Way Late Game Impressions: Fire Emblem: Radiant Dawn (Wii)

Sometimes it takes me a while to play a game. I like to wait until things go on sale, okay? Anyway, I will be reviewing games at irregular intervals.

Today’s game is Fire Emblem: Radiant Dawn for Wii. 2007. Intelligent Systems/Nintendo. Rated Teen. 40+ hours.
Fire Emblem: Radiant Dawn is the latest in a long line of Japanese strategy RPGs.

The story is kind of silly. It is presented melodramatically, with characters saying all their thoughts out loud. That is probably to compensate for the lack of cutscenes and animation. In fact, nearly all dialog is presented in text balloons on still images of the characters. That’s the same method they used in Final Fantasy III for Super Nintendo! I don’t know why they couldn’t have short, prerendered movies between the campaigns rather than this text crap. The opening movie is good, so I know they can do it, but why didn’t they?

This is the sequel to a Gamecube game, so you may want to play that one first to follow the story.
The gameplay is actually very good. You have to carefully maneuver your characters (from three to ten) around enemies on a grid to attack them. You have all your normal classes: fighter, healer, mage, etc. You are only allowed one save slot during battle, which is a pain. I understand the need to not allow unlimited “undos”, but only one save slot means you may have to play an entire battle over if you mess up.

The Normal difficulty setting is really quite challenging, so you may want to play the first few missions on Easy.

The game is played with the Wiimote held horizontally, like Mario Kart or Super Paper Mario. In fact, there are not waggle controls at all. The controls work well.

Online capabilities: none

Overall: Try it if you like puzzles and RPGs. I really enjoyed the gameplay, but the between-mission reading sessions really tried my patience.

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