The highly anticipated Fire Emblem Fates is finally available! With tantalizing trailers, European fans had marked with a red cross on May 20, the game’s release date. But what is Fire Emblem Fates worth ? Is it as good as its predecessor Awakening ?
TORN BETWEEN TWO FAMILIES
Fire Emblem Fates evolves in a universe where two kingdoms clash, Nohr and Hoshido .
Nohr is a dark and bellicose realm (bad guys basically), in a medieval fantasy style that stays in the lineage of old Fire Emblem games . Hoshido is a pacifist kingdom steeped in traditional Japanese style, samurai and ninjas replace swordsmen and thieves!
You play as Corrin, a young prince (s) who lives in a castle in the kingdom of Nohr with a ban on leaving the estate. You are surrounded by your affectionate brothers and sisters but your father, King Garon, is an unfriendly being. You quickly realize that he is even quite evil. Hoshido , this “enemy” country indeed seems much less evil than what you have been led to believe.
Worse, you learn that in fact you are Prince (sse) of Hoshido , and they are very eager to see you return among them. You will therefore have to choose.
This is the great peculiarity of Fates , you have to choose a side. There are two versions of the game to choose from: Legacy or Conquest , depending on your choice, your character will either choose blood ties ( Legacy ) or remain loyal to those who raised you ( Conquest ).
HERITAGE OR CONQUEST, WHAT TO CHOOSE?
If the two versions offer different scenarios and characters, the game difficulty is also different.
You could describe Heritage as the “easy” version and Conquest the “expert” version . Indeed, in Legacy , you will have the opportunity to train your units between each chapter, to improve their abilities, this will not be possible in Conquest , so you will have less money and less opportunity to improve your characters. Note all the same that you have of course the three levels of difficulty offered, from beginner to expert in both games.
Finally, a third scenario called ” Revelation ” is available online. Revelation allows you to take sides and create your own clan. Sold for 40 €, it is also half price if you already own one of the two games!
Many denounce here (rightly?), A marketing coup forcing players to buy several games to have only one. But it should be understood that you can quite settle for playing just one of those games which have a very decent lifespan. Of course, to be able to explore all facets of the game, you will need to get both, see, the three versions, but be aware that after purchasing Legacy or Conquest , the other will be available at half price in downloadable content.
A LITTLE MODIFIED BUT REFINED COMBAT SYSTEM
As in Awakening , you can choose from several possibilities when one of your units is shot down:
- – she dies permanently and does not come back
- – She is injured and can only return to the next part
New in Fates: “Phoenix” mode , your character returns immediately after death and in full health . A new feature that is not well received by experienced players. Indeed, the whole stake of Fire Emblem is to keep its units alive during a fight, the battle loses much of its interest if they come back to life automatically! However, this “Phoenix” mode is purely optional and can easily be ignored.
Another big novelty: the weapons no longer wear out! Once a weapon has been acquired by a player, he can keep it throughout the adventure. No need to run from armory to armory to stock up on swords or steel axes. You can now upgrade your weapons in the Forge and keep them for life. Only the various healing scepters are perishable.
We could fear that the game will become too easy, but we must admit that it is still more practical!
Apart from that, the gameplay remains in the same vein as that of its predecessor , we will notice a little effort made in terms of graphics during duels! The fights take place in a 3D version of the scenery and not in a typical arena, so good improvement!
THE SYSTEM OF RETURN AFFINITIES
Awakening had introduced the affinity system: you have the possibility of making friends, see lovers, characters in the game. Depending on the affinities of your players, they can improve their stats during a fight if they are on adjacent squares or in duet.
The duo allow a character to be defended by another , his pair will not intervene in combat but can on the other hand defend him and cancel the enemy’s damage or increase his dodging stats, a very useful bonus therefore ! Otherwise, you can place two units side by side, at this point, when you attack your attacking pair as well, this allows you to greatly increase the damage you cause, or even knock out the enemy.
The other advantage of these affinities is that your characters can make children together , children who (by magic) will grow up very quickly and will be ready to fight by your side. This leaves you a lot of freedom as to your choices of “creation” of new characters!
Note, your character can enter into a relationship with another character of the same sex . Still very limited (only your character has this possibility), this novelty is still welcome and to be applauded.
To be deplored, however, at the character level: the spoken lines, in English ( why are we not entitled to the Japanese version?! ), Which can sometimes become annoying. The characters each have a panel of lines that they declaim depending on the situation and which make them quite hollow at times. They make up for it however largely at the level of graphics, rather varied, there will be something for all tastes.
YOUR NEW HQ: “MY CASTLE”
In Awakening everything happened on the map and only on the map, to buy your weapons or take on additional challenges or side quests you had to walk from one point to another on the map.
In Fates, everything happens from your Castle , your HQ , by going near the exits, a menu offers you either to go to the next chapter or to take up a challenge or carry out a side quest if there is one available. .
This is not the only functionality of your castle, you can also build buildings there, like stalls, a canteen or a prison, collect food or objects allowing you to improve your weapons, improve the affinities between your characters but also to show it to other players online ! Just as you can also visit theirs , by collecting items or by facing him and his army!
Also note that your castle can be attacked by enemies, so think carefully about its layout .
If Awakening’s map system was fine, we have to admit that this new feature is welcome!
The Fire Emblem saga does not seem to stop improving over the years. Fates easily establishes itself as a must-have for 3DS (or 2DS). Compared to its predecessor it remains in the lineage and brings only the best, fans of the saga will not be disappointed, neophytes in love with T-RPG can only love! Difficult to find fault with him, he is good in every way.