I'll show you my true power!Kuja about to unleash Ultima
Ultima is a supremely powerful magic spell in Final Fantasy IX that is not available to the player. It is Kuja's ultimate ability when under the effect of Trance. He uses it as a final attack in the boss battles against him, ending the battle and moving the story along. He also uses Ultima in an FMV cutscene.
Ultima is a common final spell in the player's spell list in the Final Fantasy series, dealing powerful non-elemental damage against all enemies. Prior to Final Fantasy IX, Ultima was most commonly depicted as blue or green explosion that engulfs the enemies in a dome, but Kuja's Ultima spell is vivid pink and purple energy raining down and exploding all around its target(s).
Kuja was a powerful schemer from the dead planet of Terra that existed inside Gaia. Though he had various powerful magical abilities, like teleportation and the ability to create monsters from Mist, he only ever used Ultima when in Trance; it may be is his Trance-exclusive skill, like Zidane's Dyne abilities.[note 1] Kuja lived on Gaia to foster war as per instructions from his master Garland, but secretly plotted to find a power great enough to dethrone him. He acted from the shadows by manipulating others rather than by engaging in direct offense, and when directly confronted, called forth aid in the form of Mist monsters, his silver dragon, the Invincible, and stolen eidolons. After discovering the power of Trance however, Kuja abandoned all other sources of power and engaged his adversaries directly.
Kuja fought Zidane and his friends atop the Terran "mausoleum", Pandemonium. When he was about to lose, he entered Trance and ended the battle by easily defeating everyone with Ultima. He he was able to sustain his Trance outside of battle by using souls stolen from the Invincible, and defeated Garland who was already weakened by having fought Zidane. Kuja boasted that he was going to rule Terra and Gaia both, but upon learning of the limit placed on his lifespan and how he was going to soon perish, went mad and destroyed Terra with wave after wave of Ultima spells. Ultima rained down on the world, destroying Pandemonium and everything around it, while Zidane and his friends escaped back to Gaia on the Invincible.
Kuja returned to Gaia and headed to Memoria that had manifested above the Iifa Tree. Zidane and friends followed, and caught up with him at the end of Crystal World where Kuja revealed his intention to wipe out all life by destroying the original crystal. Zidane and his friends fought to stop him, but just as Kuja was about to be defeated, he declared that he will take everyone to the grave with him, and unleashed Ultima. The party was knocked out, and awoke on the Hill of Despair. The next they saw the dying Kuja, his Trance had dissipated.
Trance Kuja uses Ultima on the party when defeated in battle both atop Pandemonium and in Crystal World. Trance Kuja is a cinematic enemy atop Pandemonium, at the end of the fight with Kuja in his normal form. This enemy form is cinematic and will only cast Ultima to end the fight.
Both times Kuja uses Ultima when his HP drops to 0, signifying the end of the battle with the party's defeat for story purposes by instantly defeating them without displaying any damage taken. Because Kuja defeated the party, no battle spoils are given (the player can keep any stolen items).
Kuja uses Ultima by charging energy into his body, which spirals upward in waves and joins into a mass that detonates, raining down purple-pink streams onto Kuja's targets, each wave exploding on impact.
The player cannot use Ultima unless via cheat devices and hacking. If Ultima is obtained through cheating, the game crashes upon finishing the casting animation.
Dissidia Final Fantasy series
Kuja's version of Ultima in Dissidia Final Fantasy and Dissidia 012 Final Fantasy summons magical orbs to fall on the opponent, stunning them if they are hit. Kuja learns to cast Ultima on the ground at Level 38 and in the air at Level 44. In Dissidia it costs 40 CP to equip and 300 AP to master, and in Dissidia 012 Kuja's Ultima costs 30 CP to equip and 130 AP to master.
Kuja uses a variation of the Final Fantasy IX move as his secondary ability, learned at STR 20.
Premium Skill version (Kuja)
Enemies who cast Ultima in their game of origin will do so in Record Keeper##; however, it only deals one hit of non-elemental magic damage.
Ultima means "the last" in Latin and many Latin-based languages. In the Spanish versions of many Final Fantasy games, the spell Ultima's name is written as "Artema", a close transliteration of the Japanese katakana.
- In Dissidia, Kuja can use Ultima without being in Trance.