Zhong Hui's Forces
175 cm (5'9")
|Weapon Type:||Floating jian (7~8)|
Fan sword (9)
|Playable Debut:||Dynasty Warriors 7|
鍾會 - 钟会
Zhong Hui (onyomi: Shō Kai) is a military general who served Wei and is Zhong Yao's second known son. He is fabled to have been a descendant of Zhongli Mei (鍾離昧), a general who once served under Xiang Yu. Valued for his passionate studious nature yet despised for his sour-and-condescending front, he eventually befriended Jiang Wei after the collapse of Shu and rebelled against the Sima family.
Before his playable Dynasty Warriors appearance, he was a Wei NPC since Dynasty Warriors 2. Fans voted him to tenth place in Gamecity's Dynasty Warriors 7 and Dynasty Warriors 8: Xtreme Legends popularity polls. The latest poll for the eighth installment puts him in tenth once again. The character poll for overseas fans puts him in eighth place for the Jin division. He won second place in the Warriors Orochi 4 Ultimate popularity poll. He also has two character image songs titled Light Blue Sensation and I.
- 1 Role in Games
- 2 Character Information
- 3 Quotes
- 4 Gameplay
- 5 Weapons
- 6 Historical Information
- 7 Romance of the Three Kingdoms
- 8 Gallery
Role in Games
In the Dynasty Warriors series, Zhong Hui often appears as an officer for during the twilight battles for the kingdoms such as Wu Zhang Plains and He Fei Castle. He used to serve under Sima Yi in earlier incarnations, but he often leads his own unit in newer titles. In Dynasty Warriors 5, he and Deng Ai are in charge of the catapults for Wei at Wu Zhang Plains. In the Wei version of the stage, Zhong Hui is the one that is needed to set up the catapults. However, in the Shu version of the stage, Deng Ai is the one that sets up the catapults as Zhong Hui instead arrives as reinforcements at the northeastern edge of the map and works his way down.
His friendship with Jiang Wei is often not mentioned during the games, but Zhong Hui does implore the youth to lay down his arms in Dynasty Warriors 4: Xtreme Legends.
For his playable appearance, he is a competent general who willingly supports the Sima family. He aids them in various campaigns against opposing factions in Wei, Wu, and Shu.
When Jiang Wei attempts to invade Duangu, Sima Zhao orders Zhong Hui and Deng Ai to stop him. Zhong Hui personally leads the Wei army himself in an attempt to prevail over the veteran. However, his arrogance leads him into a trap and he is rescued by Deng Ai. He then begrudgingly cooperates with the other general. He is later seen accompanying their leader to quell Zhuge Dan's Rebellion. His contribution to the battle is telling the Wu forces of Zhu Yi's death by their leader's hand, coercing their surrender to Wei. Zhong Hui suggests their immediate execution, but Sima Zhao refuses to resort to bloodshed.
His bitterness while working together with Deng Ai is the reason why he willingly chooses the direct approach to end Shu. He leads a fraction of the Wei army to attack Yangping Gate. While Xiahou Ba attempts to stall their advance, Zhong Hui is the one who slays him. He is last seen leading subjugation forces into Shu.
The first Legendary Battle Zhong Hui has is a retelling of Zhuge Dan's Rebellion. His second Legendary Battle is his own rebellion as he joins forces with Jiang Wei and other former Shu officers to overthrow Sima Zhao.
Zhong Hui first appears in the penultimate chapter of Dynasty Warriors Next where he and Sima Yi's officers rebel against Cao Shuang in an effort to save Wei. He also participates in most of the battles against Wu and Shu, often reassuring his allies to have more confidence in their tactics. In Jin's ending scene, he is among those present during Sima Yi's rally.
The eighth installment has him appear as one of Sima Yi's officers at Wuzhang plains during Shu and Jin's story modes. He stays loyal to the Sima Family during the latter story path and participates in many events such as Zhuge Dan's Rebellion, Cao Mao's attack on Sima Zhao, and many of Jiang Wei's northern campaigns. He is also present for the final siege of Chengdu.
In the hypothetical path, where Shu's fall occurs earlier than history, Zhong Hui rebels when he is tasked with returning to the capital, and ends up kidnapping Cao Mao. He is captured by Sima Yi and Zhang Chunhua, but they allow him to live so as to serve them again. He, like the other characters in Jin, participates in the final battle at Chibi.
The Xtreme Legends gives him important, though not playable, roles in various hypothetical scenarios of Jin. Zhong Hui will appear in the defense of Shangyong Castle, moving to defend the castle against Zhuge Liang and Lu Meng. He then appears in a revised version of Zhuge Dan's rebellion. Later, Zhong Hui appears as a recurring enemy officer, having launched his rebellion against Sima Zhao.
He first attempts to arrest both Wen Yang and Deng Ai at Chengdu, but both flee and inform Sima Zhao. Acting as late reinforcements at Bashu if his officers surrender before he arrives, Zhong Hui will be forced to retreat but will not give up. Finally, Zhong Hui will launch an assault on Shangyong Castle alongside Jiang Wei and Ding Feng. Defeated and charged with treason, Zhong Hui is executed. Before his death, he sees off Deng Ai and Wen Yang, leaving them with the statement that he simply followed his ambition and that the two could never do the task.
In Dynasty Warriors: Unleashed, Zhong Hui's bond story starts out with him mourning for his mother's death. After the funeral, he is amused to learn of Zhuge Dan being appointed as chief secretary, having been aware of his power-hungry ways for some time. His ploy to trick Wu officer Quan Yi into defecting contributes to Zhuge Dan's revolt failing, though it is Deng Ai who ends up receiving Sima Zhao's praise.
Much to Zhong Hui's chagrin, Deng Ai continues to upstage him during the campaign against Shu, which results in the younger man being more sympathetic to Jiang Wei whom he had fought at a stalemate before Chengdu's fall. While paying their respects to Zhuge Liang's grave, both Zhong Hui and Jiang Wei conspire to eliminate the Sima clan, ending the story with their plan set in place.
Zhong Hui's story in Dynasty Warriors 9 begins with him as one of Sima Yi's recruits for his coup against Cao Shuang. After dealing with both Cao Shuang and Wang Ling, Sima Yi passes control to Sima Shi. Zhong Hui assists the defeated Wei forces in retreating to Hefei Castle and assists in the castle's defense. After repelling a Shu invasion, Sima Shi is wounded, and this moment of weakness allows Guanqiu Jian and Wen Qin to rebel.
At the end of the rebellion, Sima Shi passes to overexertion, and Zhong Hui aids Sima Zhao in putting down Zhuge Dan's rebellion. With the Wu forces gone, Sima Zhao puts down Jiang Wei's final northern campaign.
Deducing that Shu's resources have been depleted, the Wei forces launch their campaign on Shu. After Liu Shan's surrender, Zhong Hui finds that his ambitions are still unfulfilled. Wishing to eventually rebel against Sima Zhao, he brings in Jiang Wei as an ally and declares his will to the heavens.
For his DLC scenario, rather than ignore and look down on the Sima clan entirely, Zhong Hui decides to approach them and use them to further himself instead. Instead of joining their attack at the capital, he is instructed by Sima Yi to eliminate nearby Shu forces and prevent them from attacking during the upheaval.
After Cao Shuang's death, Zhong Hui is relegated to serve Sima Shi alongside Deng Ai. When Xiahou Xuan is executed, Xiahou Ba begins his flight to Shu. As he was not actually present for the coup, Zhong Hui offers to be the mediator to bring him back. Sima Yi allows Zhong Hui to use his proposal.
Upon capture, Zhong Hui tells Xiahou Ba to serve him instead of the Sima family. In no position to refuse, Xiahou Ba agrees. After the duo return back to Wei, Xiahou Ba gives a letter from Wang Ling, an official discontent with the Sima family's rise to power. As Guo Huai's wife is Wang Ling's sister, the pair decide to recruit him for their fight against Wang Ling.
Zhong Hui's advanced preparations prevent the rebellion, and Wang Ling surrenders. Rather than punish Wang Ling, Zhong Hui allows him to live. After Guo Huai makes his report to Sima Yi, he privately tells Zhong Hui to not stop pursuing his ambitions. When Zhong Hui asks why he was not told to continue supporting Sima Shi, Sima Yi replies that the new land will need to be governed by one with talent. If Sima Shi or Sima Zhao's talents cannot match Zhong Hui's, then it is only natural for him to be on top.
After his promotion, Wen Qin approaches Zhong Hui with an offer of friendship. While Xiahou Ba sees Wen Qin as a scoundrel, Zhong Hui sees him as a decent pawn. In Sima Shi's first act, they attack Wu after Sun Quan's death. Thanks to Zhong Hui's efforts, the attack is successful.
Sima Shi's rise to power, however, leads to Cao Fang's increased paranoia, and he summons Sima Shi to the capital in order to kill him. Rather than follow through a civil war, Zhong Hui moves on behalf of Sima Shi and eliminates the rebels in the capital instead.
Once the rebellion is quashed, Sima Shi and Guo Huai are killed as a result of the battle of Mt. Tielong. Zhong Hui begins to make his own moves when Sima Zhao takes his brother's role. Their first move is to begin unifying the land. Wu is the first target of Wei's attack. As most of their capable officers have already died, the Wei forces are able to break closely to the capital.
After Wu is conquered, Zhong Hui proceeds to blackmail Zhuge Ke into service, threatening to exterminate the Sun clan should he not do so. With Wu gone, Wei turns its attention against Shu. Before beginning the final campaign, Zhong Hui asks Sima Zhao why his advice was accepted so readily, only for Sima Zhao to respond that the Sima family always believed that those who rule the land must be those of the most talented. When Zhong Hui asks if he will be promoted if they succeed in conquering Shu, Sima Zhao rejects the proposal, stating that the position he wishes for must be seized, not given. Accepting his proposal, Zhong Hui proceeds to destroy Shu.
After Shu's destruction, Zhuge Ke leads a rebellion at Hefei in order to lure Sima Zhao from Luoyang. Cao Fang later affirms Zhong Hui's decision to rise against the Sima clan. With Wei's retainers in check, Zhong Hui blackmails Jiang Wei into service with the promise of Shu's restoration and Liu Shan's safety.
With his warriors all set, Zhong Hui formally begins his campaign against Sima Zhao, who has rallied his loyalists to aid him at Hefei Castle. Together with his forces and the Wu and Shu forces he gathered, Zhong Hui slays his rival once and for all.
Bringing his forces over to meet Cao Fang, he is congratulated for the general's loyalty, and the emperor asks for Zhong Hui's continued service under his rule. Zhong Hui, however, kills the emperor's guards before having the emperor vacate the throne. Establishing himself as the new emperor, Zhong Hui is met with the remaining loyalists of the Cao family, having allied themselves with the remnants of both Wu and Shu.
After annihilating all resistance, Zhong Hui begins walking to his throne and is met by Xiahou Ba, who has now become the closest confidant of the new emperor. Meeting the other troops that followed him loyally, Zhong Hui simply reminds them of his status as the true chosen one of the land.
By his own volition, Zhong Hui served Wei in Warriors Orochi 3, but when the Hydra emerged, he broke his ties and served under Dong Zhuo and the rest of the demon army, helping him lay siege to Ueda Castle in the original timeline. He also guarded Mt. Xingshi and wounded Jiang Wei, who was attempting to infiltrate Xuchang.
He appears in Luo Castle once, where his image is caught by a wandering Okuni. This eventually causes her to infiltrate the castle, and the ensuing chaos ends up inviting the Coalition from the future. At the end of the battle, Okuni further examines Zhong Hui, and decides to simply reject him.
When the Hydra emerges after the Coalition from the future travels to the past, Zhong Hui once again severs his ties and forms his own kingdom at Luoyang. The coalition responded against this, however, and they defeat him at the throne room of the former capital. A thoroughly defeated Zhong Hui is quickly convinced by Nagamasa and Mitsuhide to abandon his ambition and join them for the good of humanity. Partly admitting to have faulted in his judgment, Zhong Hui then proudly offers to join their cause.
Zhong Hui stars in the downloadable stage, "Zhong Hui's Pride". He serves Dong Zhuo by capturing several beauties. But soon he feels he doesn't have to serve the tyrant to achieve greatness, so he rebels and defeats Dong Zhuo.
In Ultimate, Zhong Hui continues to serve Dong Zhuo at Xuchang. During his stay, Dong Zhuo is attacked by Yuan Shao's forces. During the battle Shennong and Dian Wei appear and later explain that the battle was caused by clones of officers. Deciding to gain glory for himself, Zhong Hui volunteers to assist the two as they go to Shu which is currently under a civil war thanks to similar circumstances.
Zhong Hui is an ally of Seimei Abe and Da Ji in Warriors Orochi 4, appearing to resist the Coalition when they attempt to find an Arm of Ouroboros. Later, when Da Ji allies herself with Odin, Zhong Hui, and the other humans gathered by Seimei begin waiting until the perfect opportunity to rebel.
At Baidi Castle, Zhong Hui joins Loki in trying to defend Zeus's staff. When Himiko attempts to aid Da Ji, Zhong Hui betrays her and shuts the gates when she exits, isolating her and Da Ji. Kiyomori, however, mobilizes some troops against the traitor, and Zhong Hui, much to his disgust, is rescued by Deng Ai. After the battle, he joins the Coalition, and helps fight Orochi and Orochi X.
He is later scouted by Hideyoshi Toyotomi when he attempts to use Zhong Hui to look for a supposedly beautiful goddess.
In Warriors Orochi 4: Ultimate, he helps kickstart the new story by observing Yukimura Sanada before Yukimura departs to meet Loki at the Wuzhang Plains. After Yukimura returns with Loki, Zhong Hui helps defend Jianye castle from the Odin forces and demon forces thereafter. He, along with Zhou Tai are later placed under the command of the Shingen Takeda and help the Takeda Army outwit Himiko at Nagashino.
A flashback scenario also occurs during the later events of the base title, where Zhong Hui alongside Kanbei Kuroda deigns to help Seimei Abe escape Komaki-Nagakute when the three were still a part of Odin's forces. To do so, he has to stealthily move away from Odin's forces and defeat the demon forces such as Sun Wukong and Himiko who are causing too much of a distraction with their jovial banter with Zhong Hui. Once they let Seimei Abe escape, they remark the encounter as being too close and that Zhong Hui will set his plans in motion very soon.
Romance of the Three Kingdoms
Although he is usually an optional general in the Romance of the Three Kingdoms series, both he and Deng Ai star in a "what-if?" scenario in the seventh and eighth installments. After Shu falls, both generals unite with the remaining warriors from the fallen kingdom and declare independence in January 264.
As a contrast to Deng Ai, Zhong Hui was incorporated as the young elite character. He is meant to be the youngest character in Jin, designed to be the new wave of the future. His ego is meant to contrast him from other characters from the cast.
For his playable appearance, he is described as a young, studious man who has the respectable ability to instantly read the battlefield. He believes himself to be an impeccable and almighty genius who is incapable of committing a single error in his strategies. Zhong Hui accepts his failures as a temporary lapse in judgement and will do everything in his power to not place blame on himself. Often bragging that he is withholding his true potential, he jumps at the chance to outwit his adversaries and to punish those who don't agree with him. Due to his arrogance and spiteful demeanor, there aren't many fellow officers who trust him. His pride wilts when he expresses his intimacy for someone and he is unexpectedly bashful.
Opposite of Deng Ai in every respect, he has seething resentments for the veteran. His personal reasons for opposing Sima Zhao is not explicitly stated, but it's been implied that he rebels due to selfishness and pride for his own family. For his Warriors Orochi appearance, he shares special conversations with Nagamasa, Mitsuhide, Aya, and Okuni. He has a short fuse with the dancer's persistent flirtations, while Aya attempts to mold him and "fix" his personality through force.
- David Berón - Dynasty Warriors 4 (English-uncredited)
- Quinton Flynn - Dynasty Warriors 7~8 (English-uncredited)
- James Butler - Dynasty Warriors 9 (English)
- Kyle Hebert - Romance of the Three Kingdoms: The Legend of Cao Cao (English-uncredited)
- Huang Zhen Ji - Dynasty Warriors 9 (Chinese)
- Ichitaro Ai - Dynasty Warriors 7~9, Warriors Orochi 3 (Japanese)
- Yukiya Matsui - Sangokushi Hadou
- See also: Zhong Hui/Quotes
- "I will not lose to dullards bound by the words of the dead."
- "Doesn't the enemy value their officers? If so, they shouldn't be sending them to fight me."
- "Let's go! Soon everything will be ours!"
- "Thanks, the result has me touched. Well, I have concluded that there is still much for me to do with my abilities."
- "For me to be satisfied with this rank... Good grief, the people lack a discerning eye. Well, I suppose I am grateful to those who put me here."
- "Tenth again? By all rights, I am a person that should have been even more above. This result must be a plot from someone who's jealous of me."
- "You truly do study hard. I am impressed that such a young man is interested in strategy."
- "It's only natural. Still, feel free to praise me as much as you like."
- "That's quite a mouth you've got. Your special training must have been very... special."
- ~~Deng Ai and Zhong Hui; Dynasty Warriors 7
- "You're always so full of confidence, Master Zhong Hui. What can I do to be more like that?"
- "I have never really thought about it. If anything, it was probably the special training I received."
- "I see, so that's it. Where can I get this special training?"
- "I think it is too late for you. I started when I was a child."
- "No, it's never too late if you put in the effort. Please give me the details."
- "Hah... One thing I never did learn was how to deal with stubborn people."
- ~~Jiang Wei and Zhong Hui; Dynasty Warriors 8
- "Eventually, I will be the one to rule this land. Allow me to prove it to you now."
- "Hehe... Where does that misplaced confidence of yours come from? You have achieved nothing, and you will die here."
- ~~Zhong Hui and Jia Chong; Dynasty Warriors 8: Xtreme Legends
- "Lord Zhong Hui, you have a habit of constantly playing with your hair, don't you... It's so charming!"
- "I do not! That habit was corrected when I was a child."
- "Your hand just twitched, didn't it? You want to adjust it again, don't you!"
- ~~Okuni and Zhong Hui; Warriors Orochi 3
- "Why, hello there. Don't you just have fabulous hair! I love it."
- "Hmph, leave me alone. This hairstyle is not by choice."
- "Oh, so cold and mean. If you don't watch out, I'll bring down misfortune on you."
- "Misfortune? Hmph, I'd like to see you try."
- "Oh, I can do it. Anyone who spends any amount of time with me ends up being cursed to a life of misfortune."
- "Pure superstition. Go ahead, then. Do your worst."
- "Hehe. Then I'll spend every waking moment by your side from now on. You can count on it."
- "Good. I'll prove once and for all that this silly superstition about misfortune is all in your head."
- ~~Koshōshō and Zhong Hui; Warriors Orochi 4
- See also: Zhong Hui/Movesets
Dynasty Warriors 9
|Keys:||Flow Attack •||Reactive Attack •||Musou •||Jump/Mount|
Zhong Hui is affiliated with the splay-blade in this appearance. He can perform two unique attacks exclusive to him when equipped with the weapon. Upon performing his Musou techniques, he will automatically use the weapon in his attacks.
- Unique Flow Attack Finisher: As a part of his normal Flow Attack, Zhong Hui's finisher will cause him to jump up into the air as he throws his splay-blade, spinning around him before descending.
- Unique Trigger Attack (R1 + ): Zhong Hui's Knockdown Trigger attack will cause him to throw his splay-blade's blades out, before proceeding as normal.
- Special Technique (R1 + ): Imbued with the slash element, Zhong Hui will launch upwards, spinning and cutting with his splay-blade until his momentum slows down, dropping back down. The Following Flow Attack will always be that of the Launching Trigger Attack.
- Musou (): Zhong Hui will repeatedly toss his splay-blade forward, having it return to him like a boomerang, while slowly stepping forward with each toss. For the finisher, he will slash three times in front of him, then throw out all but one of the splay-blade's blades in a spreading arc in front of him. The finisher is imbued with the poison element.
- Aerial Musou ( + ): Zhong Hui will open his splay-blade, and then throw it to the ground, where it will spin around rapidly below him before returning to him just as he descends. This musou technique is imbued with the slash element.
- See also: Zhong Hui/Weapons
Dynasty Warriors 8
Zhong Hui still uses the flying swords as his default weapon in this title.
Zhong Hui originated from the Yingchuan, Changshe Prefecture (modern Xuchang, Henan). His father was Zhong Yao and his older brother was Zhong Yu. His older sister married the Wei general, Xun Xu. There are no records of him being married and he did not father a child of his own.
Advised by his mother, Zhang Changpu to become a modest intellectual, Zhong Hui immersed himself in studies since he was a child. By the time he was four, he was taught and recited the Xiao Jing and was enrolled in advanced studies by the time he was fifteen. Even when he was five, Jiang Ji praised him as a person of uncommon caliber. His mother was said to have been an intellectual woman but it's unknown if this is actually true. In the Record of Three Kingdoms, he visited her throughout his early career and often heeded her advice. When Zhong Hui chose to continue his studies and political career after her death, there is a slight debate if he did so due to personal interest or to honor his mother's wishes. Like his father, Zhong Hui was also a calligrapher who studied the cursive and clerical scripts. He was said to have written many compositions throughout his lifetime, which included a poem after his father's death.
The Shishuo Xinyu (世說新語) claims that although he was wise, he was also rude and unpopular because of his behavior. When he was a child, he stole a sip from his older brother's wine. When his father caught him, Zhong Hui responded that his brother didn't bow or pay respects to him and that stealing his wine was petty by comparison. Another episode describes an incident when he was visiting the scholar Ji Kang. As Ji Kang was enthusiastically speaking to a blacksmith at the time, Zhong Hui approached but was forced to wait for Ji Kang. Growing impatient, he began to leave. When Ji Kang asked why, Zhong Hui replied that while the scholar asked for him to be there, it felt like he was only there to be seen and displayed in public. It is said that Zhong Hui held a grudge against Ji Kang after the incident and later had the scholar accused for a crime.
Life and Death
When Zhong Hui was 20, he was called to serve into the court. Although his father had served Cao Cao and Cao Pi as a statesman, Zhong Hui was skilled in tactics and was highly educated. He was promoted to an important position in spite of his young age, becoming the Secretary of the State and Minister of the Palace Secretarial Attendant. When Cao Mao ascended the throne, he was named the Marquess of the Internal State. He also became good friends with other ministers of the state, such as Wang Bi and He Yan.
As Sima Shi and Sima Zhao rose to power, Zhong Hui participated in suppressing the rebellions caused by Zhuge Dan, Wen Qin and Guanqiu Jian. During Zhuge Dan's revolt, Zhong Hui presided over the staff of military affairs. His main contribution to the conflict was interrupting the Wu troops for Zhuge Dan's rescue, convincing them to submit to Wei. His master was greatly pleased with his accomplishments and was said to have thought Zhong Hui as "[his] Zifang". He was then appointed the Captain in Charge of Law Enforcement and Public Works. Zhong Hui then made several drastic changes to the reward and punishment system of affairs, distancing himself from the central office. When he was not attending to politics, he was said to be among the many who entertained Cao Mao with literary and poetry sessions.
Since Zhong Hui was proud of his bold changes, he was perceived to be too ambitious by fellow ministers and generals, many voicing that his wit made him a dangerous threat. Even his good friend, Fu Jia (傅嘏), warned him to tone down his boastful behavior and to be more modest. In response to his actions, Wang Yuanji asked her husband to be more stern with Zhong Hui, chiding him to oversee his actions more often in person. The perceptive maiden, Xin Xianying, was said to have taken one glance at Zhong Hui and confided in Yang Hu not to associate with him.
In 262, Zhong Hui investigated and accessed the state of the weakened Shu Han. For his services, he was appointed the General who Guards the West and was sent to govern military affairs in Guanzhong. During the winter, he pretended to pose a threat to Wu as to distract the Shu forces. The following year, he was ordered to assist Deng Ai in the suppression of Shu. He went with Hu Lie and others to siege Yang An Pass and assisted the troops towards Jiange County. During the suppression, he scolded Xu Chu's son, Xu Yi, for resting with a drink. He squelched the fire for his wine and said that there was nothing worth celebrating. Later, he had Xu Yi executed for claims of insubordination. He warned Zhuge Xu to not advance without his permission and, when he thought Zhuge Xu disobeyed him, he took his troops as punishment. He was also said to have paid his respects to Zhuge Liang's grave. His troops fought with Jiang Wei's army near the end of the conflict.
After Liu Shan's surrender, Zhong Hui gained permission to plunder the state. For his services in the subjugation, he was promoted to Minister over the Masses and his followers became marquises with at least 10,000 households. As he accessed and shared amicable relations with the remaining officers for Shu, he admired and became friends with Jiang Wei.
When Deng Ai started to use his position for selfish gain, Zhong Hui, Hu Lie and Shi Zuan had him indicted. As a result, Deng Ai was deprived of his right over soldiers and arrested. Wanting to fulfill his own ambitions, Zhong Hui organized an army with his own resources and declared independence. With Jiang Wei's help, he revolted against Wei. Jiang Wei felt no loss in the situation as either result of Zhong Hui's revolt would weaken Wei. He hoped to use the rebellion to reestablish Liu Shan to power. However, as they were in the midst of forming their strategy, one of Zhong Hui's supporters, Hu Yuan, revolted and rallied the men against them. Zhong Hui and his two nephews were killed. He was 40 at the time of his death. His followers were said to have revolted due to lack of reward and caring for their safety. Jiang Wei heard of the failed plot and felt that he was in a life crisis. He held a meeting with his wife and children, killing them before he killed himself.
Although he was betrayed by his vassal, Sima Zhao continued to be amused by Zhong Hui's efforts and remarked that he could have stood a chance at success if the remnants of Shu were united under his leadership. The historian Chen Shou offered the following comments for Zhong Hui: "Though he was an able strategist, he held too great an ambition. He accidentally stumbled on rebellion without thinking and was murdered with his clan."
Romance of the Three Kingdoms
In Romance of the Three Kingdoms, Xiahou Ba mentions him as one of the two generals ordered by Sima Yi to attack Shu and Wu in chapter 107. When Zhong Hui was seven, he and his brother visited Cao Pi in person. While his brother became sweaty due to nervousness, a dry Zhong Hui remarked that he didn't sweat because he was too nervous. His witty reply made him favorable to the ruler and he then took to studying. His talents were said to have impressed Sima Yi and Jiang Ji. Jiang Wei, who listened to his ally report on their reputation, found that they weren't a great threat.
Zhong Hui was one of the secretaries who advised Sima Shi to join his brother's rise to power and pushed for humane solutions during Zhuge Dan's rebellion. On his advice, Wen Yang and Wen Hu were pardoned for their father's actions and escaped execution. When Zhuge Dan's city was in distress, he then offered that his lord attack at once.
When Xun Xu suggested for Zhong Hui to attack Wu, the strategist responded with his intentions to attack Shu instead. Sima Zhao agreed and gave Zhong Hui command of the armies in Qingzhou, Xuzhou, Yanzhou, Yuzhou, Jingzhou, and Yangzhou. He was ordered to descend from Luo Valley, but he suggested to put up a strong front with a navy to deter Wu from attacking. Sima Zhao had foreseen that Zhong Hui would someday betray him and made the secretary the leader of the campaign to suppress Shu. He chose to do so to limit Zhong Hui's choices and loyal retainers in the future.
He made Xu Yi the leader of the vanguard, entrusting the lad to create the roads for the army's march. After Zhong Hui fell from his horse and almost died during the battle against Lu Xu, he ignored the celebrated history of Xu Yi's father and had him executed. His head was displayed to serve as an example against other disturbances. He hurried towards Hanzhong and ordered for no breaks in their march, making his followers understandably disgruntled. After they took Yangping Pass, his army took a break and celebrated. However, they couldn't rest as they heard voices throughout the night. On the second day of the mysterious occurrence, Zhong Hui was given a report that they were near Zhuge Liang's grave at Mt. Dingjun. To quell the dark clouds and spirits, he ordered for an ox sacrifice at the tomb. During the night, Zhuge Liang's spirit visited and thanked him, asking that Zhong Hui be merciful to the residents in his home. Moved by the visit, Zhong Hui told his army to follow the spirit's words and adopted the principle to comfort the people. If any should be prone to violence, they should suffer death as their punishment. His benevolent march made him welcomed by the people within Shu.
In time, both he and Deng Ai had surrounded Chengdu from ten sides. After Jiang Wei defeated and plundered the scattered army of Zhuge Xu, Zhong Hui was infuriated with the loss and offered to put the vassal to death. Although Zhuge Xu was a part of Deng Ai's forces, Zhong Hui used his position as commander to hold Deng Ai in contempt. Zhuge Xu was spared due to pleas from surrounding officers, but Zhong Hui's insult of Deng Ai's rank was sent back to the opposing camp and angered Deng Ai. Both generals began to distrust and despise the other, each thinking that the others plan were preposterous and ordinary. When Jiang Wei came to him in tears to submit, Zhong Hui was impressed by his guest's praise for his ability and swore a closely-knit brotherhood with him. Deng Ai heard that Jiang Wei preferred to surrender to Zhong Hui and adored the other general greatly.
When Zhong Hui heard that Deng Ai had received higher ranks than him for the subjugation, he complained to Sima Zhao. As his titles were granted to him via letter, he worried about his leader's integrity and asked Jiang Wei for advice. Jiang Wei suggested a plan to make Deng Ai a suspect of rebellion by intercepting his letters to Sima Zhao. When their scheme succeeded, Zhong Hui and Jiang Wei made Deng Ai and his son prisoner and added their troops to his forces. As Sima Zhao's suspicions became clear, he united with his friend to oppose Wei. He told his troops that he was given an edict from the late Empress to destroy Sima Zhao, threatening to kill all who wouldn't follow him.
He had a dream that night of being bitten by several serpents and Jiang Wei interpreted it to be an auspicious one. What he wasn't aware of was that his vassal, Qiu Jian, had freed one of the prisoners from their cell and had plotted with Hu Yuan to attack Zhong Hui. As Jiang Wei had suffered from a heart spasm, Zhong Hui went to his friend to see what was the matter. Within moments, he realized they were under attack from their own troops. Fleeing to the hall with Jiang Wei, they fought off the instigators until he was shot down by a rain of arrows. Distressed by his failure, Jiang Wei fought for a time but committed suicide soon after.