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Fire Emblem: Radiant Dawn
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Fire Emblem: Radiant Dawn, known in Japan as Fire Emblem: The Goddess of Dawn (ファイアーエムブレム 暁の女神, Faiā Emuburemu: Akatsuki no Megami) is the only game in the Fire Emblem series to be for the Wii. It is a direct sequel to Fire Emblem: Path of Radiance, taking three years later. It was announced at at E3 2006 on May 9. It was released in Japan on February 22, 2007, in the United States on November 5, 2007, in Europe on March 14, 2008, and in Australia on April 10, 2008.
The game is split into four different parts, each focusing on how a different place is three years after the events of Fire Emblem: Path of Radiance. Part I deals with Daein gaining independence from Begnion after they lost independence after losing the Mad King's War. Part II is about Crimea and the new queen, Elincia. Ike reappears at the end of Part II and is then hired for the war starting in Part III. Part IV is the trip to Sienne and the endgame.
|SPOILERS! This section contains key plot or ending details. Read at your own risk!|
Fire Emblem: Radiant Dawn is divided into four parts, each dealing with a different faction of Tellius. Some characters from earlier parts are usable in later parts, and all are available by the last part.
Part I: Silver-Haired Maiden
The game begins in occupied Daein, three years after the fall of Mad King Ashnard in the previous game. After Crimea, victor of the Mad King's War, yielded the right to rule Daein to its suzerain, the Begnion empire, the empire's forces sent all of Daein's men of fighting age to internment camps, intent on utterly destroying Daein as a country. A small resistance force, known as the Dawn Brigade, formed as a response, in order to combat Begnion's occupational army. The brigade is lead by Nolan, a seasoned Fighter, and Micaiah, a young girl possessed of prophet-like powers, backed by her dearest friend Sothe, a young but deadly Rogue who had fought with Ike in the Mad King's War. It is through Micaiah's unexplained gift of foresight that she is able to keep the brigade safe from Begnion's relentless pursuit. In the process, the Dawn Brigade gains the popular support of Daein's crushed citizenry, as well as gaining the support of the merchant convoy which supplied the Greil Mercenaries during the war, and a mysterious young boy travelling with them named Kurth.
Despite their successes, however, the brigade is fighting a more-or-less hopeless struggle. That is, until they are called to unite with another resistance force, led by a previously unknown heir of the late king Ashnard, the decidedly less mad prince Pelleas. Pelleas himself did not know of his heritage until a wandering wise-man once in service of the Daein king, Izuka discovered him and set him on the path to retake the throne. In the process, Pelleas was united with his lost mother, Lady Almedha, who overbears on him, along with General Tauroneo, Swordmaster Zihark, and Wyvern Knight Jill as his retainers. When the Dawn Brigade finally meets up with this force in the eastern deserts, they unite and begin the first real plans to free Daein from the occupational army.
In the process, they also meet up with two separate bands of laguz. The first are a company of two Wolf laguz, hailing from a country unknown to the people of Tellius up to this point, and a third surviving Heron prince, Rafiel, who had inexplicably been found by the wolves after the Serenes Massacre. This group allies with the Dawn Brigade after Micaiah and Rafiel see into each-others' hearts. The second group of laguz appears during the resistance's push to reclaim Daein, consisting of the Tiger Muarim, the Raven Vika, and the beorc Mage Tormod. They had arrived on the scene as a reconnaissance force for Begnion's apostle Sanaki, who did not approve of the occupation.
Izuka, seeing himself still as the true leader of Daein's resistance, begins to show his depravity after the Dawn Brigade joins their ranks. With every major battle, he sees fit to suggest vile tactics, such as poisoning the water supplies which the occupational troops, and their prisoners, rely on. Every time, he is overruled by Micaiah, which causes him to grow very jealous and frustrated. At one point, after Muarim's group convenes with the resistance, Izuka, in secret, slips Muarim a drug that begins to transform him into a Feral One. It is only through Rafiel's Galdr of Rebirth that Muarim is spared from this horrible fate. At that point, all remaining trust in Izuka is lost among the Dawn Brigade, but due to his continued hold over the prince and the resistance, they cannot excise him. They simply agree to continue the fight and liberate Daein as quickly as possible.
With the help of Micaiah's prophetic visions, the resistance wins battle after battle, and are soon on the march back to the capitol of Daein, Nevassa. Just at the moment when they begin their march, it is also revealed that Begnion's empress Sanaki has taken notice of the atrocities committed in Daein, and has ordered all of Begnions remaining troops there to stand down. This angers Begnion's senators, who were largely responsible for the occupation and its cruelty. Still in lieu of the edict, they abandon the remaining occupational forces to their fate, causing its leader, General Jarod, betrayed and bemused. Time and again he had failed to stop the Dawn Brigade, and now all hope of him making it out alive is lost. He decides that, even if he is to go down, he ought to at least exact his revenge on Micaiah by taking her head. One night outside the resistance camp, Micaiah is called to rest by herself in a grove. There, she is completely surrounded by Jarod's forces. Just as they close in to do the deed, a towering figure warps in to defend her. This figure is none other than the Black Knight, Ashnard's deadliest general, and presumed slain by Ike's hand during the war. With the sheer power of his bladework, the Black Knight defeats Jarod's entire strike team single-handed, saving Micaiah in the process. Upon the death of Jarod's loyal retainer, Micaiah calls the Black Knight to stay his hand against slaying him as well, in order to allow Jarod to bury his lost comrade, and face the apostle's judgement. This allows Jarod, in turn, to launch one last act of spiteful violence by turning Nevassa's defenses inward on the city itself, terrorizing its helpless populace.
Seeing this, prince Pelleas, having felt completely impotent as a ruler up to this point, finally finds the strength to rally his soldiers and retake the capitol. Unwilling to wait for Begnion's answer while Nevassa is destroyed, the resistance marches into the city and retakes it by force, slaying Jarod and the remaining occupational forces in the process. This done, Daein is finally freed, and Pelleas is crowned as King of Daein, signing an official declaration with Begnion to recognize Daein as a free country once more. However, both the Black Knight and Izuka disappear after the coronation without a trace. This leaves Micaiah to continue operating as General of Daein's forces until the country is rebuilt. In the meantime, the merchant convoy, along with Kurth, the wolves and Rafiel, finally having safe passage through Daein, head out through Crimea and ultimately to Gallia.
Part II: Of Countries and Kings
This relatively short act begins in Crimea, still in the process of rebuilding after the Mad King's War had torn the land asunder. Once word reaches Crimea that Daein has been repatriated, the noble classes begin to fret at the possibility that Daein may reinvade. Seeing their still new Queen Elincia as inexperienced, they begin to press her relentlessly about the issue, which forces her, after a particularly grueling council session, to seek solace in the skies on her pegasus near the edge of her country. There she is found by one of Crimea's royal knights, the Falcon Knight Marcia, who came to cheer her up. However, they both then spot the Heron princess Leanne and her bodyguard, the Raven Nealuchi, pursued relentlessly into Crimean skies by a greedy unit of Begnion's wyvern knights, intent on selling them to the senators for profit. Without revealing her identity as queen, Elincia and Marcia step in to save the two laguz. In the process, they recruit Haar, who just so happened to have been carrying cargo through the area at the time.
In the meantime, word is spreading throughout Crimea's backcountry of a rebel insurgency, led by one of the counts. After battling through a battalion of recruit soldiers, countryfolk and ex-soldiers Nephenee and Brom relay word to Elincia about the uprising, believing Count Ludveck to be responsible. To settle matters and gain evidence of this treason, Elincia sends her retainers, which includes Swordmaster Lucia and the two laguz emissaries Lethe and Mordecai to Ludveck's county of Felirae. There, they manage to uncover the documents which prove Ludveck's coup, but are nearly captured by his soldiers in the process. At word of their escape, Ludveck orders the rebellion to begin, forming an army not far off from Melior. To answer this, Elincia sends her royal knights, led by Paladin Geoffrey to quell the resistance as quickly as possible. Upon arriving, however, they find the rebel army is severely undermanned and untrained. In actuality, they were merely an unwitting diversion while Ludveck's main force marched on Elincia's backup stronghold. In the process, Ludveck also managed to capture Lucia during further reconnaissance, taking her as a hostage.
As Ludveck's forces begin to overtake the stronghold, Elincia battles them directly, along with scant few retainers, including Haar, the SageCalill, the Halberdier Danved and her laguz allies. Just as all hope of holding the fort seem lost, the Crimean Royal Knights manage to return in time to help rout the invading force. Ludveck is then captured and held as prisoner to await his sentence for treason. Here, he plays his final trump card, and brings Lucia out with the remainder of his troops, threatening to execute her if Elincia does not relinquish the throne to him. Despite the threat of losing her dearest friend and retainer, Elincia stands firm, refusing to let Ludveck go. She is then forced to watch as the last of the rebellion sets Lucia up to be hanged, despite the gathering crowd of booing citizens.
Just as they are about to do the deed, however, Lucia is rescued by the Greil Mercenaries, who quickly and efficiently rout the remaining resistance forces. Lucia saved, Elincia meets up with Ike, and thanks him for showing up to save her. Ike in turn reveals that, prior to leaving for Daein on his own investigation, Count Bastian had sniffed out Ludveck's insurgency, and hired the mercenaries to help handle the situation. Here, Elincia shares with Ike the news regarding Daein, and the return of the Black Knight.
Part III: Intersecting Vows
(due to the length and complexity of this part, the synopsis will be separated into three distinct but arbitrary sub-acts)
Sub-1 - March of the Laguz Alliance
The third act, the longest in the game, and the crux of the story, begins at the home fort of the Greil Mercenaries in Crimea. Here, after returning home from their task to save Elincia, Ike and his men are greeted by the Cat laguz warrior Ranulf, with whom they'd fought during the Mad King's War. Ranulf had come to inform Ike that the collective nations of Gallia, Phoenicis and Kilvas had formed a Laguz Alliance against Bengion, and declared war with them, and Ranulf is now petitioning the mercenaries to come in and fight on their side. Ranulf reveals to them that, after prince Rafiel arrived in Gallia, he told them of the true perpetrators behind the Serenes Massacre, revealing them to be none other than the imperial senators of Begnion. From there, when Gallia sent an emissary to Begnion to ascertain the truth of this, the emissary was promptly murdered. Hearing this news, the mercenaries agree to help, and march with the alliance as they begin to cross into Begnion's territory from Gallia, led by the hotheaded Lion prince Skrimir, while the bird tribes, led by kings Tibarn and Naesala begin their attack from the south.
During Gallia's first steps, general Skrimir proves to be an inept strategist, which forces the mercenaries' tactician, the Wind Sage Soren, to step in and pick up the slack. Under Soren's masterful guidance, the warriors of Gallia overtake fort after fort, eventually reaching the far side of the Ribahn River, to begin their engagement with Begnion's Central Army, led by the legendary General Zelgius. The original plan was to have the bird tribes attack the Central Army's convoys, essentially crippling their supplies. However, due to false information, they end up running straight into the army itself, the ravens disappearing in the process. When Tibarn attempts to clash with General Zelgius, he informs the Hawk King to return immediately to Phoenicis if he wishes to save his people. He does so, and returns to his country only to find that the ravens had been enacting a massacre. After clearing away the invaders, Tibarn and the remainder of his men regroup with Gallia's forces to inform them of Kilvas's treachery, forcing them to rethink their battle plans moving forward.
Even at this bleak moment for the fragmented alliance, Soren hatches a plan to engage the Central Army, despite his reservation toward the laguz. At first, it works out well, as the alliance manages to secure its first real victory against the Central Army. However, the entire advantage is ruined when Zelgius, cleverly taking advantage of Skrimir's blind pride as a warrior, challenges the lion prince to a one-on-one duel. Despite the mercenaries' attempt to stop the duel, Zelgius defeats Skrimir in single combat, and forces his army to withdraw, sparing them from utter annihilation. Forced to retreat, the Laguz Alliance begins its march back to Gallia, and the Greil Mercenaries are released from their service.
Sub-2 - Gallia's Retreat
Despite Zelgius's mercy, however, the senators force the army to pursue Gallia's retreating forces, in an effort to exterminate them. Upon hearing this order from Empress Sanaki's holy guard, Sigrun, Zelgius is outraged, in disbelief that the apostle and his master, Sephiran, duke of Persis, would desire this action. Though disallowed to openly say so, Sigrun reveals to Zelgius that both Sanaki and Sephiran are being held hostage by the senate, and urges Zelgius to follow the senate's orders, lest the two of them be murdered. Ike and his mercenaries, who had up to that point been holding out in one of Begnion's captured forts, are the first to be attacked by the advancing troops, and upon escape, rendezvous with Gallia's retreating army to tell them this disturbing news.
At the same time, however, Daein's forces, led by General Micaiah and on explicit orders from King Pelleas, move into Begnion and set up a blockade to stop the Laguz Alliance's retreat, which would allow the Central Army enough time to catch up to the alliance and destroy them. With no choice but to obey, Micaiah sets up the blockade, and prepares for the engagement with the Greil Mercenaries, much to Sothe's chagrin. Even so, the Gallian army proves too much for their blockade, until the Black Knight appears again out of nowhere to reinforce them. Caught in a situation of life or death, the Gallian army hatches a plan to slip by the blockade while the mercenaries distract Daein's forces. Here, Ike finds the Black Knight and attempts to engage him. Their fight is left inconclusive, however, when Ike and his battalion are called back along with the army, having safely slipped by the blockade.
Even having made it past Daein's forces, the Begnion Central Army is not far behind. The alliance, not willing to reveal Gallia's secret passageways to the empire, is forced instead to take a much more dangerous route, through the Kauku Caves, an active lava tube that connects Begnion to both Gallia, and the kingdom of Goldoa. When Begnion's forces see Gallia entering those caves, Zelgius decides not to pursue them further, lest they lose their own men to the active magma floes. However, one of Begnion's high senators, Valtome, appears suddenly, overrules Zelgius's position and orders a battalion to pursue the alliance in the caves, while the rest of the army plans to cut through Crimea to invade Gallia proper. The alliance, though battered both by Begnion's forces and the heat of the caves, manages to pass through intact. However, they had ended up taking the wrong fork, entering Goldoa instead of Gallia. At the immediate sight of this intrusion, the alliance is taken into custody by the Dragons, and forced to answer to their king, Dheginsea. Instead of allowing them to cross Goldoan territory into Gallia, he orders the alliance to return through the caves, despite its peril. Ike and Skrimir voice their outrage at this, but are unable to move the king. However, two of Dheginsea's subjects, Ena and Nasir, step forward and manage to persuade the king to allow the army to pass through to Gallia, after revealing that heron prince Reyson, who had been travelling on the alliance's side, had helped to save the king's son Rajaion from madness at the end of the Mad King's War.
It is not long after Gallia's army returns when they hear of Begnion's intent on cutting through Crimea to invade their country. They prepare for the inevitable conflict, despite their despair at Crimea's apparent willingness to let this happen. Meanwhile, it is revealed that Crimea had initially refused Begnion's army access to support and supplies, even sending the royal knights to stop the army from ransacking a village. However, Zelgius manages to persuade Elincia to let them pass and occupy the forts on the border with Gallia, despite her continued resistance to these foreign armies spilling blood on her soil and terrorizing her civilians. Just as Gallia's army appears to meet Begnion's forces, Elincia makes a bold move, appearing in-between the armies, and dropping her sword to the ground, in a declaration of her intent against them battling in her lands. This act greatly impresses both Zelgius and Tibarn, who thus recede both of their forces, but Valtome, infuriated, moves to attack the queen, spurring Ike and his mercenaries to protect her. In lieu of his defeat, Valtome prepares to have Zelgius executed without trial for disobeying his orders. At that moment, the headsman is shot by one of Sigrun's Pegasus Knights. The Holy Guard arrives at the scene, conveying the apostle and Empress of Begnion, Sanaki, to reveal the senate's corruption and vile intent. In response, Valtome declares Sanaki to be a fraud, and going against the wishes of the goddess, Ashera. In this act, the Central Army is divided between those who support the Empress, and those who support the Senate. The half under Sanaki's control begin their march back to Begnion, along with Gallia, Phoenicis, and Crimea's support. At this time, Zelgius makes his own way back to Begnion in order to free Sephiran, leaving only Ike to accept the title of General of the combined forces of the Apostle's Army.
Sub-3 - The Blood Pact
Just as the Apostle's Army begins its march, Daein's forces appear again, at Riven Bridge, to threaten them. Despite the utter bewilderment as to why Daein would be fighting on the side of its former enemy, the army is forced by this provocation to make their way to Begnion by means of Daein, in order to nullify their threat. Despite their country being still in ruins, the Daein army fights ferociously under Micaiah's command. Despite this, they are still beaten back into Daein itself. In a subsequent flashback, it is revealed why Daein is fighting on Begnion's side. Vice Minister Lekain, using a Rewarp staff, had appeared before Pelleas, and revealed to him that he had unwittingly signed a Blood Pact, forged to resemble the treaty he signed during his coronation by none other than Izuka. The pact's condition forces Pelleas to obey the senate's orders, or watch as his entire nation withers away to a magically-induced plague.
Despite dealing heavy damage to the Apostle's army, even at one point using burning oil to try and incinerate them, the Daein army is all-but-crushed, forced to retreat to their last stronghold between Daein and Begnion. Here, when Pelleas desperately tries one more time to rally Micaiah's support against the Apostle's Army, he is forced to reveal to them the blood pact that he'd signed. He is about to fall into despair, when Micaiah convinces him to try and find a way out of the pact, which up to that point, he'd believed was unbreakable. In the mean-time, the Daein Army would have to continue fighting for Begnion, despite the insurmountable odds.
Eventually, Pelleas does find something alluding to the pact in his royal library. It states that the only way to be break the pact is for the one who'd signed it to die. Upon this revelation, Pelleas urges Micaiah to kill him, in order to free Daein from the pact. At this point, the story can take two separate paths, depending on whether or not the game was being played on Clear Data or not. In the first playthrough, Micaiah has no choice but to either carry out the deed, or have Tauroneo kill Pelleas. In the Clear Data, she can instead convince Pelleas to not have himself killed, and come up with a better solution. Either way, it is later revealed, even as the Apostle's army storms their last fort, that Almedha knew of the Blood Pact, and knew that it could only be undone with the destruction of the pact-maker and the document itself. She knew this due to her ex-mate, Ashnard, using such a pact to secure his position as King of Daein.
At this moment, as their fort is invaded, a mighty black dragon appears, and forces the armies to cease fighting at once. They do this in lieu of Lehran's Medallion which is on the verge of breaking its seal containing the Dark God, which would be released by the chaos of the war, should it continue much longer. The black dragon turns out to be prince Kurthnaga, who, by happenstance, was the boy Kurth that Micaiah had met during the liberation. He meets with Almedha, revealing her to be one of the Dragon Tribe as well and Kurthnaga's sister, having been cursed after her union with Ashnard. Should Pelleas still be alive at this point, he will note this revelation.
Meanwhile, in Begnion's capitol Sienne, Zelgius finally manages to free Sephiran from his prison, and the two of them start a rebellion in Begnion itself, spurring the citizenry to side with Sanaki instead of the senate, creating even more turmoil in the process. Hearing this, the Apostle's army is forced to resume the fight with Daein, as they continue to resist them. In the last fight, Kurthnaga, heron prince Rafiel, and wolf queen Nailah, having become aware of the blood pact, decide to fight on Daein's side. In the chaos of this battle, Lehran's Medallion grows increasingly unstable, rendering both of its caretakers, Reyson and Leanne, unconscious. As its fury grows, Micaiah abandons her position on the battle-front, being called by a mysterious voice. Ike's sister Mist, in turn, collapses on the battlefield, and urges Ike and his compatriots to take her to the medallion. At the same time, Sanaki, wishing to know how the battle fares, enlists the help of Raven King Naesala, who had remained unseen up to this point, to take her to the location of the medallion as well. (it is implied that it was Naesala who had helped Sanaki escape the senate's clutches in the first place)
When all gather at the resting place of the medallion, they deliberate upon themselves as to what could possibly be done to quell its blue flames. At that moment, Mist, still unconscious, hums the Galdr of Release, and instructs them to release the Dark God using the song, rather than leaving it to wake on its own. Sanaki appears with Naesala, and upon being informed of the situation, attempts to sing the galdr. However, strangely enough, despite being the apostle, she is unable to do it. At that moment, Micaiah walks calmly into the room, followed by Sothe, trying in vain to stop her from wandering into enemy territory. As if possessed, Micaiah exposits on the nature of the medallion and the galdr, then proceeds to sing it, with the lyrics that nobody had known up to that point. The blue flames are then finally quenched, and an eerie silence grips the room. When Sothe attempts to speak to Micaiah again, she speaks in a voice that is clearly not her own, addressing itself as Yune. Yune then starts talking to someone who is not in the room, trying to dissuade it from an unknown action it is taking. At that moment, the entire area is engulfed in a bright light. Once the flash ends, Ike and the others leave the room, and find that the previously warring soldiers had all turned to stone.
Part IV: Gods and Men
Radiant Dawn features a large cast of characters. All of the playable characters in Fire Emblem: Path of Radiance are playable, save Largo who lost an arm between the games. Along with a majority of the previous characters, a large amount of new characters are playable.
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