With the December 17th release of Final Fantasy VIII on the Playstation Network, TLS felt now was the best times to look back on one of the most iconic Final Fantasies of the PSX era. It is with great pleasure that we begin hosting our translations of the Final Fantasy VIII Ultimania, done by Squall_of_SeeD. The “Sorceresses” and “Magic” entries however, were translated several years ago by ACF member DarkAngel, which were then only available until now in the Time/Ultimecia Plot FAQ SoS helped write a while ago.
The following translations below are from the first two pages of the five-page keyword section of the Ultimania, found on pages 41 to 45. Be sure to check back to see the rest in our series of FFVIII Ultimania Translations. A big thanks to SoS for all his hard work on getting us this information. With that, enjoy!
On the basis of a growing concern, the Kramers established a private soldier training academy. Those trained here are known as professionals for their elite combat ability. 12 years ago, at the beginning, Balamb Garden was established; Galbadia Garden and Trabia Garden were opened together next. Each Garden has a Garden master of administrative matters, as well as a headmaster of academic affairs. Balamb Garden functions as the main campus and sets the example; entry into Garden is available to males and females between 5 and 15 years of age; the drive to improve one’s abilities is also an essential condition. After demonstrating sufficient ability under Garden’s instruction and receiving a campus’ approval, students 15-19 years old are eligible for graduation (graduation must be achieved by one’s 20th birthday, or they are dismissed from the school; remaining in the school after turning 20 is possible for graduated SeeDs). Many graduates are enlisted in armies around the world and actively involved in the war industry.
The central figure of the three schools. Wrapped in an atmosphere of freedom, conduct and attire are left to the discretion of the pupils. Counting the headmaster’s office and the Master Room, four floors comprise the school building, with the dormitories and cafeteria on the first floor, where pupils spend most of their time.
On the second floor are the classrooms and their tutorial panels, from which the campus network can be accessed. Because 24-hour training facilities are available, pupils’ interest in battle is high, and many take part in official grapple athletic festivals. Many students are also active in sports clubs they’ve formed.
This Garden is the largest of the three schools. With the headmaster and Garden master roles both filled by Martine, relations with the Galbadian government are very strong. Possessing a tradition of strict discipline, silence is maintained around the campus, such that even whispering is prohibited.
Uniforms are standard attire, and jerseys and headgear are wore during exercises. There is a skating rink within the school, and ice hockey and figure skating are common club activities. Because many graduates are placed in fortunate positions, large amounts of money and weaponry are donated to the school from the country, and there is aggressive investment in the facility.
The Garden in Trabia. Having the greatest school spirit, pupils have a strong sense of independence. During times of problematic behavior, instructors make pupils stand in a row and recite the motto, “Take Care of Oneself.”
Due to student council officials having difficulty drawing up a rule manual, the appearance of things is often that the younger generation is in charge. On the sports front, basketball is popular, and rallies are held regularly. The colors of their uniforms are unlike the other Gardens, having a light grey foundation.
Codename of the mercenaries employed by Balamb Garden. Consists of those pupils within Garden who possess the greatest ability, and handle duties such as combat support. In order to become a SeeD, one must pass the two-stage written and field exams (candidates qualify for examination at 15 years of age). Those recognized as SeeDs perform their duties in accordance with dispatch requests, while salaries — stipulated by SeeD rank — are payed in fixed periods. The SeeD name is derived from being brought up by Cid like seeds in gardens; they have a “fate” they shoulder, though not necessarily just as conducting themselves as mercenaries.
Said to have existed from time immemorial to the present day, the Witches are women who are said to have received their powers from the old god, Hyne. There is, however, no hard evidence to support this claim. Extraordinarily powerful, many witches have harbored ambitions to rule over the world — as a result, many people have come to equate the Witches with fear. However, there are also many Witches who have chosen to live a quiet life sheltered away from civilized society; as such, the actual number of Witches and the amount of power shared between them remains unknown.
The potential to become a witch is determined by one’s capacity to wield such power — their natural affinity for magic. This factor helps to determine Witch candidates for when a Witch passes on all of her power into the next Sorceress. The giving and receiving of power can be made between any two individuals — it not necessary for them to be related by blood. A Witch’s lifespan is the same as a normal human’s, however they cannot die until they have passed on their power to the next Witch.
A special power that can only be used by Witches. The magic that is used by human beings is referred to as para-magic. Discovered by Doctor Odine during the course of his Witch research, para-magic via junctioning GF is used by Balamb Garden.
While it is possible to use para-magic without prior training, without equipping a GF one’s power is limited physically, and cannot develop beyond normal parameters. However, in order to create forces capable of fighting without having to rely on the power of the GFs during combat, Galbadia Garden has instituted areas with special anti-magic force fields similar to those used in the D-District Prison.
Related to magic is an invention of Dr. Odine — the famous Odine Goods, which have a function that suppresses magical power.
Uniting an organism with a non-corporeal entity and magic. The magic of junctioning is practiced by those who equip G.F.s; the consciousness of one human can’t be connected to another without an intermediary with a special ability. If the Junction Machine developed by Dr. Odine is used to perform such a function, the same effect is achieved, though the device is currently still in the trial stages.
Someone whose mind is being junctioned to by another — in other words, the person on the receiving end of the junction — may experience a sensation like the sound of people chattering entering their head. However, the junctioned consciousness will likely be unable to put what has happened into words. In addition, the body of the person on the broadcast end of the junctioning will fall into a comatose state, with their consciousness gaining a clear view of circumstances on the end of the person they’re being junctioned to.
An effective method exists for the deliberate interference with a consciousness and junction magic, performed by means of accumulating specific materials that interfere in the transfer of powerful waves.
The worldwide jamming that spread 17 years ago. As all frequencies became filled with noise, and the radio waves that had been the routine means of communication became impossible to use. Presently, HD (Hyper Data) cables stretched along the underground are the primary means of communication, though areas are often cut off from the cable network due to battles and the behavior of monsters; not all areas above ground are connected. If the restoration of a radio wave-related facility is conducted, a brief radio broadcast is possible, but as it has no practical use, it is rarely performed.
Each possessing special characteristics and appearing in the forms of beasts and fairies, mighty autonomous energy bodies. Existing in specific places (energy fields), they can reside within objects and living organisms, and furthermore, may be junctioned, bringing 2 kinds of beings together. If the other organism possesses a comparable consciousness, most lose their solid forms and can only manifest for limited periods of time.
Equipping G.F.’s is possible through the magic of junctioning, substantially enhancing the body’s functions. However, the G.F. takes up residence in the mind of the person to whom it’s equipped; this person should be prepared for the loss of some memories. For that reason, the use of G.F.s has many voices of criticism, and within Garden, which trains battle professionals, Balamb Garden is the only school where the use of G.F.s has been approved.
A cycle said to have begun tens of thousands of years ago, a phenomenon in which monsters fall from the moon to the planet. The moon is the den of monsters, while humans inhabit the planet; a product of gravity, in a phenomena similar to the pull on the tides, when the moon’s surface reaches its saturation point with monsters, the group spills and falls to the surface of the planet below. The monsters fall like the tears of the moon, and are not incapable of causing enormous damage to the surface sufficient to destroy an entire nation, depending on the scale of the event. As well, the natural terrestrial flora and fauna in an ecosystem may change drastically; many are the creatures that have been changed by the touch of the monsters of the moon.
In modern times, high-tech science is able to predict where the Lunar Cry will fall, but a perfect method of controlling it has not been established. For that reason, the existence of the crystalline object known as the “Crystal Pillar,” which is capable of inducing the Lunar Cry, is extremely dangerous.