Gamertell Review: Fire Emblem: Radiant Dawn for Wii

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Fire Emblem: Radiant Dawn box

Title: Fire Emblem: Radiant Dawn
Price: $49.99
System(s): Wii
Release Date: November 5, 2007
Publisher (Developer): Nintendo (Intelligent Systems)
ESRB Rating: Everyone 10+ for fantasy violence and mild language
Pros: Multiple difficulty levels, new support system, multiple chapters, multiple control schemes, deep storyline, double promotions
Cons: You can feel left out if you haven’t played Fire Emblem: Path of Radiance. Only one support relationship per character. New support system. Can be quite challenging, so newcomers might be intimidated.
Overall Score: Two thumbs up, 90/100, A, **** 1/2 out of 5

The Fire Emblem series is one crafted for the serious strategic RPG fan. There is a degree of realism brought into the series that doesn’t exist in other RPGs, from the permanent character deaths, specific character skills, troops who develop relationships if they work closely together and the weapons which aren’t invincible. It also is one of the more hardcore games, known for its difficulty level.

Fire Emblem: Radiant Dawn is the first game in the series on the Wii, and the second game in the series to be released on a North American console. Being one of the few RPGs on the system, it has a lot of expectations to meet, and thankfully it surpasses everyone. It is challenging enough and has enough characters and nostalgia to satisfy Fire Emblem fans, yet offers difficulty options, simple control schemes and a rich storyline that new-comers will enjoy.
Fire Emblem Radiant Dawn screenshot
The quest to rebuild a fallen nation and return peace to the land.

Fire Emblem: Radiant Dawn picks up where Fire Emblem: Path of Radiance (for the GameCube) left off. The nation of Daein, whose ruler was responsible for the war in Path of Radiance has fallen under Begnion rule. However, Begnion’s ruler doesn’t know what the appointed Begnion dukes are doing in Daein, and the country’s citizens are being harassed and put upon.

Enter the Dawn Brigade, a group of renegades trying to help the citizens of Daein. This small resistance group is lead by Micaiah, known as the silver-haired maiden with the power to heal wounds and use light magic, and Path of Radiance‘s Sothe. The group wants to make Daein a strong, peaceful nation again where the citizens can live freely without fear.

The game actually features multiple storylines. The first follows the Dawn Brigade and the Daein’s restoration, and later moves on to stopping a rebellion against Path of Radiance‘s Crimean Queen Elincia and a rebellion against the Apostle Sanaki in Begnion. History buffs will likely be excited by all the events and intrigue that occur throughout Fire Emblem: Radiant Dawn.
Fire Emblem Radiant Dawn screenshot
Radiant Dawn improves upon Path of Radiance, but newcomers may feel left out.

Fire Emblem: Radiant Dawn is truly a game made for fans of the series. It features 3D, cell-shaded cinematics, gorgeous 3D character models for battles, multiple difficulty levels or players, a wide variety of potential units and a rich storyline. It also happens to be one of the few strategic RPGs for the Wii, so it helps set the bar for quality strategy titles for the system.

The thing is, playing Fire Emblem: Radiant Dawn without playing Fire Emblem: Path of Radiance, is like going to your new spouse’s massive family reunion. You really only everyone and the family history by reputation, but everyone else knows everything about one another. The game tries to make up for this with helpful segways, conversations at camp between characters and brief introductions from Sothe (who acts as an early bridge between the two games), but you still can sometimes feel like you’re missing out. In fact, I even went out and hunted down Fire Emblem: Path of Radiance and played through some of that first, and then returned to Radiant Dawn so I’d feel more at ease.

The support system also underwent a drastic change that can be considered both good and bad. Instead of having a relationship build up between characters, with individual conversations, and the ability to engage in five conversations with certain characters, there is a new system where any character can support any other character. The only thing is, you only can have one support. Also, the conversations are very generic. Its great that you can now design your own teams and see the support bonuses, but you lose one of signature touches and miss character development.
Fire Emblem Radiant Dawn screenshot
A wonderful addition to the Wii game library.

If you have a lot of patience, love strategic RPGs and want a challenge, then you have to pick up Fire Emblem: Radiant Dawn. The game has a wonderful storyline, characters you’ll fall in love with and has missions which push you to want to do better. Radiant Dawn‘s strong connection to Path of Radiance may cause players to initially feel left out. A good way to solve this is to pick up the GameCube game Fire Emblem: Path of Radiance and play through that first. That way, you’ll have save data you can use in use in Radiant Dawn and come into the game fully informed.

Site [Fire Emblem: Radiant Dawn]

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