Weapons are tools used primarily for battle in the Fire Emblem series. Weapons can be bought, sold, found in chests, and taken from enemy troops, among other methods; they can be used for battle roles or traded between characters, and are carried in a character's inventory or a supply convoy.
As is the case with items (one definition of which states weapons are items), there are multiple ways to define what exactly constitutes a weapon, the most typical being offensive capability while defined with a specific weapon type, and in most games making use of a weapon level or rank. Almost all direct damage-capable offensive implements can be undoubtedly said to be weapons (with very few exceptions), and most definitions of weapons also include staves (the primary exception being Mystery of the Emblem, whose inventory system does not consider staves as weapons despite still making use of weapon level). In many games of the series, matchups between weapons are affected by the weapon triangle and possibly one or more trinities of magic.
Weapons capable of dealing physical damage make use of the user's Strength and the target's Defense, and all weapon types that typically deal physical damage are sold at armories in games that include both the armory and vendor shop types. Weapons capable of dealing magical damage typically make use of the user's Magic stat or apply a special damage formula as well as the target's Resistance stat; while there are some weapons in normally-physical types that deal magical damage, weapon types that normally specialize in magical damage have long typically been sold at vendors in games where both armories and vendors exist, the primary exception being Fates where tomes are sold at armories despite the presence of vendors. Staves are typically non-offensive, many make use of the Magic stat, and are exclusively sold at vendors in games where both armories and vendors exist. (Other exceptions to magical implements in relation to shop type exist in The Sacred Stones, where an armorer with the supply convoy offers a shop with all basic weapons physical and magical alike albeit at inflated prices and only in chapters, and in Shadow Dragon and New Mystery of the Emblem, whose online shops were defined as armories but also offered fare one would expect from a vendor.)
In Fire Emblem Gaiden, weapons act like equipment, raising a unit's strength and lowering a unit's speed (if applicable) when equipped; units can attack without a weapon in Gaiden; when without an equipped weapon, they are treated as having a hit of 90. For Alm, when he promotes to a hero, these stat changes do not apply when he attacks with a weapon type (either sword or bow) that is not what he has equipped.
Weapon types in the Fire Emblem series
The below is a list of weapon types that have appeared in various games of the Fire Emblem series.
|Axe||Enemy only in Gaiden.|
|Tome||The Drained Tome of Genealogy of the Holy War may arguably also qualify in this category.|
|Staff||Not considered a weapon for purposes of inventory in Mystery of the Emblem.|
|Ballista||Enemy only in Mystery of the Emblem, the Jugdral games, and New Mystery of the Emblem.|
A subtype of bows outside Archanea.
|Dragonstone||Not formally defined as a weapon type until Shadow Dragon, and doesn't use weapon ranks until Fates.|
|Black magic||Separated from normal inventory.|
|White magic||Separated from normal inventory.|
|Strike (monster)||Enemy only. Not formally defined with a weapon type until Awakening, and doesn't use weapon ranks until Fates. Can be further subtyped into:|
•Claws (FE8, FE13)
•Fists (FE8, FE14)
|Breath||Enemy only outside Mystery of the Emblem and Fates. Subtype of stones and not formally defined as a weapon type until Awakening, and doesn't use weapon ranks until Fates.|
|Fire||One of the elements of anima in the GBA games.|
|Thunder||One of the elements of anima in the GBA games.|
|Wind||One of the elements of anima in the GBA games.|
|Light||Requires the Lumina skill in Path of Radiance, sharing its weapon rank with staves.|
|Dark||Enemy only in Genealogy of the Holy War.|
A subtype of tomes in Awakening and Fates.
|Knife||Requires the Knife skill in Path of Radiance, wherein it doesn't use weapon ranks.|
|Strike (laguz)||Doesn't use weapon ranks in Path of Radiance. Can be further subtyped into:|
•Claws (FE9, FE10)
•Beaks (FE9, FE10)
•Breath (FE9, FE10)
|Beaststone||Doesn't use weapon ranks until Fates.|
|Katana||Hoshido counterpart to the Nohrian swords.|
|Naginata||Hoshido counterpart to the Nohrian lances.|
|Club||Hoshido counterpart to the Nohrian axes.|
|Shuriken||Hoshido counterpart to the Nohrian daggers.|
|Yumi||Hoshido counterpart to the Nohrian bows.|
|Scroll||Hoshido counterpart to the Nohrian tomes.|
|Rod||Hoshido counterpart to the Nohrian staves.|
|A means that the weapon is available in that game, while a indicates the contrary.|
- In Fire Emblem Gaiden, gargoyles and balrogs are depicted in their battle sprites as wielding scythes, which do not exist as a proper weapon type in any Fire Emblem game. However, the scythe is a defined monster weapon in the remake.