Squall Leonhart

Squall Leonhart (Japanese: スコール・レオンハート Hepburn: Sukōru Reonhāto) is a fictional character and the primary protagonist of Final Fantasy VIII, a role-playing video game by Square (now Square Enix). In Final Fantasy VIII, Squall is a 17-year-old student at Balamb Garden, a prestigious military academy for elite mercenaries (known as "SeeDs"). He stands 177 cm (5 ft 10 in) tall. As the story progresses, Squall befriends Quistis Trepe, Zell Dincht, Selphie Tilmitt, and Irvine Kinneas, and falls in love with Rinoa Heartilly. These relationships, combined with the game's plot, gradually change him from a loner to an open, caring person. Squall has appeared in several other games, including Chocobo Racing, Itadaki Street Special, and the Kingdom Hearts series, as Leon (レオン Reon).

Squall was designed by Tetsuya Nomura, with input from game director Yoshinori Kitase. He was modeled after late actor River Phoenix. Squall's weapon, the gunblade, also made so that it would be difficult to master. In order to make players understand Squall's silent attitude, Kazushige Nojima made the character's thoughts open to them. Squall's first voiced appearance was in the first Kingdom Hearts game, voiced by Hideo Ishikawa in Japanese and by David Boreanaz in English; Doug Erholtz has since assumed the role for all other English-speaking appearances.

Squall had a varied reaction from critics, with some judging him poorly compared to other Final Fantasy heroes due to his coldness and angst, and others praising his character development. Nevertheless, the character has been popular, and his relationship with Rinoa resulted in praise.

Squall Leonhart
Final Fantasy character
Squall Leonhart
Squall Leonhart Dissidia artwork by Tetsuya Nomura wielding his gunblade
First gameFinal Fantasy VIII (1999)
Created byKazushige Nojima
Designed byTetsuya Nomura
Voiced byDoug Erholtz
David Boreanaz (Kingdom Hearts)
Hideo Ishikawa (Japanese)
Limit BreakRenzokuken[2]

Creation and design

River Phoenix
Squall was inspired by late actor River Phoenix.

The first character Nomura designed for Final Fantasy VIII, Squall was inspired by actor River Phoenix, although Nomura said that "[n]obody understood it."[3] Squall is 177 cm (5 ft 10 in) tall,[4] initially with longer hair and a more feminine appearance. After objections by game director Yoshinori Kitase, Nomura made the character more masculine. He added the scar across Squall's brow and the bridge of his nose impulsively (to make the character more recognizable), leaving the description of its origin up to scenario writer Kazushige Nojima.[5] Squall's first illustration was used as a set up to create the world around him. The logo of the game which had Squall embracing Rinoa was left as an open interpretation for fans who still had not played the game. The scar in Squall's forehead was also left ambiguous although Nomura said it was important for him.[6]

Nomura's design of Squall included fur lining along his jacket collar as a challenge for the game's full motion video designers.[7] In Final Fantasy VIII Nojima worked to give players insight into what Squall was thinking, in contrast to Final Fantasy VII (which encouraged players to speculate).[8] In retrospective, Nojima believes the staff made him particularly "cool".[9] Across the video game it is implied that the character of Laguna Loire is Squall's father. However, Square Enix never confirmed it.[10] Nomura designed Squall to contrast with Laguna.[5]

Nomura created Squall's gunblade with silver accessories.[11] The weapon is a sword with components of a revolver, sending vibrations through the blade when triggered;[12] this inflicts additional damage if the player presses the R1 trigger on the controller as Squall strikes an enemy.[12] Although the weapon was intended as a novel way for players to control weapons in battle, Nomura said he feels (in retrospect) that it looks odd.[5] Additionally, he felt it was very difficult to master.[6] Square's Hiroki Chiba said that his favorite moment in the Final Fantasy franchise was when Squall and Rinoa embrace in space due to the use of Faye Wong's "Eyes On Me" music in the background and having to work every frame to make it work.[13]

During one of the cutscenes of Final Fantasy VIII, Squall is impaled by the Edea in battle. This created a theory that Squall dies in battle. When asked about this, Kitase laughed at this and denied this theory. However, he found it interesting if a remake of the game was ever proposed and the staff would think of changing elements from the story.[14]

While Final Fantasy VIII did not use voice acting, Squall obtained a voice in the Square Enix series Kingdom Hearts, where he is known as "Leon". There, he is voiced by David Boreanaz in the English version of the game and Hideo Ishikawa in the Japanese version. He returns in Kingdom Hearts II, voiced in the English version by Doug Erholtz. Erholtz said in an interview that he had a "fun journey" voicing Leon and it was a "really fun role to play".[15]


Final Fantasy VIII

At the beginning of Final Fantasy VIII, Squall is known as a "lone wolf" because he never shows his feelings[16] and seems cold to his associates.[17] His superiors (such as teacher Quistis Trepe) consider him difficult to deal with, but respect his talents.[18][19] Squall is stoic, with his taciturn nature used for comic relief. He is dragged into a heroic role when Cid, headmaster of Balamb Garden, appoints him leader of the academy midway through the game.[20] During a late battle against Galbadia Garden, Squall has difficulty exhibiting leadership because of his lingering isolation.[21] Although other characters try to pull him out of his shell and Rinoa Heartilly expends considerable energy pursuing him, it takes time for him to accept the others' friendship, fall in love with Rinoa and care for her.[22] Squall is more comfortable later in a leadership role, especially when he must fight Ultimecia.[23]

Throughout the game, he has a rivalry with Seifer Almasy. The opening sequence features the duel where Squall receives his facial scar (giving Seifer a mirror image), and scenes where Squall and Seifer are supposed to cooperate are characterized by squabbles between the cadets.[24] Although Seifer later allies with the Sorceress (requiring Squall to fight him several times), Squall still feels a camaraderie with him.[25]

According to flashbacks during the game, Squall grew up in an orphanage with the other playable characters (except Rinoa). The orphans were cared for by Edea; although Squall remembers little about his past, he becomes an emotionally detached, cynical and introverted boy whose original goal is to go through life without any emotional ties or dependence.[26] He gradually warms, and it is later revealed that his detachment from his companions is a defensive mechanism to protect himself from the emotional pain he suffered when he and his older sister were separated.[27]

After Ultimecia is defeated, the time and space that she had absorbed begin to return to normal, pulling Squall's comrades back into their places in the timeline, while Squall returns to the orphanage and meets a younger Edea. Since she does not want to involve the children, she absorbs the dying Ultimecia's powers as part of the cycle of sorceresses (a sorceress must pass her powers to a successor before she can die peacefully).[28] Squall plants the ideas for Garden and SeeD in her mind, creating an origin paradox: Squall must become leader of Balamb Garden so he can pass its version of SeeD tradition to Edea, who teaches them to her husband Cid (who co-founds Balamb Garden, which admits Edea's orphans—including Squall).[29]

Other appearances

Squall appears as a non-playable character in Kingdom Hearts. He wears a short leather jacket with red wings on the back (resembling the decorations on Rinoa's duster) and his Griever necklace. Squall takes the name Leon as an alias, because he was ashamed of not protecting those he loved from the Heartless when his home world (the Radiant Garden) was consumed by darkness.[30] His role in Kingdom Hearts is to help guide the protagonist, Sora, in his battle (with other Final Fantasy characters) against the Heartless. Although Squall's appearance and age differ (he is 25 in Kingdom Hearts[31] and 17 in Final Fantasy VIII),[32] his personality remains the same.[31] A memory-based version of Squall (as Leon) appears in Kingdom Hearts: Chain of Memories teaching gameplay in a tutorial.[33] Leon's jacket later has a fur lining on its collar, which did not appear in the first Kingdom Hearts game. In this game, he works with his friends to restore their world.[34] Squall also appears as an opponent in Olympus Coliseum tournaments, often paired with other Final Fantasy characters. His virtual replica appears in Kingdom Hearts coded, where it meets Sora's virtual replica.[35]

Squall is a secret character in Chocobo Racing [36] and Itadaki Street Special, and a sprite version occasionally appears on the loading screen of the PlayStation version of Final Fantasy VI (part of the Final Fantasy Anthology). He appears as a playable character in every Dissidia: Final Fantasy title, with his Kingdom Hearts design available as downloadable content in Dissidia 012 Final Fantasy.[37][38][39][40] He is a playable character in Itadaki Street Portable and the main character, representing Final Fantasy VIII, in the rhythm games Theatrhythm Final Fantasy[41] and Theatrhythm Final Fantasy: Curtain Call.[42] Squall also appears as a premium character in Pictlogica Final Fantasy and Final Fantasy: All The Bravest both for Android and iOS.


Critical reaction to Squall was mixed. Journalist Jack Patrick Rodgers of PopMatters said that Squall's cynicism and frustration with those around him made him a strong character, but "coldly inhuman".[43] GamesRadar called Squall the fifth-best Final Fantasy hero of all time, praising the development of his personality and his improved interactions with other characters.[44] GameZone rated him the fourth-best character in the franchise, saying that while fans "either love or hate this guy" he became the "ultimate anti-hero" (despite little dialogue) of an entertaining journey.[45] The website called Squall and Rinoa the best couple created by Square Enix, noting the differences between them and the fact that their relationship was the first in the series to drive the plot of a game.[46] They were on The Inquirer's list of most-memorable video-game love teams, with comments again focused on the differences between them.[47] GameSpot said that while Squall could be viewed as a "jerk", he could also be seen as "standoffish because of some repressed Wagnerian broodiness, in which case he was kind of interesting".[48] Allgame said that they initially hated Squall, but although he originally seemed "cold and uncaring", his romance changed him for the better.[49] RPGamer called Squall "everyone's favorite orphan" and said that although he tries to distance himself from others, "he can't help but draw people to him, be it sorceresses or gun-slinging ladies' men".[50] GameDaily ranked him sixth on their list of the "Top 25 Gaming Hunks", stating that while critics described the character as a "jerk", his character design, notably his scar, made him visually appealing.[51] Similarly, Den of Geek listed Squall as one of the most sexually appealing video game characters based on the design, most notably his scar.[52] Arnold Katayev of PSXextreme praised Squall's redesign in Kingdom Hearts as the game's best.[53] In a 2008 Oricon poll, Squall was voted the tenth-most-popular video-game character.[54] He was voted the 29th-best video-game character by Famitsu readers in February 2010.[55] Complex listed him as the one of the greatest Final Fantasy characters.[56]

However, IGN said that "the problem [with Final Fantasy VIII] is that the character at the heart of everything, Squall, is basically a pouty jerk ... When your story is character-centered, you'd better center it on a character the audience can care about. Squall ... just doesn't fit the bill".[57] 1UP.com ranked Squall second on its list of the "Top 5 Most Irritating RPG Protagonists" and stated that although he was an attempt to "cater to the fedora-wearing, trench-coat-clad folks", his lack of social skills alienated players.[58] Edge compared Squall unfavorably with Final Fantasy VII protagonist Cloud Strife, saying that Squall's angst "didn't seem to have any context" (unlike Cloud's, which developed from one of the pivotal events in Final Fantasy VII). His relationship with Rinoa was criticized by Edge: "He [Squall] suddenly falls in "love" with [Rinoa] at the end [of Final Fantasy VIII]."[59] In GamesRadar's humorous "RPG Emo-Off", Squall was defeated in heartbreak by Cloud.[60] Squall was featured in the 1UP.com article "Top 5 Final Fantasy Character Types" in the second category, "The Sullen Asshole", with Cloud and Cecil from Final Fantasy IV.[61] GameSpy featured him in its comical "Videogame Characters Who Would Suck in Real Life", saying that in reality he would be a terrible soldier.[62]

See also


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  2. ^ Square Electronic Arts, ed. (1999). Final Fantasy VIII North American instruction manual. Square Electronic Arts. p. 21. SLUS-00892GH.
  3. ^ "The Bouncer Team Talks About Its Mysterious Game". IGN. 2000-09-21. Archived from the original on 2012-02-25. Retrieved 2013-08-09.
  4. ^ Studio BentStuff, ed. (1999). Final Fantasy VIII Ultimania (in Japanese). DigiCube/Square Enix. p. 12. ISBN 4-925075-49-7.
  5. ^ a b c Knight, Sheila (2003). "Tetsuya Nomura 20s". FLAREgamer. Archived from the original on 2016-11-07. Retrieved 2006-04-13.
  6. ^ a b Coxon, Sachi (2003). "Final Fantasy VIII interview". PlayStation Tripod. Archived from the original on 2012-12-08. Retrieved 2017-01-06.
  7. ^ Studio BentStuff, ed. (1999). Final Fantasy VIII Ultimania (in Japanese). DigiCube/Square Enix. pp. 46–47. ISBN 4-925075-49-7.
  8. ^ Square Co. (2002-01-31). Final Fantasy X International. PlayStation 2. Square EA. Level/area: Beyond Final Fantasy: Event.
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  11. ^ Studio BentStuff, ed. (1999). Final Fantasy VIII Ultimania (in Japanese). DigiCube/Square Enix. p. 13. ISBN 4-925075-49-7.
  12. ^ a b Studio BentStuff, ed. (1999). Final Fantasy VIII Ultimania (in Japanese). DigiCube/Square Enix. p. 43. ISBN 4-925075-49-7.
  13. ^ Wallace, Kimberley (April 29, 2016). "Final Fantasy Masterminds Reminisce About Their Favorite Moments". Game Informer. Archived from the original on April 30, 2016. Retrieved April 30, 2016.
  14. ^ "Is Squall Really Dead? Final Fantasy Producer Addresses The Series' Biggest Fan Theories". Kotaku. September 5, 2017. Archived from the original on September 5, 2017. Retrieved September 5, 2017.
  15. ^ Kana. "Kana's Korner - Interview with Doug Erholtz". Kana's Korner. 91.8 The Fan. Archived from the original on 2012-09-13. Retrieved 2013-08-19.
  16. ^ Square Co. (1999-09-09). Final Fantasy VIII. PlayStation. Square EA. Rinoa: That's it! Just let out anything! Anything... We want you to talk to us a little more. That's all. Y'know, if there's anything you want to tell us, or anything we can do, don't hesitate to let us know. I know it's not easy, but I wish you would trust us and rely on us a little more.
  17. ^ Square Co. (1999-09-09). Final Fantasy VIII. PlayStation. Square EA. Rinoa: Don't you ever worry about or even think about the well-being of your comrades!? / Squall: (I don't believe in relying on others.) / Rinoa: Don't you understand!? / Squall:(...Whatever.)
  18. ^ Square Co. (1999-09-09). Final Fantasy VIII. PlayStation. Square EA. Quistis: I guess I was right. You and Seifer are in a class of your own. You both have amazing strength and potential.
  19. ^ Square Co. (1999-09-09). Final Fantasy VIII. PlayStation. Square EA. Quistis: Aren't there times when you want to share feelings with someone? / Squall: Everyone has to take care of themselves? I don't want to carry anyone's burden.
  20. ^ Square Co. (1999-09-09). Final Fantasy VIII. PlayStation. Square EA. Headmaster Cid: Squall, we're under your command from now on. This is your fate. It is your destiny to lead the way in defeating the sorceress.
  21. ^ Square Co. (1999-09-09). Final Fantasy VIII. PlayStation. Square EA. Squall: (I've had it up to here with this leader thing... Alright, alright... I'll choose.)
  22. ^ Square Co. (1999-09-09). Final Fantasy VIII. PlayStation. Square EA. Squall: Pandora whatever and Sorceress Adel are out of my hands. I don't know where to look for Sis. The only thing I know is Rinoa. The only thing I want to do for sure right now is for Rinoa. We're going to get Rinoa back!
  23. ^ Square Co. (1999-09-09). Final Fantasy VIII. PlayStation. Square EA. Squall: I don't know what's going on. But since we're still here, I think we still have some time to finish our job. / Quistis: What are we going to do, Squall? / Squall: We'll divide into two parties.
  24. ^ Square Co. (1999-09-09). Final Fantasy VIII. PlayStation. Square EA. Seifer: Well then, Squall. Go see what's going on outside. / Squall: ......Ok. / Seifer: Good. Because it's MY order.
  25. ^ Square Co. (1999-09-09). Final Fantasy VIII. PlayStation. Square EA. Squall: (I liked him... wasn't really a bad guy... He was one of us...) (Seifer... You've just become just a memory.) (Will they... Will they talk about me this way if I die, too?) (Squall was this and that. Using past tense, saying whatever they want?) (So this is what death is all about...) (...Not for me.) (I won't have it!!!) / ... / Squall: I'm not having anyone talk about me in the past tense!
  26. ^ Square Co. (1999-09-09). Final Fantasy VIII. PlayStation. Square EA. Squall: (I don't believe in relying on others.)
  27. ^ Square Co. (1999-09-09). Final Fantasy VIII. PlayStation. Square EA. Squall: I worry too much about what others think of me. I hate that side of me... That's why I didn't want anyone to get to know me. I wanted to hide that side of myself. I hate it. Squall is an unfriendly, introverted guy. It made it easy for me when people perceived me that way. That's a secret between you and me. Got that?
  28. ^ Square Co. (1999-09-09). Final Fantasy VIII. PlayStation. Square EA. Edea: It's ok. There's no need to fight. That sorceress is just looking for someone to pass her power on to. In order to die in peace, a sorceress must free of all her powers. I know... for I am one, too. I shall take over that sorceress' powers. I do not want one of the children to become one.
  29. ^ Square Co. (1999-09-09). Final Fantasy VIII. PlayStation. Square EA. Edea: SeeD? Garden? / Squall: Both Garden and SeeD were your ideas. Garden trains SeeDs. SeeDs are trained to defeat the sorceress. / Edea: What are you saying? You're... that boy from the future?
  30. ^ Square (2002-11-15). Kingdom Hearts. PlayStation 2. Square Electronic Arts. A swordsman who wields the gunblade. His real name: Squall Leonheart. He escaped to Traverse Town when the Heartless raided his home world. To part with his old self, a man who had been helpless to stop them, he changed his name.
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Characters of Final Fantasy IX

The characters of the PlayStation role-playing game Final Fantasy IX. Filling four CD-ROMs, Final Fantasy IX featured a cast containing a variety of major and minor characters. Players could control a maximum of four characters for combat at once, with eight main playable characters in the party and a few other, temporary characters.

Characters of Final Fantasy VI

Square's role-playing video game Final Fantasy VI (released as Final Fantasy III in North America) features fourteen permanent player characters, the largest number of any game in the main Final Fantasy series, as well as a number of characters who are only briefly controlled by the player.

Characters of Final Fantasy VIII

Final Fantasy VIII, a 1999 best-selling role-playing video game by Squaresoft, features an elite group of mercenaries called "SeeD", as well as soldiers, rebels, and political leaders of various nations and cities. Thirteen weeks after its release, Final Fantasy VIII had earned more than US$50 million in sales, making it the fastest selling Final Fantasy title at the time. The game has shipped 8.15 million units worldwide as of March 2003. Additionally, Final Fantasy VIII was voted the 22nd-best game of all time by readers of the Japanese magazine Famitsu in 2006. The game's characters were created by Tetsuya Nomura, and are the first in the series to be realistically proportioned in all aspects of the game. This graphical shift, as well as the cast itself, has received generally positive reviews from gaming magazines and websites.The six main playable characters in Final Fantasy VIII are Squall Leonhart, a loner who avoids vulnerability by focusing on his duty; Rinoa Heartilly, an outspoken and passionate young woman who follows her heart; Quistis Trepe, an instructor with a serious yet patient attitude; Zell Dincht, an energetic martial artist with a fondness for hot dogs; Selphie Tilmitt, a cheerful girl who loves trains and flies the airship Ragnarok; and Irvine Kinneas, a marksman and womanizer who uses his charm to mask his insecurities. Temporarily playable characters include Laguna Loire, Kiros Seagill, and Ward Zabac, who appear in "flashback" sequences; SeeD cadet-turned-antagonist Seifer Almasy; and sorceress Edea Kramer. The main antagonist is Ultimecia, a sorceress from the future who wishes to compress time.

David Boreanaz

David Boreanaz (; born May 16, 1969) is an American actor, television producer, and director, known for playing the roles of vampire-turned-private investigator Angel on Buffy the Vampire Slayer (1997–2003) and its spinoff Angel (1999–2004); FBI Special Agent Seeley Booth on the television crime procedural comedy-drama series Bones (2005–2017); and Jason Hayes in the military drama series SEAL Team.

Dissidia Final Fantasy NT

Dissidia Final Fantasy NT is a fighting game with action role-playing elements developed by Koei Tecmo's Team Ninja and published by Square Enix for the PlayStation 4. The game is a follow-up to Dissidia Final Fantasy and Dissidia 012 Final Fantasy, released for PlayStation Portable, and similarly allows players to battle one another using many characters from the Final Fantasy series. The game is a console port of the 2015 Japanese arcade game Dissidia Final Fantasy, and it released worldwide in January 2018.

Doug Erholtz

Douglas J. "Doug" Erholtz (born February 21, 1971) is an American voice actor. He is best known for his performances as Gin Ichimaru from Bleach, TK Takaishi from Digimon Adventure 02, Squall Leonhart from the Final Fantasy series and Kingdom Hearts II, Asuma Sarutobi from Naruto and Hamrio Musica from Rave Master.

Eyes on Me (Faye Wong song)

"Eyes on Me" is a pop ballad performed by Chinese singer Faye Wong as a love theme for the video game Final Fantasy VIII. The music was composed by Nobuo Uematsu with English lyrics by Kako Someya.

Final Fantasy VIII

Final Fantasy VIII is a role-playing video game developed and published by Square for the PlayStation console. Released in 1999, it is the eighth main installment in the Final Fantasy series. Set on an unnamed fantasy world with science fiction elements, the game follows a group of young mercenaries, led by Squall Leonhart, as they are drawn into a conflict sparked by Ultimecia, a sorceress from the future who wishes to compress time. During the quest to defeat Ultimecia, Squall struggles with his role as leader and develops a romance with one of his comrades, Rinoa Heartilly.

Development began in 1997, during the English localization of Final Fantasy VII. The game builds on the visual changes brought to the series by Final Fantasy VII, including the use of 3D graphics and pre-rendered backgrounds, while also departing from many Final Fantasy traditions. It is the first Final Fantasy to use realistically proportioned characters consistently, feature a vocal piece as its theme music, and forgo the use of magic points for spellcasting.

Final Fantasy VIII was mostly well received by critics, who praised its originality and visuals while criticizing some of its gameplay elements. It was voted the 22nd-best game of all time in 2006 by readers of the Japanese magazine Famitsu. The game was a commercial success; it earned more than US$50 million in sales during its first 13 weeks of release, making it the fastest-selling Final Fantasy title until Final Fantasy XIII, a multi-platform release. A Microsoft Windows port followed in 2000, with the addition of the Chocobo World minigame. Final Fantasy VIII was re-released worldwide as a PSOne Classic on the PlayStation Store in 2009, for PlayStation 3 and PlayStation Portable, with support for PlayStation Vita in 2012. It was re-released via Steam in 2013 and in Japan in 2014. As of December 2013, it has sold more than 8.5 million copies worldwide.


Griever could refer to

A mourner

Squall Leonhart, the lead character in Final Fantasy VIII

Griever de Hocus, the lead character in Gerald Vizenor's novel Griever: An American Monkey King in China

Griever, a creature in The Maze Runner by James Dashner

Hideo Ishikawa

Hideo Ishikawa (石川 英郎, Ishikawa Hideo, born December 13, 1969) is a Japanese voice actor born in Hyōgo Prefecture, Japan. He works for Aoni Production.

He is most known for being voices for Kicchō Fukuda in Slam Dunk, Auron in Final Fantasy X, Itachi Uchiha in Naruto, Squall Leonhart in Final Fantasy VIII, Jūshirō Ukitake in Bleach, and Pierre de Chaltier in Tales of Destiny.

Jun Akiyama (video game designer)

Jun Akiyama (秋山 淳, Akiyama Jun, born 1973) is a Japanese video game event director and scenario writer who works at Square Enix. He joined the predecessor company Square in 1995. In his role as event planner for Final Fantasy VII, Akiyama was responsible for the story elements and cutscenes involving the characters Red XIII and Yuffie Kisaragi, respectively. During his work as the event director of Vagrant Story, he intended to make the transitions between gameplay and event scenes as smooth as possible. The fully polygonal graphics of the game entailed precise camera movements, character animations and the usage of different lens effects.In late 1999, Akiyama watched Disney's animated Tarzan film and then pleaded with Kingdom Hearts director and story writer Tetsuya Nomura to join the game's team. He became the event planning director and one of the scenario writers, taking charge of the Tarzan-themed segment, among others. Akiyama tried to inject Disney-like humor into the game, such as a scene in which Donald Duck is flattened by an opening door. He also suggested Final Fantasy VIII character Squall Leonhart be renamed Leon to maintain suspense before his first on-screen appearance. In January 2002, Akiyama joined the Final Fantasy XII project as event director in charge of such aspects as camera movements, voice-overs and motions. When Yasumi Matsuno stepped down as the game's director in mid-2005, he expressed his high confidence in the remaining team members, among them Akiyama. Many of the story ideas that Akiyama came up with alongside scenario writer Daisuke Watanabe had to be abandoned in order to finish the game on time. For a time, Akiyama was the event planning director of Final Fantasy Versus XIII (which was later reworked into Final Fantasy XV).

Kingdom Hearts II

Kingdom Hearts II (Japanese: キングダムハーツII, Hepburn: Kingudamu Hātsu Tsū) is a 2005 action role-playing game developed and published by Square Enix for the PlayStation 2 video game console. The game is a sequel to Kingdom Hearts, and like the original game, combines characters and settings from Disney films with those of Square Enix's Final Fantasy series. The game's popularity has resulted in a novel and manga series based upon it and a Japan-exclusive re-released version of the game featuring extra content, Kingdom Hearts II Final Mix, released in March 2007.

Kingdom Hearts II is the third game in the Kingdom Hearts series. It picks up one year after the events of Kingdom Hearts: Chain of Memories. Sora, the protagonist of the first two games, returns to search for his lost friends while battling the sinister Organization XIII, a group of antagonists previously introduced in Chain of Memories. Like the previous games, Kingdom Hearts II features a large cast of characters from Disney films and Final Fantasy games.

The game was critically acclaimed and earned year-end awards from numerous video gaming websites. In Japan, it shipped more than one million copies within a week of its release. One month after its North American release, it had sold over one million copies and was the second best-selling game of 2006. By April 2007, the game had shipped over four million copies worldwide. The game has been included by gaming publications in lists of the greatest video games of all time.The Final Mix version of the game was re-mastered in high definition and released globally in 2014 as a part of the Kingdom Hearts HD 2.5 Remix collection for the PlayStation 3 and PlayStation 4.

Maternal mortality in fiction

Maternal death in fiction is a common theme encountered in literature, movies, and other media.

The death of a mother during pregnancy, childbirth or puerperium is a tragic event. The chances of a child surviving such an extreme birth are compromised. In fictional literature the death of a pregnant or delivering mother is a powerful device: it removes one character and places the surviving child into an often hostile environment which has to be overcome.

Music of Final Fantasy VIII

The music of the video game Final Fantasy VIII was composed by regular series composer Nobuo Uematsu. The Final Fantasy VIII Original Soundtrack, a compilation of all music in the game, was released on four Compact Discs by DigiCube in Japan, and by Square EA in North America. A special orchestral arrangement of selected tracks from the game—arranged by Shirō Hamaguchi—was released under the title Fithos Lusec Wecos Vinosec Final Fantasy VIII, and a collection of piano arrangements—performed by Shinko Ogata—was released under the title Piano Collections Final Fantasy VIII.

The game's soundtrack is best known for two tracks: "Liberi Fatali", a Latin choral piece that is played during the introduction to the game, and "Eyes on Me", a pop song serving as the game's theme, performed by Chinese singer Faye Wong. Reviewers were generally pleased with the music, although several cited issues while comparing the score to previous games or looking at individual tracks.

Noctis Lucis Caelum

Noctis Lucis Caelum (ノクティス・ルシス・チェラム, Nokutisu Rushisu Cheramu), "Noct" (ノクト, Nokuto) for short, is a fictional character from Square Enix's Final Fantasy series. He is a playable character and main protagonist of Final Fantasy XV, originally a spin-off titled Final Fantasy Versus XIII. The crown prince and protector of Lucis, Noctis and his allies must defend their country when the empire of Niflheim attacks Lucis in an attempt to take control of its magical Crystal. Alongside Final Fantasy XV, Noctis has appeared in the game's expanded media, including Final Fantasy crossover titles, and other game titles including Puzzle & Dragons and the fighting game Tekken 7.

Noctis was created and co-designed by Tetsuya Nomura, with later design revisions being handled by Yusuke Naora. Nomura created Noctis as a type of protagonist not featured in a leading role in the Final Fantasy series before. He also wanted his personality to be unique in the series, being unlike protagonists like Squall Leonhart or Cloud Strife, instead focusing more on realism. Noctis' clothes were designed by Hiromu Takahara, lead designer for Japanese fashion house Roen. His clothing was created to be both asymmetric, mirroring the fashion house's trademark style, and indicative of the game's themes and atmosphere. Before his design was finalized, Noctis was given a story-inspired temporary outfit used in early trailers.

Since his original reveal, Noctis has been compared with other asocial characters seen in the series' other games based on his appearance. Following the release of the game, Noctis has been positively received by journalists, with many noting his growth over the course of the story, and contrasting him against other Final Fantasy protagonists. His appearances in both the expanded media of Final Fantasy XV and other games have gathered multiple types of responses.

River Phoenix

River Jude Phoenix (né Bottom; August 23, 1970 – October 31, 1993) was an American actor, musician, and activist. He was the older brother of Rain Phoenix, Joaquin Phoenix, Liberty Phoenix, and Summer Phoenix.

Phoenix's work encompassed 24 films and television appearances, and his rise to fame led to his status as a "teen idol". He began his acting career at age 10, in television commercials. He starred in the science fiction adventure film Explorers (1985), and had his first notable role in 1986's Stand by Me, a coming-of-age film based on the novella The Body by Stephen King. Phoenix made a transition into more adult-oriented roles with Running on Empty (1988), playing the son of fugitive parents in a well-received performance that earned him a nomination for an Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor, and My Own Private Idaho (1991), playing a gay hustler in search of his estranged mother. For his performance in the latter, Phoenix garnered enormous praise and won a Volpi Cup for Best Actor at the Venice Film Festival, along with Best Actor from the National Society of Film Critics.

On October 31, 1993, Phoenix collapsed and died of combined drug intoxication following a drug overdose on the sidewalk outside the West Hollywood nightclub The Viper Room at the age of 23. At the time of his death, Phoenix was acting in Dark Blood (2012).

Squall (disambiguation)

A squall is a sudden, sharp increase in wind speed.

Squall or The Squall may also refer to:

The Squall, a 1929 film by Alexander Korda

"Squall" (NCIS), an episode of the American television series NCIS

"Squall" (song), a single released by Japanese band D'espairsRay

Squall Leonhart, the main hero of the role-playing game Final Fantasy VIII

USS Squall (PC-7), a Cyclone-class patrol ship

Warrior (character class)

Warrior is a character class (or job) found in many role-playing games. This class may also be referred to as Fighter, as in Dungeons & Dragons. The class is sometimes also referred to as a Knight or Bruiser, although in some games this is a separate class with a more chivalric aspect. The Warrior is skilled in combat, and usually can make use of some of the most powerful heavy armor and weaponry in the game. As such, the warrior is a well-rounded physical combatant. In some games, the Warrior (or more often the Knight, if it is a separate class) may be able to learn basic magic, but its capabilities in this field are somewhat limited. Because of the class's reliance on heavy plate armor and expensive weaponry, the cost of managing the Warrior's equipment is typically very high.

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