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Zorafin

Is FE3 playable?

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I've been scared off from the early Fire Emblems, since the later ones are esoteric enough as they are.  I've played most of the series by now though, and FE3 caught my eye.  I love the artstyle of 4 and 5, and 3 seems to be a continuation of that.  Playing through 3 will also let me see all of Marth's adventures, which will allow me to de-mist the mystery around him.  

However, there's a lot to fear about early RPGs.  Secrets needed to do well are completely hidden from the player, terribly balanced difficulty, and boring gameplay can make some - most - unplayable.

So, How is FE3?  Would I enjoy it if I jumped in blind?  Do I need to look up guides and secrets like I did in 4?  How crushing is the difficulty?

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Hell yeah it is, quintessential SNES experience. Tragic it never got localized during the SNES's time. 

FE3 probably more than any other FE is relaxed enough that you can play it any way you choose. Some characters aren't great, but I wouldn't say anyone's straight unplayable. Book 2 of FE3 is a bit more of a challenge, but not extremely so. 

As for secrets, I wouldn't say there's any off the top of my head. Just be sure to collect everything that is obvious, and you should be fine.

Edited by grandjackal
grammar errors

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FE3 isn't anywhere near as unfair as FE4, in regards to secrets and requiring a guide, unless you count the loads of hidden items desert chapter in FE3 Book 2 (but even FE7 and FE8 did that)

The difficulty is pretty easy for FE3 Book 1 in comparison to all other FEs, while FE3 Book 2 would probably be easy-medium to medium in comparison to all other FEs. 

In regards to using guides, you could enjoy most of the game and its contents/items/units without requiring a guide. Just keep in mind that only Marth can enter villages and in FE3 Book 1, Sheeda can recruit most characters that don't give any hints as to who recruits them. If you're okay with mild spoilers in regards to hints and gameplay, I'd be happy to give you some that won't spoil the story too much.

I should throw it out there that FE3 Book 1 was my very first FE that I played. I played it blind for a while, and despite not knowing about villages, entering houses for advice, and recruiting characters until ~8 chapters in, I did decently enough and was able to defeat the game in my very first file. For my first FE, I found it pretty mild, easy, and a decent enough starting point (though all of that is by FE standards and in comparison to all other FEs). I'll admit though, I definitely would've preferred a more fleshed out tutorial a la FE7 and onward. And learning about permadeath at the start would've saved me from a world of pain. I lost Cain, Abel, Doga, and Gordin.

Edited by Randoman

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The only thing you might have to worry about is that the game moves kinda slow so have a shortcut for for fast forward (though if you played FE4 and 5 already you probably already have one) and for Book 1 I'd say Shadow Dragon on the DS offers a better experience, but Book 2 is still very unique when compared to the DS remake since FE12 ended up differing wildly. For instance in FE12 the star shards only boost stats whereas in Book 2 of FE3 the shards boost your growths like the scrolls in FE5 and stats cap at 20 like in FE5 so you can easily get your waifu favorites to become viable even if guides say they're garbage. The sprites are very cool, too so battles are far more graphically pleasing than FE12.  If you've already played FE4 and 5 you'll be right at home here.

Edited by SalShich10N

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The story is also really, REALLY good. The first book paints everything as very Black and White, and book 2 essentially shatters that outlook and brings everything to a moral grey area. The best part about the story is the fact that it takes a minimalist approach. FE3 may not have aged as well as the other ones, but it's still a pretty good game in its own regard.

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I would recommend having a speed key because the units move at a snail's pace, the menus are ass, and the AI takes too long to move. Be ready for constant critical hits and getting RNG screwed. 

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I think it's totally worth playing.

Good, classic music, plausible story for its time (though in Book 2, there is quite a bit of exposition, but it all essentially explains the lore and the motives of Medeus and the other Earth Dragons), and it's right when FE was starting to find its groove.  And if I recall, it was the highest rated game on a popular Japanese magazine (I think it was Famitsu?) for a good while, so there's a sort of official seal of quality.  If you want a good throwback to the SNES days (or in this case, it's the Super Famicom, but whatever), Mystery of the Emblem is an excellent choice.

The only real secrets in this game are the Secret Shops and, like someone already pointed out, the desert map in Book 2.  There are also a few instances where recruiting or rescuing some units might be a bit cryptic, but if you pay attention to characters' relationships and the story in general, I think you should be able to save most of them.  But again like others have said, the secrets are by no means necessary for beating the game; in fact, if you're good enough to even get those secrets, you likely don't need them.  In other words, there are no Fire Emblem Mysteries you have to investigate in this game.  Sorry, I had to make this joke somewhere.

One odd thing to note about Mystery of the Emblem is that cavaliers can't go through mountains without dismounting, and no mounted units (cavaliers, pegasus knights, and dracoknights) can fight on their mounts during indoor chapters.  The lore reason for the latter is pretty laughable (seriously, go visit the villages and see for yourself)...  This can make some indoor chapters somewhat difficult, but there's only one I can think of where it might become a serious problem if you use mostly mounted units.

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It's a very straightforward game, and I consider it to be the most beginner-friendly out of all the SNES games. There's also something oddly charming about this game. 

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It's definitely playable in my opinion. Only thing is that it's quite slow, even compared to the other SNES FE games.

As for secrets, the only things that could potentially qualify that pop in to my head are

The Book 2 Silver Card and Sheena's recruitment. But even those two aren't nearly as random or obscure as some of the secrets in FE4.

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The fact that the universal cap outside of HP is 20 and the fact that you can make stat growth adjustment with the Star Shards in Book 2 makes the cast adaptable for lack of better words,

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Okay, so...  I got up to chapter 7, and I don't think I can play this.  Right at the start I'm swarmed by a group of 20, 10 of which are archers.  Then once those are down, 5 units spawn per turn.  Once I saw the reinforcements coming, I tried pushing through them.  But I could not kill them faster than they were coming.  By the time they finally got one of my characters, there were 24 on screen - more than what I started with.

 

I have never seen a fire emblem game with reinforcements this brutal.  Normally they're a couple of units that mess with your strategy.  These end up being stronger than the first units you fight - which were strong enough.  How are you supposed to deal with this?

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You see that fancy warp staff that Rena comes with? Warp Marth to the boss and suddenly the chapter becomes a lot easier. Don't be afraid to warp units in case things go south.

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That can't be the only way through it.  I considered it many times, but I figured if I couldn't get through this one, there's no point in cheating through it since future levels will be just as hard.

I had the same problem in the last level, though to a lesser extent.  The only way I could get through it was sending all my fast units to the reinforcement points before my main force got there.  I had no other way of dealing with the reinforcements.

I should probably ask.  Are the reinforcements infinite?  I just figured they were.  If they stop after a while, I can get through.  Though it would take forever.  

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Haven't played FE3 (yet) but if it's like the remake then I feel I should point out that you'll need all the Star Shards to reach the last few chapters (in Book 2). They're not exactly difficult to get but you might want to consult a guide to know which chapters they're in just to make absolutely sure you're not missing them.

Edited by Jotari

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9 hours ago, Zorafin said:

Okay, so...  I got up to chapter 7, and I don't think I can play this.  Right at the start I'm swarmed by a group of 20, 10 of which are archers.  Then once those are down, 5 units spawn per turn.  Once I saw the reinforcements coming, I tried pushing through them.  But I could not kill them faster than they were coming.  By the time they finally got one of my characters, there were 24 on screen - more than what I started with.

 

I have never seen a fire emblem game with reinforcements this brutal.  Normally they're a couple of units that mess with your strategy.  These end up being stronger than the first units you fight - which were strong enough.  How are you supposed to deal with this?

i'd recommend just

not playing it if that's bothering you

stuff like this happens a lot in fe3 and it's frustrating and gets pretty not fun pretty fast

i never finished it as a result

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4 hours ago, Zorafin said:

That can't be the only way through it.  I considered it many times, but I figured if I couldn't get through this one, there's no point in cheating through it since future levels will be just as hard.

I had the same problem in the last level, though to a lesser extent.  The only way I could get through it was sending all my fast units to the reinforcement points before my main force got there.  I had no other way of dealing with the reinforcements.

I should probably ask.  Are the reinforcements infinite?  I just figured they were.  If they stop after a while, I can get through.  Though it would take forever.  

This game isn't that hard. In fact its one of the easiest games in the franchise.

Heres my own take on it.

 

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1 hour ago, Zorafin said:

So the only way to do the level is to use the warp staff?

Not really, it's just the easy way out.

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What I personally did is after facing the existing enemies, I'd rush as many units as possible to the northwestern forts (cavaliers/social knights are best for this) and have them stay on it. Also, don't go too close to the second set of forts because otherwise you have to deal with 6 units appearing for around 3-4 turns (reinforcements in some cases will only appear from forts when one of your own units gets close enough to a fort). By sticking close to the 1st set of forts only and not the 2nd, you significantly reduce the amount of reinforcements you deal with. and if you've successfully gotten some of your own units standing on the forts in the 1st set, the amount of reinforcements you deal with get reduced further (be sure to give those fort clogging units vulneraries). Also, keep in mind that even when your units stop clogging the forts, the reinforcements that should've appeared before the forts were clogged will appear after your units move away from them, so either be ready to attack them and protect your low defense units when those reinforcements appear, or clog those forts for the rest of the chapter.

As for the 2nd set of forts, you can either do the same type of strategy as the 1st set of forts, or rush and defeat the boss. A useful thing to note is that reinforcements stop appearing after a boss is defeated. Though with the 2nd set of forts giving less reinforcements, it shouldn't be a problem if you were able to deal with the 1st set. If you're still using your best units for clogging the 1st set of forts, instead you should put in characters in the forts who you're not planning to use (if you're not training Caesar or Radd, they can be used to clog the forts).

And don't worry about chapters later on. By that time, you'll have promoted and much higher levelled characters, and the game will still be sending enemy reinforcements with stats that are almost the same as the ones you're facing now. In other words, reinforcement units will usually have the same stats regardless of how early or late the chapter is. So it does get better, in terms of your units becoming much stronger than the reinforcement units.

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Yes. Enemy units have an exp stat next to their level, that's how much exp you get for defeating them.

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On 5/3/2017 at 9:08 AM, Zorafin said:

However, there's a lot to fear about early RPGs.  Secrets needed to do well are completely hidden from the player

Listen, thats been a thing up till about Shadow Dragon. It's kind of a Fire Emblem thing. I mean, hell, even the stat growths are technically "secrets needed to do well" which are "completely hidden from the player" (You can guess, eventually how a character might turn out)


If you're GOOD at Fire Emblem as a series, you know what to look for, how to react to certain things and look for recruit flags and understand things like the importance of forts/diversification of parley/Village importance etc etc.

You'll get along fine after the learning curve of 5 or so chapters for nuances. There will generally be one real tough chapter you weren't ready for and you'll rage. After that, you'll have learned what needs to be done in the particular game and be fine.

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23 hours ago, Zorafin said:

So the only way to do the level is to use the warp staff?

If you play at a reasonable pace, you can finish many chapters before the reinforcements show up. The reinforcements in FE3 are more or less there to punish you for durdling. You could also take the other route and wait for the reinforcements to grind experience. The ones in chapter 7 are not a good idea for the reasons you already mentioned, but there are other chapters where you can just stand in a chokepoint and grind for exp.

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On 5/7/2017 at 3:11 AM, Zorafin said:

Okay, so...  I got up to chapter 7, and I don't think I can play this.  Right at the start I'm swarmed by a group of 20, 10 of which are archers.  Then once those are down, 5 units spawn per turn.  Once I saw the reinforcements coming, I tried pushing through them.  But I could not kill them faster than they were coming.  By the time they finally got one of my characters, there were 24 on screen - more than what I started with.

 

I have never seen a fire emblem game with reinforcements this brutal.  Normally they're a couple of units that mess with your strategy.  These end up being stronger than the first units you fight - which were strong enough.  How are you supposed to deal with this?

.......Oooh never mind ignore all I said below you are playing book 1 chapter 7. well then you are right about that but this chapter is annoying in every version of this game. Port Warren is my least favorite chapter. It`s a bit easy still though just use the terrain wisely like the bits of forest and the mountains on the side for evasion bonuses. Your main targets should be the horsemen the archers and armors are no threat at all get rid of the horsemen first because their bows are annoying. Then afterwards hurry and cover the forts. You should leave one or so uncovered and use it to farm EXP from. ah and Bantu helps a bunch here too so yeah use terrain wisely and kill the horsemen fast and the rest is easy.

 

What book are you playing book 1 or 2? It`s been quite long since I played but if is book 2 chapter 7 that chapter is easy. Sounds to me like you just took too long to clear it as I believe if you linger on some of the chapters from this point Hardin`s army shows up and that is dangerous don`t even bother facing them run. Also Feena the dancer girl....She is the best dancer ever dem growth rates she will get strong don`t let her class fool you here she can dance of course and fight just as affectively. 

 

Ah I have so many fond memories of Feena ripping through enemy after enemy. but yeah back on track have Nabarl just go to town on most of the thieves in the forest with the help of some pegasus knights and Feena.

Edited by Naglfar94

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