A Theory on Continuity in Final Fantasy

Discussion in 'Square-Enix' started by Keyblade Spirit, Feb 23, 2012.

  1. Keyblade Spirit Chaser
    Premium

    Joined:
    Aug 1, 2007
    Messages:
    2,454
    Gender:
    Male
    Local Time:
    6:11 AM
    I got thinking about the Final Fantasy series and just figured that this all made too much sense not to have been thought of before. However, I couldn't find an already written version, so I made one myself. Figured I'd post it here because I'd like to get some feedback and this is the Square Enix section, after all.

    Before we begin, I'd like to note that this stems mostly from the fact that two specific genres exist in the Final Fantasy series. Science fiction and, obviously, fantasy. From here on, there will be unmarked spoilers, so look away now if you don't want anything spoiled.


    Now, Final Fantasy I sets everything up. It's a world where magic is predominant over technology, but it is clear through Lufenia and many old ruins that technology was dominant earlier in the world's history. In particular, the Temple of Wind in the original NES version was depicted as a satellite in space. The Warriors of Light also discover the airship at one point, another clue to the world's technologically advanced history. The plot after defeating the Fiend of Wind and lighting up the last Crystal consists of the Warriors of Light being sent 2,000 years back in time and defeating Chaos, breaking the cycle that Garland started and setting the world back to normal. Based on the original NES version, the world only goes back to normal from the point where the Warriors went back in time. This is what my theory is based on, not the remakes where it goes back to normal all the way, rendering the whole game more or less noncanon.

    After that, it splits into two distinct continuities.

    In the first continuity, the airship is destroyed or stops working before anyone finds it and the story continues with magic as the dominant force. This leads to FFII, to III, IV, V, IX, and XII, all of which hold a distinctly "fantastic" nature to them.

    In the other continuity, once the Stable Time Loop is resolved, someone finds the airship that the Warriors of Light discovered and uses it to finally get to the northern continent, where he finds Lufenia and discovers more technology that they used. From there, technology became predominant, leading to Final Fantasy VI where Magitek has been developed because "real" magic has sort of gone away. After this, things get a bit more complicated due to implications that may or may not be purely coincidental.

    Final Fantasy X (and, by extension, X2) is heavily implied to take place in the same universe as Final Fantasy VII (and all spin-offs thereof), but on a different planet and as many as several thousand or even millions of years before. For example, the airship that Cid uses in Advent Children is very clearly based on the airships of Spira. The character named Shinra, therefore, is likely an ancestor of the Shinra family we know and love. A reference is also once made to using the planet's (Spira) "soul energy" for power, something that we saw become reality in Final Fantasy VII through the use of Mako from the Lifestream as fuel. Now, this is where a huge amount of conjecture comes in. Given the extremely small but big enough to be significant similarities between the Junction and Materia systems, it's possible that Final Fantasy VIII is a sequel to FFX, taking place far into the future, but still long before anyone goes out to colonize FFVII's planet. It's even possible that VIII and VII take place at the same time, VII on "the Planet" and VIII on what was once called Spira. However, for the purpose of this theory, I'm going with VIII being long before VII. Ultimecia did her thing and was pretty much foiled, but managed to scare the world into working on exploring the universe a bit more.

    Eventually, VII happens and many years later, all the Materia and Mako that Shinra screwed around with returned to the Lifestream. Years pass and the events of VII (and its spin-offs) fade into myth and are eventually forgotten altogether. In time, the Lifestream manifests as fal'Cie, which eventually split into two main factions, one that stays on the planet, now called Pulse, and another that decides the planet is too dangerous and works to build Cocoon. By this point, many humans have split off and decided to go with the Cocoon fal'Cie. Finally, because Materia and Mako have returned to the Lifestream, they have manifested in XIII as l'Cie sigils.


    So, what do you think?
  2. Machina Agito
    Premium

    Joined:
    Oct 5, 2007
    Messages:
    3,259
    Gender:
    Male
    Location:
    Anywhere
    Local Time:
    4:11 AM
    Except for the fact that you included XIII in this, which already has definite means of the whole world's creation...you've done an alright job at trying. The thing is, the majority of the Final Fantasy games are unconnected. X is connected with VII and II is connected with IX. That's all I can recall from the top of my head. Though III might be connected with I...I'm not sure since I could care less about FFIII. There's no need to connect Final Fantasy games together other than for use in Dissidia.

    Anyways, if you want to find some sort of link between all of the games, it's better just to look at Dissidia.
  3. Keyblade Spirit Chaser
    Premium

    Joined:
    Aug 1, 2007
    Messages:
    2,454
    Gender:
    Male
    Local Time:
    6:11 AM
    I actually thought of FFXIII's creation story as more of a myth than anything else. Did I miss something when I was watching all the cutscenes, or was something new confirmed in XIII2?

    As for how they're all more or less unconnected, I agree that the stories aren't connected, but that doesn't really mean that they don't share a history. The "Fantasy" continuity most likely takes place with huge time skips between stories which, as shown in the "Sci-Fi" continuity, may not actually be in sequence.

    And yes, Dissidia does tie them all together, but that's a really lazy way of doing it. I don't even think that Dissidia is really canon in the series. Yeah, you have WoL on the way to Corneria at after the 13th cycle, but it's still kinda iffy given that there were four Warriors of Light, not one.
  4. Machina Agito
    Premium

    Joined:
    Oct 5, 2007
    Messages:
    3,259
    Gender:
    Male
    Location:
    Anywhere
    Local Time:
    4:11 AM
    It's not explained so well in the English version of XIII. XIII-2 however does mention a goddess, who is real for XIII's universe, and proves the whole creation backstory behind it all.
    Caius has Etro's heart. Somewhat literally since if he dies, the Goddess dies which basically ends the world. Etro was also confirmed to have intervened in the ending of XIII which kept Lightning and the group from becoming crystal. Though that's the reason why the rest of XIII-2 takes place.

    I know what you mean. Though I think Final Fantasy is more of a sort of...style I suppose that's like a story being retold over and over with various interpretations. Of course, that kind of view is exactly how XIII, Versus, and Type-0 are(were) being created so maybe it's not the best metaphor. Hm. While it is fun to think of ways how they could all be connected together, the games really aren't appart from sharing similar elements(save for a few exceptions).

    Also, I'd like to think Dissidia is canon for FFI. Not for the other games but just for that specific one. Until it came out there wasn't really a characterization for WoL or too much backstory for the whole game. It didn't need it, but the way it was presented in all the extra...stuff, made it feel like it was truer to FFI was than the original game.
  5. Patman No Ctopus
    Premium

    Joined:
    Oct 19, 2010
    Messages:
    1,265
    Gender:
    Male
    Location:
    France
    Local Time:
    12:11 PM
    Same as Machina, I don' t think we' re supposed to look too much into the few tie-ins, they' re probably nothing more than insider jokes or shoe-horned fan-service. When Vagrant Story was released in Europe Matsuno said in an interview that Valendia and Leá Munde were actually part of Ivalice, not far from the places shown in Final Fantasy Tactics. I read that interview myself in a French magazine back then. Matsuno confessed since then that what he said that day was pure fan-service, meant to advertise the game, and that in his mind Vagrant Story isn' t linked to Ivalice at all, even though Vagrant Story and Final Fantasy Tactics share Alazlam J. Durai as a "narrator".

    http://finalfantasy.wikia.com/wiki/...2_and_Vagrant_Story_are_not_in_the_same_world

    Whatever Matsuno might think FF XII established these connections as canon, but then the Ogre Battle games made by Quest (the team behind FFT) also share connections with Ivalice such as the Zodiac Stones. Should those non-SE games be part of your big FF picture ? Also Seiken Densetsu, Mystic Quest, Ehrgeiz, the Cristal Chronicles series and the many Chocobo games have many FF tie-ins, make of that what you will. Anyway, if you have fun trying to Link them all somehow then by all means knock yourself out (see what I did there ?).
  6. Sforzato† Banned

    Joined:
    Nov 28, 2009
    Messages:
    686
    Local Time:
    6:11 AM
    Might have overdone it a bit, but it's an interesting read.

    My hypothesis boils down to there being a single universe, and a single (or one extra in the case of IX) world where all the games take place; they're just in totally different time periods. It makes sense considering that the games share common deities, combat systems, and technology, which are conceivable carry-overs no matter how large the generation gap. Add to it the fact that such destructive forces are at work in each game, no less under the control of ordinary people, and it's easy to imagine that entire civilizations could be wiped out and replaced with the next generation, or one like it. This might account for different technological focus between the games, e.g. the similar-yet-different fantasy/sci-fi settings of Final Fantasies VII and VIII. As for the different religions and technical terms... Well, those change between generations in the real world. No reason to believe they couldn't do the same for FF. The only exception in this would be the Ivalice series, although that was quickly established as a fantasy world regardless. That is, a fantasy within a fantasy (potentially; or maybe just a totally different fantasy).

Users Viewing Thread (Users: 0, Guests: 0)