Feature

Investigating Final Fantasy XIII-2's Characters

by Jeff Marchiafava on Jan 27, 2012 at 09:46 AM

I take an uneducated guess at what the characters of FF XIII-2 will be up to, and what other Final Fantasy characters should be in the game.

I don't have a lot of experience with Final Fantasy XIII – I only played a couple of hours of the Japanese version for a preview way back in the day. However, if the comments of random Internet folk are anything to go by, my analyses of Pokémon and SoulCalibur V have been extremely helpful for gamers, so I thought I'd provide my professional take on FF XIII-2 as well.

During my initial and highly intensive investigation of FF XIII-2, I learned the game revolves around something called the Historia Crux system, which introduces time travel elements to the series. Time travel, as we all know, means that literally anything can happen in a story. To that end, I'm providing my own guess as to what potential plotlines these characters might be involved in.

Main Characters:
These are the characters that Square Enix has put on its FF XIII-2 website, so they must be important.

Noel Kreiss
Character Analysis: Hmm, maybe I'm wrong. This character doesn't look important at all. He looks like a Kingdom Hearts reject. Also, why is the crotch of his pants so long? His shoes are stupid, too.
Official Description: "Although straightforward and cheerful, no one knows much about his past, or how he stumbled across Serah in her time of distress."
Potential Storyline: Square Enix's description doesn't give me much to go on, but if I had to take a guess, I'd say Noel's storyline must revolve around his peculiar weapon, which looks pieced together from a bunch of random crap. Seriously, it's got a sword handle, some kind of dragon flames, and a big metal spike. It looks like he's still trying to figure out how that small brass stake fits on there. I'm going to go ahead and assume his weapon acts like Voltron, and will actually be really cool when it's finally assembled.

Serah Farron
Character Analysis: Oh right, I remember hearing about Serah. She's the one who has to use a bow because she's a woman or something.
Official Description: "At first glance, people see a timid, fragile girl, but she is friendly, outgoing, and much stronger than she looks." Serah Farron is also Lightning's sister.
Potential Storyline: Square Enix got a lot of flak for stating that Serah would use a bow to "preserve her femininity," so I'm betting the developer will overcompensate by making the bow really bad-ass. My guess is that the bow contains the soul of an ancient, powerful warrior, who speaks in a language only Serah can understand. Before you dismiss that as being totally outlandish, allow me to offer my rebuttal: time travel.

Snow Villiers
Character Analysis: Oh crap, I remember this guy from Final Fantasy XIII. He was the one whose fiancée turned into a Popsicle. Pretty ironic when you think about it – the dude's name is Snow, and his fiancée gets crystallized? Back to the analysis: Snow looks like a homeless hipster, which is how all hipsters end up anyway. Take a good look, hipsters: This is you in 10 years.
Official Description: "He's an easy-going optimist who gets along with everyone. Although he's known to be reckless at times, he has the strength to work through whatever comes his way."
Potential Storyline: Snow's fiancée was actually Serah (didn't think I knew that, did you?), and based on the fact that she's no longer a crystal, I'm going to assume he found a way to unfreeze her – or Lightning did, as we all know she was best character in that game. Based on Snow's unkempt appearance, however, I'm guessing Serah left him for a better man. Snow's quest in FFXIII-2 will probably be collecting enough gil to buy a can of soup.   

Lightning
Character Analysis: Just when you thought Lightning couldn't get any more kick-ass, she gets more kick-ass, by apparently becoming half gladiator. If Lightning had been in the movie 300, it would have just been called 1 – and it would have been good. Noel should take note – that's a sword. I'm not sure how I feel about Lightning being half bird now, though...
Official Description: "Although harsh on herself and others, Lightning is filled with determination and stands by her beliefs."
Potential Storyline: I'm not sure what the core problem in Final Fantasy XIII-2 is going to be, but my money is on Lightning being the one to solve it. I fully expect her to light up the battlefield with her awesomeness, while passively tolerating the goofy antics of the rest of the cast during cutscenes.

Mog
Character Analysis: Wait a minute, why is there a Pokémon in this game?
Official Description: "Although shy at first, once he opens up, he is quite the chatterbox, teaching Serah and Noel all about the world and its history."
Potential Storyline: Based on the fact that Mog is some kind of Pokémon, I suspect he will spend the majority of Final Fantasy XIII-2 trying to find his way back to wherever the hell Pokémon come from.

The Rest: 
These characters were snubbed from the FF XIII-2 website, but were in Final Fantasy XIII, so I'm guessing they'll be back in one form or another.

Sazh Katzroy
Character Analysis: The only thing I remember about Sazh from FF XIII is that he had a chocobo living in his hair and needed to be saved by Lightning a thousand times – and that was only in the first few hours. Frankly, I'm surprised he managed to make it to the sequel.
Potential Storyline:
Someone must have been keeping Sazh alive all this time, and I'm guessing Lightning would have stopped caring halfway through FF XIII. Therefore the logical conclusion is that Sazh's hair chocobo has burrowed its way down into his brain, and now controls his body like a puppet out of a sense of self-preservation. Expect Sazh-puppet to be even goofier this time around, until his brain chocobo pecks its way out of his eye socket and flies away, at which point Sazh will be a lot less animated.

Continue to the next page for more of FF XIII's B-squad, plus a few Final Fantasy dream picks.

Hope Estheim
Character Analysis: What? Hope is still alive too? Apparently anyone can survive a Final Fantasy nowadays.
Potential Storyline: By now I'm guessing Hope has grown into that awkward teen stage like Haley Joel Osment, so he'll probably spend most of FF XIII-2 getting into shenanigans with Michael Caine and Robert Duvall that have something to do with lions.  

Oerba Yun Fang
Character Analysis: I didn't play enough FF XIII to get to Fang, but her staff looks awesome, and Joe tells me she was the only other character besides Lightning worth giving a crap about, so that's good enough for me.
Potential Storyline: Based the screenshot above, I predict Fang's plot in FF XIII-2 will have something to do with the invisible chair she's sitting on, as that kind of technology could have major ramifications on how the human race sits in the future. I'm guessing Fang will be a proponent of invisible chairs, and will have to fight the irreparably corrupt visible chair industry, which will do anything in its power to stifle this new, invaluable resource.

Oerba Dia Vanille
Character Analysis: I feel like someone needs to point out the fact that Vanille and Serah are the same person. Same pink hair, same schoolgirl demeanor, same inappropriate battle attire. Serah's bow serves the same function as Clark Kent's glasses.
Potential Storyline: I think I just figured out the entire plot of Final Fantasy XIII-2! Based on Vanille and Serah's similarities and the fact that the game features time travel, I'm predicting they are, in fact, the same person. The main storyline is going to mimic Back to the Future, where Lightning and her crew must keep Vanille and Serah from coming into contact with one another, as doing so could cause a rip in the space-time continuum. Things are about to get heavy.

Final Fantasy All-Stars
Since FF XIII-2 involves time travel, I figured why not choose a few other classic Final Fantasy characters to join the cast? After some extensive googling, I came up with the trio of characters that Final Fantasy fans love most.

Cait Sith
Character Analysis: I totally get why fans love Cait Sith. First of all, the fact that there are Sith in Final Fantasy is awesome – I didn't know George Lucas was willing to let Star Wars characters appear in other IP. Cait Sith's crown and cape suggest she's some kind of royalty, so I'm guessing she's pretty high up the Sith ladder.  
Potential Storyline: I envision a Planet of the Apes-like storyline where Cait Sith leads a feline revolution against their human oppressors. Maybe Mog will join their alliance, if he hasn't found his way back to Pokémonland yet.

Edward Chris von Muir
Character Analysis: Based on my research, Edward Chris von Muir is another incredibly popular character amongst Final Fantasy fans. I don't really get it – he looks kind of emo to me, but I'm not one to disagree with popular opinion.
Potential Storyline: Fans must have a reason for loving this guy, so I'm guessing it has something to do with his lute. If Square Enix brought Eddy back for FF XIII-2, they should give his lute magical powers, like the ability to shoot sonic waves at enemies or something. That, or make him a cyborg. Cyborgs in disguise are always cool!

Quina Quen
Character Analysis: Man, Final Fantasy fans are weird. Quina Quen appears to be some kind of baker – why that makes her cool, I don't know. She looks kind of like a Miyazaki character, so maybe that's the appeal. Unfortunately for me, Jeff Cork pointed out that her arms look like two phalluses, and now I can't unsee that.  
Potential Storyline: I dunno, give her a baking minigame or something. Just hide her arms, please.

What other Final Fantasy characters do you wish would show up in FF XIII-2? Share your dream picks in the comments section.