Fire Emblem Burns Strong With Another Nintendo DS Remake

By Spencer . May 25, 2010 . 12:52am

imageNintendo just announced a new entry in the Fire Emblem series for the Nintendo DS that isn’t completely new. Another Fire Emblem game is getting the Fire Emblem: Shadow Dragon treatment.


Fire Emblem: New Mystery of the Emblem – Hero of Light and Shadow – is a remake of Fire Emblem: Mystery of the Emblem, a Japan-only title. Details are scarce, but there is a teaser trailer you can watch.


A screen at the end says copyright 2010, so it seems like this game will be released in, at least Japan, this year.

  • Trotmeister

    Oh @#$%, not Marth again.

    • Avojavo

      Nothing wrong with Marth, Marth is cool and can actually enter a scuffle and survive. Eliwood however was just a sack of potatoes.

  • malek86

    What’s with portable systems and unoriginal games?

    The GBA was the SNES-port machine of choice, and now the DS has become the SNES-remake machine of choice.

    • jj984jj

      The DS has more original content than the GBA did thankfully. But the oddest thing here is that the GBA entries were original and the DS can’t seem to land an original FE. Instead it essentially gets what FE3 provided, probably split in 2?

  • Ereek

    Maybe they will add more than just pretty graphics this time?

    • Guest

      But Shadow Dragon was disgusting…

  • GBA sprites are the best, please use similar style.

  • Artavasdus

    No. Not this again. X__X If this is a remake of FE3, as the title implies, then we have a remake (this new announced FE12) of a title (FE3) which was in itself an upgraded remake of FE1, which has already been remade another time on DS with FE11. This is unbelievable, especially since the FE series has long production times and this flood of (unwanted by many FE fans) Marth remakes is probably blocking new games. Not to mention that this FE12 will probably include just the second half of FE3 (book two), since that game sported all the events of FE1 in its first half, but they have already been covered in FE11.I am truly saddened by the awful turn the Fire Emblem franchise has taken in the last years. FE 10 RD put a great end to the Tellius saga and was astonishing both in gameplay and in narrative value, but FE11 SD was a bland game which took a Famicom-era t-jrpg, managed to not upgrade its already stale plot and changed in the wrong directions the series’ classical gameplay elements (not to mention the aestethics, both regarding sprites and character design, even if that is more subjective of course).If they wanted to remade something why not go for FE4 Seisen no Keifu, a practically unknown gem with a strong plot and an unique gameplay even among the other FE, not to mention a necessary passage to enjoy renowned FE 5 Thracia 776? But no, they have decided that FE = Marth… At least when they remake FE3 they would have exhausted the Akaneia FE (unless they go with obscure FE2 Gaiden, which is largely unrelated to the Marth saga) and they will be forced to remake something else or, better, to start a new saga.

    • LOL ‘wrong direction’ of the series combat. In other words, even though the game is technically well made with strategic chapters, you don’t like it for personal reasons. Fire Emblem fanboys are so cute.

      • Artavasdus

        I have no problem in accepting that other fans have different takes on Fire Emblem’s recent developments, nor do I presume to have a God-given truth regarding the series (not by a long shot), but your reaction is kinda pointless since you provide no concrete opinion aside from calling other “fanboys” (are you a FE SD fanboy only because you defend it, then?) with a tone of superiority, not exactly the right way to compare different points of view.That said no, mine aren’t strictly “personal reasons” (those would be mostly related to SD’s graphical presentation, and I am the first to consider that a subjective criticism, as I said in the previous post), nor have I said that SD is technically well made nor strategically (tactically) excellent (those are things that you wrote, not me), even if I think it is absolutely decent and playable if taken as just another t-jrpg and certainly better than some of its handheld competitors. Problem is, it doesn’t only need to work as “just another t-jrpg” (which I think it does, since its gameplay isn’t too incoherent if taken as a stand-alone game, even with its flaws), it needs to work as part of the Fire Emblem franchise.The reason of many FE “fanboys” ‘ displeasure is the way some of the series’ key features have been handled in SD, those features that defined the franchise and were known and loved since the days in which its early fans imported the japanese chapters. For an extremely traditional series such as FE those are not small issues, since if the key features are too dilutedchanged they put into question the reasons of FE’s continued success and the elements which made it different from almost all other t-jrpgs (aside from quasi-FE titles like TearRing). It’s not even a matter of strictly adhering to a single formula, since the series has seen chapters with different takes on its core features (FE2 Gaiden’s hybrid formula or FE4 SnK’s generation system and gargantuan maps with almost-wargame feel, for example), but providing Gaiden missions with dead characters as a requirement, to quote only one of SD’s ideas, completely breaks one of the series’ most important factor, the absoulte need to keep your team alive since if they die you won’t replace them and would have a serious disadvantage in the next battles (and this new take on the matter isn’t even so newbie-friendly as it seems, since it doesn’t encourage new players to think strategically because the game will provide an easy way out). Even the class swap (useless as it is for many characters, but then again other can get unbalanced thanks to it) is in total contradiction with the balanced party, heavy characterized nature of each member typical of the series, and even if this feature itself absolutely works in Tactics OgreFFT kinds of t-jrpgs, it has nothing to do with FE’s take on the genre since it gives the player the possibility of ignoring his party’s specializations and avoid losing precious classes if some characters die (with some exceptions, of course). As it is, class swap in FE SD is a rarely useful, out of place feature. The map layout as well is simplified from previous entries in almost every case, lessening the importance of the positional element, another key feature of the franchise. Many other innovations, little or big that they are (like the lower importance of the avoid %, vital to some classes), make SD feel like a decent game, but a bad FE. Gameplay aside, in SD even the plot and characters were handled in an extremely superficial way, especially after the incredible work done by IF with FE10 RD and no, the fact that FE11 is a remake of an 1990 game doesn’t imply that it needs to retain the same narrative quality (especially considering the great deal of material regarding Akaneia that came out after the first FE).Of course you are free to think that FE needs a rehaul (I partially agree), that it needs to cater more to new players (again I agree, but that was a thing that FE10 RD managed to do brilliantly without going SD’s way) and so on, but that could have been accomplished in many ways without creating another remake of a remake, especially since this will probably result in no new FE in the near future since the series’ development times are quite long and IF has been put to work on many other projects in the last years.

        • The optional chapter requirements are a legitimate and balanced mechanic that works perfectly well within the confines of the game. You are using subjective emotions to rate a gameplay system, which is completely illogical. The Fire Emblem series rarely rewards the player for keeping everyone alive. In comparison to the majority of Fire Emblem entries, the optional chapter requirements increase the amount of strategy required and do not ‘reward failure’ or poor playing.

          The class change system is also balanced and increases strategy because you need to consider what the optimal class for your party should be. There’s no one overpowering class that destroys the games difficulty. Growth rates of two certain characters are unbalanced, but that’s not related to changing classes.

          The added systems are all technically well done. The map designs and enemy layouts still hold up pretty well for encouraging strategy. You’re wrong from a balance/strategy perspective, and nobody cares about your emotional arguments or arguments for tradition.

          • Artavasdus

            Pardon me, but yours is an interesting way to debate: you say that something is well done without providing practically any kind of supporting arguments, and then proceed to badmouth others with unpolite phrases like “nobody cares about your emotional arguments” while you are in fact doing exactly the same (I would like to know your definition of “emotional argument”, by the way, since I limited my criticism to gameplay and narrative elements and, while even in those field a measure of subjectivity is normal, I avoided completely purely subjective considerations like those regarding the stylistic departments). Your opinion is as subjective as anyone else’s, and if you aren’t able to discuss respectfully and to accept different stances then I don’t see the point of having any kind of exchange of p.o.w.s.That said, it feels like you are playing the Devil’s advocate here, since in your perspective it’s wrong and subjective to judge a series’ entry using that series’ canonical features, while judging it using new canons as if it was a stand alone game (which it isn’t, like it or not) is a purely objective and irrefutable statement. I can understand using a double standard (i.e. “good as a stand-alone, questionable as a FE entry”, or something of the sort), but implying that it is utterly wrong to judge a game using its franchise’s history and features is quite puzzling. If you say that’s your opinion all is fine and good (I wasn’t starting a crusade against SD in the first place, as I said I even find it a decent game as a stand-alone), but your “I have the truth, this is it” attitude is rather pointless and doesn’t do any good to the value of your points, especially since you didn’t refute any of my criticism, simply saying that I am wrong from a balancestrategy perspective (nice but meaningless words, since you don’t provide any kind of contextualization nor do you show the supposed fault in my criticism).Moreover what you say is by itself extremely subjective: the FE series always gave players strong rewards for keeping their team alive, and the foremost of those, before any kind of optional extras, was the simple possibility to continue playing with a balanced team without recurring to a butchered selection of units because you had let them die in the previous battles, a thing that was often vital to survive to the end, especially in the middle installments of the series.The goal of keeping your team alive is by itself a tactical cornerstone of the series, and it is senseless to compare it to the “let the party die” mechanic of SD as if it was identical, since the former adds another layer of tactical depth and difficulty while the latter deprives the game of an important challenge and implies that the player is able to screw up many times since the game will provide a solution anyway. Liking some tactical depth in my tactical jrpgs instead of having optional extras unlockable by losing my units is an “emotional” argument? Frankly I don’t think so.The lack of a reason to keep your team alive in order to survive the late game is an obvious loss from a strategical perspective (maybe it’s better in other regards, like the access factors for new players, but that’s different from an evaluation based on strategy), nor do the optional quests have “strategic” requirements since their requisite is by itself a lack of tactic.At this point even an “auto-win” mechanic could be fine because it would be coherent with itself, but since we are speaking of a series of tactical games I feel that kinda misses the point.Another of your “well done” added system, the class swap, has a long list of faults ranging from overpowered characters, potentially game breaking stat ups and, on the other side, useless swaps and characters that don’t benefit at all from it. Those problems are quite apparent if you experiment with the units and have been addressed in detail by the fans, aside from the fact that you don’t want to consider them as such. That said, discussing it is kinda pointless since, subjectively speaking, from your pow the mechanic could be fine even if others find it flawed and there’s not a clear definition of how many flaws a class swap system needs to be considered broken.The map designs, aside from your “pretty well” definition of encouraging strategy, are almost all straightforward, with simple objectives like easy attainable eliminateseize and a lack of challenge even in the enemies’ placement that is extremely noticeable if compared with the majority of FE’s previous entries. Again, since you didn’t elaborate on why they should be considered strategically deep even this points became undebatable.Since you like to call others “fanboys”, let me remind you that the negative sense of that term applies to those who swallow everything that sports a franchise’s name without analyzing it throughly and deciding it it holds true to the series’standards.

          • LOL you can’t tell the difference between a subjective emotional whine about not wanting to kill your characters and game design facts about balance and strategy. Since you are obviously clueless about SRPGs and facts about game design, I suggest you read this SRPG 101 article that will explain it to you.


            There are two ways to analyze a game with plot/charaters. You can rate it objectively as in game mechanics (how balanced or strategic it is), or you can rate it subjectively as in plot/characters. Just calling the whole system ‘bad’ because of a subjective opinion about not wanting to kill off your units isn’t a valid argument. Both aspects of the game system should be considered when forming an opinion.

            >the FE series always gave players rewards for keeping their team alive

            Wrong. The game does nothing differently whether you keep people alive or not, except in 2 entries, where keeping people alive is related to getting a Survival rank. It is obvious you are clueless about game design.

            >The goal of keeping your team alive is by itself a tactical cornerstone of the series

            Argument to tradition. Another useless argument.

            >imply that the player is able to screw up many times since the game will provide a solution anyway, is an obvious loss from a strategical perspective.

            The system adds strategy in the form of choosing exactly who you want to live and allowing you to use some units as cannon fodder or choose whether to recruit them or not. It is obvious you are clueless about game design.

            >swallow everything that sports a franchise’s name without analyzing it throughly.

            Pathetic strawman argument trying to imply I haven’t analyzed the game thoroughly. You are wrong with your analysis of the games strategic depth and difficulty, and your emotional appeals to tradition and ‘not wanting to kill my own party’ are again worthless. You can’t even tell the difference between an objective analysis of a game system and subjective emotions about plot/characters attached to them. It is obvious you are clueless about game design.

          • Artavasdus

            (to the reply) Wow, nice way to answer without even understanding what I was saying and putting in my mouth concepts and arguments that I never used :P

            -I have never said that every FE game had optional extras for keeping the party alive (I explicitely said that the “bonus” was having a complete set of characters to choose from, without having it butchered losing units in the early game)

            -I haven’t mixed plot and gameplay arguments, in fact I have kept them utterly separated in my analysis. The fact that even narrative can be analyzed seems to escape you, but that’s fine.

            -I haven’t said “it’s good because it’s traditional” : I have said why that tradition has worth from a tactical standpoint and why SD’s innovations (not any kind of innovations, RD was totally fine for example) put those core elements in jeopardy.

            -I have explained why killing off your characters is less tactically worth than keeping them alive in rational terms, not in “rants”, and you are the first person I have ever read that think that the two things have the same worth in a tactical formula and to clumsily justify SD’s extras with a pretentious show of e-bullying, complete with links and the usual badmouthing. To quote your paper, “The content of a game (level design, enemies, etc.) that forces the player to figure out a solution using the available strategic depth is termed the strategic difficulty.” In SD, compared to previous FEs, the player doesn’t need to figure out almost anything since he doesn’t need to keep characters alive having the game itself to correct his carelessness through extra units, the map design is obvious, the difficulty is rather low and class swapping can be used in game breaking ways andor to replace lost units.

            -Again, your analysis doesn’t provide any kind of concrete argument to confute what I claimed, aside from the usual claims of superiority, badmouthing and arrogance, but those things don’t give your position any kind of worth, and sadly the only thing that cames off is your inability to have a polite conversation and your need to crusade for the games you like (yeah, pretty much that negative definition you try to put on others).

          • First, a game is a test of skill with game mechanics that exist independent of plot and characters. There are two ways to analyze a game that has plot/charaters. You can rate it objectively as in game mechanics (how balanced or strategic it is), or you can rate it subjectively as in plot/characters. Just calling the whole system ‘bad’ because of a subjective opinion about not wanting to kill off your units isn’t a valid argument. Both aspects of the game system should be considered when forming an opinion.

            The reclassing system adds strategic depth in the form of figuring out optimal classes for each character and setting up your party with classes that compliment each other The only balance issue are the two units Sedgar and Wolf who have unusually high growth rates that make them overpowered if reclassed. Compared to any other Fire Emblem that doesn’t allow reclassing, the system adds strategic depth whether you want to delude yourself about it or not.

            The optional chapter requirements adds strategic depth compared to most Fire Emblems. The system adds strategy in the form of choosing which characters you want to live and allowing you to use some units as cannon fodder or choose whether to recruit them or not. Most Fire Emblem games make no distinction whether you lose units or not, except for Fire Emblem 6 and 7, where you are graded on a Survival rank. All Fire Emblem games are easier if you keep the best characters alive, it’s no different with SD, you’re just more encouraged to kill off the worse or inferior ones, which makes it a strategic choice about what units to keep. The game handing out replacement units is just a way of preventing very poorly skilled players from being unable to progress in the easier difficulty modes – you will still be screwed if you start losing the best units in hard mode. Thus claims like “the system rewards failure” or “it’s less strategic than most other FEs” are objectively false. The system adds strategic depth compared to most FEs whether you want to delude yourself about it or not.

            You are wrong, deluded, you ignore facts about game design, your grammar is terrible, and you have no clue what you’re talking about. Just stop. Anybody with a clue about game design is laughing at your incoherent factually wrong and confused rambling. Seriously, it’s painful just trying to read your terrible grammar and run on sentences like “the player doesn’t need to figure out almost anything since he doesn’t need to keep characters alive having the game itself to correct his carelessness”. You are wrong. Just stop posting and showing off how ignorant you are.

            As for the games difficulty, it is one of the most difficult FEs on Hard 5. The map design is average for a FE game.

          • Artavasdus

            After your exhibition of arrogance, badmouthing and self rightneousness I should have expected you to follow the old path of the grammar fanatic, especially when you know all too well that that post couldn’t be edited because of Siliconera’s layout :P

            That said, for all your incredible display of loathing it’s quite sad to see how you haven’t understood much of what I have said, since you continue to accuse me of criticizing SD for reasons linked to the plot or the characters while I have only attacked the title’s gameplay (the only thing I said regarding the game’s narrative was a brief statement in one of the first posts, in a separate paragraph and not linked to any other consideration).

            Reading your post one would think that I disliked the “let your characters die” mechanic because I loathed the idea of losing characters that I liked, but I never said that kind of nonsense, and anyone reading the discussion (I doubt someone is that patient, but still) can easily see that my criticism was caused only by tactical and gameplay reasoning (right or wrong as they may be, but totally separated from narrative arguments regarding plot or personal likings to some characters). So, your whole claim that I mix subjective narrative elements with objective gameplay ones has nothing to do with what I have written.

            Not only that: you probably have also failed to read that I consider SD as a decentgood game with rather coherent mechanics if considered as a stand-alone, and in that regard our judgements are almost identical. Not so long ago I have been criticized for having been “too kind” to SD during another debate regarding this matter XD The only difference in our opinions stems from a second way of judging it, i.e. as a chapter of the Fire Emblem series, and while I have no problem to recognize that both those judgements have meaning in different contexts you seem uncapable of understanding the merit of judging a game putting an emphasis on its roots. Moreover this isn’t an issue of blindly following traditions: FE has changed many times during its history, but not even FE8 managed to garner such widespread discontent in its fanbase (of course you are free to think that any other FE fan is an idiot and that only you have understood the game, but that’s not the point here).

            Since those are only some of many of your misunderstatements regarding my posts (the others are listed in the post below, and some are so blatant to make me think that you misunderstood them voluntarily in order to have easy arguments), I must assume that you never tried to understand them, thinking that I was some blind hater and opting for one of your spite-filled replies which, actually, not only have failed to address the discussed points in the way you wanted (you have stated your opinions, not “facts”, and you dismissed some key criticism as useless for your own subjective reasons), but have shown how you don’t give much importance about the other’s arguments, opting instead to recreate them in order to have an easier time replying.

            Also, repeating x times “you don’t know anything about game design”, like it was some kind of mantra, doesn’t bring anything to your position, nor is game design a positive science which provides clear-cut, undoubtable answers about games in order to silence anyone who have different opinions. Accept that your analysis stems from your own interpretation of the tactical jrpg genre’s tenets and that, while it’s certainly respectable (and interesting, if it wasn’t mixed with a presumption of superiority), you can’t impose it like a religious truth treating anyone who disagree as an idiotheretic.

  • YoFace

    Ike needs more love. Because he fights for his friends.

  • masuto

    I love Fire Emblem!

  • If you’re gonna complain about the artwork, then blame Masamune Shirow (Ghost in the Shell) creator.

    Honestly, I’m just grateful if this gets localized.

  • fuzzy_hobo

    Hmm…I could always use more Fire Emblem in my life, but a Mystery of the Emblem remake will probably be in the same vein as the Shadow Dragon remake…and I liked that least of all the NA released Fire Emblems.
    Maybe 2 years from now we’ll see a Genealogy of the Holy War remake? Or I’d love a new story.

  • kupomogli

    I don’t understand why people are complaining that it’s a remake. Sure you can play the original game on an emulator with an English translation patch, but some people don’t do that or some people can’t. Other people also like to own the games in a language they can understand.

    The Fire Emblem series is decent, with the best of it being the storyline over all else. The gameplay is just easy and isn’t very satisfying. In my opinion it’s only worth playing the game for the storyline and to watch all of the special attacks.

  • Vanilla

    I don’t mind that it’s a remake as opposed to a new game because I’m kind of afraid the series will degenerate (imo it has been past Rekka no Ken), but if it’s getting the same exact treatment as Shadow Dragon…I’ll have to pass. Also, given the trend for making fail remakes developers have set this gen, I’m not expecting too much. At the very least, they could get a better artist.

    By the way, I never really understood what happened with the art direction in FE:SD. As much as I disliked FE8 and on, at least they had pretty pictures. I’ve never been able to figure out if the artist left or something.

  • Pichi

    Bring back the 2D sprites.

  • Guest

    Shadow Dragon looked horrible, played like crap, and was a bad game overall. I’m fine with a remake as long as they move forward with what been established with the latest FE games and not a kind of back and forth gameplay idea they had with Shadow Dragon.

    I like Marth I’m fine with that I just hope they bring back 2D sprites or at least some quality 3D. And again continue evolving the game from FE7+.

  • Hraesvelgr

    Dammit, Nintendo, do a remake of FE4 or FE5, instead.

  • epy

    I was hoping this was a Fūin no Tsurugi remake what with Roy being popular over here as well and all. But no matter. More Fire Emblem is ALWAYS good. Good call Nintendo.

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