Three Houses: E3 2018 Trailer Analysis

After a year and a half of waiting, Nintendo finally removed the curtains from their Switch Fire Emblem title, now officially known as Fire Emblem: Three Houses, during their E3 2018 Nintendo Direct

It’s been almost that long since I last dusted off my magnifying glass, so without further ado, here’s my analysis of the reveal trailer plus other promotional materials!

First things first, over in Japan, the game is instead known as Fire Emblem Fūkasetsugetsu, which can be read as Fire Emblem Four Seasons, but it means a whole lot more than that.

The subtitle is poetic and evokes the wonders of the four seasons: the winds of Summer, flowers of Spring, snows of Winter and the moon of Autumn. It also has romantic allusions and can refer to a love affair.

Either way, it seems like the three houses–presumably noble houses or even individual nations–will be very important. Perhaps romance will also play a key role, similar to Genealogy of the Holy War?

Speaking of nations, the very first thing we’re shown is the game’s world map. This map is reminiscent of previous Fire Emblem maps, but does not appear to be a world we’ve seen before.

The text on the map is English and various locations and landmarks are spelled out. That said, the font used is very typical fantasy and thus it’s not easy to identify all of the names.

From what I can tell, the three main nations in the middle are Fergus (north), Adrastea (south) and Leicester (east). These nations have a flag that represents them. In the middle appears to be a mountain range called Garg Mac.

Other names I can make out include Brionac (west), Rusalka (far south), Aegir (above Rusalka) and Gloucester (by the bottom-left corner of Leicester). There’s also a mountain towards the far east called the Necklace of Fodra.

A big thanks to everyone who helped to decipher the location names on the forums!

There are many more names, but I’ll skip over them for now since it’s unknown how important they’ll be or whether you’ll even visit them. But keep in mind these names: Hresvelgr (far south), Blaidad (far north) and Regan (north of Leicester).

By the way, the Nintendo Topics site revealed a wider version of the map, where you can see the greyed out territories. These include Brigit to the south-west and Morpheus to the south-east. Likewise, it’s unclear if we’ll go there, but their presence makes the world seem larger.

We later learn that the world is called Fódlan and it’s controlled by the Church of Seiros. This information comes from an old fable and also from the trailer description on YouTube:

Long ago, the Divine Seiros received a revelation from the goddess. A gift to help guide the lost. Now the goddess watches over Fódlan from her kingdom above, as the mother of all life, the arbiter of every soul.

Just in case, if you noticed the “Necklace of Fodra”, “Fodra” is the name of the world in the Japanese version. “Fodra” can also be seen on the compass in the wider world map. Perhaps the “dra” is a reference to dragon?

Also, this isn’t the first time a continent has been slightly renamed. We had Ereb from Binding and Blazing Blade become Elibe and Magi Val from The Sacred Stones become Magvel. Presumably Fódlan is just easier to recognise for us folk.

Back to the fable, the “Divine Seiros” appears to be the robed figure holding the sword in the tapestry. In the Japanese version, they call Seiros a holy (wo)man. Afterwards, Seiros or his/her followers presumably built the Church of Seiros.

Meanwhile the goddess appears to be the woman near the top of the tapestry–and she may even be the dragon in the very centre. Most likely she’s a member of the dragonkin, who are often regarded as gods in the various Fire Emblem worlds.

If so, the “gift” could be the sword in Seiros’s hands–an equivalent to the Falchion, Yato or similar Regalia. Note how the blade has a serpent-like shape.

While the fable is being told, a war is waging in the background. Standing calmly in the middle of all the fighting is a woman who evokes the imagery of a peaceful queen not unlike Emmeryn or Mikoto.

She is wearing the same kind of flower that the Gddess is wearing and her headpiece has dragon wings. Also, it’s hard to tell from the lighting, but she may have light green hair similar to Divine Dragons like Tiki, Mila and Duma.

Before long, she is attacked by a powerful-looking figure coming from the air. At first glance, it looks like the rival general or maybe even the rival king.

But if you slow down the action, you’ll see one of the queen’s soldiers deflect his attack and his face is just a generic warrior’s–the same from earlier on.

Next we learn the game’s name, which I’ve already covered. Both the logo text and the background are very minimalist, suggesting a more serious, dramatic game.

Now for some gameplay! Thanks to the Nintendo Switch’s improved specs, the battle maps are more detailed than ever. Most important, the grid-based Fire Emblem gameplay we all know and love is back, blue and red squares and all.

The player selects Edelgard, who’s a Level 3 unit with a Steel Axe. She has a movement range of 5, which is par for the course for an infantry unit, unless you’re playing Fire Emblem Heroes.

Interestingly, when Edelgard is selected, you can see red curved lines coming from the enemy units towards the units you control. These could be aggro lines, similar to those found in action games etc., which indicate who the enemies are likely to target next.

In previous games, it’s often a big question mark which of your units an enemy will move towards or attack, even if there are ways to predict their actions. Explicitly showing an enemy’s aggro should make it much easier to plan a strategy. Perhaps previous skills like Provoke and Shade will directly influence aggro?

When Edelgard gets close enough to an enemy, a series of command tags are shown: Attack, Magic, Combat Arts, Formation, Equip, Items and Wait. Curiously, Attack and Magic are now separate commands. Perhaps Magic now encompasses offensive and healing magic? Could magic even operate similar to in Echoes, depleting HP?

Related to Echoes, Combat Arts make a return, although how they work here is anyone’s guess. “Formation” is a new option and seems to be related to a completely new gameplay mechanic that we’ll see very soon. The other options are self-explanatory.

After choosing “Attack”, we see Edelgard can wield swords and axes. Assuming she’s an unpromoted unit, it’s rare to see a unit capable of wielding two types of weapons, let alone sword and axe–a combination usually seen with promoted Heroes, Paladins and Wyvern Lords.

Also, weapon durability is back after being absent in Fates and Echoes.

The Battle Data shows familiar stats: Attack, Hit rate, Critical rate, Attack Speed, Avoid and Range. End and Rsl are new though. Or are they? Actually, they are more obvious in the Japanese version. They are short for Endurance and Resilience, or defence versus physical and magic. Basically Def and Res.

To the left is some interesting info as well. Edelgard’s class is “Aristocrat”, which is new to the series. Well, actually, it was an unused class in Blazing Blade, belonging to the likes of Elbert. That’s your useless FE fact for the day! Also displayed next to her level is the Adrastea flag.

Forum user Mackc2 pointed out that Edelgard has an attack range of 1~2 when selected, but only an attack range of 1 when fighting with her weapons. None of her weapons seem like ranged weapons either. Perhaps the extended attack range comes from her magic or combat arts?

Edelgard’s foe is Mercedes, a sword wielder. It’s not clear if Mercedes is a unique character. At the least, she’s probably not a recruitable character, because showing the player kill one off doesn’t look good, so maybe she’s a boss or some kind of captain.

Above Edelgard’s name, towards the left is an icon that looks like Vantage. So it seems Skills from Fates etc. will be back in. Curiously, weapon triangle icons aren’t displayed despite Edelgard wielding an axe versus a sword. Still, Mercedes has better Hit, but it could be the difference in weapon stats.

The battle scenes look highly detailed and sport a somewhat cel-shaded look. More importantly, it’s not just Edelgard and Mercedes that appear in the battle, but their troops too!

We see the troops feature in another battle scene between Dimitri and a Kingdom Soldier, then another with Claude. Dimitri has a huge Hit advantage wielding a lance versus a sword, so it’s possible the weapon triangle is still intact (or Dimitri is really OP). Meanwhile Claude has a bow.

Going forward, you may want to remember those three names: Edelgard, Dimitri and Claude.

Anyway, the game seems to have taken inspiration from its sister series, Advance Wars, in that each unit on the battle map represents a battalion of troops. So while it may be just Edelgard on the map, in reality, it’s Edelgard plus a number of her troops. This makes the battles more realistic and to-scale, considering they’re fighting in a war.

After the short glimpse of gameplay, we’re treated to more cutscenes. A massive army is gathering, with Pegasus Knights flying in the skies and lance-wielding cavalry leading the charge. They are fighting barbaric-looking warriors, similar to the warrior attacking the queen near the start.

More gameplay! The player selects Edelgard again, but switches to an alternative viewpoint that really reminds me of the cancelled Fire Emblem RTS-like game for the Wii. In this view, all the hidden troops appear in view so you can really appreciate the scale of the battle.

In the bottom-right corner is a map to help you plan your movements since your view is more restricted. There are icons depicting each weapon type (sword, lance, axe, bow, tome, etc.) and the colour (blue for player and red for enemy). A movement and attack range for the selected unit is also shown.

Meanwhile, looking away from the map, there are face icons above each battalion, so you can tell who they belong to. The aggro lines are visible as well and you can also see a blue line in the distance that indicates how far your selected unit can move.

The player then shuffles to the blue-haired character, Byleth, before sending his battalion to attack Hilda, the pink-haired girl. As Hilda is being targeted, you can see more enemies with faces behind her–a mustached tome-wielder and two younger-looking bow and lance users.

Judging from Hilda’s positioning on the map, she doesn’t seem like the boss of the map, nor do the faced enemies. Perhaps this game simply features more non-generic enemies?

From the sounds of things, life and death might be more important in this game than before. Of course, the survival of your playable characters is always important, but could it be that the survival of certain enemies will also influence how the story pans out? They did say the Goddess is the arbiter of all souls…

Alternatively, it could just be a simple mock battle, especially if the battle is from early on in the game (which looks to be the case since both the playable units and enemies are very low Level).

During the combat forecast, above Byleth’s name, towards the left is an icon that looks like Wrath. Meanwhile, between his name and his weapon is a ZL/ZR toggle for Combat Arts (it’s more obvious in the Japanese trailer).

Again, forum user Mackc2 noted that Hilda can counter-attack at close range despite wielding a bow, similar to in Echoes. For reference, unlike Edelgard, Byleth only has an attack range of 1 at this current point in the game.

After that battle, we see a big castle in the backdrop. Then we’re transported directly into the castle, where Byleth–who I like to affectionately call “Edgy Marth”–gives us a quick tour, of both the inside and the outside.

As you can see, you can free roam around 3D environments just like in Echoes! Before, you could only roam around dungeons, but now you can run around inside a castle, which is something I’ve been really looking forward to (not counting boundary breaking Echoes maps).

It seems you can interact with your allies in the castle. We next see Byleth helping Edelgard deciding whether to train her sword or axe skills. You can then physically choose which to go for. Perhaps this unlocks new Combat Arts or simply increases her weapon rank progression (eg. from C to B)?

Sadly we don’t get to see the results as the trailer transitions to the peaceful queen from the beginning, this time holding onto a very important-looking sword. The gemstone in the middle screams “Falchion” or a similar dragon-slaying sword and the wings on the hilt further suggest its purpose.

What’s odd is that the entire sword seems to be cracked. Has it been damaged or is it sealed within stone? Also, is it the sword that Seiros was holding in the tapestry? The blade is definitely not straight, but the shape doesn’t look quite right. Also the hilt isn’t the right shape, but a tapestry is just an interpretation.

We’re on a bridge next, with a blonde-hair male–Dimitri–seemingly changing his battalion’s formation to make a triangle shape. This is likely what the “Formation” command from before was. Perhaps the formations give different benefits or trump other formations?

Immediately afterwards, a female mage of some kind is attacking a group of soldiers. It could just be the angle of the battle scene, but it looks like the female mage has a height advantage. Could height play a role like in Radiant Dawn? Or maybe the height just adds to the dramatic effect.

Now we see somebody who could be a rival ruler. This man wields a flame-infused chain blade and uses it to attack the lance cavalry. He also has fur on his collar just like the warriors attacking the cavalry. Perhaps he’s their king or a powerful general.

Reddit user /u/Nahzuvix pointed that his chain blade is actually the same as the sword being held by the peaceful queen earlier on. The chains appear to be made of bone–possibly dragon bone? The bone-like structure explains why the sword is so oddly shaped.

The order of the cutscenes makes it ambiguous who got hold of the sword first. Did the queen have it first, then it was stolen and wielded by the man? Or did the man use the sword to fight against her army, then he was defeated and she obtained the sword?

In addition, the man has a curious symbol on his left shoulder (from his point of view) and cape, which I can’t seem to identify.

Things get a bit weird as a giant doll-like enemy appears inside an eerie temple or castle interior. I’m reminded of the non-human foes from Fates, like the clock-work Automaton and the Stoneborn. Meanwhile the design looks vaguely similar to the Chinese Terracotta soldiers.

Facing this monstrosity is a dark-haired archer, who we can piece together is Claude.

From one exciting scene to another, we finish with Byleth landing a critical hit (or using a Combat Art). The cut-in animation is very dynamic and improved on the ones from Echoes and even Warriors.

The trailer then ends with a young dragonkin girl sleeping on a throne. This imagery is very similar to Tiki in Shadow Dragon and Mystery of Emblem, where she was forced to sleep to keep her powers in check. Looking at the design, this probably isn’t Tiki herself, although you never know…

A slightly pointless detail, but if you look carefully at the wall behind the throne, it’s the same teal-coloured wall from when the game’s logo is shown. In fact, it’s literally the exact same wall–when you paste the game logo into the top-right corner, the texture matches exactly.

The last piece of news is that the game is coming out in Spring 2019–and it may even be a simultaneous release worldwide like Warriors. That said “Spring” is a pretty wide window, so it’s entirely possible that Japan gets the game first (since that’s where it was first developed).

However, that’s not all the news. On Nintendo’s Japanese website, there was a topic article about this game that revealed a few extra tidbits. Namely, the protagonist will have an important encounter with three key characters.

From left to right: Edelgard von Hresvelgr, Dimitri Alexander Blaidad and Claude von Regan.

We’ve seen Edelgard, Dimitri and Claude appear multiple times in the trailer and here are their portraits from the article for reference.

You may notice their surnames correspond to locations on the world map. Looking at the map again, Hresvelgr is located in Adrastrea and is marked by a flower-shaped emblem. Blaidad is in Fergus and has an emblem that’s kind of shaped like ice or snow. Finally, Regan is in Leicester and has a moon emblem.

If you think back to the game’s Japanese name, the flower, snow and moon are represented by these three locations and their emblems. All that’s missing is the wind (of summer). Perhaps the missing link is Byleth? Thanks to reddit user /u/raptor-lover for bringing this to my attention!

These same three emblems appear in the flags of the three countries too. Therefore, signs point to these three characters being pivotal members of the three nations/houses. However, all three are wearing the same kind of uniform and clasp for their cape, so maybe they’re all in the same group.

Wait, are they in a military academy like Sigurd, Quan and Eldigan from Genealogy of the Holy War (or Trails of Cold Steel, Valkyria Chronicles 2, etc)? That could explain why they’re training and why they need a teacher.

By the way, the three emblems also appear in the tapestry, around the edges. In total, there are 21 emblems or 22 if you count the one above the goddess in human form.

Hresvelgr’s emblem is at the very top and also appears in the castle that Byleth was exploring. Meanwhile, Blaidad’s emblem is near the bottom-right, and Regan’s emblem is towards the far left.

For your convenience, here are all the outer crests rearranged so you don’t need to keep turning your head.

Before we leave the subject of emblems, one of the characters–maybe Edelgard–remarks about crests around halfway through the trailer.

Some believe the crests, token of the goddess’ power, are necessary to maintain order. But they’re wrong, teacher, the crests are to blame.

Crests and emblems are synonymous, so there’s a good chance these family crests will be important somehow. Not just because the name of the series is Fire Emblem!

The final thing to comment on is Byleth, the blue-haired male. The article–and the E3 fact sheet–mentions a protagonist, but it’s not the three key characters. Given his prominent role–and that he’s seen wandering the castle–Byleth is undoubtedly the protagonist in question.

His role seems to be a teacher of some kind, although he can fight. The characters make reference to an “instructor”, which appears to be him. He’s also the one suggesting how Edelgard should train. But more than that, the fact they discuss a protagonist without mentioning his name…

Might Byleth be this game’s Avatar, similar to Robin and Corrin (and Kris from New Mystery of the Emblem)? In fact, they’ve made it easier to refer to him/her in voiced cutscenes, because they could simply call him/her “teacher”. Like how the Persona 5 cast call their main character “Joker” based on his role.

Anyway, that’s most of the important things I’ve noticed, but I’m bound to have missed something. If you’ve spotted something interesting that I haven’t, feel free to discuss in the comments or on the forums!

Update: Corrected some location names thanks to Tactician_Iris.

About the Author: VincentASM
Fire Emblem fan since 2002 and webmaster of Serenes Forest. Occasionally an online content editor or brand ambassador. Is a sucker for mage girls and has an unhealthy stash of Sylveon plushies.
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  • Zebra

    Fódlan’s Japanese name is a reference to the Irish goddess, Fódla. Who, by the way, has two more sisters, Banba and Ériu. Whether this will be significant to the game has yet to be seen.

    • Which, incidentally, are also the names of the three Mage Sisters in Genealogy of the Holy War.
      This is almost certainly not significant, but now you know anyways.

  • worldstraveller

    Nice analysis, it makes me more relieved, I was getting a bit worried about the group troops formation and the enemies looked like manequins as FEWarriors for a awhile…

  • MetalGear Lamia

    Great analysis the wait for info on this game and coming was worth it!

  • This analysis was great, several points I didn’t noticed.

    About the outcome of your saying to Edelgard to train axe skills is the very first battle in the trailer since she says it’s a “mock battle”.

  • Pablo Martinez

    Call me crazy, but does anyone notice how weird the hub looks? Could this be a VR title?

    • Semi Colon Parenthesis

      There’s no real point in that…

      • Pablo Martinez

        You never know, Nintendo has done some crazy stuff before.

  • The heck with Claude’s skin in the game? Its Caucasian while his actual artwork depicts him as a darker tone. And before anyone jumps on the whole “he was in artificial lighting in the cave so it could have whited his skin out”, well, if you pause his combat time when he first appears outside, you’ll see his skin color is Caucasian.

    • Kneekicker

      Maybe he might get a gradual tan throughout the game, or it could be the cause of some magic-related shenanigans similar to how people in the Fate franchise gradually tan through excessive use of magic.

      Alternatively, a more pragmatic explanation would be that there’s still finishing touches yet to be done on him and that’s not how his model will look in the final game, though it’s rather unlikely since he showed up in a cinematic and all. I recall a similar situation with Shantae prior to Half Genie Hero’s release where her skin was lighter than it was in the game proper.

    • Semi Colon Parenthesis

      It’s a fairly light tan, and maybe they had issues conveying that. Boey in Echoes looks Grayish which is weird after all.

  • Kneekicker

    Seeing a return to the feeling of Jugdral is really refreshing, and I’m loving the new art style since it reminds me of SMT IV, though Dimitri looks more like a SoV character. From what I can gather, the naming sense of the game draws inspiration from Gaelic, Anglo-Saxon, and Nordic languages. It’d be nice if the game was a little lighter on the Norse naming than Heroes, since it’s tough for me to discuss Book II characters with friends who can’t pronounce Nordic names. Having surnames is a good call.

    This is purely speculation on my part, but I’m hoping the story is a mixture of Fates and Genealogy. The former had some real potential going for it which went unused or underutilized, and I’m thinking some good old fashioned love and political drama could do the trick. It’d be kind of nice if Heroes threw us a bone by sneaking in some like Edelgard shortly before the game releases like what happened with Faye last year, since I don’t think I can contain my hype until Spring.

    • Metadragon

      With potentially 21(22) different crested houses to work with on top of characters that wouldn’t be I’m sure the eugenics programs some players will come up with will be spectacular.

      It is interesting to see a more subtle culture clash instead of generic European vs the generic Japanese of Fates. The Main three are Celtic/welsh, Anglo and Nordic, although rotated 180 from where they are in our world respectively. But we also see places like Palmyra which is Greco-Arabic and probably why Claude is ambiguously brown, assuming that the cultures are supposed to represent real world cultures to an extent. Morpheus is a straight Greek name and deity and Threne is a death dirge in Greek so its probably a wasteland, Brigit is a Gaelic deity as in Irish. Albino aside from its representation as the name for those with pigment deficiencies comes from Spanish.

      So we are left with Anglo, Nordic, Spanish, Greek, Arab, Celtic Irish, Czech, and French in some of the minor areas. Its really just a mixed bag of cultural and linguistic names that all seem to be around and associated with each other. The Central area looks neutral and mountainous meaning its like Switzerland. This ought to be fun if they go all out on the lore for this game for its big Switch debut.

  • Chopper

    That about units representing troops as in Advance Wars was actually something IntSys has been wanting to do since Genealogy of the Holy War, according to an interview. Thank you for this analysis, I learned a lot! I wonder if you can choose what house to side with.

  • Reuska

    Rusalka actually has a meaning in Czech. It’s a beautiful forest fairy that lures men into swamp to drawn. Antonin Dvorak wrote an opera based on that legend. Curious to see a FE region named after it.

  • Trần Thế Hào

    The Wind might be the dragonkind. their symbol of breath look like winds

  • meruemou

    Man but Claude is frigging GORGEOUS.

  • Deinochi Saurus

    I just watched the german version of the reveal trailer in the Direct and the subtitles there state, that Seiros is a female. I suppose you have enough german speaking people to check and confirm that to you. It is right in the first sentence, where the english voice just says “the divine Seiros”

    • Shenai

      That could well just be a translation choice. You can’t really leave it ungendered in German without sounding weird, and the translator will have to go with his or her best call of what they think it will be.

    • Aveyn Knight

      Thanks! Seiros does look feminine from their appearance on the tapestry, but I wanted to play it safe for the time being ^^

  • Ephidiel

    The german version translated “crests” to “talents”

  • to do

    Join Edgelord and Cyka Byleth on their journey to literally kill everyone and everything!

    On a more serious note I wanted to point out some thing things that may have been missed, the country and county names are obviously analogous to the UK and the barbarian enemies are wearing kilts so they may be Scots.

    Fodla is the name of an Irish goddess who was one of a triumvirate and is sometimes used as an ancient name for Ireland.

    The whole three houses thing may be referring to the War of The Roses where two branches of the royal house fought for supremacy so the warring countries may all have once been a part of a greater whole.

    • Awes

      The Fodla thing is a bit of a bust because Genealogy we had the three sisters named after her and her sisters. But the rest of it seems believable, nice catch.
      Also, really loving the already budding memes that Edgelord and Cyka Byleth (Creative one, this) have spawned.

    • Aaron Bahra

      Cyka Byleth… like that

  • L95

    I could just type this out, but I’m lazy so I’ll post this screenshot
    saying my point. The designs in the command menu might mean something.
    Previous FEs have used text colors to do the same thing.

  • Ikewise

    Nice analysis.
    Figured there’d be an avatar, let’s hope they don’t mess up again.

    • Doctor Robert

      We need a subtle Avatar. (and not one who uses his/her Sue powers to control all the other characters toward his/her ultimate goal of replacing the local Lovecraftian dragon god. 😀 )

      • Ikewise

        Well we don’t need an avatar at all.

        • Doctor Robert

          You and I know that, but I think IS is convinced FE’s success post-Awakening is because of the Avatars…

        • MetalGear Lamia

          To you might think so not to me and MANY others that do.

        • Metadragon

          People really resonate with the player Avatar thing they made in FE7 with Mark. Since Awakening was IS’s final hail mary they decided to bring it back with Robin and Corrin and it resonated with new fans too so now its likely to remain a thing in Fire Emblem for the foreseeable future. I personally like the idea of creating a relatively balanced avatar for yourself and the marriage and child system. I don’t think its appropriate for every Fire Emblem though. The Child system worked in Genealogy and it worked in Awakening, both for story reasons, but they used a GIANT asspull to shoehorn it into Fates.

  • Evan Smith

    After doing some research, I found that Byleth, or more commonly known as Beleth, is a figure in demonology. I’m not very surprised by this, given the dark cloak and the red symbol on his chest. He is a king of hell who has 85 legions of demons at his disposal, so I would be incredibly surprised if he is not the tactician and main character of the game. He rides a pale horse, so he may get a mount upon promotion. After the Great Flood, an event found in many religions, he was summoned by Noah’s son, who he helped write a book about mathematics, which could explain the “teacher” role. In my opinion, the most interesting thing I found was that he is summoned by striking a want to the south, then to the east, and upwards to form a triangle. If you look at the geography of the places the 3 lords come from, they appear to be in this same formation, and given her prominence in the trailer, I think it’s safe to assume that Byleth will start in Hresvelgr with her before traveling to Regan and subsequently Blaidad. From what I read, it is also stated that “Beleth causeth all the love that may be, both of Men and of Women, until the Master Exorcist hath had his desire fulfilled,” but I’m not quite sure what this means.

    I also looked into the names of the 3 lords. Edelgard’s name, unsurprisingly, means noble protector. Based on this, she is probably going to be a Corrin-esque character, so we all have that to look forward to. Claude’s name means lame, limping, or stuttering. This could mean that he is incompetent, but I think it is more likely that he has an inferiority complex, like another archer we all know and love. He seems a lot like Gray from Echoes, with his wild hair and his fun, foolhardy expression, so I’m very interested in how his character is going to be written. The most interesting name out of the bunch is Dimitri, which derives from the Greek goddess Demeter and means lover of the earth. Demeter is the goddess of agriculture, harvest, fertility, and sacred law. Sacred law refers to moral code, and the “earth lover” meaning in his name could indicate that Dimitri is a lover of his homeland and potentially another Camus. The most famous story involving Demeter involves her daughter, Persephone, being tricked into getting trapped in the underworld and marrying Hades, and her distraught mother, as the goddess of agriculture, let the earth go barren. Eventually, a deal was struck to allow Persephone to leave for 4 months of the year, which is the ancient Greek explanation for the seasons. Interestingly, Dimitri lives in the far north, and his home’s emblem depicts snow. If this legend is paralleled in the plot, it could also mean that Dimitri or someone in his house might side with Byleth, who would be the equivalent of Hades.

  • Alex

    I can’t believe we got that awful title instead of something more similar to the japanese one which I think it’s amazing
    Anyway this was a really nice analysis thankss

  • Robert D Roys Jr

    Nice! thank you for the in-depth review!

  • Awes

    This is an awesome analysis! You’ve done a great job with this, really fun seeing the connections in the trailer!
    The symbol on his cape is reminiscent of the dragon symbols we’ve seen before, definitely looking like the rival ruler that we fight before the inevitable dragon

  • RedBlaze

    Another small weird thing I noticed in the trailer is that at the end of the trailer where we see the “young” girl sitting on the chair/throne after the music ends is that she sighs or breathes out. It could also be a yawn but it makes it seem like she’s either waiting for something or just woke up after some time.

  • Doctor Robert

    Looks pretty bloody cool! It seems, from this first trailer, that they’ve learned from the mistakes of FE14 (tone down the Avatar’s power/significance/sue-ish-ness a bit (A LOT, I’m hoping), actually name the continent…) and that they’re expanding on FE15’s (and FE9/10’s…) mechanical ideas.

    I’m all for the one-character-is-a-squad-leader idea. It makes way more sense and adds a lot of depth to the game (badly needed after FE14’s creation-myth-soap-opera and also the very lovely but nevertheless very OP’d Dual-Strike-Apotheosis-is-the-only-challenging-map mechanic). I do love the earlier Emblems and their 10-teen-badasses-against-the-local-Lovecraftian-Dragon-god but, really, it was a bit ridiculous:

    KENT: OMG, Lyn! There’s, like, FIFTY soldiers out there! We’re doomed!

    LYN: R-Really, Laus? Sure, we’re outnumbered 15-to-one because it’s the 3 of us & Wil & Florina, but… Who sends 50 guys to sack a whole castle!? Is that even a full battalion?!
    SAIN: There’s more inside.
    LYN: Yeah, no more than 30. That’s 80. 80 guys are supposed to take over all of Lycia.

    Yes, it’ll be nice to actually command the actual-armies we’ve been seeing for years in the cutscenes (*cough*The Path Is Yours*cough*). It pleases my strategic brain.

    I predict you play a lowly tactician/professor from a tiny neutral fief with a university to kill and/or die for and, because a war *always* has to break out, a war breaks out, forcing you to chose one of the three dashing peeps above to the detriment of the other two. With your guiding hand, chosen lord is able to remain just, but the other two succumb to their weaknesses, maybe even ingest an evil dragon soul because why the heck not (those crazy kids and their narcotics!). You and chosen lord then have to kill the other two because they’ve fallen too far into perdition.
    Maybe choice actually means there’s plenty outcomes to play with, like some redemption options… and maybe even a special “screw it, let’s go to Albino. Sounds nice.” option.

    Basically, it’ll be like Fates, I wager, but it’ll suck less and have more dramatic weight because the characters are more fleshed out, less overpowered, and more relatable. —This is what I really hope for. And a dash of intrigue too. Makes the game even more interesting and immersive (it’ll earn the rich art design! IT WILL EARN IT!!!).

    Welp! *Claps* Time to buy a Switch! XD

  • Gaien

    If you look at the screenshot with Edelgard with End and Rsl, you’ll also see her hit rate. It is 71. But a second later, when she fights a sword unit, it is 67. There is a difference of 4, meaning weight, formation, and/or support may be affecting accuracy, but the weapon triangle is undoubtedly there.

  • Aaron Bahra

    A ‘Few’ things;

    –Why is there a different option for “Equip” and “Items”, when in previous games you could equip weapons etc, in a character “items” menu? Is there something else that they will be used for or am I just brain dead and forgetting something?

    –Also we see that there is a lot of additional space when Edelgard is selecting a weapon… Could we be getting increased inventory like in RD?

    –Byleth is a name that is synonymous with Beleth… the name of a demon in J. R. R. Tolkien’s books. Byleth is such a specific and weird name, unlike Robin or Corrin (which is translated from Kamui in Japan, which means spiritual or divine being). Do you think the name was specifically chosen for a reason, similar to how Kamui relates to how Corrin is part dragon (a divine being in FE) and son of Anankos.

    –Is it just me or does the clothes and colours Byleth wear look similar to the “Antagonist” shown who has that Whip/Sword similar to Ivy from Soul Calibur? Also I believe the symbols on Byleth’s attire shown in free roam looks similar to that of the symbol shown on the Antagonist. Is it a possibility that they’re from the same Faction (Which I believe is the Church mentioned on Nintendo’s Official Website).

    –Hilda and Mercedes don’t exactly look like random, nor your “typical enemy”. I believe that what we saw was actually a Mock Battle mentioned by Edelgard, and that Mercedes and Hilda are actually playable characters. Also not to mention your character is supposed to be “teacher” of some sort and Edelgard was talking about the mock battle in an area that resembled a classroom of sorts.

  • DarthR0xas

    If you look in the bottom left hand corner when a character is selected, you can see there’s a little sprite of them. Nothing major, but I thought it was cute nontheless.

  • Metadragon

    Did anyone else notice that the three different armies seem to have a focus. One showed Mounted troops both Horse and Pegasi, that would be Fergus. One has the Infantry and Wyvern focus, Adrastea. And Leicaster seems to have an artillery focus…

    Looks like they have not abandoned the “one side has Pegasi and the other has Wyverns” archetype. Wyvern’s probably breed slower than Pegasi but are stronger in practice. And with a faction focused on archery they are all in an effective stalemate. Interesting.

  • Metadragon

    I really, REALLY hope they dont mangle the translation like they did because they think western audiences “wont get it” or the TL staff don’t like certain things like the whole drugging debacle.