If you’ve played Fire Emblem: Three Houses, you’ll immediately recognize many game systems in Fire Emblem Warriors: Three Hopes. Functioning as a kind of retelling of the Three Houses story, this game has players take on the role of a mercenary named Shez, who ends up joining the Officer’s Academy at Garreg Mach Monastery. As you might expect, that means you’ll need to choose one of three houses to join. Three Hopes has three different storylines or “routes” to go along with that. It’s a difficult choice to make, but we’ll help give you a little bit of guidance to start out Three Hopes.
What’s different in each route?
Each of the three routes in Three Hopes has a different story that provides a unique perspective on the war in Fodlan. Shez joining one side or another drastically changes how events play out, so a big part of choosing a route will simply come down to which characters you like the most. Also, note that every character has their own unique ability.
In every route, you’ll go through basically the same experience of improving your base camp, leveling up characters, and playing through various missions on the world map to conquer regions. However, keep in mind that the Black Eagles route is a bit longer than the other three, with almost 30 percent more event scenes. There are also two different branches to the story in each route, based on whether or not you recruit or fight Byleth.
If you’ve played Three Houses, you should think of Three Hopes the same way, with Black Eagles being the more “advanced” route, while Golden Deer and Blue Lions are the simpler ones. If you haven’t played Three Houses, however, we’ll go over the playable character you get with each house, and what they focus on. It’s also important to note that there are additional characters you’ll recruit in each route, but due to spoilers, we won’t cover those.
Golden Deer - Golden Wildfire Route
The Golden Deer are an eclectic bunch and feature more archers than any other house. Claude is the most specialized unit, of course, and he’s the only character that can fire a bow while riding a wyvern, which makes sense considering his Wyvern Master class. Here are the main units available in Golden Wildfire and the classes they specialize in and their unique abilities.
- Claude (Wyvern Master) - Dustcloud ability imbues attacks with wind.
- Lorenz (Cavalier) - Rondo of Roses ability can block enemy attacks when the gauge is full, or draw in enemies if used.
- Hilda (Brigand) - Lightning Bound ability lets you hold the attack button down to increase damage and add lightning.
- Raphael (Brawler) - Pure Brawn ability lets you charge up attacks for extra damage.
- Lysithea (Mage) - Curse Expulsion ability makes enemies explode when they’re sent flying.
- Ignatz (Archer) - Dreamer’s Paintbrush ability splatters the ground with pain. Enemies that walk in paint take elemental damage.
- Marianne (Priest) - Snowslip ability automatically rains ice attacks down when you achieve 300 hits.
- Leonie (Cavalier) - Careful Study attacks increases the normal attack count by double.
Blue Lions - Azure Gleam Route
The Blue Lions focus almost exclusively on physical attackers and have very few characters that specialize in magic or bows. Dimitri has the High Lord class which has some of the highest sheer damage output in the game and a powerful ranged lance throw for its strong attack. Here are the students of the Blue Lions.
- Dimitri (High Lord) - Azure Lightning ability imbues attacks with lightning.
- Dedue (Armored Knight) - Demolisher ability lets you hold down the attack button to perform blast attacks on impact that hit a small area.
- Felix (Mercenary) - Intense Velocity ability lets you dodge in the middle of an attack, then increasing your speed.
- Mercedes (Priest) - Radiant Love ability gradually restores HP and fills the gauge. When the gauge is full you can unleash an attack that damages enemies and heals allies.
- Ashe (Archer) - Wind Stance ability lets Ashe target the ground and create a damaging zone of wind.
- Annete (Mage) - Courageous Aria ability slowly filled ability gauge when attacking. When full you can use a move that buff yourself and nearby allies.
- Sylvain (Cavalier) - Gordian Strike ability increases attack range and damage proportionately when above 300 hits.
- Ingrid (Pegasus Knight) - Icy Plunge ability make enemies explode and deal ice damage when sent flying.
Black Eagles - Scarlet Blaze Route
The Black Eagles have the strongest magic users in the game and a big focus on ranged attacks. Edelgard is one of the best defensive units in the game with her Armored Lord class, making her an extremely efficient tank during battles. Here are the students of the Black Eagles.
- Edelgard (Armored Lord) - Solar Prominence ability imbues attacks with fire.
- Hubert (Mage) - Dark Conjuration ability has a low chance of impaling enemies with dark spikes. Press the ability button to make the spikes explode.
- Dorothea (Mage) - Prismatic Resonance ability makes musical notes spawn on the battlefield. Attacking the notes sends out a shockwave.
- Ferdinand (Cavalier) - Maximum Ambulation grants an increase in speed proportionate to the hit count when over 300 hits.
- Bernadetta (Archer) - Using the ability button spawns a zone of ice that increases critical hit rage.
- Caspar (Brigand) - One for the Books ability lets you hold the attack button to charge, which increases attack range and damage dealt.
- Petra (Thief) - Windstorm ability slightly increases dodge instances. Dodges inflict ver small wind damage.
- Linhardt (Mage) - Easy Breezy ability spawn two wind orbs when you complete a final regular attack. These orbs attack a small range on their own.
Fire Emblem Warriors: Three Hopes is currently available for Nintendo Switch.