3DS Nintendo

Fire Emblem: Awakening UK Review

fire_emblem_awakeningLight your fire on the battlefield with Fire Emblem: Awakening and rekindle your spark for this RPG.

The thirteenth game in the Fire Emblem series brings a staggering amount of heart, courage and strategy to the tactical role-playing game – and it pulls it off with an undeniable, phenomenal finesse.

Fire Emblem: Awakening sees the main protagonist Chrom – Great Lord of Ylisse – lead a group of trustworthy fighters known as the ‘The Shepherds’ through a treacherous journey to discover the fate of the fantasy realm. The game hinges on events from both the future and the past, planting the player’s Avatar directly in the middle of the action, strategising the way to victory or doom against the game’s antagonist Grima; a fell dragon awakened to bring destruction to the future lands of Ylisse.

As you begin your adventure, your chosen Avatar will meet Chrom and his band of soldiers and he or she quickly establishes a firm friendship with the group. Like any other Fire Emblem game, victory lies in strategising but it also requires a smidgen of luck. Teaming up with another Shepherd allows your characters to trigger critical attacks in dual strike mode, which can give you the upper-hand when a battle is turning most sour. Those partnerships in battle also allow for extra events to strike outside of the main storyline. By building the relationships high enough, players can secure marriages and even children between characters, which can be utilised in later battles. The perfect fusion of stimulation and RPG genres creates another astounding level of depth to the game, giving the player such satisfaction from the unfathomable bond between characters.

fire emblem characters
Prepare to meet thy doom against the characters of Fire Emblem: Awakening

When planning for the battles ahead, the player is presented with a grid – the enemies scattered on various parts of the board, while your own Shepherds congregate in a group formation. When the combat finally ensues, the visuals are simply stunning, with the 3DS enhancing the sharpness, depth and clarity of the characters’ detail beautifully. There are also plenty of weapons to choose from, which vary in degrees of power, ranging from magical spells to deadly bows and swords.

An abundance of side quests and enemy battles keep you occupied when needing a break from the main storyline, and also serve a great purpose of giving your characters some healthy experience if you intend to level them equally. These separate battles also give you a chance to stock up much-needed money for the more difficult battles ahead.

Above all, Fire Emblem: Awakening is a game intended to keep you hooked for hours at a time, but it doesn’t just do that, it keeps you on the edge of your sofa, bed or kitchen counter for days on end. It’s a game with real heart and that is, ultimately, why it is so wonderfully mesmerising.

9/10

Check out the North American review of the game here. 

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23 comments

  1. I got the game and i got to say it is one of the best 3DS games out (besides Luigi’s mansion 2!). I thought i never would get into the series because this is my first time jumping into Fire emblem and i got to say my eyes are glued to the screen when ever i can get the time to play it! The grid format and battles are just really epic and the characters are very easy to warm up too and there is a lot of humorous parts to between the characters.

    Overall it’s more then worth the purchase and it got me into the Fire emblem series! Can’t wait for the SMT X FE crossover for the Wii U!. :)

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    1. As you can tell, I loved it and it was also my first time playing a Fire Emblem game – now I’m going to have to play all the successors to this one and try and get my hands on some of the earlier games of the franchise.

      I thought the humour between the characters was fantastic, it gave you a real reason to care about them and made the ending all the more spectacular.

      Glad you enjoyed the game as much as I did! :)

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      1. Hope fully some Fire emblem games will be added to the western Virtual consoles. Japan already has 2 :0

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    2. You never played advance wars? If you find dual strike get it asap days if ruins is good too but not better.

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  2. Yeah, in my opinion, this game is REALLY close to a 10/10. It’s such a high quality game, it’s unbelievable. I would choose Fire Emblem over any Sony/Microsoft first party games any day. It’s a beautifully crafted game. The mechanics, story, soundtrack and visuals are VERY impressive and appealing. I really hope for a Wii U Fire Emblem game.

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    1. Yup, it was very close to a 10/10 for me, but as a film reviewer as well, I often find it really difficult to give something 10 out of 10 and I tend to nitpick when something is really really good. I settled on a nine because I felt there were parts of the game that was almost perfect and other parts that were entirely perfect. :)

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  3. yea I’d give it a 9/10. I’m not particularly fond of the group battling system or some other new fighting mechanics. Love most of the characters. the story has its highs and lows in my opinion, but overall I felt it was missing the grittiness that the older fire emblem games had (more specifically blazing sword and sacred stones since those are the only ones I’ve played.)

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      1. Actually I’m busy preparing myself to enter a higher level where I will create games aswell…

        Don’t worry, I’ve bought lots of other games…

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  4. “9/10”
    Wow. That’s a weird abridged version of saying “10/10, best in the series, best 3DS game, system seller”.

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  5. It gets taken down a notch because the story’s not all that strong, but Awakening is one of the best 3DS games out right now, and I’m glad that’s the case :D

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