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Early Material Files Worldview & Terminology – p. 523-525 of the Final Fantasy VII Ultimania Omega

by August 11, 2009 11 comments

Another Hypothesis

[Jenova]

Signifies a certain region of the brain, or genes. The name is taken from “Jenova”, a book left behind by a race known as the Ancients. Normally it isn’t used, but rarely there are people in whom it awakens naturally.

[Jenova (book)]

A book said to have been written by the Ancients. In legend known as both the Book of God and Book of the Devil, the reason for which lies in its remarkably precise and mysterious contents. The book is about the brain (or genes) of living beings, and apparently it details everything about the unknowns of the human brain (or genes). However, even if it does contain all that information, understanding it is a different matter entirely… Further, there exists many books which appear to be forged imitations of Jenova (it is plainly obvious that the majority of these are pure fiction).

[Ancients]

To be exact, a race which once existed and are now extinct (or died out gradually). Are said to be the race who wrote the Book of Jenova, and the race who created materia. According to legend they could use magic without materia, and had an advanced magical civilization, but the truth has been lost in the passage of time. It is thought that the normal race also existed at that time, and that there were wide-ranging exchanges between them, or that they were made into slaves (or that this was different based on region, and that both happened). Because it is still believed that they could use magic inherently, it is rumored that people who harbor supernatural abilities are their descendants.

[Thaumaturge]

A name given those whose Jenova has awakened. Used to denotes those with special senses ordinary humans do not have, regardless as to whether the abilities are innate (such as Aerith or the Ancients) or acquired (such as SOLDIER or Sephiroth). The abilities of the Thaumaturge vary, but they share a common ability to be drawn to and sense one another. Those especially skilled in these abilities are sensitive to the thoughts of others and to natural phenomena, and are able to sense clearly in regards to other Thaumaturge. For example the Turks, experts at searching out Thaumaturge, are skilled at such, as is Aerith.

[Materia]

materia

An item, which human thought from Jenova that is only materialized based on a certain principle. By a ‘certain principle’ this means, for example, about fire or about water.

[Promised Land]

Handed down in another form, the Book of Jenova states that “those whose Jenova had been awakened by mako energy gain an acute sense for mako energy, and seek out even greater mako.”

[Sephiroth]

sephiroth-face

A man who had his Jenova artificially awoken using the power of mako energy. His original personality is extremely brutal and cruel, with a strong interest in destruction and slaughter. He also possesses a powerful will and ego, calm judgment and a sharp mind. However, he succumbs to mako addiction and usually suffers withdrawal symptoms. Any normal person would have be crippled at this point, but for some reason he is a unique exception: it was only his madness that was amplified, while he retained his composure.

[Mako Energy]

The life force of the planet. Shinra bathes SOLDIER operatives directly with this pure energy. Those who have been bathed in mako gain superhuman physical strength, vitality, and healing abilities, and their dormant Jenova becomes easier to awaken. However, when the energy runs out they take various mental damages, such as rapid weakness, anxiety, fear and loneliness. Also, though it is actually already known that it has addictive effects and withdrawal symptoms, and that if overexposed people will turn into something not human, Shinra continue to infusing SOLDIER with mako energy like stoking coal into an engine.

[Aerith]

aerith-face

Can inherently use Jenova. To her, this is completely natural, but because of it she is said to be a descendant of the Ancients, and is targeted by Shinra to use in their research.

[Hojo]

One of the people who read the Book of Jenova.

hojo-render

[ White Tower ]

A 2 meter tall white stone tower in a grass field, where the lore of Holy is handed down for all eternity. In the past this grass field had been the site of a massive city where many people lived, but in a single night it was completely wiped out. Due to the forbidden black magic, “Disintegrate”. Holy was created as the absolute defense against dangerous magics such as Meteor.

* The biggest differences are Jenova referring to an ability, and the existence of the ‘Thaumaturge’. Perhaps looking at the game from this perspective is another way of enjoying it?

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11 comments

  1. S and G
    #1 S and G 12 August, 2009, 00:59

    An interesting read. Thanks again for bringing us this, Hito. There are quite a few odd (or odd to us veterans of the original) concepts. I find Sephiroth’s early character strange as it kinda rams home how powerful but collected he was as an individual before the whole Nibelheim incident. And Jenova as an ability? That was cool to read. There didn’t eem to be much change with the whole Spirit Energy idea except that it the universe could use it to give birth to alternate universes. Hmmm….

    Reply to this comment
    • Makoeyes987
      Makoeyes987 Author 12 August, 2009, 01:49

      Yeah, the big change regarding who/what Jenova was, surprised me. I love reading esoteric stuff like this. It certainly goes to show how much thought and time went into development for this game.

      And who knows, we may see some of these ideas/concepts again in another Compilation title. The whole universe/spirit energy thing reminded me of Lucrecia’s/Shelke’s monologue in DC regarding the universe, Omega, and Spirit Energy.

  2. ForceStealer
    #2 ForceStealer 12 August, 2009, 02:15

    Wow, that was really fascinating, thanks a lot. That’s really interesting about how different Jenova is. Makes you wonder how they made the leap from being a part of your mind to an alien…

    And Midgar encompassing all of Tokyo? Certainly doesn’t look it…

    The way they talk about SOLDIER and magic makes it sound like, either SOLDIER can cast magic without materia, or materia are just very hard to use. But the symptoms of mako addiction being part of regular SOLDIER seems to have been transferred to Deepground.

    Reply to this comment
  3. OWD
    #3 OWD 12 August, 2009, 23:22

    Oh awesome. I love these. Thanks, hitoboy.

    I actually like the idea of Sephiroth being inherently destructive, which is what I thought was really the case before CC. The whole “mad” but composed is kind of awkward — not translation wise, but I just don’t get the whole “calm judgment & composure” + “amplified madness” in the same sentence. LOL @ mako addiction/withdrawal.

    Not a whole lot of changes though, minus Jenova. I’d love to read more on her. What exactly do they have on her (not necessarily from early files)? I’d rather get somethign on Jenova than the pointless Case of _____. Yuffie’s was lame, for example.

    Reply to this comment
  4. Frostwave
    #4 Frostwave 16 August, 2009, 22:17

    Some interesting stuff here.

    Thanks for translating this! (=

    Reply to this comment
  5. Fern
    #5 Fern 8 September, 2009, 20:10

    Thank you for this translation!

    These are fascinating concepts. I enjoyed these early material files a whole lot more than some of the other additions to the FF7 compilation. Jenova as an ability and a part of the brain, activated by mako energy, is awesome as is the concept of Sephiroth’s mako addiction to explain his villainy and the Turks being able to sense people with their Jenova awakened. I would love to see these ideas used somewhere else, be it in future FF7 sequels or in other FF games. But I must say that I’m glad that they didn’t go with the term “Thaumaturges”.

    Reply to this comment
  6. angelina jolie
    #6 angelina jolie 10 September, 2009, 18:06

    I love your site. 🙂 Love design!!! I just came across your blog and wanted to say that I

    Reply to this comment
  7. Tappymint
    #7 Tappymint 21 October, 2010, 13:37

    Ah, this means what Sephiroth read in the Nibelheim mansion was actually that godforsaken book.

    Reply to this comment
  8. Wostvely
    #8 Wostvely 24 October, 2010, 21:35

    Thanks for translating.
    The idea of the ancients sounds like chrono trigger to me, just like the kingdom of Zeal and the earthbound ones.

    Reply to this comment
  9. Mr. Ite
    #9 Mr. Ite 6 May, 2011, 14:15

    The idea of a “Forbidden Black Magic” called “Disintegrate” wiping out every one who lived in “The White Tower of Holy” sounds too good to forget about. FFXVI, please?

    Reply to this comment
  10. Orah
    #10 Orah 1 September, 2013, 23:52

    i would have liked some more insight on sephy…: (

    Reply to this comment

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