"I do not know." I'm on the phone with Toshiyuki Kusakihara, one of the directors of the Emblem of Fire: Three Houses, Valance Shadows and Art Director of many others. And that tells me by a translator when I ask what he thinks the reason is that the series has suddenly risen in the success of the West over the last decade. This is a very funny answer. "I really do not know why it was accepted by so many people around the world."
The RPG franchise for Nintendo based on line has been popular with Japanese audiences since its inception in 1990, but outside of Japan, few have ever heard of it, while two Anime swordsmen named Mart and Roy did not appear in Super Smash Bros. After Melee's release in 2001
, a number of fire emblem games entered the West on the GameCube, DS and Wii. But only in 2013, when Awakening was released in 3DS, the emblem of the fire actually exploded in international popularity – an event that allegedly retained the series of impending cancellation.
Maybe this is just a fast-growing 3DS installation base; the notebook has begun to grow after a bad start and the new 3DS XL has just been released. Perhaps it was a new interest in tactical strategy games; The excellent restart of XCOM, Enemy Unknown, on Firaxis, was also a recent and popular edition. But Kusakihara could not say nothing at all. "We have no confidence to say," Oh! As we continue to do this, the game will be popular! "After awakening, the Intelligent Systems development team took out a fire emblem in several exciting new directions: First, the ambitious Fates for 3DS, a title divided into three separate products, followed by Shadows of Valentia, a remake of the 1992's Fire Emblem, which featured its remarkable tweaks to the strategy of anti-mechanics and included a third-person darkness study of all things, including Fire Emblems, which modified the tactical battles to they look surprising Now, Three Houses are released for Switch, and his story tells about an annual schedule combined with a military academy where your hero is a professor, and your class students are your soldiers
I have the confidence to say: "Oh! As long as we continue to do this, the game will be popular! "There is nothing like that."
When three houses were officially unveiled, I (and I guess many others) saw the academy component and immediately connected with another Japanese RPG Shin Megami Tensei detachment, Personality, People's Games always revolve around high school students for a year, so naturally I assumed that the Fire Emblem Development Team looked at Persona's incredible success and tried to get involved in this formula. Of course, as stupid Westerner, I was wrong.
"Genealogy of the Holy War," was what we They bought direct inspiration, "said Kusakihara. "It was a Super Famecom game that was released in 1996, and this is the fourth in the" Emblem of Fire "series, and it has never been released in English even though there is a translation of fans." In this game you have an officer academy, in which there are the best friends who really develop their relationship there, and the story is centered around them. [Three Houses] was an attempt to create such a setting in more detail. "
Emblem of Fire: Genealogy of the Holy War Familiom
Building a lifelong aspirational relationship through the extravagantly romantic performance of high school life is a huge component of the three houses, and during the campaign you will spend several dozen hours with any number of students in the academy sharing food, struggle along with them, to be drunk by laughing, losing and loving.Later, as fireworks games are usually unfolding, you go to war, and how the bloody conflicts of the game unfold and affect everyone can just change how once your close friends see one In the course of development, several different methods have been explored to help express this experience, but the natural conclusion of the team was just like the popular Megami Tansy. "We had a lot of talk about how we can distinguish the past time in the monastery." If you have a year, we really want the player to feel every single one of these days and make them valuable to the player, "explained Kusaki.
"We did not have a calendar at the very beginning of the development, we did a lot of builds where we were trying to make systems to work but it just wasn 't fun, so we added this and the element of activity points." The Three Houses "A certain amount of activity points tied to your professor's level limits the access that you can give to students, and how much extra-curricular activities you can do on your weekends. "[Activity points] would really focus the player on what they have to do every day, whether it's exploration or going on missions, etc."
When Sunday rolls into three houses and you do not have to spend your day teaching pupils, there are a number of valuable things you can choose, but you will not have enough time to do them. You can get your own individual training sessions from colleagues to improve your own skills, you can head to the battlefield and fight off excursions to complete the side missions, you can fish, you can build, you can sleep and to do nothing, but most importantly: you can go out with your students and cultivate these personal relationships. By having close friends in their class, this will provide a significant advantage on the battlefield, of course, but out of the battlefield, these social relationships can flourish in deep friendships, and sometimes in the proposal of romance, providing a wealth of insights into the history of the symbols. Among the three different classes of students, professors and other academics, Three Houses have 35 signs with storylines that connect most of them together.
Professor Manuela Teaches the Class of Fire Emblem: Three Houses )
Kusakihara interrupts the production of social simulation: "There were three scriptwriters from Koei Tecmo who helped with a lot of writing, and as you know, the game is fully sounded so we definitely had a lot of content to work on  The participation of Koei Tecmo (responsible for another lasting tactical strategy, romantics of the three kingdoms) has already been known in the development of the three houses, but what surprised me is how much of the studio's work was responsible, especially because the emblem of the fire is so closely related to the intelligent systems Kusakihara : "With the composition of the team, I was in the role of a director presenting Intelligent Systems, and then Mr. Takeru Kanazaki worked as a sound director. We had several members who helped in programming and also sounded, but many members of the development team were from Koei Tecmo, so they really did a lot of work.
"… there was at least five times more content than in Echo. "
" I have provided the world with the settings and settings of the symbols, as well as some of the systems and scenarios of the game, and we will pass them on to Koei Tecmo and then we will discuss more details and we will develop from there. "This is a curious revelation, though only because it invites speculation about what other intelligent systems can work on." It is also interesting that Koei Tecmo, responsible for the Dynasty Warriors series (as well as the individual Fire Warners), was also seriously responsible for another title of Nintendo that was released a week before three houses – Marvel Ultimate Alliance 3.
Among the fresh newcomers who contributed to the considerable work of Three Houses was the Illustrator Chinatsu Kurahana, who serves as a new designer for the d Kurahana's previous work mostly involves designing characters for the popular romantic romance in the novel, Uta no Prince-sama, a game revolving around a teenage girl's beginnings with a group of ambitious male pop idols
that much of far from the social aspect of the emblem of fire and the new direction of the series, Kurahana was an easy choice. "Many of this game is happening at the Police Academy and there are many nobles. So we want to portray a glamorous, aristocratic society, "Kusakihara told me." Kurahana, with whom we had already spoken, seemed to have done well and definitely had a great influence on the hairstyles of the heroes. "
" We wanted a little refresh because we played this game on Nintendo Switch, which is a new platform and, well, we wanted a new image for the game. "Of course, hairstyles are not the only huge makeup of the series.One of the biggest mechanical adjustments in the three houses is the removal of the arms triangle of the fiery emblem, the system of rock scissors, which is the main base for combat in each entry, The fairy-tale game, which returns to a relatively insignificant idea found in the genealogy of the Holy War, also completely rejects the most influential and longest legacy of the world. "The reason why Kusaki is given to me is quite understandable:" We think the triangle of the weapon is like a stylized system, it is not really realistic, "he said," If you have a situation where a novice user of the ax is down advanced user of the well, ok, does that make sense? Probably not. So we wanted to do something more realistically to fight and develop our weapons skills individually
Caspar struck a monk in the emblem of the fire: Three Houses (2019) He also dwelt on the continuing focus of the series on his personalities, especially given the establishment of three houses in an academy where teenagers only come to their own. "We wanted to focus on developing the skills for these characters and also give them much more freedom in terms of how they are developing, so we really create a weapon system that is less restrictive than our previous games . "
This does not mean that choosing the right device or battle weapon is not an important issue in the three houses. There are still situations where one approach can give you a huge advantage, such as using arrows against flying units. And if any of your units become more and more skilled in a particular type of weapon or discipline, you can unlock the option to equip them with passive or active combat capabilities to help them deal with other types of weapons or disciplines. the advanced fencing player may have the ability to "Axebreaker," which will increase both their avoidance and the chance to hit the gun. "… the triangle of the weapon is like a stylized system, it's not really. But the new system of freedom to form the battle units in whatever you want also creates interesting difficulties at the social level, which in turn may ask you to rethink the long-term strategy for In my first campaign, for example, I had Dorothea in my class, superior to black magic and the bear, her ambitions throughout her life must be bad sorcerers, and she hates the idea of learning healing magic based on faith – in the end at the end it is for young children, and it even hides an inherently unequal attitude to learning.
But if you are dedicated enough to spend most of your time in class to take care of a serious work of Faith, Dorothea's ability to uncover hidden potential, she will get an early access to an ability that even the advanced bishops will wish, and will ultimately turn this shortcoming into grandmother training. There is some controversy in this example, but nevertheless, the system allows you to promote unique stories for your class – it was difficult to give one of my favorite students (and my most effective magic user) a tough time in class for a few months, instead of further refining our forces. But that's worth it.
Kusakihara does not play favorites. Towards the end of the conversation I tried to get the developers to call the dirty students from the team (my Lorenz, he's nasty). Everyone laughs: "As the director of the game, it's almost like, you know, I'm a teacher because I helped create them, so I have to say I love all the students." Genki Yokota, the other director of Nintendo's "Three Houses," was the only one to throw me bone: "You have to help the students, so it's hard to say I hate any of them. students, I can say that I really like the hero Shamir. I also like Shamir, so it was a good answer. Kusakihara has left me with the impression that his team is on the other side of this coin. They do not know why the game has attracted fans to the west, so they will just keep doing what they did after awakening. Change the structure. Reconsider the fundamental mechanics. We welcome the talents of new teams and artists. "When we develop the game, we just strive to do more than what people can imagine," he said. "This can help promote it."