I wrote about the existential themes of Final Fantasy IX here. I think Final Fantasy IX is the most meaningful game in the Final Fantasy series. Part of the meaning is exemplified in the character’s quotes.
Apsialnti84 doesn’t think so. Geez, what a surprise, right?
You don’t need a reason to help people – Zidane
O RLY??? You don’t? You just help people, even if they don’t need help? Because when a normal person helps someone, it’s because:
1) it’s the right thing to do,
2) they need help.
So then, you do need a reason to help people, you just don’t need something in return. Enough of your glib, pretentious, shallow morality, Zidane. He sounds like an SJW. And anyone who thinks this quote is moral, is probably shallow themselves and not thinking about what he’s actually saying either.
Zidane’s kinda a sociopath.
Didn’t he call Selphie a sociopath? I guess it takes one to know one.
But let’s break Zidane down. His character arc is about being friendly and helpful. As the representative of Final Fantasy IX, his quote harkens back to the original Warriors of Light. They would help the towns people with their problems, even though there was nothing in it for them.
Sidenote: Zidane always had a reason. It was usually to capture the attention of Garnet. He did help other people for things. And he didn’t turn anything down when people offered after he helped them. Other than that, help helped himself…to other people’s goods…because…you know, he was a thief. SOOOOO – he was actually causing more problems than good [see: Amarant].
This isn’t true. Zidane genuinely helped because he thought it was the right thing to do at the time. And I think this is a good trait to have.
Someday I will be queen, but I will always be myself – Garnet
Uh-huh. Pretty vapid. Except we never get to know the real Garnet because she’s a blank slate. She literally has zero personally. And can you imagine there were 16 more Garnet Til Alexandroses in that world? Since Alexandria was founded 800 years ago, the average age of a Garnet Til Alexandros would have been only 47. But then, where does 39 year old Queen Brahne Raza Alexandros XVI’s line fit in…oh, I get it! They were just throwing numbers around to make the titles SOUND important! Stuff like that flies right over your head when your a kid. And I’m pretty sure Squaresoft was hoping you were a kid when playing Final Fantasy 9.
Her quote is actually a subtle spoiler of a revelation that happens later on in the game. She has a personality: she’s “naive due to her sheltered childhood” and “quick-thinking”. Later on, she “eventually matures into a more assertive individual who realizes that past does not need to constrain how she lives her life in the present.”
How do you prove that you exist…? Maybe we don’t exist… – Vivi
Funny, I don’t remember Vivi’s conflict being about his actual existence? He knew he existed. It was about a conflict over his untimely morality. This quote was all wrong about Vivi’s character.
Vivi’s conflict was about what it means to live, than to exist. But I’m sure that in the actual Japanese, the distinction is between ‘exist’ and ‘live’ are similar.
He does have conflicts over his untimely mortality, but the quote gets what Vivi’s entire character arc was really about.
Having sword fealty, must I spend my life in servitude? – Steiner
When did Steiner ever have this conflict in the game? I think he wanted to be a royal servant for life just for a good cause. All wrong again.
He has “sworn” fealty, but I think his servitude was to his narrow minded duty, as opposed to Garnet.
To be forgotten is worse than death – Freya
Finally, a summary that actually fits the character. And then they forget about her midway through, kinda like how Sir Fratley forgets about her, and she dies a little inside. Cruel work, guys. Cruel work (thanks, Sakaguchi).
I guess they have no problem with Freya’s character quote. They just wanted a way to stick it to Sakaguchi.
I do what I want, you have problem!? – Quina
I don’t wanna be alone anymore – Eiko
Yet another character who fits her summary. And she wasn’t alone anymore…because she was just another Summoner/White Mage. And then you wished that she was the only one.
And then her story arc was dropped. Or completed? They really didn’t care either.
Just a cheap shot at the game, again. Her arc finished once she realized her feelings for Zidane weren’t true.
The only dependable thing about the future is uncertainty – Amarant
I guess. This kinda fits him, since Zidane helped him by stealing from his guard post and successfully framing him as the culprit…and the game never makes Zidane feel like a terrible person for doing that, nor does it let this Zidane-manchild take responsibility for actions or even say “sorry dude, my bad”.. Other than that, I thought he was actually about relying on yourself and not other people? Who knows what he or any of these characters were about…
I’m not sure that Aspilanti84 gets it, but they might. It seems like they’re hinting at it.
OH I GET IT NOW!!! These are the quotes that the ol’ Sakaguchi originally conceived, but due to rushing the story, we got entirely different, mediocre characters. Thanks…Squaresoft. I had high hopes for this game.
In other words, the game and characters are flawed.
But what Apsilanti84 is missing is that these quotes are perhaps the most meaningful in the entire Final Fantasy franchise. Each are about the existential conflicts they have with themselves and the world. Each give a clue as to how they overcome their doubts and anxieties to become whole people. The stories themes are about living one’s life.