Magic (魔法 / まほう, Mahō?) is a significant element in the Final Fantasy series important for both the gameplay and plot. As a gameplay element, magic is the counterpart of physical attacks, and generally, those who mainly use magic are called mages. In the plot, magic has a major influence in the workings of a game's world and can be used both to destroy and to save it.
Magic is, by definition, "the art of producing a desired effect or result via incantation or various other techniques that assure human control of supernatural agencies or the forces of nature".
The Final Fantasy series features various methodologies and schools of magic to manipulate the forces of nature through knowledge or various items, sometimes even bordering on scientific and technological.
The use of magic in the series is not always exclusive to the Magic command available in each game. For example, games like Final Fantasy IX and Final Fantasy X feature abilities that, while not considered part of the usual magic schools such as White or Black, require MP to use and cause "unnatural" or "superhuman" effects, such as poisoning or debilitating enemies. Some games feature Limit Break abilities, which may be healing or protective, create destructive energy blasts, or allow the user to attack an enemy multiple times in succession; they usually do not consume MP, instead having their own gauges to fill or triggering conditions. Technicks in Final Fantasy XII are supernatural abilities that require no MP and are seen as a contrast and parallel to magick.
Though any manipulation of energies to achieve feats beyond normal human abilities could be considered "magic," the variety of different abilities with similar workings make a single, definitive definition of magic impossible; what constitutes magic is thus vast, but ill-defined. The basic principle of magic is to cause the atmosphere to vibrate in a way that deviates from the laws of nature by uttering something that cannot be expressed in words, and to use that vibration as a catalyst to twist the logic of all things.
Magic is one of the two principal forms of attack in the series, the other being physical attacks. Magic generally doesn't miss or deal critical damage, but enemies may resist their effects. Although the specific features of the magic system vary significantly between games, many concepts have remained consistent.
Magic spells have various effects. In the original Final Fantasy magic is split between "White Magic"—healing and battle support spells—and "Black Magic"—offensive spells. As the series progressed and new spells were added, different types of spells have been introduced.
|White Magic||Final Fantasy||White Mage||Generally curative, enhancing or holy magic. Typical White Magic spells: Cure, Raise and the ultimate white magic spell of Holy.|
|Black Magic||Final Fantasy||Black Mage||Mainly offensive, often harnessing elemental powers of Fire, Ice, Lightning, Wind, Earth, and Water. Black Magic spells often exist to inflict instant death as well. Typical Black Magic spells: Fire, Thunder, Blizzard, Aero, Quake, Water and the ultimate black magic spell of Ultima, Meteor or Flare depending on the game.|
|Summon Magic||Final Fantasy III||Summoner||Involves summoning a powerful being, often supernatural, to fight for or defend the party.|
|Time and Space Magic||Final Fantasy V||Time Mage||Alters the reality around a character. Typical Time and Space magic spells: Slow, Haste, Warp and Gravity.|
|Blue Magic||Final Fantasy V||Blue Mage||Spells and abilities learned from enemy characters and monsters. Common examples include spells based on a target's level, White Wind, Aqua Breath, and Condemned.|
|Spellblade||Final Fantasy V||Mystic Knight||Involves casting Black Magic onto a weapon with which the magic is compatible. The spells are usually elemental and offensive magic spells.|
|Spirit Magic||Final Fantasy Tactics Advance||Elementalist||A variant of Black Magic, also focused on using elemental magic, which at times also is paired with status-inducing and healing properties.|
|Item magic||Final Fantasy||Anyone||An alternative to the main types of magic, this type is associated with equipment and the spells are usually weaker than their counterparts. These spells can be used endlessly and cost zero MP to use.|
Magic is split into three categories named based upon their effect: Attack, Healing, and Effect. The list of magic spells labels each spell with a colored sphere: white (Healing), black (Attack) and gray (Effect). In the Japanese version, the Magitek command is also named Magic with the same spelling. The mobile/Steam versions of the Magitek abilities are classified like the party's magic spells learned from magicite.
|Healing||Denoted by the white sphere seen next to the name of a spell. Most spells are related to healing magic.||Curaga, Reraise, Esuna|
|Attack||Denoted by the black sphere seen next to the name of a spell. Most spells are related to offensive and elemental magic.||Flare, Meltdown, Flood|
|Effect||Denoted by the gray sphere seen next to the name of a spell. Most spells are related to status effects and enhancements.||Rasp, Imp, Valor, Vanish|
Abilities are classified based on the five types of Materia. Green Materia is Magic Materia, and having any equipped bestows the Magic command. Each Materia may contain up to four spells while the better ones require AP to unlock. Examples of magic include Fire, Cure, and Resist. Summon Materia lets the party use the Summon command.
Magic is split into four categories:
|Restore||Spells that restore HP, revive characters, remove statuses, and/or add the positive statuses Resist and Regen.|
|Attack||Offensive elemental spells.|
|Indirect||Spells that inflict and remove statuses, removes enemies from battle, and Death.|
|Other||The remaining spells. Contains non-elemental spells, elemental spells that also inflict statuses, and otherwise exceptional spells such as Flare (heavy elemental), FullCure (full HP restore), and Shield (status that voids attacks and absorbs elemental damage).|
Each Materia corresponds to one spell. Magic Materia is green Materia, and they are split into three types based on color.
|Dark green||Offensive magic|
|Yellow green||Effect magic.|
Magic types are sorted into several views:
Magic stock sorting types
|Attack||Includes offensive-oriented elemental and non-elemental spells.||Fire/Fira/Firaga, Blizzard/Blizzara/Blizzaga, Thunder/Thundara/Thundaga, Water, Aero, Demi, Bio, Quake, Tornado, Holy, Meteor, Flare, Ultima|
|Curative||Includes healing-oriented spells.||Cure/Cura/Curaga, Esuna, Life, Full-life|
|Indirect||Includes buffing and debuffing spells.||Blind, Silence, Sleep, Zombie, Death, Break, Slow, Stop, Pain, Berserk, Drain, Meltdown, Dispel, Haste, Regen, Protect, Shell, Reflect, Aura, Double, Triple|
|Fire Magic||Fire type spells. Despite dealing non-elemental damage when cast, Flare is regarded as a Fire Magic spell.||Fire/Fira/Firaga, Flare||Ifrit|
|Ice Magic||Includes water and ice type spells.||Blizzard/Blizzara/Blizzaga, Water||Shiva|
|Thunder Magic||Includes Thunder and Wind type spells.||Thunder/Thundara/Thundaga, Aero, Tornado||Quezacotl|
|Life Magic||Includes Holy-elemental spells as well as recovery and life-related spells.||Cure/Cura/Curaga, Life, Full-life, Zombie, Death, Holy, Regen||Siren|
|Time Magic||Includes time magic, gravity, and earth spells.||Haste, Slow, Stop, Demi, Quake, Double, Triple||Diablos|
|Support Magic||Spells that protect or enhance a character with positive status.||Shell, Protect, Reflect, Esuna, Dispel, Drain, Aura||Leviathan|
|Status Magic||Spells that inflict negative status.||Blind, Silence, Bio, Berserk, Sleep, Pain, Meltdown, Zombie||Diablos|
|Medium Magic||A variety of mid-ranked spells.||Fira, Blizzara, Thundara, Cura||Quezacotl|
|High Magic||A variety of high-ranked spells.||Firaga, Blizzaga, Thundaga, Curaga, Tornado, Triple||Alexander|
|Forbidden Magic||Powerful non-elemental spells.||Meteor, Ultima||Bahamut|
Final Fantasy XI has a diverse and complex magic classification system spread over its 20 job classes. These sub categories are divided into magic sub-types called "skill", spanning the generic types—sometimes in the same category. Example: Paralyze is a White Magic spell, and Poison is a Black Magic spell, yet both are considered Enfeebling Magic spells, affected by Enfeebling Magic skill level.
Black Magic includes all Elemental Magic, all Dark Magic, Enfeebling Magic and some Enhancing Magic. White Magic includes all Healing and Divine Magic, and Enfeebling and Enhancing Magic. There are no Enfeebling or Enhancing spells available to both schools.
Final Fantasy XI uses the -na, -ra, -ga, and -ja suffixes to broadly indicate the different effects and area of effects (AoE) of spells, while roman numerals describe a spell's power (I to VI). This allows for players to ascertain a spell's general effect and power at a glance.
|Dark Magic||Self-serving, stat-manipulating, leeching spells.||Bio, Absorb-ACC, Drain, Dread Spikes, Stun||Black Mage, Dark Knight, Red Mage, Scholar|
|Elemental Magic||Generic offensive damage-dealing spells.||Fire, Water, Flare, Quake||Black Mage, Dark Knight, Red Mage, Scholar|
|Enfeebling Magic||Chip away at foe attributes with status ailments.||Dia, Slow, Blind, Sleep, Gravity, Dispel||Black Mage, Dark Knight, Red Mage, Scholar, White Mage|
|Enhancing Magic||Beneficially affect allies with stat buffs.||Enthunder, Haste, Regen, Shell, Erase, Ice Spikes||Black Mage, Paladin, Red Mage, Scholar, White Mage|
|Divine Magic||Light-based offensive spells to vanquish foes.||Banish, Holy, Flash, Repose||Paladin, White Mage|
|Healing Magic||Curative spells that mend wounds.||Cure, Curaga, Raise, Esuna||Paladin, Red Mage, Scholar, White Mage|
|Blue Magic||Spells garnered from monsters turned against them.||1000 Needles, Healing Breeze, Self-Destruct, Eyes On Me||Blue Mage|
|Summoning Magic||Elemental beasts evoked to aid combatants.||Ifrit, Fenrir, Carbuncle, Light Elemental||Summoner|
|Ninjutsu||Ancient ninja arts, to ail and inhibit foes.||Utsusemi: Ni, Suiton: San, Jubaku: Ichi||Ninja|
|Singing, String Inst., Wind Inst.||Intricate songs to aid allies and hinder foes.||Foe Requiem VI, Maiden's Virelai, Chocobo Mazurka||Bard|
Magic is spelled like magick in the Ivalice-related games starting with Final Fantasy XII and followed by subsequent games within the Ivalice Alliance. This also marks the appearance of new magic types:
|Black Magick||Final Fantasy XII, Final Fantasy Tactics, Final Fantasy Tactics A2||Black Mage, Red Battlemage||Spells that deal elemental and non-elemental damage.|
|White Magick||Final Fantasy XII, Final Fantasy Tactics, Final Fantasy Tactics A2||White Mage, Time Battlemage, Red Battlemage||Spells that restore health and recover statuses.|
|Time Magick||Final Fantasy XII, Final Fantasy Tactics, Final Fantasy Tactics A2||Time Mage, Red Battlemage||Spells that bend time and space to create a wide array of effects.|
|Green Magick||Final Fantasy XII, Final Fantasy Tactics A2||Black Mage, White Mage, Time Battlemage, Red Battlemage, Green Mage||Spells that cast status effects to buff the party or weaken enemies.|
|Arcane Magick||Final Fantasy XII, Final Fantasy Tactics A2||Red Battlemage, Arcanist||Spells that deal damage or negative status effects, generally though the powers of darkness.|
|Red Magick||Final Fantasy Tactics A2||Red Mage||A selection of low-rank spells from the Black, White and Green Magick schools.|
|Blue Magick||Final Fantasy Tactics A2||Blue Mage||Spells learned from monsters with many different effects.|
|Summoning Magick||Final Fantasy Tactics A2||Summoner||Spells that consist of summoning Espers from the world of illusion.|
|Elemental Magick||Final Fantasy Tactics A2||Elementalist||Spells that control the elemental forces of nature to cause both damage and negative statuses or heal. Also known as "Spirit Magic".|
|High Magick||Final Fantasy Tactics A2||Seer||A selection of mid-rank spells from the Black and White Magick schools.|
Besides the typical White and Black Magic spells there is Lost Magic, which contains more powerful spells. There are only three Lost Magic spells that can be bought in shops. Shar can create Lost Magic spells for the party by mixing two elemental stones, but these stones are in limited supply. There are enough elemental stones in the game to precisely make one copy of each Lost Magic spell.
|Lost Magic||Lost Magic is a combination of damaging spells and non-damaging spells that are different from both White Magic and Black Magic. There are spells which heal, attack the enemy, and help the player get around obstacles.|
Alongside White and Black Magic, Benjamin and his ally Phoebe can cast Wizard magic. This spell pool consists of powerful attack spells, mostly group spells, with a casting limit distinct from the White and Black categories.
Spells have a hierarchy of power, which is divided in tiers. These tiers are denoted by the suffixes -ra, -ga and -ja, normally corresponding to the second, third and fourth level of power of a spell, respectively (e.g. Cure evolves to Cura, which progresses to Curaga). Various exceptions exist, however. In the localized versions of earlier installments, numbers were used instead of suffixes.
Spells can be divided into elemental spells and non-elemental spells. Elemental magic includes fire, ice, lightning, water, wind, and earth, with fire, ice, and lightning often serving as the main elements, and water, wind, and earth more often than not serving as secondary elements. The elemental spells' number and names vary between games. Sometimes holy and dark also exist.
Non-elemental spells include spells that affect the status of the target.
Each caster's magic power determines the potency of a given spell. Certain characters can have affinities to an element: for example, a Fire spell from a fire-based character will deal more damage than one cast by a wind-based character. Targets' magic resistance and elemental resistances meanwhile mitigate the effect of magic spells.
Certain targets have a different resistance (positive or negative) to certain elements: they may receive more damage than usual from spells associated with that elemental (usually 200% damage) or less (usually 50%); they may nullify the damage (0%) or absorb it (usually 100% of the damage is converted to health gain). Non-elemental magic damage depends only on magic resistance.
The demon Cagnazzo, under the guise of the King of Baron, orders the village of the summoners destroyed because he fears their power. Rydia is the only survivor, and her powers become pivotal to world safety.
Meteor is a fabled spell of such power it was sealed away. Tellah seeks its power to avenge his daughter. When Golbez and Fusoya battle Zemus they cast Twin Meteor only to see Zemus rise again as Zeromus. In the 3D remake releases, it is mentioned that the gift of magic was bestowed on humans by the Lunarian Kluya. The Lunarians seem attuned to magic naturally, including Fusoya, Golbez and Zeromus, although the young Golbez lamented his inability to use healing spells.
1000 years ago, the Warring Triad began the War of the Triad and many creatures and humans were transformed into magical demi-gods called espers while other humans began using magic extracted from them. The Warring Triad petrified themselves to stop the war, the espers fled to another dimension, and magic was forgotten. The few survivors rebuilt the world with those who still had magical powers founding the village of Thamasa, and although over time their powers dwindled, it remained innate and present.
Twenty years ago Emperor Gestahl found the Esper World. With a process developed by Cid Del Norte Marguez, he forcibly extracted raw magical power from the espers he captured. This led to the process known as Magitek, and many powerful machines were infused with magical energy, as well as people, including Kefka Palazzo and Celes Chere, making them Magitek Knights. With magic fueling their army, the Gestahlian Empire conquers much of the world.
The rebel faction Returners comes across a woman named Terra Branford, a former imperial general who lost her memories. She is the child of the esper Maduin and a woman named Madeline, making her half-esper and one of the few humans to naturally know magic. The esper Ramuh reveals that Magitek is inefficient—the magic extracted is weak and kills the espers—but when an esper expires they become magicite, which can teach magic at a higher potency and efficiency.
Kefka takes control of the Warring Triad's remains, draining their powers to become the God of Magic. Reshaping the world into the World of Ruin, Kefka rules unopposed with his new powers until the Returners reassemble their ranks and assault his tower. The Warring Triad and Kefka are destroyed, and magic vanishes from the world. The party's innate magic fades, the magicite shards they had collected shatter, and the world reforms. Due to her emotional attachments to the children of Mobliz Terra becomes a full human and survives.
Magic is used via Materia, orbs of mystical energy created by condensed Mako from the Lifestream. As the Lifestream is the collective consciousness of all who have lived, Materia allows the holder to access its knowledge and tap into the powers of the Planet, manifesting as magic and other abilities. As such, magic is the materialization of Spiritual Energy. Ancients were said to have been able to use magic without the use of Materia. Professor Hojo, a scientist for the Shinra Electric Power Company, studied Materia but was unable to grasp its secrets. He objected to the use of the term "magic" to describe the powers of Materia.
Few can also manifest magic-like powers in their Limit Breaks, although it is unknown if it is related to magic in any way.
Certain ultimate spells are too powerful for a normal human to use. Meteor is the ultimate Black Magic with the power to destroy the Planet by summoning an asteroid from outer space. The ultimate White Magic has the power to stop it: Holy. Both great spells manifest via special Materia, the Black Materia for Meteor, and the White Materia for Holy.
Sufficient exposure to the Lifestream can grant the power to use magic without Materia, as shown with Sephiroth, who has absorbed so much of the knowledge of the Ancients that he no longer needs Materia to perform magic. He can move objects telekinetically, read minds, project illusions to the minds of others, manifest his sword at will, fly, and erect a nigh-impenetrable barrier over the North Crater.
Sephiroth plans to use Meteor to become a god. Meteor would create a wound on the Planet so great the Lifestream would be sent out to heal it. Sephiroth plans to take control of the Lifestream and take over the Planet. When Aeris Gainsborough travels to the Forgotten City to summon Holy, Sephiroth kills her. Though he is too late to stop Aeris's prayer from reaching the Planet, he has the power to hold Holy back.
Cloud Strife and his party descend into Sephiroth's lair in the Northern Cave and defeat him, releasing Holy. Holy is sent out too late and the Meteor breaks through it, decimating the metropolis of Midgar. Aeris's spirit summons the Lifestream to force Meteor back and save the Planet.
Magic is the manipulation of the planet's energy fields. Magic can be used by everyone through different means, the main ones being sorceress power (embodiment) and Guardian Force junctioning (Para-Magic). Sorceress's power is attributed to the legend of the Great Hyne, supposedly the creator of the world and the first sorcerer. The legend goes that fragments of the Great Hyne's power were given to women who became sorceresses. This passing of sorceress powers, called the embodiment (called "The Succession of Witches" in the Japanese version), became a tradition where a person with the capacity to embody a sorceress's power is chosen as the candidate. As such, sorceresses are both respected and feared.
Dr. Odine, who started out as a monster researcher and moved on to study Guardian Forces, cooperated with a sorceress and began studying sorceresses and magic. He developed Para-Magic, which involves junctioning a Guardian Force to a person. It is unclear where a Guardian Force resides within the body, but those who rely on the Guardian's power suffer memory loss. By junctioning Guardian Forces, people can use magic by drawing the energy from various sources, such as items, draw points and monsters.
Ultimecia, a powerful sorceress from the future, wishes to change the world by compressing time and taking power from all sorceresses ever to have existed. Time compression involves powerful time magic that causes various present states to appear at one time, which causes all sorceresses to exist at one given time to give Ultimecia the opportunity to become the most powerful sorceress in existence, and an all-powerful being able to control all of time and space. Time compression requires her to possess a sorceress from the past and draw their power. However, the SeeDs from a certain past travel through the time compression to end her reign and restore the flow of time.
According to the Final Fantasy X Scenario Ultimania the first development in Spira was brought about by the power of magic. The use of magic depended on individual factors, and those who could use magic naturally had an advantage, while those who couldn't were discriminated against. Thus the age of the magic civilizations was an age of inequality.
When machina was invented it was revolutionary and did away with the inequalities. Machina developed quickly, and things once thought impossible rapidly became a reality. The endless supply of electricity made "cities that never slept" possible.
Machina was supposed to be an alternative for those who couldn't use magic, but when it surpassed the power of magic new problems arose. Some nations possessed outstanding machina technology, while other nations didn't, and a new age of inequality began.
Once machina was outlawed by the Yevon Temple, magic again became the prominent power in the world. Some study black and white magic to learn various spells, but the most respected magic users in Spira are the summoners who embark on a pilgrimage to gain the power of the Final Aeon. Monsters and aeons use magic naturally. The most powerful magic user in Spira was Yevon whose teachings became revered and spurned a new religion in Spira in his followers.
The use of magic appears related to the manipulation of pyreflies, the life energy of Spira.
There are many origins and different perspectives on how magic came into the hands of the Enlightened Races and Beastmen of Vana'diel, but one constant fact is how its origins can be traced back to the nation of Windurst and the race of the Tarutaru.
According to one tale a young Tarutaru girl, lost around the ruined towers in the wilderness of Sarutabaruta, met the last known living remnant of the Kuluu race and was led to the Full Moon Fountain. She gained the power of magic and became her race's first Star Sybil. Another tale tells of how the Terrestrial Avatar Fenrir bestowed the gift of magic upon the Tarutaru upon their discovery of the Full Moon Fountain.
Regardless of the veracity of the tales, the power of magic became to be wielded by the Tarutaru with unmatched proficiency and would usher in the Age of Magic. Over time, as the powers they wielded became widespread and even fell into the hands of the dreaded beastmen, the Tarutaru isolated themselve and Vana'diel discovered a new power that would change its shape.
You used magic! You used the power of a l'Cie! The fal'Cie cursed us! We're l'Cie now!Hope, scared after becoming l'Cie.
The crystal is the source of magic. The fal'Cie, machines with a core made out of crystal, can use magic naturally, while humans have their crystal power dormant, unlocked by being branded as l'Cie by a fal'Cie. Although off-limits to regular citizens, PSICOM and Guardian Corps cast magic via Antimatter Manipulation Principle (AMP), and thus the magic Sanctum uses is called Manadrive.
'Magic' is the ability to draw on the crystal power residing within oneself and make possible all manner of incredible feats. This power was once only the province of l'Cie, but since the catastrophe and the migration to Pulse, some former citizens of Cocoon have suddenly developed the ability to wield magic. Serah is one of those people.
Many of those who now command magical energies are simple civilians, and have never had Serah's experience of once being a l'Cie. It is theorized that the move to Gran Pulse has awoken these abilities, and people are beginning to see magic as just another tool in their everyday lives. Noel is also capable of casting spells, but doesn't seem to think of himself as anything special.Datalog entry
When Etro's gate opened during the fall of Cocoon, chaos leaked from Valhalla into Gran Pulse. Goddess Etro intervened and closed the gate, preventing a flood. As said in a fragment entry, when the timeline was changed and history broken, fissures appeared in the wall that separates the spirit and the material and the crystal power that was once bestowed only upon the l'Cie was released, permeating deep into the soil. As such, after the Catastrophe, some of the people who settled the lowerworld developed the ability to use magic, including former l'Cie Serah Farron. Magic is used by channeling the crystal power within each magic-wielder.
Those who can command the powers of chaos can gain immense power from it. For example, Caius Ballad, with the Heart of Chaos, can become one with his Eidolon and use powerful and unique spells. Seeress Yeul meanwhile has a connection to Valhalla, gaining the ability to retain memories of past lives and to see visions of the future. Serah displays similar powers, and does Lightning, who as the Knight of Etro can send dreams to those still dwelling in the mortal realm.
The fal'Cie and l'Cie are largely gone from the world, but Caius still wields the powers of Chaos, although it is going out of control, bursting into the physical plane as Chaos infusions. Oerba Dia Vanille has gained the ability to hear the voices of the dead stuck in the Chaos, and is the only one able to perform the magical ritual of Soulsong with the relic holy clavis. The most notable magic user in the world is Lightning who has become the savior, gaining divine power from the god Bhunivelze, allowing her to collect and yield souls to the magical tree Yggdrasil. At the end of their quest mankind journeys to a new world free of gods and magic.
The world of Eos has various schools of magic: the kings of Lucis channel the power of the Crystal as their birth right and manifest weapons of light; the Tenebraen Oracles have the powers of healing; and the Astrals and their Messengers use the power of the land and transcend time and location. Other magical powers in the world are wielded by daemons, whose power Niflheim uses for magitek.
The kings of Lucis can bestow some of their magical powers to those close to them as with King Regis and the Kingsglaive, and Prince Noctis and his retinue. One type of royal magic is Elemancy, the power of fire, ice and lightning that can be collected from various elemental deposits. Originally only usable by the royal family, Elemancy is collected in flasks and can thus be used by others.
King Regis and his Kingsglaive use elemental magic outright without magic flasks or needing to collect elemental energy from deposits. Many of the Kingsglaive hail from Galahd, and it is implied people from this region are adept at learning magic, thus making Galahdian refugees suitable for the position of a royal guard. Regis bestows upon the Kingsglaive the use of elemental magic and warping, but the Glaives lose their magical powers with Regis's passing. In Final Fantasy XV: Comrades, the Glaives use the royal magic via royal sigils. Cor Leonis, the Marshal of the Crownsguard is also implied to have been given magical powers from Regis, and despite Regis having died, he displays the ability to empower his weapons with red energy and manifest his sword from thin air.
Noctis grants his friends the use of elemental magic via magic flasks, the use of healing potions (Noctis is the one powering the potions and elixirs so they have healing properties—without him, they would be just regular soda), and presumably, the conjuring of weapons from thin air. Noctis's comrades do not need to be in his vicinity to borrow his powers. Even Aranea can conjure her weapon from thin air when she interacts with the retinue, but whether this is a power borrowed from Noctis or a property of her magitek spear is unknown. Noctis's retainer Ignis Scientia is especially attuned to using elemental magic, and can do so without magic flasks with his spelldaggers techniques and Sagefire.
The Lucian royals can teleport and phase through solid matter, summon weapons (and even a fishing rod in Noctis's case) from thin air, wield the power of the Ring of the Lucii, summon the Astrals they have forged covenants with, and project magic barriers, the most notable one being the one around the Crown City of Insomnia that King Regis upholds (though doing so ages him). The descendants of the Lucis Caelum bloodline can brandish the royal arms, magical weapons with transcendental presence that are said to be able to destroy the Starscourge. The royals have access to Armiger, which allows them to wield various weapons at once, fly and greatly increases their power. Each of the rulers of yore also has specific powers that are engraved in the sigils of their statues. The most powerful magical ability in the world is the power of Providence the True King is prophesied to use to cleanse the world of Starscourge.
Ardyn Lucis Caelum, the oldest member of the Lucian royal family who became tainted by the Starscourge he had absorbed, still retains the powers granted to his bloodline while gaining new magical powers from his corruption. While his powers have been tainted, causing his magic to emit a demonically red glow, he can still teleport, phase, summon weapons from thin air, wield the royal arms, power potions for healing purposes and use Armiger as well as erect a magical barrier. He can also use elemental magic without needing Magic Flasks and is the only one capable of controlling darkness. He can create illusions, stop time, transform into miasma to teleport and fly, and even brainwash beings as powerful as the rulers of yore. Ardyn can assimilate daemons into himself to increase his power and experience their memories and even resurrect the dead, turning them into ghastly mockeries of their former selves. As the Starscourge incarnate, Ardyn is immortal and unkillable to all but the True King.
The old kings' spirits are linked to the mortal world by the Ring of the Lucii, a royal heirloom that allows the monarch to command the Crystal's power. The ring holds the souls of the past Lucian monarchs, and if someone outside of their bloodline wears it, the kings will judge whether they are worthy of its power. If deemed unworthy the ring-bearer is burned. If accepted, the kings grant the bearer power in exchange of a blood price. The ring allows the command of the Old Wall, twelve statues in Insomnia that house the spirits of dead kings that can animate to defend the city at the behest of the ring-bearer. The ring also greatly enhances the wielder's physical power and grants them powerful magic. The royals armed with the Ring of the Lucii can cast special spells with it.
Gilgamesh, the first Shield of the King, displays unique magical powers. He can phase and warp, and though unknown means seems to have sealed his soul inside the Tempering Grounds, allowing him to transcend his mortality and continue living for over 2,000 years. He can reanimate the dead souls in his residence, empower his blades with red energy, and vanish from one place to another as well as create a spectral version of his lost arm.
Niflheim has a device that can block the king's powers: the forging of weapons from thin air and the use of Elemancy. The effect is the result of Niflheim having discovered "a wave" they have dubbed the Wallbreaker Wave that can neutralize not only the Wall of Insomnia, but other magical phenomena exhibited by the Lucian royalty, and even has an enfeebling effect on the Astrals. However, the machine has no effect on the Ring of the Lucii.
Although Nyx Ulric says Lunafreya Nox Fleuret can't use magic in Kingsglaive: Final Fantasy XV, she has the powers of an Oracle and can fight the Starscourge. She also uses the Trident of the Oracle, a royal arm, to summon the old kings' spirits to empower Noctis. The Oracles bless havens that become able to repel daemons and can heal those afflicted with the Starscourge malady.
The magic of the Astrals, the gods of Eos, is linked to their element. For example, Shiva, the ice goddess, can freeze things solid with a touch of her hand. The Astrals' Messengers likewise have mystical powers of their own. For example, the canine Messenger Umbra can travel anywhere in the world. In Final Fantasy XV: Episode Ignis, Lunafreya's other Messenger dog, Pryna, delivers a vision of the future to Ignis.
Kimya Auburnbrie was exiled by her sister for the supposed "dark arts" she was practicing with her potion-making, and became known as the "Witch of the Wood", but whether she actually has any supernatural talent is unknown.
Final Fantasy XV -The Dawn of the Future- elaborates on the kings' and the Oracles' magic originating from Bahamut, the highest Astral who exists in a heavenly realm as opposed to being bound to the planet like other Astrals. After Noctis and Ardyn cooperate to destroy him in both the physical and the heavenly realms, magic is lost and the Astrals and the Crystal vanish. Before shattering, the Crystal absorbs all remnants of the Scourge, cleansing Eos.
Magic is susceptible to the Militesi crystal jammer, which prevents people from drawing power from their Crystal in its vicinity. Class Zero can wield magic without the Crystal due to having been augmented by Arecia Al-Rashia, and draw the power from their hearts by the force of phantoma instead. People's magical powers wane once they become adults, but it is unknown if this also extends into the use of phantoma rather than the powers of the Crystal. Arecia is the archsorceress of Rubrum and one of the most powerful people in Orience, although she doesn't flaunt her prowess often. One of the magical powers used by the dominion citizens is command over Eidolons, and Arecia's Bahamut ZERO is perhaps the most powerful of them all.
l'Cie are servants of the Crystals who grant them incredible strength and the ability to wield magic. However, many view this as the l'Cie sacrificing their humanity.
Magic is researched in Akademeia's Sorcery Division. Different spells are analyzed and reformulated day and night, and the findings taught to individuals enrolled as Agito Cadets who seek to actualize their magic potential.
History of magic within the Dominion of Rubrum
"Unto Orience came the Crystal of the Vermilion Bird, to guide the children of Rubrum and bestow the great task upon them" is an ancient verse that still guides the Vermilion Peristylium. The creed was initially known to the few who desired to become Agito, a figure of legend said to be able to open the path to the heavens. Housing the Vermilion Bird Crystal under a humble schoolhouse, in 100 years the word of the verse spread to settlements far and wide, and the school expanded into a grand institution to be known as Akademeia.
About a century after the unification and official establishment of the Dominion of Rubrum the separation of magic from religious faith was made official. With the establishment of the Sorcery Division, the study of magic saw leaps in progress; while spells were traditionally taught from individual to individual, categorization and classification helped provide a lexicon of spells to anyone with magical power. Rubrum's military helped stabilize and unify spellcraft by developing units that would specialize in certain types of magic.
Japanese naming scheme
The Japanese names for magic spells often have their names written in katakana and are borrowed from English words. In the original Final Fantasy there was a four character limit on ability names, so all spells in that game only had four characters in them (this also applied to the English NES version which led to some creative names). This meant several things:
- Characters are likely to be removed, especially chōonpu and sokuon (e.g. ブリザド (Burizado?) rather than the expected ブリザード (Burizādo?, lit. Blizzard); サイレス (Sairesu?) rather than the expected (サイレンス (Sairensu?, lit. Silence)).
- Some spells end up with replaced or removed endings (e.g. プロテス (Purotesu?) rather than the expected プロテクト (Purotekuto?, lit. Protect); リフレク (Rifureku?) rather than the expected リフレクト (Rifurekuto?, lit. Reflect)).
- In cases of tiered spells, the final character is replaced in four-character spells (ケアル (Kearu?, lit. Care) levels up to ケアルラ (Kearura?, lit. Carera), but ファイア (Faia?, lit. Fire) becomes ファイラ (Faira?, lit. Fira)).
Future games had extended the upper limit for ability names, however most magic spells retained their shortened name.
In Final Fantasy IV Dispel, known in Japan as デスペル (Desuperu?), was renamed to the likely intended name (ディスペル, Disperu?). This ability was the only Black or White Magic spell in the game to have five characters. This change carried into Final Fantasy V, before it went back to its original name in future games (excepting Final Fantasy XI).
The introduction of -ja (ジャ, ja?) abilities meant Magic spells had five character names, however these are not ordinarily spells used by the player. Even cases of Curaja appearing as a player spell in English releases is actually "Curaga" (ケアルガ, Kearuga?) in Japanese, where the third-tier spell localized as "Curaga" is actually "Curada" (ケアルダ, Kearuda?).
Magic or sorcery is an attempt to understand, experience and influence the world using rituals, symbols, actions, gestures and language that are believed to exploit supernatural forces.