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Nightmare Fuel / Final Fantasy V

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You said that being a tree equals being Laughably Evil. Say it again now.

It has been said that most of the fun in Final Fantasy V comes from the way it doesn't take itself too seriously. This doesn't mean the cheery tone can be taken for granted.

After Final Fantasy IV's utter horrors and after its After Years, this is the next step into the darkest depths of the pants-shittingly scary Final Fantasy series.

The fact it's a short walk compared to the rest of the series barely reflects the game's nature as a Breather Episode for the series — just as the sequel will quickly tell you.

As a Moments subpage, all spoilers are unmarked as per policy. You Have Been Warned.

  • Castle Exdeath, the Disc-One Final Dungeon, starts off as a fairly standard-looking castle. But when the illusions are dispelled on the second visit, it becomes a horrifying Womb Level. The thirteen story-tall castle is constructed entirely out of the breathing corpses of Exdeath's victims. The walls visibly pulsate and the Background Music changes from the heroic "The Dawn Warriors" associated with Galuf to its own sinister tune.
  • Pictured is Exdeath's form once he gains the power of the Void: An Eldritch Abomination of a tree that looks more like brain matter than wood, with an inhuman face on the trunk and his familiar torso armor sticking out of his head, giving the impression that he's taken root. After the Void turns against him, his body implodes and then spills out with a legion of demonic horrors fused together that could either be his original demons or the other horrors sealed in the Void, or both. And it takes up most of the battle screen.
  • In the Great Sea Trench, there are four types of enemies you can fight. All four are called "Unknown". Here's how they look. What are these?!?! Undead, mutated corpses whose main attacks are to vomit on you, and kill you instantly! Their existence combined with the hazardous floor of that dungeon and the annoying boss compound to make the area terrifying. These monsters wouldn't be out of place in a Splatterhouse game, yet here they are in a fantasy RPG like FFV.
  • The Interdimensional Rift can get incredibly creepy at times, especially thanks to the music.
  • Before beating the game, the door to the Bonus Dungeon in the GBA version isn't locked. Instead, opening the door will result in an unnerving noise, the screen going dark, and a dialogue box saying only "It is pitch black inside. You cannot enter." And then there is the dungeon itself. Remember feeling nervous when trying to sneak past Omega? Here, have an entire floor full of them!
  • There is a family of undead enemies that take the form of a floating head with the face ripped off and floating in front of the skull and an elongated tongue feeding from the skull's mouth through the mouth of the face in front (and little stringy bits connecting it to the rest of the flesh on the skull).
  • The mobile versions renders the monsters in high-quality sprites that fully match their original concept artwork. This allows players to see a number of really horrifying details that had previously been obscured by pixellation.
  • This game introduced the Zombie status to the franchise. It sets the character as dead like Instant Death does, but the victim's sprite changes so they have green skin (like they're rotting) and empty white eyes, and they keep fighting, but you lose control of them and they can attack their own allies. It's also harder to cure than most other status effects in the game (only Holy Water will cure a zombie) and a Ribbon, which protects against most status effects like in other games, will not protect against this. There are quite a few enemies throughout the game that can inflict Zombification (even the Final Boss has an attack that can potentially inflict it), and it's always jarring to be caught off-guard by such attacks.
    • There's one enemy (and an Optional Boss in a few versions) that will use an attack named Paraclete on any KO'd characters to turn them into a zombie. This attack's animation is like the one for the Raise spell, except the angel reviving the character is zombified in a similar manner.