Look into my eyes... You're-going-to-like-me... You're-going-to-like-me... Did it work?Rinoa Heartilly to Squall Leonhart
Rinoa Heartilly is a playable character in Final Fantasy VIII known for her trademark angel wings printed on the back of her duster sweater and, as such, her "character symbol" is a white feather that signifies the wings. She is Squall Leonhart's love interest, and is featured in the game's logo with him.
In battle, Rinoa wields a unique weapon called the Blaster Edge, a bladed projectile she launches from a firing mechanism on her left arm. After hitting the target, the projectile returns to Rinoa like a boomerang. Rinoa's faithful dog Angelo accompanies her in battle by attacking the enemy or aiding the party.
Rinoa's shoulder-length black hair has three caramel highlights on both sides of her face. Her eyes are dark brown. When first met at the SeeD ball Rinoa wears an off-white sheer fabric halter dress, her signature necklace, a bracelet on her right wrist, and white shoes. She wears the ballroom outfit again at the Garden Festival event in Fishermans Horizon.
Her signature outfit is a long, sleeveless, blue rib-knit duster sweater with a pair of white wing designs on the back. She wears matching rib-knit arm warmers, a black tank top, a denim button-up skirt, a black ribbon on her left arm, and black bike shorts with zippers going down the front and a pair of silver buckled black boots. Her necklace features a ring. Just before the Battle of the Gardens she receives Squall's Griever ring from Zell, who borrowed it to make Rinoa a replica. Rinoa adds the Griever ring to her necklace and wears it along with her own.
In the original North American release, Rinoa's height was listed as 161 cm (5' 3.5"), but the Final Fantasy VIII Ultimania, the latest edition released seven years after the game, has her height as 163cm (5' 4"). This is because all the character heights were wrongly converted from the metric to imperial for the North American version of Final Fantasy VIII.
Apart from the angel wings symbol and her ring, shooting stars have a significance to Rinoa. She points at a shooting star during her introductory scene, her strongest weapon is Shooting Star and one of her most powerful Limit Breaks is called Wishing Star.
A member of the Timber resistance group Forest Owls. Uses her dog to make special attacks.Scan description
Rinoa is compassionate, warm, and friendly, although she can act stubborn and naive. Despite being born to a well-to-do family and her father being an important figure in Galbadian military, she is concerned by the state of the world. Rinoa joins a resistance movement fighting against Galbadia to achieve Timber's independence in a mixture of genuine desire to fight for Timber and rebellion against her father. However, the Owls are amateurish and she has little experience with the realities of combat, and is anxious at the prospect of fighting solo. She can be impulsive and act without thinking, which gets her into trouble. She is loyal to her friends and committed to doing what she thinks is right.
Rinoa clashes at times with Squall and Quistis for what she perceives as a cold and mechanical attitude and their impatience with her inexperience. Rinoa serves as a foil to Squall as a person who had a normal upbringing and who can freely express emotion. Although she initially dislikes him for his coldness she grows to like him and encourages him to open up and talk about his feelings, as well as teasing him playfully to try and break through his shell.
I like it like this. I liked having my mom hold me. My dad, too, back when we got along. But now... Squall, you're the one who gives me the most comfort. Comfort and happiness... and annoyance and disappointment, too!Rinoa Heartilly
Rinoa Heartilly is the daughter of Galbadia's military commander Fury Caraway and idol singer Julia Heartilly. When Rinoa was almost five, Julia died in a car accident and afterwards, Rinoa and her father grew steadily apart. At 16, Rinoa dated a SeeD cadet named Seifer Almasy from whom she learned more of the mercenary-for-hire service SeeD provides. By the time she is seventeen, Rinoa has moved away from home and presumably changed her surname to her mother's maiden name. To compound their problems, Rinoa joined the Forest Owls, a group of freedom fighters rebelling against the Galbadian government.
Rinoa meets Squall during the SeeD inauguration party at Balamb Garden where she gets him to dance. Rinoa is on an errand on behalf of the Timber Owls to convince Headmaster Cid Kramer to employ SeeD mercenaries to aid their cause. With Seifer's help she is introduced to Cid and, hearing her plight, he allows her the use of a group of three SeeD despite the meager payment she offers in return and the complaints of the Garden Faculty.
The three SeeD chosen are Zell Dincht, Selphie Tilmitt, and Squall Leonhart. While disappointed that Seifer is not part of the squad, Rinoa is nonetheless elated SeeD has come to the Owls' aid. The SeeD at first willingly assist in Rinoa's plans to kidnap Vinzer Deling, the president of Galbadia, by hijacking his train. Although the plan is successfully deployed, the president they kidnap is a fake and the SeeD's confidence in the Timber group begins to wane.
They learn the real president will make an announcement at the Timber TV Station and the Forest Owls hatch a new plan with their SeeD mercenaries watching skeptically from a distance. Squall requests to see the contract that bounds the SeeD group to the Timber Owls, only to discover they are under Rinoa's command as long as Timber remains under Galbadian oppression. Rinoa wants them to take over the newly-activated TV Station to broadcast a message of sedition, but while on their way to infiltrate the station new intelligence indicates that, due to the military presence, the plan would have to be abandoned. Squall expresses the SeeD group's misgivings of being part of such a casual organization and questions Rinoa's commitment. The argument ends with her leaving.
During the president's TV broadcast, a renegade Seifer takes him hostage over the air and Squall, Selphie and Zell rush to the station to aid Quistis who had been pursuing Seifer. Seifer is spirited away by Sorceress Edea, saving the president. Having seen the incident on the Timber TV Station screen, and discovering the Forest Owls' base destroyed, Rinoa returns looking for Seifer and the rest.
Arriving too late to find him, she orders the SeeD to help her lie low while the Galbadian forces search the town. Contemplating Seifer's fate leads Squall and Rinoa into another argument over their views on life before they are given word it is clear to leave town. On their way to Galbadia Garden the two argue again, this time about Squall's cold attitude towards his teammates.
The group makes it to the Garden and after reminiscing about Seifer, whom they presume dead from execution, Rinoa reveals her past with him (in the Japanese version, she says she no longer likes him), and the SeeD receive new orders. Rinoa pretends to be a SeeD to avoid conflict and joins Squall's group in heading to Deling City to meet their contact, Rinoa's father, General Caraway. After meeting with the SeeD General Caraway locks Rinoa in another room and informs the SeeD of his plan to assassinate the sorceress, Edea Kramer.
After the briefing Rinoa escapes the room, rushing to Quistis to tell her of her plan to stop the sorceress by tricking her to wear the Odine Bangle said to suppress a sorceress's powers. Quistis berates her thinking Rinoa's plan is only contrived to oppose her father. Left to her own devices, Rinoa carries out her plan alone, infiltrating the Presidential Residence, and offers the bangle to Edea as a gift. Edea renders Rinoa under her control like a puppet, and Rinoa placidly follows Edea out onto the balcony where she is designated as a sacrifice for Edea's coronation ceremony.
Edea summons two Iguion statues to attack Rinoa, but Squall and Irvine arrive to save her. Rinoa fights alongside Squall when he attacks Edea, but the attack proves unsuccessful and the group is captured and imprisoned in the D-District Prison, barred by Irvine who escaped. Irvine returns, acting on orders from presumably Rinoa's father, to retrieve Rinoa from imprisonment and, with tenacious convincing from Rinoa, the pair assists the rest of the group's escape from the compound.
During their capture, the group learns that in retaliation for the attack on Sorceress Edea, Galbadia has targeted Balamb and Trabia Gardens in a missile attack. Splitting into two groups, the party attempts to prevent the attack: Selphie's plan being to sabotage the missiles aimed at Balamb Garden, and Squall rushing to warn Balamb Garden of the impending attack. It is up to the player to place Rinoa in either group. The party is reunited in Fishermans Horizon where the unharmed but now mobile Balamb Garden crashes. Squall acts as an ambassador and enacts a formal apology, but Mayor Dobe, the leader of the pacifist city, tells them to leave as their presence can only cause destruction.
Galbadian soldiers invade the town and Dobe heads off to discuss peacefully with the soldiers. The soldiers do not listen, and Dobe is rescued by Squall and his team. Grudgingly, the mayor accepts their apology, and orders the city's technicians to restore Balamb Garden to full functionality. During this the participants of Selphie's group reunite with Squall and for a moment Squall is almost elated, something that does not go unnoticed by Rinoa.
With the mobile Balamb Garden Squall is appointed commander of SeeD and to celebrate his friends organize a concert for his honor. During the concert Squall and Rinoa spend time together. If Rinoa doesn't like the band's music Rinoa and Squall argue and she runs away. If Rinoa enjoys the music she convinces Squall to trust in his friends more.
As his first command Squall liberates Balamb from Galbadian occupation. Next they head to Trabia Garden, Selphie's home Garden, where he offers the students Balamb Garden's support. While waiting for Selphie, Rinoa voices her worries about being an interloper and a burden within the group and what would happen in the future. The others recollect their pasts and discover they were raised in the same orphanage and that Edea is the Matron who used to look after them.
The Garden embarks to Edea's Orphanage in search of clues, but is intercepted by a similarly mobile Galbadia Garden. The Battle of the Gardens ensues, and Rinoa falls off the Garden's edge but Squall rides a Galbadian jetpack to save her and regroup with the others inside the enemy Garden. Rinoa asks Squall about his lion ring, as she is holding it for him, having obtained it from Zell for safekeeping. Sorceress Edea is defeated and Rinoa starts acting strange: she revives a defeated Seifer and then collapses. It is revealed that Edea had been possessed by another sorceress from the future known as Ultimecia, but being defeated by SeeD snapped her out of it and she becomes the SeeD's ally.
Rinoa remains in a coma and her condition concerns Squall, driving him to seek a cure. He knows Ellone can send people's consciousnesses back in time and searches for her to ask her to send him in Rinoa's past to discover what happened to her. Being lead to Esthar, Squall is sent to the Lunar Base space station with Rinoa to meet Ellone.
Aboard the space station, Rinoa awakens under the control of Ultimecia, as after being defeated, Edea unknowingly passed on her sorceress power to Rinoa. Ultimecia uses Rinoa to unlock Adel's Tomb and leaves Rinoa to die in space. Squall ditches his escape pod from the Lunar Base that is being destroyed by the Lunar Cry and intercepts Rinoa in space. The two discover the derelict Ragnarok airship which was floating aimlessly in space near them.
On board the Ragnarok, Squall communicates their current situation to Esthar, and enables the ship's autopilot to return to the planet. Squall confesses many things to Rinoa about himself and Rinoa tells him he is the one who gives her the most comfort and happiness. The land base tells the two Rinoa will be seized by the Esthar government upon landing.
Upon landing Esthar officials take Rinoa to contain her sorceress powers in a new tomb in the Sorceress Memorial. Fearing she would hurt anyone else or be hated by society, Rinoa allows her powers to be sealed. After being pushed into action by his friends, Squall breaks into the Sorceress Memorial as Rinoa is about to be cryogenically frozen, and takes Rinoa away with him to Edea's Orphanage.
In the flower field behind the orphanage, Rinoa voices her concerns about being possessed and turning evil and Squall makes a silent vow to become Rinoa's Sorceress Knight. Rinoa asks Squall to kill her should her worst fear of becoming evil come to reality, but Squall reassures her his enemy is Ultimecia alone. Rinoa tells Squall of a nightmare she had in which she wanted to see him, but could not find him. The couple promise to meet at the flower field should they be separated.
Joining forces with Esthar, the SeeD devise a plan to defeat Ultimecia. They invade the Lunatic Pandora on Ragnarok and fight through Seifer and Sorceress Adel (now Ultimecia's vessel). Ultimecia orders Seifer to capture Rinoa, who is junctioned to Adel's body through Ultimecia's powers. Squall and the others defeat Adel who passes on her sorceress power to Rinoa. Ultimecia possesses Rinoa and Ellone sends Ultimecia and Rinoa back in time so Ultimecia can cast time compression, a magic spell only possible to cast if the sorceress's consciousness simultaneously exists in the past, present, and future.
The process of time compression is long, and allows for Squall, Rinoa, Zell, Quistis, Irvine, and Selphie to enter Ultimecia Castle in the future and defeat Ultimecia. The time compression unravels leaving the combatants stranded in time and they make their way back by remembering who they are and where they want to be. Rinoa reappears in the flower field where she and Squall had made their promise, but Squall is nowhere to be found. Using her sorceress powers, Rinoa finds Squall in a Void, trapped between time, and brings him back to the flower field.
During a party at Balamb Garden to celebrate SeeD's victory over Ultimecia, Squall and Rinoa stay outside on a balcony overlooking the ocean. Noticing a shooting star, much as the one he had seen on the night the pair first met, Squall smiles at Rinoa and kisses her as the Garden flies under the moonlight.
Rinoa uses a Blaster Edge in battle. Through upgrades via Junk Shop she can come to wield other variant models. The Blaster Edge, which should be attached to her left forearm, does not appear in cutscenes. When in trouble she receives the aid of her dog, Angelo.
Rinoa wields the Blaster Edge as her default weapon. There are five types available for Rinoa to use.
- Pinwheel – Initial model. Described in Weapons Monthly, April Issue.
- Valkyrie – Described in Weapons Monthly, May Issue.
- Rising Sun – Described in Weapons Monthly, July Issue.
- Cardinal – Described in Weapons Monthly, August Issue.
- Shooting Star – Described in Weapons Monthly, 1st Issue.
Rinoa is the only character in Final Fantasy VIII to have two Limit Breaks. The first one she starts with, while the second is obtained through story progression.
Combine is Rinoa's primary Limit Break, in which Rinoa teams up with Angelo to perform a variety of attacks. To gain access to Combine moves the player has to read Pet Pals magazines and walk around with Rinoa in the party so Angelo can learn it. Learning all of Angelo's Combine skills in the Steam version earns the player the achievement Dog Trainer.
Angel Wing is Rinoa's second Limit Break, appearing in her Limit Break list after she obtains sorceress powers. While in the Angel Wing state Rinoa's magic damage is boosted five times more powerful than usual, and puts her into a berserk spell-casting state in which she uses only magic.
Despite being the character with the least combat experience, of the main party Rinoa has some of the highest base Stats at Level 100, surpassing all others in Strength, Magic and Spirit, possibly due to her inheriting sorceress powers.
Creation and Development
Tetsuya Nomura, the main character designer for Final Fantasy VIII, had difficulty drawing Rinoa. He wanted to create a character who would leave an impression on the viewer; instead of a beauty, he wanted something cute. He had a hard time with this, and feels that some of his personal preferences were included in the design. For Rinoa he also created a "cute" vocabulary list and some ideas for her habits which were sent off to the scenario writer Kazushige Nojima.
For his part Nojima wanted to have Rinoa like books and reading; this is the reason she is found in the Balamb Garden library when not in the active party. One detail that did not make the Japanese-to-English translation was Rinoa's habit of forming cutesy words (much like Selphie). One such word was oHARO~ ("ohayo" (good morning) and "HELLO" put together).
Mayuko Aoki acted out most of the motion capture needed for Rinoa's FMV sequences, although Yasuko Yokoyama acted as her motion actress for the waltz scene and Hoshimi Asai performed Rinoa's stunt scenes, such as when she falls down the side of Balamb Garden.
During the game Rinoa does not have a voice, but in some FMVs, she is heard breathing. Foley artists in the USA recorded and mixed all the sounds featured in the FMV movies.
There is a dummied piece of dialogue in the scene where Squall and Rinoa were onboard Ragnarok where Rinoa tried to dissuade an assumed jealousy in Squall for her having dated Seifer in the past. When Squall did not catch on, Rinoa commented that Squall does not care about other people's pasts.
The romance between Squall and Rinoa is accompanied by a variation of Julia Heartilly's "Eyes on Me". Rinoa's introduction in Balamb Garden's dance hall is accompanied by the "Eyes on Me" variation "Waltz for the Moon", and her second introduction on the Timber Owls train is accompanied by another variant, titled "My Mind", which often is considered to be her theme.
This would continue on as a pattern over the next two games, as the character themes of Garnet and Yuna would likewise be variations of "Melodies of Life" and "Suteki da ne", the themes of their respective romances with Zidane and Tidus.
Pocket Station Memorycard Icons
An icon sprite of Rinoa appears in the Pocket Station memorycard file manager.
As a part of the Forest Owls, Rinoa works to undermine the Galbadian government along with her fellow freedom fighters. She meets Squall when she goes to Balamb Garden to seek help for her group's plans to abduct the Galbadian president. She cannot help falling for the SeeD, yet she will find herself the unwitting inheritor of a sorceress's power, making her a liability and putting her life at risk during the war against the sorceresses.Online description
Rinoa appears as a playable character in the iOS version of Theatrhythm, and must be purchased in order to use.
|Brace (Lv1)||Level 15|
|Regen (Lv1)||Level 20|
|Focus (Lv2)||Level 30|
|Regen (Lv2)||Level 40|
|Brace (Lv2)||Level 50|
|Regen (Lv3)||Level 60|
|Focus (Lv3)||Level 65|
|Brace (Lv3)||Level 80|
Rinoa returns as an unlockable character, and is unlocked by collecting Turquoise Crystal Shards.
She is a Support oriented character. Her Limit, Wishing Star, deals damage in proportion to her Magic and Agility.
|Cry (Lv1)||4||Level 5|
|Counter (Lv2)||10||Level 30|
|Wishing Star||18||Level 40|
|Cry (Lv2)||14||Level 45|
|Spare Change||15||Level 50|
|Counter (Lv3)||16||Level 70|
|Cry (Lv3)||24||Level 80|
|Sinewy Etude (Lv1)||7||Initial|
|Elegy (Lv1)||10||Level 15|
|Regen (Lv1)||12||Level 20|
|Hero's Rime (Lv1)||18||Level 25|
|Sinewy Etude (Lv2)||10||Level 35|
|Elegy (Lv2)||15||Level 55|
|Regen (Lv2)||18||Level 60|
|Hero's Rime (Lv2)||26||Level 65|
|Sinewy Etude (Lv3)||15||Level 75|
|Elegy (Lv3)||30||Level 85|
|Regen (Lv3)||30||Level 90|
|Hero's Rime (Lv3)||35||Level 95|
Rebelled against her Galbadian military father to join the Timber resistance group, The Forest Owls. A cheerful and carefree young woman who falls in love with Squall.Character Description
Rinoa appears as an ally and a summonable Legend in Final Fantasy Airborne Brigade. She is depicted in her Final Fantasy VIII default outfit and in a wedding dress. Her abilities are Angelo Cannon, Angelo Rush and Angelo Strike. Her EX abilities are Angelo Strike, Angelo Rush, Angelo Recover and Angel Wing. In battle, Rinoa is armed with her Pinwheel.
This vibrant young member of the Forest Owls is extremely moody after waking up.Description
Rinoa is an exclusive character only available from the Premium Character Shop as a random downloadable content, she uses the Angelo Cannon ability during battle.
In the original demo of Final Fantasy VIII, Rinoa is part of the team that infiltrates Dollet and is featured in Selphie's place in the evacuation FMV. She has no Limit Break, and no spoken lines, but is the only one able to summon a Guardian Force, Leviathan.
Squall and Rinoa appear in a technical demo for the PlayStation 2 where they reenact the waltz scene from Final Fantasy VIII to showcase the console's graphics engine.
Non-Final Fantasy Appearances
Kingdom Hearts series
Dragon Quest & Final Fantasy in Itadaki Street Mobile
Rinoa reappears in this mobile-phone edition of Dragon Quest & Final Fantasy in Itadaki Street Portable. While initially not part of the player roster, she was later added on August 16, 2010, following the game's release.
Gunslinger Stratos 2
Rinoa's costume is to be released in November 2014.
In Popular Culture
- For more information, see Dead Fantasy Wiki: Rinoa Heartilly.
Rinoa has appeared in the second segment of the fanmade Dead Fantasy series. She uses a gunblade for melee combat, possesses permanent angel wings (that enable her to fly) and uses the sorceress power. She debuts in Dead Fantasy II with Kairi to aid Yuna, Rikku, and Tifa against their Dead or Alive rivals. Rinoa will appear in a future installment Dead Fantasy VII to fight against her rival, Rachel.
Rinoa has a fanmade design known as the "Dion Rogers' Rinoa" that is popular among cosplayers. Late 2004 to early 2005 Square held a competition to see who would make the best fanart following the theme "FFanything-2". The winner would get their design turned into a pixel rendition.
A minor reference is done to Rinoa in the "Yellow" Trailer where Yang Xiao Long visits The Club and interrogates Hei Xiong if he knows the "Transient Princess". The Transient Princess is in fact the name of a Rinoa CG that Monty Oum created and the image's name references the way that Final Fantasy VIII manikins are named in the Dissidia series.
In one of the windows outside the Artnia café is a display containing a crystal chandelier, a suspended wall mirror and a candle lit dresser in front of a red curtain. Besides the dresser is a silhouetted figure of Rinoa Heartilly in her "request pose" that she performed when asking for a dance with Squall Leonhart.
Being one of the central characters of Final Fantasy VIII, Rinoa has featured in numerous merchandise, such as in the Final Fantasy Play Arts Action Figures, Final Fantasy Trading Arts, Final Fantasy Trading Arts Mini and other Final Fantasy VIII Action Figures.
Rinoa has been part of the Coca-Cola marketing campaigns where she has had several different bottle-cap figurines: chibi and regular versions, red crystal versions of each and the color of the figurine's base either yellow or red.
The Transcendent Artists Collection: Final Fantasy VIII statue features Rinoa with the Guardian Force Siren.
The Rinoa Zippo lighter is perhaps the rarest piece of merchandise; only a few hundred were ever produced. Other very rare pieces of merchandise are the ballroom scene Final Fantasy Cold Cast Collection statue and the Rinoa chrome statue, both limited at 3,000 pieces.
Before the magazine Shonen Jump revealed the name "Rinoa Heartilly" many publications translated the name as "Lenore", which means "light" (romaji transcription of "Lenore" is Rinoa). The French translation of the game comes closer to this, calling her "Linoa" (also a Haitian/Tahitian female name meaning "light of the earth").
The name Rinoa may be a variation of Riona, a Gaelic Irish name meaning both "pure" and "royal". Both meanings could be attributed to Rinoa, in the angelic appearance of her sorceress powers and in the Forest Owls members referring to her as "princess".
Rinoa's surname, Heartilly, is derived from the English word "heartily". Heartily is an adverb meaning in a cordial manner, with warmth and sincerity, with zest or enthusiasm.
- During the ending of Dissidia Final Fantasy, when everyone is disappearing, a feather (possibly a reference to Rinoa) falls down towards Squall. He grabs hold of it and disappears with the other Warriors of Cosmos. In Shade Impulse, Squall mentions to Ultimecia and Onion Knight he made a promise to return to someone in his world, referring to Rinoa.
- Three of Rinoa's weapons, the Valkyrie, Cardinal and Shooting Star are Ultimecia's exclusive weapons in Dissidia Final Fantasy.
- Aside from the Laguna flashbacks, Rinoa is the only playable character in the present timeline to not have any connection to SeeD or Garden.
- Despite not being a SeeD, Rinoa can be paid salary when she is alone in the party during the sorceress assassination mission in Deling City.
- Rinoa's Blaster Edge might have been inspired by similar weapons found in Rudra no Hihō on the Super Famicom, a game that was release by Square in 1996. In that game, these weapons are mounted on the arm and shoots a crescent-shaped scythe at the enemy.
- Wikipedia article on Rinoa Heartilly
- Rebelling Princess - a fansite dedicated to Rinoa Heartilly containing exclusive interviews and background info.