So I bet you thought I would merely be content with just working on parts huh? Well, no, I decided to go work on something else. Mainly, it involves the 13th edition of Fire Emblem…that 13th Edition is Fire Emblem: Awakening.
After being one of the people who pre-ordered it at Gamestop only for Nintendo to slap everyone in the face and say they ran out of copies, I ended up getting the game eventually. Let’s just say I played the crap out of it. Some FE Western vets who have played every game since FE7 will probably take offense to calling this game the best of the series released so far. The reason I say it is the best is merely because of what it is able to do now that prior games of the series could not do. Let’s go get this started:
In the end, it is 2013. Nowadays we have more than just hardcore gamers playing games. While prior Fire Emblem games forced you to go hope your units don’t die (except the unreleased worldwide New Mystery of Emblem), Awakening gives you the choice of going classic or going casual. With casual gameplay, you can be as flexible as you need to be since your units won’t die. This of course sends a FE fan into a tizzy (and that includes me), but the flexibility just allows more people to play the games. More people playing FE games = more people maybe curious about FE history. More people maybe curious about FE’s history = more FE love that it has needed since it’s debut in 2003. And in thinking about it that way, it’s a win-win for everybody!
Let’s just say with the addition of DLC, spotpass, it has cured the ails of what previous FE games failed to do. For reasons unbeknownst to me, the GBA line of games had a multi-player arena feature which involved pairing up your strongest teams and pitting them against other Fire Emblem users. Please admit in the comments section that you played this feature alone. I seriously don’t want to be the only one to admit I played that feature alone. Anyways, if you thought that was another good step, then came Shadow Dragon and the ability to play other people online on maps with your units. I never actually bothered with this feature to be honest (so call me out if I’m doing this a disservice!). Awakening however, puts it all together, giving us a steady stream of content that can theoretically keep you busy for at least 2 years…and with the support and marriage function system, the main storyline, and paralogues to play, no other game in the series can say it can provide as much content as Awakening can, and that’s because it’s on system that allows it
I’ll call it an underrated feature, but voice acting is a major key in this series. When I played the demo, I admit to getting pretty annoyed with it, but when I got the game itself, I didn’t turn it off because I was curious about how everyone else sounded. And alas, I still haven’t turned it off. It really gives the game something fresh rather than just text on the screen and just voice acting in cut scenes. It definitely makes one wonder how a fully voiced RPG would work out, as I hear that hasn’t been done just yet…or at least for this series it hasn’t. Guess that makes one wonder right?
So did I just declare Fire Emblem: Awakening the best Western release in the series? In one sense yes, and in another sense, no. I never did talk about the story, characters, gameplay, etc compared to the other games in the series. And yes, I did promise one day (but I want to save that for now) that I’ll tell you how I rank the series I’ve played (the list will include New Mystery). But in another sense, it’s accessibility compared to previous FE games I think makes it the series to beat right now.
…Don’t worry, you can say I contradicted myself in the comments. I…I won’t cry.