You know, the boys often choke on this test when I come with them. I guess my charm makes them nervous...
Quistis wears a salmon zipped vest, with a gold-rimmed fold-over collar, that is zipped just below the ribcage exposing her midriff. She wears brown arm warmers and brown gloves, a long salmon skirt with a silver waistband, black pants, a brown belt and black shoes. She has blue eyes and wears her blond hair tied up held with a silver comb accessory, and has two long fringes framing her face. As an instructor in Balamb Garden she wears her SeeD uniform and a pair of silver-rimmed glasses.
Uses a whip. When in danger, uses monster skills she has learned. Her admirers in the Garden have formed a fan club.
Quistis is known as a child prodigy around Balamb Garden. At the age of 15 she became a SeeD, and now at 18 is the youngest instructor in the Garden. She is less strict than the other instructors, leading some of her students to not take her seriously and to treat her with disrespect. Quistis tries to maintain her calm and due to her quiet assertiveness, stoic nature, and restraint, she mulls over her worries alone, kept at a distance from her pupils by her rank.
Quistis would love to develop a more personal relationship with the people around her, particularly with Squall, yet hesitates to make a move. At first she mistakes her feeling protective of Squall for love, but later comes to realize the connection she felt was the latent sisterly feelings of responsibility from a time she had tried to comfort him after he had become estranged from his "Sis". Despite her composed exterior, Quistis can get emotional. She thinks of herself as the group's "big sister" and takes it upon herself to look after everyone. As she regards the Garden as her home, she is fiercely protective of it.
When she feels at ease Quistis displays her more easygoing side. Unbeknown to most, Quistis is the best Triple Triad player in Balamb Garden, and a member of a secretive card club. If she is in the party when they visit Zell's room in Balamb, she will playfully snub him by recounting an embarrassing story of him, and if the party visits the manor in Winhill, Quistis spooks her teammates by pretending to be a ghostly voice emanating from an old suit of armor.
Quistis was an orphan at the end of the Sorceress War, growing up in Edea's Orphanage with Zell, Selphie, Irvine, Seifer, Squall and Ellone, all of whom were cared for by their "matron", Edea Kramer. She was nicknamed "Quisty" by her friends and was considered the bossy one of the bunch. When Ellone left, Quistis attempted to take her place as Squall's "big sister", being there to break him and Seifer up when the two fought.
Quistis was adopted but the arrangement did not work out, and she enrolled into Balamb Garden at the age of 10, where Squall and Seifer were already students. Due to the use of Guardian Forces the three forgot their childhood memories of the orphanage, leaving behind only vague impressions, such as Squall and Seifer's continued rivalry and Quistis's feelings of sisterly protection of Squall. Quistis climbed the ranks of Balamb Garden's Card Club and became the card master "King"; the highest ranked member in the club, at age 14. At 15 she became one of the youngest students to become a SeeD and received her instructor's license at 17. Even after becoming an instructor she could not stop thinking about Squall, starting to confuse her childhood "big sister" feelings for love.
Quistis became something of an idol to some of the students, so much they created a fan club dedicated to her. Calling themselves "Trepies", they idolize everything she does, but Quistis mostly ignores them, concentrating on her job as instructor. Two students she pays specific attention on are Squall and Seifer, the former due to her hidden feelings, the latter due to his repeated misconduct.
When Squall and Seifer injure each other in a training match, Quistis is called to retrieve the former from the infirmary. She takes him to class but dismisses it after announcing the SeeD field exam is to be held later that day. Knowing Squall is behind in his prerequisite tests for the exam, she takes him to Fire Cavern to acquire the Guardian Force Ifrit.
For the exam Quistis is to supervise Squad B, captained by Seifer with Zell and Squall assisting him. Seifer is unhappy with his team and their mission, and continues to defy Quistis who tries to brush it off. During the exam at the Siege of Dollet Quistis stays on the SeeD Assault Boat while her squad moves to secure the town's central square, and later fends off the X-ATM092 with a mounted machine gun when it chases Squall to the beach as they are about to withdraw.
Despite two of her squad, Squall and Zell, passing the field exam, Quistis is dismissed from her position as instructor citing her lack of leadership skills, and her instructor license is to be revoked as of midnight. She partakes in the SeeD inauguration ball, but doesn't bother to dress up for it, and watches from afar as Squall dances with a girl. On the balcony she approaches him and asks him to accompany her to the Garden's training center where she attempts to confide in him. She receives a cold shoulder in return, as Squall cannot understand the point of relying on other people for emotional support. They run into Ellone being attacked by a Granaldo who calls Quistis by her childhood nickname, but she does not recognize her. After Squall and Quistis defeat the Granaldo, Ellone is led away by mysterious men in white uniforms.
Now a regular SeeD, Quistis is called to track and contain Seifer when he breaks out of the disciplinary room where he had been banished as punishment for his misconduct during the field exam. Following him to Timber's TV station, she watches Seifer take the Galbadian president, Vinzer Deling, hostage live on air, and requests Squall's SeeD team's assistance, as she knows they had been assigned a Timber mission earlier that day. Squall, Zell and Selphie meet with Quistis at the studio, but a sorceress appears and spirits Seifer away, saving the president.
As G-forces storm Timber the group is forced into hiding. Rinoa Heartilly, the girl who danced with Squall at the ball who is now his client, secures them a safe house. As returning to Balamb Garden is made impossible by the train services having stopped, Quistis reminds Squall of the SeeD's official conduct during a time of crisis: Squall decides they should retreat to the nearest Garden, Galbadia Garden. The last train out is fully booked, but Zone, a Forest Owls member whom Squall's SeeD party was sent to assist in Timber, gives his ticket to Quistis so she can go with the others. Quistis vows to repay him one day.
While the group passes through a forest Quistis falls asleep along with Squall and Selphie. They enter a mysterious dream world where the three experience the past exploits of a Galbadian soldier called Laguna in a Centra Excavation Site. As they come to, Quistis notes the others are not as nonplussed as she is, and concludes they had experienced a shared dream before.
Quistis is familiar with Galbadia Garden as she had taken classes there before, and once they get there she heads off to talk with Master Martine. Quistis, along with the rest of Squall's group, Rinoa, and a Galbadian student Irvine Kinneas, are tasked with assassinating the Galbadian ambassador Sorceress Edea whom they had glimpsed at the TV studio earlier.
With Squall as the group's leader, they take a train to Deling City to meet with their contact, General Caraway. The plan is to assassinate the sorceress using two teams; one to trap her inside a gateway, and the other to snipe her from afar. Squall elects Quistis to be the leader of the gateway team, and heads off with Caraway and Irvine. Quistis is momentarily diverted by Rinoa who has another plan to stop the sorceress, but Quistis berates her, thinking Rinoa's plan is only contrived to oppose her father, General Caraway. Quistis leads Zell and Selphie to the gateway, but soon regrets what she said to Rinoa. She heads back to apologize with her group in tow, but gets locked inside Caraway's office. After discovering a secret entrance to the Deling City Sewers, the three make it back to their position in time to trap the sorceress, who has usurped power and declared herself Galbadia's dictator.
The assassination fails and both teams are captured and imprisoned in D-District Prison with Squall separated from the others to be interrogated. Using Zell's knowledge of the prison layout and his martial arts skills, they recover their weapons and free Squall. With Irvine and Rinoa's help the party escapes on Galbadian vehicles.
In retaliation for the attack on Sorceress Edea, Galbadia targets Balamb and Trabia Gardens for missile attack. Splitting into two groups, Squall's group returns to Balamb Garden to give warning of the impending attack, while Selphie's group infiltrates the Missile Base to stop the launch. It is up to Squall to assign Quistis in either team. While the Missile Base team fails to stop the launch and only barely survives the base's destruction by taking shelter inside a Galbadian war machine, Squall's team enables Balamb Garden's mobile functions and moves the Garden away from the spot the missiles were programmed to target.
Left adrift in the ocean currents as the Garden's steering mechanisms have broken down due to lack of maintenance, they learn Headmaster Cid and Sorceress Edea are married, and that SeeD's true purpose is to defeat her. The adrift Garden is intercepted by the White SeeD Ship whose crew asks for Ellone. Ellone is the girl Quistis and Squall saved from the Granaldo, and after she reveals to Squall she is the one who has been sending him and his friends back in time to inhabit Laguna in a dream world, she departs with the White SeeD.
If Quistis was in Squall's team, she invites him for tea to get his mind off things, but the Garden crashes in Fishermans Horizon interrupting their plans. G-forces occupy the town during their search for Ellone, whom Edea wants to find, and the war machine with the Missile Base team still inside is brought into the town. The teams are reunited and the G-forces are driven out of FH.
Overseeing the care of the students with Dr. Kadowaki, Quistis serves, along with her friend and a fellow SeeD Xu, as Squall's assistant while on board the mobile Balamb Garden after he is promoted to the Garden's commander as Cid departs, reluctant to wage war against his wife. To celebrate Squall's promotion Selphie and Irvine organize a party for his honor and Quistis partakes in the concert by playing an instrument.
After FH's technicians repair Balamb Garden to full functionality, Squall leads the Garden in a war against Sorceress Edea. As his first command as the new commander Squall liberates Balamb from Galbadian occupation. If Quistis is in Squall's party, she marvels at how neat Zell's room is when they visit his house, and recounts a story of Zell crashing the girls' restroom in Garden with his T-Board, much to his embarrassment.
Next the group visits Trabia Garden, Selphie's home Garden that was destroyed in a Galbadian missile attack. During their stay there Irvine reveals they all grew up together in Edea's Orphanage being cared for by Edea. Quistis and the others are shocked, and as her childhood memories return, Quistis realizes the affection she feels toward Squall is not love, but a sisterly bond. The group is forced to accept their beloved matron has become their enemy, but choose to fight her regardless.
The Garden embarks to the old orphanage and is intercepted by a similarly mobile Galbadia Garden. The Battle of the Gardens ensues, ending in Sorceress Edea's defeat and Rinoa becoming comatose. After Edea's defeat, it is discovered that the sorceress they had been fighting was not their matron Edea, but an evil sorceress from the future called Ultimecia who had been possessing Edea's body to take over Galbadia and use its resources to find Ellone, whom she needs to reach her goal of time compression to make herself a god-like being. The SeeD's defeat of Edea snapped her out of it, and she helps the party by telling them everything she knows about Ultimecia.
Squall searches for Ellone to find a way to revive Rinoa from her coma. Learning from the White SeeD Ellone is in Esthar, Squall opts to go alone, carrying Rinoa on his back, but Quistis and the others follow him. They enter Esthar and learn Ellone has gone to the Estharian space station, the Lunar Base, that was constructed to oversee Esthar's former dictator, Sorceress Adel, who is being kept entombed on the moon's orbit to prevent her from ever passing on her sorceress power. As Squall takes Rinoa to the space station to be cured, the others stay behind as Lunatic Pandora, an Estharian weapon of mass destruction that was constructed during Sorceress Adel's reign, now piloted by Seifer and the remaining G-forces, docks at the Tears Point, triggering the Lunar Cry that brings Adel's tomb back to the planet.
Squall and a cured Rinoa return from space bringing an Estharian spaceship Ragnarok with them, but because Rinoa inherited Edea's sorceress power when she was defeated by the SeeD during the Battle of the Gardens, Esthar wants to contain her similar to how they contained Adel. A depressed Squall is left behind as Esthar takes Rinoa away, but as the others find him, Quistis pushes Squall into action. Inspired by Quistis's advice that he should follow his heart, Squall saves Rinoa from the Sorceress Memorial. After visiting the orphanage, the group is called back to Esthar by President Laguna's request to stop Ultimecia once and for all.
They invade the Lunatic Pandora and fight through Seifer and defeat Sorceress Adel, making Rinoa the only sorceress left in their era. As Ultimecia possesses Rinoa Ellone sends her mind back in time starting the time compression. By believing in each others' existence the group survives its effects and travels to the future where Ultimecia awaits allowing them to defeat her. Upon Ultimecia's demise the time compression spell breaks and the timeline begins to revert to its original form. The group is momentarily trapped in a time warp, but due to their belief and reliance on each other they return to their time safely. As Balamb Garden celebrates the victory over Ultimecia, Irvine and Selphie record the festivities as Quistis greets the attending Edea and Cid, is unimpressed by Irvine's advances, and helps Zell when he almost chokes upon consuming too many hot dogs.
Quistis is a Blue Mage who wields whips in battle. Her Blue Magic is a Limit Break in which she casts enemy abilities that are learnt by using special items. The abilities can have varying effect, and their damage or healing amount is based on her current Crisis Level in battle. Her ultimate weapon is Save the Queen.
Like other player characters, Quistis is a possible Triple Triad card. Quistis is also a Triple Triad player, and is the final challenger in the Card Club Group side event. She has the rare Gilgamesh card.
Creation and developmentEdit
When designing the characters, Tetsuya Nomura had wanted at least one female character to wear a skirt. Quistis was originally supposed to fill this part, but Nomura decided a long skirt worn over pants would look better and the skirt-wearing role was passed to Selphie. In an interview, Nomura has mentioned he was surprised upon learning Quistis was cast as Squall's teacher.
Though Final Fantasy VIII does not have individual character themes, Quistis's theme is often considered to be "Tell Me", a song on the original soundtrack. The song first plays when Quistis and Squall are talking in the secret meeting place in Balamb Garden's Training Center, and she laments the loss of her instructor position.
Quistis has made appearances in the following games in the Final Fantasy series:
- PocketStation memorycard icons as an icon.
- Dissidia Final Fantasy as a cameo.
- Dissidia Final Fantasy Opera Omnia as a playable character.
- Pictlogica Final Fantasy as a playable character.
- Final Fantasy Airborne Brigade as a summonable Legend.
- Final Fantasy Artniks as a series of cards.
- Final Fantasy Record Keeper as a playable character.
- World of Final Fantasy as a non-playable character.
- Final Fantasy Trading Card Game as a series of cards.
- Triple Triad as a card.
Non-Final Fantasy guest appearancesEdit
Quistis has made key guest appearances in the following non-Final Fantasy games:
Quistis has appeared in some merchandise, ranging from action figures to vinyl statues, Coca-Cola bottlecap figures and a real version of her Triple Triad card.
In Latin, 'quistis' is the 2nd person pl. perfect form of the verb 'quire' (to be able), translated as 'You (pl.) were able'.
- Quistis is not featured in the PlayStation Final Fantasy VIII demo. In the evacuation of Dollet FMV, a Dollet soldier mans the gun turret that Quistis uses in the final game to fight off the X-ATM092. She appears in the PC version demo, which takes place during the SeeD graduation ball.
- Quistis's menu portrait is the only one facing to the right; every other main character's and temporary character's portrait faces to the left.
- Quistis is the eldest out of the "orphanage gang", beating Seifer by mere months.
- In the North American release Quistis's height was listed as 168 cm (5'6"), however, the Final Fantasy VIII Ultimania, the latest edition of which was released seven years after the game's release, revised the height to 172cm (5'8"). This is because all character heights were converted wrong from their original metric values to the US customary system.
- If Quistis is in the party and the player talks to a man on a railway bridge in Timber, he gives her a Potion because he had seen her on TV during the president's announcement broadcast.
- After Balamb Garden becomes mobile, when the party members are not assigned as player characters, they wander the Garden on their own. Quistis stands in the Garden's control room, which is where she can be challenged to Triple Triad if the player has completed the Card Club sidequest.
- The Ragnarok is piloted by Selphie whenever she isn't in the player party. If Selphie is unavailable, the Ragnarok is piloted by Zell, and if both are in the party, Quistis takes the reins.
- Quistis is one of the few playable characters in the series to wear glasses; the first was Tellah from Final Fantasy IV, and others include Queen from Final Fantasy Type-0 and Ignis Scientia from Final Fantasy XV.
- In the 2000 film version of Charlie's Angels, the two boys are playing Final Fantasy VIII and are controlling Squall and Quistis in a battle in the Training Center. They are fighting against two Grats, Quistis is equipped with only the Attack command. She is seen attacking a Grat while Squall prepares to summon Quezacotl against the two Grats.