Skills are special abilities that units can possess, each having widely varying effects. The skill system was introduced in Genealogy of the Holy War and has been present in several games of the series since then.
Mechanics by gamesEdit
Genealogy of the Holy WarEdit
In Genealogy of the Holy War, skills are divided into Soldier skills, which all units in a particular Class possess, and Citizen skills, which are inherent to the character and do not depend on their class. Skills cannot be removed or assigned, but Citizen skills are inherited by any children a character has. Skills can also be gained from equipping Rings or certain weapons. For example, the Killer Bow gives the user the Critical skill.
In Thracia 776, skills work much the same way as in Genealogy of the Holy War. There still exist skills that are inherent to a class and skills that are inherent to a character, but since there is no second generation, functionally these skills are treated the same. Skills can now be learned from Manuals or gained from equippable weapons, but Rings no longer give skills. Notably, Pursuit is no longer a skill and all characters can Double Attack.
The Sacred StonesEdit
In The Sacred Stones, skills particular to characters do not exist as in the prior games, only certain classes have associated skills.
Path of RadianceEdit
In Path of Radiance, skills were reintroduced in a more similar way to as in the SNES games. Skills could be learned from scrolls. However, Skill Capacity was introduced as a limit on the number of skills that any one unit could learn. Mastery Skills were also introduced. These were class-specific skills that were only learnable through rare Occult Scrolls. Skills could also be removed to free up capacity for new skills, or simply because certain skills had negative effects as well as positive (such as Parity or Tempest).
In Radiant Dawn, the skills system was much the same as Path of Radiance, with limited capacity and scrolls. However, skills could also be removed and reassigned to other units. Skills that a unit joined with did not take up capacity and were dubbed 'innate' skills. However, certain skills could not be removed. Shove and Canto became skills that took up 5 and 10 space, respectively. Mastery Skills from Path of Radiance reappeared. They could not be removed and took up a large amount of space, and were learned automatically on a Beorc unit reaching 3rd tier (Laguz could use a Satori Sign at level 30). In addition, skills could not be removed or reassigned during Part 2.
- See also: List of Skills in Fire Emblem Awakening
In Awakening, skills are obtained when a unit reaches a certain level in their current class, depending on the tier their class is. There are also 4 skills that can be obtained via DLC chapters, and certain characters, such as Walhart and Aversa, have unique skills. Because of the Reclassing system, a unit can gather a wide pool of skills from their reclassing options. To balance this, no unit can have more than 5 skills equipped at any one time. However, players can freely choose what those 5 skills are from all the skills a character has ever learned.
Children characters will inherit a skill from each of their parents. They will inherit the last skill on the parent's skill list of skills each of their parents has currently equipped, even if it's from a class that they cannot reclass into because of their gender. As such Gerome can inherit Dual Support+ from Cherche or Nah can inherit Counter from her father if they have it equipped in their last open skill slot. However, skills from Downloadable Content cannot be inherited.
There are also 8 enemy exclusive skills. Only Dragonskin will appear on all difficulties while Hit Rate +10 and Rightful God will appear on Lunatic and higher. All 5 other skills will begin to appear on Lunatic+. All enemy skills will appear on all difficulties of Apotheosis.
In Fates, skills are learned when a unit reaches a certain level in their current class, depending on what tier their class is. If a unit is Level 15 or higher in a promoted class and they reclass into another one, they will learn the class skill of its first tier class if it has not been learned before the promoted skill. Every time the unit levels up, they will learn a skill of a new class once they have reached level 15 or higher in an advanced class, and 35 for special classes.
Every unit in the game has a personal skill that is unique to them and cannot be removed. However, they will have five slots to equip whatever skills they learn from their classes, totaling 6 equippable skills.
- See also: List of Skills in Fire Emblem Heroes
In Heroes, Skills are classified under five different categories:
- Weapon skills determines the weapons the character wields in battle. Every Character is classified under a specific weapon type under the traditional Fire Emblem weapon classes. Even if the character can wield multiple weapons in their base class in their respective games, they are locked to their specific predetermined weapon type. Legendary Weapons such as the Falchion are fixed to certain characters, thus cannot be inherited through Inherit Skill.
- Assist skills are non-combat skill that allow units to affect each other. These include repositioning skills like Pivot, ally support skills like Rally Defense, or even the Dance command.
- Special skills are a series of various skills that activate in set intervals depending on the amount of traded attacks in battle. After a unit has attacked and/or has been attacked a specific amount of times depending on the skill, they can activate these special skills. These include attacking skills like Luna, defensive skills like Pavise, or healing skills like Imbue
- Passive skills are miscellaneous skills that give a variety of effects to a character. All passive skills are categorized into three types; A, B, and C skills. Majority of passive skills come in three tiers, each tier increasing the effect of the skill.
- Seals are universally equipable skills. Unlike other skills, Seals are earned by completing quests or achieving a certain score in Tempest Trials. Seals can be freely equipped and unequipped between characters, allowing the player to use them on whatever character they want to, whenever they want to.
All characters come with a predetermined set of skills based on the Hero themselves. Thus, no matter who summons Chrom, he will always come with the same skill set. Weapon Skills are the only guaranteed skill type to be on a unit. Majority of the cast have at least one Passive Skill in their base skill pool except for Masked Marth. Upon being summoned, a Hero will automatically come with the highest rarity weapon and special skill in their skill set. If they have a Support skill, they will also come with the skill pre-learned. All Passive skills must be learned. All skills come with restrictions to be learned. Characters need to be a certain rarity learn specific skills in their sets, though the rarity requirement is not fixed by the skill itself, but by the character. For example, Roy can learn his Triangle Adept at 4-Star Rarity, while Cordelia needs to be 5-Star Rarity.
Characters learn skills by acquiring Skill Points (SP) by participating in battle. Defeating an enemy earns 3 SP and healing an ally earns 1 SP. SP is also gained by leveling up, earning increasing amounts of SP per Level Up every 10 levels. Merging characters also gives a character SP based on the rarity of the hero merging with the base hero.
Heroes can also acquire new skills outside of their base set by Inheriting skills from different characters. This allows heroes to learn skills from all four main categories and further allow players to customize their heroes. Players choose two heroes in their roster. Hero A will inherit the skills of Hero B. The player is allowed to choose up to three skills from Hero B to be transferred to Hero A. For the most part, skills are free to be transferred at the player's digression. Once the three skills have been chosen, Hero B is removed from the player's roster.
Weapon Skills are allowed to be inherited only by another unit of the same Weapon type. Legendary Weapons are restricted to specific heroes, thus only Ike can have Ragnell and it cannot be inherited by other characters. Tome units are also restricted by the tome color that they can learn. Breath weapons are the only weapons that can be inherited, regardless of the character's Breath weapon color.
All skills inherited receive an additional SP cost to learn when compared to learning them on their base unit.