In the southwest seas, the sanctuary of death as arisen. Beyond the reach of mortals, it waits. If it is a path to Pandæmonium you seek, passage thither I shall grant... Yet these words you had best heed: from nowhere, nothing shall return. In case memory of your life should fade, let now your peace be made.Celestia
Pandæmonium, also called the Land of Judgment, is the final dungeon of Final Fantasy Type-0. The original twelve members of Class Zero arrive and must undergo the trials imposed by the Judge, Marshal Cid Aulstyne.
Arriving at Pandæmonium marks a point of no return. Being cut off from the Vermilion Bird Crystal, the player is unable to summon Eidolons or the Vermilion Bird there, and the cadets no longer automatically recover HP.
After all of Orience is united under the banner of the Vermilion Bird, Pandæmonium rises from the ocean sending out the Rursan Reavers to slaughter mankind. As Class Zero returns to Akademeia from the battle at Ingram, they find the Central Command and the Consortium of Eight gone, and hear news that Cid Aulstyne of the Militesi Empire has gone to the newly appeared sanctuary. Arecia Al-Rashia hints at a vital decision the cadets would soon have to make before departing, explaining that they have lived their lives according to the Will of the Crystals.
Queen tells the others of the Judge said to reside in Pandæmonium, the Land of Judgement, who will end the world if there is no Agito, a messianic savior of myth. Despite knowing that without Arecia's help they cannot be revived should they fall in battle, the cadets decide to brave Pandæmonium anyway to speak with the Judge. Their conviction is reaffirmed when Claes Celestia Misca Sancest, the Secundus l'Cie of the Azure Dragon Crystal, arrives and informs them Cid has become Agito.
As only l'Cie can enter Pandæmonium, Celestia brings Class Zero there, but loses her humanity and turns into the Shinryu Celestia for going against the Will of the Azure Dragon Crystal. Before her final transformation, she implores the cadets to make their choice wisely. The cadets fight through the trials Cid has placed for them. Though Cid has never met the class before, he knows about them and their "mother", Arecia Al-Rashia, whom he deems has interfered with the White Tiger Crystal. Cid declares to pass Judgment on the cadets and give them a slow death.
During their trek through the temple, the Vermilion Bird Crystal asks the party to become its l'Cie. Pandaemonium is always the ultimate destination in Class Zero's journey, and despite Dr Arecia's guidance, the cadets always chose to become l'Cie to combat the Rursan Arbiter in previous cycles, ending the spiral. Lost souls of Class Zero's past can be heard in many of the hallways, confused, scared, and crying out for help. If the cadets again choose to become l'Cie they are slain by the hordes of Rursus. If they choose to remain mortal, the Vermilion Bird brands Rem Tokimiya, still slumped in Arecia's office back in Akademeia, to become its l'Cie in the others' stead.
The cadets continue through Pandæmonium being guided by Cid's voice, completing task after task until they reach the top of the Spiral of Rebirth where they are stricken down. Cid declares he is bored and his voice dissipates.
The Vermilion Bird Crystal sends Rem to apprehend the White Tiger Crystal l'Cie it has sensed in Pandæmonium, wanting Agito to be born to the Vermilion Bird Crystal. Rem draws her daggers and engages him, accidentally impaling herself in his rapiers. Dying, she falls to the ground and the White Tiger l'Cie's mask falls: it was Machina Kunagiri, who, unknown to everyone, had willingly inherited Qun'mi Tru'e's Focus so he could become strong protect Rem, scared of being alone and losing his memories of her. Rem is happy to see Machina one last time, and pleads for him to always remember her before dying. As Machina embraces her body the two turn to crystal.
The other cadets find they are still alive, if only barely, and approach the l'Cie's crystalline forms, startled to find they are Machina and Rem. As they stagger onwards Cid's voice derides the cadets for failing to become Agito, but as he begins to talk about the cadets being born from the blood of Etro, he realizes he is no longer following his own will.
As the cadets head for the Consecrated Ground by passing through the fiery depiction of Etro's gate at the top of the sanctuary, they find Cid amid a pool of red liquid in a void-like dimension. Cid declares the cadets' lives useless since the day they were born, and himself as the Judge fit to carry out their punishment, transforming into the Rursan Arbiter. Shinryu Celestia attacks him, but Cid kills her and harvests her phantoma. In truth, Cid has been possessed by Gala, a servant of the deity Lindzei, though he had tried to commit suicide to prevent being taken over.
The cadets engage Cid in his Rursan Arbiter form but are killed. Machina and Rem's crystal revives the cadets by transferring their power to the rest of Class Zero. One by one the cadets fight the Rursan Arbiter until he finally falls. His phantoma disperses into the void and the class is transported back to Akademeia's ruins. The weakened cadets plan for all the happy things they would have done had they the strength to survive, but perish.
The mysterious Joker and Tiz have secretly overseen Class Zero's actions and played a role in convincing Arecia to revive Machina and Rem from their crystal stasis. Deciding to allow the two and the rest of Orience to remember the dead, Arecia abandons her search for Etro's gate and leaves, and the light of the Crystals fades. Arriving to find the cadets dead, Rem comforts a guilt-ridden Machina for his perception of them. Without the Crystals Orience falls into a dark age, but Machina and Rem honor their classmates' deeds by recording their names in history fifty years later while rebuilding the post-war Orience.
What happens to Pandæmonium is unknown. It was last seen when Joker and Tiz talked with Arecia in the void-like dimension where the Rursan Arbiter was fought.
- Shrine of Coronation
- Hall of Transgression
- Cloister of Adumbration
- Cloister of Inspiration
- Cloister of Revelation
- Chamber of All
- Chamber of Fate
- Cloister of Premonition
- Cloister of Manifestation
- Cloister of Exhibition
- Chamber of Life
- Cloister of Instruction
- Portal of Destruction
- Chapel of Destruction [Vermilion Bird]
- Chapel of Destruction [Azure Dragon]
- Chapel of Destruction [Black Tortoise]
- Chapel of Destruction [White Tiger]
- Spiral of Rebirth
- Sanctuary of Descension
- Consecrated Ground
- Ice Flan
- Thunder Bomb
- Evil Eye
- Unidentified Target
- Rursan Reaver (1)
- Rursan Reaver (2)
- The Rursan Arbiter
Pandæmonium is only visited during the final mission. The original twelve members of Class Zero are pit against Cid's Crucibles to determine if they can pass his judgment.
Behind the scenes
The emblems for each nation of Orience seen in Pandæmonium also have the symbol of the gate on them, symbolizing how each Crystal wants to birth the Agito: the one who can open Etro's gate.
A concept art of Pandæmonium shows the Pulse l'Cie brand in place of the symbol for Etro's gate, which appears in the final game.
In the "Portal of Destruction" area, there is a spelling mistake: Proceeding through the portal representing the Lorican Alliance, the prompt says "Chapel of Desruction".
A lot of the artwork is from the Final Fantasy Type-0 Kōshiki Settei Shiryōshū Aku no Hishi art book.
Etymology and symbolism
Pandæmonium comprises the Greek words pan, "all", and daimonion, "demon"; it can roughly be translated as "all demons". Pandæmonium is the castle of Lucifer and the capital of Hell in John Milton's Paradise Lost, and the word was invented by him. The word has also come to mean any wild disorder or chaos in English.
Pandæmonium's location is significant, being situated at the peninsula that stands at the middle of Orience. In the mythology of the Four Symbols, the original incarnation featured the Shenlong or Koryu, the Golden Dragon representative of the Wu Xing element of Earth, the direction of center, and the highest powers that govern the rest of the symbols. Its Japanese analogue rather sees no beast represent the aspects of center, and instead represents the element of sky, or the Void.
This symbolism is present in the Portal of Destruction area, where the doors to each nation's trial are situated in the cardinal directions, with a dark sphere—like a black hole—in the middle. Once the player overcomes the trials, the black hole turns into a portal of light that whisks the player away to the top and final areas of the dungeon. The very final area of Pandæmonium appears to exist in the Void.
In the rooms that have no battles the player can hear the cadets' voices, scared and lost in darkness. If these are parts of their souls stuck in Pandæmonium from previous spirals, it would befit Pandæmonium's namesake as the capital of Hell. Class Zero strives to become Agito and open the gate to the afterlife, which could be seen analogous to entering heaven.
Within Buddhist cosmology, the highest point of the mortal world is the Deva Realm, and its highest region is the Sixth Heaven. Seemingly a juxtaposition to mankind's traditional depiction of heaven throughout the world, the Deva Realm is said to be a place of endless indulgence and the Sixth Heaven is populated by demons and their leader Mara, the antithesis of Buddhist virtues who represents the negative aspects of the fleeting material world. Along with victimizing and agonizing mankind corporeally, Mara and his demonic followers control mankind through their desires for their own ends. Mara created the Desire Realm where the world of men is located, and is the master of its domain, in control of its illusions, sensual manifestations, and abstractions to misguide and corrupt its denizens in the unending cycles of karma and suffering. Able to resist and counter Mara's presence within one's life is one purpose of the Dharma and Buddhist Virtues, as transcending the Desire Realm leads one into Nirvana to be freed from these cycles and the malefic influence of Mara.
While Buddhism teaches mercy and compassion, and to incorporate virtue in the face of life's challenges, Buddha's teachings are not the only definite way, and one must achieve their own salvation within the course of their own lives. Buddhism's Middle Way is that of balance, including not being overtly indulgent only in the good things and to be expedient to others and oneself to help realize the way of one's enlightenment. Although Orience's alternate history sees the Second Orience War never occurring with an age of peace in its stead, such a timeline implies other unfortunate implications, such as ignorance of the threat of Bhunivelze and the destruction of Mwynn's universe in the wider scope of things. Through realizing the farce of the Crystals' desire to unify Orience through world wars to find the Agito, even after six hundred million cycles Class Zero fights without the temptation of becoming l'Cie to free Orience from the selfish affairs of the Fabula Nova Crystallis gods.