IX’s Terra is the world of I. It’s not spelled out, but there is an awful lot of evidence pointing in that direction.
And for more depth:
Terra has a lot in common with the world of FF1.
- Terra’s only possible eidolon, Ark, is summoned using the FLOATER.
- Mt. Gulug is an FF1 location, down to the music.
- Terra has four elemental guardians whose names are the same as FF1’s four fiends. FF3 and FF4 have eight crystals anyway.
- The name Garland.
Final Fantasy IX contains a series of homages to the preceding games. Most seems to be from Final Fantasy I. Yet, do they match up when broken down?
Terra’s only possible eidolon, Ark, is summoned using the FLOATER.
The Floater is the Levistone, Floater Stone and Pumice Stone. It makes the Ryukahn Desert Airship fly. Our characters in Final Fantasy IX acquire Ark only if we contain a Pumice Stone, aka the Levistone in the original Japanese.
Perhaps the Lufenians are responsible for the summon Ark? Maybe the Airship that the Warriors of Light ride is actually a summon?
Mt. Gulug is an FF1 location, down to the music.
Except for the fact that Mt. Gulug is actually on Gaia, not Terra.
Terra has four elemental guardians whose names are the same as FF1’s four fiends. FF3 and FF4 have eight crystals anyway.
This might actually be the strongest case. In both worlds, each one represents an element, and correspond to the same element. Final Fantasy III and IV have the same amount of fiends, but they are not the same ones. As for the Crystals, these are the dark and underground crystals. Final Fantasy V has only four crystals. Could it also be a part of Final Fantasy I’s world?
But Final Fantasy IX’s Gaia and Terra only have one crystal each at the center of their respective worlds. The Elemental Guardians in Final Fantasy IX simply have shrines, and are not the guardians of the crystals.
The name Garland.
Considering that Garland isn’t a common name he very well could be the same Garland. Or, he could be a descendant. Yet, Terra’s futuristic; maybe Garland’s just an android version of Garland the knight?
By comparison, Garland from Final Fantasy I:
Garland is the main antagonist in Final Fantasy. A former knight of Cornelia who has fallen from grace, the Warriors of Light fight him near the beginning of the game. Although he is dispatched, it is discovered Garland has enacted a plan to create a time loop, allowing him to exist forever and eventually become the god Chaos.
And Garland from Final Fantasy IX:
Garland is the secondary antagonist of Final Fantasy IX who works behind the shadows. Before Garland reveals his identity, he is known to the player as Old Man. He is an elderly-looking man in dark armor with great knowledge and mystical powers.
The Lufenians would play a big part in making Final Fantasy I’s Terra the Terra of Final Fantasy IX. In fact, nothing says that the Lufeneins didn’t create Garland to protect the land. Perhaps he went haywire, enacting his prime directive early, using the powers of Chaos.