Those descendants of the Hero-King were marked with a Brand of the Exalt to show the holy bloodline they inherited from Naga: King of the Divine Dragons who created those legendary blades in her ultimate benevolence toward humans.
Despite lacking the power to create, many consider Naga the world’s creation deity.
Naga’s history in Fire Emblem lore ties back to one idea: Killing malevolent dragons.
Her skill set as the first Astra Mythic Hero in Fire Emblem Heroes reflects this idea perfectly.
She flies in (reminiscent of her appearance in Fire Emblem Awakening) and grants every adjacent ally effectiveness against dragon foes. For each ally with that descriptor she receives a boost to all of her stats.
That’s her entire gimmick. It’s an interesting and likely effective one, but narrowly focused toward players who actively seek competitive online matches.
Though to be fair her A Skill refers specifically to Aether Raids, so she’s obviously meant to appear in online modes of battle.
I happen to not be very focused on the Player-versus-Player aspects of Heroes, so Naga is more interesting to me on account of her lore than her battle prowess.
Yet she comes with a good enough entourage — particularly on blue stones — for me to like her banner quite a bit:
In the age of the ancients, two sibling Gods shared a near unbreakable bond.
However, a disagreement at the core of their ideologies led to a schism. The sister aimed to create a world rich with blessings of the Earth, peace and pleasure. The brother felt strength was all that mattered, and wanted a world full of powerful subjects.
To the south of the continent Valentia, the sister founded a kingdom called Zofia: Rich with live. A kingdom which, in its overindulgence after her disappearance, became rife with greedy, entitled rulers and passive farmers who struggled as the lands died.
To the north, the brother founded a kingdom called Rigel: Cold, calloused and infertile. A kingdom which, fallen into the trappings of power, became militarized and unkind. His power gave way to madness, and the pious subjects of that fallen deity sought to conquer all.
This is the tale of Mila and Duma, a story underlying the plot thrusts for both Alm and Celica in Fire Emblem: Gaiden (and its recent remake, Echoes: Shadows of Valentia).
Now in Heroes, you too can summon yourself an endlessly powerful god of war, fallen from grace, who also happens to be an inexplicably handsome daddy that transforms into a dragon monster with wacky eyes.
Grants Attack +3. At the start of combat, if foe’s Health < 100 percent, grants Attack and Resistance +6 during combat and foe cannot make a follow-up attack. If foe’s Range = 2, calculates damage using the lower defensive stat.
Draconic Aura (Cooldown = 3)
Boosts damage by 30 percent of unit’s Attack.
Defense/Resistance Solo (A Skill)
If unit is not adjacent to an ally, grants Defense and Resistance +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).
Upheaval (C Skill)
At the start of turn 1, deals seven damage to all foes, and if defending in Aether Raids during anima season, destroys offensive structures within the same column (does not affect indestructable structures).
So I heard a rumor that every Mythic Hero was going to be some kind of deity in the Fire Emblem canon.
If that’s the case, I think I might try to provide some deep lore diving into each whenever a Mythic Hero banner comes along.
Even though the top of this banner technically says he’s a Legendary Hero?
But whatever. Semantics.
Let’s talk about Duma, shall we?
As our second colorless dragon and fourth armored dragon, Duma has a strong legacy to live up to.
The guy’s gimmick ties back to his Upheaval, which damages all enemies right away. Once they’re damaged, he gains an Attack and Resistance buff. Then if he’s alone, he instantly gains more Defense and Resistance.
Add all that to the increased chance of a powerful Special Attack and you have yourself a hard-hitting tank who faces no weakness on the weapon triangle.
… Just weaknesses from dragon-killing weapons like the Falchion or armor-killing weapons like Armorslayers.
Also he loses a good chunk of that benefit to his stats should the opposing team have a healer.
But hey, he blows up buildings in Aether Raids!
So all-and-all, I’d say he’s got some well-balanced benefits and detriments.
His overall status also increases due to great synergy with other armored dragons like Grima, Tiki and Myrrh. So he’s easily worth a summon for powerful team building.
In fact, that Legendary Tiki he melds so well with is also on this banner. She’s alongside:
Unlike a lot of the other Legendary Hero banners, Duma’s entourage splits equally for me.
I have every green and red unit besides Laegjarn.
Yet I don’t have a single one of the blue or colorless units.
So my targets are narrowed, particularly focused on Duma and Tiki.
If any of you remember my Legendary Tiki banner review, you’d know I was super into her. A powerful alt for one of my favorite characters who eluded me all those months ago, and I’ve been waiting for her to rear her head again.
Hopefully I can summon her and the God of Strength, which would give me a perfect foursome of armored dragons.
Unfortunately those aspirations cost orbs.
… And I wasted a whole bunch of orbs on the hot springs banner, only to get a stupid regular Elise instead of Sakura.
So I turn to the Duma Battle Map to get my orbs stash up:
I never have anything particularly interesting to say about these things, other than the fact that they’re cool references to stages like the final map of Echoes here. So I’ll mostly make them quick asides from now on.
Especially since my time is better spent gathering orbs to feed my addiction.
Or to be honest, playing a certain other game which received a new character today.
So there we have it, my thoughts on the Duma banner.
I know this whole post was a bit more scatterbrained than usual for my formulaic FEH pieces, but hopefully it was all worth my attempts to shake things up a little. All things being said, I was actually more excited for Duma here than I was for the hot springs units last week.
Let me know what you think of Duma in the comments below, and weigh in on whether you think we’ll get his sister Mila as our next Mythic Hero or not.
Personally I’m betting Intelligent Systems will keep us waiting.
Just like they’ll keep us waiting for more regular Valentia units.
The Tempest Trials have returned in Fire Emblem Heroes, and this time they’re based in the land of Valentia, home of Fire Emblem Gaiden and its remake Fire Emblem Echoes.
Unlike the last Tempest Trials, this one comes with a little less pomp and circumstance. While the Ylisse-themed trials had an extra paralogue series aimed at explaining how the entire calamitous event began, this one simply comes with a small conversation introducing it to a new world:
It wasn’t much, but I did find it interesting to note that Masked Lucina continues to be the bridge for Tempest Trials appearances. Given her initial appearances and overall role in Awakening, when she served as a warning for the coming apocalypse by the Fell Dragon Grima and aimed to stop its rise, it makes a lot of sense.
It’s also pretty cool from a lore perspective, I would say. Gives the chance for these events to tie together and be more engaging as they go along and hit more worlds.
First and foremost, the major difference between this version of the Tempest Trials and the last version is the locale. Instead of the battles taking place on maps from Fire Emblem Awakening, they take place on the maps from Fire Emblem Echoes.
In the most difficult Lunatic-level run, the first three battles take place on maps from Alm’s in-game route (featured in the “World of Shadows” Paralogue) and the second three battles take place on maps from Celica’s in-game route (featured in the “Rite of Shadows” main story chapter).
The final battle takes place in the ritual sacrifice room underneath Duma Tower where you have your final bout with Berkut in Echoes. I won’t spoil anything here, but the fight has some emotional repercussions in the games story, so having that map as a background is pretty awesome.
One of the coolest things about this map is that it continues the tradition in Fire Emblem Heroes of using the origin map’s music to accompany the fight. While Alm’s maps use the battle music from Chapters 1 and 3 from Echoes and Celica’s maps use the battle music from Chapters 2 and 3 from Echoes, the final fight in the ritual sacrifice room uses the music from Chapter 5 where the in-game battle takes place.
It’s both fitting and brings up good memories from that part of the game. All and all a nice touch.
Plus, Celica is the big contender to deal with rather than Veronica, which is phenomenal considering how hard it was to get past her.
The next change regards differences in the missions that have been added to correspond with the event:
Now, instead of there being a larger reward for completing runs in the trials over the course of the two weeks, the reward missions for completing runs are going to recycle every day and come with smaller prerequisites. Completing the run once, twice or three times rather than 15 times in a more long-term format.
The rewards for these daily missions will also be doubled once the event is halfway done, starting on July 14th. At the very least, this makes aiming for the stamina bottle way more worthwhile, as each of them provides enough energy to accommodate about 5 runs at the Trials on their own.
To accompany this new mission system also comes changes to the format of battles and the multi-team selection mechanic as you progress through battles.
The update log specifies two proprietary changes in this field:
First, the scores you can receive in normal and hard difficulty runs have been increased. This is good for people who are new to the game at least, as it makes it easier to rack up points when you don’t have that many good units to cycle through. However, I only attempt the hardest difficulty so I can earn as many points as possible even with losses, so it doesn’t affect me that much.
Second, the more significant and honestly much needed change, comes into play as battles progress.
Inevitably, your units will begin to burn out the further into the challenge you get. Health and death are not restored when you move from one battle to the next, so even the strongest of teams can get worn down. This fact hasn’t changed, but what happens when you move from one team to the next has.
During the last Tempest Trials, when you began with a second team, the opponents on whatever battle you’re fighting were restored to full capacity with just a small health deficit.
Now the opponent’s team receives the same treatment yours does. Whoever you kill before your team loses stays dead and all the damage you cause carries on.
Finishing the final battle against Veronica in the last Trials was frankly a nightmare. Even if you got close to winning and lost, all of your work would be undone when you started with the next team. It meant you had to be nearly perfect to make it to the end and follow-through for a victory.
My teams were less than perfect, so I had to work up to the higher-tiered rewards by racking up as many points from loses as I could.
The fact that you can wear down your opponent’s team is frankly a godsend. I’ve already won more times in one day than I did in the entirety of the other event’s two week runtime.
It makes everything feel faster and more engaging to play, which fixes my major complaint of getting burned out on Tempest Trials runs far too quickly the last time it came around.
The last major change to discuss are the rewards to shoot for.
In Fire Emblem Heroes, sacred seals allow heroes to have an extra skill to utilize for building battle strategies. However, you can’t have more than one of each kind of seal, so it would be useless to provide the same rewards a second time around.
Thus, there are two new sacred seals and a brand new hero to aim for:
The lower-level seal at 20,000 points is a +1 Resistance buff. The higher-level seal, pictured above at 40,000 points, is Phantom Speed 1. This seal automatically adds 5 points to your unit’s speed stat whenever a skill activates that compares your unit’s speed to another unit’s speed.
The character reward this time around is Tobin, one of Ram Village’s children and childhood friend of Alm. Arguably one of my favorite villagers too… Though I’m not sure I fully understand his designation as “The Clueless One.” If anything, I remember him being more of a confidant and advisor to Alm.
That’s beside the point, however.
Compared to the last character reward, Masked Lucina, Tobin looks to be a little underwhelming. Lucina was a completely blank slate that allowed for complete customization of skills through inheritance, which was an interesting prospect. Tobin, however, comes prepackaged with an Armorslayer+ and the skills Pivot, Attack +3 and Seal Speed 3.
While I give the game some points considering I made my Tobin a mercenary during my playthrough of Echoes, meaning I appreciate the idea of him holding a sword (even if it isn’t my personal token Levin Sword that slaughtered fools), these skills don’t seem fantastic or make him standout particularly well.
Hopefully I’m proven wrong by a good stat distribution, but I suppose I’ll find that out once I unlock him. He has attachment value at least, so I’ll be happy to get him for that if nothing else.
Besides the two additional summoning focuses corresponding with the Tempest Trials and with the Alm & Celica special battle, that just about sums everything up in regards to the new event.
I’m building up my orb surplus after splurging to get Eldigan after all, so I probably won’t be spending any on those. Even if the second chance at getting Genny, my favorite Echoes unit, is appealing.
How do you feel about this second Tempest Trials? Do you appreciate the changes to the format as much as I do? Or would you have liked to see more done?
Personally, I’m pretty happy with the changes. Between getting through a number of updates in Duel Links coming down the pipeline, I’ll gladly be working my way up to that 5 star Tobin.