|Final Fantasy character|
Vaan as he appears in Final Fantasy XII. Designed by Akihiko Yoshida.
|First appearance||Itadaki Street Special (2004)|
|Last appearance||Theatrhythm Final Fantasy: Curtain Call (2014)|
|Created by||Yasumi Matsuno|
|Designed by||Akihiko Yoshida|
|Voiced by|| Bobby Edner |
Kouhei Takeda (Japanese, Final Fantasy XII)
Kenshō Ono (Japanese, Dissidia 012 Final Fantasy)
|Quickening||Red Spiral, White Whorl, Pyroclasm|
Vaan(ヴァンVan) is a fictional character in the Final Fantasy series from Square Enix. Created by Yasumi Matsuno and designed by Akihiko Yoshida, he first appeared in Itadaki Street Special and then appeared in Final Fantasy XII as the protagonist. Final Fantasy XII establishes Vaan as an orphaned teenager from Rabanastre who dreams of becoming a sky pirate. He and his best friend Penelo join Dalmasca Princess Ashe in her fight against the tyranny of the Archadian Empire. Vaan also takes a more active role in the sequel Final Fantasy XII: Revenant Wings and has also been featured in few Final Fantasy crossover games.
A character is a person or other being in a narrative. The character may be entirely fictional or based on a real-life person, in which case the distinction of a "fictional" versus "real" character may be made. Derived from the ancient Greek word χαρακτήρ, the English word dates from the Restoration, although it became widely used after its appearance in Tom Jones in 1749. From this, the sense of "a part played by an actor" developed. Character, particularly when enacted by an actor in the theatre or cinema, involves "the illusion of being a human person". In literature, characters guide readers through their stories, helping them to understand plots and ponder themes. Since the end of the 18th century, the phrase "in character" has been used to describe an effective impersonation by an actor. Since the 19th century, the art of creating characters, as practiced by actors or writers, has been called characterisation.
Final Fantasy is a Japanese science fantasy media franchise created by Hironobu Sakaguchi, and developed and owned by Square Enix. The franchise centers on a series of fantasy and science fantasy role-playing video games (RPGs/JRPGs). The first game in the series was released in 1987, with 14 other main-numbered entries being released since then. The franchise has since branched into other video game genres such as tactical role-playing, action role-playing, massively multiplayer online role-playing, racing, third-person shooter, fighting, and rhythm, as well as branching into other media, including CGI films, anime, manga, and novels.
Square Enix Holdings Co., Ltd. is a Japanese video game developer, publisher, and distribution company known for its Final Fantasy, Dragon Quest, and Kingdom Hearts role-playing video game franchises, among numerous others. Several of them have sold over 10 million copies worldwide, with the Final Fantasy franchise alone selling 144 million, the Dragon Quest franchise selling 78 million and the Kingdom Hearts franchise selling 30 million. The Square Enix headquarters are in the Shinjuku Eastside Square Building in Shinjuku, Tokyo. The company employs over 4300 employees worldwide.
Vaan was conceptualized as the main character for Final Fantasy XII in order to contrast the older hero from Square's previous title Vagrant Story as a result of negative feedback received by fans. Critical reception to Vaan's character has been mixed as a result of his lack of involvement with the Final Fantasy XII's plot although various video game publications still found him likable.
Vagrant Story is an action role-playing game developed and published by Square for the PlayStation video game console. The game was released in 2000, and has been re-released through the PlayStation Network for the PlayStation 3, PlayStation Portable and PlayStation Vita consoles. Vagrant Story was primarily developed by the team responsible for Final Fantasy Tactics, with Yasumi Matsuno serving as producer, writer and director.
Vaan was first introduced in the 2004 crossover board game Itadaki Street Special for the PlayStation 2.He also appears in Itadaki Street Portable for the PlayStation Portable.
The PlayStation 2 is a home video game console developed and marketed by Sony Computer Entertainment. It was first released in Japan on March 4, 2000, in North America on October 26, 2000, and in Europe and Australia in November 2000, and is the successor to the PlayStation, as well as the second video game console in the PlayStation brand. As a sixth-generation console, the PS2 competed with Sega's Dreamcast, Nintendo's GameCube, and Microsoft's Xbox.
The PlayStation Portable (PSP) is a handheld game console that was developed by Sony Computer Entertainment as part of the seventh generation of video-game consoles. Development of the handheld console was announced during E3 2003 and it was unveiled on May 11, 2004, at a Sony press conference before the next E3. The system was released in Japan on December 12, 2004; in North America on March 24, 2005; and in the PAL region on September 1, 2005. It competed with the Nintendo DS.
The protagonist of Final Fantasy XII, Vaan is a 17-year-old orphaned street urchin who lost his parents in a plague when he was 12 years old.His only brother, Reks, died two years prior to the start of the game, during the Archadian invasion of Dalmasca. He makes a living as Migelo's assistant, running various errands for him, while at the same time pickpocketing from Archadian soldiers while claiming to take back what is Dalmasca's. He is a cheerful and energetic boy. Vaan dreams of someday becoming a sky pirate in command of his own airship. He trains to meet this goal by killing dire rats in the sewers of Rabanastre on a daily basis, for which Dalan gave him the nickname "Vaan Ratsbane." Despite nominally being the protagonist, the majority of the game focuses on the events and conflicts of the world as a whole and of Ashe, rather than Vaan's individual problems, with his character instead used as a narrative device to allow the player to follow the events as an outside observer. During the course of the game, Vaan comes to understand that he has spent his time running from his problems and blaming the Archadian empire for them, rather than moving on with his life after his brother and parents' deaths. Vaan ends the game as a sky pirate, traveling the world along with Penelo. He also reprises his role from Final Fantasy XII in the manga adaptation by Gin Amou.
During the events of Final Fantasy XII: Revenant Wings , Vaan becomes captain of the Airship Galbana and uses it to travel to Lemurés, meeting old friends while making new ones. By Final Fantasy Tactics A2: Grimoire of the Rift Vaan's and Penelo's adventures take them to the Jylland region of Ivalice, where they get caught up in events surrounding Clan Gully and a boy from another world named Luso Clemens, eventually joining up with the clan for a time.
Final Fantasy XII: Revenant Wings is a real-time tactical role-playing game developed by Think & Feel and Square Enix who also published the game for the Nintendo DS. It is a sequel to the 2006 PlayStation 2 role-playing video game Final Fantasy XII.
Final Fantasy Tactics A2: Grimoire of the Rift is a tactical role-playing game developed and published by Square Enix for the Nintendo DS handheld game console. Releasing in 2007 in Japan and 2008 in the West, the game is a sequel to Final Fantasy Tactics Advance and forms part of the Ivalice Alliance, a group of games set in the titular fictional universe. The game features cameo appearances from central and supporting characters from Final Fantasy XII, a title set in Ivalice.
Vaan also appears in the PlayStation Portable fighting game, Dissidia 012 Final Fantasy , as one of Cosmos' warriors who seek to eliminate creatures known as Maninkins. He returns in the game's sequel, Dissidia Final Fantasy NT , as one of Materia's champions. He is also featured in the rhythm game Theatrhythm Final Fantasy and its sequel, Curtain Call , as the main character representing Final Fantasy XII.
Dissidia 012 Final Fantasy is a 2011 fighting game published by Square Enix for the PlayStation Portable as part of the Final Fantasy series. It was developed by the company's 1st Production Department and released in Japan on March 3, 2011. The game is both a prequel and remake of Dissidia Final Fantasy, revealing what occurred before the events of its predecessor, and was released on March 22, 2011 in North America.
Dissidia Final Fantasy NT is a fighting game with action role-playing elements developed by Koei Tecmo's Team Ninja and published by Square Enix for the PlayStation 4. The game is a follow-up to Dissidia Final Fantasy and Dissidia 012 Final Fantasy, released for PlayStation Portable, and similarly allows players to battle one another using many characters from the Final Fantasy series. The game is a console port of the 2015 Japanese arcade game Dissidia Final Fantasy, and it was released worldwide on January 2018. From March 12, 2019, the game is also available in a free-to-play version for PlayStation 4 and Microsoft Windows players.
Theatrhythm Final Fantasy is a rhythm video game, developed by indieszero and published by Square Enix for Nintendo 3DS and iOS. Based on the Final Fantasy video game franchise, the game involves using the touch screen in time to various pieces of music from the series. The game was released in Japan in February 2012, and in North America, Australia and Europe in July 2012. An iOS version was released in December 2012. A sequel, Theatrhythm Final Fantasy: Curtain Call, was released in 2014. A third game based on the Dragon Quest series, Theatrhythm Dragon Quest, was released in 2015. An arcade game, Theatrhythm Final Fantasy: All-Star Carnival, was released in 2016.
Yasumi Matsuno added Vaan and Penelo to be male and female avatar characters for the player in Final Fantasy XII. They would see and learn about Ivalice in sync with the player over the course of the game but would not be deeply connected to the story.The development team explained that their previous game, Vagrant Story , which featured a "strong man in his prime" as the protagonist had been unsuccessful and unpopular; the change regarding Final Fantasy XII from a "big and tough" protagonist to a more effeminate one was thus decided after targeting demographics were considered. Although originally conceived as more "rugged", Vaan was changed during development of the game to be more effeminate after "taking into consideration the target demographic". He was designed by character designer Akihiko Yoshida to look Asian. In response to criticism from Western fans regarding Vaan's design executive producer Akitoshi Kawazu noted that while several members from the development team were not feeling Vaan was the right main character owing to his young age, it was common for Japanese RPG to start with an inexperienced characters who grow across the game.
Motomu Toriyama, the writer and director of Final Fantasy XII: Revenant Wings , picked Vaan as his favourite character in the game.In the making of the high-definition of Final Fantasy XII, the staff reflected on how "weak" and unreliable he was in the original game. However, they jokingly discussed together that ten years later, he could become more appealing than Balthier, a character Square found appealing. Wanting characters who could appeal to long-term fans and new fans, the team incorporated Vaan and Penelo in Final Fantasy Tactics A2: Grimoire of the Rift . Vaan's appearance, which was supposed to mirror that of Balthier, was suggested by Hiroaki Kato. In Dissidia, he is featured in his Final Fantasy XII design, while alternative ones depict him as in Final Fantasy Tactics A2: Grimoire of the Rift, a new one by Yoshitaka Amano and another one featuring him as sea pirate by Akihiko Yoshida. Another Final Fantasy XII centered-title, only known as Fortress, was in plans by Square Enix but was cancelled; in this video game, Vaan would remain with Penelo and live quiet lives due to the plot being more focused on other characters from the previous games, most notably Asche, Larsa and Basch.
Vaan was voiced in Final Fantasy XII by Bobby Edner in English and by Kouhei Takeda in Japanese. With the casting of Takeda for the voice acting and motion capture, Vaan became a little less feminine and more "active, upbeat bright and positive" than planned.In the making of the English version, some lines involving Vaan had to changed for its release but without the loss of the real information. When asked how he compares to other Final Fantasy protagonists, Hideo Minaba stated that due in part to being designed by a different character designer than before, he did not feel he could be compared to any other Final Fantasy character. Vaan's inclusion in Dissidia 012 met difficulties due to the fact Takeda was busy with other works to voice him. However, following a Japanese popularity survey, the staff in charge hired Kenshō Ono to replace Takeda as fans wanted him to appear in Dissidia 012.
The similarities between the design of Vaan and Tetsuya Nomura's have been criticized, which artist Akihiko Yoshida noted was likely due to the similar colours used. 's protagonists, lacking in a "sense of honesty and justice". GameSpot editor Greg Kasavin described Vaan as the "token androgynous male lead", also describing him as an "Aladdin-type". G4 TV editor Greg Orlando described him as "eminently likable" due to the game's focus on "political intrigue" and Vaan trying to understand it all. Cyril Lachel of GamingNexus.com stated that while he was not a fan of Vaan, he was surprised by how his story turned out. 1UP.com editor Andrew Pfister stated that while everyone was expecting to hate what he describes as an "angsty teen", this is "tempered by the presence of Balthier and Basch", two fellow characters. Kotaku's Jason Schreir considered Vaan and Penelo the game's weak points as they compared them with other characters such as Balthier and Asche whose actions were "interesting". Christian Nutt of GamesRadar made fun of the character in an article about the best Final Fantasy heroes stating that Vaan would definitely not be included. Meanwhile, US Gamer simply described him as a stereotypical character often seen in anime series aimed at young people. Jason Schreier, another Kotaku writer, went harsher, to the point of making a podcast titled "Vaan Really Sucks" as he and his partner interacted about video games.In the book Final Fantasy and Philosophy: The Ultimate Walkthrough, he is described by Greg Littmann as a pick pocket and, unlike many of Final Fantasy
His lessened involvement with the plot compared to protagonists from preceding Final Fantasy titles was met with mixed reception. Destructoid editor Aaron Linde described him as "arguably the most uninspiring character in the game".Play.tm editor Andrew Macarthy described Vaan as an "undescribing figure". Eurogamer editor Rob Fahey stated that while "players may initially be somewhat dismayed to find themselves largely following around the cheerful prettyboy Vaan", the game introduces new characters who "fill out the cast superbly". PSX Extreme editor Cavin Smith commented that due to the game not focusing on just one character, Vaan "spends the entire game as an observer of the events unfolding in front of him", adding that it is a "far different take on the protagonist compared to Nomura's egocentric tendencies". Daily Collegian was harsher to the point of listing him as one of the most useless characters in the franchise due to his lack of appeal most notably in comparison to the party members from his game. PALGN editor Phil Larsen called him a "rogue-ish bad boy with a heart of gold", adding that "while this may seem clichéd at first, Vaan is always presented as extremely young and never tries to control every situation", citing Tidus as an example of someone who does. Worthplaying editor Agustin described the set-up as being "Dragon Quest-like", and that while he acts as a vehicle for players to view the plot through, he compared him to critically acclaimed characters Crono and Link from the Chrono Trigger and The Legend of Zelda series respectively.
Bobby Edner's portrayal of Vaan has been met with mostly positive reception. Cavin Smith praised his acting, stating that he sounds like an actual teenager without sounding whiny.Agustin praised the developers for giving Vaan a voice actor, commenting that it prevents any awkward silences from a silent protagonist. He added however that Vaan is "decidedly quiet", owing to many of the conversations not requiring his input, which Agustin called a "brilliant interactive storytelling device". His design change from Final Fantasy XII to Revenant Wings was criticized by RPGFan editor Patrick Gann, for going from a teenage design to what appears to be the design of a 10-year-old Vaan.
Cloud Strife is a fictional character and the main protagonist of Square's 1997 role-playing video game Final Fantasy VII and several of its sequels and spin-offs. In Final Fantasy VII, Cloud is a mercenary claiming to be formerly of SOLDIER, a group of elite supersoldiers employed by the Shinra Electric Power Company, a megacorporation responsible for draining the life from the planet. Fighting against Shinra in the resistance group AVALANCHE, and driven by a feud with the primary antagonist, Sephiroth, Cloud learns to accept his troubled past and adapts to his role as a leader. Cloud reappears as the protagonist in the 2005 computer-animated sequel film, Final Fantasy VII: Advent Children, in which he fights a new threat to the world while dealing with a sickness that infected his body. He acts in a supporting role in other Compilation of Final Fantasy VII titles and is featured in several other games outside the Final Fantasy VII continuity. Additionally, he has been featured in Nintendo's Super Smash Bros. series, and the Kingdom Hearts series by Square Enix.
Sephiroth is a fictional character and main antagonist in the role-playing video game Final Fantasy VII developed by Square. Character designer Tetsuya Nomura conceived and designed Sephiroth as an antagonist to - and direct physical opposite of - the game's main character Cloud Strife. The character was voiced by voice actor Toshiyuki Morikawa in Japanese. In English, Sephiroth has been voiced by Lance Bass in Kingdom Hearts and George Newbern in all subsequent appearances, and will be voiced by Tyler Hoechlin in Final Fantasy VII Remake.
Terra Branford, known as Tina Branford in Japanese media, is a character in the Final Fantasy series of role-playing video games published by Square Enix. Designed by Yoshitaka Amano and Tetsuya Nomura for the main series installment Final Fantasy VI, she also appeared in the spin-off fighting games Dissidia Final Fantasy and Dissidia 012 Final Fantasy, and made small appearances in several other games in and outside the Final Fantasy series.
Akihiko Yoshida is a Japanese game artist. Yoshida was born in 1967 and joined Square Co. in 1995, before the company merged with Enix. He then left Square Enix in September 2013 and became freelance. On October 2014, he became the company director of CyDesignation, a subsidiary of Cygames. He is well known for his work on the Final Fantasy series. He is a frequent collaborator of game designer Yasumi Matsuno.
Tifa Lockhart is a fictional character in Square's role-playing video game Final Fantasy VII. Created and designed by Tetsuya Nomura, she has since appeared in the fighting game Ehrgeiz and made cameo appearances in several other titles, as well as the CGI film sequel to Final Fantasy VII, Advent Children and related games and media in the Compilation of Final Fantasy VII series.
Kefka Palazzo is a character in the Final Fantasy series of video games. Originally designed by Yoshitaka Amano, he appears in the 6th installment of the series - Final Fantasy VI. First introduced as the court jester and army general under Emperor Gestahl, throughout the game he reveals himself to be a nihilistic psychopath after setting in motion events leading to the Apocalypse and pronouncing himself the God of Magic. From that point he acts as the game's primary antagonist.
Squall Leonhart is a fictional character and the primary protagonist of Final Fantasy VIII, a role-playing video game by Square. In Final Fantasy VIII, Squall is a 17-year-old student at Balamb Garden, a prestigious military academy for elite mercenaries. He stands 177 cm tall. As the story progresses, Squall befriends Quistis Trepe, Zell Dincht, Selphie Tilmitt, and Irvine Kinneas, and falls in love with Rinoa Heartilly. These relationships, combined with the game's plot, gradually change him from a loner to an open, caring person. Squall has appeared in several other games, including Chocobo Racing, Itadaki Street Special, and the Kingdom Hearts series, as Leon.
Ivalice is a fictional universe setting primarily appearing in the Final Fantasy video game series. The world was co-created by Yasumi Matsuno and Hiroyuki Ito, and has since been expanded upon by several games as the Ivalice Alliance series. Ivalice is described as a complex world with a very long history, and the stories of Final Fantasy Tactics, Vagrant Story and Final Fantasy XII all take place in it.
Balthier is a 22-year-old fictional character in the Final Fantasy series, and a protagonist in Final Fantasy XII. He was designed by Akihiko Yoshida, was voiced by Gideon Emery and Hiroaki Hirata in the English and Japanese versions respectively, and is one of the most positively received characters of the game, compared by some to the likes of James Bond and Han Solo.
Final Fantasy XII, a role-playing video game released by Square Enix in 2006, revolves around the attempt to liberate the kingdom of Dalmasca from the Archadian Empire. The story is told through the eyes of Vaan, an orphan who wishes to be a sky pirate, and the cadre of other characters he encounters throughout the adventure. The visuals of the characters were designed by Akihiko Yoshida, while their stories were created by Daisuke Watanabe. The characters were designed to look and behave unlike any that had existed in the Final Fantasy series. Their stories were written to create a script where neither side was truly right or wrong, but instead just had different opinions and interpretations of the events occurring in the game.
Final Fantasy Tactics: The War of the Lions is a tactical role-playing game developed and published by Square Enix for the PlayStation Portable (PSP), the game is an updated version of Final Fantasy Tactics made for the PlayStation which was released in 1997.
Fran is a fictional character in the Final Fantasy series of video games. She is a member of the Viera race, a group of rabbit-like humanoid people. She appears in Final Fantasy XII, having left her tribe and worked as a copilot to the pirate Balthier. Her character design was created by Akihiko Yoshida. She is voiced by Nicole Fantl in English and by Rika Fukami in Japanese. Her English voice performance took inspiration from Icelandic singer Bjork, which left Square Enix skeptical but eventually sated with their explanations. Fran later appears in the Nintendo DS sequel Final Fantasy XII: Revenant Wings.
Tidus is a fictional video game character in Square Enix's Final Fantasy series. He was introduced as the protagonist of the role-playing video game, Final Fantasy X, in 2001 as a 17-year-old expert in the fictional sport of blitzball from the city of Zanarkand. After a mysterious creature named Sin attacks his hometown, Tidus is apparently transported to the world of Spira. Shortly after his arrival he meets Yuna, a mage and her guardians. The group will soon set out on a pilgrimage to destroy the creature which attacked Tidus' city; by joining them, Tidus hopes to find his way home. He has appeared in other video games, including the Final Fantasy X sequel Final Fantasy X-2, the Kingdom Hearts series, and several Square Enix crossover games.
The Japanese video game developer and publisher Square Enix has been translating its games for North America since the late 1980s, and the PAL region and Asia since the late 1990s. It has not always released all of its games in all major regions, and continues to selectively release games even today depending on multiple factors such as the viability of platforms or the condition of the game itself. The process of localization has changed during that time from having a one-person team with a short time and tight memory capacities to having a team of translators preparing simultaneous launches in multiple languages.
Fortress is the code name of a cancelled action role-playing video game that was in development by Grin. Director Ulf Andersson devised the concept for Fortress and preproduction began in the second half of 2008. During development, Square Enix approached the developer and proposed making the game a spin-off of Final Fantasy XII. Grin reconceived the game in the recurring Final Fantasy world of Ivalice, and included elements of Final Fantasy XII such as stylistic motifs and character designs; additional elements included chocobos and other recurring creatures from the Final Fantasy series. It was to be released on the Microsoft Windows, PlayStation 3, and Xbox 360 platforms.
Vaan: A lot of kids lost their parents in the war. Mine- mine had already died before that. The Plague took them both. / Basch: I'm sorry. I didn't know. / Vaan: It's okay. It's been five years now. After that, I lived with my friend Penelo and her family.
Penelo: I thought that this money was the people of Dalmasca's property. The Imperials stole it from us, so it's only fair that we take it back. It's our duty as Dalmascans. Well, wasn't that what you said?
Vaan: One of these days I'll fly an airship of my own. I'll be a sky pirate, free to go where I will.
Old Dalan: Now the right takes Vaan Ratsbane to his territorial hunting grounds in the sewerbottom.
Vaan: Hating the Empire, getting revenge. It's all I ever thought about. But I never did anything about it. I mean, I realized there was nothing I could do. It made me feel hollow, alone. And then I'd miss my brother. I'd say stuff like "I'm gonna be a Sky Pirate" ... or some other stupid thing. Just anything to keep my mind off it. I was just—I was running away. I needed to get away from his death. That's why I followed you. Know what? I'm through with it. I'm through running. I'm ready to find my purpose. To find some real answers—some reasons. If I stick with you, I think I will.