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Thread: Ngok Fei's War Tactics Manual - wither Sun Tzu's ART OF WAR?

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    Moderator Ken Cheng's Avatar
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    Default Ngok Fei's War Tactics Manual - wither Sun Tzu's ART OF WAR?

    During the CONDOR HEROES TRILOGY, Ngok Fei's Mo Muk War Tactics Manual was regarded as the Holy Grail of war strategy. The Mongols, the Jurchen, and the Hans all believed that if they possessed this manual, they could win against any enemy. Indeed, the manual proved its worth when Gwok Jing used it on behalf of his Mongol allies late in LOCH, when he used it against the Mongols in ROCH, and when Cheung Mo Gei and and his wulin allies used it against the Yuan Dynasty Mongols in HSDS.

    During the CONDOR HEROES TRILOGY, we constantly hear about Ngok Fei and Chu Gok Leung being great legendary military strategists...which they were.

    But...what about Sun Tzu?

    We never hear much about Sun Tzu and his famous ART OF WAR in the CONDOR HEROES TRILOGY. Was there a reason that Ngok Fei's Mo Muk War Tactics Manual was so heavily favored over Sun Tzu's ART OF WAR? Were Ngok Fei's tactics far superior to Sun Tzu's?

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    guo jing's ancestor (or was it yang kang's ancestor i cant remember) was a lieutenant of Yue Fei. I guess that is why. also i guess Yue Fei's manual specifically deals with fighting outsiders and probably contains a lot of patriotism and virtuous values and stuff which makes it more suitable for someone to drive away the mongolians.

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    Moderator Ren Wo Xing's Avatar
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    I think it's because Sunzi's was more strategic, whereas Yue Fei's was more tactical.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ren Wo Xing View Post
    I think it's because Sunzi's was more strategic, whereas Yue Fei's was more tactical.
    Hmmm. Perhaps the two texts should have been used in conjunction with each other. You need *both* (strategy and tactics), after all, to win a war.

    Maybe it had something to do with availability too. Even before the age of mass printing, Sun Tzu's ART OF WAR probably wasn't all that uncommon in China (you could probably find a copy in the personal library of every general in Sung China). Ngok Fei's manuscript of the Mo Muk War Tactics Manual, however, was apparently the only document of Ngok Fei's ideas on war tactics.

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    Senior Member flamer's Avatar
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    I guess Yue Fei's tactics were more... unique and unseen-of, as compared to Art of War at that time.

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    Senior Member Guo Xiang's Avatar
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    Aside from the availability of Sun Tzu's Art of War, it probably also had to do with Yue Fei's great military success during his career. This guy's workings lifted the crumpling Song Dynasty, accomplishing a mission impossible. His reputation and success is the guarantee itself.
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    Senior Member Exodus's Avatar
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    it's stupid to think that with the manual you would be unbeatable. In real war there are alot of factors and wth thinking participants that makes the war unpredictable

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    The modern military study miltary strategies and tactics from recent and ancient conflicts. If GJ/HR could learn and adapt the teachings of Yue Fei then they would be able to react to changing circumstance. There is a direct analogy to learning and applying martial arts.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Exodus View Post
    it's stupid to think that with the manual you would be unbeatable. In real war there are alot of factors and wth thinking participants that makes the war unpredictable
    well in jin yong universe, even a scrub can become unbeatable (or at least reach grandmaster level) if he has the manual(s).

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    This is one of the most ridiculous things in the Condor Trilogy to me, because I'm pretty damn sure a living Subutai beats a dead Yue Fei. The Mongols had the living, breathing, inventing and adapting circumstances strategies of a guy who conquered a third of the planet, I don't think they needed to worry to much about the what written-down ideas he could fit into a book of a guy who might have been able to reclaim the territory of Northern Song if he had been allowed to, but who knows, it didn't actually happen.

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    Amateurs talk strategy; professionals study logistics.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Ren Wo Xing View Post
    I think it's because Sunzi's was more strategic, whereas Yue Fei's was more tactical.
    What's the difference between strategic and tactical? I always thought it was the same.

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    Quote Originally Posted by tvbtoday View Post
    What's the difference between strategic and tactical? I always thought it was the same.
    Strategy is the broader category that can consist of a number of tactics. Positioning certain individuals at a certain location, telling a group of guys to move a certain way at a certain time, or placing booby traps at certain places would all constitute tactics.

    A strategy would be something like, "Capture the King," or "Trap them at the bottleneck."

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    I thought Yue Fei based his War Tactics Manual on Sun Tzu's Art of War, and modified or added more things on to it? Did not Sun Tzu come before Yue Fei?
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    Quote Originally Posted by Suet Seung View Post
    I thought Yue Fei based his War Tactics Manual on Sun Tzu's Art of War, and modified or added more things on to it? Did not Sun Tzu come before Yue Fei?
    Yes, he did.

    If what you're saying is the case, then Ngok Fei was, at least partially, a plagiarist.

    But if he quoted and cited in MLA format, then it's fair game.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Ken Cheng View Post
    Yes, he did.

    If what you're saying is the case, then Ngok Fei was, at least partially, a plagiarist.

    But if he quoted and cited in MLA format, then it's fair game.
    Haha, but you know if by Yue Fei's time, all of Sun Tzu's family are dead, no one could lay claim on the copyright infringements. Isn't thatwhat happens to many of the classic literatures? People can make movies or adaptations without asking the authors' permission because they're centuries dead or no living family member left?
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    Quote Originally Posted by Suet Seung View Post
    Haha, but you know if by Yue Fei's time, all of Sun Tzu's family are dead, no one could lay claim on the copyright infringements. Isn't thatwhat happens to many of the classic literatures? People can make movies or adaptations without asking the authors' permission because they're centuries dead or no living family member left?
    True, but it'll still get you into trouble with your professor and the academic ethics board.

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    YF's manual probably come with examples and the tactics in it are more detailed, and more relavant to the specific era (relavant as in weapons deployed, squad formations, etc.).
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    So in addition to what I said earlier about Yue Fei having absolutely nothing on Subutai in terms of strategy: based on the limited information I have about YF I would expect his manual to deal less with tactics and more with recruitment, training, administration/day to day managing of troops. I think that's what his specific genius was said to be, turning the force under his command into elite troops and keeping their morale high, not necessarily the artful deploying of them.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Suet Seung View Post
    Haha, but you know if by Yue Fei's time, all of Sun Tzu's family are dead, no one could lay claim on the copyright infringements. Isn't thatwhat happens to many of the classic literatures? People can make movies or adaptations without asking the authors' permission because they're centuries dead or no living family member left?
    By the time of Yue Fei, Sun Zi's Art of War was set and recognised. In previous times the text had been corrupted a tad, but Cao Cao went through all the extant copies he could find and compiled what he felt was most likely the original text. The compiled text is the thirteen chapters we have today. All subsequent additions, including Cao Cao's own, were in the form of commentaries on the thirteen chapters.

    I think military manuals like Sun Zi's were a state secret for a fairly long time, but I'm not sure if this was still so by the time of Song.

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