A lot of weird events happen in Final Fantasy. Most of the franchise’s strange occurrences are attributed to magic and fantastical technology, with monsters, aliens, sorcerers, machines, and Gods manipulating the universe. The games nonetheless possess numerous plot holes, creating characters, stories, and gameplay that defy the established rules of the Final Fantasy universe.
Many of the plot holes on this list very obviously break the laws of Final Fantasy. Certain explanations oppose other statements found in the games, leading to narrative chaos. Other plot holes indirectly disrupt narrative, using inconsistent magic and survival rates to differently manipulate characters. While some players excuse these discrepancies, the plot holes are often difficult to ignore. The creators include inconsistencies without properly considering their repercussions, writing plots that should be more logical and understandable.
Some plot holes occur because of combat, although Final Fantasy’s gameplay tends to avoid plot holes despite its illogical nature. The bosses of Final Fantasy are often bizarre—seemingly human individuals are capable of transforming into gigantic monsters. These bosses are usually excusable, though, for these individuals possess spiritual or divine power that gives them greater magic than the protagonists. However, some gameplay elements completely defy the mechanics of the world.
Every plot hole on this list draws significant attention to itself. Although some plot holes provide entertaining mysteries, every plot hole causes more harm than good by confusing and frustrating players. Whether they stem from combat, characters, or magic, these 15 plot holes are so glaringly obvious that they interrupt players’ immersion.
15 Raines Serves Barthandelus (XIII)
Cid Raines defies his Focus to protect the world, turning into a Cie’th in order to kill you and thus prevent the protagonists from completing their Focus. While l’Cie are supposed to transform into either a Cie’th or crystal, Raines is crystallized after becoming a Cie’th. He dissipates as a crystal and reappears later in the game, when we learn that Barthandelus crystallized Raines and teleported him away from the battle.
Raines’s crystallization and revival are unique but explained—what isn’t explained is his cooperation with Barthandelus. Instead of rebelling as he did previously, Raines allows himself to become Barthandelus’s puppet. He asks Rygdea to kill him, yet Raines could have easily killed himself or died trying to defeat Barthandelus. Raines breaks character for an odd, unnecessary addition to the main storyline; instead of taking the time to create a new character, Square Enix revives Raines and creates a terrible plot hole in the process.
14 Fusoya And Golbez On The Red Moon (IV)
After spending much time finding the Lunar Whale, you are able to travel between Earth and the Red Moon. When you return to the Red Moon at the end of the game, however, you find Fusoya and Golbez battling Zemus. Fusoya and Golbez were last seen on Earth and did not board your airship. Despite their powers and Lunarian heritage, Fusoya and Golbez should be incapable of traveling between worlds. Final Fantasy IV’s climax includes these characters without explanation, overthrowing the game’s narrative rules and discarding a significant portion of the game. There’s no logical reason Fusoya and Golbez are on the Red Moon; even if the game had included a reason, nothing can explain why you must fly an airship while Golbez and Fusoya use an alternate form of transportation.
13 The Crowd Cheers For Edea (VIII)
Edea feigns cooperation with President Deling until she becomes his ambassador, when she insults her audience and murders Deling. Despite her horrendous actions, the crowd adamantly cheers for Edea and her celebratory parade continues as planned.
The crowd’s acceptance of Edea will confuse you if you only play Final Fantasy VIII; if you read Final Fantasy VIII Ultimania, you’ll discover that Edea cast a spell on the audience. This explanation tries to resolve one plot hole, yet creates another: Squall and Irvine are within the crowd yet are unaffected by the spell.
Seeing the crowd cheer would normally be visually and thematically powerful, but the scene suffers from unclear magic. Edea’s magic influences the crowd, yet oddly does not affect any protagonists except Rinoa.
12 Monsters And Miasma (Crystal Chronicles Series)
At the end of Final Fantasy Crystal Chronicles, players destroy the Meteor Parasite and thus extinguish Miasma from the world. They also slay Raem, a creature who consumes humans’ painful memories and turns them into monsters, who feed Raem by inflicting pain upon humans.
Despite the disappearance of their sources, Miasma and monsters continue to inhabit the world of Crystal Chronicles. Monsters appear in every game in the series and Miasma Streams populate the land in Crystal Bearers. In Ring of Fates—which takes place before the Meteor Parasite’s arrival—a book mentions the presence of Miasma. Even though Miasma vanishes at the end of the original Crystal Chronicles, the prequels and sequels ignore the game’s lore by including Miasma.
11 Cid Came From The Surface World (III)
In the DS remake of Final Fantasy III, Cid states that he and the four playable characters left the Surface World ten years ago and crashed on the Floating Continent. However, Unei states that the Surface World has been inaccessible for the past millennium. Unei’s statement connects more logically with the main story: the game acts as if nobody has traveled between worlds in centuries. Even if Cid possessed a powerful airship, there’s enough natural and magical chaos to prevent travel between the two worlds.
The Warriors of Light are destined heroes who enter the Surface World after a thousand years of darkness; if Cid truly reached the Surface World, the heroes aren’t as special as the game claims. Final Fantasy III originally shrouded the Warriors of Light in mystery. The DS remake should have maintained this mystery and excluded Cid’s illogical backstory.
10 Prompto Is An MT (XV)
Prompto, like the magitek troopers (MTs) fought throughout Final Fantasy XV, possesses a tattooed barcode that lets him enter buildings meant for MTs. Because Prompto differs so greatly from an MT and obviously isn’t tied to the Empire like the MTs, fans have theorized that he’s either an escapee or failed member of Project Deathless. The game actually steers fans away from these theories: Prompto describes the MTs before stating he is “one of them.” He may be referring to the barcode alone, but his words suggest a deeper connection. While the other MTs are thoughtless daemons vulnerable to light, Prompto remains distinctly human. By establishing Prompto as an MT without stating why he isn’t really an MT, Square Enix fails to explain Prompto or his odd connection to Project Deathless.
9 Garland Opposes Kuja (IX)
Garland spends five thousand years trying to kill the inhabitants of Gaia and replace them with the souls of Terra, yet he opposes Kuja when Kuja follows the same path. Kuja admittedly might destroy the planet’s surface and thus prevent the Terrans from surviving, but Kuja states that the Iifa Tree will conquer Gaia as Garland envisioned. The surface of Gaia seems unimportant since the Iifa Tree supports the planet’s core. Since the Iifa Tree prevented the planet’s destruction five thousand years ago and contains the Terrans’ souls, the Iifa Tree seems more important than Gaia. Garland nonetheless replaces Kuja with Zidane (both created by Garland). While he tries to manipulate Zidane earlier in the game, Garland ceases pursuing Zidane and never seeks Kuja’s aid, instead abandoning his lifelong goal to help Zidane defeat Kuja.
8 Aerith Dies While Cloud Survives (VII)
Individuals in real life may endure injuries differently, but Aerith’s death contrasts too sharply with Cloud’s survival. Both characters are wounded by Sephiroth: Sephiroth stabs Aerith in the stomach and Cloud in the chest. While Aerith instantly dies, Cloud miraculously exhibits superhuman strength (before he legitimately gains superhuman strength through the Jenova Project) and, using himself as an axis and Sephiroth’s katana as a lever, throws Sephiroth aside. Cloud survives despite the effort and blood that such a maneuver would require. Aerith’s death is believable until we see Cloud survive, making her death a narratively convenient plot hole that’s a bit too obvious to believe.
Despite Aerith’s canonical death, there’s a great theory that Sephiroth paralyzed Aerith instead of killing her. This would explain her instantaneous collapse. Unfortunately, Aerith is truly—though illogically—dead.
7 Shuyin’s Connection To Tidus (X-2)
Shuyin has the same clothes and voice as Tidus, suggesting Tidus is the fayth’s recreation of Shuyin. The antagonist died just before Dream Zanarkand was created, causing Shuyin to influence—or even cause—Tidus’s creation.
Instead of establishing a connection between Shuyin and Tidus, Final Fantasy X-2 allows players to interpret Tidus’s origins. While this is a fun mystery, it unfortunately leads to plot holes. If Tidus is a recreation of Shuyin, why didn’t he fall in love with the recreation of Shuyin’s lover, Lenne? If Tidus and Shuyin are completely different entities, why do the two so closely resemble each other? The fayth may have produced new individuals who only resemble their dead counterparts; we’ll never know because the game refuses to elaborate on Tidus’s connection to Shuyin.
6 The Weapons Attack Shinra But Not Meteor (VII)
The Weapons are mysterious, speechless tools created by the Planet to defend the Planet, but most characters and fans accept that the Weapons awaken in order to stop Sephiroth. They appear right when Sephiroth summons Meteor to destroy the Planet. However, the Weapons attack Shinra instead of Sephiroth or Meteor. A barrier prevents the Weapons from detecting Sephiroth, but Meteor is a massive, visible threat that the Weapons completely ignore.
While it’s possible the Weapons awoke specifically to destroy Shinra, the game insists that the Weapons rose because of Sephiroth. If this is true, the Weapons should be able to recognize the threat that awoke them and destroy either Sephiroth or Meteor. Even if the Planet and its Weapons act by instinct rather than thought, it’s hard to believe Sephiroth has the power to both summon Meteor and hide Meteor from the Weapons.
5 Only Serah Remembers Lightning (XIII-2)
Serah possesses the Eyes of Etro and thus sees all timelines, allowing her to remember the original timeline in which Lightning survived. While Final Fantasy XIII-2 acts as if this thoroughly explains why only Serah remembers Lightning, the game fails to justify Serah’s powers. Yeul and Serah gain the Eyes of Etro because Etro protects them with divine magic, but Etro uses the same magic on Serah’s friends. Serah, Snow, Sazh, Dajh, and Hope are all crystallized until Etro saves them, yet only Serah suffers the side-effects of Etro’s interference. Magic may be strange and sometimes unexplainable, but the inconsistency of the Eyes of Etro is infuriating. Instead of establishing rules for magic, Square Enix simply uses the Eyes of Etro when convenient.
4 Jegran’s Crystallization (Crystal Bearers)
Everyone Jegran touches with his right hand instantly turns to crystal except for Vaigali, Amidatelion, and Keiss. Vaigali survives several seconds after Jegran hits him while Amidatelion continues speaking for an entire minute. Their final words are powerful, but they logically should not have enough time to speak. Crystal Bearers abandons its established rules for emotional deaths. Instead of simply making Jegran’s power consistently slow-paced, the game uses Jegran as a tool of narrative convenience. His powers fluctuate so widely that, even after holding Keiss for several seconds, he fails to crystallize Keiss. Perhaps Jegran wanted to choke Keiss instead of crystallizing him, but nothing in the game suggests Jegran can control his powers in this way. Jegran’s magic is consistent until he touches major characters, producing one of the most blatant plot holes in Final Fantasy.
3 Magic Available While Fighting Biggs And Wedge (VIII)
In order to prevent magicians from escaping, the D-District Prison incorporates an anti-magic field. This field is disabled during your prison break but not until after your battle against Biggs and Wedge. You are capable of using spells during the fight. The anti-magic field is a brilliant concept for a world governed by magic, but the game completely abandons narrative in order to maintain its established system of combat.
The most frustrating thing about this plot hole is how easily it could have been prevented. Instead of announcing the disabled anti-magic field after the battle, the game should have made the announcement beforehand. Square understood the significance of magic yet failed to properly structure the story of Final Fantasy VIII, producing gameplay that contradicts narrative.
2 No More Summoners (X-2)
With Sin destroyed at the end of Final Fantasy X, summoners no longer need to travel across Spira summoning aeons. However, the world still needs sendings, a ritual performed solely by summoners. Sendings allow troubled souls to rest in the Farplane. Unsent souls haunt the living world first as physical ghosts and later as fiends.
Spira will always need sendings, yet the summoners of Final Fantasy X act as if the world no longer needs them. Yuna, Dona, and Isaaru—the only living summoners seen in the first game—no longer perform sendings in the sequel. The recent audio drama, Final Fantasy X -Will-, tries to fix this plot hole by replacing summoners with senders, but there’s absolutely no reason every summoner would have ceased sending souls.
The summoners’ retirement is not only a plot hole but a major inconvenience. Shuyin could have easily been defeated with a sending—although sendings are inconsistently effective in Final Fantasy X.
1 Souls That Survive Sendings (X)
Sendings are supposed to deliver all restless souls to the Farplane, yet multiple ghosts survive sendings—particularly Auron. Yuna must send Jyscal in the presence of Auron, who experiences pain yet does not vanish. Auron is unaffected when Yuna sends Seymour, yet he vanishes when Yuna sends the fayth. Auron obviously accepted death at the game’s end, but that doesn’t explain why he or Jyscal survived previous sendings. The party concludes that Jyscal survived due to his unclean death and his will to live—but if that’s true, wouldn’t sendings fail for a large number of souls? Seymour seems as determined to survive as his father and Auron, yet he disappears when Yuna finally chooses to send him. Sendings are ineffective only when the plot needs it.