Fire Emblem

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a game by Intelligent Systems
Genre: Strategy/War
Platform: GBA
Editor Rating: 7.5/10, based on 2 reviews
User Rating: 8.8/10 - 8 votes
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See also: Anime Games, Manga Games, RPGs, JRPG Games, Games Like Advance Wars, Fire Games, Fire Emblem Series
Fire Emblem
Fire Emblem
Fire Emblem

Classic Light V Dark

Fire Emblem: Shadow Dragon and the Blade of Light when in development, the developers at Intelligent Systems Nintendo R&D 1, struggled to put the game on the NES cartridge. The first game was that massive that it couldn’t even fit on one cartridge. It was ahead of its time, with the developers having to scale back the work they’ve done so it can fit on the system.

How the fire was lit

You play as Marth and his ever-growing army on their path to conquer Archanea. As it has been invaded by the Dolhr Empire led by the Shadow Dragon Medeus after being resurrected by an evil Mage, teaming together to take on Archanea and the whole world. Marth (you) are the son of the King of Archanea and have been left behind as your father has gone to fight them.

After the betrayal of one of the King’s subjects leading to the death of your father. Marth escapes the castle knowing after the King’s death that they’ll kill him soon and takes refuge on a lone island called Tayls. This is where everything starts with a time jump, and the gameplay starts to take centre stage. The story is great, and we haven’t even mentioned the gameplay yet.

Nostalgic Emblem

Graphically Fire Emblem: Shadow Dragon and the Blade of Light for when it came out in 1990 and today’s standard, was a graphical masterpiece with developers having to scale it down due to it being too big to put on to the NES cartridge. Its classic look with pixel art would teach some pixel artists out there a thing or two on style as the style they used in Fire Emblem was amazing, never really realistic but just give you a great experience. We are going to need an Army.

The gameplay is a tactical role-playing game where takes control of Marth and his army to defeat the Shadow Dragon and his forces. You’ll also be able to grow your army through the campaign. There are also classes where every army member will have their class designated to them and with classes comes different abilities to be used. An example of one of the classes available is The Archer and the ability to attack from farther away than The Swordsman. Fire Emblem is a turned-based game as you take a turn moving your units and attack the enemies then your enemies do the same to you. There’s also permadeath available which adds that little bit of fear that everybody needs in their games.

Ahead of its time

This game has a perfect balance across the board, it is near perfect game with an amazing story, graphics, and gameplay right there, some might not be a fan of the genre but if you are to pick this up and add it to your collection, you might just find your new favourite game.

Download Fire Emblem


System requirements:

  • PC compatible
  • Operating systems: Windows 10/Windows 8/Windows 7/2000/Vista/WinXP

Game Reviews

People say:


Cheesy dialogue. Cartoon characters. Turn-based strategy that's in-depth enough to hook tactical nuts but accessible enough to anyone who understands "rock, paper, scissors".... Is this just GBA's famous strategy game, Advance Wars, in chain mail instead of Kevlar armor? Pretty much. If you haven't played Wars 1 or 2, and you have a taste for some portable wargaming, try those first. They're less intimidating and slightly more fun. If you're a veteran and are ready for more, this time in a fantasy-themed flavor, then Fire Emblem is a great follow-up. Since it has more RPG elements like experience points and item equipping, it gives you more to think about and strategize around, though it's a bit on the easy side. This is all packaged in the same turn-based format that made Advance Wars such a hit--only more strict. You have to play the missions in order (with barely any side quests); you only get the specific units that the game wants you to have (you don't manage any resources to "build" anything new); and you never have as much variety in your armies as you do in Wars.


Shoe seems determined to shove Advance Wars down our throats, but I'd easily recommend Fire Emblem over it. Both games offer similar gameplay, but the rich fantasy setting, intriguing plot (Shoe's comment about cheesy dialogue is way off base), and likable characters really propelled me forward, while I always found the Wars world dull. Emblem has some issues, like repetitive visuals and weirdly balanced narrative (you'll spend the first few hours on a massive tutorial), but it's still a must-play for fans of tactical RPGs.


Like Shane, I'd give Emblem the edge over Advance Wars. Character-developing cut-scenes, along with the leveling-up system, made me actually care about my soldiers (something I never did with Wars' interchangeable tanks), to the point where I tried to give final death blows to my favorites--so they'd earn more experience points--and restarted missions whenever anyone died. I just wish Emblem included more stages, as several gameplay concepts (like vehicles and evolving character classes) seem underutilized.

Snapshots and Media

GBA Screenshots