Review | Fire Emblem Warriors: Three Hopes


Review | Fire Emblem Warriors: Three Hopes – As a reviewer, I have a bit of a hate-love relationship with developer Omega Force. Their games are mainly musou’s, whose genre they are also the founders. So it’s no surprise that they like to keep using this formula. Sometimes it works well, other times less. The problem with musou’s is that they can become quite repetitive over time. But as soon as the Omega Force joins forces with the right partner, in this case Nintendo, a first-class racehorse can just emerge from their stables. At least the Omega Force seems to have learned something from their relationship with Nintendo, for Fire Emblem Warriors: Three Hopes is of a completely different caliber than its predecessor.

What one person can do

In Fire Emblem Warriors: Three Hopes, you step into the shoes of a young mercenary whose comrades were killed by a rival group called Geralt’s Mercenaries. However, this goes against the usual honor among mercenaries, which attracts the attention of a creature named Arval. Along with Arval, you will happen to meet the three heirs from ‘The Three Houses’, who own most of the land. In the center is the Garreg Mach Monastery, a sacred property where anyone from any home can train as an army officer. By helping the three heirs, you also get to this training, and your talents on the battlefield ensure that all three houses are eager to recruit you.


After joining one of these three houses, the story unfolds further, with war playing a major role. The sacred property of Garreg Mach Monastery has been conquered, which pits the houses against each other. As an army commander, you play a major role in all of this, but your goal remains the same: track down Geralt’s mercenaries and find out why your comrades were massacred. As you search, the story continues to unfold with land conquests, betrayal in the three houses, and personal development between the characters you get to know along the way. But the bonds you build do not have to last forever.

Short about

Fire Emblem Warriors: Three Hopes gives us two options in terms of difficulty customizing. First and foremost, of course, the standard melody from easy to difficult, but also the choice between a so-called ‘Classic mode’ or a ‘Casual mode’. With classic mode, if they go down on the battlefield, your men will actually die. No rematch, they are gone. You need to be careful with your favorites in this mode. In addition, you also have to manage the broadcast well, because if you regularly take the same men with you, they will eventually become exhausted. This in turn affects their performance.


If you’ve never touched an Omega Force game, especially one in the musou genre, here’s a little overview. In a musou, you and a few other hero units take on an army of thousands in a hack & slash format, where it is also important to conquer various strategic points on the battlefield. Each mission has its main purpose, for example, to take out an enemy hero unit or conquer all strategic points, but also contains different side missions. These give you extra loot and money at the end of the trip, but are not needed to complete the level. That’s exactly what you can expect from this game in terms of action gameplay.

To the interesting part

The fact is that Fire Emblem Warriors: Three Hopes has so much more to offer than a standard musou that we prefer to discuss that aspect briefly and concisely. The Musou part plays well and offers enough variety, partly because on the battlefield you can also switch between your own character and the men in the house you are associated with. The star of the show in Fire Emblem Warriors: Three Hopes is your base. In the base you have all kinds of shops for raw materials and useful power-ups for the battlefield. You will also find opportunities here to make items or even improve the facilities in your base. To be able to buy or upgrade something, you must of course have money and resources, which you naturally get by winning matches


So it pays to complete as many of the side missions as possible if you want to see your base and troops flourish. Because your troops are at least as important as you are. As a starting point, you also have a number of side activities. Examples of this are cooking for your men, which strengthens the relationship between you and the troops, provided you serve them the right meal. You can also do simple tasks at the base with your men, such as washing the horses or tidying up the archive. These kinds of jobs are more popular with some than others, which is important if you want to build a good relationship with everyone. This means something, as with the right conditions you can lay down as strong an army as possible. If everyone has a good relationship with each other, it promotes cooperation on the battlefield.

A class of its own

Each playable character has several classes to choose from. By and large, these are mostly the same, with a few exceptions here and there. Each class has its strengths and weaknesses on the battlefield. In your base, you can also train your troops to elevate each class to a higher level or even upgrade to a completely different class. By giving your troops different classes, you expand your options considerably because you never know what awaits you on the battlefield. If you choose the right training partner for each character, you will also improve the relationships between them, just like with the aforementioned side activities.

One step back

However, the technical aspect of Fire Emblem Warriors: Three Hopes leaves much to be desired. With the original Fire Emblem Warriors, Omega Force has done the right thing by offering a performance and quality mode. Three Hopes does not do this, so we are bound to a frame rate of 30 fps that regularly fails to maintain its stability. However, this is not only the case on the battlefield, but also in storms at your base. Does it make the game unplayable? Certainly not, there is still work to be done. But the frame drops are definitely there and they really caught our attention. A possible performance condition may have resolved this issue.

We would have loved to have had that choice since Three Hopes does not exactly blow our minds when it comes to graphics. It’s not an ugly game, but a concession in terms of graphics for a more stable frame rate would, in our opinion, have been a good deal. Of course, we have to take into account that the Switch is not the most powerful console on the market, but then we look back at the first part, where this went fine. Docket, the resolution is not exactly good. Three Hopes uses a dynamic resolution to compensate for the already somewhat poor performance, and it turns out. We can say with certainty that the game does not reach 1080p. In handheld mode, the game barely appears to touch 720p, except for very quiet scenes within four walls.


The sound, on the other hand, is fine. Nothing revolutionary, but a soundtrack that does the Fire Emblem series justice. We also get a choice between Japanese and English voice acting, which is always a welcome option. The English voice acting is not terrible, but it still suffers a bit from voice actors who sometimes go a little too deep into their role and thus begin to overlook. So it’s best to leave the voice work in Japanese and read along with the subtitles, maybe you’ll learn something Japanese with it too.

Conclusion

A successor who builds on the success of his predecessor and does so many things more comprehensively and better, but who misses the mark on one front. We definitely had fun with Fire Emblem Warriors: Three Hopes. Besides the standard musou gameplay being rock solid, we spent at least as much time in our base as on the battlefield. The story clearly relates to Fire Emblem: Three Houses and therefore makes it a celebration of recognition if you have played that game too. In our opinion, the game’s performance is below average, which in our opinion is difficult to justify, as the game is not a graphic masterpiece either. If you manage to bite through it, there’s a lot of fun to be had with Fire Emblem Warriors: Three Hopes, and we dare say this one is pretty high on our list of musou’s.

Advantage

  • Interesting plot
  • The base is quite extensive
  • Many options per. Grade
  • The gameplay itself is solid …

Negatives

  • … But held back by the performance
  • Visually at most ‘okay’

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