This Was What Supporting Awakening and Fates Has Brought Us


I was gonna use an Awakening and Fates picture but this artwork by this women was boss, so I used this instead

How did it feel to learn about a franchise from a 4 player free for all for friends?

How does it feel to support a franchise that managed to get progressively under the skin of its newcomers?

How did it feel when Awakening was intended to be the last in the series?

How does it feel today, January 19, 2017?

Well, let’s answer the questions.

How did it feel to learn about a franchise from a 4 player free for all for friends?

Super Smash Bros Melee has been the title to introduce me to a number of Nintendo’s best or hidden franchises, whether it’s through fighting or their large trophy collection. It’s where I learned about F-Zero, Metroid, and Fire Emblem.

Fire Emblem, of course, was never released in the West.

5 games had come by and gone in Japan (the 6th would soon follow), and considering I kind of liked the characters in Smash (Roy was my main), I thought it would’ve been nice to play it at some point.

It took two years after Smash, but it finally happened. We got the 7th game in the series. I had no idea what to expect, even though it got one of the highest reviews (and is still pretty high today) at the time.

I played the sh*t out of that GBA game. Still mad I’m stuck at 88% support for all the characters.

So this basically makes me think — why did it take so long for a series like this to be released here? Was it really difficulty concerns? Story concerns? Or was it they didn’t have the resources to translate it (or they didn’t want to translate it?)

How does it feel to support a franchise that managed to get progressively under the skin of its newcomers?

Nintendo missed its chance to evolve the franchise when it never released Fire Emblem 6 (Binding Blade) I think. With Blazing Sword selling well, it would have looked like a sequel and finished the story of Elibe. Instead, we go two years until the next Fire Emblem game, The Sacred Stones, which had nothing to do with Fire Emblem 7.

That was the first missed opportunity.

Then came, in some aspects, stubbornness. Path of Radiance and Radiant Dawn hit the consoles. Radiant Dawn is the game I’ve played the most, despite some story issues and lack of supports. Both managed to be the worst selling games in the series. For context, Thracia 776 sold more than those two.

Thracia 776 came out on the Super Famicom in 1999, and it didn’t even release normally.

The one thing that stood out for me at the time was Path of Radiance’s kinda blandness (I only beat it once, then only played it more after playing Radiant Dawn), and Radiant Dawn’s punishing difficulty. Combine all of that and lack of marketing (though it’s hard to market something like Radiant Dawn), you don’t lose your fanbase, you end up not having it grow. You search the internet long enough or talk to people, they tell you Fire Emblem 7 is the one they’ve played the most.

They basically failed to get newcomers to stick to each game.

Then Shadow Dragon happened, and, well, I’ve now gotten used to it. it took a while though. But for others, it’s hard to go back when you don’t update things, and Shadow Dragon showcased a lack of adjusting to 2008-2009’s standards.

How did it feel when Awakening was intended to be the last in the series?

Unlike a lot of people, I understood why Nintendo didn’t localize New Mystery of the Emblem. It probably did have to do with sales. But I also believe a factor was the phasing out of the DS. With the 3DS coming up, and considering how long it took for Nintendo to translate Fire Emblem games, it was a development crunch.

I was still in despair though, since I really wanted to play it.

Then of course, Awakening was announced. It definitely looked different from its predecessors, and with the pair-up mechanic, it was certainly interesting.

The more info that came out about this game however, the more you realized that this was essentially it. This was going to be the last game. And I would’ve been super sad. It’s not a case where, hey, it might just be time. I felt like it was something it could’ve been more, and it was dying prematurely due to bad decisions.

Well, I knew one thing: it was definitely being marketed harder than other Fire Emblem games. That’s definitely because it finally relented and let other people join in the fun. Would it prove to be a success?

It proved to be a worthwhile success. This then led to Fire Emblem Fates, which has a bad but crazy story, and one of the best gameplay systems in the franchise. It fixed whatever ailed Awakening (it even gave characters feet), and boy did I have fun with it.

I (so far) have only played it once. I want to play it again at some point.

How did you feel about January 18, 2017?

Yesterday felt like the culmination of years of frustration and effort with this franchise, and it was all resolved in 19 minutes.

Here’s the release schedule for Fire Emblem:

+ Fire Emblem Heroes is coming Feb 2.
+ Fire Emblem Echoes: Shadows of Valentia is coming May 19.
+ Fire Emblem Warriors is coming in the Fall
+ Fire Emblem for the Switch is coming in 2018.

To me, this made me think back to one of the reasons why I supported Awakening and Fates, and kind of why I started this site. There’s still games in the series the West has never gotten, and considering we live in the remake/reboot era, eventually Fire Emblem would have to go through that well. If it dies though, how else will I feel when all the units I carefully trained get boiled alive (if the wikis are accurate, maybe some of them). Or how busted the Sword of Seals really is (I hear it’s really busted). The fact that it has grown into a major IP is, for me, long overdue.

I’m super glad that Fire Emblem has hit its stride. And I hope this will eventually lead to Genealogy of The Holy War getting released in the West soon enough.


About Walters

Fire Emblem fan. Looking out for fire of course. Has played every Fire Emblem game that's come in the West.

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