According to the theory, the Sorceress Ultimecia is actually a future version of Rinoa. Squall’s death drove her crazy, so she intends to compress time to regain her beloved friends. But Ultimania counters with,
A Witch’s lifespan is the same as a normal human’s. However, they cannot die until they have passed on their power to the next Witch.
So the line of thought is that since Ultimecia is generations into the future, she can’t be Rinoa. That’s a bit anti-climatic and disappointing, but it’s canon now and that’s that. Right? Well, no so fast, there’s an inconsistency here. If Ultimecia’s actions are a means to escape her destined defeat, why would she engage in “Time Kompression”? That would essentially condense all of time and space into a single moment, bringing SeeD closer to her.
If all Sorceresses live a normal timespan, then what was she trying to accomplish through Time Kompression? Time still flows. How would she become a living god, only to die in a normal lifespan during the Kompression? Also, she can’t die unless she passes her powers on to yet another sorceresses. So Ultimecia flings her physical self back into time to Edea’s orphanage. So then, technically the game contradicts Ultimania. Sorceresses have the ability to live forever. She’s already is a living god as long as she chooses to hold on to her powers. Plus, one can’t live beyond one’s lifespan.
And then, if a Sorceress has to relinquish her powers. Yet Adel is in space while Rinoa becomes a witch, who gives who whose power? How are there two sorceresses at the same time? How does Rinoa inherit Sorceress powers if Adel hasn’t relinquished them?
So far, none of this makes any sense. Unless you consider Ultimecia is Rinoa. Square Enix simply eases up on holding to this misaligned plot. After Adel dies, Rinoa would be the sole sorceress. What’s to say Rinoa didn’t hold on to her powers, because,
“…Really scared…really, really scared
of her mortality during that fight with Edea, and thus vowing never to die. And then she watched the horrifying fate of her friends as they aged. Keeping her witch powers made Rinoa go insane. Junctioning Griffin made her forget SeeD are her friends. Also that Time Kompression (out of desperation) would be her downfall.
A part of me believes this is what they intended. However, they spoiled it when they felt the need to save face for Rinoa’s character as being basically good. At least it kept the script a light love story.
The main argument “Square Enix said so, so R=U is non-canon” isn’t impressive. Remember, there’s wisdom with Sakaguchi’s insistence on the “no sequels” rule. Square Enix is somewhat incompetent in this area. Square Enix makes continuity errors (i.e. Final Fantasy VII), ad-hoc stories (i.e. Final Fantasy XIII trilogy), poor pacing (i.e. Final Fantasy XII) and poor judgment (i.e. Final Fantasy X’s radio drama). I think FFVIII is just another one of their blunders. It’s a bit too bad too because R=U saves FFVIII’s internal consistency and gives it more meaning.
I make sure Rinoa or Squall are the only two in the fight. Depending on who defeats her, it changes the meaning of the fight.
Also, consider this website for more details (credit given where credit’s due): http://www.heartilly.com/rinoa/article_ultimecia.html