October 27th sees the release of a much anticipated Nintendo Switch game; that is not the game I am featuring here. No, that particular one will most likely share the spotlight for November’s game of the month.
The game I am choosing to feature here is a crossover between one of my favourite Nintendo franchises and Omega Force’s hack-and-slash franchise. It is being released for both the Nintendo Switch and the New Nintendo 3DS consoles, with my focus here being on the Switch version.Pretty much a successor to Hyrule Warriors (and Hyrule Warriors Legends), Fire Emblem Warriors has you taking control of renowned and original Fire Emblem characters to fight hordes of enemy soldiers and monsters. The story focuses on two original characters, Rowan and Lianna, who are joined by a whole host of familiar faces – including Marth, Chrom and Corrin.
As you might expect, the game begins with the peaceful kingdom of Aytolis being invaded by twisted monsters. Prince Rowan and Princess Lianna embark on a quest to reawaken the legendary Shield of Flames to seal away the Chaos Dragon, allying themselves with heroes who come from other worlds.
From Fire Emblem: Awakening, both male and female Robin, Chrom, Lucina, Cordelia, Lissa and Frederick will join the fray.
Male and female Corrin, Xander, Ryoma, Leo, Hinoka and Takumi are a few characters from Fire Emblem Fates that are playable.
Anna has appeared in every Fire Emblem game to date, except from Fire Emblem Gaiden and its remake, Fire Emblem Echoes: Shadows of Valentia. Her first appearance as a playable character was Fire Emblem: Awakening.
If you’ve ever played Hyrule Warriors, or any Dynasty Warriors game, then the gameplay of Fire Emblem Warriors will feel familiar to you. You hack and slash your way through hordes of enemies, occasionally taking out a boss or two.
As you fight, you’ll build up various gauges. Activating the Awakening Gauge provides a temporary stat boost, whilst filling the Warrior Gauge will allow you to launch a powerful special attack.
Fire Emblem Warriors makes use of a mechanic that was introduced in Fire Emblem: Awakening – Pair Up. You can have two heroes pair up as a single unit, allowing you to switch freely between the pair and launch special attacks. Pairs of units can increase their bond, making their attacks much more powerful.
Using the map screen, you are able to issue commands to allied units. You could have a hero advance to a key position, and then switch to another who is near a threat that needs to be defeated. Making use of this feature will be key to achieving sub-objectives.
Fire Emblem‘s weapon triangle is very much present here as well – swords beat axes, axes beats lances and lances beat swords.
Fighting battles will earn you gold and materials, which can be used to improve your characters’ stats by creating crests that provide numerous perks. You are also able to re-forge weapons.
Sometimes Anna will appear on the battlefield. If you can find her, you will be able to earn puzzle pieces that unlock hero artworks and History Mode scenarios.
There is also a Temple where you can receive a temporary blessing for a price. If you’re playing in Classic difficulty, this is also where you’ll go to revive fallen characters.
Characters will level up as they fight, though you can also take heroes to the Training Grounds to have them grow by spending gold. Once a character reaches level 15, you can use Master Seals to advance their class.
Fire Emblem Warriors offers several different modes. Obviously Story Mode is the one that focuses on Rowan and Lianna as they team up with past and present Fire Emblem heroes to defeat the Chaos Dragon.
There are two difficulty levels: Casual and Classic. If a character falls in Classic difficulty, you won’t be able to select them again – unless you revive them in the Temple. If one falls in Casual difficulty, they’ll return in the next chapter.
History Mode offers twists on memorable Fire Emblem scenarios from previous adventures.
Hand a Joy-Con to a friend, and you can play through Story and History Modes co-operatively.
Fire Emblem Warriors is compatible with amiibo. Tap an amiibo once a day and you will receive a random amount of gold or rare materials. Tapping the amiibo of a character who appears in Fire Emblem Warriors will unlock a strong weapon for that character to use.
Two new Fire Emblem amiibo will launch alongside the game (though you have to buy them separately if you want them as well): Chrom and Tiki. These both provide exclusive weapons the first time you scan them.
Much like Hyrule Warriors before it, Fire Emblem Warriors will be receiving DLC. There will be three DLC packs, and buying the season pass will grant access to all of them as soon as they are released. The season pass costs £17.99 in the UK.
Each pack will contain three new characters, three new History scenarios, new costumes, new weapons and new support conversations inspired by Fire Emblem Fates, Fire Emblem: Shadow Dragon and Fire Emblem: Awakening. Buying the season pass will also get you a bridal costume for Lucina.
I absolutely adore Fire Emblem, and I find the Dynasty Warriors games to be enjoyable – well, at least the ones I have played (Hyrule Warriors, Hyrule Warriors Legends, Warriors Orochi 3 Hyper and Samurai Warriors Chronicles 3 – and I suppose Fate/EXTELLA: The Umbral Star has similar gameplay, too).
I will probably pick up the season pass for the DLC for this game, but only after Comic Con.
Fire Emblem Warriors is only one of the three games I intend to pick up during this month, though. The other two – well, one should be incredibly obvious if you’ve been following Nintendo. The other is something that I have purchased the Limited Edition of, and I’ll probably publish an unboxing post for it here, similar to what I did for Fire Emblem Echoes: Shadows of Valentia earlier on this year.
Fire Emblem Warriors provides a fun mix of Fire Emblem strategy mixed with the action of Dynasty Warriors, and is something I would recommend to fans of both – though I suspect it would hold greater appeal for fans of the latter.