Fire Emblem Fates Reviews Round-Up

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Nintendo of Europe may still be silent on when we can expect a release, but Fire Emblem Fates reviews have lead the charge ahead of the Nintendo 3DS exclusives launching in North America tomorrow.

With three versions – Birthright, Conquest and Revelation – to choose between, we have rounded-up verdicts penned by critics online to help you decide which is best. Let us know which you choose, and enjoy!

Fire Emblem Fates: Special Edition Reviews

Games Radar+ – 4/5

“Fire Emblem Fates smartly revises a quarter-century old battle system and offers ever more reasons to care about your little chess pieces, but neither version does enough to welcome new players.”

Nintendo Everything – Thumbs Up

“Fire Emblem Fates is just about everything we ever could’ve hoped it to be. Great stories, better characters, and a fun and never overwhelming combat system all blend so well together to create just about one of the best games the 3DS has to offer. If you’re a fan of Awakening, you will no doubt fall in love again with this new entry. Although, if you can, purchasing both Conquest and Birthright your first playthrough to make the decision more personal. Even if you can’t, with just one of the three released titles in your hands you still have hours of content waiting to have you falling in love.”

Nintendo Life – 9

“Fire Emblem may have found itself in a strange spot after the success of Awakening, but Intelligent Systems has found a way forward. Actually, two ways – Fire Emblem Fates does a remarkable job delivering what newcomers and long-time players both could possibly want out of this series. Fans of Awakening will dig Birthright’s continuation of that style of gameplay, and Conquest’s strategic demands should go over well with series veterans and those looking for more bite from their games. Extensive campaigns, online multiplayer, and spit-shine polish combine to make for some of the most well-rounded Fire Emblem experiences to date.”

Nintendo World Report – 9.5

“Fire Emblem Fates is so perfectly executed that I wonder how they’ll top it as the series progresses. Every complaint from Awakening has been addressed, leading to a fine-tuned strategy game that borders on genius. I found myself smiling as I surveyed a new battlefield, realizing what hidden challenges and pitfalls the developers so expertly inserted. The story is so wonderfully engaging that you want to rush to the next chapter after every battle but cannot avoid getting sucked into all the other extras the games have to offer. Fates has struck a seamless balance in each version to not only keep you glued to your 3DS, but looking forward to the next version and the next as each one contains just enough information to hook you into buying all three. And while Birthright and Conquest build up amazing experiences, Revelation is the perfect pièce de résistance that succeeds in pulling back the curtain on a story you’ve been so entrenched in.”

Polygon – 8.5

“Still, Fire Emblem Fates isn’t lacking in reasons for you to care about the plight of its world and its inhabitants. It has a powerful emotional core that is unique for games, and it all stems from the ramifications of its instigating choice. It’s a war game that’s light on blind aggression and bloodlust, instead fueled by curiosity — maybe even regret, when you consider where the different paths lead. Developer Intelligent Systems maintains the series’ punishing, rewarding tactics, which force you to consider every angle of every second of combat. But with Fates, it makes you consider another angle: that your enemies, in another life, might just be the people you’re fighting for.”

ShackNews – 9

“Fire Emblem Fates exemplifies the best way to approach a sequel. It maintains and iterates on Awakening’s best qualities, while also introducing new systems that have a profound impact alongside a richer and more poignant story. It’s more than just a worthwhile successor to a recent hit. Taken as a whole, it’s the best Fire Emblem to date.”

Fire Emblem Fates: Birthright Reviews

Game Informer – 9.25

“Birthright is its own epic saga, with at least 25 hours of playtime and a load of sidequests and goodies to discover during the course of its satisfying and moving story about identity, family, and love. It tricked me into falling in love with its cast of characters and then made me weigh their lives against the fate of the world over and over again. Birthright is a grueling, fantastic experience that not only matches the quality of its predecessor but possibly outshines it as well, more than earning its place at the table of must-play strategy/RPGs.”

GameSpot – 8

“Fire Emblem Fates: Birthright is an absolute delight to play, from the battlefield to the bedroom. If you loved its predecessor Awakening, you’ll enjoy the heightened tension and intimacy imbued in every moment of Birthright. Between the strategy, the dating sim elements, the can’t-help-but-swoon-over-it melodrama and some truly gorgeous visuals and music, you can overlook things like repetitive maps and cringeworthy-dumb parts of the writing. The series that kicked off the strategy RPG genre still has it, and you’ll enjoy getting wrapped up in the conflict.”

IGN – 9.4

“Fire Emblem Fates: Birthright is a fantastic balance of tactical challenge and accessibility. Even after I finished the story, I found myself returning to the battlefield again and again to unlock more conversations between friends and test my army’s might against Nohr’s finest. I’m addicted to Fire Emblem Fates, and that’s fine by me.”

USGamer – 4.5/5

“Fire Emblem Fates: Birthright is a great followup to the amazing Fire Emblem: Awakening. The story is solid, the tactical combat is great, if simplistic in this version, and the characters are wonderfully endearing. The game excels in providing options, letting players tailor how they want to experience this world. If you care more or equally about the romance and social aspects of Fire Emblem, this is the version you should be playing.”

Fire Emblem Fates: Conquest Reviews

Game Informer – 9.25

“It’s built on the same great foundation, but Conquest is more than just a harder version of Birthright. It creates a consistently tense journey with few lulls. I spent the majority of Conquest’s campaign feeling like hope was some distant dream as I fought tooth-and-nail with limited resources against armies that vastly outnumbered my untrained troops. The campaign is a grueling challenge all the way through, but every time I snatched a win from the jaws of defeat I felt an undeniable surge of satisfaction and pride, one that made my victories that much sweeter. If that sounds fun to you, Conquest is the ideal way to play Fire Emblem Fates. If you want all of the fantastic gameplay with less pressure, don’t feel any shame about sticking to Birthright. You can’t go wrong either way.”

GameSpot – 7

“Disappointed as I was, I still enjoyed my time with Conquest. It’s got a charming cast of characters that range from vulnerable, to overconfident, to hell-bent on silly pursuits like carb-loading and working out. I fought over two dozen difficult missions that pushed my army–and my brain–to its limit. Not counting numerous attempts to backpedal and keep my allies from dying in Classic mode, it took me 20 hours to beat the game, and I would have gladly spent another 20 grinding for experience and relationships alone, but I didn’t have the choice. Conquest is a great game, and I fell for its hardcore lean at times, but when I was backed into a corner after a series of hard fights with no resolution but to lower the difficulty, I wished I was playing Birthright instead.”

IGN – 9.5

“Fire Emblem Fates: Conquest is a rewarding and deep turn-based tactical game with a grand story and characters I liked enough that losing them in combat really stings. The intense difficulty is squarely aimed at veteran Fire Emblem players, and its satisfying campaign is full of variety and challenge. And even though a win or loss can down to sheer luck, I walked away either satisfied or eager to give it another shot.”

USGamer – 4.5/5

“Fire Emblem: Conquest is billed as the “hardcore” side of Fire Emblem Fates, and it doesn’t disappoint with its intricate and challenging maps. On top of that, the core of Fire Emblem’s relationship mechanics are strong as ever, and the castle hub is a very nice addition. Even if you opt to ignore Birthright, Conquest is a full-featured and satisfying RPG on its own.”

Fire Emblem Fates: Revelation Reviews

Destructoid – 9

“It’s a great middle-ground overall, really. Players can still grind like they can in Birthright (a mechanic that’s eliminated from Conquest), but the difficulty is more in tune with the other release. This is even extended to the “My Castle” section, since you can build your own base with elements from both kingdoms, which isn’t possible in either core game. I had a lot of fun decorating my base with bits from both Nohr and Hoshido influences, and to this end, my Revelation abode was my favorite of the three. To top things off, you can also opt to upgrade Corrin to either faction’s advanced class.”

GameSpot – 9

“Between the seemingly endless romance opportunities and the ever-evolving challenges of its missions, Fire Emblem Fates: Revelation is an incredible accomplishment in marriage of storytelling and gameplay. Its challenges are rewarding, and its story is wonderfully told, with high emotional points that deliver in big ways come the ending. To borrow the cliche, there is a never a dull moment, between building and honing your army and the intimate moments between characters. With everyone Revelation places at your disposal, you really feel as though you are accomplishing something, amassing troops to stop a war, truly creating something meaningful with the siblings and friends who fight beside you. It’s a beautiful game.”

Written by
After starting out with a Yellow Game Boy and a copy of Donkey Kong Land, Alex once hid in his room to play The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time one Christmas. Now he shares his thoughts on Nintendo Insider, keeping track of everything to do with Nintendo.

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