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This is an unfinished Rom Hack of Fire Emblem: The Sacred Stones. Remember to play and give constructive criticism. With a grand kingdom, there's always a grand story. Follow Lucas, Cid, and many more characters in a great fan game to Fire Emblem. It's all the classic features of Fire Emblem. With a grand kingdom, there's always a grand story. Follow Lucas, Cid, and many more characters in a great fan game to Fire Emblem. It's all the classic features of Fire Emblem, but with a unique story. This game is coded/designed by me, Gultykappa. Upload, Download, Review Fan-Made FE Games! FE Central aims to be the best place to go when you want to play, release, and rate fan-made Fire Emblem games made by the community! The sidebar to your left has everything you need in order to get started. Fire Emblem is a fantasy tactical role-playing video game franchise developed by Intelligent Systems and published by Nintendo. The Fire Emblem series is well known for its innovation and for being one of the first Eastern style tactical role-playing games, with a strong emphasis on Western forms of medieval folklore.

What's Next For Fire Emblem?

by Donald Theriault - December 4, 2020, 9:00 am EST
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Aside from more Heroes powercreep, we mean.

The “prime years” for professional athletes tend to be centered around the 30th birthday, and the same is true for the Fire Emblem franchise. And it’s had a heck of a 2020 - putting another character in Smash, being a top performer in Nintendo’s mobile plans, having Three Houses become the unquestioned market leader in strategy RPGs, and even managing to launch the original Famicom game localized in the West on the day this (video) goes live. But with all this success in the rearview mirror, the question becomes just what mountains are left for Fire Emblem to climb?

Or to put it more simply...

The elephant in the room is what the follow-up game for 2019’s Three Houses would be. Whatever it is, there’s a lot to live up to: Three Houses is by any metric the most successful game in the history of the franchise, or in the entire strategy genre on consoles. After being included in Nintendo’s Black Friday sales this year, there’s no doubt that it’s growing the lead over both its 3DS predecessors Awakening and Fates as well as the legendary Final Fantasy Tactics. Series developer Intelligent Systems has also had a major game launch in 2020 with Paper Mario: The Origami King, which as of Nintendo’s last financial results had shipped over 2.8m copies - and the launch of which would free up some development bandwidth, though most of the credits for The Origami KIng are similar to the credits for 2016’s Color Splash right down to help from Vanpool. Koei Tecmo, who did a lot of the heavy lifting on Three Houses, have a new collaboration with Nintendo coming out in Japan next month called Buddy Mission BOND, as announced in the home version of the final Nintendo Partner Showcase of this year. We don’t know who at Koei Tecmo worked on the game, but it’s not inconceivable that some of the Three Houses staff are going to go gold with a new game sooner than later. Some of the senior staff at IS are also involved in managing Fire Emblem Heroes on mobile.

There are plenty of options for what the next strategy game from Intelligent Systems would be, though the odds of a new “Wars” game are slim and only shrinking over time. Three Houses’s story leaves the door open for new games in its universe; a prequel in the time before the creation of Fodlan’s houses, a time skip interquel set elsewhere in the world, or even a sequel that could focus on a new uprising. The last of those is the least likely, however, as a Famitsu interview prior to Three Houses’s launch confirmed that they were trying to avoid the kind of “golden ending” the Revelations campaign of Fates provided. It also wouldn’t make sense to pick one of the paths through Three Houses as the “canon” one in a sequel, because it’ll only serve to annoy somewhere between ⅔ and ¾ of the LARGE Three Houses audience.

Fire Emblem has a history of doing interquels; there’s an entire Super Famicom game that’s set in between portions of its predecessor, and Three Houses takes place on one part of a much larger world that could be fun to explore with a new set of units. Or they can lean into nearly 1200 years of in-game history: after the opening of Three Houses, I definitely wanted to play as Seiros and punch Nemesis in the face personally. It’s entirely possible they could disconnect from the world of Three Houses; Fates’s countries haven’t been run back yet, so it wouldn’t be the first time in recent memory that a continent has been used for one game and that’s it. A new continent could also give them freedom to remove controversial elements of Three Houses such as the strict calendar system and focus on base exploration that even superfans who have unlocked every support in the game find annoying.

For a three decade old series, Fire Emblem has had less remakes than would be expected. Shadow Dragon was remade for the DS, and was also remade in part for 1994 Super Famicom title Mystery of the Emblem. Mystery was itself remade - in Japan only - in 2010, and the Famicom’s Gaiden was remade as Shadows of Valentia for 3DS in 2017. But unlike series like Donkey Kong or Metroid, Fire Emblem has a built-in marketing program for remakes if they choose to use it in the form of the mobile game. And there’s arguments to be made for remaking almost every pre-3DS game. (Sorry, Sacred Stones fans.)

Is this funnier said by Ash Ketchum, or Manuela?

The “Radiant” games, Path of Radiance and Radiant Dawn, seem to be the most likely titles to receive the Super Mario 3D All-Stars treatment. They’re even from the GameCube and Wii, so the tech would be right there. However, they’d be likely to add in modern functions like rewinding because if they did it to a Famicom game, it’s clear that these are considered part of the franchise at this point. Ike is still one of the most popular characters in the franchise, so there’s a natural character to focus on in marketing. Its conversations about race - or species - would be in the zeitgeist now, and there is a very strong peripheral demographic potential. Most importantly, there’s little to no chance they’ll stick it the week before a Mario Galaxy game and on a platform people actually bought unlike the initial releases.

In an interview with The Verge around Shadows of Valentia’s release, director Kenta Nakanishi stated that the next game he would want to remake is the first Game Boy Advance game - now known as The Binding Blade. As a Smash fighter Roy is the easiest hook, but it’s also possible to point to the presence of characters from the first localized Fire Emblem so there’d be appeal for longtime Western fans. It’s also the one that basically crippled the main character for a good portion of the game and had some of the most annoying unlock requirements in the series for characters, so it needs modernization perhaps more than any other game. I for one will replay Fire Emblem games a lot, but playing through a game nine times for one character is too much even for me.

If Nintendo really wants to appeal to their home market of Japan, then the best game to choose for a remake is also the oldest title that has never been remade: 1996 Super Famicom title Genealogy of the Holy War. It’s still the best selling game in the series in Japan, and in a 30th anniversary poll in Famitsu magazine it was selected as the best game in the series so it has plenty of hardcore cred. For what it’s worth, Genealogy units also perform far better in Heroes orb sales than would be expected from a Japan-only game. For Western fans, the structure is the most similar to Three Houses with its timeskip, and it would have appeal with A Song of Ice and Fire / Game of Thrones fans for its conflict. And content, but we’ll leave it at that.

Genealogy would also come with the natural end to a beefy expansion pass: the former Satteliview title Thracia 776 which released on a Super Famicom cart in 1999. Most people have never played it; it’s the lowest selling Fire Emblem franchise game that wasn’t made by Atlus and only received a meme-free fan translation in 2019. It’s best known as the home game for Heroes free-to-play god Reinhardt - and if that man isn’t made playable in a remake, I will be absolutely floored.

The last possibility for a remake is to take another kick at the Mystery of the Emblem can. There’s clearly a will to do it in North America, or we wouldn’t have had such a focus on Marth in the announcement trailer for Shadow Dragon and the Blade of Light’s localization. As we get farther away from the April anniversary the odds dip a little bit more, but it still wouldn’t be surprising if we get a chance at the sequel at some point down the road. There will be a temptation to tie it into Awakening somehow given the two millennium difference between the two games, but it still wouldn’t be the worst thing they added to a remake. Right, Kris?

There’s also the temptation to sit back and let Heroes money roll in. Although it’s facing down strong challenges from Mario Kart Tour in general and Animal Crossing Pocket Camp this year, Fire Emblem Heroes was still Nintendo’s top-grossing mobile game according to mobile analytics firm Sensor Tower at roughly $8m US across iOS and Android in October 2020. It’s about to kick off a new story “book” in a few days, which means more original characters to sell, and there’s still many popular main series characters that need to get into the game somehow. When will it finally be Deduesday? Who knows, but hopefully soon. The game’s fourth anniversary is coming up shortly, so it’ll be interesting to see if there’s any major changes that come to the game around then. Last anniversary brought the controversial “FEH Pass” subscription plan, so the hope is 2021 sees something a little more palatable that can still convince players to hit their PayPal accounts.

As Fire Emblem prepares to enter decade number four, it’s at an interesting crossroads. It can move forward and hope for greater success, double back and try to pick up a fanbase that was lost along the way, or just keep going whale hunting. Whatever Intelligent Systems and Nintendo elect to do, it will be controversial - but it certainly won’t be boring. And with Three Houses’s success in the back pocket, IS can afford to take risks and get messy.

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April 20, 1990 — Fire Emblem: Ankoku Ryuu to Hikari no Tsurugi released in Japan. While other SRPGs had been released prior to Fire Emblem, this game was the one to popularize the genre and expand its appeal outside of the established fanbase.

December 3, 2001 — Super Smash Bros. Melee releases in the West and includes the unlockable characters Marth and Roy. For many outside of Japan, this is the first time they have ever heard of Fire Emblem.

November 3, 2003 — Fire Emblem: Rekka no Ken is released as Fire Emblem in the West. The seventh game in the series overall, this is the first time Western fans were able to experience the series for themselves.

April 19, 2012 — Fire Emblem Awakening releases in Japan. After a decade of financial failures, Nintendo was ready to retire the series. Awakening was meant to be the final installment, so Intelligent Systems poured every idea they ever wanted to use for the series into one game. With a sales target of 250,000 worldwide, Awakening sold over 240,000 copies after its opening week thanks to positive critical reception and word of mouth. In the West, Awakening sales skyrocketed as many picked up the series for the first time after positive reactions spread.

July 26, 2019 — Fire Emblem: Three Houses releases worldwide. Three Houses received critical acclaim and, as of December 2020, has sold over 3 million copies, making it the best-selling game in the franchise.

December 4, 2020 — Fire Emblem: Ankoku Ryuu to Hikari no Tsurugi releases as Fire Emblem: Shadow Dragon & the Blade of Light in the West.

For over 30 years, Fire Emblem has captivated fans with its endearing cast of characters, strong tactical gameplay, and classic stories of good versus evil. While the West did get the DS remake of the original Fire Emblem game, we never got the game in its original form until now. For those who missed out on the DS remake, this is the chance to experience Marth’s story for the first time.

For those who have never played Fire Emblem before, the series is a tactical role-playing game where you control a squad of individual units against another army. There are multiple classes that each have their strengths and weaknesses. You have traditional medieval units like swordsmen (myrmidons), axemen (fighters), and cavalry (cavaliers) in addition to mages and healers (curates). Positioning and an understanding of your units is the key to success in these games, and Fire Emblem is no exception. Terrain plays a role in combat as well. Tiles like mountains and fortresses offer a significant boost to evasion and defense, so prioritizing those are important.

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Fire Emblem: Shadow Dragon & the Blade of Light stars Marth, the prince of Altea as he leads his army against the the Dolhr Empire’s forces. Dolhr is planning on creating an army of dragons (Manaketes) to rule over the continent of Archanea using the influence of the shadow dragon Medeus. Along the way, Marth recruits various individuals willing to fight with him against the Dolhr Empire’s influence.

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As reflected in the timeline above, Fire Emblem‘s general plotlines have stayed consistent ever since the start of the series. The story feels familiar, and this is truly Fire Emblem at its core. However, with a couple of exceptions, Fire Emblem‘s cast of characters is the unique hook that brings me back time and time again. This is where Fire Emblem: Shadow Dragon & the Blade of Light shows its age.

Without the series’ signature support system, it’s hard to get to know most of the cast of characters. With the exception of important story characters like Marth and his lover Caeda, most of the cast don’t have dialogue for any actions. No conversations in the story, no fun quip when they level up, nothing at all. This made me feel detached from the characters and the narrative as a whole. I started thinking of these characters more like traditional no-name units I would use in RTS games: units that weren’t much more than stats to use in battle to accomplish my objectives. It felt wrong for me to think that way, but I really struggled without dialogue. The best I could do is rely on my knowledge of them from other sources like the mobile game Fire Emblem Heroes.

Nintendo has more or less preserved the game in its original form from the NES/Famicom days, adding in a few adjustments like fast-forwarding, save states, and redoing turns. That does mean including the game’s original UI, which doesn’t preserve many of the quality of life changes added to the series over the years. Staples of the series, like combat previews and the danger zone, are absent in this game. Without these important mechanics present, I spent a lot more time carefully planning out my moves and memorizing enemy movement and attack ranges based on knowledge I’ve gained over the years playing Fire Emblem. The game does have save states and the ability to redo turns if you do make a mistake, which can help erase errors, whether they are your own fault or because you weren’t sure if combat would go favourably for you.

Fast-forwarding was both a blessing and a curse. While it’s nice to speed up the game (since it is pretty slow otherwise), it also tends to skip over dialogue if you’re fast-forwarding through enemy turns. Unit deaths in this game aren’t treated nearly the same as in other games in the series. For most of the units here, there are no final words as they are slain in battle. You might not know you lost a unit if you look away from the game for even a few seconds, and regrettably, this happened to me a couple of times throughout. For me, losing units in Fire Emblem games is unacceptable. After a certain point, I began counting all of my units to make sure I didn’t miss a random death.

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Inventory and shopping work differently from other Fire Emblem titles since there is no ‘base camp’ to speak of. Shops and convoys are present on each map to take care of your shopping in the middle of battle. The good thing about this is that most victory conditions in this game involve capturing a point on the map instead of the usual “kill the commander” to clear the map. After defeating the boss of the area, you can shop and take care of business as you see fit.

For a game released in 1990, the sprite animations for the units in this game are well done. Each class truly feels unique, with their own attack animations and effects. Since this is an older game, I can excuse them using the same sprite for the same class of unit, regardless of whether it’s an enemy or ally. It just takes longer to select a unit to see who it is before moving them. You have to do this whenever you start a mission, as there’s no way to rearrange units before the battle starts.

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If you want to listen to the classic Fire Emblem songs you’ve heard over time and/or from Super Smash Bros., you need to keep the game on normal speed. Like with other games played on emulators, fast-forwarding in this game will also speed up the music. This was a real bummer since I do enjoy the original game’s music quite a bit. There’s not much else to listen to besides the stock sound effects during attacks.

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Fire Emblem: Shadow Dragon & the Blade of Light shows how much and how little the series has changed over the past 30 years. It was fun experiencing Fire Emblem‘s origins for the first time in the original format. For a game released in 1990 on the Famicom, it indeed has a grand story with beats reminiscent of games from that era. However, I do know the third game of the series, Monshou no Nazou (Mystery of the Emblem), is a remake of this game and features a lot of improvements. It makes me wish we got that game instead; it would have been closer to how the series is today. If you’re curious about how the series got its start, pick up this game before it leaves the eShop on March 31st, 2021.