Gaming Decor Patch Notes: Holiday 2019 Edition

‘Tis the season to deck the halls! After failing to do anything festive for Halloween, my wife volunteered to give the game room a holiday makeover. Here are the results!

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The Fire Emblem Series Tier List

Fire Emblem may be a modern phenomenon to many, but the franchise’s history goes way back. Even excluding the Japan-only releases that make up roughly half of the catalogue, you’re still left with 10 mainline games and multiple spin-offs. Those alone might make Fire Emblem one of Nintendo’s deepest franchises in terms of quality and volume.

Though I don’t think there’s a bad game in the series per se, there are certainly titles that stand out from the rest. It’s always been a goal of mine to rank them, but it’s been a long time since I’ve played some of these games, and I don’t want to do the legwork required to confidently place them on a numerical list.

Instead, I’m going with a tier list. Unless stated otherwise, there’s no particular rankings within each tier. As of right now, here’s how I’d rank the mainline games in the Fire Emblem series!

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The Newbie’s Guide for Starting the Fire Emblem Series

Are you curious about the Fire Emblem franchise but too intimidated to dive in? I don’t blame you. Spanning across multiple consoles – along with roughly half of the games in the series never making it outside of Japan – it can be confusing to know where to start.

That doesn’t mean you shouldn’t start at all. With just a little nudge, you could join us on the Fire Emblem hype train! Hopefully this guide can clear up some questions you may have with regards to starting your journey into the series.

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The Great Fire Emblem Debate: Classic or Casual?

For decades, the Fire Emblem franchise’s most unique feature was its inclusion of perma-death. Should a character fall in battle, they’re gone for the rest of the campaign. In a game where characters can develop into fighting machines while also going through their own mini story arc alongside of the main campaign, any loss of life is devastating. Though I’ve gotten pretty good at protecting my heroes throughout, I will unashamedly save scum or redo levels entirely if it means I can save lives and keep my options open.

Starting with Fire Emblem: Awakening, players got an alternative. Prior to the start of a campaign, one can choose to play in Classic mode with perma-death on. Or, you could choose a new Casual mode, where fallen heroes simply retreat for the remainder of a level. In this case, these fallen heroes can return  at the start of the next mission.

This split has created quite the discussion amongst fans of the series. With Fire Emblem: Three Houses out now, it’s bound to heat up again. Which do you prefer? Is there a “right” way to play? Take it for what you will, but this is my approach to Classic vs. Casual in modern Fire Emblem games.

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