If you’re wondering what I have been up to that would make you wonder why I haven’t written anything in any one of my blogs, well, let’s just say, I have been in hiding and rolling around with these guys with their sweet ride in the newest installment of the ever-running Final Fantasy series, Final Fantasy XV.
When my brother moved back home, he took along his PS4 with him, obviously. I finally have the chance to play when available1 and rather than going crazy with the games like I did with my current PS3,2 I only purchased and installed three games in there: Destiny,3 Tales of Zestiria,4 and this one. I pre-ordered FFXV as a download, and even though I purchased the standard edition, I also purchased its Day One Season Pass pack, which includes a few extras here and there to help me out with the game.
I’m really loving the game so far. In fact, I’m barely working on the main plotline because there’s just so much to see and so much to do. This version of FFXV features, for the first time, an open world/sandbox- style adventure questing game like many of the MMORPGs as of late. What this means is that you will never run out of things that you can do to level up, gain experience points, gain more perks, all before you face the final boss or proceed to the next chapter of the story. There are plenty of countless side quests, a lot of bounty hunting quests, and you do a lot of real life everyday things that you do aside from fighting and killing the baddies. Plus, who wouldn’t want to hang out and chill with four cool, laid back dudes like you would regardless of their background and where they came from?
Okay, what’s the game about?
You live on an Earth-like planet called Eos, very very much like ours. Throughout the first chapters of the story, you are stuck in a land that hugely resembles the West Coast and/or the Southwest Route 66-like setting, which means a lot of desert terrains, a log of coastal scenery, lots of forests, and if you’re living in a location that I have, much of the world in FFXV would seem very familiar to you. The weather also changes from sunny to rainy to plain ol’ grey, morning, daytime, and nighttime, 24 hours a day. The dress, culture, language, and mannerisms of the people are very much like the way we live. They have (fast) cars, cup noodles, endless ads, bags of potato chips, Coleman camping gear, and smartphones.
In the game, you play as HRH5 the Crown Prince Noctis Lucis Caelum, the legitimate heir apparent to the throne of the mighty (and very modern) Kingdom of Lucis, known to house the last powerful crystal to the planet. I don’t really want to throw in spoilers, but it’s highly recommended to watch the movie Kingsglaive: Final Fantasy XV6 to know its background and history prior to the start of the game’s story. The Caelum Royal Family have been guardians of the crystal for generations, and while King Regis is the current guardian, Prince Noctis7 would eventually become the next guardian of the crystal. The royal family also possess special powers bestowed upon them by the crystal, and Noct is no exception.
A peace treaty was supposed to be signed by both his father, the current King Regis Lucis Caelum, and the menacing Empire of Nifleheim, and part of that treaty involves the prince be married to his childhood friend, a former princess and current oracle named Lunafreya Nox Fleuret of Tenenbrae, now a kingdom belonging to the Nifleheim Empire. With all of the politics going on, King Regis sends his only son and selected three “guardians” to guide him out on a journey to meet Lunafreya, and let the wedding bells ring. Sadly, that didn’t happen, as you can guess.
While Noct and his three companions, Gladiolus Amicitia (his personal bodyguard), Ignis Scientia (his personal royal advisor), and Prompto Argentum (his best friend since high school), are outside the gates of Insomnia (the Crown City/capital city of Lucis) making their journey, Nifleheim invades Insomnia and pretty much massacred its government including the current king, thus taking over the capital city and the crystal. It was also reported that both Noct and Lunafreya were also found dead, although it’s already obvious that’s not quite exactly true. Noct is out on the road with his dudes in King Regis’ super-slick Tesla-like car called the Regalia and Lunafreya was able to escape with the Caelum Family royal heirloom known as Ring of the Lucii. I haven’t gotten much far in the game yet, but after watching Kingsglaive and playing the game, I think the real reason why Noct was to meet with Lunafreya isn’t for the marriage, but for Lunafreya to pass on the ring to him, claim all of the summoned weapons owned by the previous kings hidden in different royal tombs, and make his mark as the new and sole ruler of Lucis.
Unfortunately for Nifleheim, they may have the crystal, but there was no way for them to accumulate its powers without the ring. Because of this, they are also on a hunt for Noct and Lunafreya in order to obtain the ring.
So, the story of a battle to reclaim a powerful kingdom begins.
Who (the heck) are these guys?
I will have to admit, but it would take me a whole fansite to write in depth background of the main characters. I thought about building a fansite or a fanlisting to the game or some aspect of the game, so when I do, I’ll save all the other info for those instead. Rather, I’ll just give a short, brief bio and my own views towards the characters (so far anyway).
Our four heroes may have their own roles: the prince, the bodyguard, the strategist, and the best friend, but their relationships with one another seemed like they have known each other since they were in diapers. They’re very chill and informal with each other (all three call the prince “Noct,” instead of “Your Royal Highness” or “Prince Noctis” like most of the others outside their little brotherhood circle), they clown around and (playfully) diss each other with no hard feelings, they walk alongside one another instead of Noct being in front and the rest following behind him like most royalty would appear in public, they share one room in a hotel (mainly because they’re dead broke and have to do some side odd jobs to make their ends meet), you know, just seriously chill with each other.It’s because of this special brotherhood bond that they shared with each other that makes me want to be one of the prince’s homies too, so to speak.
It’s because of this special brotherhood bond that they shared with each other that makes me want to be one of the prince’s homies too, so to speak. ????
Noctis Lucis Caelum
The next in line to the royal throne of Lucis, Prince Noctis (or Noct, which he doesn’t mind being called) isn’t exactly quite your typical royal prince. In fact, his personality and mannerisms are a little of the opposite.
Noct seems to have a history of some childhood ailment that granted him a special power of foreseeing the future through his dreams (there were some flashback scenes where we see a young Noct on a wheelchair), which makes him as the Chosen One by both the gods and that of the royalty and nobility of Lucis. Well, in short, he really is not an ordinary prince. Of course, no one can tell the hidden burden on his shoulders being present because he’s so damn chill and laid back (almost) all the time.
When I first saw the trailers, it made me a bit irked at first at his appearance and persona. Dark haired, wearing all black, at first I was thinking that he would be one of those typical gloomy, introverted heroes that the past Final Fantasy games are known for (FFVII with Cloud Strife and FFVIII with Squall Leonhart come to mind). In fact, Square Enix gave us quite a surprise that his persona is the very opposite of his physical appearance. He is more of a mix of Zidane (of FFIX) and Tidus (of FFX), the two male main characters who are expressive, extroverted, and always happy-go-lucky, but more of like the type of guy that a lot of us can relate: just your everyday, average “Yo, wassup?” type of dude, if you will.
He would probably the first royal who would greet you with something like “Hi/hey there” or “Yo, ‘sup?”. When he disagrees, he would say “nah” or “nope” and “hell no” when he disapproves highly. He can make wisecracks and a few sarcasms with his buddies the same way as the other three can dare diss him (Gladio, his bodyguard, disses him a lot in a fun way, of course). Here are a few examples (non-verbatim):
Noct and his royal diet
IGGY (Ignis): I’m impressed, Noct. You’re getting a lot stronger!
NOCT: Well, you know, thanks to my “balanced diet.”
IGGY: You mean, the ones that exclude vegetables? (Iggy is the cook of the group, so he’s very familiar with Noct’s “I hate veggies” diet)
NOCT: Yup. That’s the one!
What Noct thinks of Iggy’s hair
NOCT: Man, the wind is too strong!
PROMPTO: Nooo! My perfectly sculpted hair!
NOCT: You think that’s bad? Check out Ignis!
PROMPTO: Oh yeah, huh? You’re right!
IGGY: … It is very rude to stare.
Noct and the weather
NOCT: Man, it’s scorching hot…
GLADIO (Gladiolus): Then why don’t you take your shirt off?
NOCT: And what? Like you? No thanks!
GLADIO: Are you wussing out because ya got no muscles?
NOCT: Hey, I got some muscles. You just don’t see them!
As a fighter, I would say that as a gamer, for me he’s a little OP (overpowered). He can use any weapon (any, meaning swords of all kinds, poles, spears, guns (yes, GUNS), etc.), he can warp attack (where he is in one place further and then right at your face the next second), absorbs elemental magic from the sources and creates his own magical powers based on those sources (an inherited trait of the Caelum Royal Family), and most of all, he can use his awesome powers to create chain attacks with one of the three or even all of the three, just to get the battle done and dust off your hands (which he always does after a battle).
Because of him and his menacing OP-ness, so far throughout the game, I haven’t died, rather, I haven’t reached a “Game Over” screen yet. Well okay, the battle system is self-explanatory and easy to get used to. ????
Aside from fighting, hanging out with his buddies, and cruisin’ around with his old man’s car, the Regalia, not to mention his knack of playing King’s Knight on his smartphone with Prompto and Gladio, he has a passion and knack for fishing. One of his goals in his personal bucket list is to capture the rarest fish existing and then get rewarded and recognized for it. His fishing highly contributes to Iggy’s cooking, in which, depending on the types of ingredients that he uses (you can purchase them in a store or gather them yourself out in the wild), the dishes can give our heroes special effects, such as higher HP, higher attack percentage, higher critical rate chance, you know, the good stuff you’d find in your typical RPG game. The fish he captures, plus all the meat you can tear up from the carcass he and his homeboys hunt or kill, gives a higher boost effect. I have Noct at level 5 in his fishing skill currently, while Iggy is at level 9.
And yes, they have Cup Noodles as an alternative.8 They’re a bit pricey at 220 Gil per cup though.
All four guys have four different outfits, however, like the food they eat, the clothes also give them some boost and abilities too, so depending on your situation, choose your outfit wisely. This would have to be my favorite of Noct’s:
Gladiolus Amicitia (Noct and the other guys call him Gladio, so let’s call him that too) is the sworn bodyguard and strongman of our unorthodox prince. But like Noct not being your typical prince, Gladio isn’t your typical bodyguard either. Despite the scar on his left eye, his obvious muscles, the tattoos, and his brash attitude, he’s actually wise and street-smart in the ways of pretty much everything. Judging from his role as being the big brother of not just Noct, but also with Iggy and Prompto, he is the oldest member of our four-man circle.
Gladio is a member of the Amicitia Family, a very prominent noble family sworn to be the guardians and protectors of the Lucis Royal Family. His father was the bodyguard of King Regis, and in turn, he becomes the bodyguard of Noct, lifetime bound. If I were to describe Gladio, his responsibility is to keep Noct steadfast, brave, and fearless in all of the challenges he faces in the future. He even declared to Gladio that when Noct loses focus, he will be doing the focusing for him. If we’re talking about keeping the prince as grounded and steadfast all at once, Gladio’s the man who will keep him grounded and steadfast.
He is also the one who does a lot of the dissing and criticism towards the prince in order to build up Noct’s inner strength and confidence. He would often call Noct as “Prince Charmless” (when he loses a training battle against him), “Prince of Pain” (when he does really well on his skills and actions during battles), and “Loverboy” (whenever they talk about Lunafreya). His constant dissing also works too, as Noct gives full attention to him and actually listens whenever the dissing comes. It shows by him reacting by the way of accepting his failures (he would jokingly say “Prince Charmless. Call me that!” or he would reply with some random wisecrack). The dissing and the wisecracks, as well as being the big brother that he is to Noct is what makes their relationship a lot closer and stronger.
On the other hand, Gladio also disses Prompto by his immaturity and his being talkative, and won’t hesitate to call all three of them (Iggy included) as wusses when the opportunity comes. He also has the tendency to open up his opinion on other people he encounters, whether he likes the person or not. I have to say, even though each of them have their own personal stories we haven’t seen yet, all four of them are definitely not introverts.
Gladio has a younger sister, Iris, who may be a capable fighter herself like her big brother (I haven’t seen this yet during my game, but I have read some articles). She was able to escape along with some friends and family from the Nifleheim invasion, and she and Gladio would often contact one another through the phone. She also has an obvious crush on Noct too (even though she doesn’t admit it, but I think Noct can feel the vibes and as usual, just plays it cool), but she knows she doesn’t have a chance.
As a fighter, he wields the two-man greatsword that reminds us of the good ol’ zanbato horse-killing sword that Cloud (FFXVII) and Squall (FFVIII) uses, and of course, his brute strength just adds to it.
The big man also loves his Cup Noodles. He even encouraged the party to buy some on the way. I even read that there’s a side quest in which we have to fight some boss monster just to save his Cup Noodles. Probably for the laughs though. ????
If I were to describe Ignis Scientia (the dudes call him Iggy, so let’s call him Iggy), he would be the stereotypical “English gentleman” with a lot of smarts, dresses sharp, and oozing out the coolness appeal all at the same time. Then again, he’s the only member of the four-man circle who speaks with elegance, grace, and a British accent all James Bond-like (well, not really). He’s more of the prince figure than the prince himself, but sadly, he is of nobility whose purpose is to act like Noct’s personal agent/manager/advisor/strategist all at once. He is the second oldest member of the homeboy circle.
While Gladio serves as Noct’s bravery and focus, Iggy serves as Noct’s wisdom and common sense. The young prince, like any other young gun, is spontaneous and can also be impatient, and acting on impulse and impatience is definitely not the real qualities of what a real prince should be like. If I think about it, Gladio nurtures Noct as a leader, while Iggy nurtures Noct as a symbol of royal grace and class to the people and to the nation (Noct is very casual, so much that no one can even tell that he’s of the royal blood). I haven’t even gotten to Prompto yet, but I’ll get there soon.
Iggy is also the second person who can also multitask with weapons as much as Noct does. He is both an expert in twin daggers and the spearpole with very precise attacks. He can also use magic as well. But the best thing about him is his impeccable cooking skills, which is a total necessity to the entire party throughout all the quests. He can come up with an instant recipe whenever the group stumbles upon new ingredients (which also includes hunting down monsters for meat and the fish that Noct reels in when he goes fishing). He also nags Noct to eat his vegetables as well. (Noct does not like his veggies. He’d already shown his dislike for them when a merchant requests a mission for him to retrieve a shipment of beans for his produce stall when he reacted with “Beans? I don’t get why everyone loves eating them” with a sour face to boot) If I look at the recipe menu that Ignis collected, the dishes that don’t have veggies in them are indicated as Noct’s favorites.
He also serves as the voice of reason when the rest of the group couldn’t come up with a solution. He also is the chauffeur of the group and is often seen as the driver of the car. It’s not because he was assigned to be the driver, he volunteered to be the driver. Apparently, he doesn’t trust anyone, not even Noct, with the car (after all, it’s the present king’s wheels after all), as he hinted that Noct (and Prompto) are somewhat reckless drivers. (But you do have an option of driving the car manually as Noct) Gladio also trusts Iggy more with the wheels also and gets nervous whenever Noct gets behind the wheel. After all, it’s Noct’s dad’s car.
When Gladio shapes up Noct as a brave leader and Iggy shapes up Noct as a brilliant strategist, Prompto Argentum does what he can to remind Noct that he is, after all, a human being. In short, he shapes up his heart and character as an individual. He is the youngest member of the homeboy circle, just some months younger than Noct. Unlike Gladio and Iggy, who are both of Lucian nobility, Prompto was born and raised in a humble background. In short, he is literally out of their league, the only member of the circle who is a common Lucian folk. On top of that, he is also the weakest in battles and probably the one who is the least serious at everything that you would start to wonder how n earth would a loser commoner like him get involved with someone so high and mighty as the Crown Prince Noctis and the noble lords Gladiolus Amicitia and Ignis Scientia (and Prompto himself knows how useless he is compared to his three majestic-blooded homies). Don’t let all these qualities fool you though.
Prompto is Noct’s best friend, (probably) the closest friend a prince could ever have, and in terms of relationships, he is also the one whom Noct turns to when it comes to things that don’t involve royalty or his predefined destiny as the future king of Lucis or simply just with things that he would not talk to Gladio or Iggy about. He is (probably) the main reason why Noct’s attitude and personality are what it is today: chill, laid back, and very humble. Among the three, he is also the one whom Noct mostly talks to. According to Prompto, they have been friends for five years since their high school years,9 but Noct already knew him since elementary school. There is a scene when Prompto confesses how intimidated he was with him because he is royalty, but the prince thought of the opposite. Gladio and Iggy are there to shape him to be the future king, but Prompto is there to shape him as an individual person. They play video games together, Noct even helps out with Prompto’s dream of becoming a professional photographer,10 not to mention that they team up to do some dissing against Gladio and Iggy when the time is needed.
It may seem that Prompto is the useless one of the group, but his engineering skills make him an asset of the team. In battle, he uses pistols and guns and can convert any Magitek weaponry scrap leftovers into powerful weapons that he could use alongside his guns. He’s also quite knowledgeable with cars, talking about them like they were his girlfriends, and in addition, he gains a little crush on Cindy, the cute and sexy grease monkey who helped repaired their car, probably because of her expertise with cars. Noct has a knack of making fun of Prompto whenever he starts talking about her.
Cindy has found their car!
GLADIO: Noct, who was that on the phone?
PROMPTO: What? Noct, you can’t talk to Cindy like that!
NOCT: Sorry Prompto, but I can… and I just did.
Prompto may seem useless in many things, but he is also the life and soul of the circle. His being talkative is what makes the rest of the gang remain sane whenever they get themselves into heaps of trouble, and all three thank him for being the heart.
What? No main female characters?
FFXIII has Lightning as the main character, and the majority of the main characters are female, so please stop whining. Now it’s the guys’ turn. The only female characters I’ve come across so far are Iris (Gladio’s sister), Lunafreya (the oracle and Noct’s fiancee), and Gentiana (that deity-like messenger for Lunafreya), and even then, I still don’t know much about those girls. But as I progress with the main story, I’ll be sure to write about them in another entry.
And with that, I shall take my leave. If you have me as a friend on Facebook, I post a lot of screenshots of the game there, so you can enjoy the sweet eyecandy. ????
Till next time!
On the sidenote...
- which is almost everyday… [↩]
- it still works, but the TV in my room isn’t. I may have to transfer my PS3 to his room [↩]
- which includes the newest downloadable content, Rise of Iron [↩]
- which has been in my video game wish list for almost a year now [↩]
- His Royal Highness [↩]
- now available on DVD starring Sean Bean and Lena Headley [↩]
- you can just call him Noct, since his homeboys call him that [↩]
- Nope, not kidding on this one. [↩]
- I will assume that both Noct and Prompto are about age nineteen. [↩]
- thus the very nice screenshots that I’ve been posting on this entry… [↩]