Class Changing is the process through which a character changes from one class to another. It is also commonly known as promotion.
Effects of Class ChangeEdit
Most class changes have at least some of the following effects:
- Vastly higher stat boosts than a levelup
- Increased Movement
- Additional weapon types made available
- Enhanced skill in current weapon types
- Additional skills
- Brings level back to one, allowing more level-ups
- Increased stat caps
Methods of Class ChangeEdit
Throughout the series there have been several methods of initiating class changes.
Item-based Class ChangeEdit
The original, and also the most common, method of initiating class change. There are several items in the game world which will class change a character if they use them, but they only work on certain classes. For example, Fire Emblem 7's Elysian Whip will let Pegasus Knights and Wyvern Riders class change, but not any other classes.
See also : Promotional Items
The same method as the multiple item style, except only the one item is used for promotions. In Fire Emblem 5, this item is the Hero Proof. In Fire Emblem 7, this is the Earth Seal. In Fire Emblems 8 - 11, it is the Master Seal (although for FE10, an additional two items are added, for those wishing to promote second-tier units: the Master Crown, And the Holy Crown, used exclusively for one character in particular to promote her to final-tier : Mist).
Location-based Class ChangeEdit
In Fire Emblem 2, in order to class change, a character must visit one of several Shrines spread throughout the world map.
Compared to the item-based systems, this has the advantage in that potentially every character can be promoted, whereas with item-based systems promotions are limited to the amount of promotion items you can obtain. On the other hand, a unit cannot promote at any time like it can in an item-based system - one first needs to go to a map which contains a shrine.
Used in: FE2
In Fire Emblem 4, a character must enter the home castle and choose an option in the castle menu in order to change class.
This has an advantage over the Shrine style of locative class changing in that there is a home castle on every map. However, due to the size of FE4's maps, it can take some time for a unit to reach it, unless one of the teleportation staves is used.
Used in: FE4
Level-based Class ChangeEdit
This style of Class Change is used in Fire Emblem 9. Instead of an unpromoted unit stopping gaining experience once it has reached level 20, it continues to gain experience and at the point it would have levelled up to level 21, it instead initiates Class Change. The unit does not get an additional level up for reaching 21.
This has the advantage of the location-based systems in that promotions are not limited to the number of items available, and avoids the disadvantage that characters need to be in a certain location to promote. However it does have the drawback that the experience gained after level 20 is, in effect, lost (as the unit doesn't get a level up bonus for it, and the unit could have been promoted at level 20 with a Master seal).
Event-based Class ChangeEdit
This style of class changing has never been used as the predominant method in any of the games.
Event-based class changing usually initiates a class change for specific characters throughout storyline events, with the player having no say in the timing.
A list of all characters which receive event-based class changes:
- Roy (automatically initiated)
- FE7 Lyn Normal Mode
- Wallace (Wallace's promotion is forced in Lyn Normal Mode as it serves as a tutorial. The choice to promote Wallace is optional in Lyn Hard Mode, though.)
- FE7 Eliwood Mode
- Eliwood (automatically initiated)
- FE7 Hector Mode
- Hector (automatically initiated)
In general, a Class Change may only be initiated for a character over a certain level. The exceptions are event-based ones.
The level at which a character may first be class changed is usually level 10 (except in Fire Emblem 4, where it is 20). It is usually, however, recommended to allow characters to reach the maximum level for their current class before promoting them, as this allows them more growth.
Fire Emblem: Ankoku Ryū to Hikari no Tsurugi Edit
Instead of receiving predetermined stat boosts on class change, characters instead get any low stats raised to the base stat of the class they have become. Any stats higher than the new base stat are left as they are.
Fire Emblem GaidenEdit
In this game, most classes have a third tier.
FE2 also has a class, Villager, which has multiple promotions. When visiting a shrine, a villager will receive the option to promote to a random class out of the available choices. The game offers the option of denying the class change, so one can keep making the villager visit the shrine until the class wanted is offered.
The class Dread Fighter is able to be demoted to Villager through class change, which allows looping.
FE2 also uses FE1's method of class change stat boosting.
Fire Emblem: Genealogy of the Holy WarEdit
Unlike the rest of the Fire Emblem series, a unit's level does not reset upon promotion. This means that there is no drawbacks to promoting as early as possible in FE4, as there is no lost growth.
Fire Emblem: Thracia 776Edit
Lara can change to Dancer through an event, but her normal class strain is that of Thief -> Thief Fighter. The Dancer class is it technically a demotion because Lara loses stats when changing. However, is able to promote to Thief Fighter after she reaches level 10 as a Dancer.
It is possible for Lara to have 76 levels of growth, if she is promoted at the maximum level throughout Thief -> Thief Fighter -> Dancer -> Thief Fighter.
Fire Emblem: The Sacred StonesEdit
Almost every class in this game can be promoted to one of two different classes. The player gets the opportunity to choose which one they want after initiating the class change.
Fire Emblem: Path of Radiance, Fire Emblem: Radiant DawnEdit
Characters are able to promote by reaching level 21, after which, their level will return to 1. In Radiant Dawn, most class sets have three tiers.