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Is the Church route worth playing?

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I'm loving the game so far and am quite far into my first playthrough of the Golden Deer route and plan on playing through Blue Lions next. I was originally planning on playing the Church route but I've heard it is like the Golden Deer route besides the last map. Is it worth playing for the last map or should I not bother playing it yet?

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29 minutes ago, Edegard1902 said:

I'm loving the game so far and am quite far into my first playthrough of the Golden Deer route and plan on playing through Blue Lions next. I was originally planning on playing the Church route but I've heard it is like the Golden Deer route besides the last map. Is it worth playing for the last map or should I not bother playing it yet?

The Church route is more or less absolutely identical to the Golden Deer route, except Claude's dialogue gets given to Seteth, and it's missing a map (Because you can't program in an extra army, I guess). It does provide some story information that isn't revealed in any other route, but I don't think it's anything that can't be inferred based on stuff you learn elsewhere. 

In fact, it's SO similar to the Golden Deer route that it actually creates a logic error. 

Spoiler

In the GD route, when you first begin discussing taking Fort Merceus, Claude launches into his plan of having some of your troops disguise themselves as Imperial soldiers. In the Church route, no such exchange occurs, but when you start the actual mission it proceeds as if it did. 

I really feel like they realized that they couldn't copy/paste Endgame for Golden Deer, otherwise they would have. Because endgame for the Church route, if you care about rationale, is also incredibly contrived. Fun map, though. 

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If GD first then I can only recommend church last. If you just want to play it for the entire experience of the game then just go casual normal and be done with it. I'd recommend recruiting Lysithea if you have NG+ because of her early warp that you can get before the Tower chapter with Miklan. That way you can warpskip what's several hours worth of content on an already easy difficulty.

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I'd say do it on Normal/Casual for last. (or 3rd if you're going to go back to GD on your 5th). If anything you get some info, music, and cutscenes to fill up. That and fill up supports with characters from different houses.

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I think I might play it last and do a recruit everyone playthrough. I planned on it last since I started with Edelgard's route.

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3 hours ago, Naoko_Akamori said:

I really feel like they realized that they couldn't copy/paste Endgame for Golden Deer, otherwise they would have. Because endgame for the Church route, if you care about rationale, is also incredibly contrived. Fun map, though. 

So is Golden Deer final level, if not more

Spoiler

Nemesis just showed up nowhere from Shambhla after you already kicked Agrthans without any context. Like how and why did he come back, why didn't he show up in other routes? How did Byleth missed out the room full of casket in Shambhla?

Rhea at least had explanation that her injury weakened her self control.

And Verdent Wind was probably the one that copying Silver Snow, not the other way around

Spoiler

Since every shared cutscene was clearly made for Silver Snow, they all have better context with Byleth and missing Claude's presence.

Gronder Field was taken from Azure Moon. Even Nemesis fight had better context with Silver Snow than Verdant Wind

 

Edited by Timlugia

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Maybe once if you enjoy Seteth and Flayn as characters? I'm only planning on playing it once and I'm trying to avoid using students much as possible. So in order for it to feel really unique, I'll only be using Byleth, Seteth, Flayn (I know she's a student but eh), Alois, Catherine, Shamir, Cyril, Hanneman, Manuela, and I have one free spot I'll give to Ferdinand Von Aegir or something.

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Silver snow is actually the "real" version of the route, I would say, with Verdant Wind being the copy. Scenes like the ones in Enbarr barely make sense with Claude. 

Spoiler

Byleth barely knows edelgard or Hubert in that route, so their actions make almost zero sense. Edelgard saying she wants you to be the one to end her? Hubert willing to give up rhea and everything he knows to someone he has no connection to? It's inane. 

Its worth seeing those scenes in their original context. It also recontextualizes the Black Eagles as characters. 

If you are primarily only interested in seeing unique maps, then sure, skip either Silver Snow or Verdant Wind or even both, since many maps are shared with Azure Moon. But if you care about the characters or the story or just decent narrative flow, it's worth seeing both, for sure.

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@NaughtyPeachy Yeah I actually really like Seteth and Flayn which is why I was planning on playing it anyway at some point. I heard it was a copy so I assumed it'd be the same but are the character interactions different? Also are the Black Eagles part of the Church route besides Hubie and Edel?

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8 hours ago, Edegard1902 said:

I'm loving the game so far and am quite far into my first playthrough of the Golden Deer route and plan on playing through Blue Lions next. I was originally planning on playing the Church route but I've heard it is like the Golden Deer route besides the last map. Is it worth playing for the last map or should I not bother playing it yet?

Makes more sense than Golden Deer, has less Charisma since no Claude, basically the same route with differing casts. So pick Golden Deer and assume church is a rip off, or play the church route, realize all the soldiers in shared VW and SS cutscenes use the models for the SS faction soldiers, that Claude is completely missing in the majority of shared cutscenes (Shambala, Enbarr, Merceseus getting nuked) and the the Claude route gives you the sparknotes lore that Silver Snow will give you; that the Edelgard/Byleth relationship in these cutscenes makes no sense unless you had her as your student, slowly come to accept that Verdant Wind recycled all of the Silver Snow route assets and not the other way around, and then deal with arguing with everyone who believes otherwise forever. Makes a nice "book ends" route though, if you save it for last.

 

@Edegard1902 yes, the Black Eagles have as much prominence in this route as they do in Crimson Flower because this was the original route for them with Crimson Flower being added later in development. uniquely, during the reunion, you'll actually get resources (gold) from lindhart after he mentions stealing from his family before coming to the reunion. Small details like that.

Edited by CyberNinja

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That's the main problem with Silver Snow. Regardless of which route copies which.... GD was advertised as part of the main game and SS wasn't. The fact that you can get stuck with SS while attempting BE if you're not careful is already considered annoying to a lot of people.

Not to mention VW just seems a lot more refined despite the Edelgard scene and the lack of charisma with an unnecessary double dose of the BE kids just makes it kinda a slog if played in a certain order.

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I'm early on in 1st playthru (chapter 7, w black eagles), but plan to make decisions without knowing how to side with church or edelgard (tho I know there's 2 routes since that was hard to avoid when looking up guides to figure out the systems, stats, etc). Whatever side I end up on, I'll finish, but I'll probably only play 1 other time after that (huge backlog). That being the case, if I end up playing through the church route, should next playthru be blue lions since Golden deer is so similar? Or would it be better to play the other black eagles route? Any recommendation?

Not trying to hijack. Just one knowledgeable recommendation will be fine. Thanks in advance.

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4 hours ago, CyberNinja said:

 

@Edegard1902 yes, the Black Eagles have as much prominence in this route as they do in Crimson Flower because this was the original route for them with Crimson Flower being added later in development. uniquely, during the reunion, you'll actually get resources (gold) from lindhart after he mentions stealing from his family before coming to the reunion. Small details like that.

Or that Rhea repeatedly talks about how important you were, that she would rather die for you, then shield you from both imperial army and orbital strikes, again makes little sense in Verdant Wind. Since only in Silver Snow Rhea confesses to you who you really were to her, or why she would not let another Zanado happened to you.

Edited by Timlugia

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4 hours ago, twztid13 said:

I'm early on in 1st playthru (chapter 7, w black eagles), but plan to make decisions without knowing how to side with church or edelgard (tho I know there's 2 routes since that was hard to avoid when looking up guides to figure out the systems, stats, etc). Whatever side I end up on, I'll finish, but I'll probably only play 1 other time after that (huge backlog). That being the case, if I end up playing through the church route, should next playthru be blue lions since Golden deer is so similar? Or would it be better to play the other black eagles route? Any recommendation?

Not trying to hijack. Just one knowledgeable recommendation will be fine. Thanks in advance.

It depends on which route you end up on. If you play the Church route then BL should be your second/last playthrough because you will have learned exactly what Byleth is and most of the other lore is covered on that route.

If, however, you end up on Edelgard's route you should do Golden Deer. You will get more of the history and an actual satisfying conclusion vs. Blue Lions which is fun but doesn't explain anything

Spoiler

and leaves the main villains virtually untouched. 

Another option if you aren't interested in Dimitri or Claude is to recruit as many of the BL and GD students as you can then save before the big decision and once you finish the first BE route go back to your save and do the second one. It will save you time and you still get the full story. 

Edited by LilyRose
left something out

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13 hours ago, mrwanton said:

That's the main problem with Silver Snow. Regardless of which route copies which.... GD was advertised as part of the main game and SS wasn't. The fact that you can get stuck with SS while attempting BE if you're not careful is already considered annoying to a lot of people

This is so weird to me. You cannot get Silver Snow instead of Black Eagles. Silver Snow IS Black Eagles. It is the route those characters were clearly conceived and designed for. These characters feel desperately out of place in Crimson Flower. Characters like Linhardt, a pacifist, or Petra, a hostage, or Dorothea, who seems confused as to why she's even there. Silver Snow is the route where you build a strong connection to edelgard and Hubert and that connection takes center stage throughout the war phase, which you fight alongside the Black Eagles. It was advertised. 

Frankly, I wish people would stop saying "church route." It's the Black Eagles route.

 

Spoiler

Crimson flower is an optional, hidden, half finished villain route that I still can't believe they didn't make ng+ only or wait to add in a free update when it was actually done.

If there is one canon route in this game... it's silver snow. It answers everything, it has the biggest set pieces, it is the most all encompassing without leaving major plot points unfinished, and it has what was clearly intended to be the games true final boss. It's not my favourite route. (azure moon for life.) But it's a total shame that people are playing the less coherent VW and CF routes and avoiding this one. 

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I'm of the opinion that there is no canon route however I'm not sure if I would argue Silver Snow would be the best choice

Spoiler

Especially considering it's the one route where 2 of the 3 lords are offed/MIA right as the timeskip starts which kinda defeats the tension of the war.

 

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46 minutes ago, NaughtyPeachy said:

This is so weird to me. You cannot get Silver Snow instead of Black Eagles. Silver Snow IS Black Eagles. It is the route those characters were clearly conceived and designed for. These characters feel desperately out of place in Crimson Flower. Characters like Linhardt, a pacifist, or Petra, a hostage, or Dorothea, who seems confused as to why she's even there. Silver Snow is the route where you build a strong connection to edelgard and Hubert and that connection takes center stage throughout the war phase, which you fight alongside the Black Eagles. It was advertised. 

Frankly, I wish people would stop saying "church route." It's the Black Eagles route.

 

  Reveal hidden contents

Crimson flower is an optional, hidden, half finished villain route that I still can't believe they didn't make ng+ only or wait to add in a free update when it was actually done.

If there is one canon route in this game... it's silver snow. It answers everything, it has the biggest set pieces, it is the most all encompassing without leaving major plot points unfinished, and it has what was clearly intended to be the games true final boss. It's not my favourite route. (azure moon for life.) But it's a total shame that people are playing the less coherent VW and CF routes and avoiding this one. 

It's called the church route because you work in service of the church, Setheth and Flayn are your "lords" of sort in the church route.

The reason the CF route tends to be called Black Eagle route is because it features everyone from the BE house.

Also, hard disagree on your notion that the characters don't fit the BE route. I'm doing the Church route now as my last route and I thought that the way the BE students showed up felt really shoehorned in. Ferdinand and perhaps Caspar is the only one I could see showing up at the Academy. 

I'm doing the church route now for the first time and the BE students haven't even said anything after they gave me gifts. They were just standing there like zombies while Byleth talked with Setheth and Flayn. Doesn't seem like a very BE kind of route if the students don't even talk. It took until the end of the next chapter for them to talk.

 

Edited by Hekselka

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1 hour ago, NaughtyPeachy said:

If there is one canon route in this game... it's silver snow. It answers everything, it has the biggest set pieces, it is the most all encompassing without leaving major plot points unfinished, and it has what was clearly intended to be the games true final boss. It's not my favourite route. (azure moon for life.) But it's a total shame that people are playing the less coherent VW and CF routes and avoiding this one. 

THERE. IS. NO. CANON. ROUTE.

The whole point of the game is moral ambiguity. To have a canon route would devalue the entire game. They learned their lesson from Fates.

And there's no ONE Black Eagles route, either. It's either Church and Edelgard routes, or Silver Snow and Crimson Flower. You're perfectly welcome to prefer the church route, but don't try and force that opinion on people by calling it canon.

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9 minutes ago, Sid Starkiller said:

THERE. IS. NO. CANON. ROUTE.

The whole point of the game is moral ambiguity. To have a canon route would devalue the entire game. They learned their lesson from Fates.

Honestly, there is also no hard evidence so far saying dev didn't consider a canon on one of the routes either, they only promised "there was no true ending in form of DLC like Fates" to Famitsu.

It's also not on common that game dev has an internal memo on canon info in case they need to develop later works on it, like how Witcher 3 later published official post game graphic novel implied Witcher Ciri + Yen was the canon ending.

So they might come out with it later, or that we might never know.

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If you want to fight Vicar Amelia and get the whole truth (that you could already have pieced together from the other routes, btw) from Rhea, then yes, you should. Also, people saying that BE characters "belong" in the church route are just wrong. You can make the argument that they have dialogue in the overworld when you talk to them each chapter, but that doesn't work, because every character has that.

"These characters belong in this specific route! That's why they have no dialogue in most of the cutscenes of that route!"

Like, what are y'all talking about?11645220.jpg

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2 hours ago, Hekselka said:

The reason the CF route tends to be called Black Eagle route is because it features everyone from the BE house. 

Isn't Crimson Flower called BE because it's the only route of the 2 that keeps the Black Eagles shield for the save slot?

Anyway, about my thoughts about if the Church route is worth it: I...don't really know. I mean, it's very much appreciated you're not forced to side with Edelgard if you disagree with her way of doing things, but the fact the post-timeskip map and story (exclusive reveals notwitstanding) plays almost exactly like in Verdant Wind but without any lord killed any motivation I had for playing that route when I could easily play Claude's instead.

That, and I've heard the Church's last map is pretty hard for all the wrong reasons.

Edited by Moltz23

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16 hours ago, Timlugia said:

Or that Rhea repeatedly talks about how important you were, that she would rather die for you, then shield you from both imperial army and orbital strikes, again makes little sense in Verdant Wind. Since only in Silver Snow Rhea confesses to you who you really were to her, or why she would not let another Zanado happened to you.

Rhea sacrificing herself for Byleth would honestly make sense in any route that's not CF as even pre-timeskip she was already shown to be pretty devoted to them. She gives them the sword despite Seteth's objections, coddles them when they wake up from their transformation, and then entrusts them with the safety of the church if something happens to her. It's obvious from the start that she places a lot of value on them and would do anything to ensure that they (and the future she wants for Fodlan) survives, so her taking the bullet makes sense either way. 

Edited by Medeus

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2 hours ago, Medeus said:

Rhea sacrificing herself for Byleth would honestly make sense in any route that's not CF as even pre-timeskip she was already shown to be pretty devoted to them.

From her perspective yes, because she knew who you were from day one, and confirms her speculation when you picked up SotC.

But from player/Byleth's perspective it's only logical in Silver Snow when she told you how you two were related.

I know when I first played Verdant Wind it was like "why do I even need your protection? Didn't you just say I am the progenitor god?"

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3 hours ago, Edegard1902 said:

@grandark_z319 Is the Church route final boss a new boss?

Not him, but it's the same from Crimson Flower but with a different gimmick and a new song that fits the context of the fight better.

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