Fire Emblem: Awakening Partners
Image: Nintendo Life

For better or for worse, Fire Emblem today is a different beast to what it was a decade ago. Fire Emblem Engage brought back the weapons triangle, a combat-first focus, and the wonderful Engage mechanic, but at what cost? The social aspect (one of the biggest selling points in previous games) takes a tumble in the most recent entry. The central hub (The Somniel) is much smaller, character interactions are lessened and, most importantly of all, there is no marriage.

Ten years ago, Fire Emblem: Awakening came to the 3DS (in the US, at least) and opened our eyes to the prospect of in-game marriage. Evolved from the 'Love System' which debuted in the Fire Emblem: Geneology of the Holy War on Super Famicom, no longer was the game's romance something that you had to read into, oh no; this time around it was front and centre and came with a number of genuinely beneficial perks based on who you decided to partner up with.

There were conversations to unlock, skills to be shared and, as you progressed through the game, children to be had and recruited into your squad. The abilities that these children would inherit became a precise chemistry in working out the perfect couplings to build some kind of super-child — yep, it sounds creepy when we phrase it like that, but let's not pretend we didn't all do it.

Even though we now love Fire Emblem Engage for all of its 'fight first, talk later' attitudes, we can't help but look back fondly on the marriage mechanic that was introduced in Awakening ten years ago. Below, some of our writers have come together to share their Awakening marriages which once were. We are only focusing on who we (Robin) [Who? - Ed.] paired up with rather than our entire marriage bracket, but this always was the most special partner, after all.

Have a read through our lovers of old and then take to the comments to let us know which fighter you chose to settle down with!

Alana Hagues, Staff Writer

Fire Emblem: Awakening Lon'qu
Image: Nintendo Life

I know, I know — many people use the marriage system in Awakening to get the best units. And I did that with some couples. But not me, my Robin. I gave my Robin exactly who I wanted to give her for eternity — Lon'qu.

Myrmidons are my favourite class in Fire Emblem. An extremely fast, powerful unit that has poor defense, Myrmidons are the glass cannons that I love to master. So I was pretty much locked onto Lon'qu the minute he joined the army. He's cool, closed-off, and likes to keep to himself and do his job, which honestly just spurred me on to crack through him. I basically threw everything at him to make him one of the most powerful units on the field, and frequently, he would be the one to wipe out most of the enemy army.

But I can admire Lon'qu for his prowess or his coolness, but it's his quirks and vulnerabilities that endeared me to him. He suffers with gynophobia, so part of me wanted to help him get over that. He's also an adept potato peeler (and who doesn't like potatoes), and he doesn't like hot weather (same here). We're basically a match made in heaven.

And hey, at least my Morgan ended up being a super speedy unit with Lon'qu as his father.

Jim Norman, Staff Writer

Fire Emblem: Awakening Sully
Image: Nintendo Life

I played Fire Emblem: Awakening with my heart on my sleeve. I wasn't about to go partnering up my Robin with any old teammate just because their stats were 'appealing'. This was love, and Robin deserved to find the right person.

On this case, I settled on Sully. I have always found those Fire Emblem characters whose entire personality is just 'grrr, I have so many muscles' kinda hilarious. Every time I meet one, I think that there must be something under the surface; Sully needed someone to listen to her, and I decided that Robin was that very person. Was there anything deeper to the character? Nope! It was muscle through and through, but since this was a character that appears veeery early in the game, I thought of the pair as childhood sweethearts by the time that it came to finding out anything deeper about her.

Of course, it was easier given the fact that I was big on the Cavalier class during my first Awakening playthrough. Sully's movement capabilities meant that I was regularly using her to pick off those pesky archers while the brutes fought in one big central pile-up (yeah, my earlier tactics strategies were somewhat chaotic).

Her defiant self-confidence, can-do attitude and, yep, hilarious muscle obsession sold Sully for me. There will never be another like her...

Kate Gray, Staff Writer

Fire Emblem: Awakening Lon'qu
Image: Nintendo Life

I should have married Donnel.

But I didn't. Like Alana, I married Lon'qu. I'm not mad about it — his storyline is interesting, he's an absolute powerhouse, and he's a cutie to boot. But the thing is, Lon'qu's whole deal — other than a slightly silly name — is that he hates women. And that's what I am. Like a ton of women before me, I thought to myself, "I can change him", won over as I was by his unwillingness to speak more than monosyllabically whenever I was around. Swoon.

I do love a shy guy, even though in this case it was shyness combined with misogyny, so I focused all my attention on Lon'qu (after, um, a brief dalliance with Chrom). But when we married, and when he softened up like butter, I found myself — again like many women before me — losing interest.

Don't blame me! I was in my early 20s when this game came out, and I was clearly in a "bad boy" phase!

If I went back now, I would marry Donnel in a heartbeat. He's not mean, sullen, or sulky — in fact, he's more like my partner: Kind, sweet, and eager to please. Except unlike my real-life partner, Donnel, bless him, is not that smart — but he ended up being my most dependable warrior, since he levels up something fierce. He's the kind of guy you want to end up with in your 30s, even if he does wear a saucepan as a hat. Plus, he's got that bumpkin charm. And an accent. I'm a sucker for an accent.

Gavin Lane, Editor

Well, this is awkward. It appears that both Jim and I also married the same person. The odds seem remote (What's that? She's, like, the second woman you meet in the game? Shh, you.) but I can understand: Sully is awesome.

Jim, however — much like Virion — is a blaggard and a brazen liar who apparently posed as 'Robin' in this game. He probably calls himself 'Link' when he's around Zelda, too. Pff. Avatar shmavatar. Sully deserves better than that duplicitous scoundrel.

While my love will forever burn for my flame-haired Shepherd spouse ("The Woman to End All Men" no less), in truth, our marriage ended long ago. I fired up my old save file to rekindle those memories and was reminded of her infectious energy, uncurtailable warrior spirit, and sailor's tongue. "Who left this crap lying around?" she would often ask me. T'was I, my dearest. T'was I.

A toast to all our lost loves! Well, all two of them. Great minds, Team NL. Great minds.

Young love, isn't it beautiful? Did you marry for love or for the chance to build a super-child? Fill out the following polls to let us know!

Who did you marry in Fire Emblem Awakening?
What was the reason for your Fire Emblem: Awakening marriages?
Would you like to see marriage return in future Fire Emblem games?

Who did you marry in Fire Emblem: Awakening? Tell us your long-lost love in the comments!