Part 3: Chapter 3 and The War Room Part 3 (Weapon Stats Explained)
Alright, now things start to really get underway. I'll have a real party beginning this level. Furthermore, the addition of Florina means I'll finally have all the people I plan on training.
The War Room, Part 3
And speaking of new characters, there's now enough weapon variation in the party that it's worth talking about how weapons work.
Last time I told you a bit about the basic stats every character has, including how they affect your chance to hit and dodge and how much damage you take. However, I wasn't telling you about how weapon stats affect any of those things, so the picture was incomplete.
First of all, there are 8 categories of weapons in this game: Swords, Lances, Axes, Bows, Light Magic, Anima Magic, Dark Magic, and Staves.
Every character has a weapon mastery rank from E to S with some of these categories and is completely incapable of using the others. Which categories you can use is determined entirely by your class. For example, Mercenaries are only capable of using swords. But Mercenaries can be promoted into Heroes, who gain the ability to use Axes and get a starting weapon mastery level of E with axes.
Your weapon mastery level improves as you use weapons of that category and determines which weapons of that category you are allowed to use. With an E you can generally use only the most basic weapons of that category. With an S you can use every weapon of that category. That is all weapon mastery rank does, except that S rank grants a small (5%) bonus to hit and crit chances with those weapons.
Other that they also have mastery ranks, staves don't function like the other weapons at all: you can't fight with them, they don't have any of the normal weapon stats, etc. So I'm not going to talk much about staves here. In fact, from now on when I say "weapons", I'm actually going to mean "Everything except staves"
Weapons all have certain stats: a mastery rank requirement, range, weight, might, hit, crit, and durability.
For example, here are the stats on Lyn's excellent Mani Katti:
Sword Prf- this means the Mani Katti is a sword, so you need a weapon mastery level of Prf in swords to wield it. Prf means the weapon is unique to a certain character, in this case Lyn. No one else may use the Mani Katti under any circumstances, but Lyn can use it regardless of her weapon mastery level.
Rng 1- The Mani Katti has range 1, meaning it can hit targets one square away (right next to you, but not diagonal). This also means that if an enemy attacks you from right next to you and Lyn has the Mani Katti equipped, she can counterattack with it. However if an enemy attacks her from any other range, she cannot counterattack. Most weapons have a range of 1, bows have a range of 2 (And ONLY 2, so a bow cannot be used against people next to you), and most magic has a range of 1-2. This means magic can be used to fight enemies both near and far and to counterattack virtually everyone. That makes it very powerful. There are also a select few weapons with 1-2 range (like handaxes and javelins) which I'll talk about in the future.
Wt 3- The Mani Katti has a very low Weight of 3. Remember I talked about a character's Con stat last time? If the Wt of your equipped weapon is greater than your Con, then you take a penalty to your effective speed equal to the difference. Bear in mind that ONLY your equipped weapon weighs you down. Currently Lyn has her Iron Sword equipped, so it doesn't matter what the Mani Katti weighs at the moment. Lyn's Con is 5 so the Mani Katti is no problem for her anyway.
Mt 8- The Mani Katti has a rather good Might of 8. Your weapon's Might + your Strength - the enemy Defense is your damage (with a few other modifiers sometimes).
Hit 80- The Mani Katti's accuracy is actually pretty bad for a sword. This number + 2x your Skill and 1/2 your Luck is your basic chance to hit. You'll notice that the 80 from the Mani Katti dwarfs the total of 20 or so Lyn gets from her Skill and Luck. It is for this reason that Skill is not a terribly important stat in general: most weapon accuracies are so high that you're not going to miss.
Crit 20- The Mani Katti grants a VERY high bonus of 20 to Lyn's % chance of getting a critical hit. Most weapons just have 0 here
Effective against Infantry- Actually this description is totally wrong; the Mani Katti is normal against most infantry but effective against cavalry and knights. What this means is that when used against cavalry and knights, the Mani Katti's already considerable Might is doubled. This is a significant bonus, but it's not as high as the usual tripling in most Fire Emblems.
45/45- Shown on the inventory page above, this is the Mani Katti's durability. Out of its maximum durability of 45, it is still at full strength. If the Mani Katti hits an enemy 45 times, it will break and cease to exist. In the case of magic attacks, missing also uses up durability.
Now relatedly, every weapon in the game has a price to it. For an Iron Sword it's 460. And a fresh iron sword you own is worth that 460. But the current worth of your equipment depends on how worn out it is. For example, an Iron Sword that only has half of its durability left is only worth 230. So using any weapon effectively has a cost per use that depends on how much durability that weapon has and its base price. The Mani Katti actually has a worth of 0 though so using it is free. This means I'll be using it a lot in this run to save money.
Oh and there are some general patterns to the stats of various weapon categories which I'll outline below for your benefit:
Weight: Anima Magic < Bows < Swords < Light Magic < Dark Magic = Lances < Axes
Might: Light Magic < Anima Magic = Swords < Bows < Dark Magic = Lances < Axes
Hit: Axes < Lances = Dark Magic < Bows < Swords = Anima Magic < Light Magic
Cost per Use: Axes < Lances < Swords < Bows < Anima Magic < Light Magic < Dark Magic
Chapter Story Summary
To get from the shrine of the Mani Katti to the realm of Lycia requires traveling through the lawless border between the kingdom of Bern and Sacae. Lyn's old friend Florina heard that Lyn had left home and came looking for her. The two are reunited when Lyn finds Florina being accosted by some bandits/slave traders. Along with Wil, a traveler passing through the area, they slay the bandits and continue toward Lycia together. However, the comrades of the bandits they killed chase after them, bent on revenge.
Seeing the wreckage of a village destroyed by local bandits, Lyn tells Sain and Kent what happened to her home. This is another moment where the melancholy soundtrack really does a good job of setting the atmosphere of the game.
Lyn finds Florina and comes to her aid. Because Florina could sell for quite a lot of money and her pegasus for even more, Migal and his henchmen are determined to fight to recapture her. That henchman of Migal doesn't even get a name, but they gave him a unique portrait. Most other games in this series don't put that much effort into their art.
Now here's a map with several features worth talking about. This level introduces Villages (the red-roofed houses on the left). Brown-roofed villages just function like houses; the people give you some setting lore or advice but nothing more important. Red-roofed villages give you treasure or even new characters. If an enemy brigand reaches a village, it's destroyed forever; so you need to get to them in short order.
In this case, Wil joins the party if you visit the nearby village and the one in the upper left gives you 2000 gold with which to buy more weapons to drive out the bandits. Sweet!
You can see Migal the boss standing back in the top right corner, much too important to move or in any way help his forces.
And you'll notice a convenient chokepoint at which Sain can hold off most of Migal's minions with the protective bonuses of the forest.
Lastly, that building in the bottom right is an armory. If you have a character visit one of those, you can buy new weapons. Which weapons are available varies chapter by chapter and there is no way to resupply without going to armories, so you'd better do your shopping while you can. I consider this system to be one of the best ones in any FE really. Later titles pretty much let you buy whatever you wanted whenever you wanted, which took away the challenge of needing to manage your supplies and make sure no one ran out of usable weaponry.
I would be honored to count myself one of Lyndiss Legion! -Wil, Chapter 3
Wil is a young man from the distant city-state of Pherae in Lycia. He and his friend Dan left home (to the annoyance of Wil's childhood sweetheart Rebecca) in search of adventure. Things went wrong and the two parted ways. Now Wil is far from home, penniless, and surrounded by bandits. So he joins Lyn's group.
Wil is a fairly bland character, a commoner with an adventurous streak but little else to say about him. His supports with Dart are useful for discovering the truth of the latter's past, but other than that he's not terribly important and there isn't much to learn about him. Not one of my favorites.
Mechanically, he's borderline unusable in a run like this. Archers are an absolutely horrible class, almost certainly the worst in the game. This is because Bows are incapable of attacking enemies in melee range and nearly all enemies use melee weapons. The result is that your archers can't defend themselves, which means they can't counterattack, which means they're garbage for getting rid of the hordes of enemies you must wade through. Meanwhile, Mages and Monks and Shamans or people wielding Javelins and Handaxes are much more effective at dishing out ranged damage. And Archers aren't even the best bow users because Nomads are the same but more mobile and eventually capable of using swords too.
Wil's stats are nothing special either, just decent across the board. This means his defenses come out pretty solid overall, but since he can't counterattack you never want him on the front lines.
"Its just Ive always dreamt of being a pegasus knight. I imagined I would just work it out. Somehow -Florina, Chapter 3
Florina is a young pegasus rider training to become a mercenary like her sisters. She and Lyn are old friends and Lyn has helped her a great deal. Florina wants to be as strong and confident as Lyn and to repay all the help her friend has given her over the years. But she's timid, lacks self-confidence, and has a petrifying fear of talking to men (But not slaughtering them by the dozen) for reasons never really explained. Possibly it's because in her homeland of Ilia men are generally marginalized and she was raised by pegasus riders (who are all women), so she just has no experience dealing with males.
Since she's an unmarried woman, Sain immediately starts wooing her. She of course is terrified of him.
Her wimpiness, bouts of self-pity, and androphobia annoy me and there isn't much else to her personality, so I don't much like her.
However, Florina is a tremendously useful unit. As a pegasus rider she can fly, passing over difficult (or impassable) terrain at tremendous speed. This lets her quickly get to objectives like distant villages that no one else can reach and move around the battlefield nimbly. She can wield lances, which are one of the better weapon types overall, and benefits from massive speed and luck and resistance coupled with solid strength and skill. However, her HP and defense are lacking and bow users deal huge, super-effective damage against her, so she must be used carefully. Furthermore, her terrible Con means that she takes a hefty penalty to her speed at all times. Still, she has enough that this rarely matters.
There are better flyers in the game, but Florina is available the earliest by far, so there's just no way to not use her on a run where speed matters.
Were not listening to any of your stinking apologies! -Migal, Chapter 3
A slave trader and member of the Ganelon bandits. It's not entirely clear who or what Ganelon is, but it is a safe bet that Ganelon is the mountainous area where this infamous group makes their home because we know that the Taliver bandits take their name from Mount Taliver. After Florina stupidly lands her pegasus on one of Migal's friends, he captures her.
Either he was pretty high up in their organization or the Ganelon bandits are really, really close-knit, since they really throw everything they have at you to avenge his death.
The first thing to do is trade Kent's lance away to Florina. Slim lances are both weak and expensive. Not only does a Slim lance cost more per attack than an Iron Lance, but she'll need more attacks to kill the enemy. Florina starts off pretty weak, but she can still waste most enemies with swords in two hits when given an iron lance.
Florina flies over the wall to visit the village and collect their money, then moves to fight the nearby enemy Mercenaries (sword users) on future turns)
Lyn walks to the other village and recruits Wil, to the tune of Together We Ride. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=O6UOa22akeY
I never get tired of that.
And Sain moves to slaughter the nearby archer before continuing on into the chokepoint next turn. You'll notice that I have him attack from the bottom rather than the right of the archer. If I attacked from the right, the other enemy archer would be able to shoot him over the wall. Lyn's story is easy so that doesn't really matter now, but in HHM you don't ever want to give enemies free hits, so thinking about positioning is important.
Sain seizes the chokepoint in the forest here. Because Sain is in the woods, he gets some hefty defensive bonuses.
With those, he'll win eventually even though he's using a lance against mainly axe users. Of course, he'll miss a lot so it will take a while. Because I'm not trying to go fast on this chapter, I'm quite content to let him sit there and kill them one by one.
Ding! My Sain has had EXCELLENT luck with his speed, though some of his other stats are a bit behind. Speed is most important now though so I don't care.
Florina killed the mercenaries in the top left and Kent bought a new lance at the armory. Now it's time to move in and take Migal down.
Holy cow! His Skill may be terrible, but this is one of the best Sains I've ever seen. Just look at that blazing speed! And that defense!
That concludes the level. Florin and Wil are formally inducted into the greatest fighting force on the continent. I love Kent facepalming while Sain flirts and Florina hides.
And that's the level. Next Issue: Sain Kills the Ganelon Universe.