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Fire Emblem Has The Potential To Become Huge


 We just got one of the best Nintendo Directs ever. Concise editing, to-the-point writing, awesome announcments, and an exciting voice-over by Yuri Lowenthal really made this presentation a home run. Let's dig into the meat of this greatness.
Fire Emblem Gaiden's original art
 Fire Emblem Echoes: Shadows of Valentia is my kind of remake. It's not as cut-and-dry as most game remakes these days. Obviously a game would need some polishing up on its 25th anniversary, but this is really a knockout job on Nintendo's part. The original game, Fire Emblem Gaiden, was released in Japan only, but it was a very important game for the series. The innovations of this game shaped the series into what it is today. Nintendo is honoring this by completely rebuilding it from the ground up. They've added beautiful anime cutscenes, 3D graphics, and even a fully 3D free-roam dungeon crawling mechanic. 25 years later and Intelligent Systems is still innovating. I certainly can't wait to get my hands on this game on May 19th, as well as the beautiful Amiibo of the main characters, Alm and Celica.

The information card displayed during the presentation
 The most brief segment of the presentation was the confirmation that there is a brand new Fire Emblem game currently being worked on for the Switch. The only information we got for this new game was that the release is planned for next year. We didn't get any characters, story, or even a title, but it's fun to speculate. What do you think it will be like? They did make a point of focusing on the fact that it's the first home console Fire Emblem in a long time, so it might be a bit more in-depth than the recent entries in the series.

Chrom's beautifully shiny sword in all of its HD glory
 Perhaps the most surprising segment was that of Koei Tecmo's take on Fire Emblem, called Fire Emblem Warriors. Similar to what was done with Legend of Zelda and Hyrule Warriors, this is an adaptation of Fire Emblem into the Warriors/Musou formula. The trailer was a continuation of the one we saw during the Nintendo Switch presentation. We even got to see a brief glimpse of gameplay as Chrom, which looked incredibly visually stunning and engaging. I was very surprised by two things in this segment. Firstly, I was pretty shocked at how far along the game is. We saw how nice it looked in the gameplay, but we even got a release window: Fall 2017. I was also taken aback at the fact that it will be available on the New Nintendo 3DS. While I'm glad to see that 3DS owners will still have games to look forward to, I do hope this doesn't mean that the Switch version will feel like a 3DS game.

A still from the cinematic trailer, showcasing some of the available characters
 Another shocker was Fire Emblem Heroes. It was a given that we'd see Fire Emblem's foray into the mobile market sooner rather than later, and this was definitely the place to show it off. I was more surprised with the game itself. It looks surprisingly in-depth, especially for a mobile game, and it's also very far along. Releasing in just over two weeks, Fire Emblem Heroes looks like it could really break Fire Emblem into the mainstream market. Just like Super Mario Run, it will be free to start out the game, but I can foresee in-app purchases being included. Perhaps you could buy the orbs used to unlock characters. Similarly to the Smash ballot, there is currently a poll to see which characters the community wants to see in the game.

 Overall, 2017 looks to be a great year for Fire Emblem. We'll be getting Fire Emblem Heroes in just two weeks, an easy to pick up entry in the franchise. In May, we're getting the West's first exposure to Fire Emblem Gaiden with the beautiful remake Fire Emblem Echoes: Shadows of Valentia. And later this year, the series will land on the Switch with a match made in heaven between Fire Emblem and Koei Tecmo's Warriors series. And finally, not too far off in the horizon is the first home console game in the series in a long time, Fire Emblem for Nintendo Switch.

 Be sure to let me know what you liked about the presentation and what you're looking forward to in the comments.

Comments

  1. And to think in between 2009 and 2011 Nintendo was considering cancelling the series because of poor American and European sales.

    See that's why Awakening really deserves appreciation: it SAVED the entire series. The team knew that if they were going to go out, it would be with a bang. They hit the ball right out of the park and made Fire Emblem more successful than it has ever been.

    I never thought I'd see a day like this where the series got a 20-minute live presentation with no less than 4 games on the way in the span of this year and the next.

    People may mock Nintendo for a lot of things, but when they make great games, they make fucking fantastic games.

    Slightly off-topic but I always cite Fire Emblem as an example as to why I believe Metroid can rise to its former glory once again, even with the poor sales of Federation Force. If Nintendo shows the same amount of dedication and marketing to a new mainstream Metroid as they did Awakening five years ago, I damn well believe Metroid could finally return to glory.

    ReplyDelete
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    1. Metroid could certainly make a comeback. Also yeah, Awakening deserves more love. A lot of the fanbase hates the 3DS games for some reason.

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