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Aug 1, 2019

In This Episode:

  • Fire Emblem: Three Houses is a turn-based strategy RPG, but it’s also totally a game like Persona where it’s just as much about relationships on a one to one level as it is about the battles
  • First time I’ve played FE not on a handheld system 
    • Radiant Dawn?
    • There hasn’t been one since the Fire Emblem on the Nintendo Wii
  • Premise
    • Kingdom of Fargus?
    • Lester Alliance?
    • Something Empire?
    • Edelgard
    • Dimitri
    • Claude
    • Three countries on this continent
    • There’s a monastery in neutral ground in the middle of the continent that happens to be the seat of the church and also the training ground for officers from all the different countries
    • The 3 houses in the school correspond to the 3 countries on the continent
    • This year is special because future leaders from each country are all studying at the monastery at the same time
    • You end up there kind of by accident but they make you a professor and you have to pick a house to instruct
  • Houses
    • Blue Lions - Kingdom
    • Golden Deer - Alliance of Nobles
    • Black Eagles - Empire
    • No, they don’t believe in democracy here
  • No weapon triangle (sword, lance, axe)
    • This is probably the biggest initial change to adjust to
  • Quality of Life improvements in battles
    • It’s so much easier to make sure your characters don’t end up somewhere that they’ll get killed because you misjudged distance by one square on the grid
    • It’s limited to only a few times per battle
    • But, you can rewind time to any point in the battle
      • Most of the time I’ve used it I only rewind one turn but you could rewind multiple turns if you realized you made a critical mistake 3 or 5 or 10 turns ago
      • Saves you from replaying entire battles
    • It’s much more clear about which enemies will attack which ones of your characters before you commit to a movement
    • Battle forecasts are a little more clear but there’s still room for variance with hit % and crit %
    • Divine pulse lets you rewind time
  • Characters are much more customizable than in past games 
    • Beginner classes you need to be level 5 and then maybe have a “D” rank in a weapon type related to that class
    • Intermediate classes you generally need level 10 and then maybe a “C” rank in something related to that class
    • Etc
    • “Focus area” pick two abilities for each character for when you’re auto progressing through the week.
    • Individual instruction
      • Manually pick from abilities but you can get bonuses if you (as the instructor) are skilled in that skill or if the student has natural talent for that skill.
    • Group Projects
      • Flying, heavy armour, etc
      • Can focus on a few things that are hard to level up otherwise
      • Also makes their support levels go up for anyone in the group
    • Classes, skills battalions, training focus 
    • Class system is all about taking exams based on the skills a character has + their level
    • Characters are super customizable because you are their professor and get to have them focus in whatever area you want
  • Game structure / school
    • Monthly - main mission
    • Weekly
      • Explore
      • Seminar
      • Battle
      • Rest
      • Lesson planning
      • One day each week you get to pick what to do completely
    • Daily
      • Random events
    • So much Persona DNA and I love it
    • School / class / calendar structure
  • So much to do in “Explore” mode
    • Have tea
    • Have a meal
    • Cook
    • Choir Practice
    • Tournaments
    • Wander around the monastery
    • Talk to everyone
    • Find lost items and return them
    • Answer mystery letters
    • Give gifts
    • One on one time with characters
    • Do one on one training with instructors
    • Essentially, you’re building up your relationship ranks and having meaningful interactions with people from all three houses plus the instructors and church leaders
  • Things I’ve barely scratched the surface of but will report back on
    • Unique back half of the game for each house / political entity
    • If you have the stats?  Or the support level? Or both?
    • Battalions
    • Blacksmith
    • Relics
    • Time Jump
    • Recruiting non-house characters
    • Advanced classes
    • I don’t think I have any one on one relationships above a C rank yet, so there’s a ton more there to dig into as well
  • I like this game a lot already.  I’m only ~9 hours in and I barely have scratched the surface but I also wouldn’t be surprised if this ends up as one of my top games of the year.  
    • This game is so much of what I like in so many ways

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Weekly Geekery

  • Beej
    • DQB2
      • Finished the game, took about 55 hours to finish the main story, I think.
      • The third island is...ew. Far too long, too much combat (and I tend to enjoy the battles), the environment is bleak and not even fun to explore, and the characters are kind of meh.
      • All in all, it drags an amazing game down a notch, but I powered through it.
      • Still haven’t done co-op. Can’t wait to.
      • Main goal: reconstruct my Ultima Online houses
    • Marvel Ultimate Alliance 3
      • Had no camera issues in co-op. Was it because I already had it on Heroic?
      • Jennifer likes it, but it’s a small-bursts game for her, understandably.
  • Void
    • Sky
      • Basically a spiritual successor to Journey but on smartphones 
      • Feels a lot more directionless than Journey

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