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A new "Awakening"

Okay, got "Smash 4" (and FYI ended up getting both versions), found I can still use Peach quite well but a major change in Zelda's play mechanics (again, due solely to technical issues stemming from the decision to make both a 3DS and Wii U version of the game) cost her her position as my second main, as a result began seeking a successor among the new guys, and I ended up disappointed in the ones I thought I'd really like while three I never expected to love as much I do have reached "main" status.

"Three? You only mentioned two!" Yes, I can count. Thing is, much as Shulk and Duck Hunt/Duck Hunt Duo surprised me and I do love them, neither of them were the biggest surprise for me among the "Smash 4" roster and as far as becoming mains only achieved #3 and #4 status respectively (for me personally, remember I'm not into that "tier" nonsense). The true successor to Zelda's #2 position (#1 still belonging to Peach) merited a separate write-up. This person, like Shulk, was someone I'd had no prior knowledge let alone experience with and whose announcement I had missed (also whose presence in "Smash" wasn't talked about much, at least not where I could hear/see it or as much as some others).

I did, however, have some familiarity with the series this person came from. Ever since "Melee" included Marth, the original hero of the series, on its roster, it's become tradition for he and someone from the newest (at that point) "Fire Emblem" game to make an appearance in "Smash Bros.". Even "Melee" itself featured Roy, from a "Fire Emblem" that was months away from release ("The Binding Blade"), alongside Marth. (FYI, "Fire Emblem" is a bit like "Final Fantasy" as far as sequels: other than the occasional direct sequel or prequel, for the most part the games in this series have little to do with each other aside from the very occasional reference.) And until 2003, Marth and Roy were all anybody outside of Japan really knew of the "Fire Emblem" series at all. But interest in those guys proved to Nintendo that there was a demand for the series from whence they came in other markets, thus starting not with "Binding Blade" for whatever reason but the one that came out right after it "Fire Emblem" started regularly being released internationally. And, no, nobody from that entry made into the following "Smash" game (at least not as a playable character) because by the time "Brawl" was in development "Path of Radiance" and its direct sequel "Radiant Dawn" had come out, therefore "Smash" got the main character of those two games, Ike. Now while I did play as the "Fire Emblem" characters sometimes, none of them ever became mains, nor did I ever actually play a "Fire Emblem" game proper and had only a slight passing interest in doing so. I did, however, do considerable research on the characters and their personalities/roles in their game(s) of origin so I could judge them fairly (I do still at least try to see the characters in "Smash" as, well, characters after all regardless of how well I play with or against them- case in point: even though I can't use Zelda like I once did I do still like her as a character- and at least try to see the characters beyond what some fans do with them in fanfics/fanart).

Which brings us to "Smash 4". Marth and Ike returned, and as mentioned earlier Roy also returned (albeit as DLC) after having been cut from "Brawl". From the newest (at the time "Smash 4" was in development and before anyone knew there would be DLC of any kind, anyway) "Fire Emblem" game, "Awakening", "Smash 4" actually got not one but two characters. One of them, Lucina, well, being female is the only real way she stands out from her predecessors, though as with the others I researched her and on the whole do like her okay. But who was this guy with silvery-white hair in a long black coat/cloak holding a book (other than a wizard, that much became apparent very quickly), this Robin fellow? I could only tell he was from the "Fire Emblem" series because there was that same sword symbol behind his damage meter the other FE characters used (like how "Legend of Zelda" characters have the Triforce, the "Super Mario" characters have a mushroom, etc.). All the same, the more I got to know him purely from playing him in "Smash" (and only using his default colors/form- there's a reason I mention that), the more I really came to love him. This probably has to with the fact that Robin actually has limited use of his spells and his good sword (though he does get them back after dying or a set amount of time, whichever comes first), so here was that strategic aspect of Zelda/Sheik that I'd lost. Or perhaps because I needed a new wizard or wizard-like character to love given the current state of my "relationship" with a certain franchise whose creator has all of a sudden decided to (I'm sorry) milk to death.

As with the other characters from the FE franchise, I researched Robin a little further after playing with him a while in "Smash". Which proved slightly difficult because as it turned out Robin is actually the customizable player character in "Fire Emblem Awakening"; in fact "Robin" is merely the default suggested name. The outfit only changes if you change job classes, but the hair (style and color), facial structure, apparent age, and again even name (with a lot of people simply using "My Unit"/MU or "(the) Avatar" to refer to this character when not using whatever name they specifically chose) are decided by the player. For "Smash", you are limited to the default name, apparent age (in this case probably nineteen or twenty at oldest), and hairstyle but do have a say in color scheme. That said, I remembered Shadow talking about "Awakening" when it came out and bringing up how "your character here can be a boy or a girl" (or something to that effect) in that game. Now having realized that this was Robin, I wondered if that was still possible in "Smash 4". It is, though that just means you get the default male design and the default female design in your choice of color scheme, and in practice all that really changes is the voice and the hairstyle. But that's just icing on the cake- while I may give slight preference to the female, the male still gets considerable playtime from me.

However, not only have I found my new second main, but through my aforementioned research have become inexplicably obsessed with "Fire Emblem Awakening" itself, which I don't own and have never played (a situation I do plan to rectify, of course). I'll have to see whether that's really a good thing or a bad thing (especially since as of right now this only extends to "Awakening" itself). Between that, wanting to buy "Xenoblade Chronicles" as mentioned earlier, and me breaking down and buying the 3DS version of "Smash 4" itself- well played, Nintendo. Well. Played.