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Yuan Shang
Romance of the Three Kingdoms XII~XIV portrait
Character Information
Force(s): Yuan Shao's Forces
Yuan Shang's Forces
Weapon Type: Spear (5)
Sword (6)
Swallow swords (Blast)
Unit Type: Hero
Significant Battle(s):
First Appearance: Dynasty Warriors 2
Historical Information
Real name:
Yuán Shàng
Chinese name:
Style name:
Chinese name:
顯甫 - 显甫

Yuan Shang (onyomi: En Shō) is Yuan Shao's third son. Due to his good looks, he was favored by Yuan Shao. After his father's death, he fought with his eldest brother, Yuan Tan, for the succession. Later, he was defeated by Cao Cao and turned to his other brother Yuan Xi, governor of You Province, for help. However, the two were defeated there as well and fled to Gongsun Kang of Liaodong. Gongsun Kang, however, killed the two and sent their heads to Cao Cao in order to keep him from invading Liaodong.

Role in Games[]

Dynasty Warriors 4 gave him a special role at Ji Province. While the brothers begin to feud who will be family heir, Shen Pei and Feng Ji suggest that he should be chosen. After Yuan Xi is taken out, Cao Cao can decide which brother will side with him. If Yuan Shang is picked, the younger thinks Yuan Tan will never be his brother again and attacks. When his father arrives, Yuan Shang realizes his mistakes and fights Cao Cao alongside Yuan Shao.

Voice Actors[]


  • "The one to succeed the Yuan family should be one of skill! I will defeat you and prove my worth!"
  • "My father favored me over my brother, I owe it to him to defend our proud family."
~~Yuan Shang; Dynasty Warriors 7: Xtreme Legends

Historical Information[]

Yuan Shang was born from Yuan Shao's second wife, Liushi, and had much animosity between himself and his oldest brother, Yuan Tan. This conflict arose due to them both believing they should be the heir of their father. Matters were made worse due to Yuan Shao favoring the boy and being very unclear on whom he wanted to succeed him. This problem of succession began to climax after 200 AD, when Yuan Shao soundly lost the battle of Guandu.

Unable to fully recover from the loss, Yuan Shao grew ill at his capital in Ye, where Yuan Shang was also stationed. After his father's death, principle supporters Shen Pei and Feng Ji, pushed for Yuan Shang to succeed his father before Yuan Tan could reach the capital. Yuan Shang agreed, and nearly fell into conflict with his brother once he arrived. While open conflict was avoided, resentment continued to mount between the brothers.

Shang sent Feng Ji with Tan to report on his brothers' actions, who was on the receiving end of Cao Cao's follow up invasion. Besieged at Liyang, Yuan Shang did not at first send soldiers to help his brother, suspecting a coup once the battle was over. As a result, Yuan Shang's adviser Feng Ji was killed. He did finally lead some forces to break Cao Cao's siege, forcing Cao Cao to pull back. Yuan Tan approached Yuan Shang about more soldiers to pursue further victory against Cao Cao, but Shang denied him, stoking the fire to their conflict.

This conflict finally culminated in Yuan Shang defending Ye from an attack by his brother. Shang was able to not only drive off Yuan Tan, but also pursue him back to Nanpi, driving him to take refuge at Pingyuan. He was, however, unable to finally defeat his brother, and a stalemate ensued. This standoff ended when Yuan Shang received word that Cao Cao was moving to attack Ye in his absence, under the pretext of aiding Yuan Tan. Yuan Shang rushed to save his capital, only to be defeated by Cao's forces, forcing him to flee to safety at Yuan Xi's, his other brother, in You Province.

Once in You Province, the two brothers suffered a rebellion of their officers, forcing them to flee to the Wuhan tribe for safety. They made their last desperate stand at Mt. Bailong, only to be completely crushed. Yuan Shang attempted to flee to Liaodong for safety with Gongsun Kang, who promptly executed them and sent their heads to Cao Cao.

Romance of the Three Kingdoms[]

The Romance of the Three Kingdoms introduces Yuan Shang during the campaign at Guandu, apart of his father's retinue. He attempts to prove himself heroic at the follow up battle of Cangting by riding out and challenging Cao Cao's forces. Shi Huan answered the challenge and Yuan Shang feigned defeat after a few bouts, before turning suddenly and slaying him with an arrow through the eye. However, his victory was short lived, and Yuan Shao's forces were defeated the next day. Shang accompanied his father back to the capital at Ye. Overflowing with arrogance at his personal victory, Yuan Shang endeavors to strike Cao Cao's forces at Liyang, only to meet Zhang Liao in battle and completely defeated before three blows could be exchanged.

The arrogance of Yuan Shang continues to cause him problems as his struggle against Cao Cao continues. When Cao Cao lays siege to Ye city while his forces are out trying to defeat Yuan Tan, Yuan rushes back completely misreading the situation and marching right into a trap layer by Cao Cao. This defeat drove Yuan Shang into the mountains, where Cao Cao ambushed his camp at night and drove him towards You Province and Yuan Xi. Shang and his brother are defeated again alongside the Wuhan tribe and forced to seek refuge with Gongsun Kang, who decided to execute them once he saw Cao Cao showed no interest in attacking him as well as the Yuans.