What's your opinion on the "Any ally dies" game-over condition?

I, for one, am rather torn on this one.

Path of Radiance, for example, has the characters appear repeatedly throughout the cutscenes during the first 8 chapters, with the only minor change should one of them die being a slightly altered script.

I find it to be a nice idea, however the approach that Radiant Dawn took for its first 4 chapters seemed cooler to me. That is, the fact that you could get a game over should ANY of your units fall. I really like how it made the characters at your disposal seem important to the plot and to your battlefield performance. Sure, Leonardo’s last line was in Chapter 1, however Nolan, Edward and Laura repeatedly contributed to the scenes until you got away in Chapter 3.

I honestly think of it as a missed opportunity from the developers to flesh out the new characters a little bit more (aside from the whole shortened script issue). Path of Radiance did a wonderful job with its characters during its opening chapters.

Anyway, having the losing condition from Chapter 4 onwards being either Micaiah’s or Sothe’s death makes sense, however I also really liked the earlier vibe.

I’ve seen a couple of chapters in some of the hacks do this, and I honestly don’t mind, since this losing condition doesn’t last for too many chapters.

What about you? Does this losing condition bother you, since it’s not really IronMan-friendly, or do you enjoy it when it’s implemented?


Makes no difference to me. If an ally dies, I reset the chapter regardless.


Yeah, I used to do that too. Now, however, if a certain character dies that I didn’t intend to bring to the finale anyway, I just let them stay dead because I can’t be bothered to replay through the long late-game maps😂

Jokes aside, though, I really appreciate how whenever this condition is used, I just get a game over without having to wait for the enemy phase to end, or to restart the game/emulator. It usually saves me quite a bit of time.

I think that, when used for more than a few chapters this type of game over condition can kill all enjoyment one has of fire emblem. Take a look at any Fire emblem lets play, what do you see? Iron mans! This is because most games design around your characters dying, even the binding blade is beatable with its trash replacement units. This makes fire emblem more replayable than many games in our current era because of how varied each end game team can be so forcefully removing that entirely is one of the worst things that any dev can do in my eyes.

If this implementation is only used for a few chapters I’m okay with it though, it’s most likely for story integration so as long as it doesn’t stretch on too long it makes at least a little bit of sense


Having the game game-over on any death is really just more annoying than anything and creates room for situations that make me more likely to put down the game for some time than anything else. Having to replay an entire chapter is rarely fun, but it’s one thing if that was my choice to reset, or if I did let the designated game over unit die. But when game-over status is applied to every unit now I straight up can’t let anyone die and that doesn’t make for a more interesting experience. Any death is now a forced reset, and depending on the situation that can be majorly annoying and just drag down the experience, like if it’s near the end of a map, or it’s a character that I did not want to spend time resetting for.


Hmm, the current demo I’m working on will use this mechanic… Only because, character death has an effect on dialogues, and we haven’t implemented the consequences for permadeath, just yet.

That said, even though it’s annoying, I tend to restart if any unit dies anyway. Like @Huichelaar.

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you could just have those characters retreat when dying, bismix style.


Yeah, it wouldn’t really make sense to have it last the whole game. I suppose it really just helps me make the early-game more interesting from a gameplay-story integration perspective.:thinking:

As a matter of fact, as much as I like the vibes with this condition, I often have this problem while playing 1-3 from Radiant Dawn, in which often I overlook something and one of my units ends up dying, thus having to replay through the map again.

That one is slightly annoying for me. The only reason I don’t really mind replaying through it is because of the music, but that can’t save it every time…

The game-over when any unit dies can be less annoying if you allow people to make backups or undo moves, like in more recent FEs.

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I think that forcing a game over for anyone’s death should really only be used in the early game, generally if you have ~8 units to work with for the first few chapters. But this seems more like a band-aid on the larger problem of having a small cast more than anything else.

Ironmanning FE6 on hard mode has taught me that you can get through the game pretty easily with heavy losses, but that’s because units are heavily frontloaded. A game with a smaller unit pool could be tough to balance if you make it with the mindset that player’s will always reset upon a unit’s death.


It’s really bad, play early game Four Kings to understand why.
Players need time to check enemy stats and to contemplate their past misdeeds.


It’s stupid and bad. Allow players to play the game the way they want to.


Yeah I dislike it because players are conditioned to assume Lords are game over and everyone else is fair game.

Story importance is overrated. Not everyone who “dies” on the field needs to die in story, too. I think FE9 generally handled this pretty well, although I forget if it had any game overs early on for non Ike units.

If you need to go down this path (I did in my stupidity with VQ), make sure it’s very clear to the player.


I think the thing that can make it clunky in terms of GBAFE is that there isn’t anywhere set aside for showing loss conditions, so a non-lord causing a gameover might come as a surprise. In Radiant Dawn, you can always see which units will cause a gameover, which is good because it changes throughout the game. For example, if you take her to the tower, Elincia can die without causing a gameover, where in any other map, her death is a gameover condition.

In the tradition of Radiant Dawn, Deity Device has Orville, who is a game over condition on four maps, but can die without triggering a gameover after a certain point. I can’t recall anyone commenting on that, so I’m actually not sure if most players have gone through the game thinking that he is a gameover condition or if they never realized that he was one to begin with.

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I think its cool for the early game, but only for a handful of chapters and only if you have decent units to justify it, if the game gives you many weak units that can’t take hits it can be pretty annoying

Depending on how the chapter is designed, it can become a turtle fest were you only tank with your tankier units while everyone else is relegated to the back, because you become fearful they might die

I think a better option for losing plot relevant units is to “retire” them instead of killing them if they lose the battle, it can be cheese if many units have this option, but at least the player can advance through the game quicker

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I don’t prefer it, and if you do it, I think you need to be very up front about it in communicating this to the player, and take it into account in your map/unit design.

I’m neither a huge ironmanner nor an automatic resetter, I really enjoy the choice, from both story and gameplay perspectives, presented to reset or not reset for deaths. I think it’s a pretty powerful aspect of Fire Emblem that I don’t see much in other video games.