Cheng Yu
Cheng Yu (ROTK13)
Character Information
Force(s): Wei
Weapon Type: Sword (2~6)
Spear (7~8)
Unit Type: Strategist
Significant Battle(s):
First Appearance: Dynasty Warriors 2
Historical Information
Real name:
Chéng Yù
Chinese name:
Style name:
Chinese name:
Formerly named Chéng Lì (程立).

Cheng Yu (onyomi: Tei Iku) is an advisor for Cao Cao who stood at approximately 191 cm (6'3") and had a beautiful mustache. Persistent in his own beliefs and unwilling to bend to others, Cao Cao is noted to express utmost confidence in his vassal's decisions. One of his sons is named Cheng Wu.

His height is 170 cm (5'7") in Kessen II.

Role in GamesEdit

In Dynasty Warriors, Cheng Yu is a prominent general of Wei during their early and late battles. He may appear as early as the Yellow Turban Rebellion as a subordinate of Cao Cao. He continues to serve Cao Cao in his later battles, often staying by his side. In some games, he may appear as late as Mt. Dingjun.

In Dynasty Warriors 5, Cheng Yu accompanies Cao Cao during his Escape from Chi Bi. In Dynasty Warriors 8, he guards Puyang castle while Xiahou Dun and his companions go to rescue Xun Yu, but his unit is immediately wiped out once Lu Bu's main army arrives.

In Warriors Orochi 3, Cheng Yu acts as Jia Xu's replacement officer when players assume the latter's role.

Cheng Yu is one of Cao Cao's top strategists in Romance of the Three Kingdoms with his intelligence being in the low 90's. He also has decent leadership and politics and even a for strategists uncommonly high war stat, but he usually lacks charisma. He appears as a free officer in Yan Province before joining Cao Cao. He ends up as a free officer again in the later scenarios of Cao Cao's rule, mirroring his historical semi-retirement in the late 210's.

During his Kessen II appearance, Cheng Yu is a sadistic strategist for Cao Cao who proposes many crafty and diabolical schemes during war councils and political stages of the game. He has a habit to chuckle or giggle at thought of one of his plans being used in war. Though he acts rotten, Cheng Yu actually harbors respect for the working populace and is compelled to help them. His speck of empathy is officially described as the reason why Cao Cao acquired him, but Cheng Yu personally detests the softer side of himself. He leads an army of bowmen into battle and can hurl destructive magic at his foes. He can also rally to boost a unit's morale.

Voice ActorsEdit

  • Dan Woren - Kessen II (English)
  • Kang Ho-cheol - Dynasty Warriors: Unleashed (Korean)
  • Park Doseon - Romance of the Three Kingdoms: The Legend of Cao Cao (Korean)
  • Bin Shimada - Kessen II (Japanese)
  • Arihiro Matsuda - Romance of the Three Kingdoms drama CD series


  • "Let's tell Liu Bei's soldiers that if they defy the Mandate of Heaven, they will suffer Heaven's wrath! Liu Bei's army will be consumed with fear! Hahahahaha!"
  • "Master Xu Shu, you came at just the perfect time. I have a letter addressed to you."
"A letter for me, Master Cheng Yu?"
"It seems to be quite important."
"Umm, sorry, but could you throw it away for me? I don't want to deal with things I know nothing about."
~~Cheng Yu and Xu Shu; Dynasty Warriors 8

Historical InformationEdit

Cheng Yu was born in Dong'e in Yan Province, originally named Cheng Li. Once he dreamed about lifting the sun with his hands and decided to change his name to Cheng Yu. He was known as a very brave man in his home county. When the Yellow Turban Rebellion broke out, a country magistrate named Wang Du burned the storage of the warehouse and caused the prefect and the commoners to flee the city. Cheng Yu contacted a man named Xue Fang and told him that Wang Du would be unable to handle the situation and they should reoccupy the city. Xue Fang agreed, but the commoners did not comply. The two then sent a few cavalry to the hilltop near the commoners' camp and Xue Fang and his men started to scream once they saw them. This made the commoners believe that Yellow Turban rebels would attack and they fled into the city. Wang Du then started to launch an attack on the city, but Cheng Yu successfully defended it and then launched an unexpected counter attack which dealt a heavy blow to Wang Du.

In 192, the governor of Yan, Liu Dai, asked Cheng Yu to join him, but he refused. He then asked him for advice whether he should side with Yuan Shao or Gongsun Zan. Cheng Yu told him to side with Yuan Shao, who would defeat Gongsun Zan soon. Liu Dai severed his ties with Gongsun Zan and the latter was eventually defeated by Yuan Shao's men. Liu Dai again asked Cheng Yu to become his officer and offered him a title, but Cheng Yu refused yet again. Later that year, Liu Dai was killed in battle with Yellow Turban remnants and Cao Cao was marched his forces into Yan to defeat them. He sent a letter to Cheng Yu, who immediately decided to join him. When the commoners asked him about why he changed his attitude so snobbishly, Cheng Yu only laughed and did not answer. Cheng Yu was assigned the position of prefect.

In 194, Lu Bu took control over Yan Province and most counties yielded to him. Cheng Yu and Xun Yu guarded Juancheng and saw that the defense against Lu Bu could only succeed if the counties of Juancheng, Dong'e and Fan would work together. Cheng Yu went to Dong'e, since he could probably convince his fellow townspeople to help them in the defense. On the way, he passed Fan county and saw that Lu Bu's general Si Yi tried to persuade the prefect to surrender. Cheng Yu met with the prefect and held a speech that convinced the latter to kill Si Yi instead. When Cheng Yu arrived in Dong'e, Xue Ti and Zao Zhi had already put up a defense. Cheng Yu then split his cavalry force and ordered one part to take control of Cangting, effectively blocking the advance of Chen Gong.

When Cao Cao returned, he wanted to lead his men north and surrender to Yuan Shao. Cheng Yu rebuked him, saying that Cao Cao was a far better commander. His speech convinced Cao Cao to not surrender to Yuan Shao, but he asked Cheng Yu to prepare three days worth of grain since a famine had broken out. Cheng Yu instead led his men to his hometown, abducted the townspeople and had them slaughtered. He then used the human meat to feed Cao Cao's army, which did not know anything about Cheng Yu's actions.

Later, Cheng Yu advised Cao Cao to kill Liu Bei when the latter had turned to him for help against Lu Bu, but Cao Cao refused. Afterwards, Cao Cao sent Liu Bei to deal with Yuan Shu and Cheng Yu immediately went to Cao Cao, warning him that Liu Bei would betray him. Cao Cao sent a small force to order Liu Bei back, but it was already too late. In 200, Yuan Shao marched his forces south to attack Cao Cao. Cheng Yu was sent to guard Juancheng with 700 men. Cao Cao sent a letter to him, saying that he would send 2,000 reinforcements later. Cheng Yu replied that he should not send reinforcements, stating that if his force in Juancheng became bigger, Yuan Shao would surely attack and defeat them. With only 700 men, however, Yuan Shao would not attack and pass the city. Cao Cao did not send any reinforcements and Cheng Yu was able to hold Juancheng. Later, he aided Li Dian and Yue Jin in defeating Gao Gan.

Before the Battle of Chibi, Cao Cao stationed a large force in Jiangling. Many officers thought that Sun Quan would kill the fleeing Liu Bei and surrender to Cao Cao, but Cheng Yu analyzed that Sun Quan would rather side with Liu Bei and fight a desperate battle. Cao Cao did not take his advice seriously and Cao Cao's fleet was eventually burned. Later, in 211, while Cao Cao was away fighting Ma Chao, Cheng Yu served as an advisor to Cao Pi. A small rebellion broke out and Cao Pi led his men to besiege the city. The rebels offered their surrender and Cao Pi consulted his officers on whether they should accept the surrender or not. Most officers said that the rebels should be executed, stating that Cao Cao issued a law that those who surrendered after being besieged should be executed. Cheng Yu opposed the decision, stating that Cao Cao only issued the law because he was fighting many enemies at that time and it served to intimidate other enemies to surrender before a long siege. He also said that if the decision was made to execute them, Cao Cao should be informed first. The officers ignored him and insisted on their military autonomy.

Cao Pi met Cheng Yu afterwards and asked him if he held any thought back. Cheng Yu stated that the commanders only held autonomy at the frontlines because decisions had to be made immediately, but those rebels had no intentions of mutiny and Cao Pi should not use his authority. Cao Pi decided to report the issue to Cao Cao, who ordered the rebels to be spared. After his return, he greatly praised Cheng Yu.

After losing to his political enemy Xing Zhen, Cheng Yu went into semi-retirement. Some officials told Cao Cao that Cheng Yu harbored intentions of rebelling, but Cao Cao trusted Cheng Yu enough to not investigate the allegations, he even gave him more rewards. When Cao Pi ascended the throne, he reinstated Cheng Yu as Minister of the Imperial Guards and intended to make Cheng Yu a duke, but Cheng Yu died before a decision was made. He was posthumously named "Marquis Su" and was succeeded by his son Cheng Wu.

Romance of the Three KingdomsEdit

In the novel, Cheng Yu came up with a ruse to make Xu Shu leave Liu Bei and join Cao Cao's ranks. Due to Xu Shu's filial nature, he advised Cao Cao to make Xu Shu think that his mother was being held hostage and force Xu Shu to serve him. He then met Xu Shu's mother and pretended to be Xu Shu's sworn brother. After some time, he got to know the handwriting of Xu Shu's mother well enough to write a fake letter to Xu Shu, mimicing her handwriting. Xu Shu was successfully tricked into believing that his mother was imprisoned and left Liu Bei. When his mother learned that Xu Shu had left Liu Bei to help her, she committed suicide and Xu Shu swore to never give Cao Cao any advice.

Before the Battle of Chibi, he predicted that Wu admiral Zhou Yu would use fire on Cao Cao's fleet, but Cao Cao was confident that the winds would make such an attack ineffective. After Cao Cao's disastrous defeat, Cheng Yu was one of the few people who stayed with him during his escape from the battle.