Hume, 19 years old
A princess who has lost everything.
The only child of King Raminas and sole heir to the Dalmascan throne, Ashe is believed dead following the invasion. She meets Vaan and the others under the most unlikely of circumstances.
Ashe knows all too well she lacks the power to right the wrongs committed against her and her kingdom, but she will not allow herself to admit defeat.
Ashelia B'nargin Dalmasca, otherwise known as Ashe and by the alias Amalia, is a playable character in Final Fantasy XII and Final Fantasy XII: Revenant Wings. She is the former Princess of Dalmasca and the only daughter of King Raminas. She is the last true descendant of King Raithwall, the Dynast King. She also appears in the manga version of Final Fantasy XII that delves more into her background.
While Vaan is the game's designated protagonist, the bulk of the party's actions in Final Fantasy XII hinge on Ashe, and the main story is her drive to accumulate the power she needs to avenge her kingdom.
In Final Fantasy XII, Ashe is 19 years old with a small build and slender frame. She has sandy blonde hair cropped above her shoulders, and she is variably depicted with blue, brown or gray eyes. Ashe is seen in four different outfits.
Her main attire comprises of a white and gold cropped shirt over a leather waist swath and a bright pink miniskirt secured by a thick light-blue belt. She wears metal thigh-high leg-guards and a pair of gold metal open-toed shoes with darker pink stockings. Her wedding gown is similar in design to her white and gold shirt, with a long, fitted white skirt and a feather-adorned white veil. She is briefly seen in a black mourning gown, and in the final scenes, seen dressed in a peach gown with loose sleeves. In Final Fantasy XII: Revenant Wings, Ashe wears her standard Final Fantasy XII outfit.
I am simply myself. No more and no less. And I want only to be free.
Ashe is fiercely independent and driven and will stop at nothing to restore her family to its rightful place. She is proud, indignant, determined and loyal. Her façade can be broken by memories of Lord Rasler, reminding her of the joyful and easier times of her youth. Ashe's true strength is the ability to turn down great power even while being faced with that same power backing her adversary, realizing it would corrupt the ideals she has lived her life by.
How dare you say that! The Empire attacked us, stole all we hold dear... and you would have me save them from war?
Ashe was raised as the Princess of Dalmasca, the ninth, last and only daughter of the Dalmascan royal family. Her eight older brothers had died of illness or fallen in battle making her the sole heir of her kingdom by the time of her marriage. She was raised with the duties and responsibilities of her rank and, besides being raised in royal etiquette, Ashe was no stranger to the defensive arts.
In the year 704 Old Valendia, King Raminas and the king of the neighboring Kingdom of Nabradia arranged a political marriage between their children. Both Ashe and Lord Rasler were understood that the marriage was to cement an alliance between Dalmasca and Nabradia against the conquering Archadian Empire. Ashe was nervous to see Rasler again, as the two had met since early childhood.
Upon their first meeting for years Rasler surprised everyone by claiming he cannot marry Ashe. Embarrassed, Ashe stormed out to be consoled by Marchioness Argas, her caregiver, whom the Princess regarded as an older sister figure. While pondering over her pending marriage upon a balcony, she overheard Rasler and Sir Forz, General of Nabradia, discuss plans concerning Ashe's father. Ashe followed Sir Forz into a Neo-Rozarria Faction meeting in the part of the Royal Palace of Rabanastre under reconstruction. The faction believed the proposed political allegiance to Dalmasca to be better placed with Rozarria to avert war with the Archadian Empire.
The faction conspired to assassinate King Raminas to prevent the royal engagement from going ahead, and pin the murder on Archadia to send both Dalmasca and Nabradia into Rozarria's hands. Ashe wondered if her future husband led the faction and inadvertently drew attention to herself by knocking over some boxes. Before Sir Forz and the rest of the faction could discover her, Rasler hid her behind a column. Ashe tried to escape but fell through the weak floor. Rasler jumped down after her into the Garamsythe Waterway.
Rasler explained his reason for refusing to wed her was because he knew of the Neo-Rozarria faction and thought by preventing the marriage he would protect Ashe from assassination attempts. Ashe forgave him and healed his wound, and they made their way to King Raminas's bed chambers before the Neo-Rozarria faction attempted to assassinate the sleeping king. The faction leader was revealed to be Marchioness Argas, the woman Ashe treated as a sister.
Ashe refused Argas's offer to join them and she and Rasler attempted to fight off the faction. When Argas was going to stab Raminas, Captain Basch fon Ronsenburg of the Order of the Knights revealed himself from under Raminas's bed sheets and chopped off Argas's arm. The Order of the Knights stormed the room and arrested the faction members, and Sir Forz was revealed to be an undercover member of the Order. Ashe was embarrassed everyone knew of the plan except for her, but her shame was quelled by Rasler's admittance that her actions had proven he loves her, and he was glad they were to be wed.
Ashe was married at the age of seventeen to Lord Rasler of Nabradia. Despite the political nature of it, the two genuinely cared for one another. Ashe was widowed when Rasler was killed at the Battle of Nalbina Fortress, devastating the princess and fueling her hatred toward the Archadian Empire. Not long after Archadia made a full-scale assault on Dalmasca, Raminas intended to surrender to save his people but was killed by Judge Gabranth posing as his twin, Basch fon Ronsenburg, after signing a peace agreement with Archadia. Ashe disappeared and Bhujerba's ruler, Halim Ondore IV, announced her suicide.
Now unable to seek Ondore's aid, Ashe retreated underground and assumed the name Amalia. Vossler, a captain in the former Dalmascan army, joined her and they formed the Resistance to reclaim Dalmasca's independence and recruited many former members of the Dalmascan army. The Resistance moved slowly, not winning any major victories or causing enough unrest to be notable until Vayne Solidor travels to Dalmasca to assume his position as consul in the year 706.
The Resistance plans to attack the royal palace in Rabanastre unaware the opportunity is a trap. A street thief Vaan and two sky pirates, Balthier and Fran, infiltrate the palace to loot its treasures and when the Archadian forces break up the Resistance attack, Ashe is separated from her companions and forced to retreat through the sewers. In the manga, Vossler sees they have walked into a trap and calls for a retreat, but Ashe is unwilling to admit defeat. Vossler has Ashe taken to safety via the sewers, but the Resistance members he sends her with are Imperial informants aware of her identity and turn against her. Ashe fights them off but is trapped on a ledge. Vaan spots her and calls for her to jump down, catching her.
Ashe and the thieves make a temporary alliance, but are captured by Archadian soldiers and Judge Ghis takes her into custody on the Dreadnought Leviathan, discovering she is indeed Dalmasca's princess. Vaan and his new companions—Basch, Fran and Balthier—eventually join her in captivity aboard the Leviathan. When they are brought to the bridge Ashe slaps Basch, outraged the man believed to have killed her father is still alive. Ghis plans to execute Ashe as an "impostor" since, without the heirlooms Dynast-King's heirlooms, she has no means to prove her lineage. When Vaan reveals he holds the Dusk Shard he had looted from the palace earlier—a piece of deifacted nethicite the Dynast-King once wielded—it reacts to Ashe's presence. Ghis claims it, again removing the means for Ashe to prove her identity.
Vossler and the Resistance have infiltrated the Leviathan with Ondore's help, and Ashe and Vaan's parties are set free. During their escape they run into Vaan's friend Penelo and Vayne's younger brother Larsa Ferrinas Solidor who extends an offer of allegiance to the Princess despite being a member of the Archadian Empire's ruling family. Ashe accepts his offer before Balthier pilots them on a stolen carrier ship out to safety. Ashe reaffirms her determination to free Dalmasca, and returns to the Skycity of Bhujerba to speak with Ondore.
Ondore tells Ashe it is impossible for Bhujerba to openly join Dalmasca in resistance without proof that Ashe is queen. Ashe attempts to commandeer Balthier's airship, the Strahl, to seek out another of Raithwall's treasures, the Dawn Shard, but he catches her in the act. Ashe implores Balthier to "kidnap" her and take her to the Tomb of Raithwall, promising him the treasure of the Dynast-King's tomb in return for passage.
Ashe, Balthier, Fran, Basch, Penelo and Vaan cross Jagd Yensa on foot. Vossler rejoins the party, having escaped the Leviathan. He questions the loyalty of sky pirates, but Ashe defends Balthier and Fran. At Raithwall's Tomb, they fight the Esper Belias and Ashe reveals to Balthier the Esper is Raithwall's treasure, much to his disappointment. In the manga version, Vossler, Basch, Fran and Balthier fight the Esper while Ashe, Vaan and Penelo go for the Dawn Shard. Vaan wants them to help the others, but Ashe claims Dawn Shard takes priority and that Basch and Vossler would die to see Dalmasca restored. Vaan is dissatisfied and leaves Ashe to get the Dawn Shard for herself, but she returns and protects Vaan from Belias's attack, and the party defeats the Esper together.
In the treasure chamber, they find the Dawn Shard and an apparition of Ashe's late husband, Lord Rasler, halts her path. No one else can see the figure except for Vaan, who thinks it resembled his late brother, Reks. Ashe vows to avenge Rasler's unjust death. As the party exits the tomb, they are ambushed by the Archadian Empire and imprisoned on the Leviathan.
Vossler is working with the Empire to restore peace to Dalmasca, and the party is transferred to the Shiva, where Ghis tests the newly retrieved Dawn Shard by placing it in the ship's engine. The Dawn Shard exudes Mist, and the engine overheats. Fran, being a viera, is sensitive to its effects, and her Mist-induced frenzy frees the party. Vossler refuses to let them leave, forcing Ashe to fight her old ally. He is wounded in the melee and asks Basch to protect Ashe in his stead, explaining everything he did, he did for Dalmasca. Ashe and the party flee the Shiva before it explodes, leaving Vossler behind. The Dawn Shard's Mist explosion destroys the entire fleet, but the party spots it hovering at the explosion's center and turns back to recover it.
In the manga version, Vossler hands the Dawn Shard to Ghis on the Leviathan and reveals Vayne has agreed to restore Dalmasca with Ashe as ruler in exchange for the shard. Ghis has the shard tested while Vossler takes the party to their quarters. He tries to explain himself to Ashe, but she refuses to listen. Fran goes berserk from the Mist spewed by the Dawn Shard, and the group incapacitates their guards. Basch and Vossler duel as the party flees to the airship bay. When a group of Imperial gunners halts them, Ashe summons Belias, entering a trance-like rage. Basch bests Vossler, who entrusts Ashe's protection to him, claiming she's currently too weak to hold the throne, and Basch must aid her in her mission. The Dawn Shard's reaction causes a chain of system failures throughout the airship. Ashe awakens from her trance and sees her arm where Belias's glyph appeared has grown bulbous and deformed. She dismisses Belias, causing her arm to be cut to a stump below the elbow. The airship explodes as Ashe and her friends flee in an airship back to Dalmasca. The ending narrates that Dalmasca has taken the first step on its road to revival. Because the manga was cancelled, this serves as the ending to the adaptation.
While Ashe may wish to wreak revenge on Archadia using the Dawn Shard now that she has witnessed its power, she doesn't know how to use it. Fran suggests they head to Jahara, land of the garif, to learn how to wield the nethicite. Ashe implores Balthier and Fran to accompany her and Balthier agrees if she gives him a ring of hers as a down payment. Ashe is reluctant to hand over Rasler's wedding ring, but does so knowing it is her duty to reclaim her throne.
In Jahara, the garif tell Ashe they do not know how to use the stone, and that it lost its power in the explosion, making it useless as a weapon. Vaan reveals to Ashe that he, too, can see Lord Rasler's ghost, though he thinks it looks like his brother. Ashe meets with Lord Larsa, who has followed her out to Jahara, to discuss meeting a political ally in Mt Bur-Omisace, and Larsa temporarily joins the party on their passage. Before leaving, Basch questions Balthier's intentions, fearing for Ashe's safety.
On their journey across the Ozmone Plain, Basch and Ashe discuss the possibility of a truce between the Empire and Dalmasca. While Basch supports the idea, Ashe remains uncertain. At Bur-Omisace they meet with Al-Cid Margrace of Rozarria who wishes to see Ashe ally with the Empire, and she may have no alternative if she does not want to see Dalmasca destroyed in a war between empires. When news arrives of Emperor Gramis having been murdered, this possibility disappears; Vayne, the new Emperor, would never allow Ashe to reclaim the throne.
Ashe's goal becomes to destroy the Empire's nethicite with the Sword of Kings to rid them of their strongest asset. Claiming the Sword of Kings, another of the Dynast-King's artefacts, from the Stilshrine of Miriam, Vaan asks Ashe to test its power on the dormant Dawn Shard, but as she tries Lord Rasler's apparition shaking his head stays her hand. When she later asks Vaan about it, he says he didn't see it. Refusing to travel to Rozarria with Al-Cid to talk the Empire out of war, Ashe intends to head to the Draklor Laboratories in Archades and confront Doctor Cid, the empire's leading nethicite researcher. On the way, the party stops in the Phon Coast Hunters' Camp, where Balthier questions Ashe's intentions with the nethicite, comparing her drive to that of his father's, Doctor Cid. He implores Ashe to not allow the stone's power to consume her.
The party reaches the Draklor Laboratories and apprehends Doctor Cid, but he escapes with the Empire's nethicite, saying he is headed for the ancient city of Giruvegan. The party ventures to the Balfonheim Port with the sky pirate Reddas, who they met at Draklor and who is on a quest similar to theirs. At Reddas's mansion, they discuss the current political situation and the possibility of the Resistance going to war against the Empire. Reddas has spoken to the Marquis concerning the situation, but hesitates challenging Vayne, who still wields the nethicite. As long as it is Doctor Cid who holds the nethicite and not Vayne, the party sees they have a chance of deterring the war. The party decides to follow Doctor Cid to Giruvegan while Reddas stays in Balfonheim, asking Ashe to remember the devastation of Nabudis before making her decision to use the nethicite she plans to reclaim.
In Giruvegan, the party discovers Dr. Cid tricked them and never went there, and instead meets with the Occuria, the beings who manipulate world events and steer history to their desired direction by granting certain individuals powerful shards of nethicite. The Occuria have chosen Ashe as the new Dynast-King and grant her the Treaty-Blade to cut a new shard of nethicite from the Sun-Cryst. They task her with destroying Venat, the rogue Occurian responsible for teaching Doctor Cid how to manufacture man-made nethicite, and in turn, the Archadian Empire.
Now accompanied by Reddas, Ashe and the party travel to the Pharos. Ashe is torn with indecision: whether to destroy the Cryst and rid the world of nethicite, or to carve out a new piece to take revenge on the Archadian Empire as the Occuria wish her to. Atop the Pharos, Gabranth ambushes them and tells Ashe she should wield the Treaty-Blade and avenge her father's murder, which the Judge Magister admits to being responsible for.
Ashe attempts to use the sword to defeat him, but Rasler's apparition comes to stop her. Ashe realizes her visions of him have been an Occurian illusion to keep her fixed upon their determined path. Ashe refuses to be an Occurian puppet as taking revenge isn't what her late husband would have wanted. The party defeats both Gabranth and Doctor Cid, but Cid's plan has been realized: after reintegrating the shards of deifacted nethicite to the Sun-Cryst, the effusing Mist has roused the Sky Fortress Bahamut, the Empire's new warship. Ashe attempts to destroy the Sun-Cryst with the Sword of Kings, but it is too volatile, so Reddas takes the sword from her and sacrifices his life to destroy the Cryst while she and the others escape.
As the Resistance fleet engages the Sky Fortress Bahamut and the 12th Fleet in the Battle above Rabanastre, Ashe and the party infiltrate the Bahamut. Although Ashe and Vayne's goals—to determine their own history without Occurian interference—are near identical, Vayne is still set on war. Gabranth joins their cause after seeing Vayne is willing to harm Larsa to have his way, but is mortally wounded. Vayne merges with Venat to become The Undying, but is defeated.
Returning to the Strahl, the group contacts both sides. Impersonating his brother, Basch orders the Archadian forces to cease fire. Larsa, now Emperor, declares the Imperial fleet to be under his command. Ashe declares the war over and Dalmasca finally free. When Balthier contacts the group from the descending Bahamut, Ashe pleads with him to escape, but Balthier fixes the Bahamut's glossair rings in time, saving Rabanastre, and the Sky Fortress crash-lands outside the city.
A year later Ashe is to be crowned Queen of Dalmasca, and her duties force her to distance herself from her former companions. Penelo believes Ashe misses Basch and, in a letter to Larsa, expresses a wish he would someday return to serve her. Balthier returns Ashe's ring, which he encloses with the message he leaves for Vaan and Penelo after reclaiming the Strahl, implying that he has found a more valuable treasure.
Ashe arrives to Vaan and the others' aid with Basch and Larsa beside her in the new Dreadnought Leviathan, which is now under her royal fleet. She no longer fears the Empire and sees it as a "thing of the past". After the auraliths have been destroyed, the aegyl regain their anima and, filled with anger, attack Ivalice, which prompts Ashe to join her former comrades to defend against the new threat.
In Final Fantasy XII Ashe is both as a support character (as Amalia) and a playable character. She has among the highest MP and Magick Power growth, with average Speed and Vitality, though her HP is low. Her Strength is average in the original release but high in Zodiac Job System releases. Her overall Strength and Magick Power make her useful in both magic oriented and physical oriented jobs and abilities, and make her ideal for equipping weapons reliant on Magick Power and Strength stats. She has the most initial licenses available, which provide her early licenses in armor, swords and White Magicks.
In Final Fantasy XII: Revenant Wings Ashe is a Time Mage and equips hand-bombs as weapons, coats as armor and necklaces as accessories. She has several Time Magicks for skills both offensive and supportive. Her Quickening, Empyrean's Edict, stops the enemy team from summoning Yarhi for a set amount of time. It can be obtained by defeating the Esper Famfrit.
Creation and development Edit
According to two Famitsu interviews, Ashe's face was based on that of the French actress Sylvie Testud with her features altered to look more Japanese.
In the English release of Final Fantasy XII, Ashe is voiced by Kari Wahlgren, the same actress who voiced Shelke the Transparent in Dirge of Cerberus -Final Fantasy VII- and Ovelia Atkascha in Final Fantasy Tactics: The War of the Lions. She is voiced by Mie Sonozaki in Japanese release, who has also voiced Jihl Nabaat in Final Fantasy XIII.
Ashe, along with Basch and Balthier, speaks in formalized English in contrast to Vaan and Penelo's more casual style. In Japanese, Balthier, Ashe and Basch use an older, more formal style of Japanese than Vaan and Penelo. Wahlgren was not someone the casting director Jack Fletcher was looking for, but when she was discovered, Fletcher thought she was perfect.
Musical themes Edit
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"Ashe's Theme" (アーシェのテーマ, Āshe no Tēma?) is a piece mainly driven by a dark brass melody, stringed and percussion accompaniment. It draws from many motifs heard throughout the soundtrack. Unlike most character themes it is not played during Ashe's central scenes, rather, it is heard at the gates of Giruvegan, and in the Penumbra of the Subterra.
A piano arrangement of the theme is included on the Piano Collections: Final Fantasy XII album.
Other appearances Edit
- Fortress as a major character (cancelled).
- Dissidia Final Fantasy Opera Omnia as a playable character.
- Theatrhythm Final Fantasy as a playable character.
- Theatrhythm Final Fantasy Curtain Call as a playable character.
- Pictlogica Final Fantasy as a playable character.
- Final Fantasy Airborne Brigade as a summonable Legend.
- Final Fantasy Artniks as a series of cards.
- Final Fantasy All the Bravest as a playable character.
- Final Fantasy Record Keeper as a playable character.
- Final Fantasy World Wide Words.
- Final Fantasy Trading Card Game as a series of cards.
- Final Fantasy Brave Exvius.
Non-Final Fantasy guest appearances Edit
- Itadaki Street series as a playable character.
Other media Edit
Users in Square Enix Members Virtual World community can make their character appear as Ashe. Ashe's hair costs 100 crystals and her clothes cost 480 crystals.
Ashe's Play Arts action figure was released in 2007 in Japan and includes an extra pair of open hands, the Treaty-Blade, and a display stand. Ashe's ring has been also released as merchandise, made of sterling silver. Ashe appears on the cover of the first issue of the Final Fantasy XII manga.
Ashe's alias is Amalia.Amalia is a Latin name meaning "hardworking". The unisex name 'Ash' is an English name meaning "from the ash tree".
- In Final Fantasy XII, having the level of all six main characters average to level 50 will add Ashe in the Sky Pirate's Den and grants the player the title "Exemplar".
- Ashe is the only playable character in Final Fantasy XII whose menu portrait is not taken from her official render. Instead, her portrait is derived from this image.
- Ashe's promotional poster depicts her wielding the Hero's Blade, a weapon dummied out of the game. The sword's model and associated stats for it as an equippable weapon can still be found in the game, and it appears in the game's introductory cutscene where Raminas gives the blade to Rasler at a ceremony.
- Ashe asking Balthier to kidnap her resembles Final Fantasy IX, when Princess Garnet asks Zidane Tribal to kidnap her to Lindblum.
- Ashe's CG model was used in the production of Final Fantasy XIII to stand in for characters who hadn't been finished yet.
- A running gag throughout Final Fantasy XII is Ashe telling others not to interrupt her while she is talking. She dislikes the word "insurgents" and corrects others, saying that her group is called the "resistance".
- In the manga, the word used is "rebel-force" as said by Judge Ghis. Ashe corrects him by saying "liberation".