Fire Emblem Fates Revelation Plot

While Nintendo's E3 2019 presentation and Treehouse Lives didn't give us all that much information about the upcoming Fire Emblem: Three Houses, the Big N offered enough of a taster to get a good idea about what to expect.

From a series-busting change in the combat system to a massive cast of characters, mysterious enemies and a continent at war, the trailer showed off a lot of new content. Most important was revealing the game isn't just a school story and includes a time-skip partway through. It looks like FE:TH is set to be one of the better Fire Emblem games in a long time.

Of course, that designation begs the question: 'What makes a good Fire Emblem anyway?'

The answer would likely vary greatly depending on who you ask. Here we're going to go over some of the key facets of the series and highlight the titles that did it best and worst. Certainly, not all Fire Emblem titles are created equal.

Fire Emblem: Fates The Fates games get a lot of flak from series fans, and, well, it's deserved in terms of plot. After chapter 6 and The Big Decision, it just doesn't really go anywhere. The middle chapters in all three branches are basically variants of 'We must defeat Opponent X, and to do so, we shall travel — a lot.' For Fire Emblem Heroes on the Android, a GameFAQs message board topic titled 'Which Fates plot was the worst one?' Invasion 3 is the third of three optional pre-set skirmish battles in Fire Emblem Fates against mysterious invaders in the player's My Castle. This particular invasion is first unlocked upon completing chapter 26 in the Revelation campaign. Like other battles in the My Castle, Invasion 3 has no overall bearing on the plot, has no storyline, and does not require deploying Corrin; unlike other.

The Story Aspect

Any Fire Emblem lives or dies by its story, and the series is definitely a case where story is greater than or equal to gameplay.

The mechanics might be spot-on, but it's difficult to put a lot of time and work into a game that doesn't make you care or want to find out what happens after that chapter. Make no mistake: Fire Emblem games tend to require a fair bit of work, unless you break them of course.

Best Fire Emblem Plots

The Tellius Saga

Fortunately, most FE stories are good, even the very basic ones like the first game, titled Shadow Dragon in North America. Yet there are some that stand above the others as the best Fire Emblem plots.

It's pretty difficult to split Path of Radiance from Radiant Dawn in terms of story because the one isn't complete without the other. They do stand strong on their own, but together, their overarching story is dramatic, grand, and compelling.

One of the most interesting features is the conflict between Beorc and Laguz. In PoR, it seems like a unique side story that adds background and makes the world seem deeper. It isn't until you near the end of Radiant Dawn that you find out it's the source of the entire arc's conflict, that fighting and prejudice between two groups of different appearance and heritage reached the point where it threatened to destroy all of civilization.

It's helped along by some storytelling flair as well. Playing from different perspectives was nothing new to the series at that point. However, Radiant Dawn's splitting the narrative into three parts that eventually come together created a compelling sense of tension. It centers everything around the many, many problems plaguing the land and how they were affecting characters you either knew from the first game or became acquainted with in an earlier part of this one.

That the stories are fraught with betrayal and rife with surprise reveals about certain characters' backgrounds, like Soren, Greil, and a certain bishop, means both games easily retain the player's interest throughout the 70+ hour combined story — which is good, since neither is exactly a cakewalk.

Worst Fire Emblem Plots

Fire Emblem: Fates

The Fatesgames get a lot of flak from series fans, and, well, it's deserved in terms of plot. After chapter 6 and The Big Decision, it just doesn't really go anywhere. The middle chapters in all three branches are basically variants of 'We must defeat Opponent X, and to do so, we shall travel — a lot.'

There aren't any major plot twists, except ones the games telegraph loudly from the beginning, e.g. who the traitor is. No minor antagonists really stand out either, unlike, say, Sonia from Blazing Blade. It doesn't change in Revelation, either.

That's not from lack of material. The unnamed continent has what seems like a rich history to explore, particularly the relationships between the various subgroups that live there and the two main powers. Then there's the resistance movement, the concept of the Faceless, how the conflicts affect others — plenty of interesting areas to explore.

Fire Emblem Fates Revelation Plot

The problem is Fates is a concept-based game that relied too much on the idea of branching paths at the expense of making those paths interesting.

Map Design

Fire Emblem Fates Revelation Plot

Map design is up there with story in terms of importance. It's pretty difficult to get immersed in a game when the stage maps are dull, uninspired, or just plain easy; it is supposed to be a strategy game, after all.

Unlike story, not all FE games sport quality maps, and even the good games in this category still have some that turn into a slog. The maps that are good stick with you for a long time as part of the overall experience — how they tested you, what strategy worked after failing 50 times, how it was fine until X unexpectedly showed up.

Best Fire Emblem Maps

Fire Emblem: The Blazing Blade

Known just as Fire Emblem in the West, the 7th title in the series boasts a number of quality maps that test he player's ability and often require a few retries until you learn exactly how they work. The Peddler Merlinus and The Dread Isle are shining examples. Darkness and fog of war, respectively, are added on top of already difficult maps, crippling your vision and making the sense of relief at finishing with everyone alive tangible.

Then there's Cog of Destiny, which looks deceptively simple, but forces you to use every character wisely to defend against hordes of reinforcements.

Fire Emblem Fates: Conquest

Conquesteasily wins out over the other two Fates games in this regard. Not only does it bring back conditional victories, like in Eternal Stairway and Unhappy Reunion, but it throws all kinds of obstacles up at almost every turn. Cold Reception is an early case of this, and it's especially interesting because you can technically make it easier on yourself by not trying to visit each house. Bitter Intrigue is another one that punishes you for trying to charge through too quickly, even while you have a limited number of turns.

Voice of Paradise is probably the best, though. Not only is the setting completely unique to the entire series, but the method of progression is as well. There are ways to completely cheese it, which is still difficult, or you can buckle up and try to fight your way over the boats; bottlenecks are usually your friend in FE, but here is another story entirely.

Worst Fire Emblem Maps

Fire Emblem: Awakening

First, let me say I like Awakeningon whole, but even I can't deny its maps aren't that great. They're largely linear affairs, with very few obstacles except in some stages like Emmeryn and... well, that's it actually.

The rest of them except a few towards the end tend to be full of open spaces. You can patiently move your entire army from one end to the other, gang up on the boss, et voila. Mad King Gangrel is one of the worst offenders here, with Naga's Voice being another.

It's not that these aren't challenging; they can be. It's just there are only so many times you want to deal with the same basic, open map style. The Paralogues are where the more interesting designs are, but it's a problem when the most dynamic designs in a game are relegated to its side stories.

Emblem

Fire Emblem: The Sacred Stones

It might seem a bit unfair to putSacred Stones under the bad category.

Many of its maps, like Phantom Ship and Victims of War, are quite good. The problem is they don't really do much different from Blazing Blade, with a few exceptions. Refining what works well is by no means a bad thing, but some changes in environment, style, or even just obstacles would have improved.

The other issue is how most of the maps turn into slog-fests, Scorched Sand, Darkling Woods, and Two Faces of Evil in particular. There's nothing like taking 20 turns just to trek across the map to the objective for ruining immersion.

Supporting Casts

One of Fire Emblem's biggest strengths has almost always been its dynamic supporting casts and the accompanying relationships players can build between them.

To test this claim, just play Shadow Dragon and then a more modern title. The difference is immediately noticeable, because the older titles didn't develop other characters as fully.

Despite being called 'supporting' casts, these can make or break a game. Good characters with depth or fun personalities make you want to spend time in the game, learning about them and developing their skills. In other words, they make you want to play Fire Emblem.

Best Fire Emblem Support Casts

Fire Emblem: Awakening

Issues with map design and some narrative indecision aside, Awakening has a stellar supporting cast, helped along by some excellent localization from 8-4.

Each character almost pops off the screen — and no, that's not a 3D joke — with their own quirks, fully developed personalities, and most importantly, interesting stories. It's all made even better with the game finally opening up support conversations so almost everyone can have a chat with, well, almost everyone else.

Obviously, there are characters more appealing than others; Gaius, the cheeky, candy-obsessed thief with a heart, Morgan the oblivious, and the wannabe Lothario Virion. The list could basically include the entire cast.

That's because even the tired trope characters have at least one scene or characteristic that makes them feel fresh. Ricken in particular stands out. He's the usual 'boy who wants to be grown up.' Despite, or maybe because of, his overall immaturity, his interactions with Panne and Maribelle demonstrate a higher level of emotional awareness and compassion than many of the other characters.

Fire Emblem: The Sacred Stones

Sacred Stones makes up for its recycled map concepts with a pretty strong cast of supporting characters. Some might not be quite as dynamic or entertaining as the Awakening cast — Moulder, for instance.

However, they compensate for amusing quirks with more meaningful interactions between each other, interactions that make the player want to find out more or keep using those characters. For example, Neimi and Colm's relationship makes you want to keep them together, Cormag needs to be rehabilitated, and Marisa's and Tethys's backgrounds are awfully mysterious.

The game does still have its stand-out characters, though. L'Arachel and her retainers easily steal the show, and Lute is a strong follow-up for Serra whose interactions with Artur create an entertaining foil for the more serious characters.

Fire Emblem Fates Revelation Walkthrough

Worst Fire Emblem Support Casts

Fire Emblem Fates: Birthright

Birthright really got the short end of the stick with its supporting cast. For whatever reason, the Nohrian side has all the interesting and bizarre characters, from Charlotte and Benny, to Arthur, Odin, and, of course, Peri the bloodthirsty madwoman.

The Hoshidans get arguments about who serves their lord better — two separate sets, in fact: Hana and Subaki, then Oboro and Hinata. Hayato is Ricken revisited, only without many redeeming qualities, the ninjas don't say much (not altogether surprising), and Rinkah just falls short.

The reason? They don't have anything going for them. Setsuna and Azama are the only ones with unique personalities, along with Orochi, though the latter only gets some depth with Kaze, Corrin, and Saizo. Even many of the support convos seem forced and stretched out to get to that A or S-rank mark, because there isn't anything to say. It's odd and frankly disappointing.

Fire Emblem Fates Revelation Plot

Fire Emblem: Radiant Dawn

If you've played Radiant Dawn, then this needs no explanation. The game doesn't let you get to know the supporting cast at all. In a bizarre turn of events, the game did away with regular support conversations in place of very short, non-essential speech snippets that are supposed to be like bonds of some kind. They offer battle benefits — and little else.

It's a huge missed opportunity, too. The cast is full of promise, especially given the wildly varying settings that shape their experiences. The Dawn Brigade is one of the most rag-tag band of companions in the series, and then pretty much every playable character and some extras get thrown together towards the end.

Maybe at the time, it was a logistics nightmare coming up with all those possible conversations, or it was an innovation gone wrong. Either way, it makes for a very bland experience outside the main story and fails to deliver on the promise of the unique cast.

Fire Emblem Fates Revelations Characters

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With Treehouse Live keeping much of the plot and gameplay hidden for now, so close to release date, it's too early to say whether Three Houses will exceed in any or all of these categories.

In the end, though, all of this is pretty subjective, because a series made up of so many intricate components is bound to appeal to different people in different ways. What to me might be the worst map design in the series could be someone else's favorite — and that's okay.

Someone can think of the three versions of Fire Emblem Fates as follows. Fire Emblem Fates: Birthright is the beginner’s game, with maps that aren’t too challenging, a traditional “save the world” story with expected heroes and heroines, and ample opportunities to level grind. Conquest is the most challenging entry, a throwback to Fire Emblem’s roots and, in my opinion, the entry with the best storyline. There are conflicted motivations, unlikely heroes, and some twists and turns. Revelation is the dream team. Once you’ve played through one or both of the other storylines, Fire Emblem Fates: Revelation lets you have it all.

Fire Emblem Fates Revelation Rom

To start, Revelation has some of the challenge of Fire Emblem Fates: Conquest. There are plenty of maps with unique gimmicks. One has colored panels which determine if the unit on them is a basic or advanced class, depending on whether the ground is blue or red beneath them. There are maps with unseen roads, where taking a wrong turn will send you back to the entrance of the immediate area. Another has you breaking down a barrier to gain access to a seemingly impenetrable fortress. It’s clever in a way that Birthright is not, but not as demanding as Conquest.

Fire Emblem Fates: Revelation offers the best grinding opportunities as well. Whether it’s for levels, money, or Support, it’s easy to get enough of everything to make your experience go smoothly. Which is especially helpful, since you can have 67 people in your army, kids included. (That isn’t counting amiibo units or the unique captured characters.) Be advised, Saizo, Orochi, Kagero, Shura, Nyx, Benny, and Charlotte are missable. The avatar needs to talk to Saizo in Chapter 11 to recruit him, Orochi, and Kagero. You must send Elise to talk to Benny and Charlotte in Chapter 14, and Shura and Nyx must be approached by Corrin in Chapter 15. Benny and Charlotte will be most difficult, as Elise will be a Troubadour at that chapter the game and unable to defend herself. I don’t have Benny or Charlotte in my Revelations route and am quite sad about the lack of Ignatius. After a while, creating Challenge maps, sending a group of characters out, and choosing to auto battle for cash and experience is incredibly appealing.

Revelation

My favorite part of Fire Emblem Fates: Revelation is the ability to pair up people who can’t be together in other routes. I put together Hayato and Nyx as soon as possible. Every royal family member is intermingling and married. Subaki and Selena make perfect sense together. Also, Kaden and Peri have the best “proposal” Support conversation in this entry.

It also means you’re going to get the best castle for My Castle. You get access to all of the Hoshido and Nohr facilities in the Fire Emblem Fates: Revelation route. The result is one of the most attractive fortresses for visits. People get extra food and precious stones for stopping by. If they challenge you, they’ll have to deal with Dawn and Dusk Dragon. Your place can be intimidating. As an example, visit the Siliconera castle. You should be able to find it by putting in “Siliconera” or the address code “01720-47948-56162-86246.” You can go out of your way, making sure you have the best statues for stat cap lifting, upgrading buildings, and arranging things in such a way that the entire castle is a nightmare.

To be honest, Fire Emblem Fates: Revelation is almost too much. You’re overwhelmed with content. Having a story that clears up some plot holes and helps everything make more sense is great. I can see why Nintendo decided to wait to make this route available as DLC until March 10, 2016. You really need to have played at least one of the other routes to be equipped to handle everything here.

Now, as for recommended units, you might want to give Fuga a try at least once when tackling a Revelation run out of pity. This is the only route where he’s a playable party member. (He replaces Izana.) Though, sadly, he’s a poor replacement for the other unit. Izana is a pretty fantastic unit with amazing growth rates in every stat except strength, which is fine since he’s best as a mage. Fuga is strong and lucky, with lots of health, but he’s not as good a unit to have in battle as the other characters. By the time you’ll probably get him, your other party members will be farther along.

Fire Emblem Fates Revelation Plot Summary

I’d suggest preparing and using as many royal characters as you can, be they members of the Nohr and Hoshido families or their kids. Many of the later maps have Dragon Veins to exploit, and you’re going to want those folks along to take advantage of that.

Fire Emblem Fates Revelation Pairing Guide

Fire Emblem Fates is immediately available for the Nintendo 3DS. If you didn’t get the limited edition, the Revelation storyline will be available as DLC starting March 10, 2016.