But when nine and nine meets nine, Tempus Finis shall be willed upon them. For without the Agito, their world—called Orience—must persist in its spiral.
Tempus Finis (フィニスの刻, Finisu no Toki?) is an apocalyptic event in Final Fantasy Type-0 and Final Fantasy Agito. It is the time when the world of Orience is faced with destruction and the Agito, a prophesied savior, is said to arrive. The entry of the Ultima War within the Annals of Orience appears to provide foreshadowing to the world's end. The Nameless Tome is an ancient book said to predict the coming of Agito and Tempus Finis.
In the land of Orience, it is said that 'when Tempus Finis arrives, the crystal will guide Agito, those who will balance the world.' Many interpret this as 'saviors, called Agito, will emerge when the catastrophe, referred to as Finis, befalls this world.'Online description
Finis is the point when the plans of Arecia Al-Rashia and Gala are supposed to come to fruition at the end of each cycle of time. While Arecia uses the Agito, chosen human souls, to try and open the Unseen Gate, Gala uses his Rursus Army to slaughter the people of Orience in an attempt to trigger a flood of souls to force the Gate open.
The Gate is the barrier between the mortal world and the unseen realm of the dead, said to be operated by the goddess Etro and found only by the deceased on their way to the other side. Following their divine orders, Arecia and Gala attempt to locate and open the Gate. Each time the two failed, Orience would be consumed by Tempus Finis, time reverting to the beginning of the cycle, continuing for 600,104,972 times. Gala brands his chosen as the Rursan Arbiter, who is said to make the Final Decision on the world's fate and test those seeking to become Agito.
In each cycle within the spiral of history, Tempus Finis is instigated in the Oriencian calendar year 842, when "9 and 9 meet 9" (when three nations of Orience are conquered by the fourth and the cycle of death and rebirth collapses). When Finis arrives, several drastic environmental changes occur: the sky and sea turn red, choked with dark clouds. An ominous sound like a rumbling wind is also present. Along with the arrival of the Rursan Army, strange monsters spawn. A temple, Pandæmonium, rises from sea off the coast of Rubrum where the Judge waits to test those wanting to become Agito. The only constant source of bright light appears to be over the palace, where a fiery depiction of Etro's gate shines amid rotating clockwork gears. Airships can't approach it, and only l'Cie are said to be able to reach the temple.
During the first cycle one of those chosen to be the Agito is a cadet from Rubrum, saved by Ace from a behemoth attack. When Finis arrives, as a member of Class Zero, the cadet fights the Rursus alongside the other Akademeia cadets they befriended during the war. The academy's cadet master, Miyu Kagirohi, reveals her true identity as Judge Myuria, a subordinate of Gala who tests the worthiness of those attempting to become Agito. The cadet defeats her, but fails to defeat Gala as the Rursan Arbiter. With the experiment a failure, the world resets and the the cycle of history is repeated.
Final Fantasy Type-0: Change the World novel details the penultimate cycle of Orience. As Tempus Finis commences when Orience is united under the Vermilion Bird's banner, Rem Tokimiya becomes the Judge who is to make the Final Decision on the world's fate. Class Zero realizes they might have to become Agito by means of felling her. They venture to Pandæmonium, convincing themselves they are not felling Rem, but releasing her.
Qator Bashtar of Milites takes the class on his Gabriel, and once at the temple, crystallizes. Rem sends the Rursan Reavers at them and reminds the cadets have come to the temple independent of Arecia, and thus cannot be revived. They defeat the Rursus, but Queen dies and the others lose all their memories of her.
The path to the Judge is clear, but everyone is weakened from fighting the Rursus. The Judge kills everyone but Ace and Machina with a bolt of lightning. Ace asks Machina to extract all of their phantoma to give him the power to defeat the Judge. As Ace also dies, Machina absorbs his classmates' phantoma as his memories of Ace and their final conversation are erased. With the souls of the twelve members joining with his, voices of encouragement ring in his ears although he cannot recall whom they once belonged to. Rem's voice begs him to stop her. Machina fells the Judge using Rem's ultimate spell, Holy, empowered by the combined powers of Class Zero and Machina himself. Rem is back to her old self, and though dying, is glad she could be with Machina in her final moments.
The lone Machina is angry and confused that things turned out this way after all the hardships they went through. If only he were stronger, he could have protected everyone. If only he had been a l'Cie. Arecia approaches him and telepathically imparts the truth about Orience to him: the world is locked in an endless spiral to be repeatedly destroyed in Tempus Finis, the participant souls gradually changing through the cycles, as even if their memories are erased, the souls remember the truth. Arecia repeats that Machina's presence among her children weakens them, and asks if he wants the world to be reset for another cycle. Machina wants the spiral to revolve so he will have another chance to save those important to him. Arecia tells him to rest until the time again comes.
When nine and nine meet nine, the depths of reason shall stir. When the seal of creation is broken, a voice like thunder shall sound, and thou shalt know—We have arrived.Prophecy from the Nameless Tome
During the 600,104,972nd repeat of Orience's history, Tempus Finis arrives with the triumph of Rubrum over the rest of Orience. Pandæmonium rises from the ocean and the Crystals of Orience send their l'Cie there to be tested for the position of Agito. The Judge in this cycle is Cid Aulstyne, a mortal man who was taken to the temple by one the White Tiger Crystal l'Cie. He loses his humanity when he becomes the Judge and his sole goal becomes locating the Agito as per the gods' will.
When the Rursus attack, Arecia offers Class Zero the chance to rewrite history. The original twelve members of Class Zero, Arecia's chosen Agito, are given passage to the temple by the Azure Dragon Crystal Secundus l'Cie Claes Celestia Misca Sancest. The Vermilion Bird Crystal offers for the cadets to become l'Cie and fight the Rursus, or continue as mortals. If the group chooses to become l'Cie, they die, and the cycle is repeated.
If they choose to remain human, Class Zero defeats the Rursan Arbiter as mortals, saving Orience. Seeing the cadets' conviction and unwillingness to be revived for another spiral, Arecia abandons the experiment to find Etro's gate and departs from Orience, the world entering a new era as the light of the Crystals fades.
"Tempus Finis" is the eponymous track that plays during combat within Pandæmonium.
When the Akademeia's Fountain Courtyard stage transitions, the area becomes red and foggy indicating that Tempus Finis has started.
Etymology and symbolism
Tempus is Latin for time.
Finis is a Latin noun that translates "end". Other translations include "limit", "boundary" and "purpose".
Finis Tempus translates to "end times". The end times is a future described in the eschatologies of several world religions.
The first lines of Tempus Finis phase "When nine and nine meet nine..." is a flipped version of "666", known as the "number of the Beast". The last lines of the prophecy regarding Tempus Finis and the Agito share similarities with the unveiling of the Four Horsemen in Revelation 6:1.
The Three Ages of Buddhism are divisions of time following Buddha's passing. Mappō is the "degenerate" Third Age. Descriptions of Mappō vary widely, though all bear themes of existential misery and great suffering. Japanese Buddhism dated from the Heian Era describes Mappō as the days when the universe has exhausted its karma. The earth itself would rupture open, its fissures leading into Naraka (Hell), and out would pour demon consorts of Yama, the Judge of the Dead, to capture those who have not repented for their karma to be thrown into the depths of eternal damnation. Only those who turn to Buddha and his bodhisavvas would to be saved.