- Fire Emblem: Fates
Story: This game is split into three purchasable stories to choose from. The Birthright story line is a pretty basic tale of fighting off invaders. It should be noted that the main character is stupidly naive, and ends up trusting a character that most players know shouldn’t be trusted during that point in the game. The Conquest story line is noticeably grim with the main character trying to undermine a corrupt government. The Revelations story line is the biggest mess here. The two sides fighting each other seem to trust the main character for no real reason, (Spoiler, there is even a point where the main character asks both sides to jump off a magical cliff without explanation, and they believe him end spoiler). The few answers to the player’s questions from the other two games feel inadequate. It is hard to recommend this game for story alone.
Graphics: This game is a slight improvement over Awakening in this department. The feet are properly drawn too!
Game play: There are some improvements over Awakening here. You can acquire skills more quickly, and the endless level ups are handled without having to drop levels. A new feature that could be considered better is that weapons no longer break. Birthright and Revelations feature maps that you can return to for more fights, but Conquest requires you to buy a specific DLC map to do so. Birthright and Conquest feature many of the same maps, but Conquest puts a neat twist and sometimes a new objective on familiar territories (this makes it neat to play Conquest second just to see what changes between verions). Conquest is the hardest in general of the three stories, and for the most part, has the best variety. Revelations features most of the playable characters from the other two versions, but that is the only main perk.
- Fire Emblem Echoes: Shadows of Valentia
Story: This game has a few strange plot twists, some of them a little dumb. While this isn’t done to the same degree as Radiant Dawn there is (Spoiler!) a point where one of the protagonists falls for an obvious trap! (End Spoiler). It should be mentioned that the game’s presentation is incredible, where every important character has fully written and spoken dialogue. Unlike the two previous games, all spoken dialogue matches what is written!
Graphics: This game is an improvement over Fates, even if it is somewhat marginal.
Game play: There are a few missing features, including the lack of the weapon triangle. Weapons don’t break again, and your currency only goes towards upgrading weapons. Many characters do promote multiple times, and should be promoted as early as possible most of the time. Skills are tied to the weapon that is equipped, and each character only holds one item at a time! All characters have a default weapon if one isn’t equipped. Spell casters have to lose health to cast any spell, even the healing spells (this is somewhat offset by ring items that grant automatic healing each turn)! You can choose which of the two armies you want to battle with next once the two sides meet, a slight improvement over Radiant Dawn’s multiple armies. There are also fewer class sets in this game, and many maps you will play on multiple times, even on geographically distant missions. It is a strange game, but is still quite playable.
So those are my impressions of the Western released Fire Emblem games. Do you agree with my findings? Which game is your favorite and why? Will you seek out any of these games? What would you like to see in a future game? Tell me all this and why in the comments below!