Villagers are hardly a new concept to the Fire Emblem series. These trainees have been a part of our games for years. But, while they’re rather common now, it was Fire Emblem Gaiden that introduced the class. Which means Fire Emblem Echoes: Shadows of Valentia has all of the villagers. There are so many, guys. This means we have an extraordinary level of freedom. We get to decide what our army looks like.
This is more for Alm’s side than Celica’s. As a denizen of Ram Village, all of Alm’s friends are Villagers when they decide to follow Lukas and him and join the Deliverance army to save Zofia. Within a few levels, you’re able to quickly take them to the Mila Statue in the Thieve’s Shrine to place them in a more capable class. Now, as usual, keeping them Villagers for a while would make them stronger overall. But, Alm is also in a situation where you will need a diverse army. You may not have that luxury of waiting.
Alm doesn’t have any Mercenaries join his group normally. Making one or two of your early friends a Mercenary would be to your benefit. I went with Gray, since that makes him speedier and a good partner for Clair, a unit he can support. It also means you could give him a Lightning Sword, like I did, and increase his range. He has good health, defense, strength, and skill, so it works well for him. He isn’t fast enough normally to make a good Archer and he doesn’t learn a wide repertoire of spells, so it is best to keep him as a physical attacker.
Your Mage should be Kliff. I mean, Kliff is a great character in general. He could work well as an archer, or maybe even as a mercenary, but you should not waste his library of spells. He can learn so many. My Kliff is now a level 20 Sage and he knows Fire, Thunder, Excalibur, Arrow, Recover, and Aura. I mean, Alm will eventually get a better Mage. But Kliff is one of the absolute best early units you get and making him a Mage keeps him viable for the entire game.
You could also go that way with Faye. Here’s what happened with her. I didn’t know what I wanted her to be, so I had two save files where I tested her options. In one, I made her a Mage. She learned Fire, Seraphim, Arrow, Recover, and Nosferatu when she was a Mage and beginning Priestess. Which are all really nice. It takes a while for Alm to start getting Mages, so having a second one is nice. But she really excelled as a Pegasus Knight. She’s a good companion to Clair. She isn’t as fast as her in my game, but she does hit harder. I gave her a Ridersbane and Clair a Steel Lance I’ve been gradually upgrading, and the two fly ahead to deal with minor issues. Since Alm doesn’t get a group of pegasus sisters relatively early on, like Celica does, Faye gives you more versatility.
And then there’s Tobin. I’m not a big fan of Tobin. Of all of Alm’s Villagers, he’s the one most likely to be left behind when better units arrive. This gives you the luxury of doing whatever you’d like with him. I don’t recommend making him a Mage, as he’ll only learn Fire and Excalibur. He could be a Mercenary or Soldier, if you want. I made him an Archer. It gives Alm range he doesn’t normally have until Python joins the party. At which point you should go ahead and use Python, because he’s pretty awesome.
Celica only gets one Villager, and that is Atlas. He joins at a time where you will be coming up on some major fights and need the extra units. Atlas is so solid. He can be incredibly strong, fitting given his name. The only thing he isn’t good at is magic. He’ll only end up learning Fire and Arrow. Celica is surrounded by people who can use magic. By the time you come upon Atlas, you’ll have Celica, Mae, Boey, and Genny who can all use magic. Not to mention, you might end up getting Sonya, one of the best Mages in the game. Almost any other route is better for him. If you’re a fan of Horse Emblem, you could go ahead and make him a rider. I turned him into an Archer, because it made the most sense with the battle that was immediately ahead of the party.
It really is up to you, though. You have the freedom to use your villagers to form the army you want in Fire Emblem Echoes: Shadows of Valentia. While it won’t make much of a difference on Celica’s crew, it will absolutely impact your experience when leading Alm’s army. See how each Villager is performing, look at who you like, and choose wisely.
Fire Emblem Echoes: Shadows of Valentia is available for the Nintendo 3DS.