Thancred Waters is a male midland Hyur Gladiator and later Rogue who played an important role in the Ul'dah storyline of the original Final Fantasy XIV and currently is involved in the plot of Final Fantasy XIV: A Realm Reborn.
Thancred is a Hyur of medium height and ash-blond hair. He has neck tattoos like his former Circle of Knowing allies Yda, Papalymo, and Y'shtola. He wears a white long-sleeved shirt covered by black tunic with leather belts over his left shoulder and a black belt on his waist. He wears white fingerless gloves and greenish pants with a heavily patterned black leather greaves and sandals. Thancred's attire changed during the events of Final Fantasy XIV: A Realm Reborn, now wearing a white belt and Sharlayan goggles on his left shoulder.
Ever since Final Fantasy XIV: Heavensward Thancred's hair has grown longer and his left eye has changed from brown to gray, which he covers with an eye patch. While he maintains it is purely cosmetic, in the rare instances his eye is visible it is notably silver instead of the original brown.
Thancred is an intelligent smooth-talker with a fondness for women, though he does get flustered when Minfilia Warde points out some of the shadier elements of his past, even as a compliment. Thancred is devoted to Minfilia and views her as a close friend, akin to a sister. Following the events of the Calamity, Thancred became a workaholic to the point of exhaustion, trying to fill in the shoes of Louisoix Leveilleur.
After learning that Minfilia had become the Word of the Mother, Thancred's disposition changed, becoming less cheerful and more stoic and hardened, though he still retains his dry wit. Despite this, Thancred has come to accept Minfilia's fate. He is devoted to the Scions of the Seventh Dawn's cause and has become something akin to their spy and recon-agent, willing to delve into hostile territory. The other Scions are fond of Thancred and view him as a close friend. Thancred in return is protective of his friends and allies and, in particular, holds the Warrior of Light in the highest esteem. In the later patches of Final Fantasy XIV: Stormblood, Thancred is revealed as a cunning and clever tactician.
In Shadowbringers, Thancred's feelings and inner-conflict over Minfilia's fate are laid bare. He is initially reluctant to accept her reincarnation in the First, Ryne, but follows his Minfilia's wish to look after Ryne while keeping emotionally distant. This leads Ryne to believe that Thancred hates her, for which he later apologizes.
Thancred was a street urchin in Limsa Lominsa, snatching purses with a band of petty thieves. One day he targeted Louisoix Leveilleur, but was caught red-handed. Instead of turning him in, Louisoix asked Thancred to aid his fellow man with his talents. The boy returned with Louisoix to study survival and intelligence gathering techniques, becoming an Archon and then a member of the Circle of Knowing.
At the age of seventeen, Thancred appeared in Ul'dah on the day of a big festival, aiding subdue a Goobbue that suddenly went on a rampage. He questioned the actions of Niellefresne for orchestrating the events at the parade that had cost the life of Ascilla's father. Unable to get Nielle to fess up, Thancred was exiled from the city until the authorities looked to question him. He discovered Nielle collapsed on the floor and witnessed his death. Knowing Garlean spymasters would come for Ascilla due to her father's betrayal, Thancred renamed her "Minfilia" so none would come looking for her.
Thancred drifted in and out of Minfilia's life, but on her eighteenth birthday he delivered her a mythril knife and a missive from his mentor: Louisoix Leveilleur. She was upset he told Louisoix about her gift, but Thancred revealed that the Echo will help people survive the upcoming calamity, although how she uses it would be up to her.
Thancred, Yda, Papalymo, and Y'shtola attempted to defeat Gaius van Baelsar. Thancred prayed at the Milvaneth Sacrarium as the Calamity struck and though not shown, in Tales from the Calamity Thancred had persuaded the sultana, Nanamo Ul Namo, to do a similar vigil at the Arrzaneth Ossuary.
The Warrior of Light ends up in an altercation in Ul'dah with some thugs led by Ungust who harass a refugee woman in the streets. Realizing the Warrior of Light had used the Echo to clear her name, Thancred invites them to meet the Antecedent in the Waking Sands with the password "Wild Rose" to be given to the clerk Tataru. The Warrior of Light meets Minfilia there, who introduces the other Scions of the Seventh Dawn and assigns the Warrior to assist Thancred in discovering who is responsible for missing refugees in Camp Drybone.
They discover it was Ungust posing as a priest of Nald'thal to lure the poor into being captured by Amalj'aa. The Warrior of Light is caught in a trap and taken to the Bowl of Embers along with Ungust and a corrupt Brass Blades member. After the Warrior of Light slays the Lord of the Inferno itself in self-defense, Thancred arrives with a detachment of the Immortal Flames and regrets he could not help sooner. He confides that the other survivors had to be put down due to Ifrit's tempering.
Thancred gradually appears less often at the Waking Sands as he works on other assignments. Much later, it is discovered he has become possessed by Lahabrea via a black crystal necklace while out investigating the Ascians. Using his body, the Ascian Lahabrea secretly aided both the beastmen and Gaius van Baelsar to bring about the return of "the one true god." He unmasks at Castrum Centri as the Scions escape on Cid's airship. They realize Lahabrea possessing Thancred was how Livia sas Junius was able to raid the Waking Sands, and conclude Thancred became possessed due to pushing himself so hard to make up for Louisoix's absence.
During the final confrontation with the Ultima Weapon, Lahabrea explains to Gaius that the light of the mothercrystal is shielding the party from the superweapon's assault. He reveals the real reason he had it absorb the primals: to activate the Heart of Sabik and awaken a sliver of his god's power, Ultima. To Gaius's horror, Lahabrea demonstrates its power by using it to destroy much of the Praetorium and exhaust all of Hydaelyn's strength to shield the party. They yet defeat Gaius, after which Lahabrea confronts the Warrior of Light directly. Though he taunts that they would have to kill Thancred to fight him off, the Warrior of Light has a trump card: the Light of the Crystals they had found enables them to purge Lahabrea from Thancred's body. As the ruined imperial base crumbles, the Warrior of Light escapes with an unconscious Thancred using a Magitek Reaper.
Thancred later accompanies the Warrior of Light and Y'shtola in investigating reports of stolen crystal shipments in Thanalan. After ruling out the Amalj'aas' involvement, they learn the raids were carried out by the Serpent Reavers on behalf of the Sahagin who are intending to summon Leviathan. As the Scions investigate Sapsa Spawning Grounds, Thancred demonstrates his knife-wielding skills, and to his astonishment, the newcomer Yugiri demonstrates similar talents from her homeland. After Leviathan is felled at sea, Minfilia reveals (to Thancred's embarrassment) that his knife skills were learned in his days with the Limsa Lominsan underground. Intrigued, Yugiri wants to be introduced to this "Fraternity" and share her knowledge.
When the Scions are betrayed by the Crystal Braves and framed for the apparent assassination of Nanamo Ul Namo, Thancred is confronted by a squad of Brass Blades who want to arrest him for colluding with the Garleans. Initially believing them to be referring to his actions while under Lahabrea's control, he evades capture and meets up with the other Scions, who are fleeing Ul'dah. He reveals a hidden tunnel that leads out of the city, but their pursuers follow. Y'shtola and Thancred remain behind to ensure that the Warrior of Light and Minfilia escape by causing a cave in. At the last second, Y'shtola uses the ancient spell Flow to transport herself and Thancred to safety.
While Y'shtola becomes trapped within the Lifestream, Thancred ends up in the wilderness of the Dravanian Forelands, devoid of clothing. Thancred fashions obsidian blades to hunt for animal skins to cover his naked body, later bartering with the Vath for more ideal clothing by offering them food. Thancred's aether was distorted by the Lifestream to the point of being unable to use magick, and thus he cannot teleport out of the wilderness. When Thancred learns of the Gnath and Ravana, he decides to remain near the Beast Tribe as he deems it his best chance of reuniting with the other Scions.
Thancred is reunited with the Warrior of Light, Alphinaud, Y'shtola, and Krile while they search for him in the Smoldering Wastes at Loth ast Gnath. He saves the Warrior of Light from the leader of the Warriors of Darkness (Ardbert) and assists in the investigation of the arson incidents in Ishgard.
Thancred learns of Minfilia's fate as the Word of the Mother and the Scions promise to fulfill her wishes and defeat the Ascians once and for all. After the Scions discuss what happened to Minfilia with Matoya, a bereaved Thancred walks away while at a loss for words. This has a lasting effect upon him; when punched by Emmanellain de Fortemps after the protest in Falcon's Nest, he hits back with enough force to send the lordling flying and shares his experience at giving his all and yet failing. He retorts that Emmanellain must learn to live with the consequences of his actions, as he himself has.
Thancred rescues Alisaie Leveilleur after her run in with the Warriors of Darkness, having been keeping an eye on them. He fights alongside the other Scions against the Warriors of Darkness at the Bowl of Embers. Thancred later arrives with Hilda on an airship to pick up the Scions on top of Baelsar's Wall just as Ilberd Feare sets into motion his plan to summon a primal using the Eyes of Nidhogg and the sacrifice of himself and his soldiers. Soon realizing what Papalymo intends to do, Thancred carries Yda over his shoulder back to the airship despite her protests. The airship gets away just as a shell of light engulfs the manifesting primal.
The Eorzean Alliance faces Garlean forces in the battle of Ala Mhigo. Thancred has done his part by spreading discontent upon the Garleans with rumors of the imperial crown prince Zenos yae Galvus being possessed. He is subjected to G'raha Tia's Calling and his soul is separated from his body.
Thancred ended up trapped on the First (a reflection of the Source world) years before the Warrior of Light follows suit. He decides to do his part by hunting Sin Eaters, the monsters of light that plague this realm. He learned of Minfilia being revered as the Oracle of Light and of her current incarnation being held captive in Eulmore. Thancred rescued the girl, making her his apprentice while using her magic to complement his role as a Gunbreaker.
Their relationship was initially awkward as Thancred still loved the Minfilia he knew and was thus emotionally distant from her reincarnation. Thancred knows the girl's awakening as the new Oracle of Light would mean his Minfilia would cease to be. Seeing the girl's resolve when she protects him from Ran'jit and expresses her desire to follow her own path, Thancred battles the Eulmorean general and drives him off while nearly being killed in the process. By the time Thancred is reunited with the girl once she becomes the new Oracle, he names her "Ryne" and begins opening up to her. After the newly-arrived Warrior of Light defeats the Ascian Emet-Selch and saves the First, Thancred decides to travel outside Norvrandt with Ryne to hunt down more Lightwardens.
Creation and development
Thancred is voiced by Taliesin Jaffe (credited as T. Axelrod) in the English version of A Realm Reborn. He shares his voice actor with Edge Geraldine from Final Fantasy IV. Since Heavensward, he is voiced by Peter Bramhill.
Thancred has appeared in the following games throughout the Final Fantasy series:
- Dissidia Final Fantasy Opera Omnia as a playable character.
- Theatrhythm Final Fantasy All-Star Carnival as a playable character.
- Pictlogica Final Fantasy as a playable character.
- Final Fantasy Airborne Brigade as a Legend.
- Final Fantasy Record Keeper as a playable character.
- Final Fantasy Brave Exvius as a summonable vision.
- Final Fantasy Trading Card Game as a card.
- Triple Triad as cards.
- Thancred is a Bard, but uses knives instead of bows. In battle he is treated as a Gladiator. In patch 2.2 it is revealed that he is a former member of the Rogue Guild and from then on is treated as a Rogue.
- A Wind-up Thancred appears as a minion that could previously only be purchased during The Rising event. It is now available for purchase in the Mog Station.
- In patch 3.4, Thancred's in-game model was slightly altered. His right eye was returned to its original brown while his left (seen when he and Krile are at the imperial castrum) remained the silver it was originally changed to, indicating that the eye patch is not "purely cosmetic".