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Characters / Final Fantasy XIV Ascians

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Due to the story's advancement and the fact some articles would otherwise be all white, There are Unmarked spoilers below, you have been warned.

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    Ascians in General
The Three Unbroken Ascians and Zodiark's Crystal note 
A cult of dark sorcerers that have lurked in the shadows of Hydaelyn for centuries. It is said that they taught the Beastmen tribes how to summon their primals, and with the coming of the Seventh Umbral Era, their actions are becoming more overt. They are worshippers of Zodiark, a slumbering god of chaos inferred to be the dark opposite of Hydaelyn. The Ascians themselves are immortal and formless, and use "Dark Crystals" to possess living hosts so that they can interact with the physical world.
  • Ambiguous Disorder: After The Reveal of what happened to the original Star, how the three Unbroken Ascians act could be seen as signs of mourning and depression. Lahabrea is horrifically sociopathic, falling from grace as a respected scholar researching Creation Magick. Elidibus acts emotionless and calculating, but deep down holds hatred towards Hydaelyn. And finally Emet-Selch, despite seeming like a Troll who revels in the chaos he creates, is just wearing a mask based on a dear friend back when the Star was whole. All of which is worsened by the fact that Hydaelyn chose to demonized them and erase the existence of their original home.
  • Apocalypse How: They seek to cause these in order to restore the world to what it was before so that they can sacrifice it to Zodiark in order to bring Amaurot back. As Shadowbringers reveals, they've caused in order; a Calamity of Wind, Lightning, Fire, Earth, Ice, Water, and Darkness.
  • Badass Long Robe: All of them wear a black one, with Elidibus being the sole exception.
  • Balance Between Light and Darkness: Despite the evil they cause, they actually don't (usually) seem to want to have "darkness" win all the time; they mostly use dark powers as much as they do because the Warrior of Light is such a powerful force for Light and channel of Hydaelyn's power. This can sometimes seem dubious or hypocritical, but Elidibus in particular is very insistent on it. It turns out that, earlier in multiversal history, the Ascians did in fact employ darkness much more freely in order to simply dominate light, and succeeded upon the Thirteenth Shard... whereupon that entire dimension of Hydaelyn imploded on itself in a Flood of Darkness. This actually made it functionally worthless for their plans for resurrecting Zodiark. And what's more, the First Shard is on the verge of being lost to a Flood of Light, which would make it just as worthless. note  So modern Ascians are far more careful about how they balance light or dark, especially since the Source - Hydaelyn - being Flooded either way would be even more of a disaster than the Flood of a Shard.
  • Batman Gambit: They keep having primals summoned, knowing full well that the Warrior of Light will keep fighting and destroying them. This is exactly what they want to happen; by having the Warrior of Light fight the primals over and over again, the beastmen will be forced to increase their efforts to summon more powerful Primals to damage the lands. Hydaelyn will have no choice but to keep giving the Warrior of Light more power to help them destroy the primals and have her own strength sapped in the process. Ergo, weakening Hydaelyn until she can no longer use her powers will allow Zodiark to emerge and create chaos and destruction.
  • Battle Theme Music: "Thunderer".
  • Benevolent Precursors: At present they are definitely not this, but that wasn't always the case. When the Scions encounter shades of these ancient Ascians, they are all perfectly accommodating to any request to learn more about their people, and are downright friendly in any interaction with them. When their world had been devastated by a terrifying cataclysm, half of their population willingly gave their lives on two separate accounts to stop the ongoing disaster and restore life to their dying star. Even when their people found themselves divided for the first time in their history it was between those who wanted to support Zodiark and return those previously sacrificed to him, and those who championed Hydaelyn and felt that the lives newly born had a right to exist beyond being sacrificed to Zodiark. This stands in stark contrast to the Ascians of today who will gladly cause apocalyptic events and destroy billions of lives to complete their goals.
  • Black Cloak: Most of the Ascians wear distinctive hooded black robes. The only exceptions are Elidibus, who wears a white version of the robes, and Emet-Selch, who is never seen in the typical Ascian robes until shortly before his demise.
  • Black Magic: All of them use darkness-based magic, contrasting directly with the Light of Hydaelyn.
  • Black Speech: They partake in this fairly often, with shadowy black text bubbles instead of white. It's subtitled normally, however, as the player can understand it thanks to the power of the Echo. It also ends up hilariously subverted in Shadowbringers when you get to Amaurot, as it turns out that's just their native language, and when the phantasmal Amaurotines speak it, it's still otherworldly and uses the same text box but sounds profoundly less sinister, since the Amaurotines aren't angry at you all the time. In fact, the first Amaurotine you meet treats you like a lost child and offers to walk you home.
  • Brown Note: Whatever it was that caused the ancient Ascians to lose control of their creation magic, it was described as a mysterious sound emanating from the heart of the planet, and its source is yet unknown.
  • Complexity Addiction: Justified. Their ultimate endgame is to Rejoin all thirteen Shards with the Source, which they thought would be as easy as destroying the Shards outright. As proven with the Thirteenth Shard, it wasn't that simple: there needs to be an accompanying disaster in the Source that uses the aether of the destroyed world, otherwise the Shard collapses on itself into a useless void. Carefully manipulating events with convoluted schemes in both the Source and Shards at just the right time is a requirement for a Rejoining.
  • Creating Life: When the world was one the "unbroken" souls of the Ascian civilization utilized the powerful creation magick, allowing them to create whatever they desired. Due to the boundless abundance of aether that came naturally from their own immortal being it never threatened the star's existence. This magic is the power that creates the Primals seen throughout the story.
  • Everyone Calls Him "Barkeep": The Ascian's names aren't their true names, but rather a legacy title of the first Ascian that it belonged to, and at this point are no different than an office job designation. Ascians of the ruling class are always referred to by their title, and at this point only Emet-Selch has revealed their true name.
  • Evil Plan: The Ascians have one clear goal in all of their actions: to cause enough aetheric instability to trigger disasters they refer to as "Rejoining". They have succeeded in seven calamities and seek to perform thirteen Rejoinings total to restore and resurrect their god Zodiark. It turns out though that what they seek is actually more well intended than previously thought. They seek to sacrifice a completed Star to Zodiark so that he could bring back the all those who were lost in the previous world.
  • Fighting a Shadow: The Ascians' true forms are dark spirits that simply flee to the void between worlds until they can possess another shell. And even after having his essence exorcised and seemingly killed for good, Lahabrea just revives later. Finding a way to make it possible to kill them entirely is Moenbryda's reason for coming to Eorzea to help the scions by creating a Soul Jar to trap them until they're unable to cheat death.
  • Fusion Dance: The Ascians are able to use the power of the Echo to fuse together. The resulting creature, dubbed Ascian Prime, is a grim reaper-like cloak filled with nothing but pure shadows with the masks of the Ascians used the in the fusion smelted together in the center to identify them. This creature also has some of the strongest dark magic seen yet, making Nabriales, Lahabrea and Igeyorhm look like two-bit thaumaturges by comparison.
  • Freudian Trio: The three Unbroken Acasians are this. Lahabrea was the Id, due to constantly being in pure rage, hoping to use weapons of mass destruction like the Ultima Weapon and the Warring Triad to cause mass destruction and hasten the awakening of Zodirak. Elidibus is the Superego due to his cold rationality, using politics to ensure war and create Calamities from the chaos. Emet-Selch was the Ego, due to being the most reasonable, but not by much, out of the three of them, deliberately creating kingdoms that would rise and fall to cause Calamities, with Allag and Garlean being the most notable examples.
  • Game Face: When they get serious about fighting you, their current vessel gains a flat mask of what looks like red Hard Light in an intricate geometric pattern.
  • Godzilla Threshold: The threats of the sound emanating from the earth that was driving Ascians insane and causing their creation magick to run rampant, the sound ruptured the very planet to its core turning it into a deadly wasteland, and even rained down death from above, threatened them to the point half the people willingly sacrificed themselves to save the world. Only with Zodiarks birth as the will of the Star were they able to repel the threat.
  • I Know Your True Name: Most of the Ascians are fragmented souls that have forgotten their past and reincarnated over the ages. The Unbroken who stand at the top of their organization gathered them together and helped them learn the truths they've forgotten.
  • Law of Chromatic Superiority: The more powerful and notable of the Paragons wear red masks that leave their mouths visible. The lesser of their kin wear dark gray masks that hide the whole face. We don't know where the red-masked and white-cloaked Elidibus ranks in magical power, but he seems to have the most political clout and may or may not communicate directly with Zodiark to relay orders, making him the leader-by-proxy.
  • Leitmotif: "Without Shadow".
  • Long Game: As immortals, the Ascians have been working towards their ultimate goal to restore their "one true God" since before recorded history. Every Calamity was orchestrated by the Ascians to facilitate the Rejoinings to restore Zodiark to power... and thus, they hope, restore the lost "original" form of the world, complete with the old civilization from which they hail.
  • Man Behind the Man: Aside from Lahabrea and Nabriales, the Ascians prefer to work from the shadows and avoid direct confrontation. Their manipulations are responsible for the primals being summoned with more power than ever (the extreme modes), the existence of Good King Moggle Mog and Shiva as primals, the tragedy that befell Haukke Manor (maybe), potentially the monetarist coup of Ul'Dah, and further proliferation of the Dragonsong War. It's also revealed that they taught Tiamat a form of dark magic to bring her brother Bahamut back as a Primal after he was killed by the Allagan Empire. Ironically, the only major moment in the lore that they seem to have been completely uninvolved in was Ratataskr's murder and Nidhogg's declaration, that was entirely the Heavens Ward to drive home the Humans Are the Real Monsters theme associated with the Dragonsong War's origins. One of the biggest Wham Episodes in the game reveals that even the Garlean Empire was made as an Ascian scheme, however subverting expectations in that they're not just pawns, but the first Emperor, an Ascian himself, created the Empire for this purpose.
  • Mark of the Beast: When an Ascian uses their power, a red symbol appears over their face. The symbol is unique to each Ascian.
  • More Than Mind Control: Emet-Selch reveals that they have been tempered by Zodiark when their self-sacrificed members brought him forth. Due to them all having the Echo, it's left unclear how much of their praise of Zodiark is brainwashing. Emet-Selch in particular shows great reverence for Zodiark, but his desire is to revive his people first and foremost as the goal that motivates him above anything else, Lahabrea had an unknown agenda that he was concerned only with benefits for himself and Zodiark was an afterthought to his plans, and Elidibus reveals his deep rage at the fact Hydaelyn and her followers tried to erase everything of their people from history as his motivation for undoing all she did.
  • Nice Job Breaking It, Hero!: How the Ascians lost their world. The Ascians created Zodiark as means to save their world from a disastrous Calamity. However, some Ascians were threatened by Zodiark's powers and created Hydaelyn in response. The resulting war destroyed their world and created the Source and the thirteen worlds.
  • Not-So-Well-Intentioned Extremist: An interesting example that isn't exactly their fault. They sincerely want to bring back the lost nation of Amaurot through the Rejoining, and repair their (and our) shattered world into its proper, perfect state. The problem is that, as Emet-Selch admits, they've been tempered by an immensely powerful elder primal to help it, meaning that their noble ideals are really more of a rationalisation for throwing the Source and its shards into chaos so Zodiark can feed. They're sincere, but that doesn't make them sane. Even worse, as Alisaie puts it, even if they do restore the world, they can't save everyone who was lost.
  • Oh, Crap!: Despite seemingly always being in control of the plot, they've had this from time to time, when the unexpected has happened.
    • Lahabrea has one when he's forced out of control of Thancred's body, and banished for a time back to dark plane of existence by the power of Hydaelyn, Warrior of Light, and their allies.
    • Nabriales has one when he finds out that Scions have discovered a way to trap Ascians, and in his final moments discovering he's not as immortal as he thinks he is.
    • Lahabrea, and Elidibus both have a minor one in a conversation at the end of 2.55, admitting that, while Nabriales's destruction was his own fault, they are nonetheless concerned that the Warrior of Light and Scions did manage to find a means to somehow kill them, forcing them to hasten their plans in the Northern parts of Eorzea, notably Coerthas. Additionally, Elidibus summons Urianger for a meeting as well, citing that it pertains to the future fates of everyone, though for what purpose, is currently unknown.
    • Lahabrea one last time at the end of Heavensward when he learns that Thordan had been playing him like a fiddle and was about to kill him off for good by summoning the Knights of the Round primals to consume his lifeforce.
    • Emet-Selch when he sees a vision of the Ascian the Warrior of Light once was after the latter and Ardbert fuse, before rejecting it by stating that it's "a trick of the light."
  • Our Giants Are Different: The ancient Ascians of Amaurot were massive, easily reaching around 30-feet tall. The physical extinction of their race forces their souls to possess the bodies of smaller races. The shades inhabiting Amaurot mistake the Scions of the Seventh Dawn for children due to the height difference.
  • Playing Both Sides: They are more than happy to manipulate both sides to get what they want. This includes in the past where they trick Tiamat into raising Bahamut as a Primal and teaching the Allagan Empire how to seal away Primal Bahamut afterwards.
  • Put on a Bus: The Ascians don't play any role at all in Stormblood's main story, even the new primals are summoned without their influence. The only thing they did period was sic a powerful voidsent into Shisui of the Violet Tides. According to Word of God, this was intentional to make the scope of the expansion's fight more personal and less world-saving. Elidibus does show up in The Stinger of 4.0 though, and given Varis's reaction, might have something to do with Zenos turning up alive.
    • Subverted as of Patch 4.5, with the revelation that the Ascians are responsible for the foundation of the Garlean Empire on the whole and by extension nearly all of the expansion's events.
  • The Remnant: Shadowbringers reveals that they are the last survivors of a kingdom said be even greater than Allag was at its height. Their kingdom and world were destroyed during Hydaelyn and Zodiark's war, and now they seek to resurrect Zodiark in the hopes of reclaiming what they have lost.
  • Signature Move: All three higher ranked Ascians engaged in battle boast the powerful Shadow Flare, a party-hitting dark element attack distinct from the Arcanist spell.
  • Staying Alive: Ascians are not easy to kill. Their true nature is basically sentient aether that can jump from one vessel to another - an exhausting process, but as long as they survive this is a non-issue. There are only three known ways to kill an Ascian for good, none of them practical: to hit them with a massive amount of Light aether (we're talking an entire world's worth), to trap them in White Auracite and hit them with a not-as-big amount of Light aether (Auracite is very hard to find and even harder to synthesize, and it still needs a more-than-practical amount of aether to perform), or for an aether-devouring being to consume them (the most practical solution, but the least ideal because the only beings that consume that much aether are Primals, which drain the aether out of everything around them the longer they survive).
  • Sympathy for the Devil: Shadowbringers goes a long way in humanizing them as a whole by delving into their tragic history.
  • Theme Naming: The Ascians are named after the Espers' light counterparts from Final Fantasy XII. Elidibus is named after the sorcerer and optional boss from Tactics.
  • Tragic Dream: As Alisaie puts it, it's a hollow dream, as even though the world would be restored as to what is was, many lives were irreversibly lost, and that can't be reclaimed.


The Paragons

The three most evident leaders of the Ascians. The Paragons of the Source are significantly more powerful than other, lower ranked Ascians, and act as major villains across all storylines.


Voiced by: Shuichi Ikeda (JP), Kyle Hebert (EN, Los Angeles cast), Alec Newman (EN, London cast), Gabriel Le Doze (FR), Michael Che Koch (DE)
The Abyssal Celebrant
Race: Ascian
Epithet: The Warrior

"The end of your tale is but the beginning of another. The tale of the Crystal's demise."

A powerful sorcerer who bears the rank of "Overlord" among the Ascians, and who can be identified by the red mask he wears. He seems to be helping the Garlean Empire advance their agenda by sowing chaos in Eoreza and helping the Beastmen to summon their Primals. He possesses the body of Thancred sometime during the events of the story. His goal is to manipulate Gaius van Baelsar into completing the Ultima Weapon so that the ancient artifact at its heart can be used to advance the resurrection of Zodiark.

  • Ambiguous Disorder: His anger and sociopathic tendencies are at first all that makes him up. The reveal that he lost everything during the Final Days could be seen as him suffering from a form a PTSD and his mind breaking from all that was lost.
  • Big Bad Duumvirate:
    • He shares the role of Big Bad with Gaius in A Realm Reborn, though he is in fact using Gaius as an Unwitting Pawn.
    • Later, he forms one with Archbishop Thordan in Heavensward, but this time Lahabrea is the Unwitting Pawn.
  • Body Snatcher: Possesses Thancred near the end of the 2.0 scenario.
  • Boss Banter: In his Post-Final Boss fight at the end of the Praetorium, he constantly punctuates his spells with things like "you have meddled enough!" and "Hydaelyn cannot save you!"
  • Casting a Shadow: Most of the magic he uses in battle is dark elemental like Dark Orb and Shadow Flare.
  • The Corrupter:
    • It is implied he was the demon that Lady Amandine of Haukke Manor consorted with, though with the release of 2.1 and Haukke Manor's hard mode it's equally implied that Halicarnassus was the demon instead based on her battle dialogue so take that as you will.
    • It's also heavily implied that at least his direct underlings, if not he directly, are responsible for providing the beast tribes with the support to summon such powerful versions of the Primals, while the other "major" Ascians are off attending to other matters.
  • Deader Than Dead: At the end of Heavensward, Archbishop Thordan VII, channeling the power of King Thordan as a primal, disperses Lahabrea's body and then devours the aether that makes up his soul to empower himself, ending the Ascian once and for all. To make sure that any trace of him is gone, said eye is later used in creating Shinryu, who is then defeated at the end of Stormblood and said eye completely drained afterwards, and is then destroyed just to make sure that it can't be used and so he can't come back.
  • Didn't See That Coming: He didn't expect Archbishop Thordan VII to use the summoning technique against him nor did he expect the Archbishop to absorb him as a source of aether once he became a primal. This is one of the very few times Lahabrea acts completely surprised before he meets his demise.
  • Dramatic Unmask: Late in A Realm Reborn's storyline, he takes off his mask to reveal that he has possessed Thancred's body.
  • Dragon with an Agenda: The final moments of ARR's grand finale before Heavensward hint that he might have a plan separate from Zodiark. While he and Elidibus discuss accelerating their plans in Ishgard Lahabrea remarks that everything is moving according to his will. Elidibus corrects him that it's moving to Zodiark's will and Lahabrea corrects himself in what sounds like almost an afterthought. Elidibus realizes in Heavensward that Lahabrea and Igeyorhm planned on initiating the eighth Rejoining prematurely.
  • Evil Laugh: He gets a fair few good ones.
  • Evil Sorcerer: He makes use of darkness-themed magic in his battle.
  • Foreshadowing: His speech before his boss fight at the end of The Praetorium is chock full of this; what initially seems like mere ranting and raving about his God, Zodiark, takes on more meaning the further into the plot we get.
    • He mentions that a growing imbalance afflicting the planet; much later on, in the content between Heavensward and Stormblood, you learn the results of such an imbalance from the Warriors of Darkness, as they explain the Flood of Light that immediately began consuming their world, the First, after they had beaten the darkness completely.
    • He calls Hydaelyn a parasite; much, much later on in the middle Shadowbringers, it's revealed by Emet-Selch that both Zodiark and Hydaelyn are in fact elder Primals, with the latter taking the former's spot as the Will of the Star, and what we know of primals states that they are inherently parasitic, sustaining themselves with the aether of the land.
    • He mentions that the imbalance will cause the laws of existence, both aetheric and physical, to be warped beyond recognition. He would presumably know, as much, much, much later on, at the very end of Shadowbringers, you get to see his long-lost home of Amaurot tear itself apart when said laws of existence unraveled, and as he's one of three remaining unbroken Ascians from Hydaelyn's sundering, he would have direct memories of the event.
  • The Friend Nobody Likes: A lot of his fellow Ascians really don't care that much for him despite making use of his talents, especially when he's not around. Elidibus clearly thinks he's an overactive hothead (and is at least willing to tell him this to his face), Nabriales has absolutely no respect for the man, several other Ascians do question him a bit during their grand conclave in 2.x, and during 4.4, Emet-Selch refers to his escapades in ARR and Heavensward as "Lahabrea's crowning act of idiocy" which ended up undoing centuries worth of work on his part. Later on in Shadowbringer's main plot, Emet would not hesitate to call Lahabrea an idiot for various reasons, such as his habit of constantly jumping between multiple hosts which severely weakened his powers.
  • Fusion Dance: He merges with Igeyorhm into an Ascian Prime while fighting the Warrior of Light at the Aetherochemical Research Facility.
  • Hidden Depths: The sadistically evil Smug Snake Lahabrea was once a scholar researching Creation Magick when their civilization thrived. He has certainly fallen a long way since then.
  • Malevolent Masked Man: Together with his black robes, his mask is an easy hint as to his nature.
  • The Man Behind the Man: Lahabrea regularly pulls the strings of one Unwitting Pawn after another.
  • Not Quite Dead: At the end of the 2.0 story line, Lahabrea is completely obliterated by the player character, the Scions of the Seventh Dawn, and the leaders of the city-states as they are infused with pure light by Hydaelyn. However, patch 2.2 revealed that Lahabrea isn't quite dead and is, along with the other Ascians, immortal. At the end of 2.3, shortly after learning what makes the Ascians immortal, Lahabrea finally re-forms and immediately gets back to work.
  • Oh, Crap!: He gets two of these during the climax of Heavensward. The first is after he and Igeyorhm are beaten by the Warrior of Light, commenting that he always considered the possibility that the Warrior might regain Hydaelyn's blessing, but he never counted on them to become so strong without it that with the blessing now back their power is completely overwhelming. The second is immediately after when he realizes he's been played for a fool by the Archbishop and is actually killed.
  • One-Winged Angel: He performs a Fusion Dance with Igeyorhm to become an Ascian Prime while fighting the Warrior of Light in Azys Lla.
  • Out-Gambitted: He assumed that by manipulating Thordan, the plan for the Eighth Rejoining would go on as normal. However, Lahabrea was completely outwitted by the archbishop via Batman Gambit; the bishop knew that the Warrior of Light would fight Lahabrea and when the Ascian grew weak after the battle, Thordan comes in and summons a primal unto himself and then uses Nidhogg's eye (the one that he kept hidden from Estinien for years) to absorb Lahabrea's soul. The Ascian is flabbergasted over how he got outsmarted before Thordan kills him.
  • Playing with Fire: His specialty is Fire magic to contrast with his partner's ice magic.
  • Post-Final Boss: In A Realm Reborn. The Ultima Weapon is in ruins and Gaius is defeated, but Lahabrea comes down to finish the job. He is, however, considerably easier than the last two fights with Ultima Weapon.
  • Power Floats: He rarely if ever walks.
  • Pride: So very full of it. Messing with the Spoken races and beastmen for ages made him so full of himself that he thinks nothing can go wrong with his plans. It isn't until King Thordon manages to effectively kill him, the same man Lahabrea thought he could manipulate, that the Ascian manages to get caught off-guard.
  • Smug Smiler: Very much so. When it is revealed that he hijacked Thancred's body, he is seen with such a smile, and even when the situation doesn't look good for him, he keeps smiling smugly and loves to taunt his opponent.
  • Smug Snake: He loves rubbing his evilness right in peoples faces, which only makes it that much more satisfying to kick his ass. Despite being powerful, he tends to not utilize some of his greatest abilities as one of the highest ranked Ascians and gets repeatedly humiliated as a result. Elidibus even calls him out on his arrogance at the end of Heavensward, where him attempting the 8th Rejoining without the consent of the others only made the Warrior of Light more powerful than ever.
  • The Sociopath: Textbook example. Nothing and no one will stop him in the goals he pursues. He is completely unfazed by the death of one of his companions, even when said death happened right before his eyes (and despite having fuzed with her mere moments before), and doesn't seem to really care about his companions in general. He is an expert at manipulation (or, at least, believes himself to be one), thoroughly enjoys playing with people and making them do his bidding, and is so full of himself you will want to punch him repeatedly in the face.
  • Spanner in the Works: According to "Solus" in Patch 4.4, something Lahabrea did was his greatest "crowning moment of idiocy" that forced "Solus" to return into play. It is unknown if that event was either unleashing Ultima magic during the fight with the Ultima Weapon or throwing his lot behind King Thordan. Whether it was making Warrior of Light stronger thanks to casting Ultima, which forced Midgarsormor to step in and seal the Warriors connection to Hydalen for time, or how his attempts to instigate an 8th Rejoining without consenting with the rest of the Ascians and making the Warrior of Light even more powerful as a result.
  • Summon Magic: Can use his dark magic to call the voidsent.
  • Villain Teleportation: Used as a plot point because teleportation without the use of aetherytes is simply not possible for regular beings.
  • Worf Had the Flu: Dialogue in Shadowbringers reveals that possessing a new body takes a considerable amount of power from the Ascian doing it. In contrast to Emet-Selch, who preferred to stick with the same body for the better part of the last hundred years, Lahabrea had a very bad habit of abandoning his host the moment they began to no longer be useful and significantly drained his power as a consequence. Considering he was in new bodies in both A Realm Reborn and Heavensward he must have he must have been considerably weakened when the Warrior of Light and Thordan ended him. Consequently, Emet-Selch, who as mentioned rarely body hopped, put up MUCH more of a fight at the end of Shadowbringers, casually defeating all of the Scions single handedly, and a world's worth of eldritch light as well as requiring 7 extra heroes from other Shards with the same strength as the Warrior of Light to be defeated.
  • Worthy Opponent: By the time the player faces him he readily acknowledges their strength and doesn't hesitate to call them a Warrior of Light.

The Emissary
Race: Ascian
Epithet: The Emissary

"Have the laws of man grown so twisted in my absence that it is now permitted to lay hands upon an emissary?"

An Ascian who appears in a white with gold trim cloak, not far into the Seventh Astral Era. He claims to have no quarrel with the Scions, or the Warrior of Light, but seems to be stirring up trouble in Eorzea just as much as Lahabrea. He apparently knows secrets of the Echo that neither Minfilia nor the Warrior of Light are yet aware of, and tells them that the Ascians and those who possess the Echo are not so far apart.

  • Affably Evil: He's far more civil with the Scions than any of his compatriots.
  • Ambiguous Disorder: His stoicism and calculating behavior is seen as how he gets things done. The Reveal that he lost his home, which was then erased by Hydaelyn and the surviving members demonized. He's quite furious, but his stoic persona is a sign of dealing with anger, specially, closing one's heart and just following logic.
  • Ambiguous Situation: An In-Universe one at that. The Scions are very confused by the revelation that someone named Elidibus chose to become the "Heart of Zodiark", as they aren't sure if its the same Elidibus as they encountered so often, or one from the past.
  • Batman Can Breathe in Space: He is seen speaking with the Warrior of Darkness on the moon.
  • Batman Gambit: In Patch 5.2, the Warrior of Light and their companions decide to reveal the truth about Ardbert and the First's Warriors of Light to the people of the Crystarium, hoping to lure out the person posing as one. Indeed, that person turns out to be Elidibus in Ardbert's body. He quickly hijacks the moment to shill 'his' heroics, inspiring others to take up the mantle of Warriors of Light, and later summons a vision that awakens the Echo in these new aspirants. As of the end of the patch, it's still unsure what his plans are, but one thing is clear: he wanted events to play out as they have. He even mocks the Scions for being puppets dancing to his tune.
  • Beneath the Mask: He normally gives the idea of being calm, mysterious, and scheming with a reverence for Zodiark. Only when he's been cornered does he show his deep seated hatred for Hydaelyn for erasing his peoples existence and even the memory of their being from history.
  • Bluff the Impostor: "Ardbert" suddenly showing up alive and in the flesh in 5.2 was a huge red flag of Ascian involvement, as the Scions note. The Warrior of Light immediately realizes it can only be Elidibus and confirms it with this ploy the minute they're alone with him.
  • The Chessmaster:
    • As Zenos he orchestrated the events of Tsukuyomi's summoning by manipulating Asashi into bringing back Yotsuyu with the Kojin mirror treasure, by doing so he knew that the Warrior of Light would defeat Tsukuyomi and also planned for Asashi's death in case he had survived the initial summoning. When the emperor learns of this he is extremely angry at the thought of Garlean involvement in a summoning, Elidibus calmly explains that the events were set up in a way that Tsukuyomi is now forever unable to be summoned again, essentially killing off the primal Tsukuyomi for good and that everyone involved sans the Warrior is now dead.
    • In the end of Shadowbringers he ends up finding his manipulating skills as the Emissary to be nothing more than a joke as everything he's tried to control to prepare for Zodiark's return comes undone, even telling Zenos the truth of history as a desperate bid to have Zenos' Wild Card nature further blur the lines of history now that everything is out of his control.
  • Don't You Dare Pity Me!: In 5.2 he expresses disgust when the Scions try to implore him to hear them out after what they learned in Amaurot and he expresses disappointment in Emet-Selch for sympathizing with mortals in his final moments. He then states that they will never reach an understanding before leaving.
  • Evil Plan: Naturally like the other Ascians, it's to bring back their god, but unlike the more proactive Ascians he's smart enough to keep most of the details to himself, and will flat-out tell the Scions he has no intention of giving them any details that might lead to his defeat.
  • False Flag Operation: The events of Patch 4.2 and 4.3 was this: Elidibus-as-Zenos charges Asahi with suing for peace with Doma under the banner of the Populares. While he's doing that, he was to hunt down the still-alive Yotsuyu and recruit her into turning into a Primal. As the caveat of the peace being that Doma forsake summoning, Yotsuyu during into a Primal would be "proof" that the Populares' way of trying to obtain peace would never work and the Garleans' way is the right way. It doesn't really work out that way as Maxima smells a rat.
  • Final Boss: He's the final opponent you face in Stormblood's afterstory, fighting in Zenos's body.
  • Humiliation Conga: The end of Stormblood and Shadowbringers has him failing hard time and time again. First he is beaten by the Warrior of Light. Before he could land the killing blow when the Warrior of Light was crippled by the calling, Estinien holds him off and then whisks the Warrior of Light away to safety. Varis mocks him for being unable to deal with the Warrior of Light and basically says "I thought you were going to take care of them," to which Elidibus can only offer a weak excuse for why he failed. Lastly, Zenos not only shows up to reclaim his old body, but he succeeds and drives out Elidibus's soul, forcing him to retreat. After all that and finding out that Emet-Selch was killed, Elidibus is nearly at a loss on what to do next.
  • Invisible to Normals: Tataru couldn't see or hear him when he visits Minfilia in the Waking Sands, and says that those without the Gift or the knowledge cannot see him.
  • Last of Their Kind: The sole remaining unbroken Ascian with Emet-Selch's death at the end of Shadowbringers.
  • Magic Knight: He wields a combination of dark magic and superhuman swordsmanship when he fights the player in patch 4.56. This makes him more dangerous than previously-faced Ascians; by combining Zenos's raw power with the ability to use magic, the heroes are unable to overpower him until the Warrior of Light arrives, and he still has enough power to rise up for another match afterwards.
  • The Mind Is a Plaything of the Body: When he takes to the field and fights after taking Zenos' body, he notably becomes more of a Blood Knight, and even seems surprised about how powerful Zenos was. He even toys with Hien, Yugiri, and Lyse for a bit, not unlike Zenos did when fighting the Warrior of Light at first. As Emet-Selch showcases, the magical abilities of an unbroken soul when invoking their true name far surpass anything that exists, but he lets the rush of power from Zenos' body cloud his mind and to keep appearances up for their battle.
  • Mythology Gag: Shares the same name with a mage who is also associated with a Zodiark.
  • No Nonsense Villain: Unlike all the other Ascians who fight the Warrior of Light, he wastes no time trying to kill the Warrior of Light when they finally fight, going all out from the start. When encountered in Shadowbringers, he makes it very clear that he will not fall into the same pitfalls as his fellow Ascians, and makes no hints to his goals at all.
  • Not So Different: His claims about the relation between Ascians and Echo bearers. In fact, he says if the Scions knew the whole truth about the Echo, they would be "of one mind". Of course, he declines to reveal this whole truth, but later events show a Sahagin priest using what seems to be the power of the Echo to become an immortal Body Snatcher — indeed, just like the Ascians.
    • Spoilers for 5.2: it actually reveals that the Echo itself is an power that originates from the Ancient. Those "blessed" with the echo are people with reincarnated souls, whom have awaken to said power following seeing an event similar to the world's original end. Hydaelyn can only be heard normally by those with the Echo, so she is constantly calling out in case someone gains the Echo. It is basically a power triggered by soul PTSD, that both the Ascians and Hydaelyn has been using to recruit champions.
  • One Steve Limit: It turns out that Elidbus's "name" is, like Emet-Selch, a title. A title he shares with the Ascian who gave up their life to become Zodiark's heart.
  • Orcus on His Throne: He rarely interacts with non-Ascians, and never personally raises a hand against any protagonists; he barely even performs Demonic Possession which is basically the Ascians' calling card. The worst he does is enable other villains to do his dirty work, only stepping in personally when things have gotten dire enough to warrant it. So far this has only happened twice. The first was a brief venture off the throne when he has a chance to kill the Warrior of Light with Zenos's body. The second is where he outright abandons the throne and becomes the main villain of the post-Shadowbringers story.
  • The Red Mage: In his solo fight, he combines Nabriales's magical prowess with Zenos's swordsmanship, though not as efficiently as either of them.
  • Suicidal Overconfidence:
    • He's impressed with the raw physical power Zenos' body has when combined with his own magic, and outright claims to Varis that he would "destroy Eorzea's Champion with the ease that one might swat a fly", the same Warrior of Light that every Ascian up until now has failed to kill. When Elidibus finally fights the Warrior of Light personally, his claims are quickly jossed when they prove they can engage him on even footing, only getting an opening because they were Called mid-fight. After the battle, his confidence and domineering attitude over Varis are notably absent.
    • He ends up doing it again offscreen against Zenos in the body of a different vessel during Shadowbringers, getting defeated easily despite wielding Zenos body. He even admits to letting himself get carried away.
  • Token Good Teammate:
    • While his fellow Ascians all seem to be utterly ruthless, Elidibus comes off as being the only reasonable member of their organisation. He is more inclined to try to find a pacifistic solution to the conflict at hand, and never tried to move directly against the Scions. He even summoned Urianger to speak directly to him, though the content of their conversation remains unknown. However, feeling that the Warrior of Light became too powerful, he enlisted the help of his direct counterpart: the Warrior of Darkness. So unlike his allies, when he says he's doing everything for the sake of cosmic balance, you'll be slightly more inclined to believe him over his comrades.
    • In 3.5, it's revealed that he saved Unukahlai from the death of his world, which would eventually become The Void, and taught him Ascian magic despite being well aware he would work against the Ascians' stated goal of initiating rejoinings by fighting against primals; in fact, he seemed to encourage it. Safe to say this makes his motives and plans very curious.
    • His dialogue throughout the series, but especially at the end of the 3.4 story quests suggest that while his ultimate goal is still the return of Zodiark, Elidibus is significantly smarter about it than his fellow Ascians since aside from triggering Calamities to set off another rejoining, he needs to ensure that they don't overdo it. Failure to do this carefully will end up creating another void like Igeyorhm had, which is counterproductive towards bringing Zodiark's return.
  • The Battle Didn't Count: Despite being soundly defeated by the Warrior of Light at the end of Stormblood, he simply rises back up looking no worse for wear. That being said, its ambiguous if the Warrior of Light would have lost given that he only "won" the fight because of the Warrior of Light being hit by the Calling during the fight, and the Exarch calling him warning that regardless of who wins the Warrior of Light would have lost in the long run.
  • This Cannot Be!: In the fight against him in Stormblood, he's flabbergasted at how the Warrior of Light has grown extremely powerful and wonders how they could gain so much power in a short time span.
  • The Un Reveal: in The Stinger of Stormblood, we has a conversation with Varis in which he questions the Ascian's plans and what exactly it means for mortals if they succeed. To make a point Elidibus takes off his mask. We don't get to see his face, but Varis is shocked, only to muster anything more than " dare you!?" 4.3 all but confirms that he's using Zenos's body, with 4.4 explicitly stating it.
  • Villain Decay: He grouses at length that he's undergone this as of the end of Shadowbringers, suddenly missing a lot of pieces in his cosmic chess set and having no foresight on what will happen next. Garlemald has lost its Puppet King, the First being saved from the Light has made Emet-Selch's ultimate plan FUBAR and gotten him killed, and the current driving force of chaos in the Source is Zenos, a monster of a man that he can't manipulate that now has his sights set on fusing with Zodiark. The post-Shadowbringers questline sees him finally moving to avert this, as he becomes the arc villain of the story.
  • Villain in a White Suit: A unique trait to Elidibus, said to be the mark of an Emissary.
  • Villain with Good Publicity: In 5.2, by using the body of Ardbert right after the Scions make an effort to redeem the First's Warriors of Light's names, he becomes a source of inspiration to the people of the Crystarium. Even the Scions admit that though his methods and intentions are far from benevolent, the lessons he is teaching the people of the First are admirable. Overall, this currently makes him near untouchable.
  • Villain Has a Point: Big time in 5.2. He's travelling the world as Ardbert telling everyone the Warrior of Darkness came from a different world and that they and their companions will be leaving the First, so the people of the First need to become Warriors of Light to protect the world when we're not there. The only lie there is that he's Ardbert. The Scions ARE actively looking for a way home, their lives are actually in danger if they don't get back to their world. Also, it's highly unlikely word could reach us if the First needs us to run back to take care of something. A few heroes in that world honestly wouldn't be a bad thing. And considering the reveal near the end of that chapter that the Echo is a lot more widespread than we thought, and the fact that a whole crowd of people all awakened to it, the people of the First are probably up to the task.
    • When the Scions confront him alone so he can speak without pretending to be Ardbert, he flat out states that he doesn't trust mortals to properly preserve the memory of the Ascian world, citing that it only took a century for the people of the First to turn against the Warriors of Light who did so much for them all. Considering that it was only earlier in that chapter that people finally regarded them as heroes, again, he makes a good argument.


Voiced by: Hiroki Takahashi (JP), René Zagger (EN), Eilias Changuel (FR), Andreas Hofer (DE)
The Angel of Truth
"Ours is a struggle to restore both mankind and the world to their rightful state."

A highly mysterious Ascian, and the third and final of their number to be native to the Source, according to Shadowhunter. Absolutely nothing is known of this individual save the name until Shadowbringers made him an important character.

  • Abusive Parents: Zigzagged. What little we know of Solus's relationship with his son implies some amount of pride and love... only for his son to die young from disease, reinforcing his belief mortals are feeble & frail creatures. Emet winds up despising his grandson Varis for reminding him of his dead son.
  • Adaptational Villainy: An In-Universe example that he lampshades. All Emet-Selch wants is to save both his people and their world so that they can just go back to the good old days. In his fight to bring back their Star, he and the rest of his kind have been demonized by Hydaelyn into demonic anarchists and cosmic conspirators that seek to revive Zodiark just to destroy everything, and dethrone her. And he hates that with a vengeance. He's also states that during the final battle, the loser will be villainized by history, while the winner becomes its hero.
  • Alas, Poor Villain:
    • As the story goes on, it's clear that beneath the hamminess, Emet-Selch is a crushingly tired and lonely man who just wants to save his people and go back to the good old days. Indeed, his motives aren't villainous at all, it's his methods that cause the Scions to oppose him. In his final moments, he pleads with the Warrior of Light to not let the memory of Amaurot die. The Warrior of Light agrees to this with a nod, and Emet gives a small smile as he accepts his death.
    • What little we glimpse of his mortal lives doesn't look bright, either. As Solus, he shows some pride in his son, only for it to be crushed when he dies young from disease. It ends up reinforcing his belief that mortals are feeble and frail and souring his relationship with his grandson Varis.
  • The Aloner: He often works alone and keeps his intentions a secret, even from his fellow Ascians. Unlike Lahabrea though, he tends to get the job done and so Elidibus lets him do as he wishes without questioning him to his face.
  • Ambiguous Disorder: Emet-Selch expresses a desire to be left alone to sleep when he makes his debut post-Stormblood, and later quips that it's one of the most wonderful ways to pass the time. At first it seems like a funny quirk, but taking into account his backstory, it might actually be a sign of depression.
  • Anti-Villain: To the extent the game itself calls him a hero in the text for Hades EX. Emet-Selch's goals are ultimately very relatable and sympathetic—the salvation of his loved ones and his people—and he's so broken it's impossible not to feel for him. It's the lengths he's willing to go to accomplish his goals that make him an antagonist.
  • The Archmage: Even among Ascians, Emet-Selch possesses incredible talent for magic and aetherweaving rivaling that of Omega. Even in a society where creating almost anything out of thin air was common practice, the disparity becomes clear when it's explained that old-world Ascians would have to work together and sometimes even die to create a large-scale project, while Emet can magick an entire city complete with inhabitants into existence all by himself and appear no worse for wear. Granted, it's stated that the massive glamour will fade with time and it's both stated and observable by the player that the "inhabitants" are fairly limited in what they can actually do or think, but it's still staggering in scope, even in-universe.
  • Armor-Piercing Question: Before the final fight when Alphinaud tries once more to reason with him, Emet-Selch asks one thing: half the Ascian population willingly and gracefully sacrificed themselves to save the other half from certain death. Could any of the Scions claim that the current inhabitants of the Source would do the same? The Scions can only look to the ground defeated for a moment, well aware what the answer is.
  • Badass Boast: Upon going One-Winged Angel in the final battle:
    Behold, a sorcerer of eld! Tremble before my glory!
  • Badass Finger Snap: Being a man of flair, Emet-Selch often works his magic with a solid snap of his fingers, audible even through his gloves.
  • Been There, Shaped History: He reveals to the Crystal Exarch that he was likewise behind the Allagan Empire's creation just as he was for the Garlean Empire's.
  • Believing Their Own Lies: Not lies per se, but it's implied that "moral relativism and all that" is just what Emet tells himself to stay on his path, and that deep down he knows the ones he deems "broken" are very much alive. Hence, his desire for "a path of lesser tragedy".
  • Beneath the Mask: Under Emet's flippant, cheerfully evil Troll nature lies literal eons of sorrow and pain over all he and his people have lost, and burning, bitter hatred for the goddess who damned his kingdom and all who fight in Her name.
  • Berserk Button: Considering how Hydaelyn destroyed their world and labeled their race as monsters, "Heroes", being considered the same, and the future.
    • For heroes, while in Amaurot, if you choose to "stop him," it causes Emet to note how cliche it is... before going into \ rant about claiming that there were many "heroes" who thought just like the Warrior does, and angrily states how not only were the Ascians villainized into monsters for wanting to save their world, the "heroes" all thought the current, broken world should be preserved, not at all caring about the world before and those lost in the Final Days and the Sundering.
    • When Alphinaud claims that just like him, they too share his conviction in protecting their world from the threat of the Calamities, Emet-Selch goes Tranquil Fury and venomously asks if he thinks them the same.
    Emet-Selch: (venomously) You think us the same? You think your tattered soul of equal worth to those I lost?
    • For the future, he responds by knocking both Y'shotala and Urianger out cold just before the fight with Hades.
    Emet-Selch: (With red mask glowing) Do not presume to speak of my future!
  • Beware the Silly Ones: When he is first introduced, he seems to be rather comical. He is even shot dead by Emperor Varis with a goofy look on his face, only to reappear shortly in another body taunting Varis. And throughout Shadowbringers, he lightly taunts the Scions and is rather flamboyant. But when he gets serious, all of that drops and his voice drops to a low pitch. And he puts up a much bigger fight than Lahabrea did.
  • Big Bad Friend: In Shadowbringers. He spends most of the expansion ingratiating himself with the Scions, as it occurs to him that cooperation might reap better rewards than opposition. He tags along on a few excursions into Lightwarden territory, can be spoken to at length to get his unique perspective, and reveals some of the biggest twists in the story. He even steps in to save Y'shtola's life when she's lost in the lifestream. For all that, the party never lets their guard down around him, and he's bluntly honest about his goals as the conditions to realise them change. However, see Evil Plan below...
  • Blue-and-Orange Morality: Being one of the three "unbroken" Ascians, he has existed since before the Great Sundering and lived in a time where civilization and peace were on levels unimaginable by mortal men, and thus has very high standards of what people should accomplish. As a result he views "broken" beings as not being truly alive, and murdering them is more like stepping on ants. He even mentions moral relativism for why his morals and the Warriors' simply don't connect to the other, and it isn't until his defeat that he accepts their viewpoint and asks for them to remember the ancients in return.
  • Boss Banter: As his fight as Hades in Shadowbringers, his banter is filled with either Badass Boast, his smug beliefs on the Star belongs only to them and the Warrior's insignificances, or him calling out to the souls of the Ancients to help him in battle.
  • Characterization Marches On: He was considerably more zany and maniacal in Stormblood as opposed to in Shadowbringers. However, it can be justified as his grandiose persona is indicated to be a mask to hide his inner sorrow as an Ascian. As he begins to warm up to the Warrior of Light, he begins to show more and more of his true self.
  • Contrasting Sequel Antagonist: Emet-Selch is thematically the opposite of his great-grandson Zenos, him being pretty much everything Emet-Selch despises in mortal beings. Zenos relishes in conflict for its own sake and sees it as the only true meaning in the world; Emet-Selch despises petty conflicts, seeing them as foolish and misguided. Zenos very much a front-line general, very much willing to get his hands bloody, and prefers using physical force; Emet-Selch is a schemer who prefers avoiding conflict and is a sorcerer. Zenos is normally very detached and uncaring, but this is but a mask for his inner insanity and blood lust; Emet-Selch carries an air of eccentricity and unpredictability that hides a remarkably meticulous and rational mind. Finally, Zenos is a man who lives only for himself and is broken from the boredom of having suffered no real failures in his life. On the other hand, Emet-Selch is a man who exists only for his own people and is forced to live for eons suffering from his own failure to save them. Ironically enough, the two (presumably due to blood ties) rather resemble one another, and the once-mortal Zenos is beginning to turn into an Ascian-like being akin to his great-grandfather.
  • Cynicism Catalyst: He remarks that mortals let him down time and again, and it is a culmination of these failures (in addition to his deep sense of grief and loss) that drives him to cause Rejoinings. The final straws were when his son, who had given him hope for the new world, died young and then the Warrior of Light, who was a reincarnation of his old friend from the Original Star, failed to contain the Flood of Light.
  • Determinator: How determined is he? You have to beat him twice in his boss fight. And even then, through nothing but willpower, Emet rouses himself for a third round, which is stopped by the aid of the Scions.
    I... will... not.. yield...
    Should I surrender this fight, what will become of it all..?
    What will become of our triumphs? Our hopes? Our... our despair?
    What of this anguish which yet burns in my breast even after the passing of eons?
    No, no, no! I will not let it all be for naught!
  • Didn't See That Coming:
    • Despite being the finest schemer among the Ascians, his plans for the First fall apart as soon as the Warrior of Light appears in the First. Not that he can be faulted, as the Warrior only appeared because of the Crystal Exarch travelling back in time and between worlds specifically to make it happen. As far as the original timeline goes, Emet-Selch won by a landslide.
    • A smaller example is when while traveling in through the Rak'tika Greatwood, he taken aback by "Minfilia" asking him to join them in fighting. It's only for a split second though, and immediately says no before explaining why he can't help fight.
    • His final defeat is another prime example. Disappointed by the Warrior of Light's inability to contain the Light, Emet-Selch wrote them off as a failure ready to expire, and indeed, when it's time to fight him, they can barely stand. ...Until Ardbert, an Alternate Self of the Warrior and a fragment of their soul, performs a Heroic Sacrifice to merge with the Warrior, giving them the strength to not just contain the corrupted aether, but control it. Emet is absolutely shocked, especially when he catches a glimpse of the person they used to be.
  • Disappears into Light: His body glows and breaks into seven fragments of light when he dies; notable because how he's the only Ascian to die this way.
  • Even Evil Has Loved Ones: Emet-Selch's actions show that the Ascians are not motivated by sheer malice or fanaticism, but out of love for their own people. Emet-Selch in particular seemed to have experienced love more readily that the other Ascians, fondly remembering his loved ones from Amaurot. He even truly loved his son of mortal origin, despite seeing them as woefully inadequate as an Ascian; his son's death is what finally made Emet lose hope in humanity.
  • Evil Cannot Comprehend Good: After you absorb the light of the final Lightwarden, and it begins to transform you into a Lightwarden, Emet-Selch proclaims that your friends will turn against you and try to strike you down, as clearly you've become an enemy to them, and tells you to come to Amaurot where he will let you live with dignity til you inevitably transform. It doesn't seem to even occur to him that your friends will stick by you til the bitter end, indeed he believes that the fragmented "lesser" souls of mortals are incapable of true self sacrifice, and he sounds genuinely offended that you rejected his offer when you and your friends show up to stop him.
  • Evil Plan: His ultimate endgame, aside from reviving Zodiark and restoring Amaurot, was for the First to be completely consumed by the Flood of Light. This would then cause the First's excessive Light to "seep" into the Source, empowering the Black Rose to the point where he could use it to effortlessly kill the Warrior of Light and the Scions and lay waste to Eorzea, which would in turn cause enough death and destruction to trigger a new Rejoining.
  • Face Death with Dignity: When the final blow is dealt and its damage clearly fatal Emet does not rage against the end. He simply asks that the Warrior of Light remembers the Ascians as they once lived. Once he knows that his people will be remembered he gives the Warrior of Light one final, sad smile before he disperses into aether.
  • Famous Last Words: After being blown through by the Warrior of Light, he asks them to remember that the Ascians existed. When you agree to do so, he goes out with a sad smile.
    Remember... remember us... Remember... that we once lived...
  • Fantastic Racism:
    • His inability to reconcile with the Scions on their points of view stems from this. He sees any of the races created after the world was shattered as 'lesser' due to them being far less powerful; as he explains it, Hydalen's powers essentially split people in half with the shards, dividing their aether and essence in half with it. Divide that by thirteen (as there are thirteen shards), and the races of the Source and the Shards are barely a shadow of what the Ascians were. To him, their condition is akin to a gross deformity, and it disgusts him.
    • He absolutely despises Hydaelyn and her Light after what she did to his civilization. This hatred extends to anyone who has received the Blessing of Light, with him repeatedly calling the Warrior of Light a "monster" and an "abomination" throughout the final battle. A part of this hatred however, might also be due to the fact that the Warrior of Light is the source's reincarnation of one of his closest friends. To him, it probably is hell to find himself in that situation, with his friend on the other side of the balance, which makes him go full denial about it.
  • Fatal Flaw: His Super Supremacist and Fantastic Racism attitude, Orange And Blue Morality, and inability to let go from the past costs him dearly when after the Warrior fails to contain the Lightwardens' Light, he betrays everyone by kidnapping the Crystal Exarch so that he can make sure that the Warrior helps in the Eight Rejoining. When Ardbert and the Warrior fuse before the final battle, and Emet sees a vision of the Ascain the Warrior once was, Emet rejects the possibility that the Warrior is becoming the person they once were before the Sundering. After losing the fight, Emet, in both rage and despair, lunges towards the hero, only to be kept in place long enough by everyone else for them to condense the Light into an axe to slay the Ascian. In the end, Emet accepts his defeat, and merely asks that they remember that the Ascian once lived.
  • Foil: To the Crystal Exarch. Both are mysterious men with color schemes of predominantly black and red, with a little white. Both have ultimate goals revolving around the salvation of people important to them. Both are a long-lost friend of the Warrior of Light in some capacity. Both present themselves as your allies, but whereas the Exarch is secretive and hides his face, Emet is straightforward and shows his. Both carry deep inner sorrow, but the Exarch deals with it by being quiet and withdrawn, while Emet is a Sad Clown. And finally, while both were watching to see how the Warrior would deal with the surplus of Light, the Exarch steps in to save them when they fail to contain it, while Emet grows bitter over their failure and becomes the Final Boss.
  • Forgotten Friend, New Foe: A lot of his bitterness towards the Warrior of Light comes from the fact that they are the reincarnation of one of his closest friends. While the details of their identity remains unknown as of now, it adds a whole new layer to his attitude, as his friend is now on the other side of the balance. He goes full denial when he sees this person's appearance take over the Warrior of Light's for a split second, unable to get over the fact that despite not being fully merged with their other shards yet, they ultimately are still that person.
  • Final Boss: Invokes his true name of Hades to fight the party at the end of Shadowbringers.
  • Final-Exam Boss: His Extreme version has him summon up the shades of previous Ascians that have been killed over the story as well as using their attacks. Nabriales' meteor drop, Lahabrea and Igeyorhm's fire and ice as well as fusing to Ascian Prime.
  • Foreshadowing: Quite a few that foreshadows Emet-Selch's big reveals of the game.
    • In patch 4.4, Emet-Selch states "Ours is a struggle to restore both mankind and the world to their rightful state." He means his "struggle" against Hydaelyn to bring back the Ancient's Star and restore the fractured souls of those lost in the Sundering.
    • When Alphinaud question's Emet's decision to team up with the Warrior and friends, Emet's response ends with "You do not know our motive."
    • During the same scene, he also says with "So come, shed your preconceptions. See beyond the scrupulous villains you take us for. When all is said and done, we may find ourselves pleasantly surprised," which foreshadows his reveal of the true nature of the world, the gods, and the Ascians, as well as his desire to legitimately turn over a new leaf should the Warrior of Light succeed in containing the Flood of Light.
    • While in the Rak'tika Greatwoods, he gives his sympathies over the apparent death of Y'shtola, saying "tis never easy to lose the ones we love", foreshadowing the reveal that he mourns the people lost during the Sundering.
  • Freudian Excuse Is No Excuse: During the final confrontation of Shadowbringers, he rants at length about how all he wants is to restore his people's world and kingdom that Hydaelyn "robbed" them of and expose the hypocrisy of the Light to the Shards and the Source. As the Scions point out, while he has every right to be angry about his own losses, that doesn't give him the right to mass murder millions of people just to get his own back and even if those living within the Source and the Shards are "lesser", they still have a right to live.
  • The Ghost: We at first only see the barest suggestion of their form and, when the idea of them is first introduced, no living man the story has seen or encountered them, on camera or off. At least, under this name. When he effectively "joins" you in Shadowbringers, he drops the Solus alias and just goes by Emet-Selch.
  • Going Native:
    • Defied. He tried to do so in the past. Emet did everything from making friends, getting lovers, having children, even choosing to die with the bodies he resided in. He bitterly responds to the Scions that despite it all he still found himself unable to accept the world as it currently is and found people to be grossly wanting. This presumably includes his own current grandson and great-grandson, who would definitely be... rather unimpressive, by his standards.
    • Tales from the Shadows implies he was closer to going native than he admits. As Emperor Solus, he had to remind himself his grandson was just his body's grandson. He also shows a flicker of pride in his son... only to have it dashed when he dies young from an illness.
  • Go Out with a Smile: When he dies, he gives a genuine smile to the Warrior of Light, which has a lot of both Heart Warming and Tear Jerker implications between them.
  • Graceful Loser: While the process of losing itself is not taken with grace, once truly defeated he calmly accepts it and simply requests that you remember him, his city, and his people as he fades away.
  • Greater-Scope Villain: Threefold, having a hand in every conflict in the story since 1.0:
    • Of the Garlean Empire and their efforts to sow unrest across The Source, given he is Solus zos Galvus.
    • Of the Allagan Empire, as he confides to the Crystal Exarch in private, toward the same end as he founded the Garlean Empire: bringing about Calamities and causing Rejoinings.
    • Of the Eulmore arc; it was he who proposed the idea of infusing the mayor's unborn child with the power of the sin eaters, creating the abomination that is Vauthry.
  • I Have Many Names: "Emet-Selch" is just a title, and Solus zos Galvus was a pseudonym he used in the Source. As we learn at the end of Shadowbringers, his true name is in fact Hades.
  • Hoist by His Own Petard: Perhaps it wasn't the wisest idea for him to infuse the most powerful warrior on the entire star with the light from all five Lightwardens. Although, to his credit, he wasn't aware that Ardbert would be there to give the Warrior of Darkness a bit of extra help by combining their souls into one. In a dose of irony the merger even made the Warrior of Light strong enough to contain the light as Emet originally wanted, but at a point where they were decidedly set against one another allowing Warrior of Light to use the aether of the Lightwardens to forge the Blade of Light that kills him.
  • Humans Are the Real Monsters: He confesses if questioned after saving Y'shtola that all he does is plant the seeds for chaos to happen in most situations. Instead it is man who quickly begins to grow the seeds and harvest them to spread ruin. He merely watches as things tend to go as planned from afar.
    • Part of his justification for the Ancients being superior to the modern races of the world is because they're not just biologically superior, but morally superior. He taunts the Scions asking if the inhabitants of the modern world would willingly sacrifice themselves to save half their people, as the Ascians did when summoning Zodiark. The Scionsnote  are silent, implying he may be right.
  • Ironic Echo: His mocking words that describe The First's despair at the sight of the Warrior of Light becoming the Prime Lightwarden of Norvrandt are repeated by the Crystal Exarch, described by the Future Source's despair as the Light-infused Black Rose causes the Eight Umbral Calamity.
    Emet-Selch/Crystal Exarch: There is no hope. Our world is finished. Mankind is finished.
  • Ironic Name: Despite his title meaning "Your Truth/Your Reality", while fitting for a "perfect being" and never really lying, as Amaurot shows, he's willing to reject several worlds right to exist for his to come back, refusing to believe that they should exist in the first place. Even more so when he rejects the sight of the Ancient the Warrior of Light once was, calling it "a trick of the light".
  • Last Request: After being defeated and fatally wounded, he asks the Warrior (who's a reincarnation of his close friend), to remember him, his city, and his people as he fades away.
    • Its deconstructed in later patches, as it shown to be much more easier said then done, as the Warrior has never lived through the Sundering themselves, thus having an unintentional bias on that "memory", as Elidibus puts it, the fact that the Source and Shards have never learned from their history, makes him doubt that they could even change, let alone uphold that promise.
  • Meaningful Name: His real name is Hades, the Greek god of the Underworld. As the "Through His Eyes" short story reveals, the Ancients actually called the Lifestream the Underworld, and Emet-Selch has always had a very close connection to it. This connection even allows him to locate souls and pull them out, as he does with Y'shtola.
  • More Than Mind Control: He overtly states he is tempered by Zodiark and is well aware of the implications surrounding that, but to him it doesn't matter because summoning Zodiark and using his power to resurrect the Ancients is the only way he can see bringing them all back.
  • Mr. Exposition: He reveals more about the lore and goals of the Ascians than anyone else in the entire game. It is through him that we learn the Ascians we know were thirteen of the fourteen highest ranking officials of Amaurot, the capital of the original precursor race of immortal sorcerers who once ran the world, until a great cataclysm caused the species' creation magicks to spin out of control and summon apocalyptic monsters out of fear. Half of their race sacrificed themselves to imbue the world with a will, creating the primal Zodiark to end the calamity, who in turn tempered his summoners; half the remainder sacrificed themselves to Zodiark to restore the world; and half that remainder sacrificed themselves to create the primal Hydaelyn to end the cycle of sacrifice and protect the budding mortal races from Zodiark. Hydaelyn's true power is in her ability to split things not just physically, but aetherically, and the battle between the two primals ended with her splitting Zodiark, the world itself, and every soul on it into fourteen copies, save for the three Source Ascians (Lahabrea, Elidibus, and Emet-Selch). The "unbroken" three have the ability to restore people who possess the soul shards of their original number back into full Ascian status to replenish their ranks; the "names" of Ascians we've seen are in fact just their original job titles. The methods for primal summoning that the Ascians passed on to the beast tribes are in fact reteachings of their creation magic, and each Calamity has been the result of the excess aether of one of these world Shards flooding back into the Source, slowly reverting it to its original state. The Ascians intend to reassemble Zodiark through the Rejoinings not simply to reinstate him as the chief god, but so that they can sacrifice the mortal races to him to resurrect the members of their original race they previously sacrificed to him.
  • My Greatest Failure: Hythlodaeus reveals he blames himself for failing the Ascians when they needed him. Despite how he might present himself, his guilt at failing all those who died only continues to weigh heavy on him, and with each passing century the burden he carries only grows as he tries to save them.
  • Mythology Gag: If his Solus Zos Galvus persona calls to mind Ardyn, then his Emet-Selch persona references Garland from Final Fantasy 9. Like Garland, Emet-Selch's primary goal is the revival of his advanced yet long extinct race, at the cost of the currently living species that inhabit the the Source and it's reflections. Both their plans rely on the merging of worlds, rely on pawns they create to get their plans moving, both turn out to be the man behind the man of the supposed antagonist that they have a familial connection to, (Varis for Emet-Selch, Kuja for Garland),and have a connection to the main hero that goes before the events of the game. The Warrior of Light is the reincarnation of Emet-Selch's close friend, while Zidane is Garland's perfected angel of death. Both their endgames rely on the hero's soul to some extent, (Emet-Selch hoped that the Lightwarden's corruption would break the Warrior of Light's soul to bring about a rejoining, while Garland rips out Zidane's soul in an attempt at forcing obedience.) Lastly their plans are ultimately ruined by another villain they assumed they had under control. (Emet-Selch's posthumous plans for black rose and thus the rejoining is ruined by Zenos overthrowing Varis, while Terra along with it's inhabitant's souls are destroyed by Kuja in addition to Kuja killing Garland himself.
  • Necromancer: Hades calls forth the souls of deceased Ascians for aid, even merging them in the second half of the battle with his own as they unite to battle the Warrior of Light. The Minstrel’s Ballad: Hades’ Elegy takes this up a notch, with him summoning shades of Nabriales, Lahabrea, Igeyhorm and an Ascian Prime during the fight..
  • Name To Run Away From Really Fast: His real name is Hades for crying out loud.
  • Nice Job Fixing It, Villain!: Following the Villainous Breakdown below if one highlights the tooltip granted the player it reveals that you're using the very light threatening to consume you to empower yourself enough to finish Emet-Selch. By orchestrating Norvrandt to be flooded by light ever since the original flood ended and allowing you to absorb said light for his own plans, the single most powerful Ascian ever faced has unwittingly given the Warrior of Light a blade of light powerful enough to destroy him, even without his soul being entrapped in auracite.
  • One-Winged Angel: In addition to the form he takes when he invokes his true name of Hades, he has a further one where he completely casts off his body, combines his essence with the lost souls of his Ascian brethren, and becomes a monstrosity littered with Ascian masks over its body. Taken Up to Eleven in Hades's Elegy where instead of casting Dark Cauldron, he fuses with all of the Ascian souls to become even bigger, using only Dark Current, Gigantomany and Quadstrike to destroy you above the sky of the dying Star.
  • Sad Clown: One would be forgiven for initially thinking that Emet-Selch is having the time of his life, enjoying every second of plunging the Source and the other worlds into chaos. However, it becomes apparent later on that his cheerful and mocking attitude is merely a mask that conceals a crushingly tired and guilt-ridden man. Even sadder is that it is implied this persona was based off of his colleague Hythlodaeus, who had a rather jovial disposition with a tendency to tease others, whereas Hades was originally much more melancholy in comparison.
  • Schemer: Emet-Selch's role is to conspire, plot and scheme new ways to ensure Calamities. It's even lampshaded in one scene:
    Y'shtola: You're plotting something.
    Emet-Selch: Every hour of every day. But never you mind about that.
  • Secret Test of Character: His interest in cooperating with the Warrior of Light stems from their ability to contain the Lightwardens' aether without transforming. This is implied to be a feat that an "unbroken" being from the old world would be able to do with ease, and if the Warrior can rise to the challenge, Emet-Selch is willing to abandon the Rejoining and accept that the Source and the Thirteen have the potential to attain the old world's glory. Unfortunately, the Warrior fails, and Emet wastes no time resuming hostilities. Ironically, when the Warrior and Ardbert become one to contain the light before the final fight, the Warrior had essentially "passed" Emet's test, but by then, the line was already drawn in the sand, and the ensuring fight ends with Emet getting blown though by the concentrated Light from the Flood.
  • Shadow Archetype: To the Warrior of Light. Like them, Emet-Selch carries the expectations of an entire people on his shoulders and fights to save his loved ones and world. Like Emet, the Warrior of Light carries their share of trauma, pent-up anger, and guilt for what they've experienced and done, as the Dark Knight questlines reveal. Emet is basically them after eons upon eons of fighting.
  • Signature Move: He has two of these in the final boss fight:
    • In his first form he has “Ancient Dark IV”, a powerful blast of dark magic charged up by the fervor of the Shadows of the Ancients.
    • In his second form he has “The Dark Devours”, repeated blasts of dark magic which he uses in an attempt to snuff out the player’s light. Once the light has been smothered he’ll begin casting his true signature move, “Black Cauldron”, which is an instant kill if allowed to go off.
  • Slouch of Villainy: He has a very distinctive posture and walk, condescending and eccentric but later described as "as if he has the weight of the world on his shoulders".
  • Super Supremacist:
    • He refuses to accept the current races of the worlds as worthy stewards of the Ascians' legacy, believing them to be not even a fraction as strong as the Ascians. Considering the Asicans were capable of creating anything out of thin air using only a sliver of their aether in the same way the current races must use a veritable reservoir to summon a Primal, he's not wrong in that assessment. Of course, as with any supremacist, it comes with him treating the non-Ascian races as dirt, at best only useful to help further his own plans. Best shown when in "Hades's Elegy", upon achieving his final form;
    "We are the blessed. We are the chosen!"
  • Suspiciously Similar Substitute: As Hades, he serves this as a Primal for the Ancients, in a vein similar to Loiusoix becoming Phoenix, due to him being "raised up by the souls of [his] fallen brethren," even fusing with all of them in the extreme version of his trial.
  • Sympathy for the Hero: When the Warrior of Light seemingly starts transforming into a Sin Eater, Emet-Selch expresses genuine pity at their situation, and offer them to come to his hideout, the Tempest, so that they can complete their painful transformation in peace and dignity. He then tells them that he will "see them off", which takes a new meaning in light of the 4th "Tales from the Shadows", as Emet-Selch is able to see the souls of the dead departing and traveling, seemingly offering to guide them, in a way, when their time comes. Which makes his true name of Hades more sense. The fact that the Warrior of Light's original self was a very close friend of his probably has a lot to do with it.
  • This Cannot Be!: He has that reaction when a glimpse of the Warrior of Light's original self appears instead of their current appearance to him. He immediately goes in denial about it, unable to face the fact that the person in front of him is so much like their original self despite not being "complete".
  • Tragic Villain: Very. Emet-Selch is ultimately a man who survived the complete destruction of his home and race, emerged into a world that had forgotten all about them, and just could not adjust to his new reality no matter how he tried. ...So he decided to try and bring back the old, at the expense of everyone else.
  • Trauma Conga Line: Despite how he looks and acts, his life has not been an easy one. First his world faced the apocalypse, and he had to watch half the surviving population sacrifice themselves, twice, to save it by summoning Zodiark and then fix the damage. Then a group of dissidents created Hydaelyn to keep Zodiark in check and protect the new life from being sacrificed...except in doing so, Hydaelyn shattered everything into 14 shards that Emet considers barely alive. This put him at the Despair Event Horizon, yet he spent literal eons working away tirelessly to save their world, only to accidentally turn the 13th Shard into the Void. He tried to adjust to his new reality, doing everything he could from getting friends, having a family, fighting alongside mankind, and even letting himself die in his bodies, but was continuously disgusted by the new worlds for their ignorance, weakness and wanting, as well how his people were labeled as monsters and erased from history. Then, as Solus zos Galvus, he had one son who actually gave him hope for humanity... before dying young, enforcing his belief that Humans Are Flawed and everything must be restored to the way they were before. Then when he "died" and entered "retirement", his grandson would do everything in his power to erase him from history, starting with his love of theater. And because of Lahabrea's failures with the Ultima Weapon and The Warring Triad, he is then forced out of his "retirement", but his plans for the Eighth Umbral Calamity are immediately foiled by the Warrior being summoned to the First. Emet gets one last glimmer of hope by the fact that the Warrior is a reincarnation of one of his closest friends who, if capable of containing the Flood of Light, can prove that there is hope for mankind. They fail, so Emet kidnaps the Exarch to force the Warrior to become a Lightwarden, which fails as well when Ardbert sacrifices himself to allow the Warrior to contain the Light. This gives Emet a glimpse of his old friend, but he rejects it, and they battle, during which he snaps hard and is ultimately run through with a Blade of Light. In the end, the only ray of hope is that Emet asks them to remember the Ancients, which they agree to, and he accepts his death with peace. In short: the only happy parts of his eons-long life were before the Final Days, and the very end.
  • Villains Never Lie: He doesn't lie, unlike most others including his fellow Ascians. It fits his title of Emet-selch the Angel of Truth. However, it doesn't stop him from skewing the truth at times, for omitting certain context. That and his own bias pertaining to Hydaelyn. When he betrays everyone and Alphinaud asks what was Emet's true purpose in approaching them, Emet is legitimately offended.
  • Villainous Breakdown: His starts right before his boss fight and extends all the way until his final defeat. When the Warrior of Darkness gets a Heroic Second Wind thanks to Ardbert Rejoining his fragment to the Warrior's original soul, Emet is shocked. Then he briefly sees the image of the Ancient that the Warrior used to be, goes into denial, and becomes absolutely furious when the Crystal Exarch summons backup from other worlds..
    Ardbert!Warrior of Darkness: This world is not yours to end. This our future. Our story.
    Emet-Selch: (briefly sees the Ancient the Warrior once was) No... It can't be...Bah, a trick of the light. You are a broken husk, nothing more. How can you hope to stand against me alone?

    Crystal Exarch: We stand together!
    Emet-Selch: How did─!? ...I'm surprised you can stand at all.
    Crystal Exarch: I could not well leave matters half-finished. Let expanse contract, eon become instant! Champions from beyond the rift, heed my call!
    Emet-Selch: Damn you! Damn you all!
  • Vitriolic Best Buds: In Tales from the Shadows, he constantly complains about, insults, and snaps at Hythlodaeus, who he privately calls a close friend. Hythlodaeus isn't fazed one bit by it.
  • Villain Takes an Interest: He became interested in all the Scions and sought to make them genuine allies if they agreed to his alliance. Unfortunately The Warrior of Light failed his Secret Test of Character by being unable to sustain the combined Light of the Lightwardens within, dashing his hopes and him expressing disappointment as a result.
  • Walking Spoiler: Just look at all the redacted lines in here. Even in his first appearance at the end of Stormblood he drops one of the biggest lore bombs in the story, and continues to do so throughout all of Shadowbringers, revealing a lot of the world's biggest mysteries.
  • What Measure Is a Non-Human?: Discussed: Because the races of the Source and its reflections have but a fraction of aether and lifespan as the Ascians, Emet-Selch considers them less than living beings. As he sees it, he wouldn't be committing murder if he killed one of them, because he hardly considers them to be alive at all.
    Emet-Selch: But yes, moral relativism and all that. Case in point - I do not consider you to be truly alive. Ergo, I will not be guilty of murder if I kill you.
  • What You Are in the Dark: As an Ancient, Hades was originally a rather lethargic and surly individual who misliked being bothered and preferred being left to his own devices. Upon being left as one of the three last beings of his kind, he could have easily given in to his nature and given up on restoring his people without any consequence, but instead Emet-Selch decided to bear the brunt of the burden, working tirelessly in search of ways to bring about the Rejoining.
  • Wham Line: He reveals some major truths in Shadowbringers, and delivers one of the biggest twists in the story in regards to Hydaelyn and Zodiark, a bombshell that changes the scope of the entire story and casts the player's role and relation to it in a very different light.
    Emet-Selch: They are gods after a fashion, yes. The eldest and most powerful... of primals.
    • Another one is during his talk alone with the Exarch, and blatantly admits to having a hand in Allegan's rise.
    Emet-Selch: The once great nation whose ingenuity gave birth to this tower was shaped by my hands. As such I know full well the wonders it can facilitate... and those it cannot.
  • Well-Intentioned Extremist: Just wants to save his world and reclaim the future that was stolen from his race. Too bad that means slaughtering untold millions and millions more to do so.
    Emet-Selch: "I will bring back our brethren. Our friends. Our loved ones. The world belongs to us, and us alone."
  • Written by the Winners: During the final confrontation, he states his first act of reclaiming his world will of wiping away the history of the Source and Shards. Just before he transforms into Hades, he states that the winner of the final fight will become its hero, and the loser its villain.
  • Xanatos Speed Chess: He shows quite the aptitude for it in Shadowbringers. The Warrior of Light ruins his plans for the First just by showing up? He recognizes the futility of fighting them and, recognizing the soul of his old friend in them, offers himself as an ally. The Exarch tries to save them when they fail to contain the Light? Emet shoots him, leaving the Warrior with the inevitable fate of becoming a Lightwarden who will help carry out the First's Rejoining, and kidnaps the Exarch to gain his knowledge for use in future Rejoinings. The Warrior shows up in Amaurot with allies instead of alone as he requested? Alright, time to get his hands dirty.


Minor Ascians

Race: Duskwight Elezen

A mysterious Elezen mage who appears in the 1.0 storyline. He does not cast a shadow, and it is inferred that he is an agent of the Ascians.

  • Beard of Evil: A combination of Hot Blooded Sideburns and thin lines of hair on his jaw.
  • Greater-Scope Villain: In the final segment of the Alexander storyline in Heavensward, it was revealed that he was the one who instigated the summoning of Alexander and convinced Mide to infuse a magical horn within the Primal's core allowing it to drain aether from Hydaelyn itself rather than just the surrounding area.
  • Leitmotif: While it would go on to be used by the Ascians in general, he was notably one of the very few Legacy NPCs to have a personal theme in "Without Shadow".
  • Mind over Matter: He has unexplained telekinetic powers.
  • Our Elves Are Different: He's a dark-skinned Wildwood elezen.
  • Put on a Bus: For the Seventh Umbral Era storyline and on into Realm Reborn. There has been no indication he will return. Reading between the lines, it seems likely he was a prior host for one of the Ascians, either Lahabrea or maybe Nabriales, or possibly even one of those lesser, nameless Ascians, but was abandoned for more conveniently-placed hosts post-Calamity.
    • The Bus Came Back: He reappears in Heavensward, via flashback, as the Greater-Scope Villain of the Alexander storyline. His exact standing among the Ascians remains unclear, but he is still seemingly active, as Mide received the horn post-Calamity. With revelations from Shadowbringers, it's now speculated he's one of the "ascended" Ascians, who are soul-descended from one of the original council members and raised back to their role by one of the unsundered.
  • Red Right Hand: He has no shadow.
  • White Hair, Black Heart: Whatever his motives are or were, no good came from his agenda.

The Majestic
Race: Ascian

"Unlike the others, I am not given to waiting. I shall take that staff, and bring about the next Rejoining."

An Ascian overseer introduced briefly at the very tail end of The Stinger of the initial 2.0 release and brought into greater prominence in the patch content, particularly patch 2.5, Nabriales is the Ascian responsible for teaching Iceheart how to summon Shiva, and potentially for how the primals were re-summoned in their "Extreme" difficulty. Contrasting Lahabrea's and Elidibus's personalities, Nabriales isn't one for sticking to the shadows or respecting diplomacy.

  • Barehanded Blade Block: He blocks Moenbryda’s axe with a single finger when she tries to cut him down, prompting her to mutter “Oh, bugger.”
  • Bastard Understudy: Implied from his dialogue where he mentions being under the tutelage of Lahabrea while he taught people about primals. He has no respect for him and makes his disdain and desire to surpass him clear.
  • Beard of Evil: He has some noticeable sideburns poking out from under his hood.
  • Black Mage: While all the Ascians seem to be able to cast dark magic, he takes this art to another degree during his boss fight, in which he unleashes powerful spells such as Dark IV, Quake III and Comet (a lot of Comets actually, while slowing the flow of time itself), and summon dark elementals. He is also able to cast nearly instantly his basic spell several times in a row, something which will kill your tank if you don't anticipate it.
  • Casting a Shadow: His basic attack spell Spark as well as the Dark IV spell which will wipe the party if they let the orbs reach him and charge his spell, during this time he also summons Shadow Sprites who cast Dark II at you.
  • Colony Drop: His final desperation move is to trap your party in a rift in time space and pelt you with Comets while he summons a Meteor and your party has to escape the rift before the meteor lands to avoid a Total Party Kill.
  • Deader Than Dead: At the end of 2.5 part 1, he becomes the first Ascian to fall victim to the Auricite/Blade of Light combination and be permanently and irrecoverably slain. Though doing such comes at a great cost.
  • Dishing Out Dirt: When he starts getting desperate he will cast Quake III an unavoidable shockwave, sometimes several times in a row.
  • Evil Brit: Has a distinct British accent in the English version (largely because Gideon Emery pulls double duty in voicing him, on top of doing Urianger).
  • Faux Affably Evil: He is very polite, but this is nothing but a facade, hidding an incredibly ruthless individual. He seems to respect Elidibus's wishes to not harm Minfilia, who tries to stop him from getting Louisoix's staff... so he decides to kidnap her instead with the staff.
  • "Get Back Here!" Boss: He loves to teleport away from you and cast a long-range spell, prompting you to run after him.
  • Hero Killer: Fatally wounds Moenbryda in the Rising Stones.
  • Hot Blooded Sideburns: The only identifying characteristic underneath his mask, and matches his no nonsense personality to boot.
  • Knight of Cerebus: He shares this role along with Midgardsormr in the 2.5 patch, though his role is short-lived.
  • Implacable Man: As soon as he realizes that the player character is no longer under Hydaelyn's protection, he immediatly rushes the Scions' base in order to steal Louisoix's staff, and crushes anyone resisting him, effortlessly.
  • Nice Job Fixing It, Villain!: Rather than just simply taking the fragment of Tupsimati, Louisoux's former staff, he decides in the middle of taunting the Scions to explain why it's so important to the Ascians and partly because he's shocked that the Scions had such a powerful artifact in their possession all this time. Namely he explains that it's able to draw to it a great amount of aether from the land at once. Yes that's right, he unwittingly gave the Scions the solution to his own destruction to summon forth the aether needed to use the Blade of Light.
  • No-Nonsense Nemesis: Elidibus wants to solve the enmity with the Scions through diplomacy and Lahabrea's still recovering from his temporary defeat and prefers to work in the shadows; Nabriales is neither of these. While at first he just shows up to gloat, he easily deflects Moenbryda when she attacks him. And when he senses your character no longer has the Blessing of Light, he immediately goes to the Rising Stones to get Louisoix's staff, which has the ability to channel incredible amounts of aether. When Moenbryda tries to stop him, he doesn't hesitate to fatally wound her in a single attack. And when Minfilia refuses to give him the staff, he adheres to Elidibus's orders to not harm her... by taking her and the staff together. This even spills into his boss fight: he doesn't mess around with weak or slow magic, his spells are extremely powerful, have excellent range, and cast quickly. He uses his "big" technique twice, and after it's clear it won't work a third time, reveals a second big technique: pulling you into a pocket dimension and spamming Meteor, which is a great deal more difficult that stopping his shadow flare. Ultimately, the entire reason for his downfall was only because Moenbryda pulled a Heroic Sacrifice; has she not, he would have escaped with knowledge that the Scions are unprotected and of the existence of the white auracite.
  • No-Sell: He stops Moenbryda's battleax with a single finger.
  • Time Master: His skills are so great that he is able to spam spells and slow the flow of time itself.
  • Time Stands Still: He is able to create a distortion in time and space, in which time is slowed (complete with mandatory Colour-Coded Timestop) and in which he spams meteors on your party.
  • Villain Teleportation: As an Ascian, he is able to teleport himself around pretty quickly. He actually teleports himself inside Minfilia's room several times, and also likes to do that during his boss battle.
  • Villainous Breakdown: When it's clear to him that he's finished he starts this very quickly. While the dub portrays this as him being defiant to the end but still flipping out that this is even possible, the Japanese audio has him outright screaming in terror:
    "I don't want to die. I don't want to die! I DON'T WANT TO DIE!!!"
  • Wave-Motion Gun: Whenever he teleports he will cast the End of Days spell which is a straight forward laser beam of death.
  • Weak, but Skilled: According to Encyclopedia Eorzea, Nabriales lacks the raw magical power of the likes of Lahabrea and Elidius, but makes up for it with his expansive knowledge of the dark arts.

The Martyr
Race: Ascian

"Darkness shall consume light!"

A female Ascian in league with Lahabrea and the one in charge of overseeing the group's plans within Ishgard.

  • An Ice Person: She specializes in ice elemental magic to contrast the magic of Lahabrea.
  • The Atoner: She seeks redemption by working with Lahabrea for her failure covered under Gone Horribly Right.
  • Dark Action Girl: So far the only female Ascian seen in person and more than capable in a fight.
  • Fusion Dance: Joins with Lahabrea to become an Ascian Prime.
  • Gone Horribly Right: Encyclopedia Eorzea explains that Igeyorhm was the Ascian in charge of events in the Thirteenth Shard. She crushed the forces of light in that world so suddenly and completely, it triggered a flood of darkness that nullified the Shard's aether and converted that realm into the Void, which is useless for the Ascians' purposes.
  • Killed Off for Real: Just as Nabriales was defeated, Igeyorhm is killed by the Warrior of Light with white auracite and the Eye of Nidhogg used to create the Blade of Light.
  • Small Role, Big Impact: She serves as a bit-player in the storyline and only shows up in a few scenes, one of which is a boss fight which ends in her permanent death. Yet it was first Encyclopedia Eorzea which revealed that she's potentially one of the most important figures in the entire meta-universe. Since she's responsible for creating the void, she's, albeit unintentionally, the Greater-Scope Villain for every single voidsent villain on both Hydaelyn and the other shards. Shadowbringers confirms this, though Emet-Selch claims that, really, the Ascians are collectively guilty for not stepping in to help Igeyorhm and prevent the Flood of Darkness until it was far too late to stop.
  • We Hardly Knew Ye: While she can be seen in the scenes where all of the Ascians are present, she's properly introduced in the main story of 3.0 and is killed by the Warrior of Light at the end of it while barely getting any screen time.
  • You Gotta Have Blue Hair: In the post climax 2.0 stinger, the dark room hides her face, but it shows her having long blue hair.

An unseen Ascian mentioned in Galuf Baldesion's notes within Eureka Hydatos. She sought to control the primal Eureka, only to be destroyed by Galuf and his three allies.
  • Deader Than Dead: Galuf and company took her down at the same time you were fighting Lahabrea and managed to kill her outright. This turned out to be a terrible idea.
  • Gender Flip: Sort of - in the original FFXII Scions of Light pantheon that inspired the Ascian names, Emmerololth was the Holy Queen. XIV's Emmerololth, however, appears to very much be a man and is described with male pronouns.
    • Averted as of Patch 4.56, where all pronouns referring to Emmerololth have been changed to female, seemingly as a correction to an error in the English localization.
  • Greater-Scope Villain: Her machinations are why the Isle of Val became the Forbidden Land of Eureka.
  • Posthumous Character: She was destroyed by Galuf and his allies, and her aether was scattered into the Lifestream.

God of the Ascians


The Ascians' god. Very little is known about Zodiark. What is known is that the Ascians' ultimate goal is to destroy Hydaelyn so that they will be able to summon Zodiark in her place. Such an act will destroy and remake the world to the Ascians' wishes.

  • Ambiguous Situation:
    • Exactly how malevolent he's supposed to be is kept extremely tight lipped. The Ascians summoned him for a benign purpose in saving the world, and their next two plans were suggested to have been done of their own volition, as having the Echo makes them being tempered ambiguous in how much influence he had over them, with it even being implied to be no worse than Hydaelyn due to the More Than Mind Control the "Unbroken" Ascians show. Hyadelyn and the history her follower rewrote on the other hand depict him as a villain seeking greater power, which itself is thrown into doubt when Hydaelyn didn't exist until after Zodiark did. Making it Written by the Winners.
    • After 5.2 was released whether Elidibus the Ascian emissary encountered throughout the story is the same one who sacrificed himself to become the "heart" of Zodiark or simply a successor to the title. Should the former be true, then are the Scions interactions with the emissary a reflection of a loyal servant or of the god himself?
  • God of Evil: God of the Ascians, whose rise will bring about the destruction of the Mother Crystal and as a result, all of Eorzea and Hydaelyn. Shadowbringers reveals this is highly a matter of perspective.
  • Dark Is Evil: While Hydaelyn, the Mother Crystal, is aspected to Light, Zodiark is Darkness. Shadowbringers makes this far more complicated than originally thought. Firstly, "Darkness" in the XIV cosmology is revealed to be the overarching aspect of creation and active energies; "Light" is the aspect of stasis and passive energies. Neither one is inherently evil (and Darkness even contains elements absolutely vital to life), and in the right circumstances Light can be deployed in the service of absolutely hideous "evil" in the eyes of many. Secondly, Zodiark was actually created to save the world from a terrible calamity, and was sundered by Hydaelyn because her followers were afraid of his powers and tired of the cycle of sacrifice. That said, the overall goal of restoring him, their original world, and all of its inhabitants would result in the deaths of every living being on both the Source and its current shards.
  • Equivalent Exchange: Due to the level of power needed for him to do things on the scale of a Star, Zodiark needs an equivalent level of aether to perform the miracles the Ascians need of him. To stop the threat of the sound that was killing the planet and driving the Ascians mad required half of their people to willingly give him form. Then to Terraform the planet after it had been made uninhabitable by the Sound to the point it disrupted the very aether that made up the land(similar to the Black Rose/Burn/Static Aether of the Flood of Light) required half of the remaining people to give themselves over willingly as well. After this, half of the population planned to continue making sacrifices of Aether from the land to eventually bring back the souls of all who had been sacrificed to Zodiark. Among the rest, a group of individuals believed that enough sacrifices had been made and that the world should just be left to the future generations. As a result, they summoned Hydaelyn into existence to seal Zodiark away. The rest is history.
  • Pieces of God: Hydaelyn says she divided Zodiark into thirteen pieces, and the Ascians have been working towards the "Rejoining" to make him whole again.
    • 3.4 reveals that The Void was the result of Zodiark's darkness flooding the "Thirteenth World", much like how overwhelming Light destroyed the Warriors of Darkness's home world. Though according to Elidibus, this is actually detrimental to Zodiark's ultimate goal as he has no use for a void.
  • Power Crystal: The Warrior of Light briefly gets to see what is apparently Zodiark at one point during A Realm Reborn, and like Hydaelyn, he seems to be a giant crystal, but in dark purple coloration instead of light blue.
  • Terraform: One of his abilities as the elder primal of Darkness. Darkness is the aspect of growth, and as the avatar of darkness, he would be able to reform the world. With enough aether that is...
  • 13 Is Unlucky: Zodiark was divided into thirteen pieces after Hydaelyn vanquished him. The Ascians have so far succeeded in restoring seven pieces - one for each Umbral Era.

Other Ancients (Spoilers for Shadowbringers)


"Nay, there is no cause for alarm. I am simply a shade. Here and not here."

An Ancient appearing in the city of Amaurot. He is the illusion of one of the old inhabitants of the city, recreated by Emet-Selch out of loneliness. Unlike his fellow citizens, he is aware of his nature as a shadow, and is the one to reveal the first glimpses of the Warrior of Light's true nature to them. He used to be a close mutual friend of both Emet-Selch.

  • Always Someone Better: Beneath is Grumpy Bear attitude, Emet-Selch always thought of him this way, to the point where he thought Hythlodeus would be a better fit for the "Emet-Selch" title than even himself. In fact Hythlodeus was nominated for the position, but reportedly turned it down in favor of Emet.
  • Aura Vision: He can see Ardbert’s soul accompanying the Warrior of Light. He can also tell that the two of them used to be the same person before the Sundering, just by looking at their souls. The 4th "Tales from the Shadows" states that, as far as we know, he had the most powerful version of this among all Amaurotines, proven by even the magicked shade of Hythlodeus seeing Ardbert's soul accompanying the Warrior of Light. Not even Emet-Selch could do that, and he made the shade.
  • The Gadfly: He loved messing up with Emet-Selch, in a friendly way. The 4th "Tales of the Shadows" has him teasing the latter about his new position, and the fact that he hasn't announced it to the Warrior of Light's original self yet, much to Emet-Selch's annoyance.
  • Odd Friendship: With Emet-Selch. Tales of the Shadows shows him as unflappably polite and happy, in contrast to Emet's grumpiness and snark.
  • Posthumous Character: He is long dead by the time of Shadowbringers, only appearing as an illusion created by Emet-Selch.
  • Refusal of the Call: The 4th "Tales of the Shadows" reveals that he was considered first for the position of "Emet-Selch", but turned it down in favor of Hades. He still retained a prestigious position as the Chief of the Bureau of the Architect though.
  • Small Role, Big Impact: Hythlodaeus appears for a single ten-minute cutscene, during which he reveals some very important information to the Warrior of Light.
  • Spanner in the Works: Indirectly helps the Warrior of Light defeat Emet by revealing Ardbert's another shard of the Warrior of Light's original soul. Noteworthy because Emet created Hythlodaeus's shade, subconsciously sabotaging his own plans.
  • Tulpa: He figures out he is a shadow based on Emet's thoughts, but keeps it to himself rather than inform the others likewise given form by his old friend. He suspects that, when remaking Amaurot, Emet-Selch had a stray thought that Hythlodaeus would see through the illusion, and thus he could.
  • Villain Respect: Although Emet wasn't a villain when he was friends with Hythlodaeus, Emet's respect for him is so great he subconsciously lets Hythlodaeus realize he's an illusion and derail Emet's plans by talking to the Warrior of Light, simply because that's what Hythlodaeus would do.


An Ancient whose hologram appears in Anamnesis Anyder. They were the leader of the faction that eventually created Hydaelyn.

  • Adaptational Heroism: While Venat in Final Fantasy XII was an Anti-Villain at least, this Venat seems to be purely heroic, though Zodiark's supporters may have seen them as an extremist.
  • Ambiguous Gender: While the English localization doesn't use any gendered pronouns for them, the French localization refers to them as female, and their (at least Japanese) voice sounds similar to Hydaelyn's.
  • Mythology Gag: Named after a character in Final Fantasy XII. Unlike the other Ascians who are named after Espers from the mythology of XII, Venat in that game was one of the Occuria - the setting's gods who created the Espers. More specifically, Venat was a rogue Occuria who sided with Humanity, much like how this Venat chose the new life of the star over recreating/resurrecting the lost.
  • Wham Line: Not from her, but the other Ancient that was with her.
    Diplomatic Ancient One: I this how the Convocation felt about Elidibus?

    The Defector 
The mysterious fourteenth member of the Convocation who refused to participate in the summonings of both Zodiark and Hydaelyn.
  • Ambiguous Situation: Their name, their Convocation title, whether or not they're the same person as Emet-Selch and Hythlodaeus's unnamed friend, and why they rejected both Zodiark and Hydaelyn have yet to be explained.
  • Defector from Decadence: They quit the Convocation after Zodiark was summoned, and turned down Venat's invitation to join them in summoning Hydaelyn.
  • The Ghost: The Defector is the only notable Ancient who hasn't been seen, only mentioned off-hand by other characters.
  • Take a Third Option: Rather then stand for either Zodiark or Hydaelyn, for whatever reason, they stood neutral to the summonings.

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