Fire Emblem Warriors releases next month in Japan but we’re seeing early-impressions from the media, with plenty of new screenshots and gameplay highlights and some interesting notes.
Here are a bunch of screenshots and highlights from 4Gamer who got to spend about two hours playing an in-development build of the game.
They mostly played as the protagonist Rowan but got to try out a little his sister, and the other protagonist, Lianna. Both characters are well-suited for beginners as they are easy to control, but it is noted that Lianna felt a little more nimble in movement.
You can change between playable characters by pressing up and down on the D-pad.
Fighting involves a combination of weak and strong attacks as well as special attacks such as the “Musou Attack” and “Awakening” features.
While those are more common to the Musou-style games, there are plenty of Fire Emblem elements added to the mix.
A character equipped with a staff can heal allies while in a pinch.
You can fill up your “Musou Gauge” to pull off the “Musou Attack.”
The Weapon Triangle system is said to give a slight advantage or penalty depending on the type of weapon you use against enemies. Since Rowan uses a sword, the struggle was easy to notice when going up against a group of spear-wielding enemies. In these situations, it is best to switch to a hero with an axe.
Strengths and weaknesses go beyond weapons, too. For example, bow units do additional damage against Pegasus Knight heroes, Knight units take more damage against Armorslayers, and so on. This is called “Special Effectiveness,” and it deals more damage than having the upper hand in a Weapon Triangle fight. They say so much so, that you can take out mid-bosses in just a few hits.
That said, be careful not to go around flying as a Pegasus Knight when the place is swarming with archers. You can do so by checking the map to see what kind of enemy units await.
You can also have the map display icons that tell you whether the enemies are strong or weak against your current hero. The game adds some of Fire Emblem strategic elements by having you observe the map and plan accordingly.
Fire Emblem Warriors offers a parameter for your “Support.” When taking certain actions with an ally, you’ll see a heart symbol appear, indicating a deepening of their Support level. By increasing the parameter, you’ll receive rewards and get to watch special Support Conversations.
That’s not all, when characters are well-bonded, you’ll see them heal each other, perform tag team battle actions called “Double” that allows you to pair up with another character. When paired, you have a frontline character and a backline character. So for example you have Chrom in the frontline and Lissa in the backline as a pair. The backline character can boost the stats of the frontline character, and the two can even perform a special “Dual Arts” attack together.
We’ve been wondering how the familiar permadeath feature works in Fire Emblem Warriors, and we now have a better idea. Basically, when playing in Classic Mode and a character’s HP reaches 0 they become “wounded” and get a special cut scene to indicate that they can no longer be used in battle. Characters can also get “wounded” in Casual Mode, but the difference here is that they return and can be redeployed afterwards.
Again, players who are going with Classic Mode can change it to Casual Mode if they feel like it is a little too difficult for their liking; however, you won’t be able to do the reverse the option, meaning if you go Casual Mode that’s what you’re stuck with. Players who are uncertain of their skills can get plenty of time early in the game to see what they feel comfortable with, as the opening stages are mostly a big practice for what’s ahead.
The 4Gamer player noted that he accidentally let Frederick die and he definitely felt the struggle of losing the only horse-mounted unit in the early game.
4Gamer concludes their impression by saying there was a lot of exciting moments seeing Fire Emblem characters meeting other characters from the series on the battlefield. The interaction is always a big thing to look forward to for fans of the series. With the battle flow changing in real-time, they say that it almost feels like an RTS game at times when working with the map, so fans who prefer a more strategic approach than what your average hack-and-slash offers will be pleased. Fire Emblem Warriors does a good job at combining the Fire Emblem series’ strategic strength along with the characteristic action you’d expect from a Musou title, making it an enjoyable game for both Fire Emblem and Warriors fans.
Fire Emblem Warriors launches on Nintendo Switch and New Nintendo 3DS in Japan on September 28, and in Fall 2017 in the West.