It all began when I saw this sphere of you.
The story of Final Fantasy X-2 takes place in Spira two years after the events of Final Fantasy X, told by former summoner turned sphere hunter Yuna. Three groups: New Yevon, the Youth League, and the Machine Faction, have risen to replace the fallen Yevon church and guide Spira into a new age. As everyone in Spira tries to adjust to living in a world without Sin, political conflicts between the three groups gradually escalate to the point of threatening war. At the same time the dangers of progress and a force from the ancient past threaten to make history repeat itself and destroy the newfound peace. Yuna and her friends must rise to the occasion to save Spira once again while she holds on to the hope of reuniting with her lost love.
- The game begins on the context of events featured in Final Fantasy X: Eternal Calm, an extra cutscene originally included with the release of Final Fantasy X International.
Two years after Sin's defeat, Yuna, now a high summoner, was leading a quiet life in Besaid when Rikku presented her with an ancient sphere recording discovered by Kimahri. It shows a captive man, strongly resembling Tidus, demanding to see "the summoner." The sphere, along with Rikku's encouragement, inspired Yuna to seek adventure and a purpose for herself and she joined Rikku as a sphere hunter.
Yuna, Rikku, and their new friend Paine are members of a sphere hunting group, the Gullwings, led by Brother. Brother's friend Buddy is the co-pilot of their airship, the Celsius. Shinra is an Al Bhed boy prodigy who devised the dressphere system the girls use to enhance their battle abilities. Yuna, Rikku and Paine go out to sphere hunting missions together as a trio dubbed "YRP." Together they travel around a Spira that finds itself amid a clash of factions that have established themselves since the coming of the Eternal Calm, unearthing hidden legacies from Spira's ancient history.
The New SpiraEdit
A rival sphere hunter, Leblanc, has stolen Yuna's Garment Grid, allowing her to perform a concert in Luca under Yuna's guise. The concert is disrupted by Rikku and Paine while Yuna wanders Luca incognito. Rikku and Paine approach Leblanc on stage and she flees. The two chase Leblanc to the docks where Yuna joins the fray and reclaims her Garment Grid. Shortly after switching to the Songstress dressphere, Yuna finds herself overcome with someone else's excitement and dances uncontrollably, both frightening and intriguing her.
Back on the Celsius, the Gullwings use the Sphere Oscillo-finder to detect hidden spheres throughout Spira and pick up a signal from the recently discovered Floating Ruins at Mt. Gagazet's peak. Yuna, Rikku, and Paine encounter the Leblanc Syndicate and compete for the sphere, but emerge victorious and take it on board the airship. The sphere is a recording of ancient Zanarkand, but brings the team no new information, and Shinra turns it into a new dressphere for the girls to make use of in battle.
Free to travel the world on their airship, Yuna can visit Besaid Village to apologize for her sudden disappearance to her friends Lulu and Wakka, who had served as her guardians on her pilgrimage two years ago. The two are now married and Lulu is to give birth to their baby any day. YRP can help Wakka look for a sphere in the Besaid Cave and learn of his anxiety toward fatherhood as he never got to know his parents.
If the party visits Mt. Gagazet they can meet Kimahri, now the leader of the Ronso, who struggles to decide on a new path for his people as many swear vengeance on the Guado who have been exiled from Guadosalam. The Guado now hide in the withering Macalania Woods, where the YRP can also find O'aka XXIII, the traveling merchant who had helped Yuna during her pilgrimage, running from his Al Bhed debtors.
Sphere waves emanate from the Zanarkand Ruins, and YRP goes off to investigate. They discover the ruins have become a tourist attraction promoted by Rikku and Brother's father Cid and the former summoner Isaaru, much to the team's disapproval. In an underground ruin, the Gullwings discover the sphere they were after, but it is only a fragment and useless for either viewing or as a dressphere. Cid, upset at learning of Rikku and Yuna's scorn toward his enterprise, leaves the ruins to Isaaru to oversee. YRP later have a chance to further sabotage the attraction by spreading monkeys around the ruins to quell tourists' interest from visiting it.
The hostilities between Youth League and New Yevon build to a head as an "awesome sphere" is discovered in the rebuilt Kilika. The Youth League and New Yevon compete over it but the Gullwings claim the sphere. The ancient sphere contains images of a machina weapon called Vegnagun hidden beneath Bevelle with enough power to lay waste to all of Spira that is unable to distinguish friend from foe once activated. The sphere also shows the man who resembles Tidus mentioning someone named "Lenne."
Over the evening, the Gullwings celebrate their success with Yuna singing for everyone in the Songstress dressphere. Afterward, she gets angry pondering who Lenne is and storms off to bed, where she dreams of herself and Tidus stuck in an underground passage being shot by guards in front of Vegnagun. When she awakes, Rikku blames the nightmare on Yuna having worn the Songstress dressphere while asleep.
The Gullwings return the sphere to either the Youth League or New Yevon and gain allegiance with their chosen faction but become enemies of the opposing one. While the Gullwings are out to deliver the sphere, Leblanc breaks into their airship and steals the half-sphere YRP had found in Zanarkand. Intent on reclaiming it, YRP scours Spira to locate Syndicate members to steal their uniforms, and infiltrate Chateau Leblanc, the Syndicate's HQ, in Guadosalam to discover Leblanc had the other half of the sphere and stole theirs to restore it.
Leblanc explains she is hunting spheres to gain the affections of Nooj, the Youth League's leader. After discovering the Gullwings support her cause, they join forces to investigate the Bevelle Underground, a secret, ancient mechanical complex hidden beneath Bevelle where Vegnagun is held as per new information gained from the restored sphere. Discovering a tunnel recently dug into the floor of the weapon's chamber, they realize Vegnagun has been moved to the Farplane at Spira's core.
Disagreements between Spira's factions escalate after Baralai, Nooj and Gippal—the leaders of New Yevon, the Youth League, and the Machine Faction respectively—go missing. Returning to the Bevelle Underground, the Gullwings discover the missing faction leaders discussing Vegnagun and learn the machina's artificial intelligence allows it to detect hostility and respond by activating and fleeing. Previously Nooj had come to Bevelle with the intention of destroying Vegnagun, prompting it to flee to the Farplane. Yuna and Rikku learn Paine had once been friends with the three men, assigned as their sphere recorder while they were candidates for the Crimson Squad, an elite group intended to be assigned leadership of Crusaders chapters—Yevon's military—across Spira.
Two years earlier in a cave beneath Mushroom Rock Road called the Den of Woe, before the failed Operation Mi'ihen, the squad's final exercise was conducted. Within the cave the candidates were swarmed by pyreflies, the energy that all life in Spira is composed of, and driven to kill one another. The only survivors were Paine, Baralai, Gippal and Nooj, who were targeted by the Yevon order afterward when they revealed having seen images of Vegnagun while in the cave. Even after escaping the predicament, Nooj shot his comrades, and although all parties survived, it severed the group's friendship. Unknown to the others, Nooj was not acting of his own accord when he shot at them, but was being possessed by a malevolent spirit who had entered his body while in the cave.
The feelings that drove the squad members to kill one another were the despair of Shuyin, a young man who died 1000 years ago. Before the four survivors could leave the cave, Shuyin's spirit—requiring a host to interact with the physical world—had possessed Nooj, and forced him to shoot his comrades. In the time since, Shuyin had been goading Nooj on a subconscious level, coercing him to approach Vegnagun so he could use Nooj's body to control it.
Nooj's will was too strong for Shuyin to be completely controlled, and his desire to destroy the machina prompted it to flee. Desiring a new host, Shuyin leaves Nooj's body and possesses Baralai, pursuing Vegnagun to the Farplane. The former aeons' spirits become corrupted by Shuyin's despair and emerge from the former temples' Chambers of the Fayth with an outpour of fiends.
YRP visits each temple to quell the fiend outbreak, and save Wakka from the Besaid Temple where he had gotten stranded during his attempt to stop the fiends. He is berated by everyone for having put himself in danger when he is about to become a father, and gains new resolve regarding his upcoming parenthood. One of his biggest detractors is Beclem, a member of the Youth League sent to Besaid to train the Besaid Aurochs team, who have all joined the faction. He also disdains Yuna as a relic of the past, seeing that the time of summoners in Spira is over.
After defeating a possessed Ixion in Djose Temple, its surprise final attack sends Yuna falling into the hole in the ground that once held the temple's fayth statue. She emerges in the Farplane wearing the Songstress dressphere and meets Baralai possessed by Shuyin, who mistakes her for Lenne because of the dressphere. Feeling affection toward him that is not her own, Yuna listens as Shuyin describes how he "awoke" after dying, alone and unable to find Lenne. He is angry that after a millennium, Spirans have not come to understand the heartache war can cause, and plans to use Vegnagun to destroy the world, ending the possibility of there ever being another war. The possessed Baralai continues deeper into the Farplane and Yuna meets Nooj and Gippal, who are pursuing their friend and ask Yuna to keep things under control on the surface. Yuna is angry and confused by the revelations but finds her way out of the Farplane by following a familiar whistle.
A Wish that Spans the AgesEdit
The cross-factional strife escalates with their leaders missing and Yuna decides to honor Nooj and Gippal's wish of her to "take care of things topside." The Gullwings organize a concert with the promoter Tobli's help to which everyone in Spira is invited, supporters of the Youth League and New Yevon alike, to foster a sense of kinship. It turns out the Songstress dressphere Yuna wears during the concert is comprised of Lenne's memories, and it reacts to the sphere screen Shinra had built to display the concert for the spectators. It projects Lenne's memories for everyone to see and, witnessing images of Shuyin and Lenne's last moments, Spirans come to understand the unproductive nature of their disagreements. Yuna learns it was because of Lenne's memories that Shuyin had mistaken her and she had felt affection toward him.
The wise man Maechen comes aboard the Celsius and explains everything to the Gullwings. A thousand years ago Shuyin lived in the high-tech metropolis of Zanarkand and was the lover of a popular songstress and summoner, Lenne. The two lived during the Machina War, Zanarkand's war with the more powerful Bevelle, and Zanarkand ordered all summoners to the front lines, separating the couple. Shuyin thought the only way to save Lenne was to infiltrate Bevelle, commandeer Vegnagun, and use it to destroy Zanarkand's enemies. Lenne perceived Shuyin's intentions and followed him.
When she caught up to Shuyin in Bevelle, he had begun to operate Vegnagun but before he could use the cannon to destroy the city, Lenne pleaded for him to stop. Then a group of Bevelle soldiers shot the couple and Shuyin failed to hear Lenne say she loved him before they died. Over the following 1000 years, Shuyin's lingering despair and resentment over his failure to save Lenne bonded to pyreflies and made him re-experience the anguish of that moment. His despair became so powerful it began acting on its own, and he came to believe that—in addition to helping the world—he would fade away with Lenne if he destroyed Spira.
During her travels, Yuna has a chance to better many people's lives: reconcile Cid and his children's relationship after Cid gives up on monetizing the Zanarkand Ruins; witness Wakka let go of the past and grow into his role as a new father and come up with a name for his newborn son, and even gain some respect from Beclem; encourage Isaaru to reunite with his brother Maroda in Bevelle; for Maechen to recall his true self; help O'aka and his brother Wantz's fledgling business by becoming a recurring customer at their shop after helping O'aka pay back his debt to the Al Bhed; catch chocobos for the chocobo-enthusiastic Clasko to set up a ranch; excavate parts for the Machine Faction to build an an experimental machina robot while saving a nation of cactuars from an ancient fiend; witness former summoner Dona repair her relationship with her former guardian Barthello; solve Rin's Mi'ihen Highroad Mystery of machina going haywire; and help the Ronso settle their feud with the Guado bloodlessly, allowing for the Guado to return to Guadosalam with the musicians of the dying Macalania Woods, among other deeds.
Although the factional fighting has ceased, Shuyin has nearly carried out his plan to use Vegnagun to destroy Spira from beneath its surface. Joining forces with the Leblanc Syndicate, the Gullwings make their way to the Farplane and find Gippal and Nooj battling Vegnagun. They disable the machina before its cannon can fire at Spira and Shuyin's spirit abandons Baralai, becoming corporeal. Lenne's consciousness emerges from the Songstress dressphere to convince Shuyin to abandon his mission and be at rest.
Final Fantasy X-2 features multiple endings. Depending on certain criteria, additional cutscenes will be featured before or after the regular ending FMV.
The standard ending features Nooj, Gippal, and Baralai addressing the people of Spira in Luca's stadium announcing the dissolution of their respective factions for the peace of the world. Yuna and the Gullwings depart for Besaid on the Celsius, and Yuna's story will continue as she embraces her new life.
A short cutscene will play before the ending should the player fail to reach at least 75% storyline completion and/or the certain criteria. As YRP departs from the Farplane, Tidus's spirit appears to bid farewell to Yuna, who accepts she will always love him.
An additional ending FMV will play after the credits roll should the player reach at least 75% storyline completion and fulfill the ending criteria. The fayth have located Tidus's scattered pyreflies and sent him to Besaid, where he surfaces from the water. Yuna and Tidus reunite, an event witnessed and celebrated by Rikku, Paine, Wakka, Lulu, and the people of Besaid.
A final cutscene will play after Tidus and Yuna's reunion should the player achieve 100% storyline completion. Tidus and Yuna travel to the Zanarkand Ruins, where Tidus wonders if he might still be a dream of the fayth. Yuna assures him that he is not and stands in the same place Tidus stood two years before, bringing the story full circle.
If the party fails to defeat the fourth and final part of the Vegnagun battle in time, or the party is KO'd, Shuyin fires Vegnagun's cannon and destroys all of Spira.