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Third Tier or Branching classes  

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  1. 1. Third Tier or Branching classes

    • Third tier
      43
    • Branching promotions
      60


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In past FE's, we have seen 2 distinct types of promotions. Third tier classes, when classes like paladins or swordmasters could turn into gold knights or Trueblades. There are also branching promotions, where a myrmidon could turn into a swordmaster OR an assasin. With Fe switch on horizon, which one would you like to see return?  

Edited by Something Witty

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Third tiers have been scarcely more than a glorified and glided power creep in (or in RD's case, a way to get around the fact most of the PCs are already promoted being veterans of war), so branching promotions.

Edited by Interdimensional Observer

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Branching promotions are a generally more interesting idea. Third tiers are pretty cool, but they only really work on very specific environments -- such as Gaiden's promotion-heavy meta, or as a slight flavor change to account for Radiant Dawn's status as a direct sequel. To function with the standard level curve, they would need to be in a very very long game.

Branching promotions, meanwhile, are a relatively minor alteration to the standard system that allows for quite a bit more player choice in how to approach the development of particular characters. The only real weakness to branching promotions is the tendency for one choice to be optimal the vast majority of the time, but even this can still be at least a partial plus if it allows for characters to escape 'bad' classes. I can only imagine how much the Echoes Baron Brigade would have appreciated the ability to slide into Great Knight.

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Third tiers, definitely. I loved RD's third tier classes, they looked gorgeous and powerful! And I like a good long game too, which third tier classes work best in.

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branchingthirdtierswhen?

I like third tier classes.  It's always fun feeling super powerful in one specific field.

However branch classes are probably the more effective and engaging way of class changing considering it offers more variability to each unit.

I'm cool with either honestly.

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I'm more fond of branching promotions - third tiers are only justifiable under very specific conditions.

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Third tiers would only work if the game was long enough to accommodate them.  The main campaign would need to be 50+ chapters to really justify having third tiers.

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What's wrong with a longer game? It could easily mean a better story that isn't rushed and dumb. *cough*Awakening*cough*

Disappointed that there aren't more people that want third tier classes.

Edited by Anacybele

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34 minutes ago, Anacybele said:

What's wrong with a longer game? It could easily mean a better story that isn't rushed and dumb. *cough*Awakening*cough*

Disappointed that there aren't more people that want third tier classes.

I don't think anything's necessarily wrong with a longer game, per se, but it likely would mean more story aspects for people to bitch about. Also, the games with three tiers either were structured around promoting early (Gaiden/SoV) or had most of the cast start at second tier (Radiant Dawn).

Edited by Levant Mir Celestia

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Why not both? Make each first-tier able to promote into one of two second-tier classes, and then make each second-tier able to promote into one of two third-tier classes. Would probably be a hassle to come up with that many classes, but if IS can come up with two completely different sets of classes for Nohr and Hoshido in Fates then they could probably do this. Of course, I don't honestly think they will, but I can dream.

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Porque no los dos?

Okay but really, if the third tiers are as meaningful as the second tiers, then I'd pick that. Throughout Echoes I'm just waiting until I get get to a level where the third tier class is available, because they're all deliciously overpowered. Plus with branching promotion and reclassing, it's all just so many assets to build that the player may never see. Branching promotions just add to replay value. 

Edited by Gustavos

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2 hours ago, Levant Mir Celestia said:

I don't think anything's necessarily wrong with a longer game, per se, but it likely would mean more story aspects for people to bitch about. Also, the games with three tiers either were structured around promoting early (Gaiden/SoV) or had most of the cast start at second tier (Radiant Dawn).

You'll always have people bitching about something in the game though. You can't avoid it.

And I never minded some of the cast starting in second tier like in RD, but I do think it would've been better had the Dawn Brigade and all gotten more time to actually catch up to the rest of the cast. And if we had a few more first tier units to turn into third tiers.

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I would love love love if we had both systems. I love third tiers a lot but I'm also a fan of having a choice, so if we combined both systems, I'd be peachy.

If I had to choose just one, though... it'd be third tiers, but only barely....

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I'm for 3rd tiers honestly. I noticed a lot of people were saying that 3rd tiers only work in a long enough game, which is frankly a good point. However I EXPECT a long game when it comes to Fire Emblem switch. I expect a HUGE game for that entry so a long and in depth story, well written characters, ect. I enjoy both branch promotions and 3rd tiers, I think I would rather see 3rd tiers over branch promotions as 3rd tiers has only been used a few times and I would like to see it used a little more than what it has. However an interesting idea I've often has is what if both could be used? What if the 3rd tier system and the branch promotions were MERGED into one system? That is something that I would like to see.

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I'm against 3rd tiers. It seems to encourage grinding in my experience. this is a sin in strategy games. Only acceptable if switch is another game that decides to flauntingly be more RPG than strategy.in which case I'll scalp it after playing through once like I did with SoV.

I'm tempted to find the Battle for Wesnoth thread basically telling everyone to "don't suggest 4th/5th level units for mainline anymore" for the same reason. The most interesting content is always the content that is used in practice. and not content that you have no reason to every see unless you have already gotten to the point where you could beat the game. 

Branching promotion on the other hand is healthy. In some of its FE specific incarnations it is mostly superficial (in games where one branch outclasses the other) but in most past FE games to use it, it has been a healthhy system.

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55 minutes ago, Reality said:

I'm against 3rd tiers. It seems to encourage grinding in my experience. this is a sin in strategy games. Only acceptable if switch is another game that decides to flauntingly be more RPG than strategy.in which case I'll scalp it after playing through once like I did with SoV.

What?

Third tiers have been in two games in the franchise, and one of those games had 0 grinding.

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So my main problem with taking radiant dawn as an example of third tiers done in a healthy way is that, well, it doesn't really feel like it has three tiers since its more like all of the first tiers are "trainee units", the second tiers are what would be first tier in any other FE, and the third tiers are what would be 2nd tiers in any other FE. Especially since with many of the charatahers to arrive with a first tier form.... you aren't exactly encouraged to actively use them long enough to see them in tier 3. 

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I think branching promotions are cool, but a big issue I have with them is that its inclusion leads to a large amount of class imbalance. For example, in the sacred stones, there was practically no reason to use the Assassin class over the Swordmaster (and to a lesser extent, the reverse is true in awakening, though Swordmasters have better skills going for them). There are a lot of other examples of imbalance as well. Like, there's barely any reason to use Malig Knights over Wyvern Lords, Generals over great Knights, etc besides skills.

I also feel like branching promotions sort of go against classes having a designated role. In some cases, I think its good, such as the Thief class being able to gain added utility or offensive power depending on whether they promote to a Rogue / Trickster or an assasain, but in most cases, branching classes usually just makes a class choose between an option thats specialized in a role or just well rounded, like the option between a Sniper and a Bow Knight, or a General and a great Knight, or a Sage and a Mage Knight. 

I like Third tier classes a lot more since it lets a class keep its designated role. I haven't played Radiant Dawn at all, but from my expirience playing Gaiden and SoV, most of the third tier classes have specific roles in the army which only they can fulfill, like the Dread Fighters being really good Magic tanks, Bow Knights being able to outrange every unit while at the same time having incredibly high movement, etc.

I think that third tier units would also synergies a bit better with reclassing than branching classes since a units role will change depending on the class they change to. Reclassing for skills can still be thing, but the final class a unit uses serves to give them a completely different role than the other. For example, you could say, change a Marshal to Gold Knight to acquire something like Sol, but the effectiveness of one over the other is dependent on the map design and objectives.

Ideally though, I would really like it if the next game had both Third tier classes and branching promotions since it ultimately gives the player a lot more options and it would allow the game to have a lot more replay value depending on how you leveled up your units.

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I love third tier classes honestly and I am happy to have them back in SoV, and I am all for a longer game to make third tier work well.  I always get annoyed with branching promotion since I always end up picking the wrong class for what I want my first playthrough since always try to play blind the first time.  I would be happy for the new FE to have both and make everyone happy though, and include the return of bonus XP which was fun to mess around with. 

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Ideally I'm in the "why not both" camp, but realistically I'd prefer branching promotions.  I think it better accommodates for different playstyles than if units were confined to a single class line no matter what.

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I think I prefer third tiers more although I would like both in the Switch games. They could make all the first tier units be like the villagers in Echoes where they each have 1 to 3 (or 1 to 2) different promotions they can get as second tiers, and then the third tier would be locked to that class. I just feel like the Switch game will be longer then any of the 3DS games, and so it would make more sense for their to be third tiers.

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On 5/27/2017 at 10:32 AM, SavageVolug said:

I'm for 3rd tiers honestly. I noticed a lot of people were saying that 3rd tiers only work in a long enough game, which is frankly a good point. However I EXPECT a long game when it comes to Fire Emblem switch. I expect a HUGE game for that entry so a long and in depth story, well written characters, ect. I enjoy both branch promotions and 3rd tiers, I think I would rather see 3rd tiers over branch promotions as 3rd tiers has only been used a few times and I would like to see it used a little more than what it has. However an interesting idea I've often has is what if both could be used? What if the 3rd tier system and the branch promotions were MERGED into one system? That is something that I would like to see.

I dunno about you, but if you ask me, you're overreaching with your expectations, which is a surefire way to get disappointed.

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You know what I wish they'd do? I wish they'd go back to having specific promotions for characters, rather than all promotions being class specific(Like a Myrmidon promoting to a Hero ala Machyua, while Shiva, Mareeta and Troude all promote to Swordmasters). If they stick with a single classline and no branching promotions, it'd be neat to see characters of the same class promote to different things. Plus, maybe it'd help with the argument of "Some characters benefit from a choice since not all characters fit their class".

Or

Do branching promotions, but make them specific to the character like I just said, like say Shiva and Troude could promote to Assassin or Swordmaster, while Mareeta and Machyua promote to Hero or Swordmaster. There'd need to be enough class variety among weapons to make that work, though.

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