Fire Emblem Fates is a turn-based strategy game where you play a major part in a war between the two nations, Hoshido and Nohr. It is a brilliant game for creating a strategy and putting it into action. It comes with an enjoyable story as well as a great jumping on point for people looking to get into the series.
You play as your avatar Corrin. They are the main character of the game and they are the one that chooses the major paths of fate. You choose various thing that are true about them like their birthday, talents and weaknesses. Corrin is a sheltered child of Nohrian Royalty and you start the game being given your first mission as Royalty of Nohr and fight against the Hoshidan enemy. Afterwards you discover that you are also a member of Hoshidan Royalty and you were kidnapped as a child and taken from your home.
Here the story twists into the three different paths of fate:
- Birthright, where after discovering your heritage you decide to fight against your Nohrian siblings to protect Hoshido.
- Conquest, where you decide that you can’t betray the family that raised you and battle against your Hoshidan blood siblings and fight with Nohr.
- Revelations, where you decide that you can’t betray any of your family and leave them to try to find another way to stop the war.
The basic gameplay of Fire Emblem Fates is the same as previous games in the series, with some minor tweaks to make the gameplay smooth and enjoyable. You play by taking control of an army that you command and fight against enemies for different objectives like seizing an area or simply wiping them out. You play on a grid-based map where you move your different units around the field and command them to do specific actions like to fight or collect items to try and help you succeed in your current objective.
Each unit in your army has different stats and something called “growths” that effect what stats increase at what rate on a level up. For example if a character had a 60% growth in a stat, then they would have a 60% chance for that stat to increase on a level up. Each of these things make each individual unit useful in different ways.
Depending on which path of fate you follow you will encounter different characters. Birthright is the easiest of the three with simpler missions and a more relaxed pace. Conquest is the opposite with the hardest gameplay and no chance to take a break between missions. Revelations is in between the two with challenging missions but a chance to take a break and prepare between them.
The graphics are impressive considering that it was released for the Nintendo 3DS system that has limited graphics resources. In combat, each unit has a unique model that while hard to notice and see, show effort in character design. Outside of combat they each have a beautifully drawn character portrait.
Fire Emblem Fates also has a notable soundtrack with music fitting for each different moment and a very well performed theme called “Lost in Thoughts All Alone” that references the different paths of fate in each verse. Sound effects in combat between units are also well done with heavy blows sounding extremely satisfying and each unit’s unique quotes are enjoyable and memorable.
It also has massive replayability having three different routes to play through, though if you don’t buy the limited edition you have to buy each path separately. In each route you encounter different characters to interact with and each route has a satisfying ending.
There are also many more little things that make the game more enjoyable. For example, the Bonuses that you unlock when different units have fought together for extended periods of time that increase the stat boosts that are given for fighting together and give an insight to each character. And all the different paralogs that are fun missions that are separate from the main story that involve you recruiting a new unit for you army.
Fire Emblem Fates is an incredible game with an enjoyable story and I highly recommend it to anyone looking for an enjoyable strategic distraction.