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Shadow Dragon. What can I say? My favorite FE, and the first I happened to play. Truly, it is the ultimate form of the game that started it all. But i'm not going to mercilessly defend every flaw like a fanboy. Any game is going to have flaws. Blazing Sword had that incredibly forced tutorial that Japan loathed it for. The Radiant series had the Biorythem and the infamous Easy mode memory transfer glitch. Genealogy had it's "Never turn off, no reseting" love system that permanently swapped upon power down. And Mystery had the removal of key elements from Book 1. But still, most people overlook these flaws because these can be amazing games if you power through the crap spots, kinda like Wonderful 101. Why didn't people do that with Shadow Dragon? All i usually hear from engish players is that this game sucks and it's nowhere near the Radiant Series. I set out to find: is it really that bad? So, I compiled a list of the pros and cons of Fire Emblem Shadow Dragon to conduct a written review and comparision, and ask what you think about it. What do you like and dislike about it? Here's my input: THE PROS First official Translation of a Japanese Fire Emblem No one ever brings this up. Seriously, this is a grace from Nintendo for this to happen. They never did it ever before, even though the English Fire Emblem almost explicitly sets up Binding Blade with Athos' dying vision and the Birth of Roy, and Nintendo didn't take the chance to localize it. So to translate a game that never even had a related game across the pond was something special. Awakening continued this trend in bits and chunks with other things in it's DLC. Translaters, Heroes of Shadow, people WHY HAVEN'T YOUFIXEDYOURPATCHESYET?!?!? No offense, but "Maris" sounds like very fruent engrish now and "Roro" is annoying, especially now that i think he quotes a Bible verse in Chapter 10X that was overlooked (I am Legion, for we are many). Reclassing Really, no one can argue that this is a godsend. Even Awakening utilized this. This allows an otherwise useless character to have potential, and a powerful character to maximize his/her potential, like the Avatar can in the sequel. It can't save a doomed unit like Caesar, but it can turn better units into unstoppable swiss army knives if you use it well enough. The Controls I don't know why, but for me personally the touch controls worked like a charm, allowing me to move units in a precise path rather than a path the cpu genrates to move that unit to point X (example: have Marth move in a zigzag rather than a straight line). Maybe it's just me though. Blade of Light, Mystery of the Emblem Style Only fans really notice this: the game seamlessly Combines Ankoku Ryuu with Monsho No Nazo Book 1, making it seem like it was fixing the flaws with Book 1 more than remaking a NES game. Why is this a good thing? Because it looks and sounds damn amazing. Even haters usually say that this game (and by extension it's sequel) have the single best rendititon of the FE theme to date, and the game looks brilliant.... especially comapared to the NES version. The more the merrier People hate this, but I actually like this: to a degree. The FE series has a special focus on caracter development, so more characters means more content. I do dislike not being able to use them all, but... More replay value! Online Features For the first FE game to have online features, it really was well executed. Exibit A: Online Battles. Register your buddies, and you won't have to travel cross country to play for a mere hour! Weather or not you can have a four player war like in FE7 i'll never know for sure....(forever alone) And the online shop, the first instance of FE DLC, although maps wouldn't happen till the sequel, the most notable thing is that Starting on Dec. 31 2008, Players could buy an Elesian Whip on days that end in 1. (eg. Apr. 21) Shadow Dragon Ditched the multi item promotions that FE1 and 3 had for Master Seal based promos, (one of maybe 3 changes from the original if you sacrifice Frey and don't get to Gaiden Chapters) but this whip offered a secret means of promoting Pegasus Knights into Falcon Knights like in Gaiden and later games, which is perferred if you want to keep a high resistance. Remember how i said this was my first game? The tutorial Nintendo, you really nailed it with this. FE7's tutorial (Lyn Mode) is incredibly forced, and when you think about it Lyn's story is half of the game! HALF OF THE GAME IS A TUTORIAL! SD though, has a streamlined, and effective turorial. I didn't know the first fuck about FE except "There's this dude named Marth in Smash Bros., and he kicks a lot more ass than Roy and Ike", and I was close to an expert by the end of Chapter 6. Clearly that says something. Plus, the Prologue is interesting on it's own, and you can turn of the actual tutorial and just play through it. (Granted, there's no real reason other than story and it's insultingly easy, a stark contrast to the sequel's BS FE mode which takes place right after this prolouge) Now, we're flipping the Switch: THE CONS (BUM BUM BUUUUUUUUM!) Who the fuck is Whymp?!?!? He's Auffle! Really, this game was probably made at least somewhat with beginers in mind, but this is rediculus! If FE has a moral lession, it's that war is bad and a life cannot be restored. (Aum Staff, but there's only one of those) So why in the flying mother of fungleberries does this game have REPLACEMENT UNITS?!?!?!?!? If you really suck and everyone dies, FE makes sure that A: You feel like the biggest douch in the world, B: You're screwed and have to start the Game over, C: You have no chance of recruiting more arrow fodder, And D: You are not rewarded for this. SO WHY DO YOU GET MADE UP, RANDOMIZED CHARACTERS TO REPLACE YOUR 50 DEAD ONES?!?!?!?!?! And noone ever sees them unless they do it on purpose, so if you see someone's DS with a save file consisting only of Marth and these, DUCK AND ROLL IMMEDIATELY, because it's very likely they are behind you with a blood stained axe and a body in their closet. Sadly, the sequel isn't off the hook about this either, and there you have to be even MORE intentional because that game has 81 playable characters in all! And speaking of killing off units intentionally: THE GAIDEN CHAPTERS THAT EVERYONE NEVER PLAYED Gaiden Chapters! I don't care what i have to do, it adds an element of challenge to the mix, and sometimes you have to get every chapter unlocked to get to the end game (*cough* FE7 and FE6). Kill all theves before they escape? Ok. Use X item? Ok. Go west four spaces, use the red jewel, conjure up a raging windstorm to whisk you away, MAKE SURE you attack the theif with the Master Sward on turn 14 and get exactly 29 damnedge in? A challenge I shall accept!!!!! Kill off all your units? O- Wait WHAT? WHOS BRIGHT IDEA WAS THIS? Someone is fired at NoJ. The whole point of a Gaiden Chapter is to reward the player for completing mundane, difficult, and/or sometimes nonsensical tasks (How was i supposed to know not to kill the enemy clerics?), but this game says "Ya'know, wouldn't it be a great idea to reward the player for sucking?", Let's rip into this too: everyone is alive in the sequel yes? I can't check their pulse, but i'm pretty sure that is a living tone of skin they have. So, the sequel inexplicably has the events of the Gaiden Chapters, where EVERYONE IS DEAD, apparently have happened rather than having them say "this is the first time Marth meets them because noones dead", apparently the Gaiden Chapters happened with everyone alive.....(5...4...3..2...1..and...) (WTF BOMB scene) JESUS CHRIST NINTENDO, ARE YOU THAT THICK?!?!?!?!?!??!!??!?!? A DEAD PERSON IS DEAD!!!!!!!!! SOMEHOW EVERYONE IS DEAD, BUT NOONE'S DEAD, AND CHAPTER 24x NEVER HAPPENED BUT IT HAPPENED AN JUST, JUS, WHAT THE F#$% I CAN'T EVEN RAP MY BRAIN AROUND IT!!! MY BRAN IS MELTNG RIGHT NOW!!!!!! ........... I don't know, maybe they forgot to program another way to get into these chapters and put it on the market, released a sequel, and THEN realised that they made that error. BUT WHAT ABOUT 24X?..... Let's just assume that the SD gaiden chapters are non-canon and let inconsistencies fall where they may. That's the cons but those are some REALLY big cons. Before anyone brings it up, I have a rebuttle for: Pre Promoted Unit Overkill Really, it's not that bad. Most are really quite good, except for Jagen, who actually i was able to use well into Chapter 8. Look at sedgar and wolf. Look at Jeorge. Look at Lorenz. And the series just started, so newcomers might not have found the items for promotion, so they put in pre promotes, and made promos one item in the remakes to rectify this (not counting the previously mentioned Elysion Whip of course) Thanks for reding all that! Overall, i'd say this is a solid game that has some gaping flaws, but i'd expect that from a NES game. we'll need 1.21 gigawatts to rectify the Gaiden Chapter Paradox, and i don't think i'll be able to predict a direct lightning strike. This is Hero of the Fire Emblems, yes all five of them, signing off, and asking your opinions about it, otherwise it wouldn't make sense for this to be a topic!