Every chapter is complete and there’s a document in the Dropbox detailing which supports are done and which are in progress.
The ranks are all present, however.
Every chapter is complete and there’s a document in the Dropbox detailing which supports are done and which are in progress.
The spike in difficulty after chapter 10 is insane. I don’t know if I was just expected to use the White Lions units way more than I did, but nobody can kill anything and everyone dies to everything.
Another question. I noticed that you need to be on a harder difficulty in order to access the gaiden chapters. I would prefer an easier experience and have febuilder installed. Is there an easy way to remove that restriction. Not the greatest with febuilder but if you could point me in the right direction it would be greatly appreciated.
haha my bad i did not realize that you were not the creator of this hack lmfao
It won’t be easy, you’d have to remove the hard mode check from the events.
Also nbd, caladrius doesn’t visit FEU that often so I replied in interest of expedience
Hey guys, this is Lesk, we both know it’s been two years ever since my last post, and here we are, back again.
The only way that it could ever be done.
So, my reviewing will be based on three main factors - gameplay, characters, and overall arching story. In subject to its Gameplay, difficulty bias may arise, but we play the game the way the founding romhackers intended to do so.
Summary of the Review
A rout map that begins as a solo chapter which transitions into a slow - but constant pour of new units being introduced. Leah is fundamentally a weak lord on her start, being uncapable of one-rounding enemies she has advantage against, being unable to double any enemies on her join chapter (supposedly nimble sword lord). She can only double with a +3 Spd Slim Sword, which highly decreases her one-hit damage to the point she can’t deal with solo axe fighters reliably.
She is joined by Kathryn and Grant by the following turn, of whom the former has appeared on the introduction of this chapter. Leah will then be lastly joined by the former sub-commander of the Western Guard (all killed by pegasi), Vergil.
BERRIED DELIGHT, DIP WITH IT
Now, this chapter faces the fact that you have to use all your units half of the time to take down one single unit at a time - as many of them, even despite having weapon triangle disadvantage will deal massive damage and potentially threaten the run if allowed to do so.
The lack of more specific background into the story (Kingdom O’ Gold is our starter cutscene), while not detrimental and not obligatory, doesn’t exactly aid in the worldbuilding on the start of the game. This thus hinders any sort of initial knowledge in the game’s world.
Leah is ambushed by an attacking force from Celyste (intel was wrong, which was a nice touch, but wonder if we’ll ever get some sort of intel-based scenario ever again), and we are forced to leave from Ametoma. Thus, the group fights their way off from the main hall, not coming into contact or noticed by the pegasi that have wiped out the main force, nor by other enemies while fighting in the hall, and make it into the Catacombs.
Party enters the Catacombs without a reliable light source ding
Pretty much a more closed map with FoW. With our somewhat frail units, this’ll take way too many ounces of caution to correctly deal with it. With the addition of mages that can deal a huge dent on many of your units and the overbearing strength of fighters towards your knight and axe cavalier, which Leah can’t handle, makes the overall gameplay concerningly slow as you’re forced to play retreat as you can’t take good engagements whatsoever. Thanks to access to an Iron Axe this chapter, though, Vergil is now able to deal damage and be fast enough to double units, while Grant’s damage output is either tanking against swords, missing against axes, and dealing 1 damage against armor knights.
Party gets lost in the Catacombs, facing an old crypt which gives us exposition about the old ancient civilization of Argammae - on a very superficial basis. Then we get ambushed by a mysterious force interested in opening the crypts. This opens the door to ulterior motives which we’ve no real knowledge on and we must theorize about.
Hoo boy. This chapter. This whole chapter. Cavalry blocks your path in turn 2, so rushing down the seize spot is hardly an option. After you try to cleave your way through, the pegasi make their appearance, and you are overwhelmed. Considering the small amount of units, Kathryn is roadkill unless rescued, which snowballs into you roadkilling the rescuer due to the speed penalty. You’re forced to play slow and in a painfully defense way, which added up by not only your shaky hit rates, but the worrying hit rates of the enemies, this map is heavily punishing.
Additionally, which was never resolved on my previous post - routing or defeating the boss hasn’t been made a clear condition on this chapter, and as such you can defeat the enemy army and simply take 50 turns of leisure (without being persecuted).
Straightforward trying to escape - the route got leaked (somehow), and Leah and co. must escape. This escape leads to their eventual meeting with Count Brett in a safe place.
By this point, Leah has truly fallen off despite being fed levels, whereas units such as Vergil actually have gained a sense of reliability, and the addition of Brett, who correctly one-shots Wind Mages put Leah on a shaky position.
So I’ll say this straight - Leah is a bad lord and a bad unit.
Additionally, this chapter does not automatically end when fully routing the enemy, which is a reasonable possibility considering how they rush the castle around turn 7.
By this point, axe-locked Vergil is possibly one of your best units, sharing Grant’s bulk without all the slow speed that the latter is given.
All of this would be relevant, if, you know - were you not able to rescue Tarin. Alas, that is not the case.
This way, you can pretty much allow the map to play by itself as you let all enemies strike Tarin and allow them to fall by themselves, to the point where Tarin will break his Tomahawk and put a dent on his Silver Sword. A +1 Con makes this easily preventable.
As of Chapter 3’s completion, these are our current stats.
Leah is a heavily underwhelming lord. Her speed of 9 isn’t enough to counter any but the foes she wouldn’t even want to engage (lance cavaliers/knights) unless she was one-shotting already due to her low bulk. She can’t pick good fights as axe users have a concerning accuracy (40%) to land a blow that leave her on single-digit HP. On her game start, she could only double making use of the Thin Sword, which turned her damage output into a noodle.
She’s quite honestly cumbersome, and we’ll see if the chapter 5 item creates any sort of difference.
Glass cannon. He mainly nukes fire tomes, one-rounding them, and serves as okay-ish support for non-fire mages, but falls short from dealing lethal damage.
While he has a sizeable amount of defense, he will still take chip damage from many enemy unit types, and axe users, both cavalry and brigands/fighters will put him in need of extreme
Why did Vergil get so many levels? His high mobility combined with the later acquired Iron Axe makes him a most reliable damage dealer, and when you add a Hand Axe into the mix, he has a large edge against most enemies, sometimes being a more favorable pick against sword knights than Leah using her own rapier, or Grant with a lance of his own and weapon triangle advantage due to his abyssmal speed.
Now let’s get back into the game.
The unit that runs out of attacks if you use it, tries to act like a mage and doesn’t have the same terrain-piercing mechanics mages do. It has some nice things as easily acquired 3-range options in the form of the Strike Rune in Chapter 4 - which has 5 uses. She can’t be reliably leveled unless you feed her kills as her ammunition will run out mid-chapter. Her speed is at both sides in a dangerous spot. Fast to double? Your ammo runs out quicker. Too slow? Considering her underwhelming defenses, she crunches and crumbles like paper.
You will end up consuming the Strike Rune she finds on the same chapter since its her only safe engagement tool, as hand axe brigands and archers are common on the end-chapter.
In base to the story, we meet the promise of war crimes, and the king (and so on, Leah’s father) is labeled as the guilty party for the razing of that city, to what an enemy pegasi knight (I sure hope Vergil does not suffer PTSD from it) joins us in the quality of guardian.
In a chapter full of bows and axes. Sure.
On a secondary note, meet clearly-not-corrupted-or-controlled-by-a-dragon King and father of Celystean prince which is going to be our other protagonist. He sure is acting out by wanting to put citizens into a life of servitude and death. Surely his advisor isn’t related to any of this.
Now here we tie back with the O’ Kingdom of Gold tale, the one that left the girl from the otherworld deserted and lonely due to the prince’s pressumed lack of commitment and abandonement, which turned her melody into one of ruin.
It reminds me of my last ex, honestly.
The song of the Lonely Mirror has twisted into overtaking the minds of soldiers of both armies, which has taken the life of the king of Ametona (Fire Emblem, am I right? Gotta kill the dads all night long).
Anyways, chapter 5 begins with another character entering the list of ‘Please stay close to me, Leah’, offering the following item.
Nice. That’s 14 total damage against foe’s Res, which will surely be enough to-
And she still eats a javelin. Hear me out, guys. A 1-2 prf might be cool and all, but if you make that weapon work as just an extra reach tile instead of giving you the ability to outreach enemies, you still get the same issues of being paper-thin.
Additionally, our Runeseeker here meets more trouble. She gains another Air Rune (aka, 3-6 combats) on this chapter. Have fun. On the additional, we gain a dark mage unit equipped with Banshee, a Silencing tome, and we gain Flux from a nearby chest, who is overly squishy. This tremenduous amount of squishy units will not make any kind of grouping or fighting on open fields within fog-filled terrain any more troublesome than it is by default. Surely.
Snow chapter with turn 2-3 reinforcements, woo hoo. This chapter was simply cleared through making use of Ward Staff’d Vergil, as other units are either too slow (Grant), don’t deal reliable damage (Leah, Atticus), are limited on their number of engagements (Parvati), or are directly countered by a third of the enemies in the map (Faith, Brett). Thus, only Vergil is actually capable of taking engagements against mages and other enemies without risking a casualty.
The ambushing Monks, and later Pegasus do cause other units to be forced to focus on them, so attempting to turtle or to waddle through with different movement speeds only leads to taking focus from two sides, and due to the underwhelming damage they deal (needing 3-4 units to kill one enemy), they cannot push onwards as well as using a front-runner.
Map where you fight off the White Lions, where the double ballistas render half of your units unable to enter their range, coupled with its difficult terrain. Thus you are forced to push with your more durable units or slow down to a crawl to reach through the enemy forces. Sluggish chapter unless you decide to fuck it and send a unit bolstered by the Angelic Robe obtained last chapter.
Quite honestly one of the few good chapters so far in lore - with the reveal of the dupe contract and the later confrontation of the White Lions’ boss with the King and his second-hand man.
Prelude I - III
Very straight-forward chapters where the limited cast show precise usefulness. Travis begins with shortcomings due to the quick appearance of Myles, aka better Leah (his bases at level 4 are nearly better than Leah’s at level 10) and Boone shadowing his advantage against axe users, but Winifred (our only archer) provides a useful source of not only safe damage, but her starting speed makes it easier for her to double slower foes, adding up with a Longbow to safely shoot against mages or other archers.
Compared to Liang, they both share similar stats, although either with a Body Ring would make them able to wield the Killer Bow more effectively.
Prince Joseph is a remarkable wind mage, capable of managing both melee combatants and ranged ones.
Faith’s inclusion in this chapter - furtherso made apparent by Joseph’s statements - is one where she comes to have no usefulness anew.
She joins one turn before Vergil, Travis and Winifred on a chapter where most enemies are axes or bows, and due to the lack of a preparations screen or a convoy access beforehand, it’s highly likely she has no access to the Axereaver from chapter 7 - not that the fact that it has a Weight stat of 15 would make her hit near-negative speed, making her easily swarmed and one-rounded by most foes - thus making Grant a more solid user of the Axereaver, considering Boone comes with Milarepa by default.
Will update this post with further information of chapters I play through.
Finishing Chapter 10, here come the statlines of each of the Prologue Characters that I have encountered.
Final Stats of Prologue
Status: Forcefully Deployed
Underwhelming lord, with an extremely low bulk and unable to gain levels through her early chapters, which then leads to her being in trouble despite gaining access to a ranged weapon.
Due to enemies gaining a common access to ranged weapons and her lack of damage, Leah cannot take safe engagements against many foes and must be “fed” kills whatsoever in order to gain experience most of the time. She only excels at fighting enemies such as Shamans due to their reduced HP pool, but she will always take heavy damage from their retaliation.
Status: Benched after Chapter 7
Grant is pretty much a standard armor knight. Low movement, low speed. His later failure to keep up against the generally speed-boosted enemies that keep appearing within the game, as well as the addition of mages coming in makes his bulk dissipate. After chapter 7, where the White Lions come to join the game, he was replaced by Boone, a slightly faster candidate for wielding lances.
Status: Secondary Healer
Kathryn is your first (and only during 7 chapters) healer, and quite focused on speed. While her low defensive bulk makes her melt against many enemies and the fact that later maps become “get attacked at turn 1” with little to no room to escape or defense, frail units are heavily disadvantaged. She later gains a Ward Staff, which proves to be heavily useful to bolster other units that can handle both magical and physical threats.
Vergil Status: Motivated (Angel Robe used on Vergil)
Despite being axe-locked, Vergil remains supreme thanks not only to his superior mobility, but to his availability on the Prologue. He pretty much is your only way to deal with most enemies on the early game, as Leah is too weak to handle axe fighters (and only fast enough with a Slim Sword), and lance fighters squash her, and Grant - despite his control over two weapons - also suffers from low speed and being eliminated by mages. Vergil’s mobility, and access to an early handaxe and then a later hatchet pretty much define his role as one of great utility all across his prologue.
Brett is a Fire Mage with amazing availability on his join map, being able to one-shot all wind mages and being your first ranged unit - he feels good to play during that chapter.
And then the Thunder mages start piling up, and his effectiveness is completely diminished. Still, he makes good work of some enemies, and can chip others well, so far making him the second best mage in the prologue.
Status: Double Benched
Faith is an awful pegasus knight, locked to the Slim Lance if you have any hopes for her to survive. Due to the effectiveness granted by Wind Mages, the many archers and axe users that appear across her appearance, Faith is simply put at a major disadvantage against all of her available fights.
She simply can’t gain levels on the early game, and due to her low Con and the Weight of lances, she can take a massive blow to her speed stat in order to “pad” weaknesses such as needing to attack at range or fighting axes.
Pretty much unusable.
Parvati quickly becomes a burden the moment she runs out of available fights. I’ve made an attempt at using her with her variety of runes, which often give her an edge against other mages as well as not be affected by tome effectiveness, but her dwindling resources and the need of turning every map into a desert map for her turn her into a heavily niche unit that is destined to fall off due to the low amount of fights that she can partake in.
Status: Chest Opener
He has a pretty simple purpose as a rogue - opening chests. His high speed, acceptable strength and access to affordable 1-2 range options make him pull his weight beyond being needed for lockpicking and chest looting. He is just a standard rogue, nothing too fancy.
Status: Forcefully Deployed
Rosie is simply put too bad to be fielded effectively. Her own weapons will slow her down, ranging from -1 Spd from Flux, the base tome, to -3 from Banshee, a status tome that does not prevent her from being counterattacked, has a very slow debuff duration, and even removes her advantage on the magic weapon triangle against the foes she has enough accuracy to land an attack on.
Also, this book here is far too unreliable and far too innacurate to actually ever yield results.
Boone is an average lance lord coming with a good Prf weapon - the Milarepa, working as an upgrade to the Axereaver. His prologue does an okay job at letting him shine, as he has control both over sword wielders and axe wielders equally, pretty much being the faster variant of Grant.
Winifred is your - very late - archer, making good usage of her longbow while maintaining an affordable speed stat, and going from being a good chipper to being able to cook and kill her own fights. Between her and the late Liang, it comes to how well has she leveled on the two earlier chapters to whether decide if you focus Winifred or Liang - and hand the Shining Bow to the other.
Status: Benched after Prelude II
Caspian faces competition in the form of Vergil, who not only is mounted, but has had seven chapters of advantage to break loose. In basic concepts, both are fairly equal, as their statlines will be similar upon reaching maximum levels, with few variations.
Status: Benched after Prelude I
Travis faces two types of competitions - the mounted competition, ruled by Vergil, and the sword competition, quickly dominated by Myles. Due to both of these factors, coupled with his Abel-like stat distribution (not enough damage incoming), and with Boone being able to take on axe-wielders on the Prelude chapters, Travis often ends overshadowed by other units and dropped off.
Status: Top-Sword Wielder (Energy Ring + Body Ring)
Myles at base comes beating Leah, and with his early Killing Edge, he already comes strong, having the basic Myrmidon statline but boosted to a fault, coupled with the fact that the Prelude chapters feature many axe users, putting him at a fair advantage and ease to acquire level ups without problems.
Added with weapons such as the Lancereaver and the Wo Dao, who Myles pretty much is the best user of, Myles strongly performs on his chapters and chapters 8 to 10.
Status: Offensive Healer
Another staffbot, with access to Light Tomes, which give her an advantage against Dark Mages (which are slightly less common once she arrives, as they are only within Chapter 8, and Chapter 9’s gate enemy.
She will hardly see combat and is just a more combative version of Kathryn, with higher resistance and power, if lower speed.
Status: Deployed, but not by Force (He’s okay)
A solid Wind Mage with good balanced stats, who begins with Forseti - an extended range tome allowing him to take far-strikes, as well as good enough stats and a map filled with enemies on his joining chapter to level up on his leisure. He fills the Abel niche of mages compared to Brett’s more Cain-like statline.
With his Shining Bow being an incredible tool for archers to counter at melee range, Liang is ill-suited to make use of it due to his low defenses, but overall he is a fine replacement to Winifred whether you wish to use one or the other - or both, even. His main role, though, with his impressive Res base is as that of a mage-killer, but against many of them (Light or Anima Mages), he’ll be best-suited making use of standard bows, rendering him vulnerable to close range combat.
Status: 11th Hour Archer
He is simply your archer replacement for this chapter in case you’ve lost both Winifred and Liang, and his prf is a good weapon capable of one-shotting most foes, and maiming many others, being force-deployed for his one single chapter.
Started this today. Got to a choice in a house in chapter 2 and I’m wondering if it effects anything. Starting class of a recruitable character or boss? That portrait was very not-generic which is why I’m wondering. Probably going to pick dark just in case it does effect something since that tends to be the better magic type, just curious if it actually effects anything.
Event added in the last couple patches that lets you determine Sterling’s starting class.
I don’t remember if you’re able to recruit him outside of Hard mode now though
I honestly would never recommend Maddening for a first time play. It can be brutal at times and having knowledge of a first run through can be really helpful here. It’s not a bad difficulty if you want the challenge or if you don’t care if your units die. Just expect your units to feel weak for a while and the enemies ramp up a lot in the end.
Thanks for answering the questions, @Yasako. Sterling should be available on any difficulty now. The choice of magic type impacts Sterling’s starting class - monk or shaman.
I personally enjoy light magic a little more than dark magic, because of access to Seraphim and light having a more consistent hit rate, but Sterling will start with a lot more magic power with Shaman, which makes him a little easier to level up. Monk gives him a lot more Res, which to be honest, Sterling kind of needs too. Sterling is the only playable Prophet in the game, which is a super fun class because of the high crit light magic. Bishop is of course an amazing class too. Dark Griffon is a great class off of Shaman though. Druid is probably the worst of Sterling’s options, but staff utility is still nice.
Also, the next release will entirely remove maddening only chapters and recruitable units. You can experience any path on any difficulty. Item drops may be different depending on the difficulty though.
I am still thinking on this one. I might have to customize Chapter 11 based on the level of Boone, Caspian, and Myles, so that it is an easier experience. Chapter 11 and 12 can be a bit rough though if Boone, Myles, Caspian, and Travis were entirely ignored. It should clear up by Chapter 13, because at least you will get Wyatt - who will be buffed in the next release. You’ve definitely given me something to think on though.
Will item drops be the only difference with maddening mode then? (Besides difficulty of course)
Yes. There are a couple item differences between the difficulties. Normal/Hard may have a couple additional droppable items.
Maddening will have more waves of reinforcements and some harder enemies in some areas. Additionally stats on Maddening enemies will be higher.
There will not be any difficulty exclusive maps or characters.
I’m Ngl I actually liked the extra character and maps in maddening. It made it worthwhile to actually play it again through maddening. But I can see why you would want them merged. I’m hoping the item differences will be big enough to justify another playthrough.
Not a first time player.
Still, that doesn’t mean that Leah has to be a completely underwhelming mess of a lord with completely anti-synergetic weapons (such as being given a ranged magical Prf against light mages), that the Runeseeker is still heavily limited, and that we face thunder mages without a reliable counter (the Dark Mage’s less apt Silence Tome gnaws at her slowed down speed, and Flux itself also slows her and makes her easy pickings for the many light mages there, the Fire Mage is roadkill to them and the Runeseeker needs to conserve early Wind Runes, which easily means you haven’t been using her to fight). These aren’t challenges based on “stat differences”.
I appreciate your feedback and insights into some of the challenges you’ve encountered, but I also want to acknowledge that making an entire Fire Emblem game is a really complex process. There is so much that goes into it and achieving balance between characters and mechanics and across multiple difficulty. It’s pretty daunting.
A lot of your comments seem very specific to Chapter 6 though. Yes, Leah’s weapon may not work great on light mages, but Brett or Parvati or Faith are good options. Leah’s Prf does well against any unit with low res, and she also does well against the dark mages or the boss in Ch 6 too. Even using Ward on Roxie or Atticus or really most anyone and sticking said unit in a forest is a good way to manage this map. Maybe I’ll have Parvati start with more runes to make her feel less limited.
Anyway, I have done my best to create an enjoyable experience to my ability, and I understand that some aspects do not meet the expectations of all players. It can be draining and overwhelming to hear feedback and voices from so many people too, and there are many different personas of gamers who play Fire Emblem. Still, I am honestly so grateful people even invested time in playing this game.
I am with you in your thinking @TheSuzakuSeven. My original intention was that Maddening would feel a bit like a new game plus with some additional content, so it felt fresh and different to play. However, there are also a lot of players who do not want to play Maddening and feel like they are missing content because of it.
I wouldn’t say the item differences will be too noteworthy though. I think the replay value for Lonely Mirror will come from the many routes to take in the game.
Mainly because it’s the chapter that I have more recent as of now. Brett in Chapter 6 faces the fact that he has a low SPD stat, therefore can’t reliably one-round light mages, which have a massive Res stat. Brett will deal a low amount of damage on them.
Parvati’s issue is both the limitation on runes and her bad stats due to them. She is limited to a very few amount of combats per chapter, turning her hardly able to attack during sectors of the game due to the lack of runes. With no runes to use, she’ll gain less experience. With less experience, she’ll get less levels. With less levels, she’ll be less reliable, have less combat engagements, and get into less combats which mean less experience. My honest suggestion on this regard is to have her begin with a blank rune with unlimited uses but be worse than any other limited rune - one range, low might, some hit - mainly to entice finding runes, but not making it outright impossible for her to be useful in battle without them.
In the case of Faith, the inclusion of wind mages at any point in the chapter make her hardly reliable, and the usage of any lance but the Slim Lance slows her tremendously (-3 Spd). Additionally, her Res stat isn’t anything out of this world, making it not that much of a great option.
Roxie with Ward, while tanky, faces also the issue of low speed (being slowed down by the Dark base tome), will see trouble by her lack of speed, being doubled and possibly heavily damaged. Atticus on the other side is too frail to risk taking a blow, and while with Ward he could be able to brush some of those attacks off, his lack of damage output would make it hard for him to actually clear or damage those enemy units.
Now consider that how does X character come into what chapters at the very start is what causes the players to have one reaction or another about certain characters.
Faith? Joins in a chapter full of axes and bows, then the following chapters have ballistas or wind mages.
Leah? Her first chapter has armor knights that deck her, soldiers that kill her, and archers that damage her. She can’t defeat axe users, and even with her prf, she comes to the point where armor knights use javelins and don’t allow her to take safe combats, taking damage and chipping her health away.
Parvati starts as a unit that can only take a few combats before becoming unusable due to a lack of runes.
When I finish Chapter 7, I’ll have feedback for that chapter. When I finish Chapter 8, I’ll have feedback for that chapter, and so forth. I play, I take notes, I state what’s not at its peak performance.
I appreciate your feedback and the time you’ve taken to share your thoughts.
Again, I do my best to take in people’s feedback, but please understand that I cannot possibly meet everyone’s expectations. What one person considers “peak performance” or perfection can differ greatly depending on the perspective, and gaming experiences are highly subjective, varying from player to player.
I love that approach to harder difficulties. One of my favorite ROM Hacks has extra chapter and stuff in their Lunatic difficulty and it makes it so much more enticing to get through again. I honestly hope/kinda wish you’d be able to lock some stuff behind maddening mode for the people like me. But I totally understand you can’t please everyone. I went through hard before you implemented all the cool stuff in maddening( sterling and the extra chapters) and tbh I’ll probably keep this update so I can experience maddening the way you, the developer, intended. I’ll close out with this hack has impacted me in a good way and left a huge impression on me as if it was an original release by Nintendo. Thanks for coming back to update this gem and don’t try to change it up too much just to please a few people. Imo that’s what plagues actual releases for games nowadays, too many nerfs and updates to released games just to please the “more vocal people”. Don’t stress and I hope you continue to make and update rom hacks if you’re having fun! Cuz it truly shows