Fire Emblem: The Lonely Mirror (Full Game - FE8 ROM Hack)

I get where the prelude is coming from, as it serves a two fold focus:

  1. grinds the whie lions, Miles, and Joesph to make up the potential level gap and
  2. Gives a bit more background to our merry bunch of newly recruited mercenaries and their motivation for dropping a lucrative contract for one more in their moral interests
    It may further break pacing, but perhaps a bit of interjection from Leah as part of the pre/post chapters, like incredulity over sacking drunk bandits, and foreshadowing/comparing the dark influence over the odd behaviour of some of the enemies fought thus far

I do like the in-media-res of prologue three in particular, and how it ties the plots back together. If one were to “trim the fat” so to speak, Prologues 2 and 3 have the strongest writing and relevance to the plot, but I would hardly suggest cutting chaters so early, as I like the break in escalating conflict and difficulty to dig more into characters and plot

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My feedback on Preludes 2 and 3 and Chapter 8.

Prelude 2:

  • Ooh, I have to say I was not expecting Terrors to show up. That said, uggggggh, ambush spawns. Ambush spawns always, always, always suck. Could these not have waited until a certain turn to show up like reinforcements typically do?
  • I struggled with this chapter until I figured out that Winifred could snipe some of the enemies over the eastern wall. That made things a little easier.

Prelude 3:

  • What kind of houses are these supposed to be?
  • Hey there, casually nerfed Forseti tome.
  • LOL, the Proclaimers. Did they walk 500 miles to get here?
  • This is probably my favorite chapter in the game in terms of gameplay. It feels tense, yet still manageable thanks to the ample chokepoints.

Chapter 8:

  • Thank goodness you don’t lose any of the White Lions if you kill them in Chapter 7. Now that the parties are merged, I can give my thoughts on them properly. Though it’s really weird that certain members can potentially end up weaker than when you fought them as enemies.
  • Boone is pretty decent, I suppose. Good stats all around and a nice personal weapon. I’ll probably use him because I really want a proper Lance infantry unit if Soldiers are enemy-only.
  • Caspian suffers from the typical GBA Fighter problems of having HP and Pow as his only good stats and being mediocre everywhere else, particularly in Spd. I’ll probably bench him. (Actually, Brett’s kind of slow too now that I get a better look at him, but at least he’s a magic user with good accuracy to make up for it.)
  • Winifred is also underwhelming. Joseph renders her almost completely obsolete and I’m not sure I want to put effort into training her when Liang can at least take on magic users more easily with his good Res. I think she too is going on the bench. (Situations like this are why I hate Wind magic being effective against Flying units.)
  • Travis might merit some more training since he’s mounted, but I don’t know if I want to do it since I already have Vergil as my main Axe user and I hate Cavaliers anyway.
  • Myles is also one of the better Prelude characters if only because the previous chapter gives him good opportunities to train so that he doesn’t suffer as badly as the others from being underleveled. Too bad about that 1-Range lock, though. Hopefully I can find him a magic sword or something.
  • Lael… Oh, boy, Lael… I’m not sure what to make of her. On one hand, she’s suffers the worst from being underleveled, but on the other, she’s a second healer and can at least defend herself, which Kathryn can’t do until she promotes, while also probably ending up faster than Brett in the event that she is trained properly. …Eh. I’ll give her a chance.
  • Joseph is very good with his 1-2-Range, anti-Flying capabilities, and early access to stronger tomes. I’m definitely using him.
  • Liang can contribute more easily than Winifred thanks to his superior Res and earlier access to the Shining Bow. Like Myles, he too benefits from ample training opportunities in the previous chapter. I think he’ll end up being both my main Bow user and my main Thief.
  • The Shine tome’s bonus of Lck +2 is absolutely pathetic. You realize that 2 points of Lck only equals 1 point of Hit and 2 points of Avoid, right? I would at least double that bonus.
  • The main challenge of this chapter is rescuing the three trapped characters. Grant (mine, anyways) was surprisingly useful here as he takes almost no damage from the Revenants and Baels, and while he does take some nasty hits from the Mogalls, he makes up for it by being able to one-shot them with the Axereaver. Funny how I’ve used that more for Mogall-busting than Axe user-busting.

Overall (so far):

  • I would probably increase the White Lions’ starting Levels slightly so they can be caught up with Leah’s group more easily.
  • The last couple of chapters have been excellent. When you say there are 14 chapters in this release, does that mean there are 14 total or the story is playable up to Chapter 14? Either way, I’m looking forward to what the last few have to offer.
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I am not a fan of ambush spawns either. The ambush spawns in Prelude 2 are the only ones present in the game. I felt that it was okay in this situation because 1) only three, fairly weak, enemies could pose a problem to you, 2) I wanted to give a bit of a shock with the added monster units, and 3) there is some warning given in the text; though, I can see it not being specific enough.

In regards to the houses in Prelude 3, I haven’t quite figured out the best way to edit tilesets yet. I did create a snow village tileset by editing the palettes; however, I didn’t like how it looked in Municro as it is the “walled city.” At that point, I figured it could make sense for Municro to have funky, walled housed.

Yes, the bonus that Shine provides is pretty underwhelming. The light magic bonuses will likely be changed in a future build.

I found your character assessment interesting. The Winifred vs Joseph argument you brought up was something I never actually considered. It was always Brett vs Joseph in my mind. Joseph could fill a lot more use on a team than I initially thought. I will certainly keep this in mind.

I will say that many of the White Lion characters like Caspian, Travis, and Winifred will have opportunity to become party staples in a story arc that happens after Chapter 10, which is not in the current build (in-progress). There will also be less perspective switching going forward. I did draw a lot of inspiration from FE 7, 8, 9, and 10 for this project…

I don’t think I answered your question regarding the Silvan choice. You get a Speed Wing if you turn him into Rinto as a reward, and you get nothing otherwise. Basically, choose to play with the Speed Wing or without. You will receive a different reward in Chapter 13 (not in current build) if you choose to let Silvan go, but this does not have an effect on the available chapters.

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Archers being rendered obsolete by magic users, especially Wind magic users, is something that often annoys me.

My own game, Sanctaea Chronicles, tries to get around this by giving every Bow 2-3-Range, while most Tomes still only have 1-2-Range. This way, Bows can act as a safe counter against otherwise OP 1-2-Range weapons like Daggers, Tomes, and Kodachi/Javelins/Hand Axes and not be so restricted in their niche. To top this off, the Aero (Aircalibur) tome in my game is NOT effective against Flying units despite being wind magic; it is merely the Anima magic equivalent of a Silver weapon.

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Doing a run through hardmode currently, and consistently hitting an event trigger bug. Starting turn 2 on chapter 6 causes whoever ends their movement first on my side to trigger end chapter dialogue and then rolls into chapter 7

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Yikes! That is a really bad and weird bug. Let me see if I can find out what is causing this and patch it for you. Honestly, I haven’t done much of any testing on hard mode yet; but there are differences.

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Specifically it triggers after the light monks spawn, so I’m thinking it’s tied with their event listing, maybe how it’s prioritized?

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Actually, what appears to be happening involves the unit positions on hard mode. There is a shaman next to the gate who happens to have a door key, and then enemy AI is set to use door keys on this chapter. The door key is being used and thus triggering the seize flag on turn 2. I have found a way to disable the AI from opening doors on this chapter using HxD.

I will upload a new build shortly after I disable access to Chapters 11 through 13 as they are not all there yet from a text/map design aspect. You will also find a number of edits that have happened in the last week, including:

  • Leah begins the game with Rapier, which has 20 uses (not locked to Leah). to help in the first couple maps.
  • Lael now uses light magic.
  • Winifred has increased level and bases.
  • Additional chests are available on maps to make use of lockpick. Treasures have been restructured, but you won’t be getting anything overpowered like brave weapons in the first 10 chapters.
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I have uploaded a new UPS titled FE_LonelyMirror_v1_1.ups. I am hoping this fixes the bug in Chapter 6 for you. Thank you for pointing this out to me.

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My feedback on Chapters 9 and 10. I’m going to stop here since Chapters 11-13 are apparently incomplete.

Chapter 9:

  • Geez, as if Joseph and Liang weren’t already capable of doing what Winifred can and better, Caden here blows her out of the water! Like, with all these other solid anti-Flying options, why would you ever use her? …I hope those better Level and bases you’re giving her will help.
  • Are Helga, Patrick, and Benji planned to be playable in a future release? They don’t have any growth rates listed. Either way, protecting them was nowhere near as difficult as I was afraid it would be.
  • I don’t know if it’s just me, but there are more typos in this chapter than usual. RIP Rayne, one of the “closen”.
  • The chapter was pretty easy once Rayne was out of the way. The Ballista Caden starts near works wonders against him.

Chapter 10:

  • The Hatchet still can’t be sold. Is that intentional?
  • Lael isn’t vulnerable to Thunder magic like Brett is. I guess that’s another reason you might want to invest in her.
  • Minor, but whenever you activate a switch, the music seems to get slightly quieter until it changes.
  • I think there are a few too many enemies near the western corridor. Were it not for a flaw in the Thief AI that causes it to unlock the Door it spawns near, making the Thieves easier to catch, the monsters there combined with the Mages would be very hard to get through.
  • The first Thief does not even try to steal the treasure before escaping. I’m not sure about the second one.

Overall:

  • My impressions of this hack were not good at first, but when it really kicked into gear you could tell. I look forward to seeing more.
  • Would you possibly be able to share your class tree? I’d love to see it.
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The comment about the typos gave me a laugh. I spent an entire Saturday reviewing all the text from the Prologue all the way through To Conquer Death, but I stopped after I missed a party I organized. I will go back through Chapters 8 through 10 sometime soon, but I am happy to know that my text reviews have made a difference. :slight_smile:

  • Winifred will definitely get her moments above Joseph, Caden, and Liang going into Chapter 11 and onward.
  • There are also many characters that were introduced in the first 10 chapters that will be made playable in the upcoming chapters. Ariel, for example, is available on Chapter 11.
  • Lael not being vulnerable to thunder magic was actually intended for something I was going to reveal later down in the story. Though, Lael now should use light magic instead of fire magic, which actually makes more sense to me. I have no idea why I didn’t do that to begin with.
  • You should be able to sell the hatchet. I can easily fix that one.
  • I am also aware of the strange thief AI in Chapter 10; though, I haven’t been able to figure out how to fix that one yet - despite it having the exact same AI as other thieves in vanilla FE8.

I would share my class tree, but even that is evolving slightly. I will have this locked down when I release the next vertical slice of chapters, so I could share this at that time.

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This is great Caladrius! I’ll go ahead and play your hack which I’m excited about and of course I’ll provide you with feedback on each chapter of Fire Emblem: The Lonely Mirror. Like you I’ve created a hack too but mine is based on FE6. You are more than welcomed to play it whenever. It’s probably not as amazing like yours since it’s my first time creating a hack but nevertheless it’s still worth playing. It’s FE6 re-imagined. I call it Fire Emblem The Binding Blade Extreme. :slight_smile:

Thank you so much for creating a FE hack for us to play and enjoy Caladrius. :slight_smile:

I will start playing Fire Emblem: The Lonely Mirror starting this Friday :slight_smile:

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@7_Legault_7 You have your own thread to post gameplay of your hack in, derailing someone else’s thread about their hack just to advertise your own without giving even an ounce of constructive criticism or SOMETHING worth a damn to the OP is probably one of the most baffling and disrespectful things you could do on this forum.

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I’m not promoting my hack here. I simply mentioned it… I invited Caladrius to play it as a kind gesture since I’m willing to play his. I told caladrius that I’m exited to play his and I’m basically sharing what I’ve created because it’s the first time I create a hack. Why do you approach me in a hostile manner? There’s absolutely no tact in the way you approached me with that comment. If you feel that I might of done something wrong why not PM me first about it in a civil manner instead of putting me here on blast in an cruel way. And I’m sorry but I don’t see any of my gameplay posted/shared in here.

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I have been working on portraits for existing characters after a 3 year time skip in the story (beginning with Chapter 11). For those who have played this ROM hack, I am curious if you envision any particular appearance changes or if you have any that you’d like to suggest. I figure that it is more fun to open this discussion to the community. Thanks for any input.

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Joseph’s been working on his sick Guns, gonna promote to Muscle Sage
Miles got a nice looking, albeit eerily familiar hat… Wendell’s Sick Pope Hat
Leah grew her hair out and wears it in a cute ponytail. She also got a skill and speed buff and a penchant for critting
Caden has more severe male pattern baldness, but a glorious beard
Caspian got an eyepatch; He didn’t lose an eye or anything, Winnifred just told him he would look cooler
Travis changed his hair color and got a cool headband. No one noticed. Vergil changed nothing, because he is perfect and immortal

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Oh man, some of these were pretty funny. Thanks for your feedback as always.

  • I did play around with a new Caden portrait, and it should be along the lines with how you described him. A little less hair on the head, and a larger beard.

  • Caspian is difficult, and I have no idea how he should look. Probably won’t go with the eye patch idea as that seems a bit too Dimitri Three Houses for me. This does seem like a Winifred prank to me though. :slight_smile:

  • I can do something similar to what you describe for Travis. I tried giving him short hair, and it didn’t really look that great. Time to try a different approach.

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If you’re looking for more serious feedback, giving Leah’s retainers a bit more of a royal flair seems appropriate, emblematic of her more secure position after the time skip, while Joseph is a bit less rugged and wild and somber and groomed, the loss and maturity shaping his look, whereas Miles and Leal could be a bit more wild and “worldly”, having spent the time following up on the bell and legends at her behest. I like the idea of the White Lions continuing their work and their growing reputation, maybe a bit of an FE9 to 10 situation, where Boone grows into the role, Travis and/or Caspian have a bit of a second in command flair to them, and Winifred is a bit more grown up (or puts on the airs of being grown up anyway)

If your looking specifics
-A regal posture to Leah, with a cloak, mirrored brooch, and a bit of a longer cut to her hair
-Faith, Vergil, Kathryn, Brent and Grant are a bit more armored/clothed in finer clothing and also bearing some sort of symbol for Leah’s House or Crest
-More groomed/less rugged Joseph, with perhaps a studious bent to reflect time spent studying to avoid future deaths he believes he can prevent
-Exotic/Traveled and wild hair for Miles and Leal; see above
-Filled out “mature” look to the White lions, maybe a Lion crest they wear proudly to signal their reputation?
-A more weary Caden sounds perfect “Heavy is the Crown” and all that. Maybe a few wrinkles to go along with the beard and bald spot?

Food for thought at any rate

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We are definitely aligned regarding the Ametona characters.

Joseph is an interesting case. I see him being more call to action instead of the studious type - especially with Caden handling more internal politics. The “Heavy is the Crown” definitely makes sense here. He probably aged a lot unfortunately. Poor Caden. Celyste was wronged by a cult at the end of Chapter 10, and Celyste is focused on strength. I think Joseph will carry this strength. Given that he probably gained a lot of confidence after actually facing battle,“Muscle Joseph” might not be too far off.

I will see if I can make something like crests for the White Lions to actually show on their armors. That is a cool idea. It might be difficult given the limits in pixel art, but worth a shot.

In general, I will probably do minor changes with the exception of maybe a couple. Three years isn’t that much time, and portraits do take a lot of work.

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Yeah, not to mention having to have the same character being recognized as two different portrait assets eats up bits and confuses the rom a bit, and there’s only so much detail in a 16x16 to begin with

Honestly, its more how the relationships, dynamics and courtly shenanigans have changed and how the blue team deals with conflict, the responsibility put on their shoulders I’d put more stock in, so if you give the writing precedence, more power to ya. Keep up the good work Cal!

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