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Dissidia 012 Plot Analysis FAQ

by April 5, 2011 56 comments


• Was Gilgamesh summoned by Chaos or Cosmos?
Neither. As seen in the second story segment from Report 8, he just wandered in from the Interdimensional Rift, and, sensing Bartz, went looking for him. His Museum profile also alludes to this:

“Even Gilgamesh himself does not know whether he was summoned to this realm as a warrior of Chaos or just ended up in this realm after getting lost within the Rift. Regardless, he explores this world as he pleases, unconcerned with the battle of the gods.”


• What was Kain’s plan?
The claim has been made several times that Kain — and, thus, the plot of Dissidia 012 as a whole — is illogical because his plan was to kill his allies to save them from being wiped out by manikins. Depleting Cosmos’s forces, it’s said, thenjust created a situation in which he and several of his comrades were consequently wiped out by manikins — exactly what he was trying to prevent.

It is, furthermore, said that his plan was idiotic because the manikins could then just wipe them all out in the next cycle.

Neither of these points are a legitimate failure in the logic of Kain or the plot, though.

To begin with, Kain was desperate. As he said in Chapter 8, “There was hope in my actions. Not hope–but a gamble, perhaps. I took a risk to believe in a chance, rather than live as a pawn to disappear.”

In any case, Kain’s plan to kill his comrades ended up being part of Golbez’s plot to end the cycles of Dissidia during cycle 013 — a plot which would keep the heroes from being wiped out by manikins, as the plan the warriors of Chaos had to kill Cosmos (a plan Cosmos herself was in on, conspiring with Golbez) would require the heroes stay alive long enough to receive their crystals, rendering Cosmos vulnerable to death without resurrection.

In other words, even if Kain didn’t know Golbez had a plot, his plan was pivotal to that plot. And it was a plot which worked — so it was a damn good plan.

• Was Kain putting his allies to sleep or killing them?
While the dialogue in Lightning and WoL’s conversation from Chapter 5 refers to the warriors of Cosmos as being put to sleep, and though Cosmos says she can still sense them, they were certainly dead in any sense of speaking that matters. Running someone through with a spear, as Kain attempted to do to Lightning during Chapter 1, is going to do more than just put them to sleep.

Garland is a lot more straightforward about the matter when he confronts Lightning at the end of Chapter 1, telling her outright that “Most of your friends have already departed.”

While the beginning of Chapter 6 says that Kain was harboring his allies in the desert, this most likely means that he was hiding their bodies there so that they wouldn’t be destroyed by manikins or taken and altered like Jecht’s.

• Why didn’t Chaos’s warriors just blitz Cosmos’s with manikins during cycle 013?
Many have pointed out that swarming the heroes with manikins worked out really well during cycle 012, and so claim that the villains should have just done it again during cycle 013, thus, permanently annihilating them. The villains were not foolish, however, for not simply blitzing the warriors of Cosmos with manikins in the thirteenth cycle.

The villains deliberately let them live until the Shade Impulse portion of cycle 013 because they needed the heroes to acquire their crystals in order for it to be possible to deliver Cosmos an absolute death. In other words, they weren’t legitimately trying to kill them for most of cycle 013.

While it would have been a good plan to send all the manikins at their disposal at the heroes once they returned following Cosmos’s death in Shade Impulse, by then, they probably didn’t have many manikins left. At the end of cycle 012, Lightning and her team had succeeded in closing the rift the manikins were emerging from.

This is evident during the ending FMV for cycle 012 when the pink lights emerging from that rift dissipated after Lightning’s Zantetsuken swords flew into the crevice. Lightning had hurled her weapons over the heads of the advancing manikin horde as her last effort, keeping herself going just long enough to see that her team had succeeded before allowing her wounds to overtake her.

If anything, the only foolish thing Team Chaos did was not summarily execute Golbez at the beginning of cycle 013. In the first cutscene from Report 4, it was clear that the Emperor knew he had fed Kain intel regarding the cycle. Given the Emperor’s prominent place among the warriors of Chaos, he could have gotten the others to back him in taking Golbez down.

Not that it would be difficult for anyone to figure out what Golbez was up to. Sephiroth clearly figured it out during cycle 013 (as seen in Destiny Odyssey scene 32 from the first game), and he didn’t even have any memories of prior cycles.

• Why didn’t Lightning’s team commit suicide or kill one another before the manikins could kill them?
It’s been said quite a bit that the the six fallen warriors of Cosmos were foolish for not committing suicide or killing each other before the manikins could. However, their objective was to close that rift the manikins were coming through, and they were determined to fight until they had achieved this.


• Did Lightning’s team succeed in closing the manikins’ rift?
It’s rather easy to miss, but — as mentioned under the response to “Why didn’t Chaos’s warriors just blitz Cosmos’s with manikins during cycle 013?” above — Lightning’s team did, indeed, succeed in closing the rift the manikins were emerging from. Lightning’s Zantetsuken swords descend into the crevice from which the pink lights were emanating, and Lightning stays on her feet until she sees the pink energy dissipate behind the advancing manikin horde.

At that point, knowing she and her friends had succeeded, Lightning succumbed to her wounds and collapsed alongside them.

That Lightning succeeded is also confirmed by the text-only portion of Report 18:

“In the midst of battle, pawns
of discord discovered a door
where the experimental ‘failures’
had been discarded in the past.
They used the door to their advantage.

Pawns of harmony were pushed to
the brink of extinction in the
struggle against the ‘failures.’

But they did not give up. The
few pawns that had remaining
strength destroyed the door to
the Rift and sent the ‘failures’
to oblivion.

That was the path that led to
the Rift.”

Notice also that in the cutscene from Report 17 — which takes place at the Empyreal Paradox, where the manikins’ rift was located — that the portal is long gone.


• What was Emperor Mateus’s plan in cycle 013?
The Emperor’s plan was to use Jecht, who had been a warrior of Cosmos, as the means to ensure his own survival once Chaos eradicated everything.

Though he was brought over to Chaos’s side, Jecht still had a bond with Cosmos and the light, and, thus, when he fought Tidus, both of them received a crystal. However, the Emperor captured the light of Jecht’s crystal — one filled with Chaos’s power — for himself.

Due to Jecht’s allegiance with Chaos and his unwilling connection to darkness, the Emperor was able to use the crystal he created from that light for the same purpose as the crystals Cosmos had left with the heroes — to preserve himself after the death of the god whose side he fought upon: Chaos. Basically, by using the dark crystal Jecht’s bond with Tidus created, he was able to ensure that should Chaos disappear, he would still exist and be able to reshape the universe as he saw fit, becoming a new god himself.

This is explained by the Emperor during his conversation with Jecht in Shade Impulse scene 5:

Emperor: “You are wrong on one point, Jecht. You are not Chaos’s pawn.”
Jecht: “…What?”
Emperor: “You most likely don’t remember…but you were once a pawn of Cosmos.
Harmony and disorder are always arbitrary. You just happen to be on our side
now. You are a traitor, a body of the dark with a heart of light. So I set out
to use you.”
Jecht: “Use me?”
Emperor: “To make crystals–special ones suited for bodies of the dark. Light
was born when you faced your son. Then I took the light when you fought him.
Tremble in fear… Now I have powers the likes of which even gods can only
dream!”

It’s also explained by Mateus and Jecht’s in-game profiles under the Museum in Dissidia 012:

(From Mateus’s profile)
“Abandoning his mission as a warrior, he plots to rule the world. Realizing that he is powerless against a god through his observations of many battles, he places his machinations on hold.

Conditions turn to his favor during the twelfth cycle when he is successful in having Chaos’s powers endowed on the former warrior of Cosmos, Jecht. After the ritual purification, the Emperor guides the amnesic Jecht to form a crystal possessing the god of discord’s power and steals it for his use.”

(From Jecht’s profile)
Transferring the powers of Cosmos within him to Tidus, Jecht collapses, having lost all his might. His body should have faded away, but through the intervention of the Emperor, his body is infused with Chaos’s power. This act led to Jecht being reborn as a warrior of Chaos in the thirteenth cycle.

As with the other warriors of Cosmos, Jecht received Cosmos’s power during the twelfth cycle, and he was ready to manifest his crystal. But the flow of energy within him transforms due to his revival as a pawn of Chaos, giving birth to a crystal of darkness.”


• What were Kuja’s intentions in cycle 012?
Many players of Dissidia 012 have been confused by Kuja’s behavior and wonder whose side he was really on. We’ll clear that up now.

To begin, I’ll just present the answer to the question of which team he was trying to help: Cosmos’s.

How do we know this? First, Kuja informs Zidane that beating Chaos would cause all of his servants to fall too. He also tells Zidane that this works both ways for Cosmos’s team.

So, right here, Kuja has just given “the enemy” valuable information that he didn’t have to share in order to get Zidane to trust him. Zidane already trusted him.

Despite Kuja attacking the warriors of Cosmos when the Emperor, Kefka and Ultimecia show up, he wasn’t doing anything more than trying to protect them from being killed by the manikins.

Notice that with the villains on the scene, Kuja even tells Zidane to run: “Zidane, take your companions and go–.” He does so again when he fights Zidane: “You should probably run–before you no longer can.”

Now ignore the tone with which Kuja says that last one to Zidane and just look at what he’s actually doing. He told his supposed enemy to run away twice after — if this whole thing really were a trap to kill that enemy — the “plan” had worked? It doesn’t make sense.

Notice as well that Kuja tells Kefka to put the manikins away and says he’ll do the fighting himself. Fighting which he wins — and yet he still “fails” to kill not even one of the three warriors he’d just defeated before they escape.

It becomes clear from that alone that Kuja didn’t want Zidane and his companions to be defeated by manikins in this scene, so he decided to play the role of the treacherous schemer who lured them into a trap. This response to Kefka after the fighting ends cements that: “You think I let them slip through my fingers?”

Notice, as well, how depressed Kuja looks and sounds after the battle. In order to save Zidane and the others in that scene, he had to lose their trust.

Despite wishing for the victory of Cosmos’s team during cycle 012, his memories are manipulated by Kefka in cycle 013 and he becomes a vicious person bent on causing Zidane to suffer for most of the game.

It’s hinted in Report 1 and Chapter 1 that Kefka planned to alter Kuja’s memories in that way. Kefka says this at the very end of Report 1: “But don’t you dare think this is over. The real show? That will come after you lose to a Cosmos crony.” This, of course, happens when Kefka goads Kuja into fighting Lightning, who kills him.

After he falls in battle, Kefka makes the following comment: “The next time you fight, it’ll be study time! All over again! Oh, what kind of deliciously depraved memories should I fill you up with this time around?”

All of this information concerning Kuja is confirmed by his in-game profile from the Museum:

“Kuja had become uninterested in this world of endless battles where Chaos and his chosen continued to reign. Upon learning that Cosmos had instilled her warriors with the power to defeat Chaos in the twelfth cycle, Kuja decides to renege his mission and aid the warriors of Cosmos.

Unbeknownst to Kuja, Kefka had set a trap after learning of Kuja’s plans. Kuja and the warriors he aimed to assist were on the brink of being slaughtered when Kuja quickly takes on the role of a traitor. Having betrayed and assaulted those he aimed to help, Kuja is successful in allowing Cosmos’s warriors to escape. But this act forces Kuja to remain with the forces of Chaos.

Kuja receives purification after falling to Lightning, and is implanted with false memories by Kefka in the thirteenth cycle. These events lead to Kuja enjoying Zidane’s suffering, displaying his warped inferiority complex for all to see.

Despite these transgressions, Kuja freed Terra from Kefka’s control and comforted Cloud who was tormented over the thought of fighting a friend.”

Kefka’s Museum profile also confirms this:

“He holds no sense of camaraderie towards the other warriors of Chaos. He not only captured Kuja, who had refused to battle and planted false memories in him…”

It seems that Kuja does recover his memories during the Shade Impulse portion of cycle 013, however, as his true personality seems to emerge after being defeated by Zidane for the final time. His body even discorporates into white smoke there instead of dark smoke — the only time this happened for any warrior of Chaos, whereas white smoke pooled off of Lightning and co. as they were dying at the end of the Treachery of the Gods story mode.


• What were Sephiroth’s intentions in cycle 013?
The villains of Dissidia each held a personal goal that allowed them to overcome their differences in order to enact their plan to ensure Cosmos’s demise. One schemed the world’s return to the Void, while another wished its ultimate destruction, while others intended to survive the conflict’s end and fashion a new world with themselves as its sole ruler. But one particular villain’s goal was opaque compared to the rest…what were Sephiroth’s intentions within Dissidia? Did they go beyond merely settling his grudge against Cloud?

In Destiny Odyssey scene 50, Emperor Mateus and Ultimecia approach Sephiroth, hopeful in persuading him to join their plan in fashioning the demise of the gods. Sephiroth rebuffs their invitation and walks off. However, as seen in Cloud’s Destiny Odyssey, he clearly participates in Cloud obtaining his crystal, and goes so far to state that he led him to it … as if he intended and desired for Cloud to achieve his goal in the first place. Why would Sephiroth purposefully go forward with the Emperor’s plan of guiding the heroes to their individual crystals, after clearly stating he was not interested?

Sephiroth’s true intentions lie within his desire to be free of the conflict of the gods and allowed back to his originating world, so that he can continue to be the master of his own destiny. As stated in Destiny Odyssey II-7, Sephiroth sees the members of the conflict as “Mere puppets who cannot see their own strings.” In the previous cycle of conflict between the gods, Sephiroth was not content merely playing his role as an emissary of discord. At the end of the previous cycle, Sephiroth ended his own life to see what truth lied in a world he felt was full of illusions.

At some point, he became aware of the cyclical nature of the conflict, and believed that — were he real, and not a manikin — then despite his death, he would return again. As shown in Shade Impulse Chapter 3-2, Sephiroth did not fear his demise, believing that the spirit would live on as spirit energy instead of merely vanishing — a metaphysical perspective consistent with the world he originated from.

In the end, he realized that for him to truly be free to control his own destiny — and the destiny of others in his originating world — the heroes had to succeed in eliminating Chaos. During Shade Impulse, Sephiroth coyly discusses with Garland what fate would befall each of the worlds should Chaos truly be defeated, hinting at his desire for reality to return to what it once was. For that reason, Sephiroth played his part in Emperor Mateus’s plan while simultaneously allowing Chaos’s own forces to sabotage themselves.

In Destiny Odyssey scene 32, Sephiroth is shown to be aware of Golbez’s betrayal to Mateus’s plan. However, he remained quiet on the subject so that Golbez could continue allying himself with the heroes and working against his fellow warriors of Chaos. All this was done, so that he could be allowed to return home. After all, Sephiroth had his own personal plan to ensure his immortality and godhood: Geostigma.

In his final confrontation with Cloud in Shade Impulse, upon his defeat, Sephiroth ominously references his intent to face Cloud once more. Explicit references are made to his plan to use Cloud as a way of ensuring his return once again, as expressed in the Lifestream Black novella, where he states:

As long as Cloud remembers me, I can continue to exist. Within the Lifestream, and on the surface. Even if my spirit disseminates, even if just one fragment of a memory courses around the planet, in the end I can count on Cloud’s consciousness to bring me back…

In the end, Sephiroth’s true intent and desire in Dissidia was the fulfillment of his own ambitions. This included Chaos’s defeat and the success of the heroes so that he could return to the Gaia of FFVII, and enact his own plan to ensure his resurrection and the completion of his original goal of godhood.

• Does Cloud of Darkness die in cycle 012?
We know from the first game that she was among several warriors of Chaos who were supposed to have been killed during the twelfth cycle because, like Sephiroth, she lacks any memories of the previous cycles during cycle 013. She doesn’t even know who Shinryu is.

Yet CoD is alive and well when last seen alongside other warriors of Chaos in Chapter 8 of Treachery of the Gods, just before Lightning and co. are wiped out by manikins. As such, we know she survived right up to the final moments of cycle 012.

The developers got this particular matter right with Kuja, who is killed by Lightning in Chapter 1, and Jecht, who dies in Report 3 — so what about Cloud of Darkness?

According to her and Kefka’s in-game profiles under the Museum, she did survive up to the final moments of cycle 012, but was then killed by Kefka for having told Laguna how to find the rift the manikins were emerging from:

“It is later ambushed by Kefka who deems it a traitor upon learning that it leaked information to Cosmos’s chosen and receives purification at the hands of Shinryu … .”

“He holds no sense of camaraderie towards the other warriors of Chaos. He not only captured Kuja, who had refused to battle and planted false memories in him, but ambushed the Cloud of Darkness and had her purified for having leaked information to their foes. Any who get in the way of destruction are eliminated without mercy.”

Though she came close to surviving cycle 012, she didn’t quite make it.


• Why is Terra still around in cycle 013? And what of her memories of cycle 012?
Terra dies from wounds she received fighting manikins in Report 2. Why does she not permanently fade from the wars of Dissidia, like Lightning, Kain, Tifa, Yuna, Laguna and Vaan?

Given that the developers had the benefit of including her death in the same game in which they introduced the concept that death-by-manikins results in an absolute death, there’s little excuse for an inconsistent portrayal of the rules. It’s not as though they were artistically constrained by Terra dying due to manikins in the first Dissidia, before they ever came up with introducing this rule in Dissidia 012. Both her death and the rule appear in this new game.

While one might at first try to explain this away with the suggestion that Terra didn’t die at all and Cosmos healed her, that still leaves us with the conundrum of Terra having no memory of the twelfth cycle during the thirteenth — meaning she must have died during the twelfth. A loss of memories of previous cycle was established in the first Dissidia as a consequence of being dead at the end of a cycle, and is also made clear during Dissidia 012 by lines from the Emperor in Report 4: “The warriors of Cosmos have suffered loss after loss. Not one of them holds memories of previous struggles.”

For the same reasons, Tidus must have died from the wounds he received during Chapter 4 when he took a blast from the Emperor that was meant for Yuna. Indeed, as shown in Report 3, his body begins discorporating into dark smoke before Jecht takes measures to save him, and he loses consciousness after asking Jecht to take care of Yuna.

Though Laguna does say afterward that Tidus was only sleeping, there’s the matter of Tidus not having his memories of cycle 012 during cycle 013. He doesn’t even remember Yuna during cycle 013, though he had seemed to remember who she was by the time he died in cycle 012.

Why is this?

It’s unlikely that Tidus and Terra’s alignment shifting from Chaos to Cosmos played any role in their memory loss. Cloud makes the same shift during this game, but doesn’t seem to have any fewer memories of his homeworld. He certainly also remembers Tifa. In a conversation with Firion in the Gateway of Good and Evil during Chapter 1 of Light to All, Cloud comments that there was a manikin type that shouldn’t be there:

Firion: “There are manikins of unfamiliar faces, aren’t there?”
Cloud: “I don’t know why, but they may be probing our memories. What a sick joke.”
Firion: “Our memories? Did you see someone you remember, Cloud?”
Cloud: “Yeah… Someone from my past… Someone that shouldn’t be here.”

Tifa’s manikin type, Illusionary Brawler, was among the manikins on that gateway board.

Moving on, even being alive at the end of a cycle doesn’t seem to have helped the Warrior of Light, who is alive at the end of cycle 012 but has no memory of it during cycle 013 — unless, of course, he died from utter exhaustion in the last two seconds of that cycle right as Shinryu was beginning the next.

Is it that only the warriors of Cosmos were subject to removal from the war if they died from wounds received while battling manikins, exempting Terra since she was a warrior of Chaos at the time? Unlikely given that it’s apparently the fact of the manikins not being part of Cid and Shinryu’s agreement that places this vulnerability on the warriors of Dissidia.

Is it possible that Cosmos healed Terra, such that she didn’t die at all, and that just being on the losing side of a cycle — regardless of whether dead or alive — leads to the loss of memories of previous cycles? This may explain Warrior of Light’s amnesia regarding cycle 012 as well.

But then we run into the dilemma where dead members of Chaos’s team (e.g. Sephiroth and Cloud of Darkness) have no memories of cycle 012 during cycle 013. If the memories of the losing team are forfeit, would the memories of all members of the winning team not be safeguarded?

Could it be that all members of the losing team lose their memories of previous cycles while the dead members of the winning team also lose theirs?

Could it be that Cosmos choosing Terra as one of her warriors saved her? Cloud’s Museum profile says that Cosmos selecting him as one of her chosen as he was fading qualified as rescuing him:

“When his friend Tifa is faced with peril, Cloud casts aside his duty as a warrior of Chaos and fights to protect those he holds dear.

His adamant will reaches the throne of Cosmos. Cosmos rescues Cloud after he is defeated by Chaos and on the verge of disappearing.”

Though Cloud wasn’t killed by a manikin, he was killed by his own side’s god, which probably would be enough to get him booted off the team. Cosmos’s intervention may well have saved him from permanently fading from the war.

Among the best possible explanations for Tidus and Terra’s memory loss is that their minds had technically died before their bodies, and this was enough for their memories to be lost. Tidus’s body didn’t finish discorporating before Jecht saved him, but he was already dead, and perhaps Cosmos healed Terra’s body before it could begin to, despite her already being dead as well.

This, however, does leave the question of Terra’s exemption to dying at the hands of manikins. Perhaps her body would have needed to fully die without healing in order for being removed from the war to apply to her? Or maybe Cosmos interfering and selecting her as one of her own warriors before Shinryu’s purification process made the difference?

Another of the more simple explanations for all of this is that simply being on the losing side forfeits one’s memories. Thus, whether Tidus and Terra had fully died becomes irrelevant since they had received Cosmos’s light by the end of cycle 012, whether the Warrior of Light died or just passed out is also irrelevant, and Terra’s survival into the next, final cycle of the war was simply a result of Cosmos intervening and making her one of her chosen, resetting Terra’s place on the board so to speak.

This is MakoEyes’s preferred interpretation of events, and I’m rather inclined to agree that it makes sense.


• Why was Cloud ever on Chaos’ side to begin with?
Tidus and Terra would be rather simple enough to explain to begin with given that they were brainwashed, but what about Cloud?

Golbez explains to Kain during Chapter 6 (the conversation is also repeated in Report 4) that warriors who have only recently been summoned to the cycles of Dissidia have fewer memories of their homeworlds than those who have been around for a while. Cloud seems to have all of his memories, while Sephiroth seems to have no more than Tifa, who is identified as a newcomer.

This means that Cloud was not forced over to the side of Team Chaos via Sephiroth manipulating the JENOVA cells in him to control him. So why is Cloud there?

In the same vein, this question could, of course, also be posed regarding Golbez, Gabranth and Kuja. In at least Golbez’s case, however, this is explained by the fact that, like Jecht, he was stolen from Team Cosmos and filled with Chaos’s power. Though implied by an exchange between the Emperor and Exdeath at the end of Destiny Odyssey IV in the first Dissidia, a revised form of that dialogue between them in Dissidia 012′s Light to All retelling of cycle 013’s events makes it more explicit.

Here follows the original conversation and the revised version:

(Original)
Emperor: “It was right to give him space. We now see his true colors.”
Exdeath: “Indeed. He is a betrayer to the last.”
Emperor: “I suppose it was only a matter of time until he became aware of the light within him… Nevertheless, we must resolve this issue before Shrinyu makes its move.”

(Revised)
Emperor: “It was right to give him space. We now see his true colors.”
Exdeath: “Indeed, he is finally caught in the act. His inner light of harmony never faded.”
Emperor: “A heart of light in a dark body… How intriguing. We must resolve this issue before Shinryu stirs.”

Note that the Emperor refers to Golbez as one possessing “a heart of light in a dark body” here — the same description he would later use to describe Jecht in the Shade Impulse portion of cycle 012: “You are a traitor, a body of the dark with a heart of light.”

It’s also likely that this happened to Kuja as well, given that he also strived to assist Cosmos’ side in winning the war, and given that — upon recovering his true personality as he was dying near the end of cycle 013 — his body discorporated into white smoke like that which pooled off of Lightning and co. in the final battle of cycle 012.

Though Jecht’s Museum profile states that “He is the only warrior of Cosmos to be reborn as a warrior of Chaos,” the conversation between the Emperor and Exdeath regarding Golbez is explicit in that he changed teams somewhere along the way. The line about Jecht must have been referring only to warriors of Cosmos involved in cycle 012.

So, given that other warriors from Cosmos’s team could have been taken, could Cloud have been similarly hijacked? No, actually. Cosmos is genuinely surprised by Cloud’s emotions as he dies in the first story segment of Report 7, and says that if his desire to fight Chaos remained unchanged, she would bring him to her side in the next cycle. Cloud’s profile in the Museum — as well as Terra and Tidus’s for that matter — specifies that he was summoned to the war by Chaos from the start:

(From Cloud’s profile)
“Originally summoned as a champion of Chaos …”

(From Terra’s profile)
“Originally summoned as a warrior of Chaos …”

(From Tidus’s profile)
“Summoned as a warrior of Chaos in the twelfth cycle …”

Why, then, was Cloud or the other two ever on the side of villains?

It’s possible this matter is explained by the narration at the end of Chapter 1, which states:

“The world calls on strong wills.
Those wills then search for still more…

A warrior is chosen only on strength.
One considers not the warrior’s own will…”

It may well be that Chaos selected his warriors based on their strength alone, with no consideration given to whether they would even want to use that strength to help his side win. A couple of lines in Chaos’s profile certainly support that conclusion: “He originally summoned warriors of his own to combat Cosmos’s warriors who incessantly craved battle. But understanding the anguish of being forced to battle against one’s will, he allowed his chosen to do as they pleased, never punishing even those who would forfeit their mission.”


• Which Onion Knight is featured in the Dissidia Final Fantasy series?
Which Warrior of Light from the DS version of Final Fantasy III is he supposed to be?

For what I hope should be obvious reaons, he couldn’t be Refia. Whether he’s Luneth, Arc or Ingus is a little harder to determine, though.

Obviously the developers chose to not explicitly identify him as anyone so that he could represent both the original Final Fantasy III on the NES, as well as the DS remake. That doesn’t preclude him still actually being one of the three male Warriors of Light from the DS FFIII, though.

Even the “Link to the Original” entry for FFIII on pg. 236 of the Dissidia Final Fantasy Ultimania doesn’t shy away from connecting the NES version of FFIII with the DS version. A screenshot there from a battle in the NES version displays the four Warriors of Light as named Arc, Ingus, Refia and Luneth.

So, which one is he?

While Dissidia’s Onion Knight does have a Luneth alternate look, it’s questionable whether that’s really enough to go on. Several characters have alts of characters other than themselves: Ultimecia (Edea alt), Gabranth (Basch alt), Lightning (Aya Brea alt), Cloud (Kingdom Hearts Cloud alt), Squall (Leon from KH alt), and Sephiroth (KH Sephiroth alt).

That being said, all these alts of other characters didn’t show up until Dissidia 012, while OK’s Luneth alt is in the first game. Given that, as well as the fact that the other nine warriors of Cosmos whom the first game focuses on, are the main characters of their respective games (Luneth is as well for the DS version of FFIII), if he has to be anyone, Luneth seems like the obvious choice.

Of course, it does bear acknowledgement that OK’s hair and reserved, more thoughtful approach to battle are more like Ingus. Luneth is impulsive — pretty much the opposite of OK’s way of thinking. Those things in mind, I would personally say that Ingus is a better fit for OK’s identity.

In any event, Dissidia’s Onion Knight is most likely based on the NES characters, as his profile mentions all four Warriors of Light from FFIII being raised by Ur’s village elder and getting lost in the Altar Cave — something that only happened in the NES version of the game:

“Four orphaned youths raised by the village elder of Ur become lost in a cave while exploring. There, they are informed of pending doom by the Wind Crystal.”

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56 comments

  1. Ryushikaze
    #1 Ryushikaze 5 April, 2011, 18:49

    A quick point re: OK

    I don’t think it’s Luneth. If it is one of the new DS version heroes and not one of the OK from III, then I think it might be Ingus.

    Luneth is the archetypal ‘Rush in ASAP’ hero, regardless of who is involved. Ingus, by contrast, is much more reserved, wanting to examine a situation before leaping in, much like OK in Dissidia. Though Ingus certainly would not ‘fight only battles he was sure he could win’ he would do everything he could to maximize his chances.

    I reckon that OK is a younger Ingus, years before ever becoming a knight of Sasune.

    Besides, OK has his hair and his color scheme. It takes the Luneth Alt for OK to look anything like Luneth.

    Just my 2c.

    Reply to this comment
    • Squall_of_SeeD
      Squall_of_SeeD Author 7 April, 2011, 13:58

      Fair points. I’ll add mention of the similarities to Ingus in as well. Thanks, Ryu.

  2. Shikamarunara
    #2 Shikamarunara 5 April, 2011, 19:41

    I gotta ask, when was it stated that Chaos lost the 13th and several cycles afterwards in 000? Because I can’t find that stated in the game.

    Reply to this comment
    • Squall_of_SeeD
      Squall_of_SeeD Author 7 April, 2011, 14:04

      On a second look, you are right. I’d misinterpreted this line previously: “The Cycle of destruction and purification gave Chaos power and corroded his
      mind.”

      I’d taken this to mean that Chaos had received purification over and over (in which case he would have died), and that this had messed with his mind. However, it’s said that Cosmos herself receives purification over and over and loses power over time: “Cosmos was true to her mission, even as she lost her memory after every purification. … Cosmos’s power to summon warriors eventually started to wane. After the 20th purification, she could not summon any new pawns for herself.”

      I guess the reference to purification in the line about Chaos just means that he kept getting more and more powerful, and the increase in power made him insane.

      So, Confessions of the Creator is more like an expanded version of Inward Chaos then. Thanks for the correction. I’ll add it in, along with further thanks to you. =)

  3. I Am Not Me
    #3 I Am Not Me 6 April, 2011, 02:46

    Hi… er. Why is this posted under ‘Final Fantasy VII’?

    Also, your Seventh Heaven Strategy guide appears to be a dead link.

    PS: I’m still reading this article.

    Reply to this comment
    • Squall_of_SeeD
      Squall_of_SeeD Author 7 April, 2011, 14:06

      It’s under the “Final Fantasy VII” category because I forgot to add tags when I posted the article, and that’s the default tag. Thanks for pointing that out. I went ahead and fixed it just now.

      You finished reading the article and have anything else to add?

  4. DeltaRay
    #4 DeltaRay 7 April, 2011, 23:38

    I believe regarding manikins are truly merciless they have no will of their own they will continue slaughtering their victim including destroying their victims flesh which is why I even though Terra was nearly about to die she killed the manikins before they killed her and leads me to believe that if you have no Flesh Shynryu cant revive you, If the villains kill you they will leave your body but I believe manikins dont know any better so they will continue to slaughter a body.

    Reply to this comment
    • Squall_of_SeeD
      Squall_of_SeeD Author 7 April, 2011, 23:43

      I’ve considered that possibility before, but since Shantotto apparently vaporized Gabranth and he was still brought back for the next round of the cycle, I don’t think it’s the case.

      Thanks for throwing that out there, though.

    • DeltaRay
      DeltaRay 8 April, 2011, 05:02

      I though Gabranth ran away with shame after his defeat against Shantotto, and in the end he ended up in a place thats not in the gods battle ground or so it says on dissidia 013 game I cant remember where I read that.

    • Squall_of_SeeD
      Squall_of_SeeD Author 8 April, 2011, 19:24

      Well, his profile says that he went into hiding after being defeated by Shantotto, but it’s clear from their fight that she killed him. So I assume it was in the next cycle that he went into hiding, once he’d been revived.

    • DeltaRay
      DeltaRay 8 April, 2011, 20:47

      ah ok yea that makes sense but killing him doesnt mean she destroyed his flesh which is why I believe no body = no revive also doesnt shynryu keep reviving chars until they can no longer give him “experince”, I mean if a character has no body he cant really absorb their experience to make himself stronger because he only heals their body he doesnt make them their body if he made their body then that probably make them manikins which I believe they arent manikins.

    • Squall_of_SeeD
      Squall_of_SeeD Author 9 April, 2011, 12:11

      Don’t the bodies of all the warriors of Chaos discorporate into black smoke upon death, though? So they really don’t have bodies when Shinryu arrives anyway.

      In any case, I thought Shantotto incinerated Gabranth. She said she would, and he wasn’t there after the battle.

  5. clide88
    #5 clide88 8 April, 2011, 00:49

    New here, but I had a few opinions/questions.

    First off, you pointed out that the Dissidia world is an amalgamation of the various worlds from the main series’ games. What would you say the gateways are supposed to be? Distortions of the Dissidia world, perhaps (given that in a single gateway a character battles manikins on different stages)?

    As far as the necessity for Chaos and Cosmos summoning new warriors every so often, could it simply have been (in addition to your points) that Chaos and Cosmos, being pawns themselves of Cid and Shinryu, were simply summoning new warriors in their attempts to win? Cosmos, as I understand, was unaware of the cycle, so would it not make sense that she was summoning more warriors for the sake of winning?

    When talking about Terra’s and Cloud’s survival, you said “Though Cloud wasn’t killed by a manikin, he was killed by his own side’s god…” That god being Chaos…who, as you noted, was in fact a manikin himself. Nothing really relevant there, I just found it amusing, though I could see someone not very pensive being confused by that.

    This wasn’t ever covered (and I’m a little surprise no mention was made of it), but do you think Golbez was a warrior of Cosmos at some point in the conflict? At the end of Cecil’s Destiny Odyssey (in the 012 version; the scene was evidently revised from its original representation in the first game), Mateus and Exdeath have a conversation in which they discuss Golbez’s betrayal. Mateus uses a familiar phrase – “a heart of light with a body of darkness” – in reference to Golbez. Exdeath also mentions the harmony/light has not yet left Golbez. It very much sounds as though they’re referring to him having been sided with Cosmos some cycles ago. (Forgive me for not regurgitating the colloquy; I couldn’t find the 012 version of this scene ANYWHERE online).

    As far as the inconsistencies mentioned at the end, I’ll give a few of them a shot:

    As far as Kuja being manipulated by several of the villains when Sephiroth wasn’t, all I can suggest is that Kuja was more emotionally/mentally fragile than Sephiroth, who wasn’t easily manipulated, if for no other reason than he more or less showed a disinterest in their ploys.

    About Chaos’ inability to transport himself and Cid to their world, perhaps, despite his immense power, teleportation just isn’t one of his abilities? Clearly he can conjure beings from other dimensions/universes, but it could be just that it’s a one-way street sort of thing. He can summon things, but cannot transport himself over space and time. That might be implausible or flat out ridiculous, but it’s about the best I can come up with off the top of my head.

    On that note, it was apparent Cid was unable to find the gateway to the Rift and so return to his home, which explains why he couldn’t access his homeworld. I think a better question is, “If Cid doesn’t know where the gateway to the Rift is (since he needed Chaos to find it for him), how was he able to seal manikins in the Rift?” All I can think of there is that he had access to the Rift, but not the gateway to return home. By being able to enter the Rift but not have a doorway to his homeworld, he could conceivably seal up the manikins while at the same time be unable to return home.

    Just some questions/thoughts. Feel free to correct me/shoot me down wherever necessary. I certainly haven’t put as much thought or effort into the storyline as you, so any theories I have may easily be explained by an oversight on my account.

    Reply to this comment
    • Squall_of_SeeD
      Squall_of_SeeD Author 8 April, 2011, 20:01

      First, thank you for your very thorough and thoughtful response. =)

      -“First off, you pointed out that the Dissidia world is an amalgamation of the various worlds from the main series’ games. What would you say the gateways are supposed to be? Distortions of the Dissidia world, perhaps (given that in a single gateway a character battles manikins on different stages)?”

      Yes, actually, that’s exactly how I would have described the gateways.

      -“As far as the necessity for Chaos and Cosmos summoning new warriors every so often, could it simply have been (in addition to your points) that Chaos and Cosmos, being pawns themselves of Cid and Shinryu, were simply summoning new warriors in their attempts to win? Cosmos, as I understand, was unaware of the cycle, so would it not make sense that she was summoning more warriors for the sake of winning?”

      Cosmos was also aware of the cycle itself, actually. Check out the conversation between Golbez and Cosmos in the second story segment of Report 7.

      -“This wasn’t ever covered (and I’m a little surprise no mention was made of it), but do you think Golbez was a warrior of Cosmos at some point in the conflict? At the end of Cecil’s Destiny Odyssey (in the 012 version; the scene was evidently revised from its original representation in the first game), Mateus and Exdeath have a conversation in which they discuss Golbez’s betrayal. Mateus uses a familiar phrase – “a heart of light with a body of darkness” – in reference to Golbez. Exdeath also mentions the harmony/light has not yet left Golbez. It very much sounds as though they’re referring to him having been sided with Cosmos some cycles ago. (Forgive me for not regurgitating the colloquy; I couldn’t find the 012 version of this scene ANYWHERE online).”

      You know, that’s an excellent observation. Yeah, I’d agree — Golbez must have belonged to Cosmos at some point.

      Now that you bring it up, I notice that the original dialogue alluded to it, but they evidently realized that it wasn’t explicit enough and revised it. Here’s what it was in the original:

      Emperor: “It was right to give him space. We now see his true colors.”
      Exdeath: “Indeed. He is a betrayer to the last.”
      Emperor: “I suppose it was only a matter of time until he became aware of the light within him… Nevertheless, we must resolve this issue before Shrinyu makes its move.”

      And here’s the new version:

      Emperor: “It was right to give him space. We now see his true colors.”
      Exdeath: “Indeed, he is finally caught in the act. His inner light of harmony never faded.”
      Emperor: “A heart of light in a dark body… How intriguing. We must resolve this issue before Shinryu stirs.”

      Makes me think that they probably did the same thing with Kuja after all, and that he hadn’t originally been summoned by Chaos. This would explain why he discorporates into white smoke like Lightning and co. when he dies in Shade Impulse.

      I notice that they’ve also removed Garland’s reference to him as new. This was the original flow of that conversation:

      Garland: “You are growing reckless, Kuja.”
      Kuja: “You again… Have you come to laugh at me, too?”
      Garland: “Not at all. You and I are the same. Not just me. We are all the
      same. Even that witch, Ultimecia… We all bear the same fate. You have only
      been…directed…because you are new.”

      Here’s the new one:
      Garland: “You are growing reckless, Kuja.”
      Kuja: “You again… Have you come to laugh at me, too?”
      Garland: “Not at all. You and I are the same–warriors summoned to this land by the god of discord. And that is the truth for all of us. Even that witch, Ultimecia… Not one remembers everything. You were used when you had just awakened.”

      Seems like Garland is now elaborating on the new conversation that Kuja had with Ulty earlier in which she now tells him that his memories have been tampered with (in the original, she told him of his mortality instead).

      Seems like I’m going to have to make some more edits to the FAQ to account for all this.

      -“About Chaos’ inability to transport himself and Cid to their world, perhaps, despite his immense power, teleportation just isn’t one of his abilities? Clearly he can conjure beings from other dimensions/universes, but it could be just that it’s a one-way street sort of thing. He can summon things, but cannot transport himself over space and time. That might be implausible or flat out ridiculous, but it’s about the best I can come up with off the top of my head.”

      It is true that we never see him teleport, but didn’t he just sort of pop up at the beginning of Shade Impulse when he wasn’t there before? Right before he killed Cosmos, I mean.

      He wasn’t there, then the scenery deteriorated, Tidus looked around him, looked back at Cosmos, and suddenly Chaos was floating in front of her.

      -“On that note, it was apparent Cid was unable to find the gateway to the Rift and so return to his home, which explains why he couldn’t access his homeworld. I think a better question is, “If Cid doesn’t know where the gateway to the Rift is (since he needed Chaos to find it for him), how was he able to seal manikins in the Rift?” All I can think of there is that he had access to the Rift, but not the gateway to return home. By being able to enter the Rift but not have a doorway to his homeworld, he could conceivably seal up the manikins while at the same time be unable to return home.”

      That’s the thing, though: the rift the manikins were coming out of was the one that was opening because of Chaos’s growing power, per Cid’s plan. And Cid knew of this rift, so why didn’t he go through it?

      Thanks again for your feedback. I look forward to hearing from you again.

    • clide88
      clide88 8 April, 2011, 20:19

      – “Cosmos was also aware of the cycle itself, actually. Check out the conversation between Golbez and Cosmos in the second story segment of Report 7.”

      Yeah, I had completely forgotten about that scene.

      – “Seems like Garland is now elaborating on the new conversation that Kuja had with Ulty earlier in which she now tells him that his memories have been tampered with (in the original, she told him of his mortality instead).

      Seems like I’m going to have to make some more edits to the FAQ to account for all this.”

      I’ll admit I haven’t played that far into the game yet (not on the 012 version, anyway), otherwise I may have caught that revision as well. I’ll also admit I find Golbez WAY cooler than Kuja, too, and I tend to focus more on the characters I like the most, quite naturally.

      Glad I could help. It’s awesome that someone decided to make such a comprehensive analysis/FAQ. Being able to contribute is sort of a service to FF fans.

      – “It is true that we never see him teleport, but didn’t he just sort of pop up at the beginning of Shade Impulse when he wasn’t there before?”

      Also a good point, but perhaps the developers differentiated between short-distance teleportation and long-distance teleportation. It is somewhat logical, after all, and Chaos teleporting back to his homeworld would also require him to teleport himself across dimensions, not just from one spot to another on the current planet he’s dwelling.

      It could also just be the developers didn’t think about it. I suppose you can’t expect them to cover EVERY detail (or maybe you should expect it…I don’t know), and like I said earlier, it’s just a presupposition off the top of my head.

      – “That’s the thing, though: the rift the manikins were coming out of was the one that was opening because of Chaos’s growing power, per Cid’s plan. And Cid knew of this rift, so why didn’t he go through it?

      Thanks again for your feedback. I look forward to hearing from you again.”

      Yeah, I have no idea about that, either.

      I’ll be happy to provide further commentary as I crawl my way through my current playthrough and (hopefully) discover further points of interest.

    • Squall_of_SeeD
      Squall_of_SeeD Author 9 April, 2011, 19:20

      -“Glad I could help. It’s awesome that someone decided to make such a comprehensive analysis/FAQ. Being able to contribute is sort of a service to FF fans.”

      I very much appreciate your help. =) I’m glad you like the FAQ.

      -“I’ll be happy to provide further commentary as I crawl my way through my current playthrough and (hopefully) discover further points of interest.”

      I’ll be looking forward to it!

  6. Shady
    #6 Shady 8 April, 2011, 06:04

    Slight disagreement on the comment about Shantotto in the “Why was Cloud ever on Chaos’ side to begin with?” section.

    While Shantotto is indeed ruthless and seems to have erased Mercy from her dictionary, her heart’s in the right place. In XI, she’s fiercely loyal to the Federation of Windurst (her home nation) and was an active participant in saving the world on at least 3 accounts (providing valuable enemy information to the Allied Nations during the Crystal War, going undercover to assess the situation in Aht Urhgan, and showed up at the last moment to stop Domina and Bella Shantotto from Shantottofying everyone in Vana’diel).

    Reply to this comment
    • Squall_of_SeeD
      Squall_of_SeeD Author 8 April, 2011, 20:09

      I’ll concede that I sounded a bit too harsh on Shantotto there. That was meant to be a joke, but it didn’t come across as such, did it?

  7. DeltaRay
    #7 DeltaRay 8 April, 2011, 20:56

    BTW im really loving the analysis plot not just this game I read the other analysis plots from other FF games.

    Reply to this comment
    • Squall_of_SeeD
      Squall_of_SeeD Author 9 April, 2011, 17:29

      Thanks.

      Which others have you read?

  8. Sephiroth_Owa13
    #8 Sephiroth_Owa13 9 April, 2011, 00:57

    Hm, I have a question for you if you can answer it. It’s more of something that I’m curious about really.

    It’s clear that Jecht went from team Cosmos to teams Chaos, but were other villains who were once warriors of Cosmos as well? Say like Golbez, Kuja, or even Sephiroth?

    It’s pretty clear why I ask for Golbez and to a point Kuja. But the reason why I ask for Sephiroth is because as you said in your FAQ, Sephiroth doesn’t seem to have a lot of memories of his home world as Cloud does. Which seems very off to me and sort of reminds me of how Jecht was in the first Dissidia. When the Emperor told him that he was once a warrior of Cosmos he seemed very surprised by it. Then there’s the fact that Sephiroth summons the Masamune in a flash of light like the heroes do, versus just carrying it around like the villains. Also he vanishes in a flash of light sort of the same way Kuja does when he dies.

    So I’m really wondering if at some point Sephiroth was a warrior of Cosmos, something happened and he was defeated, and when he woke up he was a warrior of Chaos with almost no memories. Or is it just SE nodding their head at Sephiroth’s hero status before Nibelheim?

    Reply to this comment
    • Squall_of_SeeD
      Squall_of_SeeD Author 9 April, 2011, 12:39

      I think that Seph manifesting his weapon as the heroes do is just referencing his hero status prior to the razing of Nibelheim.

      I don’t think he was ever on Cosmos’s team. Changing sides shouldn’t affect homeworld memories, as both Cloud and Jecht seem to retain the significant amounts of it they’d recovered.

      Also, unlike Kuja, they wouldn’t really need to feed him false memories or goad him into fighting, so tampering with whatever memories he had shouldn’t have been necessary.

    • Sephiroth_Owa13
      Sephiroth_Owa13 9 April, 2011, 18:49

      Okay, cool. Thanks for answering. It’s something I’ve wondered about because I’ve been trying to figure out at what point everyone came from their game. With some it’s pretty clear (like Kuja and Zidane I’m sure they’re post game), with others it’s a guess.

  9. DeltaRay
    #9 DeltaRay 9 April, 2011, 18:22

    Ah ok I definetely Agree then yea the pyreflies with the villains so that obviously isnt it then, wonder what truly is the reason behind for not being able to revive heroes killed by munchkins

    Reply to this comment
  10. Squall_of_SeeD
    #10 Squall_of_SeeD Author 9 April, 2011, 22:28

    Just wanted to keep everyone informed: all necessary updates have been applied at this point. =)

    Thanks again to everyone (here and elsewhere) who has commented and strived to improve the article!

    Reply to this comment
  11. jammi568
    #11 jammi568 10 April, 2011, 17:06

    Appreciated that you added my question to the FAQ. As one of my college (high school to Americans) teachers said – “If you have a question about something, chances are that someone else will also have it.”

    Reply to this comment
    • Squall_of_SeeD
      Squall_of_SeeD Author 10 April, 2011, 18:14

      You’re very welcome. =) And, yes, your teacher was right.

  12. clide88
    #12 clide88 13 April, 2011, 03:18

    As promised, I do in fact have a few more questions.

    How exactly are the characters in Dissidia able to perform some of the feats they do? I know your article mentions the concepts of Ex Mode and the supernatural abilities that accompany it, but what about abilities such as Free Air Dash? With the except of Advent Children, it’s not really known for the characters to be able to perform such a stunt like boosting themselves forward (or backward, in the case of Reverse Free Air Dash) in mid-air. On that note, where do they derive the power to perform magic in this game? Cloud’s arsenal of bravery attacks include numerous fire spells, yet Materia (presumably) doesn’t exist in the Dissidia world; Squall, likewise, can performs attacks such as Thunder Bullet and Fusillade, yet he doesn’t have GFs to junction magic attacks. If there is some other element that allows magic to be performed by all the characters in Dissidia, that might also provide a more satisfactory answer to why Terra and Kefka are able to use magic (though “a wizard did it” is certainly satisfying enough for me given all the other things that have occurred in the game).

    Any insight on that topic would be most interesting.

    On a completely different and much more minute topic, what causes Squall’s crystal at the end of Chapter 7 in Light to All (Destiny Odyssey VIII) to emit a light pointing toward Bartz? I’ve wondered how it was able to react like that since my first playthrough of Dissidia.

    Reply to this comment
    • Squall_of_SeeD
      Squall_of_SeeD Author 17 April, 2011, 11:41

      Sorry for the slow response. Meant to do this sooner and got tied up with other things.

      Stuff like Free Air Dash I won’t even attempt to address. =P I’ll be straight up with you on that. And I don’t think we’re really meant to. That sort of thing has got to be just gameplay-related.

      As for magic in general, thanks for bringing up those points. Tifa and Cloud do, indeed, use magic despite us having no reason to believe they have materia. Squall could be given a pass, perhaps, since one can still use para-magic in the world he comes from without junctioning GFs — though that still leaves points like Laguna never running out of ammunition.

      Yuna, meanwhile, even has her aeons back, despite the game making it clear that her pilgrimage and Tidus’s death is in the past tense for her.

      “A wizard did it” really is the best and only explanation. Some folk who are dead set on trying to bring the game down or don’t like to picture it as canon may not ever accept that, but you can’t reason with a fool who chooses to be a fool knowingly anyway.

      In answer to your last question about Chapter 7 of Light to All/Destiny Odyssey VIII … a wizard did it? =P

      No, I’m kidding. Your guess is as good as mine, really. Probably something to do with the crystals being born from a combination of the heroes’ resolve and Cosmos’s own power, so it pointed in the direction his heart was set.

    • clide88
      clide88 18 April, 2011, 01:41

      – “Sorry for the slow response. Meant to do this sooner and got tied up with other things.”

      Full-time college student with a full-time job right here. You have my understanding.

      Another point of interest (for me, anyway) that I came across occurs in Chapter 10/Destiny Odyssey I. From the beginning of cycle 013 Warrior of Light seems to recognize Garland (or at least knows who he is), made evident during the scene between the two before WOL battles him the first time before ever leaving Order’s Sanctuary. WOL refers to Garland by name, yet he should have no memory of Garland since Team Cosmos lost the previous cycle and, as made abundantly clear, Dissidia chronologically predates FFI, so there’s no “homeworld memories” argument to obfuscate the matter.

    • Squall_of_SeeD
      Squall_of_SeeD Author 19 April, 2011, 21:09

      He knows him because the story of cycle 013 apparently begins a good while after that cycle had already begun. Remember, the opening to the original Dissidia is actually part of the story.

      And the Silent Presage scenes included in the releases of Dissidia outside Japan (and in the Universal Tuning rerelease in Japan) took place before that opening battle sequence.

      That clear things up?

    • clide88
      clide88 22 April, 2011, 00:48

      The way the opening of Chapter 10 (WOL’s story) and the prologue/Silent Presage were situated made it seem like the prologue led straight into WOL’s story, given that the prologue ends in Order’s Sanctuary and the first dungeon in WOL’s story took place solely in Order’s Sanctuary. I could be mistaken, though. I wonder, though, if the opening battle in Dissidia is canon, why is not included in 013?

      I also would like to point something out regarding your well thought out Garland timeline (I could actually have a lengthy discussion on that topic, but I’ll keep it brief). You suggested Garland from World B was transported to World A after Dissidia, transported back in time by Chaos/himself, and then thrown back into the world of Dissidia, explaining why he remembers the time loop from FFI. However, in the opening scene for the Inherited Memories gateway in the 013 epilogue, we see this exchange between Golbez and Garland:

      Golbez: “What is it that you know? Who ARE you?”

      Garland: “Nothing so dire as you imagine. I was once made a prisoner of a time loop. The Great Will saved me from that fate. In return, I agreed to carry out a task.”

      While this doesn’t discredit your conjecture, it seems to provide a discrepancy. Again, you suggested Garland, after traveling to World A following Dissidia, is pulled into the time loop and sent by Chaos back into the Dissidia universe. Garland, during this conversation with Golbez, makes it clear that it was the Great Will who pulled him from the time loop. This also begs the question if that the Great Will saved him from the time loop and that was the reason Garland carried out the task of watching over the deities battle for eons, what did the Great Will offer the first time he met Garland (assuming your theory that Garland was originally a product of World B)?

      It should also be noted that Garland was evidently involved in the FFI time loop for a cycle or two anyway, as he describes himself as a “prisoner” of the time loop. If he had only been killed, transported back in time, and immediately thrust into World B in the Dissidia universe, he would have had no time to realize he was trapped in an actual time loop and would simply have deduced he had been pulled 2000 years into the past without any notion that he would repeat the cycle indefinitely.

      …Okay, that was much longer than I intended, but when dealing with a convoluted subject such as time travel, you can seldom be brief. Anyway, just some thoughts on the Garland timeline mystery. Hopefully you can shed even more light on this mind-boggling subject.

  13. Theophanes
    #13 Theophanes 16 April, 2011, 13:30

    Excellent work!
    However trying to seperate heads from tails in a story that involves two cycles and time space rift is impossible 😛 I would very much like to hear your thoughts on these two points
    1) if they propose that dissidia is a prequel to FFI how come Garland says to Chaos ( in shade impulse) that when he was on the verge of death it was chaos who sent him 2000 years in the past? that happens in FFI after WOL defeats garland for kidnapping the princess :s that puts dissidia after FFI

    2)Also the text entry says that WOL heads to cornelia with a darkened crystal in hand. But the WOLs had shinning crystals that they used (along with defeating each fiend) to restore the light to the apropriate big crystals. It seems like WOL returning with a darkened crystal means he returns to a peaceful world of FFI -after its ending-

    Reply to this comment
  14. Squall_of_SeeD
    #14 Squall_of_SeeD Author 17 April, 2011, 11:48

    Thank you for your compliments. =)

    In address to your questions:

    1) I talk about this in the section about Garland in the FAQ. For Garland, being defeated at the hands of the Warriors of Light happens before Dissidia.

    He’s mortally wounded by them, left on the floor dying, and then Chaos pulls him through time — but also drops him off in World B, where he resides until meeting Cosmos, Cid and Chaos (Garland’s own past self).

    After Dissidia ends, he’ll go back to where he last was before entering World B: 2000 years in World A’s past. He’ll then gain more power, become Chaos once again, and reach across time to the future to save his past self, who is dying after being defeated by the Warriors of Light.

    At least that’s how it will go until he’s defeated by the Warriors of Light before being able to pull his past self across time. Who knows what becomes of things after that.

    2) That is a good observation. However, since the Warrior of Light was born on World B during the conflict of Dissidia, he’s never been to World A until the ending of cycle 013. He couldn’t have taken part in the events of the first FF yet.

    Someone made a mistake there, it sounds like.

    Reply to this comment
    • Theophanes
      Theophanes 17 April, 2011, 20:28

      -For Garland, being defeated at the hands of the Warriors of Light happens before Dissidia.-
      Thats the crazy part lol. he is defeated by WOL before dissidia while WOL doesnt get in that world until after dissidia!

      Damn SE and those loops! :p

  15. DeltaRay
    #15 DeltaRay 17 April, 2011, 19:10

    No wonder… Whenever I saw the ending for original Dissidia I would get a nostalgic feeling that the ending of Dissidia was the beginning of FF1, because the scene staring at cornelia castle “warriors will be holding crystals”,Also Im starting to think the crystal that WOL obtained in dissidia somehow “revives” or powers up the ones being guarded by the elemental fiends.

    Reply to this comment
  16. Squall_of_SeeD
    #16 Squall_of_SeeD Author 22 April, 2011, 18:58

    Response to clide88:

    “The way the opening of Chapter 10 (WOL’s story) and the prologue/Silent Presage were situated made it seem like the prologue led straight into WOL’s story, given that the prologue ends in Order’s Sanctuary and the first dungeon in WOL’s story took place solely in Order’s Sanctuary. I could be mistaken, though. I wonder, though, if the opening battle in Dissidia is canon, why is not included in 013?”

    I imagine it was left out for disc space considerations. Even the Silent Presage cutscenes and the primarily text-based exchange between Kefka and the Emperor discussing Sephiroth’s suicide was left out, after all, and Cid of the Lufaine’s voice-over monologues about the heroes during each of their chapters are heavily abridged from what they were in the Destiny Odysseys of the first game. Each is cut by about half.

    You can also tell at a glance that the cutscenes from the original game were compressed at a lower quality in order to fit them all on the disc.

    In any case, as an example of how the FMV opening from the original game actually fits into the story, recall that the last shot of it is of the Warrior of Light laying face down on the ground in the vicinity of Order’s Sanctuary — exactly how we find him at the beginning of the Prologue segment of cycle 013, both in the original game and this one.

    The only difference in how it’s presented this time around, though, is that following Shinryu’s restarting of the cycle, we’re shown that part of the opening FMV to the first game as the last shot of the ending FMV for cycle 012. They just skipped over Silent Presage and the opening FMV to cycle 013.

    “Garland, during this conversation with Golbez, makes it clear that it was the Great Will who pulled him from the time loop.”

    I don’t think it necessarily suggests that the Great Will pulled him from anywhere. Especially since Garland’s monologue in Report 12 outright says that Chaos/his future self was the one who placed him there where he met the Great Will.

    He speaks of hearing Chaos’s/his own voice explain the existence of the time loop to him as he was saved while on the verge of death at the hands of the Warriors of Light in Cornelia, and that he found himself on World B, thinking he had been taken 2000 years to the past of World A.

    I think Garland’s comment about the Great Will saving him is merely a mistake on Garland’s part. He thought this because he was confused as to why he was there in the conflict of Dissidia to begin with if he was supposed to have been taken to World A’s past.

    If the events of Dissidia are just part of the overall timeloop of the first FF, Garland probably didn’t know that at first. It seems like he figured it out once he realized that the cycle would be coming to an end, though. That’s probably why he tells Chaos the truth about their relationship toward the end of Shade Impulse/the Epilogue.

    Also, notice that in the same conversation with Golbez that you mentioned, Garland says “…There is no end to my cycle, Golbez. As long as he is me… .” That contradicts what Garland said earlier in their conversation about the Great Will saving him.

    So, yeah, I think Garland just thought that he’d been saved from the time loop, but realized he was still in it once he found out the Dissidia conflict was ending. After all, it was supposed to last forever — or at least until Chaos grew powerful enough to do what Cid wanted.

    “This also begs the question if that the Great Will saved him from the time loop and that was the reason Garland carried out the task of watching over the deities battle for eons, what did the Great Will offer the first time he met Garland (assuming your theory that Garland was originally a product of World B)?”

    I wouldn’t worry about this. It’s like trying to establish a beginning to FFVIII’s time loop. You can’t. It just is.

    “It should also be noted that Garland was evidently involved in the FFI time loop for a cycle or two anyway, as he describes himself as a ‘prisoner’ of the time loop. If he had only been killed, transported back in time, and immediately thrust into World B in the Dissidia universe, he would have had no time to realize he was trapped in an actual time loop and would simply have deduced he had been pulled 2000 years into the past without any notion that he would repeat the cycle indefinitely.”

    Remember, Chaos/his future self told him about the time loop as he was being saved, per Report 12. So he knows he’s supposed to be a prisoner in a time loop the moment he’s rescued.

    “…Okay, that was much longer than I intended, but when dealing with a convoluted subject such as time travel, you can seldom be brief.”

    No doubt. Have you seen the FAQ that Sir Bahamut, TheOnionKnight and I did on FFVIII?:

    http://www.gamefaqs.com/ps/197343-final-fantasy-viii/faqs/34215

    “Anyway, just some thoughts on the Garland timeline mystery. Hopefully you can shed even more light on this mind-boggling subject.”

    Thanks for your continuing contributions to this analysis. I hope my response was illuminating in some way.

    Reply to this comment
    • clide88
      clide88 25 April, 2011, 20:23

      “Even the…primarily text-based exchange between Kefka and the Emperor discussing Sephiroth’s suicide was left out…”

      Yeah, and in my opinion that was crap. It sounded like such an awesome occurrence worth covering in 012. I imagine it was primarily due to space constraints, as well (given that it’s still mentioned in Sephiroth’s profile), but I still felt jipped, maybe just because VII’s my favorite title. But seriously, would a two-disc game have been all that bad? Type-0, after all, is rumored to span two UMDs.

      “The only difference in how it’s presented this time around, though, is that following Shinryu’s restarting of the cycle, we’re shown that part of the opening FMV to the first game as the last shot of the ending FMV for cycle 012. They just skipped over Silent Presage and the opening FMV to cycle 013.”

      I didn’t catch onto that. At least it all makes sense now.

      “Especially since Garland’s monologue in Report 12 outright says that Chaos/his future self was the one who placed him there where he met the Great Will.”

      Pardon me if I’m being curt, but where is it outright stated? We hear Garland in-game mention on two occasions that the Great Will pulled him into the Dissidia realm: the first is the aforementioned exchange between him and Golbez; the second is while speaking with Chaos (in the Epilogue/Shade Impulse). Garland states: “Before the Great Will led me to
      this realm, when I was on the edge of death, it was you who sent me two
      thousand years into the past.” He clearly acknowledges Chaos as transporting him through time while simultaneously denoting the Great Will as separately having brought him to the Dissidia realm (transporting him through space, if you will).

      In Report 12 there are certainly implications, but I never read where it was explicitly stated that Chaos transported him across dimensions (if I overlooked something, please correct me!). To me it seems to be a logical assumption that Chaos did so, but given the in-game conversations it seems to me that the Great Will is responsible.

      As far as whether Garland said the Great Will did because he was mistaken, I guess that’s subject to perspective (unless, again, if I have missed something that definitively proves otherwise). It seems, however, to be unlikely for the sake of storytelling. Why risk confusing players with an intentionally erroneous statement from a character unless it served a specific purpose to the plot?

      “I wouldn’t worry about this. It’s like trying to establish a beginning to FFVIII’s time loop. You can’t. It just is.”

      Even time has a genesis. It merely cannot be established without more information. In other words, given the lack of information we’re given in Dissidia/FFI about the time loops (as well as FFVIII), yes, I would concur.

      On that note, I have in fact seen that well-written FAQ. I admittedly didn’t read the entire thing because it’s been like seven years since I’ve even played FFVIII and it’s not one of my favorites (though I did enjoy it). I thoroughly enjoyed your FFVII/AC plot analysis, though!

      “Remember, Chaos/his future self told him about the time loop as he was being saved, per Report 12. So he knows he’s supposed to be a prisoner in a time loop the moment he’s rescued.”

      The manner in which Garland presented these revelations to Golbez implied (at least to me) a much more emotionally invested response that simply being told about doesn’t produce. Only experiencing the catastrophe personally would elicit such a deep and heavy lamentation. That being said, I certainly could have perceived that conversation incorrectly and Garland was in fact merely told about it without experiencing it. I don’t know, though; it really did seem like his words were too heavy to not have experienced the time loop for a cycle or. Again, I’m not too haughty to admit I could be wrong.

      “Thanks for your continuing contributions to this analysis.”

      I’m curious. I ask questions. I’ll be the first to admit my priority is understanding the facets of the story myself, though I am glad if my contributions are helping others reach a greater understanding as well.

    • Squall_of_SeeD
      Squall_of_SeeD Author 29 April, 2011, 13:39

      -“Yeah, and in my opinion that was crap. It sounded like such an awesome occurrence worth covering in 012.”

      It really should have been. That was one of the things that I believe a great many fans were looking forward to seeing depicted.

      -“Pardon me if I’m being curt, but where is it outright stated?”

      In Report 12 he speaks of Chaos/his future self transporting him several times:

      “I heard a voice speak to me as I laid
      dying–and that voice was my own.

      My words were the only clues I had of the
      realm in which I found myself–in which I
      assumed time has been frozen for 2000 years.”

      “In the present, I no longer have an interest
      in carrying my future self back to the past.”

      “As I imagined the hatred building inside me
      that would eventually and inevitably lead me to
      make a irreparable mistake, all I could do
      was cower in fear.”

      “I often think of the start of the cycle.

      I as Chaos summon me from the future;
      once summoned, I become Chaos.”

      He also speaks of encountering Cid/the Great Will after he’s been wandering for a while, so there’s no indication from his monologue that Cid had anything to do with him appearing there — even if Garland came to believe so himself for whatever reason. For that matter, Cid’s own monologuing from Chaos Report 4 in the first game doesn’t imply that he summoned Garland; only that he came across him in the same way that Garland came across Cid.

      -“Why risk confusing players with an intentionally erroneous statement from a character unless it served a specific purpose to the plot?”

      Well, it does serve the purpose for the plot of explaining why Garland ever agreed in the first place to assist the Great Will in all these shenanigans.

      -“On that note, I have in fact seen that well-written FAQ. I admittedly didn’t read the entire thing because it’s been like seven years since I’ve even played FFVIII and it’s not one of my favorites (though I did enjoy it). I thoroughly enjoyed your FFVII/AC plot analysis, though!”

      Thanks for your compliments. =) Glad you enjoyed.

      -“Again, I’m not too haughty to admit I could be wrong.”

      Me neither. I just can’t see any other way at the moment that the plot would work otherwise. Especially since Cid’s own monologue — and the circumstances under which Garland encounters him (prior even to Cid gaining his disembodied form from Shinryu) — don’t imply the GW to have had any hand in Garland’s appearance on World B.

      -“I’m curious. I ask questions. I’ll be the first to admit my priority is understanding the facets of the story myself, though I am glad if my contributions are helping others reach a greater understanding as well.”

      They have. Thank you again. =)

    • clide88
      clide88 30 April, 2011, 18:46

      Something else that occurred to me to refute my presupposition is that Cid didn’t have access to World A, given that his goal was to cross the door in the Rift to reach his world. So yeah, there’s not really a way he could’ve even accomplished transporting Garland from World A to World B. He couldn’t even get back to World A himself!

    • Squall_of_SeeD
      Squall_of_SeeD Author 1 May, 2011, 01:46

      That’s a good point too. Hadn’t thought about that.

  17. B
    #17 B 24 April, 2011, 06:27

    Perhaps Chaos could summon warriors and couldn’t just teleport himself and Cid because it works one way and not the other? Also, it is established exactly what causes disembodied essences of other worlds to be floating around World B? It seems to be a consequence of Chaos’ very presence, at least as long as he fights Cosmos. In any case, those consciousnesses are accessible because they’re present, and none from World A show up so it may not be included in the Katamari ball. Of Final Fantasy I’s representatives, the Warrior of Light was made in World B and Garland got there by another means, as you outline here.

    Reply to this comment
    • Squall_of_SeeD
      Squall_of_SeeD Author 24 April, 2011, 23:10

      -“Also, it is established exactly what causes disembodied essences of other worlds to be floating around World B? It seems to be a consequence of Chaos’ very presence, at least as long as he fights Cosmos.”

      It would most likely be that those worlds have been shattered and fused into World B.

      -“In any case, those consciousnesses are accessible because they’re present, and none from World A show up so it may not be included in the Katamari ball. Of Final Fantasy I’s representatives, the Warrior of Light was made in World B and Garland got there by another means, as you outline here.”

      It’s a good question, really, whether the World A version is part of the Katamari ball. It’s not entirely clear. My guess would be yes since the Chaos Shrine shows up as part of gateways and such.

    • B
      B 25 April, 2011, 22:57

      But shattered by what? A consequence of the fact that Chaos and Cosmos fight, rather than intentional reaching for the other worlds on their parts?

    • Squall_of_SeeD
      Squall_of_SeeD Author 29 April, 2011, 13:43

      It seems to have been a deliberate action on the gods’ part, probably at the same time as when they acquired their warriors. Here’s what Golbez had to say on the matter:

      “This world is formed of shards brought from different realms by the two gods.”

  18. B
    #18 B 24 April, 2011, 06:28

    I meant “is it established”, not “it is established”.

    Reply to this comment
  19. B
    #19 B 1 May, 2011, 00:22

    I read in other summaries that Chaos went crazy in 018 in the “Confessions of the Creator” alterniverse because he kept losing to Cosmos, not because he kept winning. For instance, here: http://finalfantasy.wikia.com/wiki/Feral_Chaos

    Reply to this comment
    • Squall_of_SeeD
      Squall_of_SeeD Author 4 May, 2011, 14:21

      That was a misunderstanding some of us had early on, but, no, Cid is very specific that Cosmos lost every time in the 000 story:

      “Cosmos was true to her mission, even as she lost her memory after every purification.”

  20. Black Jesus
    #20 Black Jesus 2 May, 2011, 23:44

    Has anyone ever considered that Cid, Chaos and Cosmos’ powered are limited to this world only and would not allow them to escape while still allowing them to pull others in from outside?

    Reply to this comment

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