fourth with fans. Fans voted him to second place in the second most wanted poll with 278 votes.
The height for his Kessen II counterpart is 165 cm (5'5").
Role in GamesEdit
In the Dynasty Warriors series, Xun Yu is a constant general for Cao Cao and Wei since the third title and appears in numerous battles as a generic officer. Due to his historical lack of involvement in many battles, his roles in these battles are rather insignificant with a few exceptions.
Dynasty Warriors 5: Xtreme Legends has Xun Yu appear at Yan Province as the commander of Cao Cao's forces. He holes himself up in Puyang castle, but surrounding the castle will lead to Chen Gong's surrender and the opening of the gates. Defeating Xun Yu before Cao Cao's main force arrives will end the stage, taking too long will relegate the role of commander to Cao Cao.
In Dynasty Warriors 6, Xun Yu is placed in charge of Xu Chang while Cao Cao is engaged in battle against Yuan Shao at Guan Du. During Sun Ce's invasion of Xu Chang, he noted the Little Conqueror's commanding prowess and doubted his ability to stop him. He may further serve as the allied commander at Xia Pi, if the player chooses to play as Xiahou Dun.
His role in the overall game is lessened in the following installment, albeit he reprises his role as the commander at Xuchang for most of the battle until Xiahou Dun arrives. His other appearances are restricted to Xu Province and Changban, but Xtreme Legends has him further aid Guo Jia in his quest to defeat the Yuan family.
In Dynasty Warriors 8, he has his most prominent role at Puyang in Wei's story and serves as the commander. He is besieged at Juancheng castle and has to be rescued. Once this is done, a cutscene is triggered in which Xun Yu thanks Xiahou Dun and his comrades for rescuing him. When Xiahou Dun is shot in the eye, he turns away in disgust. He further shows up at Mt. Bailang and Xinye as an ally and in numerous other battles in Shu's and Wu's stories as an enemy. Xtreme Legends also has him participate in the Strategist Tournament of the Wu scenarios. He shares a special conversation with Cao Cao in the game's Ambition Mode.
In Kessen II, Xun Yu is depicted as a woman and one of Wei's strategists. Dressed in armor, she is torn between her duty as an officer and her love for Cao Cao.
Romance of the Three Kingdoms usually lists Xun Yu as the regular officer with the highest politics stat in the game. His intelligence and charisma are also among the game's top values, but his military stats are considerably lower. This makes him a very good domestic officer as his stat increase the drafting of troops, production of weapons and the success chance of diplomatic actions and plots. In battle, he can be used as a supporting officer to prevent better commanders with lower intelligence to fall for enemy ploys. In most scenarios, he serves Cao Cao as one of his highest ranked political officers and may also fill the role of the force's strategist in some scenarios.
- Lex Lang - Dynasty Tactics 2 (English)
- Munehiro Tokida - Dynasty Tactics 2 (Japanese)
- Sumi Shimamoto - Kessen II (Japanese)
- Keiichi Nanba - Romance of the Three Kingdoms drama CD series
- "I have been given control of this army. I will not lose it to the likes of you!"
- "The enemy is too strong! It is regrettable, but we must withdraw for now. There are more ways than one to repay our lord's trust."
Xun Yu hailed from Yingchuan and was the son of Xun Gun and the grandson of the Minister of Works Xun Shuang. As a young man, he was praised by He Yu of Nanyang for his ability. Xun Yu served as the Prefect of Palace Guards in 189, but when Dong Zhuo took over the capital, he asked to be sent off as a local officer and was assigned the post of Prefect of Kangfu. He gave up his post soon after and returned to his hometown, where he tried to convince the locals to abandon their homes as Yingchuan was a battleground, but the locals did not listen to him. He then led his family north into Ji Province, which was governed by Yuan Shao upon his arrival. Xun Yu was welcomed by him and while his younger brother Xun Chen went to serve Yuan Shao faithfully, Xun Yu said that Yuan Shao would be unable to achieve great things. In 191, he left Yuan Shao and went to serve Cao Cao in Dong Commandery instead. Cao Cao was pleased and called Xun Yu his own Zifang, a reference to the great Zhang Liang of Western Han.
Cao Cao asked Xun Yu for his opinion about Dong Zhuo. Xun Yu said that Dong Zhuo would experience a violent end due to his extreme tyranny. At that time, Dong Zhuo sent Li Jue to pillage the counties of Chenliu and Yingchuan, killing many of Xun Yu's former fellow villagers who had previously ignored his advice to flee. In 194, while Cao Cao was away fighting Tao Qian at Xu Province, Xun Yu was left in charge of Yan Province. At that time, Zhang Miao aligned himself with Lu Bu and surrendered most of Yan's cities. Lu Bu pretended to aid Cao Cao and Zhang Miao asked Xun Yu for supplies. Xun Yu saw through the ploy and instead ordered his men to strengthen the defenses of Juancheng and call for Xiahou Dun as support, calming the the situation. Later, when the Inspector of Yu Province Guo Gong arrived with his men, many feared that he would help Lu Bu. Xiahou Dun and others tried to dissuade Xun Yu from meeting him, but Xun Yu said that showing doubt about Guo Gong would surely lead him to plot against them. Guo Gong was impressed by Xun Yu and believed that Juancheng's defenses were strong, so he left. Together with Xiahou Dun and Cheng Yu, Xun Yu was able to hold the counties of Juancheng, Fan and Dong'e until Cao Cao returned and defeated Lu Bu at Puyang in 195.
After the death of Tao Qian, Cao Cao wished to make another attempt to conquer Xu Province before dealing with Lu Bu. Xun Yu dissuaded him, saying that Liu Bang and Liu Xie, who founded the Western and Eastern Han Dynasties respectively, were only able to accomplish greatness because of a secured home base and further analyzing the situation in favour of attacking Lu Bu first by pointing out the difficulty of conquering Xu Province after their last defeats against Cao Cao and the importance of sustaining the troops with enough supplies. Thus, Cao Cao did not attack Xu Province and instead focused on the harvest before sending multiple units out to reconquer the counties of Yan Province and finally driving Lu Bu out of Yan.
In 196, Emperor Xian fled Chang'an and returned to the destroyed capital of Luoyang. Cao Cao wished to rescue the emperor and move the capital to Xuchang, but many of his subjects advised against the move, saying that the Luoyang area was in turmoil and that Yang Feng and Han Xian, who had escorted the emperor, allied with Zhang Yang of Bing and would be difficult to overcome. Xun Yu on the other hand persuaded Cao Cao to rescue Emperor Xian, pointing out Cao Cao's show of his Han loyalty in the past and the fact that the other warlords of the realm would desire to get the emperor in their hands sooner or later. Cao Cao led his forces to rescue Emperor Xian and safely escorted him to Xuchang after defeating Yang Feng and Han Xian. Xun Yu was promoted to Imperial Counsellor and Chief of the Imperial Secreatriat. Although Xun Yu now stayed behind to manage the internal affairs, Cao Cao still often consulted him during his military campaigns. When Cao Cao asked Xun Yu on whom he should rely in Xun Yu's place, Xun Yu recommended his cousin Xun You and Zhong Yao, as well as Xi Zhicai. Xi Zhicai died of an illness shortly afterwards and when Cao Cao asked Xun Yu for a replacement, the latter recommended his friend Guo Jia.
After Cao Cao's defeat against Zhang Xiu at Wan, Yuan Shao sent a rude letter to him. Cao Cao wanted to attack Yuan Shao, but Xun Yu and Guo Jia dissuaded him with an impressing speech in which they compared Cao Cao and Yuan Shao and made out ten points that made Cao Cao superior to Yuan Shao and made him prevail against him eventually. Instead, Xun Yu advised to first take care of Lu Bu and Zhang Xiu and then ally with Ma Teng and Han Sui in the west to secure his position. Afterwards, when Cao Cao prepared to advance on Yuan Shao, Kong Rong tried to dissuade him and praised Yuan Shao's officers and strategists. Xun Yu countered by pointing out the various flaws of Yuan Shao's commanders and silenced Kong Rong. In 200, when Cao Cao fought against Yuan Shao at Guandu, his food supplies ran low and he wrote a letter to Xun Yu asking whether to keep up the defense or withdraw to lure Yuan Shao out. Xun Yu persuaded Cao Cao to hold the lines and that it would be time to employ unexpected tactics. Cao Cao proceeded with a night raid on Yuan Shao's camp at Wuchao and scored a great victory against his rival.
One year later in 201, Cao Cao discovered a shortage on grain and thought about abandoning the campaign and attack Liu Biao in Jing. Xun Yu advised against the move, saying that withdrawing their troops from the Yellow River would allow Yuan Shao to regroup and attack them from behind. Instead, they should focus on Yuan Shao while the morale of his troops was still low after the huge defeat at Guandu. Cao Cao did not withdraw the troops from the northern frontlines and Yuan Shao died a year later, leaving his territory contested between his sons Yuan Tan and Yuan Shang. In 203, Xun Yu was granted the title of Marquis of Wansui.
In 204, Cao Cao conquered Ye and many urged him to re-instate the Nine Imperial Districts system, which would have Ji Province gain a large amount of territory in the north and unite it under a central government. Xun Yu advised against the idea, bringing up that this would equal annexion and lead to the other warlords, especially in the northwest to fear that they would be annexed as well and close off the passes, making it harder for Cao Cao to unite the land. Cao Cao thus did not re-instate the system and instead focused on defeating the Yuan family. In the following years, Xun Yu would often serve Cao Cao as a military advisor. Cao Cao even gave one of his daughter's in marriage to Xun Yu's oldest son Xun Yun. In 207, Cao Cao united northern China and Xun Yu's fief was increased to 2,000 households. Despite this, Xun Yu and also Xun You were always known to be humble and gave much of their salaries to their friends and relatives.Cao Cao asked Xun Yu how to proceed in attacking Liu Biao. Xun Yu suggested that Cao Cao should lead a large force towards Wan and Ye to show off, while sending another portion of the army ahead to travel swiftly and catch them unaware. Liu Biao died of an illness soon afterwards and when Cao Cao's main force arrived at Wan, Liu Cong surrendered Jing to Cao Cao.
In 212, Dong Zhao and others urged Cao Cao to be promoted to the Duke of Wei. Cao Cao again asked Xun Yu for his opinion. Xun Yu, believing that Cao Cao's initial goal was to start a volunteer force to uphold the Han Dynasty, should not make such a move and instead display his loyalty to the Han Dynasty. Cao Cao declined the position as Duke, but started to bear a grudge against Xun Yu. When Cao Cao marched off to face Sun Quan at Ruxu, he had Xun Yu sent to Qiaojun to reward the army. He then served Cao Cao as a military advisor again and was made a Honorary Palace Attendant. When Cao Cao continued to head for Ruxu, Xun Yu was left behind in Shouchun because of an illness. Xun Yu had all of his secret letters discussing official affairs burnt and died a short time afterwards at the age of 50. Cao Cao probably sent an empty food box to Xun Yu prior to reaching Ruxu, signaling Xun Yu to commit suicide, which he did. He was given the posthumous title of "Respected Marquis" and later even promoted posthumously to Grand Commandant. One year after Xun Yu's death, Cao Cao became the Duke of Wei.
Romance of the Three KingdomsEdit
In Romance of the Three Kingdoms, Xun Yu's actions remain largely the same for the first decade of his service under Cao Cao, although his words concerning the rescue of Emperor Xian were rephrased a bit so that Xun Yu said that Cao Cao should hold the emperor hostage to control the warlords. He is also often seen to calm Cao Cao down when the latter wants to execute someone for his behaviour or failure in campaigns, such as Zhu Ling and Zhang Song. When Cao Cao learns about Liu Bei's attack on Runan, Xun Yu advises him to not take Guan Yu with him and later objects Xiahou Dun's attack on Liu Bei at Bowang Slope. After the death of Zhou Yu, he advises Cao Cao to attack Sun Quan and at the same time summon Ma Teng to the capital in order to prevent the Xiliang forces from attacking them. He finally dies in chapter 61 after receiving Cao Cao's empty food box and taking poison. In chapter 68, when Cui Yan objects Cao Cao's decision to become King, his colleagues remind him of Xun Yu's fate, but Cui Yan ignores them and is later thrown into prison and beaten to death.