Fire Emblem Fates, the newest title in the fan favorite Fire Emblem series, released to both critical and fan acclaim last week in the United States. With its unique distribution model, more than 300,000 units were sold between all versions of the game during its launch weekend, becoming the fastest selling game in in the history of the illustrious series in the United States. Fire Emblem Fates divided its narrative into three varying and unique storylines, offering players the choice to decide which fate best suits their play style and desires for their characters. A tale of family, honor, betrayal, and adventure, Fates has created essentially three new games for players to devour. Based on the theme of choices, and within the backdrop of warfare between two powerful kingdoms, players must choose whether to help defend their birth family the Hoshido clan– the Birthright storyline, whether to try to assert change from within their adopted family the Nohr clan—the Conquest storyline, or whether to choose to forge their own path in the Revelations storyline, which will be unlocked through DLC for non-special edition holders in the coming weeks.
Fire Emblem Fates is just one of the dozens of must have games available on the Nintendo 3DS, along with its predecessor, Fire Emblem Awakening, and is poised to carry the franchise to even loftier heights. Once always considered a niche franchise, whose many early games were Japan exclusive, Fire Emblem has now become one of Nintendo’s core franchises. One only has to look at the myriad of Fire Emblem characters now included in Nintendo’s popular latest Smash Bros. title to see how much the franchise has grown. As a long-time fan of the series, seeing the franchise get its due in the sunlight has been heartwarming to say the least. Although many older fans may decry some of the changes and added features in the latest title, in my opinion, the core mechanics of Fire Emblem– the depth in strategy and combat, the litany of content, and interesting narratives, are all still here in droves. Hopefully this latest success will be a signal for Nintendo to start crafting a new console version of the franchise for the Wii U, or the mysterious upcoming NX, which fans have not seen since Fire Emblem: Radiant Dawn for the Nintendo Wii. And maybe, just maybe, Intelligent Systems, the main developers behind the Fire Emblem series, can bring back another old fan favorite strategy RPG just waiting for a revival, the Advance Wars series. Fans can only wait with baited breath.