Liu Yan is a Chinese name; the family name is Liu.
For the faction, see Liu Yan (faction)

Liu Yan is a unique character in Total War: Three Kingdoms. He is the leader of his own faction in 190 and 194. In the 200 start, his faction still exists but is led by his son Liu Zhang as Yan died in 194 from old age.

General Information[edit | edit source]

Attributes[edit | edit source]

Main Article: Attributes (Total War: Three Kingdoms)

  • Expertise: 43
    • -5% construction cost (administered commandery)
    • +7 melee evasion
  • Resolve: 51
    • +12% general's health
    • +2k population growth (administered commandery)
  • Cunning: 96
    • +38% ammunition (own retinue)
    • +9 military supplies (own army)
  • Instinct: 53
    • +7% melee damage
    • -2% recruitment cost (this army)
  • Authority: 59
    • +2 satisfaction (faction-wide)
    • +2 unit morale (own retinue)

Background[edit | edit source]

Main Article: Background (Total War: Three Kingdoms)

Opportunistic Ruler

  • +10 cunning
  • +5 instinct
  • +15 authority
  • +1 resilience
  • +15% income from peasantry (faction-wide)

Admires Power, Wary of Ambition.

Unit Statistics[edit | edit source]

  • Morale: 40
  • Melee Toughness: 10
  • Ranged Toughness: 13
  • Melee Power: 5

  • Hit Points: 9k
  • Melee Charge Bonus: 181
  • Melee Attack Rate: 30
  • Base Melee Damage: 345
  • Armour-Piercing Melee Damage: 80
  • Base Melee Evasion: 7%
  • Base Armour: 14%
  • Speed: 97

Traits[edit | edit source]

Main Article: Traits (Total War: Three Kingdoms)


  • +8 authority
  • +50% desire for higher office
  • +5% income from all sources (administered commandery)
  • Increases ambition to gain independence as administrator

Admires Power, Wary of Ambition


  • +6 resolve
  • +2 instinct
  • May randomly trigger superstition events for their owning faction

Indulges Superstition, Respects Caution.


  • +6 cunning
  • +2 instinct
  • -5 cover cost when performing spy actions

Disregards Honour, Disregards Trustworthiness

Skills[edit | edit source]

Main Article: Skill (Total War: Three Kingdoms)

Stifling Deluge

  • +4 cunning
  • +4 instinct
  • Ability: Stifling Deluge


  • +8 cunning
  • Enables: Flaming Shot (own retinue)
  • +10 military supplies in enemy territory (when commanding)


  • +8 expertise
  • +10% ranged armour-piercing damage (own army)
  • +10% ranged firing rate (when commanding)

Abilities[edit | edit source]

Main Article: Ability (Total War: Three Kingdoms)

Stifling Deluge (Passive)

  • Target: Enemy General
  • +5 increased cooldown of abilities
  • Range: 50m
  • Duration: 1s
  • Cooldown: 4s

Ancillaries[edit | edit source]

Main Article: Ancillary (Total War: Three Kingdoms)

Ceremonial Sword

  • Base Melee Damage: 321
  • Armour-Piercing Melee Damage: 80
  • Melee Attack Rate: 30
  • +6 authority

Liu Yan's Armour

  • Base Armour: 14
  • +16 cunning
  • +50% ammunition
  • +25% ranged damage

Black Horse

  • Speed: 97
  • Mass: 1.5k
  • +2 cunning

Guanxi[edit | edit source]

Main Article: Guanxi




Biography[edit | edit source]

Liu Yan was born in Jiangxia around 132 AD. He was a descendant of Liu Yu, a powerful prince of the early Han dynasty, and as such grew up with all the benefits of a member of the imperial family. He held some low-ranking administration positions when he was young, rising to higher ranks over the years. Eventually, he quit his career, moved to a small mountain village far away from Luoyang and started his own school where he would teach good morals to his students. By all means, Liu Yan had planned to spend the rest of his life here, turning into a character akin to Confucius.

He was eventually convinced to move back to Luoyang by the court, where he moved between extremely prestigious titles. Liu Yan was not blind to the growing corruption in the capital, however, and secretly resented the Ten Attendants' rise to power and Emperor Ling's inability to do anything about it. Eventually, he convinced the emperor to make him the governor of Yi province as the previous governor was supposedly a tyrant that levied extreme taxes upon the peasantry living there.

Once he made his home in Yi, Liu Yan immediately began planning to overthrow the imperial government. The collapse of the Han dynasty and the rise of Dong Zhuo was a surprise, but the chaos it caused came as an opportunity. With Han's power reduced to nothingness, Liu Yan started assembling a vast army to "liberate" the Han dynasty from all the tyrannical warlords that had risen up — naturally with himself in charge of this renewed empire. He did not join the coalition against Dong Zhuo, but neither would he fight for the warlord.

Over time, Liu Yan became more and more antagonistic to the Han. He conquered various lands around him and killed any Han envoys heading for his land, blaming it on one of his loyal generals who had supposedly turned on Liu Yan. To secure Yi province firmly for himself, Liu Yan started killing various powerful and influential people in the province, once again blaming it on rogue generals, bandits or Yellow Turbans. This all became too much for one lord, Jia Long, who rebelled against Liu Yan. Once he was defeated, his power over Yi province was secured.

Despite his rise to power, there was still one thing Liu Yan couldn't control: His age. The warlord was turning old, and deep down he knew he could never conquer all of China before his death. He looked to his four sons who could serve as his heir, hoping to groom a worthy heir. When travelling through Chang'an, Emperor Xian — who was not blind to Liu Yan's violent rise to power in Yi — ordered his youngest son, Liu Zhang, to deliver an official warning for his violence. Liu Yan was outraged and had his son imprisoned. Despite releasing him shortly after, this drove a permanent wedge between the father and his son which is what the emperor hoped to accomplish all along.

Eventually, Liu Yan allied with warlord Ma Teng, and together they rose in rebellion against the cruel regime of the late Dong Zhuo's successors: the two generals Li Jue and Guo Si. Their plan to march on Chang'an eventually fell into enemy hands and subsequently the combined armies of the two warlords were annihilated. Both Liu Fan and Liu Dan were captured and tortured to death. With Liu Mao dying of an unrelated illness some years earlier, this left Liu Zhang as the only heir to Yan despite their hatred of each other. This time around, Liu Yan had proved to be overambitious and he paid the price, having to settle on an uneasy peace with the two generals.

His bad luck would not run out yet, however. The capital of Yi province, Mianzhu was struck by lightning. One building erupted into flame, then a street, then the whole city was rapidly consumed by an unstoppable inferno as Yan and his court barely managed to escape the burning ruins. With tens of thousands of civilians dying and Mianzhu being reduced to nothing but rubble, the crushed Liu Yan moved the capital to Chengdu. Shortly after this, Liu Yan died from a combination of old age, grief over his dead sons, and stress. Yi fell into complete chaos before eventually Liu Zhang was appointed the new governor of the province. Unlike his father before him, Zhang didn't care about conquest and made no attempts to expand the territory he inherited, opting to try to stabilize and develop the province.

Total War THREE KINGDOMS factions and leaders
Warlords Cao Wei (Cao Cao)・Dong Zhuo (Dong Zhuo)・Gongsun Zan (Gongsun Zan)・Shu-Han (Liu Bei)・Wu (Sun Jian)・Yuan Shao (Yuan Shao)・Yuan Shu (Yuan Shu)
Governors Kong Rong (Kong Rong)・Liu Biao (Liu Biao)・Ma Teng (Ma Teng)
Outlaws Black Mountain bandits (Zhang Yan)・Zheng Jiang (Zheng Jiang)
Nanman King Meng Huo (Meng Huo)・King Mulu (Mulu)・King Shamoke (Shamoke)・Lady Zhurong (Lady Zhurong)
Other factions Han EmpireCai MaoGongsun DuHan FuHan SuiHuang ZuJia LongKong ZhouLiu DaiLiu Yan (Liu Yan)・Liu YaoLiu YuLiu ZhangShi XieTao QianWang LangWang KuangZe RongZhang ChaoZhang LuZhang Yang
Total War THREE KINGDOMS historical characters
Sentinel Bao XinCai HeCai YangCao RenChang DiaoChang XiaChen HengChen QianChen WuChen XiuCheng PuCongqianCui JunDeng AiDing FengGan LiGao GanGongsun DuGongsun XuGuo XianHou YinHan SuiSHuang SheHuang YueyingFHuang ZhongSHuangfu SongJia LongJian YongLi DianLiang XingLiu ShangLiu YaoLu MengLu ZhiMa MaoQu YingSong JianSui GuSun JianSSun ShaoTaishi CiSTao ShangTian FenWang KuangWang SuWang YuXia ZhaoXiaoqiaoXu HuangSXue LiYan XingYang BoYang HongYang ZhongYin LiYu JinYuan ShangYue JinSZang HongZhang HuZhang LiaoSZhang YaZhao YunSZheng BaoZhu Zhi
Champion Cai ZhongCao AngCao HongCao ShuangCao XiCao ZhangChang XiChen JiuChen LanCheng YiDong FengDian WeiSGao DingGao ShengGuan XingGuan YuSHan FuHan HaoHong MingHuan LinHuan ZhiHuang GaiHuang ZuHuo NuJi BenJiang GongLi DamuLi HuanLi YuLing TongLiu ShaoLu KangPang DeQu GongQuan RouSen PeiSong YangTao YingTuoba LiweiWang XiWei HuangWei JieWen ChouXiahou DunSXianyu YinXin PingXu ChuSXu RongXuan FanYang FengYou TuYu QinZang BaZao ZhiZhang FangZhang FuZhang GuangZhang LuZhang YanSZhao DuZheng YanZheng JiangSFZou LinZuozi Hangba
Strategist Bao XunBian RangBu LianshiFCai YanFCai YongCao ChongCao ZhiChang LinChe ZhouChen BiaoChen DiChen GongChen LinChen QunChen ZhenCheng XuCheng YuCui LinCui YanDiaochanFDing YiDong YunDong ZhaoDu QiongFa ZhengFan QinLady FengFFeng ShuoFu GanFu JiaFu WanGao RouGaotangGongsun XiuGu YongGuan ChunGuan JingGuan LuGuan NingGuanqiu DianGuo JiaGuo TuHan JiHan RanHan RongHan YinHandan ChunHandan ShangHe YanHe ZengHu ZhaoHu ZhiHu ZongHua BiaoHua TuoHua XinHuan DianHuan FanHuan JiaHuang WanHungfu MiJi MiaoJi MuJia ChongJia CongJia XuJiang JiJin YiJu ShouKan ZeKong RongSKong ZhouKuai LiangKuai YueLiu BaLi ChaoLi FuLi KangLi RuLi ShaoLi XiuLiang MaoLiu DaiLiu FuLiu HeLiu JiLiu YanLiu YeLiu YiLiu ZhenLu AnLiu FanLu JiLu KaiLu MaoLu SuLu XingLu XunLu YiLu YuLu ZhengFMa LiangMa MidiMa QiuMa SuMa YuMao JieMi HengMi ZhuMiao XiMin ChunPan XuPang JiPang TongPei JunPei QianPeng YangQi ZhouQiao ZhouQin MiQuan JiQue XuanRen AnRen JunRuan YuShan GuShan TaoShen YouSheng XianShi WeiShi XieShi YiShi ZhiSima FengSima FuSima LangSima YiSSu ShuoSu ZeSun QianSun XuTao QianSTeng YinTian ChouTian FengTian JingWang BiaoWang CanWang DangWang FuWang JianWang LanWang LeiWang LieWang SuWang XiangWei DanWei FengWei ShuWei YouWei ZhaoWei HuiWu FanWu ShuoWu ZhiXiahou RongXiahou XuanXiahou ZuoXiahou LangXin XianyingXing YongXu GanXu JingXu MiaoXu ShaoXu ShuXu TaXu XuanXu YouXue ZongXun WeiXun YuXun YueYan PuYan XiangYan YuYang ChouYang DaoYang XiYang XiuYao TaiYao ZhouYing QuYing YangYing YuYu FanYuan LongYuan YiYue DunZhang ChaoZhang ChengZhang ChunhuaZhang HongZhang JiZhang MiaoZhang MinZhang QuanZhang SongZhang WenZhang YunZhang ZanZhang ZhaoZhang ZhenZhang ZhiZhao AngZhao QiZhao WeiZhao YanZhao YiZheng MaoZheng MoZheng SuiZheng TaiZheng XuanZhong YaoZhongchang TongZhou HuanZhou YuSZhou ZhiZhu EnZhu GuiZhu HanZhuge JinZhuge LiangS
Vanguard Bu JiBu ZhiCai MaoDong ZhuoGan NingGongsun ZanSLiu QiLü BuSMa ChaoSMa TengSSun CeSSun RenSFXiahou JieXiahou YuanSYan LiangZe RongZhang FeiSZhang HeZhang Yang
Commander Lady BianFLady CaiFCai XunCao CaoSCao JieFCao RenDaqiaoFDong PeishanFGuan YinpingFLiu BeiSLiu BiaoSLady LiuFLiu YuLiu ZhangSWang LangLady WuFSun QuanSYuan AnyangFYuan ShaoSYuan ShuSYuan TanYuan Xi
Healer(YTR) Han XianHe YiSLiu PiWang Du
Veteran(YTR) Gong DuSGuan HaiLiao HuaPei YuanshaoSZhang KaiSZhao Bo
Scholar(YTR) Guo DaHe ManSHuang ShaoSWang RaoXu He
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