Editor’s Note: There are spoilers for Fire Emblem Engage in this character list. Also, it is a matter of “your mileage may vary,” as some of these units could end up being useful for you!
Okay. Here’s the issue with Anna. Yes, you don’t have many axe-wielding characters at the time she’s introduced. That’s a perk in her favor. But she’s a bit frail compared to other characters, ax hit is notorious for not being the best, and you really only want her around when you need to make money. Even then, her Make a Killing unique skill is triggered by her luck stat and dependent on her being the one to strike the killing blow. The extra 500G isn’t worth it.
Really, it’s better you stay safe at home on the Somniel, kid.
Boucheron is someone who has the misfortune of being one of your first recruits. Ax users can be great, but once you start needing to diversify and pull in more units, you’ll want an ax-user with a unique class, like Jade. Or an axe-user who has increased movement and a unique class. Or an ax-user who can also really take a hit, like Jade again.
His Moved to Tears unique skill also relies on having a lot of other allies around who can take part in a Chain Attack he kicked off, which means only certain strategies are best for him.
Etie isn’t a terrible archer, but she has the misfortune of being in the same game as the far superior Alcryst and Fogado. Compared to two characters who get unique advanced classes and have far better starting skills, she… doesn’t exactly stack up. Especially since you probably won’t need more than two archers in any map.
Also, it isn’t that her Energized unique skill isn’t bad, but it only gives her +2 Str whenever she uses a healing item. Sorry, Ettie.
Oh, Framme, imagine the things you could have done if Jean didn’t exist. But he does, we get to recruit him not long after meeting you, and he is better than you in every possible way. You aren’t a great attacker. Since all we’d be using you for is healing, we really don’t need more than one early on. Also, you have a hyper-specific unique skill that only makes you useful if you are directly next to Alear the whole battle. Listen, we appreciate you exist, and we will have room for you until we get a second healer, but once Citrinne and her Generosity comes along, we’re done.
Lindon joins far too late. By chapter 18, you’re established. You know who your best and favorite mages and healers are. He’s a good Sage, to be clear. His stats are good when you get him! His unique skill, Weapon Insight, means you can give him lower level weapons and still have him be viable, because he’ll get +20 Crit whenever his weapon isn’t as good as an opponent’s.
I just… didn’t… have… room for him when I played. I imagine others will feel the same, given when he joins.
Okay. In every Fire Emblem game, there is a Jagen. This is a character who is an advanced class unit at the very beginning of the game and is basically your ace-in-the-hole for the first few chapters while characters level up. Ideally, you want to save them for an extreme circumstance, so your lower level characters with lots of room to grow can get experience and develop. This also means as their stat growths lead to them getting stronger, the Jagen gets left behind.
Vander is Fire Emblem Engage‘s Jagen. Worse, he’s like Framme in that he’s only useful if he is right next to Alear, as Alabaster Duty only grants a +5 Crit bonus to both when they fight alongside one another. (And even then, +5 Crit is nothing in this game. I don’t get out of bed for +5 Crit.)
Thanks for the help in chapters 1-4, Vander!
Fire Emblem Engage is available for the Nintendo Switch.