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I've died before, Arbert. I'm not afraid to die again.


Branden, also known as the The Knight of Darkness, is a character from Final Fantasy XIV. He is a member of the the Warriors of Darkness.

During his time on the the Source, Branden went under the alias of Blanhaerz.


Early life[]

Branden and Sauldia.

As a young recruit, Branden caught the eye of the princess Sauldia, who handpicked him to serve as her protector as she embarked on an investigation into a series of mysterious incidents in which innocent souls were irrevocably transformed into malformed beasts. Branden served as the princess's bodyguard for a time, until he failed in his duty to protect her during one of her many “investigations.” Though she would make a full recovery, Branden was nevertheless stripped of his knighthood and cast out.

During his travels, Branden befriended Ardbert and his companions—Lamitt, Renda-Rae, Nyelbert and Cylva. Together, they return to Voeburt and seek to identify the culprit behind the mysterious transformations that continued unabated in Branden's absence. They discovered it was Tadric, court mage and loyal servant of the royal family, was the architect of Voeburt's misery. Consumed by pride and jealousy, he had orchestrated the transformations in an effort to throw the kingdom into chaos that he might claim Voeburt's throne for himself. Though the Warriors of Light succeeded in putting an end to Tadric ambitions, Tadric in a final act of spite before he breathed his last, cursed Sauldia like he had so many others, condemning her to a fate worse than death. Branden then gives Sauldia the rest and upon receiving his crystal of light, he awakens as one of the Warriors of Lights.

Branden and his companions traveled across the realm vanquishing evil, eventually coming to blows with one of their own, Cylva, who revealed herself as the Shadowkeeper and ally to the Ascians. Ardbert spared her life, unable to kill someone he could call a close friend. They turned their weapons against the Ascians, Mitron and Loghrif. With their deaths a Flood of Light came crashing down on their world, eradicating all life in its wake. To save their world, the Warriors were approached by the Ascian Elidibus who offered them a chance to save their world by journeying to the Source, telling them that by causing a Calamity they could halt the Flood. Doing so, however, would require them to sacrifice their corporeal forms, leaving them as souls that would nonetheless have a physical and tangible presence.

Final Fantasy XIV: Heavensward[]

The Warriors of Darkness.

With Elidibus's help, the warriors arrive on the moon of the Source world where Zodiark lays dormant. To save their world, a shard of the Source world known as the First, the Ascian tells the warriors they must sow chaos by slaying primals and, should they come across them, the Source's Warrior of Light. To that end, each of Ardbert's party becomes a Warrior of Darkness. To blend in with the unfamiliar world, each takes up a pseudonym, Branden calling hiself Blanhaerz.

Their first primal encounter is against Ravana. They encounter the Warrior of Light and their companions, and introduce themselves by fighting them. Thanks to the timely intervention of a skilled Rogue, the group retreats, but not before revealing who they are. Sometime later, the Warriors of Darkness are told of the summoning of a primal at the top of Xephatol with a new masked mage at their side. They are too late as the Warrior of Light had slain the priest who attempted the summoning, accompanied by a familiar-looking youth.

A final confrontation at the Bowl of Embers reveals to the Scions of the Seventh Dawn that the Warriors of Darkness offered up their lives in their own world to travel here. When they begin to use their crystals of light, the Warrior of Light draws upon their own and transports them all to the realm of Goddess Hydaelyn. Here Ardbert attempts to strike down Minfilia when she offers to save the First, but is stopped, and promises to return they to the First with her.

Final Fantasy XIV: Shadowbringers[]


Back in The First, Minfilia uses the souls of the Warriors of Darkness to stop the Flood of Light, except for Ardbert's soul. Branden's body became Cardinal Virtue Dikaiosyne, a powerful sin eater who is attacking without mercy and recovering the Voeburtite treasures that were looted. In search of The Fangs of Orthus, Dikaiosyne attacks Wright and turns Milinda who had possession of the treasure into a sin eater.

Once the Warrior of Light travels to Norvrandt, he assists Granson—Milinda's husband—on his journey to hunt Dikaiosyne and get revenge against him for turning his wife into a sin eater. During the journey, the duo learns about Branden’s past. After reflecting on the tale, Granson was convinced that he would have nothing to gain from the role of a vengeful hero, since Branden was also a victim. Granson then decides to end this tale and let the spirit of Milinda and Branden rest and move on. Satisfied with the answer, Sul Oul reveals the location of Claws of Orthus.

Once with the relic, the duo ambushes and confronts Dikaiosyne one last time. After being defeated, Branden begins to fade into motes of aether and a fragment of his memory resonates revealing that despite everything he was at peace.

After the Ascian Emet-Selch is defeated, the spirit of Branden and his companions are seen one last time in Crystarium to be reunited with the spirit of Ardbert.



Branden is identical in appearance to the male Roegadyn from the A Realm Reborn promotional material, though his gears is blacked.

Spoiler warning: Plot and/or ending details follow. (Skip section)

Upon becoming the Cardinal Virtue Dikaiosyne, his appearance remains the same, though he has black and red eyes, plaster-like white skin, and his body is surrounded by a ghastly white glow.

Spoilers end here.


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During Patch 3.4 Soul Surrender, Branden is fought as the Knight of Darkness alongside other Warriors of Darkness during the quest One Life for One World One Life for One World in a Special Instance.

Branden in role-play mode.

In Shadowbringers expansion, Branden is temporarily playable during the tank role quest The Hardened Heart The Hardened Heart.

Branden is fought one last time as Dikaiosyne in final tank role quest To Have Loved and Lost To Have Loved and Lost.