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The Temple of the Goddess is a location in Final Fantasy XIII-2 and Lightning Returns: Final Fantasy XIII, although it cannot be visited in the former. It is the temple of Etro, originating from Valhalla, the middle world between the mortal and unseen realms where she resides. A fragment found in Final Fantasy XIII-2 suggests the temple was not erected in dedication to Etro, but rather by her, to imprison a "long-forgotten" enemy.


The temple of the goddess and the great Chaos

A cursed temple that stands in the north of the Wildlands, beneath which, it is said, lies the great Chaos.

The temple is not a thing of this world. It is an artifact which appeared from Valhalla, the realm of the dead goddess Etro, when the Chaos flooded through the gate. Could it offer some further understanding of the destruction that afflicts the world?

The Angel of Valhalla is meant to carry the chosen one to the temple of the goddess—that is what the legends say. Lightning heard a voice telling her as much when she arrived here. It seems like too great of a coincidence to mean nothing.


Spoiler warning: Plot and/or ending details follow. (Skip section)

Final Fantasy XIII-2 Fragments After[]

On the first day of the AF era that started on the Day of Ragnarok, Lightning is dragged into an abyss by a manifestation of chaos caused by a paradox. Lightning falls through the Historia Crux and ends up in Valhalla, the realm of death and chaos dislodged from time. She comes upon a moogle named Mog who challenges her to a duel and promptly loses. Touched by Mog's innocence, Lightning has him follow her.

Mog tells Lightning about Valhalla, the Void Beyond, and the goddess Etro. Lightning and Mog encounter Odin, who challenges Lightning and she learns to cast magic despite no longer being a l'Cie. After defeating Odin Lightning rides him to Etro's temple where Bahamut challenges her. Lightning loses her weapon, but Mog transforms into a bow for her to use to overcome the Eidolon. Standing before the goddess's throne, a brief oneness with Etro enables Lightning to understand the goddess's isolation and her love towards mankind.

Lightning transforms.

Lightning comes to realize Etro saw her and her friends as sinners for killing people during their time as l'Cie, yet freed them from their brands after giving Vanille and Fang the strength to become Ragnarok. Through the Eyes of Etro, Lightning sees various moments in time that include an era facing destruction, seeress Yeul repeatedly dying, Serah trapped in an endless dream, and her own losing battle with Yeul's Guardian, Caius. Her Guardian Corps uniform disappears and a suit of armor materializes in its place. Lightning chooses to stay as Etro's champion to contain the memories of the deceased and fight Caius as a way to atone for her sins.

Final Fantasy XIII-2[]

Lightning defends Etro's temple from Caius who wishes to vanquish the goddess. Unknown to both the battle is an endless cycle that is destined to repeat forever, as in Valhalla time does not flow as it should. At one point Caius summons a meteorite to crush the temple, but "later" the building stands intact.

Serah and Noel find another version of the temple in the Void Beyond, a realm between Time Gates. When Serah becomes separated from Noel she finds herself in the temple and talks to the past incarnations of Yeul until confronting her Guardian, Caius, at Etro's throne. She loses and is confined to a dream world, but escapes and reunites with Noel.

When Caius's Heart of Chaos is destroyed, he becomes part of the chaos itself. Revived, he sits on Etro's throne in the Void Beyond as chaos spills into the visible realm heralding the end of time.

Lightning's Story: Requiem of the Goddess[]

Lightning crystallized on Etro's throne.

Lightning makes her way to Etro's temple and finds the Chaos Yeuls holding Serah's soul hostage over the goddess's throne. The Yeuls summon Caius from the chaos to fight her, but Lightning prevails. Lightning realizes Serah continued the journey that would eventually kill her on her behalf. She almost succumbs into despair, but meets Serah's soul who comforts her. Serah's heart and soul find a safe haven inside Lightning's heart, and as chaos bleeds into the mortal realm, Lightning sits on the goddess's throne and turns into crystal to preserve herself, as well as Serah's heart and soul inside her, to one day awaken at the end of eternity and reunite with her sister.

Lightning Returns: Final Fantasy XIII[]

The Temple of the Goddess.

Lightning awakes 500 years later and finds a much altered world. The god Bhunivelze makes her the savior, tasking Lightning with saving humanity's souls and guiding them from the dying world of Nova Chrysalia. In exchange for her servitude, Bhunivelze promises to resurrect Serah for the new world he is crafting for the chosen.

When Lightning arrives in the Wildlands an ethereal voice calls out to her to seek the Angel of Valhalla. She notices that one of the area's most prominent landmarks is the temple where she once fought Caius. She learns that though the Wildlands is the last area where lush forests prevail, it is the place where the Chaos spilled forth when Etro died. She learns from the locals that a powerful Chaotic energy resides within the temple, though none can reach it.[note 1] She seeks the Angel of Valhalla, the legendary chocobo with wings of white that is said to guide the savior to Etro's temple.

Arriving at the foot of the temple on her steed, Lightning enters Poltae, a town where Etro's devout followers live in the ruins of Valhalla. She flies the chocobo to the temple where she confronts what she believes to be the source of the great Chaos: Caius Ballad. He strikes Lightning down, telling her to come and find him at the goddess's throne if she wants his soul. The temple is in ruin and corrupted by Chaos.

Lightning meets different incarnations of Paddra Nsu-Yeul, the ancient Pulsian seeress. They tell Lightning that Caius cannot die because different Yeuls from different timelines either wish for his salvation or demand he lives for fear of being alone. They construct walkways that allow Lightning safe passage while recounting their story, telling her the source of the Great Chaos is all the Yeuls who ever lived. Yeul could see the future at the cost of her own life, only to be reborn. The cycle of reincarnation splintered Yeul's soul and created a source of Chaos in the visible realm, slowly eroding it. Lightning steels her resolve to help the Yeuls achieve some respite by defeating Caius and saving his soul.

Lightning faces off against Caius.

Lightning reaches Etro's throne where Caius awaits her. He taunts her by suggesting she is a puppet to yet another deity and asks if his victory over her and Etro still stings. Caius only ever wished to save Yeul by killing Etro and severing the goddess's hold over her, but Lightning blames him for the entropy of time. Lightning defeats Caius, but he is revived, and reveals the Yeuls refuse to let him die. He demonstrates this by skewering his sword through his chest, but he is brought back to life. Caius says the savior has no place in the temple, as there is no one there she can save: Caius deems himself and the Yeuls beyond salvation, as bringing the Yeuls to the new world would only corrupt it like it did the current world.

Seeing that she cannot save Caius Lightning departs. As she is about to leave the temple, the final incarnation of Yeul from the 700 AF Dying World talks to her. She reveals the Angel of Valhalla is Odin, Lightning's former Eidolon, and that she is the only Yeul whose heart longs for someone other than Caius.

As the final day comes to pass the Temple of the Goddess is destroyed in the Apocalypse. While Caius and most of the Yeuls remain in what is to become the new unseen realm as guidance to the dead, the last incarnation of Yeul travels to the new world with Noel.

Spoilers end here.


When Lightning is inside the Temple of the Goddess, her HP constantly depletes due to a curse Caius put on her. It dispels after Caius is defeated.

Main Quests[]

3-3 Where Chaos Sleeps[]

At last, the Angel of Valhalla has recovered the use of his wings.
The source of the voice that brought Lightning and the angel together remains a mystery. It is time to go to the temple of the goddess where the great Chaos lies, just as the voice foretold:
The encounter is ordained. You have been led to the fountainhead whence the Chaos flows.
At the entrance to the Temple of the Goddess, Lightning encounters her old nemesis Caius. The man who unleashed the unseen Chaos on the world tells her that he is a corpse living a life bereft of meaning, unable even to die.
Caius takes away part of Lightning's power and disappears into the darkness of the temple. Even in her weakened state, Lightning goes after him, further into the temple. She is resolved to unlock the secret of the great Chaos.
Lightning now knows the true nature of the great Chaos. It is made up of the very substance of Yeul's souls, that over countless generations of birth and rebirth have become threaded together to form the fabric of the Chaos.
Yeul's existence is too dangerous, too destructive to be allowed in the new world, and that is why Caius refuses Lightning's salvation. He is inextricably bound to Yeul. He cannot die, but he can watch over the conflicted souls of Yeul, and descend with them into the darkness at the end of the world.

Lightning must cross gaps via ephemeral platforms.

After the scenes, the player should head north and search the northeast corner for Ruinga Lv. 2. Turning back and heading up the southwest slope leads to the next level where the player can enter the Hall of Avarice.

Continuing triggers another scene in which Yeul asks Lightning to save Caius. The player should continue up the platforms, turn left, then drop down and examine the plaque on the north side of the room to obtain the Goddess Glyphs. Heading up the rubble to the right allows the player to talk to Yeul to manifest more platforms and jump across. There is a Firaga Lv. 2 to the left before heading north.

Upon reaching the War's Cage: Middle Level, the player should talk to Yeul in the southwest corner on the upper level to spawn more platforms. Going into a small room and talking to another Yeul spawns more platforms outside. Before going up the player should drop between the second and third platform to get a Blizzaga Lv. 2 spell. To reach Yeul again, the player must use the golden pole to slide down, then walk back up and cross from the first platform.

After heading up the stone rubble the player must drop down to reach Yeul to create more platforms, and then continue on for another scene. Afterward, the platforms become available. Jumping across to the right reaches Thundaga Lv. 2. The player should drop down and go back around to continue.

Upon reaching the War's Cage: Highest Level, the player must head to the north side of the room and check the plaque for the Chaos Glyphs before heading up.

Instead of talking to Yeul, the player should drop off the other side of the platform to get an Elementa Lv. 2 and a Tri-Point Coronet, then retrace the steps to Yeul and talk to her again. The plater should cross the platforms to an Aeroga Lv. 2 before continuing on. Talking to Yeul again to cross more platforms allows the player to enter a new area.

Talking to Yeul opens up more platforms that lead to another scene. Afterwards, the player must cross the platforms to another hole in the wall and follow the path clockwise to an Elementa Lv. 2 before continuing northeast. After another scene the battle against Caius starts.

  • First Time Rewards: Maximum HP +120, Maximum ATB +10, Strength +56, Magic +126, Recovery Item Capacity +1.

Completing this quest earns players the An Appetite for Chaos achievement.


War's Cage
Hall of Avarice
Hall of Rebirth
Hall of Memory


Musical themes[]

In Lightning Returns: Final Fantasy XIII, both "Caius's Theme" and "Yeul's Theme" play in the temple.



A goddess is a female deity with supernatural powers in polytheistic religions. Goddesses most often have female characteristics that are apotheosized in their pure form, and some cases they have rather general for all humans characteristics, both men and women, like Sophia, and other times they can have characteristics that are rather not specific for women like battle and hunting success (Artemis). Thus while they have been, are and may be associated with as wide a range of phenomena as male deities, including war, creation and sometimes destruction (and death), life-giving, healing and compassion, they have been especially associated with beauty, love, motherhood and in prehistoric religions and also later with the Earth, fertility (Mother-goddess cult in prehistoric times).


  1. Although it is stated that none have been able to reach Etro's Temple since the Chaos consumed the world, a rope bridge connects Poltae and the temple that does not share architectural similarities with the surrounding area.