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  1. Actually, while I won't profess to have things completely down pat, I can explain some things. First off, using a different weapon in and of itself does not guarantee a different level up. The difference, I believe, comes from whether it doubles or not, which forces another roll - plus another one if the enemy got to retaliate. As for crits, I believe this is how it works in both this game and Three Houses - say your crit chance is 25%. If the RNG roll is 10, since that's below 25%, it crits. Then, if you go back to a savestate, or use Divine Pulse in the case of Three Houses, and use a different weapon that gives you a 15% crit chance, it will still crit - because the RNG roll is 10, and still below 15%. In the case of Florina here, it was already an extremely low roll (though obviously I don't know exactly what it was) that was within the crit chance for both a Slim and Iron Lance. So I do believe that, since a Slim Lance has a higher Crit chance, there won't be any situation where you will crit if you use an Iron Lance but not crit if you use a Slim one.
  2. Part 3: Things Get Interesting (OBLIGATORY WARNING: If you are following along, be careful not to accidentally manipulate the RNG with the movement arrow, as it WILL change what results you get. If you get something different, that’s the most likely answer - that being said, if you’re sure you didn’t do it, let me know. If my own work is faulty, I’ll do my best to correct it.) And here we go, with… This is the last chapter where I can promise a no-damage run - but it’s also probably the first chapter with any semblance of difficulty (though not by much), so there’s that. Once again - behold, tutorials. Sorry, you’ll still be seeing those for a while. In any case, the first ACTUAL thing I get to do is send Sain over to attack this archer. Kent, obviously, works just as well for this, but it’s a bit indicative of who I’m going to be relying on in this first section. After bringing up Kent to form ranks, the enemies move, and we hit turn 2. Sending Lyn to join her allies, while also sending Florina to visit the village and get a couple thou’, before backing up a bit. Wil similarly joins his (soon-to-be) colleagues, but I don’t move the others just yet. While I COULD send one of them up to plug the forest hole there, such a thing would kill any possibility of taking no damage. Not that it’s a bad strategy - it’s perfectly valid for this chapter. You’ll notice the Brigand goes for Sain - I seem to remember when testing things out that if I swapped the two around, he ends up hitting Kent, but I can’t remember. Onto Turn 3, and I bring down Florina to rejoin the group… While Wil moves up and takes out the Brigand. NOW is when we plug the hole with Sain - while also bringing up the other two stragglers into a place they won’t get tagged by the archer. …Now, this is something I confess I can’t explain. I have, multiple times, fooled around with having someone right there - and as far as I can tell, there is nothing FORCING that Brigand to move first. Yet, in this situation, he always goes for Sain instead of the Mercenary, who lacks the weapon triangle disadvantage. Why? Hell if I know. Some FE AIs make sense, such as prioritizing not being countered, prioritizing low-health units, or prioritizing attacking the Lords (even if those three aren’t always the best strategies at the time) - this is not one of them. And as it happens, we also get the one unit to be worried about in this chapter for a no-damage run - while the first archer could be taken out pretty handily without getting attacked back, and the Brigands and Mercenaries can have the odds evened with a weapon-triangle advantage, there’s no such thing you can do to help with this Archer. His hit rate is his hit rate. …which is why it’s a good thing I mentioned ‘not taking damage’, not ‘not getting hit’. This is why Sain was important for this section. Now, we bring Florina up past the wall - once again, I can afford to do this, as I already know what happens next. Meanwhile, Wil quickly takes a moment to steal a Vulnerary for Sain, in preparation for the Cavalier’s next action… …Before taking out the Brigand. Next, Sain goes to the Armory and picks up an Iron Sword and Iron Lance each, before retreating a step. …As it turns out, I probably could have done without the Iron Sword - you get an extra one as a drop in Chapter 5 - but I feel it doesn’t make that much of a difference. Next, Kent heads up to take out the archer - making sure to use a lance in preparation for our mercenary friend. Finally, Lyn moves up to complete the turn. Here comes the Mercenary - I may have fibbed when I said the archer was the only hit rate to worry about, Mercenaries are actually pretty accurate - but he misses. Now, when the next turn rolls around, we move up Sain and have him hand over that shining new Iron Lance to Florina, so she has some extra might to work with. Kent impales a Mercenary, and Lyn moves up to attack the Brigand - with the Mani Katti, I should mention. Sadly, ORKOing a Brigand with an Iron Sword just isn’t in the cards for her at the moment. Of course, with the Mani Katti… …the predictable happens. Wil chips away at the Mercenary… And Florina finally gets to hit something! The Slim Lance works just fine here, though - as accurate as the Mercenaries might be, they aren’t particularly tanky at the moment. Next turn is spent bringing the characters up towards Migal - Florina COULD take a shot at him now, but… …yeah, no. Let’s wait a turn, get all our ducks in a row. First, let’s send Lyn to take a chunk out of him. …Hm? Why are we still using the Mani Katti, if we don’t want Lyn to kill? …Well, you’ll see. For one, it doesn’t crit, surprisingly (for a certain measure of ‘surprise’ - as I said, I know all that is about to happen) Then, we send Florina to finish the job with her new Iron Lance. And… She gets a good level! Florina Lv +1 (+0.95) HP +0 (-0.6) Str +1 (+0.6) Skl +1 (+0.5) Spd +1 (+0.45) Lck +0 (-0.5) Def +0 (-0.15) Res +1 (+0.65) See, here’s the thing - while I’m not abusing RNG by any means, I am messing with it. I wouldn’t qualify this as really cheating, as I’m not doing anything that couldn’t happen normally just by playing the game (as opposed to messing around with the cursor for hours on end just to get a perfect level). Even a couple chapters later, where I take a pot-shot at a boss with Javelin on a ~50% chance - that’s still something a first-time player might be inclined to do. Of course, what I’d originally been PLANNING to do was use Wil AND Lyn to whittle Migal down, before swooping in with Florina for a level. While the results weren’t quite as good as this one, they were…interesting. Here, take a look. First, Lyn with the Iron Sword, then Wil…although I will say if you want to get this result you CAN do it in the other order. Then, Florina, and - …well would you look at that! A crit! That happens WHETHER OR NOT you use the Slim or Iron Lance! No real reason to show it off - I just thought it was funny. I will, however, also show the levels she gets by using the Slim Lance… Florina Lv +1 (-0.05) HP +0 (-0.6) Str +1 (+0.6) Skl +1 (+0.5) Spd +0 (-0.55) Lck +1 (+0.5) Def +0 (-0.15) Res +0 (-0.35) …and the Iron Lance. Florina Lv +1 (-0.05) HP +1 (+0.4) Str +0 (-0.4) Skl +1 (+0.5) Spd +0 (-0.55) Lck +0 (-0.5) Def +1 (+0.85) Res +0 (-0.35) Not exactly BAD levels, mind you, but not great either. In any case, that’s all for this chapter! I’ll see you next time, for a chapter where…no damage will sadly become a thing of the past.
  3. Yes and no. I've never been one for obsessing over rankings, as they feel like they just get in the way of a good time. That being said, if there's one thing I'm paying attention to, it's my turn count - I'm basically making sure to finish chapters as quickly as I reasonably can, give or take a turn or two.
  4. Part 2: I don’t have funny names for these, sorry (OBLIGATORY WARNING: If you are following along, be careful not to accidentally manipulate the RNG with the movement arrow, as it WILL change what results you get. If you get something different, that’s the most likely answer - that being said, if you’re sure you didn’t do it, let me know. If my own work is faulty, I’ll do my best to correct it.) Hey, all! Back again, with… Still more bandits. What did you expect from FE7? Once again, just covering the tutorials for completion’s sake - although in this case the Canto movement afterwards may be a bit important. As you might expect, I just moved Sain and Kent so that they would be closer to the action afterwards. Then, for the next turn, getting into position for the inevitable attack from the first Brigand. And the inevitable miss. Admittedly, that’s not too different from a regular battle between a Brigand and Lyn on a forest tile… But this one gets us a level, which is...still exactly the same as the prologue, and the one we didn’t actually get in the previous chapter. …I’ll be the first to admit, I don’t quite get this. Are levels in Lyn Mode semi-scripted or something? Ah well. Here’s the stats. Lyn Lv +1 (+3.3) HP +1 (+0.6) Str +1 (+1.2) Skl +1 (+0.8) Spd +1 (+0.8) Lck +1 (+0.9) Def +0 (-0.4) Res +0 (-0.6) For the next turn, setting up the characters I don’t intend to use…which is actually interesting, as in a regular playthrough you’d only want to do this after you’ve made sure to deal with the enemy in front of you. What if you miss, after all? I had been thinking hit chance, crit chance, and level-ups were the main things that would be affected that I would show off, but I suppose little strategies like this change as well. …Although it doesn’t matter in this case, as it’s guaranteed either way. You know the drill. Anyway, after the enemy phase (and some healing)... We do some more fighting, which… …nets Kent his own level! Kent Lv +1 (+1.1) HP +1 (+0.15) Str +1 (+0.6) Skl +0 (-0.5) Spd +1 (+0.55) Lck +1 (+0.8) Def +0 (-0.25) Res +0 (-0.25) Now that the Brigand is dead, Lyn comes in to take his place and force the next one to attack her. You can probably guess how that goes. Sain’s job, meanwhile, is to go up and attack the wall - in any run, he’s likely going to be best for this, as he has the strength to two-shot it with a lance. I…apparently lost the screenshot for the battle forecast, but given Kent has had 100% chances on previous attacks, I think you can safely assume things are legit here. Next turn, Sain takes out the rest of the wall’s health, and Lyn proceeds inside to attack the Brigand. Once again, everything’s usual here. Kent heads in and finishes the guy off… And next turn, Lyn heads down to the main entrance to take on the Brigand. Meanwhile, Kent heads up to attack Glass, and here’s where things get a little interesting. Everything up till now has been well within what you’d expect - swords vs. axe-wielding Brigands is a pretty clear matchup, so it’s not that far outside the realm of possibility to expect to get through everything so far with clean hits and without taking damage. Glass, however, is different - he’s a Mercenary, he’s got a sword, and he’s sitting on a throne. The odds are still in our favor - but not nearly as much, this time. Still, that’s where our method comes in handy - I can tell you, 100%, that Kent will hit and Glass will miss. ‘But you’ve already played this’, you say, ‘of course you know!’ Well, yes, I…don’t really have a way to disprove that’s the reason. But, if you take the exact same path I did through the game so far, you will get this exact same outcome. Of course, he’s not dead yet, meaning Sain has to come up and finish the job. And Sain gets his own quite-good level! And a Vulnerary. Sain Lv +1 (+3.2) HP +1 (-0.6) Str +1 (+0.8) Skl +1 (+1.3) Spd +0 (+0.2) Lck +1 (+0.3) Def +1 (+0.6) Res +0 (+0.6) Of course, we still have one enemy left to deal with - and this one annoyingly is going to take multiple turns, no way around that. Sending Lyn up and AVOIDING seizing for now, I send Kent down to take out the straggler… And with this…not-quite-as-good level, everyone’s now at Lv3. Kent Lv +1 (+2.2) HP +1 (+0.3) Str +1 (+1.2) Skl +0 (-1) Spd +0 (+0.1) Lck +1 (+1.6) Def +0 (-0.5) Res +0 (-0.5) You don’t need me to tell you what happens next - with that, Chapter 2 comes to a close. Next chapter, things’ll be a bit more interesting, with more Mercenaries and some Archers on top of that to deal with. See you then!
  5. You've misunderstood me - I did not say that I was going to do a No Hits run for the entirety of FE7. I'm pretty sure that's impossible without SEVERE RNG abuse, and I gave up doing that as soon as I hit Chapter 4 (for what I'm sure are fairly obvious reasons). You CAN, however, go through Chapters 1-3 without taking any damage whatsoever, and I'm going to at the very least show that off. Also, currently testing stuff out with Chapter 5, and I've decided it's somewhat for the best - it prevents healers from being usable for anything but healing HP level-ups if I were to do that. As for deploying and investing in units, I have to admit I'll probably need to figure something out once I hit Chapter 7 and actually have to start choosing what units to use and where to put them in the starting formation. Because once that happens, the list of probabilities balloons wildly. I am happy that someone else is interested in this concept, though - I'm aware it's somewhat technical and can suck the fun out of it for some people. But now that I know someone's interested, it's full steam ahead!
  6. Definitely agree with Baron Dominic and Myson (not Mycen - that's Echoes), not so sure about the Sreng guy. I've also thought the same about Count Rowe, given how prominent he is in the story.
  7. Part 1: The Beginning (OBLIGATORY WARNING: If you are following along, be careful not to accidentally manipulate the RNG with the movement arrow, as it WILL change what results you get. If you get something different, that’s the most likely answer - that being said, if you’re sure you didn’t do it, let me know. If my own work is faulty, I’ll do my best to correct it.) Now, I’m doing this on an entirely new game, fyi - I don’t know if having a previous save file would ruin it or not. Maybe, maybe not, but best not to risk it. …Oh, right, forgot about this. I can never remember what effect the tactician has on things, in all honesty - but either way, if you’re playing this yourself, I’d once again recommend following me exactly. I’m just leaving things as the default. Now, I am going to cover the prologue, even though there’s very little for me to talk about there - just for completion’s sake. I’ll skip over tutorial bits, and just point out how I moved - for the most part, I don’t think changing this should change the outcomes? Unless, once again, you accidentally manipulate the RNG with the arrow. Moving Lyn to the directed square 5 to the east… The brigand approaches, and I go around to attack (fun fact - just for the sake of spicing up this boring-ass tutorial chapter, I always go around back to attack this guy. Omae wa mo shindeiru, nothing personnel and all that) …Side note - I hate having to take screenshots of the battle window with the x2 floating around. It’s not so bad on the left side of the screen, but the right side makes it all but impossible. Like, look at this. What is she even dealing here? Anyway, the Brigand spontaneously ceases to exist, and after heading left one and up two, I follow the tutorial’s only good direction for this map - use a Vulnerary. Then, next turn, it’s time to do something ill-advised again and attack the boss. As most veterans know, fighting a boss that does more than half your health in damage on your turn is not the way to go. Thankfully, we have tutorial magic to help us. Wait…shit, it’s Batta the Beast! Not even tutorial magic can help us against him! Oh wait, nevermind, we crit. Tutorial magic! Now, this has been mostly bog-standard so far - but now that we’ve reached Lyn’s level-up, let’s talk about something interesting. You’d be forgiven for thinking this level up is scripted - after all, literally everything else in this tutorial is. However, if we go back to a savestate right before the boss… …and start fooling around with the RNG… …Voila! We get…a worse level. …Yeah, not sure why you’d ever want to fool around with the RNG here - the original level is actually pretty good. No defense, but this is Lyn, after all. That being said, with that, we can move on from this chapter to something ACTUALLY interesting. Before we do, here’s a quick thing I’ll be keeping track of - how good character are doing on their level-ups! Lyn Lv +1 (+1.65) HP +1 (+0.3) Str +1 (+0.6) Skl +1 (+0.4) Spd +1 (+0.4) Lck +1 (+0.45) Def +0 (-0.2) Res +0 (-0.3) The number in the parentheses indicates how far ahead they are from their averages, as seen in here: https://serenesforest.net/blazing-sword/characters/average-stats/ - and the number in the parentheses next to the level is the total of that. Let me know if I’m off on any of my calculations! Now, onto…! The first chapter we actually get to do stuff! …though not until after a boatload of scripted tutorials. Hooray. Once again, going over the tutorials just for completeness’s sake. Sain goes right 4 here, attacks the Brigand… And, the predictable happens. We do get a free Iron Sword, though. Kent does the same thing, only smarter, and deals some damage… And Lyn heads up two, right one, and finishes the job. Next turn, Sain heads down four, right one, and does something a bit smarter… …Okay, this one isn’t his fault - it’s the game’s. Though missing at an 87 isn’t exactly unheard of… Once again, Kent heads to do his partner’s job better, heading right one, down one, then right one, and attacking… While Lyn heads up here at the tutorial’s behest. Admittedly, I’m not sure this Brigand’s counterattack is actually scripted, but that doesn’t make too much of a difference at this stage. And our final tutorial for the day, Sain heads up four and grabs a Vulnerary from Lyn, healing up. Leading us to… Our first Actual Choice! Decisions, decisions… Unlike in my previous Lords-Only run, this one doesn’t extremely matter, but I decided to move him right one just so that he’d be closer to the action next turn. Meanwhile, Lyn heads up two and attacks the Brigand there. And although this seems like it won’t kill… Ta-da! Coming to you live from The Most Normal Run of FE7, it’s our first guaranteed crit! If any of you are following along at home, here’s the chance to prove once and for all whether or not this method works! Anything else might have been happenstance, but it’s hard to argue with a crit. Meanwhile, Kent does exactly what you’d expect from someone in his position and murders a Brigand. Next turn, Lyn heads up one and right four in preparation for the eventual bossfight, while Sain heads right two to hunker down in a forest and deal with the remaining enemy. Kent, meanwhile, heads right three to the edge of the enemy’s range so that he can stay out of it. Strictly speaking, as there’s no plan to use him for the rest of this chapter, I might as well just keep him where he is, but why not. Our Brigand friend comes down with a severe case of ‘Miss’, and Sain deals over half his health in retaliation… …leaving him prime and ready as easy pickings as Sain circles around him (up one, right two, down one) to finish the job. Meanwhile, Kent moves right one, up three, and left two, and Lyn moves down one and right three, right up to being diagonal to the boss. Our final turn left me with a choice - who do I kill the boss with? Lyn and Sain were both approaching their level-up, and some testing proved that either would be a reasonable choice - but as I’ve tested out the route where I kill with Sain more, and I’m partial to spreading EXP around, that’s what I’m going with. That being said, while I don’t have the screenshot on hand for it, if I had killed with Lyn, I would have gotten the exact same level-up I got in the first chapter, which is…interesting, to say the least. Here’s the stats in question: Lyn Lv +1 (+3.3) HP +1 (+0.6) Str +1 (+1.2) Skl +1 (+0.8) Spd +1 (+0.8) Lck +1 (+0.9) Def +0 (-0.4) Res +0 (-0.6) But, with that firmly in the realm of AU fanfiction, let’s let Lyn head up a square and take the first strike instead. Although Zugu is perfectly capable of two-shotting Lyn on a bad day, that’s not anywhere near to in the cards this time. Meanwhile, Sain heads right three and up three, and finishes Zugu off nicely. And of course, here’s that level-up I promised - and not a bad one, either. Sain Lv +1 (+1.1) HP +0 (-0.8) Str +1 (+0.4) Skl +1 (+0.65) Spd +1 (+0.6) Lck +0 (-0.35) Def +0 (-0.2) Res +1 (+0.8) And with that, we beat our first chapter - without taking a single lick of damage outside of tutorials, as you may have noticed. While that may be actually pretty par for the course in a chapter like this one with so many axes vs swords, the likelihood is going to get far slimmer as we continue on - but here in The Most Normal Run, ‘odds’ means little to us…
  8. Part 0: Foreword Hello, everyone! It’s been…a few years, huh? Back in the day, I posted a Lord-Only run of FE7, then lost interest in it - and didn’t even let anyone know it was abandoned because I was too ashamed to show my face. Thankfully, I’m…a bit more mature about things now, I’d say? At the very least I don’t think I’ll dip out without any warning this time. I might end up doing the Lord-Only run again at some point, because it’s a fun one, but I’m instead doing something…a bit different. As the title expounds, this is The Most Normal Run of FE7 - but what the hell does that mean? Well, if you want a shorter name, you could call it a ‘Normalized’ run - but that implies that I’ve done something to the game in some way. And unless you count emulating it and using savestates, this is all-natural on the game’s part. What this run is about will take a bit to explain, so I’ve devoted a full post to it. It is a bit technical, and I’m hardly the biggest expert on how FE works in all its aspects, but I believe I know all I need to for this run. There will be a TL;DR at the end of the foreword if you want to skip to that. The main thing we need to talk about for this run is a little thing called RNG manipulation. Some of you may already know about this, but bear with me. Here, we have a scene from the end of FE7 Chapter 3 - in fact, the same one I ran in the preparation for this very run. As you can see, everyone but Migal has been dealt with - and as you can’t see, Migal has been run down to 4 HP on the prior turn. Now, the character I’m going to be using to illustrate this point is Florina (hence why I got Migal’s HP so low) as Pegasus Knights not only have high movement, but no obstruction to that movement for the most part (as you can see). Now, first of all, let’s attack Migal with a Slim Lance. As you can see, this will kill (although Florina may take some pretty hefty damage in the process). We finish him off, take that hefty damage I mentioned, and level up - I believe this is a fairly standard level for Florina, although the lack of strength is disappointing. Now, instead of proceeding, let’s use a savestate (which will not be featuring too heavily in this run itself, though the prep I do will involve quite a bit of it) and head back a step. Let’s say we want to finish him off with the Iron Lance and avoid taking any damage, even if the chapter is about to end. Like so, and… …Would you look at that. A different level. Better in some ways (hello strength), worse in others. Now, this may seem fairly standard - doing things differently ends up with different results. But now, let’s head back again, and this time…do something special. There’s multiple ways to do this next step, but the one I prefer is to head all the way out to the edge of Florina’s movement range, and then go beyond it, so that my cursor is outside. Then, we bring the cursor up a couple spaces and back into her movement range. Now, the game has a decision to make - what is the shortest path that arrow can travel? ‘Does it matter?’ you ask. Not really - but the game thinks it does. So, in order to make that decision…it rolls a random number. As you can see, it can end up fairly straightforward, like this… Or all squiggly, like this. ‘So?’ you ask again. So, that random number I mentioned just rolled - what do you think would happen if we went back and attacked Migal again? …yet another different level. See, by basically forcing the game to roll a random number before the attack, we’ve shifted everything out of alignment - meaning the result of the random rolls are now different. And, of course, if we decided the level wasn’t good enough, we could always fiddle around some more… Hmm…better, but what if we wanted some strength? (Note: this can also backfire, as seen above) Aha, there we go! Now that’s a nice level! And now, you know how to manipulate the RNG in a GBA FE game. Congrats! …and now that you know that, say goodbye - because you’ll never be seeing this trick again (at least in this run). ‘...Well then what the hell was the point?!’ you ask. …Man, you’re doing a lot of that. The POINT, you see, is that while many don’t do this RNG manipulation on purpose, it does often happen on accident. Like I said, this is one of multiple ways - another is to fold the arrow in on itself so it recalculates. So what, I ask, would happen…if we never let that happen on accident? Because FE7, as it happens, is not really random. Not truly, you see. Because while it does roll a random number over and over, those numbers are always rolled in the same order - hence why, if you go back to a previous savestate and take the same action, you will get the same result, the same level-up. Furthermore, FE7 always starts on the same 'seed' - meaning, if you boot-up a brand-new game, and take the exact same actions as you did last time, making sure not to let any accidental RNG manipulation happen - you will get the exact same result. So what do you do with that knowledge? Well, if you’re me, you’ll find that intensely interesting, and wonder how far you can take it. Could you, perhaps, make a walkthrough of the game, that if someone followed it exactly, could always get you all the way to the end with no casualties? Maybe, maybe not - as the game goes on, things will get more complicated, definitely - and I might tire of this concept before long. (And I don’t know if it would work on, say, FE6 or FE8 - or even outside of Lyn Normal Mode) But until then, I might be able to show you some interesting things - like, for example, a way to get through the first few chapters without taking any damage, guaranteed (barring tutorial fights, as…FE7 has a lot of those). If you follow along with this walkthrough exactly, you should be able to get the exact same outcomes (though I would like confirmation on this. Having someone else at the very least try out the first chapter following my guide on an emulator, or hell, even on a real GBA, would help a lot) Now, would you want to do this for the full thing? …Admittedly, probably not. You can still have a lot of fun with a game even if you follow the basic steps a walkthrough provides, FE included (I know this from experience) - but already knowing the outcome before you start would take the fun out of it, if it isn’t already sucked out entirely by having to follow step-by-step so meticulously. Still, I won’t stop you from doing it, just…be warned. Now, if this isn’t going to be fun to follow, why do it? Well, it has been somewhat fun for me to check out on my own, at least so far. Messing around with RNG this way is somewhat fascinating to me. And I hope that the rest of you will at the very least have fun reading my experiences. TL:DR - RNG abuse is a thing, but what if we went all the way to the other end and removed any chance of randomness entirely?
  9. Part 6: Lookalikes and Bad Plans Time for another chapter that’s rather short, but is kept longer by lots of talking. Seriously, over half the screenshots I took in total were of people talking. Spot the recruitable character. This time, it’s so obvious you don’t even have to look at their mugshots. Honestly, considering what we know of Marquess Araphen, it’s surprising he even offered aid to Lyn in the first place. Things not to say in a fire emblem game #359. Oh hey, look! It’s Puzon! Well, we obviously know he survives the chapter, since he appears in 13x- ...Oh. I, er...guess that was Puzon’s twin brother. ...wow. I just realized that for all the criticism of anyone’s racism towards Sacaeans, it goes the other way as well. Are you saying, Rath, that you wouldn’t have helped if she wasn’t Sacaean? Once again, I feel it necessary to bring up the fact that Lundgren, despite what Lyn is saying here, sent soldiers to Araphen. This is evident in the fact that there aren’t any brigands in the invader’s army. There’s some soldiers, some mercenaries, an archer, and a knight as a leader, but no brigands. As you can see, he doesn’t seem to have much desire to avert a national incident. Meanwhile, a tiny bit to the north... I like how despite her scathing rebuke of Matthew, she doesn’t take a second before accepting his offer. I have to say, out of all the characters in Blazing Sword, Matthew is one of my favorites. A lot of his early scenes portray him as a thief just out for the money, but in retrospect, they mean a lot more. Here, he’s probably actually thinking ‘which has the most to offer’ in terms of espionage, rather than wealth. Sorry to go off on a tangent. I just...really like Matthew. Uh-huh. And...where are these men of - WAIT. That was close. I was basically inviting a bunch of green units onto the map, and we don’t want those. The Tutorial forces us to recruit Matthew, and then makes us make him open the door. On another funny note, here’s what Matthew has to say if you try to select someone else. Oh, Matthew. :) This is what the map looks like after the tutorial. Florina flies to the house and gets the door key, And everyone else gets out of the way. Hm...I wonder who this is going to? Could it possibly be the only person we intend to use in battle? I don’t actually visit this house, but it’s an interesting bit of lore that you can easily miss. Once again, I find it surprising that Marquess Araphen even agreed to help Lyn in the first place. It’s okay for me to leave Matthew here (still with the Iron Sword equipped because I forgot to take it off him) because this soldier won’t move. Neither, for that matter, will the soldier to the south. I do some rescuing to ferry Lyn down in range of the mercenaries. Man, I love having four mounted units. :) Unnecessary crit… And another level of strength. I’m getting kind of worried about her defense, though. The other mercenary goes down just as easily. Matthew and Florina ferry the Angelic robe over to Lyn. (and I STILL forget to take the Iron Sword off Matthew.) Yesss… Serra runs down to heal her as well. (Man, look at that max HP...it’s so beautiful.) Once again, I ferry Lyn over into the range of the enemy. Normally, I would be apprehensive about setting her up against a lance-wielder, even one she’s quite a few levels above. However… ...soldiers suck. Florina unlocks the door, and I realize Lyn’s on the verge of going through another Iron Sword. So I use the other one to take him out. Funny story, I checked, and if you rescue someone with a mounted unit while they’re on the trigger, you can move again afterwards. However, Sain can’t move enough to get out of the room, so I don’t do this. Instead, I use Rath, while I finally remember to give Matthew’s Iron Sword to someone else. Let’s take a quick note to talk about Bool. Other than having a stupid name, he’s actually a bit tougher than most previous bosses. Part of this is because he has a spear, and unlike the soldiers we’ve been fighting, he’s not awful. If we were able to use Dorcas or Erk, he would go down real easy. However, he’ll still go down pretty easy, even without the Mani Katti, and I’ll tell you why in one word: Armorslayer. The archer is nice enough to help close the distance, giving me the opportunity to do one of the funniest things you can do in all Fire Emblem games. Adding insult to injury, I use some of my weakest units to do it, too. I take a turn to get Lyn up there… ...and she puts him out of misery. Then I realize I’ve also forgotten to take Rath’s weapon as well, so I do that real quick before rescue-dropping Lyn a bit. Unfortunately, I can’t quite get her in range of the soldier. However, she takes him down easily enough, and gains both a weapon level (Her final one until she promotes. ALREADY.) and a door key. Wil promptly takes the door key and unlocks the door, and I despair over the fact that I can’t quite get Matthew to the chest. So instead, I move Sain into position to do a bit of trading next turn. Voila. The boss is now trivialized. I may have said ‘don’t underestimate Lyn mode’ in the pasts, but it’s hard not to when they just give you the solution like this. Next turn, we do some trading to get the Armorslayer to Lyn, and heal her up before her title fight. Here’s the comparison between the Mani Katti and the Armorslayer. As you can see, the Mani Katti is the better choice, but it would be a shame to not use the solution that they gave us this very chapter, so I go with the Armorslayer. Also, note the fact that for the first time in...actually, ever, I think...the boss can’t kill Lyn in two hits. Ah, stat boosters. How I love you. ...wait. What do you mean, ‘when did you arrive?’ You know she was in the city! You sent your men to deal with her! His poor logic fails to prevent Lyn from slaying his armor. Also, note the fact that he specifically mentioned Lundgren’s name as he died. I’ll get back to that. And with that, we clear the chapter. Rath rightfully defers credit to the one who did all the work. Also, hello yellow/purple Aion. I’m sure your sprite choice isn’t an indication of your integrity whatsoever. Hoo boy. Here we go. Yes. And as you can probably guess, there’s two choices of who Aion can blame. Most reasonable people would blame Lundgren. Of course, he’s not reasonable, he’s a racist. (Once again, I’m surprised he offered his aid in the first place. Even if he didn’t know Madelyn’s daughter was Sacaean, she still spurned his advances, so I assume given his disposition he’s still bitter) So yeah. He’s too much of a coward to challenge Lundgren, despite the fact that Araphen is, as stated, the second-largest territory in Lycia. So let’s go over what we’ve learned so far, shall we? Lundgren is specifically sending soldiers, and he is specifically sending them to Araphen, not ‘wherever Lyn happens to be at the time.’ This is corroborated by the fact that of the enemies we face, a few of them are of the soldier class. As far as I know, there is NO battle in the entire Fire Emblem series where we face Soldiers in a battle with bandits or mercenaries. We ONLY face them when fighting actual armies. It’s also worth noting that the leader, Bool, is a knight, wears gilded armor, and specifically mentions Lundgren (and with the title ‘Lord’) when he dies. This counts against him being a mere mercenary for hire, and points more to him being a loyal...well, knight. Of course, what this means is that Lundgren is essentially encroaching on another territory and sending soldiers to murder someone inside its borders. And not just any territory… This is Araphen. Stated to be the second-largest territory in Lycia. Even if they don’t have as big an army, it would be pretty easy for them to cry foul to Ostia. The only thing that stops this from happening is due to the fact that the Marquess of Araphen is a racist bastard who is bitter at being turned down by Madelyn. So either Lundgren is a mastermind who remembers that his niece spurned the guy who eventually became the Marquess of Araphen, and somehow knew for a fact that he would still be bitter… ...Or he’s a goddamn idiot. Man...Lundgren wouldn’t survive a year as Marquess. He’d end up transgressing in some way and then be deposed by the full might of the Lycian League. I know that this is way more effort than anyone should put in to decipher the plot of a bunch of tutorial chapters in a video game...but I just kept on finding that plothole over and over again this chapter. Rath is gonna be real useful for Lyn Mode. He comes pre-leveled, and while he’s not got quite as much HP as Dorcas, he has a good bit more defense, so he’ll be useful for now. Not quite so much when he comes back next mode, but eh. Growths: HP: 80% Strength: 50% Skill: 40% Speed: 50% Luck: 30% Defense: 10% Resistance: 25% Total: 285% Average: 41% Ah, Matthew. It’s a shame that you won’t be useful for much more than thievery and lockpicking. Suffice it to say, while he’s good at utility, he won’t be defending very well. Growths: HP: 75% Strength: 30% Skill: 40% Speed: 70% Luck: 50% Defense: 25% Resistance: 20% Total: 300% Average: 43% Lyn from the beginning of the chapter... ...And Lyn from the end. Growths: HP: 70% Strength: 40% Skill: 60% Speed: 60% Luck: 55% Defense: 20% Resistance: 30% Total: 335% Average: 48%
  10. I've done some thinking about it, and you're probably right. Hell, I'll probably be fine with just Serra and Priscilla. If there's anyone I want to train up at the arenas, it will be the defense and HP-heavy characters. As for the enemy level, I have learned to NEVER underestimate Fire Emblem. If it turns out it's too easy, I may later revisit this concept on a harder difficulty. But since this is my first foray into Let's Playing, I don't want to bite off more than I can chew.
  11. Part 5: Our Final Bandit Confrontation Are you guys ready for a weirdly easy chapter? I know I am! Maybe? They’ve been weirdly persistent. (Also Wil, what are you doing here? You have nothing to contribute to this conversation.) Oh for fu- NO ONE CARES! Wait, who’s that? ...YES! A HEALER! Yeah, I don’t even care that she’s abrasive. No more Vulneraries for me! ...Ok, that’s a lie. Even discounting the fact that I’ll need to wait a bit to get her any more healing staves, I know for a certainty that I’ll need some in emergencies. After doing all the stuff tutorials force me to this chapter... This is what the map looks like. Bug...is kind of underwhelming honestly, not least because of his name. Not only is he the same as every other previous boss (Besides Glass), but he, like Carjiga, has a forest next to him, and he does not move. I really think that they should have at least given him a Hand Axe. I mean, it’s not like we haven’t already seen it with Dorcas. First of all, Florina rides over to take Erk’s tome. Then, next turn, Lyn begins to take out the few enemies we have. (Seriously, there’s more of us than there is of them. That NEVER happens.) Ah...a healer. I’ve missed this. Everyone nicely gets out of the way of the bandit… And Lyn takes him out the following turn. (Look at how little experience she’s getting now. 8XP for one kill. Wow.) I then lost the screenshots after this, but I used some of my units to ferry Lyn up just a few squares and into the bandit’s range. He then dies. Lyn then hits the halfway point of her first 20 levels...in the halfway point of Lyn Mode. Yeah...there is a decent chance we’ll max her out before we finish. She also gets an Iron Sword that I lost the screenshot for, which she then trades away to Dorcas. Lyn then steps into the archer’s range. I would normally heal her of her one HP of level-up retroactive damage for the sake of extra XP for Serra, but I’m trying to conserve the staff’s uses. The archer hits Lyn, and is promptly killed for his insolence. I make sure to heal Lyn this time, and move Sain to lure the Mercenary up. Lyn then subsequently deals with him. Next, everyone piles on their weapons to Florina, and she goes to visit the armory. No swords, so there’s nothing for us to buy, so she simply sells the excess. Serra heals Lyn again, and we eventually work our way down to Bug. Now, I can probably kill him, but there’s no reason for me not to wait, so I do so. Yeah, your 2% hit rate disagrees. I then finish him off with the Mani Katti (And an unnecessary crit) since that’ll conserve my Iron Swords. Yeah, yeah. Meanwhile, at the cutaway… I’ve got to be honest, I don’t understand Lundgren’s logic here. Why not wait until she’s in Caelin? Then you wouldn’t have to INVADE ANOTHER TERRITORY and risk an national incident in order to take care of her. And here we are, our first utility unit. We’ll be getting 4 healers over the course of the game, plus a few extra by promoting. Out of these, Serra has the second-best magic and resistance growth, meaning she’ll be getting plenty of mileage. Growths: HP: 50% Magic: 50% Skill: 30% Speed: 40% Luck: 60% Defense: 15% Resistance: 55% Total: 300% Average: 43% Oh, Erk...How I wish I could use you. As it is, however, he will certainly not be a meatshield. However, I can promote him into a staff-user eventually, so that’s something to look forward to. Growths: HP: 65% Magic: 40% Skill: 40% Speed: 50% Luck: 30% Defense: 20% Resistance: 40% Total: 285% Average: 41% Lyn at the beginning of the chapter... ...And Lyn from the end. Growths: HP: 70% Strength: 40% Skill: 60% Speed: 60% Luck: 55% Defense: 20% Resistance: 30% Total: 335% Average: 48%
  12. Yeah, I think I was thinking of Eubans. Also yeah, any defense map where you have less combat-worthy characters than the amount of chokepoints is quite a bit more difficult. Also, Chapter 5 is so small and easy that it's already finished, so all I have to do is write the update. It should go up either tonight or tomorrow.
  13. Part 4: Actual Difficulty Finally got this one done and posted. Hoo boy. A defense chapter. This’ll be fun. Where did you sleep on the way to Sacae, Sain, if this is too low for your standards? I’m so sorry Natalie. They put poison in his mutton. Alright, now that the obligatory reference is out of the way… Who is the leader of the Ganelon bandits, anyway? We never see him. Well, one fanfiction suggests it’s Wallace...No, I am not joking. It was that absurd. Well, time to recruit the ‘Myrmidon who is on the enemy side’ stereotype...Wait, what do you mean he’s not a Myrmidon? Ah well, that’s fine...in this playthrough I’d rather have a Fighter than a Myrmidon anyway. Oh for crying out loud...This tutorial. THIS TUTORIAL. This makes the chapter so much harder than it needs to be. If I could just let Dorcas come to me instead, things would go so much smoother but nooo, they have to show you how to recruit enemies… One forced miss, forced recruitment, and forced critical later... This is what the map looks like. Kent’s taken a bit of damage, while Sain’s still at full health due to a miss. Carjiga. Not much different about him from the previous bosses, really. The only thing that makes him special is that it’s possible to leave him alive...and likely, especially with the restrictions upon us. In fact, I wasn’t planning on trying to kill him at all, but circumstances beyond my control forced my hand. Wil swaps out with Kent. He may not be a very good meatshield in the long run, but here in the early-game, he’ll do. They miss Wil, and hit Sain. I was about to remark on how apt this comment is when Lyn is the only one fighting, but then I realized she actually hasn’t done any fighting yet, so I have no idea what Carjiga is so worried about. Dorcas comes over and gives his weapons to Kent… ...And another turn passes. Both Wil and Sain take damage this time… And they also break through the wall over there. Weirdly enough, the bandit doesn’t come through. Guess he’s being polite to his fellow battering rams. I begin to gather everyone in the central room, and since I’m here anyway, I decide to have Dorcas speak to Natalie. It’s not that important of a conversation, but most players miss it because it’s an unnecessary detour. I set up the formation I wanted from the beginning, with Lyn blocking the path into the room. Here’s where the onslaught begins. One down, and a sort of disappointing level. Ah well, they can’t all be winners. Two down. Three down, but some damage taken in the process. Four down, and a 29% chance that managed to hit. This is probably going to cause a lot of trouble. And our final bandit falls...for now. This is an accurate representation of the danger that Lyn is now in. Remember that on top of these three battles, I also have to face the bandit and archer on the left. Even with a vulnerary, Lyn could still die if all five of them focus on her. As such, I have no choice but to head out of the fort and towards Carjiga. This will serve two purposes; The mercenary on the right will be unable to reach me, and in addition, the bandits on the left will be more inclined to go towards the unarmed meatshield blocking the path into the central room. First, Sain gives her an extra vulnerary. She’s going to need it. She heads out and heals, while Dorcas takes his place as the doorman. The left mercenary heads for Dorcas, which is a relief. Lyn can deal with the bandits, and the archers don’t deal too much damage, but the mercenaries I’m glad to be rid of. The first bandit falls, and Lyn’s skill rises. (Not her actual skill, but her skill with - aw, you know what I mean.) Also, I am getting unlucky with these hits this chapter. Two more bandits follow their comrade into the abyss that is Lyn’s swordplay. The archer, meanwhile, continues to be a nuisance. Lyn heads east, to get a clear shot at Carjiga, while Dorcas weathers the storm. Lyn gets into the forest to attack Carjiga, but I can’t afford to wait till enemy phase to attack him, cause if you’ve been counting, this is the last turn. So I equip her with the Mani Katti, and hope she crits. She doesn’t. (Also, don’t sell yourself short Carjiga, you’re tough too.) She does get a level, though, and this warms my heart. Look at that strength. It’s higher than her skill, for heaven’s sake. (Her defense is a bit troubling, though.) He counterattacks on his turn, and falls at Lyn’s holy blade. And with that… ...Wait, the chapter’s still going. Uh… ...Turns out killing Carjiga doesn’t end the chapter until the end of the turn. (Oh of course, now you get a crit.) Lyn doesn’t worry me. Even with both the Mercenary and Archer attacking, she won’t die. Dorcas, on the other hand, does worry me. I left him up there because I thought that he would be safe after Carjiga was dead. Thankfully, he has just enough HP to survive. Replace ‘They’re’ with ‘She’s’, and you’ve got a more accurate statement. Now, we have passed our first real trial. And with that, we get a real meatshield. Ah, Dorcas. So glad to have you aboard. His defense may be almost as bad as Lyn’s, but his HP more than makes up for it. This accelerates him right to the top of ‘units I want on my team’ in Lyn Mode. Growths: HP: 80% Strength: 60% Skill: 40% Speed: 20% Luck: 45% Defense: 25% Resistance: 15% Total: 285% Average: 41% Lyn at the beginning of the chapter... ...And Lyn from the end. Growths: HP: 70% Strength: 40% Skill: 60% Speed: 60% Luck: 55% Defense: 20% Resistance: 30% Total: 335% Average: 48%
  14. Part 3: More Bandits! (Are you sensing a pattern yet?) Sain once again displays his shocking lack of cultural awareness, somehow not knowing that not all nations have the same form of government. I sort of wish they touched on Lyn’s whole revenge thing more. I know that apparently it gets talked about in Lyn’s supports with Wallace later, but still. (Also, who would even use Wallace that much, anyway?) Also, Lyn is oddly forgiving to any bandits that aren’t Taliver, for some reason. And then a whole bunch of guys come out of nowhere. Where were they hiding, in the bushes? Actually, Florina, ignore that. Don’t fight. In fact, since you’re as fragile as glass, don’t go anywhere near the front lines. Normally, I don’t pay much attention to the pre-battle strategies the main characters come up with, but this one is actually pretty accurate for this playthrough. There are some pretty good chokepoints here that will come in handy. But first, TUTORIAL! Hello, Wil. Weirdly, in Lyn Hard Mode, if you visit the village with someone other than Lyn, they’ll be entirely silent for the whole conversation. I find it sort of weird that they put variation into so much of this game, but refused to program a generic conversation. Now, after the tutorial forces this guy to die... ...This is what the map looks like. Migal, once again, follows the trend of ‘Really easy bosses if you’re using everyone, but can still do enough damage to kill Lyn, despite a poor hit chance’. This is even more the case since he has a Steel Axe instead of an Iron one. To prevent any chance of Wil being engaged in combat, Kent blocks the archer’s path while Sain takes Wil’s bow. In addition, Sain gives Wil his lances, so there’s no longer a chance of him accidentally attacking. The archer can’t reach far enough around Kent to attack anyone else, so he goes for his only target. Interestingly for Lyn Mode, they don’t force you to visit this village. It’s sort of natural to have Florina go for it anyway, though. Unfortunately, Lyn can’t reach the archer on her turn, so she stops just out of range while Sain and Kent form a wall. Next turn, however, the archer’s dead. The rest of the team heads out of the bandit’s range, and Florina, like Sain, gives Wil her lance. The bandit rushes to his death, like so many before him. Admittedly, I could take the bandit out pretty easily here, but then I would have to endure not only the Mercenary’s attack, but also the archer’s. Lyn would probably survive, but I don’t want to take any chances, so waiting it is. Lyn takes both of her enemies out pretty easily... But she’s left low on health as a result. Lyn parks in the forest for extra evasion, heals with the last use of her Vulnerary, and Sain comes over both to give her a new one and to give the archer a better target. One down... Two down…(aw man, no strength. I think I’ve been spoiled by her previous levels.) And the archer...goes for Lyn, despite her being in a forest. (in retrospect, it makes sense. Sain’s at full health, Lyn isn’t, and she’s a lord on top of that. It makes sense that the Fire Emblem AI would target her, even if it had little chance of hitting.) One of Lyn’s iron swords is running low, so Lyn uses a different one to take down the archer. With the path to the armory now clear, Sain and Wil give the weapons they stockpiled to Florina... ...And she sells them at the armory for some extra cash, which she then uses to buy a couple of swords for Lyn. Funny thing I discovered; Any character can traverse over a destroyed village. Doesn’t make that much sense to me, but eh. Migal’s accuracy may be incredibly low, but his attack is incredibly high, so once again I use my trademark strategy of ‘letting the other guy hit first.’ And once again, Lyn displays a surprising amount of forgiveness for non-Taliver bandits. Since I only need one hit, I use the final hit of the Iron sword to take Migal down. For what it’s worth, he’s right...for some reason. These bandits are persistent. The first of many broken swords. Like I said, we’re going to go through a lot of them. The best picture. Look at Kent. That poor man. He’s so done. Wil is...meh. I don’t really care much about him. He’s so-so as a unit, but his character is really bland. He has supports later in the story, but in terms of Lyn’s story, he’s as bland as bland gets. He’s just...there. And I don’t care about him. I care about him even less in this playthrough, since he is not a person I would select as a meatshield, and he has no other utilities. Growths: HP: 75% Strength: 50% Skill: 50% Speed: 40% Luck: 40% Defense: 20% Resistance: 25% Total: 300% Average: 43% Florina is even worse in terms of defense, but thankfully, she makes up for it by being able to fly and ferry units around. So she’s just above Wil in terms of people I want on the team at this point. Growths: HP: 60% Strength: 40% Skill: 50% Speed: 55% Luck: 50% Defense: 15% Resistance: 35% Total: 305% Average: 44% Lyn at the beginning of the chapter... ...And Lyn at the end. Growths: HP: 70% Strength: 40% Skill: 60% Speed: 60% Luck: 55% Defense: 20% Resistance: 30% Total: 335% Average: 48%
  15. ...Wait, really? *Goes to look it up* ...Welp. Guess I don't know as much about Lyn Mode as I thought I did. I sort of thought that since the Mani Katti was a unique weapon, it wouldn't magically get repaired...Well, that'll teach me to expect logic in a video game. By the way guys, sorry for not posting the next update sooner, real life got in the way. The chapter's finished, I just need to write the update. It should go up later today.
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