Game of Thrones may have ended but another fantasy war has just begun in Fire Emblem: Three Houses, out now exclusively for the Nintendo Switch.
In Three Houses you play as either a male or female protagonist named Byleth. You’re invited to teach at the Officers Academy, and must choose between one of three powerful factions: the Black Eagles, Blue Lions, and Golden Deer, comprised of eager students, young warriors, and budding tacticians.
The gameplay is divided between mentoring, teaching, and socializing at the academy to improve your students’ stats, skills, and synergy, and the classic Fire Emblem turn-based tactical strategy that takes place on a battlefield grid.
At a certain point the story jumps ahead five years and former friends at the academy now find themselves on opposite ends of the battlefield, dictated by the house faction and choices you ended up making.
Nintendo has released two launch trailers showcasing teaching (above) and battling (below).
The Fire Emblem series has been around since the 90s but didn’t appear in the US until the early 2000s, and didn’t gain prominence until 2013’s Fire Emblem: Awakening on the Nintendo 3DS, which also helped revitalize the flagging series and added more social components to the gameplay. The strategy games have not had a home console release since 2007’s Fire Emblem: Radiant Dawn.
The last Fire Emblem release, Shadows of Valentia (2017), was a remake of the second ever Fire Emblem game, Fire Emblem Gaiden (1992). Three Houses is the first original Fire Emblem game since 2015’s dual release of Fire Emblem Fates: Conquest and Birthright.
Fire Emblem: Three Houses is available on Switch. It’s rated T for Teen with Blood, Suggestive Themes, and Violence.