The solitary, gentle-souled dragon knight whose heart lies with the dragons.
Kain Highwind is a playable character in Final Fantasy IV and Final Fantasy IV: The After Years. He is a Dragoon from the kingdom of Baron, Cecil Harvey's childhood friend and adoptive older brother. He also has feelings for Rosa Joanna Farrell, but he hides them so they do not hinder his relationship with either of the two: Rosa in turn has feelings for Cecil.
Kain wears full body armor colored dark purple or blue in most of his appearances. He wears a helmet the shape of a dragon's head that obscures most of his face and sharp spikes extend out of his armor on his shoulders, elbows and calves, to give it an even more draconian look. He has long blond hair, tied back in a ponytail in most appearances. His original Amano artwork and Dissidia 012 appearance seem to depict him with purple hair, but in Dissidia 012, it was revealed to be an attachment to his helmet, covering up his real hair.
In his appearance as "the Hooded Man" in-game in The After Years (which is his first in-game appearance without armor), Kain wears blue garments with a hooded purple cloak. His concept artwork and FMVs instead depict him with blue clothes and white boots with a white hood. His Dissidia 012 outfit as the Hooded Man is based on his concept art rather than his in-game sprites. After becoming a Holy Dragoon, Kain wears light blue and white armor, a winged hairpiece that reveals the whole of his face, and a blue cloak.
It would seem your life is spared... for now.
Forgive me, Rosa... not all I've done was because of Golbez's spell. I just wanted to... I just wanted to keep you by my side.
Kain is a calm, sometimes sarcastic young man, driven by his dream of following his father's footsteps of becoming a Dragoon and shunning the King's wish for Kain to follow Cecil's profession of a Dark Knight. He has been friends with Cecil and Rosa since they were young, but their relationship is strained by their rivalry as soldiers and their love for the same woman, although Kain hides his feelings.
Kain's personality changes when he is possessed by Golbez, becoming cold towards Cecil, though his love for Rosa still shows. Once freed from Golbez's control, Kain is forgiven by Cecil and vows to atone for his past actions, a promise that carries over into The After Years, as he tries to vanquish his dark side and helps Ceodore.
The commander of the Baron Dragoons. Like Cecil, Kain lost both parents at an early age and was subsequently raised by Baron's king. He has long been a friend and a rival to Cecil.
Kain was born in Baron to the Commander of the Dragoons, Ricard Highwind. His father was particularly active, but died suddenly one day while Kain was still young, sprouting rumors that he may have been assassinated. In The After Years, Kain recounts that he used to hate his father for how strict he was. Kain was raised with Cecil by the King of Baron.
Initially, Kain disliked Cecil, since the king treated Cecil more like a son than Kain himself. It was often Rosa who would stop the two from fighting. The three eventually became friends, and Kain became Cecil's rival and developed romantic feelings for Rosa, although she and Cecil were likewise enamored.
The king wanted Kain to become a Dark Knight like Cecil was, but Kain wished to follow in his father's footsteps down the path of the Dragoon in order to defend the castle. Kain cared for his father's dragon, who grew weak but still faithfully awaited his master's return. The Dragoons were on the verge of disbanding after Kain's father's death, but reformed when they saw the devotion of both the dragon and Kain. Kain was eventually appointed the Commander of the Dragoons. The fate of the dragon is unspecified, but it does not appear in any version of Final Fantasy IV.
I owe His Majesty much, but not so much I'd soil the Dragoons' name in his.
As Final Fantasy IV begins, Kain tries to defend Cecil after Cecil was discharged from the command of the Red Wings. Cecil is ordered to deliver a ring to the village of Mist, and slay the Eidolon Mist Dragon in the Misty Valley that blocks the way. Kain is ordered to accompany him. The next morning, Cecil and Kain depart for Mist. They pass through the Mist Cave and dispatch the Mist Dragon. When they arrive at the village, the ring they were supposed to deliver activates, and bombs are summoned to burn the village.
Cecil and Kain find a little girl and her dead mother, the Summoner who conjured the Mist Dragon who died when the Eidolon was slain. While Cecil and Kain discuss the fact that they must have defeated the Mist Dragon and thus accidentally killed her mother, the girl blames them for her death. Cecil and Kain offer to take her to safety after pledging not to follow any more orders from the king, but she does not listen. She summons Titan and causes an earthquake that sparks an avalanche, which separates Mist from the rest of the valley.
After this event, Kain's whereabouts are unknown. It is assumed, however, that he returned to Baron, where the mage Golbez was named new Lord Captain of the Red Wings. Kain is appointed Golbez's second-in-command, although it is unknown if he did this of his own will or if he was already manipulated. Either way, Kain eventually becomes subjected to Golbez's mind control. During an attack on Fabul to seize their Crystal, Kain betrays Cecil, knocking him down. However, before he can deliver the finishing blow, Rosa enters and Kain hesitates when she calls out to him. Golbez arrives and kidnaps Rosa, and Kain takes the Crystal, leaving Cecil alive.
Kain is assigned to guard Rosa in the Tower of Zot, a task he does faithfully in order to remain near Rosa and keep her safe from any harm one of Golbez's other minions would inflict upon her. He requests Golbez give him another chance to defeat Cecil, but Golbez refuses and sends one of his Archfiends instead—Scarmiglione. When the second Archfiend Cagnazzo, who was impersonating the King of Baron, is slain, Golbez has already stolen the airship fleet. As Golbez ponders retrieving the last Crystal, Kain suggests they exchange Rosa for it after having Cecil get it for them. Golbez agrees, and Kain delivers Cecil the ultimatum―deliver them the Earth Crystal, or Rosa perishes.
Cecil follows through on the deal and Kain takes him to the Tower of Zot. At the summit, Golbez decides not to exchange the Crystal for Rosa. As a result, Tellah attacks Golbez out of vengeance for his daughter Anna, and casts Meteor on him. This not only weakens Golbez, but also released Kain from Golbez's control. Kain rejoins Cecil's party, and accompanies him to rescue Rosa. He reveals his secret love for Rosa and apologizes. Rosa forgives him and invites him to fight alongside them, to which Kain agrees. However, Barbariccia, the Archfiend of Air and a seeming rival of Kain, attacks and has to be defeated before they can escape the tower. Rosa casts the Teleport spell and the party is warped to Cecil's room in Baron.
Cecil's party is worried, as Golbez now possesses all four Crystals. However, Kain speaks of the Dark Crystals hidden in the Underworld. These Crystals had only been rumored to exist, but Golbez knows of these rumors. Kain explains that Golbez needs the Crystals to open "the way to the Moon". Cecil decides his party has to head underground to protect the remaining Crystals. Kain shows Cecil the Key of Magma, which could be used to enter the Underworld. The party eventually enters the underground and reunites with Rydia following a confrontation with Golbez, where he is defeated but escapes with a Crystal, leaving only one remaining.
With the remaining Crystal sealed, the party attempts to invade the Tower of Babil to take back the other Crystals, an attempt that ultimately fails when it is revealed the final Archfiend Rubicante has moved them to the upper world. They return to the surface and with the help of Edge, the Ninja prince of Eblan, they climb the tower and defeat Rubicante. However, a booby trap leads them back underground, where they steal a Red Wing airship that Edge christens the Falcon.
The party heads for the Cavern containing the final Crystal and open the sealed door. They retrieve the Crystal and return to the surface, but Golbez calls out to Kain possessing him once again. Kain steals the Crystal and flees. With all eight Crystals, the Tower of Babil is activated and the Giant of Babil is summoned. After a journey to the Moon, Cecil and his allies destroy the giant, and the Lunarian Fusoya reveals Golbez as Cecil's brother, under the control of Zemus. Kain is again freed from Golbez's control and allies with Cecil to take revenge on Zemus.
The party heads back to the Moon, and make their way to the Lunar Subterrane. During the journey Kain's thoughts can be seen in the Nintendo DS version—though Zemus is once again trying to take control of Kain's mind, he overcomes it and makes it to the core. There the party finds Fusoya and Golbez fighting Zemus. They defeat him, but cannot defeat the manifestation of Zemus's hatred, Zeromus. Eventually, Cecil, Kain, Rydia, Rosa, and Edge defeat Zeromus themselves and return to Earth.
In the game's Advance release, Kain, along with several other characters, undergoes a "Lunar Trial", but his is much more character-based than the other characters'. Unlike the other trials, Kain is forced to enter his trial room alone. Kain awakens alone in Baron to find the town plagued by a series of murders from an assailant jumping from roof to roof, wielding a lance. Agreeing to help Cecil and the guards investigate, Kain is plagued nightly by mysterious dreams, and keeps finding a lance soaked in blood lying in his room. Cecil and the guards lead the investigation, and even Rosa is attacked. Eventually, Kain is apprehended for the attacks, but he unmasks the true culprit shortly after.
The next night, Kain leaves his room during the night and follows Cecil to the Devil's Road room, where he finds a mirrored chamber with Cecil unconscious and Rosa tied up. A cloaked figure, the true assailant, emerges from the mirrors and tells Kain that it is the embodiment of his dark desires, and urges him to fulfill them and kill Cecil. The player can then decide if Kain kills Cecil or not; if the player chooses to kill him, it results in the scene ending immediately and Kain returning to the party outside.
Refusing, the figure casts off its cloak to reveal itself as Kain's dark doppelganger, which later transforms into Lunar Bahamut. Kain defeats Lunar Bahamut and acquires his ultimate weapon, Abel's Lance, as his prize. As Kain returns to his allies, Cecil tells him no time has passed since he entered the door to the trial, and asks Kain what was behind the door. Kain replies, "Nothing. Absolutely Nothing".
In the credits, Kain is one of the only characters not to attend Cecil and Rosa's wedding. He feels tremendous guilt about his unintentional acts of treachery and blames his own weaknesses. Instead, he climbs Mount Ordeals to undergo a spiritual trial similar to what Cecil went through when he became a Paladin, with the hope of becoming a great Dragoon worthy of his father's legacy. No one hears from him again for some time.
Who is this mysterious man and why is he helping Ceodore? It seems he has issues with a certain Dragoon, but seems reluctant to talk about his past or his goals.
Some time between Final Fantasy IV and The After Years, Kain entered the mirrored chamber on Mt. Ordeals and engaged his dark side. Failing to dispatch him, Kain was struck down and his dark side escaped. Kain abandoned his name to seek out and destroy his evil half. Later, a character named Kain in the company of Porom betrays her and assists the Mysterious Girl.
This character is actually Dark Kain, while the true Kain assists Ceodore and is known as the Hooded Man. He rescues Ceodore near Mysidia when the Red Wings crash, and the two head to the village of mages and use the Devil's Road to get to Baron. When the soldiers guarding the castle, under the Mysterious Girl's control, refuse them entry, Kain directs Ceodore to the waterway leading into the castle moat. The two infiltrate the castle, and while Ceodore searches Kain encounters Cecil under the Mysterious Girl's control. Realizing he is not himself, Kain tells Ceodore they must go to the Mist Cave.
The two cross the Misty valley and head to Kaipo when they see the Red Wings flying to Damcyan. Arriving at Damcyan shortly after Dark Kain, commander of the Red Wings under the Mysterious Girl, steals Damcyan's Crystal and Rosa, the two meet with Cid and Edward and pursue Dark Kain back to Baron in the Enterprise.
In Baron Castle, Kain confronts his dark half and reveals his true identity. The two battle and Kain defeats Dark Kain, absorbing him. On Mt. Ordeals, the spirit of Kluya recognizes Kain's strength and grants him the power of light transforming Kain into a Holy Dragoon. Kain assists Ceodore, Rosa, Cid and Edward in breaking Cecil free of the Mysterious Girl's control and he continues to fight alongside the party, reaffirming his bonds with the friends he had abandoned.
After defeating the Creator with the rest of the party, Kain returns home to Baron. He leaves the ranks of the Dragoons to join the Red Wings, and goes with Ceodore to help the boy attain his own Proof of Knighthood. At this point, in the Final Fantasy IV: The After Years novelization, Kain tells Ceodore that although Cecil is his best friend and ally, he still considers him a rival and looks forward to defeating him one day.
Final Fantasy IVEdit
Kain's physical stats are heavily weighted. In 2D releases Kain has no MP growth, and in all releases learns no magic naturally.
Kain's special ability is Jump, which allows him to deal extra damage via an aerial attack. While Kain is airborne, he cannot be targeted and thus avoids attacks. In the Advance and Complete Collection releases, completing Kain's Lunar Trial and defeating Lunar Bahamut rewards him with the Dragoon Gauntlets, which upgrades Jump to Double Jump, which does more damage and executes faster.
While Kain cannot cast any magic in Final Fantasy IV, the data in the SNES version contains a two-frame animated sprite for Kain casting spells, as all other spellcasters have. The Final Fantasy IV Settei Shiryou Shuu shows a screenshot of Kain with a White Magic command, and there is an unused empty magic spell list that based on the internal character order, was intended for him.
Kain can equip all spears, axes, shields, helmets, Armor, gloves, and most swords and rings. In the Advance and Complete Collection versions he acquires his ultimate weapon, Abel's Lance, from the Lunar Bahamut. In all other releases, Kain's strongest exclusive weapon is the Holy Lance.
Kain appears as the Dragoon in the scripted battle with Cecil in Final Fantasy IV at Fabul's crystal chamber.
Final Fantasy IV: The After YearsEdit
As the Hooded Man, Kain has overall decent stats in the physical department, but lacks any special abilities. Kain's HP and MP growths as the Hooded Man are different from the ones assigned to his Holy Dragoon form, and if the player wishes to get the most out of these stats they should leave him at the lowest level possible for his transformation, though this means they must complete Ceodore's Tale with Kain KO'd for much of it.
However, because only his HP and MP are affected by when he changes class, it is always possible to adjust for lost HP and MP using the HP and MP increasing items. As a Holy Dragoon Kain has high HP, Strength, Speed and Stamina, but mediocre MP.
- Kain's HP and MP as a Holy Dragoon change depending on his level when he class changes. The following stats assume he only begins gaining levels after the class change.
Kain regains the Jump ability when battling Dark Kain, and when defeating him becomes a Holy Dragoon. He knows a handful of White Magic spells after his class change and cannot learn any more as he levels up.
||7||Slice through a single enemy.|
|Cross Slash Prime||
||20||Slice through a single enemy together.|
||30||Attack all enemies with divine wrath.|
||12||Set your sights on one enemy and punch through it.|
||32||Summon clones to confuse and attack one enemy. Casts Blink on Edge.|
||50||Attack a single enemy with sword and spear. Can break damage limit.|
||20||Cast Curaja, Protect, Shell and Haste on users.|
||35||Three fighters combine to attack one enemy. Can break damage limit.|
||40||Five fighters slice away at all enemies.|
||22||Two fighters attack one enemy.|
||35||Two fighters attack an enemy from the air simultaneously. Can break damage limit. Cannot be used if Ceodore is Awakened.|
||75||An offense/defense mix combining the powers of all five fighters. Damages all enemies and restores HP and status of party. Break's damage limit.|
As a Holy Dragoon, Kain can equip the same weapons and armor as previous games, but now he can equip the Paladin-exclusive equipment as well.
Kain is faced as a boss in some cinematic battles in flashbacks at the end of the Lunarian's Tale. In each of these battles the player's actions mean nothing, after a few turns the battles end in dialogue sequences and the enemy party nor the player can be KO'd in that time.
|"Disbelief" from Final Fantasy IV (DS)|
|Trouble with the audio sample?|
Kain's theme is called "Disbelief", alternatively called "Suspicion" or "Kain's Betrayal." It plays whenever Kain betrays the party under Golbez's command, and is reprised in -Interlude-and The After Years when a party member acts suspiciously or betrays the party.
Another track, "Cry In Sorrow", plays during Kain's Lunar Trial and whenever he rejoins the party.
Kain's dark side appears as one of the monsters that can be summoned by Mira after being purchased as downloadable content. He takes on his appearance from The After Years. Kain is a melee summon with somewhat low attack; however, with his fast speed and cost of one slot on a tower floor, investing some NP to summon and max out the levels of an army of Kains makes for a very effective melee force.
Kain appears as a playable character. He is officially on the side of Cosmos, but works with Golbez to help the Warriors of Cosmos survive to the next cycle of war by attacking and defeating them before the Manikins do, as they will not be revived if beaten by the manikins. Kain defeats Bartz, Firion, and Zidane, and he is implied to beat most of the other original Warriors of Cosmos, before Tifa, whom he rescues from an encounter with Ultimecia, talks him into returning to the survivors and admitting what he's done. At this time, Kain accompanies them to the Lands of Discord, and the group sacrifices themselves to seal the portal the manikins are emerging from.
Kain's first alternate outfit, Noir Dragoon, is based on Dark Kain, giving him dark blue and red armor, while his second alternate outfit, Light Seeker, is his "Hooded Man" attire, a blue and white robe with a brown cape.
Tetsuya Nomura stated prior to the announcement of Dissidia 012 that Kain was considered as a candidate to appear in the original Dissidia, either as a secret character or the antagonist representing Final Fantasy IV. He was ultimately excluded, but Tetsuya Nomura has said he personally wanted Kain in the game and that Kain would be in a sequel to the game if one were made.
Cecil's best friend and dearest rival. He feels deeply, but is ill-practiced in expressing that which he feels. Though he swears to stand by Cecil in his revolt against their unjust king, his heart is consumed by his secret love for Rosa and as a result of this weakness his conflicted mind is easily taken over by Golbez.
Kain appears as an unlockable character, and is unlocked by collecting Navy Shards, albeit from Dark Notes only.
He is an Offense and Speed oriented character.
|Focus (Lv1)||4||Level 10|
|Brace (Lv1)||3||Level 15|
|Brace (Lv2)||5||Level 60|
|Focus (Lv2)||9||Level 70|
|Brace (Lv3)||7||Level 75|
|Focus (Lv3)||13||Level 80|
|Counter (Lv3)||16||Level 85|
|Strength Up (Lv1)||5||Initial|
|Wind Rhapsody (Lv1)||5||Level 5|
|Lance (Lv1)||8||Level 20|
|Sacrifice (Lv2)||10||Level 30|
|Strength Up (Lv2)||10||Level 35|
|Wind Rhapsody (Lv2)||10||Level 40|
|Lance (Lv2)||14||Level 45|
|Sacrifice (Lv3)||16||Level 50|
|Strength Up (Lv3)||16||Level 55|
|Lance (Lv3)||20||Level 65|
Kain returns as an unlockable character, and is now unlocked by collecting Turquoise Crystal Shards.
He is an Offense oriented character. Kain receives his Limit Break from Dissidia 012, Dragoon's Pride, dealing damage in proportion to his Strength, Agility, and Level.
|Weapon Break (Lv1)||3||Level 15|
|Chakra (Lv1)||5||Level 25|
|Counter (Lv1)||5||Level 30|
|Berserk (Lv2)||10||Level 35|
|Dragoon's Pride||18||Level 40|
|Brace (Lv1)||3||Level 45|
|Weapon Break (Lv2)||6||Level 65|
|Brace (Lv2)||5||Level 70|
|Chakra (Lv2)||9||Level 75|
|Berserk (Lv3)||15||Level 80|
|Weapon Break (Lv3)||10||Level 95|
Cecil's close friend—and friendly rival. The resourceful commander of Baron's Dragoons, a highly efficient squad on par with the Red Wings, he is manipulated by Golbez into becoming Cecil's adversary.
Kain appears as a Legend character. He uses Jump and Double Jump to assist the player. The spear Kain is depicted with in his Yoshitaka Amano artwork and in Dissidia 012 Final Fantasy is available as a weapon. It was given away as a reward for leveling up Kain to Lv.99 during Part 2 of the Shattered Worlds FF Special Event as an SSR ranked weapon called the Wyvern Spear.
Cecil cares for this commander of the Baron Dragoons, despite his many deceits.
Kain is an exclusive character only available from the Premium Character Shop as a random downloadable content, he uses the Blaze Jump during battle.
Kain is the gifted captain of an elite airship squad, the Baron's Dragoons. He is also Cecil's friend and rival--a rivalry that turns real when Golbez manipulates Kain to stand against his old companions.
Kain is a standard character, also appearing as an early boss. He is automatically recruited as the First Time Reward for completing Mist Cave on the Classic difficulty track. He also appeared in the Challenge Event The Burning Blade, although many players may have received a Greater Growth Egg in his place. The only advantage to his recruitment in this event was a much earlier acquisition of his Memory Crystal.
Kain is an excellent starting warrior with good HP, Attack, and Defense stats throughout his progression, with the added bonus of a high Speed stat. This allows him to strike most foes before they can strike back. Being a Dragoon gives him the option of range. Although spears are his preferred arms, Kain can also wield swords to deal just as much damage to an enemy party. Outside of his Realm, however, he faces tough competition from Fang, who is equally as skilled.
His default Soul Break is Double Jump which at the expense of one Soul Gauge segment deals physical damage to a single target equal to 140% of a conventional attack. The spear Blood Lance (IV) allows Kain to use Lancet which at the expense of one Soul Gauge segment deals physical damage to a single target equal to 400% of a conventional attack and absorbs 50% of the damage dealt as HP.
He can equip accessories.
Many cards are depicted with Kain and are lightning-elemental.
Kain appears on Triple Triad cards.
Non-Final Fantasy guest appearancesEdit
Lord of VermilionEdit
Kain appears as a card and summonable creature in Lord of Vermilion II, along with other characters from Final Fantasy IV as part of a special cross promotion.
Cain and Dragoon Cain are units and their ability is Jump. Cain can be promoted to Dragoon Cain.
Users in Square Enix Members Virtual World community can make their character appear as Kain Highwind.
In Heavenstrike Rivals, a Square Enix strategy game for mobile, Kain was released as a unit in a Final Fantasy IV event from 13 to 20 January, 2016.
Cain was the brother of Abel in the Tanakh/Old Testament book of Genesis. Cain became the first murderer by killing his brother out of jealousy stemming from God choosing Abel's gift over that of Cain. This reflects the love triangle between Kain, Cecil and Rosa, Kain being jealous of Cecil being the target of Rosa's affections and not him. Kain's ultimate weapon in the Advance port, Abel's Lance, takes its name from the same source. In some versions, including the original Japanese releases and the Spanish release of the Advance port, Kain's named is spelled with a "C", the same as the Biblical spelling.
In the English localization of the DS version as well as in Dissidia 012 Final Fantasy, Kain is pronounced [keɪn], just as Biblical English "Cain". However, in the Japanese version his name is spelled カイン (Kain) in kana, which is closer to the name's pronunciation in Continental Europe and to the Hebrew form קַיִן Qáyin. However, the Japanese manual lists his name written in Roman alphabet as "Cain" which would suggest the English pronunciation.
As well as the aforementioned etymology, the name Kain is similar to the Hebrew word kidon (כידון), meaning 'javelin', which is also significant to his character.
Kain is called Kain Ventalto in the Spanish DS version, and Caín Céfiro in the Spanish GBA version.
- Kain's Lance, a recurring spear in later installments of the series, is named after him.
- Kain's father Richard harkens to Ricard from Final Fantasy II, where Kain states in the Nintendo DS remake that his father died fighting an evil empire. Additionally, in Final Fantasy II, Ricard adopts a young boy after his father was killed by Palamecia's attack; beginning with the Dawn of Souls remake, this boy is named Kain. It is unlikely this is more than a passing reference, as in The After Years, Kain mentions he was Ceodore's age when his father was killed, with Ceodore being older than the Kain seen in Final Fantasy II.
- Officially, Kain is considered left-handed, yet numerous illustrations depict Kain right-handed; Yoshitaka Amano's artwork features Kain holding his lance right-handed, while his in-game Nintendo DS model depicts him this way. On the contrary, his artwork for The After Years in both his Hooded Man and Holy Dragoon forms depict him left-handed.
- In Final Fantasy V, Bartz's Dragoon sprite depicts armor similar to Kain's, only with a different shade of blue and a mask covering his mouth.
- The first Super Nintendo entry in Square's Hanjuku Hero series features parodies of Final Fantasy IV characters, where some of the playable generals are named after them, including Kain.
- Along with other characters, Kain is featured on the loading screens for Final Fantasy Chronicles, where he enacts his iconic pose before the Final Fantasy logo appears.
- Kain has four different menu portraits across all releases of Final Fantasy IV and six more from every release of The After Years, tying him with Rydia and Cecil for the most in the series.
- During the first playthrough in the DS version, the player will see the back of Kain's head without his helmet, but on the two times it is possible to play over the game, more and more of his head is revealed.
- Kain shares his English voice actor with Red XIII from the Compilation of Final Fantasy VII, Caius Ballad from Final Fantasy XIII-2, and Cu Chaspel from Final Fantasy Crystal Chronicles: Ring of Fates.
- The Artifact Armor for Dragoon in Final Fantasy XIV is a reference to Kain Highwind's armor. The presentation artwork of Dragoon also resembles Kain's pose on the the Final Fantasy IV logo .