Final Fantasy XV (was Versus XIII)

I don't quite get how Ardyn helps to eliminate the Star Scourge. Yes, he absorbs a bunch of it in order to match Noct, but there's more of it in the world than ever under his rule. It's not like he draws it all in to face Noct. Shouldn't the end result be that Ardyn is gone, but the world is screwed anyway, because there are more demons than ever?
 

Makoeyes987

Listen closely, there is meaning in my words.
AKA
Smooth Criminal
I don't quite get how Ardyn helps to eliminate the Star Scourge. Yes, he absorbs a bunch of it in order to match Noct, but there's more of it in the world than ever under his rule. It's not like he draws it all in to face Noct. Shouldn't the end result be that Ardyn is gone, but the world is screwed anyway, because there are more demons than ever?
Because Ardyn becomes one with the Starscourge. By him constantly absorbing it, he eventually became the Starscourge incarnate.

Bahamut's goal was to make Ardyn think he had a special ability to absorb the malady into his body and save people. By continuously doing this, it eventually merged with him due to the sheer volume of it he absorbed and he became the Starscourge's nexus.

Then, Bahamut made it to where the last of the Lucian line, Noctis, would be taken into the Crystal of the planet Eos, and the Ring of the Lucii would become replete with the power of the crystal. With that much light energy, Noctis would be able to destroy Ardyn at the cost of his own life. The two forces would effectively cancel each other out. The darkness of the Starscourge consumed by the light of Eos' crystal, gathered and concentrated by Noctis. That's why Noctis was sleeping in the crystal for 10 years. To gather the power of the light necessary to defeat Ardyn and purge the Starscourge.

Had Ardyn not become the nexus of the Starscourge, the plan would fail because there wouldn't be a target to strike.
 

The Twilight Mexican

Ex-SeeD-ingly good
AKA
TresDias
Here's all the summary/translation info I've seen about "The Dawn of the Future":

https://autumnstwilight.tumblr.com%2Fpost%2F184431791853
https://higharollakockamamie.tumblr.com%2Fpost%2F184500373537
https://higharollakockamamie.tumblr.com%2Fpost%2F184526914297
https://higharollakockamamie.tumblr.com%2Fpost%2F184546855277
https://autumnstwilight.tumblr.com%2Fpost%2F184453133948
https://higharollakockamamie.tumblr.com%2Fpost%2F184568952517
https://higharollakockamamie.tumblr.com%2Fpost%2F184616509822
https://higharollakockamamie.tumblr.com%2Fpost%2F184641133067
https://autumnstwilight.tumblr.com%2Fpost%2F184458988143
https://autumnstwilight.tumblr.com%2Fpost%2F183762261593
https://autumnstwilight.tumblr.com/post/184495479298/dawn-of-the-future-summary-lunafreya-part-1-of

https://autumnstwilight.tumblr.com/post/184508038383/dawn-of-the-future-summary-lunafreya-part-2-of

https://autumnstwilight.tumblr.com/post/184546837068/thanks-for-continuing-to-put-up-with-us-p-so

https://autumnstwilight.tumblr.com/post/184531810328/dawn-of-the-future-summary-noctis-part-1-of-2

https://autumnstwilight.tumblr.com/post/184621823198/dawn-of-the-future-summary-noctis-part-2-of-2

https://higharollakockamamie.tumblr.com/post/184434824622/dawn-of-the-future-throne-room-scene

https://higharollakockamamie.tumblr.com/post/184454258347/bahamut

https://higharollakockamamie.tumblr.com/post/184469216357/ardyn-and-bahamut

https://autumnstwilight.tumblr.com/post/184497255913/dawn-of-the-future-thoughts

https://autumnstwilight.tumblr.com/post/184507162678/so-this-came-up-in-a-discussion-but-does-ardyns

https://autumnstwilight.tumblr.com/...n-it-is-mentioned-bahamut-wanted-to-use-terra

https://autumnstwilight.tumblr.com/...-you-very-much-for-giving-us-summaries-of-the

https://autumnstwilight.tumblr.com/...lo-thank-you-for-giving-some-summaries-of-the

https://autumnstwilight.tumblr.com/...eard-that-ravus-was-at-the-wedding-as-well-in

https://autumnstwilight.tumblr.com/...now-that-dawn-of-the-future-has-turned-out-to

Additional summary of "Episode Luna" and "Episode Noctis":
https://www.mognetcentral.com/threads/final-fantasy-xv-general-news-thread.3288/post-70370
 

Makoeyes987

Listen closely, there is meaning in my words.
AKA
Smooth Criminal
Final Fantasy XV is the perfect example of a story that's so amazing and massive in its scope, it just can't sustain itself. It wants to tell so much but it just doesn't have the time.

If this were the early aughts, these stories would be spread out across the PSP, Nintendo DS, another PS game and maybe a mobile game to take advantage of all the sequel material that exists in here.

But times have changed, evidently.

FFXV sold incredibly well, so the DLC cancellations weren't a matter of profitability. Wasn't the problem that S-E wanted to move on with Luminous Studios and Tabata chose to leave rather than abandon the work he put time in? If so, I can see why. There's a lot in this, and it's all amazing. But it would take so much time, money and resources to make these DLC episodes that FFXV would go on for at least another year and a half, at least.

I wouldn't mind that personally but obviously someone upstairs at S-E did.

In terms of the plot, I will say one thing. This novel fleshed out so many dangling plot threads, it essentially weaved a brand new sweater alongside the original. This story gave some very interesting new details of the lore and scenario of XV that we would never have known otherwise.

One thing I will say is, this novel pretty much cements how much unrealized and wasted potential Lunafreya had in XV. It's sad and bizarre that the moments Lunafreya's character shines brightest and are most interesting are all in segments outside of the main game in FFXV. Luna's character is the biggest casualty of the Tabata restructuring that went on with Versus XIII to get the game out on a timely schedule. The examination of her character, the showcase of her battle prowess, and amazing determination just... Are lost in FFXV proper. To those who only gave a cursory glance at FFXV or only played the Day One edition, she's nothing but a flat, 2-D character who's poorly written and their romantic ties to Noctis are shallow, at best. It's a shame, cause her chapter was extremely interesting, given how it confirms the gods did give Ardyn the ability to absorb Starscourge and she evidently was bequeathed the same gift hundreds of years after. The gods seem capable of containing the Starcourge but not outright eradicating it. And apparently, recently daemonified people can be reverted back.

Kinda brings new context in Somnus' "burn them all and let Bahamut sort them out" approach. :mon:

The revelation that Bahamut's role in the Astral War wasn't just in defeating Ifrit, but he was in fact ready to Tera Flare the entire planet, offers a glimpse into his absolutist line of thinking. Which was already displayed in XV, way back even during the "Omen" trailer with Regis and the Crystal. Bahamut may appear noble, but he is not the one to fuck around with, since he holds not a single fuck for the well-being of the mortals beneath him. As the novel says, humans are nothing but flowers in his garden, and now the garden is diseased. So, it's time to burn it all down and start anew. And the fact he's so vain that he chose the leader of the Luciian line based on him being in his image is just, fucking telling.

Also, to clarify since this needles me to no end. The revelation regarding Bahamut's role in the Astral War, isn't a "retcon." It's an addition to the story. Nothing is retroactively changed or re-written from the past story. The established history of what was depicted and told in FFXV remains in tact. The story now just expands the story to reveal that's only a lie. That's not a retcon, that's expansion of the story. And given Bahamut's depiction in the story, it's not wildly inaccurate at all. Stories can change with their expansion. A perfect example is the llore and history of the Jedi has developed far beyond what was shown in just the original Trilogy, yet that's not a "retcon." That's an expansion and explanation based on the continued lore and history of the series. Not everything that's different is a "retcon."

On anotehr note, I somehow missed this, but upon replaying I noticed that the game did hint that forging covenants with the Astrals was actually harming Lunafreya. I'm not exactly sure on the nature of this however. I originally thought it was just Lunafreya running herself ragged trying to evade the Empire all on her own, but Ravus was literally seeing Luna drain her life or something. Which explains his fury even further.

Also, maybe I confused the nature of the stories in this novel, but I thought this was going to explain the alternate ending and depiction of Episode Ignis. Yet Dawn of the Future still has Ignis blind, yet Ravus was at the wedding of Luna and Noctis? So, I'm rather confused on that episode's placement. I get that it triggers from the alternate choice of Ardyn choosing to deny and fight against his fate, so... Where does Ignis's episode fit?

Reading Episode Noctis really really really makes me wish they had made this along side Arydn because... The dialogue/moment between Ardyn and Noctis was just perfect. Noctis truly matured and developed and just. Him deciding to spare and abandon his desire to kill him was huge.

Likewise, Ardyn finally coming around to helping save the world and fight Bahamut was amusing and also a great moment for his character. I really love and respect his refusal to just, be redeemed and be a "good guy" yet he internally acknowledges the differences between him and Noctis and low-key admires him. Ardyn's heart wasn't completely lost to the darkness, and while he refuses to acknowledge it, the human part of him still beats inside. Like, let's be real. To make such an abrupt change, and willingly face and fight alongside the brother who betrayed you so massively takes a lot. The fact Ardyn was willing to swallow that hatred and move on, is pretty telling of Ardyn's true character.

What I'm wondering though, is what are the ramifications of Eos' Crystal being destroyed? The Crystal represents the "soul of the star" and gathers the memories of the dead into it. It is also from where the power of magic flows. With the loss of the Six and the Crystal of Eos, does Eos have a soul anymore? Will the planet be able to continue to grow and survive?

And what happened to the Starscourge? Presumably it was destroyed upon Ardyn's destruction in The Beyond fighting Bahamut, but what about the darkness that flowed out of Daemon Luna? Was it cleansed too?

And the big question is.

Where the fuck did the Starscourge come from? Who created it? Why did it exist?

I guess just as with Jenova, the world may never know. :desu:

Honestly, I much prefer this expansion of the lore and ending, more than the rushed conclusion XV gave us. This novel fleshes out the characters that were woefully neglected and explains the lore of the Eos far better, which makes sense given that you can tell a whole lot more story in the pages of a book, versus in a game. However it suffers from the fact it came afterwards and a lot of these events would be far better presented as either a game or some other visual depiction. Writing an epic RPG final boss fight is a lot harder to convey in text versus gameplay/animation. But I can excuse it. :mon:

This story also feels a lot closer to something that spun off of the Fabula Nova Crystallis series, than XV which ultimately had Noctis and his friends submit to the authority of their gods and in a way, "accept their focus." I never liked that, especially with all the hints screaming that Noctis' sacrifice wasn't necessary or fair. I guess that gave the story a fair and beautiful air of fantastical tragedy, and while it depicted that wonderfully, it just still felt wrong.

I really hope this gets released in English cause I would thoroughly enjoy reading it. On the Way to a Smile did, so I have hope. There's clearly a market for S-E's novellas so hopefully they'll tap into it.
 

Tashasaurous

Tash for Short
AKA
Sailor Moon, Mini Moon, Hotaru, Cardcaptor Sakura, Meilin, Xion, Kairi, Aqua, Tifa, Aerith, Yuffie, Elena, Misty, May, Dawn, Casey, Fiona, Ellie
I really hope this gets released in English cause I would thoroughly enjoy reading it. On the Way to a Smile did, so I have hope. There's clearly a market for S-E's novellas so hopefully they'll tap into it.
I'm actually pretty confident that this book will get released in English. Probably not for the next decade like with On the Way to a Smile and A Turks Side Story(Lateral Turks Final Fantasy VII:) books did, but now that Yen Press not only had the rights to make the FFVII novels be printed in English as well as doing so with the Kingdom Hearts novels which two more are coming out this year in August and October(assuming they won't be delayed), I think they'll eventually do the same with Dawn to the Future which, after reading summaries on it makes me want to buy the FFXV Novel now too!
 
AKA
The Engineer
This reminds me of when one of my graphic design profs talked about the concept of controlling your artwork and not letting it get away from you. Creators naturally come up with a lot of ideas, but at some point in the workflow they have to stop coming up with new ideas and polish the ideas they already have so they can get a complete product in to their customer.

It feels like this didn't end up happening with the Fabula Nova Crystallis collection as a whole. Everything that started in that "universe" just kept getting spun and spun out well beyond what it seems the orrignal scope of the games were. I'd go so far as to say that this seems to be a common problem for the creators of the FF games in general, it just wasn't quite so obvious a problem when creating game assets weren't anywhere near as complicated or involved as it is today.
 

Tashasaurous

Tash for Short
AKA
Sailor Moon, Mini Moon, Hotaru, Cardcaptor Sakura, Meilin, Xion, Kairi, Aqua, Tifa, Aerith, Yuffie, Elena, Misty, May, Dawn, Casey, Fiona, Ellie
I think we can safely say that FFXV is not part of the Fabula Nova Crystallis anymore since it was changed from Versus XIII to XV and that it's in it's own Universe.
 

Ryuman

Pro Adventurer
AKA
Pointlessname, Pointer
XV decided to shy away from FNC's concepts as a whole, though you can still see the framework. Obviously this book brings it more into focus yet without the underlying mythology or even terminology I don't see how you could class it as FNC.
 

The Twilight Mexican

Ex-SeeD-ingly good
AKA
TresDias
Also, maybe I confused the nature of the stories in this novel, but I thought this was going to explain the alternate ending and depiction of Episode Ignis. Yet Dawn of the Future still has Ignis blind, yet Ravus was at the wedding of Luna and Noctis? So, I'm rather confused on that episode's placement. I get that it triggers from the alternate choice of Ardyn choosing to deny and fight against his fate, so... Where does Ignis's episode fit?
I can't find it at this precise moment, but I think all they said with regard to a relationship between "Episode Ignis" and "The Dawn of the Future" is that DotF would show an example of how it was possible for Noctis to survive.

Verse 2 of "Episode Ignis" is still an alternate timeline from both DotF and the mainline universe. Ravus is dead in DotF, presumably having died the same way he did in the primary timeline.

So no, he wasn't at the wedding. He watched from The Beyond with Regis. In his ending narration, Regis mentions asking Ravus how he feels about it, but Ravus was apparently too emotional to say much.

Mako said:
Reading Episode Noctis really really really makes me wish they had made this along side Arydn because... The dialogue/moment between Ardyn and Noctis was just perfect. Noctis truly matured and developed and just. Him deciding to spare and abandon his desire to kill him was huge.

Likewise, Ardyn finally coming around to helping save the world and fight Bahamut was amusing and also a great moment for his character. I really love and respect his refusal to just, be redeemed and be a "good guy" yet he internally acknowledges the differences between him and Noctis and low-key admires him. Ardyn's heart wasn't completely lost to the darkness, and while he refuses to acknowledge it, the human part of him still beats inside. Like, let's be real. To make such an abrupt change, and willingly face and fight alongside the brother who betrayed you so massively takes a lot. The fact Ardyn was willing to swallow that hatred and move on, is pretty telling of Ardyn's true character.
I must confess, I wasn't too saddened that we weren't getting the rest of the DLCs as prose instead of DLCs until I read about those parts. Getting to hear Noct and Ardyn's English voice actors say these lines would have been a joy.

I will especially miss that we don't get to hear Ardyn's reply when several of the Lucii offer him warnings about how much it's going to hurt to take Noctis's place on the throne. They literally say stuff like "Your tainted body may crumble to dust"; "You may be burned alive"; "You will experience the pain of death" -- and Ardyn is just like "I've had worse."

Mako said:
What I'm wondering though, is what are the ramifications of Eos' Crystal being destroyed? The Crystal represents the "soul of the star" and gathers the memories of the dead into it. It is also from where the power of magic flows. With the loss of the Six and the Crystal of Eos, does Eos have a soul anymore? Will the planet be able to continue to grow and survive?
Sounds like a good starting point for sequels by fanfic writers. :monster:

Mako said:
And what happened to the Starscourge? Presumably it was destroyed upon Ardyn's destruction in The Beyond fighting Bahamut, but what about the darkness that flowed out of Daemon Luna? Was it cleansed too?
Yes. I was just looking at the lines about this. The book says -- in the moment following Bahamut's destruction -- the Crystal rose out of the already floating Citadel, higher into the sky, sucking in all of the miasma that had blanketed the world. Then it simply shattered.

It feels like a very traditionally FF moment, even if it's not entirely clear why it happens. Maybe the miasma was following Ardyn into The Beyond?

Mako said:
Honestly, I much prefer this expansion of the lore and ending, more than the rushed conclusion XV gave us. This novel fleshes out the characters that were woefully neglected and explains the lore of the Eos far better, which makes sense given that you can tell a whole lot more story in the pages of a book, versus in a game.
In several respects the novel does the fleshing out you describe, but the Chocobros and brotherhood theme went woefully neglected here instead. =(

Mako said:
This story also feels a lot closer to something that spun off of the Fabula Nova Crystallis series, than XV which ultimately had Noctis and his friends submit to the authority of their gods and in a way, "accept their focus." I never liked that, especially with all the hints screaming that Noctis' sacrifice wasn't necessary or fair. I guess that gave the story a fair and beautiful air of fantastical tragedy, and while it depicted that wonderfully, it just still felt wrong.
I get feeling that way. That's probably what they were going for with it from the very early concept stage, though, what with the intended contrast with the "Versus" name.

I didn't follow Versus XIII as much as most Final Fantasy people, but wasn't it always quite loosely connected anyway?
Sort of? Versus XIII was always going to be in the "fantasy based on reality" setting, so the more overtly fantastical FNC elements were going to be altered into something more subdued (e.g the l'Cie became the line of Lucis, with a very different kind of Focus). Still, a version of Etro at the very least was going to be part of the setting, but she was removed at some point -- probably around the time it was decided that the game would no longer be part of the FNC.
 
It's not so much a retcon as if you hang your story on the hook that there is no easy answer for a problem, and then later say that there is in fact an easy answer, it makes the stakes of the previous story feel hollow, and make everyone look bad for not taking the aforementioned easy answer.

It's possible to do this well, but the explanation of how involves a fifteen page crash course in the storyline of Legacy of Kain.
 
Harder how? Goes from 'no easy answer to the Starscourge , the sacrifices must be made' to 'you don't need sacrifices, just kill God, which will get rid of the scourge for free.'
 

The Twilight Mexican

Ex-SeeD-ingly good
AKA
TresDias
Harder how? Goes from 'no easy answer to the Starscourge , the sacrifices must be made' to 'you don't need sacrifices, just kill God, which will get rid of the scourge for free.'
That isn't how it happened, though.

Killing Bahamut doesn't end the scourge. He has nothing to do with it. Ending it came from Ardyn casting Providence in Noctis's place, destroying himself. The same ritual and spell was still performed, just with the most unlikely person imaginable taking on the role of the sacrifice. And Noct still had to fight Ardyn prior to that.

So the same things (beating Ardyn, and someone who could endure the power transfer on the throne sacrificing themselves) still had to happen to get rid of the scourge -- in addition to the added difficulty of continued survival thereafter calling for simultaneously defeating their world's supreme deity on two planes of existence.

This was much harder than "just" killing Ardyn and sacrificing Noctis. :monster:
 
What does that mean to Noct, though? Not much, he's already faced and killed gods, he went to Insomnia with the full intent of dying in battle, who that battle was against doesn't matter to him. There's no extra twist or bite.

I'm not sure it is particularly unlikely Ardyn would make that choice, he doesn't care about his health or wellbeing, he just wants revenge for what was done to him. On finding Bahamut is ultimately responsible, of course he'd take that chance, it would be more out of character if he didn't.

On a different note, it's kind of interesting that Somnus named his capital Insomnia, essentially 'not Somnus'.
 

The Twilight Mexican

Ex-SeeD-ingly good
AKA
TresDias
@Clement Rage
Perhaps I misunderstood what you're taking issue with? You seem to be identifying it more as a matter of literary theme now while I thought you were focusing on plot mechanics.

That may be my fault, but -- in my defense -- you did incorrectly summarize the mechanics, and it has been known for over a year that this alternate story would be based on this image. Seems a little unfair to hold the theme against it essentially for not trying to be the opposite of what it meant to be, no?

I'm not sure it is particularly unlikely Ardyn would make that choice, he doesn't care about his health or wellbeing, he just wants revenge for what was done to him. On finding Bahamut is ultimately responsible, of course he'd take that chance, it would be more out of character if he didn't.
He's known for more than three decades, but that doesn't stop him from wanting to fight Noctis first in either timeline.

Clement said:
On a different note, it's kind of interesting that Somnus named his capital Insomnia, essentially 'not Somnus'.
It is definitely interesting. One must wonder if this was a secret admission that he knew it shouldn't belong to him.
 
I'm starting to think that maybe Bahamut had his Terraflare incident covered up, and did all those terrible things because he was scared of how future generations would judge him, if and when they do find out. Bahamut saw what he was doing with the kings and oracles as something that would earn him the gratitude and devotion of Eos' people, that they would care less about the methods he used, and Ardyn's selfless actions for the sake of the many sparked about as much jealousy and resentment on Bahamut's end as it did Somnus, that people are more prone to listening to an idealist than a god or a king who used extreme methods right off the bat, without searching for a better way. The God of War refused to admit his misguidedness and couldn't take it that humanity will never let go of it's classical sense of morality, that they will always judge him as a self-serving hypocrite and treat him no better than the daemons he wants exterminated. Over time, his already strong fear of such admonishment and his obsession with destroying the scourge at any cost both got worse until finally he decides to destroy everything, just to escape the consequences of his making mistakes to cover up his biggest one. I guess this goes to show that even supreme gods can be afraid of how their people view them. It took being defeated by Noctis and Ardyn for the god to realize that all he did was give humanity more justified reasons to hate him, and he no longer deserves their worship and allegiance for thinking the greater good of Eos depended entirely on his arrogance and self-preservation. Bahamut had given in to fear, but accepting his and, by extension, the other Astrals' deaths with dignity not only allowed for the scourge to disappear forever, but also freed them from an eternity of enduring the profound guilt of mankind's scorn and disgust at them on their collective conscience. In the end, it was the Astrals who were the few that had to be sacrificed for the many.
Original Link

Also read this article I wrote about how the novel's events have come to coexist with the main canon; Dawn of the Future Past: Final Fantasy XV Epilogus.
 

Makoeyes987

Listen closely, there is meaning in my words.
AKA
Smooth Criminal
Wow, that was a good article!

Just a small correction, but this is actually the second time, Bahamut has been depicted as outright evil in a Final Fantasy. The first one was King of Bahamut, Brandelis from World of Final Fantasy. He was an evil Bahamut... A member of the Exnine Knights.

Granted there's more than one singular Bahamut there but yeah. He still is one :mon:

But yeah, very interesting article, thanks for sharing.
 
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