Square Enix’s long-running MMORPG Final Fantasy 14 is a love letter to the franchise, packed to the brim with references to iconic characters, locations, and themes. Like all Final Fantasy games, Final Fantasy 14 tells its own separate story that doesn’t require playing through any other titles, although it heavily rewards players who have done so. The latest expansion, 2021’s Final Fantasy 14: Endwalker, makes many references to 1991’s Final Fantasy 4 – particularly with the introduction of Golbez.

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Despite tying off a 10-year-long story arc with its dramatic conclusion, Endwalker isn’t the end of Final Fantasy 14‘s story. A post-Endwalker story has been unfolding through major updates, with the recent 6.2 Buried Memory update revealing the identity of the game’s latest villain. Although he had been spotted occasionally leading up to this point, players could only speculate on the antagonist’s identity until he was finally confirmed to be Golbez, one of Final Fantasy 4‘s primary antagonists. With so many references to Final Fantasy 4 in Endwalker, it’s no surprise that Golbez is the Warrior of Light’s next challenger. Spoilers for Final Fantasy 14: Endwalker and Final Fantasy 4 ahead.

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Final Fantasy 4’s Golbez Has a Tragic Beginning

Despite his textbook evil villain persona, Golbez’s origin is tragic. Born as the half-Lunarian Theodor to parents Kluya and Cecilia, he was determined to learn magic as his father was a gifted mage. His father was attacked by villagers who disagreed with his teachings, and Theodor unsuccessfully attempted to cast Cure to save his dying father. Later, his mother Cecilia died in labor giving birth to Cecil, Final Fantasy 4‘s main protagonist. Under the influence of the mind-controlling Lunarian Zemus, Theodor was renamed Golbez and forced to abandon his newborn brother, thus beginning a story of rivalry between the siblings.

Golbez would reluctantly do Zemus’ bidding throughout Final Fantasy 4, working to gather the crystals of Water, Fire, Earth, and Wind, as well as the four Dark crystals. By bringing all eight to the Tower of Babil (another Final Fantasy 4 location referenced in Endwalker), the Giant of Babil could be summoned to destroy all life on Earth and allow the Lunarians of the moon to settle there. Golbez would succeed in summoning the Giant, although he is freed from Zemus’ mind control thanks to the party member Fusoya. The freed Golbez realizes he has been fighting his own brother and joins forces with Cecil, turning the tide in the fight against Zemus.

Golbez and his Minions In Final Fantasy 14

During Golbez’s tenure as Final Fantasy 4‘s antagonist, Zemus provided him with four powerful Archfiends: Scarmiglione, Cagnazzo, Barbariccia, and Rubicante. Scarmiglione is encountered as the final boss of Final Fantasy 14‘s The Fell Court of Troia dungeon, and Barbariccia is the opponent in the new Storm’s Crown Trial. Final Fantasy 14 players can expect to face the remaining Archfiends leading up to a confrontation with Golbez himself.

It’s uncertain what Golbez’s motives are beyond a few cryptic lines about his desire to “win redemption for this star.” As he is a resident of the Thirteenth Shard, a realm that has been consumed by darkness, it’s possible that Golbez’s intentions are to somehow bring light back to his realm and restore it. Similar to his role in Final Fantasy 4, this Golbez may have more noble intentions than immediately apparent. Just as the Warrior of Light had a counterpart in Shadowbringers‘ The First, Golbez may be another reflection of one of Final Fantasy 14‘s heroes.

Final Fantasy 14 is available on PC, PS4, and PS5.

MORE: Final Fantasy 14: Explaining Yoshi-P’s Own Characters



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