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Hero-of-Time

Fire Emblem Engage (20th Jan 2023)

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Uh, all the 3H Lords in one emblem? That's neat. Plus, with Tiki there, that means potential characters who aren't lords.

I'm hoping we get one with Hector & Eliwood, at least. And if I'm allowed to dream big, one with Tibarn & Elincia.

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I was already getting a "Fates-y" vibe from this game from the start (a blank slate dragon protagonist who's half one thing, half another, is going to do that), but this "My Castle" looking thing tipped it right over. Furthermore, I'm seeing a lot of Heroes terminology here (Tempest Trials, characters gaining "SP", etc.), and that game took a lot from Fates in many respects, mechanically.

My point is, after IntSys had a side trip with Echoes, some experience with Heroes, and some outsourcing with Three Houses & Hopes... I think this is the big, true successor to Awakening & Fates, likely with the same major key figures behind it.

Me, I'm still feeling lukewarm with this game. But 3DS fans can rejoice with the general direction of Engage.

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7 hours ago, Jonnas said:

I was already getting a "Fates-y" vibe from this game from the start (a blank slate dragon protagonist who's half one thing, half another, is going to do that), but this "My Castle" looking thing tipped it right over. Furthermore, I'm seeing a lot of Heroes terminology here (Tempest Trials, characters gaining "SP", etc.), and that game took a lot from Fates in many respects, mechanically.

My point is, after IntSys had a side trip with Echoes, some experience with Heroes, and some outsourcing with Three Houses & Hopes... I think this is the big, true successor to Awakening & Fates, likely with the same major key figures behind it.

Me, I'm still feeling lukewarm with this game. But 3DS fans can rejoice with the general direction of Engage.

Agreed.  You can really tell that IntSys actually worked on this one (unlike Three Houses).  Crazy to think that this is only their second Switch game after more than 5 years of the console's life... FEH really did a number on their development capacity huh?

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Posted (edited)

Previews are coming out now... all sounds great! Sounds like they've gone back to having it be more like the GBA/DS/GCN era FE games (and all of the Somnium stuff doesn't sound overbearing like the Monastary was in TH)... which is exactly what I wanted :D

Edited by Dcubed

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I mean... by all means, this sounds far more like the 3DS era. The GBA era was almost entirely devoid of skills and base activities, the GCN era had a much grittier aesthetic, and the DS games really toned down on plot and characterisation for the time... and of course, the Somnium stuff is right out of Fates.

But I really hope it's good, and that folks enjoy it for what it is. I'll wait on this one, due to being a tad saturated on new FE games, but I'll be paying attention.

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1 hour ago, Jonnas said:

I mean... by all means, this sounds far more like the 3DS era. The GBA era was almost entirely devoid of skills and base activities, the GCN era had a much grittier aesthetic, and the DS games really toned down on plot and characterisation for the time... and of course, the Somnium stuff is right out of Fates.

But I really hope it's good, and that folks enjoy it for what it is. I'll wait on this one, due to being a tad saturated on new FE games, but I'll be paying attention.

I meant in terms of gameplay, not so much aesthetics.  We're seeing the return of pure strategy gameplay, no world map, with varied mission objectives (unlike Awakening & Birthright) and minimal base building stuff (nothing that affects anything beyond the next fight).  That's more in line with the Tellius games than Awakening or Fates.

Edit: Ahh, didn't realise that Engage actually does have a World Map... Ok, that's more like Fates then.

Edited by Dcubed

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Wow! The game uses Unity!? Wasn't expecting that!

This makes it the first ever internally developed Nintendo game to use an externally developed game engine! (Yoshi's Crafted World was made by Good Feel, so it's not an internally developed title).

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4 hours ago, Dcubed said:

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Wow! The game uses Unity!? Wasn't expecting that!

This makes it the first ever internally developed Nintendo game to use an externally developed game engine! (Yoshi's Crafted World was made by Good Feel, so it's not an internally developed title).

Boxboy! + Boxgirl! was also developed in Unity, though obviously not internally developed either but it's not often I get the opportunity to mention that game

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I watched @Ugh first aid play the first 5 chapters last night. She renamed the main character Colgate, and it's naturally very funny. Here are a few impressions from me though.

- Intro FMV cutscene music bad. Very bad. Doesn't fit the series at all.

- Rest of soundtrack so far good, so hopefully the above is just a weird outlier.

- UI very good, she can parse the information despite being visually impaired. Vast improvement over Three Houses.

- The new mechanics such as Break and the Emblems provide some really cool wrinkles. Being able to move the Emblems around promises some mix and match shenanigans.

- That said, she's playing on Normal and having these Emblems gives her such a massive advantage. Consider playing on Hard at least. Celica only being able to use Warp once per Engage use and only on the character she's paired with seems like a good balance, until you realise she can warp to any enemy, and immediately smack them with Ragnarok without fear of counterattack! That's bonkers. Sigurd giving Mov+5 is also bonkers!

- You can lower the difficulty midway through the game. Good! You can't raise it though, hence why I suggest starting on Hard at least.

EDIT: Oh right, I forgot to mention this, but the cutscene building up to the first proper battle is hilarious.

"Shall we fight them? As you wish, Divine One, your bravery knows no equal!"

"No, let's run."

"Huh?"

That caught me off guard.

Edited by Glen-i

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On 17/01/2023 at 7:29 PM, MindFreak said:

[my first fire emblem]

As far as I remember, Path of Radiance on Gamecube was my first FE. I thought it was great! Those cutscenes. :o 

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8 hours ago, Glen-i said:

 Intro FMV cutscene music bad. Very bad. Doesn't fit the series at all.

 

EDIT: Oh right, I forgot to mention this, but the cutscene building up to the first proper battle is hilarious.

"Shall we fight them? As you wish, Divine One, your bravery knows no equal!"

"No, let's run."

"Huh?"

That caught me off guard.

Yeah it's awful. Totally wasn't expecting to hear that when you boot up the game.

That cutscene made me laugh too.

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I've started my file now. UFA took the toothpaste joke, so I went with the other obvious one, "PepsiBoy" (8 character limit).

Spoiler

I regret nothing.

 

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fireemblemengagelaunchtrailerbanner.620x0.webp

Fire Emblem Engage Launch Trailer

Now up on the main page.

Overview and launch trailer.

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On 20/01/2023 at 9:38 AM, Glen-i said:

Intro FMV cutscene music bad. Very bad. Doesn't fit the series at all

Maybe not the series... but in this RWBY-looking game where everybody can turn into Emblem Power Rangers, the Saturday morning cartoon vibes are likely the intended tone.

This message was sent during a Saturday morning.

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4 hours ago, Jonnas said:

Maybe not the series... but in this RWBY-looking game where everybody can turn into Emblem Power Rangers, the Saturday morning cartoon vibes are likely the intended tone.

This message was sent during a Saturday morning.

Oh, "Saturday Morning Cartoon" is a great way of describing the tone of this game. Yeah, I agree with that based on what I've seen.

Chapter 5 on hard proper kicked my butt. I already hate revival stones. Had to use a lot of time travel to get through that one. Yet, Clanne still got one shotted by the boss, at which point, I said "screw it" and finished off the chapter, he didn't miss out on any experience anyway.

Anyway, as a quick PSA, the game doesn't notify you when a support conversation not involving Pepsi Boy is available. So check on that section in the + menu periodically.

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Holy crap! The story and characters are fucking shit aren’t they?

Gameplay’s tops though! :D

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On 21/01/2023 at 3:49 PM, Glen-i said:

Chapter 5 on hard proper kicked my butt. I already hate revival stones. Had to use a lot of time travel to get through that one. Yet, Clanne still got one shotted by the boss, at which point, I said "screw it" and finished off the chapter, he didn't miss out on any experience anyway.

Beat chapter 5 last night.

Spoiler

I wonder if it was better to send all my units to the left. I only just managed to defeat the thief who had opened the chests thanks to Warp Ragnarok.

Revival Stones suck - they revive at full health as well! Not looking forward to later bosses that will have multiple.

Break only seems to last for the next round of combat not until the end of the player phase, like I assumed it did. Only learned that against the chapter 5 boss because I thought I could cheese him. Break is great when you get it, it's awful when the enemy breaks you. Feels like they deliberately place 2 different weapon types next to each other so you can't just put a single unit against a group.

I feel like I've been getting some poor level ups, my units still feel weak.

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Just starting Chapter 5 now… that’s some difficulty spike huh?

Playing on Hard Mode Classic BTW.  The difficulty is quite nice; game is putting up a good fight, feels well balanced and even the Engage moves don’t feel stupidly broken! Defo feels like the intended way to play so far :) (especially compared to the utter pushover that is Normal Mode from what I’ve seen; I really like how the AI plays far more aggressively on Hard Mode!).

Still not sure how I feel about the lack of weapon degradation though… It works in SoV because of your woefully limited inventory space, but here? I’m not seeing why I’d ever bother to equip the weaker weapons in favour of always using the strongest equipment all the time later on? Magic also seems crazy OP so far, especially since there is no penalty for using it whatsoever here! (No weapon degradation and no HP draining?, ALA SoV, just seems busted!).  In turn, it also makes me question the value of the game’s economy when your weapons all have infinite usage anyway… why bother buying weapons at all? (Until maybe the end-game where you might want some extra Silver Weapons?).

The skills on offer seem almost overwhelming in their potential complexity though.  There is a LOT going on here! I can only imagine the dizzying array of stuff I’m gonna need to keep track of later on!

Loving it so far, though I do have to say that I feel that the UI is a bit cumbersome… It feels like a two screen game that has been uncomfortably shoved onto one.  If I didn’t know any better? You could easily fool me into thinking that this was originally a Wii U game that was cancelled and then ported to Switch.  Probably would’ve been better if they just reverted to the classic GBA/GCN style interface, rather than try to emulate the DS/3DS FE games’ UI design.

Also… Octopath Traveller called.  It wants its Break mechanic back :D

Edited by Dcubed

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2 hours ago, Dcubed said:

Holy crap! The story and characters are fucking shit aren’t they?

y7r6ae3sulca1.jpg

Edited by Jonnas
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Oh god, Chapter 11! Oh god, why!?

That is one rude wake up call!

Spoiler

Gotta admit though, Sombron has a rad design! I am down for Cobra Dragon. Probably my favourite FE Dragon design so far.

 

Edited by Glen-i

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