As big a fan as I am of the Fire Emblem series, there’s another turn-based strategy system that Nintendo has been publishing that I like even more, and that’s the Advance Wars series. Intelligent Systems is the company behind both of those franchises and they’ve expressed interest in doing another one. According to an interview posted on Nintendo’s Fire Emblem page, Masahiro Higuchi says the company would like to take another shot at the more light-hearted war game.
Well, whether it’s Fire Emblem or the Advance Wars, we never want to put an end to any series we’re involved with. We always want to make games that provide a lot of fun to gamers, so if we have the chance, we’d certainly like to make another [Advance Wars] title.
Days of Ruin, the most recent entry in the franchise on DS, took the series in a little bit more of a dark direction. I hope they steer away from that somewhat and get back to making the cheesy, funny style of game. That seemed to work better.
The company has already done two of their three big names on the 3DS (Fire Emblem, Paper Mario). They’ve even created a new franchise with Pushmo. It’s time that Advance Wars has its turn in the spotlight.
While the numbers themselves aren’t actually huge, compared to other big name releases, Fire Emblem: Awakening did have the best first month of sales the franchise has ever seen. According to Nintendo, the strategy RPG sold 180,000 in its first month of availability in North America. 63,000 of those sales came courtesy of the Nintendo 3DS eShop.
To put that into perspective, the most recent handheld release in the franchise, Fire Emblem: Shadow Dragon has sold 250,000 in the five years that it has been available. Overall the sales of Awakening seem to be doing pretty good and are going to easily surpass those of its predecessor.
I “grew up” playing games like Warhammer, its sci-fi equivalent 40K, Piquet and more recently Flames of War. Those games are all essentially turn-based-strategy games where you and an opponent face off on opposite sides of a tabletop battlefield with hordes of painted soldiers at your command. Much like chess, those games require strategy, the ability to react quickly to opponents and a little bit of luck.
Intelligent Systems are the developers behind the Fire Emblem series that has been around for more than 20 years now, mostly in Japan. The game is basically the video game version of a tabletop strategy game. It’s known for its punishing difficulty, relationship building and most importantly the dreaded “permadeath.” Until now the series has been mostly unknown in the United States, but could Awakening truly live up to its name?
What You Need to Know
Fire Emblem: Awakening is a strategy-role-playing game where you take groups of fighters on a quest to save the world. You, as the Avatar, awaken to find you have no memory of yourself, but you do know the people who find you. It’ll be you and your party’s job to rid the world of Risen, save the kingdom and maybe get married along the way. Battles take place on a grid and turns bounce back and forth between your party and the enemy. Actions are chosen from menus, multiple weapons will be available to many characters and the battles play out in real time on the 3DS top screen.
If you’ve downloaded or bought a physical copy of Fire Emblem: Awakening for the 3DS then you may not know exactly what to expect when you first play the game. If you’re a veteran of the franchise you know that things are going to be difficulty and there are some strategies to keep you alive. If you’re new to the series then you probably have no idea what to expect and need a little help giving yourself the edge in battle.
This game is definitely one of the more hard core strategy games available to players. It utilizes a permadeath form of play, meaning that if a character dies in battle then they’re no longer available to you. If you’re worried about the time you invest in those fighters and you don’t want to lose them the developers, Intelligent Systems, have given you the option to play in a more casual mode that will bring all fighters back after the battle. I like to play with permadeath on as it makes you more aware of what you’re doing and forces you to come up with some really solid strategies that you can take into battle.
With that in mind I’ve come up with a few tips that I use on the battlefield. Read more…
If you were one of the lucky people that were able to snag your copy of Fire Emblem: Awakening on launch day then you’ve got a nice surprise waiting for you. Nintendo has announced that the first batch of DLC is available for the game through the Outrealm Gate, which is the game’s hub for all things DLC. The first playable map available is called Champions of Yore 1 and is available to download for free through March 5th. It features fan favorites like Ike and Marth (popular through Nintendo’s Smash Bros. series), as well as other characters like Eirika from Fire Emblem: The Sacred Stones. You have to complete the fifth chapter of the game to access the DLC and you should have your party leveled up to around level 7 before attempting to play it.
More DLC will be available each week for the first two months of the game’s life. If you’ve had the chance to play the game let us know what you think of it. Did you run into any of the shipping problems with the game? Did you get it straight from the eShop? I’m about 4 hours into the game for review and my early impression is that this game is going to be something special.
That’s what I’m officially labeling the month that features Valentine’s Day. During their most recent Nintendo Direct video, which aired yesterday, Nintendo announced the release date for Fire Emblem: Awakening. February 4th is the date you can mark on your calendar for when I’ll be hanging out with Lord Chrom and the Shepards.
The game will feature many elements of past games like the tactical, turn-based combat. You’ll be able to position troops on the battlefield to increase their relationship with other characters. New 3D animated cutscenes will tell the story.
I love tactical, turn-based RPGs like this and Final Fantasy Tactics. If you haven’t checked out a Fire Emblem game, now might be the perfect time to hit up your classic game retailer and find one of the GBA releases.
Nintendo presented another 3DS focused Nintendo Direct today. Among the things discussed were the new subtitle for Animal Crossing, now called New Leaf, the host of downloadable games coming to the system for the remainder of the year, and more. Check it out here in case you missed it earlier.
- Professor Layton going back to the high school years. New puzzles every day for free.
- New SpotPass based puzzles for Crosswords Plus!
- Leaderboards for New Super Mario Bros. 2 through an official website and more downloadable content available today.
- New details on Crashmo and Fluidity: Spin Cycle
- Liberation Maiden available today. Other Level-5 published eShop games (Aeroporter, Crimson Shroud) coming soon.
- Ikachan releasing later this year.
- Fire Emblem getting DLC in North America after launch.
- ANIMAL CROSSING!!!!!!
The Heroes Journal is my attempt at doing a little creative writing based on the events that occur during different games I play. It started during my review of Dragon Quest IX and continues with Fire Emblem: The Sacred Stones for the Game Boy Advance. I’m playing the game on the Nintendo 3DS.
This journal follows the events of the game from the viewpoint of a knight in service to Princess Eirika of Renais named Seth. Be warned that this journal could contain story spoilers about the game so if you don’t want anything spoiled don’t read on. You’ve been warned.
Here it is, folks. The big one-oh-oh. Episode 100 of the Okie Cast is here and dang if it isn’t a good one; we make fun of Tony, we yell at Tony, Tony says he hates us. It’s awesome. As usual we cover the games we have been playing this week and then roll into the news. Also, to celebrate the 100th episode, we have three separate segments to start us down the road to episode 200. Hope y’all enjoy. Thanks to everyone for 100 episodes!
Starring – Tony, Micah, Shelby
Run time – 1:53:28
If you want to send us some feedback our email address is email@example.com. You can also find us in the same places as all your other internet personalities. Places like Facebook, YouTube, Twitter and our forum. Our new opening song is a remix of the Dr. Mario Fever music by CsGuitar89 and our closing song is a Blaster Master remix by DJ Axis. If you like them you can find the mp3s here and here.
Fire Emblem: The Sacred Stones was released for 3DS Ambassadors at the end of December. It’s a franchise that I’ve never played before so I was eager to jump into the game as I am a big fan of strategy RPG’s. The turn based combat is right up my alley.
The Hero’s Journal is a feature that I’ve done during my play through of two previous games, Dragon Quest IX: Sentinel of the Starry Skies and Dragon Quest VI: Realms of Revelation. It’s my attempt to write down some of my experiences with the game as I was working through those reviews. I take one of the characters in the game and write journal entries from their perspective showing some of the things that occurred while I played the game. I’m not reviewing Fire Emblem, but the game play gave me the opportunity to add my own flavor to the events that are happening in the game.
In this series of the Hero’s Journal I’m choosing Seth as the focus of the stories. For those of you that don’t know Seth is a captain of the Knights of Renais, one of the factions that are participating in a continent wide war in Fire Emblem: The Sacred Stones. He flees the castle of Renais at the beginning of the game under orders of King Fado to protect his daughter. She sees the suffering that her people are going through and vows to help them in whatever way she can. It just happens that she’s also a pretty decent warrior and begins to take the fight to the Kingdom of Grado who has invaded Renais. This journal begins shortly after those events take place.
Be warned that this series may contain story spoilers for the game. Character deaths are permenant so just because a character dies in my version of the game doesn’t mean the same will happen to you. Now that you’ve been warned, read on if you want to see how my adventures play out.