Give Me the Creeps: Fire Emblem Edition

My wife is a fan of The Walking Dead. Personally, I’m not super into it, but she likes to watch it and I like to cuddle when she’s scared of zombies, so it’s ultimately a win-win. Watching the show – along with other apocalypse-themed things like The Last of Us and RWBY – has helped me to form an opinion about scary things. Specifically, apocalyptic scary things.

Humans are always what you should be afraid of.

Think about it. Watch a zombie movie or play a zombie game. The story never really revolves around zombies. I mean, they’re there as an obstacle, but the real enemies, the villains that truly make your skin crawl and make you want to reach through the screen and kill someone, are people. Regular old human beings who are either stupid or malicious or nihilistic always end up causing more problems than the thing that actually caused the apocalypse in the first place.

So for the final edition of Give Me the Creeps, I’m gonna talk about scary human enemies from Fire Emblem. Since focusing on specific humans would be more along the lines of my Moral of the Story segment, I’m gonna keep things more general and talk about classes. Without further ado, here they are, the five scariest classes from Fire Emblem!

#5: Berserker
These musclebound, axe-wielding nightmares are high HP, high strength warriors who deal incredible amounts of damage with their heavy weapons. Berserkers can be hard to kill because of their high health, and all they need is one lucky hit to decimate you. This makes them particularly deadly to units like cavaliers and pegasus knights who rely on lances in combat.
You see, weapons in Fire Emblem operate on a triangle. Lances beat swords, swords beat axes, and axes beat lances. This means that berserkers deal extra damage and have increased accuracy against anyone with a lance, and anytime a lance user comes against these behemoths, death follows.
Berserkers are low on this list because their garbage accuracy means that they rarely deal their massive amounts of damage to anybody, particularly to fast sword-wielders like thieves or myrmidons. But on the off chance that their axe finds flesh, you can pretty much guarantee that the unit is dead.

#4: Sniper
Heck, these guys already sound scary! Snipers are precision archers that can pick off opponents from a short distance away. Their attacks are quite accurate, which is problematic because bows happen to be the weak point of any unit that flies in the air. Pegasus knights and wyvern riders normally can ran around the battlefield with impunity, their incredible movement range and ability to fly over obstacles making them very mobile. But a sniper can shut down that ability easily. One arrow from a sniper can easily kill most flying units, and seeing a sniper means that very careful management of those units is completely necessary.
Snipers aren’t higher on this list because while they can be pests for other units, they aren’t particularly deadly. However, I have lost many, many flying units to a sniper I didn’t see coming. Let’s have a moment of silence for all the dead pegasi.

#3: Sage
Sages are masters of the magical arts, wielders of raw elemental power such as fire, wind, and lightning. Their ability to command magic makes them dangerous for a number of reasons. Most units have significantly lower resistance than defense. This means that when a sage attacks one of your characters, it is pretty much guaranteed to hurt a lot. Additionally, elements have the ability to capitalize on particular weaknesses, depending on the game. Wind magic pretty much always has extra power against flying units, while in the Radiance series fire and lightning also have advantages against beasts and dragons, respectively. In addition, lightning magic has an above-average critical hit rate, and I’ve lost units to surprise criticals from a lightning-wielding sage a few different times.
Now sages tend to be vulnerable to physical attacks, but it’s a double-edged sword: most strong physical attackers are vulnerable to magic. So attacking a sage is almost always a risk. The most effective way to fight them is to attack them with a warrior, someone so strong that they can finish the job in a single hit. Pegasus knights are somewhat useful because of their high speed and resistance, but they always have to be mindful of an incoming wind spell.

#2: Assassin
“Oh, you’re scared of assassins? How original.”
Listen. Assassins are scary in these games, particularly in Awakening. For one, just look at their design. These cloaked figures have serrated blades on their arms. Their arms! Add that to their incredible speed, and you’ve got a serious problem. Assassins outspeed a lot of other units, which means that facing an assassin is a really good way to get double-attacked during combat. They also have high skill, which means accurate blows and a decent chance to score a critical hit against you. Add this to the fact that they can wield bows to capitalize on the weakness of flyers, and assassins are a force to be reckoned with.
Generally, the best way to defeat an assassin is with a superior speedy unit. If you have a swordsmaster or an assassin that can outspeed, things are a bit easier. Pegasus knights can be helpful, but again, you have to watch out for bows. Another useful strategy for these guys is to gang up on them. Swords can’t reach far and bows can’t fire close, so just surround them with units that the assassin can’t battle with their current weapon and slowly whittle them down.

#1: General
Generals are my absolute least favorite unit to see on the battlefield, especially as a boss character. These guys are ridiculous – they have incredibly high defense coupled with impressive strength. This means that most physical attacks just bounce off of generals, while they can retaliate with crippling blows. Generals wield lances in combat, which is problematic because the typical solution to a strong-but-slow foe is to outwit them with a faster unit. But fast units wield swords, and so generals can easily outmanuever them with their superior weapon. Additionally, there are many lances with excellent throwing potential, meaning that attacking a general from a distance is going to be problematic.
Now a magical unit might seem like the answer to these guys – magic ignores armor, after all – but remember, generals tend to have ranged weapons and they have high physical power. This means that if your sage fails to land a killing blow, the general will instead.
The main solutions to a general are berserkers. Axes trump lances and these units have the offensive power to actually penetrate a general’s defenses somewhat. However, berserkers and similar units have low defense, so the general is still a potential threat if they manage to land an attack with their lance. Perhaps the best solution to a general is a bigger, stronger general, able to take the hits and then dish them back out with more power.

There you have it, my five scariest Fire Emblem classes. If you’re an FE fan, be sure to leave your scariest classes in the comments.

It’s time to say farewell to Give Me the Creeps, at least until next October. But hey, that means a new monthly segment will be coming! So be excited for November, because we’ll be having an all-new segment that I hope you all sincerely enjoy.

3 thoughts on “Give Me the Creeps: Fire Emblem Edition

Add yours

  1. Nice article 🙂 I’m a fan of the Advance Wars and Final Fantasy Tactics series, but haven’t made my way into Fire Emblem yet (aside from using Roy as my MC in Super Smash).

    Any suggestion as to where I should start with FE?

    Like

    1. I recommend Awakening as a starting point. As the most recent entry in the series, it should be the easiest to find. Additionally, it has a casual mode where you don’t have to worry about the permanent death feature – although it sounds like you already have some tactics experience, so you may feel comfortable jumping right into Classic mode. When it comes to game mechanics, Awakening took a lot of things that different games throughout the series did right and puts them all together into one. I too am a fan of Final Fantasy Tactics, so chances are if you enjoyed that then Fire Emblem will suit you as well.

      Liked by 1 person

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