In the vast realm of video games, there exists a series that has captivated the hearts of gamers worldwide—Final Fantasy. Renowned for its immersive stories and exciting user experiences, this iconic role-playing franchise has introduced several memorable characters throughout its long history. However, among the diverse cast of personalities, one recurring figure stands out: Cid. With his consistent appearance in every Final Fantasy game, Cid has become a crucial part of the series’ identity. But what is the origin and significance behind Cid’s presence? Let’s embark on a journey to unravel the captivating phenomenon that is Cid.
The Origins and Significance of Cid
The origins of Cid trace back to Final Fantasy II, marking the genesis of a tradition that would persist throughout the entire series. Etymologically, the name “Cid” finds its roots in Arabic, derived from the terms “sidi” or “sayyid,” which means “lord” or “master.” This linguistic and cultural depth adds an intriguing layer of significance to the character. Interestingly, the original Final Fantasy did not include Cid, but subsequent remakes rectified this omission, solidifying Cid’s presence as an important element in every game of the series.
Why is Cid in Every Final Fantasy Game?
The reason behind Cid’s consistent inclusion in the Final Fantasy series may not be as complex as one might expect. Hironobu Sakaguchi, the creator of Final Fantasy, shed light on this matter back in 1997, stating, “There really isn’t any deep meaning to it, we just wanted to make a character that would appear in various forms in all the games. I guess I’ve always had a soft spot for that kind of character. Cid is like Yoda from the Star Wars series—very intelligent and wise.”
Sakaguchi’s statement implies that Cid’s character was crafted to provide a sense of continuity and familiarity across the series. Each new entrant in the Final Fantasy series introduces players to a different world with unique characters and stories, yet Cid remains a constant figure, thus, offering a reassuring presence. With each variant, Cid’s wisdom and intelligence manifest in unique ways, fostering a comforting connection between players as well as the rich, often complex universe of Square Enix’s Final Fantasy series. This consistency, coupled with Cid’s versatility, forms the foundation of his role as a crucial part of the series’ overall charm and appeal.
The Appearance of Cid in Various FF Games
One of the most intriguing aspects of Cid is his ability to assume diverse roles and identities across the Final Fantasy games. Here are notable variations of Cid in various FF games:
Cid Highwind (Final Fantasy VII):
Cid Highwind stands out as a gruff and passionate pilot, always seen with his spear by his side. His dreams and ambitions revolve around the space program, making him a vital character in the story. Moreover, this portrayal deviates from the traditional depiction of Cid as a wise and kind older man.
Cid Kramer (Final Fantasy VIII):
In stark contrast to Highwind, Cid Kramer assumes the role of the headmaster of Balamb Garden. His character exudes wisdom and benevolence, guiding players through the complex world of Final Fantasy VIII. Similarly, Cid Kramer’s strategic thinking and caring nature make him one of the game’s most memorable characters.
Regent Cid Fabool IX (Final Fantasy IX):
This version of Cid undergoes a transformation that injects a comedic twist into the game. As an oglop, a bug-like creature, he rules his kingdom, adding an element of humor and light-heartedness to the story.
Cid (Final Fantasy X):
In Final Fantasy X, players will see Cid as the leader of the Al Bhed, a technologically advanced ethnic group. His strong leadership skills as well as unwavering loyalty to his people make him an important part of the game’s story.
Cid (Final Fantasy XI – Chains of Promathia):
Cid assumes a significant role in the Chains of Promathia storyline. His character is intricately woven into the quest narratives, assisting players in navigating the intricate twists and turns of the plot.
Cid Haze (Final Fantasy III):
Cid Haze is a skilled mechanic and a key ally to the heroes. His expertise in airship technology proves instrumental in traversing the world of Final Fantasy III. Also, Cid Haze embodies the essence of courage and determination, leaving a lasting impression on players.
Cid Previa (Final Fantasy V):
As an eminent scientist and engineer, Cid Previa plays a crucial role in the narrative. He not only repairs the airship for the party but also provides valuable knowledge to help players overcome various challenges. Cid Previa’s character adds a layer of intellectual depth to the storyline.
Cid Pollendina (Final Fantasy IV):
This version of Cid, Cid Pollendina, distinguishes himself as the chief engineer of the Red Wings, Baron’s airship fleet. His character intertwines deeply with the game’s narrative, thus, providing technical support and emotional depth. Cid Pollendina’s bravery and self-sacrifice make him one of the most memorable versions of Cid.
Cid Del Norte Marguez (Final Fantasy VI):
This rendition of Cid assumes the role of a seasoned scientist responsible for the creation of Magitek. Despite being affiliated with the Empire, his character exhibits a profound sense of morality and guilt. Cid Del Norte Marguez’s relationship with the main character Celes Chere adds an emotional dimension to the storyline.
Cid Fabool (Final Fantasy IX):
As the Regent of Lindblum, Cid Fabool plays a pivotal role in guiding the heroes through their journey. Despite being transformed into an oglop and later a frog, his wisdom and leadership continue to shine, endearing him to players.
Cid’s Usual Contribution to the Story and Gameplay
Cid’s multifaceted roles, whether as a party member, mechanic, or leader, significantly impact gameplay and storyline alike. His interactions with other characters add depth and complexity to the narrative, enhancing players’ gaming experience. For instance, Cid’s involvement with groups such as the Red Wings in Final Fantasy IV and the Al Bhed in Final Fantasy X introduces multiple dimensions to the storyline, providing new perspectives and narrative dynamics.
The Character’s Cultural Significance and Fan Service Appeal
Cid’s influence extends beyond the game world and connects with the broader FF community. The character has become an enduring symbol of the franchise, recognized and celebrated by fans worldwide. Furthermore, Cid’s iconic status is evidenced by numerous tributes, cosplay, and fan art dedicated to him. This solidifies his place in Final Fantasy’s cultural legacy.
Moreover, Cid’s recurring appearance in FF games now also serves as a form of fan service. It appeals to long-time players who have grown attached to the character. His presence evokes a sense of familiarity, nostalgia, and anticipation for fans, thus, creating a comforting link between different Final Fantasy installments. Indeed, Cid’s inclusion has become an anticipated tradition that fans eagerly look forward to. So much so that Final Fantasy games just feel incomplete without a Cid character in them.
In conclusion, the presence of Cid in every Final Fantasy game is rooted in tradition—a consistent thread woven throughout the series to provide continuity and familiarity amidst the ever-changing worlds, characters, and plots. Each incarnation of Cid brings something unique to the table, contributing to the charm and longevity of the Final Fantasy series.
Through Cid, players witness the seamless blend of consistency and change that has made Final Fantasy a staple in the realm of role-playing games. As the legacy of Final Fantasy continues to unfold, fans eagerly anticipate the next manifestation of Cid, ready to embark on another journey alongside this beloved and timeless character.