Fire Emblem Heroes update might help placate those who miss free, daily Orbs

Intelligent Systems/Nintendo

A new event is now live in Fire Emblem Heroes, and it seems to have a lot going for it. It adds five new maps to the free-to-play mobile game, each one based on the play data from series artist Yusuke Kozaki. More notably to fans, clearing these maps on both available difficulties will reward them with more of Heroes’ currency, Orbs — which have been dearly missed in recent weeks.

When the game launched back in February, developer Intelligent Systems was happy to dole out Orbs both on the regular and at no cost. Although players have always had the option to buy more of them if they ran out — typical for a free smartphone game — the plethora of giveaway Orbs enabled most people to get away without ever spending a dollar on Fire Emblem Heroes.

Orbs are used for one thing in particular: summoning new playable characters from the Heroes grab bag. This is the essential component to Fire Emblem Heroes, with new characters switched up on a regular basis and especially coveted ones available for a limited time. Of course players appreciated Intelligent Systems handing out Orbs every day, just for logging in; collecting Orbs to get new characters is the biggest incentive to keep playing.

But the free Orbs dried up earlier this month. Players had become comfortable with the regular and easy supply of currency throughout the game’s first weeks, but as the days whiled away without any login bonuses that gifted them with orbs, they became frustrated.

The Fire Emblem Heroes subreddit became filled with former devotees proclaiming how angry they were with the game for no longer supplying them with Orbs for free. A moderator had to post and pin a thread this week asking users to stop complaining about the lack of Orb giveaways, having grown sick of the repeated posts.

“I think just about every single one of us isn't happy about this,” wrote user Andis1, sympathizing with fellow players. “Orbs are expensive. A lot of us can't regularly throw money into the game to get Orbs, and using Orbs to summon new heroes is the most exciting part of the game. Getting new characters and being able to level them up (or feed them to other characters) is what drives us play the game every day. I understand it all. The thing is though, we don't need a hundred different threads about it every day.”

In a way, the new event — which runs through June 8 — supplants the old daily Orb gift by giving out a similar amount of the currency just for completing it. Players can get up to 12 Orbs by doing everything the event has to offer, which is just a bit less than the 14 that Intelligent Systems used to hand out for Fire Emblem Heroes’ early life.

New content is hard to complain about, although some players still miss the staggered Orb giveaways. Twitter is filled with a mixture of celebratory posts and ones tinged with disappointment following the event’s launch.

Fire Emblem Heroes, like any free-to-play game, is meant to make Intelligent Systems and its publisher, Nintendo, money. Orbs are still available to players — they just may have to get used to ponying up the cash for them, if they really are running low and want all those new characters.

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