There's a chance that the Fire Emblem franchise means nothing to you. You may have heard about your friends playing it on NES or Game Boy Advance, but just never bothered to try it yourself. Back then, you had a reason: they seemed super hard, crazy niche, and difficult to get into. Thanks to Fire Emblem: Awakening, you no longer have that excuse. While the strategy RPG maintains the same level of complexity as past games, it's accessible enough for anyone to jump into - and by Chrom’s chiselled shoulders, you absolutely should.
Your mind will be tested on the battlefield, as you edge troops into position and outmanoeuvre opponents. The ability to link together characters for dual attacks raises the strategic bar even higher. These links can be taken further, into marriage, and even parenting, which helps bolster the already engaging story. Awakening is almost humbling in sweep, taking you on a journey that spans entire generations.
The sequel, Fire Emblem: Fates, is out now. It continues the series trend of being deeply tactical and wholly essential, but it’s a more intimidating prospect thanks to the complex choice of stories and expansions. If you’re new to the series, Awakening is the place to start, and you can race through safe in the knowledge that more amazing Fire Emblem games yet await you.