1548 - 1610
Appearances: Sengoku Musou (1Moushouden,2), Sengoku BASARA (1,2)
Honda Tadakatsu was born in 1548 and was also known as Heihachirou (平八郎). He is recorded as being one of the Four Tokugawa Guardians (Tokugawa Shi-Ten-Ou, 徳川四天王), along with Ii Naomasa (井伊直政), Sakai Tadatsugu (酒井忠次) and Sakakibara Yasumasa (榊原康政). Today he is considered to be one of Tokugawa Ieyasu's best generals and is often believed to be the Sengoku Saikyou (The strongest general of the Sengoku era, 戦国最強).
Honda is known to have donned an antler-horned helmet. In battle he also wielded a famous polearm called the Tonbogiri (Dragonfly Cutter, 蜻蛉切) Spear. He fought bravely in almost every Tokugawa battle, and is said to never have been injured in more than 50 of the clashes that he fought in. During the battle of Anegawa, Tadakatsu's unit is said to have held off Asakura Yoshikage's 10,000 horsemen. This feat earned Tadakatsu the nickname of Japan's Zhang Fei (日本の張飛). Tadakatsu would later distinguish himself again when he volunteered to lead the rear-guard at Mikatagahara. Acknowledging Tadakatsu's great deeds in this battle, Takeda Shingen, Tokugawa Ieyasu's rival at Mikatagahara, is said to have proclaimed that Honda Tadakatsu was one of two things that surpassed Tokugawa Ieyasu (Tokugawa Ieyasu ni sugitaru mono, 徳川家康に過ぎたるもの), along with Tokugawa Ieyasu's helmet.
Though Honda Tadakatsu would command a rifle unit at Nagashino, participate in the siege of Odawara and lead troops to Sekigahara, his best deed was during the Komaki Campaign (1584). While Ieyasu went to Nagakute to engage the Toyotomi army, Tadakatsu guarded Komaki only to find out that Hideyoshi himself was leading a huge army to the location. Hearing of this, Tadakatsu rode out with only around 200 men and challenged the enemy army from the opposite bank of the nearby Shonai River. He had his army fire guns, taunt Hidyoshi's troops, and do other things to prolong the Toyotomi assault on Komaki. Hideyoshi, who's troops outnumbered Honda's by huge numbers, was awe-struck by Tadakatsu's fierce determination and ordered no harm be done to him and his troops.
Tadakatsu died of old age in 1610. At the time he was the lord of a great fief in Izu province. He was succeeded by his eldest son Tadamasa
(忠政) and second son Tadatomo (忠朝) (who would unfortunately die just 5 years later
during the Osaka campaign). Both of his successors would fight the defenders of Osaka castle in 1614 and 1615, but neither of them would gain the fame and prestige that their father had.
Biography created by: Hondam