Tired of the static Fire Emblem modes where all you do is just try and outwit your opponents and you’re usually stronger than them in stats? Actually, you’re probably not, considering most of you just like it the way it is, and you want to keep your players alive. Well, too bad. In past FE games — or mostly the ones that never got released in the West — there was no difficulty levels, but the game was hard anyways. Starting with the unreleased in the West Fire Emblem: The Binding Blade for the GBA, an option to make it harder surfaced…
Let’s just say since then, things have gotten a bit crazier since.
If you’ve been involved in the Japanese gaming scene before or you’ve seen videos of Touhou, the difficulty for games can range from the usual standards to “THESEGUYSARELOCO!!!” Fire Emblem was no exception. Somewhere out there, there are players who are crazy (and talented) enough to want to test their strategic and game breaking knowledge. I can only guess that’s why Intelligent Systems chose to do the one thing that might be considered sane by those people: coming up with new difficulty levels. It only got worse from there. The GBA line was mostly safe, as it only had Hard mode as its highest difficulty (though in the West it was nerfed compared to the Japanese editions). Then it tread new territory for the console games. Path of Radiance had some silly mode called Maniac. Let’s just say that never came to the West, and was replaced by Easy Mode. Then Radiant Dawn came and we also got Maniac as a disguise called Hard Mode. I don’t want to be the bearer of bad news, but let’s just say all’s fair in love and war (so no crying about how many times you lost that chapter). If it was possible though, it got worse after that. For the two DS Fire Emblem games, not only was there difficulty levels, you could set the difficulty levels from 1-5 on Hard Mode. Then for Shin Monshou No Nazo, it introduced Lunatic Reverse. We all know that here in the West as Lunatic+ (Fire Emblem Awakening).
So what’s the big deal with these levels? Well, the biggest deal is of course, their insane difficulty. Each game in the series took the difficulty steps further than it maybe should have. The standards in general is to have more enemies on a map, with higher stats, better weapons, and an inherent desire to kill your units with ease. Then of course you have a mode like Lunatic+ where the enemies attack first on each turn. How does one beat these modes? Well, the first thing is you need to be a major M and deal with the fact that you’ll be resetting a lot. The other thing is for the early parts of the game, you just have to accept that a certain strategy will be the only way to beat the chapter. The last thing you’re gonna need is a lot of luck. And I mean a lot of it.
But don’t take my advice. I mean, I have yet to actually beat any higher difficulty mode except for Hard in Awakening. I’m pretty sure there are players out there who can detail the best ways to deal with the modes better than I can. So how about you share your strategies in dealing with them?