FFTSamurai Iado

A Samurai using Purifying Breeze, an Iaido ability.

Samurai job command. Unleashes the mystical powers contained within katana.

Iaido (引き出す, Hikidasu?), also known as Draw Out, is an action ability from Final Fantasy Tactics. It is used by the Samurai.

Iaido gives the Samurai access to several skills, each named after one of the katana. To use the skill, the Samurai must have not only learned it, but have a copy of that katana in his inventory (not equipped). The Samurai invokes the spirit of the katana (without charge time), which generally deals damage to all enemies nearby, though one (the Murasame) heals allies instead, and a second (Kiyomori) bestows them with Protect and Shell. The downside of the skill is that, occasionally, the katana used from inventory may break. This can be especially bad for rare katana, such as the Masamune. Iaido skills calculate damage using the character's Magick Power value, making this skill a decent second choice for most magick-based classes.

Marquis Elmdore uses a command ability called Sword Spirit, which has the exact same set of skills as Iaido, including the broken-sword drawback.

Iaido techniquesEdit

Each Iaido Technique is different from the rest. When Iaido are used, a special attack name is shown, one that is different from the katana's name. The Iaido hit rate is 100%.

The damage/healing formula for Iaido skills are as follows:

$ \text{Magick Attack} \times \text{PWR} $
Name Range Effect Speed JP Needed
(Asura Knife)
1 3 Now 100
Spirit Blade. A technique that releases the spirit in the user's katana, causing an unseen specter-sword to slash at the target.
Quote: "Legendary sword that kills freely! Asura!"
1 3 Now 180/200
Binding Darkness. A technique that releases the spirit in the user's katana, loosing a wave of howling dark spirits.
Quote: "Evil souls of the dark, gather here... Koutetsu!"
(Bizen Boat)
1 3 Now 260/300
Verse of Oblivion. A technique that releases the spirit in the user's katana, sending the whispering dead to feed on the target's MP.
Quote: "Nihilistic sky, inhale magic power... Bizen Boat!"
Murasame 1 3 Now 340/400
Rain of Wisdom. A technique that releases the spirit in the user's katana, raining tears of an enlightened soul to restore HP.
Quote: "No more loss of precious life... Murasame!"
(Heaven's Cloud)
1 3 Now 420/500
Cloudsea Curse. A technique that releases the spirit in the user's katana, releasing a phantom of pure mist to attack the target.
Effect: Slow.
Quote: "Yagumo rising, all who know god! Heaven's Cloud!"
Kiyomori 1 3 Now 500/600
Purifying Breeze. A technique that releases the spirit in the user's katana, bestowing the protection of its effervescent life force.
Effect: Protect, Shell.
Quote: "Innocent sword, slash evils and protect! Kiyomori!".
Muramasa 1 3 Now 580/700
Doomed Aspirations. A technique that releases the spirit in the user's katana. Only a living soul will quell its tumult.
Effect: Confuse, Doom.
Quote: "Summon all ghosts of the sword! Attack! Muramasa!"
4 8 Now 660/800
Sanguine Blossom. A technique that releases the spirit in the user's katana, wreaking havoc with its all-consuming hatred.
Quote: "Brave weapon, turn to a deadly blaze! Kikuichimoji!"
Masamune 1 3 Now 740/900
Ethereal Embrace. A technique that releases the spirit in the user's katana, bestowing physical healing and increased speed.
Effect: Regen, Haste.
Quote: "Sword of fury, inject power! Masamune!"
Chirijiraden 1 3 Now 820/1000
Raging Inferno. A technique that releases the spirit in the user's katana, which pursues the living as a band of blue flame.
Quote: "Flame-eating sword, swipe away the evils! Chirijiraden!"


Etymology and symbolismEdit

Iaido is a Japanese martial art associated with the smooth, controlled movements of drawing the sword from its scabbard, striking or cutting an opponent, removing blood from the blade, and then replacing the sword in the scabbard.

Its incarnation as the ability to literally draw out the spirit of the sword, refers to several legends and lore within samurai culture and the Japanese swordmaking community. A quality blade is said to be made with the full spirit and focus of its maker, transferred through each process of its creation, and in turn, its ideal wielder is one that matches the spirit of that individual blade made.

Within the context of Final Fantasy Tactics, what every soul of the katana can do has a historic and/or legendary basis:

  • Kotetsu's Binding Darkness would seem more relevant to that of Muramasa, however, a lesser known tale sheds light on Kotetsu's ill-mannered temper. A commissioning samurai complained of Kotetsu's sword in forge not looking strong enough. Kotetsu slashed down his customer to prove him wrong and was forced to run off to another province to avoid arrest. Kotetsu was also once an armorer, and had used his knowledge to allow his blades to hew and cleave through armor.
  • Osafune refers to the legacy of Mitsutada and his family line of smiths of the Bizen school, in which they pioneered the second steps of revolutionizing the katana. Because of his fame for his and family's strong swords, Osafune cemented Bizen as one of the Five Major Schools of the Koto Era of Katana, and drew the most aspiring smiths to their tutelage. Their fame grew during the days of the civil wars of the Genji and the Taira, and though the name of Osafune lived on, their first era of decline would happen around the days of the Sengoku, where the focus on artistic and quality would have to take a backseat to mass demand and quantity.
  • The name of Kiyomori refers rather not to the name of a smith, but to that of its wielder; Taira no Kiyomori's sword was said to have been a katana that went by the name of Nuke-maru, and was created by the son of Amakuni Yasutsuna, Ohana Sanemori. Nuke-maru was said to be a sword made for the purpose of protection to Emperor Saga of the Heian Era, which is why it bestows defensive magicks.
  • Muramasa is infamous for being swords feared for their violent and bloodthirsty nature; it was said that Sengo Muramasa was a mad genius whose direction was focused on practicality and lethality, but whose behavior was crazed and unstable, as he broke swords that did not live up to his expectations. Reinforced by how his swords were made in Japan's most violent eras of civil war, and were haunting the Tokugawa family due to a personal grudge in the years after, it is often alluded that his swords were representative of warriors driven by a lust for carnage and unstable in spirit with an obsession for killing.
  • Kikuichimonji refers to the legendary collaboration launched by Emperor Gotoba and thirteen of the best smiths of Japan of his time. It is said that because of this event, such works helped further pave the way to the Golden Age of Koto katana. The Kikuichimonji are often praised for their beauty and refinement that established the third steps of revolutionizing the katana, but such a collaboration came to a halt when the aftermath of the Genpei Wars saw Emperor Gotoba exiled to the islands of Oki, and forced to never again come in contact with his fellow artists.
  • Masamune is the most celebrated of the smiths of katana, famous as the paragon of the Golden Age of Koto katana for his methods of a strong body forge and further establishing the creation of katana as a craft of art by melding the aesthetics signs of strong katana with those of beauty. Praised throughout the years by both nobility and the populace for their pinnacle qualities, his blades would further gain renown by the Tokugawas as weapons antithesis to Muramasa, being hallowed and pure, and hence touted as blades representative of discerning benevolent warriors and defenders of the peace.
  • Chirijiraden refers to blades made specifically for the nobility. The name refers to the fittings that decorate the handle and the scabbards. Only the best artisans were allowed to work with the most luxurious of materials reserved for the highest castes. To attain the highest ranks of society meant being born into such lofty ranks, or when times of social upheaval made themselves known, to fight one's way to the top. As the weapon bears blades of any maker, and of only the best make themselves to their owner, the Chirijiraden represents the soul of the samurai in its core: an indomitable spirit and one of their utmost efforts with their entire being.