Mind Blowing Moments in Final Fantasy
SPOILER ALERTS!!!! Keep in mind the following is intended to look at very specific key moments in Final Fantasy, so if you don't know certain twists, turn away now and never look back.
Those of you who would like to be in awe, continue down.
The following is not in any particular order or ranking. These are just nice little rifts of literary genius.
1. Sephiroth's sword and it's relation to the female protagonists.
Final Fantasy 7 has one of the most complex love triangles in all of narrative history. Cloud, Aeris, and Tifa make up a large part of the plot and what's unfortunate is that both Aeris and Tifa are likable, and even are friends. There wouldn't be so many profound arguments about the two if they both weren't strong candidates for Cloud's heart. The makers were clever in masking what would befall Aeris and making the video game player believe she was being setup for Cloud, and still being able to use the latter half of the game to develop and reveal Cloud's feelings for Tifa. What's fascinating in all this reveal goes back to Aeris' death.
Aeris became all too aware of her destiny as the only Cetra and left the group to pray for holy to prevent the forbidden spell of Meteor. Sephiroth headed off to find her and even attempted to manipulate Cloud into killing her. It doesn't seem that Sephiroth had hatred for Aeris, but that she just happened to be in his way.
However, in a flashback we realize that Tifa angered by the events in Nibelheim finds Sephiroth's stray sword and attempts, though very out of her league, to overtake the master villain. She ends up crashing down the stairs of the Jenova sanctuary (much like the holy materia in the Forbidden City) and lays unconscious, but more like a sleeping beast who eventually will help defeat Sephiroth (again, much like the holy materia).
By the point of Tifa holding the sword in the flashback, there's been so much story development that Aeris' death, though not forgotten, is not so much in our mind for the sword. These female counterparts are much more intricate than would seem on the surface.
2. Is Squall actually dead?
The case for Squall being dead in Final Fantasy 8 is a surprisingly valid theory. The belief is that during Squall's encounter with Edea when an ice spell is cast, that Squall fell to his death and the rest of the game is his subconscious or a dream playing out until the end. There is also the case that what happens after the ice spell is a completely different timeline, or the original timeline of defeating Ultimecia, except with time she was able to intersect the rising hero and the second timeline that we follow at the beginning of the game reveals how the sorceress succeeds in vanquishing the hero. It's time travel, the mind, and our narrative expectations all being turned into a crazy amount of possibilities.
Part of the belief that he is dead is that the ending of the game focuses so much on cut scenes that happened up to the point when Squall is hit with the ice. Therefore there is the possibility in the real first timeline Squall succeeds, but in another the sorceress knew what would happen and therefore killed Squall. Consider this ending video.
3. Kefka's Love for Celes Chere
Final Fantasy 6 villain Kefka is honestly the god of all villains. He acts as the second in command to Gesthal the emperor, but quickly sharpens his abilities as a Magitek knight. At the beginning he is somewhat puny, qualms over sand on his boots, then upgrades to maliciously poisoning Doma. What's seemingly darker than what we at first see, is the Magi War from 1,000 years ago and the three statues on the floating continent representing Gesthal, Kefka, and Celes. While on the floating continent, Kefka essentially asks for Celes to be his bride for the new world he wants to create for Magitek knights, for the more perfect race. It's a queer reality of eugenics, and Kefka hints at his attraction and dismay of Celes throughout the first half of the game. He even tells Celes that ruling the planet is her "birthright." Kefka overthrows the current ruling power, Gesthal, then proclaims himself as the new order... and what the game suggests is that through Celes he would have been able to create Kefka spawns of perfect magic users.
Unfortunately for him, Celes doesn't see eye to eye.
Throughout the first half of the game, Kefka desperately believes that Celes is a traitor to the Returners. He wants to believe she is bad, that she is plotting against the heroes because her actual nature is like his. Celes has to existentially question who she really is beyond how she was created and determined to be from the Empire. She is in a sense a dual protagonist with the other female lead Terra, who also has compelling magical abilities, but from being an Esper. Terra reawakens herself after removing the crown on her head, Celes comes into fruition by standing against the Empire which ends in her being locked up in South Figaro where though imprisonment she finds her true love.
Kefka's plan for how to sustain Magitek knights is ruined by Celes taking the sword that is offered to her to stab her friends and instead uses it to draw blood from Kefka. Then Kefka decides to take balance into his own hands.
A year later and into the World of Ruin, Kefka succeeds at being the god of the world, and he stands on his mighty tower of rubble and casts his light of judgment on the towns beneath him. Dragons ravage the planet along with other terrifying new monsters. And from the pits of being cast on an island, alone with only her maker Cid, Celes on pitiful square one is the catalyst to reunite the Returners to defeat Kefka. Not only that, but if Celes fails at keeping Cid alive, Celes attempts suicide but her heart changes at the last moment when she finds a bandana that reminds her of Locke. In the end, Kefka is killed by the catalyst of his love interest, and partly because of the real authentic love in her heart for Locke Cole... who Kefka may have haphazardly introduced to her through locking her up.
4. Sephiroth isn't the real one pulling the strings behind Final Fantasy 7; it's Hojo.
Hojo is Frankenstein and Jenova is his star pupil. Sephiroth just happens to have looked at the alien body, saw the name, and gone crazy not knowing his real mother was Lucrecia Cresent, his father was Hojo, and there were some Jenova cells involved. Hojo lets the events play out as he studies various special species such as Aeris the last Cetra, and Red XIII. What was Hojo really doing? Being a mad scientist who wanted to control the world. He works for Shinra where he can receive the proper funds for his experiments, but he probably would have been hired by Wutai if they offered him more -- he has no allegiance. Though in line with the Shinra president, he has no remorse for the president's death. Instead, he is frankly quite excited about the return of Sephiroth.
No, Jenova was not a Cetra. Scientist Gast found the real last Cetra, Iflana, and they had a child named Aeris. Hojo tracks down this family in Icicle Inn, he murders Gast, and holds Iflana and Aeris hostage. Hojo was the man behind the Jenova reunion theory. He could have just left it alone. And even with the coming wrath of meteor, rather than make plans to help the planet, Hojo injects himself with Jenova cells, but it's too late for him to have a masterful metamorphosis... like his son's.
5. Relm Arrowny Can Destroy Your Cartridge (Literally)
Ten-year-old Relm Arrowny of Thamasa is one of the most powerful characters in all of Final Fantasy lore. She wields a paintbrush and likes to take portraits of monsters which can end up attacking foes. She also comes from a town of magic users, so her magic stats are some of the best. What is fascinating about this character is that she breaks the fourth wall of the game. In one literary sense, she waves to the user at the beginning of battles. But the real breaking of fourth wall is a glitch; due to a lack of checking her functions in beta testing, in the original release of the game, Relm's sketch function could actually cause all kinds of malfunctions from erasing game data, giving the user all the best items, raising stats, freezing the game, and creating graphical mayhem. I once rolled the dice with this glitch and ended up with all the best items (times ten). But others i know ended up with all their data being erased.
Who is the greatest Final Fantasy character of all time?
6. Shadow is Relm's Father
Shadow in Final Fantasy 6 is a loner; he decides when he comes and when he goes. Depending on how you play the game, Shadow will enter your party or join the Emperor. He is a free lance assassin. If you play the game just right you'll enter into Shadow's dream state where he reveals his past. He doesn't comment much in person about who he is, what he dreams, and what here is headed. There are four dreams you can find in total by visiting inns. There is one last dream found in the World of Ruin.... and a sixth dream is available if you let Shadow die on the Floating Continent. Shadow's real name is Clyde, and he shared the name "Shadow" with his train robber friend Baram. Baram was unfortunately killed, but Clyde escaped to Thamasa. He ended up falling in love with a woman and fathered Relm, but left before his past caught up with him. Interceptor, the town dog, ends up following and staying by Clyde's side. Later, both Shadow and Relm can use the Memento Ring, which is said to be laced with the love of a departed mother -- Shadow's wife and Relm's mother.
In the sixth dream, Relm cries out to Strago, her grandfather, about where is her dad. The game developers considered having another dream sequence where Shadow revealed his face to Strago at a bar.
© 2013 Andrea Lawrence