|The all-time Weirdest Final Fantasy Monsters
|The Tentacles - Final Fantasy VI
Among the fantastical locales of Final Fantasy VI is a mechanized desert castle capable of
submering and tunneling through the sand. One such voyage is interrupted, however, when
the engines grind to a halt and the entire kingdom is stranded deep below ground. Braving the
dungeon-like bowels of the immense machine, you find the engine thickly entangled with
wormy, writhing tentacles. The tentacles of what, we will never know. It's deep beneath a desert
and it's big enough to stop a castle from moving. Oh yeah, and its tentacles cast spells.
|Brainpods - Final Fantasy VII
|Alluring Rider - Final Fantasy VI
There's a sequence in Final Fantasy VI which takes place inside the subconscious
dreamscape of the samurai king Cyan, one of your party members. Most of the monsters are
rehashes from throughout the game, but you'll sometimes run into one of these, uh, half-nude
ladies riding fat, floating tapirs. This is probably a reference to the "Baku," a Japanese
mythological creature that preys on dreams. While the mythical Baku is more lion-like, Tapirs
are also called Baku to the Japanese, so the two are commonly confused in video games and
manga (the Pokemon Drowzee is a reference to this). While it's not unreasonable to feature
floating dream-tapirs in a fantasy game, it still doesn't explain why they're ridden by pantsless
women. The original American release added more clothes to the girls, since we can't have
any children seeing six extra pixels of skin.
The elderly, seemingly human wizard Doga is actually one of your greatest allies throughout
Final Fantasy III, but ultimately insists that you attack and destroy him, requiring the energy of
battle to complete some sort of spell. It's complicated. Refusing to take no for an answer, he
forces your party into a boss fight, and with absolutely zero explanation, enters combat as a
gigantic, abstract floating head. Earlier scenes alluded to him being quite ancient, dabbling in
arcane magic and even visiting another dimension, but nothing to imply that he was really
some mad cross between a clown's laundry pile and a nautilus. How can I do that?
|The Unknown - Final Fantasy V
.You're always in for something interesting when they refuse to even name a monster, and the
"Unknown" of Final Fantasy V definitely reek of "unnameable horror." These slimy, mangled
mutants are only encountered in an undersea trench, after your world is magically merged with
a parallel, alien world. All four are classified as "undead" monsters, and attack primarily by
draining health. While the dangling skeleton, acidic serpent and puking mouth guy are all
fascinating in their own right, the humble, featureless polyp is actually my favorite.
|The Unknown - Final Fantasy VII
In a nice little tribute to series past, the first 3-d Final Fantasy brought us a brand new wave of
"Unknown" monsters, and while I feel a little guilty putting them higher on the list than the
classics, there's no denying that they're quite a bit weirder; something skinless, legless and
rainbow-fingered is actually the most normal of the bunch, another resembles a skull-faced,
tongue-eyed flower made of fingers, and my personal favorite is some sort of two-dimensional
ribcage kite. These monsters are again encountered underwater, but in a Shinra aircaft which
crashed carrying both biological weapon samples and a powerful source of magic, easily the
two most idiotic things anybody could ever decide to transport at the same time. These guys
are a textbook example of exactly what couldn't not happen in that very situation.
|Dorky Face - Final Fantasy VII
In a world of both magic and biotechnology, there probably isn't anything that weird about a
magical pumpkin-looking monster, but the "dorky face" is clearly something more than just your
garden-variety magical pumpkin-looking monster. Encountered in the classy Shinra mansion,
the Dorky Faces wear ridiculous pink ribbons, fly around with a ring of flapping feathers and
inflict the dreaded "confusion" status with their hilarious sounding "Funny Breath" attack. Now,
there just might be an answer to what these are supposed to be, but it really only makes things
stranger. This image was posted by user Christian G over on Little Rubber Guys in a topic on
vintage rubber monsters:
|Grangalan - Final Fantasy VII
Our last entry from Final Fantasy VII, (sheesh, it's not even near my favorite of the series...)
the Grangalan is the only thing in FFVII more absurd than the Dorky Face, though obviously
based on a simple real-world nesting doll. The hovering, wooden-looking sentient egg contains
a slightly smaller "Grangalan Jr." which in turn houses a "Grangalan Jr. Jr.," each with its own
unique eye-beam power. It's times like this that you wish these games went into at least a little
story detail on the local, er, wildlife, which wouldn't happen until later installments like Final
Fantasy X and X-2. Unfortunately, these later installments almost entirely lack any monsters
that really interest me.
|Brainpan and Face - Final Fantasy VI
Alright, so you have these two monsters in FFVI that happen to look like gigantic, disembodied
Buddha heads. Odd, but maybe not brain-breakingly odd. Well, I guess it's pretty strange that
they fly. They're also categorized as "undead," so I guess they must have been alive at one
time. Perhaps they're the heads of actual giant Buddhas, or perhaps there's just some secret
island of giant living disembodied Buddha heads who all turned into flying zombies. These
guys also have the power to freeze you in place with an attack called "smirk." Now we're really
getting into what-the-hell territory, and once they've smirked you helpless, they proceed to
spray you with needles. A thousand needles, to be precise; one of the game's deadliest
attacks. Where the hell do those come from? Their hair? Their giant ears? Oh no, is it giant
You probably don't think it can get more ridiculous, but of course it can. Brainpan and Face
are among the only enemy types in the game who automatically die if they run out of mind
points, the fuel for all magical attacks. Their only magical attack is Smirk, however, so if you
can't kill the Buddha heads yourself, they'll eventually just smirk themselves out of existence.
Do you even know what was in all those potions that kept you going?
|Armstrong - Final Fantasy IX
So, what could possibly be more confusing than smirking zombie buddha heads,
funny-breathing dorky faces, unnameable mutant abominations and giant balls of clown-squid
wizard? How about a fairy-tale dream house running around on a dozen tiny horse feet as it
blasts passersby with its gigantic cannon and sun-dries the carcass of a giant fish on its roof?
Hey, it even has a cute little window box! Does somebody live in this thing? Why does it have a
human name like Armstrong? Is that who lives there? Do they all have a different person
named Armstrong living there? It's obvious this goddamn thing was conceived entirely to be
confusing, and they did a spectacular job.
The role-playing genre has always been generous to us monster fans. With the vast scale of
games like Final Fantasy, Dragon Quest or Persona, there's enough room for dozens or even
hundreds of different monsters. As you might expect, things can get mighty peculiar as an art
team strives to fill an entire virtual world with a menagerie of horrors, and Squaresoft's Final
Fantasy, perhaps the most mainstream RPG series, is no exception. What passes for weird in
a world where suicidal balloon monsters, toxic tentacle beasts and speedy little cactus-people
These hovering, teapot-like canisters are only encountered in the laboratories of the evil
Shinra Corporation after the monster Jenova escapes and wreaks havoc, freeing some of the
lab's other specimens. Though it can do damage just by ramming its opponent, a brainpod
also employs the toxic "refuse" attack; lifting its lid like a hat, a withered, floating, downright
silly-looking head floats up out of the container and spews its own waste over our heroes from
its puckered mouth.
Like many Shinra monsters, these things were probably created by the mad scientist, Hojo, but
for what purpose, we can only imagine. Were these once people? Or just genetically grown
from people? Why the teacup design? Considering some of Hojo's other projects throughout
the game, your guess is as good as mine.
This toy dates back to at least the sixties, and obviously has to share some real-world
inspiration with the Dorky Faces, but all efforts to find out what that is have come up dry. If
anybody knows what's up with ribbon-haired, feather-bodied fruit, please enlighten me
Armstrong makes a return appearance - sort of - in Final Fantasy: Crystal Chronicles, but this
time appears to be a house overtaken by an evil, magical fungus. This actually makes
relatively perfect sense, so while pretty damn cool, I have to say it's nowhere near as freaky as
the original. Way to go, Armstrong. If there were a trophy for being the most confusing
monster, you'd be walking home with it. Or walking yourself with it, anyway. The trophy is
probably also alive. With electrical eyeballs and cheese for breath. While we're here, let's just
classify that as a "vampire" and have it live on the moon!
A giant land snail that deflects electrical magic isn't even mildly unusual for an RPG world, but
Whelk's role in FFVI is fairly distinct; at the start of the game, you're actually fighting against
your will as a soldier of the evil Empire, and invade a mining town of Narshe to seize the
magical, frozen being they uncovered deep underground. Before you can reach your prize,
however, the miners call upon a special friend to stop you...
That's right; Whelk isn't just any giant, electrical snail, but a giant, electrical hero snail, dying in
his attempt to protect the innocent locals from your imperial tyranny. I've always wondered how
Narshe might have come into possession of a giant, electrical snail willing to put its life on the
line for a bunch of humans...I don't doubt it's an epic and emotional tale. A tale which,
unfortunately, must end in tragedy for the game to progress...
A mistranslation of "Ragtime Mouth," also known as simply "Ragtimer," this goofy, dancing
monster can be encountered at any time in any forest of the FFIX world, but only "fights" by
asking a single "true or false" question about the game and flees if attacked directly. His final
question, "you can defeat ragtime mouse," is true, and when answered correctly, he explodes
and awards you the powerful "protect ring." Whether he's a demon, an alien, a cosmic horror
or just a crazy freak is left unknown, as he lacks even a creature class.
|Ragtime Mouse - Final Fantasy IX
|The Zone Eater - Final Fantasy VI
The desert-dwelling Zone Eater may at first seem like your typical giant sandworm monster, but
if it uses its engulf attack on all four of your characters before the battle ends, you'll awaken in
a mysterious, booby-trapped cavern, inhabited by various thugs, thieves, demons and even a
few zombies. For no apparent reason, there are also these guys in green uniforms who try to
kick you off bridges and into the lower levels. It's at the end of this bizarre little world that you'll
fine Gogo, an optional character capable of imitating the abilities of others.
|Are those guys paid to do this?
Originally known as "Orthros," this giant, purple octopus with teeth isn't just a mindless
monster, but a scheming, greedy, loud-mouthed, lecherous nut case, bumping into our heroes
again and again on his scatterbrained quest for riches. He drops corny jokes throughout
battle, prefers to use his "tentacle" attack on female characters (uh-oh) and his most insidious
scheme involves dropping a giant weight on an opera singer. Never before - and seldom since
- has the series concocted such a ridiculous villain, and he's yet to be given any coherent
|Ultros - Final Fantasy VI
As a fan favorite, Ultros has been referenced by several Square games since, and managed a
few full-blown guest appearances where he continues to ham it up. In a more recent sequel to
Final Fantasy IV, he can even be found on the moon, and in other games, reappears as a
gelatinous slime monster rather than a mollusk.
Zorn and Thorn are a pair of diminutive court Jesters who torment our protagonists throughout
the ninth Final Fantasy, working as agents of the evil Kuja. The twins are enigmatic and eerie
enough when we still think they're human, but the final battle against them reveals a horrific
|Meltigemini - Final Fantasy IX
As it turns out, Zorn and Thorn were never actually twins, but two halves to a single being, the
hideous Meltigemini, a twisted demon that attacks with the disgusting-sounding "viral smoke"
and "venom powder." We never really learn a damn thing about Meltigemini's origins, or any of
Zorn and Thorn's past, which only makes this fleshy, two-headed clown all the more disturbing.