No other gaming genre packs as much depth into their titles as the RPG genre. For decades now, players have upgraded their weapons, customized their characters, and shaped the world around them with their decisions, through the popular gaming niche. The more possibilities there are, the more engrossing they become. However, one series, in particular, helped pave the way like no other franchise of its ilk. Yes, of course, it’s the fantastical fan-favorite Final Fantasy.
Since its first incarnation in 1987, FF has been a trailblazer, with many aspects of its clever design becoming industry standards. 30 years on, and its influence can still be felt in RPGs of the present day, along with other gaming genres that look to implement the series’ sense of wonderment, something which isn’t such an easy feat to achieve. Why? Because flawless games like Final Fantasy VI and Final Fantasy VII can’t just be replicated at the drop of a dime.
My gushing love for it aside, Final Fantasy has also featured some incredible hidden secrets and Easter eggs amidst its revolutionary gameplay mechanics, enchanting storytelling techniques, and lovable graphical style. Consider yourself a FF aficionado? Then check out our top 25 list of the most obscure and elusive secrets that even hardcore fans most likely had trouble finding…
25 Hit Me With Your Best Shot (Final Fantasy X)
Tidus is one awesome Blitzball player, but those few who found this hidden secret were able to make him even more fearsome. Yes, in Final Fantasy X, it is actually possible to have him learn his father’s trademark shot. Titled the Jecht Shot, this one can be attained by going through a fast button combination once you’ve picked up a ball on the S.S. Winno.
It’s one of the best mini-games in any Final Fantasy game
Once learned, the hard-hitting move can even be upgraded with sweet variations, gained by winning tournaments various Blitzball tournaments. It’s one of the best mini-games in any Final Fantasy game too, so why not try to improve your abilities as best you can? Like father, like son? As far as Tidus and his dad go, the answer would have to be a definitive yes.
24 Secret Endgame Dungeon (Final Fantasy XV)
The latest installment in the uber-popular RPG franchise featured a truly massive game map. It's so big, in fact, that some of its areas aren’t even accessible until you’ve completed it. One of the most secretive locations which can be found during the end-game state is the Pitioss Ruins. You’ll be tasked with converting your car into an aircraft which, once completed, will grant you access to areas that you could never get to before. In the corner of the map, you can land on a thin yellow strip with some precise landings skills and a fearless attitude. What you’ll find there is one of the most imaginative dungeons to ever grace the series, and it’s not even available until you’ve beaten the game. Go figure!
23 Aeris The Friendly Ghost (Final Fantasy VII)
Many players tried to resurrect Aeris in Final Fantasy VII following her passing but to no avail. However, some players did manage to find her lurking around the old church where you first met her, except it was her ghost. Yes, many players thought for years that this could be a glitch, but a debug menu found in the game’s files suggest that this was intentional.
Aeris’ spirit can still be felt long after the credits
So even in passing, Aeris’ spirit can still be felt long after the credits have rolled. Even cleverer is the fact that she’s standing in her favorite flowerbed, a logical place for her to rest in peace. Now if that’s not a deliberate move by Square to appease grief-stricken fans, we don’t know what is. Ah Aeris, we barely knew ye!
22 You Don’t Have To Evacuate Alone! (Final Fantasy III)
Bit of a spoiler here in Final Fantasy III, so shield your eyes if you don’t want to know about it! It revolves around the ending which sees the world collapse. As your evacuating the premises before the whole thing is destroyed, wait until five seconds are on the clock before getting in the emergency aircraft. If you do, you’ll actually save Shadow. Yes, he’ll appear out of nowhere and get in the airship with you, making those nail-biting last seconds worth enduring. And why wouldn’t you save him when you’ve got the chance to whisk him off the Floating Continent! Final Fantasy III gives you the chance to do it. You may have lost some friends by the end, but this secret will ensure you don’t lose them all.
21 Meadows And Dragons (Final Fantasy XI)
Here’s one that’s so specific, we really wouldn’t blame you for missing it, even if it is something you’d think would be unmissable. Found in Final Fantasy XI, this hidden secret only occurs once a day in the game, and only if you’re at the right location. At 14:20 in-game, you can spot a dragon swooping down at the Lufaise Meadows. It will skim across the water (casual as you like) before disappearing again for another 24 hours. So, sorry, if you aren’t there at that very precise time, you’ll have to wait until the following day to catch a glimpse of it. This is the kind of obscure nugget that only die-hard FF fans know, but it’s such a nice little touch, that it deserves to be known about by the larger gaming community, because who doesn’t love dragons?!
20 The Sound Of Music (Final Fantasy Tactics: The War Of The Lions)
Hankering for some fresh tunes in the awesome FF spin-off Final Fantasy Tactics: The War of the Lions? We’ve got just the thing for you. It turns out that you can up the number of tracks from 70 to 96 by entering in Ramza’s name as PolkaPolka.
26 extra songs that weren’t included on the official soundtrack
The name change will grant you access to 26 extra songs that weren’t included on the official soundtrack. What’s more, the vast majority of them are never played during gameplay, so it makes unlocking them all the sweeter. The Final Fantasy franchise has always had a plethora of memorable tunes, and the hidden ones here are certainly contenders. Songs in video games tend to repeat themselves a lot. However, thanks to this hidden secret, Final Fantasy Tactics won’t be one of them.
19 An Eyeful Of Vanille (Final Fantasy XIII)
Oerba Dia Vanille is a bubbly party member in Final Fantasy XIII, but it seems Square Enix had other, more adult uses for the character. It was discovered when players began scouring the game files for interesting information. However, nothing could prepare them for the eye-opening revelation of a disrobed Vanille. For some reason, there’s a fully animated depiction of her with no clothes on, despite the fact that such a model is never seen in the game. Hmm, this is a secret that the developers really didn’t want you to find! Even more incriminating is the fact that her model is rendered flawlessly, indicating that this idea was probably pondered over a little too long by the team. The word awkward comes to mind…
18 Take A Break (Final Fantasy VI)
The Break Blade is a powerful piece of kit in Final Fantasy VI, but it certainly isn’t the easiest thing in the world to find. No, you could quite easily miss it if you aren’t exploring thoroughly. Why? Because you have to go through an invisible wall to obtain it.
Once there, you’ll find the Break Blade
When you’re navigating the MagiTek Factory, you’ll come across a corridor made up of empty glass tubes. Go to the bottom left-hand corner tube, and you’ll notice that there’s an invisible area which you can explore. Once there, you’ll find the Break Blade dwelling inside a rather inconspicuous chest just waiting to be looted. This is a hidden secret which will certainly pay dividends later on in the game. Don’t worry, you can thank us later.
17 Infinite Cash (Final Fantasy X-2)
You might not have infinite cash in real-life, but you can make up for it in the fictional world of Final Fantasy X-2 with this devious little ploy. Once you’ve handed over 100,000 Gil to O’aka to help settle his long lingering debt problems, you’ll find that he gives you some whopping discounts on items. One of them is the Hi-Potion which you can nab from him at a measly price of 50 Gil. However, what he doesn’t suspect is that you could be gathering up high quantities of the good stuff to sell at a higher asking price to other shopkeepers, which is exactly what you can do. From there, simply rinse and repeat until the Gil is falling out of your pockets. Mwahahaha!
16 The Name Game (Final Fantasy IX)
Tired of seeing the same old names pop up in Final Fantasy IX? Clearly, you haven’t come across the Namingway Card. This priceless gem can be found at Kuja’s place in the Desert Palace shortly after nabbing the Gulug Stone. Kuja will teleport out of the room, giving you the chance to pick up said card from the round table, because Kuja clearly isn’t the type of person to worry about leaving behind such valuable trinkets. It just so happens that the item can be shown to an NPC in Daguerreo, who will allow you to change the alias of one of the game’s characters to whatever your discontent heart desires. Now’s your chance to give that person the name you always wanted them to have!
15 No Summoning These Three Deities (Final Fantasy Type-0)
Can you imagine Final Fantasy without summons? Yeah, us neither. However, although Final Fantasy Type-0 had an impressive six summons, there were actually more in the pipeline in the initial stages of its development that never made it into the finished product.
A total of three godlike beasts that weren’t included
Once again, players searched through the game files and found a total of three godlike beasts that weren’t included in the game; Pandemonium, Phoenix, and Typhon. The former of the three previously appeared in Final Fantasy VIII, and the latter of the trio made numerous appearances as a summon in the FF titles. Still, it feels like somewhat of a missed opportunity for this particular game, but it’s interesting to know that they were greatly considered for inclusion.
14 The Seedy Developer’s Office (Final Fantasy IV)
Western gamers, unfortunately, didn’t get to see this secret when the game was first released, but Japanese buyers of Final Fantasy IV certainly did. Yes, it’s the Developer’s Office, a room where NPCs were actually animated depictions of the game’s real-life creators. Undoubtedly an ingenious addition to the game, the characters would sometimes challenge you to a battle in the secret area located in the pub near Dwarven Castle. You can even get your peepers on a rather adult magazine in the office! In an age where the invisible fourth wall gets broken in many forms of entertainment, this cheeky one came at a time when such a notion wasn’t contemplated before. The developers clearly subscribe to the old ‘all work, no play’ adage judging by this risqué inclusion…
13 Dark King No Match For The Cure (Final Fantasy: Mystic Quest)
Struggling to beat the Dark King at the end of Final Fantasy: Mystic Quest? You’ll be pleased to know you aren’t the only ones. But fear not, as this hidden secret will ensure you never struggle against him again. While operating Benjamin during the big boss fight, simply cast the Cure spell on the Dark King and you’ll see that it takes a stonking 10,000 HP off of him, a fourth of his overall health. Repeat the process, and voila! That FF boss is going down for the ten-count no matter what he chooses to throw your way. Who knew it would be as easy as that to beat him?! There are secret weaknesses and then there’s this, the ultimate way to bring down the dreaded Dark King.
12 Having A Card Up Your Sleeve (Final Fantasy VIII)
Finding all of the cards in Final Fantasy VIII is harder than you might think, and in Disc 4, you best hope you’ve completed the Card Club side quest by now. Because after that, your first stop should be at the Ragnarok where you’ll be able to assemble your deck once more.
You’ll find it in the middle of the oasis
After finding the Ragnarok, you’ll come across Xu, who will grant you access to all of your refined cards. Of course, locating the airship is quite a task in itself, requiring you to find a way to the Kashkabald Desert where you’ll find it in the middle of the oasis. So not too hard then… However, we’re willing to make the commitment to finding it considering just how good the card game is in Final Fantasy VIII!
11 Hold Off On The Looting! (Final Fantasy VI)
We gamers know how tantalizing an unopened treasure chest is, so much so that looting has become a video game staple of sorts in recent years. However, we have to warn you that it’s best to hold off on the chest opening in Final Fantasy VI because it will only be doing you a disservice in the long run. We’re talking about the cave between Figaro Castle and South Figaro specifically. You’ll come across the treasure early on in the game but leave it be. Why? Because once you return to the World of Ruin, those shiny boxes will be housing much better goods than they previously would have. Patience is the key here, so for all you rabid looters, don’t let the glint of the treasure draw you in.
10 Being Bossed Around (Final Fantasy)
If a powerful boss isn’t tough enough for you, Final Fantasy is only happy to oblige with some insane super bosses. Yes, they’ve been a constant throughout the series since its inception, but did you come across the first ever one in Final Fantasy I? Chances are you didn’t, mainly due to how difficult it is to find. The robot called Warmech can be found lurking around at the bridge of the Flying Fortress, however, it only appears three out of 64 battles, meaning many players probably missed this fierce foe. You’ll get EXP for your troubles, but we think there should’ve been a special item awarded to the player as well, considering how rare it is to come across Warmech! Ah well, you win some, you lose some.
9 Off The Beaten Path (Final Fantasy V)
Open-world games usually feature some very obscure locations, and Final Fantasy V is certainly no different. The game has one of the most hard-to-reach areas in the franchise’s history. Best known as the Unknown Cave, this peculiar environment houses just one man by the name of Mr. Clio, who will show the player scores of stats ranging from the number of battles fought, to the number of times the game has been saved during the player’s playthrough.
Good luck finding a roadmap to the location
It isn’t highlighted clearly on the world map, ultimately forcing the player to submerge themselves in the sea south of Karnak, entering the purple rock at the bottom of the ocean, before finally making their way into the mystifying cave. Good luck finding a roadmap to the location, there aren’t any!
8 Throw Like A Champ (Final Fantasy XIII-2)
Think your Moogle throwing skills aren’t up to snuff in Final Fantasy XIII-2? Here’s a tasty little secret that will have it hurling like there’s no tomorrow, and it's one which probably eluded you during your first time going through the game. First, you must reach Serendipity in order to improve the throwing capabilities. Once there, speak to Mystic as she will reward you with Mog’s Manifestation, an ability that will improve the throw. Now that you’re good to go, you can even obtain monster crystals by chucking Mog into various locations throughout the game’s world, ranging from vast oceans to huge craters. Now there’s an upgrade we can all get behind I’m sure. Mog’s Manifestation will soon become an invaluable part of your arsenal because, you know, more monster crystals equals more fun, after all!
7 Back From The Afterlife (Final Fantasy VII)
There’s nothing in Final Fantasy that’s quite as annoying as one of your party members perishing when you’ve got no potions left to bring them back from the brink. It’s one of those moments that will have you cursing the series for a fleeting moment because of its difficulty at points. Well, for those frustrated bunch, take solace in the fact that there is one area in Final Fantasy VII that will revive any fallen comrade. Yes, simply walk into one of the fly traps in the Ancient Forest, and you’ll find that your deceased companion(s) is now alive and well, albeit at 1HP. This is a great secret for when the going gets tough. Forget using a Phoenix Down, the Ancient Forest is where it’s at!
6 Jumping Through Hoops To Obtain The Zodiac Spear (Final Fantasy XII)
The Zodiac Spear really was a difference maker in Final Fantasy XII, but it was so difficult to obtain, that many players probably gave up on it. There were so many conditions put in place in order to acquire it, that it’s more or less become the stuff of FF folklore.
The Zodiac Spear should appear in the second chest
First of all, avoid opening certain treasure chests in the towns of Rabanastre, Royal Palace of Rabanastre, Nalbina Dungeons, and Phon Coast. Then, you must travel to the Necrohol of Nabudis where there will be 16 chests present. Make sure you don’t have any Diamond Armlets equipped, and bingo! The Zodiac Spear should appear in the second chest to the left in the front row. Jeez, they really don’t make it easy do they!
5 On A Knife-Edge (Final Fantasy IV)
Getting the knife in Final Fantasy IV is quite a laborious task, but that doesn’t mean it’s not worth attaining. It can be found by going to the Sylph cave where you will find a house. There, a person by the name of Yang is unconscious, and his wife fills you in on his condition. Following this, you must go to Fabul and speak with her again. She’ll hand you a pan to wake up her failing husband, with the rewards being more than worth the effort. The object will bring him back to the world of the living, and he’ll give you a knife for your trouble. The item takes 9999 HP from opponents so it’s worth getting. As an awesome bonus, one of the Sylph family members will also give you a summon called Rydia!
4 Skip To The End (Final Fantasy II)
Don’t fancy tackling the Sealed Cave in Final Fantasy II? Well, luckily, you don’t have to. There is a way to bypass it altogether by warping soon after you defeat Golbez in the underworld. All it requires is the use of one spell timed at the precise moment in which you slay Golbez, but who would’ve thought to do it? Just use Warp and it will take you back to the Crystal Room with the crystal intact, meaning you never have to take part in the quest in the Sealed Cave. If timed correctly, you’ll forgo having to go through the task, assuming you’re the kind of person who doesn’t like playing the game as it was intended to be played. Yes, you know who you are…
3 Should I Be Here? (Final Fantasy XV)
Is the map in Final Fantasy XV not big enough for some reason? Are you yearning to see what’s beyond what the developers allow you to see? Surprisingly, there is a way to break the conventional boundaries of it, but only on unpatched disc versions of the game. If you get to the train section towards the game’s conclusion, you’ll be able to delve into previously unseen lands in the game.
You’ll find that you’re now outside of the boundaries
Jump at the correct moments and you’ll find that you’re now outside of the boundaries. You’re free to explore at will, even if your findings aren’t exactly the stuff of legend. Still, it’s a neat glitch that will certainly please those who were put off by the post-game linearity of Final Fantasy XV’s map. There, I said it.
2 Between Heaven And Heck (Final Fantasy VIII)
If you’re looking for the best place to level up in Final Fantasy VIII, you can’t go wrong with two very disparate islands. Yes, the Island Closest to Heaven and the Island Closest to [Heck] are your best chances to take the fight to some high-level enemies: lvl 100 to be exact. For all you adventurous players out there, these islands are worth seeking out, but only if you’re leveled up significantly as they will prove too hard otherwise. With many rare spells and a plethora of draw points, these two locations provide the best opportunity to take your party to the next level. Word of warning for the naïve ones though: they are practically no-go zones for those not powered up enough to face their deadly inhabitants!
1 Lost For 13 Years (Final Fantasy IX)
Of all the secrets on this list, none are as elusive as this hard-to-find mission. In fact, it was so hard to find, that it wasn’t uncovered until 13 years after its respective game’s release. Yes, it was Final Fantasy IX and The Lost Nero Family quest. It would take about five entries to do a step-by-step walkthrough of the quest, but needless to say, it’s incredibly involved.
It takes a mind-boggling 17 steps to complete
So involved, actually, that it takes a mind-boggling 17 steps to complete. What’s more, they all have to be done in the same order to ensure completion. Fail one of the steps or fail to even spot one of them, and you can say goodbye to seeing this quest play out in all of its obscure glory. Now that’s a hidden secret if ever there were one!