In her pictures she captures everything: forests, water, light... the very essence of the things she paints...Game description
Relm Arrowny is a playable character in Final Fantasy VI. She is a young but talented artist from Thamasa and Strago's adopted granddaughter. As a descendant of the Magi, Relm can naturally channel magic, which she does through her ability to Sketch monsters and bring them to life.
Relm is a ten-year old girl with short blonde hair and blue eyes. She wears a red turban with stars, a black top, baggy red pants with stars around the bottom, and a short yellow cape. In some concept arts Relm's pants are yellow. Her turban is purple in some concept art and her in-game portraits, but they are usually both red in spin-off appearances. Her Super NES sprite gives her yellow pants, a green top, and a red cap, but her iOS and Steam sprite gives her a sprite more closely matching her concept art, though her top is purple instead of black.
Relm's signature weapons are magical paintbrushes. Dissidia Final Fantasy Opera Omnia gives her the Chocobo Brush in her artwork, which is her default equipped weapon in Final Fantasy VI, and Opera Omnia and Final Fantasy Record Keeper include the Chocobo Brush as a weapon for her. Opera Omnia depicts Relm's brushes as much larger than normal paintbrushes, almost as tall as Relm herself.
Relm is an independent and sassy young girl. Her speech patterns are rude and casual, and in the Japanese version she occasionally uses foul language, which was toned down in releases outside of Japan. She has no problem talking back to adults to their faces, and often uses the mention of drawing someone's portrait as a threat. She often scolds Strago for his foolish behavior and ignores his attempts to discipline her.
Despite her behavior, Relm has a good heart. She truly loves Strago as a grandfather and expresses concern for his safety when a situation turns dire. She fights alongside the Returners to free the world from Kefka, insisting on coming along in spite of her youth and the danger they face.
If Relm is in the party when a battle commences, she will wave to the "fourth wall" before facing the enemy.
Connection to Shadow
Throughout Final Fantasy VI, there are hints of a connection between Relm and Shadow. Such hints include: Shadow's dreams reveal he found his way to Thamasa and fathered a daughter before leaving to keep his past from catching up with his family; an NPC in the town mentions a rumor that Relm isn't really Strago's granddaughter, just a friend's daughter; Relm is the only person other than Shadow that his dog Interceptor is friendly with; Shadow is the only other person able to use Relm's Memento Ring which grants a "departed mother's love"; at the end of the game, Shadow gives his reasons for living as "friends... and family".
While not explicitly stated in any version of Final Fantasy VI, it was confirmed in an interview with the developers that Shadow is Relm's father.
Relm is a gifted artist and at a young age has begun to build a reputation for her skill. Her painting skill is the foundation of her Sketch ability; she is able to draw monsters and bring the drawings to life to attack. The animation for Sketch depicts her waving a brush in the air and a copy of her target's sprite appears over Relm, flashes, and then vanishes; presumably she is magically painting in the air to create the simulacrum of her target. In spin-off titles, Relm's Sketch command forms the basis of her movepool.
In Record Keeper Relm is a White Mage who specializes in healing and defending the party by granting them Blink status, and her Soul Breaks and Materia have names and visuals themed on Relm's affinity for drawing. Opera Omnia allows Relm to use "Sketch Summon", which has variable effects depending on the summon the party is equipped with, and she can use the Sketch command to inflict the status "Sketch" on targets, which lowers their Attack and causes Relm to take an additional turn immediately after her Sketched target takes their turn. In Brave Exvius Relm is a support character that boosts the party's damage in the fire, ice, and lightning elements, and can increase their resistance to the same elements.
Relm's Desperation Attack is Star Prism, which inflicts instant death on a target. It serves as her equivalent of a Limit Break in other titles, appearing as her EX Ability in Opera Omnia and a Burst Soul Break in Record Keeper, with the thematically parallel "Galactic Prism" appearing as her Synchro Arcane Soul Break.
Ten years before the start of Final Fantasy VI, a man named Clyde found his way to Thamasa and fell in love with a resident. He fathered a child with her, Relm. Her mother died and Clyde left town to keep his past as a bandit from catching up with him and ruining his family. Relm's age at the time was unknown, though she was old enough to speak. Strago, a friend of her mother's, took her in and raised her as his granddaughter.
Years later Terra, Locke, and Shadow came to Thamasa seeking espers that had attacked the Empire and asked Strago about them. Strago feigned ignorance, but Relm came out of her room to see the visitors and mentioned use of magic as Strago tried to shush her. Relm began to play with Interceptor and he followed her when Strago ordered her back to her room, concerning Shadow as the dog was never friendly with strangers. The three stayed the night in the inn, and Relm went to a neighbor's house to play.
While she was there, the house caught fire, and Strago woke the three to ask for their help in saving Relm. Terra and Locke went inside with Strago and found Interceptor had made it to her. As they approached her the house began to collapse and the party fell unconscious, and Shadow saved them with a smoke bomb. Relm recovered in Strago's home and Strago told the three about the village's history with the Magi and their ability to naturally use magic. Strago agreed to help them locate the espers and Relm demanded to come, but Strago refused her.
Terra, Locke and Strago went to the Esper Caves to the west, unaware Relm had followed. Relm tailed them through the caves, narrowly avoiding being caught, until the three found a shrine with effigies to the Warring Triad, the gods of magic. Relm listened in as Strago explained the history of the Triad to Terra and Locke, and they were attacked by Ultros. During the battle Relm intervened and prepared to draw Ultros, but he insulted her and refused. Relm feigned like she would leap off a ledge in despair, and Terra and Locke talked Ultros into letting her draw him. Relm used her Sketch ability on Ultros and, horrified to see he was a "washed-up old octopus", he fled. Terra and Locke were convinced of Relm's abilities and agreed to let her accompany them.
The group continued through the caves and found a group of espers led by Yura. Yura agreed to return to Thamasa with them for peace negotiations with the Empire's General Leo. At Thamasa Relm noticed the romantic tension between Locke and Celes and cracked a joke about it that the party and Imperials both laughed at. The jovial atmosphere was short-lived, however, as Kefka arrived and revealed the expedition was a trap set up by Emperor Gestahl to lure the espers out and transform them into magicite. Kefka incapacitated the Returners and Imperial troops, slaughtered the espers, and murdered General Leo. In the aftermath the party laid Leo to rest in Thamasa.
The rest of their allies escaped the Empire on their airship, the Blackjack. They met Locke and Terra's new allies and Sabin laughed at the idea of a kid accompanying them. Relm replied with an insult and a threat to paint his portrait. To the rest of the group's confusion, Terra, Locke and Strago took the threat seriously and acquiesced to let her come. Edgar inquired about her age, seemingly interested in her, but backed off on learning Relm was only ten.
Kefka and Gestahl invaded the espers' world and found the Warring Triad, and used the deities' power to raise the Floating Continent. Kefka killed Gestahl and seized the power of the Triad and caused a chaotic cataclysm that reshaped the world. The Blackjack was destroyed and the party scattered.
After the cataclysm, Owzer, owner of a large art collection in Jidoor, heard of Relm's amazing art skills and brought her to his mansion to paint a portrait of Lakshmi. While Relm was working, a demon named Chadarnook was enticed by the painting and possessed it, casting the mansion in a shroud of mysterious magic. The regrouping Returners found the basement room where Relm was working and defeated Chadarnook. Owzer allowed the party to take Lakshmi's magicite and Relm left with them, promising to return to finish the painting.
The party visited the Cultists' Tower where the Cult of Kefka lived and found Strago there as a member of the cult. Relm called out to him and the sound of her voice snapped Strago to his senses. The two had a happy reunion and Strago rejoined the party. The two returned to Thamasa and found an old friend of Strago's, Gungho, had been injured by Hidon, a monster Strago had hunted in his youth. Strago set out to Ebot's Rock to defeat Hidon and returned to Gungho to boast of his victory until he fell asleep. Unbeknownst to Strago, Gungho had been faking his injuries has part of a plan Relm had concocted to motivate Strago to finally realize his childhood dream. Though Relm mocked Gungho's awful acting, she thanked him for his part.
When the party was escaping Kefka's crumbling tower following their victory, Strago stumbled while coming down a conveyor belt, earning a scolding from Relm. She dragged him the rest of the way while threatening to paint his portrait if he stumbled again. However, she confessed she would like to paint a traditional, non-magic painting of Strago using a real canvas.
Relm is a Pictomancer whose primary role is casting Magic, as her very high Magic stat and access to female-exclusive equipment make her a powerful mage. Her Sketch ability allows her to replicate the attack of an enemy, and she can turn it into Control with the Fake Moustache relic. Relm's Sketch command is also associated with many glitches in the original SNES release.
Her Desperation Attack is Star Prism that instantly kills an enemy not immune to Death. As opposed to the rest of the party, her and Strago's Desperation Attacks inflict instant death rather than high damage.
Relm has good Speed, but her physical stats are generally low. Her equipment is limited, though her rods, maces and robes can boost her magical prowess further, and she can equip the Cat-Ear Hood, one of the strongest pieces of armor. She can equip creature costumes that change her sprite.
Relm's theme is simply named "Relm". It is mixed into the ending theme.
Relm has made appearances in the following games in the Final Fantasy series:
- Final Fantasy XIV as a Minion.
- 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 Record Keeper as a playable character.
- Final Fantasy Trading Card Game as a series of cards.
- Triple Triad as a series of cards.
In Secret of Evermore, Relm appears among the crowd of spectators that includes other Final Fantasy VI characters at the gladiator battle of Antiqua. She appears alongside Terra, Locke, Mog, Strago, and Umaro.
Behind the scenes
Shadow and Relm's relationship was officially confirmed in developers' interviews in 1995. The developers considered having a scene in a bar (presumably in Thamasa) where Strago asks Shadow to reveal his identity. The dialogue was supposed to be as follows:
- Strago: I have one request... Show me your face. Even if you are him, I have no intention of wasting time trying to talk you into staying. I just want to know... for Relm's sake...
- Shadow: ...... (He takes off his mask and shows Strago his face. However, his back is turned so that the player can't see.)
- Strago: Thank you... Shadow. ...Come, let's have a drink.
The developers wished they could have used Yoshitaka Amano's artwork in the game by having one of Relm's drawings being Amano's artwork, and in the ending have Relm painting a wall mural showing scenes of all the adventures the heroes had undertaken. However, it was not possible due to hardware limitations.
- Final Fantasy VI Settei Shiryō-hen, p.38
- Final Fantasy Ultimania Archive Volume 1, p.294
- V Jump issue (in Japanese) (dead) (Accessed: September 25, 2009) at Infoseek
- Final Fantasy 20th Anniversary Ultimania File 1: Character, p.294
- Relm: Daddy...? Where'd Daddy go? He's coming back...isn't he?
- Final Fantasy VI – 1994 Developer Interview (Accessed: December 09, 2018) at shmuplations
- Final Fantasy VII – 1997 Developer Interviews (Accessed: January 12, 2019) at shmuplations