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What's your opinion on the map size of FE4?

The map size of FE4  

98 members have voted

  1. 1. How do you feel about the giant-sized maps?

    • I love them. They're one of the reasons I play the game.
    • I've always liked the idea, but feel it could have been done better.
    • I'm pretty neutral on map size. It doesn't matter much to me.
    • I don't really like how enormous they are.
    • I can't enjoy FE4 BECAUSE the maps are so huge.
    • I haven't played FE4, but I think the map size was a great choice.
    • I haven't played FE4 because I dislike the giant maps so much.
    • Other
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You have no money and precious little experience without using the arena. Running people through it until they die (or stopping at an unwinnable fight) isn't abuse, it's literally what you are meant to do.

And as Integrity said, powerful infantry like Jamke or Holyn are always going to rip holes through it while the mediocre cavalry you always have a few of (Alec, Noish, Midir, Beowulf; the guys who, generally speaking, Can Do A Job but not much else) will struggle to clear that swordfighter who always shows up.

Edited by Parrhesia

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Well, I really don't think the game is in a bad place once you remove the Arena from the equation. Sure, Holsety giving Levin a 85% dodge chance is not handled that well despite the game's constant use of time pressures but I think it's good enough for me. At least I can't say I'm not finding it reasonably challenging.

As far as the Arena being an intended part of the design, well, it IS part of the game, it wasn't forced into it by an outside hand and has been there from the beginning of the series. But it is not part of actual level and unit design, the enemy placement and strenght does not match that of an arena game but of a game in which the Arena is not used too much.

The reasons behind this are very complex, but I feel it has a mainly self-regulatory function as it mirrors that found in other Japanese games. It's a bit like grinding and credit feeding. You are not supposed to, but the option is there for those that may want to use it irrespective of its effect in the game, aren't very skilled or continued after character deaths. I'm personally not very fond of this kind of mechanics but they do have an explanation.

(i cannot belabor this point enough; regardless of the balance if you don't factor the arena you have no fucking money and money is the only way to trade)

Well, you are not supposed to trade a lot, but to focus on saving villages, getting the right person to kill the boss for the weapon drop and using Dew to steal from those suspiciously rich barbarians.

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The trade function is very important though, to the point where ranked runs are reliant upon having everyone use the elite ring for each arena. Even with the arena Dew's money collection is still useful for things like getting Lachesis and elite ring in chapter 2. Rather than axing the arena the game could maybe be better balanced by increasing repair costs for silver, hero, and holy weapons so that the player is actually forced to use weaker weapons. If everyone had to use iron or steel from time to time it would make skills like Astra more useful and maybe not just overkill.

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Well, I really don't think the game is in a bad place once you remove the Arena from the equation. Sure, Holsety giving Levin a 85% dodge chance is not handled that well despite the game's constant use of time pressures but I think it's good enough for me. At least I can't say I'm not finding it reasonably challenging.

As far as the Arena being an intended part of the design, well, it IS part of the game, it wasn't forced into it by an outside hand and has been there from the beginning of the series. But it is not part of actual level and unit design, the enemy placement and strenght does not match that of an arena game but of a game in which the Arena is not used too much.

The reasons behind this are very complex, but I feel it has a mainly self-regulatory function as it mirrors that found in other Japanese games. It's a bit like grinding and credit feeding. You are not supposed to, but the option is there for those that may want to use it irrespective of its effect in the game, aren't very skilled or continued after character deaths. I'm personally not very fond of this kind of mechanics but they do have an explanation.

the problem is you're literally wrong - the fact that there is a character that you recruit only via the arena means, straight up, that the devs intend for you to clear the arena in at least chapter 2, which is entirely unhinted at. since it's entirely unhinted at, can you really argue that you're not supposed to clear the arena in each chapter? since the arena costs literally nothing to use, are you not supposed to see the hand named and equipped enemies in every single stage of the arena in every single chapter?

you can't argue that a game is balanced "if you ignore x", i'm sorry. it's just not a good thing to do.

Well, you are not supposed to trade a lot, but to focus on saving villages, getting the right person to kill the boss for the weapon drop and using Dew to steal from those suspiciously rich barbarians.

all that is just covering for the fact that the trading system is a piece of shit that makes no sense mechanically or logically, though. why aren't you supposed to trade a lot?

villages are something that, again, favors mounties because mounties will almost always be the ones saving them. you can then truck a footsie over to reap the sweet sweet rewards later, but in a lot of cases trucking that footsie over is essentially removing them from the rest of the map because by the time they've walked back to the new front you've moved on without them.

"getting the right person to kill the boss" is entirely a load of crap because the person who needs that boss drop to compete with the better units is going to be difficult to feed the boss kill to due to lower damage in all likelihood. especially given the fact that a lot of bosses are armors who are inherently hard to kill, having to feed the kill to a certain unit to make sure they get the xp and drop doesn't redeem them particularly in my eyes as a unit.

dew's money income is a bad thing to lean on for two reasons: 1, dew is bad. 2, dew has no options besides "give every single cent i own to this guy".

EDIT:

that swordfighter who always shows up.

fuck that guy. he's in almost every single fucking chapter and fuck that guy.

EDIT2:

[16:49] Integrity man it's been a while since i effort posted about fire emblem

[16:49] Integrity feels good

[16:50] Nightmarre lol

Edited by Integrity

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I feel that the pawn shop system was created to try and compensate for how ridiculous some items get. Like, imagine exploiting canto to trade chain the elite ring and a high kill hero sword as you kill a densely packed group of enemies. Whether inventing an insane mechanic to compensate for imbalances was good game design is debatable, but I find the absurdly powerful items fun to play around with. Of course, the whole flawed system is completely reliant on arena use.

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Whether inventing an insane mechanic to compensate for imbalances was good game design is debatable,

it is definitively not good game design, hth

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I don't know why you are being so aggressive dude, we just have different takes on a game.

But no, the fact that Holyn is unlockable through the arena does not mean the developer intends the player to use it as much as possible, otherwise the game would have been designed with it in mind. Similarly, I don't think the trading system is "a piece of shit that makes no sense mechanically", it's clearly intended to limit but not outright forbid trading by imposing a tax because there's a lot of power in the game and free trading could be dangerous.

But I don't know, man, it's just how I see the game. You are free to have your own take on it.

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I think that the pawn shop system is, just like the large maps, something that you'll either completely hate or love. I personally enjoy how it adds a strategic aspect to something as simple as spreading weapons around, but it's also unnecessarily complicated, and I can understand why you would dislike that. Getting rid of it would require nerfing rings and weapons like the sleep sword a huge amount or else the game would be more absurd than it already is, which I feel would be worse than keeping the system in place as abusing these things is part of the fun of FE4.

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if i came across as being particularly aggressive i apologize, i honestly didn't mean it - i haven't /effortposted about fire emblem in probably a whole year so i might be coming across stronger than i intend

but the thing is, "the game has good balance" isn't a subjective statement - the characters can be measured against one another and found wanting and they do, in spades. fe4 has pretty crappy balance in gen 1, and some of the hokiest balance in the whole series once you get to gen 2, and you're arguing that just removing the arena from the equation makes it a pretty well balanced game, which i totally disagree with because i don't see how it's possible to come to that conclusion.

please note that this is 100% separated from "fire emblem 4 is not unbalanced enough to impact my enjoyment of it", which isn't a statement i can disagree with because i can't tell you what you do and don't like. if that's what you've been going for this whole time, well, mea culpa.

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i don't see why people continue to insist that arena rushing at the start of the chapter is the best thing to do

it's a free full heal every time you hit a new castle

tbh the only time i've found it The Right Thing to do is when you have your chapter 7 level 18 celice in a draft

as it stands, though, once you start going faster taking out arena blitzing only accentuates the gap between footies and mounts even more - footies should be grateful for any resource they can get

the game has such a massive positive feedback cycle from stuffing sigurd/lex/fin/cuan and even lachesis if you can get her to promote in a reasonable time that i need a very huge payoff to consider funneling resources into them. from personal experience in multiple no-arena runs (drafts and regular playthroughs), there are literally zero occasions in which i've had any incentive to slow down and wait for my footies other than "because i want to". the whole "you will get mobbed and you will die" is a good incentive in theory, but in practice sigurd (and to a lesser extent lex/fin/cuan) just has so many resources fall into his lap that it just never happens; from countless draft experiences (and i'm sure other LTC people can back me up on this), the mount squad just does not have trouble handling large groups of enemies ever ever. you bring up ayra as an example of a unit who needs to be brought to the front because someone like finn needs to "get going" (whatever that means, he 2RKOs bandits at base which is good enough), but why would i ever need to do that when i can have sigurd kill the enemy first? and even if you remove the arena heal at every checkpoint, you have a mounted healer in ethlin who keeps the mountsquad healthy (and once she leaves you can have lachesis promoted).

the only kind of huge payoff i've seen where it's worth it to slow down is for levin!arthur, and that's honestly just so he can have his mount faster. levin has ridiculous overkill combat, sure, but it's just that - overkill. i see no reason to wait an extra turn for levin to walk when the enemy is equally dead after two rounds with lex (or even one, lex isn't exactly weak at any point in the game). i will wait for arthur, however, because by giving him a little bit, i suddenly get the same overkill combat, but on a horse

Edited by CT075

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as it stands, though, once you start going faster taking out arena blitzing only accentuates the gap between footies and mounts even more - footies should be grateful for any resource they can get

Using the arena means that calvary can compensate their lack of strenght in combat by being overleveled while infantry gains nothing from becoming even stronger than they already are and can't compensate their reduced movement.

Keep in mind this: You are reaching level 20 with the frail Lachesis by Chapter 3. The gap between your units and the enemies is so absurdly large at that point that strategical considerations are meaningless: You are crushing ants.

if i came across as being particularly aggressive i apologize, i honestly didn't mean it - i haven't /effortposted about fire emblem in probably a whole year so i might be coming across stronger than i intend

Don't worry, I'm sure I also appear drier than I intend to ;)

but the thing is, "the game has good balance" isn't a subjective statement - the characters can be measured against one another and found wanting and they do, in spades. fe4 has pretty crappy balance in gen 1, and some of the hokiest balance in the whole series once you get to gen 2, and you're arguing that just removing the arena from the equation makes it a pretty well balanced game, which i totally disagree with because i don't see how it's possible to come to that conclusion.

I don't think there's any objective method to determine how balanced or a not a game is, really. Any comparison between units is going to be subject of debate and is going to be rooted on the personal understanding each person has of the game.

The reason I feel the game is well balanced without the arena is because I've played it that way and found that the game worked well, that the enemies were dangerous without the proper tactics and that the challenges used by the level designers (Magicians, big formations of enemies, Brave and Sleep weapons, etc.) are well paired to the power my units had. I did not see my units plough through the enemy lines, they were not powerful enough for that.

Just consider the following. I didn't promote Lachesis until Chapter 5 despite being one of my favourite characters. The power the player has in the No-Arena game is much lower than if you use it, low enough to make the game challenging and meaningful.

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You say cavalry is inherently weaker in combat, but in practice that just isn't true

Like, they don't have the same raw stsat parameters but who cares? The enemy is still dead

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I just started chapter 3 of FE4, and I think that they sometimes are a little too large for my tastes. It takes so long for most of the foot units to get across these maps, especially Chapter 2 so far. That being said, I like how the maps are taken from parts of the overworld map, makes me feel like I'm accomplishing something as opposed to FE7's smaller maps.

Edited by DragonLord

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Except even weak cavalry is enough to beat the game, so the removal of the arena wouldn't achieve anything. On 0% growths, where levels gained don't really matter, cavalry is still enough to win the first four chapters of each generation alone. It's harder than usual, but there's no need to use the statistically better infantry units. In the first generation near the end the only unit with good enough stats is Levin, but that isn't really representative of normal play, as if Sigurd and Lachesis had gotten even a few stat ups they'd be capable of closing out the generation. However, near the end of the second generation, even a pitifully weak 24 health Celice and Leif can trivialize most castles with a rescue staff to skip enemies and a high kill hero sword and power ring to snipe bosses (27 attack power on a high kill hero sword can one round every boss in the second generation except for Julius, Arvis, and Manfloy, and Celice in a real play through will be much stronger than that.). Remove the benefits of leveling entirely and cavalry are still the best by far. Enemies in FE4 are weak enough that even underlevelled cavalry can destroy anything. Infantry will always be bad when cavalry can do everything the game requires and at a faster rate.

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I always thought that if they remade fe4 one thing to make the gap between infantry and cavalry less is to make you have to actually siege the castles that Sigurd seizes instead of just being a small point to get.

Only foot units would be able to siege a castle and meanwhile on the outside you still have to worry about opponents. Introduce this with higher difficulty. While keeping most of the old school mechanics and maybe have the sieges work like a Dual Strike but you can control both fronts or more if you are sieging more then one castle at once.

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i had a huge effortpost with stats and shit but i lost it and cbf to retype it

tldr -

sigurd ORKOs all generic enemies in the initial rush in c2 with silver sword/steel lance

lex with two str procs ORKOs every generic enemy with hero axe

ayra needs to proc astra (33% chance in two attacks) to ORKO anything

lex/sigurd/cuan are all 2HKOd by Elliot, but Lex is guaranteed to win a 1v1 thanks to ambush. ayra cannot 2RKO elliot without astra (55% chance in four attacks)

lex/cuan/sigurd are all roughly 4HKOd hitrates (or 2-3 + elliot)

ayra is 3RKOd by lance knights or left at 4 hp by elliot to be finished off by anything else

lex/cuan/sigurd aren't likely to actually die because enemies will prioritize nodion cavs + lesser mounts like alec/noish can pull stragglers

"ayra has better stats than the mounts"

Edited by CT075

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I'd like to go back to the root of the problem.

Seven times per character, every chapter is enough to break the game, sadly. The game isn't designed to account for all that extra experience nor that extra influx of money, though the latter is not as important.

Seriously, if you guys are using the Arena, I can totally understand why you think the game is poorly balanced because using it completely destroys any semblance of balance it may have had. It's the root cause of practically every issue you guys have with the game

Here's a useful xkcd that fits your statement:

wikipedian_protester.png

Unless you know of the intent of the designers, all you're posting is your interpretation, which is worth about as much as mine or Integrity's. But as has already been said, even if the game designers had intended for Sigurd and friends to wait for Ayra to show up, they did a pretty poor job of that by giving him such ridonkulous stats and what amounts to a 5-6 movement lead over her..

I'd also like to bring up the fact that even a mounted unit with mediocre stats such as Alec or Noish can afford to fare poorly in combat simply because they can get ahead so far of foot units that they can afford to spend a turn chilling in a church or retreating to get healed and still contribute more damage to a skirmish than a foot unit. That's what arriving at the scene 3 turns earlier can do for you.

Edited by Mekkah

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Remind me, how many characters do you need to get to level 25-30 to get a top EXP ranking, again? Closer to "all of them" than not? Is a perfect-ranked playthrough possible without the arena?

I love the sizes of the game's maps as they are, they're among the things that made me enjoy FE4 so much the first time. and they're also a good part of why I haven't completed the game a second time

(my excuse for picking the first option is that I love the game as it is, and would just like a similar such scheme to be designed better in a future installment, please and thank you)

The rest of the whole topic hashed a lot of my thoughts on it out already- lots of empty crossing combined with movement penalty terrain don't go together very well. Even worse are the occasions where part of the empty commute includes backtracking.

Another thing that comes to mind is that the bigness is put to a kind of waste, because IIRC a large majority of the time the main enemy forces tend to only come from one direction, generally from the next place on the list to seize. IIRC there'll occasionally be forces coming from more than one direction, but except for the bandits attacking villages (which IIRC don't usually require the attention of more than a unit or so), the game doesn't ask players to actually split their forces all that much. I do actually like parts of this idea that the army is on the longest of continuous marches, doing a tour through an entire country, (which I could say is FE4's whole structure,) but it'd make for a nice change of pace to also have situations where a bunch of forts in different directions from the starting point are being attacked, a whole country's like EVERYTHING IS ON FIRE, and the player has to choose whom to send where.

Even when characters join from a long way away and under threat in FE4, usually either they can handle themselves (and indeed sometimes must), or they're the only pressing objective the player has.

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Unless you know of the intent of the designers, all you're posting is your interpretation, which is worth about as much as mine or Integrity's.

Of course it's my interpretation, what else would it be?

Like, they don't have the same raw stsat parameters but who cares? The enemy is still dead

As I said, if you use the arena, you'll be crushing ants no matter what kind of units you are using because the arena breaks the game, it isn't designed to handle so much experience being poured into the units. The game's enemies cannot hold a handle to a promoted Lachesis or other similarly powerful units if they come around by Chapter 3.

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The reason I feel the game is well balanced without the arena is because I've played it that way and found that the game worked well, that the enemies were dangerous without the proper tactics and that the challenges used by the level designers (Magicians, big formations of enemies, Brave and Sleep weapons, etc.) are well paired to the power my units had. I did not see my units plough through the enemy lines, they were not powerful enough for that.

The bolded is the critical factor; one's tactics and experience are far more telling on how one will see the balance of FE4 than whether or not they use the arena.

Before I joined SF, when I played non-draft runs, I used the arena religiously, and I also found my mounted units not powerful enough to plow through the lines. Because I distributed resources like the rings fairly evenly, I did not know how quickly units can snowball when given several rings and the best weapons. Nowadays, I could easily wreck the game with Sigurd even without the arena

In the end, the arena is good for some money and a few levels, but will not alter your thinking like knowledge of the game will. In fact, the arena enemies are generally much tougher than the field enemies; if do not have the tactics to trivialise the latter, you will get less benefit from the former anyway.

PEDIT: Lachesis being promoted by chapter 3 is not because of the Arena, but because of staff-spamming. There isn't any unit whose ability to break the balance of the game is dependent on Arena use.

Edited by Baldrick

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The real problem is that the interpretation is not sufficiently backed up by evidence, and is unfalsifiable. Cam and Marty have done some theorycrafting that can be reasonably argued against.

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I'm not sure any amount of arena use or not will get lachesis promoted in c3 in any reasonable timeframe; if I'm spending that much time feeding her kills anyway I can staff her to 20 without it

You can run the stats, lex and sigurd will wreck everything no problek, arena or no arena; ayra's offense isn't demonstrably better than either of theirs until c5 at the earliest (if ever, I've found her stats generally on par with theirs in c4 but that's also with judicious arena use)

The arena doesn't really favor mounts as much as units that are already powerful because mediocre units like alec and noish aren't clearing the arena without heavy rigging anyway - units like holyn with supposedly better stats (they aren't in any meaningful matter, as I'll demonstrate once I get home) get more gold and exp out of it, which would naturally close the power gap

FE4's balance is skewed hard either way; if you go fast then it's the sigurd/celice show (with guest appearance from lach/leaf and maybe levin!Arthur), if you go slow you get things like base shanan soloing endgame

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