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Alistair

Should Byleth have been more customizable? [Gameplay]

Byleth options  

51 members have voted

  1. 1. Should Byleth have been more customizable with regards to gameplay?

    • Yes
      45
    • No
      7
  2. 2. If you wanted them to be more customizable, would you have liked a boon/bane system like Awakening/Fates?

    • I didn't want them to be more customizable
      5
    • Yes
      32
    • No
      14
  3. 3. If you wanted them to be more customizable, would you have liked to choose skill level proficiencies and deficiencies??

    • I didn't want them to be more customizable
      5
    • Yes
      38
    • No
      8
  4. 4. If you wanted them to be more customizable, would have liked to choose particular spells and weapon arts?

    • I didn't want them to be more customizable
      5
    • Yes
      35
    • No
      11


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Byleth is in a weird position of being another avatar figure, but of all the avatars they are the ones with the least amount of customization options relative to other units in their game. For example, you can pretty directly change Kris, Robin and Corrin's growth rates and bases at the beginning of the game but no such system exists for Byleth. Would you have wanted this to be different? To my mind, there are three major vectors for customization in Three Houses:

Stats - Essentially the boon/bane system from the 3DS era. 

Skill Levels - Picking proficiencies and deficiencies. Probably would have to pick at least one deficiency and maybe pick a budding talent. 

Spells and Combat Arts - I group them together because they're both unique attacks that each character has their own list of. Spell lists max out at 10 (5 for Reason and 5 for Faith) and probably a similar limit on combat arts. 

Imo I think Three Houses already has a lot of customization available for every unit, so Byleth as-is is ok by me. However, I think that having at least the boon/bane system and maybe some flexibility with spells would go a long way to making Byleth feel more of a "My" Unit. 

Edited by Alistair

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Yeah, I would have liked a much more customized approach. Outside of appearance, I’m really sad that the last 2 avatars have had special swords. While it’s not too much of a bother in 3H, it really ruins some class setups in Fate. I would like to pick other strengths for Byleth and other spells. 

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my answer is Yes to all 4 questions, and i'll explain why

Byleth is a silent avatar in a game which features many dilague options, so players have "more empty space to fill with their own personality and ideas"
the problem comes when taking into account that Byleth is much more relevant to the game's plot than Robin and Corrin were for their, so he has an established role, but not an established personality, and despite lacking a personality, for some reason he isn't customizable, and this is Byleth's greatest weakness imo

Robin and Corrin basically were regular main characters except for the fact that they were customizable, but IntSys tried to treat them like avatars, which they clearly weren't, since they have their own personality and leave players basically no empty space to fill, so this strange combination simply results in a very boring main character which happens to be customizable for no actual reason

 

moral of the story: please IntSys enough with avatars, you've already proven that you can't handle them properly

Edited by Yexin

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The Boon/Bane System in Awakening/Fates was a terrible system that should not see the light of day in an FE game ever again. 

That said, it would have been interesting if, with sword & authority still fixed, we could've chosen Byleth's third proficiency and hidden talent, as well as the spells and weapon arts that go with the proficiency. 

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I didn't mind Byleth's strengths as swords are a solid weapon, I love gauntlets, authority encourages use of the new battalion mechanic, and I don't mind a lord functioning as a back-up healer if you decide to focus on their budding talent. That said, I do agree that it would be nice to customize Byleths skill proficiency, especially since being good in certain skills is a requirement for recruiting the majority of characters and you have to go out of your way to raise some of them. It would also be cool to be able to choose a negative proficiency to gain a budding talent or another proficiency, even if it could lead to a few min-maxing problems.

Don't care in regards to the boon/bane system. I always ended up choosing Defense as the asset and Luck as the flaw, as getting crit doesn't matter when you can take the hit, and Three Houses wouldn't have been any different. One of those "don't care if it's present, wouldn't care if it's absent" kind of things.

Being able to customize a spell list would have been interesting, although I do wonder how it would be handled so that the player can't just make Byleth a magical nuke almost from the beginning by giving them all the best spells. Every system I can think of could of how to balance their selection could lead to min-maxing situations and debates.

I know the topic is about gameplay, but I wish that Byleth was customizable in appearance. I can deal with it, but I kept thinking "y'know, I didn't get to choose the face of this character that's supposed to be me" throughout my first playthrough, and unlike Awakening and Fates, it will be the same one every time I replay Three Houses. I also wish that you could change their costume without having to buy the DLC, as I'm not a fan of female Byleths default uniform, and the recent free DLC with the dancer outfit is trading one skimpy costume for another.

Edited by Hawkwing

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Voted no, and here's why: I don't like the concept of a player avatar in Fire Emblem to begin with, and while Byleth isn't exactly an avatar, I feel like they're kind of made to resemble one. While I get what they were going for with the character, I would have much prefered a more defined personality rather than the blank slate we got. The fact that Byleth has defined talents already is a step in that direction, if a minor one.

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Remember that esoteric FE12 question system?  Make that a bit more complicated and I think it would cover everything (slightly modified bases, growths, weapon proficiencies/weaknesses, spells).  I have no idea how the spell list would be balanced, though!

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3 minutes ago, eclipse said:

I have no idea how the spell list would be balanced, though!

Maybe by giving them a cost similar to what Hollow Knight does with charms?
To elaborate, in that game, you can equip charms that give passive boosts of various sorts, but each charm has a cost associated with it, which means you can only equip a limited number of them at one time. Naturally the more powerful charms have a higher cost associated with them. I could see the same working with spells, where something basic like "Fire" would be cheaper than, say, Physic or Ragnarok.

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Just now, Elephantus said:

Maybe by giving them a cost similar to what Hollow Knight does with charms?
To elaborate, in that game, you can equip charms that give passive boosts of various sorts, but each charm has a cost associated with it, which means you can only equip a limited number of them at one time. Naturally the more powerful charms have a higher cost associated with them. I could see the same working with spells, where something basic like "Fire" would be cheaper than, say, Physic or Ragnarok.

I think everyone in the game has a basic spell list, so Byleth would naturally get those.  After that, any modifications would be dependent on how those questions were answered.  A fully physical Byleth would have nothing other than the basics, while one geared towards a hybrid/magical may have a few changes (say, Physic instead of Recover).

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Just now, eclipse said:

I think everyone in the game has a basic spell list, so Byleth would naturally get those.  After that, any modifications would be dependent on how those questions were answered.  A fully physical Byleth would have nothing other than the basics, while one geared towards a hybrid/magical may have a few changes (say, Physic instead of Recover).

I like that idea even more than mine actually. Good stuff.

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Yes to all.

It'd give another layer of depth to the gameplay if they could have their stats customized and the Spells just they have don't all feel very "me".

What I'd personally do is have it so that there's a limited number of spells they can have equipped at one time (go with the amount for the spell list) but have it so that they could learn more from Tomes which could have a seperate proficiency or something. Basically, something that'd let everyone learn every spell but the downside being that certain spells are harder to learn if  the learner's stats/weapon proficency is low. So for an entirely physical-based character, they're gonna have difficulty learning Thoron whereas a hybrid's got a solid chance and magic users can find it easy.

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My ideal system would be:

For story reasons, Byleth always has a proficiency in Swords, and a budding talent in Faith. However, the player has the option to add up to 4 proficiencies - with the caveat that, for every proficiency, they must also add a deficiency. Naturally, they choose among Lance, Axe, Bow, Gauntlets, Reason, Authority, Armor, Riding, and Flight.

Boon and Bane stats can't be directly controlled - instead, each stat is linked to a pro/deficiency, as follows:

Spoiler

Lance - Luck

Axe - Strength

Bow - Dexterity

Gauntlets - Speed

Reason - Magic

Authority - Charisma 

Armor - Defense

Riding - HP

Flight - Resistance 

If no proficiencies are chosen for Byleth, they have their normal bases and growths. Every proficiency, however, grants +2 at base, and +20% growth, in the associated stat. Deficiencies are -2 and -20%.

You can't select Byleth's personal combat arts, but they do get ones at C+ and A, in weapons which they have proficiencies, as follows:

Spoiler

Sword: C+ Bane of Monsters, A Windsweep

Lance: C+ Hit and Run, A Swift Strikes

Axe: C+ Focused Strike, A Lightning Axe

Bow: C+ Deadeye, A Ward Arrow

Gauntlets: C+ Draining Blow, A Mystic Blow

As for magic, Byleth can have one of three spell lists, in Reason:

Spoiler

I: D Fire, C Bolganone, B Ragnarok, A Agnea's Arrow, A+ Meteor

II: D Blizzard, C Cutting Gale, B Thoron, A Fimbulvetr, A+ Excalibur

III: D Miasma, C Mire, B Luna, A Hades, A+ Bohr

And Faith:

Spoiler

I: D Heal, D+ Nosferatu, C Recover, B Physic, A Fortify

II: D Heal, D+ Nosferatu, C Ward, B Rescue, A Warp

III: D Heal, D+ Nosferatu, C Seraphim, B Aura, A Abraxas

Note that Byleth will only get the first 3 Reason spells, in any given list, if they choose Reason as a deficiency. They will only get 4, if Reason is not made a proficiency. They will always get 5 Faith spells, as Faith is a fixed budding talent.

So that's it. Thoughts?

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1 hour ago, eclipse said:

Remember that esoteric FE12 question system?  Make that a bit more complicated and I think it would cover everything (slightly modified bases, growths, weapon proficiencies/weaknesses, spells).  I have no idea how the spell list would be balanced, though!

Basically what happen in certain Langrisser games. It can lead to absurdly OP MCs. Once the player figure out what the question does it can lead to crazy builds.

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1 minute ago, Flere210 said:

Basically what happen in certain Langrisser games. It can lead to absurdly OP MCs. Once the player figure out what the question does it can lead to crazy builds.

Exactly~!  It would take a lot of tweaking to get things just right, but if done correctly, it could offer a lot of options.

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3 hours ago, Hawkwing said:

Being able to customize a spell list would have been interesting, although I do wonder how it would be handled so that the player can't just make Byleth a magical nuke almost from the beginning by giving them all the best spells. Every system I can think of could of how to balance their selection could lead to min-maxing situations and debates.

100% customizable I agree would be too good. Opting for distinct sets, partial sets with a fixed base are probably for the best in terms of balance.

 

 

2 hours ago, Shanty Pete's 1st Mate said:

As for magic, Byleth can have one of three spell lists, in Reason:

  Hide contents

I: D Fire, C Bolganone, B Ragnarok, A Agnea's Arrow, A+ Meteor

II: D Blizzard, C Cutting Gale, B Thoron, A Fimbulvetr, A+ Excalibur

III: D Miasma, C Mire, B Luna, A Hades, A+ Bohr

And Faith:

  Hide contents

I: D Heal, D+ Nosferatu, C Recover, B Physic, A Fortify

II: D Heal, D+ Nosferatu, C Ward, B Rescue, A Warp

III: D Heal, D+ Nosferatu, C Seraphim, B Aura, A Abraxas

I like this. I really do.

I remember how both of the two-decades old Devil Summoner games had you pick one of three spell lists for their respective heroine. It didn't tell you outright what gave what, but each spell set had a premise. Devil Summoner 1 gave you the picks of: Offense, Healing, and Support; though you were guaranteed some of each regardless. Devil Summoner: Soul Hackers gave you a choice of: Fire and Expel, Ice and Death, and Elec + Sexy Dance & Megidola; each option had a distinct ultimate spell too, but they all shared the same set of healing spells.

For Reason, I see you went the Soul Hackers way of elemental division: Fire, Wind & Thunder, Dark. For Faith, I see you went the way of DS1 with functional differences- Healing, Support, Offense. Great idea for constructing them.

The only issue is nobody playable gets Bohr as is, but coding it so Commander/General possessors are immune would fix that.

 

I'm only chiming in on spells, because Byleth is so devoid of usefulness there as is. Robin was best going magical, and Corrin probably wanted to given the resources (and Kris... probably prefers physical if they don't need to Starlight Gharnef). But Byleth is at best an okay offense hybrid with a Levin Sword, Ragnarok and Aura are the best Reason and Faith Byleth gets, and they're both so-so spells.

Edited by Interdimensional Observer

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Definitely would have wanted Byleth to be more customizable.

 

1. Their spell list is actual factual trash, and that makes mage Byleth not fun to use.

 

2. I would have liked if the Sword of the Creator was a full on shapeshifting weapon, that could be any other weapon.

 

3. I would have liked it if Byleth inherited a Minor Crest of Seiros from Jeralt. Would have been nice for using the Sword and Shield of Seiros.

 

4. I would have liked Strength/Weakness selection, not that there's anything wrong with what they have.

 

5. I would have liked alternate exclusive classes, or even the ability to unlock the house leaders' unique classes after beating their path.

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19 minutes ago, Interdimensional Observer said:

100% customizable I agree would be too good. Opting for distinct sets, partial sets with a fixed base are probably for the best in terms of balance.

Yeah, I agree that being able to choose a set of spells with some customization to pick a spell or two would be the best way to handle it in terms of balance. It could still lead to the issue of one set being more useful than another, but at least it could prevent Byleth from becoming a magical powerhouse before the first level.

19 minutes ago, Interdimensional Observer said:

I'm only chiming in on spells, because Byleth is so devoid of usefulness there as is. Robin was best going magical, and Corrin probably wanted to given the resources (and Kris... probably prefers physical if they don't need to Starlight Gharnef). But Byleth is at best an okay offense hybrid with a Levin Sword, Ragnarok and Aura are the best Reason and Faith Byleth gets, and they're both so-so spells.

As cool as the magic system of Three Houses is, the lack of tomes results in the player having to go out of their way to raise a characters magical abilities if they don't start off with a few spells of their own. It doesn't help that the only way for Byleth to gain a single spell in the first place is through seminars and faculty training, of which the former become less and less useful as the game goes on and the latter take some time before Byleth has enough activity points to practically spare for training.

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Yes, very much so. If you're going to have an Avatar, don't just go halfway like they actually did. I know his phisical appearance was unchangable because of the 2D cutscenes, which I forgive becayse those cutscenes look fantastic, but I don't know why the things you listed couldn't be changed.

Edited by Sir Wolfram of Vallora

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4 hours ago, Hawkwing said:

Being able to customize a spell list would have been interesting, although I do wonder how it would be handled so that the player can't just make Byleth a magical nuke almost from the beginning by giving them all the best spells. Every system I can think of could of how to balance their selection could lead to min-maxing situations and debates.

As a thought, why not just give a list of all spells of that rank when you reach that rank? Then the game lets you choose only one at that rank and you can't change it without a super rare item or something.

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1 hour ago, Interdimensional Observer said:

100% customizable I agree would be too good. Opting for distinct sets, partial sets with a fixed base are probably for the best in terms of balance.

 

 

I like this. I really do.

I remember how both of the two-decades old Devil Summoner games had you pick one of three spell lists for their respective heroine. It didn't tell you outright what gave what, but each spell set had a premise. Devil Summoner 1 gave you the picks of: Offense, Healing, and Support; though you were guaranteed some of each regardless. Devil Summoner: Soul Hackers gave you a choice of: Fire and Expel, Ice and Death, and Elec + Sexy Dance & Megidola; each option had a distinct ultimate spell too, but they all shared the same set of healing spells.

For Reason, I see you went the Soul Hackers way of elemental division: Fire, Wind & Thunder, Dark. For Faith, I see you went the way of DS1 with functional differences- Healing, Support, Offense. Great idea for constructing them.

The only issue is nobody playable gets Bohr as is, but coding it so Commander/General possessors are immune would fix that.

 

I'm only chiming in on spells, because Byleth is so devoid of usefulness there as is. Robin was best going magical, and Corrin probably wanted to given the resources (and Kris... probably prefers physical if they don't need to Starlight Gharnef). But Byleth is at best an okay offense hybrid with a Levin Sword, Ragnarok and Aura are the best Reason and Faith Byleth gets, and they're both so-so spells.

Thanks for the feedback!

I haven't played the Devil Summoner games, but I guess it's a similar idea. Which one you get could be based on questions from Sothis. For Reason:

Spoiler

Q: "Your first memory... now, what would that be?"

I: Flames all around me

II: A pounding storm

III: Nothing but darkness

For Faith:

Spoiler

Q: "Power... what would you seek to use it for?"

I: To help my friends

II: To influence others

III: To defeat my enemies

Not sure how to integrate the pro/deficiencies in a clever way, though.

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If they're going to continue with silent Avatars, I'd be fine if Fire Emblem implemented a "Personality" stat like Dragon Quest 3 did.

Basically at the start of Dragon Quest 3, you're given a few questions and a trial to determine your personality. You personality determined your stat growths, so somebody who had a "Tough" personality had a lot of Strength and Vitality, good for a Warrior-type. A "Quick" personality had high speed and a high crit rate, good for Fighters/Monks.

If you weren't happy, there were a number of books characters could read that would change their personality.

In regards to Byleth/Three Houses, personality could also dictate proficiency.

Edited by Slumber

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I'm not sure. Personally, I'm not the biggest fan of Byleth's blandness and importance to the story but there is at least some reasoning for their characteristics. Customization is fun, but I'm not sure I could wrap my head around a Byleth that didn't have sword proficiency and a faith budding talent. I'm not as attached to Byleth's authority and brawling strengths but they're new features so it makes sense that the main character has them and the authority strength at least relates Byleth to Jeralt.

That being said, Byleth's spell list is garbage.

4 hours ago, Shanty Pete's 1st Mate said:

Which one you get could be based on questions from Sothis. For Reason:

  Hide contents

Q: "Your first memory... now, what would that be?"

I: Flames all around me

II: A pounding storm

III: Nothing but darkness

For Faith:

  Hide contents

Q: "Power... what would you seek to use it for?"

I: To help my friends

II: To influence others

III: To defeat my enemies

I really like this and the accompanying spell lists as well. If they kept the physical side to Byleth as is and added this it would make Byleth's gameplay a lot more fun.

I'm also a sucker for questionnaires that determine some of your battle capability so I think it could work in general, just maybe not completely with Byleth.

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I chose "no", for three reasons:

1. The existing stats and skills ground the character within the world and the story. Take away things like the strength in swords and the budding talent in faith and there's too much risk that they just end up feeling less like a character and more like a block of stats.

2. Having Byleth being able to fill any niche makes every other character in the game less interesting. In a first playthrough, it's exciting to figure out that a character that you have fills your favourite archetype. In subsequent runs, it's interesting to figure out your recruitment strategy to make your perfect team and fill in any gaps that you might have. Both of these become much less interesting if you can just have Byleth be great at anything you choose.

3. Increasing customisation makes balance more difficult. If you increase the number of choices then you're more or less inevitably going to end up with some choices being stronger than others. If you have the strongest choices be roughly equivalent in strength to current-Byleth, then you run the risk of casual and first-time players making bad choices and hamstringing themselves for the rest of the game. If you make the weakest choices be equivalent to current-Byleth, then you risk having the strong choices being overpowered  to the point that they make the game boring.

And while all of these problems can be mitigated to some extent, doing so would have taken a whole lot of time and effort. If they'd had the extra time to do something like this and actually do it well, then there are other areas of the game that I'd have prefered them to focus on instead.

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I would have liked to have been able to pick proficiencies. The defaults are fine the first time, but after a few playthroughs it's good to mix it up.

I also thought the amount of points you got from training is not enough for a full activity point. Getting them(her) to Wyvern Lord was ridiculous, I'm a little embarrassed

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Solid Yes.

I think making Byleth more customizable would have been great. Maybe it´s just me but Byleth doesn´t ever quite seem to get where I´d like them to be. Doubling, 2HKOing, doing more than just a hefty chunking with combat arts, etc (I have yet to experience Maddening anyway). When I look at their performance so far, i see a 2range sword... and that´s about it. Can´t talk about magic Byleth as that´s a road I haven´t gone down yet either.

As for customization itself, reinforcing/weakening any of their growths and base stats to actually pronounced strengths and weaknesses would have been cool. Right now Byleth´s growth´s are basically a coin-flip, with them only turning into a coin-flip in your favor with intermediate classes.

 

When it comes to unit customization however, I´d go way beyond what Fates or Awakening did.

Give the player a budget of total growth rates and base stats. Looking at Byleth we´d be dealing with 370% and 90 base stats. Now we could make a Byleth from scratch into let´s say a physical combatant that has no business with magic:

HP 60 / STR 50 / MAG 0 / SKL 60 / SPD 60 / LCK 20 / DEF 60 / RES 0 / CHA 60

HP 30 / STR 12 / MAG 0 / SKL 10 / SPD 10 / LCK 6 / DEF 12 / RES 0 / CHA 10

I would install a growth/base stat limit how much you can allocate, otherwise we might get Byleth´s that are even more lopsided than the example. The example itself, forgoing any semblance of magic would make for a think a pretty strong physical combatant, but leaves a pretty hefty downside. Granted the example Byelth would put all of their students to shame.

 

Though to be honest a large part for Customizing the Avatar I feel is being able to get a tailor-made parent in Fates and Awakening.

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