The Let's Play Archive

Fire Emblem: Sword of Seals

by Artix74

Part 17: The Misty Isles (feat. Alkydere)

Chapter 9: The Misty Isles (feat. Alkydere)

...for further attacks from Bern. However, Bern's aggression towards Lycia suddenly ceased altogether, as if to mock Roy's caution. Bern was also maintaining a neutral position regarding the peace offer from Etruria. Bern's sudden lack of activity could only be described as eerie.

Eliwood summoned the various marquises to Pherae to discuss Lycia's future plans. It was decided that Eliwood would be the new leader of the Lycia Alliance. A new Lycia Alliance Army was also established. This new force's purpose was not to take the offensive against Bern, but rather to remain in Lycia and take a defensive stance. For his victory in Ostia, Roy was chosen to lead the new Lycia Alliance Army.

Slowly, the people of Lycia started to brighten up. Business was recovering, and people's attitudes were improving. The worst seemed to be behind them...

However, around that time, Etruria called for Lycia's assistance in ridding the Western Isles of the outlaws terrorizing the area. The people of Lycia expressed their discontent at sending their only standing force all the way to the Western Isles, but since Lycia was still under Etrurian protection, they had no choice but to oblige. Thus, Roy led the Lycia Alliance Army through Etruria and on to the Western Isles.

Mostly colonies of Etruria, the Western Isles were rich with minerals and natural resources. With mining being a major industry, various rogue groups had traveled to the Isles, hoping to loot the mines and sell the minerals for themselves. Therefore, the islands' people spent their days in constant fear of bandit attacks. Roy's mission was to rid the isles of these brigands.

You sure?

Yup. We just saw 'em arrive on the small island to the east.

Just as that other group said... All right, they're probably just floundering around in the fog, unable to see anything. Sneak up on 'em from behind and kill 'em off!

Sure thing, boss.

No, it's not your fault, General Cecilia. Please don't worry about it.

I can't believe how Lycia is being treated like servants. Even within the Etrurian court, many are voicing their discontent with the advisor.

Advisor? It wasn't the king who had made the decision to send Lycia to the Western Isles?

No. Advisor Roartz was working with Lord Arcard, the man in charge of the mining operation on the Western Isles. They made the decision without consulting the king.

How can they do that?

I suspect that in this universe Eliwood’s stats were lackluster as a young Lord. Hector went out in the berserker way covered in the blood of his enemies, Eliwood lets neighboring countries bully him into sending his own son out for bandit clearing duty during a major crisis.

...Do you remember last year's tragedy in Etruria?

Of course. Etruria's next heir, Prince Mildain, suddenly passed away last year.


I never had the honor to meet him, but I've been told that he was a very bright individual.

Yes... If the prince were alive, he wouldn't have allowed this to happen. The prince's death was more than King Mordred could bear. The shock was so great that he never fully recovered from it. Today, he always seems as if he's in a different world, not paying attention to anything that's going on in his country. Roartz took advantage of this. Now, he's the one in charge of what goes on in the court. Ever since then, he made sure to keep us, the Three Etrurian Generals, away from the king unless there was a great emergency.

But what about the time when you came to our aid in Ostia?

That was an exception. Things happened to work out because Percival worked with me. But this time...

Really, don't worry about it... All we have to do is finish our mission here, and we'll be able to return to Lycia. But may I ask you to take care of Lycia while we're away?

Of course. You can leave Lycia and Princess Guinevere to me.

Since we're unfamiliar with these islands, we have no idea what dangers may await us. I think that it would be safer for you to hide in Etruria under General Cecilia's protection.

Please trust me, Princess Guinevere. I respect your intentions of suggesting a truce, and I also promised Roy that I would protect you. You have my word as the Sorcery General of Etruria that I will defend you at all costs.

...I understand. I apologize for being selfish. Roy, I will be praying for your safety.

Thank you, my lady. I will be praying for yours as well.

So let's get started. Fog of war makes its triumphant debut in this axe-filled chapter, so Astol, Noah and Alan are taking point as we head south.

Swords beat axes! That means you can use Roy and his swords and let the young Lord finally shine, right? Right?

That’s precious.

Dieck's lack of strength and speed growth is starting to catch up to us, but it's pretty handy for setting up kills for other units.

Do not think I am above benching you, Dieck. Oujay is already faster than you, has the same strength, and one less skill.

And you. ...Well I wish I could bench you at times, but you're still holding in there pretty well for now.

That’s right Roy, show the world what you can do!

Roy’s our boy! Roy’s our boy!

Oh, Fir! Sorry I had to call you in.

What's happening?

Well, you see, our island is being attacked by some pirates. The people living here are in danger.

Someone’s suddenly prim and proper for a Bandit leader. Well, at least it’s a somewhat novel way to introduce the character you must recruit compared to what seems to be the FE standard of a soldier being forced to fight against their will.


I sent some of my boys to try and stop the invaders, but they're pretty tough. The situation doesn't look too good out there.

I can't believe...

I'd go out myself, but I can't leave the castle... So, Fir, sorry, but I have to ask you to...

Yes. I shall go and drive the pirates away.


Leave it to me! Attacking innocent villagers...that's unforgivable!

I'm sending someone else along, too, so you can work together.

Someone else?

Yeah, a nomad named Shin. He looks frail, but he's got a decent shot with his bow.

Wow, this is almost subtle.

That's me. I heard the story from Scott. Let's go.





Um, did you also join the fight to protect the people living here?

No... I have no interest in such things.

Then why?

I'm paid to fight. That's all.


...'re from Sacae, right?


What took you all the way out here?

Well, you look like you're from Sacae, and you're here.

Oh, I'm traveling around Elibe to train myself, and... Oh, you weren't asking about me, were you...



...I'm looking for someone.


...My clan was decimated when Bern invaded Sacae.


Our chief let me escape, and he commanded me to find and take care of his granddaughter. I left the battlefield to fulfill his wish.

I see... Well, I hope you find her.


She's trying so hard to make a new friend.

...out there...

Yeah, I know what I'm doing. Once she's killed, her sword'll be ours.

But...none of you can even use swords! You’re all axe wielding Bandits and Pirates from what I see on the map! Also IS totally missed out, a smug or at least smiling face for Scott’s portrait would look awesome and be very appropriate here, or at least prove there are more than two neurons firing in that skull.

Sadly there’s probably some strict policy at IntSys that that one bandit face must never be altered in any way in any of its incarnations (Seriously, it’s a recurring bandit face).

Sword? That weird one she's carrying?

That's no ordinary sword. That's the Wo Dao, a famous katana. If we can get our hands on it, we can sell it for a fortune! Hehehe...

So that's why you were so generous to her at first?

I couldn't make a move until now, but now's our chance. All right, listen up. Follow the girl. When you get the chance, grab the sword from her!

Sure thing, boss!

So with that, Shin and Fir have popped up over in the west, by the castle. They'll work their way north and come down on to the center island, which is where we'll meet them.

Dieck's covering for Sue as the rest of the troop plays catch up.

Poison weapons make their debut as well, but they're about as effective as they always are.

I take it that, just like in every other FE game, they’re a chance for free experience for your healers as they only do one damage a turn?

Assuming they even manage to ever hit your guys.

Sending Thany to these villages on her own is not recommended, for obvious reasons. Doubly so when you stumble into them in the fog.

This is why no one likes you, Noah.

And there's contestant number one.

Fir's not too impressive, especially compared to our own units, but you still want to stay away from the business end of her Wo Dao. Dieck kills the fighter in front of her, and Noah comes by for a chat.

See, that’s even worse. I see some mercenary units that are at least sword users, but without looking at the map’s unit makeup I can say with almost complete certainty that Fir is the mission’s only enemy Myrmidon. Therefore none of those bandits can use the damned thing, and who would buy a sword that only had a mere twenty uses anyways? It doesn’t even have the flexibility a Javelin or Hand Axe’s 1-2 range gives.

It. Has. Forty. Crit. Also it’s rare and stuff. There’s always someone who buys things just because they’re rare.

But first, Lilina helps clean up a merc.

Sir Noah!? What are you doing here?

Well, I joined this army a while back... Whoa! What are you thinking!? Put away your sword!

Sir Noah! I thought you had more dignity than this!


You may be a mercenary knight...but lending your service to pirates!? You should be ashamed!


Don't play dumb! You're working with a band of pirates to attack innocent people living on this island! And you call yourself a knight!?

Um, can I have a moment? I think there's a really big misunderstanding...

Misunderstanding!? You still insist...

We're fighting to protect the villagers. We're supposed to kill the head of the pirate band making its base here. I think his name was Scott.

What? Sir Scott is the head of a pirate band!?

If you think I'm lying, why don't you ask the pirate over there? He's right behind you, hiding in the bushes.

Pirate? What pirate...

Hey! Wait!

...You didn't suspect him at all?

No! Sir Scott was very kind to me...

Really? Rumors say that he's a very cruel man...

But my mother used to say that you shouldn't judge people by how they look...

Given your father? She'd have to follow that religiously.

Well, that's true, but...

...I was lending my services to pirates... What can I do now?

Then do you want to come along with us?

What? Would it be okay?

We're always looking for more people to strengthen our army. I'll talk to Roy about it.

Thank you!

Well that was painless. Noah and Fir move back to safety, and Alan and Oujay cover the south entrance.

...And that's Clarine firing off a Torch staff instead of healing Noah.

Hey, that’s still more experience for your staff user, so it’s not totally wasted.

Torch staves are great for grinding EXP.

Contestant number two!

He's a nomad, with nomad stats. And a fucking ridiculous Aid score because of his relatively low con for a mounted unit.

Lugh fries the fighter in the way, and Sue rides up to talk to Shin.

Shin... What are you doing here?

I was looking for you.

For me?

Yes, under the chief's orders.

...What happened to the Kutolah after I escaped?

...Forgive us, my lady. We didn't stand a chance against Bern.

...We lost?


What has happened to Grandpa?

He is continuing the struggle against Bern...

I see...

I was ordered by the chief to find and take care of you.

Then will you fight alongside us?

With you?

This army is fighting against Bern, so we will be helping Grandpa. Also, this army saved my life earlier.

Understood, my lady. If that is your plan, then I am at your disposal.

Thank you, Shin.

With both characters recruited now, it's time to take the offense. Dieck, Noah, Astol, Lugh, Fir, and Saul head north to the villages and the rest of the crew head south to the southwest village.

Scott is unsurprisingly hanging out at the castle.

Why yes, that is a berserker with a Killer Axe. No, we're not going to be attacking him directly at all, why do you ask?

The FE games need to have a sound clip of someone splitting a melon just to punish/reward a player for doing stupid things exactly like that. What I know about FE games all came from LPs and even I understand the mechanics well enough to not take on Scott in melee range.

And it’s even more of an asshole in this game than in other games, what with the arbitrary +15 crit Berserkers normally get being replaced with an arbitrary +30. Seriously, Scott has 64 goddamn crit. Aw. Hail. Naw.

Longbow shenanigans bring Sue yet another level.

Dieck heads toward Scott to kill a mage, so Astol, Noah, and Shin head over to the villages.

Knocking it out of the park there, Noah.

Pretty typical Rutger level, minus the resistance.

On the low end of 'acceptable', but I'll take it.

Alan, the Great Knight class isn't in this game. Come back in FE8.

This last pirate is all that stands between us and the south village.

Similarly, these guys are the last guards at the northeast villages.

Lugh bombards a merc for a shit level, and Dieck finishes the job for a slightly better one.

They just steal from us all the time. Resistance? That's useless. They can do whatever they want because they have lots of support. We can't fight against them like the resistance force. [Got Silver Sword]

They're incredibly well-armed for a group that can't offer any resistance...

Plausible Deniability. The Bandits can’t prove they had this really valuable silver sword since they never found it, so even if this rag-tag band loses horribly, the village is only down a sword they couldn’t use anyways.

Man, pirates are weird in this game. Why can’t all pirates be more like FE9’s pirates? Yar! Yar? Yarr.

Astol beats up an archer, but Shin finishes the job. Alright levels all around.

Tank Saul will hear none of your complaints as he heals you up. I guess the magic is nice, too.

An archer pops out of the fog, but he's swiftly met with swords.

Everyone else, the workers, have gone north to the mines. They aren't even allowed to sleep there, they just work until they die... My brother, who escaped, is as thin as an old man. That day, he drew his last breath. Now that I've told you this... Can you I've said too much. Please forget all of this. We're leaving this island now. [Got Killer Bow]

That (or not rescuing either village) is the trigger for going to 10/11A. After saving either village, the other locks up, so there's no way to get the Restore Staff we missed.

Now the fun begins. For about 10 or 11 straight turns, the game just dumps three pirates onto the map, and they're very easy experience for our sword arms. See you all in about 12 turns.

Not a bad haul, all things considered, though some clearly made out better than others. *coughOujaycough* I also missed a level for Fir, but it was just speed - not a very promising start for her.

Good thing Fire Emblem doesn’t have mission rankings. I’d imagine the standard completionist FE player’s head would explode if they had to decide between farming experience for several turns or rushing ahead to get that perfect S rank.

It doesn’t have rankings as such (well, 7 does, kind of), but the later games do reward you for speed with Bonus EXP, and all the games end with a big slideshow showing how long you took for each mission, so that you can be reminded about all the turns you spent grinding supports, you terrible videogame player.

So with everyone having gotten some extra experience in their system, let's deal with Scott. This is Lilina's true purpose: note that she is doing 17 damage with a goddamn Fire tome, and there's fuck-all Scott can do about it. Given that he has a Killer Axe, I'm not risking anyone going up close and personal. Even Rutger gets a 30-odd% chance of being hit, and about a 52% chance of said hit being a critical.

Ah, the joy of a magic unit that turns out well. Able to bypass the armor of the heavy tanks this game seems to like throwing at the player, it looks like Lilina is going to be a keeper. Until the game starts throwing promoted magic users as level bosses, I suspect Artix is going to keep Lilina on his team. Even then there’s no reason he can’t use another, non-Roy physical unit to remove the magical boss and bring Lilina anyways.

The physical/magic duality is always nice, but in later missions the game seems to really like giving you bosses with high scores in both defence and resistance, regardless of class. It’s one thing to scale the numbers for difficulty, but it sometimes ends up kinda ruining the whole thing where certain classes are effective against certain other classes as a rule. In the end, it becomes more a matter of which of your units will take less damage from the enemy, since your stats end up a whole lot more varied than the enemy’s.

But you gotta be pretty beat up by now. I'll finish you off!

One particularly annoying pirate ran away to heal amidst the slaughter of all his friends, and only just now came back to fight. Alan was happy to meet him.

Finally, Lugh gets the killing blow on Scott.


Good enough for me. Let's roll.

Yes, it appears that they knew we were coming.

There must be more than meets the eye here...

Betrayal, backstabbing and completely transparent “intrigue” in an FE game?

Hm, clearing out the bandits might prove to be harder than we had expected. Ever since Bern started their conquest, things have been...different in Elibe.

I wonder what's going to happen... Dragons reappearing, Bern's sudden invasion, the Lycia Alliance collapsing... Too many things are happening all at once. Still, I guess we just have to take things as they come, one at a time.

Now... What should we do?

How about heading north along the coast?

North...towards the mines?

Right. I've heard that the Isles' people are being sent there into forced labor.

So your plan is to rescue them?

Yes. Then we might be able to find out who's behind all this.

Well, I suppose we must start somewhere.


Level 1 Myrmidon
Swords - D, Affinity - Fire

HP: 19 (75%)
Strength: 6 (25%)
Skill: 9 (50%)
Speed: 10 (55%)
Luck: 3 (50%)
Defense: 3 (15%)
Resistance: 1 (20%)
Con: 5

Fir has the unfortunate disposition of being a fantastic myrmidon that comes at L1 when we got a fantastic myrmidon six chapters ago. Her base stats are good (especially for being L1), but her failing is the same as Rutger's; namely, if that strength growth doesn't come through, she's useless, and her growth is even lower than Rutger's. Unless you really want two swordmasters (and there's nothing wrong with that ), Rutger is usually the better choice.

I want two swordmasters...

Level 5 Nomad
Bows - D, Affinity - Ice

HP: 24 (75%)
Strength: 7 (45%)
Skill: 8 (50%)
Speed: 10 (50%)
Luck: 6 (25%)
Defense: 7 (10%)
Resistance: 0 (15%)
Con: 7

Shin is, for what little worth the title has, the best archer in the game. He has slightly lower skill/speed growths than Sue, but his strength growth is much more reliable and he's a bit hardier with higher Con to boot. Just like Sue, having a horse and getting a real weapon after promotion does a lot to make him more useful than a typical archer and there are definitely less deserving units of your deployment spots.

Good to know that there are at least Bow-based units in this game that aren’t horrible. I’m far more familiar with Advanced Wars than Fire Emblem, so when I first got FE7 as a kid (which I never beat) I thought the game had just given me Artillery: relatively powerful but fragile units. Instead I got to become very familiar with the “plink” sound you get from a no-damage hit. My confidence in Fire Emblem Archers has never fully recovered.

Go play FE9 or 10. It’ll fix that problem right up.