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Bonds of fire connects us
Love provides, protects us
Like the heroes from the pages
Like the stories of the ages

Bonds of hope unite us
Shining on to guide us
Skies above embrace the beauty
The time is now for you and me
Intro Theme

Fire Emblem Engage is the seventeenth game of the Fire Emblem series of Strategy RPGs, developed by Intelligent Systems and published by Nintendo for the Nintendo Switch. It was released on January 20, 2023.

Engage is set on the continent of Elyos, home to four kingdoms. In the past, the kingdoms waged war against the Fell Dragon, and ultimately sealed him with the help of heroes from other worlds. However, a thousand years has since passed, and the seal is weakening. In the midst of all this, Alear, a Divine Dragon and main protagonist, awakens without their memories. Now Alear must recruit allies and seek out the Emblem Rings needed to call forth the otherworldly warriors once again.

The main new gameplay mechanic of Engage is the previously mentioned Emblem Rings. Equipping these rings will give units stat bonuses and unique skills tied to that Emblem, such as Emblem Marth providing extra attacks that deal 30% damage. Units can also temporarily "Engage" with their Emblems for several turns, which unlocks more skills, grants access to powerful Engage Weapons, and provides the one-time ability to unleash devastating special attacks that can easily turn the tide of battle.

On April 2023, coupled with an Expansion Pass, the game received an extra side story titled the Fell Xenologue. In it, Alear is summoned to a different world of Elyos where the war against the Fell Dragon left the world in complete chaos and many of their friends have turned against each other. In the center of the conflict, Fell Dragon twins Nel and Nil seek to recover the Emblem Bracelets; the counterparts to the Emblem Rings, in order to stop the nations from killing each other while a suspicious foe lurks in the shadows, hellbent on reclaiming the bracelets to make a wish.

Fire Emblem Engage received a manga adaptation of the same name that started serialization in March 2023 and is currently running on Saikyō Jump and online via Shōnen Jump+. One month prior, a prologue chapter was published ahead of the Manga's release. The manga is illustrated by Kyou Kazuro.

Trailers: Announcement Trailer, "The Divine Dragon Awakens" Trailer, "Engaging with Emblems" Trailer, Expansion Pass Trailer, "Welcome to the Somniel" Trailer, Wave 4 Expansion Pass Trailer


Fire Emblem Engage provides examples of:

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  • 11th-Hour Ranger: Both Mauvier and Veyle end up being this, joining around Chapter 21 and 22, respectively, which is right at the start of Engage's endgame.
  • 11th-Hour Superpower:
    • The titular Fire Emblem (and by proxy, all the skills and weapons which come with it) is obtained right after clearing Chapter 22.
    • The Bond Ring is a downplayed example. Once Alear reaches an S-Support with a partner of their choice, the latter can gain access to an extra skill which raises their crit chance significantly when engaging with the Fire Emblem.
  • Absurdly Low Level Cap:
    • Zig-zagged. Twenty isn't a lot, only getting you as far as two-thirds through the game in Normal Mode, but it can be looped with Master Seals (once) and Second Seals. It functionally serves to cap Level Grinding in situations where you can infinitely repeat an Experience-granting action, though you'll still gain SP at Level 20.
    • Stat caps are a much bigger deal in certain circumstances; for example, Enchanters (unlocked by completing the Fell Xenologue DLC) get very nice bumps to their growth rates across the board, but much of their stat caps are among the lowest in the game.
  • Abusive Parents: Sombron openly prides himself on having absolutely no bond with any of his children, and back during his war with the Divine Dragons a millennium ago, made a habit of disposing of them once they showed weakness or ran out of use.
  • Action Bomb: In Maddening mode, enemy Martial Masters and Enchanters gain the Self-Destruct skill, where if they have 50% or less HP when Enemy phase starts, they will blow themselves up, dealing a fixed amount of damage in a 2-tile radius to all player units in range equal to half of their max HP. And considering they are a class that have high HP values, they will hurt a lot.
  • Action Girl: Already a staple in the franchise, but this game notably has one of the highest numbers of Action Girls in Fire Emblem history:
    • Ivy and Timerra are warrior princesses who feature prominently in the story, taking charge and leaping into battle even before joining the party.
    • Goldmary, Panette, Jade, Chloé, Merrin, Lapis, Citrinne, Saphir, and Etie are experienced knights and/or retainers in their respective kingdoms, and thus naturally geared for battle.
    • Yunaka and Anna are independent Plucky Girls who learned to use weapons the hard way.
    • Céline and Hortensia are also warrior princesses ready to lay a good smackdown on baddies with their magic.
    • Framme is the first girl to join your party, and is able to defend herself with her fists.
    • Veyle is not one for most of the game, but then she gets freed from her evil side and finally joins the party, she wastes no time in cleaning house.
    • A good amount of the Emblem characters are women who've fought like mad in their own games: Lucina, Lyn, Celica, Eirika, Edelgard, Camilla, Corrin, Tiki, Micaiah, and Veronica.
  • Achievement System: Engage features a vast amount of achievements which rewards players with Bond Fragments once these are claimed in Somniel. These can go from clearing main story chapters and paralogues, deploying each playable unit in battle at least 5 times, unlocking a specific amount of C/B/A supports, and so on.
  • Action Prologue: The first minutes of the game show a premonition of sorts where Alear's future companions are seen fighting Corrupted as Alear fights their way into Sombron's throne room.
  • Adaptational Dye-Job: Regardless of what their eye color originally was, the Emblems all have the same blue eye color. This is especially notable on characters who didn't already have blue eyes, like Micaiah, Claude, and Corrin.
  • Adaptational Early Appearance: In the manga adaptation, almost the entire playable castnote , alongside Celica, Sigurd, Leif, Eirika, Ephraim, Micaiah, Corrin, Byleth, the Four Hounds, and Lumera, appear in the prologue chapter, many of who don't show up until much later in the original game.
  • Adapted Out: The Falcon Knight, the usual promotion path of the Pegasus Knight (which are now Sword/Axe/Lance Fliers in this game) does not make an appearance in this game, being replaced by the Griffin Knight instead. Both fulfill the role of a flying high resistance and speed physical unit, with the only difference being that the Griffin Knight can be accessed by both genders, instead of only females.
  • Adaptational Weapon Swap: Ike and Lucina are depicted in the mural using an axe and bow respectively, when their main weapons in their home games are legendary swords. Ike's usage of axes is derived from his Radiant Dawn portrayal, where he can use axes while promoted. Lucina's usage of bows are pulled from her variants in Fire Emblem Heroes. They do still have accesses to their swords, which their final Engage weapons are. Inverted within the same context with Lyn, who was shown using the bow Mulagir, which she has access to in Heroes but not at all in her home game Blazing Blade.
  • Adaptational Wimp: Downplayed, but the majority of the Manaketes of Elyos fight in human forms. While all known Manaketes of Elyos are still incredibly powerful beings blessed with extraordinary lifespans, abilities, and magic, only Lumera, Sombron, Nel, and later Nil/Rafal, have been shown to have access to their dragon forms. The other dragons have their own complications:
    • Alear is implied to have had a dragon form but gave their Dragonstone to Veyle as a memento 1,000 years ago, and loses it permanently when they're killed by Sombron (which destroys their Dragonstone) and revived as an Emblem.
    • Veyle is unable to summon Emblems or transform, but the latter is by choice. She has no desire to become a dragon and has long since buried her Dragonstone somewhere, and she doesn't regret it.
    • Finally there's the Mage Dragons Zephia and Zelestia. While the former's reason is never directly stated, in Zelestia's case, she lost the ability due to her Dragonstone going missing after her Mage Dragon village was purged by Sombron's forces.
  • Adopting the Abused: It turns out that Queen Lumera isn't Alear's biological mother after all, and that their real biological parent is actually Sombron. When Alear was with Sombron, he controlled his children with force, killing them if they show any signs of disobedience. However, one day, after Alear loses a battle against their future self, Lumera finds them lying unconscious. She takes them in, and Alear comes to accept her as their mother. Lumera's guidance is what inspires Alear to rebel against Sombron, turning them into the legendary hero as told in ancient scripture.
  • Aerith and Bob: While Engage still continues the tradition of using a mix of normal names (i.e. Alfred and Ivy) and very unusual ones (i.e. Clanne and Framme), the game also has each country have a specific name theme for every character originating from that country. Therefore, you can have characters named after flowers and fashion brands fight alongside those named after minerals and desserts.
  • Alas, Poor Villain:
    • Three of the Four Hounds are hit by this in the end: Marni dies in Mauvier's arms after having been wounded by Zephia for no longer supporting Veyle's brainwashing and trying to stop it by destroying her mind control helmet, asking Mauvier with her last breath to tell the real Veyle she tried to be a good girl; meanwhile, after both Zephia and Griss have been mortally wounded and left to die by Alear's party, both have one last one-to-one chat where Griss confesses to Zephia he always saw her as the mom/big sister he never had, making Zephia realize how her wish to form a family had already been accomplished without needing a spawn of Sombron to begin with, but was so consumed on ensuring Sombron would fulfill his end of his deal that she ended up destroying it herself, and both pass on while holding hands.
    • Surprisingly, Sombron gets this. He recounts his tragic backstory about how he was abandoned by the Zero Emblem right before the final battle, and while the heroes don't accept it as an excuse to avoid punishment, they do take pity on him in the end and convince him to try one last time to summon the Zero Emblem. While it's left deliberately vague whether it worked or not, Sombron thinks it did, and dies having attained some small measure of peace.
  • All Deaths Final: Played with. According to Emblem Marth there is no way to truly come back from the dead, at least as far as being exactly the same as you were before goes. There are a few ways to "cheat" though. Namely the secret one-time-only Miracle the 12 Emblems combined can perform to change a recently departed soul into a unique type of Emblem with a physical body, and the magic used to create the Corrupted (which at least sometimes involves fetching the original soul from the afterlife) and by its very invocation is noted to break the laws governing life and death. Only Fell Dragons can perform the Corruption spell, and it is not a true return to life so much as forcefully animating the corpse until its body is fully destroyed from using too much energy.
  • Alternate Timeline: The Fell Xenologue story in the Expansion Pass Wave 4 DLC takes place in one. It's a Mirror Universe where the traits of all named characters are flipped around and where the Emblem Bracelets from the Divine Paralogues originated. Not only are Firene, Brodia, Elusia, and Solm in the middle of a pissing match to claim ownership of all seven Bracelets, but the Divine Dragons are said to have died out, including Alear, who performed a Mutual Kill with Sombron when he broke free from his seal.
  • Alternate Universe:
    • Near the end of the game it's revealed that Sombron originally came from one, explaining how no one knew of his origins prior to his takeover of Gradlon.
    • Many bond supports from the DLC Emblem Bracelets allude they were gifted to an alternate version of Elyos where everyone's likes and dislikes are inverted compared to the main universe. Said universe is an Alternate Timeline where the Divine Dragons died out, including Alear, and the four nations of Elyos are in the midst of a cold war over the Emblem Bracelets.
  • Always Accurate Attack: The new Surge and Elsurge tomes have perfect accuracy, to the point of displaying an infinity symbol as their hit rate, but to compensate, they're the only tomes that have a range of 1 instead of 1–2 or 1–3.
  • And Then John Was a Zombie: Downplayed. In Chapter 22, after Alear passes out due to a lethal blow from Sombron, Veyle ends up having to revive them as one of the Corrupted but without the caveat of losing their willpower and memories, just so they can gather and summon the scattered Emblem Rings again for their allies.
  • Animation Bump: Engage has significantly improved the combat animations, with the animation generally being much smoother, fluid, and varied. Extra attention is put into how units dodge attacks and counterattack.
  • Anti-Frustration Features:
    • If you got a Game Over, you have the option of keeping your experience when you try again. As a result, your failed attempt won't be a complete waste of time and your units that gained levels will be a bit stronger for your next attempt; this also applies to any of your units that were defeated/killed on the same failed attempt.
    • Mauvier and Veyle, who join a few chapters from the end of the game, have several supports with other units, but to make seeing those supports easier, they also gain ranks very quickly.
    • Unlike previous games in the series, there is no benefit to leaving units unpromoted after they hit Level 10. If someone needs the stat boosts from promoting, give a Master Seal to them at the first opportunity. Hitting the promoted level cap is also not a problem anymore, since Second Seals exist to let a unit promote to another class or reset their level back to 1 while retaining their stats and current class.
    • Some weapons come in weaker forms when used by enemy bosses, most notably the Mani Katti in Chapter 10 and Nil's Revanche in Fell Xenologue 5 both have their normally high critical rates cut to 0, making fighting these bosses less of a Luck-Based Mission.
    • Chapter 11 may be a Darkest Hour, but the game mechanics give you a small mercy: its non-boss enemies have a hidden skill that prevents them from scoring a Critical Hit when initiating combat.
    • Alear's Paralogue spawns a large number of enemies from all sides of the map after you achieve its initial objective. When this happens, a new Player Phase begins immediately, so you don't have to worry about them sniping one of your characters before you have a chance to react.
    • The 1.3 patch lets you access Skill Inheritance in the Arena as well as in the Ring Chamber, so you can inherit skills after raising Emblem Bond Levels there without needing to fast travel to a different location.
    • Similarly, by throwing items into the Ancient Well added in the 1.3 update, it's possible to obtain books that raise the amount of SP characters have without needing to purchase the Expansion Pass, reducing significantly the amount of grinding needed to gain SP and making various skill combinations possible very early on.
    • After every battle during the exploration of the area, you get Bond Fragments from the units you used during it. If you leave the area without having talked to everyone, you will automatically be given all the Fragments you haven't collected yet, meaning you don't have to run around and talk to everyone to get them. You will however, miss out on Bond Fragments that require interacting with a glittering spot on the ground.
    • A majority of recruitments are automatic and immediately join as a player-controlled unit compared to the previous titles, and while there are still several units who are not automatically recruited, Alear can talk to all initially non-controllable units that can be recruited to recruit them like in Fire Emblem: Awakening and Fire Emblem Fates, and only one of them starts as an enemy unit instead of as a green allied unit.
    • Certain DLC missions with hordes of enemies automatically turn off combat animations on enemy phase to make gameplay smoother, although the player is free to reverse this if they so desire.
  • Anti-Grinding:
    • While you're still able to gather resources and level up your characters through skirmishes outside the main story battles, Engage's approach makes grinding significantly more tedious in that skirmishes will scale to a level or two above the average level of your party. This includes any units who promoted to Advanced Classes. If you aren't careful, enemies in Skirmishes will be far stronger than ones you might fight in the main story and make leveling up your weaker units almost impossible unless you abuse the Arena.
    • In Maddening difficulty, the above is reversed: main story missions will be more difficult than Skirmishes, but in exchange Skirmishes become a very rare occurrence so that you can't simply grind levels to brute force the story.
    • In maps that feature endless reinforcements, the extra enemies will eventually stop giving EXP. That's your cue to wrap up the map and move on.
    • To discourage Save Scumming in the first run of Maddening difficulty, the level-up stats can only be set to Fixed, so maps cannot be repeatedly reset to get a better level; your units get what they get. Random level-ups can only be set after the final boss has been defeated on Maddening once.
  • Apocalypse How: Planetary, or possibly universal (depending on just what the dimension of Elyos consists of) is stated by Emblem Marth to be a danger if the portal Sombron opens stays open for too long. That is, energy from the rest of the Fire Emblem multiverse will eventually pour in and annihilate the world of Elyos. When confronted, Sombron remarks that the party can simply close the portal as he has no more interest in Elyos, but they are not convinced he won't eventually come back, nor do they want him to escape punishment for his crimes.
  • Armor-Piercing Attack:
    • Dragonstones and Breath weapons have this property. While Dragonstones just reduce 50% of a foe's defense/resistance, Dragonbreaths ignore defensive stats entirely and deal raw damage based on the user's attack stat.
    • The Soulblade skill, available only to Zephia and Zelestia's Melusine class, averages out the target's Defense and Resistance when using swords.
    • The Luna skill, exclusive to Alcryst's Tireur d'élite class, reduces the foe's defense and resistance by 50% when it triggers.
    • Finally, Chain Attacks will always deal damage to enemies based on 10% of their maximum HP, thus bypassing defensive stats entirely.
  • Artificial Brilliance:
    • In Maddening mode, enemies will not attack units that they have no chance of damaging—if their damage dealt or their hit rate is a big ol' 0, they will ignore that unit in favor of someone else, and in some cases won't even approach them. If you want to play Enemy Phase in this difficulty, you have to be willing to let your units take a few licks. They aren't perfect about this, however: the AI will still attack units it can't hope to damage if doing so will trigger chain attacks—even if the target has Pair Up equipped, which blocks damage from chain attacks.
    • If an enemy has enough damage to kill a unit, they will take the shot and no diversionary tactic in your arsenal will stop them. The only times they don't are when the enemy is following map-specific behaviors.
  • Artificial Human: All Fabrications are this. They're beings crafted from plants and organic matter whom Lumera and the Emblems create during their trials to serve as their soldiers.
  • Artificial Stupidity:
    • Enemies with Smash weapons don't seem to be aware that they'll always strike last. They'll attack anyone they can damage on the Enemy Phase, even if their target will kill them before they have a chance to strike.
    • Relating to sure-kill behaviors above, the AI isn't bothered by destroying the clones made by Lyn's "Call Doubles" skill, since they only have 1 HP — even though they're almost harmless if left alone. Not only are they not controllable and only work in Chain Attacks, but the only time they can retaliate is if they're directly attacked by an enemy.
    • Enemies with Fracture staves are really, really stupid about using them. They will gleefully inflict Break on player units who aren't in range of any combatant enemies, wasting the Break, or even Breaking a unit who is already Broken (and thus unbreaking them).
    • Enemies who can use Tiki's "Divine Blessing" are more keen to use it on Revival-Stone-less allies than to actually attack your units, at least on Normal Mode. This stands out in Fell Xenologue 1, where taking the Revival Stone off the Corrupted Wolf Alternate Fogado blesses without killing the Wolf will sidetrack the boss for a turn, making rushing the boss safer.
  • Art-Shifted Sequel: Games released between the DS Shadow Dragon remake and Three Houses all use an art style that is realistic and mature (but still retained its anime flair), combined with having duller color palettes. Engage, however, instead has an artstyle that is closely reminiscent to most anime from the late 2010s to early 2020s, as well as having a brighter color palette not unlike the Game Boy Advance games.
  • As You Know:
    • Some supports between long-time friends and/or siblings involve this. For example, Ivy asks her younger sister Hortensia if she was seven when her mother died (obviously one of the most important events in Hortensia's life) to confirm this information.
    • The conversation between the alternate Celine and Alfred in the Fell Xenologue has them discussing things they already know, such as the deaths of their retainers in the last war, to provide exposition to the player.
  • Ascended Meme: A pretty common and memed on way to win Ike's final duel with the Black Knight in Fire Emblem: Radiant Dawn was to have Ike equip a hammer (an anti-armor axe weapon) and use that to beat him quickly due to the extra damage it gave Ike. As an Engage unit, the first unique weapon Ike gives his Engage partner is a hammer.
  • Award-Bait Song: Continues the tradition from Fates with its ending theme, Fiery Bonds. It is a piano ballad with a Small Start, Big Finish, and is also paired with various illustrations used only in the credits roll.
  • Awesome, but Impractical:
    • The "great-" weapons are powerful weapons that Smash enemies backward, capable of inflicting Break on anyone they get knocked into an impassible space. However, not only can they not do follow-up attacks, but initiating with them (which is required to Smash) forces them to attack last even if the enemy is retaliating twice. (They are, however, great for boosting the power of Engage Attacks.)
    • The Tower of Trials and Emblem Weapon Augmentation. The Tower of Trials allows your party to obtain crystals to upgrade Emblem Weapons, and depending on the Trial, you can even grind some levels. However, this can be both time-consuming and, in the case of Relay Trials, at the mercy of other players who may or may not want to complete the Trial, and Relay Tickets are limited. The rewards for the trials are useful, though the augmentation also factors in how many playable characters reach the highest Bond Level of the Emblem whose weapon you want to upgrade, and that leads to more time-consumption with the sheer number of Characters, Emblems, and the Weapons themselves to the point it doesn't seem worth it.
    • S-rank weapons are powerful and can give Engage Attacks a hefty boost, but most of them have little else going for them. Weapon Level in Engage is determined solely by a unit's Class, with no way to increase it unless a unit has a blue weapon proficiency to raise their class weapon rank by one, and not all classes allow for an increased weapon rank; not many of the Classes in the game go above A-rank even with extra proficiency, and most of the ones that do are limited to only that weapon type. S-rank weapons are also among the heaviest in the game, so a unit needs both good Speed and Build rolls to use the non-Smash variants effectively. They can do work if the unit was built with the purpose of using an S-rank weapon in mind, but if it doesn't pan out, sometimes it is genuinely better to simply sell the weapon and use the gold to upgrade something else.
    • The S-rank staff, Nodus, restores all allies' Engage meters to full upon use, making it useful to immediately reactivate Engage mode for all of your Emblem Ring/Bracelet bearers in a pinch after the previous one expired. It's a very strong boon on paper, but not only does Nodus only have a durability of one, you can only get one Nodus in the whole game, though with the addition of the Ancient Well in Version 1.3.0, Nodus has a small chance of being obtainable from there from a random pool of items. Unless you've levelled Hortensia,note  you likely won't be able to justify using this outside of the Tower of Trials (where inventory isn't saved after the run).
    • After completing the Fell Xenologue, you are given the Enchanter and Mage Cannoneer classes as new class change options for your units, both of which offer a unique style of gameplay, with Enchanters being able to access the convoy without Alear, and Mage Cannoneers offering significant long-range combat with a unique weapon type not used by any other class. Accessing these classes however, requires a unique class-changing item instead of Master or Second Seals: a Mystic Satchel for Enchanters and a Mage Cannon for Mage Cannoneers; while you get one of each for free after completing the Fell Xenologue, getting more requires you to go to the shop, where just one Satchel/Cannon costs a staggering 28,000 and 63,000 gold (respectively) even with the Silver Card. And even then, the Enchanter and Mage Cannoneer tend to be outclassed by other classes available in the base game, with the Enchanter having low stat caps in everything bar Dexterity, Speed, and Luck, while the Mage Cannoneer has no means of close-range combat without relying on Emblem weapons.
  • Awesome Moment of Crowning:
    • At the start of the credits, one of the first CGs shown features Alear shortly after being crowned a Divine Monarch, wearing an outfit very similar to Lumera's.
    • Similarly, if neither Diamant nor Ivy fell in battle during Classic Mode, the credits' CGs will shown both becoming the monarchs of their respective kingdoms as well.
  • Babies Ever After: While the characters' own endings usually don't state that they had children, Veyle's ending says that when she was crowned the first monarch of Gradlon, while many of her friends from the war had died of old age in the 100 years that had passed, their offspring were there to witness the event alongside Alear.
  • Background Music Override: While earlier maps had different themes for the enemy phase and more intense versions of map themes during battles, Chapter 10 plays the same song for the player phase, enemy phase and battles. Chapters 11 and 17 do the same.
  • Bad Powers, Good People:
    • Veyle is the only playable character in the base game who has access to the only dark magic tome in the game and even has the ability to create Corrupted in-universe. Despite this, she's also one of the nicest members of the cast, especially once she's freed from her magical evil personality.
    • The Fell Xenologue also introduces Nel and Nil, Fell Dragon twins from an alternate Elyos who defected from their version of Sombron and are very much the main heroes of the sidestory. Rafal zigzags this trope once his true intentions are revealed, but by the end of the Xenologue's story he sticks to the side of good and even tries to atone for his past actions.
  • Bait-and-Switch: Early into Chapter 7, it appears Alear and Alfred are gonna need to fight Alcryst and his retainers due to a misunderstanding as they make their way to Brodia. Then, out of nowhere, Alcryst starts running towards Alear and performs a massive jump in the air before begging for forgiveness after reaching ground in a pose heavy reminiscent of Dr. Wily, much to the Divine Dragon and the Prince of Firene's confusion.
  • Balance Buff: Certain characters have much higher innate base stats than their growth rates and the stats of their companions would suggest they should have, implying that they received significant Balance Buffs during playtesting.
    • Kagetsu (the Swordmaster) has far higher base stats than Zelkov (the Thief), for example, and happens to have higher base stats than almost everyone else in the game; this may have been to account for Swordmasters' lack of versatility compared to Thieves, who have Strength-using multi-ranged options and a Damage-Increasing Debuff.
    • Pandreo (the High Priest) and Fogado (the unpromoted mounted Archer) have higher base stat bonuses than Bunet (the Great Knight), probably to account for the latter's mobile and tough-to-kill class. Pandreo's starting class in particular is a Master of None compared to that of Ivy, a Flying Tome-and-Staff-user who joins in the previous chapter, while Fogado can't hit people at melee range in his joining chapter.
    • Goldmary (the Hero) has far higher base stat bonuses than Rosado (the Wyvern Knight), probably to account for the latter's immense advantage of being in a Flying class with better growth rates.
  • Bare-Fisted Monk: Hand-to-hand combat returns from Three Houses, though instead of gauntlets, the "Weapon" for this type of combat is Body Arts, represented by a scroll. Classes that can use Body Arts by default are the Martial Monk and its promotions High Priestnote  and Martial Master, the DLC-exclusive Enchanter, and this game's incarnation of the Dancer class. Alear will also gain access to Body Arts in their default promotion class (Divine Dragon).
  • Barehanded Blade Block: When there's a big difference in stats between enemies, the strongest unit will usually block and/or parry the opponent's attack rather than avoid it.
  • Battle Amongst the Flames: The setting of Chapter 17, a Firenese Port set ablaze by the Four Hounds and their Elusian army to lure Alear and co. to them.
  • Big Bad: The Fell Dragon Sombron, whose resurrection kickstarts the event of the story just as Alear themselves wakes up from their long sleep to oppose him.
  • Big Damn Heroes: Ivy and her retainers pull this late into Chapter 11, arriving to aid Alear and co. just as Veyle's Corrupted block their escape route by recovering the Draconic Time Crystal, giving them Lucina and Lyn's Emblem Rings, and finally joining their party.
  • Big Fancy Castle: Firene, Solm, Elusia, and Gradlon contain massive castles and palaces which are a sight to behold, to the point each one gets a CG showing them from a distance during the story.
  • Black-and-White Morality: Played straight overall for the main story. Those allied with the Divine Dragon are unambiguously heroes while those who work for the Fell Dragon are the bad guys. While some characters end up switching sides during the story and the motivations and backstories of those opposing Alear are expanded upon later, the main core of the story's conflict remains one of Good vs Evil.
  • Blaming the Victim: Both Hortensia and Alcryst fall into this in Chapter 7. Hortensia, who's currently leading an army attacking Brodia, blames Brodia for always trying to invade Elusia. In response, Alcryst defends the invasions as a pre-emptive act to keep Elusia's aggressive tendencies in check.
  • Bloodless Carnage:
    • Played straight in the game. Marni from the Four Hounds gets to be a target of this, when Zephia, the Hounds' leader, stabs her with a large dagger and the weapon proceeds to fall to the ground afterward. Given a healer like Mauvier, whose starting class can use staves, doesn't even try to heal her, it's implied to have been a deep and massive wound, yet not a drop of blood is seen on the blade, the floor, or the victim.
    • Subverted in the Manga adaptation, as blood is always visible whenever a character is injured. For example, in Chapter 3,Lumera dodges a spell casted by the hooded person, but once she summons Sigurd, she begins to cough up blood, likely due to the weakening of Lythos Castle's barrier.
  • Blue Is Heroic: Alear's mother Lumera has blue hair, representing her status as Divine Dragon and Alear's half-blue hair represents the holy power she was transferring into them. Alear gains fully blue hair in their resurrected Emblem form.
  • Book Ends: You get your first DLC Emblem and final DLC characters on the Lookout Ridge.
  • Boring, but Practical:
    • Inheriting the basic stat boosters from Emblems seems like a waste of SP, especially considering how much SP they cost. But then you discover why they're that bizarrely expensive: they're the only inherited skills that don't get negated by also being on the equipped Emblem, so both stat skills equipped by the unit and stat skills equipped by the Emblem will apply, up to a maximum of +20 for each stat. Not the flashiest use of SP, but if a unit's kit demands raw stats for their gimmicks (such as stacking a lot of Def, or needing Dex/Lck to activate personal skills), this makes them work.
    • For those who purchased Wave 1 of the DLC, the Lifesphere skill from Emblem Tiki restores some HP and cures any status conditions of the user every time you have them wait without attacking or using an item. It eventually upgrades into the more potent Lifesphere+ and Lifesphere++ for characters invested in Tiki, but at its weakest, it is an objectively better version of Vulneraries and Antitoxins that also don't take up an inventory slot, and can be inherited for a relatively-cheap 1,000 SP.
    • The lighest class of weapons including the "Slim" and "Compact" varieties are extremely light, cheap, and resource inexpensive to upgrade. Get one to +5, engrave an emblem, and you'll have a weapon that hits well above its weight class at a fraction of the investment of higher tier options. The same can be done with basic Iron weapons, still fitting the trope.
  • Boss Bonanza:
    • Chapter 10 features two main bosses—Hyacinth and Corrupted Morion—as well as Hortensia, Rosado, and Goldmary.
    • Chapter 14 features Zephia, Marni, Mauvier and a brainwashed Hortensia as bosses.
    • Chapter 17 features six bosses: the Four Hounds, plus Veyle and Corrupted Hyacinth.
    • Finally, Chapter 6 of the Fell Xenologue features Nil transformed by the power of the Emblem Bracelets, with the 4 alternate Elyos royals and their 4 siblings as minibosses.
  • Boss in Mook Clothing:
    • Various paralogues starring the Emblem Rings feature specific enemies stronger than usual who based on the heroes' past allies and enemies, all whom have very high level, solid weapons, more than one health bar, and drop gold when defeated.
    • Enemy Bow Knights are an absolute terror. Their ranged attack on top of the extra movement from being mounted units forces you to keep a close eye on enemy threat ranges when they show up on maps, lest they close in quickly and shoot down your fliers (against whom they get a bonus) with massive damage.
  • Boss-Only Level: The prologue features a one-on-one fight between Alear and Sombron.
  • Bowdlerise:
    • A lot of supports that were either meant to be romantic or have sexual undertones were rewritten heavily to be both platonic and tame, at least in the English script. This is notable with Alear's S-Supports with Jean and Anna, which was overhauled to avoid the case of Married Too Young.
    • In the original Japanese, Alternate Ivy slept with Alternate Zelkov and claims that Alternate Kagetsu refused to sleep with her, as a parallel to main universe Hyacinth having mistresses. In the localization, Alternate Ivy claims that Alternate Zelkov is her "favorite" retainer and that Alternate Kagetsu hated her.
  • Brainwashed and Crazy: Sombron and by proxy, Zephia, are capable of doing this, most notably with King Hyacinth, Hortensia, Veyle, and even Lumera.
  • Breaking Old Trends:
    • Anna has usually appeared as a young woman, at the very least in her mid-to-late teens. Her appearance in this game portrays her as a little girl, at 11 years old.
    • For most of its lifespan, the Fire Emblem series has been careful to give Divine Dragons in human form at least some nonhuman trait, with pointed ears being the most common aspect. Alear and Lumera, however, do not appear to have any physical traits distinguishing them from humans.
    • Engage drops 2D portraits completely, as the game opted to use 3D models for this purpose, making it the first mainline game to do this.
    • Poison in this game does not deal Damage Over Time, but instead simply increases damage taken.
    • The titular Fire Emblem is a sentient being bound to a ring this time around, not an object or symbol like in previous titles.
    • This game forgoes the typical level up and class change jingle that's been present throughout the rest of the series, and plays a different jingle in either case instead.
    • For the first time in a main series game since The Binding Blade, no characters have paired endings (romantic or otherwise) aside from Alear. While several solo endings mention that various other characters did end up with a spouse and descendants, who their partner was is never mentioned. Related to this, Engage is the first game to allow every playable character to achieve S-rank with the main character regardless of the main character's gender, though said rank is not always romantic.
  • Bribing Your Way to Victory: The Expansion Pass paid DLC gives the player some extra resources including, most importantly, the Emblem Bracelets via Paralogue missions. While they range in power and initially only seem to provide some extra variety for the player to choose from, they become invaluable when the villains steal all the Emblem Rings the player gathers through Chapter 10, otherwise forcing them to slowly acquire new Emblems and try to regain the stolen ones. They do not, however, steal the DLC Bracelets, making what would be some of the most difficult missions in the game far easier.
  • The Bus Came Back:
    • Griffins as a species, alongside the Griffon Rider class (now named Griffin Knight here), make a return to the franchise after debuting and only appearing in one game (outside of a painting of one in Three Houses) in nearly 11 years. Swords and lance-wielding Griffin Knights are introduced in addition to the axe variation from before, and Griffin Knights broadly can also use staves.
    • The Halberdier class makes its return, having been last seen in Radiant Dawn.
    • The Mage Knight class made a comeback to the series after having vanished for nearly two decades since their last appearance in The Sacred Stones in favor of the similar Dark Knight class seen in Awakening, Fates, and Three Houses. In this game, Mage Knights function similarly to their Jugdral duology incarnation, and can now wield axes or lances in addition to swords.
    • The concept of weapon-based class variations, such as Vander's default "Axe Paladin" class, was last strictly seen in Radiant Dawn, as armor and mounted classes in that game were restricted to a single weapon type until at least their second-tier promotion. Meanwhile, in lieu of Myrmidons, Mercenaries, and Fighters, there are sword fighters, lance fighters, and axe fighters—a group of classes that haven't been seen since Thracia 776, although unlike that game, there are more promotion options available between all three classes.
  • Came Back Wrong: The Corrupted are this by default, as they're just corpses reanimated by fell magic with no traces of their past selves, as seen with King Morion after he's turned into one by King Hyacinth. Later on, it's shown both Sombron (after being empowered by enough Emblem Rings) and Veyle can invoke this with their most perfected Corrupted, as they have the ability to twist with their original personalities and desires in order to make them loyal without sacrificing their mind.
  • The Cameo: Despite being absent from the game, Yune appears on the mural seen in the cutscene of chapter 2, as well as on the Micaiah card in fortune telling.
  • Can't Drop the Hero: Zigzagged. Even though Alear has to be deployed in story missions and paralogues, they are not required for skirmishes.
  • Cast Full of Crazy: Prepare to meet some of the most weirdest, zaniest and quirkiest cast of characters you will ever see in a Fire Emblem game, with the main hero being the only normal one out of everyone else.
  • Cast Speciation: Seeing as most Lords in the series are sword-wielding infantry, the Emblems often focus on different aspects of their gameplay to give them a unique niche, often taking inspiration from their various alts in Heroes. For example, Lyn is the bow-focused Emblem and uses Mulagir, like her Brave version, when in Blazing Blade, she couldn't wield bows until promoting and Mulagir wasn't even in the game.
  • Central Theme: The theme of family is by far the most recurring element present during the story, often being its presence (and sometimes, the lack thereof) a driving motivation for its characters.
  • Changing Gameplay Priorities:
    • Early on, your limited roster, weak weapons, and lack of Emblems forces you into a much more defensive playstyle. You'll be leaning on Chain Guard, healing items, ensuring your characters are lined up with Alear to take advantage of their personal skill for damage reduction, Hit-and-Run Tactics where possible, and trying to get your early Mighty Glaciers (like Vander and Louis) to absorb most enemy blows. Later in the game, this inverses. Your party's potential damage output increases significantly with better weapons, refined weapons, more Emblems, DLC Emblems, inherited skills, and master class upgrades. Your late game party will more likely be a team of Glass Cannons (if not bordering on Lightning Bruisers) trying to sweep the battlefield as quickly as possible.
    • Downplayed on Maddening, where the same shift gradually happens, but because it's harder to sweep the beefier enemies even with your offensive powerhouses, your beefy tank units remain more useful to absorb their attacks.
  • Character Select Forcing: The game expands the deployment slots from 12 to 14 for the last set of chapters, right after two Eleventh Hour Rangers (Mauvier and Veyle) join. Since you'll likely have no one else raised to the appropriate level for the endgame, these slots seem made to be filled by those two specifically.
  • Cheap Gold Coins: Lampshaded if one has the Fell Xenologue DLC; one of its characters reveals that Alternate Elyos's currency is made of rare metals, and not gold. These metals are implied to be the same stuff that goes into Engage's "Silver" weapons, since the currency can't be used as money but can still be traded at the Somniel's shops.
  • Chekhov's Gift:
    • Before parting ways over 1,000 years ago, one of Veyle's siblings gifted her their dragonstone as a way to show they're still alive as long the stone remains intact, motivating Veyle to search for them in the present day. Not only does this gift clue Zephia and Griss in that another child of Sombron's is still alive and could potentially be Alear, the dragonstone shatters shortly after Alear is lethally wounded by Sombron later on, which tells Veyle without any shadow of a doubt that they were the missing sibling she had been looking for all along.
    • Queen Lumera has a Ring that she planned to give Alear as a birthday gift. Considering her death in the story you would think that this wouldn't amount to much. However, when Alear dies protecting Veyle and Veyle temporarily revives them as a Corrupted, Alear awakens the Emblems, and when their spirit is about to lose hold of their body, the Emblems perform their miracle. Using Queen Lumera's ring, they revive Alear as the Fire Emblem.
  • Chekhov's Skill: Veyle's ability to create Corrupted is useful when Alear needs to come back from the dead in Chapter 22 after being killed by Sombron, thus giving them a chance to keep supporting their allies regardless of their own condition.
  • Class Change Level Reset: Changing classes in Engage will always reset the unit's external level to 1. This comes in very handy to units in Advanced classes who have reached their level cap -thus letting them keep gaining stats.
  • Chromatic Rock Paper Scissors: The Weapon Triangle returns, and as in Fates and Heroes, swords are color-coded red, Axes green, and Lances blue. Meanwhile, there's also a new inverted Weapon Pyramid in which Orange (Brawling) always beats Gray (Daggers, Staves, and Tomes).
  • Color-Coded for Your Convenience: The four nations of Elyos are each associated with a color that features prominently in their flags and the armor of their generic units. Blue for Firene, red for Brodia, green for Elusia, and yellow for Solm.
  • Combat Medic: The Martial Monk class and its promotions use both Body Arts and healing staves. Griffin Knights are also now able to use staves. The newly introduced Royal Knight class uses lances and staves.
  • Common Tactical Gameplay Elements:
    • Fog of War (only on maps covered by darkness)
    • Movement Modifiers (different terrain types such as forest and sand cost more movement points to some unit types, while flying units can cross some terrain impassable for everyone else)
    • Viewing Range (only of maps with darkness: units carrying a lit torch dispels the fog much further than normal)
    • Movement Speed (armored units have fewer movement points than light skirmishers, and mounted and flying units are much faster than either)
    • Unit Specialization (each class and even character has special abilities and stat bonuses that make them more suited for different combat roles)
    • Leader Unit (Alear's personal skill boosts adjacent allies' attack and reduces their damage taken, while their promoted class quickens how fast the Engage meter fills up. Incidentally, if Alear dies it's an automatic Game Over)
    • Attack Range (different weapons have different attack ranges, which can be further extended with special abilities and Emblems)
    • Splash Damage (Certain Emblems bestow attacks that affect multiple squares, with enemies further away from the attacker taking less damage)
    • Taking Cover (non-flier units standing in forests or bushes get evasion bonuses against physical attacks, with some specific classes such as Archers and Thieves even getting bigger boosts than others)
    • Called Shots (several staves disadvantage their targets in various ways), Knock Back (several weapons can push the target back a square, in exchange of always attacking last)
    • Crowd Control (Corrin's Torrential Roar attack can "rattle" a row/column of enemies, preventing them from moving on their next turn)
    • Concealment (enemies in the darkness get to sneak up on the player's army, though never the other way around)
    • Context Action (instead of attacking or using an items, units can occasionally spend their turn opening chests, unlocking doors, talking with allies, or even use stationary long-range weapons like a ballista)
  • Contractual Boss Immunity: Bosses and minibosses in harder difficulties get access to a few skills which make them harder to deal with compared to normal enemies. Most notably, Hard bestows bosses the Stalwart skill, which reduces the amount of damage taken from class-effective weapons from x3 to x2. In addition, Maddening can also give them: Unbreakable, which makes the boss immune to the Break mechanic regardless of their class; Veteran, which is a mix of both the Stalwart and Unbreakable skills; and Veteran+, which works similar to normal Veteran but removes weaknesses to class-effective weapons outright.
  • Contrasting Sequel Main Character: The reveal trailer alone shows many differences between past Avatar characters.
    • Byleth had an ancestry with a dragon that they did not know about and was a simple mercenary at the beginning. Alear knows their ancestry and is awakened knowing that their fate is connected to the continent. Visually, Byleth had a monochromatic hairstyle and mostly black clothing. Alear has a two-toned hairstyle and white armor.
    • Alear is also this to Corrin. Despite both being dragons, there are several significant differences between Corrin and Alear. Visually, Corrin's dragon heritage is reflected more clearly in their features; having slit pupils and pointy ears, the latter being a feature strongly associated with dragons in the franchise. Alear notably has normal pupils and ears; lacking any distinct dragon-like features. Narratively, Corrin and their family were unaware of them being half-dragon, but Alear has had generations of guardians specifically dedicated to serving dragons like them. Corrin is half Silent Dragon, a powerful type of dragon introduced in Fates as one of the twelve First Dragons. Alear is a Divine Dragon that comes from a royal family of Divine Dragons.
    • Alear also has a few differences from Robin. Alear is a white-clad sword fighter with lineage tied to divine dragons. Robin is dressed in a dark cloak and fights with both swords and tomes with lineage tied to a fell dragon. Robin was woken in the middle of a field at the start of the game while Alear was woken up in a palace room. Ironically, Alear is also tied into a fell dragon as their father is the Medeus of this game, Sombron.
  • Cosmetic Award: One of the rewards you get after beating the game is a blue stamp with Lythos' symbol on your save file. Similarly, clearing the Fell Xenologue will add a red stamp with Gradlon's emblem to it.
  • Cowardly Mooks: Similar to previous entries, some thieves will prioritize seizing the loot from chests before running away through reaching a specific spot in the map, even avoiding starting combat unless they have no other choice.
  • Crisis Crossover: Engage is the aftermath of one, as the backstory states that the kingdoms of Elyos summoned spectral versions of a dozen heroes from across the Fire Emblem multiverse to assist in defeating the Fell Dragon about a thousand years before the game's events. Downplayed in that these heroes were not the actual original people, but distinct created beings who embodied what they represented.
  • Crutch Character: Vander in a nutshell, fitting the classic "Jagen" series archetype. He's one of the first characters you get, starts in a promoted class, and has high stats for the early game, but his slow experience gain and low stat growths means he will get quickly outclassed in the long term as your other units grow stronger.
  • Cutting Off the Branches: Downplayed and Played With. While many Emblems reference either optional content or certain story choices from previous games, Fire Emblem's multiverse means there is no one true "canon" version of any game, and in any case the Emblems themselves are explicitly copies of the originals and not actually said characters returned.
    • The spinoff games tried to avoid assigning a specific gender to the main games' player characters (Heroes just had both genders appear as separate characters, Warriors and Smash Bros. had them as alternate costumes, and Three Hopes left the genders selectable), but this game solely depicts a male Robin, a female Corrin, and a male Byleth.
    • Emblem Tiki is familiar with Marth and her Divine Paralogue references her recruitment in book two of Mystery of the Emblem, indicating the Marth of that world successfully reawakened her both times, when it was entirely possible for him to fail at doing so in the original games.
    • Emblem Celica mentions during her paralogue having visited the Seabound Shrine, an optional dungeon in both Gaiden and Echoes: Shadows of Valentia, as opposed to other dungeons like the Tower of Duma which are required to beat the game.
    • Emblem Roy mentions during his paralogue having fought Idunn, the True Final Boss of Binding Blade; however, he declines to tell Alear whether he killed or saved her, the latter being that game's Golden Ending. However, his boss conversation with Emblem Idunn in the final battle implies he saved her as he states he has "no quarrel" with her and wants to free her soul again.
    • Emblem Corrin frequently mentions having to choose between her two families or abandoning both, but never confirms what decision she made. However, she is on good terms with the DLC Emblem Camilla, and the latter mentions having defeated their father Garon and establishing peace between Hoshido and Nohr, which suggests either Conquest or Revelation. In the final battle, Emblem Corrin recognizes Emblem Anankos, who is only directly fought in Revelation, even saying he is somehow always at the end of her path.
    • Emblem Byleth frequently mentions having been a professor at the Officers Academy and the Emblems of the house leaders recognize him as such, which only rules out variations from the Warriors: Three Hopes spin-off. However, he never mentions having to choose a specific class to teach or even the fact that they all literally went to war against each other before the school year was even finished, nor which side he fought for in that conflict. There is evidence to that suggest that he taught each individual class, which is an impossibility in Three Housesso determining which route the Three Houses Emblems come from, if any, is fundamentally unclear.
      • For the Black Eagles: Emblem Edelgard consistently refers to Emblem Byleth as "my teacher", which she only uses if Byleth taught the Black Eaglesnote , to no objection from either Emblem Byleth or the Emblems of the other house leaders.
      • For the Blue Lions: Emblem Dimitri mentions in his Bond Support with Seadall having been taught to dance by Emblem Byleth, which can only happen if Byleth taught the Blue Lions, as otherwise he cannot be selected to do so.
      • For the Golden Deer: Sombron only summons the Dark Emblem of Nemesis, the Final Boss of the Deer-centric Verdant Wind route, and not the Final Bosses of any other routenote . However, Emblem Byleth's reaction leaves it ambiguous whether he had previously fought Nemesis, in contrast to almost all of the other Emblems who have explicitly defeated their Dark Emblem counterpartnote .
  • Damn You, Muscle Memory!:
    • Don't be fooled into thinking mages can make it through sand tiles without a movement penalty like in previous games— now every land locked unit has to take 3 extra Mov just to traverse through said tiles.
    • All flying and mounted units in Three Houses automatically gained the "Canto" ability, allowing them to use any remaining movement points after completing their action for that turn. It can come as a surprise here that this is no longer the case and those units will stay in place even if they only moved a single tile. Instead, Emblem Sigurd has the Canter ability which allows units who have him equipped (and anyone who inherits the skill) to move two spaces after acting.
  • Darker and Edgier: In stark contrast to the main story, the DLC episode "Fell Xenologue" falls firmly into this. Its story starts showing a parallel version of Elyos where both Lumera and Alear are dead and the continent's remaining leadership have sunk its world into a state where tensions are so high that a war could spark at any moment. Alear's allies in this universe openly state to be only picking fights they can win and are always on the run due to how outclassed they are. Finally, despite their best efforts to save the continent, it's later uncovered that everyone not allied with Alear has been long since dead and that this Elyos as a whole is more or less doomed, and the only silver lining by the end is that Alear's allies are granted the option to migrate into their version of Elyos to continue their lives.
  • Dark Is Evil:
    • The titular Fell Dragon Sombron. His human form looks by far the monstruous of all the dragons seen in the game (featuring purple skin, three eyes and even dragon feet), and the story wastes no time in setting him up as the main antagonist.
    • The Fell Princess zigzags this. While Veyle herself has no actual bad bones in her body, the same cannot be said for her split evil personality.
    • The introductory movie and early cutscenes heavily imply Alear was this during the first Fell Dragon war, given their red and back color scheme, their perchant for wicked expressions, and being surrounded by flames as Lumera appears to be scared of them. Later reveals however point out the truth is far more complicated.
    • Zephia also falls squarely into this. Besides serving as The Heavy of the second half of the game, her color scheme is a mix of red, blue and black, her lightning magic has an unique dark purple tint, and even her trustworthy steed seen in her Melusine class is even called evil.
  • Dark Is Not Evil: Zelestia, Zephia's counterpart from the Alternate Elyos, is this. In spite of her dark and gray outfit and her unique class' steed being similarly stated to be evil, Zelestia herself is a big sweetheart and lacks the malice and cruelty of her parallel self.
  • Dark Reprise: The pre-map cutscene ("A Thousand Years Alone"), map ("Distorted Flash of Light") and boss ("Goddess in Shadow") themes of Chapter 25 are all Dark Reprises of Lumera's themes ("Mother and Child Reunited" and "A Goddess and Her Puppets").
  • Defeat Means Friendship: To recruit the DLC Emblems (excluding the Three Houses leaders), Alear must prove their strength against them in a battle.
  • Developer's Foresight:
    • The Break status cannot be afflicted on a character that receives zero damage, as it wouldn't make sense for someone to drop their weapon if the incoming attack was shrugged off.
    • If you manage to complete Anna's paralogue with Anna still hiding in the chest (requiring you to reach the chest before any enemies do and have a character block it off), you'll trigger special dialogue with Anna reacting to this that leads to her joining the party. Similarly, unique dialogue exists for when Anna is killed during the course of the map.
    • Chapter 6 features an enemy at the start of the map you have to kill to obtain an Emblem Ring. If you ignore him and instead try to kill the boss of the chapter without getting the ring, if he would take a fatal blow, he'll suddenly become a superhuman ninja that dodges everything, even 100% accuracy and Engage attacks.
    • In Chapter 11 where you're running away from Veyle and the Four Hounds, while Veyle is invincible, the Hounds are not; they all have defeat quotes if you can take them down. Sadly they offer no rewards outside of EXP, so this is mainly for bragging rights, or if you really just want to linger around for more EXP.
    • Also from Chapter 11, if you manage to escape with Alear on turn 1 (through the use of Warp staffs and Emblem Edelgard's Raging Storm), Ivy and her retainers will not appear to save the day, but pop up messages will indicate that they've still joined and that the Draconic Time Crystal is made available again.
    • Fogado, Bunet and Pandreo all have unique tooltip descriptions during Chapter 12, which don't refer to them as the prince of Solm and his retainers, as you don't learn this until after the chapter.
    • Played With for DLC Emblem recruitment. Most will have special boss conversations and post-recruitment scenes with the base game's Emblems from their same games, like Soren with Ike or the house leaders with Byleth. However, this means that Emblems from the same world but not the same game will have no special dialogue with each other. For example, Hector has special dialogue with Lyn since both are based off their portrayals in Blazing Blade, but Hector has no dialogue with Roy despite the latter being the son of the former's best friend and the best friend of Hector's own daughter.
    • Given it's possible to clear the Fell Xenologue DLC at any point during the main story, the Four Winds will always have an unique conversation with their respective counterparts from the Four Hounds the first time they fight each other.
  • Disc-One Nuke:
    • Having a Fire Emblem Heroes account linked up (pre-version 2.0.0.) or downloading the game's last update gives you Alfonse, Sharena, and Anna's signature weapons and a set of S-Rank Bond Rings. The weapons in particular have only one more Weight than Iron weapons but considerably more Might, and if refined they can last you all the way to the endgame.
    • Emblem Marth ends up being this. It's the very first Emblem Ring you get and very few enemies can survive the Lodestar Rush attack it bestows, yet in spite of this, it has the lowest availabily of the early Emblem Rings as you lose access to it by the end of Chapter 10 and you only get it back after beating Chapter 21.
    • The Four Winds Members and the Fell Twins can become this. The Fell Xenologue DLC can be completed as soon as Chapter 7 and they always join with stats meant for the midgame, meaning they will have no issue making the early story maps a cakewalk. It's worth noting doing this also raises the difficulty of skirmishes and DLC paralogues to midgame levels as well (thus making grinding much harder) and the new units won't be able to earn exp normally until much later on, so it's up to the player to determine if it's worth the trade-off.
    • A lucky roll with the Ancient Well can turn low-end items into end-game level equipment as soon as it is accessed. Getting versions of "Brave" and "Killer" weapons (5% chance at three stars) many chapters before they naturally start appearing is quite the nuke, plus, without the series standard Breakable Weapons, you can use them as much as you want. Additionally, the Well often provides "Books" which give free SP to the reader, allowing them to inherit skills from Emblems sooner/more easily for the same nuke-effect. Even at just two stars (requiring 1,000+G of worth of items to be tossed in), your odds of getting Books are still fairly good (70% for Novice and 30% for Adept).
    • The DLC Divine Paralogues open up in Chapter 6 and can be completed right away as they scale to your party's level. Having up to seven Emblem Braclets, including some very powerful Emblems, at that early point will massively nuke the game's difficulty for many chapters to come.
  • Distinctive Appearances: Alear's design has a strong contrast of red and blue in their outfit, as well as their hair and eyes. Notably the two-tone aspects of Alear's hair and eyes are flipped depending on their gender.
  • Double-Meaning Title: The final map is called "The Last Engage." The first and more obvious meaning is that this is the last battle in which the Emblems can fight. The second meaning, which doesn't become clear until after the battle, refers to how, a dying Sombron attempts to Engage with the Zero Emblem.
  • Do Well, But Not Perfect: A number of achievements require getting sub-par results from activities like Cooking. If you want them all, you'll need to avoid going for the best outcome each time and even outright fail sometimes.
  • Downloadable Content: The Expansion Pass included four waves of DLC, including both free and paid content:
    • The first wave launched alongside the game, including as part of the paid content two Emblem Bracelets (as opposed to the Emblem Rings the base game focuses on) containing "academy phase" versions of the Three Houses leaders (specifically containing Edelgard, Dimitri, and Claude who will function as one rotating unit), and another with Tiki in her child form. Meanwhile, in promotion with Fire Emblem Heroes, it was possible to obtain Alfonse, Shareena, and Anna's signature weapons after imputting a specific code (as of the last update however, the weapons are always available upon first visiting Somnniel).
    • Wave 2 introduced as paid content the Emblem Bracelets of Hector in his Blazing Sword look (just called Fire Emblem overseas), Soren from the Path of Radiance and Radiant Dawn games, and Camilla from Fates. For free, Recreation spots were added to Somniel which allow players to have characters do various activities and earn supports points through them.
    • The third wave added as Emblem Bracelets Veronica from Heroes, and Chrom & Robin from Awakening as paid content. Meanwhile, the update turned for free Somniel's well into the Ancient Well, which can be used to obtain 2 rare A-rank weapons, as well to drop items into it in exchange for random rewards like Joke Weapons, rare Staves, and even SP books.
    • Lastly, Wave 4 made the Fell Xenologue sidestory available for those who purchased the expansion pass, giving players access to not only two new DLC classes, but also new recruitable characters such as two Fell Dragon scions from an Alternate Elyos and the Good Counterpart of the Four Hounds (known as the Four Winds) upon clearing it.
  • Dracolich: Corrupted Wyrms and the DLC-exclusive Corrupted Wyverns are this. They're bulky undead dragons several times as big as normal units whose breath has a long range and can bypass the defense stat entirely.
  • Dragons Are Divine: Elyos as a world is heavily defined by this, with every nation worshiping to one degree or another either Divine or Fell dragons as deities (albeit the isolated Pale Sands region worships Eastern Dragons of some sort). Notably the role of "god" for the people seems to be something of a title as much as the role of an individual, with Alear inheriting their adoptive mother's title of Divine Dragon Monarch at the end of the game. Notably the dragons themselves embrace being treated as deities to some degree, and unlike in some other Fire Emblem worlds (where ruling dragons have a tendency to go insane or abuse their power) this arrangement has worked out pretty well for the people of Elyos (with the exception of Elusia's worship of the Fell Dragon). Further, the people's definition of a god does not seem to be the same as in some other worlds, where dragons like Naga clarify they cannot be truly called gods because they lack the power of creation. The people have no issue with continuing to call Alear a god even when it becomes clear they have many human limitations.
  • Dragon Variety Pack: Played with as the distinctions are more to do with power than appearance (at least for their humanoid forms, their dragon forms requiring the dragon to have their own personal Dragonstone in their possession to access), but the world of Elyos is inhabited by four distinct kinds of dragon:
    • Divine Dragons in this world look like beautiful humans but possess immense power compared to them and are associated with the color blue (as opposed to the green color Divine Dragons in some other worlds are known for). They are considered royalty and are worshiped or at least revered by most of Elyos. Their dragon form has a somewhat bird-like theme. As of chapter 3, pure Divine Dragons become extinct in Elyos with Lumera's death, though it is possible their power and essence will remain and spread in any descendants Alear has as they became essentially half Divine Dragon.
    • Fell Dragons are represented by Sombron and his children. All of said children are presumably actually half Mage Dragon and look little to nothing like Sombron in human form (Alear has his hair and eye color but nothing else, and Veyle doesn't even have that), but are considered Fell Dragons regardless. Like Divine Dragons, they can (usually) summon Emblems, but do so using invocations instead of prayer. They have become the subject of worship by Elusia. Their dragon forms are snake-themed, and in their humanoid forms most have red eyes. The pure-blooded Sombrom is the least human-looking in his humanoid form of any of the dragons in the game, but it is not known if this is normal for Fell Dragons.
    • Mage Dragons are (or perhaps were) more numerous than other dragon clans, given they were apparently the main source of Sombron's wives. Zephia is a pure-blooded Mage Dragon, and from her we can presume they are defined by pointed ears and large horns in their humanoid state, as well as the innate ability to create enchanted items (though Sombron is also shown able to do this). Zelestia reveals that Mage Dragons also have a higher body temperature than the other dragon types. There is no mention of people worshiping Mage Dragons, and their transformed form, if they have any, are not seen or mentioned in the game.
    • Dragons of the East are mentioned by Kagetsu as existing in Pale Sands and worshiped by the people there, but are never seen in the game. It's stated their dragon forms have long, lithe bodies.
  • Dramatic Irony:
    • Played for Drama. Veyle having a separate split personality created by magic is briefly implied early into Chapter 14 before being all but confirmed by the end of it, but only to the audience. As a result, when Veyle reunites with Alear and co. in Chapter 15, she's quickly accused of trying to set up a trap for them, and the royals "remind" her of the people her evil half killed, which quickly confuses and scares the poor girl enough to run away.
    • Zelestia, the Alternate Universe counterpart of Zephia, expresses her belief that her counterpart is an ally of Alear's. By the time the Fell Xenologue becomes available, Alear has already seen that Zephia is an enemy.
  • Draw Aggro: One of Emblem Soren's abilities, Assign Decoy, puts a buff on an ally that causes enemy soldiers to prioritize attacking the target for a turn.
  • Dude Looks Like a Lady: Rosado, whose personal skill (Stunning Smile) weaponizes this trope as it inflicts -20 avoid on every male enemy he fights.
  • Dynamic Difficulty: While the difficulty of story maps is completely static, optional content such as Skirmishes and Divine Paralogues scale in accordance to the highest level unit you have (or had) in your army.
  • Dysfunction Junction: Pretty much everybody is weird in some way (minus Alear). Though it's normally Played for Laughs.

    E-M 
  • Early-Bird Cameo:
    • The game's prologue, heavily implied to be a prophetic dream of sorts, briefly shows Alear fighting alongside Alfred, Diamant, Ivy and Timerra, long before they actually met each other during the main campaign. It's also possible to see them using Emblem Lucina and Emblem Ike, both whom are obtained around the game's midgame.
    • Saphir makes a very brief appearance at the end of Chapter 8, and it isn't up until Chapter 19 that she's seen again and becomes available for recruitment.
  • Edible Bludgeon: Version 1.3.0 added joke weapons themed after sweet treats, which you can obtain as possible rewards for donating items/weapons to the Ancient Well. The weapon set includes, but not limited to, Biting Blade, which is a sword with chocolate as a blade, Lollichop, which is a comically large lollipop, Croissbow, which is a large croissant shaped like a bow and baguettes as arrows, and Swirlance, which is a lance made out of ice cream. Users of these weapons can eat them to restore HP, but they will vanish upon use, requiring you to get more from the same well you obtained them from.
  • Endgame+: Beating the game takes you back to the Somniel right before the final chapter, but also unlocks a new difficulty cap for Tempest Trials and a new map for Relay Trials.
  • Equippable Ally: The heroes from previous games, referred to as Emblems, are not controllable units, and instead empower the user of the Emblem Ring used to summon them, similar to the Mirages from Tokyo Mirage Sessions ♯FE.
  • Everyone Is Bi: Of the "player-sexual" variety.In a notable departure from past entries in the series, any character who can romance Alear via an S-Support (i.e. most characters who aren't a minor, a relative of Alear, or physically much older than Alear) can do so regardless of Alear's sex. Reportedly, the Japanese version has age be less of an issue and makes romance in some of the conversations more obvious. Downplayed beyond this, as romantic implications between other characters are rare regardless of sex and don't go beyond implications as none of them have paired endings with anyone except Alear. Alear's sex likewise doesn't really get mentioned as a factor in their attraction to Alear (who is often noted to simply be an inspiring and attractive presence), so its unclear if all romance-able characters consider themselves bisexual, they simply have the orientation the player wants them to have (player-sexual), or if for a number of them it is If It's You, It's Okay.
  • Exclusive Enemy Equipment: After many recent games had made it available to the player, Meteor, a powerful long-distance fire spell, goes back to being enemy exclusive in this game.
  • Expendable Alternate Universe:
    • All of Elyos to Sombron. He sees it as a means to an end to get back to the Zero Emblem.
    • The Alternate Elyos seen in the Fell Xenologue somehow one ups this: everyone there except for the Four Winds and the Fell Siblings is a Corrupted. No wonder they all leave for the main world when the Xenologue is over.
  • Faceless Goons: Most of the Corrupted are this due to almost all of them wearing one-eyed masks that cover their faces.
  • False Flag Operation: The Fell Xenologue is kicked off by one of these. The DLC starts with a random assault on Lythos Castle by someone with an awakened Fell Emblem Bracelet, spurring Alear, Nel, and Nil to collect the remaining Bracelets. In reality, Nil orchestrated the attack (with a Corrupted Fogado) to spur the collection of the Bracelets to achieve unlimited power by gathering all seven, and only a Divine Dragon like Alear can unlock the ward on one of them.
  • Fauxshadow: The Premonition chapter turns out to be this. In it, Alear and the crown princes and princesses from Elyos are seen making their way into Lythos' Castle, fighting Corrupted up until Alear and Marth challenge and defeat Sombron, seemingly setting an end to the conflict. Suffice to say, the story's endgame does not happen like Premonition advertises, and its never elaborated upon why both deviate so much in the end. There are some indication that the premonition chapter was actually also a fragmented memory of the group Alear allied with in the war a thousand years ago, with the current royals playing the roles of the past ones in the vision. Notably, Emblem Lucina in a Bond conversation reveals that her ring used to belong to Firene (and in Premonition it is Alfred who is using her ring). Alternatively, given the theme used for this cutscene is called "The Dragon's Dream", it's suggested it could instead be—or maybe even double as—an in-universe prophetic dream, given Alear shortly wakes up from their sleep right after the Premonition chapter is over.
  • Females Are More Innocent: A very downplayed and complicated example compared to other games in the series. While the Big Bad is still male and a Hate Sink, his young female second-in-command and Lumera's would-be killer turns out to be a victim of a magically-induced split personality, who's treated as her own character and is just as heinous and vile as the Big Bad. Besides them, most major male and female villains are portrayed as sympathetic in the end, and out of the Four Hounds, which has two females and two males, one of the females, Marni, gets the Redemption Equals Death treatment, while Mauvier, one of the males, does a Heel–Face Turn, and the other two die of their wounds after fighting the party in a poignant fashion. Engage also has more generic female enemies and minor female villains than previous games. Anna's Paralogue, for example, features the series's first ever female bandit boss, and she isn't treated any more sympathetically than the typical male ones.
  • F--: The lowest a dish could be ranked is G, which only happens when the dish becomes completely burnt.
  • Fighting Spirit: One of the game’s main gameplay mechanics in is that the characters are able to fight alongside spiritual beings based on characters from previous installments of the franchise, called “Emblems.” The Emblems inhabit magical rings or bracelets. The Emblems give their user certain buffs and abilities, and can even merge with their user (called “Engaging”) for some exclusive attacks and abilities.
  • Fighting Your Friend: In Chapter 10, all of the Emblem Rings you have collected up to that point are stolen and corrupted by Sombron's power. As you continue to progress through the game, you will have to fight enemies wielding the Emblems that you bonded with in the first part of the game.
  • Final Boss, New Dimension: Sombron is ultimately fought inside the portal he opened which is meant to take him to all the various dimensions where Emblem Rings reside.
  • Final Boss Preview: The game's Premonition chapter consists of a 1 v 1 fight against Sombron's first form.
  • Fish out of Temporal Water: Alear wakes up with no memories of their past barring their name and some vague recollections. While this wouldn't be too worrying, they're immediately told that they've been sleeping for well over 1,000 years.
  • Floating Continent: The Somniel is such a place, a village-sized floating landmass that serves as home base and safe haven for your units between battles. It is also perhaps the most secure location in all of Elyos, built in such a way that the power or blessing of a Divine Dragon is required to enter it.
  • Fog of War: A returning mechanic in the game, one major change regarding fog of war is that your units cannot move through dark spots in the map. Units can only move in spaces that are visible to the player. Like previous games, thieves have increased vision, and torches and Illume staves can increase the visible area, which allows other units to maneuver through the darkness.
  • Foreshadowing:
    • Just as Alear is about to start their journey and leave Lythos, Vander makes a comment that they will need to find a source for supplies later on. Sure enough, by the end of both Chapter 4 and 5, some merchants approach Alear to offer their services for this very reason.
    • Alear's true heritage is hinted prior to The Reveal:
      • Early in the prologue, Lumera shows surprise upon hearing Alear summoned Emblem Marth through an invocation and asks their child further details on the matter. This is because that's how Fell Dragons summon Emblems to begin with, much like how Sombron summons and corrupts Emblems in Chapter 10. Griss later observes Alear use an invocation and uses this information to deduce that Alear is another child of Sombron.
      • When Zephia meets Alear, she appears to recognize them from somewhere before changing her mind. She's also surprised to hear they're Lumera's child and a Divine Dragon to boot, because as far she knew, Lumera didn't have kids and was the Last of Her Kind. As it turns out, not only Alear was adopted by Lumera, Zephia once served Alear in the distant past when they used to have red hair and eyes, but no longer remembers it due purposely avoiding getting attached to Sombron's children given how often he disposed them.
      • An obvious example of visual foreshadowing are Alear's hair and eyes, as they are evenly split between red and blue. Since Lumera has blue hair and blue eyes, and Sombron's hair and eyes are red, this is a strong hint of the revelation that both of them count as Alear's parents.
    • Lumera engages with Sigurd when you face off against her in her mock battle. Sigurd is the only one of the 12 Emblems that dies during the course of their game, leaving a child behind in the process. Fittingly, Lumera dies as well early on and leaves her child behind.
    • Veyle is the only character that has violet eyes, which is the combination of red and blue. This is a clue that she is somehow related to Alear. And even more obviously, her clothes have red and blue highlights.
    • The fact Veyle has an evil split personality and is unaware of it is hinted in Chapter 10 by two easy-to-miss comments. When Alear finally confronts the Fell Princess for Lumera's murder and for betraying them, she's briefly confused and states this is the first time they have met each other, which is seemingly immediately contradicted by Mauvier soon after once he claims he's heard a lot about Alear from Veyle. Its exact nature is also similarly hinted: In Chapter 10, Veyle briefly appears to be falling asleep before realizing something's wrong and runs away; a similar situation happens later when Veyle's evil personality reviews Alear's current whereabouts with the Four Hounds, and has to excuse herself due to experiencing the same drowsiness. As shown in Chapter 14, this sensation turns out to be a cue that one of Veyle's personalities is about to take control of her body.
    • When Alear engages with an Emblem, only the blue side of their hair changes color. It's later revealed that their blue hair is their Divine Dragon half, and the red half is their Fell Dragon half. People who use the Fell Dragon's power to engage don't get the color of their hair changed.
    • The Emblems being capable of reviving someone as an Emblem is hinted a few times in the story. Soon after Lumera's death, Marth briefly mentions to Sigurd how he wishes they were able to grant their power now, with Sigurd replying that's impossible without all 12 Emblems being present. And later in Chapter 18, when discussing the "miracle" they can perform when all 12 are reunited, they mention the long-deceased Lumera as a candidate for it.
    • During the Fell Xenologue, keen players will notice the Holy Stance skill from Emblem Celica activates with non-corrupted and very much alive-looking enemies, which not only contradicts how it's meant to work, this happens only during this sidestory. Sure enough, this turns out to be a massive clue that nearly every enemy you fight (Royals included) happens to be already dead and been revived as advanced versions of the Corrupted.
  • For Want Of A Nail: The Alternate Elyos of the Fell Xenologue has a deceptively simple Point of Divergence from Main Elyos: What if Alear was actually Lumera's biological child rather than Sombron's? As it turns out... it's much worse. Sombron presumed Alear dead in the main timeline and was caught by surprise, but he was ready for them in the alternate timeline and made a backup plan in case he died. The result by the time Mainline Alear gets there is a world that is already doomed with or without their intervention: nearly everyone in Alternate Elyos is a Corrupted, Veyle is dead, and one of the two surviving Fell Dragons is planning to finish off the few survivors and invade other worlds in accordance with the late Sombron's will.
  • Freemium Timer: You are limited to one Relay Trial per day that you've played in, though fortunately without a maximum. However, if you have an amiibo, you can scan that once a day for an additional Relay Trial attempt. Each different Fire Emblem amiibo gives its own attempt!
  • Friendship-Hating Antagonist: Sombron despises friendship and bonds, to the point of having an in-battle skill called Bond Breaker that reduces the effectiveness of Chain Attacks. This mentality led to him being an absolutely AWFUL father, treating his many children as disposable pawns, letting them kill each-other to weed out the weak ones and offing the worst "failures" himself. He's ironically motivated by the one genuine bond he ever had, with the Zero Emblem, who was his Only Friend when the rest of the world abandoned him. The protagonists are quick to call him out for this, saying it doesn't come close to justifying all the harm he's inflicted on others.
  • Freudian Excuse: All of the game's main antagonists are given such an explanation for their actions, even Sombron.
  • Fusion Dance: Party members can fuse with their Equippable Ally into a stronger form. For example, when fusing with Marth, Alear gets white clothes, energy wings, and starts floating. In gameplay it is a Timed Power-Up that lasts only for three turns (or four, if the unit reaches a Bond level of 11 with the Emblem), and a gauge needs to be filled before Engaging is usable.
  • Game-Favored Gender: Downplayed compared to past titles. In terms of non-exclusive classes, gender locks are mostly removed, with every unit in the game having access to almost every class in the game, provided they have obtained the weapon proficiencies to class change into them. The only classes that are gender locked are the Sword/Axe/Lance Fliers (which ride on pegasinote ), and they are a Base class. Rosado and Goldmary, who are faced twice as enemies, have skills that give them advantages against male units in the player's army.
  • Gameplay and Story Integration:
    • In Chapter 11, Veyle took all of the Emblem Rings in the party's possession alongside the time crystal, so naturally you can neither rewind nor Engage while the enemy Engages with impunity—at least until Ivy and her retainers come bringing 2 new Emblem Rings and have retaken the time crystal for you after several turns.
    • In Chapter 22, because Alear is revived as a Corrupted, they're unable to draw out Divine Dragon power due to being animated by Fell Dragon magic. As a result, all the Emblems summoned and rescued during the chapter are tainted red and had their abilities limited, similar to the Sombron-summoned Emblems that enemies used in previous chapters.
    • Unlike every other story mission, the final battle can only be accessed from Somniel's balcony rather than the world map. This makes sense, as Sombron by the endgame is inside a giant portal in the sky, and Somniel happens to be the location that's closest to it.
    • A minor one: the epilogue notes for Diamant that he converts his Kingdom from a warrior-based kingdom, to one that engages in trade, especially ore with Elusia. Not only does this make sense, given they're up in the mountains, but also Brodia is the best place for finding ores out of the four regions.
    • In the Fell Xenologue, after Mauvier uses a Warp staff to warp out the other Four Winds during a temple collapse, Gregory points out that like in the gameplay, you can't use a Warp staff on yourself.
    • Some skirmishes on the world map as designated as "training", taking place at the castles of allied nations. As such, any party members defeated in these battles are not permanently lost, even on Classic Mode. Alear being defeated still causes a failure, however.
  • Gameplay and Story Segregation:
    • Since it governs a number of gameplay functions, the game lets you donate funds to the very antagonistic nation of Elusia right after the first story chapter to take place in its territory. By that point in the story, your allies from said country consist of a whopping three people. And said people (Ivy and her retainers) are currently thought to have been killed in action, so they can't exactly swing their political might around even if one of them is the current heir to the throne.
    • Despite Sombron corrupting all your Emblem Rings in Chapter 10, the DLC Emblem Bracelets are not only unaffected, but are still available for use. This happens even after Alear dies and Veyle's evil personality gloats that none of the party can summon Emblems... even if you have the DLC Emblems equipped to a party member. Similarly, during the Solm arc and succeeding chapters, the party does not count the Bracelets when counting the number of rings they have compared to the enemy, despite having up to a +7 advantage if all of the bracelets have been obtained.
    • Most of the Trial Ground map battles are treated in cutscenes as friendly spars and tests between the party and a particular Emblem with no stakes beyond succeeding in deepening the bond and power with said Emblem (main game) or acquiring the help of the Emblem (DLC). However, in Classic mode characters are just as capable of being killed in these battles as in any other, and said deaths if they occur will not effect how friendly Alear and the Emblem are with each other in the cutscene after the battle(unlike Three Houses, in which characters who reach 0 HP in practice battles, like Chapter 1 and Chapter 7, are not permanently lost). Downplayed with Emblem Camilla, who explicitly warns there is a risk of her killing party members once she starts fighting seriously.
    • While some specific support chains acknowledge certain story events, none of them have any sort of progress check, meaning it's quite possible with a lot of grinding to see characters allude to these developments (i.e. Alcryst mentioning to Celine he has nightmares ever since his father's death, an event that happens in Chapter 10 but is mentioned in a support that can be seen in Chapter 8 or 9) before they have actually happened.
    • In Chapter 20, Griss claims that he's alone in Elusia Castle, and it's never indicated that he's lying, but he fights alongside Elusian soldiers and Corrupted in the battle.
  • Gender-Equal Ensemble:
    • The full playable roster (including DLC) consists of 42 playable characters: 20 males, 20 females, and two possible Alear genders, resulting in this trope.
    • The Emblems consist of six malenote  and six femalenote  heroes.
    • The royal siblings from the four kingdoms in Elyos also follow every combination of older sibling and younger sibling: an older brother and a younger sister (Alfred and Céline), an older brother and a younger brother (Diamant and Alcryst), an older sister and a younger brother (Timerra and Fogado), and an older sister and a younger sister (Ivy and Hortensia). Of the royals, four have male and female retainers (Alfred, Céline, Diamant, Hortensia), two have female retainers (Alcryst, Timerra), and the other two have male retainers (Ivy, Fogado).
    • Even the Paralogue characters (Jean and Anna), the Solo Introduced (Yunaka and Seadall), the late-game arrivals (Lindon and Saphir), and the Eleventh Hour Rangers (Mauvier and Veyle) are this trope.
    • Bond Rings for some of the Emblems are associated with equal amount of male and female characters. For example, Celica's Bond Rings feature five men—Alm, Lukas, Saber, Valbar, and Conrad, and five women—Faye, Silque, Delthea, Mae, and Genny.
    • The Four Hounds consist of two females (Zephia and Marni) and two males (Griss and Mauvier). This also applies to their alternate counterparts, the Four Winds (Zelestia and Madeline are female, while Gregory and Alternate Mauvier are male).
  • Gender-Inclusive Writing:
    • The game mostly refrains from referring to Alear as male or female, and unlike with Byleth the other party members do not speak to or treat them any differently regardless of their gender. The only exceptions are various dialog relating to the relationship between Veyle and Alear, with Veyle (and Sombron in one scene) referring to them as their "sister" or "brother" depending on which gender of Alear was chosen).
    • In the Fell Xenologue, despite the Alear of the Alternate Elyos being the opposite gender of whichever Alear the player chose (and the quite great physical differences involved), the other characters treat their appearance as being so similar that they repeatedly wonder if their world's Alear has been brought back to life somehow and make no mention that if so it means they also became a man or a woman.
  • Generic Cuteness: In a quite literal sense, generic enemies in this game look very pretty compared to their counterparts in past games, where they tended to lean towards a plain or ugly look. For instance, Fabrications are supposed to look unsettling, with Alear even complaining that they give them the chills. In practice, they look like normal young men and women with Icy Blue Eyes and empty expressions that can easily be taken for determined ones.
  • Ghost Town: Givre Port from Chapter 19 ends up being this by the time Alear's army get to it, having been long since overrun by Corrupted. Fittingly, the chapter is even named "The Dead Town".
  • Giant Mook: Midway into the story, Sombron's forces start employing Corrupted Wyrms in battle, which are twice as big compared to normal mooks and have a lot of HP, and some Emblems even use Phantom versions of them in their paralogues. Similarly, the Fell Xenologue later introduces Corrupted Wyverns from Chapter 4 onwards.
  • Good Colors, Evil Colors:
    • Emblems change color depending on who they're wielded by. Emblems aligned with the heroes have a blue aura, whereas Emblems controlled by the antagonists have a red aura. This also applies to Alear as well. Their nightmares, actually flashbacks during their time under Sombron, show them with red hair and eyes. In the present day, they have half-red and half-blue hair and mismatched red and blue eyes, symbolizing their half-Fell and half-Divine state. Then when they are reborn as the thirteenth Emblem, they have blue hair, eyes and aura.
    • Even generic enemies abide by this convention. All regular Corrupted have a dark, black color scheme with red accents, while the Fabrications that accompany Lumera in Chapter 2 and the 12 Emblems in their Paralogues are mainly a bright white with blue highlights.
  • Good Is Dumb: The Good Kingdoms of Firene and Solmnote  have massive internal problems, with Firene being too centralized to handle the bandits in its distant provinces, and Solm being too decentralized to handle bandits just outside its capital's walls. In the case of the former, the governors of Firene's provinces are implied to have no idea what's going on (and may even live in the capital instead of where they're governing). In the case of the latter, some (if not all) of Solm's provinces are basically their own kingdoms, and the only Queendom forces seen outside the capital are Desert Rangers with direct ties to the Queen. Brodia and Elusia, meanwhile, are locked in a Forever War.
  • Gotta Catch Them All: As stated in the plot, Alear's quest is to locate all twelve Emblem Rings scattered all over Elyos in order to seal the awakened Fell Dragon. The Fell Dragon in question also needs all twelve rings to open a portal to another world.
  • Götterdämmerung:
    • How the story plays out for Elyos. By the story's end, only Alear and Veyle are left standing as the remaining 'godly' figures of their world, with Alear being the last Emblem and the last Divine Dragon, while Veyle is the last Fell Dragon who has Fell powers (despite choosing not to use them). Everyone who does goes down, goes down swinging.
    • Played with in the DLC; which adds two (three in the short term) minor Dragon gods and seven extra Emblems whose fates are unconfirmed, but has them be survivors of a far-more-cataclysmic feud that left them almost-completely alone.
  • Government in Exile: Both Ivy and Hortensia eventually end up in this situation as a result of Sombron and the Four Hounds taking over Elusia after King Hyacinth's death, finding refuge with Alear's army as they regroup to fight back.
  • Greater-Scope Villain: Alternate Sombron turns out to be this for the Fell Xenologue. In spite of being long since dead in the parallel Elyos, it's his past attempts at grooming Rafal into becoming one of his potential successor and his spell on Nel's Dragonstone that kickstarts Rafal's schemes during the sidestory.
  • Great Offscreen War: The first Fell Dragon war. It's mentioned early on by Lumera that 1,000 years before the main story, Gradlon, under the leadership of Sombron, attempted to conquer the whole continent of Elyos. While the exact events surrounding it remain vague, a few specific details such as Alear's involvement in it, are later uncovered during the story.
  • Grey-and-Gray Morality: Compared to the main narrative, this is the dynamic between Brodia and Elusia. While Brodia's King Morion is shown as being a good father and strong ally of Alear, his aggressive expansionist policies toward Elusia also edge toward antagonist territory, cause innocent civilian casualties, and are indicated to have caused Elusia to become more extreme in their following of Sombron rather than making their nation less dangerous to the rest of Elyos. Similarly, it's alluded in various supports that for all his faults, Elusia's King Hyacinth wasn't that bad of a guy before Sombron came into the picture, and both Hortensia and Ivy genuinely love him as a father, and are saddened that Sombron's influence turned him into his puppet and a shadow of his former self.
  • Group Picture Ending: A still image with Alear grouped with the twelve ring Emblems, all of who appear to be happy, shows up right after the credits roll finishes, and right before The Stinger plays. The image may look a little different depending on what form you pick for Alear, but it remains the same otherwise.
  • Guide Dang It!:
    • As usual, there's no way to view character or class growth rates, but it's especially notable here as some have personal growth spreads you wouldn't expect for their starting class, but that make them more suited to others. Anna is the biggest example: she starts as an Axe Fighter, but actually has the highest personal Magic growth in the game while her Strength is comparatively poor.
    • While SP can be gained only by wearing Emblem Rings, nothing in the game tells you the main 12 Rings wielded by your units are temporarily unequipped when fighting in the arena, due to the likelihood the characters might end up fighting one of said Emblems randomly.
    • There are six different types of support bonuses in Engage which are never shown to the player in any capacity, and entirely depends on the character providing the bonuses rather than elemental affinity like previous games, which was shown to the player.
    • It's possible to obtain the unique Emblem-related songs and costumes without having to use an amiibo, which is never mentioned anywhere in the game. The catch though? To just get one specific Emblem's costume and song, you need to have the Emblem reach Bond Level 20 with 36 characters (aka the exact amount of playable characters available in the game without DLC).
    • The difficulty of optional maps is dynamic, determined by whoever in your army has (or had, if they died) the highest level, based in their "internal level" (the game keeps track of when they promoted; say they promote at Level 10, they would then be recognized as Level 11). This would've been good to know before you recruited some high-level unit because you wanted them for a Divine Paralogue, only for the enemies in said Divine Paralogue to have suddenly jumped up in difficulty. If you're not afraid of breaking the game, it's better to tackle the Divine Paralogues ASAP before the internal level goes high enough that enemies start promoting.
    • Sigurd's Paralogue has a hidden Goddess Icon that can be obtained by moving a unit onto one specific tile, corresponding to where Seliph met Sigurd and Deirdre's ghosts and received the Life Ring in Genealogy's Chapter 10. Nothing in the game hints at this, and the tile is at the far end of the north peninsula, beyond the boss and near no enemies, so it's somewhere you're unlikely to send a unit to by accident.
    • The DLC Emblem Hector's Runesword, despite its description implying it works the same way as other magic weapons, actually uses half the user's Strength stat in its damage calculation instead of Magic. It worked this way back in Hector's original game, but nothing in Engage indicates it obeys the same logic here.
  • Guilt-Based Gaming: Downplayed; if you don't deploy a unit for more than a few maps and talk to them while exploring the battlefield after completing a map, the game may trigger a unique response from them where they will ask to fight in the next battle. This will also net you 10 Bond Fragments from that unit. Some quotes include:
    Clanne: Um... Divine One? If I get to fight with you again, I promise to try really hard.
    Céline: Please do call on me, should the need arise. I am prepared to fight at any time.
    Louis: Much as I enjoy spectating your battles, a better vantage point to do so is as a combatant myself.
    Yunaka: Just so you know, I've been training extra hard lately. if you wanna put me in there, I'm ready.
    Zelkov: I hope you find use for me again in the near future. I *dislike* standing idle.
    Kagetsu: I am sad to not be fighting by your side. I hope you will find use for my sword soon.
    Timerra: Divine One, I can still fight! Please, let me tear it up on the front lines again!
    Merrin: I shall be busy honing my skills until you let me fight by your side again. I do hope it's...soon?
    Pandreo: Do you...think I'm not strong enough to fight? I pray you'll let me prove to you I'm worthy.
  • Guys Smash, Girls Shoot: Played straight by the Emblems, as most female Emblems have more ranged options than the males. There exist a couple of instances in the playable cast playing it straight as well, while there are also quite a few inversions:
    • Alfred is a lance-wielding cavalier, while his younger sister Céline is a long-range spellcaster, albeit one who can also use swords.
    • Alfred's retainers, Boucheron and Etie, are respectively a male Axe Fighter and a female Archer.
    • Framme is a Monk that fights hand to hand, while her twin brother Clanne is a Mage that sets off fireballs.
    • Pandreo is the long-range spellcasting High Priest, while his younger sister Panette is the close-range axe-wielding Berserker.
    • Timerra attacks up close with lances, while her brother Fogado uses bows (though he gains the usage of swords after promotion).
  • Healer Signs On Early:
    • One of Alear's first allies is Framme, a Martial Monk whose main role is providing healing and support, and joins at the start of Chapter 2.
    • Jean, another Martial Monk, is the first recruitable character available in the first paralogue, available after Chapter 5.
    • Micaiah, the healing-focused Emblem, is the fourth one the player acquires, after Marth (which Alear starts with), Sigurd and Celica, and is gained in Chapter 6.
  • Heroes Prefer Swords: As per franchise tradition, protagonist Alear favors swords like previous Fire Emblem protagonists.
  • Historical Hero Upgrade: Of a sort. In the present day, Alear's background as a former Fell Dragon and their involvement with the past war against Sombron has been scrubbed by Lumera, meaning that save for a few older-lived characters like Emblem Marth, Emblem Sigurd, and Zephia, everyone else in Elyos believes Alear to be Lumera's biological child and a proper Divine Dragon.
  • Hopeless Boss Fight: Chapter 11's boss is undefeatable and the mission requires you to run away. Even if you happen to get through the boss' strong guards, it also has a hidden skill called Nullify Damage, which prevents the unit from being damaged altogether.
  • Horse of a Different Color: In addition to the various wyverns and pegasi that are staples of the series, the world of Elyos has horse-sized griffons and pony-sized wolves used as battle mounts for the Griffon Knight and Wolf Knight classes respectively.
  • Infinity +1 Sword: For the final battle of the Fell Xenologue, the alternate Alear grants your Alear a special Libération sword, which does +30 damage against the boss.
  • Instant-Win Condition: The victory condition for Chapter 11 is to have Alear escape the map, winning the moment they reach one the two designated spots and choose to exit regardless of the status of the rest of your army (who escape as well) or the enemy's.
  • Intercontinuity Crossover: Much like Fire Emblem Warriors, Fire Emblem: Awakening, and Fire Emblem Heroes, it features heroes from past Fire Emblem titles. This is the first mainline game, however, where summoning old heroes is an important part of the game's story.
  • Interface Spoiler:
    • The DLC Emblems spoil the fact that there are more than 10 levels to bond levels. That the Emblems's most iconic weapons are conspicuously nowhere to be found (especially Marth's Falchion, considering you're using it in the tutorial level) doesn't help either.
    • If you view the stats of the Four Hounds in Chapter 11, Mauvier is the only one with a personal skill. This heavily implies he will join your army later, but the other Hounds won't.note 
    • You can encounter the Enchanter and Mage Cannoneer classes before seeing them in the Fell Xenologue if you do Soren and Veronica's Divine Paralogues, respectively.
    • In the Fell Xenologue, all the alternate royals (and all of their soldiers) are weak against Corrupted-effective weaponry, spoiling the fact that everyone in the alternate Elyos had already died, with the exceptions of the Four Winds and the Fell twins.
    • The end of Fell Xenologue 5 leads you to believe the Four Winds all died. But if you use the Rankings option before the next Xenologue (which, while connected to the internet, shows the most common characters other players deployed), you'll see Zelestia, Gregory and Madeline in the list... And accessing the Rankings at any time in the Fell Xenlogue will reveal an even bigger spoiler, as it lists Nil by his real name, Rafal.
  • Internal Reveal: As the story goes on, Zephia slowly starts to piece together that Alear is most likely Veyle's missing sibling and a Fell Dragon in origin rather than a Divine One. And while she later discusses this possibility with both Sombron and Griss, Alear and their allies remain in the dark about this for a while up until she has Griss finally test and confirm this hypothesis in Elusia Castle.
  • Invocation: Alear has to do a special chant every time they summon a new Emblem or purify an Emblem Ring tainted by Sombron, with each one getting their own invocation. This method turns out to be unique to Fell Dragons, as pure Divine Dragons simply have to use prayers instead.
  • It Is Beyond Saving: Alear almost says this word for word when convincing the Four Winds to join their army in the main timeline at the end of the Xenologue. They know that they do not want to leave their home, especially since Mauvier's corpse and spirit are still in the Xenologue world, but Alear tells them that their world is a complete dystopia with no signs of life. Mauvier would have wanted his fellow Winds to live prosperous lives, so they eventually agree to go with Alear and join their army.
  • It Only Works Once: After Alear is brought back to life thanks to the 12 Emblems' "miracle" late into the story, the Emblems make clear that this ability of theirs can be done only once.
  • Joke Item:
    • Occasionally, you can find and pick up Horse Manure in the Somniel; it is a gift that does nothing other than to trigger a unique and hilarious response from that character.
    • Weak food-based weapons can be acquired from the Ancient Well. They don't offer much in combat, but have the unique trait of the user being able to consume them to restore health.
  • Kick Them While They Are Down: The Warrior's class skill, Merciless, increases damage dealt by 50% against a broken unit.
  • Kill Steal: Due to the nature of Chain Attacks, it is possible for nearby Backup-style units (or units wearing Lucina's ring) to kill the attacker's target before said attacker even have a chance to act. Some units like Hortensia may comment that the intervention was completely unnecessary in their victory pose. Fortunately, the EXP won't be stolen by your teammates.
  • Kill Streak: The Speedtaker skill—available through Lyn's Emblem Ring—allows the user to gain a +2 bonus to their speed stat up to a maximum of +10 when they defeat an enemy with an attack during the player phase.
  • Knockback: Smash is a special trait of heavy weapons, like Blades, Greatlances, and Greataxes, that knocks the unit that was hit by it back by one space. If the unit being smashed is pushed to a space that cannot be crossed, whether it's a wall or another unit, they are inflicted with the Break status instead, and is in-fact the only way to inflict the status on Armored units outside of the Fracture staff. Berserker's class skill Smash+ pushes the unit by 2 spaces instead of 1. Due to the effects of this trait, anyone who fights with those weapons are forced to let their opponent strike first, no matter who initiates combat, and can't do follow-up attacks.
  • Kung-Fu Wizard: The Martial Monk and its promotions Martial Master and High Priest fight with their fists/Body Arts and can use staves (or tomes in the High Priest's case). Arts damage is physical, but is calculated by the average of the unit's Strength and Magic combined.
  • Last of His Kind:
    • It's eventually confirmed that Lumera was the only surviving Divine Dragon left after the first Fell Dragon war, with this predicament even playing a part with her eventual adoption of Alear during it. By the end of the story and, due to Lumera using her own life force to revive Alear at the start of the game—leading them to inherit her Divine Dragon powers—, they end up becoming the last Divine Dragon left on Elyos.
    • After the final battle, Veyle is the only remaining pure Fell Dragon left once the war's over (unless Nel and Rafal moved to the main Elyos, that is), though Alear's paired ending with her suggests she eventually has an offspring later down the line.
    • Once all of the Emblems (At least the Ring Emblem themselves as the fate of the Bracelet Emblems is unconfirmed) fade away from Elyos due to dimension destabilization caused by the closure of the portal, Alear themselves became the last Emblem in the entire world, though as a mortal, it's inevitable that they'll only be around for so long (their paired ending with Zelestia notes they lived for at least a thousand more years).
  • Late-Arrival Spoiler: A few of the Emblems contain references to plot twists from their home games.
    • In Chapter 3 of the main story, Sigurd casually mentions dying and leaving a child behind, when that was a brutal Twist Ending to the first half of Geneaology.
    • Lucina's true identity as Chrom's daughter from the future isn't kept a secret. In her paralogue, she even talks about fighting her father at Arena Ferox under a fake identity.
  • Late Character Syndrome: Zig-Zagged overall as some non-"royal" units who join in the second half of the game (roughly the Solm arc on) play it straight and some avert it outright. Goldmary even Lampshades the series tradition of using this trope if spoken to in the post-battle of the mission where she joins the party:
    Goldmary: "Thank you for allowing me to join you. I’m sorry if my presence makes your other allies obsolete."
    • Played Straight: Bunet, Merrin, Rosado, Goldmary, Saphir, and Lindon can be useful, but you have likely been using other characters in their most suited roles for longer, relegating them to the bench for the duration of the game barring a death in Classic mode.
    • Averted:
      • Pandreo, a magic-using retainer to Fogado, requires a reclass into a Sage or Mage Knight, but becomes one of the best spellcasters on Maddening due to his ability to double with high-level tomes.
      • Panette, a melee-attacking retainer to Timerra, can become one of the best physical units in the game in the right build, even achieving a near-100% critical hit rate. Getting her to that point all but requires a guide.
      • Seadall is the series standard Dancer with no offensive potential to speak of, but is a great Support Party Member enabling allies to take another action and passively healing with his personal skill. Pair him with quality defensive Emblems to allow him to survive near the front lines (or Sigurd for Canter so he can fall back after Dancing) and he'll be a great late addition to the team.
      • Mauvier comes with high stats and great growth, but likely needs a reclass to become anything more than a Combat Medic as his default Mage Knight.
      • Veyle is a major exception, being the game's Tiki archetype. She is the last party member to join and is a massive nuke. You'll need a very good reason to keep her out of your party.
  • Later-Installment Weirdness:
    • Engage carries over oddities present in Fire Emblem: The Binding Blade:
      • Just like Roy, Alear is the only character who can have a paired ending. Everyone else is stuck with just a solo ending if they aren't chosen as Alear's Ring Support.
      • Excluding remakes, thieves once again revert back to not having any class change options, even though in Three Houses, it is possible for anyone with this class can class change into similar thief-like classes. The game compensates this by making them function as a special class, giving them a maximum level of 40 to prevent them from falling behind, in addition to also still being able to reclass.
    • For the first time in the series, any playable character can open chests in this game. The only form of unlocking exclusive to Thieves is doors, which can also be broken down. Due to this, the Thief class has changed from a Utility Party Member to a combat-focused one. Oddly, the enemy still operates by the rules of past games: only their Thieves will attempt to loot chests.
  • Launcher of a Thousand Ships: Alear is this In-Universe, which is especially notable as they're the only character who can have paired endings with someone of their choosing.
  • Lighter and Softer: While Three Houses had its fair share of comedic relief, its story is full of Grey-and-Gray Morality where sympathetic characters die no matter the route and it has boatloads of Tragic Backstories, full of genocide, familial abuse, and (heavily implied) prostitution. And while Engage has its fair share of serious moments, it has a lot more comedic episodes in its main story, has Black-and-White Morality where most sympathetic antagonists are playable up to and including Lumera's murderer, and has most of its "serious" supports tied to select characters, like Yunaka and Zelkov's pasts as assassins or Alfred's terminal illness.
  • Light Is Good:
    • Queen Lumera is a textbook example, thanks to having served as Elyos' protector and local deity for over 1000 years while sporting a white and golden dress. When brought back for the endgame as Sombron's minion however, she's been so thoroughly twisted that she fits more into Light Is Not Good.
    • Alear similarly qualifies given they're Lumera's child and successor, serve as the main hero(ine) of the story, and wear white clothes with bright red and blue colors. Their Alternate Elyos counterpart is suggested to be an even bigger example, due to the implications that they were born as a Divine Dragon and were in their universe Lumera's biological child.
  • Limit Break: Engage Attacks are powerful abilities that can help you get a leg up on an encounter, and include effects like attacking a line of enemies, warping to another ally and attacking at that location, or refreshing every ally around them. You can do one Engage Attack each time you Engage with an Emblem.
    • Lodestar Rush: Strikes the enemy seven times at 30% damage.
    • Warp Ragnarok: The user can teleport up to ten spaces away, and then unleash a powerful spell.
    • Override: Plows through up to three enemies in a row.
    • Quadruple Hit: The user strikes the enemy with a sword, a lance, an axe, and a bow.
    • Blazing Lion: Sets the area around the target on fire, damaging those who are standing around them.
    • Astra Storm: Hits the enemy with five attacks at 30% damage, and has a range of ten spaces.
    • Twin Strike: Summons Ephraim to attack the enemy with a sword and a lance attack. Effective on Corrupted.
    • Great Aether: Increases defence and resistance, but the user can't counterattack for one turn. On the next turn, the user attacks the area surrounding them. The user is healed 30% of the damage they do.
    • Great Sacrifice: The user reduces their HP to one, but fully restores all allies' HP.
    • All for One: Allies within two spaces of the user join in for a Chain Attack.
    • Torrential Roar: Attacks up to three spaces in a line, and then turns the terrain to water.
    • Goddess Dance: Allows the allies standing next to the user to go again.
    • Dragon/Bond Blast: The user attacks with a sword/magic combo. If both Alear and the unit they engaged with are next to each other use this move, they attack together for a total of three attacks.
    • Houses Unite: The user attacks with the trio's Hero Relics. If done next to a unit equipped with Byleth's ring, the three leaders do the attacks themselves and the user gains another action.
    • Divine Blessing: Grants an ally a revive stone. If done next to a unit equipped with Marth's ring, the ally has their health restored and regains an Engage Turn/has the Engage Meter filled.
    • Storm's Eye: Makes the user immune to break, prevents enemies from doubling and guarantees a double-attack for 1 turn, at the cost of locking the user in place. If done next to a unit equipped with Lyn's ring, the user will also strike first even if the foe initiates combat.
    • Cataclysm: The user attacks the target area three times, once each with fire, lightning and wind. The area of effect is increased if done next to a unit equipped with Ike's ring.
    • Dark Inferno: Attacks an area around the user, setting the affected tiles on fire. The area of effect is increased if done next to a unit equipped with Corrin's ring.
  • Living Ghost: Alear is an odd case; they died and were revived as an Emblem, yet they still have their living body. Instead, Alear's Emblem form essentially functions as a Super Mode. They have some of the same abilities as normal Emblems, like glowing and flying, as well as being able to engage with another party member to give them perks (which is like possession, except that the host can still control their body). However, they also have differences, like how they can still fight independently from the one they're engaged to, and still act as a separate unit. Alear is still able to eat, and their ring doesn't need to be polished. Furthermore, they're the only Emblem to not be affected by dimension destablization, which broke down the incoporeal bodies of the natural Emblems (At least with the rings) in the process.
  • The Load: In the Fell Xenologue, Nil is an effectively useless unit with low stats and barely any offensive or defensive support, yet his defeat will cause a mission failure. The in-game tips out-right suggest that he's only useful if he uses a support Emblem. It's an act, however.
  • Lootboxes: The player can spend Bond Fragments to create Bond Rings, which are minor rings based on other Fire Emblem series characters. These rings are randomly generated, only feature stat boosts and sometimes an equippable skill, and can be combined to create higher ranked rings. You can have one or ten rings generated at a time, and the characters chosen are based on the Emblem Ring used. An example would be a selection of Shadow Dragon and Mystery of the Emblem characters when using Marth's ring. Unlike some examples, this feature uses in-game currency only.
  • Lord British Postulate:
    • In Chapter 11, you are meant to escape from Veyle and the Four Hounds, who at this point in the game are quite a bit stronger than your units, have multiple Revival Crystals, and have Emblem Rings in a chapter where you have none. The Four Hounds can be beaten if you're good, but Veyle has a hidden skill that nullifies all combat damage while environmental damage (from DLC Emblems) cannot kill, so the map must be finished as intended.
    • The central gimmick of Fell Xenologue 6 is that the boss can be fought from the start of the map (and in fact spawns right next to the party), but due to the field effect reducing player damage by 50 and critical rate by 50%, it's difficult to do meaningful damage to them even with Alear's new Infinity +1 Sword until the boss moves to the end of map where the field effect no longer applies. However, with enough setup and buffs, it's possible to deal enough damage such that the boss can still be killed in this state, and doing so takes a map that normally takes hours and completes it within a few minutes.
  • MacGuffin Delivery Service: Twice. The first time is by Chapter 10 when Alear is lured into a trap from both Hyacinth and Sombron, which is previously discussed as a possibility but they're given no other option but to go along with it. The second and most important one happens when Alear returns to Lythos to rescue Veyle from Sombron and the Hounds. After Alear is killed, Sombron takes all the rings and uses them to open a portal to another world.
  • Magic A Is Magic A: Offensive magic available to party members in Engage mostly consists of four families of spells that each share specific, consistent traits. Exceptions are limited mostly to magic used by Emblems or specific special characters, as well as a couple end-game high-rank spells.
    • Fire magic is the go-to versatile offensive option, packing good power, high accuracy, and a 1-2 range.
    • Wind magic is normally weaker than Fire magic of the same rank, but does much more damage to Flying enemies. It's also at least just as fast than Fire magic, though a bit less accurate.
    • Thunder magic is much slower and much less accurate than Fire magic of equal rank, and it (normally) cannot hit twice, but it has greater range (1-3) and is at least just as strong.
    • The "Surge" family of spells has the unique trait of never missing, but can only be used in close quarters. It also lacks an A-rank version, though Magic's Infinity -1 Sword shares its tome color and visual effects.
  • Magikarp Power:
    • Jean is the series "Villager with Attitude" archetype, being acquired early while very weak but having the best growth potential in the game, further enhanced by his "Expertise" personal skill which doubles his growths. It's entirely possible by the end of the game that little Jean is one of the most effective characters in whatever role you've chosen for him.
    • Anna is a literal child and comes as an Axe Warrior by default, one of the worst classes for her growth potential. Pair her with the right emblem early to enable a switch to the magic classes, where she has the best Magic growth potential in the game, and she can be nuking foes by the mid-game. On top of it, her personal skill "Making a Killing" gives a possible 500g payout every time she defeats an enemy, even if she doesn't initiate combat, based on Luck. Pair her with Emblem Tiki, inherit Tiki's +10 HP/Luck (which stacks with her equip bonus), and let Anna clear maps while you roll in the money.
  • Maximum HP Reduction: There's an unique type of enemy found in DLC maps called Corrupted Wolves, whose fangs reduce the target's max HP by 5 every time they attack and inflict visible damage during enemy phase.
  • Mêlée à Trois: Fell Xenologue 4 has the game's first and only three-way showdown between the Divine Dragon and their cohort, the alternate Elusia, and the alternate Solm. With a little daring, it's possible to goad the enemy commanders into killing each other off and then dart in to mop up the survivor.
  • Melee Disarming: The new "Break" mechanic in Engage is this, where units can make their opponents drop their weapons upon a successful hit if they have a weapon triangle advantage over them.
  • Men Are the Expendable Gender:
    • Played straight for major story characters: Both Kings of Elyos, Morion and Hyacinth, end up dying from their own stupidity- Morion for falling into an obvious trap, Hyacith for serving the Fell Dragon. The two queens of Elyos, Ève and Seforia, end up surviving until the end of the game.
    • Averted for Mooks, as Engage features far more female Mooks than any other entry in the series.
  • Mental Shutdown: When Emblems become Dark Emblems when summoned by Fell Dragons, such as Sombron, they lose their ability to think and communicate.
  • Metal Slime: Skirmishes sometimes feature Gold or Silver Corrupted, healthier-looking Corrupted with adjusted outfit and metal colors to match their type. Gold Corrupted carry Gold and are thus one of the game's few forms of Money Grinding, while Silver Corrupted yield more EXP for their challenge than their peers.
  • Mid-Season Twist: Chapter 10, mainly because it reveals Veyle's the hooded girl who killed Lumera, the Four Hounds serve her, and she steals Alear's Emblem rings.
  • Minmaxer's Delight: At first glance, the ability to inherit stat boost skills from bonded Emblems seems like a good way to make up for a unit's deficiencies, like giving a Fragile Speedster better defenses, which is valid. Even better, however, is using these stat boosts to make a character more of what they already are with game-breaking potential. For example, get a character whose personal skill triggers based on a percentage of the Luck skill to max bond with Tiki, granting them +10 Luck while they have her equipped. Then inherit Tiki's +10 HP/Luck skill, which stacks, for an insane Luck boost that will have the ability triggering all the time.
  • Mirror Match:
    • Chapter 24 ends up being this due to Zephia's magic crystal teleporting Alear and co. into the past, forcing them to fight Past Alear to shatter the Fell Dragon Shard near them.
    • The Fell Xenologue allows you to sic the eight royals on their alternate counterparts. Clearing all of Fell Xenologue early enough will also let you sic the surviving Four Winds on their mainline Four Hounds counterparts.
  • Mirror Universe: The geography and power structure of Elyos in the Alternate Timeline is flipped around. The most prominent examples are Brodia and Firene; they're positioned where Elusia and Solm would be on the world map in the main game, and their ideologies are switched: Firene is a hot-blooded nation that's a hair's width away from going to war with Brodia and is quite vengeful whereas Brodia despises war entirely.
  • Mix-and-Match Critters: The Corrupted Wolf and Phantom Wolf enemies in the game are a intimidating mix of a typical Elyos wolf and a giant scorpion. Namely their lower jaw is a pair of arthropod mandibles, and instead of a wolf tail they have a long, stinger-tipped organ that looks like it was grafted into the flesh of their back. They have a special ability where their attacks deliver a "curse" effect that reduces a units max hit points by 5 for each attack and lasts the rest of the map unless removed by a Restore staff.
  • The "Mom" Voice: Played for Laughs in one of Yunaka's bond conversations with Lyn. When Lyn finds out that Yunaka had been imitating her behind her back, Lyn starts to speak in a stern voice telling her to stop imitating people, not even for giggles. This causes Yunaka to start acting like a child, as she apologizes to Lyn and begs her to forgive her.
    Lyn: Words have attributed to me that I didn't say. Do you know why that might be, Yunaka?
    Yunaka: That was probably me. I may have done some impressions of you. It was only for a giggle!
    Lyn: I knew it. That does it, young lady — no more impressions! Of anyone! Not even for giggles!
    Yunaka: No! Come on, I'm sorry. You can forgive me, can't you? Friends forgive each other!
  • Mood Whiplash:
    • Like previous games, many Support conversations are light-hearted and comedic, and since they become available as soon as the required support level between the two characters in question is met, they can potentially pop up after major story revelations or plot deaths which can make them seem very out of place. It is possible, for example, to witness the death of a party member's father in a mission and then watch a support conversation where that character jokes around with another immediately after.
    • Most of Alfred's support conversations are pretty light-hearted, and his C and B conversations with his sister Céline are also like that: they deal with Céline playfully scolding her brother about the fact that he always tries to solve problems by exerting his physical strength instead of coming up with more sensible solutions. But when you get to their A conversation, Céline finds out that Alfred's childhood illness isn't fully healed like everyone thought, and the reason Alfred keeps honing his body is because he thinks it will keep him from succumbing to the illness. And unless you pair Alfred with Alear, the ending of the game reveals Alfred will indeed die young, making the A support between him and Céline the only scene where this turn of events is foreshadowed.
  • Mook Chivalry: Averted. Outside of a few maps where enemies are explicitly defending certain areas, they will send their forces at you en masse from all over the map save for, usually, the enemy commander. This makes for larger and often more chaotic engagements, but can be used to the player's advantage by posting up in a defensible spot and letting them come to you. Skirmishes often begin with all the enemy groups on the map, not just those closest to you, charging toward your units on the first Enemy Phase.
  • The Multiverse: The existence of various universes is alluded very early into the story, being these the source of the many heroes who reside within Elyos' Emblem Rings. The DLC Emblem Bracelets are in a similar situation, with the difference these originate from a different version of Elyos altogether. Finally, Sombron near the endgame opens a portal which connects Elyos with the other universes, which he plans to use to ditch the continent altogether to go look for Zero Emblem's whereabouts.
  • My Rules Are Not Your Rules:
    • For your units to make use of an Emblem's unique weapons and their Emblem Attacks, you need to activate Engage mode (which lasts only three turns at minimum without upgrading its duration before needing to recharge for another use) when the Engage meter is full. When it comes to enemies bearing Corrupted Emblem rings however, they have no such restrictions; they are free to use Emblem weapons and their special attacks while in a normal state with no timer. In fact, the game explicitly points out enemies CANNOT use Engage Mode at all as a trade off for this access.
    • Corrupted Emblems also bestow enemies unique variations of the skills gained during Synch Mode which work differently compared to the ones the player can use. One of the most noteworthy examples can be seen in Chapter 20 where Corrupted Celica grants Griss both Ragnarok Warp and Unholy Stance rather than Warp Ragnarok and Holy Stance, allowing him to teleport out into a safe area after attacking and deal 50% more damage to non-corrupted enemies (as in, every member of your army).
    • The Melusine class both Zephia and Zelestia can access is nearly identical in all areas except weapon proficiencies: Under Zephia's control, it gives her S-rank in swords and A-rank in tomes; meanwhile, with Zelestia it grants her instead A-rank in swords and S-rank in tomes.
    • In a cosmetic example, Rosado is the only male character in the game who will always use the female variations of outfits when reclassed into other units or when using gendered clothes in Somniel.
  • Mythology Gag: Found here.

    N-Z 
  • Near-Villain Victory: Chapter 21 ends with Sombron seemingly killing Alear for good, stealing their 12 Emblem Rings, using them to gain more power, unsealing Gradlon, and then leaving while Veyle is once again taken over by her evil personality—irreversibly for all appereances—and summons Corrupted to swarm Alear's army. Cue Chapter 22.
  • Nerf:
    • Cavalry and Flying Units now have only a +1 movement edge over their Infantry peers, and they don't get the special subclass effects introduced in this game for infantry. In previous entries, the edge was +2. They also lost innate Canto in this game, no longer having the ability to reposition after an action without help from Emblem Sigurd. They've also lost the ability to wield Staves and Tomes at the same time, with the exception of the unique classes of two important characters. Further, they can no longer dismount to get get rid of their weapon weaknesses and take advantage of terrain effects. Fliers have a few other Nerfs added, including that no flying class can wield bows while their own weakness to bows has been increased.
    • Staves also received a bit of a nerf; they now use only half of their wielder's Magic for healing, and the ranges of ranged Staves no longer scale with the wielder's Magic at all. Range-increases for Staves are now provided by Engaging with Micaiah, while Hortensia gets an innate +1 range with all of them.
    • In Three Houses, it was possible to tell which enemies would attack a given unit on the next Enemy Phase, along with their damage and chance to hit. In Engage, the feature returns, but it only shows all the units that can attack a player unit(for example, if two player units are both in the range of three enemies, it will show that any of the three enemy units could attack either of the two player units) and doesn't show any information on how combat will go.
    • It was possible to build powerful "enemy phase"-focused units in Three Houses who were typically good at dodging to avoid the enemy's attack and fast/high-crit enough to take them out with counterattacks. Engage, however, nerfs this strategy in several ways. The "Break" mechanic with the return of the weapon triangle can temporarily prevent your units from counter-attacking entirely as long as the enemy deals at least Scratch Damage to them with the proper weapon. Enemies, especially on higher difficulties, will also ignore units they have no chance to hit, meaning your "dodge tanks" are far less likely to be attacked in the first place. Finally, the "Chain Attack" mechanic means that even when your dodgy units are attacked, they will still likely take at least a little damage from other nearby enemies without being able to counter it. Overall, expect to take out fewer enemies during the enemy phases compared to 3H.
  • No Body Left Behind: Happens to every defeated Corrupted, as their bodies fade away in a red magical energy when killed.
  • No Experience Points for Medic: Averted after the series played it straight for a very long time. Healing an ally actually gives a reasonable experience payout, meaning your medics won't be falling behind your other party members quite as much. Further, Emblem Michaiah's ultimate ability, Great Sacrifice, reduces the user's HP to one while fully healing all allies on the battlefield. It also comes with a massive experience payout that all-but guarantees a level-up when used.
  • No Fair Cheating: Fell Xenologue 5 from the Downloadable Content doesn't like you meddling with the intended gimmick of Nel struggling to survive against a maniacal Nil in a secluded room. Should the fight be interrupted, such as an ally using Warp Ragnarok to enter (or Nel herself using Warp Ragnarok to exit), the map will proceed to trigger all of its mechanics at once: every reinforcement spawns, every enemy turns aggressive, Alternate Fogado spams Summon Hero, a couple extra boss-level enemies appear that wouldn't normally, and an extra Corrupted Wyvern spawns above Alear's cell to shoot at them. The boss also has the otherwise-Maddening-exclusive Warding Stance, so it's not like your Warp Ragnarok would do much damage.
  • No Hugging, No Kissing: In contrast to the Hotter and Sexier Awakening and Fates, and the Tamer and Chaster but still romance-heavy Echoes and Three Houses, explicit romance is very rare in Engage. Most of the parents met in the story are single by the time it begins, the playable cast have no romantic supports outside of Alear, and even then the vast majority of Alear's paired endings are platonic, at least in the English translation. Notably, in the English version several of the romantic paired endings are only noted to be romantic in the ending card or optional dialog in the Somniel (Chloé and Panette for instance). Ultimately, the story has a heavy focus on the theme of Found Family over romantic love.
  • Non-Indicative Name: Bolganone (the game's A-rank Fire Tome) is a play on "Volcano", and in most of its appearances it causes fire to erupt from beneath the target's feet. In Engage, it drops a gigantic fireball on the foe, closer to a Meteor-Summoning Attack than any sort of volcanic eruption.
  • Non-Lethal K.O.: Some skirmishes on the world map as designated as "training", taking place at the castles of allied nations. Any allies defeated in these battles are not permanently lost, even on Classic Mode, as it wouldn't make sense for these enemies to fight to kill. However, it bears mentioning that Alear going down in these bouts will still end the game.
  • North Is Cold, South Is Hot: The Kingdom of Elusia, which is in Elyos' northeast, is a land covered in snow, while the southeastern Queendom of Solm, is a desert. To a lesser extent, the southwestern Kingdom of Firene is warm and has good farmland, while the northwestern Kingdom of Brodia is rocky and barren.
  • Nonstandard Game Over: Save for one specific case, maps with alternate win/loss conditions or gimmicks lead to this:
    • Chapter 8 requires you to defend Brodia's Castle while also defeating the boss. You lose instantly if any enemy unit lands in the red tiles you're meant to defend.
    • Given getting Lumera's ring is required to finish Alear's Paralogue, allowing the enemy carrying it to escape will make you fail the mission.
    • Chapter 24 needs to be cleared within 20 (Normal)/15 (Hard) turns. Otherwise, it's an instant Game Over.
    • Finally, dying against the Final Boss results in a special cutscene where starting from Alear's POV upon regaining consciousness that Sombron announces that all their friends and allies are dead before turning to see that he also successfully recreates the helmet used to lock Veyle's true personality away and allow her false evil side to take over. Alear also learns that they appear to have been invoked by either Sombron or Veyle as Veyle is shown wearing their Emblem Ring, with Alear shortly discovering in horror that they've also returned to their Fell Dragon appearance as Sombron belts out an Evil Laugh. Then, you get the Game Over screen.
  • No-Sell: A fairly common occurrence in Fire Emblem, since attacks are allowed to do zero damage, and since foes in Engage tend to have at least one decently-high damage-reducing stat. There are Skills that provide "true" damage to attacks, though, averting this trope.
  • Nostalgia Level: The maps for the Emblems' paralogues are recreations of maps from past games associated with the focus Emblem, usually key turning points in the Emblem's story, with said Emblem often directly referencing the events of that past map. And yes, this includes Alear themselves once they become the Fire Emblem. The only Emblem without an associated paralogue is the Emblem of Rivals, which houses Edelgard, Claude and Dimitri from Three Houses.
    • Marth's paralogue is based on Chapter 17 of Shadow Dragon & the Blade of Light, "Star and Savior", where he took back Altea Castle and liberated his homeland.
    • Celica's paralogue is based on the entrance to the Seabound Shrine, an optional dungeon first available in Act 2 of Gaiden and Echoes: Shadows of Valentia.
    • Sigurd's paralogue is based on Chapter 10 of Genealogy of the Holy War, "Light and Dark", more specifically the segment between Castle Miletos and Castle Chalphy. In that chapter, Seliph liberated Chalphy, Sigurd's homeland, and, in an optional event, met the ghosts of Sigurd and Deirdre (though that event was triggered in a different part of Chapter 10's map than the one on which the paralogue is based).
    • Leif's paralogue is based on Chapter 22 of Thracia 776, "Across the River", where he fought against Saias and Reinhardt at the River Thracia.
    • Roy's paralogue is based on Chapter 21 of The Binding Blade, "The Binding Blade", where he stormed the Shrine of Seals to obtain the titular sword.
    • Lyn's paralogue is based on the Sacae version of Chapter 20x of The Binding Blade, "Bow of Swift Wind", which took place in Lyn's homeland of Sacae and was where Roy's army obtained the regalia bow Mulagir (which is also the weapon Lyn can bestow after the paralogue is completed). While the original map was not from The Blazing Blade, Lyn's game of origin, and Mulagir was likewise unobtainable there, that same map also inspired the map for Lyn's Legendary Hero Battle in Heroes, where she likewise wields Mulagir.
    • Eirika's paralogue is based on the first part of the endgame of The Sacred Stones, "Sacred Stone", where she and Ephraim defeated Lyon in the shrine in Darkling Woods before defeating the resurrected Fomortiis, the Demon King.
    • Ike's paralogue is based on Chapter 8 of Path of Radiance, "Despair and Hope", where the Greil Mercenaries withstood a siege at Gebal Castle the day after Greil's death at the hands of the Black Knight.
    • Micaiah's paralogue is based on Chapter 3-13 of Radiant Dawn, "Blood Contract", where she and the Daein army make their last stand against the Greil Mercenaries and the Laguz Alliance at Castle Nox.
    • Lucina's paralogue is based on Chapter 4 of Awakening, "Two Falchions", where she fought Chrom in her "Marth" disguise at Arena Ferox.
    • Corrin's paralogue is based on Chapter 6 of Fates, "The Path is Yours", where she chose whether she would fight for Hoshido, Nohr, or neither.
    • Byleth's paralogue is based on the main mission of Chapter 11 of Three Houses, "Conflict in the Holy Tomb", where he defended the Holy Tomb, a sacred site beneath Garreg Mach Monastery, during a raid from the Flame Emperor.
    • Alear's paralogue is based on Chapter 2, "Queen Lumera", when they and their retainers fought against Lumera at the Lythos Castle Gardens.
    • Tiki's Divine Paralogue is based on Chapter 14 of Book Two of Mystery of the Emblem, "A Mystery Revealed", where Marth reawakened Tiki at the Ice Dragon Temple. It has a similar gimmick of having to unseal rooms to make progress, and an obtainable Silver Card located where Anna's Secret Shop was.
    • Hector's Divine Paralogue is based on Chapter 30 of Hector's tale from Blazing Blade, "The Berserker", in which he fights against the spirit of a legendary hero in order to earn the right to wield the axe Armads in a cave filled with poisonous gas.
    • Camilla's Divine Paralogue is based on Chapter 23 of Birthright, appropriately named "Camilla", the site of her final boss battle in that route while Corrin and the Hoshidan army were inflitrating Castle Krakenburg.
    • Soren's Divine Paralogue is based on Chapter 3-8 of Radiant Dawn, "Incandescent Glow", where Soren suggested the Greil Mercanaries and their allies flee through the volcanic Kauku Caves and inadvertently entered Goldoa, the country of his unknowing grandfather. And like that map, lava geysers erupt periodically and cause terrain hazards.
    • Chrom's Divine Paralogue is based on Chapter 23 of Awakening, "Invisible Ties", in which the Shepards take down Validar and try to change Chrom's fate from Lucina's future.
    • Veronica's Divine Paralogue isn't strictly a throwback, but rather a reference to one of the game modes of Fire Emblem Heroes: Aether Raids, which has the player design a floating island base to initiate/receive raids to/from another player's floating island base. In Veronica's map, the player has to smash such floating islands together to reach her.
  • Orwellian Retcon: A rare gameplay example. From version 2.0.0., Master and Second Seals are sent directly to the Storehouse rather than the inventory or convoy, meaning it's no longer possible to use them during a map. The tutorial that can show up when you first get one was even updated with new screenshots to account for this change.
  • Offing the Offspring: Sombron had apparently done this so many times that Zephia eventually stopped bothering trying to remember any of his children's names. In the present day, he attempts to murder Veyle once she stops being of use to him, and eventually does kill Alear in-game without a shred of remorse, and it's the traumatic memory of watching multiple siblings getting torn apart by the Corrupted that gives Alear their notable fear of them, even after they eventually lost their memory.
  • Old Save Bonus: As detailed here, if the player has an active Fire Emblem Heroes account, they can receive a redeemable code for Engage that will add three Bond Rings and three weapons based on the main Heroes trio of Alfonse, Sharena, and Anna. Averted as of April 5th, 2023, when they are instead obtained through the eShop.
  • Once More, with Clarity: Early in the game, Alear has a nightmare of themselves, colored Red and Black and Evil All Over with a Psychotic Smirk, standing in a burning castle where Queen Lumera finds them and asks them why they're there alone, only for them to turn to face her with the same smirk on their face. After their death, before waking up in the afterlife, the scene plays again with proper context: it was the last moments before Alear was placed into a deep sleep, after Lumera had adopted them. The flames were presumably an aftermath of the battle with Sombron, and Lumera's reaction was one of worry for her child. Alear also wasn't smirking at the time, and was turning to tell her that Sombron was defeated, just before Sombron struck them down with a beam of dark energy through their torso.
  • One-Time Dungeon:
    • The maps used for the prologue, Chapters 1 to 3, chapter 21, and chapter 24 can no longer be accessed again once the map for those chapters are completed, due to the fact that world map skirmishes cannot occur on those mapsnote .
    • Completely inverted with the Fell Xenologue chapters, which can be replayed endlessly; the same is partially true for the Divine Paralogues, though enemies will level-scale with the party and rewards (both treasure and EXP) can only be collected the first time through.
  • Only Six Faces: Many characters, especially female ones, have very similar, young-looking faces. This is a carryover from character designer Mika Pikazo's work, which often features characters with large eyes and small noses like those seen in Engage.
  • Out-of-Character Alert: Zephia in Chapter 23 seemingly has a change of heart in her last moments and even helps Alear with reaching a Fell Dragon Shard with a magic artifact made of her lifeforce, a gesture which shocks and confuses Veyle given the woman has been anything but kind during the whole story, but ends up going along with it anyway. While she never finds out, Veyle's suspicions turn out to be right as Zephia reveals to Griss she wanted to screw over Sombron for never rewarding her services, and needed to put a scene just so Alear and co. could accept her help and unknowingly carry out her vendetta.
  • Palette Swap: All members of a particular unit class and gender wear the same outfit (unless they're recruitable characters in their starting class), with a four-color palette to distinguish themselves. In the case of enemies, Firenese soldiers wear blues with touches of yellow, Brodian soldiers wear reds with touches of yellow, Elusian soldiers wear greens with touches of yellow, Solmic soldiers wear yellows and oranges with touches of dark brown, the Corrupted wear a multitude of dark grays, Ruffians wear dark brown with touches of yellow, and Fabrications wear whites and creams with touches of yellow.
  • Patchwork Map:
    • Elyos has various kingdoms which are easily distinguishable from one another in the world map due to their contrasting climates and landscapes. Lythos has a very heavenly and beatific aesthetic, Firene features pretty grasslands, Brodia is highly mountainous and fortified, Elusia is cold and full of snow, and Solm is both desertic and tropical. Then there's Gradlon, which after surfacing by the endgame, is shown to have Hailfire Peaks.
    • The map also features details that are easily overlooked due to not being addressed outside of supports, such as the Pale Sands in Solm's northeast that Kagetsu hails from, and the medium-sized lake just south of Elusia's center that Rosado grew up next to.
  • Peninsula of Power Leveling:
    • Several maps have infinitely respawning enemy reinforcements which can be killed over and over for easy experience. They will eventually stop giving experience, meaning it's time to defeat the enemy commander and move on, but you can rack up enough extra experience to make it worthwhile.
    • "Training" is a variety of skirmish taking place at the regional castle where you take on that nation's military forces in a mock battle. In addition to the normal experience you gain the battle itself, all units who take part get bonus experience at the end of the battle. Further, allies who are defeated suffer Non-Lethal K.O.'s instead of death, even in Classic mode. Between these two factors, they make a great place for Level Grinding and especially raising up weaker units risk-free.
  • Percent Damage Attack: Individual Chain Attacks always do 10% of the target's HP, rounded down. While that may not seem like much, this completely ignores stats and there is no limit to how many times a unit can participate in a Chain Attack. The damage can rack up extremely quickly even on the tankiest units, which the AI knows and will attempt to abuse.
  • Permadeath: As usual with the series, characters reaching zero HP in Classic Mode will be killed permanently - or rendered unusable in combat if they happen to have Plot Armor - and can't be deployed again, a restriction which is purposely lifted in Casual Mode. There are a few instances where permadeath does not apply even in Classic Mode: in Chapter 2 where Lumera's mock battle takes place; in skirmishes labeled as "training" where every playable unit defeated always retreats; and in the Fell Xenologue, which even its last chapter reminds the player of so they can go all out.
  • Permanently Missable Content:
    • If the Expansion Pass DLC has been bought, and you obtain the Emblem of Rivals in the Somniel before you obtain Emblem Byleth, the bonus scene with him and his students will be impossible to access. It doesn't help that you get Byleth much later in the game, as you can obtain the Emblem of Rivals as early as Chapter 7. Additionally, skipping this scene is mandatory and unavoidable if you want to recruit the Bracelet Emblems early and (by extension) gain access to Arts proficiency (via Tiki) much earlier before Byleth is obtained. The same is true for their respective bonus scenes if you don't have the required Emblem Ring when recruiting the other DLC Emblem Bracelets (aside from the Emblem of Heroes who has no such scenes to begin with).
    • Some S-rank weapons (Carnwenhan, Brionac, Ukonvasara, Lendabair, and Cinquedea) are obtained by killing generic enemies wielding them or opening a particular chest as opposed to getting them from chapter bosses or donation rewards. If you don't acquire them before completing the chapter they are obtainable in, you cannot get those weapons again.
  • Perpetual Frowner: As is common in the franchise, there are a couple of characters who rarely smile. However, this game only has two characters of note: Vander and Jade. For Vander, it's to help emphasize his stern demeanor, and for Jade, it's for the sake of Irony, since she is a comedy writer. For the latter, it is lampshaded quite a bit.
    Ike: You look a bit angry, Jade. Is everything OK?
    Jade: I'm fine. I'm just smiling. Is it that hard to tell?
  • Piñata Enemy: Silver Corrupted grant extra EXP when killed, while Gold Corrupted always carry money that is dropped upon death. They only spawn in skirmishes to assist with grinding, and the game always informs if you one of them is present on the World Map.
  • Place of Power: The whole continent of Gradlon turns out to be this thanks to its Fell Dragon Shards. Sombron unseals it near the end of the game to have it form a shield protecting a portal he's creating in the sky, forcing Alear and their allies to journey through Gradlon and destroy the Fell Dragon Shards to finally stop Sombron. The bosses fought in it even make use of the Shards to create obstacles and powerful attacks which affect areas of the maps.
  • Play Every Day: You get a relay ticket daily, and can scan amiibo for bonuses up to five times each day.
  • Player Data Sharing: If you play online, some spaces on maps will be marked with "spirits", representing places where units have fallen. Purple spirits are where many enemies have died and will give various inventory items, while golden spirits represent where many player units died and will give EXP, Bond Fragments, or an increase in Bond Level with the equipped Emblem. Golden spirits should be taken as a sign to prepare for nearby enemies (or if there are none present, reinforcements), especially if there's a lot of them in one place.
  • Player Headquarters: In between battles, the player can travel to the Somniel, the floating island where Alear slept for a thousand years, to partake in various activities in the same fashion as My Castle in Fates and Garreg Mach Monastery in Three Houses.
  • Plot Armor: Even in Classic Mode, units who get defeated while they still have cutscenes to appear in don't actually die, though you won't get to build Supports with them or see their post-game fate. This plot armor is stronger for the bad guys, some of whom you get to fight multiple times; for your Classic-Mode characters, though, a defeat prevents them from fighting ever again.
  • Portal Crossroad World: Sombron ends up literally creating one over the skies of Elyos in the endgame, which serves as the setting for the final battle.
  • Plot Tunnel: You're forced to play Chapter 10 & 11, 21 & 22, and chapters 4 and 5 of the Fell Xenologue consecutively, with no chances to go back to the Somniel or even swap the roster used between chapters. The game fortunately warns the player ahead of time of this so they can prepare in advance.
  • Poor Communication Kills: Vander and Clanne's support chain is a case of this. Vander apparently never told Clanne, his successor as steward, that sending letters and taking messages are more than just grunt work- they're his responsibility as a steward. As a result, Clanne assumes that Vander is only treating him as an errand boy and angrily lashes out at him, interrupting him and running away before Vander can explain himself.
  • Power Dyes Your Hair: When characters uses the Emblems for the Engage mechanic, their hair takes on part of the Emblems' hair color. Notably for Alear's case, only the blue side of their hair changes color. The exception is Tiki, who turns the user into a dragon with a matching color.
    • Marth: Sky blue
    • Celica: Pink
    • Sigurd: Light purple
    • Leif: Pale yellow to pale green fade
    • Roy: Pale red
    • Lyn: Light green
    • Eirika: Blonde to spring green fade
    • Ike: Blue to cyan fade
    • Micaiah: Pale orange
    • Lucina: Cyan
    • Corrin: Silver
    • Byleth: Neon purple
    • Alear: Blue and red fusion. Alear themselves has their hair turn pure blue.
    • Edelgard, Dimitri and Claude: Dark purple
    • Hector: Blue
    • Soren: Dark green to black fade
    • Camilla: Lavender
    • Chrom and Robin: Dark blue
    • Veronica: White
  • Ragtag Bunch of Misfits: While Alear's party eventually becomes this in usual Fire Emblem fashion, the antagonists also get their own quirky mismatch of generals with the Four Hounds.
  • Random Loot Exchanger: Once per visit to the Somniel, you can throw up to five weapons into the Ancient Well. After participating in a battle and coming back, new random weapons will take the old ones' place, with the quality of weapons thrown into the well affecting what comes out. Some weapons (mainly Joke Weapons) are exclusively obtained this way, while you can potentially also get rare items like staves that are otherwise limited in supply.
  • Realistic Species, Cartoony Species: Most of the human characters, humanoid species such as Emblems and Manaketes, and Sommie are all stylized, especially with the formermost character, who is very cartoonish in design. The animals, dragons (including transformed manaketes), and monsters, on the other hand, look a lot more realistic and contrast heavily to these characters despite most of them looking cel-shaded, with some examples including Lumera as a dragon, the wyverns, and horses.
  • Recurring Boss: The list of them is rather long, longer if you include mini-bosses. You even recruit all-but-four of them. Surprisingly, Abyme, who serves as the boss of Chapter 3, returns for Chapter 18 and is killed in that chapter.
  • Redemption Equals Death: After hearing of Lady Veyle's backstory and seeing her evil-imposed state, Marni turns away from the bad guys and tries to free Lady Veyle from Zephia's control. Zephia kills her in response.
  • Rewatch Bonus: The first three Chapters of the game is full of moments which are recontextualized entirely after later reveals have taken place. Case in point: in Chapter 2 Lumera is shown using a prayer to summon Emblem Sigurd rather than an invocation like Alear did to summon Marth, a small detail whose importance is highlighted much, much later in the story.
  • Revisiting the Roots: After Fates and Three Houses dabbled in darker, more political stories, Engage returns to the franchise's classic "divine dragons vs fell dragon" plotline. While there are some political machinations going on, they're mostly relegated to the background and don't have much impact on the main story.
  • Red Eyes, Take Warning:
    • The Corrupted, whose eyes always glow red. Up until Sombron and Veyle perfect the process of their creation with their latest vessels.
    • Emblems under the control of the antagonists sport these, as well as a red color palette and aura, symbolizing they are not on your side.
    • Alear is shown to have these in their nightmares where they act unhinged and violent, though these aren't so much nightmares as they are memories of their past when they served Sombron.
    • Brainwashed enemies by Zephia end up sporting these, such as Hortensia in Chapter 14. This is also used to signify when Veyle's body is being controlled by her evil personality.
  • Ret-Canon: Corrin's Engage Attack is called Torrential Roar, the name of her Final Smash in the Super Smash Bros. series. Ike has Great Aether, also from Smash.
  • Schmuck Bait:
    • A nasty example happens in Chapter 19, as a way to test if the player's been paying attention to the cutscenes. There are two houses that can be visited on the map. Except the cutscene beforehand explicitly stated that there are no survivors in the town. So visiting the houses causes three Corrupted to jump out of the house, in the midst of all the miasma. Defeating them does reward you with extra EXP and a stat booster though.
    • Sigurd's Paralogue features two Sages representing Julius and Ishtar from Genealogy's Chapter 10. They won't attack unless you go out of your way to provoke them, but they do carry a small amount of gold. "Julius" has fully capped stats and 4 health bars, but if you really want to try...
  • Scenery Porn: Each nation's castle, and a few other notable locations, is introduced via an extended still image of a gorgeous rendition of said location, noticeably more detailed than what is shown in gameplay proper.
  • Screwball Serum: Character's cooking can sometimes result in quite-random effects; often positive, but occasionally lowering stats the food was meant to raise if the intended positive effect is weak enough, or raising Strength and Magic at the cost of lowering everything else. The negative changes are for low-quality meals, which (at least for characters skilled at cooking) are less likely to be made if you give the chef enough ingredients.
  • Sealed Evil in a Can: The evil Fell Dragon, Sombron, attacked Elyos 1,000 years prior but was sealed away by the Emblems. Naturally, in the present day the binding is coming undone.
  • Seasonal Baggage: The four nations of Elyos seem to be based on the four seasons. Firene seems to be Spring, as it is a plain-land full of flowers, Brodia is Autumn, as there are plenty of red leaves and terrain, Elusia is Winter, as it has lots of evergreens and snow, and Solm is Summer, as it is a desert area with a few oases.
  • Share Phrase: Returning from Fire Emblem Fates, each royal shares a Critical Hit quote with their retainers, save for Ivy and Hortensia.
    Alfred/Etie/Boucheron: Scatter like petals!
    Céline/Chloé/Louis: It's teatime!
    Diamant/Amber/Jade: Nothing short of Victory!
    Alcryst/Lapis/Citrinne: I will protect everyone!
    Timerra/Merrin/Panette: Let's have some fun!
    Fogado/Bunet/Pandreo: Time to party!
  • She Is the King: Alear's mother Lumera is known as the Divine Dragon King.
  • Ship Level: Chapter 18 takes place in one, where the player's ship is being raided by two Elusian vessels.
  • Show, Don't Tell: While previous games have been no stranger to telling rather than showing, Engage's lategame is hit hard by it, as the backstories of Alear, Veyle, The Four Hounds, and even Sombron's, mostly are dumped on the player this way rather than being woven more naturally during the narrative. The most the game directly shows regarding these things is a little bit of Alear and Lumera's pasts (notably how Sombron was sealed and how Alear was nearly killed), as well as a bit of Zephia's (and only after she has died).
  • Slippy-Slidey Ice World: The nation of Elusia is described as a snowy place with long winters.
  • Snakes Are Sinister: The Fell Dragon of Engage, called Sombron, sports a cobra snake-like design. Much like his predecessor Grima, he lives up to his title as he once laid waste to the world before Lumera and the other countries fought against him with the twelve Emblem Rings.
  • Solar and Lunar: Staple skills Sol and Luna are exclusive to Diamant and Alcryst's exclusive classes, with the two brothers contrasting each other in appearance and behaviour. While Diamant is a proud warrior and beloved by his people, Alcryst is more dour and insecure about his own capabilities. This duality is also a theme of the Emblem of the Sacred, as Eirika and Ephraim cover this with their 'brace' skills: Eirika's Lunar Brace and Ephraim's Solar Brace.
  • So Long, and Thanks for All the Gear: While initially largely avoided, the release of Wave 4 of the Expansion Pass gave everyone 20 of each Engage Weapon Crystal, allowing everyone to upgrade the weapons of Emblems who leave after Chapter 10 before they skedaddle. You can technically acquire Crystals from as early as Chapter 6, but that requires a daily grind in the Relay Trials.
  • Spoiler Cover: Even before you the see the opening, the cover of the game already shows Ivy standing among the heroic princesses/princes. This heavily implies she will eventually join the heroes, spoiling her Heel–Face Turn.
  • Spoiler Opening: The opening sequence to the game shows Alear, along with Alred, Diamant, Ivy, and Timerra, confronting Sombron. If you hadn't already guessed Ivy's Heel–Face Turn from the cover, the opening pretty much confirms it.
  • Stab the Scorpion: Lumera first appears hovering over Alear in her dragon form. She opens her mouth and prepares a blast, causing Alear to panic, only to blow away some enemies that were about to strike.
  • Starter Villain: Abyme, Rodine, and Nelucce are the first bosses you fight after a Training Boss battle with Lumera. All three are Elusian army generals who kickstart the plot by invading Lythos and Firene to steal their Emblem Rings in the name of King Hyacinth. Only Abyme survives past the chapter she's fought in, returning much later when the allied army prepares to return to Elusia after the big battle against the Four Hounds, Evil Veyle, and Corrupted Hyacinth in Chapter 17.
  • Stripperific:
    • The class outfit for Sages (both genders) in Engage is notably more revealing compared to previous games, with an exposed midriff and skintight leggings.
    • The Warrior class outfit has the wearer's torso exposed, though female units wear what resembles a sports bra covering their breasts, while males opt to go full-on No Shirt, Long Jacket.
    • Both Zephia and Griss' oufits —and by proxy, also Zelestia and Gregory's— leave very little to the imagination given how much skin their show.
  • Stable Time Loop: The army is sent a thousand years into the past late into the story, where they encounter Alear's past self. While some of the party worry about changing the time line, it turns out that after Past Alear is defeated by his/her present self, Lumera finds him/her unconscious on the battlefield. This is how the two meet, and how Alear ends up defecting from Sombron.
  • The Stinger: After the credits roll and a CG of Alear grouped with the other Emblems, there is an additional cutscene of them in Lythos castle on the day of their coronation. They do admit that with the Emblems gone, they never got to attend on this day, and Alear even tried to summon Marth again, which didn't work. After Alear leaves with the royals and Veyle, all of the Emblem Rings begin to glow, which hint that they will soon cross paths again.
  • Storming the Castle: After going through many ordeals, Alear & co. end up making their way into Elusia Castle where Sombron resides, only to find out he and most of his minions have already left to Lythos.
  • Summon Magic:
    • Heroes (or rather echoes of said heroes) from previous Fire Emblem games can be summoned via so-called "Emblem Rings". They appear in seemingly-incorporeal forms, and don't act as separate units, but rather as support, attacking the enemy alongside their summoner Fighting Spirit-style. They also can be seen in the castle as NPCs that can be spoken to.
    • This is one of the main gimmicks of Veronica's DLC Emblem, as she allow her wielder to summon a random controllable ally which can go from just a decently strong Fabrication, to a carbon copy of one of the Emblems found in the rings & bracelets.
  • Summon to Hand: Whereas basic mages may be rendered helpless if their spellbook is knocked from their hands, higher rank spellcaster classes are depicted with a great deal of control over their spellbooks. They are shown levitating the books with ease and even making them teleport away for convenience as soon as they are done using them.
  • Super Mode: Engaging with an Emblem puts the unit into a powered-up state, granting access to powerful Engage Skills and Weapons, and lets them perform an Engage Attack once while in that mode.
  • Super-Toughness: The older and stronger dragons in Engage's setting have a form of this, as they're notoriously hard to put down for good in normal circumstances. Sombron was never truly killed in the first Fell Dragon war and had to be sealed with the power of the 12 Emblems to be put out of comission, Lumera's death early into the game at the hands of the Fell Princess is openly stated to have been possible because she consumed her Divine Dragon powers trying to awaken Alear, and Zephia's demise late into the story is possible thanks to following a similar principle to Lumera's (in her case, she casts out her lifespan to forge a Mage Dragon artifact).
  • Support Party Member:
    • Byleth's Emblem focuses on Status Buff "instruct" skills and his Goddess Dance allows up to four allies to move again, in contrast to the more offense-focused abilities of the other Emblems.
    • Seadall, fitting the series' Dancer archetype, has very limited offensive capability. However, his ability to Dance allowing another party member to take another action is incredibly useful. It can even be stacked with Byleth's Goddess Dance ability, with Seadall using Dance, another party member engaging with Byleth to use Goddess Dance on up to four others including Seadall, then Seadall dancing again to grant up to six extra actions in a single turn. His personal ability, Curious Dance, also passively heals nearby party members for added support.
  • Surprisingly Realistic Outcome: When Veyle confronts Corrupted Lumera, she locks the doors of the cathedral so that the others won't be able to enter. What do they do? They break down the door.
  • Tactical Rock–Paper–Scissors: After being downplayed in Three Houses (which had "breaker" skills that gave weapons a hit/avoid advantage against the ones they were strong against), the Weapon Triangle returns as a central part of combat, now reworked into the new "Break" mechanic. A Break occurs when a defending unit is damaged (not just hit; 0 damage doesn't trigger it) by a weapon that has advantage over them, preventing them from counterattacking for the rest of that combat and the one after.
    • The classic Sword > Axe > Lance > Sword system remains as the simplest option to trigger a Break, but in exchange, it no longer affects damage or hit rate.
    • Daggers, Bows, and Tomes don't have a triangle with each other. Instead, they are all weak to Body Arts, the primary weapon of Martial Monks, which is this game's equivalent of Clerics. Beware, healers aren't harmless!
    • "Smash" weapons, such as the Blades, Greataxes, and Greatlances, have the added effect of knocking the enemy back a space (or two for Berserkers) if the user initiates. If the enemy doesn't have enough room to be moved, they will suffer a Break.
    • Armored units, and units that possess a certain Skill, are immune to Break from Weapon Triangle—in terms of defending, it might as well not exist to them. They can still be Broken with Fracture staff, or if they are Smashed into an impassable space.
  • Take Your Time: No matter how pressing the next story goal is, you're free to go to the other end of Elyos to do skirmishes and paralogues.
  • Talking Is a Free Action: There are several cutscenes where both the good guys and the bad guys are allowed to have lengthy monologues before fleeing the scene or attacking someone, while the opposing forces just stand there and don't try to intervene in any way.
  • A Taste of Power: By the time of Chapter 9, you've already collected a good number of Emblem Rings and even gotten access to Master Seals and Second Seals, letting you get comfortable with your ethereal buddies and promotion options. Then you clear Chapter 10 and you abruptly lose all of your Emblem Rings (except any DLC ones you've acquired) and don't get access to the World Map again until you clear Chapter 11, and you don't get those Rings back immediately, which means you lose access to their Proficiency skills needed to access most of the promotions. Rubbing salt in the wound is that you can collect no less than four extra Master Seals after clearing Chapter 11, making you feel the loss of the Emblems much more keenly.
  • Tech Points: In addition to EXP, units also earn SP from participating in combat provided the unit is equipped with a Emblem or Bond Ring. Units can spend SP to inherit exclusive skills from Emblems that they have raised bond levels with to level 5 or more.
  • This Is Gonna Suck: In the battle preview menu (just before you press A to start combat with an enemy), if a unit who is not a Corrupted or Fabrication is at very low HP, or facing an opponent who is wielding a weapon that can deal effective damage to them (i.e. a bow against a flier), they will visibly wince as if they know they will get hurt really bad.
  • Title Drop: When Alear and Marth fuse in the prologue:
    Alear & Marth: Emblem, engage!
  • Timed Mission: Chapter 24 gives you a limited number of turns to reach and defeat the boss, since you're temporarily traveling back in time and facing your past self to destroy the Fell Dragon shard while also creating the Stable Time Loop.
  • Toilet Humour: You can gift your allies horse poop in the Somniel, all of who will be either grossed out or react poorly to the point that they'll outright reject it.
  • Took a Level in Badass:
    • Despite typically being considered one of the least viable classes throughout the series, armor knights get a very good showing this time around. Not only do they have high strength and defense, they lose the movement penalty they had in previous games while their immunity to Break gives them an important niche on your team, namely being able to tank several rounds of enemy phase combat without fear of dropping their weapons via Break. Louis in particular is considered by many to be one of the best units in the whole game.
    • Due to the fact that every unit can now open chests freely in Engage, thieves have been upgraded from a Utility Party Member to a combat-focused class, acting more like Assassins, their promoted counterparts from previous games.
  • Too Awesome to Use: The Nodus staff, obtained by reaching Donation Lv. 5 with Elusia, instantly fills all allies' Engage meters to max, but can only be used once, unless you either get lucky with Hortensia's personal skill, World Tree, or you use it in the Tower of Trials (in which all staves can be used freely during those maps, and get restored afterwards).
  • Trailers Always Spoil: The "Divine Dragon Awakens" trailer outright spoils at the very start that Queen Lumera dies.
  • Tutorial Failure: Chapter 7 introduces the player to Dark Emblems, explaining how the boss enemy using it cannot Engage, so logically you'd think this prevents the enemy from using their Engage Skills. This is not the case; the Engage Skills are active constantly with the Engage Attack working on an inconsistent cooldown system, and they will continue to be active until the boss dies. In Chapter 22, when the player is given Dark Emblems, they work as advertised, making it a case of Secret A.I. Moves.
  • Unbreakable Weapons: All weapons have unlimited uses, like in Gaiden and Fates. The only exception is Staves, which still has limited uses.
  • Unintentionally Unwinnable: Averted with the Arena; Arena battles end in a draw if the battle takes longer than at least a minute, especially if in some cases the characters constantly miss each other a lot. This prevents the game from potentially being softlocked.
  • Useless Useful Spell: Class Skills that affects allies' movement, and/or that move the user or someone else, are generally overlooked compared to Class Skills that actually impact combat damage. The movement Skills are all on classes that can attain S-rank in one Weapon type, while the better Skills are generally on classes with two or more Weapon Ranks. If you have the prerequisite proficiencies for the multi-Rank classes, the comparison between combat Skills and the movement Skills you can get with a Master Seal become a bit jarring. For example:
    • Berserkers (which get Axe-S) become able to push foes back two spaces instead of one with Smash attacks, while Warriors (Axe-A and Bow-C) get a +50% damage bonus on Broken foes.
    • Swordmasters (which get Sword-S) become able to move to the opposite side of their target, while full-HP Heroes (which get Sword-A and either Lance-C or Axe-C) immediately chop up to 20% of nearby foes' HP when their friends attack them, up from 10% without the skill.
    • Generals (which can give S-rank for certain characters) become able to switch places with an ally right next to them, while Great Knights (which get B-rank in two fields) receive Damage Reduction if they're between their attacker and an ally.
    • Griffin Knights (which can give S-rank to certain characters) can let allies cross rough terrain in the space they're on/over with 1 point of movement instead of 2, while Wyvern Knights (which get B-rank in two fields) get a massive Speed bonus for attacking from spaces only other Fliers can be in.
  • Vague Age: The age of the characters is never stated, but it's made clear that at the very least: Alear, Lumera, Zephia and Veyle are Really 700 Years Old but look younger due to being dragons; Anna and Jean are children; Vander, Saphir, and Lindon are old; and everyone else appear to be in their early-to-mid 20s, if not teens.note 
  • Video Game Perversity Potential: You can choose outfits for Alear and their allies to wear on the Somniel at the boutique, with one of the options being a bathing suit seen by default if the characters use the pool. Female characters have a default one-piece, but later, skimpier options become available for purchase. It can veer into perversity to have every single female ally wearing a swimsuit around the Somniel at all times.
  • Virtual Paper Doll: Alear and their allies can wear different outfits purchased from the boutique, but only in Somniel. The player can also purchase outfits based on those of the 12 Emblems, but the payment is in the form of a ticket that can be only acquired from scanning a Fire Emblem series amiibo, and only Alear and the royals can wear those outfits.
  • Wake-Up Call Boss:
    • Nelucce in Chapter 5 is the first boss with a Revival Crystal, enabling him to refill his life bar when it's emptied.
    • Hortensia in Chapter 7, which introduces you to the concept of bosses being able to wield Emblem Rings just like your party. While they can't Engage with them, they can still use their other abilities to deadly effect, such as Lucina's "All for One" (which allows the wielder to summon all allies within a two-space radius in a Combination Attack), or Leif's "Adaptable" (wielded by Ivy in Chapter 8; getting attacked negates any weapon triangle disadvantage and turns it against the attacker, always using whatever weapon will deal the most damage for the situation).
  • We Cannot Go On Without You:
    • While most units can suffer Permadeath and the game will continue as normal, if Alear falls in battlenote , it results in a Game Over. The same goes for Yunaka and Seadall during their recruitment chapters.
    • The Fell Xenologue also has Nel and Nil/Rafal as required units in every chapter they are playable in- if they fall in any Fell Xenologue Chapter they are usable in, Game Over.
  • Wham Episode:
    • Chapter 10: The Fell Dragon Sombron. Before the chapter starts Emblem Marth warns you that you won't be able to return to the Somniel for some time. He's not joking. Alear and their party fail to not only save King Morion, but Veyle arrives and also reveals herself as the daughter of the Fell Dragon Sombron and Queen Lumera's murderer, Sombron is then revived and then he consumes King Hyacinth, and the Emblems you gathered so far including Marth are corrupted by Veyle and Sombron. At that point, the arrival of The Four Hounds is to Kick Them While They Are Down. Chapter 11 is the Darkest Hour for Alear and their party.
    • There is a second one in Chapter 21: The Return. While Veyle manages to break free of her corruption and return Marth's Emblem Ring to Alear, Sombron himself decides to take action and attempt to outright kill Veyle, only for Alear to jump in the way of the attack, resulting in their death instead. It's at this point that Sombron uses the Emblem rings to bring Gradlon up from the bottom of the sea. It takes Veyle using her power to temporarily bring Alear back as a corrupted for the party to have a chance at surviving.
    • Fell Xenologue 4 ends with revelations that shake up everything you thought you knew about the storyline. Nel eats Alternate Ivy and Timerra alive, then reveals that all the royal of Alternate Elyos were Corrupted. Nel then confesses that she was in love with the Alear of her universe, and her grief is causing her to treat the main universe's Alear coldly. After Alear is left alone with Nil, Nil reveals that he was the mastermind behind all the events, having schemed to gather the Emblem bracelets for his own ends, and abducts Alear.
  • Wham Line:
    • In chapter 20, Griss delivers a shocking revelation to Alear.
      Griss: You think you're a Divine Dragon? Lemme set ya straight. You are the child of the Fell Dragon!
    • In Fell Xenologue 4, after Nel kills the Ivy and Timerra of that universe, Alear calls her out on it, only to get the following response.
      Nel: I did not kill them. It is impossible to take a life that has already been lost.
      Alear: What? Explain yourself.
      Nel: Those were no harmless little humans. Those were the Corrupted.
    • In Fell Xenologue 4, Nel, after making an emotional confession of how important her universe's Alear was to her, runs away, with the Four Winds following her to ensure she is safe. Nil, who is alone with Alear, then shares some things he knows about his sister, before dropping the following line.
      Nil: But there is one thing I do not know and am ever so curious about. How will she handle losing the one she cares about most a second time?
    • In Fell Xenologue 5, a flashback sequence sees Sombron dropping this bombshell.
      Sombron: My pawns move as I will them to, without hesitation. but I wonder. How long will that son of mine keep up this ruse of being Nel's twin? After all, her real twin is no more. That failure died long ago.
  • Wham Shot:
    • At the end of Chapter 10, the hooded individual who killed Lumera unmasks and is revealed to be Alear's new friend Veyle. The Reveal is driven home by a shot that shows Alear's bandage around Veyle's ankle.
    • In Chapter 17, Veyle asks Zephia to give her Sigurd's ring. Veyle's eyes are closed or hidden from the player for much of the scene, but then she faces the screen with her eyes open, and they're her natural color, revealing that she tricked Zephia into handing over her ring so she could return it to Alear.
    • At the end of Fell Xenologue 4, as Alear stays behind with Nil, who turns out to be the main antagonist of the Xenologue, they see that Tiki's Emblem has awakened, revealing the identity of the antagonist who can awaken the Emblem bracelets as Corrupted- Nil himself.
  • "Where Are They Now?" Epilogue: Like previous Fire Emblem games, the game shows brief summaries on what happened to every surviving character after the events of the story. Most notably, a number of CGs during the credits featuring certain characters will be shown only if those present in those survived.
  • Women Are Wiser: The female rulers of Elyos—Queen Lumera of Lythos, Queen Eve of Firene and Queen Seforia of Solm—are presented as wiser and more benevolent than their male peers. Sombron, ruler of Gradlon, is the Big Bad responsible for many atrocities. King Hyacinth of Elusia is The Heavy for much of the game, and while it turns out that he had been controlled by Sombron after the Fell Dragon awakened, even before then, he had mistresses, resulting in a Deadly Decadent Court that caused his children no shortage of hardship. King Morion of Brodia is on the heroes' side, but is also responsible for launching many invasions of Elusia that cause civilian casualties.
  • Year Inside, Hour Outside: Played for Laughs in the Fell Xenologue when it's revealed Alternate Elyos operates on this. The main story ends with Nil/Rafal promising Alear to spend 1,000 years to revive Nel as penance for his actions and will join Alear's world when he's done. Immediately afterwards, as Alear reflects on the events of the Xenologue in their world, both Rafal and Nel pop up, saying that 1,000 years have passed, reviving Nel worked, and they're both ready to fight for you.
  • You Have Failed Me:
    • At the end of Chapter 5: "Retaking the Castle", Zephia kills Nelucce for allowing the Firenese royals to escape with Celica's Emblem ring despite him telling her their whereabouts. Downplayed in that judging by her behavior in the rest of the game this may have been more an excuse than the real reason, as she makes it clear she simply despised Nelucce for his scheming, cowardly nature. She even apologizes to the party for his behavior when they next meet.
    • In Chapter 9: "A Clash of Forces", Hyacinth tells Ivy that he's disappointed in her losing Leif's Emblem Ring to the heroes and punishes her by forcing her to fight Alear's army again without any reinforcements or a new Emblem Ring.
  • You Have Outlived Your Usefulness: This is apparently Sombron's standard practice towards his children, to the point Zephia didn't even bother remembering any of their individual names due to how often he disposed them, and Past Alear views their own eventual elimination as a "defect" as inevitable regardless of what they do.
  • Your Size May Vary: Since everyone rides essentially the same horse while playing a Cavalry class, some characters appear to have insanely-long legs while riding; Mage Knight Clanne, for example, looks to be over 60% legs.
  • Zerg Rush: In some maps, enemy reinforcements will spawn and will be comparable to the weakest enemies on the map initially, but they will spawn repeatedly. When this happens, it's likely tied to a certain enemy on the map (either the boss or someone near them) to encourage the player to get on with it already. You'll know this is happening if the extra enemies stop giving EXP.
  • Zombie Apocalypse:
    • Downplayed in the main game. The start of one all over Elyos early into the game is seen by Lumera as a clue that Sombron has returned.
    • In the Fell Xenologue,Alternate Elyo is later revealed to have been claimed by one a long time ago. Unlike most examples of this trope however, most of its populace being advanced versions of the Corrupted means they're not even aware they have perished up until they have been killed and brought back again.

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Zephia's Introduction

Zephia is introduced with a pan-up as she struts towards the camera.

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