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It's a great piece of engineering. Relying on simple mechanisms and a leaf spring type bow, it produces a powerful, fast, easy-to-use weapon capable of firing 15 bolts a minute.
— Dave Baker, on the repeating crossbow from Deadliest Warrior

The creation of the Chinese Chu-Ko-Nu "repeating crossbow" is attributed to Chinese strategist Zhuge Liang, and it is recognized as one of the great unique innovations of history. Used during the Three Kingdoms period in China, the Chu-Ko-Nu functions much differently than was shown on the TV show Deadliest Warrior - although it does fire in a much faster than a traditional crossbow, it does not fire several bolts in rapid succession like a modern-day automatic weapon would. Instead, it fires several crossbow bolts with one pull of the trigger. One "magazine" of the Chu-Ko-Nu crossbow could contain from 10-15 crossbow bolts, usually allowing anywhere from 4-5 shots before the magazine would become exhausted and reloading would need to occur. The effective range of this weapon is around 60 m, although it can be fielded at a distance of 120 m. The bolts could be dipped in poison due to the low penetrating power of the arrows.

Battle vs. Persian Archer (by El Alamein)[]

Persia, after its glorious defeats against Greece, has turned its eye eastward to unconquered China. In a massive military operation, they have smashed through Western China and threaten several of the warring states's capitals. In the midst of this, confusion and disorganization reigns on both sides, and our simulation begins here.

A lone Persian bowman walks with a companion down a Chinese road, alert for bandits. The birds chirp and the sun is bright, but this peaceful mood is offset by Chinese corpses lining the road. The two men walk silently, trying to find their way back to their battalion.

Down the road a Chinese Chu-Ko-Nu crossbowman is walking, when he spots the two distracted Persians. Quickly, he readies his Chu-Ko-Nu and pulls the lever up and down repeatedly, sending a flurry of bolts down the road. The Persian bowman looks over in confusion and pulls his wicker shield in front of him as the bolts speed down the road, embedding themselves in his shield. His friend takes several bolts into his stomach and doubles over, incapacitated. The Persian bowman backs up, drawing an arrow and firing, but the arrow flies high and disappears off to the roadside. He turns, sprinting into the woods lining the road, and disappears.

The Chu-Ko-Nu draws his Jian and slowly walks toward the injured Persian, who is crawling away on his stomach, leaving a long trail of blood behind him. The Chinese man shakes his head and continues into the forest, leaving the wounded man to his fate. He pushes cautiously through the thick undergrowth, squinting as the focused sunlight breaks through the tops of the trees into his face. He stops moving and hears the crack of a branch, right before the Persian archer jumps out with his Sagaris axe, swinging down onto the Chinese man's head. However, it's a glancing blow off of the side of the helmet and the Chinese man grabs the Persian mid-strike and throws him over. The Chu-Ko-Nu thrusts downward with his sword but the Persian rolls sideways, and the blade only pierces the soft grass. The Persian swipes with his axe but the Chinese archer jumps back and with a quick slash cuts the Persian's wrist.

The Persian bowman drops the Sagaris and kicks the approaching Chu-Ko-Nu in the breastplate, knocking him back and tripping him over a tree root. As the Chu-Ko-Nu flounders to get back up in the bushes, the Persian leaps for the Sagaris and scrambles over to the Chinese archer, but is kicked himself. When he recovers, the Chu-Ko-Nu is gone.

The cacaphony of animals in the forest resumes as the clash of metal on metal has ceased. The Persian shakes his wrist and sends the slippery blood flying to the green lush all around him. He tucks his Sagaris back into his belt and slowly draws an arrow as he spots movement up in a tree. Notching the arrow on the bowstring, he pulls back the string and aims, but hesitates and realizes that it's only a type of bird, rustling around in its nest. Quick footsteps alert the Persian again and he lets loose an arrow that flies through the forest and impales the Chu-Ko-Nu in his thigh. The Chu-Ko-Nu shouts in pain and stumbles back, firing his Chu-Ko-Nu blindly in the general direction of the advancing Persian. The Persian ducks back in shock but recovers, his wicker shield allowing him to advance. He props the shield against a tree and ducks behind it, readying his bow.

The Chu-Ko-Nu's magazine has run out, and he reaches down into his belt to take out more of the poison-tipped arrows. As he opens the compartment to drop the bolts into, he hears a slight twang and looks up to see an arrow shoot through the forest and hit his neck. The force of the arrow sends him staggering back and the back of his head hits a tree trunk, knocking his helmet off of his head. Blood bubbles sickly from the neck wound and leaks into his armor and shirt. The Persian archer doesn't check to see if he has killed his opponent; victory is escape in itself. After wrapping his injured wrist in a tight cloth, he grabs his shield and skirts off down the forest back to the road, to perhaps find his injured friend and certainly to find allied forces.


Expert's Opinion[]

The Persian archer triumphed over the Chu-Ko-Nu because although the Chu-Ko-Nu had innovation and a surprise factor in an automatic weapon, his armor couldn't protect him from the punishing blows of the Persian Sagaris up close, and at a distance his repeating crossbow wasn't sufficient to hold the precise Persian bow at bay. This, combined with the Persian wicker shield allowing a safe approaching under fire, gave the Persian archer the win.

To see the original battle, weapons, and votes, click here.

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Battles here were deemed to be unfair or otherwise not in accordance with wiki standards, and have been removed from the statuses of the warriors and displayed below.

Battle vs. Yeoman Archer (by MilenHD)[]

It was long long day,the Welsh Longbowmans has defeated the English again and now they set a camp to rest in the mountains.They set their tent and set a fire to cook the rabbits and pheasants,which they caught in the morning.The Welsh longbowmans told the other(or our antagonist)to stay and if somebody comes near,while they search for more food.Not that far away between two boulders a Chu-Ko-Nu is walking slowly,he is tired,hungry and thirsty.After little bit more steps,he come up to the camp and he saw the Welshman.The Chu-Ko-Nu reacts fast and pulls out his crossbow,shooting a poisonous bolt at the longbowman but he heared something is flying at him,he turns and see a small man in leather armor with weird crossbow,first the Welshman laugh,but the Chinese answers with more bolts,but the Welsh grab his buckler and blocked some of it,but the last one hit him in the leg.The Welsh then aim with his longbow and release the arrow hitting the Chu-Ko-Nu in the upper torso,but the Chu-Ko-Nu rushed for his zhua."Dewch Ilwfrgi"(Come back you coward)Shouted the Welsh Longbowman.Then the Chu-Ko-Nu returned with his zhua,but the Welshman pulls out his warhammer and both charge at each other,the Welshman swung his warhammer twise but the Chinese dodge it.In the next moment the Chu-Ko-Nu swung his zhua smashing the buckler,but the Welsh Longbowman react with his warhammer fast,but so fast that he even hit the ground.Seeing his warhammer is stucked,he pulls out his dagger and longsword,first he throwed the dagger,hitting the Chu-Ko-Nu's arm.The Chinese crossbowman screams in pain,he dropped the zhua and pulls out the jian and he charge at the Welshman,both begin a dual with their respective blades.Dueling between 4 minutes,the Welshman spined around and knocked down the Chu-Ko-Nu at the grass,but the Chu-Ko-Nu reacts fast and kicks the Welshman in the chin,then the Chu-Ko-Nu gets up and slashed at the Welshman,but he failed.After blocking the attack,the Welshman charge at the Chu-Ko-Nu roaring in anger,but I the mean time the waited for the Welshman to come and surprisingly,the Welsh Longbowman was stabbed in in the neck with dao gam,seeing the Welshman is dead the Chu-Ko-Nu pulls out his dao gam and roared in victory.

Expert's Opinion[]

The Chu-Ko-Nu Crossbowmen won because was better trained and his zhua and his repeating Crossbow were better than the warhammer and the longbow of the Welsh Longbowman,also some people belived the Chu-Ko-Nu was better trained and more experienced than the Welshman.

To see the original battle, weapons, and votes, click here.


The Chu-Ko-Nu crossbowman was given an inaccurate weapon.