- "The dream is the only hint the fal'Cie gives us. Figuring out what to do with it - that's our job."
- —Oerba Dia Vanille
Each l'Cie is given a Focus, which presents itself as a vision concerning a direct or vague objective. If he or she fails to complete it before his or her brand advances to its final stage, the l'Cie will turn into a monster known as a Cie'th. According to legend, when l'Cie fulfill their Focus, they gain eternal life; however, in reality, any l'Cie who successfully complete their Focus are turned into crystal.
Foci are given to the l'Cie through visions the l'Cie must interpret to know what the mission requires them to accomplish - in some cases, the missions can be straightforward and involve killing a specified creature at a given location; in others, the l'Cie are given little or no information, and have to discover their Focus on their own.
Foci generally lead to two outcomes: transformation into a Cie'th, or crystallization, leading most Cocoon citizens to consider l'Cie branding a curse. Some missions suggest certain l'Cie are promised additional rewards for completing a Focus, such as having a loved one returned to human form from that of a crystal or Cie'th; whether these rewards were ever actually delivered to successful l'Cie is unknown.
While a l'Cie is generally thought of as having a single specific Focus, it is possible for l'Cie to be created without any Focus; in this case, the l'Cie are instantly transformed into Cie'th.
In an interesting twist, fal'Cie were created by the gods for a specific purpose, which can be thought of as a "Focus". L'Cie exist as a loophole to this pseudo-Focus, and allow fal'Cie to complete objectives for which they weren't originally created.
At the Pulse Vestige, Serah transforms into crystal despite not having completed the Focus given to her. The same happens to Cid Raines later on. Barthandelus lies to the party about Serah's Focus, perhaps to conceal the fact Serah turned into crystal without having actually completed hers.
While confronting Barthandelus in Orphan's Cradle, the main party, save Fang and Vanille, are briefly transformed into Cie'th for not completing their Focus - destroying Cocoon. After reappearing, the party surmises it was an illusion conjured by Barthandelus.
After Snow Villiers left Serah in search of her lost sister, Lightning, he asked a Pulse fal'Cie (revealed to be Cactuar in Final Fantasy XIII-2 Fragments After) to turn him into a l'Cie. His Focus is to find Serah and fight beside her in "the fated battle".
L'Cie are given Focus by the Crystals, and along with it, eternal youth. L'Cie are not rushed into completing the Focus with the omen of being made Cie'th, but they don't have the blessing of memory to match their eternity and grow unstable and amnesic with age.
"Focus" (使命, Shimei?) is the eighteenth track on the fourth disc of Final Fantasy XIII: Original Soundtrack. It plays during the scene where the group's brands turn white before they fight Orphan in its true form. Its dominant instruments are drums.
|Fabula Nova Crystallis: Final Fantasy|
|Lightning Saga: Final Fantasy XIII - Final Fantasy XIII-2 - Lightning Returns: Final Fantasy XIII|
Others: Final Fantasy Type-0 - Final Fantasy Versus XIII
|Lightning Saga: Final Fantasy XIII Episode Zero -Promise- - Final Fantasy XIII -Episode i- - Final Fantasy XIII-2 Fragments Before - Final Fantasy XIII-2 Fragments After|
Type-0: Final Fantasy Type-0 The Icy Blade Of Death - Manga - Final Fantasy Type-0: Change the World -The Answer- - Final Fantasy Type-0: Change the World -The Penultimate Truth-
|Bhunivelze - Etro - Lindzei - Mwynn - Pulse|
|Chaos - Crystal - Crystal Stasis - Etro's Gate - fal'Cie - Focus - l'Cie - Unseen Realm|