Fire Emblem Catch All

The monastery feels like a real place, definitely. As did the Normandy.

I think one difference is that the conversations on the Normandy (or citadel) had in-game consequences. In Three Houses it’s just story and atmosphere. And that story is alright, but it’s not Mass Effect level, IMO.

56 hours in and I’m not finished. I thought I was, but I’m not. I can’t see playing this again. Not without a very long break.

I think I beat BotW (all 4 divine beasts) in around 90 hours. I enjoyed that game front to back.

This game has dragged a lot more than BotW. I feel like it’s seriously wearing out its welcome.

My Dedue is actually cursed. That is 7 levels in a row with only 2 stats gained

On the bright side, my Annette is a total boss.

My Black Eagles won last night. My plan is to run Blue Lions do the tutorial stuff then buy teacher level of about c. At this point I will save and play astral chain.

DSGamer wrote:

56 hours in and I’m not finished. I thought I was, but I’m not. I can’t see playing this again. Not without a very long break.

I’m now 51 hours in and cleared ch.14 of Black Eagles. The game feels faster now, since I spend a lot less time running around the Monastery, and a lot more time fighting battles. They take time, but they don’t feel like a drag yet. It helps that I still have things to grind for; I have a couple of units now at Master level classes (hit on a 53% chance for Bow Knight for Shamir), so there’s plenty more skill grinding to get everyone at the next level.

I see finishing at least one more route this year before GOTY time (probably Golden Deer, since it’s supposed to be different) but I’ll definitely break up the action with something else, first. New Game+ will hopefully help a lot with speeding through the early game.

Ferdinand’s never ending journey to qualify for Great Knight is continuing. He’s mastered everything I’ve thrown at him, and gone from Noble > Soldier > Cavalier > Paladin > Armor Knight, and now just switched to Fortress Knight. But Armor and Axes are still in C+, so idk if he’s going to make it, even with intense focus. Either way, he’s getting all the glory up front that he can handle.

Finished. 61 hours. Only 3 married couples. I’m not even sure how they got to that point, TBH. I thought I had more couples with an S-Rank. I’ll have to look at an old save and see what I missed.

The sound track, like the soundtrack for Fates, was incredible. Notable this track. I got so pumped when this was the battle music.

Quick spoiler question

Spoiler:

Is there a path where we learn more about the technologically advanced city in Shambala. That threw me and felt like SMT rubbing off on Fire Emblem.

Hey all, thinking of starting this but I've got a question.

How is the difficulty? I've heard a lot of people complaining about it being far too easy. I've even heard people claim that 'hard' mode provides very little challenge past a few rare moments. However, I understand this is a series with a very loyal following, and often comes with a bit of elitism and veteran opinions.

Personally, I've always loved the punishing aspect of the series. I force myself to play with no restarts and find the experience rewarding. I wouldn't call myself a veteran, but I've played 2 FE games to completion and 2 others to the mid-way point. I've also played a lot of Advance Wars for what it's worth.

I did notice it felt a bit easy from my first 2 hours (hard to form an opinion). Combined with being able to see enemy intent, the removal of the weapon triangle, and free "rewinds", I'm thinking of waiting a month until we have the extra DLC difficulties.

How did everyone find 'hard' mode? Are the aforementioned opinions accurate, or should I just dive in now?

While searching the Fire Emblem subreddit to learn about my spoilered question... (also heavy spoilers).

Spoiler:

I learned that people in the subreddit, in order to try and talk about the game without spoilers call the bad guys you fight at the end TWSITD or “Those Who Dubstep in the Dark”.

Still no real answers on my spoilered question. I assume I have to play it through again.

A_Unicycle wrote:

I did notice it felt a bit easy from my first 2 hours (hard to form an opinion). Combined with being able to see enemy intent, the removal of the weapon triangle, and free "rewinds", I'm thinking of waiting a month until we have the extra DLC difficulties.

How did everyone find 'hard' mode? Are the aforementioned opinions accurate, or should I just dive in now?

There are others here who have already played hard, but from my perspective having played Normal I’m kind of glad I did. The game dragged for me and the battlefields are really large and fairly open, so I was relieved to have the battles go quickly, personally.

At the end it was one of the best stories in a FE game, so I’m glad I played, but I can’t imagine how I’d feel about the game if I played it on hard AND did the 40 hours of supports and monastery stuff.

If you’re up for a challenge and don’t mind a long game, it feels like Hard would be a better challenge. On Normal I beat the final boss with a handful of rewinds, 0 deaths and almost every kill was a 1 hit kill.

I was mostly okay with that, though, because I’d accepted I was playing the game they’re making these days. A very easy SRPG where most of the focus is on the story and the supports.

Thanks for the insight! The story does seem very good. I loved the opening cinematic and the characters seem pretty great so far.

I was mostly okay with that, though, because I’d accepted I was playing the game they’re making these days. A very easy SRPG where most of the focus is on the story and the supports.

At the risk of sounding all doom and gloom, I fear that this may just not be my sort of game. No harm done, since my partner bought it for herself and poured over a hundred hours into it, but...It's definitely very different from the FE games I fell in love with. I don't feel tied to it, like I must get value out of my purchase.

A_Unicycle wrote:

How did everyone find 'hard' mode? Are the aforementioned opinions accurate, or should I just dive in now?

My first run is on hard mode, so I'll comment on that. The first half of the game on hard mode feels like it would have been a normal mode on another game. Around the halfway mark that changes, and suddenly the enemies are a lot higher level, and have great weapons. I got out from under a couple of pretty difficult missions and I'm now spending a lot of my free time doing random battles or paralogues to get my levels up, but even then I have to play missions pretty carefully, since it's easy to get surprised by getting doubled by something, or a brave weapon out of nowhere. It's not yet oppressively difficult, but it's now to the point where I'm being challenged to play smart, and like you I've played a fair number of games like this. Fought a monster yesterday with multiple life bars, huge defensive stats, and he got a bonus counterattack after losing some health, and suddenly half my units would get killed by the counterattack. I was constantly having to have some units draw his attention with someone tanky while I chipped him down with anyone who could even stay alive at that point. It was a good, tense battle.

So yeah, hard mode is probably what you want, unless you're waiting for the DLC to make the first half harder as well. But part of the dial down in difficulty is the divine pulses and the attack forecast, like you said. On older games I would reset when someone died, so the real risk was losing a bunch of time if I didn't play mostly perfect, with the occasional sweat-it-out calculated risk. The divine pulses are granted pretty freely (I bought maybe 2-3, and I have like 12 total). Now, all someone dying has to mean is rethinking who enters a fight, or where to space them.

Maybe try Hard first. Once again, I can’t speak to how difficult Hard is. You can ignore a lot of the monetary stuff. Let the computer do that. Maybe that combination will work for you.

A_Unicycle wrote:

How did everyone find 'hard' mode? Are the aforementioned opinions accurate, or should I just dive in now?

Context: I'm also doing hard for my first run (but without permadeath), because I hard heard easy was too easy. I've never played FE before, but I have hundreds of hours in the modern XComs, and the tactical layer has a lot of similarities.

I'm only about halfway into my BE run. I completed a battle last night

Spoiler:

killing Monica and transforming into my new, blonder self

that I *think* will trigger the time jump, but I had to put it down before watching much of the post-battle story.

Because I've done a lot of side battle quests, paralogues, etc., most of the battles have been pretty easy. I suspect my XCom experience of thinking about character action order, support, etc., also helps. I have occasionally used the rewind feature to optimize my results (preparing for a GD run next on hard WITH permadeath), but I've only *needed* it on one paralogue because

Spoiler:

I didn't realize Manuela had to just *sit still* until she could be rescued

.

Fights with shielded monsters definitely require some slow, careful, tactical thinking to avoid deaths. Everyone else is pretty cheesecake if you're paying attention, so I'm excited to hear from many that the difficulty ramps up on the back half. Based on what I know today, I would do my next run on the to-be-released highest difficulty and with permadeath on. I would've even done permadeath on my first run if I had understood more about recruitment... I don't think it's a spoiler to say that most of the characters are pretty similar to XCom soldiers: you get attached to them as they get stronger, but (with a few exceptions), they're pretty interchangeable.

I remember a tooltip from Enemy Unknown that described the game as being much "less brittle" if you level up multiple soldiers rather than sticking with one squad. That would be my approach next time. If you do even a little bit of min/maxing (i.e. manually instructing students, choosing optional battles over rest or seminar), it's easy to get your core team overleveled pretty early. That seems like the ideal time to grind out more experience for secondary students so they're more or less ready to slot in if you have a bad mission.

TL;DR: If you're here for the story, easy setting will let you fly through most battles without having to think too hard and grind as much experience as you want to overlevel story missions. If you like the tactics and strategy, I'd definitely lean toward hard.

Final though: I have *very* limited patience for what the Giant Bomb hosts call "anime story bull****," and I'm still enjoying the heck out of the cutscenes and plot. Many of the support conversations feel like filler to me, but even those sometimes surprise me, and there's something very true-to-life about having someone who's generally a jerk inexplicably find a soft spot for a particular character (or vice versa). This game handles that nicely, because those characters even seem to surprise themselves when it happens.

Spoiler:

Hubert's

soft side with a small few classmates is a great example of that, but hardy the only one.

Definitely start on hard — apparently you can turn the difficulty down if you want to, but not the other way around.

I’m nearing the end of my first run, and it has been incredibly easy. For context, this was actually my first Fire Emblem, but I also did take a super completionist, extremely min maxed approach to the game. Normal might feel a bit more appropriate if you’ve got next to no experience with strategy games at all, or just want to blast through the game barely engaging with many of the side systems, or maybe for a first run played with classic mode turned on. Other than that, with there was a mildly noticeable uptick in challenge in the second half, there was still nothing that even began to make me sweat — mostly things that make it slightly harder to get exactly the results I wanted for building supports and getting the right people getting experience. I have heard that the final two missions (which is all I have left to do at this point) represent one last spike in difficulty, but I’m definitely not anticipating that it will be anything meaningful at this point.

I regret picking Normal instead of Hard.

Normal is a cakewalk that's often devoid of interesting tactical decisions because your entire army is indestructible and all-powerful.

A_Unicycle wrote:

Hey all, thinking of starting this but I've got a question.

How is the difficulty? I've heard a lot of people complaining about it being far too easy. I've even heard people claim that 'hard' mode provides very little challenge past a few rare moments. However, I understand this is a series with a very loyal following, and often comes with a bit of elitism and veteran opinions.

Personally, I've always loved the punishing aspect of the series. I force myself to play with no restarts and find the experience rewarding. I wouldn't call myself a veteran, but I've played 2 FE games to completion and 2 others to the mid-way point. I've also played a lot of Advance Wars for what it's worth.

I did notice it felt a bit easy from my first 2 hours (hard to form an opinion). Combined with being able to see enemy intent, the removal of the weapon triangle, and free "rewinds", I'm thinking of waiting a month until we have the extra DLC difficulties.

How did everyone find 'hard' mode? Are the aforementioned opinions accurate, or should I just dive in now?

I talked about difficulty in a bit more detail here, but in short, you should definitely start Hard/Classic with what you describe above. If you have experience with tactics games, Hard will still likely be pretty easy for you. The permadeath modifier on top of the hard mode was the main source of difficulty during my run. Based on how easy my current NG+ run has been with a bunch of added benefits, I strongly suspect I would have grown bored of the combat if I had played on Normal or even Hard/Casual.

Yeah Hard/Casual should be the baseline if you've ever played any SRPG before, like Disgaea, XCOM, etc.

I wish I had done that for my first run instead of normal. But NG+ on Hard/Classic has been mostly a cakewalk too so far. I think I had to use 2 or 3 Divine Pulse in one battle to avoid a death and that's the most. Maybe 2 other times I've misjudged a move and once I was burned by an enemy crit, but 1 Pulse fixed each of those.

Just finished month 12 this weekend and got my dancer for reference. Recruited all but 2 characters and done every available paralogue.

We'll there's the patch. Maddening difficulty added. Also the bonus renown for NG+ is now 10k per clear. Supposed to be added if you load up an already in progress save, which I will test in a few minutes. That should finish off my statues.

Edit: yes got the renown. Wish I'd had that before. But next NG+ will be really nice, max out some Byleth skills early, maybe even cherry pick supports to boost for recruits. Good times.

OK, spoiler question for BE-Edelgard route since this is my first run-through:

Spoiler:

I'm about to go into my first battle after the big reveal about Edelgard. Flayn has apparently left my house (which makes sense)... she was my Dancer... am I now dancer-less for the rest of the game? I don't think I would've changed anything even if I knew in advance; Dorothea was my next-best Cha, and I adore her as a brutal dark-magic machine. But I'll be bummed to lose that valuable dance power for the back half of the game. It was quite convenient.

Yeah she's gone. That's one of the benefits to diving into some mild spoilers. On certain routes you lose certain teammates. Better to plan ahead and not waste time leveling them or choosing them as dancer.

Also, Dorothea makes a great dancer since she's got the great magic as a backup.

On my fist NG+ and then 10k just got 2 statutes finished.

For those people thay have done a few runs. Who is in your optimal team? Right now the only locked in people for me are Bernadetta, Petra, Lysithea, Dorothea and 2 healers.

This gets me a good mage, bow user, assassin, and an all rounder or utility unit.

As I play more I may add to this list as Ingrid seems cool.

Yeah, that's a pretty solid list. Still at the very end of my first run, but I've been running Linhardt as my main healer due to him having warp and physic (and I've left him as a bishop even after unlocking holy knight since double warps have usually been more useful than him having extra movement range), and then I've used Dorothea as a my dancer/off healer, with strong offensive magic as as third option. Perhaps once I start a hard run it will make more sense to have a second full time healer, but having Lysithea and Byleth both able to provide short range heals has been more than enough this entire run.

Igrid and Felix feel like the best candidates to add to your list to me so far, with Sylvain being a close third (particularly since he can be recruited super early for free, and makes a very strong dark knight physical/magic hybrid).

Oh, as for finishing the statues: for those of you on second runs and beyond, are you actually leveling to the point where you are stat capped (thus making the last slots worthwhile)?

I suppose if you've got multiple +10% exp bonuses unlocked and are playing on one of the longer paths that's maybe going to be more likely, eh?

Yeah take each statue to 10% XP before you take one to bonus stats. You won't need that until you have 4 XP bonuses stacked.

Stealthpizza wrote:

For those people thay have done a few runs. Who is in your optimal team? Right now the only locked in people for me are Bernadetta, Petra, Lysithea, Dorothea and 2 healers.

Zero and I just had this discussion on the previous page last week.

My choices were Lysithea, Ingrid, and Dorothea. He had a much more detailed post.

Presented for your enjoyment:

zeroKFE wrote:

Oh, as for finishing the statues: for those of you on second runs and beyond, are you actually leveling to the point where you are stat capped (thus making the last slots worthwhile)?

I suppose if you've got multiple +10% exp bonuses unlocked and are playing on one of the longer paths that's maybe going to be more likely, eh?

On my second run in Blue Lions I doubt I will be stat capped but I hated the idea of leaving all statues almost done when I could have two finished. Not optimal but makes me feel better.

Stele wrote:
Stealthpizza wrote:

For those people thay have done a few runs. Who is in your optimal team? Right now the only locked in people for me are Bernadetta, Petra, Lysithea, Dorothea and 2 healers.

Zero and I just had this discussion on the previous page last week.

My choices were Lysithea, Ingrid, and Dorothea. He had a much more detailed post.

Thanks.

Stealthpizza wrote:
zeroKFE wrote:

Oh, as for finishing the statues: for those of you on second runs and beyond, are you actually leveling to the point where you are stat capped (thus making the last slots worthwhile)?

I suppose if you've got multiple +10% exp bonuses unlocked and are playing on one of the longer paths that's maybe going to be more likely, eh?

On my second run in Blue Lions I doubt I will be stat capped but I hated the idea of leaving all statues almost done when I could have two finished. Not optimal but makes me feel better.

Stele wrote:
Stealthpizza wrote:

For those people thay have done a few runs. Who is in your optimal team? Right now the only locked in people for me are Bernadetta, Petra, Lysithea, Dorothea and 2 healers.

Zero and I just had this discussion on the previous page last week.

My choices were Lysithea, Ingrid, and Dorothea. He had a much more detailed post.

Thanks.

If I had to have an ideal team, with reasonable abilities, levels, and common builds, I would chose

1. Byleth--can't really get around them, but they are really good with the Creator Sword and their ability to use magic with their special class, especially black magic. And yes, Byleth always uses they/them pronouns. It may have been a cheap way to avoid recording additional dialogue, but in my head cannon that makes them non-binary, and much cooler and more interesting.

2. Dorothea--For my money, she is the best black mage in the game, and one of the few people who can be an alternate healer with physics.

3. Ingrid--I like having flyers on my team, and I like having people who can kill mages. Ingrid is literally the best person to do both jobs.

4. The Regent of your House-- See 5

5. The Vassel of your House-- The Regent and Vassel of the houses are frequently among the best levels/strongest party members in the game. Unless your are doing a BE-non E run, always use them.

6. Cyril--The best Wyvern Rider in the game, and someone who can level into a Monster, he needs to be in every lineup possible.

7. Mercedes--Do you like a healer with Physics (so you can heal at a distance), Fortify (to heal everyone in a large area), and who heals every time she heals someone else? I have a person for you.

8. Bernedette--The best archer in the game (except perhaps Claude), and more powerful if you get her riding up high enough to make her a Bow Knight.

9. Petra--A great swords-woman, and you can level her so she very rarely gets hit.

For Larger Maps--

10. Lysithea--She is an excellent white mage, and excellent black mage, and probably the best Gramercy in the game.

11. Leone-- I need another rider for larger maps, and I think she has a better balance of bow and lance than either Ferdinand (though he is more powerful with a lance) or Sylvain (who is super-strong when next to a female ally--not creepy at all).

12. Ashe--Oh no, I see chests and forgot to buy keys. Fortunately, I have a competent archer who has lock-touch.

Adj 1: Another Horse unit/Flyer.--I will either put Ferdinand, Sylvain, or Seteh here, depending on my run. It is nice to keep people leveled in case I want some more speed on a map.

Adj 2: An alternate healer--I like to keep an alternate healer here, usually either Lindhardt, Marianne, or Flayn, in case I run into some nasty things on a map.

Adj 3: An alternate hitter--I like to equip a heavy hitter here in hopes that they get an extra hit, or I need a heavy hitter to take down Monsters shields. This is usually an Axe-person.

Honorable Mentions--Annette, who always finds her way on my team because I like her support videos. Felix, who always finds his way on my team because of the way I build Byleth. And Manuela, because I want to be reminded how effed up the tea-time mechanic is.

Note: Students are always better than Knights or Instructors.

Hilda as a wyvern rider for me was absolute destruction