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Music video by Rihanna performing Rehab. YouTube view counts pre-VEVO: 19591123. (C) 2007 The Island Def Jam Music Group.
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Square's 1999 best-selling role-playing video game Final Fantasy VIII deals with an elite group of mercenaries called "SeeD", as well as soldiers, rebels, and political leaders of various nations and cities. Thirteen weeks after its release, Final Fantasy VIII had earned more than US$50 million in sales, making it the fastest selling Final Fantasy title. Final Fantasy VIII has shipped 8.15 million units worldwide as of March 2003. Additionally, Final Fantasy VIII was voted the 22nd-best game of all time by readers of the Japanese magazine Famitsu. The game's characters were created by Tetsuya Nomura, and are the first in the series to be realistically proportioned in a consistent manner. This graphical shift, as well as the cast in general, has received generally positive reviews from gaming magazines and websites.
The six main playable characters in Final Fantasy VIII are Squall Leonhart, a loner who keeps his focus on duty; Rinoa Heartilly, a passionate young woman who follows her heart in all situations; Quistis Trepe, an instructor with a serious, patient attitude; Zell Dincht, a martial artist with a passion for hot dogs; Selphie Tilmitt, a cheerful girl who loves trains and flies the airship Ragnarok; and Irvine Kinneas, a marksman and consummate ladies' man. Playable supporting characters include Laguna Loire, Kiros Seagill, and Ward Zabac, who appear in "flashback" sequences; and antagonists Seifer Almasy and Edea Kramer. Other characters such as the main villain Ultimecia make appearances throughout the story; their significance and backstories are revealed as the game progresses.
Cast creation and influences 
Scenario writer Kazushige Nojima stresses the dynamic of players' relationships with the main character in Final Fantasy games; thus, he puts significant thought into how that relationship will develop. With Final Fantasy VII, protagonist Cloud Strife's reserved nature led Nojima to include scenarios in which the player can select Cloud's responses to certain situations and dialogue. With Final Fantasy VIII, which also features a reserved lead protagonist in Squall, Nojima wanted to give players actual insight into what the protagonist is thinking, even while other characters remain uninformed. This approach led to the inclusion of numerous instances of internal monologue, giving insight into what Squall thinks of other characters and recent developments.
Character designer Tetsuya Nomura, while exchanging e-mails with director Yoshinori Kitase during the period between the development of Final Fantasy VII and Final Fantasy VIII, suggested that the game should have a "school days" feel. Because Nojima already had a story in mind in which the main characters were the same age, the idea worked. Thus, they created the concept of military academies, called "Gardens", in which students would train to become "SeeD" mercenaries. Nojima also planned for the two playable parties featured in the game—Squall's present day group and Laguna Loire's group of twenty years in the past—to highly contrast with one another. Laguna's group consists of characters in their late twenties and have a lot of combat experience. They are also close friends who have fought together for a long time and trust one another. On the other hand, Squall's party is young and inexperienced, and Squall himself does not initially understand the value of friendship.
Kitase expressed a desire to give the game a foreign atmosphere ("foreign" being in relation to Japan); his objective with the environment was to create a largely European setting. The first character Nomura designed specifically for use in Final Fantasy VIII was Squall, initially giving him longer hair and a more feminine appearance. However, Yoshinori Kitase did not feel that this design worked and asked Nomura to shorten his hair and make him look more masculine, which led to the design seen in-game. When designing Cloud Strife, Nomura gave him distinctly spiky, bright blonde hair to emphasize his role as that game's protagonist. With Squall, Nomura wanted to try a unique angle to establish his role, giving him the characteristic gunblade scar across the bridge of his nose. A complete history was not yet conceived, so Nomura left the explanation for Squall's scar to Nojima. Squall's design was flourished by a fur lining along the collar of his jacket, included for the purpose of challenging the game's full motion video designers. This is but one example of the demands he has consistently extended to the programmers of the Final Fantasy series as technology has advanced.
"Guardian Forces", creatures who are brought into battle to attack enemies or support the party, are the version of summons appearing in Final Fantasy VIII. Nomura felt they should be unique beings, without clothes or other human-like concepts. This was problematic, as he did not want them to "become the actual monsters", so he took great care in their design. Ramuh—an old wizard from earlier Final Fantasy games—was replaced; other human-like designs were re-imagined nude and with creature-like elements. Nomura, also the director of the Guardian Force animation sequences, wanted to create a greater impact than the summons of Final Fantasy VII. Leviathan was created as a test and included in a game demo. Garnering a positive reaction from players, Nomura decided to create the remaining sequences in a similar fashion.
In a Famitsu Weekly interview with Kitase, Nomura, and Yuusuke Naoi, the team agreed that Final Fantasy VIII reflects Nomura's preferred technique, as opposed to Final Fantasy VII, which featured characters that "weren't really his style". The team also decided to use realistically proportioned characters. The higher level of full motion video technology would have otherwise created an inconsistency between the in-game graphics and the higher definition full motion video graphics. Additionally, Kitase explained that the main logo of the game—Squall and Rinoa embracing—was inspired by the team's efforts to express emotion through body language.
Creatures and races 
The world of Final Fantasy VIII is predominantly occupied by humans. Another prominent race is the "Shumi", a small tribe of creatures with yellow skin and large arms. The tribe lives in an underground village on the Trabian continent. The Shumi frown upon showing off their large hands; NORG, the owner of Balamb Garden, was exiled from the tribe for his ostentation. All Shumi undergo a biological metamorphosis at some point in their lives; a qualified Shumi will become an Elder while another may become a mute "Moomba". Moombas are covered in red fur, which the Shumi attribute to "the passionate ingenuity in their hearts". Additionally, Moombas have appeared in several Final Fantasy spin-offs, including Chocobo World and Chocobo Racing.
Chocobos—large galliform birds common throughout the Final Fantasy series—are featured in the game. In this title, Chocobos are generally undomesticated and can be found in various forests throughout the world. Each forest has a minigame where the player must corral baby Chocobos to locate the mother. If the player catches a bird, a baby Chocobo (a Chicobo) named Boko will follow the player around. Boko has his own game called Chocobo World that can be downloaded from the PlayStation disc onto a PocketStation game unit. Series composer Nobuo Uematsu created two Chocobo themes for Final Fantasy VIII: "Mods de Chocobo" and "Odeka de Chocobo".
Final Fantasy VIII also features an array of common real world creatures, such as cats and dogs. The game also includes numerous monsters, many of which have appeared earlier in the series. Popular recurring monsters include Adamantoise, Behemoth, Bomb, Cactuar, Iron Giant, Malboro, and Tonberry.
Playable characters 
Squall Leonhart 
Squall Leonhart (スコール・レオンハート Sukōru Reonhāto ) is the primary protagonist of Final Fantasy VIII. He is a young student at Balamb Garden who was identifiable by the scar on his face that a fellow student, Seifer, inflicted. He rarely speaks and has the reputation of being a lone wolf. As Squall's story unfolds, he becomes fascinated with and falls in love with Rinoa, despite never outwardly expressing such until the ending. Squall is characterized by forlorn memories of standing out in the rain at the orphanage where he grew up, wondering where "Sis" went. Squall's weapon is a gunblade, a sword that uses components of a revolver to send vibrations through the blade when triggered. His Limit Break is a series of sword strikes called Renzokuken.
Rinoa Heartilly 
Rinoa Heartilly (リノア・ハーティリー Rinoa Hātirī ) is the primary female protagonist of Final Fantasy VIII. She is the seventeen-year-old daughter of General Caraway, a high-ranking officer in the Galbadian army, and Julia Heartilly, a successful pianist and singer. Rinoa is a member of the Forest Owls, a resistance faction seeking to liberate the small nation of Timber from Galbadian occupation. When Squall and his party of SeeD help the resistance movement fight Galbadia, Rinoa decides to stay with them; as a result she ends up falling in love with Squall. In battle, she uses a weapon called a "Blaster Edge", which consists of an arm holster and a projectile that returns like a boomerang. In her Combine Limit Break, she attacks in unison with her dog, Angelo. When Rinoa gains Sorceress powers, she acquires a second Limit Break, Angel Wing, which increases her spell-casting ability, along with rendering her in a state of "magic" berserk for the remainder of the battle.
When designing Rinoa, Tetsuya Nomura emphasized that he tried to avoid letting the possibilities presented by the recent advancements in full motion video technology become the entire focus, believing that these innovations might tempt developers to make their female characters "too beautiful" and focus more on physical appearance than personality. With this concern in mind, Nomura set out with the intention to avoid making Rinoa gorgeous, and to simply make her "cute" instead. To further emphasize this, he wrote a list of vocabulary traits and physical habits for Rinoa's character that he felt conveyed this idea of "cute, not gorgeous", and sent them to Nojima along with the character's design.
Although Squall and Rinoa clearly develop a relationship, it is never explicit until the final cutscene. IGN criticized this, stating that "considering that the love story is so integral to everything that happens—not to mention forming the central image of the box art—it's incomprehensible why no one says 'I love you' to anyone, ever". Game Revolution, however, stated "Frankly, you don't even have to play the game to know that love will win out in some way... very 'Hollywood.' But it is the way in which they tell the story that sets it apart from being just some teen-angst drama". In terms of Rinoa herself, when the Game Revolution reviewer cited the wish that the game had voice acting, he specifically mentioned Rinoa, stating "there is something sorely missing when I can't hear Rinoa talk". She is also the subject of numerous fansites, as well as an 8.0 rating on WomenGamers.com. GamesRadar wrote an article about the top seven lazy character cliches, using Rinoa amongst others as an example of the "pure hearted love interest." They again mentioned her, including her in an article of characters who are hot in their art and in cutscenes but ugly in their in-game graphics. In the cutscenes, they describe Rinoa as lovable and pretty while wearing a dress a normal person would wear, her in-game appearance was nowhere near as attractive.
Laguna Loire 
Laguna Loire (ラグナ・レウァール Raguna Rewāru ) is a man whose past and relation to the main characters are revealed slowly throughout the game. Most of the sequences involving Laguna appear in the form of "dreams" experienced by the primary protagonists. Squall always experiences these dreams from Laguna's point of view, although he does not think too highly of Laguna. Laguna attacks with an assault rifle and his Limit Break is Desperado, which involves a swinging rope, a grenade, and a barrage of bullets. During the dream segments, he is a twenty-seven-year-old soldier in the Galbadian army who travels with his companions, Kiros Seagill and Ward Zabac. He is also an aspiring journalist.
During the first two dream segments, Laguna and his team are shown getting lost and visiting the hotel where singer Julia Heartilly, Laguna's romantic interest, performs. After a scouting mission at Centra, the three soldiers are separated and Laguna is injured. A young woman named Raine nurses him back to health after he is brought to Winhill. He falls in love with and marries her. However, he is drawn away from his new home when a young girl in their care, Ellone, is kidnapped. Laguna tracks her down in Esthar, where he helps liberate the nation from the despotic rule of Sorceress Adel. The people of Esthar elect Laguna as their president and Ellone is sent back to Winhill without him. After Raine dies, her child (whom Ward and Kiros imply to be Squall in a conversation aboard the Ragnarok) and Ellone are sent to an orphanage. Laguna is unable to leave his post to visit her and remains president of Esthar to the present day. Ellone and Laguna are reunited in space, and Laguna helps the party prepare for their fight against Ultimecia.
The concept of two main characters was planned since the beginning of the game's development. Nomura tried to create a contrast between Laguna's and Squall's occupations; thus, Laguna became a soldier with a light-hearted charisma, and Squall became a reserved mercenary student. The designers intended Laguna to be more similar to the previous protagonists in the series to complement Squall, who is different from previous main characters. Laguna is ranked seventh in Electronic Gaming Monthly's list of the top ten video game politicians.
Laguna Loire appears in Dissidia 012 Final Fantasy, where he is voiced by Hiroaki Hirata in the Japanese version and Armando Valdes-Kennedy in the English version. He is featured in his youthful Final Fantasy VIII appearance while his older and his Galbadian soldier forms. His costume of a knight is also available as downloadble content. Laguna was also planned to appear in Kingdom Hearts Birth by Sleep as a the head of Mirage Arena.
Seifer Almasy 
Seifer Almasy (サイファー・アルマシー Saifā Arumashī ) is a classmate and rival of Squall, who can only be controlled by the player during the Dollet sequence. He reappears as a boss later in the game. He acts as a foil to Squall in many respects, having dated Rinoa before she met Squall, and assuming a leadership position among his friends. Like Squall, Seifer wields a gunblade which he calls "Hyperion". His Limit Break, Fire Cross, allows him to use an attack called No Mercy. He later uses the more powerful techniques Demon Slice and Bloodfest against the player. Seifer has a short temper and is often depicted as a bully who desires attention. He is also fiercely independent and is often punished for his recklessness. He is the leader of Balamb Garden's disciplinary committee with his friends Fujin and Raijin. After joining Ultimecia, he becomes the leader of the Galbadian army.
During the introduction sequence, Seifer cuts Squall across the left side of his face with his gunblade, leaving a scar. Squall retaliates with a backhand slash that leaves Seifer with a mirrored scar. At the following field exam in Dollet, Seifer acts independently from his teammates Squall and Zell, abandoning them; consequently, he fails and is not promoted to SeeD. Spurred by dreams of a brighter future, he defects to Sorceress Edea so he could be her "knight". From his point of view, Squall and the others are "evil" and he recognizes himself as a hero. As Seifer is brainwashed by the sorceress, he alienates himself from his friends. Eventually, Fujin and Raijin abandon him and he is defeated shortly afterward. Following Edea's defeat, the party confronts Seifer one last time as he now serves Ultimecia, and either they or Gilgamesh defeat him. Seifer escapes, kidnapping Rinoa and bringing her to Adel. At the end of the game, Seifer is seen fishing and having fun with Fujin and Raijin.
Nomura had originally intended Seifer not only as Squall's rival, but also as part of the love triangle between him, Squall, and Rinoa. Although this concept was not thoroughly explored in the final script, Seifer remains Squall's rival and his appearance was designed to contrast with Squall's. They have equivalent but mirrored scars on their faces and their jackets are of opposing color and length. Both characters use gunblades; Squall's gunblade is larger and requires two hands, while Seifer's gunblade is lighter and can be wielded with one hand. A younger version of Seifer makes an appearance in Kingdom Hearts II as a member of the Twilight Town Disciplinary Committee with Fujin and Raijin. Seifer in the virtual Twilight Town is a rival of the main character, Roxas, and at one point mentions that he does not wish to cooperate with destiny. He is voiced by Takehito Koyasu and Will Friedle in the Japanese and English versions, respectively. He is also featured in the rhythm game Theatrhythm Final Fantasy as a subcharacter representing Final Fantasy VIII.
The book "Converging Traditions in the Digital Moving Image: Architectures of Illusion, Images of Truth" discusses that while Seifer is seen as a show-off and a troublemaker, protagonist Squall Leonhart identifies with him. IGN listed Seifer as the 91st best video game villain, stating that he makes for a great rival due to the similarities between him and Squall.
Quistis Trepe 
Quistis Trepe (キスティス・トゥリープ Kisutisu Turīpu ) is an eighteen-year-old instructor at Balamb Garden, where Squall, Zell, and Seifer are students. She uses a chain whip in battle, and her Limit Break, Blue Magic, a common ability found throughout the Final Fantasy games, allows her to imitate monsters' attacks. Early in the game, Quistis is discharged as an instructor because she "[lacks] leadership qualities". Afterwards, she maintains a more informal relationship with the other characters as a fellow member of SeeD.
As a child, Quistis stayed at an orphanage with most of the main characters. She then lived with foster parents, with whom she never developed any intimacy, before moving to Galbadia Garden  at age ten. She became a SeeD at fifteen and an instructor two years later. Quistis initially joins Squall to prepare him for his upcoming field exam. She later takes Squall into her confidence and tells him personally about her demotion. As a result, Squall stops paying attention to her, which leads to Quistis asking if he is paying attention. Squall rudely tells her to go "talk to a wall", a famous comical line in the game, and not to burden him with her problems. This furthers the player's perception of Squall's awkwardness and anti-social tendencies. When Irvine refreshes the main characters' memories about the orphanage, they remember that Squall's asocial behavior began when Ellone, an older sister figure to Squall, left the orphanage unexpectedly. As a result of these revelations, Quistis recognizes that her feelings for Squall are more sisterly than romantic. Later, she criticizes Squall when he nearly abandons Rinoa, his romantic interest.
When designing the characters, Nomura had wanted at least one female character to wear a skirt. Quistis was originally supposed to fill this part, but Nomura decided a long skirt worn over pants would look better. The role was eventually passed to Selphie. Nomura was surprised when the writers cast her as a teacher, despite being around the same age as the rest of the group.
Selphie Tilmitt 
Selphie Tilmitt (セルフィ・ティルミット Serufi Tirumitto ) is a student at Balamb Garden who recently transferred from Trabia Garden. She is active and energetic, although slightly clumsy. She participates in many extracurricular activities, such as planning the Garden Festival and running the school's website. She wields nunchaku in battle, and her Limit Break Slot allows the player to cast a random spell numerous times as well as certain magic used exclusively in her limit break. In addition to battle, she pilots the Ragnarok starship.
Selphie first appears when running into Squall while late for class. She asks Squall to show her around because she recently transferred. During the Dollet exam, Selphie joins Squall's team after Seifer abandons them. She becomes a SeeD with Squall and Zell, and the three are assigned to the same team. When Galbadia launches missiles at Trabia Garden, she reacts with outrage and helps destroy the missile base. Throughout the game, she revisits her childhood closeness with Irvine, who serves as her copilot on the Ragnarok.
Selphie was the second character that Nomura drew, after Squall, intentionally giving her an impractical hairstyle. When he first designed Selphie, Nomura drew her in overalls; however, he realized that none of the characters would be wearing a skirt. In the end, he gave Selphie a mini-skirt and let Quistis have pants. In the Kingdom Hearts series, Nomura included a younger version of Selphie as a resident of Destiny Islands, and uses a jump rope instead of nunchaku. She is voiced by Mayuko Aoki in the Japanese version, and by Molly Keck in the English version.
Zell Dincht 
Zell Dincht (ゼル・ディン Zeru Din ) is a student at Balamb Garden with Squall and Seifer. Seventeen years old, Zell is a martial artist who fits the role of unarmed character, just like Tifa Lockhart did in the previous game, Final Fantasy VII. Zell attacks with punches and kicks, his weapons being gloves, and his Limit Break, Duel, requires the player to input button combinations on the controller to deal damage. Zell is slightly impulsive and overconfident in his own skill; however, he is loyal to his friends. Seifer gives him the nickname "chicken-wuss". He also has a passion for hot dogs; a recurring gag is that they are always sold out by the time he reaches the cafeteria.
Zell lived at the same orphanage as many of the other protagonists; this is where Seifer first began to bully him. He was later adopted by the Dincht family in the town of Balamb. His motivation for enrolling at Garden is to live up to the memory of his grandfather, a famous soldier.
Zell was designed to look and act like the main character of a shōnen manga (Japanese comic books intended primarily for boys); his neighbors in Balamb describe him as a "'comic-bookish' type of hero". He also thinks of himself as Seifer's rival, despite not being the main character. The inspiration for the tattoo on his face came from an MTV music video that featured a man with a full body tattoo.
Zell's ultimate weapon is named Ehrgeiz, directly referencing the game of the same name which came out around the same time Final Fantasy VIII did. Also, continuing the similarities to Tifa Lockhart of Final Fantasy VII, Zell's final limit break is My Final Heaven, while Tifa's was called just Final Heaven.
Irvine Kinneas 
Irvine Kinneas (アーヴァイン・キニアス Āvain Kiniasu ) is a student at Galbadia Garden, one of the three mercenary academies in the game. He is one of the Garden's elite sharpshooters, always carrying his rifle. His Limit Break is Shot, which deals damage and inflicts status effects depending on the type of ammunition. Irvine is depicted as a cowboy, tall and fair-skinned with long brown hair that he wears pulled back in a ponytail. He also enjoys flirting with the female characters, being known as well for his marksmanship as his charm. He acts like a carefree, but misunderstood loner; however, this is merely a façade to charm women and hide his lack of confidence.
When Sorceress Edea becomes the Galbadian ambassador, Balamb and Galbadia Gardens order Squall's team to assassinate her; Irvine is introduced as the sniper for the mission. Moments before the assassination attempt, he explains to Squall that he always chokes under pressure. At Trabia Garden, Irvine reveals that he and most of the other party members had lived in the same orphanage, run by Cid and Edea Kramer. However, the others could not remember this because of their use of Guardian Forces (GF), magical beings who cause severe long-term memory loss as a side effect. Because Irvine had not used a GF until he joined the party, he is able to remember his past. During the game, Irvine gradually draws closer to Selphie, acting on the feeling he has had since living with her at the orphanage.
With Irvine, Nomura tried to strike a balance between not overshadowing Squall and not becoming too unattractive. He gave Irvine a handsome appearance, but a casual personality, hoping that this would make him less attractive than Squall. Keeping with this idea, Nomura gave him goggles; however, this idea was abandoned in favor of an American cowboy-like appearance to set him apart from other goggle-wearing characters in the Final Fantasy series.
Kiros Seagill 
Kiros Seagill (キロス・シーゲル Kirosu Shīgeru ) is one of Laguna's comrades in the Galbadian Army. He wields a pair of katar (कटार) or gauntlet-daggers, with which he repeatedly slices his enemies in his Limit Break, Blood Pain. His weapons' name is given as "katal" in the English localization of the game. Following the failed mission in Centra, Kiros is separated from Laguna and Ward. He heals quickly and decides to leave the Galbadian army, but soon finds that life without Laguna lacks excitement. His subsequent search for Laguna brings him to Winhill after nearly a year. When Laguna is forced to leave Winhill to find Ellone, Kiros accompanies him, helping him earn money as an amateur actor to fund the expedition. Kiros remains by Laguna's side throughout his adventures in Esthar, earning a place as Laguna's advisor when he becomes president. Like Ward, Kiros' interactions with Laguna are based on the staff's interactions during development.
Ward Zabac 
Ward Zabac (ウォード・ザバック Wōdo Zabakku ) is Laguna's other comrade. An imposing man, he wields a large harpoon in battle; in his Limit Break, Massive Anchor, he uses it to crush his opponents from above. During the incident at Centra, he loses his voice in a battle with Esthar soldiers. After being separated from Laguna and Kiros, he becomes a janitor at the D-District Prison. When Laguna becomes president of Esthar, Ward joins Kiros as an advisor, directing affairs with gestures and ellipses. Laguna and Kiros can understand what he is saying by his reactions. Like Kiros, Ward's interactions with Laguna are based on the staff's interactions during development.
Edea Kramer 
Edea Kramer (イデア・クレイマー Idea Kureimā ) is initially presented as a power-hungry sorceress who seizes control of Galbadia from President Deling. Her motives are unknown, but SeeD is dispatched to assassinate her. Later, it is revealed that Edea is actually the wife of Headmaster Cid, and was known as "Matron" to Squall and the other kids that lived at the orphanage. It is eventually explained that Edea was not acting of her own will, but was possessed by a sorceress from the future named Ultimecia. When Ultimecia's control is broken, Edea takes the side of the SeeDs in the struggle and joins Squall's party for a short time. However, she accidentally gives her powers to Rinoa, making her a sorceress. Being a sorceress, Edea attacks with magical bursts of energy and her Limit Break, Ice Strike, consists of a magically conjured icicle, hurled like a javelin. This Limit Break is depicted in a cutscene during Edea's coronation as head of Galbadia, when she (possessed by Ultimecia) attacks Squall with it.
Edea is one of three character concepts, along with Fujin and Raijin, to have been created before Final Fantasy VIII. Tetsuya Nomura had designed Edea even before the development of Final Fantasy VII, based on the style of Yoshitaka Amano, who was the character illustrator of Final Fantasy VI and previous games. In Dissidia 012 Final Fantasy, Edea's design is used as an alternate costume of Ultimecia's.
Other characters 
Adel (アデル Aderu ) is a sorceress from Esthar who initiated the Sorceress War some years ago before the start of the game. As the ruler of Esthar, she ordered her soldiers to abduct every girl to find a suitable successor for her powers, including the young Ellone. During the Esthar revolution, Laguna and Dr. Odine devised an artifact to cancel the sorceress power, and placed her in suspended animation in outer space. In the present, after Edea is released from Ultimecia's control, Ultimecia possesses the new sorceress, Rinoa, and commands her to free Adel, so she can become Ultimecia's new and more powerful vessel. Adel is successfully freed, so Rinoa is discarded as a host. However, in order to defeat Ultimecia, Dr. Odine plans for Ultimecia to once again possess Rinoa. Eventually, Squall's party defeats Adel when she tries to absorb Rinoa at the Lunatic Pandora, thus Adel's powers transfer to Rinoa, Ultimecia possesses her again, and using Ellone's powers, they start "Time Compression", which leads to the final battle.
Cid Kramer 
Cid Kramer (シド・クレイマー Shido Kureimā ) is the headmaster of Balamb Garden. After the failed assassination attempt on Edea, the Garden Master, NORG, attempts to seize power from Cid and reconcile with Edea. This sparks an internal conflict, in which the students and personnel side with either Cid or NORG. However, Squall and Xu quell the conflict and return Cid to power. Afterward, Cid aggressively confronts NORG, who started the conflict over financial issues. Cid is the husband of Sorceress Edea, with whom he ran an orphanage and founded the SeeD organization. They are estranged for most of the game, however, because they lead opposing factions until Ultimecia releases her magical possession of Edea.
Because most Final Fantasy titles include a character named "Cid", Nomura wanted to design someone with differences from the past Cids in the series. He gave this version of Cid the appearance and personality of an older, benevolent character who would watch over Squall's party and offer them advice and motivation. Nojima decided that this type of good-natured character would work best as the headmaster of Balamb Garden.
Ellone (エルオーネ Eruōne ) is a mysterious girl and the missing "Sis" of Squall's past. She has the ability to send a person's consciousness back in time and into the body of another, so they can experience the actions of that person. She uses this talent to send Squall's party into Laguna's past adventures, hoping that they would alter the past; however, she eventually realizes that her abilities can only view history, not alter it. Ultimecia needs this power to achieve "Time Compression", so she uses Edea and the Galbadian military to find her.
Ellone is an important character in the story, tying the relationships between some of the characters, and being the primary objective of Ultimecia. However, Ellone's importance is mostly told in the flashbacks, and explained gradually. After Ellone's parents were killed by Esthar soldiers, under orders of sorceress Adel, she lived with Raine in the small Winhill village, where she also developed a close relationship with her adoptive uncle, Laguna. These peaceful times lasted until she was finally captured by Esthar. Then, Laguna travelled to Esthar to rescue her, at the same time he participated in Esthar's rebellion to overthrow Adel. After Adel's incarceration in space, Laguna having to remain in Esthar as president, and then Raine's death, Ellone moved to Cid and Edea's orphanage, where she became an older sister figure to Squall and the other orphans, and eventually she also followed Cid to Balamb Garden. Early in the game, Squall's party finds Ellone in the library of Balamb Garden, but the characters don't have further interactions. It is later explained that the "Guardian Forces" (GF) which the SeeDs use in battle cause memory loss, thus explaining why Squall doesn't remember Ellone, Edea and his past in the orphanage.
Fujin (風神 Fūjin ) is a young woman with pale skin, short silver hair and an eye patch. She is a member of Balamb Garden's disciplinary committee with Seifer and Raijin; the three of them form a close "posse", even when Seifer leaves Garden. Fujin prefers to speak in terse sentences, often with only a single word, such as "RAGE!" and "LIES!" (in the Japanese version she only spoke in Kanji). However, near the end of the game, she explains to Squall that she will temporarily break ties with Seifer because of his recent behavior. In battle, Fujin wields a chakram and uses wind-based magic. She shares her name with the Japanese god of wind, Fūjin.
Fujin and Raijin were to appear in Final Fantasy VII; however, the designers excluded them due to their similarity to the Turks. In Kingdom Hearts II, a younger version of Fujin, named "Fuu" (フウ), appears as a member of Seifer's gang. She is voiced by Rio Natsuki in the Japanese version and by Jillian Bowen in the English version.
Raijin (雷神 Rājin ) is a member of Balamb Garden's disciplinary committee with Seifer and Fujin; the three form a close "posse", as he calls it. He has a habit of ending his sentences with "ya know" (もんよ mon'yo , in the Japanese version). Like Fujin, he supports Seifer when he betrays SeeD and Garden to side with Edea. Near the end of the game, he stands by Fujin's plea to the party to help save Seifer from himself. In the ending FMV, he celebrates catching a large fish until Fujin kicks him into the water. In battle, Raijin uses thunder-based magic and a bō staff with large weights on either end. He shares his name with the Japanese god of thunder, Raijin.
Raijin and Fujin were to appear in Final Fantasy VII; however, the designers decided against it due to their similarity to the Turks. In Kingdom Hearts II, a younger version of Raijin, named "Rai" (ライ), appears as a member of Seifer's gang. He is voiced by Kazuya Nakai in the Japanese version, and by Brandon Adams in the English version.
Ultimecia (アルティミシア Arutimishia ) is the primary antagonist of Final Fantasy VIII. Because she operates through the body of a possessed Edea to gain control of Galbadia, Ultimecia's existence is revealed only after possessing Rinoa to release Sorceress Adel from her orbital prison to take as a new host. A sorceress from the future, Ultimecia is capable of reaching her consciousness into the distant past via a special "Junction Machine" to possess other sorceresses. She seeks to achieve "Time Compression", which would cause all eras to merge; this would extinguish all life but her own as she becomes an omnipresent goddess. This would give her power on a par to Hyne the Great, who, according to the background had created the world.
In fact, Squall and the heroes do help Ultimecia start Time Compression, but they do so to confront her in her own time. After Squall and his party defeat Sorceress Adel, Adel transfers her power to Rinoa, then Ultimecia possesses Rinoa again, and Ellone uses her power to send their consciousness to the past, at which point Ultimecia starts Time Compression. At that moment, the heroes are able to travel to Ultimecia's distant future and defeat her. However, after the final battle the defeated Ultimecia is shown travelling to the past and giving her power to Edea, which eventually would lead to the formation of Garden and SeeD, thus creating a bootstrap paradox.
Minor characters 
Biggs and Wedge 
Biggs and Wedge are members of the Galbadian Army. Biggs is a major and Wedge is a lieutenant. After the main characters defeat the duo at Dollet, they are demoted in rank to lieutenant and private respectively. The protagonists encounter them again at the D-District Prison. A third meeting at the Lunatic Pandora does not result in conflict; instead, they quit the Galbadian army. They continue the Final Fantasy tradition of including two minor characters with the names "Biggs" and "Wedge."
General Fury Caraway 
General Fury Caraway is a member of the Galbadian military who advises the main characters on their mission to assassinate Sorceress Edea. When Laguna left Galbadia, Caraway comforted Julia; eventually, they married and had a child, Rinoa. Caraway and Rinoa have a problematic relationship; he attempts to prevent her from participating in the assassination attempt. However, he later arranges her freedom from the D-District Prison.
Vinzer Deling 
Vinzer Deling is the President of Galbadia. He appoints Sorceress Edea as a supposed "peace ambassador" to resolve Galbadia's political problems with other nations. His body double is defeated by SeeD and the Forest Owls resistance group. Edea kills him during her welcoming ceremony at Deling City and seizes power in Galbadia.
Mayor Dobe and Flo 
Mayor Dobe is the leader of Fishermans Horizon, a town in the middle of a transoceanic highway between the continents of Galbadia and Esthar. He and his wife, Flo, detest violence and oppose the Garden's presence in his territory. Squall and his party save the Mayor from certain death when the Galbadian army invades the town.
Forest Owls 
The Forest Owls are a small resistance faction that oppose the Galbadian occupation of Timber, a town in the eastern part of the continent. A man named Zone is the leader, and Rinoa and Watts are members. Most people of Timber are affiliated with a resistance group, although the Forest Owls are the only active ones.
Julia Heartilly 
Julia Heartilly (ジュリア・ハーティリー Juria Hātirī ) is a pianist at a Galbadian hotel frequented by Laguna during his days as a soldier. After being secretly admired by Laguna for some time, Julia introduces herself, as depicted in one of the flashback sequences. Julia reveals to Laguna her dream of writing her own songs and becoming a singer. Laguna is shipped out on new orders the following day and the ensuing circumstances prevent him from returning. Julia eventually marries Galbadian military officer General Caraway and has a daughter, Rinoa. She also finds success with her song "Eyes On Me", which is also the game's theme song. She is killed several years before the start of the game in a car accident. Julia is the only character in the game with an explicit character theme, named "Julia", which is a piano arrangement of Eyes On Me.
Raine (レイン Rein ), later Raine Loire (レイン・レウァール Rein Rewāru ), is Laguna's second love depicted in the flashbacks. She finds him injured at the bottom of a cliff and brings him to her hometown of Winhill to recover. She is irked at first by Laguna's bad habits and reluctance to express himself outright, but the two grow close and marry. After Laguna becomes President of Esthar, his duties thwart his efforts to return to Winhill. Raine dies after giving birth to a child, who, along with Ellone, is taken away to Edea's orphanage. It is strongly implied by Ward and Kiros, as well as by gaming writers and fans, that Squall is their child.
Martine is the head of Galbadia Garden. His superior, Balamb Garden's master NORG, orders him to use SeeD members to carry out the assassination plot against Sorceress Edea. When Squall and his team travel to Galbadia Garden after fleeing Timber, Martine orders them to carry out the mission. He hopes that using Balamb Garden's SeeDs would deflect responsibility for the plot onto NORG. His actions trigger the conflict within Balamb Garden when Garden Master NORG tries to kill Headmaster Cid to appease Sorceress Edea after the mission fails. Afterward, the Galbadian military seizes Galbadia Garden and Martine flees to the pacifist city of Fishermans Horizon.
NORG is an exiled Shumi who lent Cid the money to build and develop the Garden and took the position of Garden Master upon its completion. NORG is more concerned about the revenue acquired by SeeD as a mercenary organization rather than its noble duty of opposing the Sorceress; he is considered a "black sheep" of the Shumi tribe. After hearing about a failed assassination attempt on Sorceress Edea, NORG begins to distrust Headmaster Cid and tries to seize control of Balamb Garden, causing a conflict between factions loyal to NORG and Cid. Feigning loyalty to the Sorceress, he attempts to kill the SeeDs who carried out the failed assassination. After he is defeated in battle, he enters a cocoon-like state. Shumis from the Shumi village later appear at the site of his defeat. They appear to have removed him from his cocoon by cracking it open. They also apologize for NORG's behaviour.
Dr. Odine 
Dr. Odine is a scientist and magic researcher from Esthar. He discovered the GFs and junctioning and engineered a machine that mimics Ellone's power. Seventeen years before the game, he developed the necessary technology to allow Laguna to entomb Adel. As a researcher of the Lunatic Pandora, he also helps to prevent it from reaching Tears' Point and initiating a Lunar Cry. Odine also plays a role in the plot to destroy Ultimecia, explaining how to survive time compression.
Minor SeeD members 
Several other SeeD members assist Squall's party. Dr. Kadowaki is the Balamb Garden doctor who tends to Squall's wounds after his fight with Seifer in the opening sequence. She also helps Headmaster Cid after his confrontation with NORG. Nida (another Star Wars reference, along with Biggs and Wedge) is a student at Balamb Garden who passes the SeeD exam along with Squall. He pilots Balamb Garden after it becomes a mobile base. Lastly, Xu is a high-ranking SeeD who helps Squall during the Dollet mission and the Garden civil war between NORG and Cid. She is friends with Quistis and a member of Squall's staff once he becomes the leader of Balamb Garden.
The characters of Final Fantasy VIII have spawned action figures, jewellery and other goods in their likeness. In 1999, action figure lineups were distributed in Japan by Bandai, Kotobukiya, Banpresto, and Coca-Cola. Bandai also released them to Europe and Australasia the same year. In 2004, action figures of Squall, Rinoa and Selphie were distributed in North America by Diamond Comics. Posters of individual characters or a collage of characters are available on many fan websites, including Final Fantasy Spirit. Other products available include mouse pads, keychains, and pens depicting individual characters or sets of characters.
The characters of Final Fantasy VIII have received praise by reviewers. The Gaming Age reviewer was originally concerned with the shift to consistently realistically proportioned characters, but he ultimately found them more appealing. Moreover, the review stated that the character designs and graphical quality allowed the characters to "convey emotions much more dramatically". Game Revolution cited similar praise, agreeing that the change "really makes the graphics impressive". Jeff Lundigran of IGN commented that the "low-polygon characters of Final Fantasy VII are gone, replaced with sometimes surprisingly realistic high-polygon models that only look better the closer they get". GameSpot agreed with the transition, claiming that "involving, personal, and emotional stories are far more believable when they come from, well, people, not short, bizarrely shaped cartoon characters".
The cast itself has received criticism from reviews. Lundigran criticized the manner in which romantic interactions play out, stating that "considering that the love story is so integral to everything that happens—not to mention forming the central image of the box art—it's incomprehensible why no one says 'I love you' to anyone, ever". With Squall, he felt that "FFVIII does break one cardinal rule: when your story is character centered, you'd better center it on a character the audience can care about. Squall, unfortunately, just doesn't fit the bill". However, GameSpot felt that Final Fantasy VIII shifts the story from the "epic" concepts of Final Fantasy VII to the "personal", in that "the characters and their relationships are all extremely believable and complex; moreover, the core romance holds up even under the most pessimistic scrutiny". A later editorial by IGN's Ryan Clements echoed this sentiment, appreciating that Squall and Rinoa's single kiss during the finale serves "one of the player's main rewards for hours of dedication". Although the reviewer at Official U.S. PlayStation Magazine acknowledged possible fears over a romantic storyline, he stated that "it's only later in the game, once you are really attached to all the distinct and complex characters, that the more emotional themes are gradually introduced".
See also 
- Sato, Yukiyoshi Ike (1999). "FFVIII Sells Six Million Copies Worldwide". GameSpot. Retrieved 2006-03-16.
- IGN staff (1999). "FF8 Breaks Sales Records". IGN.com. Retrieved 2006-03-16.
- "Titles of game software with worldwide shipments exceeding 1 million copies". Square Enix. p. 27. Retrieved 2008-03-01.
- Campbell, Colin (2006). "Japan Votes on All Time Top 100". Next Generation. Retrieved 2006-03-11.
- Square Electronic Arts, ed. (1999). Final Fantasy VIII North American instruction manual. Square Electronic Arts. pp. 6–9. SLUS-00892GH.
- "Final Fantasy VIII at Metacritic". Metacritic. 1999. Retrieved 2007-03-15.
- Square-Enix North America Site Staff (2001). "Behind The Game The Creators". Square-Enix North America. Archived from the original on 2009-04-10. Retrieved 2006-04-12.
- Knight, Sheila (2003). "Tetsuya Nomura 20s". FLAREgamer. Retrieved 2006-04-13.
- Staff (5 June 1998). "インタビュー ファイナルファンタジーVIII" [Interview with Final Fantasy VIII]. Famitsu Weekly (in Japanese). Retrieved 2006-07-15.
- Square Co., Ltd.. Final Fantasy VIII. (Square EA). PlayStation. (1999-09-09) "Shumi Tribe A small tribe living in the northern region. Basically gentle in temperament, they maintain a relaxed lifestyle. Shumis have big, long arms that change as they grow. The results vary depending on their environment."
- Square Co., Ltd.. Final Fantasy VIII. (Square EA). PlayStation. (1999-09-09) "Sculptor: You don't know? Excluding the ones qualified to become Elders, all Shumis evolve at a certain stage of our lives. We become what is in our hearts. Often, those who fail to become honorable Elders turn into Moombas. The passionate ingenuity in their hearts gives rise to the red hair."
- Square Co., Ltd.. Final Fantasy VIII. (Square EA). PlayStation. (1999-09-09) "Elder: He told me that he felt sorry for the Moombas because they don't know any words. He said that words are useful and precious."
- Square Electronic Arts, ed. (1999). Final Fantasy VIII North American instruction manual. Square Electronic Arts. pp. 38–40. SLUS-00892GH.
- IGN site staff (1999). "FFVIII PocketStation Opens Up Chocobo World". IGN. Retrieved August 10, 2006.
- "Final Fantasy VIII Original Soundtrack". Square Enix Music Online. Archived from the original on September 27, 2007. Retrieved 2007-03-30.
- Square Co., Ltd.. Final Fantasy VIII. (Square EA). PlayStation. (1999-09-09) "Laguna: "The only ones still left in town are old people, children, chocobos, dogs, and cats."
- Cassady, David (1999). Official FINAL FANTASY VIII Strategy Guide. Brady Publishing. pp. 197–238. ISBN 1-56686-903-X.
- Lundigran, Jeff (1999). "IGN: Final Fantasy VIII Review". IGN. Retrieved 2006-07-12.
- Square Co., Ltd.. Final Fantasy VIII. (Square EA). PlayStation. (1999-09-09) "Squall: I was always waiting for "Sis" [Ellone] to come back."
- Square Co., Ltd.. Final Fantasy VIII. (Square EA). PlayStation. (1999-09-09) "Squall: Elle...Ellone. So, Ellone was "Sis". She was a bit older than us, and we all used to call her "Sis". Quistis, Zell, Selphie, Irvine, Seifer, Ellone and myself... Yeah...I'm not sure what the meaning behind all this is, but we were definitely together."
- Studio BentStuff, ed. (1999). Final Fantasy VIII Ultimania (in Japanese). DigiCube/Square-Enix. p. 43. ISBN 4-925075-49-7.
- Square Electronic Arts, ed. (1999). Final Fantasy VIII North American instruction manual. Square Electronic Arts. p. 21. SLUS-00892GH.
- "Final Fantasy VIII Characters - Rinoa". SquareEnix.com. Retrieved 2007-03-15.
- Liu, Johnny (1999). "Game Revolution Review Page - Final Fantasy VIII". Game Revolution. Retrieved 2007-03-15.
- "Rinoa Heartilly of Final Fantasy V". WomenGamers.com. Archived from the original on 2008-05-25. Retrieved 2008-10-22.
- The Top 7... Lazy Character Clichés | GamesRadar
- Ugly polygon "babes" of yesteryear | GamesRadar
- Square Co., Ltd.. Final Fantasy VIII. (Square EA). PlayStation. (1999-09-09) "Squall: (I had a dream, too. It wasn't nice though...I dreamt I was a moron.)"
- Square Co., Ltd.. Final Fantasy VIII. (Square EA). PlayStation. (1999-09-09) "Squall: You were a silly Galbadian soldier. I didn't like your attitude at all."
- "Final Fantasy VIII Characters - Laguna". SquareEnix.com. Retrieved 2007-03-15.
- Square Co., Ltd.. Final Fantasy VIII. (Square EA). PlayStation. (1999-09-09) "Kiros: Don't tell me we're lost again. / Laguna: Anyway...we're goin' home. Deling City, here we come!"
- Square Co., Ltd.. Final Fantasy VIII. (Square EA). PlayStation. (1999-09-09) "Ward: So, Laguna... Julia should be making her appearance soon. You goin' for it tonight?"
- Square Co., Ltd.. Final Fantasy VIII. (Square EA). PlayStation. (1999-09-09) "Laguna: I was bedridden for over 6 months. It seemed like every bone in my body was in pieces. / Raine: I nursed him back to health."
- Square Co., Ltd.. Final Fantasy VIII. (Square EA). PlayStation. (1999-09-09) "Laguna: A fierce debate ensued about who should govern this country after Adel was gone. I wasn't paying close attention while they made me up to be this hero of the revolution, and I ended up being president."
- Square Co., Ltd.. Final Fantasy VIII. (Square EA). PlayStation. (1999-09-09) "Laguna: ...Ellone was raised by Raine who lived next door. And I came to know her. Then there was another massive hunt for a successor in Esthar again. Elle was taken away[...]so I rescued her and sent her off to Winhill. Shortly after that, Raine died. And Ellone was sent straight to an orphanage..."
- Square Co., Ltd.. Final Fantasy VIII. (Square EA). PlayStation. (1999-09-09) "Laguna: My job kept me busy. I was left here thinking about this and that and before I knew it, all this time had passed."
- Square Co., Ltd.. Final Fantasy VIII. (Square EA). PlayStation. (1999-09-09) "Laguna: Ellone followed me out to space. Little Elle was all grown up... Then she told me everything."
- Sharkey, Scott (November 2008). "EGM's Top Ten Videogame Politicians: Election time puts us in a voting mood". Electronic Gaming Monthly (234): 97.
- "Sephiroth and Laguna Costumes Hit Dissidia 012 Final Fantasy Next Week". Andriasang. Retrieved June 23, 2012.
- "Nomura and Takahashi on Dissidia 012 Final Fantasy". Andriasang. Retrieved June 23, 2012.
- Rinoa: "I don't really know. I... I think it was love. I wonder how [Seifer] felt...? ...It was last summer... I was 16." (Final Fantasy VIII)
- Raijin: "Seifer has a lot of followers, but we're his only friends... We're a posse, ya know...? The Galbadian soldiers are only listening to Seifer 'cause they fear the sorceress. Without us, Seifer wouldn't have a posse, ya know...?" (Final Fantasy VIII)
- "Final Fantasy VIII Characters - Seifer". SquareEnix.com. Retrieved 2007-03-15.
- Seifer: "NAH-NA-NA-NA-NA-NAH!!!" / Boy Zell: "Stop teasing me, Seifer!" (Final Fantasy VIII)
- Quistis: "Yes! That's right! Seifer was a kid who always needed to be the center of attention. But Squall always used to ignore him... But eventually they would end up fighting." (Final Fantasy VIII)
- Headmaster Cid: "Seifer. You will be disciplined for your irresponsible behavior. You must follow orders exactly during combat. But I'm not entirely without sympathy for you." (Final Fantasy VIII)
- Seifer: "I was hoping you'd be there, Squall. So... how'd I look in my moment of triumph? My childhood dream, fulfilled. I've become the sorceress' knight." (Final Fantasy VIII)
- Seifer: "What did you say!? Passed out cold, eh? This is the scene where you swear your undying hatred for me! The tale of the evil mercenary vs. the sorceress' knight... The fun's just started, Squall. Don't disappoint me now!" (Final Fantasy VIII)
- Fujin: "You're being manipulated, Seifer. You've lost yourself and your dream. You're just eating out of someone's hand. We want the old you back! Since we can't get through to you, all we have now to rely on is Squall!" (Final Fantasy VIII)
- Gouskos, Carrie (2006-03-28). "Kingdom Hearts II for PlayStation 2 Review". GameSpot. Retrieved 2006-12-15.
- "Theatrhythm: Final Fantasy’s Second Tier Stars". Siliconera. November 12, 2011. Retrieved July 1, 2012.
- Architectures of illusion: from ... - Google Books
- Seifer is number 91 - IGN
- "Final Fantasy VIII Characters - Quistis". SquareEnix.com. Retrieved 2007-03-15.
- Quistis: "They told me that I failed as an instructor. Basically, that I lacked leadership qualities." (Final Fantasy VIII)
- Rinoa: So Quistis attended classes here
- Quistis: "I... remember. Yes, I remember now. Things didn't work out too well at my new home. So I came to Garden at the age of 10. That was when I was first noticed Seifer and Squall. Seifer and Squall were always fighting." (Final Fantasy VIII)
- Quistis: I was a SeeD by the age of 15, got my instructor license at 17."
- Squall: "It's after midnight." / Quistis: "Oh well... I, Quistis Trepe, am no longer an instructor as of now! I'm a member of SeeD now, just like you. Who knows, maybe we'll end up working together." (Final Fantasy VIII)
- Quistis: "I couldn't stop thinking about Squall. I thought it was... love. I had to hide my feelings because I was an instructor, but I've come to realize it wasn't. It was my childhood feelings as a big sister that lingered... Oh well..." (Final Fantasy VIII)
- Quistis: "Oh! Stop that! What are you talking about!? Why did you go all the way out into space to save Rinoa!? To hand her over to Esthar!? So that you might never see her again!? No, right!? Wasn't it because you wanted to be with Rinoa? You're a fool." (Final Fantasy VIII)
- Girl: "I know! I know! It's the Garden Festival! It's going to be great! I'm planning to be on the committee. You wanna help out, too!?" (Final Fantasy VIII)
- "Final Fantasy VIII Characters - Selphie". SquareEnix.com. Retrieved 2007-03-15.
- Selphie: "It just kinda took off! I don't know. It's pretty easy. I think it'll be fine. But there's no guarantee it won't crash!" (Final Fantasy VIII)
- Girl: "Are you... Squad B? Wait a minute... You're the guy who showed me around, right!? Thanks! I don't get so lost anymore. Oh yeah, I haven't told you my name yet. I'm... a messenger. Name's Selphie, from Squad A." (Final Fantasy VIII)
- Selphie: "I'm on the missile base infiltration team! I have to be! They launched missiles at MY Trabia!" (Final Fantasy VIII)
- Irvine: "I really liked this girl, and it made me so happy just talking to her." (Final Fantasy VIII)
- "Kingdom Hearts (at Square-Enix.com)". 2002. Retrieved 2006-08-03.
- "Final Fantasy VIII Characters - Zell". SquareEnix.com. Retrieved 2007-03-15.
- Squall: "...I don't know about that. Perhaps anyone but the Chicken-wuss can make it." / Zell: "WHAT DID YOU SAYYYYY!!!?" / Selphie: "...Hm? Since you're so angry, I guess you're the Chicken-wuss." (Final Fantasy VIII)
- Zell: "I don't care if I forget about my childhood, when Seifer used to pick on me. What's important to me now is having the power to protect my parents in Balamb. They adopted me. There's no way I'm lettin' go of that power!" (Final Fantasy VIII)
- BradyGAMES Staff, ed. (1999). Final Fantasy VIII Official Strategy Guide. BradyGAMES Publishing. p. 16. ISBN 1-56686-903-X.
- Zell: "Seifer... My archenemy..." (Final Fantasy VIII)
- Martine: "Don't worry about it. Let me introduce an elite sharpshooter from Galbadia Garden. Kinneas! Irvine Kinneas!" (Final Fantasy VIII)
- "Final Fantasy VIII Characters - Irvine". SquareEnix.com. Retrieved 2007-03-15.
- Irvine: "Call me Irvine. I'm a pretty lucky guy. Hand in hand with two beautiful girls!" / Selphie: "Irvy Kinnepooo! I'll make you happy!" / Squall: (Did I say something terrible? Women... I don't understand women.) (Final Fantasy VIII)
- Irvine: "No one understands me... Sharpshooters are loners by nature... We hone our instincts, pour our whole being into a single bullet. The pressure of the moment... An instant of tension... That's what... I have to face alone... ...It's not easy. So like... Just do me a favor, and let me be! You get my drift?" (Final Fantasy VIII)
- Irvine: "I... I can't... I'm sorry, I can't do it. I always choke like this... I try to act all cool, joke around, but I just can't handle the pressure..." / Squall: "Forget it. Just shoot." / Irvine: "My bullet... The sorceress... I'll go down in history. I'd change the history of Galbadia... Of the world! It's all too much..." (Final Fantasy VIII)
- Squall: "...Why is it that we forgot? We grew up together as kids... How's that possible...?" / Irvine: "How about this? ...The price we pay for using the GF. The GF provides us its power. But the GF makes its own place inside our brain..." / Quistis: "So you're saying that the area is where our memories are stored? No...! That's just a rumor the GF critics are spreading." / Zell: "So if we keep relying on the GF, we won't be able to remember a lot of things?" (Final Fantasy VIII)
- Irvine: "Then how is it that I remember, while everyone else has forgotten? Well...? In my case, I hadn't junctioned a GF until recently. That's why I remember a lot more than you guys." (Final Fantasy VIII)
- Irvine: "Selphie... We're destined to be together!" / Selphie: "Y-Yeah right...!" / Irvine: "A sigh of love?"
- Kiros: "Thank you, for taking care of Laguna. I was able to recover in about a month or so. Ever since then... I've been searching for you." / Laguna: "Why?" / Kiros: "After leaving the army... Well, just killing time I guess. Life's pretty boring without you as entertainment, my man." (Final Fantasy VIII)
- Laguna: "Why the heck do I have to do this!?" / Kiros: "'Cause we have no money." / Ward: "......" / Laguna: "Alright, I'm sorry!!! Yeah, so it's kinda my fault that we stayed at the hotel so often. But heck, I'm not cut out to be an actor!" (Final Fantasy VIII)
- Kiros: "Oh, and he never got his voice back. You could basically tell what he wants from his facial expressions." (Final Fantasy VIII)
- Edea: "...Lowlifes. ...Shameless filthy wretches. How you celebrate my ascension with such joy. Hailing the very one you have condemned for generations. Have you no shame? What happened to the evil, ruthless sorceress from your fantasies? The cold-blooded tyrant that slaughtered countless men and destroyed many nations? Where is she now? She stands before your very eyes to become your new ruler." (Final Fantasy VIII)
- Laguna: "The owners of the orphanage were Cid Kramer and his wife Edea." (Final Fantasy VIII)
- Irvine: "Look alike? Nah, that's not it. Matron's name is Edea Kramer. Matron IS Sorceress Edea." (Final Fantasy VIII)
- Edea: "You are SeeDs. You cannot back out of a battle, I know. You were magnificent. However, it is not over yet. At anytime, I may... ...I have been possessed all this time. I was at the mercy of Sorceress Ultimecia." (Final Fantasy VIII)
- Squall: (Ultimecia!? The future sorceress is inside Rinoa!? ...Transferred from Edea? Where's Rinoa!!!?" (Final Fantasy VIII)
- Narrative: Adel was careless. She may be a sorceress, but after all, she was human. We succeeded... But... we couldn't keep such a dangerous sorceress around as a trophy. We had to do something... So... we decided to send her far, far away... Some place very far... Into outer space..." (Final Fantasy VIII)
- Piet: "If that's the case, we definitely have to stop her. If she plans to free Adel, she'll have to go out there. The Level 2 Seal is located on Adel's Tomb." (Final Fantasy VIII)
- Square Co. Final Fantasy VIII. (Square EA). PlayStation. (1999-09-09) "Laguna: Adel will need to pass on her powers before being defeated. Rinoa, will you be willing to accept them?"
- Square Co. Final Fantasy VIII. (Square EA). PlayStation. (1999-09-09) "Doc Odine: There is only one way to defeat Ultimecia. You must kill her in the future. / ... / Ultimecia probably needs to go back further in time to achieve time compression. Only Ellone can take her back further into the past. / ... / You will keep moving through the time compression toward the future. Once you're out of the time compression, That will be Ultimecia's world. It's all up to you after zat."
- NORG: "Bujurururu! Offer-the-seed's-head-on-a-silver-platter- AND-PRETEND-WE-OBEY-THE-SORCERESS!" (Final Fantasy VIII)
- Raijin: "I dunno. At first, they were sayin' somethin' 'bout roundin' up the SeeDs, ya know!? Now, everyone's either sidin' with the Garden Master or the headmaster and fightin' everywhere, ya know!?" (Final Fantasy VIII)
- Headmaster Cid: "Dammit! I should've never trusted you! I wish I could go back ten or so years. To tell myself that you're nothing but a money grubbing son-of-a-bitch! Then I would've never built this place." (Final Fantasy VIII)
- Ellone: "You can't change the past. I just found that out. When I was kidnapped, Uncle Laguna went on a journey to find me... But because he did, Uncle Laguna wasn't able to be by Raine's side when she died. Raine wanted to show Laguna her new born baby... Raine kept calling out for Laguna. So no matter what, I wanted Laguna to stay in the village... But it didn't work. I can no longer make it back to that moment... And also... I can only send you inside someone I've met before." (Final Fantasy VIII)
- Edea: "Ultimecia's objective is to find Ellone." / Edea: "Ellone's mysterious power... Sending one's consciousness back into the past." / Zell: "So, Ultimecia wants to use Ellone's power, right?" / Irvine: "I get it. Ultimecia wants to send her consciousness from this period further into the past." / Zell: "What's she going to do in the past?" / Edea: "Time compression." (Final Fantasy VIII)
- Squall: (Fujin and Raijin tagging along as usual... Guess that makes up the whole disciplinary committee.) (Final Fantasy VIII)
- Doc Odine: "It may only be a toy right now, but in ze time of Ultimecia, it iz an impressive working machine! Which means there iz a machine which imitates Ellone's power. It iz I who made ze first model of zat machine. I named ze machine 'Junction Machine Ellone'! It iz a vonderful thing to know that my invention is used in ze future!" (Final Fantasy VIII)
- Rinoa: "She's trying to achieve time compression. She's the only one who would be able to exist in such a world." (Final Fantasy VIII)
- Squall: "What exactly is it that you want?" /Ultimecia: "A world of compressed time--where you shall worship me, the eternal and solitary being!" (Dissidia Final Fantasy)
- Ultimecia Time compression. I shall freeze the hands of time/.../ and extinguish all other lives in this world but my own. (Dissidia 012 Final Fantasy)
- Doc Odine: "There iz only one way to defeat Ultimecia. You must kill her in ze future. / ... / Ultimecia probably needs to go back further in time to achieve time compression. Only Ellone can take her back further into ze past. / ... / You will keep moving through ze time compression toward ze future. Once you're out of ze time compression, zat will be Ultimecia's world. It's all up to you after zat." (Final Fantasy VIII)
- Edea: "You called me Matron. Who... are you?" / Squall: "A SeeD. A SeeD from Balamb Garden." / Edea: "SeeD? Garden?" / Squall: "Both Garden and SeeD were your ideas. SeeDs are trained to defeat the sorceress." (Final Fantasy VIII)
- Guy: "T-These are the prisoners, Lieutenant Biggs, Private Wedge." (Final Fantasy VIII)
- Biggs: "I was demoted because of you! I'm only lieutenant now!" (Final Fantasy VIII)
- Biggs: "Why the heck do I have to take orders from some kid?" / Wedge: "Well, he is our superior..." / Biggs: "Don't you think I know that!? I chose the wrong career. Being ordered around by some punk..." / Wedge: "Ha ha ha! That's pretty funny. Then why don't you quit and find another career, sir?" / Biggs: "...Hmmmm..." / Wedge: "Ha ha ha! Just kidding, sir." / Biggs: "You're right!!! You're absolutely right! I QUIT!!!" / Wedge: "Uhh..." / Biggs: "Wedge, let's go home and have a drink." / Wedge: "Oh... What!? Me, too?" / Biggs: "Of course. Now, come on." / Wedge: "But, but..." (Final Fantasy VIII)
- Studio BentStuff, ed. (1999). Final Fantasy VIII Ultimania (in Japanese). Square-Enix. p. 37. ISBN 4-925075-49-7.
- Kiros: "Heard she recently got married." / Raine: "Oh yeah! To some army general, right? General Caraway or something?" / Kiros: "I'm not too sure." / Raine: "I read in a magazine that her true love went off to war and never came back. General Caraway comforted her while she was feeling down. That's how they got to know each other." (Final Fantasy VIII)
- Squall: "Where's Rinoa?" / General Caraway: "She has not received the type of training you all have, and may become a burden. It's for the best that she stays out of this operation." / Selphie: "So you're Rinoa's father?" / General Caraway: "I can't remember the last time she called me that." / Zell: "So the father's a top military officer, and the daughter's a member of an anti-government faction!? That's bad... Really BAD!" / General Caraway: "Yes, indeed. It's a serious problem. But it doesn't concern you. It's our problem." (Final Fantasy VIII)
- President Deling: "Unfortunately, there are some trifling problems standing between Galbadia and other nations, and they must be resolved. I plan to convene with other nations' leaders immediately to resolve these problems. At this time, allow me to introduce the ambassador who will be my representative for the conference." (Final Fantasy VIII)
- President Deling: "...I'm not the president. I'm what they call... a body double." (Final Fantasy VIII)
- Mayor Dobe: "We don't want military organizations in FH. You rely on force to solve problems. That is in direct defiance of our principles." (Final Fantasy VIII)
- Rinoa: "She's the leader of the 'Forest Fox'. Almost everyone's a resistance member in this town. But right now, we're the only ones that are really active." (Final Fantasy VIII)
- Julia: "Did I interrupt anything?" / Laguna: "N-N-N-Not at all. P-Please, s-sit down." (Oh man, oh man, it's really HER! What do I do!? Kiros? Ward? HELP! What do I say!? But man, she is pretty...) (Final Fantasy VIII)
- Raine: "Then the first song she released was 'Eyes On Me'?" / Laguna: "H-How does the song go?" / Raine: "You don't know?" / Laguna: "Well, you never let me hear it!" / Raine: "I didn't think you listened to music. The song's about being in love... I really like it." (Final Fantasy VIII)
- "Eyes On Me" Julia Heartilly's song. Julia married the Galbadian General Caraway after releasing "Eyes On Me". Gave birth to a girl one year later. Julia died in a car crash at age 28, right before her daughter turned 5. (Final Fantasy VIII)
- Raine: "A guy like that? He was carried in here crying like a baby, and I was the one who had to take care of him... His crude way of speaking... I don't know if his aspirations as a journalist are going to come true... Every time I try to have a serious converation, he avoids it... I can't stand his snoring and he talks in his sleep..." (Final Fantasy VIII)
- Kiros: "You look at lot like your mother, lucky you don't look much like your father." (Final Fantasy VIII)
- Maciel, Joshua. "Rebuttal to FF8 FAQ Part 2". RPGamer.com. Retrieved 2007-03-21.
- NORG: "Bujurururu! THAT-SLY-WEASEL-MARTINE-USED-YOU-AS-A-LAST-RESORT- FOR-THE-ASSASSINATION. HE-GAVE-THAT-ORDER-TO-PLACE-THE-BLAME-ON-ME! THAT-THAT-BASTARD." (Final Fantasy VIII)
- Headmaster Cid: "He is from the Shumi tribe. A black sheep of the tribe, one might say. We met while I was running around trying to find funds to build the Garden. He became interested in building the Garden, and we hit it off. Thanks to his funding, it was completed. However, we needed an enormous amount of funds to run the Garden. So we began dispatching SeeDs around the world as a means of supporting the Garden. NORG's idea was right on the money. An enormous amount of capital began flowing into the Garden. And the Garden began to change. Lost sight of our high ideals, the truth was covered up... That's probably enough. In the end, it was my fault, for giving up control." (Final Fantasy VIII)
- Doc Odine: "I've been investigating ze Pandora since it was excavated." (Final Fantasy VIII)
- Doc Odine: "It will not attack us. This city iz not ze target." / Doctor's Assistant: "I hope so... I hope you're right." / Doc Odine: "But Tears' Point...... Hmm?" (Final Fantasy VIII)
- Nida: "What!? Oh, man, it's me. We passed the SeeD exam together. I can't believe you forgot!" / Squall: "Oh yeah..." / Nida: "Gee... Well, it's just like you to forget. By the way, you know how the FH technicians were fixing the Garden, right? They just finished. Meaning... The Garden's ready to go anytime. Oh yeah. I'll be piloting the Garden. FH technicians taught me everything about piloting this thing. Let me know when you want to go." (Final Fantasy VIII)
- Squall: "Where is [Headmaster Cid]?" / Xu: "In his office. We made it look like he's hiding, but he's been there all along. Follow me." (Final Fantasy VIII)
- Xu: "We thought you should have a title. So Quistis and I decided on commander." / Quistis: "Sorry to carry things out on our own, but Xu and I assigned duties." / Xu: "I'll take care of all the supplies needed in the Garden."
- (1999) in Square Europe: Final Fantasy VIII Platinum United Kingdom instruction manual (in English). Square Europe. SLES-02080.
- Lynch, Elissa. "SQUARE-ENIX PRESENTS DYNAMIC FINAL FANTASY VIII PLAY ART ACTION FIGURES". Retrieved 2007-03-14.[dead link]
- "Posters - Final Fantasy Spirit". Final Fantasy Spirit. Retrieved 2007-03-14.
- "Final Fantasy, Kingdom Hearts Merchandise". FFSpirit.com. Archived from the original on 2007-07-03. Retrieved 2007-03-14.
- McTague, Bob (1999). "Gaming Age Review - Final Fantasy VIII". Gaming Age. Retrieved 2007-03-15.[dead link]
- Vestal, Andrew (1999). "Final Fantasy VIII for PlayStation Review". GameSpot. Retrieved 2006-07-13.
- Clements, Ryan (2010-05-14). "Why I Dig Digital Japanese Love". IGN. Retrieved 2010-05-18.
- MacDonald, Mark (October 1999). "Final Fantasy VIII PS Review". Ziff Davis Media. Archived from the original on 2007-10-14. Retrieved 2007-03-15.
- Final Fantasy VIII character profiles — Square Enix USA