Nintendo has shown an incredible commitment to Fire Emblem, one of its most “hardcore” series, across multiple systems.
Nintendo revealed on January 12 that a spinoff of the Fire Emblem series called Fire Emblem Warriors would be released for the upcoming Switch console. Less than a week later, the company has announced additional information at a special Nintendo Direct event — not one, not two, but three other Fire Emblem games are on the way, and they’ll all be available by 2018.
The 3DS is evidently not being forgotten once the Switch comes along. On May 19, Fire Emblem Echoes: Shadows of Valentia will be released across the line of portable systems, along with Amiibo figures of the two protagonists, Alm and Celica.
This game is an updated version of the Japan-only Famicom game Fire Emblem Gaiden, which featured essentially the same story, same characters, and an increased emphasis on exploration. Certain towns and dungeons will also let you explore from a traditional third-person perspective, and combat looks to be relatively unchanged from the more recent Fire Emblem games.
Character progression was described at the Nintendo Direct event as “flexible,” and will likely include branching paths. Like the contemporary games, it will also feature rendered cutscenes and voice acting.
The Nintendo Direct event on Wednesday, January 18, also gave us our first look at Fire Emblem Warriors gameplay, which appears to be very similar to Koei Tecmo’s Dynasty Warriors games, as well as Hyrule Warriors. Chrom from Awakening will be making an appearance — the gameplay footage showed him charge into an enormous crowd of enemies and easily cut them down to size. Fire Emblem Warriors is out this fall for not only Switch, but also the New 3DS family of systems. The original 3DS will not be supported, presumably as a result of the technical issues surrounding Hyrule Warriors Legends.
More excited about a new “traditional” Switch Fire Emblem game? You’ll have to wait a little bit longer. The game won’t be arriving until 2018, and is currently just known as Fire Emblem for Nintendo Switch. Expect more information on this title in the future.
Lastly, there’s a Fire Emblem game you’ll be able to get your hands on in February. Fire Emblem Heroes, which launches first on Google Play before making its way to iOS devices, is a free-to-play Fire Emblem game featuring its own original story that focuses on two kingdoms — one torn by cruelty and the other by privilege — engaged in a massive conflict. As the “Summoner,” you must call on a selection of previous Fire Emblem characters to help you win the war, but others will take up arms against you. To acquire these characters, you must spend orbs, which can be earned both through regular play and microtransactions.
The game’s art style has also been somewhat “mobilized,” with large heads on the sprites and simpler animation, but the game is otherwise a relatively simple translation of the turn-based strategy gameplay the series is known for.