While it’s great to have finally seen more of Fire Emblem: Three Houses in the recent Nintendo direct, there are still many questions yet to be answered about the finer details of what we can expect from the next instalment in the long-running SRPG series. That means it’s time to filter out the ‘do’s from the ‘do not’s in a Fire Emblem Three Houses wishlist!
1. Full voice acting
With full voice acting in Fire Emblem Echoes: Shadows of Valentia, there really seems like no reason for Three Houses to go back to the grating partial voice acting of Awakening and Fates unless it’s a deliberate stylistic choice. Please, please, don’t let it be a stylistic choice. Personally, I find part voiced dialogue particularly distracting. You run the risk of either using lines that rarely match what’s actually in the text boxes or reducing every character to a small number of key phrases, and neither of those sounds like a good time to me.
2. More variety in battle objectives
It’s easy for a Fire Emblem game to fall into the pattern of battle after battle where you’re required to rout the enemy, but to do such a thing glosses over the variety of other objectives we’ve seen throughout the series which keep the levels from getting too slow and repetitive. I’m hoping Three Houses makes the most of such other objectives, with goals such as defend, seize, and escape returning alongside the more standard rout enemy and defeat boss levels.
In particular, if there’s going to be variety between levels for each of the three houses, a number of other objectives are going to be a necessity to stop players from being overloaded. Some of the more unusual levels in titles such as Fates Conquest give me hope for this kind of thing, but then Fates Birthright balances it out. This is probably one of the biggest points on my Fire Emblem Three Houses wishlist! Variety is good!
3. No marriage/children
Or at least keep it in the epilogue. While Supports in general have lacked in quality since Path of Radiance (really, Radiant Dawn, why?), I can’t help but feel some of this comes down to trying to shoehorn in conversations between an obscene amount of characters to implement the ‘basically anyone can marry anyone (but no gays)’ mechanic and the ensuing recruitable children. I’m sure I’m not alone in thinking this was unnecessary in Fates even though it kinda made sense in Awakening, so I’m hoping to see it absent altogether or at least reasonably toned down in Three Houses.
Giving characters fewer options for who they can Support lets the conversations be more detailed and more personal. Removing child characters from the unit list stops you from losing half your army to optional battles where they’re criminally underlevelled and just gives you a bigger, better army. Sounds like a win-win to me.
4. The return of terrain effects
Terrain effects were one of Shadow of Valentia‘s many bizarre quirks that I was pretty fond of. They add an extra layer of strategy to every unit placement and can be both a lifesaver and your downfall. It could be really nice to see these brought back in Three Houses to add a little more flavour to battles taking place throughout Fódlan’s distinct regions.
5. No random skirmishes
What’s more annoying than getting ready to crack on with the plot only to have some random zombie step into your path and force you through another battle for no reason? I’ve never been much of a fan of the world map and its propensity for forcing me into extra battles, and I’m really hoping Three Houses decides to give this one a miss. While I appreciate skirmishes providing an opportunity to gain extra experience, there are other ways to go about it that don’t also get in the way when you don’t need the extra experience. Having a pool of bonus experience you can dish out, or one defined area (training grounds or something) that you can visit if you need to are both preferable alternatives for me.
6. Actual player vs player multiplayer
Some of the 3DS titles had an attempt at multiplayer, but barely. I’m talking Dynasty Tactics 2 full army on full army multiplayer. Switch would be a perfect console for implementing such a thing too. I’ve wanted a true player vs player mode for Fire Emblem for a long old time, with the fantastic army vs army split-screen multiplayer mode of Dynasty Tactics 2 as my ideal framework for such a thing. With Fire Emblem finally back on home consoles, and the Switch’s generous inclusion of couch co-op all over the place, it’s time for me to start crossing my fingers for this again. Also, Three Houses is being co-developed by Dynasty Tactics developer and all-around multiplayer superstar Koei Tecmo, so I might, possibly, maybe, actually be on to a winner this time.
7. An equivalent of Mila’s Turnwheel
I’ve raved about the usefulness of Mila’s Turnwheel in Shadows of Valentia before and I’ll do it again. For me, Mila’s Turnwheel is the perfect counterbalance to those days when the Random Number Gods just hate your guts for no reason at all. It doesn’t really detract from paying for your own stupid mistakes in battle, but it does soften the blow of those moments where everything falls apart because of one freaking archer with a hit rate made of lies. Or, you know, the like.
I’m sincerely hoping Three Houses will show some mercy on us poor suffering tacticians who should never be given charge of an army and throw us a bone with something akin to Mila’s Turnwheel so I can occasionally pull off a grand recovery. Given the hints towards protagonist Byleth having some sort of farsight or time-rewinding ability, it seems like a fair feature for Three Houses to have in terms of story relevance too.
8. A beautiful Edelgard amiibo
I mean. It’s gonna happen, right? We don’t know what function amiibo will have in the game yet, but still. Even if we don’t see amiibo for all 3 main Lords, I’m at least expecting (and hoping for) one for Edelgard. Better yet if it’s also useful for her definitely-not-wishful-thinking appearance in Super Smash Bros. Ultimate!
I’ll be pondering all sorts of things off the back of the most recent Three Houses trailer until we learn more or the game is actually out, but that’s ok with me. I can’t wait to see how things turn out when Fire Emblem Three Houses releases in July!
Do you want to see or not see any of these in Three Houses? Let me know what’s on your own Fire Emblem Three Houses wishlist in the comments!
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