Yet another Nintendo franchise is receiving the hack and slash Warriors treatment in Fire Emblem Warriors for the Nintendo Switch. Charge your way through the kingdom of Aytolis with a range of cast members from the previous Fire Emblem games on Nintendo Switch and New Nintendo 3DS.
Is Fire Emblem Warriors trump the evil of game sales, or will it just be hacked and slashed into the bargain bin? Find out in our review after the break!
Fire Emblem Warriors
Nintendo Switch and New Nintendo 3DS
Developed by KOEI TECMO GAMES CO., LTD.
Published by Nintendo
Released: 28th September 2017
Review copy provided by Nintendo
Screenshots courtesy of Nintendo
Nintendo Switch version was reviewed
All was peaceful in the kingdom of Aytolis, the royal children, Lianna and Rowan are bickering about who should take the crown when the time comes… neither of the brats want it. The peaceful day is soon ruined when portals out of nowhere open up in the sky and start spewing a range of deadly beasts. It is up to you, Lianna, and your trusty knight, Darios, to lead the remaining troops to end this nightmare.
Don’t think you’ll be doing this alone however, as the portal also brought over several members of the Fire Emblem universe, such as Marth from Shadow Dragon, and Chrom from Fates. With the aid of these brave heroes, surely no beast can be a difficult feat, right?
As with most Warriors games, Fire Emblem Warriors will have you going from scenario to scenario on a range of different battlefields, hacking as many enemies as possible, all while taking control of outposts and completing various missions. This is unlike most other Fire Emblem games in which each allegiance take turns to move and attack, Warriors is an all out real time brawl.
You get your regular attacks, and your strong attacks, you can pair these together for some powerful combos. Once you have defeated enough enemies to fill up your Warrior Gauge, you can perform a super powerful warrior attack. One mechanism which does return from Fire Emblem is the usual attack triangle.
Warriors with swords will have an advantage over axes, axes have an advantage over lances, and lances have an advantage over swords. A fight where you have a disadvantage will surely be a lot tougher, so we’d recommend you’d choose your warriors and weapons strategically. If you are collecting enough blue tonics and enter Awakening Mode, you will always be at an advantage for a period of time, you’ll even gain some cooler bonuses too.
Though there is a lot of fast paced action in Fire Emblem Warriors, the title does have some more strategic play which is worth bearing in mind. In other Warriors games I’ve played (which isn’t many so bear with me if I am wrong), you could easily get by with just playing as one warrior during a battle, however Fire Emblem Warriors will become easier when you take advantage of your whole force of playable warriors.
At any point, you can go into the pause menu and get an overview of your Warriors and micromanage them. You can give specific warriors orders, such as to travel to a specific area and attack enemies, or you could even switch to play that warrior (this can also be done at the press of a button during play). At first you can get away with sticking to one warrior, but as the game progresses, this will become harder to do, so having the micromanagement tool will definitely alleviate these difficulties, even though it can stagger the flow of play slightly.
A nice little Fire Emblem touch in the Warriors outing is the character progression. Once a character levels up, a level up screen similar to other Fire Emblem games will appear. Characters will still have their own classes, such as archer and knight, though this is through a much more linear path. Instead of having branching classes with different options, but this time there is only one path for each type of class.
A pretty cool feature within the combat is the fact that two warriors can team up to help with guarding during your attacks or even boost your attacks even further. Additionally, similar to previous Fire Emblem games, fighting together can increase warriors’ relationships to gain bonuses. Unfortunately the Relationship system is severely watered down with small bonuses and the lack of additional scenes or dialogue, something which gave the series extra personality… Don’t know about you, but I loved when Leon was mega crushing on Valbar in Shadows of Valentia, so cute!
The Fire Emblem masochists may be in for a bit of a shock as Fire Emblem Warriors has essentially done away with the permadeath feature known in the previous games. Playing in ‘Classic’ mode, if one of you warriors dies (assuming them dying doesn’t cause you to fail the objective) the warrior will only be unavailable for a few scenarios, then they will be back as if nothing ever happened.
Fire Emblem Warriors plays beautifully on the Nintendo Switch. The team behind the title have done an excellent job with translating the traditionally 2D characters into a 3D environment. The gameplay is also very smooth, there’s even an option to switch between better performance or better graphics. I can’t really tell the difference too much, but I’m sure it will be appreciated by the more technically inclined.
Overall Fire Emblem Warriors is a pretty decent title. True the game doesn’t quite capture the same personality as the other Fire Emblem games and a lot of features from previous titles seem stripped down, it does a fantastic job to get players to think more strategically in a hack and slash title.
If you prefer the slower turn-based action of the other Fire Emblem games, then it may be best for you to skip this title, however if you are a die hard Fire Emblem fan, or are looking for a great hack and slasher to keep you busy, then I would definitely recommend Fire Emblem Warriors!
Fire Emblem Warriors is out now for the Nintendo Switch and New Nintendo 3DS