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Fire Emblem:

I figured it was high time we had a thread for everyone's* favorite turn-based strategy RPG, Fire Emblem. Hopefully whatever discussion we have won't be marred by a surfeit of hardcore fans going "dagnabbit you kids and your easy English-language Fire Emblems", unlike that on some other sites.

Anyway! Share your FE experiences, thoughts, hopes, and RAAGE.

Personally, I got hooked on the series with Sacred Stones after seeing Marth and Roy in Super Smash Bros. Melee, and got Radiant Dawn and enjoyed that too, especially since it was significantly harder than SS. I really missed support convos though, since they were a big part of the series' charm- the base info conversations and gameplay made up for it though. I recently got Shadow Dragon, and I'd have to say it's not nearly as entertaining, mostly because the characters lack, well, character. Most of them get one join-up line with some scant hints of their motivations, and then that's it- they become depersonalized units, just tools for you to use. The levels are interesting and the reclass feature is really cool, but with such flat characters (not to mention a pretty bare-bones plot), it just doesn't do it for me. I'll still play it for the challenge, or if I get bored, but it's hard to feel the same enthusiasm I had for the other Fire Emblems I've played.

Anyway, enough of my ranting- your turn to talk!

  • Maybe not everyone's, but c'mon, hyperbole is what ALL the cool kids are doing these days.
"I like them to talk nonsense. That's man's one privilege over all creation. Through error you come to truth! You never reach any truth without making fourteen mistakes- and very likely a hundred and fourteen." - Razumikhin, Crime and Punishment
 2 ccoa, Thu, 12th Mar '09 6:46:33 PM from the Sleeping Giant
Ravenous Sophovore
Yeah, Shadow Dragon was a bit of a disappointment. You'd think that if they had time to update the graphics and add new systems they could have added a bit more depth to the characters.

I'm also disappointed they ditched the wonderful sprites for the crappy 3D models. Pixel art just doesn't get the respect it should.

Path of Radiance and Radiant Dawn are some of my favorite to date. Partly for Soren, who is yummy and just broken enough for me to want to take him home, wrap him up in blankies, and tell him everything is going to be all right. ^_^ And unlike the majority of fans, I really like Micaeah.

I did like the non-linearity of gameplay in The Sacred Stones, though. Not having a strictly limited amount of EXP for the whole game meant you could get all the characters to 20/20 on the first playthrough and see for yourself which are the best, rather than having to play with a few at a time or look for someone else's character tier.

Most awesome experience in a FE game was getting unbelievably lucky on Mathew's level ups once. That little guy tore through enemies like there was no tomorrow and dodged anything thrown his way. I could solo maps with just Mathew, a thief that doesn't even get an ascended class.
Waiting on a TRS slot? Finishing off one of these cleaning efforts will usually open one up.
Yeah, I don't really like the 3D-ish graphics either, but I like the style of the sprites/maps enough to turn off the fight animations and concentrate on the lower screens. The GBA games' battle animations really were much better, though.

Hah, I have a friend who's totally in love with him. He's pretty useful as a unit, although I don't know too much of his character 'cause I never got to get Path of Radiance. Definitely pretty Woobie-ish, though. As for Micaiah, I thought she was a pretty cool lord (ehs kills soilders and doesn't afraid of anything!), especially since she happened to be a magic wielder, and Sacrifice can be pretty useful. I didn't like her character's transition into being an antagonist for the Greil Mercs, though, since it seemed like just talking to them might have been pretty useful in breaking the blood pact, or at least avoiding conflict. (Also, some of those Part 3 Dawn Brigade chapters could be kinda frustrating.)

Sacred Stones was nice, yeah, especially as an intro to the series, and the ability to train between battles helped me learn that characters who start off weak can end up being super-special-awesome. The branching class change system is also one I'd really like to see again.

I haven't really had any super-lucky moments, though I do get a lot of low-chance criticals-when they're totally pointless (the attack would've killed the enemy anyway, or I was trying to weaken it to give another character EXP). At least most of them look cool.

In terms of elements of the games, I really liked the branching class options of Sacred Stones, the skill system in the Radiance games, and Support convos, and I hope the next game will feature at least one of them. Alternately, something imaginative and new, like the reclass system, would be welcome.

Edit: Dayum, I talk a lot about Fire Emblem.

edited 12th Mar '09 8:13:01 PM by intuition

"I like them to talk nonsense. That's man's one privilege over all creation. Through error you come to truth! You never reach any truth without making fourteen mistakes- and very likely a hundred and fourteen." - Razumikhin, Crime and Punishment
I only played the GBA ones but I have to say this about the first one:

I hadn't Hector in my army. Hector was my army. Everyone else were his groupies.

edited 13th Mar '09 4:07:06 PM by TheAdversary

Pink Gunslinger
 5 ccoa, Fri, 13th Mar '09 5:27:14 PM from the Sleeping Giant
Ravenous Sophovore
Now that has some disturbing Ho Yay implications...
Waiting on a TRS slot? Finishing off one of these cleaning efforts will usually open one up.
The army had plenty of girls. You mean, "Pretty disturbing omnisexual implications".
Pink Gunslinger
 7 Brickman, Sat, 14th Mar '09 2:42:51 PM from wherever adventure takes me Relationship Status: My own grandpa
Gentleman Adventurer!
The only one I've played so far is 8 (Sacred Stones), though if I spot another one in a store I'll buy it. It was fun but I can see what people mean when they say 8 is waaaaaay too easy, and I haven't even played any of the harder ones for comparison. The number of units on a given map capable of threatening the life of anyone in your army can be counted on one hand, and is usually one. Anyways, I of course ended up playing it in an obsessively min-maxy way.

One thing I absolutely hated was waiting for the support conversations. It sounds good on paper, but the number of turns standing next to each other requried to A-Rank any pair of characters is probably more than the total number of turns required to finish the game. The only way to get the damn things was to kill everything but the boss and then just stand around for thirty turns hitting wait until the conversation popped up—or to enter the Tower of Valni and not aggro anything, which wouldn't even be an option in most games. Is the wait time that long in all the games with support conversations? I really think they would've been better off setting the goal at five or ten per support level (aka something which could be accomplished during the normal course of completing the missions) or just letting me do the things from the get-go and assuming that I'd only use it on people I planned to use together.
Your funny quote here! (Maybe)
 8 ccoa, Sat, 14th Mar '09 3:08:27 PM from the Sleeping Giant
Ravenous Sophovore
Path of Radiance and Radiant Dawn made it better. Support conversations are earned just by being in battle together x number of times. Plus you can see who can support with who, so you're not guessing.
Waiting on a TRS slot? Finishing off one of these cleaning efforts will usually open one up.
 9 Brickman, Sat, 14th Mar '09 6:20:34 PM from wherever adventure takes me Relationship Status: My own grandpa
Gentleman Adventurer!
Heh, I wasn't forced to guess either, thanks both to the internet and the fact that the copy I got was used, and the guy before me had beaten the game and unlocked a list of all possible support conversations and the ability to play back any that you've heard from the main menu.
Your funny quote here! (Maybe)
 10 Mith, Sat, 14th Mar '09 11:47:45 PM from Chicago, IL
30 turns doesn't sound too bad compared to FE 4, where it's relevant to some players that after the 50th turn in a chapter affection doesn't go up. Though easy pairings usually don't have to worry about that... too much, anyway.

(If you're only familiar with the GBA or later games, you may need a little background to understand that statement, as compared to them FE 4 is a bit of an odd duck. It has fewer, longer chapters, consisting of four-five castles on a big map to take and protect. Most of your characters in the first half become lovers and produce kids, who are most of your characters in the second half. A couple of these pairings are fixed; for the rest any eligible male and any eligible female can be matched, but some pairs are much easier than others. Incidentally, the stat bonuses for lovers and siblings being near each other were the first character-relation stat bonuses in FE.)

I just visited "Tier induced Scrappy" and found this:

"some even link Ewan together with this despite Magikarp Power and his Est Status"

Which doesn't quite fly, as his so called Magikarp Power still doesn't make him anywhere near useful or powerful at any point. Magikarp Power does not really work for any of the Rookies, since they are all very subpar units even when fully trained.

", and that the "Recommended" path for him is to make him a Druid or Summoner due to the fact that you already got a mage and couldn't possibly have any use for a mage knight or sage when you already got Lute and L'Arachel doing those jobs for you."

And... yet more incorrect claims. The recommended path for Ewan is Pupil->Mage->Mage Knight. Why? Several reasons.

1. Movement. 2. Con equal to the Druid(admittedly slightly lower speed though). 3. Can use spells without speed loss before final stage, and with more power in comparison to weight. 4. Will have better weapon levels, since you want him to use anima anyway.

Druids in FE 8 are pretty much just a Sage with another sprite, and a bad class(shaman)instead of a decent one(mage). Hence Druid is NOT recommended just because Lute does both the Sage and the Mage Knight better. Summoner would perhaps stand a chance if the class wasn't stuck with horrible attack choices, worse stats than the druid, and in this case horrible summons(Knoll's being much better).

Summary of this point: Just because Sage Lute>Sage Ewan or Mage Knight Lute>Mage Knight Ewan, that does not mean Mage Knight Ewan isn't>Druid Ewan and Summoner Ewan.

It's worth noting that L'Arachel actually do have Magikarp Power, with exemplary stats if she's trained, unlike Ewan, though.

"Admittedly, Knoll's stats are pretty bad, especially an indecently low Luck score. It's generally accepted that you should make Knoll a Summoner and Ewan a Druid, in part because Ewan already has a head start in Anima magic (the Druid's secondary magic type) when he promotes to Druid and partly because Ewan's summons aren't as strong as Knoll's for some reason. "

Knoll is indeed recommended to go summoner- actually, to be promoted right of the bat so he can heal, and thus send summons instead of fighting since he'd die instantly, even if you leveled him up. But again, Ewan's recommended path is Mage Knight.

I'd say that page needs an edit.

Just a small annoyance, but still worth backing up my stance on.

Other than that... nice to talk to you all! ^_^

I personally prefer Radiant Dawn out of the FE's released over here in Europe, but I wish they'd kept the supports interesting and not just: "Hi how are you" "Fine"

And they did that to the game with the character that I looked forward to using (Sanaki)...

RAGE.

edited 19th Nov '09 5:16:24 AM by RWB

 
Delete this post, had no clue about the editing function earlier.

edited 19th Nov '09 5:17:13 AM by RWB

 
Indeed
My first impression of the series were Marth & Roy in Melee, and eventually the commercial convinced me to download the The Blazing Sword (the only official English Fire Emblem at the time). I was partway done with Lyn's tale before I had to force myself to stop so I could buy the actual game and experience it as intended on my GBA SP. Now, if the entire game had been Lyn's tale, I would have thought it was pretty good, if a bit short. But then the game hit me with a follow-up twice as long and blew me away completely. The characters, the stylized dialogue, the intricate and epic plot, the beautiful graphics, and the gameplay were amazing. And the music... oh God, the music! Requiem still makes me cry when I listen to it. Not just the song itself, but the way it was used in the game... the game was able to masterfully convey sadness, joy, laughter, and dread whenever it suited the narrative. Fire Emblem: The Blazing Sword became my favorite game for a while, and even now I consider it my second favorite game of all time.

I tried Sacred Stones when I got the chance. I was... disappointed. Don't get me wrong, Sacred Stones is a good game on its own merits, but it feels like a step down from the near-perfection I think Blazing Sword embodies. The gameplay is very similar, with the exception that the infinite XP allowance (without needing to camp at an arena and pray your guy didn't get killed or you would have to re-started the level if you wanted him back) made the game much easier. A few changes in the advancement tree, but nothing earth-shattering. The in-map graphics were the same, but the portraits varied from the good (Erika and Ephraim, for instance) to the okay (Joshua is a great mug except for the inexplicable eye placement that means he is never looking at whom he is speaking) to the ugly (Valter, several bosses; and no, this isn't just a few people who were meant to be ugly, there is a guy who would look completely normal except his chin is stuck to his neck and he is looking down like he has a hunchback). The soundtrack isn't nearly as good; in particular, the standard battle themes (when units are attacking each other) are tacky. Though I must say, the game has one track that excels (Powerful Foe) and a few other that aren't bad. The plot was a lot more simplistic; it lacks a lot of the political scheming and considerations I saw in its predecessor. The characters also seem to be not nearly as finely crafted, and the dialogue is a lot more contemporary than idealized, with quite a few noticeable drips in quality (the emperor and the queen both repeat themselves in the exact same words, there is an idiot early on who gleefully justifies his atrocities because "This is WAR! There are no rules here!", and Erika judges all of Grado based on this idiot's actions, etc...). And then there are the monsters. Ugh... I though one of the great things about Fire Emblem was the tragedy of humans being forced to kill other humans, and it added a hint of gray to the protagonists, but the mindless monsters that made up the later chapters really detracted from the effect. As I said, not a bad game on its own merits, but it had a lot to live up to and it failed to do so.

Then there is Path of Radiance. I haven't found the time to finish it yet, but from what I played it looks very promising. I had my doubts at first; the dialogue was good bit lacked a bit of formality, the 3D battle animations rubbed me the wrong way, and so far none of the music had outright thrilled me. Then chapter 7 ended and I saw everything that Fire Emblem great come together, starting with the track "Bittersweet Victory" and going onto details I am not going to spoil. But by the time the next chapter's battle started, I knew that Path of Radiance had the potential to be every bit as awesome in my eyes as Blazing Sword had been. Maybe I'll get to finish it this vacation period.

edited 19th Nov '09 8:37:26 AM by jaimeastorga2000

 14 Parable, Thu, 19th Nov '09 10:05:37 AM from California Relationship Status: Too sexy for my shirt
Many Faces
I only played the first two that came out for the GBA here in the US, both of which I enjoyed. I remember having to restart the game over and over because I lost a character in battle. I always felt so guilty letting Florina die so early on the first time I played I vowed never to let it happen again.
Schrodinger's Goth: While inside the box, it is impossible to determine whether the Goth wishes she was never born, or wishes she was dead.
Fractally long
I only played Blazing Sword and I thought it was a fun, tough, and very well-written game. The character supports are terrific. I started Sacred Stones but the piles of (not-as-well-written) dialogue at the beginning wore me out and I never got past it.

What are your favorite character supports? I always max out Lowen/Rebecca.
 16 Parable, Thu, 19th Nov '09 11:30:24 AM from California Relationship Status: Too sexy for my shirt
Many Faces
Sain and Louise's conversations are my favorite,
Schrodinger's Goth: While inside the box, it is impossible to determine whether the Goth wishes she was never born, or wishes she was dead.
 17 Lemurian, Fri, 20th Nov '09 3:12:04 PM from Touhou fanboy attic Relationship Status: Sinking with my ship
Stained with blood
Jaffar/Nino all the way. And some Eirika/Seth.

Uhm, I've played through Blazing Sword several times (still working on getting all those Support-conversations), Sacred Stones a couple (the same, but with less zeal), Path of Radiance two and Radiant Dawn once. Path of Radiance is probably my favourite, but Radiant Dawn would take that spot if it had INCLUDED SUPPORT-CONVERSATIONS!  *

I've also played Shadow Dragon, but I got pretty tired of it after a while. I always felt that characters were Fire Emblem's greatest strength, and Shadow Dragon's characters felt really...bland compared to the other games.
 18 Some Guy, Fri, 20th Nov '09 3:13:14 PM from totally uncool town
Some Guy
Whose idea was it to get rid of support conversations anyway? What was the advantage?
See you in the discussion pages.
 19 Parable, Fri, 20th Nov '09 4:34:21 PM from California Relationship Status: Too sexy for my shirt
Many Faces
Shadow Dragon is a remake of the first game, right? There probably wasn't any support conversation to begin with and nobody felt the need to put them in.

I just remembered that I actually did have that game but got bored with it. I wanted more characterization!
Schrodinger's Goth: While inside the box, it is impossible to determine whether the Goth wishes she was never born, or wishes she was dead.
 20 Sonica, Fri, 20th Nov '09 8:30:26 PM from Australia
Rune Knight
Well, since Radiant Dawn is Path of Radiance's direct sequel, most of the characters was already developed via Support Conversations in the former game, so what else they could expand on?

However, I presume that if they only include Support Conversations with the Radiant Dawn-only P Cs, some fans would complained at not having new ones for their favourite characters...

Otherwise, I played Shadow Dragons a bit, but stopped after a while.
 21 Emperordaein, Fri, 20th Nov '09 10:51:11 PM from Australia Relationship Status: Hugging my pillow
Praise the Sun!
Oh joy. I love Fire Emblem. I first played it when I borrowed Blazing Blade from a friend, and it was a masterpiece. It still remains my favorite game in the series.

Sacred Stones was not as good. The plot was a bit dull and silly in places (Anyone care to tell me how Grado became so cartoonishly evil upon war?), the gameplay was as good as ever but still.

POR and Radiant Dawn were excellent (Although Radience's ending sucked, and Dawn's story took a large dip in quality in the second half of Act III), but they were fun.

Sword of Seals is second to Blazing Blade in my opinion. While it feels dated compared to Blazing Blade, it's still a fun and satisfying game.

....The soundtrack isn't nearly as good; in particular, the standard battle themes (when units are attacking each other) are tacky. Though I must say, the game has one track that excels (Powerful Foe) and a few other that aren't bad.

Well, "Determination" and "The Prince's Despair" are two of my favorite tracks in the series. "Princess of Fate" from Sword of Seals and The Black Fang theme from Blazing Blade are another two.
 22 Lemurian, Sat, 21st Nov '09 4:21:43 AM from Touhou fanboy attic Relationship Status: Sinking with my ship
Stained with blood
Path Of Radiance had an amazing soundtrack as well. Black Knight Battle is epic!
ALMSIVI
So, I was thinking about this just now and thought maybe someone here could answer my question. Remember in the first Fire Emblem game that came to America, how when you beat it it told you what happened to all the members of your army that survived? Does that change if you go through the various support chats? As in, do the chats affect what happened to the characters after the game?

edited 26th Nov '09 4:32:18 PM by Lucky Revenant

Fractally long
Yes, for plenty of them. Most of the endings involve characters that could marry (Lyn/Hector, Ninian/Eliwood are probably the most significant pairings) but not all of them (Lucius/Raven, Marcus/Merlinus).

Here's one example I filched from GameFAQs:

Rebecca- A Wildflower Rebecca returned to her father, then pledged service to House Pherae. She has formed a family, and yet she still serves Pherae well.

versus

-Lowen and Rebecca-

Rebecca and Lowen were wed and they became two of Eliwood's most trusted retainers. Their green-haired son inherited his father's chivalrous spirit. as well as his mother's smile and skill with a bow.

edited 26th Nov '09 4:39:07 PM by Longfellow

ALMSIVI
Ah, so it can actually change somewhat radically. Interesting. Now, I must ask, does Canas die no matter what?
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