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Straw Boats Borrow Arrows

rated 3.99 / 5 stars
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Credits & Info

Apr 6, 2009 | 8:23 PM EDT
  • Daily 4th Place April 7, 2009

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Author Comments

This is "Straw Boats Borrow Arrows", adapted from a part of Luo Guanzhong's classic chinese novel The Three Kingdoms. I entered it in a contest for short movies (5 minutes or less; this cut is available on youtube - just search "Straw Boats Borrow Arrows"), but I made an extended version just for you guys. xD It's not a comedy, nor is it some bloody showdown - its a battle of wits featuring one of the greatest military minds of all time.

Zhou Yu, director general for the Southland forces under Sun Quan, is jealous of Zhuge ("zhu-guh") Liang, director general of Liu Bei's forces (united with Sun Quan at this time, to oppose Cao Cao's invasion force from the north). So Zhou Yu conceives of a scheme to eliminate Zhuge Liang - he asks for 100,000 arrows for the army, and he wants them in ten days. Failure, he emphasizes, will be met with death, according to military law. Zhuge says he'll do it in three days. Thus our story begins.

To reviewers: I appreciate and read every constructive review, and I'm always eager for suggestions on how I could improve. In particular, I'd very much like to know what you thought of the story, which I had a hard time adapting so the context still came across. I made the music myself, despite not really being a music person, so if you have something to suggest, try not to use too much music terms, cuz I'll have no idea what you mean. I know all the people who did the voices (most aren't members of NG) so if you've got somethin to say to them, I'll pass it on.

Special thanks to Tom for letting me upload this huge file (sorry to everyone for the large file, movie's got a lot of 3D shots, so hopefully its worthwhile in the end)

For the first time in any of my movies, there's an easter egg! Who can find it? (if you're stumped, I'll probably post its location on my userpage later, or you can PM me) What do you think of it? Should I ever do it again? Feel free to give me some advice.

Edit: Daily 4th, not bad! Thx again to Tom, and to everyone who voted. Keep sendin reviews tho, I'll keep readin.



Rated 5 / 5 stars


some of the animating is a little wierd, but i love it because it is really great handmade work and the story is clever!


Rated 5 / 5 stars

Great !

Nice artwork ! I have always loved this part in the story of The Three Kingdom.

By the way , the line of words in cao cao room made me laugh so hard.

It says , speak of cao cao and cao cao will come. It's funny to see it there during the
times of the three kingdom , isn't this a modern saying? XD

RPGsrok responds:

LOLz, someone noticed. It is of course modern, and not the sort of thing that would be hanging in Cao Cao's base, but as you've noticed, it's a good in-joke for those who can read (to those who can't read Chinese, the text on Cao's wall, "Speak Cao Cao, and Cao Cao comes" is the Chinese equivalent of the english "Speak of the devil...")
Thanks for reviewing.
BTW, didya see the text in the wall of Zhuge's boat?


Rated 3.5 / 5 stars


Good story, decent artwork, but the voice-work is what kept this from being a perfect score -- most sound too similar or too young to accurately portray these aged-experienced military men, in addition they have no sort of accents which would lead to any level of authenticity with the plot-environment, but this is a level of nit-pickyness only reserved for those 10/10 videos =)

As for the story, it was an OK adaptation accounting for the length, but a longer video would allow for expansions on the crucial "why do they need these arrows" and "what is the reaction when they return", and of course "why the crud will he be executed if he fails!?". Walls of text as plot devices are not entertainment, I'm afraid =(


Rated 5 / 5 stars

clever and well animated!

for a hand-drawn work, this is pretty well done!
great animation, no notable sound distortions
overall asian goodness!


Rated 4.5 / 5 stars


I love everything about this, the story, the artwork, the cleverness.

but your animation could be slightly better, one thing that really looked odd to me was when they smiled their facial hair shrank.