Boy it sure does feel like I was covering the start of Book III just yesterday, doesn’t it? Glad to see Intelligent Systems isn’t slowing down with these new units.
Luckily today we just have a smaller holiday-themed banner, which makes it a quick distraction from my finals. Which, by the way, is why I’m not getting this out earlier. Had my Sensation and Perception exam at 12 p.m.
It was kind of a mess, but that’s a story for another day.
I’d much rather talk about this banner right now, as it involves my favorite Fire Emblem game! Especially since the units fill some interesting niches.
Fae — Holiday Dear
- Glittering Breath (Might = 14, Range = 1)
- During combat, boosts unit’s Defense and Resistance by the number of allies within two spaces x 2 (max bonus of +6). If foe’s range = 2, calculates damage using the lower of the foe’s Defense or Resistance.
- Luna (Cooldown = 3)
- Treats foe’s Defense and Resistance as if reduced by 50 percent during combat.
- Defense/Resistance Bond (A Skill)
- If unit is adjacent to an ally, grants Defense and Resistance +5 during combat.
- Vengeful Fighter (B Skill)
- If unit’s Health ≥ 50 percent and foe initiates combat, grants Special Attack cooldown charge +1 per unit’s attack, and unit makes a guaranteed follow-up attack (does not stack).
- Armor March (C Skill)
- At the start of the turn, if unit is adjacent to an armored ally, unit and adjacent armored allies can move one extra space (this turn only, does not stack).
Ephraim — Sparkling Gallantly
- Festive Siegmund (Might = 16, Range = 1)
- Accelerates Special Attack trigger (cooldown count -1). If unit is not adjacent to an ally, grants Attack, Speed, Defense and Resistance +4 during combat.
- Dragon Fang (Cooldown = 4)
- Boosts damage by 50 percent of unit’s Attack.
- Attack/Defense Solo (A Skill)
- If unit is not adjacent to an ally, grants Attack and Defense +6 during combat.
- Bold Fighter (B Skill)
- If unit initiates combat, grants Special Attack cooldown charge +1 per unit’s attack, and unit makes a guaranteed follow-up attack (does not stack).
- Close Guard (C Skill)
- Allies within two spaces gain: “If foe uses sword, lance, axe or dragonstone, grants Defense and Resistance +4 during combat.”
Eirika — Gentle as Snow
- Joyous Lantern (Might = 12, Range = 2)
- At start of turn, grants Defense and Resistance +5 to ally with the highest Attack for one turn (excluding this unit).
- Restore (Range = 1)
- Restores Health = 50 percent of Attack (min of 8 Health). Neutralizes ally’s penalties and negative status effects that last through ally’s next action.
- Heavenly Light (Cooldown = 2)
- When healing an ally with a staff, restores 10 Health to all allies.
- Dazzling Staff (B Skill)
- Foe cannot counterattack.
- Attack Opening (C Skill)
- At the start of the turn, grants Attack +6 to ally with the highest Attack for one turn (excluding this unit).
If I haven’t made it obvious before, I don’t celebrate Christmas. So it’s not exactly a time where I get super hyped up on holiday spirit. Thus, events in games that I play are usually my major connections to said spirit.
Everyone loves themselves some holiday variants, after all. Last year’s Christmas banner introduced a bunch of skills that changed the game by making armor units truly powerful.
This year… Not so much. But as a forever fan of the Sacred Stones I do love seeing Eirika and Ephraim. Hopefully between their appearance this Christmas, Tana and Ephraim showing up over the summer and Myrrh on Halloween we’re gearing up for new characters soon!
In terms of what the new variants bring to the table, Ephraim retains his solo warrior schtick, though it takes on an interesting light when applied to an armor unit.
Eirika stands out as being our first healing armored unit, and she’s an especially interesting support because of how she buffs your most powerful teammate.
Fae… Isn’t quite as important to me. I haven’t played the game she’s from and we already have male Grima as a green armored dragon.
So obviously two units were on my radar here, and as far as my luck has taken me so far:
I already got my boi! Plus an extra copy of Morgan, who has some nice skills to give away.
I also summoned a duplicate five-star Nanna, which is neat even if she stole Eirika’s thunder.
What makes this holiday banner particularly interesting is that it not last for a month, but we also have access to last year’s banner for the same amount of time!
But wait, that’s not all! Intelligent Systems has tripled the Christmas cheer by also starting the Tempest Trial right away:
Between Ephraim and my Lissa from last year, I’ve got this in the bag.
All the more orbs for me to use alongside these Paralogue rewards.
For the most part, this Paralogue offers a standard story with a few moments of humor that stand out decently well.
As usual the Order of Heroes has decided to take part in a yearly festival so they can bolster their supplies. But this time they have true opponents:
Fjorm and her sister Ylgr confirm that the Nifl units have not disappeared into the aether thanks to the start of Book III. I just hope they’ll make an appearance in the main story as well!
The Order first encounters a particularly bossy Fae.
Then they find Ephraim and Cecilia having an interesting conversation remarking on one another’s renown in legends. It’s similar to his conversations with Hector from the Brave banner, except this time he asks if she would be willing to instruct him in the art of magic.
To which she replies:
And totally tears him down. It’s actually kind of hilarious watching Ephraim fall apart when he’s suddenly told that there’s no hope for him learning a new fighting style.
Of course that’s all set dressing, as the Order shows up and hands them a big, steaming L.
When they retread and join the others, your squad easily beats them once more to receive all the big holiday prizes. Though I can’t imagine all of these contest holders are happy with the Order coming in and winning every single one…
But hey, turns out Nifl was fighting against you in the contest. So Ylgr gives you a bit of guilt:
Which leads to Sharena giving them all of the gifts. It’s frankly the least they can do for a nation that was completely ravaged not that long ago.
Once the Nifl princesses leave, there’s an extended portion of the epilogue where Anna finds out that Sharena still believes in this realm’s version of Santa Claus because Alfonse never told her he wasn’t real.
For a subject that might have just been a fun little aside, this gag goes on for way too long in-game.
So I’m not going to offer it near as much screen time. Play the game if you want to see more!
And with that, more virtual holidays have come and gone. This season’s bounty is truly worth the orb splurge in my opinion… Though in just a week or two we’ll be getting the New Year’s banner as well.
So hey, summon with your own discretion.
Let me know what you think of these new holiday units, and who you want to see get a seasonal alt next in the comments below!