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Vivi is a playable character in Final Fantasy IX who also appears as part of a boss encounter. He is a Black Mage who wields staves in battle. He is physically weak and thus best kept in the back row. His special ability is Focus, which increases his magic power for the duration of that particular encounter, and his skillset is Blk Mag, which casts offensive magic. Vivi's Trance changes this to Dbl Blk, allowing him to cast two Blk Mag spells in one turn. When he is in the same party as Steiner, the latter gains access to Vivi's spells through Swd Mag, at no cost to Vivi.

Vivi acts as the party leader a couple times in the game, notably at the beginning of the game for exploring Alexandria.

Vivi also appears as part of a boss. His victory pose is to twirl his staff before coming to an attention pose. When Vivi is growing more depressed at Queen Brahne's use of black mages during their escape from Alexandria, he will not pose until after the party's first visit to Conde Petie.

Party member[]


Support abilities[]

Vivi learns abilities that enhance him as a mage, such as MP+20%, Half MP, and Return Magic. His unique abilities are Reflectx2 that doubles his spells' power when reflected off a target, and Mag Elem Null that renders all spells non-elemental.

Name Learned From AP
Auto-Reflect Reflect Ring 70
Auto-Float Feather Boots 20
Auto-Haste Running Shoes 55
Auto-Regen Golden Hairpin, Brave Suit, Light Robe 30
Auto-Life Rebirth Ring 70
MP+20% Black Robe 30
Healer Garnet 20
Add Status Bone Wrist, Chimera Armlet, Bracer, Feather Hat, Twist Headband, Glass Buckle 25
Reflect-Null Robe of Lords 30
Reflectx2 Black Robe, Rosetta Ring 110
Mag Elem Null Promist Ring, Protect Ring 115
Half MP Light Robe, Protect Ring 140
High Tide Jade Armlet, Dark Hat, Gaia Gear, Sapphire 25
Body Temp Jade Armlet, Holy Miter, Madain's Ring, Fairy Earrings, Diamond 15
Level Up Egoist's Armlet, Rosetta Ring, Fairy Earrings 30
Ability Up Green Beret, Silk Robe, Ribbon, Lapis Lazuli 55
Insomniac Bandana, Holy Miter, Magician Cloak, Gaia Gear, Coral Ring 25
Antibody Glass Armlet, Mantra Band, Survival Vest, Glass Buckle 30
Loudmouth Mage's Hat, Golden Hairpin, Silk Robe 40
Jelly Coronet 25
Return Magic Coronet 90
Auto-Potion Black Hood, Golden Skullcap, Survival Vest, Demon's Vest 10
Locomotion Magic Armlet, Green Beret, Circlet, Dark Gear 35
Clear Headed Magic Armlet, Green Beret, Circlet, Dark Gear, Magician Shoes 15



Raise Magic.


The Focus command enhances Vivi's Magic Power. The effect stacks, but once the Magic stat reaches 99, it will not increase further. The effect lasts for the entire battle, even if KO'd.

The formula for Focus is as follows:

Blk Mag[]

Vivi casts Death, a Black Magic spell.

Vivi's main ability is to use Black Magic and he is the only character in the game with the ability to do so. Vivi is one of the strongest black mages encountered, his powers rivaling even those of the Black Waltzes. He learns the elemental offensive spells, able to exploit an enemy's elemental weaknesses (Amarant also learns a Flair that adds a random elemental weakness to an enemy). The -ga level elemental spells are missable if the player does not purchase the Octagon Rod during the time it is available; if Vivi misses these spells, Steiner also cannot use the associated Swd Mag abilities.

Vivi also learns status-inflicting abilities (though using Add Status/Zidane's Soul Blade with compatible weapons or Quina's Bad Breath tend to work better) and Demi, which deals fractional damage and thus can be of use for helping Quina eat enemies to learn their Blu Mag spells. Vivi's ultimate Black Magic spell is Doomsday, though gained very late into the game from Vivi's ultimate weapon.

Most spells can be group-cast by pressing R1 when the cursor is on the enemy when targeting the spell.


Vivi in Trance.

While in Trance, Blk Mag changes to Dbl Blk, allowing Vivi to cast two spells in succession. Each casting depletes the Trance gauge independently. Vivi automatically Trances in the battle against Black Waltz 3 aboard the cargo ship.

Swd Mag[]

If Vivi and Steiner are in the party and are alive and not afflicted with debilitating status conditions, Steiner can use Swd Mag together with Vivi during battle. This will not make Vivi lose his turn or expend MP; the action counts as solely Steiner's turn.


Vivi's stats are geared toward magic use, with low HP and Strength.


Mage Staff artwork.

Unlike in games past, where Black Mages equip rods or daggers, Vivi equips staves. His armor consists of mage robes and hoods, as well as lightweight vests and hats. Vivi begins equipped with Mage Staff, Leather Hat, and a Leather Shirt.

Boss and enemy[]

Vivi in the Prison Cage battle.

Vivi is an AI-controlled target in the second battle with Prison Cage. Vivi will cast Fire on the Prison Cage throughout the battle, while the Prison Cage will cast Drain on Vivi to drain his HP. The battle will result in a Game Over if Vivi dies. It is similar to the battle with Prison Cage and Garnet, as well as the battle with Rinoa and Adel in Final Fantasy VIII.

A mirrored Vivi can also be summoned by the Epitaph enemy through its Mirror ability in Oeilvert if Vivi is sent there. Like other mirror enemies, the Vivi will use regular attacks on others, but a 9999 attack on the player's Vivi where he exclaims "I'm Vivi!".


Vivi finds a missing cat.

Vivi is the controlled character at the beginning of the game in Alexandria, where the player can learn to play Tetra Master from Alleyway Jack as him, and play the jump rope minigame (see below). Vivi can find some new cards at this point as well as a kid's missing cat. When the player is ready to move on with the story, they must follow Puck's lead, and the point of view switches to Zidane and Steiner's parties. During the play Tantalus Theater Troupe is putting on, Vivi is chased onto the stage where he partakes in a battle against Steiner and ends up being whisked away to Evil Forest with the rest, becoming the party's mainstay party member, who is only briefly unavailable when captured by the Prison Cage.

Vivi uses fire magic to melt a new path to a treasure chest.

In Ice Cavern, Vivi melts walls to reveal hidden treasures. In Lindblum, an Active Time Event shows Vivi procure a Kupo Nut. Vivi partakes in the Festival of the Hunt (see below), and afterward accompanies Zidane's party when the main party splits. In Desert Palace, the player chooses how to divide their party, and Vivi can stay behind or be sent to Oeilvert. During the time the party splits to tackle all elemental shrines simultaneously, Steiner and Vivi head to the Wind Shrine and face the Wind Guardian. However, the scenario is not playable.

If Zidane, Eiko, and Steiner are not in the party, Vivi assumes the role of party leader, most notably in the Desert Palace and in the final battle.

Jump rope[]

Vivi skips.

Jump rope is a minigame the player can participate as Vivi in Alexandria at the beginning of the game by approaching the girls jumping rope to the left of the ticket booth. Later, the girls relocate to the bell tower where the minigame can be resumed. The minigame yields many rewards such as gil, rare cards, and a rare key item.

Vivi at the Festival of the Hunt[]

Vivi wins a Tetra Master card of the Theater Ship if he wins the Festival of the Hunt during the party's first stay in Lindblum. Although the player can only control Zidane, and briefly Freya, it is possible to control who wins the festival. For Vivi to win, one must allow the Zaghnol faced during the festival to defeat both Freya and Zidane.

Vising home[]

Vivi can decide to visit home.

When visiting Treno for the Tetra Master tournament, the player has a chance to prompt Vivi to visit Quan's Dwelling during the Active Time Event "How He Ended Up Here", in which Vivi meets with Marco. During the discussion Marco mentions that Vivi should meet with his family, and the player can decide if Vivi should visit Quan's Dwelling or stay in Treno.

If Vivi stays in the city, the second round opponent in the tournament will change, and the player has another chance to win the rare Namingway card. If Vivi is sent to the dwelling, the player controlling Zidane can leave Treno for the dwelling and meet Vivi there, who tells Zidane of his time under Quan's care.

If both Quina and Vivi are in the party, and the player visits Quan's Dwelling after obtaining the Hilda Garde III, a unique scene triggers with Quina, Quale, Quan, and Vivi. Afterwards, the player can look into the clock on the ledge to receive a pair of Running Shoes.

Racing Hippaul[]

Hippaul racing.

Hippaul can be challenged to a footrace at the beginning of Disc Three. The race is available for a very short time only, and the opportunity to race him ends as the player agrees to see Ruby's play. Hippaul, along with his mother, can be found on the main street in Alexandria. Hippolady will mention that she wants her son to lose some weight.

The player controls Vivi and must press Square and Circle in quick succession to beat him. Racing Hippaul is the only way to obtain the rare key item Athlete Queen. Genji and Ribbon cards can also be won.

Hippaul gains levels as he loses to Vivi during the successive races. He quickly becomes extremely fast and difficult to defeat. Every ten levels up to 80 the player is rewarded with a prize; there are no rewards at levels 90 or 100. Hippaul gains five levels if Vivi beats him by a lot, but he only gains one level otherwise.

Level Card
Level 10 Wyerd Card
Level 20 Carrion Worm Card
Level 30 Tantarian Card
Level 40 Armstrong Card
Level 50 Ribbon Card
Level 60 Nova Dragon Card
Level 70 Genji Card
Level 80 Athlete Queen

There are several methods for making the game slightly easier: The most basic is to reconfigure the controller so that instead of Square and Circle, the buttons would be, say, L1 and R2. Another technique, albeit one with minimal effect, is to open the disc cover or disc tray, to slow the game down very slightly. If playing via emulator, decreasing the game's frame-rate effectively increases the rate at which button presses are received making it trivial to defeat Hippaul even at higher levels.

Jumping the gun is impossible, so one can start pressing the buttons before the race begins to get into the rhythm. If the player is willing to treat the controller roughly, it can be easier, for example, to configure opposing shoulder buttons and place the controller upside down on a solid surface, rocking it left and right to press the buttons. "Spoon Strats" was made famous by the Legend of Zelda Ocarina of Time speedrunner ZFG who would rub a spoon on the controller to press buttons rapidly; the smooth surface of the rounded side of the spoon allows for very quick and smooth button presses without damaging the controller.

Behind the scenes[]

When the party returns to Alexandria from their excursion to the Outer Continent, there is a dummied a balloon-collecting minigame with the group of three girls holding balloons near the ticket stand from the beginning of the game. When in control of Vivi, the player needs to find the girls and take their balloons back to the boy at the starting line. The minigame exists in the game data in all versions, and can be hacked in.

External links[]