Men should never lust after power they lack the means to control.Cid del Norte Marguez
Cid Del Norte Marguez is a non-player character in Final Fantasy VI. He is the chief scientist of the Gestahlian Empire and the creator of Magitek that allows humans and machines to be infused with magic. Cid's discoveries are what allowed the Empire to become the world-conquering superpower it is during the Third Gestahlian Campaign.
Cid wears a yellow coat with red linings on the shoulders, red buttons down the chest, and a hood with a circular black and gray crest. His Super NES sprite depicts his clothes under the coat as yellow with green boots, but in his mobile and Steam sprite, which is closer to his concept art, he has white clothing with gray or black boots. Cid has a large mustache that is red in his concept art and brown in his sprites.
Though Cid is devoted to his research, he is not strongly loyal to the Empire. He is adverse to violence and prefers diplomacy to solve problems. Despite being the creator of Magitek, Cid was not aware that the processes he used to extract magic from espers was fatal. When he realizes this, he is horrified and commits himself to convincing Gestahl to stop the war and holding peace talks with the Returners.
Cid has known Celes since she was young and treats her as a surrogate daughter. Despite this he still forced her to become a Magitek knight and serve in the Imperial army, something Cid feels horribly for. When the two end up on the Solitary Island, Cid works himself sick caring for a comatose Celes for an entire year while building a raft to escape the island on. According to Ultimania guides, Cid keeps a greenhouse that Celes helps him tend, and he named a species of flower after her and gave her a bloom to keep in her quarters.
Cid developed the Magitek process that extracts magic from espers and infuses it into humans or machines to allow them to cast magic. His first test subject, Kefka, received terrific power from the infusion, but the process was not yet perfected and Kefka's mind was damaged, driving him insane. Cid refined the process and more Imperials were infused with magic, including Celes. Cid continued to work in the Magitek Research Facility under threat from Kefka.
When the Returners raided the facility to free the captive espers, Cid discovered the true secret of esper power was magicite, the remains of dead espers. Cid estimated that the power that could be gained from magicite could be hundreds of times greater than what his methods could achieve currently, but was aghast that his experiments had been slowly killing the espers. Cid spoke to Celes and asked about rumors she had infiltrated the Returners as a spy, stunning Locke, who was infatuated with Celes. Kefka arrived and confirmed it was true, and when the Returners were distracted confronting Celes, Kefka had troopers in Magitek armor attack them. Celes teleported herself and Kefka and his troops away, leaving Locke, Cid, and the other Returners.
The fighting damaged the systems in the facility and Cid led the party to an elevator lift to escape before they went critical. While descending, Cid bemoaned his hand in the Empire's actions and what he did to Celes, and resolved to speak to Emperor Gestahl about ending the war. Hearing Kefka's laugh, Cid pushed the party into a minecart to escape.
The the Returners returned to Vector after espers attacked the town, and Gestahl and Cid met with them to begin peace talks. Cid sat on the side of the Returners during negotiations, and then accompanied Setzer to the Blackjack, Setzer's airship that had been damaged. Cid offered his help in repairing it and suggested removing the casino equipment and streamlining the design to improve the craft's speed, but Setzer refused and ordered him out of the engine room.
After Kefka claimed the power of the Warring Triad and caused the cataclysm, Cid woke up on a solitary island in the ocean with numerous other survivors and a comatose Celes. Cid dedicated himself to caring for her and secretly building a raft to escape the island, and over the course of the next year the survivors dwindled as they leaped from the northern cliffs of the island in despair, until only Cid remained with Celes. When Celes awoke, Cid told her about the state of the world and they decided to live out their lives together, and Celes acknowledged Cid as her "granddad". Cid had fallen ill and Celes began catching fish to feed him and nurse him back to health.
Depending on the player's actions, Cid either survives or perishes. If he survives, he shows Celes the raft he had built in their home's basement, and she uses it to leave the island; Cid spends the rest of the game in the home. If he dies, Celes attempts suicide by leaping from the northern cliffs, but survives and washes up on the beach. She then finds a goodbye letter from Cid and finds the raft on her own.
The player must catch fish for Cid on the Solitary Island as part of the story. Fast-moving, healthy fish improve Cid's condition, whereas the slow-moving rotten/foul-tasting fish deteriorate his health. The game keeps track of a counter for Cid's health, which starts at 120 and decreases by 1 every passing second, unless the player is in the menu screen or in a battle.
Feeding Cid fish lowers or raises the counter depending on the type of fish:
|Medium||A rotten fish||A foul-tasting fish||-4|
|Medium||Just a Fish||An ordinary fish||+16|
|Fast||A yummy fish||A delicious fish||+32|
If the player feeds him multiple fish at a time, the effects of all of the fish count. The type(s) of fish in the water is reset every time the player talks to Cid.
If the player does not save Cid, there is no way to make the fish reset, because one needs to talk to Cid to do that. So the player will not be able to collect all four fish under the Rare Items within the Items menu.
What Cid says when spoken to depends on his "health" counter. If the player enters the cabin when the counter is below 30, Cid will already be dead, but if the counter is over 30 when the player enters, but drops below 30 while they are in the room, Cid will not die until they leave and come back in. If the player feeds Cid with enough fish to make the counter increase to 255 or more, Cid will be saved.
|Health counter||Cid's dialogue|
|255 (Cid is saved)||I feel much better! Thanks, Celes!|
|231–254||My dear, I...feel I'm not going to be around much longer...|
|201–230||Celes, thanks for all you've done for me!|
|161–200||Hackack!! I feel a little better!|
|121–160||Cough...wheeze... I can't bear this any longer...|
|91–120||I...I'm not long for this cruel new world...|
|61–90||My worst nightmare is to think of you alone here on this wretched island...hack...wheeze!|
|31–60||Cough...hack...ACK!! While I can still talk, I...wheeze...pant...want to thank you...cough!|
Cid appears in Final Fantasy Trading Card Game as Ice-elemental Backup cards.
Behind the scenes
Yoshinori Kitase was the one who programmed the scenario where Celes nurses Cid back to health. His original intent was for Cid to die, but he decided it was better to allow players the chance to save him. He made this purposefully difficult by not giving any hints as to what kind of fish is needed to do this.
Cid has an unused line for a scene intended to appear during Terra's flashbacks near the start of the game. The line is Cid describing his "ultimate machine" that combines the power of magic and machinery, presumably referring to Magitek armor.
Unlike other Cids in the Final Fantasy series, Marguez has no apparent connection to the world's airships.
Continuing with the Spanish references, 'Del Norte Marguez' may be a reference to "Del Norte Márquez", a composite Spanish surname.
Del Norte means "from the North".
"Márquez" means "Son of a Marquis", a noble Spanish last name. "Marquez" is also a French second-personal plural that refers to marking or writing something down, or to remember something by using a mark.
- Final Fantasy VI The Complete, p.182
- Final Fantasy Ultimania Archive Volume 1, p.307
- Cid: Oh, what have I done...? There's no excuse for it, no matter how much Kefka may have threatened me...
- 25 Years Since The Release Of Final Fantasy VI – Looking Back At The Passion (Accessed: May 04, 2020) at One Million Power