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Notorious Monster is a term used to identify a special category of enemies that appear in Final Fantasy XI and Final Fantasy XIV. The official short form of this term is NM.


Final Fantasy XI[]

Notorious Monsters tend to be plot-related, quest-based, or important to the world of Vana'diel as a whole. These can include great beastmen heroes, unique monsters and rare encounters on the field. Notorious Monsters typically have special qualities that set them apart from normal monsters, including unique behavior, higher stats, special attacks, and rare or exclusive loot.

Most Notorious Monsters are not easy to run into because they spawn infrequently, or under very specific conditions. NMs that do not spawn automatically may also require a player to spawn them by checking markers on the field, or trading trigger items used to cause them to spawn, among other things.

One typical way of identifying Notorious Monsters is when a player checks one to determine the relative difficulty of the enemy; the player is told that this creature's strength is "impossible to gauge" regardless of how difficult the fight will actually be.

High Notorious Monsters[]

High Notorious Monsters (or HNMs in short) are a subset of Notorious Monsters known for their high level. They are infamous for being very challenging, often requiring alliances of players to defeat and dropping highly prized loot. Most HNMs are either very elusive or take a lot of effort to even encounter.

As there is no official word on what qualifies as a High Notorious Monster, the definition is disputed among the player community, although it is generally accepted that HNMs possess the following traits:

  • HNMs grant titles on defeating them.
  • HNMs are of very high levels, starting from at least higher than the original level cap of 75.
  • HNMs damage players that are not involved in the party fighting them (i.e. bystanders) with their attacks.
  • As a corollary, HNMs are found only in standard, openly-accessed zones and not battlefields.
  • HNMs drop rare equipment and items, which are usually highly prized, although this is subjective based on player trends.

While all the old HNMs still exist in the game, Square shifted away from this model of encounter as they raised the level cap past 75 and abandoned it completely with the release of Seekers of Adoulin and Item Level gear. With few exceptions, HNMs are now neither difficult to fight nor drop anything relevant to uncapped content.

Final Fantasy XIV[]

Notorious Monsters had some background importance and some were Guildleve-related. They were often much stronger versions of normal monsters and beastmen that roam the land, with unique appearance and sometimes enormous in size. Most Notorious Monsters gave a lodestone achievement when defeated for the first time.

Every Notorious Monster had to be be killed under 30 minutes, or else they would "enrage"—receiving a great stat boost and more often than not wipe out an entire party in seconds. If a Notorious Monster was enraged and killed the engaging party, he would despawn if it was not engaged again in roughly 15 minutes. If this happened, he would reappear in the same spot after two hours, fully recovered and not enraged.

Another difference was the existence some Guildleve only NMs, that didn't require any chance or luck for spawning; they were always present on their guildleve and could only be claimed by players doing that leve. To fight them, a player had to follow a chain of three faction leves, using a total of 600 faction points, and the Notorious Monster would be fought at the end of the last one.

An NM's strength was "impossible to gauge", shown by their level icon. Instead of showing the target level like normal monsters, it was simply a "?" shape.

Notorious Monsters return in patch 4.25, located in the Forbidden Land, Eureka. To spawn them, certain mobs must be killed, although there are some that can only be spawned at a certain time of day and/or weather. These show up as FATE-like bosses and similar to the Guildleves, the Notorious Monsters' levels are labeled as ??, with their elemental icon having a light-colored border. Defeating a Notorious Monster rewards all participating players with copious EXP along with Anemos, Pagos, and Pyros Lockboxes and Crystals.


A monster is any creature, usually found in legends or horror fiction, that is often hideous and may produce fear or physical harm by its appearance or its actions. The word "monster" derives from Latin monstrum, meaning an aberrant occurrence, usually biological, that was taken as a sign that something was wrong within the natural order.