In my expedition shall we say of other types of map games and just general history I guess. Coming back here I’ve noticed that fire emblem really doesn’t have Flags, Coat of Arms, Standards etc. Or at least not in the full capacity.
And its interesting how while fire emblem worlds by all accounts do a pretty good job of world building. There is also an element of, there is an ancient legend and then there’s a now. No serious speak of past nations, empires, great monarchs. At least its something to discuss or potential consider when making your stuff.
But back onto the flags part, there are some symbols, for example in fates. Apparently the Tellius nations actually do have proper coat of arms, even the laguz ones interestingly enough. But closest thing we have here to a modern flag is in three houses but of course those are classrooms, not nations. But with that being said the shields of those nations are quite something.
I do think perhaps these games and this community could use a touch of vexillology in it, don’t you think?
the old TCG has some for Archanea (though I don’t think we ever got really good quality images of them), and FE4/FE5 has them. Thracia 776’s logo is also a combined version of the Leonster’s and Thracia’s. FE4 has simplified versions appear in the battle screen UI and certain other menus.
Here’s Silesse’s full version from FE Treasure, for example.
FE6 also had coat of arms-like generic mini icons for all the factions, though FE7 and 8 didn’t follow through on that, I assume due to less broad enemy factions…? You can look at them with FEBuilder in the generic enemy portrait section.
Renais also has a symbol on Eirika’s, Ephraim’s, Fado’s, and Seth’s official art on their armor. Grado kinda has one if you assume the symbol they replaced the bern wyvern on the tapestries with in the tileset to be a deliberate design and not some generic fancy squiggles.
It’s an interesting observation, to be certain. But it strikes me as just probably one of many worldbuilding topics FE is typically pretty light on. For example, the system of magic is most FE games is rarely ever expounded upon in any fashion, despite being fairly integral to gameplay. Vanilla FE plot priorities are typically on using the plot as a vehicle for characters to shine and be dynamic, so a lot of the time, context is given only as is necessary to understand current events.
In the end, I think it depends on the tone and type of narrative you’re trying to convey. Nations with strong history and imagery can be one way to hook a player, but it may not fit with your narrative. It’s definitely something to consider in your toolbox, though.
Putting aside coats of arms and other symbols, Fire Emblem doesn’t really even assign in-world significance to colours whatsoever. The Caelin soldiers are red because they’re the bad guys, right up until Lyn defeats Lundgren and they start to use the blue soldier portrait because they’re the good guys, then they’re green in ch16 because they’re ally units. Kent and Sain’s red/green armour signifies nothing except that they’re red/green cavaliers, and you gotta have red/green cavaliers because those have been a thing since FE1 (never mind the NES graphical limitations). Lundgren is magenta even though his armour looks black in the CG of Lyn fighting him, and his underlings (Eagler, Yogi, Bool) are grey, teal, and green (but more of a limey green, not Sain’s green). What does it all mean?! Well, nothing, except that I assume the character designers didn’t want to make all those characters be wearing the same colours… no matter that this is GBA and there are plenty more ways to differentiate them than primary/armour colour. Maybe they thought it would still make all the characters look the same to kids?
But then you’ve got Oswin in FE7, whose armour colour is almost exactly the same as Devias from FE6! Is this just asset recycling (Devias’s portrait in general was also edited into Bool), or is there something more to that? We’ll never know.
FE does use iconography effectively in other places, though. If you look at FE6’s final chapter where you fight Zephiel, the dragon imagery all over the inside of the map enhances the experience. It really gives you the feeling of “wow, this is it; this is the heart of Bern”, which would be impossible to do with the regular castle tileset.
I kiiinda see an upside-down demon king’s head? No idea if it’s intentional.