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Tear Jerker / Final Fantasy VI

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

  • The pictured scene. After Cid's death, if the player lets it happen, Celes walks to the northern cliffs, where she remembers his words about what other survivors lost in despair did to end their pain. Faced with the very real, even likely, possibility that everyone she knew is dead, and she'll have to live out the rest of her life alone on a deserted island now that she couldn't save the only other person she had for company, Celes is Driven to Suicide and leaps off the cliff, crying on the way down. Dissidia Final Fantasy implies that this version of events is canon!
    • Fortunately, it leads to a Heartwarming Moment when she survives and finds a bird bandaged with Locke's bandana on the beach, giving her a Hope Spot to keep going.
  • The Game Over music, aptly named "Rest in Peace". The song plays in such a sad way as you see your lead character kneeling down in a black screen and then fades away as the music fades to a close.
  • After defeating Humbaba by changing into her esper form Terra lands near the orphaned children she's sworn to protect, all of whom run from her and scream about the 'monster' in their midst. Terra recoils and scurries away, horrified to cause the children further distress, until one lone girl breaks away from the group and slowly approaches Terra, seeing through her esper form and calling out to her: "mama"? Cue a dogpile of children hugging her, Terra changing back into a human and accepting that this is the 'love' that she will fight to protect, joining the group in storming Kefka's tower.
  • The part of the ending where Shadow stays back, tells his dog to go on without him, and promptly stays behind to die.
    • The music doesn't help at all. Shadow's theme is normally played with an air of mystery, just a mouthharp, a simple guitar chord and a whistle to show that he's a man who comes and goes like the wind blows. During his part of the ending? It's fully orchestral, slower, and very melancholy.
    • "Baram! I'm going to stop running. I'm going to begin all over again!" There's all kinds of debate about this meaning he actually does survive the collapse (but just wants to leave everything behind, including his history with the party)... or if he's a firm believer in reincarnation.
  • Cyan's storyline. The death of his wife and kid as part of the poisoning of Doma Castle wasn't too bad, emotionally. It's soon followed, however, by a level where you accidentally board a train to the hereafter. You fight your way to the engine, defeat the train, and it agrees to take you back to the land of the living. But while it drops you off, it picks up all of the residents of Doma. Cyan gets one last desperate goodbye to his wife and son, the last words you hear from them as the train rushes off into eternity is the son promising to look after his mom. Just to make sure you're feeling Cyan's pain, the game lingers on the scene for a good 30 seconds afterward while Cyan stands at the edge of the depot in despair, staring at where the train once stood.
    • Not to mention his assault on the imperial camp during the siege of Doma.
    • Sleeping in Doma castle with Cyan in the party during the World of Ruin will have the party enter Cyan's tortured soul, which is being haunted by a monster named Wrexsoul who is feeding off Cyan's anger and guilt, and implies that Cyan's pain is nearing the point where he can no longer bear it.
  • Even Gau generates one. "Father... alive. Gau... ha..ppy.."
    • Together with Heartwarming Moments; after the cutscene, comes back and talk to that insane man. He, always mistaking the heroes as repairmen every time they're visiting, suddenly stops doing that and says everything is fixed. He's pretty much drowned in guilt for abandoning his son in the wild, he becomes obsessed to fix anything and finally finds closure when he knows Gau is alive and (mostly) well.
  • The entire story with Locke's previous love interest, Rachel. In the scene where he brings her the Phoenix magicite, and it only works for a few minutes... and she tells him to be happy with Celes, tears were shed.
    Rachel: Please, let go of the chains that bind your heart... I release you... Give your love to to the one who now dwells within your heart... Love her... as you loved me...
  • If you fail to get Locke back in the World of Ruin, Celes' ending is the same as the heartwarming ending, except that Setzer saves her and yells at her for going back for Locke's bandanna. After he leaves, she looks down (at it) and says, "Locke, promise me some day you'll look after me again." before walking out the room.
  • When Terra talks to Banon in the Returner Hideout, he asks her if she will be their "last ray of hope". If you say no three times, he says "I see..." and Terra walks in and says "How can anyone look to me as hope".
    • That is not all: each time you say "no" he looks progressively sadder.
  • Edgar and Sabin's backstory, with their father dying. Sabin thinks no one cares about their father and wants his freedom. He urges Edgar to run away from the kingdom with him, where they can be free of the kingdom. Edgar wants his freedom just as much as Sabin, but can't bring himself to leave the kingdom without a leader. So, he suggests a single coin toss. Whoever wins will choose his own path, with no regrets. He rigs the coin toss to give Sabin his freedom, choosing to shoulder the burden neither of them wanted. Now, that is brotherly love!
  • If you pay attention to what Cid has to say in the Magitek Factory, he makes a comment that Kefka was also part of the experimentation to create a mage who could use magic for the Empire's war efforts, but the process utterly shattered his mind. Call to mind another villain who went insane due to the origins of his being and it leaves you wondering: is Kefka an insane nihilist from the beginning, or did the experiments make him that way? While it's still difficult to sympathize with him, it does give him a few points of sympathy if he wasn't like that originally...
  • General Leo's death scene.
    • Terra's words at his funeral.
      "General Leo... People only seem to want power, don't they? Do they really want to be like me? I... I wanted you to teach me so much more..."
  • Right after Leo dies, Interceptor comes hobbling in, and it appears Shadow is gone too. You find him — stabbed and betrayed by Kefka and he tells them to forget about him.
  • The flashback scene in Darill's Tomb. Words cannot do it justice.
  • The entire interlude into the World of Ruin is unbelievably depressing. Celes wakes up on an island after being in a coma for a year with Cid taking care of her. Being the closest thing she has left to a family, she begins referring to him as her grandfather. But it turns out that Cid is ill from having lived on nothing but rotten fish for the past year. If that wasn't bad enough, try leaving the area and visiting the world map. The island is absolutely desolate, and the music only further drives home the feeling of isolation and despair. On top of that, any monsters you encounter won't attack so much as pathetically try to cast spells they don't have enough MP for and then drop dead on their own before you can probably attack. And if that isn't bad enough, let Cid die. He doesn't give any last words; Celes simply finds him silent and unmoving. She doesn't even realize he's dead at first. Now completely alone and with no hope of ever seeing civilization again, Celes climbs to the top of a cliff and jumps off. Damn.
    • And then there's the first time players who experienced Cid's death, and then learned it was literally all their fault, as it's possible to save him.
    • Fridge Brilliance example: When Celes makes her ascent to the clifftop, her theme, which is basically Aria di Mezzo Carattere plays. And like with the opera, you control Celes as she climbs upward to a higher level and basically atop an overlook.
  • Immediately after leaving the desolate island, you arrive very close to Albrook. The man in the cafe there says that he thinks back on how good the world once was—leading to a brief flashback showing people dancing and relaxing in the cafe—and then realizes that it will never be the same way again. To emphasize the point, the flashback shows the time when the empire's soldiers were in the town and took charge. Compared to the ruins the man lives in now, he prefers the world from before, even if it meant being under an oppressive ruler, since at least things were somewhat stable and death wasn't the main threat. In a similar vein, old lady in Kohlingen, who, when spoken to, will give you a brief glimpse of the cheery, pre-collapse town, complete with a little girl running and playing around the flowerbed.
  • Aria di Mezzo Carattere: Guaranteed to make you bawl if you take the lyrics of the song to heart, and have lost someone you loved or were in the situation of a painful triangle love.
    Our love, come what may
    will never age a day
    I’ll wait forever more!
  • Go around and talk to people in the World of Ruin. First thing you notice is that there are a lot fewer of them (some towns are even completely empty). Talking to the people who are left makes you realize that almost literally everyone lost someone they knew or cared about.
    • To make matters worse, few people anywhere talk happily about life now. It is implied THOUSANDS died when the Floating Continent fell and the world collapsed. Just about every town's theme is now "From that Day On, the song used to show people are in despair, most of the field map is barren wasteland, the World of Ruin's theme before you get the second airship representing desolation and misery, and the sky is a permanent sunset. Basically, the whole world is waiting to die.
  • When Kefka is defeated, all magic vanishes from the world, and so do the Espers. Terra, half human and half Esper, would seem to have represented a balance between the two, or an ability for them to coexist, but she must sacrifice the Esper part of her. Originally created for war and destruction, without sentience, the Espers gained sentience and became the incredible creatures we see, protecting themselves from those who would use their powers for greedy, selfish reasons. But they also deliberately sacrifice themselves and change into crystals to help good people fight for truth and justice. They have been doing everything they can to survive, only to "cease to exist" because magic disappears from the world. The Espers are more than their magic. This is one of the saddest and most unfair endings in a Final Fantasy game.


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