The series lore behind the eight Eikons of Final Fantasy XVI

By Lee Brady,

The Eikons from Final Fantasy XVI reimagine the summon monsters from Square Enix's classic RPG franchise as forceful elements tied to human beings known as Dominants. Here's a little Final Fantasy lore for the eight shown so far.

Final Fantasy XVI's latest PS5 trailer introduced us to Dion Lesage and Barnabas Tharmr, two Dominants who control the powerful Odin and Bahamut Eikons that long-time fans will recognise as two of the most powerful summons in the Final Fantasy series. It's another fresh tease that's keeping long-time fans ready for the game's PS5 release next year, but for those a little less in the know wondering "who are the Eikons in Final Fantasy XVI?", we've compiled a little series breakdown on all eight for you.

Meet the Eikons from Final Fantasy XVI

The 'Ambition' trailer for Final Fantasy XVI focuses largely on the Dominants and what it looks like when humans channel these creatures, like when Joshua Rosfield as a young boy shows signs of the Eikon Phoenix emerging from his body while in a rage. It's a fascinating new twist on such a classic Final Fantasy series staple, as while the summoned monsters have had dalliances with minor character roles or plot significance, they've never been front and centre on anything like the scale of FFXVI before — unless you count the labyrinthine plot of Final Fantasy XIV, which you should, but we won't because it's technically still ongoing and so any detail could technically count as a spoiler.

The Eikons have their fingerprints all over Final Fantasy's lore in plenty of interesting ways even when they're not playing a pivotal story role — take, for example, Phoenix. First appearing as a summonable monster in Final Fantasy V, Phoenix has enjoyed plenty of plot relevance in Final Fantasy XII and Final Fantasy XIV, but probably its biggest contribution to the Final Fantasy series is in the Phoenix Down item. Introduced in Final Fantasy III, Phoenix Downs revive KO'd allies, and are seen throughout the series, including the popular Final Fantasy VII.

FFXVIRamuh, the only Eikon who looks like a dude.

Ifrit, the "impossible" eight Eikon in FFXVI, is often the first summonable monster you meet in any Final Fantasy game — for example, in Final Fantasy VII Remake, the beast is given to Cloud Strife as a gift from Jessie, one of the member's of eco-terrorist group Avalanche. In Final Fantasy VIII, obtaining Ifrit is part of Squall Leonhart's SeeD exam, which is only a little belittling that the creature is part of the main character's mercenary school exam.

If we were to make a list of the next Eikon most likely to appear in another game, it would be Shiva. Poor Shiva never gets too much time in the sun, as far as plot relevance goes, but did you know in FFXII: Revenant Wings we find out that Shiva not only has a lover, Shivar, but also a daughter, Shivan? Adorable. At least that's more plot than Garuda has seen, an Eikon perhaps best known for going down with little trouble in Persona 5 than any particular role in Final Fantasy, though in FFIX we do learn that Garuda was once just a very determined actual bird.

FFXVIOdin, not quite as we imagine he'll look in God of War Ragnarok

Titan has also been rather poorly served over the years, making little appearances here and there, though he does become something of a talking roadblock in Final Fantasy XV, challenging Noctis to a trial by combat after Lunafreya wakes him up. Far better served, however, is Odin — at least as a Final Fantasy easter egg. Between FFIII and FFVI, Odin could always be found in a secret part in one of the game's castles, and in FFVII, he could be found in that game's equivalent of a castle — Shinra Mansion (the same building in which you find optional party member Vincent Valentine).

What's cool about Ramuh, aside from the fact that he's the only "monster" on this list who just looks like an old dude in a wizard's robe, is that he actually plays a pivotal plot role in the classic FFVI. In one potentially spoiler-y ordeal that finds main character Terra out of control of her Esper abilities, Ramuh steps in as one of the surviving Espers and acts as her guardian from that point onwards. He also seemingly taught Mog the Moogle how to speak English via dreams — that's a lot of plot relevance!

FFXVITrue power.

Finally, we saved the biggest name for last — Bahamut. Aside from perpetually appearing in the series as one of the best summons in the game, particularly in FFVII where he gets his amazing Neo Bahamut and Bahamut Zero forms, Bahamut had plot relevancy all the way back in the original Final Fantasy. As King of the Dragons, Bahamut aids the Warriors of Light in the quest to conquer Chaos, and recently players of STRANGER OF PARADISE FINAL FANTASY ORIGIN will likely have seen this character's reintroduction while hunting for DLC trophies. He's an Eikon so powerful he even fought Mario in Super Mario RPG as Bahamutt!

Now that you know a little more about the eight Eikons, you can get a sense of how Final Fantasy XVI is really tapping into the series deepest roots on this outing even as it pulls away from the RPG genre into a full-on action-heavy rogue genre mash-up. Will it still qualify for our best PlayStation RPGs list in the future? Time will tell — until then, let us know in the comments if you have any more deep lore to throw at your favourite Eikons!
Lee Brady
Written by Lee Brady
Staff Writer Lee keeps one eye on the future (Shadow x Sonic Generations), one eye on the past (PS Plus Premium games), and his secret third eye on junk he really likes (Final Fantasy and Kingdom Hearts games). Then he uses his big mouth to blurt out long-winded opinions about video games.
Hide ads
View discussion...
Hide ads