Hero Overview
You are not to make a real stand, but merely to begin the fight. You are to lose and not win, for a grand ruse is ready for the enemy.
~ Xiahou Yuan.
That's another enemy pounded into submission!
~ Xiahou Yuan's victory quote.

Xiahou Yuan is one of the supporting characters in the 14th-century Chinese classic novel Romance of the Three Kingdoms by the late Luo Guanzhong, and its multiple adaptations. He is a military general who serving under the warlord Cao Cao in the late Eastern Han dynasty of China.


Xiahou Yuan was born in Qiao County. Even then, Cao Cao and Xiahou Yuan are the best friends. Tell that Xiahou Yuan once covered Cao Cao when he committed an act of misdeed. Cao Cao set up an army to join the coalition against Dong Zhuo, who had the young Emperor Xian under his control. Xiahou Yuan and his older cousin Xiahou Dun joined Cao Cao and remained loyal to Dong Zhuo's case on many campaigns. After the Battle of Guandu, Xiahou Yuan was responsible for supplying the troops in Yanzhou, Yuzhou, and Xuzhou. Through his strict surveillance Cao Cao's force was able to prepare quickly for the upcoming major campaigns. Ma Chao besieged the city of Ji in Liangzhou. Xiahou Yuan led a relief army to the city, but Ma Chao conquered it before Xiahou Yuan arrived. Ma Chao to Xiahou Yuan, so this eastward direction had to retreat to Chang'an. One year later, Ma Chao attacked Mount Qi. Xiahou Yuan saw that a request for help from Cao Cao, who was currently in Ye, was taking too long. Against the resistance of many officers, he took the initiative and sent Zhang He out with a 5,000-strong pioneer group. He himself followed with the supplies. When Xiahou Yuan arrived at Mount Qi, Zhang He had already defeated Ma Chao.

After this victory, Xiahou Yuan prepared for the offensive against Ma Chao's former General Han Sui, who quickly withdrew to the west. Xiahou Yuan followed him to Lueyang. Han Sui was a ragtag group consisting mostly of members of the Qiang tribes of Changli. Xiahou Yuan took advantage of this and attacked Changli to lure Han Sui out of his stronghold. He left his supplies behind and feigned a fake attack on the city with a small band. As expected, Han Sui immediately came with his army to protect the Qiang tribe. His force was numerically far superior to the Xiahou Yuan. Nonetheless, Xiahou Yuan chose not to build fortifications to further stress his exhausted warriors. He ordered the immediate attack, and with reinforcements from the hinterland, managed to facing Han Sui. After defeating Han Sui, Xiahou Yuan eliminated the last resistance in the region. The most of the Qiang tribes surrendered to him. Cao Cao overwhelmed his general with praise, quoting Confucius: "As good as you could not have done that." The smaller Qiang tribes were so impressed with Xiahou Yuan that Cao Cao just had to name his general, and they were she meekly.

However, Zhang Lu handed over the Hanzhong region to Cao Cao. It represented the strategically most important area between the territory Liu Bei and Cao Cao. Cao Cao entrusted Xiahou Yuan with the defense of Hanzhong. The following year, Liu Bei attacked, and his army with Xiahou Yuan at the Yanping Pass. The fighting has been fruitless for more than a year. But Liu Bei finally managed to set the palisade wall in front of Xiahou Yuan's camp at the foot of Mount Dingjun. Xiahou Yuan ordered Zhang He to defend the camp in the east, but Liu Bei harassed him with his entire force, and Zhang He was overwhelmed. Xiahou Yuan withdrew in support, but a raiding party led by Huang Zhong attacked him from the cross. But later on, Xiahou Yuan died in Hanzhong, Wei lost for decades. Deng Ai go back to Wei through the campaign, which destroyed the Shu Kingdom. After his death, Xiahou Yuan received the posthumous title Marquis Min.


Xiahou Yuan is a gruff yet practical man of war. Though dedicated to his family's vision, he is more social and loose than his older cousins, willing to crack affable jokes during battle. While Xiahou Yuan thinks of every battle as a step in Cao Cao's conquests and wants them to be done and over with as soon as possible. The said he has little tolerance for interruptions and is known to have a short fuse when the enemy gains the advantage. When off duty, he is actually a kind soul who doesn't stress too much over his losses. For it would shown he is the one who offers an optimistic and friendly view to his brooding comrades within Wei.


  • Xiahou Yuan is a playable character in the Dynasty Warriors series.
  • Xiahou Yuan is a recurring boss character in the Knight of Valour video game series.


           ROTK logo Heroes

Cao Wei
Xiahou Dun | Xiahou Yuan | Lady Zhen | Cao Pi | Pang De | Cai Wenji | Guo Jia | Li Dian | Yue Jin | Yu Jin | Xun Yu | Xun You | Man Chong | Cao Xiu | Cao Zhi | Cao Zhang | Cao Zhen | Cao Ang | Cao Anmin | Ren Jun | Cao Jie | Cao Hong | Cao Rui | Cao Chun | Cao Fang | Han Hao | Meng Da | Tian Yu | Wen Ping | Xin Pi | Xu Zhi | Xiahou Mao | Xiahou Shang | Xiahou Hui | Chen Tai | Empress Guo | Empress Dowager Bian | Cheng Yin | Chen Lin | Wang Su | Wang Ling | Zang Ba | Yue Lin

Eastern Wu
Zhou Yu | Lu Xun | Taishi Ci | Lady Sun | Sun Jian | Sun Quan | Lu Meng | Gan Ning | Sun Ce | Huang Gai | Two Qiaos | Zhou Tai | Ling Tong | Ding Feng | Bu Lianshi | Han Dang | Lu Su | Zhu Ran | Cheng Pu | Xu Sheng | Dong Xi | Sun Yi | Su Fei | Sun Kuang | Sun Luban | Sun Luyu | Zhu Huan | Pan Zhang | Jiang Qin | Hu Zong | Kan Ze | Chen Wu | Zhuge Ke | Zhuge Jin | Pan Jun | Lu Mao | Sun Liang | Sun Xiu | Sun Hao | Zhou Fang | Lu Dai | Lu Fan | Lu Jun | Lu Kang | Lu Yi | Lou Xuan | Bu Zhi | Bu Xie | Lady Wu | Wu Guotai | Empress Zhu | Taishi Xiang | Yan Jun | Zhu Yi | Quan Cong | Zhu Zhi

Shu Han
Zhao Yun | Guan Yu | Zhang Fei | Zhuge Liang | Liu Bei | Ma Chao | Huang Zhong | Jiang Wei | Wei Yan | Pang Tong | Lady Huang | Guan Ping | Empress Zhang | Guan Suo | Liu Shan | Ma Dai | Bao Sanniang | Xu Shu | Lady Guan | Guan Xing | Zhang Bao | Fa Zheng | Lady Xiahou | Zhou Cang | Deng Zhi | Wang Ping | Zhuge Zhan | Feng Xi | Huo Jun | Huo Yi | Liu Ba | Jian Yong | Fei Yi | Liao Hua | Jiang Wan | Ma Su | Ma Liang | Fan Qiang | Zhang Da | Liu Du | Liu Feng | Lady Fan | Shamoke | Zhao Fan | Mi Zhu | Mi Fang | Yang Xi | Zhang Nan | Zhao Lei | Zhao Tong | Zhao Guang | Dong Yun | Huang Quan | Li Feng | Li Yan | Liu Yan | Lady Gan | Lady Mi | Sun Qian | Zhang Da | Jiang Shu | Xu Jing | Fu Shiren

Jin Dynasty
Sima Shi | Sima Zhao | Wang Yuanji | Deng Ai | Xiahou Ba | Guo Huai | Zhuge Dan | Zhong Hui | Wen Yang | Xin Xianying | Chen Shou | Sima Yan | Sima You | Cao Huan | Wen Qin

Han Dynasty
Diao Chan | Zuo Ci | Lady Lu | Hua Xiong | He Jin | Gongsun Zan | Gongsun Fan | Gongsun Yue | Huangfu Song | Chen Gui | Tian Kai | Guan Jing | Kong Rong | Liu Biao | Liu Qi | Cao Bao | Lady Yan | Bao Long | Chen Ying | Zhao Hong | Xu Rong | Ze Rong | Ou Xing | Wang Yun | Lady Cai | Gongsun Du | Cai Mao | Cai Yong | Ma Tie | Ma Xiu | Han Fu | Han Sui | Han De | Emperor Xian | Emperor Ling | Yuan Yao | Huang Shao | Huang Chengyan | Jiao Chu | Fu Shou | Ma Teng | Consort Tang | Zhang Lu | Liu Zhang | Liu Yao | Tao Qian | Guan Ding | Zhang Song | Lady Yang | Ma Yunlu | Yan Baihu

Exclusive Characters
Lei Bin | Lixia | Luo Pingan | Jingshu | Gongsun Baoyue | Li Feiyan | Xiahou Qingyi | Sun Ruan'er | Liu Qing'er

Good Organizations
Five Bushel Sect | Five Tiger Generals | Forces in Xiliang | Gongsun Zan's Army | Liu Biao's Army | Liu Zhang's Army | Tao Qian's Army

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