The Espers in Final Fantasy XII are powerful beings created by the gods themselves. However, the Espers that join the player's side are those spurned by their creators; twelve for having rebelled, and a thirteenth for being too powerful. Most of the Espers were based on the Lucavi in Final Fantasy Tactics or other past bosses of previous Final Fantasy games. Some appeared as Totema in Final Fantasy Tactics Advance, and all reappeared in Final Fantasy Tactics A2: Grimoire of the Rift. Recruiting every Esper in the game adds Belias's sprite on the Sky Pirate's Den and awards the player with the rank of High Summoner.
- "In vainglory they arose, shouting challenges at the Gods. But prevail they did not. Their doom it was to walk the Mist until time’s end. A legend of the Nu Mou."
The scions that would become the Espers were created by the gods for varied purposes. While the exact number is never revealed, there are at least 24 scions, with each zodiac sign having a light and dark representative.
Time passed, and eventually, being proud of her power and status and believing herself to be more powerful than her creators, the highest ranking Esper, Ultima, rose up against the gods. Rallying all the scions of darkness, they attacked the very gods that had created them. However, even with the combined force of 12 Espers, they were defeated, and banished to the darkest reaches of Ivalice. Sealed in the Mist, they could only walk amongst mortals once more if called by a summoner via their glyphs. A thirteenth scion, Zodiark, was also bound by the gods for fear of his power. Unlike his brethren, he is not known to have harbored rebellious desire. It is unknown just how long the Espers have been sealed away, but since Dynast-King Raithwall was known to posses the glyph of Belias it is thought that they have been sealed away at least since the era of the Dynast King.
Scions of Light and Darknesssửa
The following is a list of all the scions mentioned, their associated Zodiac signs, and element. It is never stated if Ultima and Zodiark are the Scions of Darkness or Light, but we never see the mentioned Scions of Light regardless.
|Scion of Darkness||Scion of Light||Zodiac sign||Element|
|Belias, the Gigas||Loghrif, the Transcendent||Aries, the Ram||Fire|
|Chaos, Walker of the Wheel||Mitron, the Chastiser||Taurus, the Bull||Wind|
|Zalera, the Death Seraph||Emet-Selch, Angel of Truth||Gemini, the Twins||Death|
|Zeromus, the Condemner||Pashtarot, Knight-Star||Cancer, the Crab||Gravity|
|Hashmal, Bringer of Order||Fandaniel, the Protector||Leo, the Lion||Earth|
|Ultima, the High Seraph||Virgo, the Virgin||Holy|
|Exodus, the Judge-Sal||Halmarut, the Arbiter||Libra, the Scales||Aether|
|Cúchulainn, the Impure||Nabriales, the Majestic||Scorpio, the Scorpion||Poison|
|Shemhazai, the Whisperer||Igeyorhm, the Martyr||Sagittarius, the Archer||Soul|
|Adrammelech, the Wroth||Deudalaphon, the Benevolent||Capricorn, the Seagoat||Thunder|
|Famfrit, the Darkening Cloud||Emmerololth, Holy Queen||Aquarius, the Water Bearer||Water|
|Mateus, the Corrupt||Lahabrea, Abyssal Celebrant||Pisces, the Fish||Ice|
|Zodiark, Keeper of Precepts||Ophiuchus, the Snake Bearer||Darkness|
List of Esperssửa
In Final Fantasy XII, there are thirteen available Espers. However, only five of them are actually obtained in the main story; the other eight, represented in italics, are found through sidequests. Espers require Mist Charges equal to their level to summon.
Level One Esperssửa
- Belias, the Gigas (The Tomb of Raithwall)
- Mateus, the Corrupt (The Stilshrine of Miriam)
- Adrammelech, the Wroth (Zertinan Caverns)
- Zalera, the Death Seraph (The Barheim Passage, obtain the Barheim Key in the Dalmasca Estersand)
Level Two Esperssửa
- Shemhazai, the Whisperer (Giruvegan)
- Hashmal, Bringer of Order (Pharos at Ridorana)
- Cúchulainn, the Impure (The Garamsythe Waterway, complete "Lost in the Pudding" and use the key to reach Cúchulainn)
- Zeromus, the Condemner (The Stilshrine of Miriam, obtain the Stone of the Condemner from the Acolyte on Mt. Bur-Omisace after defeating Judge Magister Bergan)
- Exodus, the Judge-Sal (The Mosphoran Highwaste, after the Salika Gate is fixed, solve the floatweed puzzle)
Level Three Esperssửa
- Famfrit, the Darkening Cloud (Pharos at Ridorana, fought alongside Doctor Cid)
- Chaos, Walker of the Wheel (The Necrohol of Nabudis, must defeat Fury and Humbaba Mistant)
- Ultima, the High Seraph (Giruvegan, Great Crystal)
- Zodiark, Keeper of Precepts (The Henne Mines, command at least ten other Espers, finish all Jahara based hunts and speak to Geomancer Yugelu in Jahara)
Once an Esper has been defeated, it appears on the License Board and any character can purchase its license. Espers are assigned to a specific character, however, and once a character has bought the Esper's license, said license disappears from everybody else's boards. The character can then summon the Esper in battle by using their MP. Summoning an Esper is similar to using a Quickening; the Lv1 Espers take one MP bar to summon, whereas the Lv3 Espers take all three.
When an Esper is summoned the two other party members disappear, and the battlefield is shared by the Esper and its summoner. The normal music is replaced by the Esper's battle music as long as the Esper is present. An Esper's level is identical to its summoner's, so their stats grow. Yet, Espers have fixed Attack, Defense, and Magic Defense (like wearing the same "equipment"). Each summon lasts maximum of 1:30 minutes and ends when either the summoner or the Esper dies, or the Esper uses its ultimate move. The ultimate attacks are area-effect attacks and target the enemy with the highest MAX HP. In battle, the Esper follows its own gambits, but the player can't set the Esper gambits. In this sense, Espers work much like guests.
Espers can cast magicks even if they have no MP. This means the player can Syphon their MP freely. Espers are immune to almost all negative statuses, which can give a strategic advantage against enemies like Carrot, because whenever an Esper is on the battlefield, the enemies tend to focus their attacks on it.
Battles against Espers are accompanied with "Esper Battle" (召喚獣戦, Shōkan jūsen). Composed by Hitoshi Sakimoto, it is the second track in Disc 3 of the original soundtrack. It plays immediately after the Esper begins its move towards the party. The intro starts with a series of militaristic beats, accompanied by wind instruments, and later joined with a female choir. Intermittently, the choir goes louder, joined with voices of the male choir. The choir is then switched occasionally with loud brass and strings, and reaches climax with all instruments beating together to the martial tune.
When summoning an Esper into battle, the track "Esper" (召喚, Shōkan) plays. Composed by Hitoshi Sakimoto, it is the second track in Disc 4 of the original soundtrack. It is a variation of the "Esper Battle", with a higher tempo making it fast-paced and a bit chaotic. The choir also joins in with a higher note.
Most of the names of the scions have something to do with angels, in both Judaism and Christianity. For the Etymology of the Scions of Darkness, see their corresponding articles.
- A name with a hidden meaning is Emet-Shelch, the scion of light. His title is "The Angel of Truth". "Emet-Shelch" in Hebrew means "Your Truth".
- Nabriales, another Scion of Light, is a name of an angel in Jewish mythology. It is pronounced in Hebrew as "Nabriel".
- Fandaniel matches the basic template of angel names in Judaism, as the "-el" suffix in hebrew means "god" and is usually at the end of many angel names, to mark their superior connection to God.
- Some of the Espers found in Final Fantasy XII are named after a main antagonist from the first five games in the series.
- Both Mateus and Shemhazai battles are the only Esper fights where it's impossible to fight with a guest.
Gallery of Esper Glyphssửa