Ahead of the release of the latest issue of the magazine, Famitsu have shared tons of new details and pictures for Fire Emblem: Three Houses. This time, the focus is on more characters, skills, Classes, as well as the various gameplay systems (teaching specifically), the world setting, and much more!
Fire Emblem – Three Houses – Church of Seiros
First, Rhea (proper English spelling) is once again introduced, but it’s the exact same introduction as the one shared via Twitter…
Fire Emblem: Three Houses – Crests
Crests are a key element of the game: some of the characters received it from their very ancestors. Those crests are a pretty important thing, as it can determine the standing of a family in society. Take the crest from the ruling family of the Adrestian Empire: it has been handed down from generation to generation, after being given by the Church of Seiros. Sometimes, crests are given to people with extraordinary physical and magical skills.
The protagonist also hold their very own crest, but what kind of crest could it possibly be?
Fire Emblem: Three Houses – Students’ crests and skills
In Fire Emblem: Three Houses, skills are a key element to the personality and growth of a given unit. They are divided in three main categories:
- Personal skills: skills that are inherent to a given unit. In other words: they’re the only ones who can have it!
- Class skills: skills that are inherent to a given class. In other words: only units from a given class can get this skill;
- Technical skills: skills that are learned upon reaching a given level. Unlike the previous type, those skills can be learned by pretty much any unit regardless of their type.
Next, Famitsu shares details about the crests and personal skills of the main characters
A mercenary in exile. They show promise, and so become a teacher at the Officer’s Academy.
- Personal Skill: Teacher’s Guidance. Gives 1.2x EXP bonus to yourself and any adjacent allies;
- Crest: ??? Crest. A rather mysterious crest…
Leader of the Black Eagles house, and future empress of the Adrestia Empire.
- Personal Skill: Emperor’s Lineage. Gives 1.2x EXP bonus to Edelgard;
- Crest: Small Crest of Seiros. A small crest said to have been given by Seiros herself.
Leader of the Blue Lions house, and future King of the Holy Kingdom of Faerghus.
- Personal Skill: Royal Lineage. Gives 1.2x EXP bonus to Dimitri;
- Crest: Blaiddyd’s Small Crest. A small crest handed down within the Blaiddyd family.
Leader of the Golden Deer house, and future leader of the Leicester Alliance.
- Personal Skill: Leader’s Lineage. Gives 1.2x EXP bonus to Claude;
- Crest: Riegan’s Small Crest. A small crest handed down within the Riegan family.
Each unit can have up to 5 skills set up at any time, and you’re free to choose which ones depending on the role you’re giving them in your army, and your strategy.
At the beginning of the game, you have to choose which class to teach from among the three classes at the Officer’s Academy. Of course, each one has a diverse set of students enrolled, with radically different abilities. As the protagonist, it’s your job to identify the strengths of each student, and teach them in a way that brings out the most of their talents.
Here’s a few examples:
Hubert (voiced by Katsuyuki Konishi)
- Description: He has served Edelgard since he was but a child, and he would do anything for her.
- Personal Skill: Adviser. Gives Strategy Power +5
Dorothea (voiced by Juri Nagatsuma)
- Description: She used to be a Diva before enrolling at the Officer’s Academy. She’s the only commoner in the Black Eagles house;
- Personal Skill: Diva. Allows you to recover 10% of the maximum HP of any adjacent allies at the start of a turn.
Doudou (voiced by Hidenori Takahashi)
- Description: He serves Dimitri, leader of the Blue Lions house. He looks like a tough guy, but he’s actually a prtty mild person;
- Personal Skill: Lord’s Shield. Grants Defense +4 during one turn if units does nothing.
Felix (voiced by Yuuichi Hase)
- Description: a childhoor friend of Dimitri’s, who calls him “Boar”. He’s training to hone his swordsmanship;
- Personal Skill: Lone Wolf. If the Knights have not been deployed, or if their stregnth has reached 0, then grants Damage +5;
- Crest: Faerghus’s crest.
Lorentz (voiced by Hiroshi Watanabe)
- Description: he’s from a noble family. He’s tried to seduce many a women at the Officer’s Academy… fruitlessly.
- Personal Skill: Prestigious Nobility. If Knights are deployed, grants Damage +2
- Crest: Gröstal’s small crest.
Hilda (voiced by Yuuki Kawahara)
- Description: a sweet and skilled young lady, the lone daughter of a Duke. Fond of fashionable and beautiful things.
- Personal Skill: Scrounge. During battle, if adjacent to male units, ally units get Damage +3
- Crest: Goneryl’s Small Crest.
Finally, two more characters are introduced… fellow teachers, to be precise!
- Manuela (voiced by Sahicko Kojima). She’s both a teacher and a physician. She used to be the top Diva of an opera company;
- Hanneman (voiced by Kenji Hamada). A teacher, and a scholar studying the power of the crests. He tends to get pretty enthusiastic when it comes to crests.
Fire Emblem: Three Houses – Battles
In this game, battles are a bit different than in previous games. This time, battles involve a lot more soldiers. Basically, units don’t get to fight on their own: they get to lead a group of knights, and you get to see them take part in battle. When Knights are deployed, the area a given unit can interact with changes, and for the first time in the series, you can use stratagems in battle.
To give orders to the Knights, you use a skill known as Command:
- Major Technical Skill: Command Lv. 1 – When using a strategem, gives Strategy Power +2
By raising the level of the Command skill, you can deploy stronger Knights in battle, but also learn various skills useful for strategems.
Another new element introduced in Fire Emblem: Three Houses is something called Gauntlet:
- Major Technical Skill: Martial Arts Lv. 1 – Grants Hit Rate +5, Avoid +7, Dodge +5
In this game, you can get hit twice by one attack. If the attack speed is 4 or higher than your opponent, then you can even hit them 4 times with a single attack. However, there’s a catch: you cannot use Gauntlet with calvalry or pegasus units.
As you progress through the game, you will unlock the Knights Guild: a place where you can hire Knights to use in battle. If a unit takes damage, then the strength of the accompanying Knights decreases. If it ends up reaching 0, the Knights will disappear, and you will no longer be able to use strategems with that unit. Once that happens, you can go hire more Knights at the Guild. Of course, Knights can also get stronger by taking part in many battles… training is important!
At the Guild, you get a list of the various Knights you can hire, along with their status, the stratagems available in battle, and more. By the way, it costs a fair amount of money to hire Knights, but replacing units that fell in battle costs a lot less. Its highly recommended to “replenish” your Knights frequently to avoid nasty surprises during battles!
Strategems can be used by the units commanding the Knights. Strategems are not just about attacking: there are also some for support. Those used for attacking are pretty handy: the enemy will not be able to counterattack, and you can even attack multiple enemies at once. However, there’s a catch: you can only use them a limited number of times per battle.
Here’s a few examples:
- All Out Attack: the name implies, it involves all the Knights attacking the enemy at once. This stratagem also inflicts “Unrest” on the enemy (-10% on all abilities, cannot move, nullifies stats increases, and prevents the enemy from using strategems).
- Godspeed Preparation: during the turn it’s used in, grants movement +5. If multiples allies are gathered, then they all benefit from it. You can use this stratagem to speed up even infantry units with slow movements (armoured units, for example)
- Total Attraction: a strategem to be used on enemies in adjacent spaces. It basically forces them to move close to you, which is really useful to lure them out. This can be used in many ways, such as forcing the enemy to move into unfavourable terrain, or out of favourable terain instead. You can also use it to move enemies away from a key point on the map.
Fire Emblem: Three Houses – Classes
Here’s some examples of Classes found in the game:
- Mercenary: great power and speed. Favours skills related to the sword and axe;
- Cavalier: a balanced unit that excels at Hit and Away tactics;
- Class Skill: Repositioning. If unit has “movement power” left after taking an action, then unit can use it keep moving after taking it;
- Brigand: they have high amount of HP and attack power. Great with axes and the Gauntlet;
- Fist Fighter: a male-only Class. Specialised in attacking enemies quickly with the Gauntlet;
- Class Skill: Barehanded Fighting. Allows unit to attack even when not equipped with weapon;
- Mage: can use magic, which is really effective against enemies with high defense;
- Class Skill: Fire. If a unit has already learned it, you can double the number of times it can use it;
- Dark Mage: a male-only Class. Unit needs to pass the Dark Magic exam first;
- Class Skill: Miasma. If a unit has already learned it, you can double the number of times it can use it;
- Class Skill: Curse. If there are enemies in adjacent spaces, they get hit with Avoid -20
Fire Emblem: Three Houses – Officer’s Academy parts
Fire Emblem: Three Houses mostly consists of two parts: Battles, and the Officer’s Academy. At the academy, you can interact with the students, teach them to improve their abilities, and more. There’s even a calendar system where you can see what you have planned for each given day.
Fortunately for you, the Fodlan calendar also has 12 months… how convenient! Each month correspond to a chapter in the story, and you can progress by completing the tasks set for a given week.
Teaching involves enhancing the skills of your students. If you’re the lazy type, you can let the game do that automatically for you, but it’s always better to give each and every student your undivided attention, taking into account their characteristics and skills… or you can do it only for your favourite students, as a middleground.
As you can imagine, enemies get stronger with each chapter, so you also need to strengthen the bond between teacher and students. But the thing is, you can only teach a limited number of students per week (the gauge in the top right corner of the screen indicates how much “teaching” you have left). That’s why you need to level up your teaching level, which allows you to spend more time teaching.
The face icon near the gauge indicates the level of motivation of a student. The more motivated they are, the longer they can be taught individually, leading to further growth than normal.
By the way, raising your teaching level also increases the number of actions you can perform, allowing you to do more during a given week. To raise it, you can do various things: teaching students of course, but also talk to them, go on walks together, and more. In other words: you need to spend lots of time with your students. And if you want them to grow into fine soldiers, you also need to grow yourself!
As mentioned above, it’s important that your students are motivated if you want your teaching to be effective. To make sure their motivation levels remain high enough, you can interact with them at the Officer’s Academy, but also sortie together in battle.
When talking with your students, you will sometimes be asked questions from students seeking advice/help. You have to think carefully and give the most appropriate answer to their questions.
When teaching students individually, you can see have them learn specific skills. And alongside learning new skills and strengthening those that have already been learned, you can also have the students equip stronger weapons. Since the type of weapon used do not change even if a student changes Class, you will be able to focus on skills related to their weapon type. Overall, it’s crucial to learn to spot the right skill to focus on in order for your students to grow stronger.
Your teaching can have 4 different types of outcomes, and the amount of experience gained changes depending on the one you get. The outcome also has an impact on the motivation of a student.
Besides your own teaching, you can set Goals to your students. This allows you to improve up to 2 skills per week by having the student study on their own. Students will come up with skills to study on their own, but it’s still up to you to decide on which one they should focus on.
Since improving skills is key to pass exams, and change Class, it’s important they master the right skills. But there’s not just one way do it: you can either focus on specific skills to have specialised units, or instead treat all skills equally to end up with all-rounder units that can be effective in many different situations.
And just like at an actual school, students get group assigments, on a weekly basis. When one is completed, the skill corresponding to the task will be strengthened, and the bond between the students themselves will rise. What’s more, you can also get various rewards, depending on how well the task was completed. The deeper the bond between students, the more activities they will take part in.
There’s three types of group assignments:
- taking care of the stables
The results of a group assignment will depend on the student’s affinity with it, but also its pros and cons.
The stronger the bond between students, the stronger they will perform on the battlefield. More details about that specific aspect of the game will be shared at a later date.
By the way, each student have fields they’re good in, and those they’re especially poor in. Skills from the latter are indicated via a star in the menu, and if you actually focus your teaching on those, your students will overcome their shortcomings. Doing so will not only allow them to master those skills, but also learn new ones and new techniques. This may seem counter-productive at first, but focusing on the weaknesses of your students is a great way to help them grow further!
Skills students are poor with are indicated with 3 empty stars in the menu. As you keep teaching, those stars will fill up, and when all three are complete, the skill has been mastered.
Fire Emblem: Three Houses – World
Finally, Famitsu share some more details, starting with the Church of Seiros, a religion deeply rooted in the Fodlan continent. It was established by Seiros, a Goddess who is said to have defeated the Liberating King during the Heroes War, which took place a long time ago, and brought peace to the continent. It’s also said that she was involved with the creation of the Adrestia Empire.
Many years have now passed, and both the Holy Kingdom of Faerghus and the Leicester Alliance have gained independence from the Adrestia Empire. For a long time, they fought for control of the continent, but thanks in great part to the Church of Seiros, the continent is now at peace with the three powers kept in check.
Many of the nobles are said to be descendents of people who fought in the Heroes War, and they have crests as proof of their lineage. Those are passed down from generation to generation, but simply being born in the right family doesn’t guarantee that you will get one, and in fact, not everyone can make use of their powers.
There’s two types of crests: large and small ones. As you can imagine, the larger one carry more “weight” and power than the small ones. In general, the closer you are to descendants of the Heroes, the more likely you are to end up with a large crest. However, there will be times when a child is born with a large crest, out of the blue, though nobody really knows why.
Fire Emblem: Three Houses (Switch) comes out on July 26th worldwide.