- “I had never seen anything like it in my life. Sure, it was a little scary, but still... I could feel a strange kind of gentleness from it.”
Aeons ['eɪ.ɑnz] are the summons in Final Fantasy X and Final Fantasy X-2 (however, they cannot be summoned by the player in Final Fantasy X-2). The aeons are obtained by completing the Cloister of Trials at each of Spira's temples. They are different from most summons in the Final Fantasy series, as they can be controlled by the player once summoned, and they can only be summoned by Yuna.
Aeons are the physical realization of the fayth's dreams. The fayth communicate with summoners who pray to them within the Chamber of the Fayth, and establish a mental link between the fayth and the summoner. Using this link, the fayth gives their dream a physical form - an aeon. Aeons are powerful creatures only a summoner can use in battle. Most aeons resemble their respective fayth, so it can be assumed the aeon takes on aspects of the person whose soul is sealed inside the fayth statue.
The fayth are likely the aeons themselves, or otherwise are in control of them, as evidenced when Bahamut's fayth encourages Yuna to call the aeons in her battle with Yu Yevon, saying: "Promise me you'll call us?" and "We aeons...call us!!". This is further supported by the connection between Seymour's mother and her aeon Anima. The aeons give the summoner the undying loyalty for one thing in return, to stop dreaming and be at peace with the final destruction of Sin.
Only Yuna has access to the Summon command. When she summons an aeon, the rest of the party leaves the area and even KO'd allies get up and leave, although if the aeon is dismissed the party member will collapse after reentering the field. After being summoned, the player controls the aeon who will act like a regular party member with its own HP and stats. Aeons are immune to status effects (except for Curse), but can be vulnerable to elements. Aeons can be dismissed through the Dismiss command, which causes the party to return to the battle. If the aeon dies, the same thing happens, but it can't be summoned again during the same battle.
Aeons, like the player characters, have Overdrives (with the exception of Yojimbo). Their Overdrive meters are charged by giving and taking damage in battle, or avoiding an attack. The Overdrive Gauge is also filled when Yuna uses her Grand Summoning Overdrive. After the respective aeons' Overdrive is launched, the Overdrive returns to the state it was in prior to the Grand Summoning, meaning if the gauge was full before the aeon was Grand Summoned, the aeon can launch two Overdrives in a row. When an aeon is defeated the gauge is reset to zero.
While Yojimbo lacks an Overdrive, keeping the gauge filled will slightly increase the probability of him using his better attacks.
During an aeon's summoning animation a glyph briefly appears on the ground or in the air and the aeon emerges through it. The glyphs are circular geometric patterns that are also seen in the Zanarkand and Baaj Cloisters of Trials, and each aeon has a unique one.
After obtaining the Summoner's Soul from Belgemine, when she is fought for the second time, aeons can learn most abilities available to the main party by using items in specific quantities. For example, Ixion can learn Full Break by giving up two Dark Matter. Only Yojimbo and the Magus Sisters cannot learn abilities this way - theirs are set.
List of AeonsEdit
Only five of the game's aeons are required as dictated by the game's plotline. The other three are optional.
- “Please, fight with us!”
- —Yuna, summoning Valefor.
The aeon of Besaid temple. Valefor's fayth is that of a small girl. She has high evasion and speed, but only mediocre attack power, though this changes later in the game. Valefor can deal non-elemental damage and cause a turn delay with her special attack, Sonic Wings, and with her two Overdrives, the default Energy Ray and the more powerful Energy Blast. Valefor is the only aeon to have two Overdrives.
Energy Blast must be obtained by speaking to a girl and her dog in Besaid Village. To break the damage limit, Yuna must have obtained her Nirvana, and power it up with the Moon Crest. Later in the game Valefor is so fast that if Sonic Wings is used over and over again against a single opponent, the opponent will never have an opportunity to attack. Because Valefor is a flying aeon some enemies cannot hit Valefor at all due to their attacks only hitting ground targets (an example being Omega Ruins' Demonolith), and therefore, their attacks are out of range.
- “Will you... help us?”
- —Yuna, when summoning Ifrit.
Ifrit, the Fire aeon, is located at the Kilika Temple. His fayth is a male Crusader. Ifrit specializes in the Fire element, but his special attack, Meteor Strike, is a non-elemental attack, which bypasses the Protect status. His Overdrive, Hellfire, is a powerful Fire assault in which Ifrit hurls fireballs at the enemy, and finishes by throwing a chunk of earth at them.
Ifrit has high defense, rivaling Bahamut's; however, his attack and HP are lower. As with all the elemental aeons, Ifrit can be healed by using spells of his own element on himself, meaning Fire spells are an easy way to restore his HP. To break the damage limit, Wakka must upgrade his World Champion using the Jupiter Crest.
- “My name's Yuna. Pleased to meet you.”
- —Yuna, when summoning Ixion.
Located at the Djose Temple, Ixion is the Lightning aeon. Ixion manifests as a unicorn with a gargantuan horn. It possesses high Magic and Magic Defense and uses the attack Aerospark to deal damage and dispel status enhancements from the target, and the ultimate Lightning attack, Thor's Hammer, encases the enemy in a field of electricity and sends it crashing into every other enemy on the field.
Ixion can heal by using Lightning-based elemental attacks on itself. Ixion's fayth is a man in a sailor's outfit, and to break the damage limit, the Saturn Crest must be used on Kimahri's Spirit Lance.
- “Please help us.”
- —Yuna, when summoning Shiva.
The Ice Queen, Shiva, is the aeon of the Macalania Temple. Her fayth is a Macalanian priestess, and she possesses high evasion and speed. Using her power to manipulate Ice, Shiva utilizes her Heavenly Strike to deal out non-elemental damage and inflicts the Threaten status, and her signature attack, Diamond Dust, to freeze over the battlefield, and all of Shiva's opposition. With a snap of her fingers, the ice shatters, and deals Ice damage to all enemies.
Shiva rivals Bahamut in power due to her high speed and evasion; combined with Haste she becomes a force to be reckoned with. Unlike Bahamut, Shiva can heal herself with Ice-elemental attacks, furthering her use early on. Shiva can break the damage limit once Lulu's Onion Knight has been upgraded with the Venus Crest.
- “Oh, my...”
- —Yuna, when summoning Bahamut.
Bahamut is the final summon required to complete the storyline. The Palace of St. Bevelle is where Bahamut's fayth - a young boy, seemingly the same age as Valefor's fayth - resides. In Final Fantasy X, Bahamut's fayth acts as the collective representative of all fayth, and communicates with Tidus and Yuna during the storyline.
Bahamut is considered the strongest of all the storyline summons, albeit not very fast, and backs this claim up with his powerful Impulse attack and Mega Flare Overdrive, both dealing non-elemental damage. Bahamut can break the damage limit initially. When Bahamut is possessed by Yu Yevon while Inside Sin, the help bar says "Soon... Eternal rest".
The optional aeons must be sought out outside of the main story.
- “Please, clear us a path!”
- —Yuna, when summoning Yojimbo.
Originally located at a Temple of Yevon, Yojimbo's fayth - a Crusader and his dog - is now within the Cavern of the Stolen Fayth. To obtain Yojimbo, the player must defeat Lady Ginnem's Yojimbo, and then offer Yojimbo's fayth a large sum of gil, usually in excess of 200,000. Lulu tells Tidus Yojimbo was stolen from a temple because people (possibly Al Bhed) did not want summoners to sacrifice themselves while calling the Final Aeon.
Yojimbo is a unique aeon, as his attacks are based on a complex calculation of loyalty, pay, his Overdrive bar, and random chance, and are executed by giving him gil. He must be paid at least 1 gil to act. The larger the sum, the better the attack, and frequent usage and paying large sums of money make his stronger attacks more probable. When given gil, Yojimbo will use one of four moves: Daigoro (which involves his dog of the same name attacking in his stead), Kozuka, Wakizashi, or Zanmato. Daigoro and Kozuka injure a single foe, Wakizashi one or many, and Zanmato instantly kills all opponents facing Yojimbo by slicing them with his sword, including bosses and superbosses. While Yojimbo has no Overdrive, the chance of executing Zanmato increases with a full Overdrive bar.
- “I will share your pain with you.”
- —Yuna, when summoning Anima.
Anima can be obtained after having obtained the airship, having found the Baaj Temple, and after having collected the Destruction Treasures in all six Cloisters of Trials. Anima can be found waiting in Baaj Temple's Chamber of the Fayth and her fayth is actually Seymour Guado's mother, whom Yunalesca turned into a fayth so Seymour could become a powerful summoner. This triggered a lust for power, and his eventual search for a way to control the ultimate power, Sin.
Anima offers her powers to Yuna in the hopes she can stop Seymour. The help bar when summoning her inside Sin says "Thus I atone". Similarly, if she is summoned during the battle against Seymour Omnis, he will remark on her opposing him, saying "So be it".
In battle, Anima is extremely strong. Her special attack, Pain, deals high damage, instantly defeating all foes not immune to instant death. Her Overdrive, Oblivion, has an added chance of causing instant death, but deals colossal damage to all foes. In the PAL and International versions, Oblivion deals 16 hits of damage instead of just one, as it does in the NTSC and Japanese versions.
- “We need all your help!”
- —Yuna, when summoning Magus Sisters
The last aeons obtained in the game, the Magus Sisters, can only be obtained once the player has received all other aeons, the Blossom Crown and the Flower Scepter. The Magus Sisters' fayth, three young women (presumably sisters), can then be approached in the Remiem Temple.
The Magus Sisters are so named because they consist of three sisters: Cindy the ladybug, Sandy the praying mantis, and Mindy the bee. Each has her own field of expertise, with Cindy excelling at White Magic, Mindy at Black Magic and defense, and Sandy at physical attacks and support White Magic, although Cindy is the one who knows Ultima, and Mindy has one of the most powerful attacks in the game, Passado, her special attack which deals 15 hits of physical damage. Cindy's special attack deals physical damage and is called Camisade, and Sandy's special attack is a powerful physical assault called Razzia.
Commanding the sisters is different from the other aeons. The player can only "suggest" what they should do, which could result in them doing anything, including having a rest, or casting Cure on another sister in dire need of Curaga. The sisters are still very powerful, as they can deal high damage from the beginning.
To launch their Overdrive, each sister's bar must be full, and the command "Combine powers!" selected. Delta Attack deals high damage to all foes, either in one lump sum, as it does in the NTSC and Japanese versions, or six successive hits like it does in PAL and International versions.
|Taking a break...||3|
- Main article: Final Aeon
Final Aeon is no specific aeon, but rather is unique to every summoner who completes his or her pilgrimage. At the end of their pilgrimage the summoner will meet Lady Yunalesca, who will turn one of the summoner's guardians into an aeon used for the Final Summoning. The aeon becomes the shell for Yu Yevon to manifest the next Sin after the Calm.
Using an AeonEdit
Unlike in the past Final Fantasy games where a creature would be summoned, attack, and disappear, in Final Fantasy X the player has direct control over the summoned creatures, in the same way they would control a character. Once Yuna summons the desired aeon the other characters vacate the battlefield, and offer control of the aeon to the player (with the exceptions of Yojimbo and - to a lesser extent - the Magus Sisters; see respective articles for more details).
They can also launch the Boost and Shield commands from the sub-commands menu. Boost increases the damage the aeon receives, but greatly increases the rate at which the Overdrive gauge fills up. Shield does the opposite - both damage and Overdrive increases are reduced. When an aeon is used against Seymour Flux or Seymour Natus, they will only have one turn to attack before he uses a special attack called Banish to destroy the aeon.
The summoning system was revamped for Final Fantasy X, because the developers strove for a more seamless battle experience. Shintaro Takai, the game's battle art director, says the following in the "Beyond Final Fantasy" feature included with the International and PAL versions of Final Fantasy X:
- “Each time we've created an FF game, there has been a willingness to change some aspect or other from its predecessors. For my part, I think I've changed the way aeons are handled in this installment. The world setting for this game is highly developed, and the scenario and art consequently synchronize well. In the same way, the battles are not independent elements of the game and it was my intention from the beginning to create something that mirrored the scenario, too. Coming up with new aeons was easy and natural for me since I matched the aeons -- part of the visual spectacle of the game -- to fit the world. This time, since Yuna's unique ability to summon aeons was a key point, I knew from the start that I wanted to present scenes focusing on the connection between Yuna and the aeons. I'm very proud of the results, and although the summoning sequences may seem long, they've been paced well, so I believe they are enjoyable to watch.”
- —Shintaro Takai, battle art director
Yuna appears in Dissidia 012 Final Fantasy where she summons Valefor, Ifrit, Ixion, Shiva and Bahamut and uses them as regular attacks in battles. Unlike in Final Fantasy X, the aeons in Dissidia 012 Final Fantasy emerge partially from their summoning crests; this is for ease of animating the attacks. During her EX Mode Yuna can summon two aeons at once, and her EX Burst is To the Farplane, where she calls out all aeons at once to attack while performing a sending ritual.
Yuna appears as a Legend in Final Fantasy Airborne Brigade and can summon Shiva who uses Heavenly Strike.
Some aeons appear in this Final Fantasy trading card game published in Japan by Square Enix.
Appearance in Popular CultureEdit
In episode IV of this fan-made series, Yuna summons Valefor, Ifrit, Ixion, Shiva and Bahamut to help her in a fight against Kasumi and her clones.
Made by Kotobukiya, the Bahamut figurine depicts the aeon in detail, with a paint job that has a metallic sheen and comes with a display stand. Anima's figure is part of the Final Fantasy X Monster Collection series. Valefor has appeared in the Final Fantasy Creatures Kai Vol 1 series of monster figures.
In the Final Fantasy Master Creatures series, Ifrit has appeared in Vol 2 and Shiva in Vol 3. Shiva and Ixion appear in the first Final Fantasy Creatures set. Yojimbo appears in both, Final Fantasy X Action Figure Collection, and in Final Fantasy Master Creatures, in both his original color and as a Dark Aeon.
Etymology and SymbolismEdit
The word aeon means "age", "forever" or "for eternity". In Gnostic lore, it denotes the immaterial emanations of God. The Siddham Sanskrit script, which is the basis for the script of Yevon in Final Fantasy X, is used in Japan mostly by the Shingon School of Buddhism that draws on early Hindu traditions. One traditional concept is that deities manifest their thoughts or spiritual energy in the physical world on several different "wavelengths": Sound, Form, and Symbol.
The form through which a deity can manifest, is an anthropomorphic representation that is not the deity itself, but a living form humans can apprehend. The form physically expresses the deity's essence, in the same vein the aeons represent the fayth's dreams rather than their temporal bodies. In some Hindu and Buddhist practices one can invoke a deity through the physical representation of a statue, similar to the link between aeons and fayth in Final Fantasy X.
The symbol through which deity can manifest is a mandala (Buddhist tradition) or yantra (Hindu tradition), a geometric pattern which distills the deity's essence into a visual representation. This is similar to how aeons in Final Fantasy X are represented by glyphs, which appear in the temples and during the aeons' summoning animations, the aeon often emerging into the physical world through the glyph.
- When summoning an aeon while party members are KO'ed, the knocked out party members will get up and run away to make room for the aeon. Once the aeon is dismissed or defeated, said party members will run back onto the field and fall over, as if they were struck and killed.
- During the ending FMV after the defeat of Yu Yevon, all storyline aeons are present with the inclusion of Anima.
- If the player uses Scan on the Aeons when they are possessed by Yu Yevon, a message from their fayth is displayed, begging the party to defeat them:
- Valefor: Strike me down.
- Ifrit: Extinguish me.
- Ixion: End it here.
- Shiva: Please... Defeat me.
- Bahamut: Soon... Eternal rest.
- Anima: Thus I atone.
- Yojimbo: Take my life.
- Cindy: Stop the suffering.
- Sandy: Don't cry.
- Mindy: Gotta say goodbye.