To enter the arena in Genealogy of the Holy War you must enter a castle and then select the arena from there. A unit can only successfully defeat an enemy in the arena up to seven times in a chapter, however if a character is defeated in the arena they are left with one hit point. Unlike arenas in the rest of the series, the enemies you fight are all preset, so all the characters will fight the same enemies. (which means you cannot do an "Arena Gauntlet") although having preset enemies does make it easier.
Arenas also appear in Shadow Dragon. However, unlike the arenas in the Game Boy Advance games, the arenas in Shadow Dragon allow an option to use the arena again at the same turn once winning, thus allowing players to use the arena multiple times in one turn. However, this option can be extremely risky as the player has not had the chance to heal the unit from the previous fight.
Somewhat like the Link Arena, only units that can attack can enter the arena. When you enter a unit into the arena (except for in Genealogy of the Holy War), you are given the option to wager an amount of gold. If you accept, your unit will do battle with an opponent. If your unit wins, you win even money on your wager, and gain some experience. If your unit dies, or you press the B Button to back out, you lose your wager.
The battle that takes place in an Arena works the same way as a battle in the field, except that instead of stopping once each unit has made their attacks, this process repeats until one unit dies, you retreat, or both units find themselves unable to damage the other. After each repetition, if you have pressed the B Button, the battle will end prematurely and you will lose your wager if one was made. Use this option to get your unit out if he or she is in serious danger of being killed.
Some people have taken to the hobby of "Arena Abuse", one of the most commonly used Sources of Infinite Experience. To Arena Abuse, the player sends their units in the arena constantly until they are weak, so then they can get healed by the Priest using a Heal staff. If the player did not bring a user who can use staves, then a Vulnerary will work, but not as well. The player constantly heals the fighter up until the Heal staff breaks. Usually, all levels with an Arena have a Shop on the same map. The player takes advantage of this and buys as many Heal (or Mend, if the Heal staff is not sold there) staves as he or she can. Then the abuser repeats the process.
Since you get money from frequently winning at arenas, and that arena weapons are not the weapons you are equipped with, one can keep doing this until all units are level 20 and the abuser has enormous amounts of gold earned from the arenas. The process of arena abusing, without losing any units, is rather difficult and tedious.
An "Arena Gauntlet" is when the player constantly uses the arena without healing and not using some form of "random number generator" abuse. The option that allow players to go into another match in Shadow Dragon makes it easier to do an "Arena Gauntlet" in one turn, somewhat redeeming turncount, although this can be risky.
- In Fire Emblem: Mystery of the Emblem, arena abuse is slightly more risky at times as Manaketes of all kinds except Earth Dragons can appear in the arena. But the player cannot bring their Manakete in the arena.
- Arena Abusing is made easier using emulators, since many of them can create "save states" that overrides the save mechanics of many Fire Emblem games. If things go bad, players can load save states to recover their advantageous data.
- In the GBA games you can enter the arena and pay for a match, at the screen where it shows what class you are fighting, if it is not in your favor (i.e. Fighter against a Myrmidon) you can soft reset the game, and when you continue you will be at a screen outside of the arena.
- In Fire Emblem: Binding Blade, there happens to be a very rare glitch that a character will fight a Brigand with an Iron Bow  or a Warrior with a Fire tome. The screen will fade black and health bars of the duelists appear as if the player turned the animations off. In most cases, the battle will have one of the duelists take damage in one round and the battle ends abruptly, leaving the player with no reward at the end.
- In Binding Blade and The Sacred Stones, characters will use their highest ranked weapon; this can be detrimental if you intend to specialize a promoted unit in a weapon they do not start with (Ex. a Falcon Knight you want with an S rank in swords.)
- Likewise, the arena entrance music will often contain a remix of a song from an earlier game: Genealogy of the Holy War uses the player map theme from Ankoku Ryū to Hikari no Tsurugi; Thracia 776 used the first player map theme from Monshō no Nazo; The Sacred Stones uses the prologue theme from Genealogy of the Holy War, and Shadow Dragon uses Clash, the battle theme from Path of Radiance. While talking to the fightmonger, Follow Me from The Sacred Stones plays.
- Enemies gain Difficulty Modifications in the Arenas, based on how much money you wager, even breaking class caps.
- In Fire Emblem: Rekka no Ken, due to a Glitch, if a dancer or bard uses a ring on a character and the character is rescued prior to the end of the player's turn the bonuses will still be in effect. If a character positions a unit with high constitution to a space one space south of the arena and one space east or west of the arena, then a unit (like a Falcoknight) can rescue the character after that character has used the arena. On the following turn a unit takes the character with the modified stats from the flier and drops them on the same turn; a healer can heal the unit if they took damage, and then the dancer or bard can use "dance/play" on the character, giving them another turn and allowing them to use the arena with their stats modified until the player does not rescue the character again. This happens with all status effects. (This is actually a glitch with status effects in general, a unit will not, for instance, take damage from being poisoned if rescued. Neither will the turn counter for sleep decrease.)
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