Everyone knows that Final Fantasy games aren’t complete without summons. We’re listing our favorites.
Summons represent an integral part of the Final Fantasy experience. No adventure to save a dying world is complete without the ability to summon godlike entities to vanquish your foes.
Over the years, the developers at Square Enix have given us fans all a veritable menagerie of summons to use in battle. With such a large number of summons, certain summons from certain games are bound to outshine the others. With this in mind, we here at Variable decided to list down some of our favorite summons from the Final Fantasy series.
For this, we only had one rule, if a specific summon appears in multiple games, only one version of it can be used. Also, there may be some spoilers below. Without further ado, here are our seven favorite Final Fantasy summons. (Read: 5 Important Final Fantasy deaths that aren’t Aerith)
Leviathan (Final Fantasy VII Remake)
For those whose first experience of Final Fantasy VII was the original PlayStation 1 demo disc, Leviathan has a special place in their hearts. It was, after all, the only summon available in that demo. Final Fantasy VII Remake makes what was already an awesome summon into something even more jaw-dropping.
In the original, Leviathan would just summon a tsunami and leave. In FFVII Remake, it would hang around and fight alongside you. This is made even more epic thanks to its size. Only part of Leviathan’s body can be seen, poking out through a magical water portal in the ground. Even then, it still dwarfs everything but the largest bosses in the game.
Bahamut Zero (Final Fantasy VII)
If there was one truly amazing summon in the original Final Fantasy VII, it was not Knights of the Round. No, for us, it was Bahamut Zero, the final incarnation of the Bahamut summon.
What puts this summon over Knights of the Round for us is the sheer planetary scale of it. When summoned, Bahamut Zero flies in from outer space, not even caring to enter the atmosphere. It’s from here that it fires a powerful beam at your foe. Yes, Knights of the Round may have more things happening and do more damage, but it’s really hard to top a giant space dragon laying waste to your enemies with a single shot.
Ultima (Final Fantasy XII)
Final Fantasy XII did something unique by not using the traditional Final Fantasy summons. Instead, it took the bosses from Final Fantasy Tactics and used them instead. This gives players the unique experience of being able to use a final boss from another FF game as a summon: Ultima.
And fight alongside Altima you did. Final Fantasy XII was just the second game in the series that had summons actually fighting alongside you instead of just doing a single attack, following Final Fantasy X’s lead. Befitting her status as the final boss of a previous game, she’s a pretty powerful summon in her own right. This is in part because she deals holy damage, always one of the most powerful elements in any FF game. In, she also constantly heals your character while you fight.
Crusader (Final Fantasy VI)
One of the trickiest summons to use, Final Fantasy VI‘s Crusader is not a summon you use lightly. This is because, unlike most other summons, Crusader also deals damage to your party. This is because using Crusader doesn’t summon a single entity, but rather a battle between three powerful beings.
To use Crusader then either means having enough life that it doesn’t kill hurt your party too much. This usually means saving it as a killing blow to bosses. That, or figuring out how to nullify that damage from it using other spells and buffs. All this effort is worth it, however, seeing as it is one of the most damaging summons in Final Fantasy VI.
Alexander (Final Fantasy IX)
Alexander in Final Fantasy IX is unique in that it’s not actually a usable summon in the game. Instead, it serves as the guardian Eidolon of the kingdom of Alexandria, playing a pivotal role in the game’s story whenever it appears.
The scene where Alexander is summoned is one of the most pivotal in the game. Here’ Garnet and Eiko finally understand their shared heritage while standing up to the machinations of Kuja. Here, Alexandria castle reveals itself to be the summon, gaining wings of holy light and obliterating the summon Bahamut, which was attacking the city. However, before the party can celebrate, events conspire to leave Alexander in ruins, thanks to the appearance of Garland.
Odin (Final Fantasy VIII)
Arguably the most impressive summon in Final Fantasy VIII, Gilgamesh is implied to be the same playable character from Final Fantasy V that was lost in a dimensional rift. What makes Gilgamesh truly memorable, however, is the story of how players acquire him.
Gilgamesh in FFVIII serves as a replacement for Odin, the random summon that occasionally appears when players get into battles. Already an impressive summon on his own, Odin ends up being killed by Seifer in one specific fight. But this process also creates a dimensional rift that releases Gilgamesh. Should players finish the fight with Seifer, Gilgamesh will appear once again and offer their services to the player, wherein they’ll appear randomly in certain battles, just like Odin before him.
Shiva (Final Fantasy XV)
While summons form an integral part of the franchise, rarely are they ever in a position where they both play an important role in the story, while building a relationship with the player. This isn’t the case with Final Fantasy XV‘s Shiva.
In this game, Shiva first appears as Gentiana, the messenger for the oracle Lunafreya Nof Fleuret who happens to be the player character Noctis’ love interest. This means that players get to interact with her at multiple points in the story.
This is also reflected when she’s finally able to be summoned. Instead of just appearing, Gentiana/Shiva will walk slowly behind Noctis, giving him a reassuring pat on the shoulder, before she finally casts her trademark “diamond dust” spell, splitting into dozens of Shivas in the process.
And with that, we end the list of our seven favorite Final Fantasy summons. Disagree with our list? Have your own favorite summons? Share them in the comments below.
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