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Having a group of villagers and being able to customize just about our entire beginning team was something we got to see again with Shadows of Valentia. I personally really enjoyed this idea, being able to customize what I wanted my beginning team to consist of was a great experience. Even if they only had about 2 classes that were viable for each, it added a lot to how people went about the game in their own way. Some players took the suggestion of the game and went with their canon classes like Archer Tobin or Mage Kliff, some took other ideas and went with Mage Tobin, etc. There wasnt exactly a right or wrong answer, at least not entirely.

I personally think this is something that should return for FE Switch. I think being able to customize just about our entire beginning roster added both a lot of strategy to team make up and a bit of personalizing as well. I dont think we have to go with the idea of villagers either, I think making some new classes that branch into the classics we know and love could work., things like Squires that can turn into Soldiers, Cavaliers, or Pegasus Knights, or Apprentices that turn into Mages, Priests, or Dancers could achieve the same concept the villager has, and may even be easier to balance by having them split into class subtypes that fit certain growth rates better.

Is the villager idea something that should return for FE Switch? Or should we just stick with the classic FE style of starting with a variety of Mymidons, Armor Knights, Cavalier, etc.

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Yeah, I liked this in SoV too, and it adds some replayability. I think it would be nice to have this in FE16 for the starting party of say 3-5 characters besides the lord, especially as people expect customization now. 

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I really like how the villagers give much more replayablility to the game. SoV uses those units in a way that appeals much more to me than some of the replayable aspects of Awakening and Fates. I would definitely like to see something similar in the next game, especially if there's more than just villagers, as mentioned by the OP. 

Edited by Natalie

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overall, while bringing villagers back would not add much to the next installment of the fire emblem series, i would still prefer to see it in the game. other than adding a little bit of replayability to the game it also adds additional choices to the game, most importantly however is the fact that it does not take away from the experience of the game. This way even if someone doesn't care for it, at the very least it does not take away from the game for them. 

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The thing is, the villagers system is somewhat interesting, but it's obvious that certain characters are geared more towards certain classes.  It was also marred by the brokenness of the Dread Fighter loop.  If we got a villager system, it ought to be better balanced and encourage more flexibility by being a little less objective in which paths are best for which characters.  It also shouldn't make classes gender exclusive, but that's another issue.

I more like the idea of the trainees from Sacred Stones, which is sort of like what you said as far as the squires/apprentices are concerned.  If you're unfamiliar, there were three "trainee" classes; recruit, journeyman, and pupil.  Recruit could take on either the armor knight or cavalier line, journeyman took on either the fighter or pirate line, and pupil would go for either mage or shaman.

I might like it more if those trainee classes had more variety to them... like recruit could also have access to pegasus knight, journeyman could become a wyvern knight (the modern version, since the GBA ones tend to actually use lances instead), and maybe pupil could skip to a promoted healer after reaching a higher level than usual for promotion.  And maybe add in some other trainee classes for different weapon types.  Hell, maybe even give the Lord something like that, and give them some variety, e.g. have them promote to either Blade Lord, Knight Lord, or Great Lord (the Blazing Blade Lord classes).

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To be honest, it depends on the approach. Echoes was easy. It was simply slapping two armies together and the lack of a weapon triangle meant it didn't matter who slapped who, only that your guys are capable of slapping the other guys without being stabbed in return.

If the game was difficult, and said difficulty relied upon the idea that you would have access to x amount of units with x amount of units that had access to swords/axes/lances and so on and so forth, I can see a Villager system fucking with that balance to an insane degree. Kind of like how I feel the Avatar has the potential to absolutely fuck game/unit balance if implemented badly.

If it's like Awakening/Birthright/Echoes then it'll be fine. if it's like Conquest, i feel like it'd hurt the difficulty to be able to customise every single aspect of your opening group. Maybe 1, 2 if we want to stretch it.

Also kinda why reclassing is odd tbh, fliers can cheese Fuga's wild and mild rides if you reclass a character or two into them.

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On 8/15/2017 at 10:50 PM, Ertrick36 said:

The thing is, the villagers system is somewhat interesting, but it's obvious that certain characters are geared more towards certain classes.  It was also marred by the brokenness of the Dread Fighter loop.  If we got a villager system, it ought to be better balanced and encourage more flexibility by being a little less objective in which paths are best for which characters.  It also shouldn't make classes gender exclusive, but that's another issue.

I more like the idea of the trainees from Sacred Stones, which is sort of like what you said as far as the squires/apprentices are concerned.  If you're unfamiliar, there were three "trainee" classes; recruit, journeyman, and pupil.  Recruit could take on either the armor knight or cavalier line, journeyman took on either the fighter or pirate line, and pupil would go for either mage or shaman.

I might like it more if those trainee classes had more variety to them... like recruit could also have access to pegasus knight, journeyman could become a wyvern knight (the modern version, since the GBA ones tend to actually use lances instead), and maybe pupil could skip to a promoted healer after reaching a higher level than usual for promotion.  And maybe add in some other trainee classes for different weapon types.  Hell, maybe even give the Lord something like that, and give them some variety, e.g. have them promote to either Blade Lord, Knight Lord, or Great Lord (the Blazing Blade Lord classes).

That is why I think instead of flat villagers across the line, it should be split into several other types of sub classes. Kind of like what you said there with Sacred Stones, or like the idea I posted in the original post. Split up the villager into several types, like Squire or Apprentice, and put the characters in those. That way you have characters that are clearly magic users having access to the magic based classes and the fighter type characters with access to the melee heavy classes.

On 8/16/2017 at 0:46 AM, DaloDask said:

To be honest, it depends on the approach. Echoes was easy. It was simply slapping two armies together and the lack of a weapon triangle meant it didn't matter who slapped who, only that your guys are capable of slapping the other guys without being stabbed in return.

If the game was difficult, and said difficulty relied upon the idea that you would have access to x amount of units with x amount of units that had access to swords/axes/lances and so on and so forth, I can see a Villager system fucking with that balance to an insane degree. Kind of like how I feel the Avatar has the potential to absolutely fuck game/unit balance if implemented badly.

If it's like Awakening/Birthright/Echoes then it'll be fine. if it's like Conquest, i feel like it'd hurt the difficulty to be able to customise every single aspect of your opening group. Maybe 1, 2 if we want to stretch it.

Also kinda why reclassing is odd tbh, fliers can cheese Fuga's wild and mild rides if you reclass a character or two into them.

I can see how it would mess with the balance for sure, but I also think in someways it could help in other areas. Take Radiant Dawn for example and the Dawn Brigade, if even just Meg had the ability to choose her class from the start, she could be made a much more viable character.

The way I see it is it would be done similar to SoV. Main lord and a few others already have their class, and a few of your starting characters are set as villager types. I think instead of doing flat villagers as well, it should be split up into various types of subclasses, as I said above. I think by doing this you limit how much of the disruption to the balance of the game you get. Its far less imbalancing to have a character with growth rates and stats centered around being a melee combatant to only have a choice between say, Soldier, Fighter, and Mercenary as opposed to Mage, Priest, Pegasus, Cavalier, and the previous mentioned classes.

I also think some classes should be limited to the characters that actually start in them. This way it makes some of the characters more unique and desirable to use, but also prevents you from flooding a team with Dark Fliers for example.

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On 8/17/2017 at 9:01 AM, Tolvir said:

That is why I think instead of flat villagers across the line, it should be split into several other types of sub classes. Kind of like what you said there with Sacred Stones, or like the idea I posted in the original post. Split up the villager into several types, like Squire or Apprentice, and put the characters in those. That way you have characters that are clearly magic users having access to the magic based classes and the fighter type characters with access to the melee heavy classes.

I can see how it would mess with the balance for sure, but I also think in someways it could help in other areas. Take Radiant Dawn for example and the Dawn Brigade, if even just Meg had the ability to choose her class from the start, she could be made a much more viable character.

The way I see it is it would be done similar to SoV. Main lord and a few others already have their class, and a few of your starting characters are set as villager types. I think instead of doing flat villagers as well, it should be split up into various types of subclasses, as I said above. I think by doing this you limit how much of the disruption to the balance of the game you get. Its far less imbalancing to have a character with growth rates and stats centered around being a melee combatant to only have a choice between say, Soldier, Fighter, and Mercenary as opposed to Mage, Priest, Pegasus, Cavalier, and the previous mentioned classes.

I also think some classes should be limited to the characters that actually start in them. This way it makes some of the characters more unique and desirable to use, but also prevents you from flooding a team with Dark Fliers for example.

I'm ok with sacred stones style trainees, but only if super trainees is a thing for repeat playthroughs, it's also nice when we don't end up with a massive hole in the lore where Luthier says that only those who are gifted can use magic only to bear witness to saber as a mage. A miracle of the goddess indeed. 

I feel like when reclassing isn't a thing it gives every character value rather than when it is a thing, if every class is in limited supply then those who have that class are given more value by the player and character death is rendered more significant, normally we are given two of a class at the very least so we are still left with options anyways. (except for fates where, like, any royal is instantly better than any other alternative purely on account of their exclusive weapons can setsuna run through mountains without any penalties and don't get me started on dragon blood) 

Also, you bite your tongue, Meg has been an excellent unit every time I used her.

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One of the reasons it worked so well is due to merging of strength and magic, something we haven't seen since the GBA games. That way making a physical unit into a magic class or vice versa didn't make them really weak (I'm talking like FEDS level weak - at least in Awakening it usually worked barring like magical Cherche). It's certainly an interesting take on reclass. My favorite reclass style was the open type FEDS one (which could still use some improvement) but I think this version is up there in terms of the system and implementation.

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51 minutes ago, Umbran Darros said:

One of the reasons it worked so well is due to merging of strength and magic, something we haven't seen since the GBA games. That way making a physical unit into a magic class or vice versa didn't make them really weak (I'm talking like FEDS level weak - at least in Awakening it usually worked barring like magical Cherche). It's certainly an interesting take on reclass. My favorite reclass style was the open type FEDS one (which could still use some improvement) but I think this version is up there in terms of the system and implementation.

That's why I think it would be best to split the villagers into sub classes. That way you have characters obviously meant for magic based classes having to choose between mage, priest, etc. and melee based characters choosing between the various melee ones. That way there is a bit of customization involved and not choices that are a must in order to make one viable. It will still be there obviously, but not to the same extent.

1 hour ago, thecrimsonflash said:

I'm ok with sacred stones style trainees, but only if super trainees is a thing for repeat playthroughs, it's also nice when we don't end up with a massive hole in the lore where Luthier says that only those who are gifted can use magic only to bear witness to saber as a mage. A miracle of the goddess indeed. 

I feel like when reclassing isn't a thing it gives every character value rather than when it is a thing, if every class is in limited supply then those who have that class are given more value by the player and character death is rendered more significant, normally we are given two of a class at the very least so we are still left with options anyways. (except for fates where, like, any royal is instantly better than any other alternative purely on account of their exclusive weapons can setsuna run through mountains without any penalties and don't get me started on dragon blood) 

Also, you bite your tongue, Meg has been an excellent unit every time I used her.

I agree with reclassing. I really enjoy it from a standpoint of trying to see what works and what doesn't, since you can get some surprising results every now and then from the weirdest combinations. It does limit how unique a character is though. 

That and limiting the amount of characters that start as these villager type classes would help with that too. If you only have at most 5 villagers of a total of 30+ characters, then only 1/6th of your cast can be "reclasses". It leaves a lot of room for more unique characters. 

Limiting the villager class as a whole would also help with the first thing you mentioned. Having a character obviously meant as a mage become an armor knight is ridiculous, but if they are put into a class that limits their options to magic based classes only, like mage and priest, then it makes a lot more sense from a lore perspective and also let's the character have options obviously meant for them, unlike Atlas for example who is only viable in maybe 2 of the 5 classes he can choose.

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5 minutes ago, Tolvir said:

unlike Atlas for example who is only viable in maybe 2 of the 5 classes he can choose.

Atlas is actually viable as pretty much everything but Soldier.

Merc balances out his natural flaws, making him a very effective unit, and probably the heaviest hitter you'll have among the many Mercs of the game.

Archer works well with his high strength, and the strength of Archers in the game means he can comfortably do heavy damage from afar.

Mage gives Atlas very early access to Sagittae, and due to his low speed and that spell's weight, makes him ideal to use it and nuke everything in his range.

Cavalier Atlas is a slightly less balanced version of Merc Atlas, but with the obvious advantage of a mount(Which can also be a disadvantage, though, as he is stuck on Celica's route, which is unkind to Cavaliers for quite a few maps).

All of these can work. Quite effectively. Soldier Atlas, meanwhile, pretty much just strips Atlas of his one strong suit while not addressing any of his flaws.

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1 minute ago, Slumber said:

Atlas is actually viable as pretty much everything but Soldier.

Merc balances out his natural flaws, making him a very effective unit, and probably the heaviest hitter you'll have among the many Mercs of the game.

Archer works well with his high strength, and the strength of Archers in the game means he can comfortably do heavy damage from afar.

Mage gives Atlas very early access to Sagittae, and due to his low speed and that spell's weight, makes him ideal to use it and nuke everything in his range.

Cavalier Atlas is a slightly less balanced version of Merc Atlas, but with the obvious advantage of a mount(Which can also be a disadvantage, though, as he is stuck on Celica's route, which is unkind to Cavaliers for quite a few maps).

All of these can work. Quite effectively. Soldier Atlas, meanwhile, pretty much just strips Atlas of his one strong suit while not addressing any of his flaws.

I thought Cav was a terrible choice, and Mage was a last resort style choice. Good to know, Ive been limiting it to only merc and archer for a while now.

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7 minutes ago, Tolvir said:

I thought Cav was a terrible choice, and Mage was a last resort style choice. Good to know, Ive been limiting it to only merc and archer for a while now.

They're on the lower end of his usable classes, but still viable.

It's mostly due to Sagittae that Mage Atlas is salvageable. Since nobody's going to be doubling with Sagittae as is, Atlas' low speed will be less of a problem, while his high Attack rating will make Sagittae be REALLY strong. You can even slap a heavy shield on him to make him tanky as hell, too. It's a solid combo, given the lack of res on most enemies. He also learns Rescue, which can be really helpful.

Cavalier is still usable, but it's really barely what I consider "viable". Still viable, but barely.

Edited by Slumber

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I think it's important to not remove villagers from their story context -- they're meant to be untested, unrefined new blood to the fight, which is why fitting them in unless the story accommodates them like SoV's story does. You're not exactly going to have many randos straight off the cuff in a war in which professional, trained soldiers are participating.

The occasional one-off villager as we've had in Awakening and Fates is fine, but at a point it begins to stretch credibility. A bunch of zealous newbies joining up with a resistance movement makes total sense, as the Deliverance was under a lot of pressure and pretty understaffed, so it's not a surprise that they'd take any hand that they got. Trainees also make sense, as long as they've got their teacher/supervisor with them.

I really do like the idea of separating "villager" classes similarly to the trainees. Weaker versions of the classes can represent squires, mages in training, and whatnot, and the promotions should be kept logical and consistent (Squire to Cavalier, Pupil to Mage, etc).

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I like the FE8 approach with 3 trainee classes (maybe give them 1 more promotion path). Ideally, they would start with the weapon that their promotions use so you don't have any nonsense like Donnel --> Mercenary/Fighter.

SoV was an example of too many options, and not enough guidance.

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On 8/15/2017 at 7:50 PM, Ertrick36 said:

The thing is, the villagers system is somewhat interesting, but it's obvious that certain characters are geared more towards certain classes.  It was also marred by the brokenness of the Dread Fighter loop.  If we got a villager system, it ought to be better balanced and encourage more flexibility by being a little less objective in which paths are best for which characters.  It also shouldn't make classes gender exclusive, but that's another issue.

I more like the idea of the trainees from Sacred Stones, which is sort of like what you said as far as the squires/apprentices are concerned.  If you're unfamiliar, there were three "trainee" classes; recruit, journeyman, and pupil.  Recruit could take on either the armor knight or cavalier line, journeyman took on either the fighter or pirate line, and pupil would go for either mage or shaman.

I might like it more if those trainee classes had more variety to them... like recruit could also have access to pegasus knight, journeyman could become a wyvern knight (the modern version, since the GBA ones tend to actually use lances instead), and maybe pupil could skip to a promoted healer after reaching a higher level than usual for promotion.  And maybe add in some other trainee classes for different weapon types.  Hell, maybe even give the Lord something like that, and give them some variety, e.g. have them promote to either Blade Lord, Knight Lord, or Great Lord (the Blazing Blade Lord classes).

I actually like this idea and agree with pretty much all of it. But instead of being a promoted healer for the pupil, maybe instead they can be a monk or light mage? I'm not sure why they ever got rid of that class. I really liked having 3 magic types: Anima, Light, and Dark, it's simple, and it's enough for a magic triangle.

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On 8/20/2017 at 10:44 PM, NekoKnight said:

I like the FE8 approach with 3 trainee classes (maybe give them 1 more promotion path). Ideally, they would start with the weapon that their promotions use so you don't have any nonsense like Donnel --> Mercenary/Fighter.

SoV was an example of too many options, and not enough guidance.

I agree with the idea of not enough guidance. Which is why I think the idea of trainee classes would work. Splitting things up into subclasses of the concept of villagers would give a lot more guidance for the player, and prevent situations where you can make someone with a high magic growth but low strength growth into a Fighter, or the opposite with a mage. Splitting it into a variety of things would not only balance the idea a bit, but also make the characters a little more interesting, at least I would think. Story wise, an apprentice to a wizard, a squire, and a conscript would offer a far more interesting story than just a bunch of villagers that suddenly know how to use magic, fight with a spear, or ride a wyvern/pegasus.

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