The Eight Dragons (伝説の八竜, Densetsu no Hachi Ryū?) are a series of bosses in Final Fantasy VI. They are legendary enemies released during the end of the world. Each one of them corresponds to one of the eight types of elemental damage in the game. Defeating them all breaks the seal they had placed on the Esper Crusader a thousand years ago, giving Crusader's Magicite to the party. The Eight Dragons are collectively optional bosses and can be killed in any order the player chooses.
The Eight Dragons are:
- Red Dragon is the dragon of fire. It is located in the Phoenix Cave.
- Ice Dragon is the dragon of ice. It is located on the snowfields above Narshe.
- Gold Dragon is the dragon of lightning. It is located in Kefka's Tower.
- Skull Dragon is the dragon of poison. It is located in Kefka's Tower.
- Storm Dragon is the dragon of wind. It is located in Mt. Zozo.
- Holy Dragon is the dragon of holy. It is located in the Cultists' Tower.
- Earth Dragon is the dragon of earth. It is located in the Opera House.
- Blue Dragon is the dragon of water. It is located in the Ancient Castle.
Originally it had been planned that after defeating the final dragon, all eight would merge into a superboss, the Kaiser Dragon. This was scrapped, but data for the original Kaiser Dragon remains within the game.
In Final Fantasy VI Advance, once the Eight Dragons have been defeated the player gains access to the Dragons' Den, an optional new dungeon. There, improved versions of the dragons can be found, each using some sort of unique gimmick to make them more difficult to defeat. Defeating each dragon unlocks a seal in the cave, and once all the seals are broken, the player can fight the Superboss Kaiser Dragon in the deepest layer of the dungeon. Defeating Kaiser Dragon earns the player the ultimate magicite, Diabolos.
- Of the Eight Dragons, the Holy Dragon is the only one to appear on the Veldt and have a Rage associated with it.
- Hacking the original Super NES version of Final Fantasy VI will reveal that rematches with the dragons as what occurred in the Advance release were planned for the Super NES release. Unused pieces of battle dialogue exist in which the Eight Dragons call each other into battle in sequence. Text also exists that say "Storm Drgn undergoing changes!", "Dirt Dragon got mad!", and "Skull Dragon lives on magic pwr!" These indicate the dragons may have had gimmicks as they got in the Advance release, where Storm Dragon has improved speed and evasion, Earth Dragon is "enraged" and has higher attack power, and Skull Dragon can only be killed by draining its MP. The dummied enemy CzarDragon also appears, and appears to be a sort of prototype Kaiser Dragon, as Kaiser's sprite is a more elaborate modification of the CzarDragon's.
- Final Fantasy XII pays homage to the Eight Dragons with the Earth Tyrant boss, which looks similar to the Earth Dragon in Final Fantasy VI. Earth Tyrant's bestiary entry mentions him as a member of "Eight legendary Wyrms of great Power".