Genre: Role-Playing (RPG), Strategy / Tactics
Published by: Nintendo Co.
Developed by: Intelligent Systems Co.
Platform: Game Boy Advance (GBA)
Fire Emblem: The Sacred Stones will take you to the fantasy world called Magvel. For a long time, peace reigned here, and people remembered wars only in history lessons. Suddenly, the troops of the State of Grado attack their neighbor, Renee. Prince Ephraim leaves Renee to fight the troops of Grado. His twin sister Eirika, to the last, wants to be near the king, but when the enemy’s troops break into the castle, the leader of the country orders her to flee and find her brother. Eirika is to find his relative and find out with him why Grado started a war and stop aggression.
Intriguing at first, the plot rather quickly becomes ordinary and calm, well performing its main task: to link one battle causally with another. He does not have enough stars from the sky, and quietly does his job, throwing up all the new, but typical for role-playing game characters. A brave paladin who wants to give his life for a princess, a mercenary, who at a difficult moment decides to work not for money, but for interest, an occasional magician, for help from which heroes turn, and so on.
The visual part of the game is mostly schematic. The character models themselves are well executed, so each character looks very memorable. There are beautiful backdrops during the dialogues and excellent attractive faces of the main characters, who like to have a good chat and discuss their plans in between battles. The characters look nice during the battle. When one character attacks another, a small scene begins, during which the fighters can be viewed in more detail. The battlefield itself looks rustic: this sand tile, this one for water, this one for grass. All this differs only in color and some typical pattern.
Surprise and keep me at the screen could only combat system. In fact, Fire Emblem: The Sacred Stones is a tactical turn-based role-playing game. You are given a detachment of warriors, you must correctly place the soldiers on the field on your turn, survive during the opponent’s turn and repeat everything again. In his turn, the fighter can move, after which either attack, or finish the course, or use a thing or special ability. Actually, the enemy has exactly the same arsenal of actions.
Another interesting team that the fighters have during the battle is Save. Riders, and some other warriors, can pick up an ally from the map, and stick their armpit somewhere. This is useful when there is no opportunity to cure a dying hero, but he must be quickly rescued by taking a blow upon himself. Later I found another useful application of this skill: high-speed riders can take less mobile comrades to themselves in order to throw them into the thick of things. And, as you know, who walks slowly, he is dressed in armor and equipped with heavy weapons, causing great damage.
The game has several types of characters that are generally classic for role-playing games. Paladins and other horsemen have tremendous speed of movement, archers can shoot only one cell away, so they are defenseless in hand-to-hand combat, the knight has huge armor and is a local counterpart of the tank, magicians do spontaneous damage and so on. After each attack and kill the enemy, the heroes will get experience. Experience over time turns into a level, and it, in turn, enhances certain characteristics of the character. Upon reaching the 10th level warrior, he will have the opportunity to change his class to a more powerful one. However, this can be done only with the necessary books, tokens or other gizmos, which can be selected on the playing field. With the improvement of the class, two directions for further pumping will be presented, which are mainly tied to weapons that the warrior can use. For example, you can teach an archer to handle cold weapons or to teach him to use heavy bows, which increase the firing range. After changing the class, the character level will again be the first, but all the characteristics of the character will be preserved.
To the soldiers in the Fire Emblem series, a very peculiar approach that personally surprised and surprised me. New fighters here can not be hired, all the characters join you in the story or after performing certain actions. "Novices" have character, their history, sometimes they meet in dialogues. And everything goes on as usual until one of them is killed. At such moments, the character says the death words and dies. Forever and ever. It is impossible to resurrect him, he is simply not there. Thus, you begin to appreciate the existing warriors, and to worry about their fate. I am sure that if you lose a pumped-up warrior with expensive ammunition in battle, you will immediately restart the battle. By the way, if Eirik or Ephraim dies in battle, the game will instantly end.
Heroes do not go into battle with their bare hands, but with weapons that they can control. Fire Emblem weapons tend to break after a certain number of hits. It is always shown before making an attack. New weapons can be bought in the shop before the fight, but there it does not have strong characteristics. You can buy quality weapons right during the battle if you go to the store.
Yes, the game will not allow you to safely explore the world. The action will be promoted according to the following pattern: dialogue - movement on a map, during which you cannot go anywhere, - battle. Before the battle, you will be given the opportunity to go from the menu to the simple shop, check the equipment of the fighters, select soldiers for battle, change the formation. And now, during the battle, the heroes will be able to enter the villages and warn residents of the threat (and in return receive valuables), enter the shops with items of excellent quality, and even perform in the gladiator arena. Let this be a rather strange situation, when everyone fights with crowds of opponents, and one of the characters fights for money in the gladiatorial arena, but this is a good way to earn experience and money.