So, as you may have guessed for the length of the section I wrote about Final Fantasy 7 in my “7 Gateway Games To Get You Started” post, I adore the Final Fantasy games! They are some of my all time favourite games, and the series is definitely my favourite game series ever! And I don’t just mean the main, numbered series.
So, as we make our way towards the Final Fantasy 7 Remake (which I still can’t believe is in production), I thought I would list out my favourite moments of the series. Maybe this list will help you all understand why I love Final Fantasy so much!
But first, let’s go over the rules; I will only use one moment for any individual game, but it can be in a battle, in a cutscene or any other part of the game. It can also be an optional scene. So, let’s get on with it shall we? Oh! And these aren’t in any particular order!
Final Fantasy 9: Bahamut Versus Alexander
Okay, so I think we should start by making a point that these games have been going for decades, so some of these may seem a little tame compared to modern day spectacles like the over the top action of Call of Duty. But believe me when I say that this moment was amazing when you first saw it, back on the original PlayStation.
The capitol city of Alexandria, the country that one of your team mates is princess of, has come under attack by the Eidolon (summon) known as Bahamut, the king of dragons. In an effort to save the surviving civilians, you make your way to the capitol just in time for the princess and another summoner in your party to call forth the might Alexander.
Meanwhile, one of the main antagonists hovers above the clouds in a super-powered airship, ready to strike.
The ensuing fight is astounding to watch, especially when you consider that it was in the year 2000!
Final Fantasy Tactics: End Of Chapter 1
Okay, spoilers for the first chapter of Final Fantasy Tactics, the absolute classic PlayStation game. You and your best friend, Delita (as well as your team) have made your way to the headquarters of a team of bandits who have kidnapped Delita’s sister and threatened the royal family (your family).
After a difficult battle, you finally defeat the bandits, only to have one of your old party members appear with a team of royal knights who have been ordered to kill the bandit leader. He hides behind Delita’s sister, Teta, in order to save himself, but as Delita and Teta are of common birth, your ex-party member shoots them both. You then have to fight against the royal knights.
As Teta bleeds to death, Delita runs to her, being engulfed in the ensuing explosion of the headquarters. It was a sudden and tragic scene that really hit home the way the world of the game views highborn and common people.
Unfortunately, I couldn’t find a video of just the scene, so the video below also has the battle with the royal knights. The scenes are at the 1:00 – 4:00 mark and then again at the 12:20 mark.
Final Fantasy X: The First Sending
Final Fantasy X was the first of the series on PlayStation 2, moving away from written dialogue and into voice overs, as well as full 3D background. The graphics were a huge improvement as well!
This scene, taking place after your main characters has apparently been taken 1,000 years into the future, follows on directly from the complete and utter annihilation of a peaceful town. One of the major antagonists of the game, Sin, uses magic to obliterate the town, killing almost all of the inhabitants.
Keep in mind that this happens just after you’ve had fun making new friends and enjoying the bright colours and happiness of Besaid Island.
Then, you and your party arrive, with the summoner Yuna among you. As a summoner, it is her duty to perform “the sending”, which refers to a ceremony to sending the souls of the dead to the Farplane (effectively heaven) so that they don’t come to resent the living and turn into monsters.
It’s an absolutely traffic but beautiful scene that sent shivers down my spine the first time I saw. And the description that Tidus (the main character) uses for it is perfect.
Final Fantasy 8: The Attack In Deling City
Okay, so this was the second Final Fantasy on the original PlayStation, and is still one of my favourites in the series. You play as Squall, a student in a mercenary school. As one of your missions, you are tasks with assassinating a sorceress who has joined forces with the Galbadian army.
Things down go as planned when one of your team mates is basically hypnotised by the sorceress, staying by her side in a daze. This leads to Squall taking matters into his own hand, jumping down to the street, using the soldiers as a landing platform, before stealing a car and gunning it to the sorceress.
It was an awesome scene that really built up the excitement for the upcoming boss fight! And this is in a game where even the introduction scene is epic! And again, this is from a game that came out in the 90s!
Final Fantasy 7: Aerith’s Prayer
Another big spoiler for this one, but for anyone who knows Final Fantasy, it was obvious that this was going to make the list!
Imagine you’ve spent hours upon hours getting a character stronger, completing loads of optional quests to get her best gear, unlocked her strongest special move, and seen the main character all utterly in love with her. Sounds great right? Well, it is, until this scene happens.
Aerith (also incorrectly translated as Aeris) has left the party, traveling to the City of the Ancients in order to pray for a way to defeat Sephiroth, the main antagonist of the game. You trek through forest and mountain to get to her, finally arriving at the City of the Ancients. As you make your way into the “city”, you catch a glimpse of her.
As you approach her, Cloud (the main character) goes up to her alone. Sephiroth then tries to take control of Cloud, but fails because Cloud is able to fight him off. Thinking that everything is fine, you sit back as a cutscene starts; Aerith looks up at Cloud and smiles, just seconds before Sephiroth appears and impales her with his sword! You’re left to sit there, stunned as the scene continues to play, the heartbreaking music continuing even when you get into the boss battle that follows…
Final Fantasy 7 Crisis Core
Okay, okay, don’t worry! I didn’t really break the rules here! Crisis Core is a spin off/prequel game to Final Fantasy 7, so it’s still technically a different game, right?
Anyway, this scene doesn’t need much of an explanation, it’s just epic. It shows a fight between Angeal (the mentor of the main character), Genesis (who becomes one of the main antagonists of Crisis Core) and Sephiroth (before he went mad and became the antagonist of FF7).
Now, the fight itself is just a training simulation set on top of the massive cannon that defends the city of Junon. But even for a training simulation, it is pretty damn epic!
Final Fantasy 14: End of an Era
So, a little backstory about this one. Final Fantasy 14 was an MMO (massive multiple online) game, similar to World of Warcraft. However, it was really badly made, often not being able to run of people’s computers. On top of that, the game was very empty and felt very lackluster.
Square Enix knew that there was a major issue at hand, and since the Final Fantasy franchise was their flagship trademark, they didn’t want to ruin the series. So, they brought in an entirely new development team to rebuild the game from scratch, which went on to be Final Fantasy 14: A Realm Reborn (one of the best MMOs ever made).
To signify the massive changes that were coming to the game, they actually added new content to the original version, that lead to a meteor coming down on the world. This meteor then cracked and split opening, revealing it to actually be a prison for Bahamut (remember him from the FF9 moment above?) who then proceed to take his anger (built up over thousands of years of imprisonment) on the world.
This effectively ended the world, and the original version of the game. It was an epic moment in and of itself, but to use this to “end the world” so that it could “reborn” at the hands of the new developers was awesome! Oh, and the song (Answers) is amazing!
And That’s All Folks!
Those are my personal top 7 moments of the Final Fantasy series. However, this list is by no means exhaustive… Just look up summoning Ramuh for the first time in Final Fantasy 15, or even the Lunar Cry from Final Fantasy 8, or the destruction of the world in Final Fantasy 6. This series is full of epic moments! I highly recommend you take a look at these games and experience the awesomeness for yourselves!
Are you a fan of Final Fantasy? Or have you never heard of it? Would you be interested in playing them? What did you think of these moments? Let me know in the comments below!