The Worst Fire Emblem Awakening Play Through Ever: Chapters 7 and 8

The following post is part of my series “The Worst Fire Emblem Awakening Playthrough Ever”. Spoilers ahead for a six year old game.


Welcome back to the worst Fire Emblem Awakening play through ever. When we last left the Shepherds, our heroes were busy getting their ass saved by a dark, brooding heroine who goes by Marth. The Exalt, Emmeryn, is safe, but rumors are someone may try to kill her again. Ylisse is now at war with Plegia, Virion is still riding my unit bench, and I’m about to do some more reeking box grinding to anger Fire Emblem purists. That and because it’s been nearly two months in real time between when I wrote chapters 3-6 in one day and when I’m writing this post.

In this post, we’ll be playing through chapters 7 and 8 of the story. The next post will contain chapter 9 by itself, so this will be the last two-parter for a little bit.

Chapter 7: Incursion

The Shepherds have arrived at a mountain pass, apparently walking the whole way here as evidenced by the fact that Lissa is complaining about how much her feet hurt. While this makes sense for some of our party members, Frederick has a horse. Yet, instead of riding said horse, not only is he walking up the mountain, he’s doing it in his full riding suit of armor. Because reasons. Christopher Robin joins in on the complaining about the walk and Chrom offers to carry him, but not Lissa. It seems our budding bromance continues. Christopher grows concerned about a priest who is travelling with them when suddenly the Plegian army appears. Our battle starts now.

Just kidding. We’ve been ambushed by a crew lead by someone named Vasto who is doing a lot of sniffing for someone who refuses to admit they have a cold. Before the battle can start officially, the aforementioned priest reveals that he’s a double agent working for King Gangrel. He says the king offered him protection, but Vasto is a true believer in the philosophy that snitches get stitches and promptly has one of his underlings murder the priest1I both love and detest when this trope is invoked in video games and movies. It’s terrible, yet a great way for a bad guy to get some instant heat. It just doesn’t work well here since Vasto has zero plot importance.. Chrom shouts to Phila — who we haven’t seen in this entire cut scene, but we’re supposed to believe is there — to take Emmeryn — who we also haven’t seen — out of harms way. NOW our battle starts.

We’ve got some pretty serious leveling to do for some of our newer units such as Gaius and Lon’qu, as well as neglected units like Stahl, so this seems like as good of time as any to let them wreck shit. We also have Panne, who puts the Rabbit of Caerbannog to shame. Our first turn is largely just a wave of bad guys who think it’d be a good idea to let Vaike kill them, which is effective for me, but less so for the Plegian army. I decide to let Christopher hang back, as he’ll be needed at the entrance of the map shortly. Turn two is much of the same, only replace Vaike with Lon’qu. At the end of the second turn, my favorite modded nation leader from Civilzation V, Cordelia, shows up. She’s a pegasus knight who is a redheaded, female Mr. Perfect. Her cut scene actually shows us that Phila is here, which I’m pretty sure the developers only added after the fact when they realized their story had a giant plot hole. Trust me, I’ve been there.

We continue on. Stahl finds a shiny bow, Maribelle heals people to the point where I can nearly reclass her, and Panne is still a beast. I pair up Cordelia with Christopher so that I can deal with the impending reinforcement Cordelia mentioned upon her entrance. That said, they don’t have time to get there, as Chrom gets a critical hit on Vasto, killing him, while Lon’qu, Panne, and Stahl clean up the rest of the level.

We cut to Cordelia warning us that the Plegian army is hot on our heels, thanks to the fact that the Plegians have broken through the Ylissean border. Cordelia’s entire pegasus knight brigade was slaughtered by the Plegian army, but she managed to escape because of plot conveinence. Cordelia rightly has a nervous breakdown, Chrom gets angry, and Emmeryn makes a cameo long enough to tell us that she needs to leave. Before she does, however, Emmeryn gives Chrom the Fire Emblem2Roll credits. and tells him to take it to Ferox for safe keeping. We get a good bit of arguing between Chrom/Lissa and Emmeryn over whether or not Emmeryn should go before Emmeryn pulls the ‘I am your god-queen’ card and makes the decision final. Phila — now Cordelia’s commanding officer following the loss of her squad — commands Cordelia to stay with the Shepherds, so I guess we’re getting a new unit. Chrom continues arguing and yelling as Emmeryn leaves, ending our chapter.

After the save point, we’re back in Arena Ferox where Chrom, Sumia, Lissa, and Christopher are discussing Emmeryn’s safety3I can’t remember if Sumia is only here because she’s already married to Chrom by this point or because she’s plot critical.. Chrom is so preoccupied with his sister’s safety that he’s not listening to anyone, so Sumia slaps him. And by slaps him, she does it with a closed fist, so I mean she punches him4So no. Not plot critical. And by that, I mean Sumia’s entire existence isn’t plot critical.. Flavia thinks this is hilarious. She also wants to let us know that the Feroxi army is mobilized and ready to help Ylisse. Nick Fury is coming too, but before he comes, he tells us that Ylisstol has fallen and the Emmeryn has been captured. Basilio wants us to think things through before acting, which means Chrom does exactly not that. Even Christopher is getting sick of Chrom’s impulses at this point and tells him to calm down. Now we’re formally ready to move on to the next chapter.

Chapter 8: The Grimleal

The chapter opens with Chrom talking about how he’s convinced the Shepherds have just wandered into another Plegian trap, but that the Plegians haven’t spung it yet. Frederick shows up, explains that there’s a battle ahead and gives us some exposition on how moving in sand levels work, and then we move on. What the hell is this? A chapter with minimal cut scene work before I get to play? Can I have more?

After selecting units, we’re introduced to Nowi, who is a very specific trope. You see, Nowi is thousands of years old (because of reasons we’ll get to in a moment), but looks like she’s 14-15. But it’s totally cool, because she’s actually thousands of years old. Or something. I don’t care how many times I play this game, I’ll never marry the Avatar to Nowi or her daughter because it’s creepy. She’s joined by Gregor, who is a walking bad accent with useful skills. Nowi is apparently running away from Gregor, but Gregor is trying to protect her. Chrom and Lissa yell at Gregor, giving away his and Nowi’s position, leaving them surrounded by a band of Plegian religious zealots known as the Grimleal. They’re not good. Chrom agrees to fight to save Nowi and to figure out whether Gregor is good or bad later.

We’ve got a ton of villages to save, but due to my leveling of units, I’ve really only got Ricken and Sumia that can move quickly in this level. So they’ll be saving villages while everyone else helps clean up the center of the map. We’re good though, because Ricken has apparently decided to critical hit anything that moves. At the start of turn three, Nowi gets an attack in and everyone realizes that Nowi is a fucking dragon. More specifically, she’s a manakete, which is a shapeshifting human/dragon hybrid that will become our main non-armor tank for the first half of the game. Gaius decides to get in on the crit party as well, taking out two swordsmen and coming super close to death. Good thing we don’t have permadeath on.

The AI in this game baffles me a little, as the enemies on this level will nearly always bumrush Nowi. That’s not a terrible plan, as she’s comparatively underleveled. But she’s also a beast and destroys literally anything in her path. While that’s tons of free XP for me, it’s a lot of dead bodies that someone has to explain to a Plegian general. In picking up stuff from the villages on the map, we get our first Master Seal (which allows for promotion to advanced classes) and our first5I actually randomly pick up another one immediately after this chapter thanks to a secret seller appearing on the map. Second Seal (which allows for class changing). Because the goals of this game are to have fun and to curbstomp the enemy, we’ll be making liberal use of both of these items to create the most overpowered super soldiers…er…child units we can6I’ve decided to make most of my marriage pairings in this playthrough ones that I enjoy the dialogue between. That said there are some characters who are just cringeworthy no matter who they marry. Looking at you, Nowi.. We advance on the final units with Nowi, Gregor, Ricken, and Panne, wherein Ricken has apparently decided he’s had enough of everyone’s shit and kills the last three units (including the boss) all with critical hits. With Thunder. Which has a 5% base critical chance. Holy RNG, Batman.

After we’ve dispatched of the baddies, Gregor and Nowi make up. Chrom tells Gregor to look after Nowi, but Gregor reveals he’s a mercenary and offers his services to the Shepherds. Chrom accepts. Nowi talks about how she’s been part of a human (manakete?) trafficking ring because holy fuck this game is dark. Lissa is stunned at how Nowi has been mistreated, while Frederick suggests that Nowi come along with us, both as a new, powerful ally, and to keep her safe from her past life. Flavia — who is also here — suggests everyone get some rest before we advance on the Plegian capital, ending the chapter.

End of Level Recap

Starting with this post, I’ve added a section for class changes. Both promotions to advanced classes and reclassing for various purposes will be added in here. There was a bit more reeking box grinding here, though this was mostly for the benefit of Maribelle and Lissa, as you’ll see below. I also may change my initial marriage plan for Cordelia. We haven’t met the character who I plan to be her husband yet, but the more I’m thinking about it, the more I’m unsure I like it. This may become a poll once we get there.

Units

  • Vaike – Level 12 Fighter
  • Ricken – Level 11 Mage
  • Miriel – Level 11 Mage
  • Chrom – Level 10 Lord
  • Gregor – Level 10 Mercenary
  • Sully – Level 9 Cavalier
  • Panne – Level 9 Taguel
  • Kellam – Level 8 Knight
  • Sumia – Level 8 Pegasus Knight
  • Christopher – Level 7 Tactician
  • Cordelia – Level 7 Pegasus Knight
  • Nowi – Level 7 Cavalier
  • Gaius – Level 6 Thief
  • Lon’qu – Level 6 Myrmidon
  • Stahl – Level 5 Cavalier
  • Frederick – Level 4 Great Knight
  • Lissa – Level 1 Pegasus Knight
  • Maribelle – Level 1 Pegasus Knight
  • Virion – Level 2 Stablehand

Supports

  • Vaike & Maribelle: B to A to S
  • Frederick & Miriel: A to S
  • Ricken & Panne: C to B to A
  • Sumia & Sully: None to C
  • Nowi & Gregor: None to C
  • Nowi & Kellam: None to C

Class Changes

  • Maribelle: Troubadour to Pegasus Knight
  • Lissa: Cleric to Pegasus Knight

The Worst Fire Emblem Awakening Play Through Ever: Chapters 5 and 6

The following post is part of my series “The Worst Fire Emblem Awakening Playthrough Ever”. Spoilers ahead for a six year old game.


Welcome back to the worst Fire Emblem Awakening play through ever. When we last left the Shepherds, a tween was getting upset that he couldn’t come to war and blonde Carmelita Spats was about to cause an international incident. In no way will we come back to that storyline for any reason. Also, added more people to our ragtag party of an army, including the strong, silent type, our resident Mary Sue7And Chrom’s future wife. and a talking suit of armor. I’ve also been down a rabbit hole of Awakening content on TV Tropes. I cannot be held responsible for what I say or do as a result of this.

In this post, we’ll be playing through chapters 5 and 6. While these chapters are a bit on the longer side, I feel like I go long enough between posting updates in this series that it’s worth it. Plus, these aren’t the most time consuming chapters I could write on.

Chapter 5: The Exalt and the King

Chrom, Lissa, and Emmeryn are walking through a canyon when they come up on King Gangrel. He’s clearly a bad guy due to the cocky way he stands, as well as his gigantic fur neck covering. Emmeryn tries to negotiate to avoid political turmoil, but she’s quickly interrupted by another baddy, Aversa. Aversa appears to be one part sorceress and two parts see-through clothing. Gangrel and Aversa have captured Maribelle, who is doing her best Chris Jericho impression by calling people troglodytes. Aversa is arguing Maribelle’s insolence is an act of war, and though I know Maribelle is supposed to be on my side, I’m thinking Aversa may have a good point, despite the fact that she and Gangrel are clearly overreacting.

Gangrel accuses Maribelle of being a spy, however instead of arguing Maribelle is too much of an asshole to people who she sees to be below her station to be a spy, Emmeryn’s idea of diplomacy is to say please. Gangrel says no, Chrom gets angsty, and then Gangrel wants the Fire Emblem — which is also the name of the mythical shield belonging to the Ylissian royal family — in exchange for Maribelle. Emmeryn and Gangrel then have a short expositional dialogue explaining what the Fire Emblem is and its powers8To save the world before bedtime., before Gangrel mentions that the whole reason he hates Ylisse is because Emmeryn’s father was a mass murdering sociopath of an exalt.

Chrom then shoots fir…er…kills someone with a sword first, actually starting a war. Great job, hero. You broke it.

Aversa then tries to shame Maribelle into feeling like she started this war when a blast of wind magic kills the guard that’s beside Maribelle. Our teen from last chapter, Ricken, is here to save the day. The level then begins with Ricken and Maribelle cornered, because while Ricken is brave, he is also quite stupid.

I accidentally skip the short cut scene between selecting units and the level actually starting, only to be reminded that the boss in this level is Randy Orton. Because Ricken and Maribelle are cornered, it’s in my best interest to save them first9Despite my desires to the contrary., which means we get another dose of Frederick Emblem, as he and Miriel go off to save our captive friends. I have Lissa and Sully follow, as both Ricken and Maribelle are particularly squishy at this point. Meanwhile, the rest of our crew takes the long way around, picking up XP and items along the way. Except for Vaike, that is, who will be Maribelle’s support partner in the long run.

We get Maribelle and Vaike teamed up, transferring Lissa over to Ricken in the process so Sully can run solo. This doesn’t go amazingly, but she doesn’t die, so it works out. Christopher and Sumia are particularly good at killing our attackers, so the left side of the map is cleared quickly. Even Ricken manages to get in on the fun and games, cleaning up where Vaike misses.

Despite reinforcements being a thing for the first time in this level, we clean up pretty easily because Sumia and Chrom can double hit most anyone when paired. But wait. Breaking news!

Frederick crits someone and we get that beauty of a line. Despite having a 2% crit chance. It’s so good.

We finally advance on the boss, who tries to deliver an RKO out of nowhere to Ricken, but Ricken dodges it. This allows Kellam (of all people) to come in and clean up for the win.

After the fight ends, Lissa and Maribelle reunite. Chrom apologizes to his sister for starting a war and Emmeryn says that it’s okay. Frederick reminds everyone that if this is, indeed, a war, more troops will likely show up and want to battle, so they should get a move on. We do, ending the chapter.

Chapter 6: Foreseer

Outside Ylisstol castle, Chrom is staring into the distance, reenacting the cover of Faith +1’s debut album. Christopher Robin wants to know why he’s out so late. Chrom is dealing with the fact that his father committing brutal war that killed several people on both the Plegian and Ylissean sides. We have a War is Hell moment before Chrom brings up that his father’s death made Emmeryn the ruler of Ylisse at age 10. We’re 15 years on now, but Ylisse seems to be in pretty good shape for having a young person run the country. It’s almost as if the real world could learn something from video games.

The conversation is interrupted by clearly-not-a-girl Marth, who warns Chrom and Christopher that an assassin is here to kill Emmeryn. Marth spends far longer than should be necessary convincing them that a threat on the life of the ruler of an entire nation needs to be taken seriously, but she manages to get the point across by slaying a second assassin that has arrived to kill Chrom. A third assassin then shows up because reasons. While he manages to get the drop on Marth — splitting her mask in two with his sword, Chrom kills him. Everyone is then shocked…SHOCKED, I SAY…to realize that Marth is a girl. She then gives speech about how she’s impressed she managed to fool everyone, leading into the beginning of our level.

Some guy named Validar is here to take over the castle and Emmeryn is encouraging us to flee while we still can. That said, the Shepherds aren’t going anywhere — in fact, we gain a few new members on turn two in the form of Gaius, a sticky handed thief, and Panne, the last of a rabbit-like shapeshifting race called the taguel. Marth is an ally for us in this level and she’s here to kick ass and chew bubble gum. It’s evident by the critical hits she’s dealing out that she’s all out of bubble gum. Cleaning out the incoming army takes a little bit longer than expected, as I didn’t do a massive amount of reeking box grinding prior to this level, but it’s still not too much of a challenge. Eventually, we draw out Validar and let one of the newcomers, Panne, get the final blow to end the level.

After the level, Chrom is excited to see Emmeryn safe, while Phila feels as though she’s let Emmeryn down due to the assassination attempt. The gang realizes Marth is now gone and nowhere to be found. Chrom runs off looking for her and finds her in the castle courtyard. Chrom offers to repay her for saving his life, but she turns him down. Her logic is that history has been rewritten, which may be true, but we’re clearly not even close to the end game, so there’s more of the story rewrite, I’d presume. Marth then vanishes into the darkness, as she’s Batman.

Emmeryn thanks Panne for her assistance in saving her life. We then get backstory on the taguel and let’s just say humans have been super shitty to them. Emmeryn tries her best to make amends for humanity’s terrible treatment of the taguel and Panne is annoyed, but appreciative. We then cut to Validar trying to sneak around in the darkness after his failure to kill Emmeryn, only he’s confronted by a mysterious figure named Grima who is displeased with him. Grima spares Validar’s life, but that’s all we learn for now.

Back in Ylisstol, Phila is playing the role of inept detective quite well, while Chrom is busy blaming foreigners for the attack. Emmeryn tells him to STFU and not be an asshole, because Emmeryn is basically purity personified. Chrom and Frederick convince Emmeryn to let them relocate her for safety’s sake, which is where our level ends.

End of Level Recap

Below are the unit progress and support progress we made in these chapters. I did a touch of reeking box grinding between chapters 5 and 6 for sake of getting some levels on our healers. This leads to some of the massive growths in terms of both levels and supports you see below.

Units

  • Vaike – Level 10 Fighter
  • Chrom – Level 8 Lord
  • Miriel – Level 8 Mage
  • Kellam – Level 8 Knight
  • Sumia – Level 7 Pegasus Knight
  • Panne – Level 7 Taguel
  • Christopher – Level 6 Tactician
  • Lissa – Level 6 Cleric
  • Sully – Level 6 Cavalier
  • Maribelle – Level 6 Troubadour
  • Ricken – Level 5 Mage
  • Gaius – Level 5 Thief
  • Stahl – Level 4 Cavalier
  • Lon’qu – Level 4 Myrmidon
  • Frederick – Level 3 Great Knight
  • Virion – Level 2 Still Here Because I Can’t Get Rid Of Him

Supports

  • Christopher & Kellam: None to C
  • Chrom & Sumia: C to B to A to S
  • Frederick & Miriel : C to B to A
  • Chrom & Vaike: None to C
  • Vaike & Maribelle: None to C to B
  • Ricken & Panne: None to C

My Fire Emblem: Awakening Character Tier List

The other day10Read: The other day as of when I wrote this in late January. By the time this goes up, this statement will not be true from a time standpoint., I came across a thread on Reddit where a person finished their five-year long playthrough of Fire Emblem: Awakening. In their post, they created a tier list of how useful they found the characters that you could recruit in the story, ranging from “actively broken” to “didn’t use lol”11Yes, I’m aware there’s another tier below that, but the user’s comments explain why..

This got me to thinking. I’ve been writing posts on this blog with Fire Emblem: Awakening as a topic for nearly three years now. I’ve got an entire blog series dedicated to sarcastically playing through the game that I consider to be far and away my favorite video game of all time. But I’ve never really done a true character tier list for the game. I’ve looked at the skills and tiered them, but never the actual characters themselves.

So, inspired by /u/WritersBlah’s post, I’m going to write a Fire Emblem: Awakening blog post that’s sure to piss off Fire Emblem purists. Maybe not as much as the shipping post I wrote, but it’ll be up there. Unlike the original thread, I’m going to go with a more traditional S through F tier list style. I’m only going to have characters you can pick up in the main story or the paralogues on my list, so no DLC characters. I’ll be considering these characters both in terms of their end game usefulness, as well as their usefulness as parents (if applicable).

Additionally, I am not going to add any of the SpotPass characters12Gangrel, Walhart, Emmeryn, Yen’fay, Aversa, or Priam. to this tier list, as I feel like it’s hard to objectively rate characters that join so late into the game — and are intentionally overpowered because of this. While I’ve used a couple of the SpotPass characters in playthroughs before13Aversa is a good mom for Morgan stats and skill wise., I’m excluding them from this list for that reason.

F: Units That Will Never See The Light of Day

Units: 43. Anna, 42. Say’ri, 41. Virion

While I truly don’t believe there’s a completely terrible unit in Awakening in terms of usefulness, it’s clear that some units are better or worse than others. Both Say’ri and Anna have their place in the game from a storyline standpoint, but unless you’re planning on marrying them to a male avatar unit, there’s not a lot of use to bringing their units into the game. Neither one passes down any particularly amazing skills that can’t be acquired elsewhere, nor are they so broken they can’t be ignored. Virion stands ever so slightly above the two of them, if only because he’s an early game ranged unit and you have to play a few chapters with him. You can’t get a ton of archers in Awakening, but Virion is easily the worst one you could get.

D: Trophy Units or Trophy Parents

Units: 40. Miriel, 39. Basilio, 38. Vaike, 37. Sully, 36. Flavia

Miriel and Vaike suffer from the same problem that manifests itself in different ways — they die way too easy in the early game, especially at higher difficulties. Whether it be Miriel’s squishiness or Vaike’s insistence on not hitting anything, you can’t rely on them to stay alive. Basilio and Flavia are late game trophy units with decent stats, but unless you’re marrying one of them to Robin, you’re likely not using them14Which is a shame because goddamn Flavia.. Sully is a possible wife for Chrom, but is easily the worst possible wife for him, including village girl. At least Kjelle is worth getting, but you almost have to marry Sully to Chrom, Donnel, or Gaius to make it worth your time.

C: Average, But Flawed

Units: 35. Tiki, 34. Ricken, 33. Frederick, 32. Olivia, 31. Libra, 30. Laurent

Tiki suffers the same problems as Anna/Say’ri/Basilio/Flavia, though at least she does have the advantage of being part of the broken as fuck manakete class. Ricken is just a harder hitting version of Miriel, though at least he does become somewhat tanky if you make him a dark knight. Frederick is amazing in the early game on harder difficulties, though using him heavily kneecaps the rest of your team. Olivia is polarizing, as her Dance skill essentially means you get to use your best unit twice in a turn. That said, you also have to keep her alive for this to be a worthwhile strategy, which wastes the time of other units or your healers. Libra is an odd promoted unit to get when he does arrive. He can hold his own, but is held back by being a relatively terrible parent unit. Laurent is objectively the worst of the child units, in part because of how much he’s like his mother. You can make Laurent usable, but it comes at the sacrifice of other, more useful child units.

B: Truly Average in Some Way

Units: 29. Kellam, 28. Stahl, 27. Brady, 26. Tharja, 25. Donnel, 24. Henry, 23. Panne, 22. Sumia, 21. Lon’qu, 20. Cherche, 19. Gregor, 18. Chrom

Before we get to the elephant in the room of this group, let’s hit some of the lower units on the list. Kellam and Stahl are just Frederick with better growths, hence bumping them up a tier. While Brady does get access to the all-powerful Galeforce skill, he’s hamstrung by his healer focused stats. Tharja, Henry, Donnel, and Panne are all interchangeable in terms of spots on this list, with Donnel being the best parent out of the group, but the other three being serviceable fighters — even good in the case of Panne if you reclass her. Sumia, Lon’qu, and Cherche are here because they are both useful (though not amazing) fighters and pass down good skills15In the form of Galeforce, Vantage, and Deliverer, respectively.. Gregor is one of the few parent units that gets Armsthrift without much effort, so he becomes a critical first generation unit. And then there’s Chrom. He’s important because you have to take him in levels and because he gives Aether/Rightful King to his kids. But…he’s objectively not that amazing of a unit. Better than everyone below him? Probably16I’d argue marrying him to Sumia makes him a better paired fighter, but doesn’t that mean Sumia’s the good unit?. Better as a parent? Also probably17Again, there’s a counter argument to be made here thanks to Donnel’s Aptitude access, Sumia and Donnel’s Galeforce access, and Gregor having Armsthrift.. But I find Chrom to be the weak link in most of my end game teams. That keeps him from the top two tiers.

A: Super Subs and Supporters

Units: 17. Maribelle, 16. Lissa , 15. Gaius, 14. Cordelia, 13. Yarne, 12. Owain, 11. Inigo, 10. Noire, 9. Nowi, 8. Robin

If Maribelle and Lissa didn’t give their kids access to the Galeforce skill, they’d likely be down in the B (Lissa) or C (Maribelle) tiers. That said, because of this fact and because of the fact that you have to level grind them to get this skill — making them competent in battle — they’re the bottom of the A tier for me. Gaius is essentially Donnel, only useful in fighting. Cordelia is the best first generation pegasus knight you’ll get, plus the class diversity she passes down to Severa is amazing. We then start getting into the bulk of the children, who are either good units who become great when reclassed (Yarne18Any taguel reclassed to an assassain is fun to use. and Noire19Oddly enough, I would argue archer is Noire’s worst class line. Making her a dark mage or knight line unit makes her beastly, if not a bit light hitting.) or are great units who are missing something keeping them from being top tier (Owain20Lissa’s inherited growths hold him back. and Inigo21If you’re planning on Chrom being his dad to give Inigo access to Rightful King, he becomes amazing. That said, the leg work you have to go through to make that a reality is pants on head dumb.). Nowi is easily the most underrated parent unit, particularly if you reclass her to a dark knight. The fact that my nickname for her on playthroughs is Nowi the Tank should give you some indication of her usefulness in that role. Robin is the best first generation unit both as a parent and in terms of usefulness, though they still fall short of the top tier thanks to how broken some of the kids get.

S: Look Upon Our Works and Despair

Units: 7. Gerome, 6. Kjelle, 5. Cynthia, 4. Severa, 3. Nah, 2. Lucina, 1. Morgan

Gerome’s high strength and access to several -Breaker skills make him a formidable unit regardless of who you make his father. Meanwhile, Kjelle’s utility pretty much dictates that you have to make Donnel or Gaius her dad, lest you miss out on a physical tank that hits twice per turn. Cynthia shares the positives of the first generation flying units, but without many of their stat limitation22Not to mention access to Aether if you make Chrom her dad like I tend to do.. Severa is a jack-of-all-trades unit who excels in a game that usually punishes that type of unit. Combine that with her inherent access to Armsthrift and you have a unit capable of using whatever legendary weapon you choose. With the right dad — even if that dad isn’t Robin — Nah can become your most powerful unit in the game, though she’s limited by the fact that Galeforce is better passed down to Kjelle, Gerome, and Noire than her. Lucina is broken because of her class access and all that comes with it, especially since she’s just a harder, better, faster, stronger Chrom. Morgan, however, is the strongest possible unit you can get in the game, being that Morgan can be the lone third generation unit if you marry Robin to one of the second generation units23Morally: ew. From a game play standpoint: This is absolutely the right call.. This becomes particularly true if their mom is Lucina/Chrom’s other possible daughters or if their dad is Inigo or Brady24Here’s something to think about: Inigo and Robin as Morgan’s parents passing down Galeforce and Rightful King to a Morgan that knows Sol, Vengence, and Ignis..

The Worst Fire Emblem Awakening Play Through Ever: Chapters 3 and 4

The following post is part of my series “The Worst Fire Emblem Awakening Playthrough Ever”. Spoilers ahead for a six year old game.


Welcome back to the worst Fire Emblem Awakening play through ever. When we last left the Shepherds, we had just gained several useful new units to our party, and also Virion. Sumia saves Chrom from a pegasus being angry at him, Frederick is still tired of everyone’s shit, and Miriel is squishy enough to die from a stiff breeze. We’ll work on that last one once we get access to reeking boxes25The reeking box is an item that allows you to call a small amount of lower level enemies to a map for sake of experience and money grinding. We will be taking full advantage of this because A) I’m a filthy casual. B) It’s fun. and C) Certain units are going to die quickly if I don’t do this. I will not be writing about reeking box levels..

In this post, we’ll be playing through chapters 3 and 4. Chapter 3 is the last formal tutorial-ish chapter, while getting to chapter 4 allows us to access the last menu area we’ll need to play the full game. After this post, I’ll toggle between playing one and two chapters per post, depending on how much I feel like writing.

Chapter 3: Warrior Realm

It’s snowing in Ylisse, which should be a happy time. Instead, Lissa is complaining that it’s cold outside. The Shepherds have arrived at the Longfort, which straddles the border of Ylisse and Regna Ferox. Frederick warns us that such a situation calls for diplomacy. Chrom stresses that he isn’t good at diplomacy, but he’s going to try anyway. We’re fucked.

The scene ends and immediately transitions to Frederick telling Chrom that the Feroxi troops are mobilizing. We don’t get to see what Chrom said to the Feroxi, however we can faintly see a Feroxi soldier drumming on his helmet in the background. We finally get to pick our units this map, which is convenient, as we drowned Virion under the bridge in chapter three.

As we go to start the level, we get yet another cut scene where the Feroxi commander orders his soldiers to attack. Chrom thinks it’s a good idea to try to deflect a barrage of spears with his sword, clearly not understanding how the weapon triangle works. Sumia flies in for what would be a meet cute in literally any other story, but since we met her a chapter ago, I’m just annoyed. I hit Start and skip the rest of their conversation out of spite.

With the level formally started, we run into our first allied unit, the disembodied suit of armor from the cut scene before chapter two. Chrom goes to talk to the suit of armor and HOLY FUCK BALLS THERE’S A HUMAN IN IT. Apparently the human’s name is Kellam and he says he’s been with us for a while now. That said, we didn’t see him at all last chapter. Kellam is clearly a powerful warlock and we will use him accordingly.

For the first time, we’re battling other humans rather than risen26We’re ignoring the fact that Garrick might have been human.. I’m typically a conscientious objector, however, these fools are trying to kill me. I set everyone’s medieval weapons to stun and charge forward, gaining XP for kneecapping Feroxi. Christopher Robin suggests pairing up units to make battling easier, apparently forgetting that I’ve been doing this since the premonition chapter.

It takes a couple of turns to finish taking out everyone in front of the fort and gathering keys, mostly because I’m trying to build up some experience for underleveled units like Chrom, Lissa, and Miriel. Sumia is underleveled at this point too, however there’s far too many archers in the lower level for me to risk leaving her out there at this stage. After healing and picking up items from the ground, we advanced toward the two sets of doors leading to the fort proper.

Once we open the doors, we’re greeted by a highly defensive knight on the left. While Christopher knows that friendship is magic, he realizes that magic is also magic, taking out the knight in one shot with Thunder. Vaike kills things but takes a ton of damage, because that’s his thing. We thin the opposing forces out to a single unit, which we should be able to defeat mathematically. As much as I want Sumia to get the experience, she hits about as hard as using a room temperature brown banana as a hammer. So we let Vaike get the knockout with an actual hammer.

I say knockout rather than kill because after the level, the Feroxi commander apologizes for the attack. If she thinks she’s getting off this lightly for acceptable war reparations, she’s likely right, as Chrom is also shitty at negotiation. Lissa wants us to get a move on, so we end the chapter.

Chapter 4: Two Falchions

Our intrepid heroes have arrived at Arena Ferox just in time for a grand battle between the champions of Regna Ferox. This battle occurs between a champion selected by the East Khan and the West Khan of the empire. Christopher makes the mistake of assuming the East Khan’s gender, but instead of it being a broadchested, chiseled man like Christopher thinks, we get the woman with the best official art in the whole goddamn game, Flavia. The world is better for it.

Flavia tells Chrom that the dust up at the border was Plegia’s fault. Chrom still sucks at diplomacy, but that amuses Flavia, so she says that the Shepherds should be her champions in Khan Bowl XXVIII. If Chrom wins, Flavia will lend military assistance to Ylisee, but if Chrom loses, he’ll have to spend years answering why he didn’t run the ball on the one yard line when he had Marshawn Lynch in his backfield27FOR THE LOVE OF GOD, PETE CARROLL, WHY DID YOU DO THIS TO ME?.

Chrom agrees to fight for honor, but also for hustle, loyalty, and respect. We get to pick six units, so we’re going to take in Chrom28Who is required in most every chapter., Sumia, Miriel, Frederick29Frederick and Miriel will be marrying later in this play through, so Frederick will show up quite a bit until Miriel can hold her own in battle., Kellam, and Stahl. It appears the West Khan, Basilio, has recruited none other than the masked fighter themselves, Marth. Who is, again, clearly not male from all of the art. Chrom and Marth have a sword off where Chrom notices that not only does Marth have a copy of his personal sword, Falchion, but that Marth’s father happened to teach her to fight in a style suspiciously similar to Chrom’s. The foreshadowing in this game is so thick you’ll have to cut it with a flamethrower.

We let Stahl and Kellam be our scout and bait units in this level, as it’s much easier to bait out Marth’s teammates than to deal with her head-on30Apply directly to the forehead.. Doing so allows us to pick a couple of units off with Sumia and Miriel, albeit at the expense of Stahl ending up on dangerously low health. Kellam gets in a stalemate with another knight in the process, but as a whole, taking out all of the not-Marth units goes quickly and smoothly. Sumia even says sappy shit to Chrom in the process31Their support levels grew from a random event space. I hate Sumia’s support event space dialogues. They’re rough, even by her standards..

Miriel gets to be the first to engage Marth because swords are not throwing devices, yet fireballs are. Because she’s paired up with Frederick, dual support kicks in and Frederick gets the knockout. I’m too busy laughing to read the rest of the dialogue of the chapter, however Basilio gives us the quiet swordsman Lon’qu to help us on our journey to the west.

Just kidding. I can’t help but mention who part of the post chapter dialogue is Lissa talking about how dreamy Marth is. Don’t worry. I’ll be linking back to this down the line. Chrom snips at Lissa, which I’ve never caught before this run, but it’s MUCH funnier having played the game before than it would be playing it blind. Also, Lon’qu says, and I quote, “He gives orders. I stab people. I think our roles are clear”. Spoken like a man who understands his place in a video game plot.

We end the chapter with a seperate cut scene of Chrom sharing the good news of Regna Ferox’s help with Emmeryn, only for them to find out that Plegia is invading. Maribelle has been taken and, despite my best judgement, we’re going to have to save her. Emmeryn tries to be diplomatic and remind everyone that one spoiled brat is not worth starting a war over, however Lissa, Chrom, and Phila32The head of Emmeryn’s royal guard. are off to save Maribelle. Some middle schooler is coming to join us. His name is apparently Ricken and because Chrom tells him he’s too young to join the mission, that’s a sure fire sign that we’ll likely have to save his ass too at some point.

End of Level Recap

Going forward, this section will have two areas — Units and Supports. Units will be where I share what level and class units are, while Supports will highlight any support growths between units, regardless of whether or not those units can marry. For those not familiar with supports, they go by letter grades — C to B to A, with level S available as marriage.

Units

  • Christopher – Level 5 Tactician
  • Kellam – Level 5 Knight
  • Lissa – Level 5 Cleric
  • Vaike – Level 5 Fighter
  • Stahl – Level 4 Cavalier
  • Miriel – Level 4 Mage
  • Lon’qu – Level 4 Myrmidon
  • Chrom – Level 3 Lord
  • Sully – Level 3 Cavalier
  • Frederick – Level 2 Great Knight
  • Sumia – Level 2 Pegasus Knight
  • Virion – Level 2 Being Dead to Me

Supports

  • Chrom & Christopher: None to C
  • Chrom & Sumia: None to C
  • Frederick & Christopher: None to C
  • Frederick & Miriel: None to C
  • Stahl & Sully: None to C
  • Stahl & Kellam: None to C
  • Stahl & Miriel: None to C
  • Lissa & Vaike: None to C

 

The Worst Fire Emblem Awakening Play Through Ever: Chapters 1 and 2

The following post is part of my series “The Worst Fire Emblem Awakening Playthrough Ever”. Spoilers ahead for a six year old game.


Welcome back to the worst Fire Emblem Awakening play through ever. When we last left Chrom, Christopher Robin, and the rest of the Shepherds, they were busy saving a burning village from a man with an axe and a match. We’ve learned that Chrom is a prince and his home kingdom, Ylisse, is at war with its neighbor, Plegia.

In this post, we’ll be going through chapters 1 and 2 of the game. Pretty much everything through chapter 4 is — like last post’s chapters — a glorified tutorial, so we’re going to somewhat breeze through these chapters while still giving the shitty text play through you’ll come to know and love.

Chapter 1: Unwelcome Change

Chrom, Lissa, Frederick, and Christopher are venturing down a dark road when Lissa realizes a change to an insect based diet might give us more protein, but at a terrible cost. The group clears a campsite with limited background objects, a la RWBY season 1, wherein Frederick feeds everyone but Lissa bear meat, all while being smart enough not to eat it himself. The group dozes off, only for Chrom and Lissa to wake up and realize THE WHOLE GODDAMN FOREST IS EXPLODING. A cut scene from Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood drops in and Chrom and Lissa are attacked by extras from The Walking Dead. A masked figure who in no way will be central to the story’s plot saves Lissa’s life, beginning the chapter itself (though our masked friend is no where to be found).

We learn that the zombies are called Risen and we’re going to have to kill them to get out of Smokey the Bear’s worst nightmare. Fortunately, we can hole up some of our units in conveniently placed forts that would totally be in a forest in any other situation besides learning the game. Chrom finds a fancy staff that Lissa will be able to use later in the game as our first turn ends.

Our second turn begins with the introduction of two new characters. The first is Sully, a woman who fights better than any man and speaks like an angry white pensioner from Tennessee. She’s quickly followed by Virion, a shitty ladies’ man wannabe who we’ll be benching as soon as I can select units because good fucking god he’s annoying. Sure, he’s not as annoying as Azama in Fire Emblem: Birthright, but he’s also not as useful. Virion tries to flirt with Sully, only to get shut down faster than a sixteen year old’s internet browser when their parents walk in to him watching porn. And yet, this dialogue still goes on for way too long.

Sully, Chrom, and Christopher do some zombie slaying, while Frederick hits a Risen archer so hard with a critical hit that he’s demoted to a bit part in World War Z. We don’t get the best critical hit line in the game on this hit, but when we do, you can bet your ass I’ll be showing a video of it. Lissa gains some XP solely by stepping on a shiny space, making the grind of leveling up a healer slightly less painful. As was the case in the last chapter, we’re going to let Frederick kill the boss, because I like watching the heads of Fire Emblem purists explode for giving kills to The Jagen of this story.

The chapter ends with Zorro — who is clearly a girl — being referred to by everyone as sir and insisting they be called Marth. Even though Fire Emblem is progressive as a game series, something tells me this isn’t a matter of gender identification and instead may lead us to a plot twist. Marth gives a warning that the world is about to go to shit before walking off into the still burning forest all dark and brooding like.

We arrive at the Ylissian capital of Ylisstol where the peasants walking around the streets are unaware of the fire just outside of the city. Chrom’s older sister, Emmeryn, begins walking through the streets. Considering she’s both the leader of a nation and a spiritual leader, you’d think she’d be in an armored car like the Pope. Instead, she’s just walking around with the equivalent of the medieval Secret Service at her side. Christopher finally makes the connection that Chrom and Lissa are royalty.

Chrom introduces Christopher to Emmeryn, both he and Lissa praising Christopher’s help. Frederick says that Christopher could be a spy, but Emmeryn shrugs him off because this cut scene really needs to move along already. Chrom runs off to join Emmeryn at a council of leaders, mercifully ending my endless mashing of the A button.

Chapter 2: Shepherds

We’ve unlocked Support Conversations, but have none to do at this point. In future posts, I’ll have a section of the post dedicated to that feature, for reasons that’ll become clear when we get there33Spoiler: I’ve already called this Fire Emblem: Shipping Simulator once.. That said, we’re not going to dive into the support conversations in great detail, as I don’t want to permanently scare off all my readers.

We start chapter two with Lissa in a room with a bunch of people we haven’t met yet, telling Christopher to feel comfortable around strangers. I personally find this strange, but our amnesiac friend clearly hasn’t forgotten how to make small talk with strangers. Rarity from My Little Pony is here, only her name is Maribelle and you will quickly learn that we’ve been sent the Equestria Girls version, not the Friendship is Magic version. We’re also introduced to Vaike, who has the IQ of a bag of hammers, and Sumia, who nearly everyone hates despite the fact that Intelligent Systems basically preordains her to be Chrom’s wife. Sumia is the stereotypical horse-loving country girl from a romance novel, only she doesn’t speak like it. It’s very confusing, but will come in useful down the road for about three seconds. Vaike burps.

Chrom enters the scene and Sumia tries to run toward him, only to fall flat on her face. Chrom then asks if Sumia has tripped and fallen again because of her boots, which would make total sense if any character in Awakening actually had feet. Seriously. Look at this shit.

Image courtesy @AustinEruption on Twitter

We’re off to Regna Ferox, which is another kingdom that isn’t Ylisse or Plegia. Everyone’s excited to go on this trip, as is an empty suit of armor that begins talking and is promptly ignored by everyone. The suit of armor is apparently named Kellam, which is weird, because his name should be Alphonse or John Cena.

After even more talking, we leave the bunkhouse and are introduced to Stahl, who is a fat man in a skinny man’s body. Vaike has forgotten his axe because he’d forget his own head if it weren’t attached. Frederick teaches us about the game’s weapon triangle, which is basically rock paper scissors for 14th century warfare. Our first turn is spent baiting out some of the forward enemies while we wait on the Shepherd’s mage, Miriel, to bring Vaike his axe. We have to waste an entire turn on her giving him his axe, which is extra annoying because Miriel is already squishy and underleveled compared to the rest of the team. Lissa starts going around healing people because I’m going to get tired of her not being able to attack pretty soon.

We advance on the bridge in the middle of the map, only for Frederick to talk about the auto battle feature that I’ve never once used. I’d genuinely forgotten it’s in the game. We bait some more enemies out with Sully and Christopher, Chrom and Stahl kill some people, and Vaike get swole from some XP laying on the ground. Risen go down quickly and easily and, as is tradition at this point, we let Frederick kill the boss. Just kidding. Stahl actually gets the kill this time.

The chapter finishes up with a cut scene with Chrom, Lissa, and Christopher encountering a pegasus. It’s angry, but Sumia is there to calm it down because of course she is. Sumia falls on her face yet again for reasons that still don’t make sense when you take science or logic into consideration.

End of Level Recap

  • Christopher – Level 4 Tactician
  • Lissa – Level 4 Cleric
  • Vaike – Level 4 Fighter
  • Sully – Level 3 Cavalier
  • Stahl – Level 3 Cavalier
  • Chrom – Level 2 Lord
  • Virion – Level 2 Archer
  • Frederick – Level 1 Great Knight
  • Miriel – Level 1 Mage