Given how bored he looks in his picture, he's probably pumped for this.

The Empire of Dragons

Today: The Shadow Dragon and the Blade of Light, Ch. 24.

The penultimate chapter of SD&BoL takes us to the gates of Dolhr Keep, giving me time to reflect on the course of war, the purpose of death, and the limits of human endeavor.

… I swear this is mostly about game mechanics.

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"I shall die for my motherland, and be reborn a French philosopher."

The Sable Knight

Today: The Shadow Dragon and the Blade of Light, Ch. 20.

And now, the most memorable and beloved character from SD&BoL. He’s a prominent figure in the resolution of the fourth act of the game and the fleshing out of the narrative purpose of the Fire Emblem. And this chapter is such a strong example of both good and bad map design that I’ve got to break up the tragedy to mention that, too.

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Also the treasure chambers look like silly faces.

Invasion of the West

Today: The Shadow Dragon and the Blade of Light, Chs. 18–19.

On the docket today, we return to job classes and the importance of NPC irony. Then it’s time to sink our teeth into the first tragic aspect of the latter acts of this RPG. In the process, it’s also time to be reminded once again that we can’t win against Gharnef.

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In Archanea, your eyes glow when you're cripplingly dehydrated.

Spells Across the Sands

Today: The Shadow Dragon and the Blade of Light, Ch. 15.

Following the conquest of Gra, Marth takes his first and more readily explicable detour into the Khadein territory. Here’s a word on speed mechanics, and a few more words on the most important villain in the story.

Reminder: you can’t win against Gharnef.

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So OK, nice bonding moment. Can you take this fireball in the face for me now?

Restoring the Crown

Today: The Shadow Dragon and the Blade of Light, Ch. 12.

As the game dumps yet another deluge of mediocre units on me in the space of a single chapter, I’d like to consider why it thinks I’m at all interested in them. (It’s for a good reason, really.) A couple brief stops to consider experience point gain and treasure chests, and we’re done with the game’s second act!

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No, my strategy is brilliant. Please disregard the rider attacking Castor.

The March on Aurelis

Today: The Shadow Dragon and the Blade of Light, Chs. 4–5.

Continuing down my list of topics I’m obligated to talk about in the first Fire Emblem: permadeath. Or more specifically, why permadeath contributes to making Fire Emblem feel like a whole game. Before we move on, we’ll also take a pit stop at the battle prep screen and get pedantically weirded out by translated names.

Well, I’ll get pedantically weirded out by translated names. You’ll just sit at your computer and laugh at me.

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