Spoiler warning for Paralogue 7 in Fire Emblem Fates, for Birthright and Revelation. Nothing story related, just characters and gameplay. Maybe a little story related, no promises. Probably will not affect your experience in any way but I just don’t want anyone to get upset. Battle COMMENCE!
It’s not easy being Shiro. Brought into existence by an awkward conversation, he finds himself thrust into the middle of a desert with enemies around him who are 10 levels higher. Ryoma left his son in the Deeprealms without an explanation, and Shiro doesn’t even know that he’s meant to be royalty. Happily placed in the middle of the map, hoping to make friends, he’s in the perfect position to die on the first turn.
And that’s exactly what happens. Due to the “unique” luck I had been graced with in Paralogue 7, Shiro always dies on the first turn. My party starts on the bottom left of the map, and they just can’t reach him in time. The enemies can’t actually reach him either, but they move next to him on the first turn and he attacks them and dies instantly. He has no idea how to fight or talk to people thanks to bad parenting. I was baffled that game design like this actually existed, because this is somebody you can recruit to your team. I read other people’s experiences with this chapter online, and most people say he survived 2 or 3 turns. Still ridiculous, but that sounds possible. The reason for my bad luck is perhaps a bad stat roll for Shiro, or just the timing in general. Paralogue chapters scale enemy levels with the story, and I’m on Chapter 23 in Revelation in Hard mode. This means that not only are the enemies around Shiro a whopping 10 levels higher, but also in promoted classes while he is regular.
I’m sorry Shiro. I restarted 7 times with him dying on the first turn each time. He even landed a 5% critical hit once, but he’s so weak that the enemy was still standing and he died anyway. I had absolutely no chance to save him and recruit him to my team, without stretching my units to their absolute maximum. To make this chapter extra difficult, the sand is REALLY SLOW for most units to walk through, so you have to activate Dragon Veins to get rid of it.
Before getting too salty I tried to think outside the box. The situation was so ridiculous that I was more amused than angry. I looked at all my options. I had a Rescue staff, two fliers, a few Rally stat commands, Azura, Ryoma, Takumi who could travel on any terrain. There might be enough options, at the very least it would be fun to experiment with.
First I tried using Camilla to bring Felicia close enough to Shiro to use the Rescue staff. I managed to bring him down, but then Felicia died the next turn. Way too many enemies for her to deal with, completely exposed with only average defenses. Because of the large distance, I couldn’t get anyone else there to cover her, and she had to be left standing as the main unit to even use the Rescue staff. I tried this in a few different positions and she always died, usually with Camilla also dying and Shiro STILL killing himself. So the “Rescue” staff itself wasn’t enough and ended up killing even more people.
I had to think a bit harder, who would be strong AND fast enough to get near Shiro to use the staff? By sheer luck I had made my avatar a Hoshido Noble, and this allowed him to use healing staffs. I had never ever used one with him, so it took me a while to think of it. There’s always a use for something in this game, and sure enough the Rescue staff worked. It’s such an advanced and rare staff that I only had one of them, but thank the gods you only need to be staff level E to use it.
Now at the very least, my avatar should be able to tank those hits but there are still tons of enemies around and Shiro would surely die to one of them, let alone 4. I had to initiate step 2 now, Pair Up with Shiro. Ryoma is the only one who can talk to him to make him “my unit” to even make Pair Up possible, and luckily could also tank the hits so it worked out well. He can’t physically reach Shiro by himself, but Azura could give him just enough distance.
Ryoma is on his way, but just LOOK how dangerous this is. EVERYONE is in the red, and they’re all gonna fucking die from these monster enemies if I focus too much on Shiro. Ryoma heads up to recruit Shiro and give him the speech (don’t be a fucking idiot), but now I had to be careful with Pair Up. Since Ryoma was planted there now, I had to use his turn to join Shiro, then simply use Shiro’s turn to switch back to Ryoma and have him stand there. This surely would work since I knew Ryoma could take all the hits in the area, after much experience (aka resets). I also now had to worry about Azura dying, since she had to step out to sing to Ryoma. The axe murderer could reach Azura and surely destroy her in one hit. Only Takumi was strong enough to take the axe murderer down, but he couldn’t reach. Luckily Hinoka could reach, just by one extra square. I used Pair Up with Takumi, flew there with Hinoka, switched back to Takumi and scored a KO on the axe murderer. Thank the gods. However, Takumi was now in range of two more crazy idiots to the right. He still could be fine, right? Maybe they’ll miss?
Hahahahahahahaha. Nope. SWORD guy comes from the right and Takumi’s dead now. Another axe murderer theeeeeen decides to kill Hinoka who was just there to transport Takumi with Pair Up. I felt so guilty about using her. Shiro and Ryoma survived, but this kid wasn’t worth sacrificing my whole army over. Back to the drawing board.
It looks like this plan has potential, with Shiro finally not killing himself. I literally had to NOT give him a turn to make this happen, but it was possible. To keep everyone alive however, I will have to keep them back now with enemies coming infinitely in a chain. With my best units saving Shiro, there’s nobody who can kill those enemies and tank the next ones.
This was the formation that ended up working. I only picked off the close enemies to give everyone breathing room, and everyone else just stayed back while Shiro got a lecture from Ryoma.
We slowly crossed the desert as a group, with Ryoma and Shiro fighting side-by-side the whole way. They had their disagreements, but family is far more important than logic and Ryoma had to teach Shiro how to fight.
BAM! CRITICAL! Everyone brought the best out of themselves with the whole team contributing as we crossed the desert. Azura’s lance proficiency went up to D with a double attack finisher she hadn’t done before. Elise’s staff usage went up to A as she healed everyone after dangerous fights. Charlotte was supplying +4 Strength Rallies to anyone within 2 squares, and Oboro complimented Silas to make him feel strong enough to tank everything. After an initial struggle through a seemingly impossible situation, everyone had a lot of fun working together.
Shiro’s Struggle turned into Shiro’s Success! You’re a hero, mate! 13 turns doesn’t sound like much, but it’s about 50 turns of resets I would guess. It annoyed me at first, but this map proved to be a great example of how dynamic and flexible the gameplay of Fates can be. It’s a good reason to play on Hard Classic, and above all else, it’s a good reason not to give up on a difficult map.
Now Shiro… welcome to the team. There’s a lot going on, but we’ll talk about that later. For now, take a walk around the castle and get to know everyone, or enjoy a nice spa.