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Luchi

FE: Heart of Dawn ( Demo available )

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Important note:
This is not a rom-hack. You will need to install RPGMaker VX, which can be found here.
You do not need to buy the software, a trial version will still run the game.
Download:
This is a little side-project of mine that I've been wanting to do for a very long time. I desperately want to love the original Tellius games for what they are, but I have too many gripes/issues with them. The world-building is better than any other video game I've seen save for Final Fantasy 12, the majority of the cast save Sothe and Makalov are likable in their own way and it has a great OST.
Intro video:

I've also been developing RPGs for close to 7 years, and this re-imagining of FE9 is actually my sixth video game.
However...
Ike is not the main character. Elincia is.
In a way, both Elincia and Ike get their respective character arcs, since I wasn't too fond of the way PoR handled Elincia's character. I want a Royal who Actually Did Something, not a fawning princess who relied on her blue-haired hero to do her job for her.
bandicam_20160821_163510304.png
Like that.
Ashnard doesn't wear invincible armour, btw, so Elincia can damage him. I always thought it was odd that a man who prided himself on survival of the strongest would cloak himself in impenetrable armour. :/
Gameplay:
Gets rids of FE's grid-based battle-system in its entirely, and plays out in a more turn-based fashion that still requires strategic thinking. Compared to PoR's sluggish gameplay, this game is blisteringly fast.
The player will control up to five units at once, and as the party grows in size, the player will have the option to swap out units as they please, with only Elincia being 'locked'.
Skills will function more like RD's, with units being able to equip up to two Skill Scrolls. Units will also have their own personal skill in addition to a class Skill. Masteries will be learned as units level up, like in FE13/FE14 upon hitting Level 25 ( 20/5 in FE-speak ).
Instead of moving from one static scene to another, areas from the original game become full-blown, explorable areas, with the player controlling the Elincia sprite and letting her interact with NPCs, objects, or even other playable characters if they are stationed at a Fortress or a Base.
bandicam_20160821_164425791.png
A forest on the border of Crimea and Gallia.
bandicam_20160821_092428332.png
Interior of Castle Crimea.
There are no stat-caps. They don't exist in jPRGs. I believe it severely reduces a unit's fighting potential. Also, I'm going by a rule of thumb here. Meaning that if a unit is stated to be a bad-ass in-universe ( aka if the unit is a personal bodyguard or a trained knight/general ) then they are going to be statistically superior to some scrub who just picked up an axe or a sword.
bandicam_20160821_164822279.png
I'd like my swordmaster Jeigan back please.
The size of the cast would be reduced severely, so that characters that have no influence or who contribute little or none to the overall plot would be scrapped completely.
Permadeath is still a thing though. So I'm only looking at around 20 playable characters, including laguz.
Other videos:

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
This project is still very early in development. I'm just posting it here to get a general interest level from the fandom itself. =) There are more mechanics, like how battles would play out, but I'll save that for a separate post.
Edited by tyrfing

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I wasn't sure what to expect when I stumbled into this topic, but I like what I see and I'm intrigued by the alternative take on Path of Radiance's story.

I'm definitely interested in seeing more : )

Also, a traditional Fire Emblem RPG has been something I've wanted to play for a long, long time.

Edited by VincentASM

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Ok, fairly long post incoming. xD


Basic battle mechanics:


Damage formulas are the same as classic FE: ATK - DEF = damage to target. Hit ratios are a little different though, since it no longer works off Unit Hit Rate - Target's Avoid. Rather, all enemies have set Evasion stats ( not to be confused with FE's Evade or Critical Evade ). So an enemy with 5% Evasion will have a 5% chance to dodge an attack. Simple. The same applies to your units.


Evasion for your units is calculated like this:


Base Skill/2 + Base Speed/2 = Base Evasion.

Skill is actually useful for something now other than Critical and Hit boosts. xD


Units can't double unless they have Adept or a Brave Weapon. Or the Dual Attack skill ( a stock skill found on all Myrmidons/Swordmasters ). So good strength stats are a must now.


Criticals deal double damage instead of triple.


Weapons have no durability. Rather, each weapon type will have certain advantages and disadvantages. For example:


Slim weapons grant a bonus to the Speed and Evasion stats. Horrible Mt however.

Steel weapons are powerful, but lower the Speed stat and have below-average hit rates.

Silver weapons, by virtue of them being difficult to wield and extremely expensive, lower all stats across the board except HP/MP by 3 points. More on MP below. They do, however, provide a critical bonus.


There is no Luck stat. It becomes the MP or 'Magic Points' stat( to use the traditional RPG term ). Units need MP to use most skills.


Skills will not disappear after you unequip them. Speaking of skills, I have over 100 of them planned already, for units and enemies alike. xD



bandicam_20160821_223432061.png

This is from a 'test-bed' version of the game.



A larger variety of weapons. Units that are low on Strength like Elincia can take advantage of their great magic to use the exclusive magic-weapons ( which naturally, works off the MAG stat ).


Magic targets all enemies at higher levels. Enemies who are standing in the rear row can only be hit with magic or bows. Or any ranged weapon.



bandicam_20160821_223050633.png

Welcome back, Reaver-weapons.



The weapon triangle is pretty unique too.


Sword users will take more damage from lance-wielding enemies, but less from axe-users.

Axe users will take more damage from sword-wielding enemies, but less from lance-users.

Lance users will take more damage from axe-wielding enemies, but less from sword-users.


Naturally, the Reaver-weapons reverse this triangle.


As for who will get cut, I know for a fact I'm getting rid of Zihark. I already have 5 or 6 primary sword users, and I don't need another brooding angst-ridden pretty boy. We've got enough of them in RPGs. xD He's optional, in any case, and unlike in Stefan's case, he has no reason to stick around.


Oh, and I... still don't have a name for this version of FE9. xD Any suggestions would be welcome.



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----RESERVED for Unit types, Playable Roster and Skillsets-------

Recruitment:

Recruitment order:

  • Elincia Level 1 Princess ( Uses Light magic and staves. Resident healer )
  • Lucia Level 1 Swordmaster ( Auto-protects Elincia if her HP drops below 50%. Parity negates all enemy buffs )
  • Kieran Level 5 Axe Knight ( can land consecutive on enemies with Frenzy )
  • Ike Level 4 Mercenary ( has access to Limit Breaker and Heavy Blade when he promotes into a Hero )
  • Titania Level 1 Paladin ( Buffs the party's DEF stat, and at higher levels, negates incoming damage completely )
  • Soren Level 4 Mage ( targets multiple opponents. Has the coveted Pursuit skill )
  • Mia Level 7 Myrmidon ( randomly crits an enemy if her HP drops below 50% )
  • Lethe Level 4 Cat ( can strike multiple opponents for lowered damage )
  • Mordecai Level 3 Tiger ( Tankiest unit in the game )
  • Volke Level 11 Thief ( Can mug enemies for cash or weapons )
  • Nephenee Level 10 Soldier ( Gains the powerful Jump ability when she promotes into a Halberdier )
  • Bastian Level 3 Sage ( Lowers the attack stat of one foe to near zero with Corrosion. Can use staves )
  • Jill Level 14 Wyvern Rider ( Uses Daunt on foes to lower their stats. Riding a wyvern would do that to people )
  • Tanith Level 3 Falcon Knight ( Can use magical ranged swords )
  • Reyson Level 6 Heron ( Uses magic cards for damage and all-round party buffer and enemy debuffer )
  • Janaff Level 9 Hawk ( Attacks never miss - Insight )
  • Ulki Level 8 Hawk ( Highest evasion stat out of the cast - Vigilance )
  • Ranulf Level 12 Cat
  • Geoffrey Level 11 Paladin
  • Nasir Level 18 White Dragon
  • Ena Level 10 Pink Dragon ( can use White Breath and Red Breath. Can also counter-attack )

Edited by ssl

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What you are doing is hard, but not impossible. FE9 is built to revolve around Ike, just as FE10 revolves around Micaiah. A lot of worldbuilding in FE9 comes from Ike. Soren, for example, heavily contributes to the game's backstory and character as a Branded who hates Laguz. Greil's backstory and the Fire Emblem itself is more closely interwoven with Ike then it is with Elincia. Ike is the one who can beat the Black Knight, who is a cat's paw to the real villain. In other words, what you are attempting is possible, but only if you do some serious wordbuilding of your own, like developing the backstories of Lucia, Geoffrey, and (most certainly) Bastian to flesh out Elincia as a character equal to Ike. ...Yeah, I did say equal. Ike is an integral part of PoR, there's not much you can do about it without rewriting the entire game. Fire Emblem. Glowing sword. All that stuff.That being said, I do think I like the idea of Elincia defeating Ashnard much more than having Ike whack him.

(Requests: It would be cool if Elincia's sword got a backstory or sidequest, like FE7. It would also be cool if the Black Knigh fight was an RNG battle or a stat mash, but something which required a puzzle to solve - like Cecil's duel against himself in FFIV)

Also, a traditional Fire Emblem RPG has been something I've wanted to play for a long, long time.

Actually, on that subject -> You might want to Google "Enelysion Redux". It's an RPG maker game that, while ignoring most mechanics of Fire Emblem, bases it's story around FE7/FE10 and has a very 'Fire Emblem' feel to it. The screenshots look a bit like it, actually.

Edited by StWalker

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Actually, I'm the developer of Enelysion. =) It was the first real RPGMaker game I finished and it took me a good 4 years to get it done. The game's worldbuilding has been particularly praised, so its not a skill that I lack.

Said game for those who are interested:

https://www.rpgmaker.net/games/2985/

Edited by ssl

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This is a splendid idea, my good man. No, seriously, this would fix a lot of the problems I have with the plot. I would suggest giving Ashnard far more screen time; maybe have him attack the party instead of the BK in a few instances, and give him more characterization. But yeah, I'm eager to see where this goes as I've always thought the story should have done this.

Edit: Another suggestion: have Elincia fighting Bertram as a big plot development.

Edited by blah the Prussian

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Congratulations, you managed to spark interested on someone who's generally not interested in RPGs. This looks good. I like that you took FE9 as your example, too.

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I will admit that i have a general skepticism of RPG maker games. (they tend to be a bit samey/generic, and looking at the same sprites/sprite style for too long gets boring.) I will probably still follow this, though (partly because you are using fewer default sprites then is usual.)

Edited by sirmola

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What I plan to do:


- Give backstories to most of the playable cast including Mia and Nephenee. In this alternate FE9, Mia really does believe that Lucia is her rival now. Mass hilarity ensues. As for Nephenee, since her profile ( according to the Tellius Recollection ) indicates she hates war, I want to go a little further into her backstory with regards to her fairly large family and the consequences that forces her to become a militia-woman to support them. I'm prioritising these two ( sans the really important PCs ) since they're such fan favourites ( and would be fun to write ).


I also had the whacky theory that Mia is very, very, very distant relative of Altina. xD ( she comes from Begnoin, uses a sword and has purple hair so-- ) but I doubt I'd actually add it. I'm trying to do some world-building of my own but I'd still keep to the canon lore of Tellius itself.


FE's main problem is that is has too many characters, so general characterisation is spread very thin. Reducing the size of the cast by a drastic amount solves this somewhat. FE9 also suffers from a (sorry to say this, Ike fans ) from an incredibly boring protagonist.


- Build up a little lore regarding Amiti and Gurgurant. It struck me a few days ago that both those weapons could come from Begnoin as well, sharing the same 'unbreakable' properties as Ragnell and Alondite. In an RPG setting, those weapons would be your go-to Infinity +1 Swords, so they may only be available if I ever get around to making an RD sequel.


- Develop Tellius into a living, breathing, fully-explorable world, where the player can now see the harsh implications of war. Given that this game has a fair amount of blood and gore, it is noticably darker than the original. Explore towns, interact with NPCs, find loot, all the good stuff you'd expect from a RPG. I may include an Arena to bring lower leveled units up to scratch.


Characters that I write well will be noticably more developed than ones whom I have little to no interest in. If Ike gets any new lines, he'll probably display more of his snarky side that pops up now and then. Bastian will be a complete pain to do because although I understand the nature of his personality, it's writing his lines that is the real killer. The man speaks in freakin' iambic pentameter. ><


- Balance the entire cast so that no unit ever becomes a Tier-Induced Scrappy.


- The racism between the laguz and beorc will be explored between Jill and Lethe. Ike is not so special that he needs to mend that gap. Besides, wouldn't it be more fitting that Elincia too, continues in her father's footsteps to continue his dream of laguz-beorc intergration?


- Take the amazing character development Elincia got in RD and spread it out over this entire game.


What I don't plan on doing:


- This isn't a remake of FE9. So there is far less focus Ike/Greil/BK.


- Elincia is not a fawning, doe-eyed Princess who develops a crush on Ike. That ship is dead. He also promotes into a regular Hero instead of a Lord. When Sanaki recognises Elincia as the rightful heir to Crimea ( because of Lucia vouching for her ), she becomes the leader of the Liberation Army while earning her class promotion.


- Have a cast of 40+ units.


- No uneccesary side-quests ( jRPGs suffer from this a lot ).


- No supports (gasp).


Playable demo?


When I've got about 30 minutes of actual gameplay, I'll release one. Players unfamiliar with RPGMaker will also need to install the RPGMaker VX trial on their PCs. You don't need to purchase it to play the game. I'd recommend the engine ( and the superior VXAce. It's on sale now for up to 86% off on Humble Bundle ) to anyone who is willing to make their own fan-games. However, it is easy to learn, but difficult to master. =) FE9 Re-imagined uses a lot of custom add-ons to the point that it doesn't resemble a typical game made in RMVX ( whose default style is more Dragon Quest than anything ).


Thanks for your interest so far, guys!



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Update:

bandicam_20160829_210156196.png

I will watch you grow with increasing interest, Ellie.

bandicam_20160828_134435736.png

The battle system itself will probably need a video to explain it better but here's the general gist of it for players unfamiliar with jRPGs:

The icons right on top of the screen indicate Turn-Order. So the fastest unit (Lucia) is on the far end, followed by Shinon and it goes from right to left, fastest to slowest ( Gatrie is horribly slow, but the Vantage scroll fixes his SPD issues. It will always allow the user to attack first, regardless of base SPD. ).

Basic commands are:

Attack - Execute an attack with a weapon or a tome.

Guard - Reduce incoming damage by half and recover 10% of the unit's MaxHP and MaxMP.

Skill - Use a class-specific skill ( like in the screen above ).

Item - Use items, like Vulneraries, Concoctions or use magic scrolls.

Equip - Probably the best feature: Change your equipment during battle. Two-turn cooldown.

The player controls up to 6 units on the battlefield at once. Once you start obtaining more party members, you will get the option to switch them in and out of battle as you please. With downsides, of course (otherwise, you could field all the prepromotes; all of whom have amazing base stats, and curbstomp the game ). It's game over if either Elincia, Lucia or Ike dies.

Cutscene shots:

bandicam_20160828_132912665.png

I used Ike's unused portrait because I like it more.

bandicam_20160828_140905018_1.png

I'm probably going to push these two ships really hard.. Tellius is queer like that.

bandicam_20160829_223202960.png

I should take his dislike of nobles and turn into a major flaw...

And controlling Ellie here as she explores the Merc's Fort. Lighting hasn't been added yet, I and recently touched up Ike's sprite as well.

I'm not too sure how you guys would feel about a Stat Distribution system to have more control over how your units grow. It can be easily implemented, as well as weapon forging and whatnot. Just throwing suggestions out there.

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Ike's unused portrait makes him look a bit more green than he does in the actual game. That portrait was probably a remnant from the original version where you could play as Mist as the lead.

One thing I'll say, is that you may want to have Ike have a "flipped" portrait. While I know that it's not a huge deal, it IS one of those things that adds polish to a game when you have a flipped portrait not just completely flip the sprite in cases like that.

As for character customization on growths? I like having some degree of customization. In terms of design, I think the safest way to go about doing that is to have a level up give stat growths, but then have soft caps for stat distributions.

IE, if Elincia levels up, she gets + 2 hp, and + 1 in all of her stats (on the account that she's a combat specialist and a healer), but you as the player have the ability to give her more strength, so if you decided that you wanted to use Rhys , you could do so with less redundancy. This is especially nice if your hero / heroine is ever a forced character. I hate when you have a forced lead and you don't get any degree of customization.

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@Augestein: Those points of yours can be easily addressed. =) Portrait flipping is done with a simple code. The stat distribution system would use something called 'Attribute Points' or 'AP'. More on this later.

Weapon types:

fe9steelblade.gif
Primarily a slashing and cutting weapon. Can easily cause bleeding.
fe9steelaxe.gif
Heavy weapons that specialise in dealing bludgeoning damage to sometimes stun foes. Most effective against armoured units.
fe9steellance.gif
Piercing weapons that cause deep wounds and can sometimes penetrate light to medium armour.
fe9steelbow.gif
Similar to lances, but can only attack enemies in the rear row.
fe9dagger.gif
Some knives may cause the stats of some enemies to drop. The only weapon that can be dual-wielded.
Magic effects:
fe9fire.gif
Inflicts the 'Burn' status and drops attack. Any unit afflicted with Burn will take 50% more damage from fire spells.Beast-laguz are especially vulnerable, armoured units like knights and generals take relatively little damage. A unit inflicted with the 'Oiled' status takes up to 200% more damage.
fe9wind.gif
Drops the SPD stat by up to 5 points. Higher level wind spells can inflict the 'Bleeding' status, which acts like the 'Poison' status in addition to giving a unit a reduced Defence stat.
fe9thunder.gif
Can inflict the 'Stun' status, which is similar to the Stun mastery skill. Armoured units and wyvern riders take additional damage from thunder spells.
fe9light.gif
Can Blind foes and even Burn them at very high levels.
Units get a special bonus based off their affinity as well. I always found it odd Earth never granted a DEF boost during the supports in vanilla FE9/10, and it would have made more sense that Wind would have granted the Avoid boost...
fe9affinitysky.gif - Takes half damage from magic.
fe9affinityearth.gif - Grants a defensive boost. ( +2 DEF )
fe9affinityfire.gif - Grants an attack boost. ( +2 ATK )
fe9affinitywater.gif -Grants an HP boost. ( +3 HP )
fe9affinitywind.gif - Grants a SPD boost ( +2 SPD )
fe9affinitythunder.gif - Grants a Crit boost ( +5 Crit )
Not too sure what to do for Light and Dark units.
Edited by ssl

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Hmm... A Fire Emblem fan game that isn't a Rom hack? Wow! I'm amazed o.o

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True, 99% of all fan-games on this site are made with ROM hacks. It wouldn't work for Tellius, which in itself works very well as a jRPG once the enormous cast is cut in half and fleshed out properly. So I stuck to a engine ( which I've been working with for seven years ) which does a fine job at re-imagining FE9 as a traditional Japanese Role-Playing game.

The only downside is that these kind of games can become fairly large due to uncompressed audio, along with all the graphics that are included.

I don't think I included the base stats of the playable units so far. Skill Scrolls can be unequipped at any point. It allows the player to mix and match abilities.

Unit Stats

I don't intend on making Titania playable. Same with most mounts/fliers. Doesn't really work for the game's battle system.

Elincia

Princess Level 1

HP: 20

MP: 10

Str: 3

Mag: 7

Def: 3

Spd: 6

Uses: Light magic, Staves

Base Skill Scroll: Renewal ( recovers 10% of maxHP per turn of battle )

Lucia

Swordmaster Level 1

HP: 36

MP: 16

Str: 18

Mag: 12

Def: 13

Spd: 23

Uses: Swords

Base Skill Scroll: Vantage ( always allows the user to attack first, regardless of speed )

Ike

Mercenary Level 4

HP: 23

MP: 4

Str: 10

Mag: 5

Def: 8

Spd: 10

Uses: Swords

Base Skill Scroll: None

Soren

Mage Level 3

HP: 18

MP: 15

Str: 5

Mag: 15

Def: 4

Spd: 10

Uses: Wind magic

Base Skill Scroll: Adept ( allows two consecutive attacks )

Gatrie

Knight Level 9

HP: 32

MP: 9

Str: 14

Mag: 5

Def: 14

Spd: 8

Uses: Lances
Base Skill Scroll: None
Shinon
Sniper Level 1

HP: 38

MP: 11

Str: 18

Mag: 4

Def: 13

Spd: 15

Uses: Bows

Base Skill Scroll: Provoke ( enemies have a higher chance of targeting this unit )

Lucia and Shinon had to redeem themselves, after all... Those fantastic growths of theirs went to complete waste in vanilla FE9.

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Wait, so are they promoted or is that just their class name? Also, I like how you gave Elincia light magic. Nice throwback there. I remember Elincia was originally supposed to use light magic. Will she ever get swords then?

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Shinon and Lucia are still promoted units. I figured it would be odd making them a high level Archer and Myrmidon, respectively, given their experience. Elincia gains swords once she promotes, so along with her light magic, staves and swords, she becomes one of the most versatile ( and powerful ) units in the game.

Tell me if Ashnard's stats are too much. Remember, there are no stat caps and plenty of stat-buffing skills.

Ashnard
King Daien Level 20
HP: 75
Str: 40
Mag: 19
Def: 40
Spd: 25
Skills: Nullify, Daunt, Imbue
ATK: 62
Berserk Ashnard
King Daien Level 20
HP: 95
Str: 45
Mag: 28
Def: 40
Spd: 26
Skills: Nullify, Daunt, Imbue
ATK: 67
Beast Ashnard ( Berserk Ashnard uses the medallion again )
Mad King Level 20
HP: 115
Str: 50
Mag: 37
Def: 40
Spd: 27
Skills: Nullify, Daunt, Imbue
ATK: 72
A lot more climatic than the original, to be quite honest.
Edited by Luchino

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This looks nice, when I think of RPG maker games I think of the stockiest, most plain stuff, this is actually pretty nice looking, looking forward to seeing progress with this game. also RIP critania

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