Fire Emblem Fates: Birthright Review

I’ve been playing all these 3DS games, might as well start reviewing them.

So Fire Emblem. Hmmm. Fire Emblem is something that I didn’t know existed until I got a 3DS. Apparently Fire Emblem has been a thing for ages, in Japan, but has been a huge hit since it arrived on Nintendo machines in Europe and the USA.

I believe it’s an RPG. I have to be honest and admit that I don’t really understand what constitutes an RPG, but from what I’ve read, Fire Emblem is one. You take control of a few characters, and they win experience points to be better at killing more other characters to get more experience points, and so on. It’s more fun than I’ve just made it sound.

The gameplay is almost chess-like. It’s a turn based war game, reminiscent of battles I’ve had in Civ 5, but without all the civilisation building. Actually it’s exactly like a battle in Civ 5, except you know the back story of every unit you send off to battle.

Units have relationships with each other, and give more support if they’re friends. In Birthright you can go as far as having characters have children together, who then go on to fight in your army. This is where my biggest issue with the game lies.

The character you play has the opportunity to enter into a relationship. When you do so, you then have to do things to advance that relationship. The point is that you have a character who supports yours better than any other can. That’s sweet. However, the way in which this takes place sometimes makes me a little uncomfortable. Here’s how it plays out. I have a wife and she’s always waiting for me in the residence in my castle. When I visit her, sex happens. Every time. Afterwards she expresses how she hopes she’s pleasing me. She even says that she loves me so much, she’d even learn how to cook for me. She’s such a submissive character that it’s icky to watch. To make matters worse, you sometimes have to physically interact with her. Yes, you read that right. Sometimes you arrive home, and she’s sleeping. Use the touch screen to stroke her hair and gently wake her. Maybe she’s just had a hot bath and needs to cool down, so you blow into the microphone. I came here to fight battles, not blow on pictures of cartoon women. I’m all up for the relationship building stuff, I just feel like a right twat blowing on my imaginary wife.

Birthright is one of a pair of games. The other one is called Conquest. The story in Birthright is told from one point of view, the story in Conquest is the same story told from the opposite point of view. There’s probably more to it than that, and I do intend to play Conquest, but not until I’ve completely beaten Birthright. To go into any more detail about the story at this point would just ruin it for your. It’s a very compelling story with some tough choices to make.

When you’re not making story choices or fighting battles, you’re building your castle. I’m not sure how I feel about all the castle stuff. Not only do they want me to build my own, but they also want me to go online and visit other people’s castles. In the beginning of the game, some items are only available to you when you visit other castles. It slows things down, and it isn’t battling, but I suppose it isn’t as bad as it could be. From time to time you’ll get the chance to have a battle in your castle, and that can be fun. You can spend time in your castle and interact with some of your characters. I’ve just found that an annoying thing you have to deal with in between bits of stories and gameplay. I never would have thought of mixing Animal Crossing with Fire Emblem, but clearly somebody did.

Of the two Fire Emblem games I’ve played, the last one being Fire Emblem: Awakening, this is the better game. It’s addictive, fun, and has a great story. The gameplay is spot on and keeps you coming back for more. I didn’t expect to still be playing this game three months after starting, yet it’s always with me in case I get the chance to have a quick blast.

Fire Emblem Fates: Birthright on Amazon