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Downloads and Features


aka. poyuzhe
Aug 4, 2007
[BTS 3.19] The History of Three Kingdoms

V2.5 --- Supreme Commander!

Build: .304
Release Date: 10.3.2009
Multiplayer Compatible: not working YET

Download: V2.5 Core Release, Official Music Pack , Patch E


1. Delete previous versions of HoTK mod.
2. Download Core Release file, run the exe installer.
3. Download Official Music Pack, unzip and copy 'Assets' folder in your Beyond the Sword\Mods\The History of Three Kingdoms folder.
4. Download Latest Patch, if there is one, and run the exe installer.
5. Read AnotherPacifist's Tutorial on how to get started using Liu Zhang


This Mod is a historically based Mod that covers the time of Three Kingdoms period of China (184 AD – 280 AD). Wikipedia

Although relatively short, the Three Kingdoms period has been greatly romanticized in the culture of China, as is portrayed in the Romance of the Three Kingdoms, a fictional account of the period which has long become part of the psyche of the Chinese. English Version

This Mod aims for the highest standard. We want to make a Game that totally rocks. We build it from ground up, introducing brand new civs, tech tree, units, buildings, wonders, civics, and tons of new traits you've seen nowhere else. Then we build massive new systems such as Hero and Legion system, belief system, emperor system and new diplomatic relationships. It's a complete game with little traces of the original BTS context left.

What's new in Release 2.5---Supreme Commander?

Hero Capture, Execute, Persuade, Release and Trade;
Army system (turned off by default; to turn on, play custom scenarios or custom games, and select 'Enable Army' game option)
Revamped Random Hero
Revamped Legion System with the introduction of two hero attributes: Leadership and Might
Leader succession, heroes can become new leaders

What's new in Release 2.4---Nine Transformation?

Spoiler :
Random Hero

Besides historical heroes that are always available for recruitment, when player has accumulates enough combat experience and a screen pop up asking player to choose a hero to recruit for half price, the player can choose not to recruit existing heroes, but to promote a complete new random-generated hero from the veteran soldiers of the faction. Choosing to promote a new random hero cost no money.

A new random hero has a random name, a random portrait that's different from all existing heroes' portraits, a random belief, and random loyalties to each factions. His loyalty to it's creating faction is usually high. He will also have random starting and potential unit combat levels. He will start with no more than 3 starting promotions. He even has a really small chance to be a nine transformation hero.

The real fun for random heroes come from two part. First one is, unlike historical heroes, a random hero's potential unit combat level is hidden. In civilopedia or hero advisor, his potential unit combat levels are shown as '?', unless his current unit combat level is already equal to potential unit combat level. So player don't really know which unit combat type has the most potential, and how big that potential is. Second one is, a random hero will start with zero potential promotions. However, upon each level up until level 11, he will gain 2 more random promotions as potential promotion. He can then choose from these potential promotions when level up. Those potential promotions not chosen will accumulate to next time when hero levels up. So he can turn out to be a powerful hero, is everything goes right.

Dynamic Initial Unit

For HoTK Scenarios, we always wanted to achieve one goal: the accurate simulation of history. The simulation is far from perfection, for two reasons. The first is the limitation of AI, the second is at the same time we want to provide enough challenge for players, so we can't make the historical winners too powerful. The conflict between accurate simulation of history and player challenge will be solved by introducing a mechanic called Dynamic Initial Unit.

In each scenario, every faction has a variable which determines whether that faction subjects to initial unit change. If the faction subjects to initial unit change, then when the faction is chosen by human player, the faction's initial unit will change according to the difficulty level human player chooses. If the difficulty level is equal to or below noble, then no changes will apply. If the difficulty level is above noble, then each of the faction's original initial unit will have a chance to be killed upon game initialization. The higher the difficulty level, the higher the chance of killing an initial unit will be.

Besides, if a faction subjects to initial unit change, then the faction can define several other factions as AI target faction. Faction 1's AI target faction is a faction whose initial unit will have a chance to duplicate itself when faction 1 is controlled by human player. The chance and times of unit duplication varies with faction 1 (the human player)'s difficulty level. If difficulty level is equal to or below noble, then no unit duplication will apply. If difficulty level is above noble, then the duplication chance and times will increase with difficulty level.

Nine Transformation

Some of the historical heroes in the game possess a special ability called 'Nine Transformation'. This is an ability that allows the hero to choose and active the one best suited promotion among a maximum of nine promotions each turn, thus providing a wider strategic space. Heroes who possess this ability will start with one randomly chosen promotion in his nine transformation promotion pool at level 1, and then upon each level up, he will gain another randomly chosen promotion, adding to his own nine transformation promotion pool. He can gain a maximum of nine promotions in this way. The promotions that can be gained in this way will not overlap with promotions that the hero can normally gain through level up.

New Heroes, Promotions and Scenario

In this update we introduced 13 new heroes, including the most famous warlord Cao Cao, 9 new promotions and 1 new scenario: 194AD on 68 * 64 map.

Double the Speed

In a word, the Mod runs at least two times faster than previous release. One of HoTK's scenario, 196AD 68*64, it's speed is a little faster than BTS's AD1000 scenario for the first 90 turns. And because HoTK's scenario will not increase its city number over time, it will be significantly faster than BTS's AD1000 in middle and late game.

FEATURES for Release 2.0 (First time players would want to check the feature list for Release 1.0 here first)

Introducing Combat Heroes

Spoiler :
Combat Heroes are units who contribute to warfare by attaching to unit and form a multi-units legion.

A Combat Hero has the following stats: Unit Combat Level (melee, mounted, archer, siege and naval), which determines how many units his legion can hold and how strong they would be; Promotions, which are unique to heroes, are given freely to members upon forming legion, can be gained when the hero levels up; Experience, which is gained automatically when his legion members gain experience.

A Combat Hero is either given for free in the start of the game, or recruited with gold over time. As shown in the screen, there are multiple factors that influence the cost of recruitment.

When a hero is attacked, or the unit the hero attached to is defeated, the hero can have a chance to escape, or surrender, or die, the last of which can be disabled as a Game Option.

These nice Hero models made by our 3D artist, Bakuel:goodjob:

Introducing Legions

Spoiler :
When a Combat Hero is on the same plot with own combat units, he can perform Form Legion Mission, which will bring up a new screen.

A Legion should consists of units of the same UnitCombat Type. A Legion cannot hold units more than the hero's related Unit Combat Level, for example, Guan Yu is Level A for Melee Units, so his legion of Melee units has a maximum size of 4. Upon forming a legion, the member will be given a unit combat promotion corresponding to his hero's unit combat level.

A legion Member is either a core troop, to whom the hero attaches to, or a plain members. All members can receive Member Promotions the hero has gained, but only the core troop can receive the hero's Unique Promotion. More on promotions later.

A legion can be regrouped or dismissed. When a legion is empty, the hero will be automatically recreated. A unit can also perform action such as Join Legion and Quit Legion. A "warlord" unit, which is now called 'champions', can join a legion but cannot act as core troop.

New Promotions---New Interactivity

Spoiler :
There are 80+ new promotions in this release. Half among them are uniquely interesting as they allow players to do things that are never possible before. Promotions are now classified into two part: promotions for normal units, and promotions for heroes, and can be further divided into 5 sub-classes:

1. Single Unit Promotions: all the BTS traditional promotions plus a few more we have introduced in Release 1

2. Unit Combat Promotions (25): these promotions cannot be learned either by units or by heroes. Rather, they are automatically distributed for free when a unit joins a legion. For example, our hero, Guan Yu, is level 4 for Melee Unit Combat, then when a Melee unit joins his legion, the unit will automatically gain Promotion Melee IV

3. Combat Level Promotions (5): heroes can choose these promotions to further increase their respective unit combat level. These promotions can be repetitively learned, but a hero's unit combat level cannot exceeds his predefined maximum level.

4. Unique Promotions (22): These promotions can only be chosen by heroes, and are passed to and only to the unit a hero attached to when forming a legion.

5. Member Promotions (33): These promotions can only be chosen by heroes too, but are passed to the all members of the legion when it is formed.

Note that whenever a legion is regrouped, or the hero gains new promotion, all the members of the legion will update their promotions accordingly.

AI Knows How

Spoiler :
The AI knows how to use the hero:
1. They know how to accumulate money and spend them recruiting heroes, but they can restrain themselves.
2. They know how to move heroes at different situations, to aid invasion, defend homeland as well as hunting barbarian.
3. They know how and when to form a legion, to choose the best core troop and legion members.
4. They know how and when to regroup legion, in order to bring in fresh blood or change to a better core troop.
5. They know how and when to dismiss legion when the grand situation changes.
6. They know how to level heroes up, and how to choose the best promotions for them.

The AI is also improved in several aspects comparing to the previous release:
1. AI will refuse to become a vassal if the two team are not direct neighbors. A team with emperor or Yuan Shao are not limited by this rule.
2. AI is more likely to choose a city with emperor in it as a target city in war.
3. AI thinks declaring war on an Emperor Team is more profitable now. At the same time, the AI also thinks an emperor team is more powerful, which in turn reduces the chance of weaker AI declaring war on Emperor team.
4. AI will consider their Civilization Trait when deciding whether to go for a Cultural Victory
5. Better BTS AI is updated from 0.45 to 0.60, numerous great changes are included, just pick an easy one here: AI now will improve bonuses in lakes

Revamped Interface

Spoiler :
To help players with the newly added legion system, lots of interface changes are implemented. First, there's a hero panel on the top left of the main interface, which shows all the heroes the current player controls; when clicking on a hero's portrait, the camera will go to the hero himself or cycle through his legion members

Second, on the bottom left of the main interface, each legion unit also displays it's Hero's stats and Legion Member Status. On plot list a core troop is denoted with a star, while champions (former warlords) are denoted with a shield. When you mouse over a Hero, you'll see his unit Combat Levels and promotions too. There's also a new action called Go To Legion that allows to group select all units of same legion on the plot.

Third, in Military Advisor, you could choose to display the Heroes and their Legion Members on the mini map, for fast look up.

Fourth, in the newly added Hero Advisor, apart from the recruitment screen, there's also a screen called Info, which displays a hero's current UnitCombat Level, promotions, legion members, and XP.

More Maps and Scenarios

Spoiler :
We have added more maps and scenarios in Release 2. Here is a complete list including both Release 1 and Release 2:

1. Sanguo 51_51, 196AD scenario
2. Sanguo 51_51, 196AD starting location, no City
3. Sanguo 68_64, 196AD scenario
4. Sanguo 68_64, 196AD starting location, no City
5. Sanguo 81_81, 196AD scenario
6. Sanguo 81_81, 196AD starting location, no City

Other changes since release 1

Spoiler :
1. added PianXiang Chariot unit
2. added fire MongChong unit
3. added longbowman and elite longbowman unit
4. added XuanFeng Trebuchet unit
5. added metal bureau building

1. adjusted tech price and tech prerequisite
2. adjusted few wonders' effect
3. adjusted civic effect

1. increased AI valuation for DanYang resource (now Sun Ce's palace grants 1 DanYang)

1. changed the font, button and skin of purebred horse
2. changed botton of multiple units
3. changed unit models of multiple units
4. changed default mouse animation
5. changed Emperor unit model

1. moved code in PythonCallBack to sdk to speed up the game
2. changed 'warlord' unit to 'champions', now they can only attach to units
3. added Game option: NO_SETTLER
4. moved Camp animation code from python to sdk


Spoiler :
Better AI 0.80
Blue Marble Gold
UI Coal
sez's Civilopedia
Ranged Bombardment (made into promotion)
Influence Driven War (made into promotion)


Spoiler :
HoTK Team (in alphabetical order):


Special Thanks

The BUG Team; jdog5000; ColdFever; Dresden & Solver; asioasioasio; seZereth; Dale; Moctezuma; HrochLand; Rory; Yitoo; Walter Hawkwood; Danrell; Chuggi; Wolfshanze; White Rabbit; Kael; Rhye; Tsentom1; Genghis_Kai; freesand; ztjal; Fog; QiDongYeRen; GuDuDeMouFeng; Dapeng3; Strategyonly; Jimmyballz, and KOEI for its Leaderhead Art.

If we left anyone out, it wasn’t intentional, please let us know and we will include them in the list.
Last edited by a moderator:
Tried a MP game yesterday with Zippadeedoodah: any time a Hero tried to Form Legion, an OOS occurred. (So we had to leave our Heroes idle...) Otherwise: great fun! :)


That's very kind of you, and thanks for testing!

In "Program Files\Firaxis Games\Sid Meier's Civilization 4\Beyond the Sword" directory there's a file OOSLog.txt, could you please post your version of that file and Zippadeedoodah's version of that file here, so that I could take a closer look at the issue.
I'm sorry, I cannot locate the file... I do have 2 autosaves here:


  • HoTKmulti.7z
    572.4 KB · Views: 248
Truly a fabulous mod.

I love the attention to detail in the Civilopedia's flavor text -- although more specific information about the in game effects of promotions would be nice -- and I definitely did not expect to find such an enormous quantity of information in a mod. The commander promotions are fabulous, and the homage to Konami's series in the quality levels of commanders was a nice touch. The regional promotions -- northern soldier, etc -- were a great idea, and the belief system is similarly creative. Again, excellent work!

I do admit to disliking the lengthy tech tree, which seems rather out of place in a mod about a period with more tactical than material innovation. The other issue, for me anyway, is the difficulty in keeping up with units due to their somewhat overspecified names -- although I think you definitely deserve some slack on that front, since a good number are tied to specific cities or resources, like Danyang.

I just flat out wasn't expecting the high level of quality I found in this mod, and I definitely appreciate it. Here's hoping you do more work like it!
Thanks for the compliment.

As for your feedback:
1. by 'more specific information about in game effects of promotions', do you mean the help texts in civilopedia for the promotions are not clear enough? Oh, I just remembered, there's a bug in current release that make you unable to access civilopedia page for hero promotions. Right now you can only get access by hovering a promotion button and see the help in a hover. This is fixed for next release.
2. About tech tree: I agree with you it could use some modifications. To do that, need play testing. Right now we are working on rounding up 'Legions'. After release the next version of 'Legions', we will consider our next step, which I think would be playtesting each faction.
3. About unit names: the problem is translation. 'Xiandeng Swordsman' is a Hanyu Pinyin direct translation. It means 'swordsman who clime up enemy city wall first'. If only we could figure out a more concise translation.:)
Not being able to read the hero promotions is a huge pain, but I did figure it out. Glad to hear that that's just a bug, as it was pretty shocking to find nothing there after reading through the ample documentation of every other feature.

For the tech tree, I'd mostly suggest having less of it. Speaking from a statistical viewpoint, the vast majority will almost certainly be weakly dominated or worse, and thus pose little interest to the experienced player. For the new player, such as myself, the sheer quantity of techs muddies the decision making, leaving random selection as the only viable option with respect to time constraints.

As to which techs can be removed or merged, I've not the foggiest of ideas -- I'm still puzzling out which ones matter!

With regard to unit names, I'd suggest following in the foot steps of Firaxis and go easy on the unique names -- as unpalatable as generic stuff like Assault Swordsman is, it has the benefit of being easily understood by us monolingual newbies.

As an aside, I really must compliment you again on the flawless implementation of your army mechanic. It's easily understood, provides concrete benefits, and increases immersion. I even caught myself cheering for Xiahou Dun as he charged into Xiapi! I halfway expected a message about him taking an arrow to the eye!

That said, I'd like to suggest implementing a promotion stacking system a la Fall From Heaven. Commanders seem to get a ton of promotions along a single line (Infantry Commander 1-4, Combat 1-6, etc), and it really eats up screen real estate without providing any additional information. Stacking promotions of the same line on top of one another would go a long way to improving the signal to noise ratio!

Again, excellent work! This mod is a pleasure to play!
You've got a point about techs, yes, they could use some cutting. Especially now most of the late techs have less benefits comparing to the previous ones.

As for promotion stacking, they already stack with each other in the main interface, bottom left corner of the screen. They don't stack in mouse over text as well as form legion screen and hero advisor. Any particular idea how they should behave in those situations?
First of all, this mod looks GREAT. I am a big 3 Kingdoms fan and a history lover, so I just have to say thanks for producing a beautiful mod.

About unit names: the problem is translation. 'Xiandeng Swordsman' is a Hanyu Pinyin direct translation. It means 'swordsman who clime up enemy city wall first'. If only we could figure out a more concise translation.:)

I know some chinese (although I cant read SanGuoYanYi or SunziBingfa in Chinese yet, lol). If you want some more fluid/concise translations of unit names, resources, etc, I'd be happy to help! For instance Xiandeng swordsmen i assume means "first climb" literally, so Siege Swordsmen, or Assault Swordsmen is a good rough translation. Let me know of any others, and provide the short form or long form characters and a little background if you can, and I'll mull over it till you've got something that wont throw us laowai off too much (plus you can always provide the original chinese name and background in the civilopedia).

Kudos! (zhuhe zhuhe) :goodjob:

We love some English help! In the upcoming release 2.4, we have already modified many unit/faction/specialist names, and it would be great if you could take a look at our result. I have just started a new thread here.
No problem!
YES, YES, YES!!!! IT'S OUT!! just in time after school ending too!

I don't know. Is it in the BUG Option screen? Maybe it means whether to show AI's war plan situation in scoreboard.
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