Fire Emblem: Shadow Dragon Image
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81

Generally favorable reviews - based on 42 Critic Reviews What's this?

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7.1

Mixed or average reviews- based on 138 Ratings

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  • Summary: Fire Emblem returns to its roots with a total overhaul of an NES classic never before released in America. New features include touch-screen controls, multiple save options and easy-to-follow tutorial chapters that shed new light on Marth's story. New players can jump into the action, evenFire Emblem returns to its roots with a total overhaul of an NES classic never before released in America. New features include touch-screen controls, multiple save options and easy-to-follow tutorial chapters that shed new light on Marth's story. New players can jump into the action, even if they've never played a Fire Emblem game before. Medeus, the king of the dragonkin, has been revived and is forming an alliance with a fearsome sorcerer named Gharnef. Together, they threaten to the throw the entire continent of Archanea back to an age of chaos and war. Now, it's up to young Prince Marth and his small band of loyal followers to rise up and rally all those left in the land to make one last desperate push to free Archanea from the tyranny of the Shadow Dragon. How to progress through the game: Fire Emblem: Shadow Dragon is a turn-based strategy game with a fantasy setting. Players alternate turns with opponents, moving their pieces (units) and attacking enemy units on the battlefield. There are dozens of units and different weapons and magic spells, each with its own strategic benefits-high-flying Pegasus knights move effortlessly over varied terrain, fast-moving mounted cavaliers can use swords and lances, unarmed curates use healing staves to mend the wounds of other units and so on. [Nintendo] Expand
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Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 37 out of 42
  2. Negative: 0 out of 42
  1. Fire Emblem's DS debut has been a long time coming but it's unquestionably worth the wait. Shadow Dragon provides astonishingly compulsive turn-based action.
  2. Fire Emblem: Shadow Dragon debuts on Nintendo DS with a classic chapter adapted to these times. The deeply interesting story of the game with many characters to recruit and different strategies for the victories offers a unique experience. The most important feature is the online mode, simple but correct in its way. This is one of the best games to come out this year for Nintendo DS.
  3. While not revolutionary by today's standards, it is easy to understand why the original was groundbreaking in its day.
  4. Part of what has made Fire Emblem such a beloved series is the emotional attachment the player makes to the characters, and unfortunately, this is largely missing in Fire Emblem: Shadow Dragon. Shadow Dragon is not a bad game; heck, its a very good game. It’s a great buy for fans of the series or the genre. It’s just missing that charm that earlier games in the series had, at least for me.
  5. Fire Emblem: Shadow Dragon continues the series' trademark strategic gameplay, this time on the Nintendo DS. If you're a sucker for the combination of strategy and roleplaying elements, this game will let you burn countless hours on your DS. Upgrading your units and making sure they survive is very addictive and fun, and the intuitive online mode is a great bonus. This is not an easy game though and not for the casual player, but for all of you strategy nuts out there, this is one great buy.
  6. 80
    Fire Emblem: Shadow Dragon could be played by someone new to the series quite easily thanks to its many refinements and the tutorial contained within the Prologue chapters. Veterans of the series will find a game that combines the refinements of more recent entries, save for a lack of variety in battle objectives.
  7. 60
    Fans of the series will be quick to pick this one up and will likely get much enjoyment. New players might find more to love in the newer games in the series. Either way, Shadow Dragon is a good move for tactical strategy gamers.

See all 42 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 14 out of 34
  2. Negative: 7 out of 34
  1. hondo
    Feb 21, 2009
    10
    Amazing game, pivotal game elements of characters dying makes it truly feel like a war game, they don't just faint or some crap, if youAmazing game, pivotal game elements of characters dying makes it truly feel like a war game, they don't just faint or some crap, if you let your guys die, they DIE, so suit them up with what you need, and play smart, or you'll lose your characters, which the game does a brilliant job of getting you attached to. Expand
  2. KevinQ
    Feb 16, 2009
    10
    It's a wonderful remake of a series that Nintendo seems to be neglecting handheld wise. Can you believe that this is the first DS Fire It's a wonderful remake of a series that Nintendo seems to be neglecting handheld wise. Can you believe that this is the first DS Fire Emblem game?! It's unconceivable how little attention Nintendo gives this series. Anyways, this is a good remake of the very first Fire Emblem game. It tells the story of Marth, which I'm sure everyone recognizes from the Smash Bros series. The story could be better, and the permanent loss of characters maybe be hard at first, but it brings a new level of strategy to it. Buy this game, and you won't be disappointed. Expand
  3. PhilG
    Mar 21, 2009
    9
    Challenging, and a bit cluttered at times with a few too many details (I could have done without weapon forging especially when said weapons Challenging, and a bit cluttered at times with a few too many details (I could have done without weapon forging especially when said weapons break a lot) and lacks a little on the story side. That being said, it is a very strong entry in the series and the best handheld tactics game to pick up on the DS. Addictive, challenging, and very rewarding when you discover new ways to beat levels. And (thank god) Nintendo decided to LEAVE THE BUTTON CONTROLS ALONE unlike LoZ: PH on the DS so you can use touch screen or buttons. Only other gripe is an undo feature would be nice (not to prevent characters dying, but if you move someone in the wrong spot or something) but I can see why it's not in there (don't want you screwing around until you find the best outcome). Expand
  4. Mar 4, 2017
    7
    It's really funny to say "it's the worst Fire Emblem game (probably)" when the game's really functional, and decently fun.

    I don't think I
    It's really funny to say "it's the worst Fire Emblem game (probably)" when the game's really functional, and decently fun.

    I don't think I need to retell you the plot or facts about this game. They're pretty standard, and you could just search Wikipedia for a synopsis on it.

    And that's just it: The game's really standard. It's good, it works, it plays well, and it's a bit difficult at times. But as a Fire Emblem game, you could find any other English one and enjoy it a lot more.

    What's missing in it is exactly what should be missing in the first Fire Emblem game: interesting characters, and a memorable plot.

    I guess as an aside for you, the reader: This was the first Fire Emblem I ever played. I got into the series because I am a massive Advance Wars fan, and found a copy of this for cheap. I fell in love with the game, but then started playing others and quickly discovered how good the Fire Emblem series can actually be.

    The characters seemed bland and uninteresting, known more-so as, "that really awesome horse archer guy!" rather than "that guy with a really interesting backstory" or something. Marth doesn't really get much in terms of character progression, and I can't think of one person who actually had a personality.

    Don't get me wrong: you'll get attached to characters, but it'll be for functional reasons than character reasons. Sedgar and Wolf are generally known as really good units in the game, despite not following the 'pre-promotes can't be good' rule (following in Shinon's footsteps). However, excluding the end credits and death scene, they do not talk and do not interact with anybody.

    Say what you will about Virion from Awakening, at least he had a personality (albeit trash, bottom-tier personality).

    The plot's functional, but it's not particularly unique. You travel from point to point, fighting enemies. There's a bit of a cutscene explaining why you're here and who you're fighting, but not much else. It's almost feels like the developers made a whole bunch of levels, and then strung them together with the cutscenes and increasing enemy difficulty.

    You do get the reclass your units for free, allowing to change up how a certain character works, but

    Lastly, if you were introduced to Fire Emblem through Awakening, do note that units permanently die, so get ready to either lose some of your best units, or restart levels a bunch of times.

    In conclusion, if you like Fire Emblem, you'll probably enjoy this, because it's scientifically Fire Emblem in its purest form. However, if you're looking for a better Fire Emblem than one you've played before, steer clear.
    Expand
  5. Jun 10, 2015
    6
    This is perhaps the weakest entry in the Fire Emblem franchise. Although its game play and story are on-par for the franchise, they are notThis is perhaps the weakest entry in the Fire Emblem franchise. Although its game play and story are on-par for the franchise, they are not enough to save it from its horrendous art-style. Expand
  6. Jan 22, 2020
    5
    A lazy attempt at cashing in on nostalgia with little improvement on the graphics and mechanics
  7. TeodorIkonomov
    Jan 27, 2009
    1
    The Best Game Ever

See all 34 User Reviews

Awards & Rankings

19
8
#8 Most Discussed DS Game of 2009
5
#5 Most Shared DS Game of 2009