Fire Emblem: Awakening takes place approximately 2000 years after the events of Fire Emblem: Shadow Dragon and the Blade of Light. In ancient times, the Fell Dragon Grima attempted to destroy the world. To stop Grima, the Divine Dragon Naga chose the ruler of the Halidom of Ylisse (known as the First Exalt) and granted them power through two magical objects: Falchion, a sword with the power to slay dragons; and the Fire Emblem, a magical shield. Using these, the Exalt struck down Grima, sending it into a long slumber. In the intervening period, the continents of Archanea and Valentia became known as Ylisse and Valm.
By the present time, the land of Ylisse is divided between Halidom of Ylisse, which continues to worship Naga, and is ruled by Exalt Emmeryn and defended by the Shepherds, her brother Chrom's militia force; the kingdom of Plegia, which worships Grima; and Regna Ferox, a country whose rulers periodically compete for dominance. Fifteen years prior to Awakening, the last Exalt of Ylisse, Emmeryn's father, waged a religious war against Plegia, which greatly damaged both countries and left bitterness on both sides. Ylisse has slowly recovered from the war thanks to Emmeryn's peaceful actions.