© 1996 Nintendo / KSS
Fire Emblem is based on a series of video games, released in Japan for the Famicom and Super Famicom (the Japanese versions of the Nintendo and Super Nintendo) game systems. However, none of the games have been released in North America, so I doubt very many people will be able to identify with this anime.
What first struck me as I started watching, was the vivid coloring the art had. Everything is very bright and crisp, but almost to the point of being overdone. Probably the oddest side-effect of this, was that it made the characters hair look like plastic. Granted, some of the scenes were rather moody, and the art was pretty good. But plastic hair? Um, okay.
Once I got to the story, I immediately began thinking, "This is *exactly* like The Heroic Legend of Arislan." The story certainly follows Arislan's formula pretty closely. The young prince, Mars, has to leave home to raise an army to defend his homeland while accompanied by his friends. The characters themselves were somewhat engaging, albeit a little on the unoriginal side. There's also a lot of medieval-style action, although it's surprisingly bloodless. Even though bodies are dropping left, right and center (it *is* about war, after all), there is only one brief scene with any blood in it.
However, just like The Herioc Legend of Arislan, this anime is incomplete. Mars leaves his homeland, battles some bandits, and... that's it? It's obviously based on only part of one of the games because there was definitely a larger story present. But numerous plot elements aren't explained, some characters seem to have no real purpose, and there's absolutely no resolution. The end result is a rather unfulfilling experience.
If you're looking for some realistic medieval action, then I'd recommend The Heroic Legend of Arislan, instead. If Fire Emblem had a more complete story, then it could have been good. Unfortunately, it's a mediocre title at best.
The Verdict: * * 1/2 (below average)
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