One of the most prominent examples is the fate of the Returners. They are never seen again in the World of Ruin and the fates of the officials such as Banon are never revealed. Just what happened to them?
The Cultists' Tower. First off, its theme is fucking disturbing; it sounds like some religious, death march music with some eerie chanting in the background. Next we have an entire cult that sprung up out of complete fear of Kefka and they march in a circle in front of this tower without end. The most disturbing thing? Strago is amongst them; believing Relm to be dead, he was so overcome with grief he actually turned to worshiping the same man that caused her "supposed" death. She's alive, of course, and comes to snap him out of it, but damn.
The poisoning of Doma Castle. This is where Kefka firmly first establishes himself as such an utter and soulless psychopath that even his lord doesn't look fondly on this action. Granted, his dialogue is a little over the top and enjoyable, but then you see the water turn purple and all the citizens of the castle dropping dead. It's not a pleasant sight. But the worst is when Cyan, retainer of the castle, finds not only his king, but his wife and child all dead due to the poisoning. Seriously messed up.
Narshe, a bustling mining town in the World of Balance, revealed to be a monster-infested ghost town in the World of Ruin.
Doma Castle in the World of Ruin and Cyan's Dreamscape where you have to venture into the guy's dreams and literally help save his soul from these psychopathic triplets who want it. Even worse, he was willing to relinquish it out of deep despair, and it takes the souls of his wife and kid to snap him out of it.
Especially if you didn't know about them, happen to sleep in an inn with Shadow in the party, then hear that godawful buzzing sound...
The scene after the three-team battle in the fields of Narshe provides a bit of Nightmare Fuel. Right after the fight, your team goes to examine the esper they just saved. However, everyone aside from Terra is blown away by the esper's power, all of them either knocked out or hanging off the edge of a cliff. Then a faux battle starts, complete with creepy music, and Terra transforms into another being entirely. Battle ends, Terra spins around a bit, and then unleashes a BLOODCURDLING scream and flies away.
This piece◊ of official artwork is even more scary.
The method to finding hidden character Gogo. You literally have to allow this worm to swallow your entire team up and then venture through its stomach until you find the aforementioned character, who apparently has been living here for quite some time.
Some of the enemy sprites in this game are pretty nasty. Humpties◊ are pretty grotesque, looking like round, wrinkly, naked humanoid shapes, and they also use Hugs/Their own odors as a special move, which is so disgusting it confuses whoever they try it on. Brainpans◊ could easily be images from a drug-induced nightmare, honestly being smiling flying zombie Buddha heads, and Crullers◊ resemble twisting intestines covered in discolored tumors.
The World of Ruin. The music, with that bone-scrapingly discordant pipe organ. Discovering Narshe has become a ghost town. Its inhabitants decimated except for that one old man, the mines left abandoned and filled with monsters, and that CREEPY ASS MUSIC driving it all home.
In the original release and the GBA remake, the waters of the World of Ruin were a sort of rust-brown, giving the impression they were filthy and polluted. Th iOS remake of the game, the water looks like an ocean of vibrant blood◊.
The squirrel-like monsters on the first island of the World of Ruin. The way they just... die without being hit. It really hammers home the fact that this world itself is dying.note This effect was done by giving these enemies very low HP and automatic seizure status. Well played, Square.
The very cutscene at the end of the Floating Continent, that destroys most of the world. An entire continent is split in half by massive, city-sized explosions and people fall into the created chasms to their deaths. The entire thing is driven home when we see the explosions visible from space as the music fades out... The intro to the World of Ruin just adds more despondent salt in the wounds.
The scene that probably horrified players the most was watching the party's airship split and all of them falling from the sky and scattering down to the earth. When Celes is the character the player first takes control of and she's stranded on a deserted island by herself, save for Cid IF you manage to save his life in time, you know something is wrong.
Celes's attempt at SUICIDE! . That's right, SUICIDE in a Final Fantasy game. This scene only occurs if you failed to save Cid. Celes barely even knew the truth about him being her uncle until now and yet is so overcome with grief she attempts it. You even watch as she takes the jump off the cliff. She lives, but still, yikes.
The fate that almost befell Figaro Castle. The castle was stuck underground when the Tentacles gummed up the engines and kept the castle from moving or surfacing. Everyone inside nearly suffocated when they started to run out of breathable air under there.
The LightofJudgement. Kefka uses it in the World of Ruin to destroy any town or any person that opposes him (or even just For the Evulz), destroying them instantly, and he can direct it towards any part of the world.
The location where it's found, Owzer's Mansion is also really unsettling, since the paintings come to life without warning, there's a Creepy Changing Painting of Maria (Celes' lookalike opera singer), and you get sucked into one painting of a chair, where an old woman takes the chair.
Also, thanks to certain "liberties" with translating the script, what Kefka tells the Esper reinforcements when they arrive in Thamasa in the SNES/PSX version absolutely reeks of Nightmare Fuel. He says "I'd say you're all charged up, boys and girls... or whatever... Say, remind me to show you my magicite collection! You might find a few familiar faces!!!", the implications being that, after killing the Espers, he's showing them other Espers that he killed that they knew personally, which would be a terrifying thought to imagine.
The Back Story of Thamasa. The town was founded by human mages who survived the great War of the Magi, who were then blamed for causing it and fled the following persecution. When you first arrive, they try, without much success, to hide that they have magic, and this is Played for Laughs — but when you think about it, these people are very much afraid that outsiders will find out about their powers and decide to finish the job that nearly killed off their ancestors.
Imagine this. You're just flying through the air in the Falcon, without a care in the world, when suddenly you find a random encounter. Deathgaze. It certainly scared this troper the first time (causing him to nearly fall out of his chair) he showed up, seemingly out of nowhere, killing off half the party instantly with Level 5 Death.