Fire Emblem Engage can be considered a divisive entry to Fire emblem series, but it has made an important change after Three houses. On the one hand, some fans think Engage is a return to the classic and offers better games than Fire emblem: Three houses, but others criticize the title for its simplistic and one-dimensional story. However, there is one aspect that Fire Emblem Engage do better than Fire emblem: Three houses.
Fire Emblem Engage is immediately different from Three houses by having more vibrant colors and stylistic art. When Nintendo revealed Alear’s character design, the contrasting hair colors became an immediate point of discussion. Some players did not hesitate to mock the quirky hairstyle, comparing it to popular brands with similar color schemes, such as Colgate and Pepsi. The first exclusive Nintendo Switch title of 2023 also stands out further Three houses with its unique story route, which can limit the game’s replayability. Other changes set Engage apart, but there is one improvement regarding support bonds that is appreciated.
Any character’s support can reach Rank S in Fire Emblem
Fire Emblem Engage allows players to gain support from any character to rank S regardless of Alear’s gender. To unlock S-Rank Support, players must obtain the Pact Ring from the Memory Drawer after completing “Paralogue: The Connector” mission. Alear can only give the ring to one ally, but not every support will be romantic since some characters are strictly limited to platonic relationships. In addition to giving special cutscenes, S-Rank Support also unlocks the Boon of Elyos for the chosen ally and Alear, provides a boost in Crit and Dodge when units enter combat.
Fire Emblem Engage improves Three House’s limited romance options
Unlike Fire Emblem Engage, Fire emblem: Three houses has limited romance options based on Byleth’s gender. Unsurprisingly, hetero relationships are given the most attention, and players can choose from a dozen characters depending on their story route. Even worse, gay male Byleth players only get three romantic options, which is less than lesbian female Byleth, who can court five women. Such limited options are disappointing, and Polygon even reported that some players hacked the game to unlock all the S-Rank supports Three houses.
Criticism of this Fire Emblem Engage The change includes insensitive accusations that developer Intelligent Systems is targeting a minority of players, and a more understandable stance that the new system results in the dialogue of S-Rank Supports feeling impersonal and less emotional. Still, it’s generally a good thing to give players more options in the game instead of limiting their choices due to unknown reasons. Despite its criticism, Fire Emblem Engage has become one of the most exciting RPGs to play in 2023 by allowing players to gain S-Rank Support with all allies, regardless of Alear’s gender.
More: Fire Emblem Engage Review: Peak Tactics Lacks Class
Source: Polygon, Nintendo of America/YouTube