#THEORY || Making sense of FFXV lore by going back to FFvXIII ||WARNING - spoiler & loooong post

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andrzejp90

Balamb Garden Freshman
May 15, 2018
34
18
#1
Hi everyone,
We can all agree that FFXV seems like such a wasted potential. Inspired by the soon-comming Episode Ardyn, and the story seems to grow some legs, I tried to understand what the lore could/would`ve been if we had got FFvXIII. With Stella, four crystals, blood moon, chaos, etc.

Warning: major spoilers, and this is going to be a long-ass post. Nevertheless I hope somebody finds it interesting. Feel free to comment or flesh out the story if you have some ideas. I think especially people who are deep into FFXIII-2 and Lightning Returns could contribute a lot to it, as I haven`t really played these games, and there semes to be a lot of paralells beetween them and the original FFvXIII lore.

First of all, reccomended read: http://finalfantasy.wikia.com/wiki/Monoliths_(Final_Fantasy_XV)
and then some of my loose thoughts (excuse the chaos, no pun intended):

NOTE 1* Everyone focuses solely on Etro. Bhunivelze – the most powerful of FNC gods, absent from FFvXIII? I find it hard to believe.

NOTE 2* FFvXIII Omnis Lacrima trailer, Noctis vs Stella duel – see how the Purple mist that comes from Stella is the same as Ardyn`s in FFXV. Is there a connection? Where they meant to be somehow related?

NOTE 3*
„The Focus” in FFvXIII seems to be taken „by chance” compared to FFXIII and its branding by the fal`cies.

Think about:
Somnus (and by blood Noctis) -> Bahamut`s L`cie
Ardyn -> at first Bahamut`s l`cie, then Ifrit`s l`cie
Gentiana -> Shiva`s L`cie
And so on

NOTE4*
FFXIII-2 & LR show a lot of similar themes to FFVXIII

Loose comparisons:
PADDRA NSU-YEUL (YEUL-JUL-pagan germanic celebration pre-christianity = the Oracle /GENTIANA (see how both share the flowers motive) / Stella

CAIUS (CHAOS) BALLAD = ARDYN (ARDEN-burning) LUCIS CAELUM / SAFAY ROTH / SAFFIRUS

NOEL (Christmas, Christ`s birthday, think of how people were waiting for the chosen king to be born) = NOCTIS

NOTE 5* FNC citations to take in consideration:

„Come, pity poor Etro, she was left all alone. Her blood pouring forth, in Chaos to atone. Queen of nothing, goddess of death—so let her be known.
—Fang reciting a rhyme about Etro.”


Come pity poor Etro…………. The Pitious (Ifrit?Ardyn?)
„According to Final Fantasy XIII-2 Fragments After, the Yeul of 200 AF is the "Yeul who collected flowers".”

„(Bhunivelze) After creating Pulse the wild, Lindzei the wise, and Etro, the goddess of death and Chaos, Bhunivelze retreated from man's sight and slipped into a long slumber."

„In the physical world, it contains within its form endless chaos. By the will of the deities, it gives birth to all living things. I speak of crystal. The eternal dream world of the crystal lies within the Unseen World. Even the gods long to find their way to that place. In all crystal, the heart that shines most brightly is called Bhunivelze.
—Yeul's Confessions, Final Fantasy XIII-2”


„Final Fantasy XIII-2 Fragments After states that goddess Etro spilled her blood out of desperation to get her father Bhunivelze's attention, and the deity Lindzei created mankind from Etro's blood. The first human created was named Yeul and was said to been fashioned by Lindzei in Etro's image. Yeul passed on to Valhalla, the middle world between the mortal and unseen realms, but her soul was unable to fade like the others. Taking pity on her, Etro sent Yeul back to the mortal realm so she would not be lonely, beginning her cycle of reincarnation. It is suggested Yeul obtained the Eyes of Etro as a side-effect of being reborn, becoming a seer priestess from the city of Paddra in the Yaschas Massif region. The gift of seeing into future events, such as the War of Transgression and the catastrophe, doubles as a curse as the visions shorten Yeul's lifespan and eventually kill her.”

„Caius, the peerless hero celebrated in Paddra legend, was a Guardian, appointed to serve and protect the seeress. The sagas sung of his countless victories, of foes vanquished in the thousands. He was called 'Caius of the Ballads,' but despite his renown, none knew his true origin.
He took the name 'Ballad' because of the one battle that nearly killed him.
The foe was a fellow warrior of the Farseers. Overwhelmed by the strength and skill of his opponent, Caius was driven back and back, until it was only a matter of time before the final blow would fall. But their duel was interrupted by an enemy attack, and during the ensuing battle Caius's opponent gave his life defending the seeress. Caius believed that it was he who should have fallen in her defense. Thus, to honor the fallen warrior, he took his name.”


„(Caius) The man responsible for releasing the Chaos from the unseen realm and inviting the world's destruction. Immortal since ancient times, Caius served the seeress Yeul in her many incarnation. He vowed to save Yeul from the cruel cycle of endless death and rebirth.
Caius's plotting led to the downfall of the goddess Etro, and brought catastrophe. The unseen Chaos, released from Valhalla, now consumes the world.
He was defeated in his confrontation with Noel and he lost the heart, full of Chaos, which had kept him alive so long. He should have died then, and yet he appears once again. Are his crimes so great that even death will not take him?”


NOTE 7*
As we all know, in the beginning, the very antagonist of the game was called SAFAY ROTH (nod to Sephiroth). As comical as it may sound its actually is very interesting given:

- Ardyn`s storyline being very similiar to Sephiroths (see the hypothesised scenario below).
Etro being the mother of humanity – Arden`s mother – (Sephiroth and Jenova).
To stop mother`s suffering the end of the world must ensue (meteor in Sephiroth`s case, end of Lucis line/or maybe end of the world and humanity with Arden).

Also (although it might be reaching a bit), dataminers of FFXV actually found a character name SAFFIRUS. Saphire (hebr. „sapir”, cognate to the Sanskrit sani-prijam, meaning "dear to Saturn".
Now, in latin mythology, Saturn is a god of generation, dissolution, plenty, wealth, agriculture, periodic renewal and liberation.
Think how Ifrit liberated – at first humanity by giving the crystal, then (tried) to rescue Etro, and then himself by being defiant to Bhunivelze (again, Etro).
wikipedia: Under Saturn's rule, humans enjoyed the spontaneous bounty of the earth without labour in the "Golden Age" (Solheim?)

This is extremely interesting also:

The Romans believed that Jupiter granted them supremacy because they had honoured him more than any other people had. Jupiter was "the fount of the auspices upon which the relationship of the city with the gods rested."

And

„Jupiter is usually thought to have originated as an aerial god. His identifying implement is the thunderbolt and his primary sacred animal is the eagle.”
...And...

„Saturn for his part got his name because he was "sated" with years; the story that he regularly devoured his own children is explained by the fact that time devours the courses of the seasons, and gorges itself "insatiably" on the years that are past. Saturn was enchained by Jupiter to ensure that his circuits did not get out of control, and to constrain him with the bonds of the stars.”

So I`d make a connection: SATURN=IFRIT, JUPITER=BAHAMUT.
They`re called ASTRALS after all, aren`t they…?

Note 3*
Think of an elipse in an abstract sense-> BHUNIVELZE=MIND (the body/materia) & ETRO=EMOTION/PASSION (the heart/chaos)
This would make the story and the FNC mythos even more symbolic and deep.

Note 4*
There seem to be a lot of paralells, showing how similiar the gods are to humans.
Ifrit and Shiva -> Arden (lit. „burning”) and Gentiana
Also I think one of the themes was how conflicts go from generation to generation.
BHUNIVELZE VS MWYNN -> BHUNIVELZE VS ETRO -> BAHAMUT VS IFRIT -> SOMNUS VS ARDYN -> NOCTIS VS LUNA

Note 8*
Some connections I took into consideration constructing this:
· Bhunivelze – the lyrics of Somnus (god sleeps…) and the lyrics of Omnis Lacrima (female and male choirs singing from Bhunivelze and Etros perspective). See how there`s a distinction beetween male and female („Deus dormit” – god (male) is sleeping & „yatrae corun dea” we are protected by our goddess)

Note 9*
Im pretty sure, that by the end of the game Stella would replace Etro (Lightning style), but maybe Noctis would have replaced Bhunivelze…? It may be far out though.
Note 10*
Gentiana – reincarnation of the first Oracle (based on the illustration on cosmogony and syleblossoms being her symbol) / or maybe she was unable to die in peace just as Arden..? Now helps Stella to finish her Focus.

Note 11*
Originally, there were 4 crystals. Despite of that, it seems that Lucis crystal was special in some way.
There was speculation it was a void/chaos crystal. I have my own interpretation of it.

Secondly – what actually are crystals in world of Eos?
I believe they are given to humans by astrals (like bahamut did to the Lucians) to grant them with some power of the higher being – most likely Bhunivelze (the god of light in FNC).

In all crystal, the heart that shines most brightly is called Bhunivelze.
—Yeul's Confessions, Final Fantasy XIII-2”



2.jpg
The restrained Etro
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Restrained Ardyn
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Restrained crystal (notice the subtle purple light trapped inside)
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restrained Etro as seen in one of the Lucii paintings
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Purple-colored power of Ardyn
7.jpg
Same hue coming from Stella...?
5.jpg
Bahamut with the chosen king (Ardyn?) accompanied with the black-haired Oracle wielding a trident and syleblossom (Gentiana....?). Notice how the crystal is still glowing (coming from the Bhunivelze - the light god?)
 
Likes: Storm

andrzejp90

Balamb Garden Freshman
May 15, 2018
34
18
#2
Here it goes...

This is a fantasy based on a fantasy of a fantasy based on reality. :cool:

FINAL FANTASY VERSUS XIII
Through the lens of FABULA NOVA CRYSTALIS

„Nothing either good or bad, but thinking makes it so.” W. Shakespeare


I. The beginning
a. Mwynn creates Bhunivelze, who kills her and takes the reign
b. Bhunivelze creates Etro and discards her, then the astrals (Fal`cies) , among them: Shiva, Bahamut, Ifrit, Titan, Leviathan, Ramuh (and possibly Odin)
c. Bhunivelse falls asleep
d. The astrals create the world of Eos
e. Etro spills her blood for fathers attention, creates humans
f. Ifrit grants humans with the first crystal (containing Bhunivelze`s power, giving rise to the first civilization – Solheim
g. With the help of crystal`s power, the civilization advances, becomes very avid
h. Solheim finds a way to leech on to Etro`s life force (chaos), advances even further creating the Magitek. Etro becomes Solheim`s slave, suffering to no end.

reference:
Come, pity poor Etro, she was left all alone. Her blood pouring forth, in Chaos to atone. —Fang reciting a rhyme about Etro. (FFXIII)


The statue in Pitios ruins…?

i. Ifrit, filled with rage about empire`s arrogance, summons a meteor to destroy humanity/the world and save/release Etro
j. The war between the astrals ensues, as most of them stay obedient to Bhunivelze and regard Etro unworthy. Shiva, even though in love with Ifrit, decides to stand with the other six/seven and save humans. Titan catches the meteor, Bahamut slays Ifrit (possibly with Shiva`s help?)

O ye, devoid of virtue: o ye, impure of soul
O ye, consumed by anger, who dost the death knell toll
O ye, who throughout time has spread thy scourge across the land
Shall slumber 'neath the earth, laid to rest here by her hand


k. Before his demise, Ifrit, by „cutting a cord” (I suppose), which was sucking off Etro`s Energy (chaos) infects the world with „Scourge of the Stars” – uncontrollable leaks of chaos infecting humans. (Other possible scenario – the chaos (scourge) comes from bleeding Etro).

II. The first saviour
a. People are taken back thousands of years in terms of progres. Moreso, they suffer from the scourge immensely.
b. The astrals, seeing the suffering. Bahamut choses to give mankind another crystal.
This time around though, he makes some conditions – „a convenant”, that states that humans have to be obedient to his will
c. Bahamut atoins Arden to be crystal`s master, giving him the name Lucis Caelum
(reference – the cosmogony illustration)
d. With the power of crystal (magic), one thing the mankind is able to do is to subdue the deamons and seal them off underground. Which Arden finds morally dubious.
e. To balance out the power in the world, Astrals decide to give some more crystals to humans. Shiva gives one to what becomes Tenebrae (see how Luna`s mother in kingsglaive has an ice crown), Leviathan gives one to what becomes Accordo.
f. Etro, seeing the suffering of humans, creates (or attoins) the first Oracle – Gentiana
g. Now, in tandem, Gentiana (as the healer) and Arden (as her guardian) travel the world meeting the deamons and purging the people of the scourge.
h. They fall in love. Gentiana becomes pregnant with Ardyn creating what will be called Nox Fleuret bloodline.

The gods are fickle entities, capricious through and through
Those among us who receive their grace ar numbered few
And while I was not blest with acumen or power divine
The gods bequeathed to me a greater gift: her hand in mine


i. Sadly, every time Oracle disposes a deamon, she suffers immensly and becomes weaker and weaker. Hence, some of the people still have to be simply sealed away in the dungeons and cannot be saved, and the scourge can`t be eradicated for good (with the Oracle staying alive at least).
j. Arden`s heart breaks seeing his lover dying. He thinks of some other way of dealing with the problem.

These cages are a closely guarded secret of our line
Keeping wicked ones imprisoned by power divine
Yet the sealing of these tombs is not done without cost
The Oracle gives all her strength until her life is lost


Such sacrifices must be made to serve the greater good
And yet I wonder: have we done everything that we could?
Should the symbol of our failures ever come to light
Our people would revolt, unsympathetic to our plight


May the future king complete the calling I could not
And may my name be forgotten, forever left to rot


k. Additionally, when visiting one of the dungeons while sealing the deamons, he is introduced to the pitious story of Ifrit and Eos. Arden can`t believe what humanity, with the help of his crystal did to their „mother” (Sephiroth/Ssaffay Roth reference!)
Burning (ARDEN=BURNING reference) with anger, he decides to rebel against the crystal.

The wisdom of mankind was by the warring gods laid low
Yet not unlike the seeds of flowers buried 'neath the snow
The secrets of the ancients lie in waiting underground
Hidden blossoms of lost knowledge longing to be found


The warring of the Astrals brought the walls and towers down
Yet we held onto hope the ancients' wisdom might be found
We ventured through the woods, underneath the forest floor
In search of secrets left behind by those who came before


Deep beneath the earth where rays of sunlight cannot reach
Encased in walls of stone the gods themselves could never breach
Laid a trove of knowledge—so we thought, yet what we saw
Was a terror out of time that left us all in awe


l. There might be two options how it could have gone:
1)He breaks off a piece of the crystal and creates "the ring of Lucii", into which he absorbs and traps the chaos
2)He absorbs the chaos into himself some other way
Looking to the Oracle for guidance in these trials
I realized we might defeat the menace with our wiles
First we draw the devil down and seal it in a cage
Then entrust its exorcism to the coming age
And 'til an heir arises to succeed the life she led
Her staff in hand, I shall become the Oracle in her stead


m. Ardyn/or the ring becomes abundant in chaos. Thinking that maybe the crystal can take some of it away or heal him, he touches the crystal.
n. The crystal, when touched, because of the amount of chaos becomes corrupted and turns black – becomes (in addition to being a crystal I suppose) „the heart of chaos (Etro)” with Arden as its master, turning him immortal.
o. Bahamut, enraged about Arden`s doing and him breaking the convenant, chooses another master of the crystal – Somnus Lucis Caelum, his jealous brother.
People under Arden`s reign revolt against Arden thinking he destroyed the crystal. With the help of his brother, they capture him and lock him away in a dungeon.
p. Somnus (or whatever Arden`s brother was called before) founds the kingdom of Lucis (referencing the god within the crystal – Bhunivelze (the light god).
q. It turns out, that the crystal, „infected” with chaos gives the Lucis line even more power than ordinary crystal – giving them an ability to control the chaos (warping etc.). Hence, they`re basically doing the same thing that Solheim did – drawing power from Etro`s blood (chaos). That`s the reason why they depict the goddess as sleeping and restrained (the infamous painting in the tower for instance). She`s their source of power in a sense.

III. The aftermath
a. The world gets trapped in a neverending cycle of the darkness becoming too great to handle and sacrificing an Oracle, who sacrifices her life to postpone the catastrophe.
b. The nations given the crystals become all too powerful, while outside of their cytadels the world is povert and suffering.
c. The Aldercapts unite the people without crystal under one flag. They purpose sharing of the crystal between everyone. After learning about Solheim`s history they decide there must be a way to make use of all the chaos that enrolls the world. Nibelheim is made (NIBELHEIM – house of the mist. (think FFIX mist -> MIST=CHAOS).
d. Versateal learns the story of Arden – who once was able to subdue the chaos. They free him from his prison.
e. Arden manipulates Nibelheim to reach his own goals. Which could be:
i. Revenge
ii. Eradicating chaos from the world by letting it being sucked back in by the gates of Etro.
iii. Destroying the crystals of Bhunivelze who made Etro suffer, and which (the crystals) have only brought worst of humanity
iv. Being able to finally die (by the hand of the next attoined) and ending the cursed bloodline
v. Freeing the Oracle from her Curse
vi. Maybe letting Etro finally die and stop suffering from humans using her blood (?)

IV. The near past, and the choosing of the second saviour
a. Stella Nox Fleuret is born. The new eyes of Etro, made in her likeness (hence in the logo it might actually be Luna Stella replacing Etro as the new balancer of chaos (like Lightning in LR)
b. Noctis Lucis Caelum is born. When little, he was submit to some sort of near death experience, which somehow branded him as Etro`s lcie. So now he`s both Bhunivelze L`cie – (Lucis Caelum) and Etro`s (the eyes that see the light of the dead).
This will become his internal conflict (Light vs Chaos)
c. (speculation) Just as Bhunivelze casted away Etro to the kingdom of the dead, the crystal made child-Noctis kill little Stella in some bizarre chain of events. And then she comes back from the dead to finish her „Focus”
Note: I think it could change when they have rewritten the story first time to make it FFXV and decided to keep her alive.

And then… who knows what.

Other stuff I`ve been thinking about:

Stella versus Noctis conflict:

Stella is sympathetic to Arden and Etro, she knows that the crystals have brought the worst of humanity and they should be destroyed. Maybe she figured out some other way to get rid of the Scourge? Maybe she sees it as something astrals/the crystal keeps running to manipulate the people?
(What if she was some kind of Etro reincarnation?)

Noctis is obliged to follow his bloodline convenant, otherwise his father`s sacrifice would would seem worthless. He also has people of Lucis to protect. Let`s remember that the master of the crystal is Bhunivelze who is in conflict with Etro.
At the same time he was also attoined by Etro, the mother of all humans, though and he learns how the humanity mistreated her.
Is any compromise possible?





Every tragedy divides, before our very eyes, the things we used to love...




Further read & inspirations:
https://gamefaqs.gamespot.com/boards/932981-final-fantasy-xv/76257714

and probably many more I dont even remember - so if theres something similiar pointed out somewhere - let me know, I`ll gladly give the credit where it`s due
 
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Likes: Storm

SerjAngelo

PSICOM Soldier
Oct 28, 2017
75
125
26
#3
Although it's fun to speculate, I doubt so much of the FNC mythos played a huge part in Versus's story.

From the bits we can gather I would assume that it's actually the past Lucian kings who were supposed to be the Fal'Cies as judging by the Dawn trailer it was them confirming that Noctis was the Chosen King destined to sacrifice himself to stop the Scourge (this being his Focus as a l'Cie).

I think, Summons/Astrals were supposed to be just guardian forces of nature overseeing each nation. Other than that the only thing we know is that just like in the final game they were supposed to have ranks eg. Leviathan being highest rank, Carbuncle - lower rank (lower ranks being changed to Messengers in the final game).

Etro's powers of seeing the "light of expiring souls" along with Stella's role are definitely the most intriguing parts in the original Versus storyline, considering Stella seemed to have powers similiar to Noctis, while Lucian crystal being the only one left in the world. Still I doubt this plot element was fully developed or finalized. Versus had many scope changes and I doubt many of the parts we'd seen back in 2008 carried over to the project that it was in 2011 or 2013
 
Apr 23, 2018
57
112
#5
Nomura said they wouldn't be using the terms l'cie and fal'cie at least. My assumption is Versus XIII was like a blend of XIII, Type-0 and Kingdom Hearts. I do think Versus would've utilised the FNC lore because it seemed like the kind of thing Nomura would include in his story. In fact the lore of the XIII trilogy even bares some similarities the Kingdom Hearts lore (I even think Nomura helped build the FNC mythos?) But anyway, it has a realm between life and death (Valhalla) like KH, a realm of darkness/chaos (Unseen Realm), dream worlds and time travel. And there were the rumors that Versus had all of those things, which isn't surprising when you think about what he's been pouring into Kingdom hearts recently, those may have been scrapped ideas for Versus that he's re-purposed for KH now.

tumblr_inline_pixjt6ibGl1sl2arq_1280.jpg

The current arc that is beginning to unravel in the wake of Kingdom hearts 3 is all about fate and how it is unavoidable. There's a prophecy which has existed since the beginning of time that darkness will consume everything in the end, and even though the apocalypse has been averted multiple times, that end is still coming in the future by the look of it. Which is very much like the FNC mythos where Mwynn cursed all of creation to end:

The world, it was certain, was destined to die.
He believed this was a curse laid on the world by his mother Mwynn. Bhunivelze knew he had to destroy her.
To do this, he must search for the door. The door to the invisible world where his mother waited.


That aside, if I had to guess how FNC would've been involved in Versus, I'd say Ardyn was somehow. If he was some l'cie cursed to be immortal from conception he'd probably have met Etro at some point, she'd be unable to let him pass onto the afterlife because his soul had been corrupted by Chaos/Plague or something like that. Grasping at straws here but there was an interesting hint at a powerful adversary of Etro in XIII-2 when they talk about the Temple of the Goddess:

It is the temple of the goddess Etro, originating from Valhalla, the middle world between the mortal and unseen realms where she resides. A fragment found in Final Fantasy XIII-2 suggests the temple was not erected in dedication to Etro, but rather by Etro, to imprison a "long-forgotten" enemy.

FFXIII_2_029.jpg

Was this ever addressed? Were they referring to Caius or is it a mystery? Who would be such a threat to Etro that she'd need to imprison them in the world between life and death? So I wonder if this was meant to be addressed in Versus, maybe Ardyn/Adagium was imprisoned there by Etro or her servants because he couldn't be reincarnated or move onto the afterlife, as opposed to being chained up in Angelgard like he is in XV. I think it's a cool potential connection anyway. And I think he was intended to be more monstrous initially? The only credible FFXV leak from 6 months prior to launch claimed that Ardyn would've turned into a monster in the final boss but it must've been cut late in development. I know Ardyn wasn't even designed until around 2010, but the concept for the main villain of Versus may have been known for a while, a hint might have been dropped and never actually explained because FNC being dropped. But that's me over thinking it of course.

And as for Noctis and Stella, I have a weird gut feeling that the ending in XV where Noct and Luna both end up in the afterlife is actually very true to Versus, if it really was supposed to be a tragedy and center around sacrifice instead of the usual "killing god/defying fate" JRPG/FF trope.. There were theories they became Gods at the end since Bahamut says Noctis' power will surpass the Astrals or something after killing Ardyn, and there's Luna becoming the Goddess figure in the logo too. Again, maybe the original idea was for Noctis/Stella to sacrifice themselves to replace Etro as the new gods to watch over the world, and they'd fall asleep on Etro's throne after defeating Ardyn. Just ideas of course but I can see the possible parallels. It's fun to speculate at least.

maxresdefault.jpg

I mean they are sitting on a throne in the afterlife in XV. It would've paralleled XIII and Lightning, like I said, Versus XIII might have been a different interpretation of the same myth. Maybe Square canned it because they felt it was too similar to XIII's story and wanted it to stand alone more? We may never know...

8131abb0fb404a30c090d448e3759819.jpg
 
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Likes: andrzejp90
Apr 23, 2018
57
112
#6
Another thing in Kingdom Hearts that made me think of Versus XIII was lil' Chirithy's line about Dreams and the Afterlife being closely connected. Reminded me of how Noctis would sleep a lot, didn't Nomura say that was going to be important? Probably would've had something to do with him being able to speak to the dead? But it's clear Nomura likes these concepts and will continue to use them wherever her can.

ChirithyWisdom.jpg

90fc02995963595126e0dcb0e8e6578c_full.jpg

I think more dream sequences in XV would've helped actually, I beleve there was a "Forest of Memories" patch planned but it never made it sadly.

Carbu.jpg

I've come to believe that the ghost of Versus lives on in two halves, the first half being XV obviously, the other being KH in a more spiritual sense. The connections are there.
 
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