The Evil and the Tragic: Fire Emblem Villains

You’re on a battlefield. Maybe you’re besties with the guy leading this army. Maybe you just needed the cash, or maybe you’re not quite sure how you ended up here with sword in hand. But the fact is, you’re among this ragtag team of fighters, and the leader of the enemy army is swiftly approaching.

There’s a lot of evil in this world, but with that is some of the best themes. They’re fast-paced, they’re exciting, and sometimes… they’re a little tragic.

But before we go into battle, we have to stop by the armory (Preparations, FE11). (Just because I like this suiting-up theme the best. Sometimes I’d spent a little longer than necessary shifting around my inventory just to listen.) Pack up your best weapons, friends, because we’re in this ’til the end.

Most of Fire Emblem’s games begin with a charming pirate duo (Wonderful Pirates, FE9), who are maybe a little dumb but a good experience booster. But you’re not here to merely fight off pirates. You have a grander mission, whether it’s to save your family, get revenge, or—save us all—face a corrupted goddess.

And now, battle! Epic music change.

Maybe your enemy is a band of assassins (Black Fang, FE7), where some of its members have an eerie, not-quite-human physical beauty. Maybe it’s the king’s elite knights (Stratagem in Black Armor, FE9), the strongest of the strong across the land. Whatever the case may be, you gird up and venture into battle (Trouble!, FE11).

But not all enemies are clad in black armor. They can have the highest seats in politics (Beauty is a Mad Mistress, FE10), reflected in this harpsichord-like tune to reflect wealth and prosperity. Or you could be facing one of those eerily beautiful quasi-humans directly (Softly with Grace, FE7), in a more trilling, graceful version than its Black Fang counterpart.

But what if your foe is not of this world? The demon-possessed (Return of the Demon King, FE8), or the goddess of creation (A Grasping Truth, FE10)? There’s an urgency in these pieces, with the fate of humanity itself in your hands. The music drives you forward in its runs and speed; it slows to a dirge-like quality; it slowly builds back up to build your confidence that you can, in fact, save the world.

But when it’s over? Maybe you have a country to rebuild. Maybe you’re mourning some allies. But with the defeat of the final enemy, there is hope. You have fought bravely, and you have saved the world.