We nonetheless know little or no concerning the upcoming Final Fantasy XVI, however some mysterious character artwork that’s emerged on-line looks like a serious clue about how the darkish story takes form.
Following a tasteful apology from producer Naoki “Yoshi-P” Yoshida in late December, that is seemingly the one tidbit of information we’ll get till a promised “big reveal in spring of 2022.” However, if we learn between the strains, this pseudo leak may very well be a serious clue — and if some fan theories show to be true, then it might be central to the sport’s plot.
What occurred — Within the early hours of January 3, character design artist Kazuya Takahashi shared a drawing of a younger girl to his @short__pieces Twitter account. She has blue eyes, darkish hair lower brief, and an ornate gown. She’s holding what seems like a plate with a fancy blue crystal on it. All issues thought-about, she’d look proper at residence in most Closing Fantasy video games.
Most of the Twitter replies level out that she may very well be an older model of Jill Warrick from Closing Fantasy XVI. It’s definitely potential, however is it true?
Who’s Jill Warrick in FFXVI? The upcoming sport takes place in a fantasy world referred to as Valisthea the place Mothercrystals bless its competing nations with magic. The crystalline sources of that energy, nonetheless, are some extent of nice competition. At an early age, Jill Warrick is taken from her residence within the fallen Northern Territories and raised as a ward within the Grand Duchy of Rosaria, all within the effort of sustaining peace between the realms. As such, she grows up with our protagonist Clive and his brother Joshua, each sons to the Archduke of Rosaria. This form of association is frequent trope in fantasy storytelling, and it’s considerably frequent in real-life historical past as properly. (Assume Theon Greyjoy in Sport of Thrones.)
The sport’s preliminary reveal trailer from September 2020 makes it look like Clive, Joshua, and Jill are good buddies. In a single scene, she chuckles fortunately in Joshua’s path. (Is love within the air?) Most supplies describe her as a “confidant” to the brothers. A PS Blog post from a month later refers to them as “three characters swept up by the winds of destiny.” That means she’s each bit as essential to the story as Clive and Joshua, however how?
It’s value recapping right here that Joshua is the Dominant of a magical Eikon referred to as Phoenix, primarily making him one thing much like a Summoner in Closing Fantasy phrases, besides he “transforms into the Phoenix” fairly than conjures the legendary beast. When all three characters are of their teenage years, one thing horrible occurs that includes the Darkish Eikon Ifrit. The trailer exhibits moments from the “tragic occasions that change Clive’s life perpetually.” To be frank, it looks like Joshua may meet an premature finish, and Clive’s failure to guard his brother sends him on a quest for revenge.
A grizzled, older Clive is proven within the trailer as properly, sporting a face tattoo and a complete lot of anger directed at destroying the Mothercrystals. It’s seemingly that many of the sport takes place after this time skip. We’ve but to see Joshua or Jill at that cut-off date additional into the longer term, so is that this new picture a have a look at Jill within the current day?
What we all know for positive — Takahashi has labored on numerous artwork items for Sq. Enix’s Closing Fantasy collection beginning with FFIX. Notably, he’s drawn a lot of the artwork for Closing Fantasy XIV: A Realm Reborn and now Closing Fantasy XVI. You probably have a favourite murals that includes characters from both sport, Takahashi might be accountable for it.
Takahashi doesn’t appear to have a private web site, and many of the titular “Quick Items” featured on his Twitter account look like random sketches. Many of the characters seem like they stepped proper into an official Closing Fantasy XIV or XVI artwork guide, however they aren’t essentially official artwork. Whereas this may very well be a sly reveal earlier than what’s to return later within the 12 months for Jill, it’s simply as potential that it’s a very random character sketch.
That being stated, we all know suspiciously little of Jill Varrick. The official web site describes her as “gracious” and “unassuming” which is fairly sus, isn’t it?
The Inverse Evaluation — Trying on the photos side-by-side, it appears seemingly that these are literally the identical character. The coiffure and colour are virtually an identical, and even the eyes are an analogous blue-grey. The overall form of the gown and even her cross-legged stance is similar. Moreover, this is able to jive with one other fan principle — that Jill is secretly Shiva’s Dominant. The icy crystal and trim on the proper determine’s gown might trace at simply that.
The twist of her being Shiva’s Dominant can be fairly the bombshell. Keep in mind that Clive appears to be trying to find Shiva’s Dominant within the opening scene of the unique reveal trailer set throughout the current day. Once we see Shiva going through Titan, is that really Jill? Is she secretly accountable for Joshua’s demise, and that’s what sends Clive on his indignant quest? We will’t wait to study extra later in 2022.
Closing Fantasy XVI has no confirmed launch date, however a launch in 2022 appears potential.