O mighty Ifrit, Lord of the Inferno and Champion of Sun! Thy humble servants have summoned Thee forth from the boundless aether, that Thou might cleanse these heathens' souls of their transgressions with Thine holy flames.
The primals (蛮神, Banshin?, lit. Barbarian Gods), also known as eikons, are magical beings in Final Fantasy XIV worshiped by the beast races of Eorzea. They are classic Final Fantasy summoned monsters, and may be related to both the Echo and the sudden new attacks from the Garlean Empire who considers them a threat. Each beast race has its own primal and plans to use them to its own ends, either to harass the city-states, self protection, or to fight the Garleans.
- 1 Profile
- 2 Known primals
- 3 Story
- 4 Other appearances
- 5 Gallery
- 6 Etymology
- 7 Trivia
- 8 References
Divine seeds were ever wont to quicken in Eorzea's fertile soil. We need only lead men to the field, and by their eager hands shall a new deity arise.
Primals are constructs of concentrated aether made manifest by the will of the summoner in the form of legendary figures or mythical creatures. Due to the nature of their existence, a primal must consume aether from its surroundings, thus becoming a threat to the world of Hydaelyn.
The Ascian race, possessing vast amounts of aether in their being, developed the art of summoning when the fear they felt during the final days of their world caused them to unconsciously create monsters based on their imaginations. The process was perfected in the summonings of Zodiark and Hydaelyn, both being products of a mass sacrifice, whose conflict sundered the world into the Source and the thirteen Shards.
When the Ascians conduct a Rejoining to restore their world, they teach the way of summoning to many of the races in the form of praying for the aid of their deity. Unlike the ancient Ascians, the new races had little aether and the ritual requires an ample supply—the most convenient being crystals. The aether can also be acquired with other tools, such as the enigmatic horn and tablet stored on Seal Rock, or the eye of a great wyrm.
While usually an embodiment of the summoner's desire, there are cases where the summoner transforms into a primal. A primal can also be summoned into a structure or be created in the image of their namesake. Once summoned, primals can "temper" other beings, instilling fanatical loyalty and creating a secure wellspring of faith. Usually this is an intentional process, but some primals (such as Ramuh) have shown distaste for it, implying it is a natural byproduct of their existence. While those gifted with the Echo are immune, their soul's aether may still be consumed by a nearby primal if they ever lose their mortal form.
Due to the presence of primals in Eorzea and the massive amount of energy needed to summon them the flux of aether over Silvertear Falls has been disrupted and the land of Eorzea will slowly perish if this process isn't reversed. The Scions of the Seventh Dawn strive to eliminate any primals that manifest. This is also one of the reasons behind the Garlean Empire's campaign to destroy the primals, according to Emperor Varis. Gaius van Baelsar hoped to achieve a permanent means through the Ultima Weapon's ability to absorb primals.
The Ascians also taught the ancient Allag the means to bind primals. The creation of primals has an effect on the mothercrystal Hydaelyn, seemingly as part of the goal to revive Zodiark. The primals and the tools to summon them have proven useful in undoing an Ascian, as the supply of aether needed to summon a primal can, if focused, shatter an Ascian trapped in White Auracite. Further, an Ascian's soul can be consumed directly by a primal if its host body is slain by one; primals feed on aether, and a soul is comprised of it.
By patch 5.01, there are 29 known primals, though one of them was only mentioned.
The term "Elder Primal" indicates those worshiped/summoned in older eras (i.e. before the Sixth Astral Era), often from cultures that no longer exist. For example, Bahamut was originally summoned in the Third Astral Era, whereas Shiva is a recent "newborn" primal.
- Ifrit, Lord of the Inferno, primal of the Amalj'aa.
- Titan, Lord of Crags, primal of the Kobolds.
- Garuda, Lady of the Vortex, primal of the Ixal.
- Good King Moggle Mog XII, primal of the Moogles known as Moggleguard, who support him, and is modeled after their ancestors' savior.
- Bahamut, the Dreadwyrm, Elder Primal of the dragons of Meracydia in the image of the Firstbrood of the same name. He was incarcerated inside Dalamud until the Seventh Umbral Era.
- Phoenix, a primal of rebirth created from Louisoix Leveilleur during the Seventh Umbral Era.
- Leviathan, Lord of the Whorl, primal of the Sahagin.
- Ramuh, Lord of Levin, primal of the Sylphs.
- Shiva, Lady of Frost, primal of the Ishgardian heretics in the image of Saint Shiva and summoned into Ysayle Dangoulain.
- Enkidu, an inadvertently summoned primal created by Gilgamesh, based on the memory of the original Enkidu.
- Ravana, Lord of the Hive, primal of the Gnath.
- Bismarck, Lord of the Mists, primal of the Vanu Vanu.
- Knights of the Round, primals created by Archbishop Thordan VII using the Ishgardians' faith in their country's founding legend in conjunction with one of Nidhogg's eyes. King Thordan is supported by his Knights Twelve, the primal forms of the Heavens' Ward.
- Odin, the Dark Divinity, described as a roaming Elder Primal. The sword Zantetsuken is the primal, while Odin is a mortal whom the primal blade tempered and blessed with power.
- Belias, an Elder Primal from an unknown era. Only his Egi is encountered. Though the Lucavi bearing his name makes an appearance in The Ridorana Lighthouse using similar Egi to support himself, the nature of the Lucavi within the game makes it uncertain if the Belias encountered is the primal itself.
- Alexander, the Creator, primal of the Illuminati Goblins.
- Sephirot, the Fiend, is the first member of the Warring Triad and an Elder Primal of a tree-like race in Meracydia.
- Sophia, the Goddess, is the second member of the Warring Triad and an Elder Primal of a multitude of Meracydian races. Sophia is supported by the giant head Barbelo, though both are the same entity.
- Zurvan, the Demon, is the third and final member of the Warring Triad and an Elder Primal of Meracydian centaurs.
- Shinryu, the Worm, a primal summoned by Ilberd Feare using the Eyes of Nidhogg to lay waste to the empire. It was stopped by Omega, ending up in the possession of Zenos yae Galvus.
- Susano, the Lord of Revel, the principle primal of the Kojin.
- Tsukuyomi, Goddess of the Moon and Divinity of night. A minor primal of the Kojin summoned into Yotsuyu goe Brutus.
- Lakshmi, the Lady of Bliss, primal of the Ananta.
- Eureka, an Elder Primal from The Forbidden Land of Eureka storyline. Sealed inside the isle's castle, but appearing around the place as a masked man. It is responsible for creating weapons and enthralling their wielders, unless they posses the Echo.
- Hydaelyn, the Mothercrystal, elder primal of Light and goddess of the enlightened races of the world, as well as a faction of ancient Ascians.
- Zodiark, elder primal of Darkness and god of the Ascians.
- Leviathan, Heritor of the Whorl, Norvrandt's version of the Lord of the Whorl made by the Warrior of Light's memories.
- Titan, Heritor of Crags, Norvrandt's version of the Lord of Crags made by the Warrior of Light's memories.
Valefor was a primal mentioned by Gagarua that hasn't appeared. Enemies named Valefor appear in the Labyrinth of the Ancients, but these are voidsent dahaks, not primals or even egis, so Gagarua may have been bluffing.
The Warrior of Light discovers that some youths from Little Ala Mhigo were plotting to summon Rhalgr in the same way beast tribes summon their deities to combat the Garleans, which would have created Rhalgr as a primal. This plot is halted before they do anything reckless.
In the End of an Era cutscene, Louisoix Leveilleur summons the Twelve, appearing briefly during the Battle of Carteneau. In A Realm Reborn, Gaius van Baelsar hints that these could have been primal versions of the Twelve, since they were summoned through aether and faith, just like the beast tribes summon their deities.
Egi are tiny versions of primals, made of concentrated elemental essence. Only Summoners can call them forth after binding their power with the aid of their Soul Crystal. These egi bear many characteristics of the respective primal, but lack the personality and aether-draining properties of the full-scale forms. Currently, players are only allowed to summon egi versions of Ifrit, Titan, and Garuda, but much larger and more fully-formed versions of Bahamut and Phoenix can be summoned via Demi-Bahamut and Demi-Phoenix, respectively.
Some primals summon minions that resemble egis, such as Ramuh's Grey Arbiters and Titan's Granite Gaolers.
In the Heaven-on-High Deep Dungeon, players have a small chance of receiving magicite only for use inside said dungeon. Magicite are used to summon a simulacrum of certain primals, based on the user's memories of past encounters with them.
These kind of summons are similar to those from other Final Fantasy titles by making their appearance just to unleash their signature attack before leaving.
Currently, players are only allowed to summon Ifrit, Titan, Garuda, and Odin. The former three instantly kill all normal enemies on the floor and deal roughly 20% damage to bosses, while also granting temporary invincibility. Odin will instantly kill even bosses, but is extremely rare, and best saved for the final boss on floor 90 if acquired.
A decade prior, the death of the dragon Midgardsormr during the Battle of Silvertear Skies broke the seal he placed on Silvertear Lake to contain the aether beneath it. The Ascian Paragons used this to teach the summoning ritual to the Eorzean beast tribes, with the resulting primals providing added motivation for the imperial campaign.
The Warrior of Light was made aware of the primals by the Elezen mage Louisoix Leveilleur, leader of the Circle of Knowing, whose investigation of Garlean Legatus Nael van Darnus revealed the primals' absorption of the realm's crystals threatens Eorzea. When Van Darnus enacted Operation Meteor, Dalamud's descent towards Eorzea weakened the primals as it absorbed their aether.
During the Seventh Umbral Calamity Dalamud was revealed as Bahamut's prison. Louisoix tried to use the power of the Twelve, Eorzea's guardian deities, to reseal Bahamut, but the attempt failed and Bahamut's rage was unleashed on the realm, triggering the Seventh Umbral Era. In the catastrophe's aftermath, the beast tribes focus on rebuilding.
Thancred Waters asks the Warrior of Light to aid in solving a mystery regarding the disappearances in Camp Drybone. It turns out the Amalj'aa have been kidnapping people to be offered to their primal, Ifrit. During the operation to catch the Amalj'aa red-handed, the Warrior of Light is betrayed and knocked unconscious to be turned into a follower of Ifrit. Through the protection of Hydaelyn, Ifrit's fire has no effect on the Warrior and s/he defeats him.
The Maelstrom, the grand company of Limsa Lominsa, requests the Warrior of Light to slay Titan, who has been summoned by Kobolds near the city. Y'shtola Rhul warns the Warrior that Titan is much stronger than Ifrit, and that advice from the Company of Heroes, a brave band of men and women who have in the past killed him, would come in handy. After performing a series of tasks for the company members, the Warrior of Light receives their blessing and enters Titan's lair, where his/her group defeats him.
Later on, the Warrior of Light works with Cid and Alphinaud to reach Garuda where the Ixal have summoned her in Natalan. Garuda is much more powerful than the previous two primals, able to retain her physical form even after seemingly being beaten. She proclaims to tear down each city-state and leave behind a world where she is revered. Before she can attack the Warrior of Light again, Gaius van Baelsar arrives and mocks her, slaying the Ixal whose prayers were powering her. Garuda rips Ifrit and Titan into existence from their followers the Ixal had captured and prepares to feed upon their aether. The intervention of the Ultima Weapon, deployed by Van Baelsar, defeats Garuda and the other primals.
After the defeat of the Garlean Empire and the resurrected primals, Alisaie Leveilleur asks the Warrior of Light to investigate a dungeon beneath Castrum Occidens called the "Binding Coil of Bahamut" to discover the mystery behind Bahamut's sudden disappearance. They find fragments of Bahamut's body, and at the center see its head held in place by technology from Dalamud. They see Louisoix and Nael van Darnus, alive, watching over Bahamut. Unable to do any more, the two take their leave.
In the events of the "Through the Maelstrom" scenario arc, the Sahagin accumulate enough crystals to summon their primal, Leviathan. After being warned by the Scions of the Seventh Dawn of the impending crisis, Admiral Merlwyb Bloefhiswyn mobilizes the Maelstrom in launching a preemptive strike against the Sapsa Spawning Grounds. They find a Sahagin priest calling forth Leviathan, who claims he will achieve eternal life through the Echo. He transfers his mind into the bodies of fellow Sahagin after being shot by the admiral, but is absorbed by the awakened Leviathan. To take out the Lord of the Whorl on the open seas before he can unleash a catastrophic tidal wave, a special barge called the Whorleater is created to enable the Warrior of Light to approach and defeat the ocean primal.
In the main scenario events of "Defenders of Eorzea", the touched Sylphs call forth Ramuh, Lord of Levin. The sylphs of Little Solace had previously assured Ramuh was of minimal concern, focused only with the protection of the forest, and it was believed that an influx of refugees from the unrest in Ul'dah pushed the touched ones' hands into summoning their primal. When confronted by the Scions, the Lord of Levin condemns the actions of man. Questioning the Warrior of Light's resolve to be the Bearer of Light, Ramuh bids him/her to undertake his trial. Once defeated, he grants the Warrior of Light his blessing and leaves the physical world.
During the events of "Dreams of Ice," the heretic Ysayle Dangoulain summons forth Saint Shiva as a primal. Being a user of the Echo, she can channel the primal into herself, becoming its avatar—a feat previously unknown. Shiva is defeated by the Warrior of Light, and reverts to Ysayle. Frustrated, she condemns their involvement, insisting she's doing this for the sake of peace.
The Gnath, a tribe of arthropod-like beastmen native to Dravania, became increasingly belligerent to both dragons and hunters. The dragon Vidofnir reveals that they had summoned a primal, and this has put the dragons on edge and thus denied the Warrior of Light, Ysayle, Alphinaud, and Estinien Wyrmblood access to Hraesvelgr for the time being. The Warrior of Light and Ysayle let themselves be captured as offerings to the primal, Ravana. Realizing the primal is a war god, Ysayle offers a trial by combat, asking the Gnath abandon their conquest if they defeat him. In the first round, Ysayle transforms into Shiva to duel Ravana, but is defeated. The Warrior of Light is up next, and defeats the primal, who honors his word.
In the Sea of Clouds, the Vundu tribe of the Vanu Vanu have summoned Bismarck as a primal, an immense whale capable of devouring the floating islands, including the one that housed the key to Azys Lla. Cid concocts the idea of towing a floating island via airship as bait, and installing Ishgardian Dragonkillers to harpoon the whale, allowing the Warrior of Light to defeat the Lord of the Mists at the Limitless Blue.
During the course of the Main Scenario quests it is revealed the Archbishop Thordan VII and his elite knights, the Heavens' Ward, used Ascian teachings to channel the legend of King Thordan and his Knights Twelve as a primal of the church. At the floating continent of Azys Lla, Thordan uses the power of Nidhogg's right eye to transform into King Thordan with the intent of eliminating all conflict in the world and ruling as a God-King. As his first act, the primal executes Lahabrea and absorbs the Ascian overlord's aetherial essence. The Knights of the Round are defeated by the Warrior of Light in the Singularity Reactor. Alexander is awoken in the Dravanian Hinterlands, while the Warring Triad stirs from their slumber.
Later, atop Baelsar's Wall, Ilberd Feare uses the Eyes of Nidhogg and the sacrifices of himself and his soldiers to summon Shinryu and bring calamity upon the empire, but moments after its release Shinryu is confronted by a recently activated Omega. The battle ends in a stalemate as the clashing energies result in a massive explosion that sends both flying away to parts unknown.
Upon traveling to Tamamizu, the Warrior of Light learns of a creature akin to a primal called Susano, a kami worshiped by the Kojin of the Red. Unlike the primals of before, the Red Kojin do not plan to summon him. Instead, the Warrior of Light unwittingly summons Susano during a mission to draw Red Kojin away from their imperial allies, as the Yasakani-no-Magatama in the Warrior's possession reacts to two other treasures stored in a vault, materializing into the physical world without either prayer or crystal. Susano desires a contest of wills with the Warrior of Light, his wish for battle independent from the the Red Kojin.
After freeing Doma and returning to Gyr Abania, the Warrior of Light learns of another primal from their Ananta allies, called Sri Lakshmi, a deity worshiped by their beast tribe. She was summoned when Fordola rem Lupus murdered the daughter of the Qalyana's leader, who had previously sided with the empire in the hope of being left alone. Driving the imperials away with the might of their patron deity, they demanded that the Vira tribe of the Ananta come pay tribute to her. The Warrior of Light, the Leveilleur twins and Lyse Hext head to the Qalyana's home to slay the primal.
They see the Qalyana's broodmother distraught, as although her daughter had been revived, her soul was long ago lost to the aether, leaving behind an unresponsive husk. Alisaie becomes incensed by the primal's false promises and tries to convince the Qalyana to renounce Lakshmi, but the mother's grief is profound. The primal floods the room with a wave of tempering flames, which the Warrior of Light blocks. Lakshmi warns them to leave them be. After defeating the primal in her lair, the Qalyana broodmother curses the Warrior of Light and Lyse for taking away their only means of solace and tells them to leave for her to mourn.
The Warrior of Light discovers the missing Shinryu within the Royal Menagerie of Ala Mhigo. Zenos's men had captured and imprisoned the beast while it was incapacitated from the battle with Omega. Because Shinryu was born of pure rage with no worshipers to guide its power toward a specific target or goal, it is akin to a mindless beast. Taking advantage of this, Zenos used the Resonant within his being to merge with Shinryu, becoming the primal itself with its power at his disposal. The Warrior of Light later fights and destroys Shinryu, leaving behind Zenos's battered body and the now powerless eyes of Nidhogg.
After the liberation of Ala Mhigo, the Qalyana join with the leading members of the Resistance to discuss the matter of the throne. Though the broodmother spoke of harmony with her fellow Ala Mhigan neighbors, she reveals her true plan to summon Lakshmi, calling it forth in front of the leaders to temper them, having used the enthralled guards to smuggle in the crystals. Amid the chaos, Raubahn Aldynn cuts down the broodmother while Arenvald Lentinus and the Warrior of Light use their Echo to shield the civilians and leaders from her influence. Lakshmi's advances become overwhelming, but unexpected help arrives when Fordola, released from captivity, steps in and uses her Resonant powers to protect the Ala Mhigans from a blast that would have otherwise ensnared them. With their combined power, the three slay the primal, saving countless lives from a lifetime of servitude.
During the prisoner exchange between Doma and Garlemald to solidify the united front against primals, Asahi sas Brutus plans to disrupt the negotiations by forcing Yotsuyu goe Brutus to regain her memories, bringing her back as acting viceroy of Doma. The supply crates he took from Yanaxia were in fact crystals and the mirror he had given her prior was used as a catalyst for the summoning of a kami. Feeding upon her sorrows, the crystals transform her into Tsukuyomi. Asahi uses her summoning ritual to breach the agreement and orders his men to retreat. As the Warrior of Light battles her, they bear witness to her innermost turmoil, being overwhelmed by specters of those who wronged her, though a single light defends her in the form of a ghost of Gosetsu Daito. Yotsuyu succumbs to her hate, but is defeated. Remnants of the primal's power still linger in her transfigured state, but Asahi repeatedly shoots her. Yotsuyu uses her remaining power to skewer him with swords. Her vengeance sated, she dies peacefully, her lifeless body returning to its original state.
In the absence of the Warrior of Light, Ifrit was once again summoned. In response, Raubahn enlisted a contingent of Summoners to combat the Primal threat, with Arenvald and the newly conscripted Fordola as commanding officers leading the attack. Due to Arenvald's Echo and Fordola's Resonant, they were immune to the Primal's influence and their enhanced strength allowed them to successfully fell the beast.
In the First, the adventurer, Ryne, Urianger and Thancred discover a primordial being half-buried in the Empty known as Eden, deduced to be the first sin eater and the one responsible for the Flood of Light. They eventually discover through some investigating its inner workings that Eden did not erase aether so much as it simply halted its flow and devised a means to restore the flow through its own power when Ryne manages to take control of it after the Warrior defeated its prime form from within. Urianger speculates that in order to do so, aspects of aether must be introduced in mass quantities, with each element of the astral kind restoring nature piece by piece. The Scions' solution was to use Eden and the Warrior's memories to evoke Primals from the Source and defeat them so that their dispersed aether would in theory restore an aspect of the First.
Focusing on water first, the adventurer's thoughts turn to Leviathan. When confronted with the beast however, its form appeared very different, now possessed of two heads. After defeating it, Urianger speculates that its altered form was due to the adventurer's hazy memory of having fought the primal so long ago and may have confused its form with how it was originally fought in addition to other water-aspected primals encountered during their travels. Nevertheless, Urianger's theory proved true as flowing water returned to the Empty. Next they would focus on earth. Titan immediately springs to mind. As with Leviathan, Titan's form was also significantly altered based on faulty memory, now appearing as a less hefty humanoid covered in large iron tires that it rode upon. With its defeat however, natural soil returned to the world. Though their successful efforts seemed localized, Urianger theorizes that the restored aether may have reappeared in focal points across the world. Ryne, exhausted from the summonings and having spent an extended amount of time in the Empty, regroups back with her friends to Norvrandt
Some of the primals appear on cards.
Some of the primals appear on Triple Triad cards in the version available via Final Fantasy Portal App.
- Official Artwork/Renders
The Garlean word "eikon" (borrowed from the Allagans) may derive from the Greek word eikon, translated in English as "image," which is the root word for the English work "icon" whose early definition was religious imagery.
- In the original opening CG of version 1.0, the shapes of Ifrit and Titan emerge from the aether pillar formed after the death of Midgardsormr. Unlike Ifrit, Titan did not appear until A Realm Reborn.
- On the bonus disc included with the physical collector's edition of Final Fantasy XIV: A Realm Reborn, Midgardsormr is erroneously referred to as an elder primal.
- The terms for those enthralled by the primal match with their element: Ifrit's Tempered, Leviathan's Drowned, Ramuh's Touched ("touched" by the primal's divine influence), and Odin's "sundered" due to how his blade tears one "asunder."
- "Tempered" is the default term for a being brought under a primal's thrall, as violent Sylphs have been referred to as "tempered in the levin light of Ramuh." This was confirmed during Live Letter XXVII, where it was mentioned each primal has a phrase correlating to its element and their form of tempering.
- Though Hildibrand referred to Enkidu as a primal after his summon, many fans originally believed him to be an egi due to the nature of his summoning and behavior. However, on an updated list confirming how many primals there were since Patch 3.15, Enkidu was confirmed to be a full primal.
- Square Enix's Eorzea Cafe served dishes based on the primals.
- As of patch 4.4, 15 of the 25 known primals have their own minions: Odin, Bahamut, Ifrit, Titan, Garuda, Leviathan, Ramuh, Shiva, Alexander, Ravana, Bismarck, Lakshmi, Susano, Shinryu, and Tsukuyomi.
- In the quest "Gods of Eld" Unukalhai mentions that the term the Allagans used for primals is "Eikons." Given the time between the fall of Allag and the present this would mean all the eikons from the Allagan era are elder primals since they have been around for at least 5,000 years. This also heavily implies that the Garleans took the Allag term since the term "primal" gives them a godly identification, and with Allagans and Garleans being atheists they prefer the term "eikon" to deny primals this hint of divinity.
- The Waning of the Sixth Sun (Accessed: November 29, 2018) at gamer escape
- Letter from the Producer LIVE Part XXVII Digest (02/10/2016) (Accessed: November 29, 2018) at Official ''Final Fantasy XIV'' forums
- One Primal, Two Primal, Red Primal, Blue Primal (Accessed: November 29, 2018) at Developers' Blog for ''Final Fantasy XIV''
- Gods of Eld (Accessed: November 29, 2018) at gamer escape