Awful Emblem: The Thread (Demo 1.10 released)

**Latest Version: AE Demo 1.10 **

I think it’s high time we made a real topic about our hack over here.

This is Awful Emblem, an FE7 hack made by various members of Something Awful’s community. The idea came about in 2013 during a Let’s Play thread about FE romhacks, where, after talking about it a lot, we decided we may as well see if we can make a hack of our own. Fast forward nearly two years and here we are today.

The game is divided into three main Acts. Act 1 is essentially Lyn mode mechanically. It follows the story of Judith, head of the local militia. As the story begins, she heads to the local lord to petition for aid due to recent bandit attacks, only to get wrapped up in an assassination attempt and things escalate from there. Act 2 begins a few months after Act 1 ends, giving characters enough time to split up again before rejoining the party you play. Act 3 isn’t its own game mode but you can liken it to the shift in focus after Dragon’s Gate in FE7.

We’ve made a number of gameplay changes that we feel enhance the gameplay. For example, Soldiers are no longer a throwaway class and can instead be likened to Lance Myrmidons, though not as fast. They can also promote into Halberdiers. Mercenaries saw some nerfs to differentiate them from myrmidons as well by making them stronger but slower in their bases. They’re probably still too good. Knights have 5 Move. Archers have instant access to Longbows, which have been made lighter and stronger and lock to them. A number of “crutch” weapons have been added such as a low weight lance for Pegasus knights and a high hit, low might axe for Fighters. Classes that retain a single weapon type on promotion will also be given a +15 natural crit, which means your Snipers and Halberdiers can become critting monsters as the game progresses. (We’ll have to see how well this balances, we’re not that far along yet.)

The magic system has had a sizable overhaul. It always bugged us that the number of available magic weapons was so small compared to physical weapons, so we got together and hashed out an expanded magic system. There are now 12 tomes per branch of magic, with each branch having a Reaver tome and at least one Effective tome. Other new tomes include a middleground damage tome for Dark magic since there used to be nothing between Flux and Fenrir, a Killer tome in Anima, a damaging Siege tome in Dark that isn’t Eclipse, a Brave tome in Light, a Poison tome in Dark, and if we can get them working properly, a Sleep tome and Silence tome in Light. The hardest part is the animations obviously, but if we or someone else scripts the monster magic from FE8 we should have enough to cover all the new tomes.

We have an older demo that we released following FEE3 last year. It’s pretty outdated at this point as we have since gone back through Act 1 and rebalanced everything in preparation for Act 2, but if you want to try it out, you can click here:

I’m FPzero, the main project lead. I do most of the tasks that actually make the game function, such as all the eventing, most of the mapmaking, hex editing and hair pulling when things frequently go wrong. I like to post pictures of me breaking the hack as I develop it, as well as progress, so check back over time to see both.

The other members of the team are:

  • Artix - Lead writer, Hard Mode
  • Blastinus - Mapmaking, Writing
  • Tyty - Portraits
  • PoorlyWritten - Writing, Text encoding
  • SCBracer - Writing, Editing
  • ddinkins112 - Writing, Supports
  • Ryushikaze - Battle animations, Map animations

Special thanks to Can of Worms for always being around to help when I inevitably blow something up.

To start us off, this is Chapter 11, the second chapter of Act 2. Judith and co have been sent to investigate both a bandit problem and an old ruin in the frozen north. They end up split apart from the ruins team when the bandits attack them. Reunite the group and take on the boss!


Yo, when is the next version coming out? I can give this bad boy an LP sometime if it’s soon :smiley:

ya buddddddd good job more hacks always good

Looking good! The changes to magic are much welcomed (people really don’t do enough with magic in mods) and the portraits strike a chord with the sheer amount of /personality/ that they all seem to have. Consider your thing followed.

Man, you insinuate that I do a lot more than I actually do. In reality most of what I do is sign off on what the rest of the team comes up with writing-wise and I haven’t even touched hard mode in literally a year. :V

How awful to see this here :wink:

Is it ever going to get a different title or is it just gonna be Awful Emblem all the way?

See it’s actually funny that he made this today because the rom exploded again last night and did the thing where it linked two totally unrelated text entries together (and different ones than last time to boot!)

Truly, we are pioneers in breaking FEditor in new and never-before-seen ways.

Aw, I liked where you were going with hard mode from what I’ve played.

The current demo is good fun in general, I’m looking forward to the nest version whenever it comes out!

It’s not dead or anything, I’ve just been working on a lot of other stuff. One of these days when I don’t have videos to edit or a crushing backlog to try and play through, I’ll sit down and try to knock out the rest of Act 1, at least. Also, hard mode is kind of a misnomer, it’s more like “what kind of silly shit can I make happen that would make this more interesting?” Sometimes that means totally changed enemy placements, sometimes that means “hey there’s a troubadour with a sleep staff in Chapter 5.” Frankly, I wish there was a way to do shortened or custom ailments, because sleep and berserk are interesting, but they either remove someone from the field for 5+ turns minimum, or they accomplish jack shit.

Artix’s stuff isn’t all about being Hard though, for example, the Priest in Chapter 4 that usually drops a Mend staff now drops a Physic. We should just rename it to Alternate Mode or Interesting Mode or something.

We might release a new demo shortly that includes all of the Act 1 reworking we did, as well as sneak peeks at chapters 10 and 11 even though they are nothing but gameplay at this point.

Creative Liberties mode?

Well whatever you want to call it, I liked your mode haha.

Just making status ailments last for fewer turns would be a very simple ASM edit. Making their length variable depending on some statistic of the attacker and/or defender would also be pretty easy if you want to go that route. Fully custom ailments are a little more tricky - FE8 has an unused Sick status that can be repurposed, but FE7 doesn’t have that convenience.

Chaos mode

goddamn you

I like the idea of variable length. What if it were based on the level of the unit wielding the weapon? Something like every 5 levels the length increases until you reach 5 turns.

That should be doable - would mean you’d reach maximum length at level 20 unpromoted or so.

Which sounds reasonable. Earlygame, the troubadours and priests aren’t too high level but by the time you’re facing promoted units, you’ll be able to handle 5 turns of status ailments.

Just for you buddy, I am working on “hard mode” right now. Unfortunately, it’s mostly touching up stuff that was already done because we were initially in Hector Mode, then we moved back to Lyn Mode so they don’t get HHM bonuses anymore and now I have to redo a lot of the enemies. Not to mention that since we changed the level scaling in general I should go back and do this anyway.

Also yes yes yes I would absolutely love the variable ailment length. Standard sleep is a pain in the ass, but one that knocks out a unit for a turn or two? Just enough to throw a wrench in your plans, but not enough to ruin a run or put someone out of commission for the entire map.

So who wants a new demo for Awful Emblem? I do!

Version 1.10 is released here!

Most of the changes are listed in the readme but here’s a basic rundown of what’s different.

-We rebalanced Prologue - Chapter 9 to level players slightly slower, so they don’t go into Chapters 10 and onwards too powerful.
-Chapters 10 and 11 are playable, but don’t have any opening events, ending events or text. They are just gameplay previews. You’ll loop back to Chapter 10 after finishing 11. They might feel too easy coming in with characters from Act 1 but that’s because they’ve been balanced around starting a new game directly from Act 2.
-If you use a full save to play Hard Mode I think Artix has made up to Chapter 3 or 4. I haven’t tried it yet but from what I keep hearing it’ll be interesting, to say the least.

Have fun, feel free to leave feedback in here.

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In the interest of disclosure, up through Chapter 3 is done for hard mode. I was hoping to get to five but then FP was like “No we’re doing the demo now” so maybe we’ll do a 1.11 patch or something that gets further in. Would have done more, if not for having to completely redo the opening chapters because Lyn Hard Mode is garbage and doesn’t do hard mode bonuses.