I ain't gettin' any younger, so I might as well make myself useful.Jecht
Jecht ['dʒɛktʰ] is a non-player character and a reluctant antagonist in Final Fantasy X. He is Tidus's father, was one of High Summoner Braska's legendary guardians, and a major blitzball star in his hometown. Jecht is a tall, muscular man with a tendency to drink heavily. He wields a large black sword in battle.
Jecht is a dark-skinned, muscular man with long, unruly black hair and red eyes. He wears a pair of black shorts with an orange and red sash covering his right leg, a red headband, and a metal gauntlet and pauldron covering his left arm. He is barefoot. His outfit appears to be a Zanarkand Abes jumper, similar to Tidus's uniform, with the straps undone. He has a black tattoo of the Zanarkand Abes' symbol on his chest. In his concept art and in Dissidia Final Fantasy, Jecht wields a black sword with red markings that resemble dolphins. He never wields the sword himself in Final Fantasy X. Braska's Final Aeon, on the other hand, wields a larger version of it, and Jecht is mentioned to have fought with a sword during Braska's pilgrimage. The design of Jecht's greatsword, (called the Iconic Sword in Dissidia NT), resembles a ceremonial African Konda sword.
As Braska's Final Aeon, Jecht is a large, deformed version of his former self with brown scales and horns with crests of spikes emerging from his back and shoulders. He wears a larger version of his headband, his hair is white and emerges in tufts from the spikes around his head, and his eyes glow. His Zanarkand Abes tattoo is white, and his body below the waist has another large crest of spikes partially covering his legs. His right hand is of normal proportions to his body and is used to wield his sword, while his left hand is a large claw.
Jecht is surly, arrogant, and a bully. He frequently refers to himself as "The Great Jecht" (Jecht-sama in the Japanese releases, giving himself a respectful, in this case arrogant, honorific), and is known to Spira as "Sir Jecht" for being a famous guardian. Jecht considers himself the best blitzball player there is and loves fame, asking Braska several times if there will be celebratory events on their pilgrimage. Jecht's career hit a slump when he began drinking, and it was rumored he was going to retire, though he was quick to deny this and claimed he could quit drinking if he chose. Jecht used to be emotionally abusive to Tidus, calling him "crybaby", and otherwise brushing him off or berating him.
Despite his numerous flaws, Jecht is a good man at heart. He criticizes Tidus in the hope of encouraging him to try harder and disprove him. Jecht does love Tidus, but struggles expressing it: a sentimental message to Tidus on a sphere is cut off with Jecht mumbling, "Remember, you're my son. And... well, uh... never mind. I'm no good at these things." Jecht told Braska and Auron his dream was to train Tidus into a star blitzball player like himself.
Jecht enjoys the "Hymn of the Fayth", and is well-loved by his fans to the extent that a blitzball tournament in dream Zanarkand is named in his honor. When the party learns about the Chocobo Eater, and Tidus says they must help because "it's the right thing to do", Auron laughs and reminisces Jecht used to say the same thing, which ended up causing problems for the group.
"Jecht's Real Story" from Final Fantasy X Ultimania Omega elaborates on his personality. He had been criticized as hating practice, yet he made frequent training trips out to sea. Jecht may have been concealing how hard he trained, preferring to appear "naturally talented". He also may have bragged so much to cover up his insecurities. The memory of Tidus in Jecht's mind remains as that of a seven-year-old boy. Jecht cherished that image of a son who needed protection and dreamed of him growing up. Fragments of Jecht's feelings appear in the illusions that occur whenever Tidus comes into contact with Sin's toxin.
Jecht was in a relationship with Tidus's mother and they had a son together. Tidus's mother fell into depression and died when Jecht vanished. Before he disappeared from Zanarkand, Jecht was a famous blitzball player, but his career had hit a slump due to his alcoholism, and there were rumors he was planning to retire, though he denied them. Jecht went to train at the sea to regain his former glory, and it was the last he was ever seen. The vanished Jecht became a near legendary figure in Zanarkand, with billboards featuring him and an annual blitzball tournament being named for him.
Jecht had entered Spira after coming upon Sin. According to the fayth of Ifrit, Sin swam in these waters to ease its pain on that day; as Jecht touched him, "he became real", and was washed ashore somewhere near Bevelle. The Zanarkand he hailed from, as well as Jecht himself, were but a dream recreation of the original city, created from the memories of its original citizens and maintained by Yu Yevon, the powerful summoner who was the original Zanarkand's leader a thousand years ago. The dream Zanarkand is based on Zanarkand as it existed a millennium ago in Spira's history, whose ruins have since become the destination of summoners' pilgrimages. Unaware of any of this, Jecht was seen as a crazy drunkard and was locked up in Bevelle.
A former priest named Braska visited Jecht and requested he become his guardian along with Auron, a warrior monk of Bevelle who had fallen from grace. Auron, wary of Jecht, objected, but Braska thought it the perfect irony for three of the most unlikely people to defeat Sin: a drunken blitzball player from Zanarkand, a summoner with a "heathen" Al Bhed wife and a "half-breed" daughter (Yuna), and a disgraced warrior monk who had refused to marry the daughter of a high priest. Before they departed, Jecht told Yuna stories about his Zanarkand.
During the earlier parts of their journey Jecht's carousing got him into trouble, most notably at the Moonflow where he mistook a shoopuf for a fiend and wounded it, forcing Braska to pay for the damage with their travel money. Afterward Jecht gave up drinking anything stronger than shoopuf milk for fear his family would be ashamed of him, and out of embarrassment for what he had forced Braska to do. Jecht recorded their journey to show his wife and Tidus, still hopeful he would find a way home some day.
Over the course of Braska's pilgrimage Jecht matured as he learned about Spira and what became of Zanarkand. His journey mirrors what Tidus would go through a decade later. According to Auron, Jecht would suggest helping people along the way because it is "the right thing to do", which always led to trouble for the three. Jecht came to accept he was trapped in Spira with no hope of returning to his Zanarkand, and left behind spheres to guide Tidus's journey should the same fate befall him.
By the time they reached Zanarkand Ruins the trio had become close friends, and Jecht offered up his life to become Braska's Final Aeon, knowing he could never return home. As one last favor Jecht asked Auron to look after Tidus, believing Auron could find a way to dream Zanarkand. Though Auron protested Jecht's choice, knowing Sin would return, Jecht assured he'd think of a way to stop Sin's reincarnation.
Although Jecht defeated Sin as Braska's Final Aeon the "spiral of death" surrounding Sin continued; Yu Yevon's spirit possessed Jecht and transformed him into the core of a new Sin, leaving Jecht's soul trapped within the creature for ten years. Struggling to fight the powerful instincts Yu Yevon had instilled within Sin, Jecht can momentarily operate of his own volition for the brief moments he hears the "Hymn of the Fayth". The now-unsent Auron rode Sin to dream Zanarkand where he looked after the orphaned Tidus, watching him follow his father's footsteps in becoming a star player for the Zanarkand Abes.
One day, Sin attacks dream Zanarkand and transports Auron and Tidus to Spira. As Auron looks up at Sin he asks "You are sure?", suggesting he is communicating to Jecht's consciousness. Jecht hopes that Tidus will find a way to destroy Sin for good, a wish shared by the fayth with Bahamut's fayth asking for Tidus's help before he is sucked into Sin. While in Spira, Tidus reminisces about Jecht, not suspecting Sin is his father. When Auron reveals the truth, Tidus rejects the notion, but eventually senses Jecht within Sin, and his desire for Tidus to free him from being forced to destroy Spira. During Operation Mi'ihen Sin decimates the joined forces of the Crusaders and the Al Bhed, and afterward a raging Tidus chases Sin out to sea before collapsing. Auron explains the reason Sin showed up was to see Tidus. Later on Tidus and his comrades are stunned to find Sin complacently listening to the "Hymn of the Fayth" beneath the ice in Lake Macalania, the song Jecht enjoyed as a human. Tidus accepts what he must do and promises Jecht he will find a way to end the cycle and free him.
Using the Fahrenheit to broadcast "The Hymn of the Fayth" across Spira, Tidus's group brings all of Spira together in song, calming Sin momentarily, allowing them to fight their way through the beast's innards and confront Jecht at Sin's core. Able to speak to his son a final time, Jecht asks Tidus to finish him, as Yu Yevon has almost consumed him, and fears he will soon be unable to "hear the hymn" any longer. Jecht transforms into Braska's Final Aeon, and Tidus and his allies defeat him. Dying, Jecht and Tidus make peace and Jecht enters the Farplane. Yuna uses her aeons to weaken Yu Yevon's spirit, making him vulnerable for the first time in a thousand years. After the group destroys Yu Yevon and ends Spira's spiral of death, dream Zanarkand and its inhabitants fade away, including Tidus. In the Farplane, Jecht reunites with his son with the two slapping a jovial high five.
Jecht appears in a flashback from the scholar Maechen during Chapter 5 at the Zanarkand Ruins. When Yuna, Rikku, and Paine fight Vegnagun in the Farplane, the voices of Jecht, Braska, and Auron encourage them and advise the party on where to strike Vegnagun. As Shuyin resembles Tidus, Jecht calls him a crybaby and claims he needs a "good spanking".
Jecht is fought at the end of Final Fantasy X as Braska's Final Aeon. As the fight with Yu Yevon is commonly considered a mere story formality due to the ease with which he is defeated, Braska's Final Aeon effectively acts as the game's final boss.
"Jecht's Theme" (ジェクトのテーマ, Jekuto no Tēma?) is a laid-back melody with steel-stringed guitar solos following Western style, performed by Tsuyoshi Sekito. It appears in the original soundtrack as the second track of Disc 3.
The music that plays during the final confrontation against Braska's Final Aeon within Sin is "Otherworld", a heavy metal style song with English lyrics that was uncommon for a Final Fantasy game. The only other time the song plays is during Sin's attack on dream Zanarkand in the opening FMV.
Jecht has made appearances in the following games in the Final Fantasy series:
- Final Fantasy Tactics S as a playable character.
- Dissidia Final Fantasy as a playable character.
- Dissidia 012 Final Fantasy as a playable character.
- Dissidia Final Fantasy NT as a playable character.
- Dissidia Final Fantasy Opera Omnia as a playable character.
- Theatrhythm Final Fantasy Curtain Call as a playable character.
- Pictlogica Final Fantasy as a playable character.
- Final Fantasy Airborne Brigade as a summonable Legend.
- Final Fantasy Record Keeper as a playable character.
- Final Fantasy Brave Exvius as a summonable vision.
- Final Fantasy Trading Card Game as a series of cards.
Non-Final Fantasy guest appearances
- Puzzle & Dragons as a playable character.
- Monster Strike as a playable character.
- Yo-kai Watch: Wibble Wobble as a playable character.
In Gunslinger Stratos 2, a costume based on Jecht was released in November 2014.
Behind the scenes
Jecht's character design was completed before his character was written. Daisuke Watanabe considered having Auron be Jecht in disguise, watching Tidus throughout his journey, but the team did not want to give Jecht a leading part in the story so they gave up on the idea. It has been said Tidus and Jecht's relationship invokes the timeless theme of "a child trying to exceed the achievements of their parent". The bond between parent and child becomes a key factor in finding the chink in Sin's armor that allows for this otherwise invincible creature to be defeated.
One of the character development system proposals for Final Fantasy X was a "tattoo system" where characters would have a 100x100 grid, and upon level up could place "tattoos" down to boost stats and learn abilities. Jecht's tattoo is a remnant of the this system where different tattoos would confer what abilities the bearer could use.
During development of Dissidia Final Fantasy, Jecht's inclusion over Seymour Guado was influenced by their respective relationships with Tidus and Yuna in Final Fantasy X. Development staff believed that as an antagonist Seymour was more suitable to oppose Yuna rather than Tidus if she were to be included, and so Jecht became the Final Fantasy X antagonist representative instead to make Tidus's rivalry with his game's villain more personal. This gave the development staff the chance to expand on their relationship, as their interactions in their original game were limited. Jecht is the second antagonist to be playable in Dissidia in place of his game's main antagonist due to a bigger personal connection to the main protagonist, first being Golbez (over Zemus).
Jecht's voice is provided by Masuo Amada in Japanese.
- English translation of "Jecht's Real Story" from the Final Fantasy X Ultimania Omega Guide
- Further explanation of Jecht
- (2021, July 27). "Tidus was a plumber? – Final Fantasy X 20th Anniversary Developer Interview (Part 1/4)". From Frontline Gaming JP. Archived from the original on 1 August 2021.
- Final Fantasy X Ultimania Omega, Creator's Salon, p. 476–477
- Final Fantasy 10: Kitase reveals the secrets of its success (dead) (Accessed: June 03, 2014) at games™
- Final Fantasy X Ultimania Omega, p.192
- Dissidia: Final Fantasy script longer than Crisis Core's (Accessed: December 22, 2018) at engadget