Characters and story
Though Fire Emblem Warriors‘ cast of playable characters will include fighters from multiple games, it won’t be all-encompassing. Favorites from games like Path of Radiance or The Sacred Stones don’t appear to be included. In the latest issue of Famitsu, it was confirmed that Marth from the original game — playable in North America on the DS as Shadow Dragon — and Chrom from Awakening will both be playable. Two original characters, Darios and Yuana, will also be playable. They both appear to be similarly designed, with a shield in one hand and a sword in the other. The decision to not include every protagonist was apparently made to avoid having too many sword-wielding characters. With the exception of Ephraim from The Sacred Stones, Hector from 2003’s Fire Emblem, and Micaiah from Radiant Dawn, every protagonist in the series uses a sword.
As with the recent Fire Emblem Echoes: Shadows of Valentia, the entire game will be fully-voiced. Unlike the strategy games, characters will not be able to marry, but they can still engage in “bond” conversations regardless of whether or not they came from the same game.
Fire Emblem Warriors is a beat-’em-up in the same vein as Hyrule Warriors and Dynasty Warriors — it’s being produced by Koei Tecmo — but it features a number of gameplay changes that keep it more in line with the strategic combat found in the main Fire Emblem series.
As revealed in the previously-mentioned Famitsu story, Fire Emblem Warriors will make use of the series’ famous “weapon triangle” system. This will make sword-wielding units stronger against axe-wielding units, while axes will be stronger against lances and lances will be stronger against swords — outside of Shadows of Valentia the system has been included in every game to get a North American release. Flying units will also be particularly vulnerable to arrows.
Players will be able to switch characters on the fly across several class types, including magic-users and mounted units. The latter will always remain on their horse, as they do in the strategy games.
In an “extended” gameplay demonstration released by Nintendo earlier this year, we were able to get a sense for the flow of Fire Emblem Warriors‘ combat. The demonstration features Chrom absolutely demolishing enemies with his sword, tossing dozens into the air at once as he cuts them down to size. At one point, a close-up shot of his face is shown before he launches a special attack. In the main series, this occurs when a character lands a critical hit.
When can we play it, and on what?
Fire Emblem Warriors will be available this autumn for Nintendo Switch and New Nintendo 3DS systems. It will not be playable on standard 3DS units, unlike Hyrule Warriors, which ran at frustratingly low framerates on the older handheld.