Points

Pa Kua Chuan - also called Pa Kua Chang, Bagua, or Baguazhang - is one of the three major "internal" arts of Chinese kung fu, the others being Hsing I Chuan (pp. 162-163) and T'ai Chi Chuan (pp. 200-201). Legend places its origins as far back as the 14th century. Its verifiable history starts in 1796.

Pa Kua Chuan translates literally as "eight trigram palm," hinting at its basis in the I Ching. Practitioners walk in circles while making complex hand movements. The art is nonaggressive, and based on avoiding blows and redirecting the foe's attacks. It does include some strikes - especially with the open palm (treat as Hammer Fist). These are effective, although they look deceptively lazy and unskilled.

The Pa Kua Chuan practitioner normally chooses Wait, Defensive Attack, or All-Out Defense (Increased Parry). Only after his opponent commits to an attack does he respond -most often with a lock or a throw. Strikes are infrequent;

stylists prefer evasion and redirection to taking the offensive. Move and Attack, Committed Attack, and All-Out Attack are all extremely rare for the same reason.

Developing and channeling chi is the ultimate goal of Pa Kua Chuan. The style can be effective in a realistic game . . . but it's devastating in a cinematic one. Masters avoid incoming blows with steady walking and sidestepping, and use Push, Pressure Points, and Power Blow to defeat attackers.

Legend tells of a friendship between a famous Hsing I Chuan master and a renowned Pa Kua Chuan master. Some sources say that they fought a three-day duel before the Hsing I Chuan master finally laid out the Pa Kua Chuan master with a strike! Each master was so impressed by the other's style that they shared their secrets, cementing the tradition of training one another's students. Whatever the truth, Pa Kua Chuan practitioners frequently learn Hsing I Chuan as well, students of one art are welcome at schools of the other, and the styles have borrowed from one other - some Pa Kua Chuan schools teach linear forms from Hsing I Chuan.

Skills: Judo; Karate; Meditation; Philosophy (Taoism).

Techniques: Arm Lock; Exotic Hand Strike; Hammer Fist.

Cinematic Skills: Hypnotic Hands; Immovable Stance; Mental Strength; Power Blow; Push; Pressure Points; Pressure Secrets.

Cinematic Techniques: Roll with Blow.

Perks: Style Adaptation (Hsing I Chuan).

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