Though native to a territory subjugated by the Empire, Rhitahtyn nevertheless serves as praefectus castrorum of the XIVth Imperial Legion. The Roegadyn was awarded the rank by Gaius van Baelsar himself, the legatus more interested in recognizing the mercenary's exceptional martial prowess than the origin of his birth. Rhitahtyn wields a unique gunshield named Tartarus.Official A Realm Reborn website description
Unlike the Tribunes, Rhitahtyn was not a native of the Empire, but from one of the conquered lands. Despite this he rose through the ranks to his current position due to Gaius valuing skill over origin. He strongly believed in Gaius's mission of conquering Eorzea to unite it under a powerful leader, stating that his homeland was in a constant state of turmoil before the Empire brought order to it.
Rhitahtyn and Nero watched the Warrior of Light emerge victorious in battle against the primal Titan. Afterwards, Rhitahtyn admitted his misgivings about relying on the Ascians and the mysterious Lahabrea. He warned Nero that his loyalty should be to Garlemald first and to their new allies second.
With the prisoners from the Waking Sands escaped and the Eorzean Alliance preparing its counter-offensive, Gaius awarded Rhitahtyn with the command of the Imperial forces at Cape Westwind. Accepting his new position with some reluctance, Gaius reassured his protege that he would not give the position to anyone who did not earn it.
As one of Gaius's most valued soldiers, Rhitahtyn became one of the first targets of Operation: Archon who sought to defeat him and cut off communication between the Imperial Strongholds located throughout Eorzea. The Warrior of Light confronted him in the Imperial outpost at Cape Westwind, where Rhitahtyn ordered his soldiers to flee as they stood no chance against the one who had felled Titan.
He engaged the Warrior in battle himself, but was outmatched before Rhitahtyn's men returned to aid their commander against his orders. Enraged after the Warrior strikes them down, Rhitahtyn resumed their battle and struck with renewed vigor, but was still defeated. In a last-ditch attempt to kill the Warrior, Rhitahtyn bound them in chains and attempted to kill them both in a circle of flames to achieve a pyrrhic victory, but was slain, his last words exclaiming his regret for having failed Gaius.
When the Warrior later ventured into the aetherial sea to find Hydaelyn, they encountered Rhitahtyn manifested as a monstrous being.
Rhitahtyn is a Roegadyn clad in a customized suit of armor that officers of the Imperial Army wear, his being black with gold lining and a unique helmet that features large forward-curving horns. He wields a pair of gunshields, named the Tartarus.
A strategic genius and powerful warrior, Rhitahtyn is slow to anger and prefers to avoid needless bloodshed, although he is fiercely protective of the soldiers under his command. He is deeply loyal and reverent to his commander, Gaius van Baelsar, who promoted him into his current position despite his past as a mercenary from one of Garlean-conquered patron states.
Rhitahtyn sas Arvina is fought in the opening stages of Operation Archon, initially during the Cape Westwind trial. Due to syncing issues, this battle was retired in Patch 6.1 and replaced with a solo quest battle.
His spirit can later be encountered in The Palace of the Dead as the Flyblown Praefectus and the The Aitiascope as Rhitahtyn the Unshakeable, while a simulacrum of him created by Elidibus is encountered during the quest Faded Memories.
The theme "Steel Reason" plays in the battle against Rhitahtyn in the Cape Westwind trial, as well as the first phase of his solo instance. In the final phase of his solo instance, Thunderer plays.
Rhitahtyn appears on Triple Triad cards in the version available via Final Fantasy Portal App.
Behind the scenes
Square Enix's Eorzea Cafe served a dish called "Rhitahtyn sas Arvina" as part of its special menu served after 7 pm, whose description translated to: A dish made both in consideration of those looking to enjoy a large feast together with others and as an answer to adventurers disappointed that there wasn't an extreme version of 'that' boss they laid to waste. We believe there is enough here to send a group of unwary adventurers home saying "Ugh...".
Rhitahtyn is notorious among fans due to how easy his first fight was. This is due to multiple factors. As the fight was potentially the first 8-player fight new players will encounter, the mechanics involved were fairly simple. As a trial, Cape Westwind was not item level synced, but level synced to 50, meaning more experienced players would enter a fight designed for level 49 characters at the full allowed power for level 50, approximating item level 130, far too strong for the fight to pose any challenge. Players began to sarcastically claim Cape Westwind is the hardest fight in the game, inventing fake mechanics that take longer to describe than the fight typically lasts for. With the release of Endwalker, the Aitiascope dungeon is sometimes jokingly referred to by the community as "Cape Westwind/Rhitahtyn (Extreme)", as the fight against him there is considered more difficult than his first fight, despite dungeon mid-bosses typically being very easy. The original version of the fight was retired in patch 6.1 and replaced with a solo fight that is more mechanically complex, as part of a general push to standardise the A Realm Reborn experience with the rest of the game.
Rhitahtyn is a name from the Roegadyn language combined from the words rhit meaning "right" and ahtyn meaning "judge". His surname of Arvina is Latin for "fat", and is a popular choice of surname for Roegadyns with Garlean citizenship, and is shared with Grynewaht pyr Arvina, who has no relation to Rhitahtyn.