With Fire Emblem Heroes (Free) raking in money hand over fist for Nintendo, it’s not likely that support for the game is going to dry up anytime soon. But surely there are only so many characters to go around, even in a long-running series like Fire Emblem? That much is true, but players have been responding enthusiastically to special variants of popular heroes, which means the development team can more or less throw a Santa hat on Chrom every so often and call it a day. Beyond silly (and fun) holiday tie-ins, however, there exists within certain games some canonical reasons to have different versions of characters, and it’s that particular vein that is being mined for the Summoning Event kicking off on February 22nd.
This event is called Fallen Heroes, and if you haven’t played the games these characters are drawn from, this is one spoilerific group. Okay, one of the games, Fire Emblem: Mystery of the Emblem, has no official English release and may never get one, and another, Fire Emblem Awakening, is several years old at this point. The last of the bunch, Fire Emblem Echoes: Shadows of Valentia, just saw an official release in English in 2017, and it may well be sitting in the “haven’t entirely ruled out playing it" section of your 3DS backlog. If so, well, spoilers. Spoilers spoilers spoilers. Don’t say you weren’t warned.
All three of these new characters fall to the dark side at some point in their respective stories. You may remember Hardin if you played Fire Emblem: Shadow Dragon on the Nintendo DS. A loyal retainer of Princess Nyna of the Archanean Empire, he weds her after the events of the game and becomes the new Emperor of Archanea. The darkness in his heart gives the evil mage Gharnef the opportunity to exploit him, fully corrupting him into the form that we see in Fire Emblem: Mystery of the Emblem and this Fallen Heroes update.
The Fell Reincarnation form of Robin is drawn from the history of Lucina’s bad future in Fire Emblem Awakening. In her past, Robin turns on Chrom and his friends, killing them all and helping to resurrect the evil dragon Grima. This evil past-future Robin follows Lucina into the past and tries to ensure matters proceed as Grima wishes. It’s… complicated. But it does mean that this form of Robin has Grima on his side, and that’s nothing to sneeze at. Finally, we’ve got the Imprisoned Soul version of Celica from Shadows of Valentia. Certain events transpire that put Celica temporarily in the thrall of the evil Duma. How does this happen? Is she freed? Play the game if you have a 3DS and find out for yourself. It’s pretty great.
Do you need all of these details for incoming heroes in this game? Probably not, I suppose. But I am a big fan of Fire Emblem and I feel like giving you all some of the flavor behind the cast helps to keep them special. In a cast of hundreds, I think that’s important. These are some pretty cool characters to add to the game, and for once the story behind them is a little more robust than Anna trying to make a buck off the latest holiday. Let’s enjoy that.