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Cid is a tough talking, warm-hearted old pilot who hasn't forgotten his dreams...


Cid Highwind is a character in the Final Fantasy VII series. He is part of a long tradition of Final Fantasy characters named Cid, and owns an airship, the Highwind.

Cid is a former Shinra engineer and rocket scientist who has an unfulfilled dream of sending a rocket to space. Cid mistrusts the company, and when one of its executives attempt to steal his plane, the Tiny Bronco, he joins Cloud and his allies to fight Shinra. Cid is the most uncouth of the protagonists: he swears constantly, is short-tempered, cranky and impatient, and chain-smokes cigarettes. However, he has a good heart, and is voted as a temporary party leader during Cloud and Tifa's absence.

Cid wields spears in battle, and his Limit abilities make use of him jumping and landing on enemies with his spear to hit multiple enemies, or hit enemies multiple times, potentially dealing devastating damage.




Artwork by Tetsuya Nomura.

In Final Fantasy VII, Cid wears a navy blue flight jacket over a dark shirt with dark green cargo pants. He wears a white pilot's scarf that covers most of his shirt. Cid has blond hair (despite his field model having gray / ash blond hair) and blue eyes and facial stubble. He wears a pair of goggles on his forehead, with a packet of cigarettes strapped underneath the band. Cid is a chain-smoker, and ends each battle by lighting a new cigarette. He wears leather gloves and boots, and his weapon of choice is a spear, although he also has an affinity for firearms as noted by an AK-47 and two M-14s in his "engineering room". In Rebirth, his main appearance remains unchanged, but he no longer has a packet of cigarettes on his goggles and is not a chain smoker.

In Final Fantasy VII: Advent Children and Dirge of Cerberus -Final Fantasy VII-, Cid wears a light blue T-shirt with dark green cargo pants. He also wears a brown bomber jacket tied around his waist and a dog tag around his neck. He still wears goggles, but his smoking habit is absent in Advent Children. In the ending for Dirge of Cerberus he lights a cigarette saying "All in a day's work." His face and chin look slightly thinner than in Final Fantasy VII. Character designer Tetsuya Nomura has said Cid's appearance was designed with working clothes, and he does not care about fashion, and Co-director Takeshi Nozue said Cid's T-shirt was deceptively hard to render.

In the Kingdom Hearts series, Cid wears blue pants with a belly warmer and a white T-shirt. He does not smoke, likely due to the younger demographic the series is aimed at, but chews a toothpick to give the same type of imagery.

Due to poor conversions from centimeters to feet in English materials, Cid's height has been listed as 5'8".[1][5] His height is actually 5.8 ft, or 5'10". The Dirge of Cerberus -Final Fantasy VII- Signature Series Guide guide featured the correction conversion.[3]


Cid Portrait

Portrait by Tetsuya Nomura.

No, come to think of it, if I had to, I'd put my faith in science. Because of science, humans who used to crawl around on the ground can now fly, and soon we're about to go into space! I've earned my living thanks to science, so to me, there's nothing greater.

Cid in Final Fantasy VII.

Cid is known for his foul mouth, as he curses a blue streak at several points in Final Fantasy VII. Several of his lines are "bleeped", appearing as a jumble of symbols. He does not bother about trivialities, and prefers going to the source of the problem, though sometimes seems wholly uncaring, such as during the party's visit to Gold Saucer to acquire the Keystone, where Cid sleeps while Cloud explains the mission to the Temple of the Ancients. He also sleeps on the Highwind during Cloud's breakdown, when Barret and the others discuss who should lead the group during Cloud and Tifa's absence.

Cid was always crude, but he is kindhearted. His attitude and foul language are an effect of him losing his dream of spaceflight, as he remains angry over missing out on his dream, struggling to move on, though he sacrificed it deliberately to save Shera. Cid does not always mean his insults in a negative way: he refers to Cloud and his allies as "numbskulls" for opposing Shinra Electric Power Company, but admits he likes the idea.

Cid finds a new perspective towards the party's goal to save the Planet, something that he didn't care much for in the beginning, ruminating: "This planet is a little kid. A little kid sick and trembling in the middle of this huge universe. Someone's gotta protect it. Ya follow me? That someone is us!" When the party learns about Holy and Cloud wants finish what Aeris had started, Cid would cuss at him before telling him "WE" would finish it.

Two years later Cid had softened up somewhat, no longer swearing and smoking as much. He shows more consideration towards others, such as naming his second airship after his now-wife, Shera.

In the English versions of his appearances, Cid speaks with a North American southern accent. As a mechanic and technical engineer, Cid is somewhat of a skeptic of things of mystical and magical nature, but his lifelong interests in the field of aeronautics reinforce his belief that through knowledge and manpower, nothing is impossible.


Cid is a respected pilot and an engineer. The North American manual states that Cid's starting Spear is "handmade", implying that Cid made it himself. He has extraordinary prowess with the spear in battle.


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

Failure of rocket launch[]


Since childhood Cid, dreamed of becoming a pilot and first man in space, initially a gofer in the company before nearly achieving his dream in the Shinra Space Program. Aside his ambitions as an astronaut, Cid designed a number of aircraft and is a great pilot. Among his designs are the propeller plane Tiny Bronco and the airship Highwind. Shinra built a rocket, Shinra No. 26, intending to launch it into space with Cid at the helm.[note 1]

In Before Crisis -Final Fantasy VII-, Shinra No. 26 is to launch on April 11th, 2003. Vice President Rufus Shinra is overseeing the celebratory ceremony, but finds the idea of space travel pointless. Cid accuses Rufus of being cynical compared to his father. The eco-terrorist group Avalanche attempts to steal the Tiny Bronco before Rufus's bodyguard, a member of the Turks, saves it.

Avalanche attacks the rocket, led by Shears. Avalanche steals an oxygen tank to stop the launch, but Cid tells Rufus and President Shinra to continue despite this. The President agrees, so Avalanche resorts to kidnapping Cid. Cid is rescued and the launch proceeds to countdown.

Shera, Cid's assistant, is still doing a safety check. Unwilling to let the rocket launch kill Shera in the blast, Cid halts it. He vows to take care of the rocket and wait for another chance to launch, but due to the prohibitive costs Shinra cuts funding to the space program, and the Shinra No. 26 is abandoned. The rocket becomes a tourist attraction, which spawns the village Rocket Town around the launch pad.

Cid blames Shera for destroying his dream, and the insecure Shera accepts the blame. After the incident she devotes to doing whatever she can to atone for her mistake, although Cid continues to treat her abominably. Cid becomes bitter and irate over the years as his dream continues to grow more distant.

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Original continuity[]

Pursuit of Sephiroth[]

Shut up! Sit your ass down in that chair and drink your goddamn TEA!

Cid (PS)
Tiny Bronco Escaping

Cid and Cloud's party on the Tiny Bronco.

During the events of Final Fantasy VII Cloud Strife and his party meet Cid in Rocket Town during their search for Sephiroth sometime in December 0007. Their visit coincides with a visit from Rufus Shinra, now president of the company, who Cid hopes is planning to restart the space program. Rufus is uninterested and merely wants the Tiny Bronco to track Sephiroth. Cid refuses to give up his plane, and Shera tells Cloud and the group she suspects Palmer, a Shinra executive, is attempting to steal it. They fight Palmer and jump onto the plane as it takes off, pilotless. As they fly over the house Cid jumps aboard, but Rufus orders his soldiers to shoot it down. They crash into the sea. His hopes dashed anew and having no reason to return to the town, Cid joins Cloud and his allies.


Though he refers to his new allies as "numbskulls" for opposing Shinra, Cid travels with the group. At first he remains detached from their quest, sleeping through Cloud and Aerith's explanations on their motives at Gold Saucer. When Cloud is separated at the North Crater, and Tifa and Barret are held captive in Junon by Shinra after Sephiroth summons the Meteor, Cid persuades the Highwind's crew to join him. The crew defects from Shinra and Cid becomes the airship's captain. He commandeers the Highwind to save Barret and Tifa from execution as scapegoats for the Meteor crisis, and the Highwind becomes the group's airship. They use the Highwind to search for the missing Cloud, and when he is found in Mideel suffering from mako poisoning, Tifa stays to care for him, and Cid is appointed leader.

Shinra attempts to load Huge Materia onto Shinra No. 26 and launch it at the Meteor that is approaching the planet, hoping to destroy it. Cid spearheads an attack on two mako reactors to stop Shinra from collecting the Huge Materia, hoping to save them and use them by Geisel Bugenhagen's instruction instead, a wise elder from Cosmo Canyon and an expert on the study of the planet.

When Cid returns to Mideel to check on Cloud and Tifa the town is attacked by Ultimate Weapon, one of the gargantuan creatures that the planet spawned millennia ago to be its "defense mechanism" that were roused when Sephiroth summoned Meteor. Cid's party fights it until it flees, but an earthquake swallows Mideel and Tifa and Cloud fall into the lifestream that is exposed from the substrata. When they wash ashore the others take them to the Highwind to recuperate. Cloud recovers, and Cid lets him retake the leader position, explaining they have been hunting Huge Materia in Cloud's absence.

Shera helping Cid

Shera helping Cid.

Unwilling to let Shinra go ahead with the rocket launch that still houses some Huge Materia, Cid and the party infiltrate the Shinra No. 26 in Rocket Town, but end up stuck aboard with Shera as Palmer launches it. Having unwittingly realized his dream of space travel, Cid and the party head for an escape pod when an oxygen tank explodes and Cid gets stuck under the rubble. He tells the others to go without him, but with Shera's help they rescue him. Realizing Shera's fears from the original launch had been founded, Cid apologizes for his rude treatment of her, and the group returns to the Planet safely. The view of their world among the vastness of space inspires Cid to give a heartened speech to the party about the planet being "a sick little kid" with Sephiroth a disease inside it, and it would be their job to protect it.

Shinra No. 26 fails to destroy the Meteor, but Bugenhagen's help lets the party discover that Aerith had summoned the power of Holy, the ultimate White Magic spell, to destroy Meteor before she had perished by Sephiroth's hand. The power of Holy could destroy Meteor, but Sephiroth is holding it at bay at the planet's core.

Cid joins with the party to finish Sephiroth off in the Northern Cave in late January 0008, and takes the Highwind's controls to escape as the North Crater begins to crumble. As the Highwind is damaged when Holy bursts from the crater, Cid pulls an emergency switch to modify the airship. They watch from the skies as the lifestream and Holy concentrate on Midgar to destroy the Meteor.


In On the Way to a Smile, Cid makes an appearance in "Case of Barret." He and Shera are working on a new airship at Rocket Town, and Shera is in charge of operating a refurbished oil drilling rig to provide fuel. Cid acts as Barret's confidante, helping him find a new purpose in life. Barret suggests Cid could use his new airship to help people with Geostigma reach medical attention, which Cid agrees to, but only if a suitable fuel for the ship could be found.

Geostigma crisis[]


Cid Highwind as he appears in Advent Children.

One year later, in 0009 during the events of Final Fantasy VII: Advent Children, Cid pilots his new airship to help out Cloud and the others in the battle against Bahamut SIN, and saves Tifa and Denzel from a group of Shadow Creepers. He carries the other Avalanche members into the Shera, his new airship. Barret orders him to land so they can help with the battle between Cloud and Kadaj. Cid tells Barret, "If you want off, then jump!"

Deepground conflict[]

The following year, 0010 during the events of Dirge of Cerberus -Final Fantasy VII-, Cid works as the leader of an airship division with support from the World Regenesis Organization. He participates in the Battle of Midgar against Deepground and Omega while helping out his old friend, Vincent Valentine.

Remake continuity[]

Cloud Strife and his party meet Cid while requesting his services to take them from the Gongaga Area to Cosmo Canyon. While picking up the group from the Nibel Area to take them to the Golden Saucer, Cid reveals that he met Ifalna during his time with Shinra while joining Cloud's group.

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Spoilers end here.


Final Fantasy VII[]

Battle model from Final Fantasy VII.

Cid is a playable party member in Final Fantasy VII who plays similar to a Dragoon, wielding spears and using jump attacks in his Limits. He has high defensive stats, but lower magical stats. His ultimate weapon, the Venus Gospel, does more damage based on how much MP Cid has remaining.

If Cid is in the party in Gold Saucer, he sometimes requests to replace Cloud in the chocobo racing or snowboarding. If Tifa is also in the party she takes precedence. Controlling Cid or Tifa in the minigames is identical to controlling Cloud. If Cloud goes to the Gold Saucer Round Square gondola with Cid, Cid will sleep the whole way through.

Before Crisis -Final Fantasy VII-[]

Cid is fought as a boss in Before Crisis -Final Fantasy VII-.

Final Fantasy VII Rebirth[]

Cid appears in Rebirth as a guest character, where he and the Tiny Bronco serve as the party's main source of transportation for the last third of the game.

Musical themes[]

"Cid's Theme" plays when Cid introduces himself in Rocket Town and during his realization of being the first man in space. "Cid's Theme" also plays on the world map after Diamond Weapon's defeat, and will continue to play until the player enters Midgar.

Connected themes are "The Highwind Takes to the Skies" that plays during flights with the Highwind and after the player beats the Mog House game in Gold Saucer; "Countdown" that plays when the Shinra No. 26 is launched; and "Launching a Dream into Space" that plays while the party is in space. During the ending FMV "Planet's Crisis" plays and the melody from "Cid's Theme" is heard when the Highwind is ejected out of the North Crater and gets its final upgrade.

"Cid's Theme" is included on the third disc of Final Fantasy VII Vinyl Limited Edition compilation album.

Other appearances[]

Cid Highwind has appeared in the following games in the Final Fantasy series:

Non-Final Fantasy guest appearances[]

Behind the scenes[]


Concept art by Tetsuya Nomura.

According to the Final Fantasy VII Ultimania Omega,[6] Cid's role in the plot was largely the same during the game's early production phase, with his dream of going into space being ruined the same way it is in the final version. Cid would only have joined the party after Meteor was summoned, as he was to be the pilot of the rocket that would destroy Meteor with the Materia payload.

However, he would not have been aware the mission was a suicide mission, but being tricked by Shinra into thinking it was a mission to the moon. The party would have hopped on board to save his life, but they would be incapable of convincing Cid of the truth until it was too late. They would escape using an escape pod like in the final version.

Cid's job class was originally listed as "Pilot (Dragoon)".

In Final Fantasy VII Rebirth, the story being changed so that Cid had met Ifalna was inspired by Kazushige Nojima's novel, Final Fantasy VII Remake Trace of Two Pasts, which includes stories of Aerith as a child in the Shinra Building. Since Cid worked for Shinra at the time, it would not have been strange for him to have met Ifalna. It was also added as foreshadowing for Cid being involved in large Shinra events at that time.[7]


In the English version, Cid is voiced by Chris Edgerly and in the Japanese version, he is voiced by Kazuyuki Yama. He shares his English voice actor with Havharo from Final Fantasy XII.

In Final Fantasy VII Rebirth, he is voiced in the English version by J. Michael Tatum, and in the Japanese version he is voiced by Kazuhiro Yamaji.



Cid and Highwind are both recurring names in the Final Fantasy series. Each of Cid's names allude to his role as an airship pilot and a Dragoon.

Cid is derived from the dialectal Arabic word سيد (sîdi or sayyid), which means "lord" or "master".

"High wind" is typical of wind speeds that place a seven on the Beaufort scale. When wind travels this fast (approximately 32 to 38 miles per hour), the sea heaps up. Streaks of foam from breaking waves are blown in the direction the wind is traveling, and there are moderate amounts of airborne spray. On land, high wind moves entire trees, and effort is required to walk against it.



  1. In Crisis Core -Final Fantasy VII- when Zack Fair speaks to a Shinra employee gazing at a rocket model, they mention that Cid is going to be an astronaut. Another employee, standing beside the airship painting, says that the airship was named after the captain, Cid.


  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 Final Fantasy VII, game manual (PC)
  2. 2.0 2.1 Dirge of Cerberus -Final Fantasy VII- Official Complete Guide, p.021
  3. 3.0 3.1 3.2 Dirge of Cerberus -Final Fantasy VII- Signature Series Guide, p.007
  4. Final Fantasy VII Ultimania Omega, p.052 (Scan)
  5. Archive of on 29th May 1998.
  6. Early Material File Character Files – p. 520-523 of the Final Fantasy VII Ultimania Omega (Accessed: May 24, 2020) at The Lifestream
  7. (n.d.) . Final Fantasy VII Rebirth Post-Release Interview (Part 1) – Devs Discuss the Story. Frontline Gaming Japan. Archived from the original on April 19, 2024.