Eight Trigrams
Eight Trigrams 八卦阵

Ability:
Whenever an escape is needed, the wearer can perform a judgment. If it is red, the escape is considered to be provided.

乾三连,坤六断,震仰盂,艮覆碗,离中虚,坎中满,兑上缺,巽下断
八卦歌诀
Clarification:
  • If the judgment comes up to be black, the player can still play their own Escape.
  • The judgment that occurs can be tampered with by any or all of the judgment tinkerers.  
  • The Eight Trigrams is optional when attacked.  The target in not obligated to perform a judgment and is then treated as if they do not have this armor.
Notable Combinations:
  • This armor is best suited for Guo Jia.  Whenever he is attacked, he does a judgment and puts it in his hand.  Not only does he get a free Escape half the time, but sometimes puts another in his hand.  Sometimes it's even a Peach.  Even when it isn't red, he still gets a card out of it.
  • Zhang Jiao is a monster when he gets a hold of this armor.  The rest of the table become terrified of attacking him.  Rightly so because now he can use "Lightning Strike" without spending any of his own precious Escapes.  This gives him more room to keep spades to ensure that "Lightning Strike" finds it's target.
  • Any judgment tinkerer has a field day when this armor is out.  They can be your best friend or worst enemy.  When on the same team, they can help protect their comrades.  When on the opposition, they assure that the judgment will fail.  Sometimes, when combating tinkerers, it may be prudent to forgo the judgment as it may do more harm than good.  Sima Yi, Zhang Jiao, Zhuge Liang, Jiang Wei
  • Wang Yi becomes nearly untouchable with this armor equipped.  The option to retry judgments greatly increases the chanced that she will get out of an attack.
  • Xiao Qiao also become difficult to hit with this armor.  All her spades are hearts, so she has roughly three quarters of the deck for red judgments.
  • Generals with unescapable attacks have a way through the Eight Trigrams.  Since the armor only generates an Escape, it is not enough to get out of their attack.  Ma Chao, Huang Zhong
  • Lu Bu becomes more tactical when charging at someone with the Eight Trigrams.  The target must do two judgments, but they do them one by one.  If the first judgment fails, they must use their own Escape before they try the second judgment.  Either way if the second fails, they need to play an Escape to prevent being hit.  Often if the first judgment fails, players take the hit to avoid throwing away cards.
  • Pang De can get rid of someone Eight Trigrams very quickly.  If the target passes their judgment, or uses their own Escape, Pang De can discard any card of theirs.  Usually the armor is a good choice, reducing it to the functionality of it down to a single Escape.  
  • When Cao Cao is king and a member of Wei has the Eight Trigrams equipped, they can each perform a judgment to provide Cao Cao with an Escape.  If the judgment does not succeed, they do not have to use an Escape from their hand.
  • Younger Zhuge Liang has this armor by default and has nothing to gain by equipping it.
  • Yu Jin has a different protective power by default.  Usually it is better to avoid equipping any more, even the Eight Trigrams.  The Eight Trigrams are better in some situations however, such as when battling a character like Guan Yu.  Under normal conditions, the advantages of "Heavy Resolve" outweigh the advantages of the Eight Trigrams.
Final Remarks:
The Eight Trigrams is a wonderful armor to have in your possession.  It can save you from much grief and suffering   The problem with that though is the other team knows this just as well as you do.  This means that they won't be too happy when you get it.  You should expect the first chance they get, they are going to relieve you of your armor.  At the same time when you have it, you need to remember that you are not invincible with it.  All your defense is left up to chance.  As such, it is possible that it fails numerous times in a row.  The opposite is also true, but failing is much more noticeable   Know that this weapon is a great aid to keep you alive, but remember that it makes no promises.

Relation to History:
The Eight Trigrams is actually an array in which the soldiers are arranged.  This was a common formation of the time, but it was very effective for those who could use it.  The most first instance of it is when Xu Shu guides Zhao Yun through the array of Cao Ren.  Taking a particular path shatters the array and the entire formation falls apart.  Towards the end of the era it was used during the northern expeditions of both Zhuge Liang and Jian Wei.  Both had a formation contest with their rivals and both used a version of the Eight Trigrams.  The most famous variation is that when Zhuge Liang set up piles of stones in this formation, creating what is known as the Stone Sentinel Maze.  This was used to stop Lu Xun and protect the fleeing Liu Bei.  Lu Xun almost perished in there, but was led out by Zhuge Liang's own father in law.  Legend has it that the stones are still in their original places, but are submerged during the summer by the rising waters of the Yangtze.
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