- “The Maker created fal'Cie. And fal'Cie, in desperation to become reunited with the Maker, created l'Cie.”
The fal'Cie (ファルシ, Farushi?) [fæl'siː] are supernatural beings in Final Fantasy XIII, Final Fantasy XIII-2 and Lightning Returns: Final Fantasy XIII, ageless immortals responsible for the creation and maintenance of the land where humans dwell, and indirectly govern their lives.
In the Famitsu magazine in June 2009, the fal'Cie were revealed to be formed from the crystals residing inside of them, acting as their energy sources. The director of the game, Motomu Toriyama, described the fal'Cie as "god machines surrounding the crystals". In the interview with the Official PlayStation Magazine in August 2009, producer Yoshinori Kitase revealed there are various types of fal'Cie, their actual number being incalculable, although only a handful appear in Final Fantasy XIII.
- See also: Datalog/History and Myth
Fal'Cie are an existence beyond human comprehension, possessed of incredible magic power. The ones responsible for Cocoon's construction are protectors of humanity, but there are others of their kind as well: the fal'Cie who dwell on Pulse and name themselves enemies of Cocoon.
Humans who encounter Pulse fal'Cie are cursed by being turned to l'Cie and ordered to destroy Cocoon. It is for this reason that most ordinary citizens support the Purge—anyone who may have come into contact with one of these fal'Cie represents a dire threat.
- See also: Datalog/Cocoon Society
The Sanctum fal'Cie are the unfathomable entities that constructed the floating shell of Cocoon in ages past, and even now watch over the world's human inhabitants. Each is assigned a specific task that supports the existence of Cocoon's grateful populace, such as generating energy or manufacturing food. The fal'Cie rarely intervene directly in the governing of society, leaving that responsibility to appointed human representatives.
One theory states that, including the lower hierarchy, the total number of Sanctum fal'Cie exceeds eight million.
In the official mythology the fal'Cie are said to be of divine origin. The god Bhunivelze, in his attempt to reach the world of the dead, created Pulse, Lindzei, and Etro. The mythology calls these three fal'Cie, but in the world of Final Fantasy XIII the humankind calls Pulse, Lindzei, and Etro gods and goddesses. After creating the three, Bhunivelze turned into a crystal and entered eternal sleep.
Pulse and Lindzei were given powers to create and, according to the mythology, created many fal'Cie of their own: the Pulse fal'Cie and the fal'Cie that would create Cocoon. Etro, on the other hand, was discarded, and in an act of self-loathing tore up her body and disappeared from the Visible World. Lindzei crafted humankind from Etro's body's remains and in time, humanity came to treat the fal'Cie as gods because of the variety of their actions: The Pulse fal'Cie terraforming the land while the Cocoon fal'Cie offer to improve humans' lives.
Pulse and Lindzei have the power to brand people chosen by their fal'Cie with the power of the crystals to make them fulfill special missions called Focus for them. These people, called the l'Cie, can be identified by a brand somewhere on their bodies. The appearance of the brand depends on the creator of the fal'Cie that chooses the l'Cie. The Pulse brands are an overlapping sequence of black arrows, while the Cocoon brands are the crest of Lindzei.
Pulse and Lindzei eventually left the world, leaving their fal'Cie orphaned. As a result, the Lindzei fal'Cie seek to summon back their Maker by isolating most of humanity into the artificial world of Cocoon, ruling it through the Sanctum while demonizing the Pulse fal'Cie who are still preoccupied with their directives. The Cocoon fal'Cie's use of propaganda incites a war between those who embrace the crafted paradise and those who remain on Gran Pulse to force a Pulse l'Cie to become Ragnarok and destroy Cocoon, with the resulting death count of millions forcing Etro's Gate to open, calling their creator back to the world.
While the first attempt during the War of Transgression failed, due to Etro's divine intervention, the second almost succeeds in 0 AF at the cost of both Barthandelus, the leader of the Cocoon fal'Cie, and Cocoon's power source, Orphan. Vanille and Fang sacrifice themselves to delay Cocoon's fall, which finally takes place in 500 AF, during Final Fantasy XIII-2. With Orphan's death, Eden and the other Cocoon fal'Cie go dormant and no longer sustain Cocoon.
Even after the Catastrophe, many residents remain on Cocoon, and some push for the fal'Cie to be restored. Hope Estheim and the Academy create a man-made fal'Cie Adam, but when Hope learns from the Oracle Drive that Adam becomes sentient and repeats the actions of the Cocoon fal'Cie to rule Cocoon, he scraps the idea to sustain Cocoon with fal'Cie. Despite the fal'Cie on Cocoon having become dormant, the Pulse fal'Cie keep on with their activities, apathetic toward mankind's reintroduction into Gran Pulse.
The fal'Cie continue to exist in the world of Nova Chrysalia in Lightning Returns: Final Fantasy XIII, sustaining the decaying world through its final days. To this end, one branded Snow Villiers to become their protector.
These fal'Cie were created by to maintain and protect Cocoon, which they used to tempt humans into residing on. Despite being relied on by the people, the Cocoon fal'Cie are unsympathetic toward them and view them as tools to suit their needs as sacrifices. Furthermore, due to their inability to go against their mandate to preserve Cocoon, the Cocoon fal'Cie also manipulate the Pulse l'Cie to destroy Cocoon for them. After Orphan's death and the Catastrophe, the Cocoon fal'Cie became dormant while Cocoon deteriorates until it is finally destroyed in 500 AF.
- Orphan: Representing sunlight and in an unborn state, this is the fal'Cie powering not only Cocoon but all other Cocoon fal'Cie. Ultimately, it is Orphan's birth and death the other Cocoon fal'Cie are striving to achieve their goal.
- Eden: The fal'Cie responsible for monitoring all functions of Cocoon, whom Cocoon's capital is named after. Siphoning its power from Orphan, Eden communicates with a Sanctum representative and was believed to be the authority in Cocoon.
- Phoenix: The fal'Cie in charge of Cocoon's weather, shining like a sun in the middle of Cocoon while oversees numerous fal'Cie who manage the wind and rain.
- Carbuncle: Responsible for the production of food in Cocoon.
- Kujata: Provides Cocoon with power, it is based at the Euride Gorge and is the fal'Cie who made Dajh Katzroy into a l'Cie.
- Barthandelus: The Cocoon fal'Cie's leader who masterminds the events of Final Fantasy XIII in the guise of Galenth Dysley to ensure his kind's reunion with their Maker through Cocoon's destruction. Barthandelus is the fal'Cie who turned Cid Raines into a l'Cie.
- Menrva: Barthandelus's familiar and a living construct holding his power while he is in human form.
- Palamecia: The fal'Cie modified by the Sanctum to serve as PSICOM's airship.
- Leviathan: Provides Cocoon with purified water.
- Siren: It is unknown what this fal'Cie's function is, but it is located in a shrine in Bodhum and is briefly seen during a cutscene between Snow and Serah. It appears as a humanoid figure holding a wing-shaped harp. Although not named in-game, the Final Fantasy XIII Ultimania Omega guide identifies it as Siren.
- Protera: lifts and moves the Pulse Vestige from Bodhum. Its appearance is detailed in the Final Fantasy XIII Ultimania Omega where it is described as a "Shield fal'Cie".
While some Pulse fal'Cie search for Etro's Gate through terraforming and observation, some become revered as patron deities in Gran Pulse villages, such as Anima of Oerba and the nameless fal'Cie of Paddra who has became inactive for unknown reasons, despite still being able to enact its purpose to protect images from the Oracle Drive. Unlike their Cocoon-based brethren, Pulse fal'Cie are mostly indifferent to human presence yet still brand them when the need arises. Most of Pulse fal'Cie are still active prior to the Catastrophe and after it, some either being destroyed or in an inactive state. Even during the events of Lightning Returns: Final Fantasy XIII, one Pulse fal'Cie still exists, taking up residence in Yusnaan and enlisting Snow as its servant.
- Anima: Originally located in Oerba, it turned Vanille and Fang into l'Cie prior to being transferred to Cocoon where it entered a hibernated state. By the events of Final Fantasy XIII, Anima is reactivated as it turns Serah, Lightning, Snow, Hope, and Sazh into l'Cie.
- Atomos: A spherical fal'Cie who digs underground passages in Mah'habara Subterra before the events of Lightning Returns: Final Fantasy XIII where it remains immobilized within the Dead Dunes.
- Bismarck: Responsible for protecting the Sulyya Springs. Anyone who tries to trespass into the waters is eliminated.
- Titan: Forces an artificial selection process to produce more powerful species on Pulse.
- Dahaka: Based at Taejin's Tower, Dahaka roams about Gran Pulse in search for Etro's Gate from the sky before Lightning's group enters its domain.
- Fenrir: The largest of the Pulse fal'Cie, it causes century long eclipses whenever active in search for Etro's Gate. During Final Fantasy XIII-2, a paradox occurring at Oerba in 200 AF makes Fenrir active early in the year 10 AF, and the eclipse only affects the Yaschas Massif region.
- Cactuar: The fal'Cie responsible for Snow's second brand in Final Fantasy XIII-2. Along with Snow, Cactuar spends some time in the Sunleth Waterscape fighting the Royal Ripeness.
- Main article: Adam
In Final Fantasy XIII-2, to save Cocoon from its predestined collapse, the Academy devises the Proto fal'Cie Project in 13 AF to re-levitate the structure. The Proto fal'Cie, known as Adam, is a paradox within itself by traveling through time to the Augusta Tower to program the AI to slaughter everyone and cover up the deaths with holograms and kill anyone who learns the truth while ensuring its creation. By 400 AF Adam repeats the actions of the Cocoon fal'Cie and rules over humans using the Academy's resources.
When Noel and Serah arrive to its time, Adam recognizes them from its past and their future, using a Caius hologram and Cie'th to kill them. When the two arrive to Augusta Tower 200 AF to uncover the truth, they fight Adam in an endless battle due to the Proto fal'Cie using Augusta Tower's time travel chamber to negate its demise and become stronger. In a gambit, Serah's fight with Adam is among the Oracle Drive's archive and Hope cancels the project upon seeing it.
Six other fal'Cie were designed during development, but were scrapped:
- Nemesis: Appears as a purple-hued Anima. Nemesis would have been a dungeon guardian that fought along with its swords. This concept was later used for the Proto fal'Cie Adam in Final Fantasy XIII-2.
- Ramuh: A Pulse fal'Cie towering over the landscape, portrayed as an old man smoking a pipe.
- Gilgamesh: Wields swords of various sizes that dwarf large buildings.
- Squid fal'Cie: Planned to dwell in the Sulyya Springs.
The fal'Cie are a central part of the story in the Fabula Nova Crystallis series and also appear in Final Fantasy XV.
While this has not been directly confirmed by the developers, concept art reveals fal'Cie to appear in the game. The Goddess Etro was speculated to be one of them, although in Final Fantasy XV the fal'Cie and the gods/goddesses are not the same thing.
In Final Fantasy Type-0, the Milites Empire's army consists of l'Cie, with the other countries of Rubrum and Lorican having turned a portion of their members into l'Cie as well. Though no actual fal'Cie appear, Arecia Al-Rashia is hinted as a servant of Pulse while the Lulusathian serves Lindzei, and both display fal'Cie type powers in creating the four crystals that brand l'Cie and stabilize the country while working to locate Etro's Gate for their respective creators.
"Fal'Cie" is an anagram of ciel (French word for sky, from the Latin caelum), and "fa" in this context is derived from the Latin famulus, meaning "servant". When combined, the new name (famulus caelum) may translate to "Sky's Servant".
It is also possible that "fal'Cie" is a play on the word "fallacy", from the Latin fallācia, meaning "a deceptive, misleading, or false notion, belief, etc".
Apart from Barthandelus, Dahaka, Orphan, Menrva, Palamecia, Protera and Adam, each of the fal'Cie are named after summons from previous Final Fantasy games. Dahaka's Japanese name has been used on multiple occasions for common enemies, as has Barthandelus's. In retrospect, Adam and Eden are names from the Book of Genesis.
- The datalog entry mentions "the total number of Sanctum fal'Cie exceeds eight million". This most likely means "countless" instead of literally "eight million" because the number eight often signifies large quantities in Japanese culture. In addition, Yoshinori Kitase has said in an interview the number of fal'Cie is "incalculable".
- In Dissidia 012 Final Fantasy, there is a battlegen in Orphan's Cradle called Fal'Cie Husk.
- When first seen in Academia at 400 AF, Adam has the same appearance as the Pulse Vestige that contained Anima in Final Fantasy XIII.