Members of the Nintendo Treehouse sit down with members of Atlus to take a look at what’s in store in the new crossover game!
Rich starts off by walking around Shibuya in Tokyo and visiting the Hee Ha!! Mart (indicated by the Jack Frost on the top) that is owned by Anna from Fire Emblem, who is now dressed up like a store clerk. Lots of Tokyo includes real life areas such as the Shibuya Crossing and Shibuya 106 (seen during the concert. BTW it’s Shibuya 109 irl).
Beings called Mirages are being drawn into the world from the Eidolosphere and are invading our world. Music plays a very big part in the story, and the look of the city will change depending on the choices made in the game (for example: posters of the heroine will be spread throughout the city and her song will play in convenience stores if the player has her debut earlier).
At this point in the story, Itsuki meets up with his friend Tsubasa who gets him to see a concert of pop singer Kiria. The song performed being Reincarnation from the first SMT x FE trailer. The songs and choreography being made by famous Japanese artists and being sung from the actual voice actors of the characters. This means the voice actor has to be both a great singer and a great actor, causing localization challenges (English dubs).
Mirages are drawn to people’s creative energy called Performa, and people who have a really strong Performa will be more likely to be targeted by Mirages who want to take that energy from them. Choices made throughout the game can awaken people’s Performa, which cannot be seen by people without the same ability. With more Performa being made, the Eidolosphere begins to act up and the Mirages invade the world to sap away people’s Performa (as seen with the generic NPCs behind the characters turning gray and slumping forward, similar to Apathy Syndrome from Persona 3). When people’s creative energy is taken from them, they are filled with a sense of hopelessness. This is meant to simulate how people feel in the real world, where people (particularly teenagers) lose hope and meaning in life when their energy is gone (again this is very similar to Apathy Syndrome).
The party meets a mysterious lady whom Tsubasa thinks is her missing sister. Shibuya Building 106 becomes the dungeon where Itsuki explores the strange, demented interior. The Fire Emblem characters in this game appear in their new design and have no memories of their own world (hence why Chrom, Caeda, and Cain don’t mention anything from their past) and appear as Mirages that assist the characters in exchange for Performa. Not all beings from the Eidolosphere are malevolent, and the party’s Mirages probably use that Performa to help awaken their own abilities to help the party.
Mirages combine with their characters and become costumes for that character (above showing Chrom and Itsuki joining together). As with SMT, striking an enemy outside battles will stun them and allow the player to gain the advantage in the actual battle. Battles are turn based, with the turn order shown as a meter at the top. The tactics wheel below has the following actions: Attack, Skill, Goods (Items), Defend, and Change. Change most likely meaning there will be more Mirages that appear that the characters can change into, which may also change their class. However, it does not seem like Itsuki has a Change action as it is replaced by the Tactics action instead. On the right shows the characters’ icon, level, HP, EP, and class. The combat system is much like Shin Megami Tensei where the player must take advantage of the enemy’s weakness for more damage. Weapon types shown are Sword, Spear, Axe, and Bow while magic types are Fire, Ice, Electric, Wind, Light, and Dark. Unlike SMT, however, striking an enemy’s weakness does not grant an extra turn.
Session attacks are possible by using a skill that will hit an enemy’s weakpoint (indicated by green exclamation marks). When using skills, a log will appear on the left indicating what allies can join in on the combo as well as what attacks they will perform. If the enemy targeted is defeated, allies will move on to attack other enemies. You’ll have to learn what the enemy’s weakpoint and resistances are first before being able to see it right away (similar to Persona Q or Etrian Odyssey).
Every dungeon in Genei Ibun Roku #FE will have a gimmick that makes it unique and different from all the other dungeons. With Shibuya 106, the gimmick is that there are maid outfits all over the dungeon. Going up one sleeve will have you come out the other. The arms can be moved by switching what model is in the spotlight at various displays, allowing the player to go into different areas. This gimmick is inspired by how Shibuya 109 is famous for its fashion, and every dungeon will have their own inspirations for their puzzles.
Each character has aspirations (such as Tsubasa who wants to be a singer and Toma who wants to be an actor) that helps them awaken their Performa, and it’s up to Itsuki to help them achieve their dreams in side stories. These side stories will help develop the characters outside the main story to help the player understand their background.
The team jumps onto another save and into Harajuku to show off more of the locations within #FE. The team did a lot of research to ensure the areas are accurate recreations while also somewhat modified to make them still player friendly.
In the top left corner of the screen, the player gets text messages and calls from their friends on the Wii U pad. These messages have their own dialogue choices as well and give updates on what’s happening in the story.
The team switches saves again to take on a boss fight which turns out to be Gangrel from Fire Emblem Awakening. Just like the other Fire Emblem characters, he is a Mirage and has taken possession of a fashion photographer who has to be freed by the party. This boss fight showcased Dual Arts, which are activated during Session attacks in order to have 2 characters perform a skill together at the end of the session. These are unlocked through the course of the story as the party grows together. Also shown are Special Skills which requires Special Points (top right hand corner). These Special Skills summon the Mirages to launch a powerful strike against the enemy. The result screen shows that there is a Main and Sub cast, meaning the Main cast is the party fighting on the field while the Sub cast is probably a reserve character or character only present during Sessions.
That’s all the info for Genei Ibun Roku #FE for today. The game comes out in Japan Q4 2015 and 2016 in the West.