Fanfic Recs: Final Fantasy Tactics
Proof that the remaining 10% is worth dying for
These are recommendations made by Tropers
for FinalFantasyTactics Fan Fics
, all of which have to be signed to stay on the page. Feel free to add a fanfic of your own to the list, but remember to use the template found here
Do warn when a fanfic may head into homosexual
territory. Some people just don't like it, and as we all know, Shipping
is Serious Business
You can also add to the current recommendations if you want. Refrain from posting Conversation in the Main Page
though; that goes in the discussion page.
Authors and Websites
The Works of Serial Ravist
Stories focused on the family and the friendly relationships of the cast. Plot-focused stories or light day-in-the-life stories. Pretty much anything that isn't focused on romance.
Truth and Reality Duty and Conscience
- Recommended by Lanky
- Author of a trio of quality, completed Final Fantasy Tactics stories as well as a pair of Neon Genesis Evangelion stories.
- Heart of Gold deals with a blossoming romance between Ramza and Agrias, set during the course of the game itself.
- Save The Queen begins after the end of the game, with Ramza witnessing Ovelia's murder (or in this case, near-murder) at Delita's hands and dealing with the idea of a queen out for revenge against Delita mucking up his retirement.
- Iceman is an alternate universe story where instead of Teta, it was Alma who got kidnapped... Leading to Delita being inarguably a Well-Intentioned Extremist, Ramza being quite bitter and cynical, and the world as a whole being a little more Crapsack than in-game. It works.
- Notably, all the stories are written with a great deal of quality, and every one of them is fully completed.
- Cinereous: I will second this recommendation. Another bonus is that one can see how the writer improves with each story, considering the stories were written in that order and progressively become more and more complex. "Heart of Gold" is largely a novelization told through a first-person perspective. "Save the Queen" is a post-game Slice of Life story. Finally, "Iceman," being a Darker and Edgier Alternate Universe story, is arguably the most thematically challenging story, where almost all the events of the original game's plot still happen but in a fundamentally different way.
by Harvey Bautista
Purity Amidst Madness
- Recommended by Maximum Casual
- Synopsis: Records of Agrias Oaks and Ramza Beoulve before, during, and after the Lion War. A retelling of the story starting from Act 2.
- Comments: One of the older FFT fanfictions this title has often been ignored or forgotten, but it is quite possibly one of the most loyal retellings, if not one of the most well written FFT fanfics around. The author seem to have meant to stick to the canon story rather than radically change it, which is a refreshing change. The strengths of the story are, I feel, in the dialogue, especially between Agrias and Ramza. I suppose this would also count as a shipping fic.
by Gaming Ikari
- Recommended by Pessimist By Nature, lanky, Obsidian Dawn
- Synopsis: A retelling of the game from Meliadoul's perspective, starting from Chapter IV of the game with her swearing vengeance on Ramza for the death of Izlude. There is a heavy focus on what Ramza's party, and Ramza especially, would actually be like in a fight, and how they would become that way. Light Ship Tease of Meliadoul x Ramza but nothing serious yet.
- Comments: The attention to gameplay mechanics is only enhanced by how smoothly those elements are used. For hardcore fans of the original series, the fight scenes are stuffed with references to abilities and job classes, but linked together so smoothly that they never get in the way. Ramza in particular is monstrous, showcasing just what it would be like to fight someone that has gamed the Job System and crossed the border from the Jack of All Stats to Lightning Bruiser. The characterization is to be commended, managing to insert a lot of personality in characters that didn't get many lines of dialogue in the original without making anything feel out of place.
- I'll add a hearty second to this rec. The fight scenes alone could steal the show, with Gaming Ikari very successfully weaving the job class system into the narrative without feeling videogamey. While some might call Ramza overpowered, the author correctly points out that Ramza has had to deal with a lot of ludicrously powerful enemies and hey, he HAS survived. TG Cid quickly develops into a Trickster Mentor, which is another point by itself which makes the story worth the price of admission.
- Caellach Tiger Eye: Thirded. With strong characterisation, good description of battle sequences and fighting style, and a nice flow, this story is quite professionally written. I thoroughly enjoy TG Cid's character, who is a combination of comic relief, Noble Bigot with a Badge (surprisingly effectively, since I normally dislike sexism yet appreciate his personality presented here), and a Trickster Mentor as pointed out above. Meliadoul's personality and character is well-written, with some insight into her history that fleshes her out even more. Ramza actually makes the stereotypical hero archetype fun, and the other characters are all well-used - particularly Agrias, Lavian and Alicia in their sequences together. Definitely deserves a readthrough.
- Now complete. And while I feel that the story is good, the ending feels a little weak. Still worth the read.
- Obsidian Dawn: This is one of my favorite FFT Fics to date, and the expansion on the Characters was very well done. Cid is particularly interesting, as well as the internal struggle that Ramza has to deal with as he battles his way through this retelling. The combat scenes depicted often made me jealous, as they were done with finesse and managed to add some realism to a concept (Tactical RPG Battles) that is very, very difficult to pull off. It remains a source of inspiration for me as I write.
The Lion Of Ivalice
- Recommended by Kishou
- Synopsis: A story that starts off from the events in Chapter 2 in the main game story, Ramza is a seemingly broken down character letting Gafgarion walk all over him. He starts to befriend Agrias and her knights, and shows a few instances of his battle genius and vast-class mastery to prove he's more than just a regular squire of a mercenary. Plot line follows through the main story, but is amplified by deep characterization, awesome fight scenes, and impressive story telling.
- Comments: Arguably, the story starts off a bit like Heart of Gold, and had limited text in the earlier chapters, but it quickly grew a beard that shows just as much gameplay mechanics as Purity Amidst Madness did. It feels satisfying how Agrias and the knights are baffled by many of Ramza's hidden skills, from Geomancy to jumping to even having knowledge in how to become a Samurai. It isn't shy on sexual tension, either, with implied past rape and already showing a sex scene. Highly recommended.
For Want of a War
- Recommended by Kishou, Cinereous
- Synopsis: What if Ramza didn't join Gafgarion's mercenary troupe, and joined the Southern Sky, enemies of the Northern Sky and the Beoulves instead? Events happen at a vicious pace, some faster than others, that still results in the rising conspiracy of the Church and the hero taking up arms to stop it.
- Pairings: Primarily Ramza/Meliadoul, with Izlude/Alma, Olan/Valmafra(Balmafula), Agrias/Zalbag, Ovelia/Delita & Cid/Ruvelia. Oh, and Ajora(Altima)/Morrigan(Shemhazai)
- Comments: A story that starts out slow but really picks up after the first few chapters. The romance is sweet and slow building, the action is intense and worthy of Ramza's heroic caliber, the team build-up is vastly different from the game, and the changes in here are clever and awesome. For example, Ramza learns to become a Dark Knight.
- This is another Alternate Universe story where a simple change results in the game's canon events occurring in a completely different manner, but without the heavy drama and atmosphere of angst and hopelessness that Iceman had. Indeed, the story ends up going beyond the scope of where the game ended. The romance is subtle and almost nonexistent at first yet it develops so well that by the time our enterprising couple reaches their Relationship Upgrade, it feels like they belonged together all along. Plus, utilizing the less-common but apparently popular Alma/Izlude pairing, as well as a Crack Pairing that might not actually be as crazy as it sounds.
by Gaming Ikari
- Recommended by Caellach Tiger Eye, lanky, Kishou, Obsidian Dawn, Tovath
- Synopsis: "Balbanes survives his attempted poisoning to halt the beginnings of a civil war which would have engulfed Ivalice. Too bad this leaves the only true war to be the one fought over Ramza's heart by a plethora of women. Yep, it's FFT done Ranma ½-style."
- Pairings: Ramza/Unknown - despite the premise, Ramza will end up with only one of the girls by the end
- Comments: Unashamedly Lighter and Softer than canon, this story is an excellent balance of good characterisation, humour and plot, evident even from the first chapter - and although there are only two chapters as I write this review, the second is proof that the story gets better. Gaming Ikari takes his signature, effective style and trasfers it here to make a unique take on the FFT story which is as entertaining as it is thrilling. Granted, the plot hasn't really started rolling yet, but even with the stage still being set, this fic shows great promise. This fic may turn out to be better than "Purity Amidst Madness", and that is saying something. Definite promise despite being in the early stages - and it's based off an idea presented in the FFT WMG Page. Heartily recommended.
- Seconded. The writing is standard fare for Gaming Ikari, which is to say short and sweet. Each chapter weighs in around the 2,000 - 3,000 word mark. However much like the rest of his work, he picks and chooses which scenes he needs to expand very carefully and glosses over the unimportant bits while still maintaining a brisk, exciting pace which moves the plot along nicely instead of stagnating on a single plot point across multiple chapters. In four chapters, significant ground has been covered and each chapter provides a strong focus or advancement in the plot.
- Kishou: Thirded. A twist of Balbanes living is worthy of a story in itself, but is merely a key component in what makes something like this possible. Ikari knows his stuff and can make what little characterization is shown in a war setting and implant it in the more calmly Ranma ½ setting. For example, in the war, Alma came only as marginally manipulative, just to travel with Ramza. Take that away and she's pretty much as manipulative as Delita. Oh, and Algus is still an nonredeemable douche.
- Obsidian Dawn: Fourth...-ded? The entire idea is awesome, and I'm reserve much of my opinion until the story is further along. Thus far I've enjoyed it to the point of checking back every day or so just to see if it has been updated. Definitely look forward to seeing who ends up fawning over Ramza.
Stories focused on the romantic relationships between the cast.
Requiem for the King
- Recommended by Shinji117, GrantMK2
- Synopsis: According to the author: "Bah". It's actually a well-written Peggy Sue story. A young Ramza (pre-Gariland) starts getting flash-backs (or would that be flash forwards?) to when he was involved in the fight against the Lucavi. He's not quite sure what to make of these 'dreams'.
- Comments: This is, as far as I know, the first Final Fantasy Tactics Peggy Sue fic, and it certainly shows the wounderful potential this genre has. Character-wise, Ramza's past/future skills seem to have bled over with the dreams, and, in the most recent chapter, has begun undertaking early Holy Knight training after apparently showing himself to be something of a combat prodigy (a forgotten 20 levels of skill would do that). For those worried that the protagonists have a massive advantage, According to the author, Ajora also got flash-backed in a subconcious, but has a more understandable motivation than 'bwhahaha-I'm-evil'.
- An advantage it seems to have over other time-travel fics is that so far the hero doesn't realize his dreams were actually reality and he doesn't run around, solving every problem instantly. GrantMK2
- Recommended by Sa Rness
- Synopsis: "Gravely wounded, King Delita wonders at how his life has come to pass and if all he has is really enough."
- A HELL of a lot better then it sounds—believe me.
- Pairings: Mainly Delita/Ramza. It could also be considered a Ramza/Delita/Ovelia love triangle, but YMMV.
- Comments: Although a bit lengthy and only two parts long (possibly dead), this 3rd person fanfic really helps you get inside Delita's very thick head, and even explains how Delita ended up joining the Shrine Knights to begin with. They do a fairly decent job with the Purple Prose, litter every paragraph with excellent detail, and it is so strikingly accurate and moving it almost seems like it came from the canon developers themselves; not to mention the Ramza/Delita/Ovelia love triangle is approached very nicely. This fic is not only very good for the shippers, but mostly very good for those in wonder as to how Delita did so much of what he, well, did—and justifies it while doing it. One problem I had though was that, oddly enough, the fanfiction is filed under mature, and although that was done probably just for safety, it's seems much more for older teen, especially because the sex is only implied and there is only one close-call; but YMMV on that subject. Either way, I highly HIGHLY recommend this fanfiction, regardless if you cruise on this ship like I do, or not.