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The Girl Who Died

Robert Bevill | 9 Aug 2013 15:59
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Later in the game, I reached Paralogue 16, the Manor of Lost Souls, where I was tasked to rescue Nowi's daughter, Nah, from a prison full of the undead. I had no plans to use Nah, and the level was optional in order to progress, but the loot and experience I would obtain was too great to pass up. However, Paralogue 16 proved to be one of the most frustrating chapters in the game. Walls would crumble and rebuild themselves without warning, leaving my army exposed to attacks that were impossible to see coming. With each reset I would learn more about the dungeon, only to be blindsided by a new trap or ambush.

My finger hovered over the power button to turn the system off and try again, but I stopped.

After several nights of frustration, I thought I had the level all figured out. I was sure that my strategy was flawless, and figured that if I could survive a particular swarm of enemies, the rest of the chapter would be easy. As part of my defenses, I placed Virion and Maribelle together at a choke point where only a single enemy could attack each of them at a time. Even if Maribelle were to take a hit, she would survive. When the time came to put the plan in motion, I was blindsided by the game once again. When Maribelle was attacked, Virion shot an extra arrow, finishing the enemy off. Another enemy took the place of his fallen comrade and shot Maribelle with an arrow of his own, ending her life.

When I saw this turn of events, I yelled in frustration. Once again, I had failed to keep everyone alive, and the thought of playing this level again even after I had figured everything out angered me to no end. My finger hovered over the power button to turn the system off and try again, but I stopped. I considered how much Maribelle was worth to my team. She had no husband and few friends, so there were few bonuses she gained from fighting alongside them. Her offensive magic paled in comparison to my front line fighters. Her healing abilities were her greatest asset, but she was far from the only warrior patching up wounds. I decided to let her die.

Just as I had suspected, once the wave of enemies had fallen, the rest of the level was easy. I looted the rest of the treasure and finished off the remaining enemies, ending the nightmare chapter once and for all. The experience my team gained prepared them for the next storyline battle. But I had a problem: for the first time in the entire game, I was down a party member.

I decided that the best replacement for Maribelle wound be Anna, a cute red-haired trickster who was a recurring character in the Fire Emblem series. Anna was considerably weaker than Maribelle, but with a little level grinding and a magic sword, she filled the spot quite well. Unfortunately, Anna's skillset made my assassin, Gaius, redundant. I reworked a good chunk of my team in order to accommodate for Maribelle's absence. After changing classes and reequipping a few team members, I was ready to continue on with the story.

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