Fire Emblem: Three Houses is the first entry in the main series to eschew its handheld roots.
Now on the Nintendo Switch, a lot has changed about the extremely popular turn-based strategy franchise. This time, you’re the professor mentoring a group of students from one of three great nations. It’s up to you to shepherd them through a gripping story, and enhance their skills between challenging battles.
These are legendarily tricky games, and if you’re not a long-time fan, there’s a whole lot to learn. Even veterans will find new systems here that might seem completely confounding at first. There’s a whole lot to learn in the first hours of the game, and if you’re looking for tips and tricks, we’ve got a few to make the game just a little easier for beginners.
The Main Character Gives +20% XP Bonus, Use It For Faster Gains!
In battle, the main character is an incredibly powerful tool — they aren’t just tough, they also give a +20% XP boost to adjacent allies. In battle, use this to enhance your favorite characters faster. Your main character, default Byleth, can also unlock healing abilities that make them even better at support.
The first real boss in the game is a good opponent to easily grind with. Just use Byleth to share the XP bonus, and slowly grind them down. Characters earn XP for each attack — not for delivering the killing blow.
Earn XP, Motivate Students & Teach To Make Them Stronger
Fire Emblem: Three Houses works in cycles. You go on combat missions and earn XP for each student. Then, you can motivate students by completing activities in Explore Mode. Once they’re motivated, you can Teach them. Explore Mode activities and Teaching are limited, so you’ll have to carefully plan your time.
Visit All The Areas To Unlock Teleport Spots For Faster Travel
You can sprint all around the monastery, or you can just straight-up teleport around the school. I recommend at least checking the school once, but after that, you’re free to teleport around to complete monastery quests faster. It can get annoying running back-and-forth.
Your Students Need Motivation — Make Sure To Motivate Them Fully Before Teaching
You have a limited amount of times you can teach per month — but if a student is fully motivated, you can teach those students more often. A full bar allows four lessons. If they aren’t motivated, you’ll get fewer benefits from a teaching session. Don’t waste your valuable teaching time on unmotivated students!
Search The Grounds Every Once In Awhile For Random Items To Earn Professor Rank XP
Randomly, blue items will appear around the grounds of the monastery. Search the area and you’ll be able to grab these handy items — they give you a quick infusion of XP, and you’ll need it to increase your Professor Rank. The higher your rank, the more you can accomplish in less time.
Gardening & Fishing Don’t Take Time And Get You Permanent Upgrades
You can Garden and Fish as much as you want. It takes time for garden items to grow, but fishing doesn’t take any time at all. That means you can plant as much as you want and fish whenever you like — reap those rewards and do them as often as possible. If you keep doing it, you can eventually get items that give you permanent character stat upgrades.
Completing Activities Unlocks Support Conversations — Use These Wisely!
When a ‘Support Conversation’ is available, you’ll be able to sit down and talk with a student to give them a motivation boost. You can stock up and save Support Conversations on multiple characters if you want — just don’t do activities with students that already have one available. It’s a waste of time! The motivation boost only happens when you have the support conversation.
Promote Your Students ASAP – There’s No Reason To Wait
Unlike other Fire Emblem games, there is no reason to wait on promotions. Promoting a character to a new class will automatically enhance their stats and advanced classes increase stats faster. You’ll want to promote immediately when it’s available to get the best possible character.
Spend Renown To Improve Mastery
Eventually, you’ll unlock statues in the Cathedral that allow you to spend Renown, another resource in the game you can earn. Your immediate goal should be spending renown on all four statues to get a quick bonus. Like Professor Rank, this allows you to teach students even faster.
Use Goals & Teaching To Improve Weapon Mastery — Don’t Bother Grinding
Every character has a starting weapon, but that doesn’t mean you have to actually use those weapons. With teaching and by setting goals, you can improve a student’s skills enough to swap. Fighting is a very slow way to increase Weapon Mastery — it’s better to do all of that in the school.
Setting a goal gives a 50% Weapon Mastery XP bonus — and learning with that weapon gives about 40 XP. With a goal set, you can earn 90+ XP per lesson. Don’t bother grinding, just use their best weapon in battle and train in the weapons you want outside of battle.
Each Class Has A Unique Ability You Can Keep, Even After Swapping Classes
If you want to keep the unique class abilities, you’ll want to max out the Class Ability XP bar — it’s just under the Weapon Mastery meter. Once the class ability XP bar is maxed out, it becomes a permanent ability. Grind these out in battle, even if you don’t like their current class.
I recommend getting these abilities, then promoting or swapping classes later.
Magic Refills After Battle, Battalions Can Be Refreshed At The Shop
Magic isn’t as limited as it seems. Some spells can only be used once per battle — but it doesn’t destroy the spell. Spells refill after battle automatically. You only have limited uses, but you also don’t need to spend money to refresh them.
Battalions work differently. Their magic abilities need to be refreshed after battle like any other weapon. Go to the shop to re-up, or you’ll find yourself running empty in the future.
That’s all the tips we’ve got so far. We’ll be fighting alongside the three houses for a very long time, so expect to see more guides, tips and tricks as we delve further into this turn-based strategy RPG.