Gan Ning
Gan Ning Artwork (DW9)
Character Information
Force(s): Liu Yan's Forces
Liu Biao's Forces
Huang Zu's Forces
181 cm (5'11")
Weapon Type: Scimitar (2~5)
Dual knives (6)
Sickle and chain (7, 9)
Flail (7:E, 8)
Significant Battle(s):
Playable Debut: Dynasty Warriors 2
Historical Information
Real name:
Gān Níng
Chinese name:
甘寧 - 甘宁
Style name:
Chinese name:
興霸 - 兴霸
Exact death year is unknown, sometime between 219-222. Romance of the Three Kingdoms has him die in 222.
Warriors Orochi Info
Character Type:
Speed (WO1~2)
Power (WO3~4)
Personal Item:
Eagle Feather
Sacred Treasure:

Gan Ning (onyomi: Kan Nei) is a reputed Wu general. During his youth, he led a pirate group that infamously wore bells to "warn" their enemies of their impending doom. After a fallout with Huang Zu, Gan Ning served Sun Quan for the rest of his days. In response to Gan Ning's surprise raid at Ruxukou, Sun Quan said "Mengde has Zhang Liao, and I have Gan Xingba."; Gan Ning's death was a crushing blow to him. Romance of the Three Kingdoms further dramatizes his conflict with Ling Tong.

His Dynasty Warriors persona is twenty-second place with fans in Gamecity's Dynasty Warriors 7 character popularity poll and thirty-third in Dynasty Warriors 8: Xtreme Legends popularity poll. In Famitsu's character survey, he placed fifth place for most desirable friend. The latest poll for the eighth installment puts him in forty-second. The character poll for overseas fans puts him in second place for the Wu division and tenth in the semi-final round. His Dynasty Warriors counterpart has an image song titled FELLOWSHIP ~MY DEAR FELLOW~ and shares a duet with Ling Tong called Taste of Victory.

His character's height in Kessen II is 180 cm (5'11").

Role in Games

"Humph! When it comes to pure, mindless violence, you win hands down."
~~Ling Tong

Dynasty Warriors

Gan Ning is known as a menace on the seas by pirate and soldier alike. Leading his own personal unit of sailors, who are likely his former shipmates, he launches surprise attacks in most of his battles. In the games where he serves under Huang Zu, he causes Ling Cao's demise and earns Ling Tong's scorn. He is a rival of sorts for Zhang Liao at He Fei as they both lead key ambushes to turn the tide of battle. To restore Wu's broken morale from He Fei, Gan Ning leads a night raid on Wei's camp at Ru Xu Kou and proves to be a crucial warrior for Sun Quan. Unless it is his own story or players neglect him, Gan Ning generally dies against Shu at Yi Ling.

His Legend Mode in Dynasty Warriors 4: Xtreme Legends takes place during his night raid at Ru Xu Kou. Planning a hit-and-run through Wei's camp, Gan Ning leads a small party to deal ten minutes of carnage. His time is limited to avoid having the enemy claim the ships they used. Although he caught the camp's generals off guard, Zhang Liao returns to challenge Gan Ning. Slaying his rival in their encounter, Gan Ning and his men make a getaway after their victory.

Dynasty Warriors 5 describes Gan Ning as a pirate who raided the docks at Jiang Dong. Taking advantage of the chaos, he joins Huang Zu and holds off Sun Quan at Xia Kou. Feeling under appreciated by his master, he soon seeks Sun Quan's service. After joining the chase for Cao Cao's head, Gan Ning distinguishes himself as an able officer at He Fei and Fan Castle. During his time in Wu, Ling Tong tries to avenge his father and attacks Gan Ning while they work together. When Gan Ning rescues Ling Tong, they eventually make amends at Yi Ling and they slay Liu Bei. Wu gains momentum and conquers the land with Gan Ning's support. In his ending, he is happy for some excitement as bandits raid his leisurely boat.

Ru Xu Kou continues to be his Legend Mode in the Xtreme Legends expansion. This time he shares the stage with Ling Tong, Lu Meng, Taishi Ci, and Zhou Tai. Although his night raid is still a pivotal part of Wu's plan, he works together with his comrades to succeed. On Lu Meng's orders, he takes the center part of the map to draw Xu Huang and Xiahou Dun's attention. With them distracted, Gan Ning circles around the west through Wu's boats and attacks the main camp guarded by Cao Ren. If he takes the enemy camp quickly, Wei is thrown off balance and not even Zhang Liao's heroics can stop Wu's victory march.

Gan Ning's ending scene in Dynasty Warriors: Online shows him walking to the marketplace with the player by their side. The town's peaceful atmosphere agitates the former pirate enough to engage his companion in a friendly duel.

Gan Ning's former employment is given a passing mention in Dynasty Warriors 6, and he is first seen joining the Allied Forces at Chi Bi. Cocky of his strength, Gan Ning insists on doing things his own way rather than listening to his superior's orders. Though Ling Tong is disgruntled with his brutish tactics, Zhou Yu and Lu Meng forgive his behavior since it lets him demonstrate his prowess to his new allies. As time progresses, Lu Meng grows weary with Gan Ning's apathetic attitude towards his comrades and chides him to work with them. The older gent, while he may criticize Gan Ning's methods, supports the former pirate and helps him gain a favorable image to Sun Quan. Joining the effort to reclaim Jing Province from Liu Bei, Gan Ning is excited to fight Zhang Liao at He Fei and distinguishes himself in the battle. Mourning Lu Meng's death at Fan Castle, Gan Ning decides to take his responsibilities more seriously in honor of his departed friend. With Shu eventually defeated by Wei, he cooperates with Lu Xun's instructions and supports the front at Shi Ting and He Fei Castle. Saying adieu to Wu and his band of sailors, Gan Ning forsakes profit to explore the peaceful land for adventure. His followers track him down and, touched by their similar desires, he decides to bring them with him.

In Dynasty Warriors 7, Gan Ning starts under Huang Zu and challenges both Ling Tong and Sun Quan at the Battle of Xiakou. However, after Huang Zu is defeated, Gan Ning joins the Wu army. As time passes, his rivalry with Ling Tong heats up and Lu Meng usually has to step in to cool them down. Unlike previous titles, Gan Ning lives past the battle of Yiling and is seen in Wu's ending, enjoying the temporary peace with Sun Quan and the other Wu officers.

Gan Ning's first Legendary Battle allows the player to fight as him in the Battle of Xiakou as he faces the Wu army led by Sun Jian. In his second Legendary Battle, Gan Ning fights Shu officers to protect the Wu forces as they retreat from Yiling.

Dynasty Warriors Next introduces Gan Ning in the sixth chapter where he begrudgingly fights for his master at Xiakou. After suffering defeat by Sun Quan twice, the pirate awaits his execution only to be spared by the Wu leader who recognizes his capabilities. He later appears in Chibi to defend their main camp while the fire attack is being prepared. During Wei's scenario, he and Ling Tong reprise their roles at the Battle of Hefei. His actions in Wu's last stand varies with each faction. Wei's version has him charge recklessly at the player should Lu Meng be defeated whereas Jin's rendition of that battle sees the duo launch a surprise attack on Sima Yi's main camp. In Shu's version, he leads the vanguard against the opposing army while displaying his camaraderie with Ling Tong.

In Dynasty Warriors 8, Gan Ning reprises his role from the previous installment. At Yiling, he ventures on his own without any orders from Lu Xun. However, he is ambushed by Shamoke and slain in battle. If the players accompanies and fights with him, Gan Ning will live past Yiling and fight the Wei forces at Guangling.

In Wei's story, he will leap onto Cao Cao's boat during the battle at Chibi, and must be defeated to ensure the vessel's complete travel. He later joins Ling Tong in ambushing Zhang Liao at Hefei, but both are repelled when Yue Jin and Li Dian arrive. In the hypothetical route, he will join Ling Tong in an ambush party against the Wei forces attempting to advance north in Jianye. If Sun Quan is killed at Jianye, he will join Ling Tong, Lu Xun, and Lu Meng to help Zuo Ci's rebellion.

In the expansion, Gan Ning is playable for one of Wu's Xtreme Legend stages. Working with Lu Xun and Zhu Ran, they lead the defense of Jiangling against the massive Wei army led by Cao Pi. He and many other of Sun Quan's officers join their lord in an alternate version of Hefei Castle in Jin's story. He and Ling Tong will also ambush the Wei officers at Shangyong with a fire attack as they pass through the central area to reach the castle.

In Dynasty Warriors: Unleashed, Gan Ning will appear as reinforcements for the player during the Chibi campaign. His bond story has him leave Huang Zu out of frustration for not being given a promotion even after killing Ling Cao. It's thanks to Su Fei that he is able to spread his wings and later find fulfillment as an officer of Wu. Sun Quan's comparison of him to Zhang Liao is reprised during a banquet to celebrate their recent victory over Cao Cao at Ruxukou.

Warriors Orochi

During Orochi's scenario, he acts as Zhou Yu's secret weapon against Zhuge Liang at He Fei. Teaming up with Zhang Liao, both warriors ambush the marching Orochi army. Despite their efforts, they are defeated and Gan Ning evades capture.

By the time Warriors Orochi takes place, Gan Ning initially allies himself with Lu Xun and Ling Tong to defy Orochi. He and Ling Tong also join a rebellion force led by Xing Cai and the two part ways after Gan Ning disobeys orders. He later enlists in a rebellion led Nagamasa and Oichi. When Nagamasa's army is beaten, he joins forces with Cao Pi. He is one of the officers who sides with Cao Pi over Cao Cao in Wei's ending.

In Warriors Orochi 2, Gan Ning fights alongside Lu Meng and they struggle to fight off Lu Bu's army. Seeing an opening through Lu Bu's charge, the former pirate momentarily retreats from the battle to seek reinforcements. Like Lu Meng, he joins Sakon's resistance in gratitude for saving them. He shares his dream stage with Zhang Liao and Kotarō at Ueda Castle. To support Sun Quan, they spring a surprise attack on Meng Huo's strategist, Zhuge Liang. As they progress through the map, Ling Cao spots them and needs to be defeated for their plan to work.

Although the former pirate still swears allegiance to Wu, Gan Ning decides to fight and wander the land by himself in Warriors Orochi 3. His lone and violent raids into the serpent force's bases causes him to build a rather infamous reputation for himself as a "raving wild man". Upon hearing of the rumors from Lianshi, Lu Meng leads a search party for him at his last known whereabouts at Mikatagahara. As Gan Ning helps them claim victory he forms a friendly rivalry with Masanori.

In the downloadable scenario, "Party Planners", Gan Ning helps Shuten Dōji and Zhang Fei gather food and drinks for a banquet while defeating enemy officers in their way.

In Ultimate, Gan Ning accompanies Shennong to Shizugatake to rescue Hideyoshi's party from Da Ji's clones. He later appears at Hefei to try and clear up a misunderstanding between the Takeda and the Uesugi caused by clones of Aya, Shingen, and Kanetsugu.

Dynasty Tactics

In Dynasty Tactics, Gan Ning only plays an optional role as a recruitable officer. For Dynasty Tactics 2, Wu's story gives Gan Ning a more prominent role. He joins after Liu Biao is defeated.


Gan Ning appears as a general for Wu in Kessen II. He is a bare-chested, tattooed general who is mentioned to being a former pirate. He is often seen alongside Sun Quan and acts as one of his closest generals. He's often worried by his lord's actions and will lightly question his judgment. He leads an archer unit in battle and is a solid physical fighter. If Cao Cao issues a scheme to weaken the trust between Liu Bei and Sun Quan at Chi-Bi, both he and Zhang Fei will get into a bloody scuffle. They will lose men and lower ally morale. His Dynasty Warriors 2 appearance makes a short cameo in a cut-scene after the Battle of Chi Bi.

Character Information

Gan Ning 15th Anniversary Artwork (DWEKD)

Shin Sangoku Musou 15th Anniversary artwork


Dubbing himself "Gan Ning of the Bells/Chimes" (鈴の甘寧, Suzu no Kan Nei), Gan Ning is a man of action who doesn't like to adjust to proper etiquette. Wild and fearless, he is merely satisfied with a good brawl in battle. He's confident in his abilities and, though he seems arrogant, he has a good head on his shoulders and knows when to rely on teamwork. He especially likes his private army of sailors and they fondly call him "Big Bro". However, he's fickle about who he'll take orders from as seen in the Warriors Orochi series. Putting up a tough front, he occasionally has difficulty expressing his opinions in a nicer tone. In the Japanese script, he is quite bashful when he tries to voice his dedication to the player's characters and is especially fretful over his wife in Dynasty Warriors 6: Empires.

His relationship with Ling Tong is strained at first, mostly on the latter's end regarding his father's death. Gan Ning is personally more agitated by Ling Tong's haughty attitude and persistent insults. Their hostility towards one another eventually turns into a civil rivalry between comrades, each one trying to outmatch or outwit the other in combat. Their sour ties are downplayed in Dynasty Warriors 6. His rival forgives him and they're good comrades in the end.

He respects Lu Meng as his good word helped him enter Wu. They share a mentor-student relationship in recent games, as Lu Meng often chides him for his reckless and nonuniform behavior. Gan Ning acts as though he doesn't care and often shrugs off the strategist's concerns. He nicknames Lu Meng, "Old man" (オッサン, ossan), a term that displeases the veteran as he's just in his late twenties. During the Warriors Orochi series, he shares special conversations with Nagamasa, Yukimura, Keiji, Magoichi, Mitsunari, and Masanori.

Character Symbolism

In the Japanese version of Dynasty Warriors 4: Empires, Gan Ning is given the nickname of "The Courageous Brawler" while the English version changes it to "The Roaring Flame of Honor". As a dominant ruler in Dynasty Warriors 5: Empires, he calls his five greatest warriors the "Five Strong Bells".

The original name for his Strength weapon in Dynasty Warriors 6 can also be translated as Dragon Dance, a traditional performance with a line of dancers during Chinese New Year festivities. Dragons in China are revered as creatures of good fortune and longevity who grant fertile rainfall for the coming year. The dance has been said to be thwart future illness, a few legends stating that it was used to appease the Dragon King Ao Guang.

His skill chart is roughly shaped after the "bell/chime" character (鈴).

His personal item in Warriors Orochi 3 Ultimate, Youxia's Bell, refers to his time prior to serving Huang Zu. A Youxia was considered as a wandering hero or vigilante with a known code of chivalry. Aside from having bells to "warn" impending targets, Gan Ning's group was known for extravagance and also mainly robbed from officials that treated Gan badly. Other people considered as Youxia include Water Margin's Song Jiang, the poet, Li Bai, and Zhou Tong, the fabled archer.

Voice Actors

  • Doug Stone - Dynasty Warriors 4~5, Warriors Orochi series; first and second games only (English-uncredited)
  • Michael Sinterniklaas - Dynasty Warriors 6~8 (English-uncredited)
  • Crash Buist - Dynasty Warriors 9 (English)
  • Dean Wein - Kessen II (English-uncredited)
  • Grant George - Romance of the Three Kingdoms: The Legend of Cao Cao (English-uncredited)
  • Dirk Meyer - Dynasty Warriors 3 (German-uncredited)
  • Li Xiangsheng - Dynasty Warriors 3 (Chinese)
  • Huang Zhen Ji - Dynasty Warriors 9 (Chinese)
  • Seong Wan Gyeong - Dynasty Warriors 2 (Korean)
  • Kim Yong Joon - Dynasty Warriors 3 (Korean)
  • Byeon Yeong-hui - Dynasty Warriors 4~5 (Korean)
  • Jeong Jaeheon - Romance of the Three Kingdoms: The Legend of Cao Cao (Korean)
  • Shiyoki Kitatani - Dynasty Warriors 2 (Japanese)
  • Hiroaki Miura - Dynasty Warriors 3~9, Warriors Orochi series (Japanese)
  • Yasushiko Tokuyama - Dynasty Tactics (Japanese)
  • Munehiro Tokita - Dynasty Tactics 2 (Japanese)
  • Mahito Ōba - Kessen II (Japanese)
  • Tomokazu Seki - Sangokushi Legion

Live Action Performers


See also: Gan Ning/Quotes
  • "Fight me if you dare!"
  • "Today's your lucky day! You get to fight the great Gan Ning!"
  • "Gan Ning is back in action!"
  • "Kill your enemies, protect your allies. It's as simple as that."
  • "I like adventure, that's the way I am and always will be. Taking my ease in a world of peace? The thought puts shivers down my spine."
  • "Oh yeah! When the bells come ringin', death comes swingin'!"
  • "I'll offer your head to the spirits of my brothers!"
"Hah! You'll have to come and get it first!"
~~Liu Bei and Gan Ning; Dynasty Warriors 5
  • "A leader must have more than just strength of arms. Today, you learn about strategy!"
"Yeah, yeah, fine. But let's go and have a drink first!"
"Hmm... I guess I can't refuse. But just one, you hear?!"
~~Lu Meng and Gan Ning; Dynasty Warriors 7
  • "Your raid was a thing of beauty. You looked quite remarkable on the battlefield."
"Your raids aren't bad either. They say the mere mention of "Here comes Liao" silences even a bawling child."
"Hahaha... I bet you could make even a demon speechless."
"Heh, I suppose I could get used to that. When it's my turn, please tell them "Here comes Ning!"."
~~Zhang Liao and Gan Ning; Dynasty Warriors 8
  • "I heard you've been close with Master Liu Biao, Master Gan Ning. I bet that Jing Province was very peaceful."
"Heh, too peaceful. He was always on my back to do some studying as soon as I had any free time, too. Sitting at a desk and squinting at letters all day! I can't do that! I fought my way out of there!"
"Master Liu Biao is very keen on study. That's why Jing has so many scholars, but it just didn't agree with you."
"I guess it was nice of him to try and find something for me to do, but not everyone is suited to all things."
~~Liu Bei and Gan Ning; Dynasty Warriors: Godseekers
  • "Get a look at this chest. You want past, you gotta go through it! Ding, ding! Round one!"
"Hey, pirate boy! I like the cut of your jib! Hah!"
"...And you're... actually kinda tough..."
~~Gan Ning and Keiji; Warriors Orochi
  • "Why'd you all come and pick a fight with us?"
"What? No! I didn't pick anything. Perhaps you mean "kicked"?"
~~Gan Ning and Yoshimoto; Warriors Orochi 2
  • "Hey, Gan Ning. You wanna go check out the sunset by the river?"
"Why would I want to go hang out with you, especially when I know you can't stand me?!"
"If you went, you'd understand! I'm sure you'll like the type of hospitality I dish out!"
~~Masanori and Gan Ning; Warriors Orochi 3
  • "You are a fascinating man. You and I are like water and oil; our values are different in every way, and yet you still insist on sticking by me."
"That's what makes us such a good team. For example, you like to take your time, while I'm always in a hurry."
"Yeah, I guess so..."
"Which means that when you find yourself over-burdened with worry and unable to move, I can pull you along. And when I'm impatient and prone to foolish gaffes, you take your time, think carefully, and keep me in line. Don't you think we have a good balance between us?"
"You may be right. We complement each other nicely. Perhaps we are each other's missing parts-- the friends we really need."
"Hehe, you get it. I could tell you and I would work together well like that. Let's stick together, partner!"
~~Takakage and Gan Ning; Warriors Orochi 4


See also: Gan Ning/Movesets‎‎

Dynasty Warriors 9



Keys: Square Flow Attack • Tri Reactive Attack • Circle MusouX Jump/Mount

Gan Ning is affiliated with the chain sickle in this appearance.

Unique Flow Attack:
Unique Trigger Attack (R1 + ):
Special Technique (R1 + Circle):
Musou (Circle):
Aerial Musou (X + Circle):


See also: Gan Ning/Weapons

Dynasty Warriors 8

Gan Ning still uses the flail as his default weapon in this title.

Historical Information

Gan Ning, at the time a bandit and outlaw, often raided empty homes of the rich just to kill the returning families; though he eventually grew tired of his banditry and started to study military affairs and conduct, which lead gave him a solid wit on his shoulders.

Gan Ning soon served under Liu Yan, a warlord of Yi province. After Liu Yan's death, Gan Ning revolted against the Yi successor, Liu Zhang. His rebellion failed, and Gan Ning traveled back to Jing province seeking employment under Liu Biao. Instead, he came to work for Huang Zu. Yet, though Huang Zu forced him to stay under his service, Gan Ning was treated like no more than a common soldier. The event in which Gan Ning shot and killed Ling Cao, an officer of Sun Quan, was virtually ignored by Huang Zu. At the recommendation and urging of adviser Su Fei, Huang Zu promoted Gan Ning to the Chief of Zhu. Zhu was located relatively close to Sun Quan's territory, and Gan Ning escaped over to there.

The generals Zhou Yu and Lu Meng beseech-ed Sun Quan to allow Gan Ning into service, which he did. In 208 AD, the territory of Xiakou was subjugated, and Huang Zu was slain. Sun Quan offered two rewards after the victory: one for the head of Huang Zu, the second for the head of Su Fei. Because of the generosity and kindness displayed to him in his earlier years, Gan Ning pleaded with Sun Quan to grant Su Fei amnesty. Once again, Sun Quan accepted, and Su Fei was let off.

After the Battle of Chibi, Sun Quan ordered Gan Ning to capture the city of Yiling. Gan Ning easily claimed success in this objective, but was surrounded and hard-pressed by the troops of Cao Ren. Though outnumbered, Yiling was held long enough for Zhou Yu to arrive as reinforcements, and Cao Ren was repelled. Other grand exploits of Gan Ning include the scaling of the city Huan's walls with a silken rope during a siege, the raiding of Cao Ren's camp at Ruxukou, and the defending of Sun Quan's carriage at Hefei, along with Ling Tong and Lu Meng.

However, Gan Ning via noting his past, was also known for wasting away the silk and riches he gained from his raids just for the sake of it. This also translated into his duties as an officer of Wu, in which he was also infamous for disobeying orders regarding council meetings which Lu Meng convinced Sun Quan to put up with during such times; though he was a quick-witted mind on the battlefield, working well with people such as Ling Tong.

However, one infamous occurrence in Gan Ning's personal records from the Record of the Three Kingdoms was involving a kitchen boy that caused a minor offense that caused Gan Ning to hunt him down. The boy as he feared for his life, sought shelter with the ever popular Lu Meng; Lu Meng in particular did not give up the boy until he was promised by Gan Ning that he would be let off, though upon returning the boy Gan Ning went back on his promise and sniped him with an arrow as he was tied up to a tree, killing him and thus with Gan Ning returning to his boat for a nap. Lu Meng was enraged upon hearing the news and wanted to attack him with his troops, though Lu Meng's mother managed to have him refrain from doing so with her profound words. Gan Ning eventually expressed gratefulness to the said mother and him and Lu Meng had a feast with her later on.

Unlike his portrayal within the Romance of the Three Kingdoms, Gan Ning did not slay Yue Jin nor was he killed by Shamoke. Instead, he died of illness. Ling Tong also remained bitter towards Gan Ning until his own death.

It has been noted that in some records, Gan Ning's son Gan Gui inherited much of his father's bitter traits, leaving him to be exiled to Kuaiji for his crimes and soon met his end.

Also contrary to the Koei portrayal of Gan Ning coining Lu Meng as an old man, the latter was historically three years younger than the former.

Romance of the Three Kingdoms


Character-stub This article about a Dynasty Warriors character is a stub. You can help the wiki by expanding it.
Community content is available under CC-BY-SA unless otherwise noted.