SENGOKU BASARA 2 HEROES CHARACTERS' TRIVIA TRANSLATION by OboroTennosuke (OboroTennosuke at hotmail dot it) and tengumaru (thekazekage at gmail dot com) Revision History v2.05 (04/18/08) Added Mouri Motonari's bio (which I had forgot) Corrected a few typos and grammar mistakes. v2.00 (02/13/08) Added all 31 character bio translations. v1.00 (01/29/08) Added all 28 characters' trivia translations. Translations of the characters' Basara bio in progress. TABLE OF CONTENTS 1. Introduction 2. Characters' Trivia Translations 3. Characters' Bios Translations 4. Credits 1. INTRODUCTION The first part of this FAQ is a compilation of the historical characters' trivia, found by selecting the third option in the Gallery submenu. Even though they are called "trivia", and tend to address relatively minor aspects of the characters' life, they sometimes tackle broader and more central topics. The second part contains a compilation of the translated profile of the characters, as Capcom as reinvented them in the Basara series. You'll find general info there. IMPORTANT NOTE: The trivia DO NOT regard the characters as portrayed in the Basara series, rather their historical counterparts. This is the reason why there aren't sections for Kasuga, Itsuki, and Zabii: the former two are fictional characters, and the latter was very loosely inspired from the missionary Francis Xavier. The bios, on the other hand, are there for all characters, since they regard their persona as portrayed in the Basara series. 2. CHARACTERS' TRIVIA TRANSLATION AKECHI MITSUHIDE The fortune-deciding lottery In the tenth year of the Tensho period (1582), after the annihilation of the Takeda clan of Kai, Oda Nobunaga ordered Akechi Mitsuhide to move his troops in Saigoku (Western Honshuu, today Kinki) in aid of Hashiba Hideyoshi (Toyotomi Hideyoshi), who was camped near Takamatsu castle in order to subjugate the Mouri clan. After that, Akechi, returning to Sakamoto castle in Oumi, passed close to Kameyama Castle and prayed at Atagoyama, and drew 2 or 3 fortunes. All of them resulted in “bad luck”, it is said. The Honnouji Incident’s occurrence* was mere days after this event. Notes: * Called "Honnouji no Hen" in japanese, this is the event where Mitsuhide betrayed and attacked Oda Nobunaga, defenseless, in Honnouji. AZAI NAGAMASA Even if Nagamasa died Azai Nagamasa suffered a crushing defeat in the battle at Anegawa by the hands of his brother-in-law, Oda Nobunaga, against whom he revolted. His sworn friend Asakura Yoshikage, to whom he was the last ray of hope, committed suicide after receiving the Oda army’s fierce attack. Nagamasa sent his wife, Nobunaga’s sister, and their 3 daughters to Nobunaga; He committed suicide with a sword in Otani castle. His daughters, named Chacha, Hatsu and Gou, each followed fates of elegant pursuits. Nagamasa’s Chacha would become Hideyoshi’s concubine –Yodogimi- and give birth to his eldest son, Hideyori. After Hideyoshi’s death, having the authority derived from being Hideyori’s real mother, soon confrontation with Tokugawa Ieyasu broke out; after being defeated at Osaka’s summer siege she committed suicide along with Hideyori. Hatsu, the second daughter, tried extensively to mend, as a mediator, the progressively worsening relations between the Toyotomi family, which her elder sister had married into, and the Tokugawa family, which her younger sister married into. The third daughter, Gou, became the legal wife of the second Tokugawa Shogun Hidetada, and Third Shogun Iemitsu’s mother. Even if Nagamasa died, his blood lineage ruled the country. CHOUSOKABE MOTOCHIKA Ichiryou Gusoku (literally, “Fief Armor(s)”) Chousokabe Motochika’s strength in war was the group of fighters called “Ichiryou Gusoku”. The Ichiryou Gusoku is a group of people that usually tended to the fields, but would scamper over to the battlefield as soon as a battle started. Chousokabe would put them in order, rally their strength, and defeat powerful clans in every area, successfully becoming the ruler of Shikoku. However, after losing to Toyotomi Hideyoshi during his conquest of Shikoku, Chousokabe spent the rest of his life as Hideyoshi’s subordinate. After that, the Chousokabe clan served the Toyotomi clan until its demise in the summer siege of Osaka. Also, when Hideyoshi summoned the daimyou for the opening of a boat meeting, Chousokabe only tasted a little bit the Manju he received from Hideyoshi, and brought them back to his subordinates. This episode is known as an example of Chousokabe’s considerate attitude towards his subordinates. DATE MASAMUNE Are you Gourmet? Date Masamune, the One-Eyed Dragon, who set his aim on Japan’s domination. Despite the cruel image that precedes him, it is said that cooking was his hobby. Originally he went to cooking for the sake of developing army provisions. Iwadeyama’s frozen tofu and natto as army provisions were finally developed by Masamune’s research on cooking. It is also said that those excellent meals themselves are the secret to the Date army’s strength. Moreover, he had built a large-scale miso storehouse under Aoba castle. Masamune was also the one who set up the first miso mass production structure in Japan. Opposing sentiment against Masamune’s cooking was high: word remains that “during banquets, master would cook and entertain (guests) personally, nonchalantly serving seasonal fruit”. FUUMA KOTARO The Received Name The Fuuma Clan were a group of ninja that served the Houjou Family since the days of Houjou Sou'un. Since their base was located in a place called Fuuma*, they started calling themselves Fuuma**. It is said their speciality was night combat, and they had exceptional skills in mounted combat. The name "Kotaro" was not used to refer to a single person - it was the title that passed through the generations and indicated the head of the Fuuma Clan. Between the several Fuuma Kotaro that existed, the one that showed the most brilliant results in battle was the fifth, the one that served Houjou Ujimasa. Some of the battles that Fuuma participated were the Night Battle of Kawagoe and the Battle of Kisegawa. Specially the latter had the details of the Fuuma action described in the "Houjougodaiki" (chronicles of the Fifth Houjou generation). After the Houjou Clan was destroyed, the members of the Fuuma Clan became a band of thieves, and it is said that they dominated the nights of Edo. Notes: * The kanji mean "wind" and "space" **The kanji mean "wind" and "demon" HOUJOU UJIMASA The Odawara conference The Odawara castle, famous for being impregnable, was laid under siege in the eighteenth year of Tenshou (1590) by an army gathered by Toyotomi Hideyoshi from the whole country, for the sake of subjugating the Houjou. In this instance, the Houjou clan and its chief vassals engaged in a conference debating whether to surrender to the Toyotomi army, or going to war against them. After many days a conclusion could still not be reached, and the castle, sadly, fell. The saying “Odawara conference”, passed down to this day, reflects the situation of the Houjou clan’s and its chief vassals’ conference; in other words, “as much as it may last, it’s a conversation that cannot reach a conclusion” is what it means. Incidentally, Date Masamune too participated in the Odawara assault. Firstly, he had no intention to obey Hideyoshi’s request, but, following Katakura Kojuuro’s advice, he decided to attack Odawara. HONDA TADAKATSU The One who Only Wins Since his childhood days, Honda Tadakatsu served Ieyasu Tokugawa and assisted him until the end of his life. The name "Tadakatsu" means "The One Who Only Wins", and was given to Honda by Ieyasu himself, who at the time was still called Matsudaira Motoyasu. Just like the name suggests, it is said that even though Tadakatsu participated in more than 50 battles, he didn't suffer injuries in any of them. The battle that made Tadakatsu's name famous in all Japan was the Battle of Hitokotozaka, that happened in the the third year of the Genki Era (1572). He showed so much prowess in battle that someone in the Takeda Army left written: "The only two things that surpass Ieyasu are his Chinese helmet and Honda Heihachi (Tadakatsu). Besides from that, Tadakatsu was present in the Anegawa Battle, the Mikatagahara Battle, the Nagashino Battle, at Komaki Nagakute, on the siege of Odawara Castle, and almost every other battle that had Ieyasu involved. It is said also that he put himself in great risk by pursuing Shimazu Yoshihiro in his retreat from Sekigahara. HONGANJI KENNYO Honganji Kennyo and Oda Nobunaga Honganji is the head temple of the Jodo Shinshu* (Ikkoshu**). Founded by Shinran it was later developed in Ishiyama, in the Osaka region. Kennyo was the eleventh abbot. The growing Honganji controlled the Ikko-Ikki, thus wielding an influence so great it could be compared to a Sengoku Daimyo’s; at the same time, it suffered Oda Nobunaga’s persecution, while he was heading to Kyoto. Firstly, Kennyo resigned himself to accepting Nobunaga’s request for money and goods. But this request would get more and more exorbitant, eventually demanding the surrender of the Ishiyama Honganji. Kennyo opposed this, and fought throughout the following 11 years. The Ikko-Ikki were formed by Ikkoshu believers, for the most part, and were peasants that suffered under the current harsh rule. They continued their opposition believing in the words “Advancing means Heaven, Retreating means Hell” and became a serious obstacle for Nobunaga. Kennyo, thanks to the support of these peasants, bore the brunt of the Oda siege, and confronted Nobunaga for months and years. They say that if Kennyo hadn’t existed, Nobunaga’s unification would have been as many as 10 years before. Notes: * The Jodo Shinshu is a Buddhist school, today the most practiced one in Japan ** Peasants, and middle classes' people rebelling under the tyrannical governments of the time. Mainly affiliated under certain temples. IMAGAWA YOSHIMOTO The best archer of Kaidou* A lover of the capital’s and the Imperial court’s customs, famous for his teeth-blackened** figure, Imagawa Yoshimoto was called the best archer of Kaidou, and was a first-rate administrator too. When he was eighteen years old, after inheriting the command of his family, he formed an alliance with the Takeda of Kai with his marriage, thus building a secure relationship, and kept working to spread his influence. In the eighteenth year of Tenbun (1549) he took back the Matsudaira hostage*** (Tokugawa Ieyasu) from the Oda who had snatched him, and successfully took Mikawa under his influence. On another note, it is said that Yoshimoto, who had a long torso but short legs, was incapable of mounting a horse. Notes: *Old name of Hamadoori, city in the Fukushima prefecture (Eastern Honshuu). **A sign of beauty and refinement among nobles. *** Taking hostages was a common practice for feudal lords to ensure the loyalty of the hostage’s family. KATAKURA KOJUURO The great commander combining both wisdom and courage Katakura Kojuuro, who served the Date for two generations as chief vassal, under Date Masamune and his father Terumune, is a great commander combining wisdom and courage, the likes of which the Date household cannot stand to lose. His abilities showed most satisfyingly in administration; he always continued to support Masamune in both warfare and politics. Especially famous is an anecdote according to which when Masamune lost his sight in his right eye, Kojuuro removed it with a small knife. Kojuuro headed off to the battlefield with Masamune in many wars, such as Hitotoribashi, Suriagehara, Sekigahara and the Odawara assault, gaining military victories and achievements. It is also said that during Masamune’s first battle, he was deeply wounded by the enemy and in dire danger; as soon as Kojuuro knew this, he introduced himself as Date Masamune and, acting as a decoy, lured away the surrounding foes. MAEDA KEIJI Kabukimono, Maeda Keiji Maeda Keiji,generally famous because of his wildly extravagant antics, was also a man whose fighting prowess with the spear excelled even when he started training, had a deep understanding of classical texts like the Genji Monogatari, and whose taste for Waka was exquisite. Finding himself in disagreement with his uncle Maeda Toshiie,he fled from the Maeda residence. It is said that in this occasion Keiji, flattering Toshiie, made him soak in a cold water bath, then snatched a horse and ran away. Afterwards Keiji took shelter and began working in the service of the Uesugi clan; he showed his valor during the clash against Mogami Yoshiaki and Date Masamune, called the "Hasedou Castle battle". The Maeda Keiji Dochuu Nikki (Maeda Keiji's travel journal) is a symbol of Keiji's great culture: it collects his writings, from Kyouto until the trying arrival in Yonezawa, and many Haiku and Waka composed by him. It is highly noteworthy also because it contains important data on that time's customs. MAEDA TOSHIIE The man who once fell into ruin Maeda Toshiie, in his younger days, was a popular youth in the Oda army for his vigor and energy, and an excellent commander who was favorably consolidating his social standing. However, he quarreled with one page Nobunaga was taking care of, named Juuami, and ended up slaying him. After that, the enraged Nobunaga discharged Toshiie, who was degraded to master-less Ronin*. Despite that, Toshiie still had faith in Nobunaga as his master and in the 2 years since he became a Ronin, he participated by his own will in many battles, such as Okehazama, as part of the Oda army; yet even though he committed many glorious deeds, he was not forgiven. It was because of his exploits in the Moribe battle that he was at last allowed to return to his master’s service. This easy-going firmness of belief into his master shows Toshiie’s direct and upright personality. Quite plausibly, it is said that this episode was Nobunaga’s way of testing Toshiie’s dependability. After that, Toshiie distinguished himself in the Oda army, on the road to becoming the great Daimyo who will obtain 1 million koku** in Kaga. Notes: * A Ronin is a master-less Samurai, the lowest position for a samurai on the hierarchy. ** A koku is an ancient unit of measurement, and equals roughly 278 litres. (3, 6 koku = 1 cubic metre). In this context, it refers to the income samurai received, calculated in koku of rice. MATSU The merits of marital support Married to Maeda Toshiie, said to be a wise and good wife, Matsu continually supported Toshiie from the shadows; even when he fell into bad spirits after being exiled from the Oda household, she cheered him on and sent him off to battle. Another of Matsu’s roles was mediating between Toshiie and his vassals. To mothers who lost their child in battle, she wrote letters like this: “(regarding condolences about your son’s death), there is nothing I can say, but he worked well.” Taking appropriate care of the vassals, never tired of looking after them, she spent much effort in deepening the bonds between masters and servants of the Maeda household. When there was suspicion that the Maeda were planning to rebel against the Tokugawa, she personally went to Edo, where she remained for 14 years in light confinement, to show proof of their innocence. After this, Matsu would set foot on her land of Kanazawa no more. The Maeda household is one of the few who gained prestige throughout the passage through history of the Oda, Toyotomi, and Tokugawa, though it is said that if it wasn’t for the merits of Matsu’s marital support it would have been impossible. MATSUNAGA HISAHIDE Sengoku’s ringleader Oda Nobunaga judged Matsunaga Hisahide as such: “He succeeded in three things, each one impossible by a common person’s standard.” The first one is the betrayal of his former lord, Miyoshi Choukei; the second is the murder of Shogun Ashikaga Yoshiteru; the third is burning down the Todaiji’s Daibutsuden*. The greatly crafty Matsunaga, though infamous as Sengoku’s ringleader, is known as an architecture expert and a deeply cultured man. Also, he was famous as master of the tea ceremony; two of his possessions, the “Tsukumonasu”** and the “Hiragumo*** teakettle” were the object of many tea ceremony masters' desires. The “Tsukumonasu” was presented to Nobunaga during his voyage to the capital (Kyoto) as proof of subservience. He’s also a rare man, since he rebelled twice against Nobunaga, and yet he was forgiven both times. The second time he rebelled, Nobunaga proposed to Matsunaga, barricaded in Shigisan castle, that if the latter would cede the Hiragumo teakettle, his life would have been spared. However, Matsunaga refused and smashed the Hiragumo teakettle to bits; then he set fire to some explosive and blew himself up. Matsunaga’s cherished Tsukumonasu was named after a section of the Ise Monogatari: “momotoseni ichitose tarinu tsukumogami ware wo koifurashi omokage ni miyu”**** Notes: * http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Todaiji ** White Aubergine/Eggplant. *** Flat-shaped spider of the family Urocteidae. **** One year short of a hundred, the white haired lady must be longing for me, since I seem to see her face. MIYAMOTO MUSASHI Miyamoto Musashi’s strategy book Miyamoto Musashi, who made his name famous because of his mastery of the sword, also left behind impressive writings and calligraphic art; he is also known for authoring many strategy books. Among them, the most famous one is the strategy book called the “Book of Five Rings”. The Book of Five Rings was written by Musashi in his later years, and is composed of 5 volumes: Volume of Earth – Volume of Water – Volume of Fire – Volume of Wind – Volume of Void. (The “Book of Five Rings” imitates as rings the Five Elements of Esoteric Buddhism; they are named after the Earth, Water, Fire, Wind and Void Ring.) In the Book of Five Rings there is the origin of his adherence to “thorough victory”, which stems from his battle experience. For that purpose rational tactics, and lastly the rightful way for humans to live their life, among other topics, are therein recorded. Arriving later then the designated time and irritating Sasaki Kojiro were also used as ways to gain victory in the Ganryuujima duel; from this it is possible to see his way of thinking. The now existing Book of Five Rings is an arbitrarily copied text; Musashi’s original work has been lost. MORI RANMARU A rare faithful heart Mori Ranmaru showed a rare faithful heart towards Oda Nobunaga. There are many anecdotes exemplifying his wit as a page. A monk had presented as gifts many tangerines, and Ranmaru was carrying them on a board, when Nobunaga cautioned him: “It’s dangerous with so many put that way, you’re going to fall" As the warning said, Ranmaru fell down. The day after, to a colleague who felt sorry for him, Ranmaru said “I fell down on purpose, as to show that master’s judgment was correct”. Another time, when Nobunaga said he would have given his prized sword to whoever could guess how many engravings it had on the sheath, only Ranmaru kept quiet and did not answer. To Nobunaga, who wanted to know the reason for that, he said “When Master was doing his business, I was waiting holding the sword, so I counted the engravings, and I already know.” Nobunaga, moved, gave the sword to Ranmaru. Thanks to his faithful heart, while he was a page he managed being promoted to the position of castle lord. MOURI MOTONARI The Mouri household’s family crests One of the family crests of the Mouri household depicts “three stars below a line”; there are two theories regarding the origin of this shape. The first theory says that it is modeled on the three stars of the constellation Orion. These three stars are also called Karasukiboshi* (also written Hikoboshi**), and, being known as “Generals’ Stars” in China, according to warriors they are good omens. As for the second theory, the symbol is made to represent the official rank of the Mouri clan’s founder, Abon Shinnou. The historically dated Mouri clan has had many family crests, like the “Sixteen-petaled Chrysanthemum”, the “Five-Seven Paulownia”***, the “Eight Arrow Notches Wheel”, the “Sagittaria Trifolia”, the “Tsurumaru****” , the “Arrow Notch in a Circle” and others; putting them all together, more than 10 kinds can be counted. Notes: *Plow stars **Altair ***It’s called like this because when it blooms, the flowers’ number pattern is 5-7-5 ****Tsuru means crane; Maru (circle) might refer to the emblem’s circular shape, but it is also a suffix for male names. Links: Three stars below a line http://www.harimaya.com/o_kamon1/tisiki/mouri.jpg Sixteen-petaled Chrysanthemum http://www.mmjp.or.jp/tajimamori/14-04jurokuyoukiku.jpg Five-Seven Paulownia http://www.iond-univ.org/old-log/gositi-toukamon.jpg Eight Arrow Notches Wheel http://www.joaf.co.jp/tyochin/bon-tyochin/kamon-hyou/ kamon-hyou-00-.jpg (nr. 66) (I’m not 100% sure it’s the right one, but it DOES look like the name says) Sagittaria Trifolia http://www.himeji.jp/himeji_jyo/img_kamon/omodaka.jpg Tsurumaru http://www.onigawara.com/03_ornament/02/kamon/30_2.gif Arrow Notch in a Circle http://www.harimaya.com/o_kamon1/tisiki/yahazu.jpg NOUHIME The Serpent's Daughter Nouhime's father, Saito Dosan was called "Serpent Dosan". When he was 19 years old, he came to Mino as an oil merchant. Even being trusted and favored by Toki Yorinari*, he ended up banishing the Toki Clan and became the ruler of the Mino Province. He was a true model for the Gekokujo movement**. When Nouhime married Oda Nobunaga, Dosan gave her a knife and ordered her to kill him, if he was proved to be the fool all thought him to be. But then, Nouhime turned to her father and answered: "This may become the blade that slays you, my father". After that, Nouhime was said to be a very intelligent woman. Notes: * Toki Yorinari was the lord of Mino before Dosan ** The "Gekokujo" was the name of a social movement that happened the Sengoku Era, where lowly lords started to overthrow their old masters. ODA NOBUNAGA The words “It must be a foolish rumor” The alliance with Azai Nagamasa thrown away, Oda Nobunaga started the attack against the Asakura clan. However, the reason why Nobunaga, who had started his invasion in favorable conditions, had to do a complete turn and withdraw was the determined Nagamasa, disaffected by Nobunaga’s breach of trust. That time, Nobunaga didn’t think for a second that Nagamasa, whom he had given his sister Oichi as wife, could have betrayed him. Nobunaga could not believe so suddenly that he had broken away from him; his words were “It must be a foolish rumor”. After that, in the first year of the Genki era (1570), in the hard-fought Anegawa battle, the attack of the Azai army was especially fierce, so much that 11 steps of the “Oda army 13 steps formation” were destroyed. OICHI The azuki bag The following anecdote has been preserved to this day: When the alliance with Azai Nagamasa was broken, Oda Nobunaga started the attack on the Asakura clan of Echizen, causing disaffection on Nagamasa’s part. Nobunaga, who was in a dangerous situation, having the Asakura in front and the Azai behind, had already started his attack on Echizen and did not know about this. Oichi, who knew about Nagamasa’s betrayal, sent an azuki bag with both ends tied to her brother Nobunaga, under the pretense of providing comfort to the soldiers at the frontlines. That was a bag with no openings. In other words, since it carried the meaning of “mouse in a bag”, implicitly it was made to disclose the existence of the Azai army, planning to do a pincer attack. Because of this, Nobunaga passed through Kyoto and retreated to Gifu, narrowly escaping a difficult time. SANADA YUKIMURA Sanada’s Rokumonsen The Sanada clan’s insignia is the famed Rokumonsen (Emblem of Six Sen*), which is depicted as six un-inscribed sen, aligned three by three in two rows. These six un-inscribed sen are symbolic of the Six Realms of Existence, namely Hell Realm – Hungry Ghost Realm – Animal Realm – Asura Realm – Human Realm – Heaven Realm, and the fare that the dead pay to be able to pass the Sanzunokawa**, on the seventh day after dying. This emblem’s meaning shows the Sanada clan’s strong determination in battle, since it represents constant preparedness to facing death. Notes: * one Sen today corresponds to 1/100 yen ** The river the dead must cross, similar to the Styx SARUTOBI SASUKE The people’s Hero Sarutobi Sasuke was part of the Sanada Ten Braves. They are 10 underlings of Sanada Yukimura, a commander active in the late Sengoku era. Composed by Sarutobi Sasuke, Kirigakure Saizo, Miyoshi Seikai Nyuudou, Miyoshi Isa Nyuudou, Unno Rokurou, Nezu Jinpachi, Mochizuki Rokurou, Anayama Kosuke, Kakei Juuzou, and Yuri Kamanosuke, it was a group whose members could use freely powerful and outlandish techniques. While their existence is not completely proven, Because of Sanada Yukimura’s heroic actions in the Osaka summer siege, against powerful foes, from the people’s oral tradition and stories these legendary heroes spontaneously appeared. SHIMAZU YOSHIHIRO The General Who Was Called an "Oni" Among the generals of the Sengoku Era, many were called Oni, but it is said that none deserved that title more than Shimazu Yoshihiro . There were many displays of his valor in battle, and even during his advance on the Kyushuu region, Toyotomi Hideyoshi was precautious of the military power of the Shimazu Clan. In the incredible war history left by Yoshihiro, the most famous one was the evacuation of Sekigahara. Having joined the western army and tasting defeat, Yoshihiro led nearly three hundred men right trough the middle of the enemy formation. That is what today is called "The Shimazu Escape Route". Having succeeded in his withdrawal and back to Kagoshima, Yoshihiro prepared for a final battle with Ieyasu and held peace negotiations at the same time. Fearing Yoshihiro because of the evacuation of Sekigahara, Tokugawa Ieyasu had no choice but to recognize the sovereignty of the Shimazu clan. This shows that Yoshihiro was also an experienced leader, not just a warrior that depended only in brute force. Besides that, when participating in a battle with lots of casualities, Yoshihiro always built graves and performed sending rituals to both enemies and allies. It is said that the great heart of the Shimazu Clan of forgetting grudges after the end of the battles started with Yoshihiro. TAKEDA SHINGEN Fuurinkazan* The famous 'Fuurinkazan' that starts with "Swift like the wind..." was in the war flag of the Takeda Clan, and came from 'Military Manouvers", the seventh chapter of Sun Tzu's military strategy book, "The Art of War". But not many people know that there's a continuation to this Fuurinkazan, which was not written in the war flags. "Swift like the wind" "Silent like a forest" "Aggressive like fire" "Unmovable like a mountain" "Mysterious like a shadow" "Move like a trembling of a thunder" From this strategy, one can know that Shingen was not a wild warlord, that used only brute force. On the contrary: he was a very resourceful one, always thinking of strategies in order to win. Notes: * 'Fuurinkazan' translates directly into "Wind, Forest, Fire, Mountain". TAKENAKA HANBEI Hanbei of the unknowing face The attitude of feigning ignorance, pretending not to notice things is called “Hanbei of the unknowing face”; its origin lies in the conversation between Oda Nobunaga and Saito Yoshitatsu, in which their discord dramatically heightened (as portrayed in the Joruri* play “Konoshita Kagehazama Battle”, in the Takenaka fortress scene). Nobunaga, wary of the famous tactician Takenaka Hanbei’s abilities, ordered Maeda Toshiie to befriend Hanbei’s daughter, in order to make him into an ally. However, Hanbei saw through this ploy, and while maintaining an unknowing expression spied on the Oda army’s intelligence. From this, it has been used as an example of someone who saw through everything yet takes an unknowing attitude. Historically, after serving Toyotomi Hideyoshi Hanbei contracted a lung disease, and on Hideyoshi’s advice he took some time to nurture his health. However, since for warriors the place to die could only be the battlefield, Hanbei returned to it and there he passed away. It is said that, when Hideyoshi knew of his death he cried over his dead body, not caring about the presence of people around him. Notes: *Joruri is a type of musical accompaniment, present, for instance, in Bunraku plays. TOKUGAWA IEYASU Ieyasu and Tempura. Tokugawa Ieyasu was always a very healthy person, he had great knowledge of medicine and compounded them personally. Also, he always encourage simplicity in meals and even set up a schedule for that purpose. Even so, there is a rumor that says that the cause of his that was no other than a kind of food, despite Ieyasu's precautions. When he was 75 years old, he got in the mood for some red snapper Tempura and started eating so violently that ended up dying by food poisoning. But officially, the cause of his that is considered to be other. TOYOTOMI HIDEYOSHI Toyotomi Hideyoshi in his later years Toyotomi Hideyoshi, who took the chance after killing Akechi Mitsuhide in the Yamazaki battle, and succeeded Oda Nobunaga successfully, became a vicious person in his later years. Aware of his old age, he wanted his son Hideyori to succeed him; for this he exiled his son-in-law Hidetsugu, whom he had assigned the title of Kanpaku, and forced him to commit suicide, thus casting a dark shadow on the future of the Toyotomi administration. After this, Hideyoshi, in the Fushimi castle, died leaving this ephemeral sentence: “Falling dew, disappearing dew, my body, Naniwa* too, a dream after a dream”. Notes: *Naniwa is the old name for the Osaka region. UESUGI KENSHIN Uesugi’s Nokizaru* The daimyou of the Sengoku era employed first-rate Ninja teams for the purpose of information gathering. Uesugi Kenshin of Echigo is also known for the Ninja team he had, called “Nokizaru”. Nokizaru’s actions have been reported in the 4th battle at Kawanakajima. When both sides stared at each other for several days, the Takeda army split into two parties; one approached the Uesugi army’s rear, thus starting the woodpecker strategy**. However, after struggling to arrive at Saijoyama, there was no one where the Uesugi army should have been. This because the Nokizaru noticed quickly the Takeda army’s actions, and informed Uesugi Kenshin of them, it is said. Uesugi Kenshin was not the only one who utilized first-rate Ninja teams; their existence has been reported also in the Takeda, Date, Tokugawa, Houjou and Maeda clans. Notes: * Literally, Monkeys of the Eaves ** This strategy consists in sending a small battallion to approach the rear of the enemy army; when the attacked army retreats to regroup, the main army ambushes it attacking the opposite flank. It is named after the method used by woodpeckers to hunt their prey (hitting the tree’s bark to make them come out scared, and then catching them with the beak). 3. CHARACTERS' BIOS TRANSLATION Note: As you can see, I added the characters' titles next to their names, because I felt it would make the bios more complete, and someone requested them on the board some time ago. Please take the translations with a grain of salt, since they're just one possibility among many, and some might be quite wrong (Imagawa Yoshimoto's in particular). Maeda Keiji - Dazzling Magnificence Maeda house's own vagabond, nephew to Maeda Toshiie and Matsu. Having been raised with the loving relationship between husband and wife in front of him, he's unusually prone to falling in love. This is the reason why, rather than fighting in war or unificating the country, he thinks making even one person happy is something wonderful above everything else. Date Masamune - Oushuu*'s First and Foremost The originator of the "Dateotoko**" expression,he's a cool guy who uses foreign speech as well. During the Sengoku tumults too, he enforces his "stylish" will, trusting in his way of life. He aims at the country's unification in order to put an end to the chaos brought about by the Sengoku era. After meeting Sanada Yukimura he gained a fateful rival. Notes: *Northern Japan **Dateotoko means "man like Date", and is used even today to designate men with exquisite taste in clothing. Katakura Kojuuro - Chivalry and Howling Virtue Date Masamune's most trusted retainer, but also a brotherly figure to him. He's the only one Masamune has ever trusted to cover his back. He has a strong sense of honor, never twists his beliefs, and overflows with chivalrous spirit; he is ready to give his life for Masamune at any time. As a warrior, he's exceptionally skilled; he wishes for the moment of his passing away to be during an earnest fight, thus showing a battle-loving side. Sanada Yukimura - Matchless Spear, Ruler of the Heavens A hot-blooded young man serving the Takeda family of Kai, sometimes he loses track of his surroundings because of his overflowing emotions... He feels deep affection and respect for Takeda Shingen, whom he regards as his life's mentor, and thinks that Shingen is the only one fit for ruling the country. After meeting Date Masamune, he gained a fateful rival. Takeda Shingen - Supreme Ruler, God of War The supreme commander of the Takeda household, who aims at advancing to the capital to gain control of the country. He's a brave warrior who fights actively in the front lines, but also a cunning leader who brings his army to victory. He likes being adressed as "House Lord"; Sanada Yukimura, especially, has vivid respect and affection for him, whom he regards as his life's mentor. He has reciprocated respect for his rival and comrade Uesugi Kenshin. Sarutobi Sasuke - Whirlwind Running in the Azure Sky This ninja in the service of the Takeda household is also the leader of the Sanada unit. He has an aloof personality, quite unlike ninjas, and usually views things from a detached position; yet he also has a cooler side which leads him to completing his task, unconcerned whether he will live or die in the process. He comes from the same village of the kunoichi Kasuga, who serves under Uesugi Kenshin. Toyotomi Hideyoshi - World Splitting Fighting Emperor The ruler who stood up to put in order the ruined country and shape it into a strong one known all over the world. Without looking back to the past, he is determined to march onwards no matter what; he has many adoring subordinates because of his charisma and outstanding generosity. He regards the Devil King Oda Nobunaga as the cause of the country's downfall. Takenaka Hanbei - Pale Blue Fury, Lightning-Fast Subjugator Sengoku's best genius tactician; for the sake of his close friend Toyotomi Hideyoshi, he builds the most powerful army, whittling away his own life. On the other side of his gentle and elegant manners lies the most cunning strategist of the Sengoku; He uses a flexible sword capable of turning into a sword or a whip, confusing his enemies even in the air with playfully magnificent techniques. Mouri Motonari - Astute general of many crafts For victory, only for victory, this ruthless strategist uses selfish plans and acts the same way. He has complete trust into his schemes; he sees the lives of his own subordinates as nothing more than pawns. His handsome facial expressions as well are a tool to control others, a performance acted to deceive. Chousokabe Motochika - The Flawless One The lucky adventurer of Sengoku, hailing from Shikoku and coveting country domination. He wanders the sea, collecting hidden treasure from many places. His personality is extremely helpful and generous, and many subordinates affectionatedly call him "elder brother*". Furthermore, he is broad-minded, which allows him to accept gladly new kinds of strategies and weapons. Notes: *Used as a sign of respect for elders in gangs. Oda Nobunaga - Demon King, Dominator of the Heavens The Demon King, matchless in his cruelty, attempts to dominate the country with terror. Calling himself by the name of Demon King of the Sixth Heaven*, he confronts all of his enemies by giving them death and terror, invading the whole country carrying the Tenka Fubu** flag. The conflict with the up-and-coming Toyotomi has become an all-out clash. Notes: *The Sixth Heaven represents our world, the sixth and last world of Desire. The Demon King of this Heaven is called Mara in Sanskrit; it is known for disrupting those who attempt to reach Enlightenment. **It is interpreted as "Militarism spread throughout the land" or "Taking control of the country thanks to military power" Nou Hime - Unparalleled Flourish Wife of Oda Nobunaga the Demon King, she's the foremost aide in Nobunaga's plans for ruling the country. During battle, although her physical strength is severely lacking, she overwhelms the opposition handling her two pistols with grace. She's determined to dirty her own hands with blood, as a butterfly dancing in the battlefield, all for the sake of her beloved Nobunaga. Mori Ranmaru - Pure Truth, Slayer of Evil A boy in the service of Oda Nobunaga, he adores and reveres Nobunaga like no one else, as if he was a superior being. Because of his childish and innocent heart, his never tired of "beating up" enemies type of personality, he has been nicknamed "Child of the Demon King" by the foes terrified by his figure, slaughtering enemy after enemy. Tokugawa Ieyasu - Incarnation* of the Eastern Shine The powerful optimist who stood up at the last moment, carrying the hollyhock emblem on his shoulders. He is blessed from birth with an exceptional good luck. Commanding Honda Tadakatsu, he has set his aim on the domination of the country. His amiable personality is liked by everyone, he's a warm-hearted person who wishes not to lose even one subordinate in war. Notes: *Gongen in Japanese. It's the Title given to Ieyasu after his death. Honganji Kennyo - Rich in Faith, Newborn Star The monk who put in order the head temple Honganji, he's a great man madly in love with money and muscular strength. With the words "Our money is pure gold, our bodies' fat percentage is zero" as his creed, he never misses the morning runs and sit-ups with his monk disciples. Unsatisfied with the savings' amount, he invades many countries, with the roaring strength of money and muscles*. Notes: *This is a wordplay, since money and muscles are pronounced the same way in Japanese (kin) Kasuga - Bathed in Moonlight, for the Lord's Sake A Kunoichi that adores Uesugi Kenshin. For his sake she decided to fight alongside him, becoming his most trusted retainer. Despite this, she is a caring and gentle person. She doesn't realize that continuing to fight means driving herself against a wall. She comes from the same village of the Ninja Sarutobi Sasuke, who serves under Takeda Shingen. Uesugi Kenshin - Holy Commander of Divine Speed A natural born fighting genius.Hoping to know the limits of his strength, he participates in the tumults. He's a follower of Bishamonten*, the God of War. Due to his mobility, allowing him to kill in the blink of an eye enemies all over the battlefield, he made his the name of Army God. He has reciprocated respect for his rival and comrade Takeda Shingen. Miyamoto Musashi - He who roams the Lands and surprises the Heavens Carrying his personal style, called Ni Ten Ichi Ryuu*, he's an outlaw rampaging furiously across the battlefields. In order to claim the crown of "strongest" for himself, ha challenges famed warriors. Incidentally, the island where he lies in wait, Ganryuujima, is a lawless land riddled with traps and other foul contraptions. Notes: *Literally, "Two skies into one" school Shimazu Yoshihiro - One Slash, Certain Death The warrior bold like no other, user of the Jigenryuu* style. He goes by the alias of "Shimazu the demon". His "one slash certain kill" technique, drawing his long sword, along with the nickname demon put fear in many warriors. Skilled in ambush strikes, his strategies are coolly calculated; he's also famous for being the only man capable of holding his own against Honda Tadakatsu. Notes: *Jigen means "manifestation of a celestial being" (it's a real school of sword techniques) Azai Nagamasa - Undefeatable Loyalty Head of the Azai family of Oumi. His wife is Oda Nobunaga's younger sister, Oichi. He believes strongly in his justice. Bent on erasing the evil surrounding him, without a single thought, he also has an inflexible side. Because of that excessive pride, unable to forgive all of Sengoku's evil, he himself and his soldiers of justice inflict Heaven's punishment, to the best of their abilities. Oichi - Enchanting Vision, Bewitching Words Wife of Azai Nagamasa and younger sister of Oda Nobunaga, from the moment she was born the fate of being the Demon King's sister stuck to her. Terrified of having the same demon blood of her brother, thus being equally sinful, she became masochistic and rather fond of cornering herself. Whoever is ensnared by her bewitching beauty is never able to free himself from it. Fuuma Kotarou - The Grim Ascending Hurricane A Ninja mercenary hired by Houjou Ujimasa who wields dreadful skills. Extremely taciturn,no one has never heard him speak. His birth, age and real name are some of the mysteries he hides. At times, in clear days, he can be seen watching afar from a high location. Houjou Ujimasa - Mature Firmness The head of the Houjou house, protector of the solid Odawara castle. When he became in charge, to bring back the waning authority of the Houjou house, he brandishes the exploits and glory amassed by his ancestors throughout the generations. Moreover, to preserve the honor of the Hojou he hires all sorts of mercenaries, Fuuma Kotarou being one of them. Imagawa Yoshimoto - Spreading Unprepared Vocal Authority The head of the Imagawa household, believer in an refined lifestyle. Heading to the conquest of the country being society's latest trend, as someone boasting of being always on the cutting edge he cannot overlook this, and thus sets his aim on the advance to the capital, not wanting to lose no matter what. Other than being fond of gaudiness, moody, and a show-off, he has little faith in himself as a fighter. Never overlooking on his own protection, one thing he never forgets is to use his brains. Honda Tadakatsu - Sengoku's Strongest A commander serving under Tokugawa Ieyasu. Carries the second name of "Sengoku's Strongest". As the name says, it is said that whatever the weapon, it is impossible to wound him. Matsu - Genius and Glimmering Beauty Wife of Maeda Toshiie; as the wife in a military family, she's a proud and level-headed person. She supports Toshiie, who works for the prosperity of the Maeda household, thanks to her great skills with the Naginata and cooking. Moreover, she's Maeda Keiji's aunt, and a valuable person, since she's able to rebuke him. She's the only one Keiji and Toshiie can't stand up against. Itsuki - Naivete in Full Glory A young peasant girl leader of the Ikko Shu*. Wishing for a world without war, to stop the conflicts she confronts the samurai, cruel in any imaginable fashion. She received a giant hammer, quite unfitting her small body, from the goddess Ukanome, protector of rice plants. She believes in her growing hope for the future, and dreams about seeing the earth giving birth to a sea of rice plants. Notes: *Peasants, and middle classes' people rebelling under the tyrannical governments of the time. Mainly affiliated under certain temples. Akechi Mitsuhide - Haughty Cold Stare He's a twisted man, who enjoys tormenting and killing people, both physically and mentally, more than anything else. Desiring to gaze at Oda Nobunaga's bloody, pained expression was the reason behind his rebellion against him, and the Honnouji Incident. Now, following his desires, he seeks blood wandering from battlefield to battlefield. Maeda Toshiie - Frank and Open Hearted The head of the Maeda household, working strenuously for the sake of its' prosperity. He likes the meals his wife Matsu prepares more than anything else. Loved because of his open personality, he's called "Our Lord" from his subordinates. Uncle of Maeda Keiji, he's the perfect partner for his jokes. Every day he's subjected by all sorts of pranks because of him. Zabii - Southern Barbarian, Personal Cult With "Brimming with Love" as its catchphrase, he's the founder of the Zabii cult. In order to execute the plan of uniting all Japan under love, he marches with his fanatical followers around the country. He has a tendency of not choosing particular means to gain his objective, and forgetting the objective because of the means. Lately, it seems he has initiated new strong and wise followers. Matsunaga Hisahide - Respecting Himself and None Other A man who lives loyal to his appetites. Nothing else exists in this world apart from him and what he wants. Even if he will trample and destroy anything to satiate his desires, he is not a frivolous person, but an extraordinary intellectual, that after looking intently at man's true nature has concluded that living following one's desires is the world's correct form. 4. CREDITS Thanks go to Capcom for the best hack'n'slash game I have ever played. draewon, Little_Kei and, on the whole, the regulars at the SB2H board for not letting it die. This FAQ Copyright 2008 to Dario Zampieri and Fernando Mucioli. Redistribution in any form, including reprinting in electronic or print media, without express permission of the authors is strictly forbidden.
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