Final Fantasy 8 was the game that had the world of pressure placed upon after the success of a certain game named Final Fantasy 7. It has been lost in time, mainly due to the outlandish plot, horrible Junction battle system, and characters whom weren’t as relatable as other FF characters. As it failed to deliver, many people have simply forgotten it, whilst relishing in the other highly decorated titles. I want to talk about Final Fantasy 8 a bit, and feel out different elements of this game that may of been better different, or explore and explain what I feel is needed. Today, I want to speak about the plot.
The story seems very easy to grab a hold of. You are playing as moody teenager Squall, whom is training to be an ultimate soldier at a university for fighting named Balamb Garden. With new allies and foes, the world becomes the battlefield with his former Matron and rival Seifer. Then time travel, sorceress beings, and nukes get involved, before eventually the puppeteer Ultimecia is revealed and ever so quickly; exterminated. Personally, this type of storyline reminds me a lot of the Flash comics, with Barry Allen and Jay Garrick. However, this game was I believe too complicated and complex for FF players to grasp. I am going to attempt to put this puzzle together, and hopefully solve a mystery I have wanted to clear for a long time.
Ok, you ready? Final Fantasy 8 is based on an alternative timeline, following events which have previously occurred. I am going to state that FF8 takes place a second round after the original initial timeline. Honestly it has to be, because if Ultimecia exists, it is because she was allowed to exist. Let me put it this way, the timeline of the game has Ultimecia already established in the future as a bad guy so to speak. At the end of the game, you kill her. If you killed her in the present, she never would have existed to begin with. What I am saying is that by Squall and co going into the future, they are breaking the timeline in which Ultimecia is already a godly witch. The original timeline would be a completely different story where Ultimecia attains power by defeating the white seeds as shown in her future via disc 4.
This is where I need to theorise on information we know. The white seeds were Edea’s creation. They were brought upon by the utter protection necessary to protect Ellone. Because Ultimecia has power to time travel and affect time on a whim, she would not have found Ellone in the original time line. She did however find Dr. Odine’s Junction Machine Ellone. The thing is, during FF8s timeline, this information is presented to us as if it has happened previously. This information was given by Edea, a sorceress whom could only die if her powers were taken away. There is a huge chance that by Edea knowing this information, she herself is from the previous timeline as well. You could say Edea learned Ultimecia’s motives via possession, yet Edea herself says that she was empty at her command. To sum up, the original timeline happens, Edea becomes a sorceress at the beach at 8 years of age. She meets Ellone and finds she is gifted with Time travel manipulation, further developed by Odine. Ultimecia pops in and becomes a sorceress somehow, and takes over the future wanting to rule all time. Then how do we get a second timeline where FF8 the game comes in?
Ultimecia gets greedy and creates it herself. She is the ruler of the future. Through her greed to capture Ellone, she forces herself back in time utilising the Junction Machine Ellone to possess Edea in Squall’s era. As this is tinkering with the past, a new time line is created as to what normally would occur. The game continues forth, and Ultimecia is slain. As a result, Squall is lost in time and space, a time vortex so to speak, in between worlds. He pops up in another timeline, aka the final timeline, where Edea accepts Ultimecia’s powers from the previous timeline. This timeline, with no other sorceresses except Rinoa and Edea, everyone lives happily ever after, and Squall/Rinoa love each other to which Squall smiles. This Squall may be a very different Squall due to the time line switch, one whom is happy. As for the Squall who dies at the end, I do believe that it is indeed the FF8 Squall, fading from history, where Rinoa lives on as a sorceress. The ending where Seifer is happy fishing, Laguna is married to Raine, everybody parties, that is the final timeline that never had anything bad ever happen. Ultimecia never existed there past the orphanage.
One last point I feel I need to clear up. The first disc, when Edea kills Squall, that never happened, or should I say, was a foresight. Ultimecia was foreshadowing Squall’s death at the end of the timeline, hence why he woke with no scar. It was an illusion, a trick to show him death was coming. Or, maybe she stole his soul and essence, to create Griever for Ultimecia to summon. Decide for yourself.
Regardless, I feel that is confusing enough for one day. Thank you for reading and regards.