Today marks the 28th anniversary of the Fire Emblem series!
For this occasion, I’d like to discuss something that many Fire Emblem fans know and take for granted: the Fire Emblem games’ numbering system.
I imagine most of you reading this probably know the numbers like the back of your hand. But just for reference, this is how we usually number the Fire Emblem games:
||Shadow Dragon and Blade of Light
||Mystery of the Emblem
||Genealogy of the Holy War
||The Sacred Stones
||Path of Radiance
||New Mystery of the Emblem
||Echoes: Shadows of Valentia
Note: Only the mainline Fire Emblem games are numbered. Spin-offs like Heroes and Warriors are not given numbers.
For us fans, referring to each game using numbers is very natural. Eg. if I said “FE6”, you probably know that I’m talking about Binding Blade. Yet for those observing from afar, or those new to the series, this system can seem a bit strange.
The main reason for this is of course because, officially, none of the Fire Emblem games are numbered. Unlike, say, Final Fantasy, where the latest Final Fantasy is explicitly titled “Final Fantasy XV ”. The numbering system is purely something we fans created.
Birth of the Numbering System
Some may ask: why exactly do Fire Emblem fans refer to the games by number?
The short answer, it seems, is because of a combination of tradition and convenience.
As for the long answer, we’ll need to travel back in time towards the early days of the Fire Emblem series and its then-developing fan community.
Here’s something a little different. Last month, Fire Emblem Cipher Festival 2018 took place in Japan. Among the various activities, there was a quiz area for fans to test their Fire Emblem knowledge.
Click to enlarge!
For those unable to attend, we’ve recreated the quiz for your amusement! The answers to each question can be placed in the crossword above. Please refer to the icon(s) in the top-left corner for where the answers should go.
After filling in the crossword (or most of it anyway), the boxes in grey should spell out a 6-letter word.
Last week, on 30th April, the Fire Emblem Echoes: Shadows of Valentia memorial book “Valentia Accordion” was released in Japan.
Since then, Kirokan and I have teamed up to translate new information from the book. You can follow our progress on the forums or Kirokan’s website.
Anyway, here is a recap of our progress so far.
First things first, Kirokan has kindly scanned all the official artwork and full body portraits from the book, including many previously unreleased ones.
At the end of our previous article, we talked about a new set of Fire Emblem Heroes acrylic mini-figures releasing in Japan in late April.
Since then, the official Fire Emblem Japanese Twitter followed up with more news of upcoming merchandise! Many of these are sequels to existing merchandise lines from November 2017.
These are highly collectable badges (75 mm in diameter) featuring cutesy artwork of popular/important characters.
The new Hector, Soren, Leon, Alm and Celica designs will be available from late May. From the sound of things, there will be more badge designs after this.
These are thin, semi-translucent A4 file holders that are popular over in Japan.
The theme of this collection is “bonds” between siblings and comrades. It’s not very clear (pun not intended), but it looks like they’re sold separately–and not as a set like previously. Anyway, the planned release date is, again, late May.
Update: It was pointed out by SuperNintendomaniac that this is the first time Saizo and Kaze’s official artwork has been seen.