The Berserker (バーサーカー Bāsākā) is a combat physical class that recurrently appears across the Fire Emblem Series, beginning from Fire Emblem: Thracia 776. The promoted form of Axe-wielding infantry classes, the Berserker has traditionally been male-only, wields Axes as their sole weapon of choice, and usually promotes from Brigand, Pirate, or Barbarian. They also possess a skill that grants critical hit bonuses.
- 1 History in the Series
- 2 Overview
- 3 In-Game
- 4 Notable Berserkers
- 5 Trivia
- 6 Gallery
- 7 References
History in the Series
Beginning from Thracia 776, Berserkers are instated as an axe using class that is, much like the Brigands and Pirates of old, intrinsically linked to thievery and pillaging. This iteration of the class is enemy-exclusive, possessing Wrath as a class skill and the ability to walk across mountainous and water-based tiles.
With the onset of The Binding Blade, the Berserker class is established as playable, the staple promoted form of both Pirates and Brigands alike, both of whom require Hero Crests in order to trigger the promotion. This iteration of the class continues to wields Axes as its sole weapon of choice, and has their critical hit chance increased by 30%.
In The Blazing Blade and The Sacred Stones, the Berserker class is again the promoted form of both Pirates and Brigands. In these two titles, Ocean Seals are used in place of Hero Crests in order for the Pirate class to access the Berserker class. Although Brigands are non-playable in both titles, in-game data reveals that usage of Master Seals allows them to access the Berserker class. The innate critical rate of the class has been moved to 15% which it will remain for most of the series.
In Path of Radiance, the Berserker class is the promoted form of the enemy-only Bandit class, like before. Largo acts as the only playable Berserker in the game, and no other character has access to the class, though enemy bandits still have the ability to the change into the class within the game data. In the localized versions of the game, the class continues to have an innate critical rate of 15%. Berserkers have an unusually high defense cap in this game, surpassing Warrior for the only time.
In TearRing Saga: Berwick Saga, the Slayer personal class, which promotes from Fighter, could be considered a form of Berserker. In addition to specializing in axes, the sole member of the class has a innately high critical and the Wrath skill. Shouzou Kaga also explicitly compares Dean's style of fighting to that of a Berserker's in his developer notes.
Although Bandits are present in Radiant Dawn, Berserkers are strangely absent.
Berserkers are added in the remake of the first game, Shadow Dragon, once again promoting from Pirates. Berserkers have the highest innate critical rate of all classes in exchange for slow accuracy and rarity in the player's army.
Returning in New Mystery of the Emblem, the remake of Book 2 of Mystery of the Emblem. In the latter, they are also the promotion of the unplayable Barbarian class, which is only used offscreen within the game data on hard, or when hacking.
In Awakening, owing to the fact that Brigands and Pirates have been replaced by the Barbarian class, the Berserker class thus acts as the promoted form of this class instead. The extra critical rate of the class is gone entirely, as is the ability to walk across mountain, and water terrain.
In Fates, the Berserker class is made unisex for the first time in the series and is treated as a Nohrian class. This iteration of the class acts as the promoted form of the Fighter class for the first time in the series as well due to the lack of Brigands, Pirates, or Barbarians. This is the first time that Berserkers do not class change from a criminal axe using class. The Berserker class regains its increased critical rate from past games, which is now a 20% increase, the highest out of any playable class. However, Berserkers in this game also have their critical evade decreased by 5%.
Berserkers fight in much the same way as Pirates and Brigands do. Their increased critical hit rate and ability to cross terrain imbued with Movement penalties (such as Peaks and Water) makes them valuable attacking units.
Berserkers are purely offensive units, complete with Strength that is practically unrivaled by most other classes. The fact that they solely wield Axes, a weapon type renowned for its superior Might, further enhances the deadliness of the blows that they are able to inflict. Additionally, they have high speed for axe users, capable of dodging and even doubling many enemies. All of these strengths do, however, come at very significant costs; their defensive capabilities, for one, are subpar, making them unsuited to sustaining vast amounts of damage, a vulnerability that even their extremely high HP is unable to effectively offset. In addition to this, Axes are also known to be very inaccurate weapons, and this, coupled with the Berserker class's low Skill, severely dampens the efficacy of their strikes.
Berserkers tend to be a rarely obtainable class among the player army due to the class, and its prepromoted forms association with unlawful behavior. Oftentimes there will be only one obtainable Berserker such as in Path of Radiance, Shadow Dragon, and New Mystery. In Thracia 776, and Awakening, no Berserkers are recruitable.
The reclass feature introduced in Shadow Dragon somewhat alleviates this by allowing certain characters who do not start out in the Berserker to take the class. Though it should be noted the DS games have a limit allowing only two characters to be in the Berserker line, and few characters in Awakening have the class line in their set.
The highest number of Berserkers obtainable in a game without reclassing or capturing is three in The Binding Blade.
In Awakening, the two skills berserkers can learn are Wrath and Axefaire. Wrath, for one, boosts its user's Critical Rate by 20 when at least half of their HP has been depleted. This skill can be combined with Vantage to swiftly defeat enemy units before the user sustains any damage. In addition, stacking the former two skills with Gamble and Zeal (from the Fighter class), alongside outfitting the berserker in question with a Killer Axe allows for them to transform into an effective massacre machine. Axefaire boosts its user's Strength by 5 when an Axe is equipped, and is best utilised to further bolster their already high Strength.
In Fates, berserkers have been significantly buffed in terms of Skill, making their attacks more accurate, alongside enhancing the potency of their passive boosted critical attack rate (+20). Their defenses remain poor, however, and when this is combined with their terrible Luck and passive -5 critical evasion, Berserkers become particularly vulnerable to critical attacks. Also, instead of having the "wrath" skill, they are given Rally Strength in its (and the warrior's) absence. Though not as useful at first glace, a berserker who is none too sure of surviving an encounter against their enemies thanks to terrible defensive stats can instead function as a supporting unit that boosts the strength of their nearby physical allies who are lacking in killing power. Though unlikely to see much use, this can power other berserkers who are more confident in coming out of an encounter with little worries.
Throughout much of the series, the typical berserker is primarily depicted as a shirtless, muscular man with very little clothing aside of a skirt/kilt, boots, negligent amounts of armor of any, and a headdress that is either a horned helmet or a headdress made of a felled animal's head (as seen in Path of Radiance). Berserkers are almost always depicted as large men, surpassing or at least rivalling Warrior in bulk. In games with the Constitution, the Berserker class always has a high base consitution, even surpassing General in Path of Radiance. Like Brigands and pirates, it is common for Berserker characters to be covered in scars.
In their debut appearance, Thracia 776, Berserkers wore no armor and wore a simple garment consiting of a torn tunic, shin wraps, a single strap across their chest, and a bandana similar to pirates; this game would form the basis of their future appearances as well as their statistical flavouring. Binding Blade added pants and a horned helmet that the berserkers would keep until Path of Radiance. In said Archanean games, berserkers don a surprisingly decent amount of armor that slightly falls short of fully armored units (yet their defenses remains poor in spite of this); here the berserkers also gain spiked pauldrons and overall look quite similar to vikings.
In Awakening and Fates, the berserker undergoes another redesign as with the rest of the classes, casting off the fully clothed appearance the previous two games gave them and gaining a more classical depiction. Both games feature the horned headdresses, pauldrons, shin-guards, and skirts/kilts, though Awakening's iteration looks far less like soldiers and more like ferocious savages; the horned helmets and spiked pauldrons are all skulls of felled beasts (with the "gorget" worn by the berserker being that of such a beast's jaw), and the shin-guards also have the appearance of crude, bone-like material. The pauldrons are also fastened together by simple harnesses going around to the back. Aside of the golden bands on the helmet's horns (one of which has a flag-like decoration), the berserker appears to wear little metal on them. When playable characteres are reclassed to Berserker in Awakening, they use a scrawny model, with the sole exception of Basilio. Despite their skinnier build, the skinny Berserkers still wear the same size pauldrons.
Fates' depiction of the berserker has them more clothed, but admittedly not by much. Building upon the fighter's new attire in the game, the berserker dons golden pieces of armor as their pauldrons, plackart, gorget, forearm guards, greaves, and helmet. In this appearance the berserker more closely (though somewhat historically inaccurate) resembles its namesake than in many previous games; scattered throughout the outfit is fur draped below their plackart (with a wolf-like tail in the back), at the top edges of their forearm guards and greaves, and at the back of their helmets like a ponytail or braid. Atop their helmet rests horns modeled after the deer family. Berserkers were said to were pelts made of bear fur, though the Ulfhednar (the counterpart of the berserkers) wore wolf pelts instead (much like the Path of Radiance and Fates incarnation of the class), and the vikings—closely related to the savage warriors of Odin, are sometimes depicted as wearing headdresses with deer-like horns on top. Female berserkers additionally wear leggings going up to their mid thighs.
In Tear Ring Saga: Berwick Saga, Dean dresses wears light armor and pants as a slayer. He does not don a helmet or skirt common in the other berserker designs and instead wears a long, green cape.
|FE5||Wrath||Class skill of the Berserker class.|
|FE6||Critical +30||Class skill of the Berserker class. Not Listed|
|FE7||Critical +15||Class skill of the Berserker class. Not listed.|
|FE8||Critical +15||Class skill of the Berserker class. Not listed.|
|FE9||Critical +15||Class skill of the Berserker class. Not listed.|
|FE11||Critical +10||Class skill of the Berserker class. Not listed.|
|FE12||Critical +10||Class skill of the Berserker class. Not listed.|
|Learnt at Level 5.|
Learnt at Level 15.
Critical Evade -5
|Learnt at Level 5 and above.|
Learnt at Level 15 and above.
Innate bonus from the class. Not listed.
Innate bonus from the class. Not listed.
|Base Class||Promotion Method||Promoted Class|
|Use a Hero Crest on a Level 10+ Brigand or Pirate.||Berserker|
|FE7||Brigand||Use a Hero Crest on a Level 10+ Brigand.||Berserker|
|FE7||Pirate||Use an Ocean Seal on a Level 10+ Pirate.||Berserker|
|FE8||Brigand||Use a Hero Crest on a Level 10+ Brigand.||Berserker|
|FE8||Pirate||Use an Ocean Seal on a Level 10+ Pirate.||Berserker|
|Use a Master Seal on a Level 10+ Bandit or train a Bandit to Level 21.|
|FE11||Pirate||Use a Master Seal on a Level 10+ Pirate.||Berserker|
|FE12||Pirate||Use a Master Seal on a Level 10+ Pirate.||Berserker|
|FE12||Barbarian||Use a Master Seal on a Level 10+ Barbarian.||Berserker|
|FE13||Barbarian||Use a Master Seal on a Level 10+ Barbarian.||Berserker|
|FE14||Fighter||Use a Master Seal on a Level 10+ Fighter.||Berserker|
- Garret - An honorable bandit making a living from the war.
- Scott - A pirate who plagues the Western isles.
- Gelero - An echoing Bandit seeking Armads.
- Maggie - showy bandit seeking the treasure of Arcadia with Rose.
- Rose - flashy bandit seeking the treasure of Arcadia with Maggie.
- Possible Promotion for: Geese and Gonzales
- Hawkeye - The protector of the Nabata Desert.
- Fargus - Leader of the pirate group, Fargus's Corsairs.
- Georg - Spirit guardian of the Blazing Sword Durandal.
- Promotion for: Dart
- Gashilama - A laguz slave trader.
- Largo- The husband of Calill, a self-proclaimed world class Berserker.
- Possible Promotion for: Dean (Berwick Saga)
- Possible Promotion for: Darros
- Victor - The brother of Vincent.
- Vincent - The brother of Victor.
- Mustafa - A Plegian general.
- Algol - A Plegian member of the Grimleal.
- Morristan - A Ruffian wyvern hunter.
- Zanth - The Southron Sea King.
- Lloyd - The ostentatious brother of Llewelyn. (encountered as a boss; can be captured)
- Llewelyn - The flamboyant brother of Lloyd. (encountered as a boss; can be captured)
- Hans - A soldier and criminal from Nohr who is willing to do whatever it takes for success and power.
- Tarba - A bandit leader in the secluded desert realms. (encountered as a boss; can be captured)
- Possible promotion for: Arthur, Charlotte, and Gazak (encountered as a boss; can be captured).
- In The Blazing Blade, the map sprite for the Berserker class is different from that which is featured in the other two GBA titles. This iteration of the class is specifically designed to match Hawkeye's design.
- In Awakening, the NPC and Enemy Berserkers are more muscular as compared to the skinny model used by most playable units. The only playable character to use the larger model is Basilio. In the case of Vaike, he strangely utilises the skinny model, despite being featured with muscular models for all his other classes.
- If the generic enemy Berserkers are made playable through cheating devices, they will also switch to the generic player model.
- The Berserker class consistently surpasses, or ties with the General class for the highest Strength cap in any appearance, boss classes excluded.
- Notably in the GBA titles, enemy Berserkers never attack any villages. However, their unpromoted forms (the Pirates and Brigands) will attack villages if there are no player units within their reach to prevent them from doing so.
- In Awakening, the Berserker class is the only playable promoted class that cannot be reached by any playable character without the use of a Second Seal.
- This is due to the fact that the Barbarian class is the only class that is capable of promoting to the Berserker class normally. No playable character in Awakening starts off as a Barbarian.
- In Fates, Berserkers are the only Nohrian class that can learn a weaponfaire skill. The other weaponfaire skills (Swordfaire, Lancefaire, Bowfaire, Tomefaire and Shurikenfaire) are learned by the Swordmaster, Spear Master, Sniper, Onmyoji and Master Ninja respectively, all of them being Hoshidan classes.