I'd imagine the royal family would have a few different branches. For two reasons, one this doesn't really seem like an era where birth control would be available and two royal/noble families would have an invested interest in having multiple children to make sure someone carries on the title.
I do wonder how things are handled when the Dominant is born to a cousin or sibling of the current duke.
True, although the second reason would apply more likely to the "main" or ruling branch wanting to have the most children themselves as having different branches of course also can lead to uncertainty factors and in worst cases to civil war and family feuds.
This would indeed be a quite interesting issue for narrative purposes and it would mainly depend on how the relationship between the different family branches are.
Although I could imagine that the Dominant themselves would most likely force the whole issue simply by commanding the full powers of the Phoenix and thus claiming "divine right".
I could also imagine there being a council of nobles or something who is tasked with ensuring that always the Dominant of the Phoenix becomes the "Head of State" once he or she is old enough in order to prevent possible squabbles between family branches.
True, I forgot about the FF13 mythology. From what I recall you are correct, the l'Cie were treated very differently depending on their fal'cie. I'd imagine that depending on how your country views Dominants and those they bless, you're live can take quite a different turn.
What I find interesting is that it seems that in the more Domiant friendly nations being the host of a Eikon seems to come with a certain amount of reverence. It almost seems like people view them as the God's chosen one and their for their opinion carries more weight.
Indeed, it is also often tied to an ideology and how the powers and consequences are viewed by either the majority of the populace or by those who are in power.
It stands to reason that different nations may have had different experiences with both Eikons and their chosen Dominants in the past and these experiences shape their current views and treatment of Dominants and Eikons.
In Rosaria the Phoenix seems to be revered as a protector and guide, hence why its Dominant is seen as the chosen one to lead the nation, although it does seem to be not taken for granted as it is implied the Dominant has to be prepared and educated before taking power.
In Sanbreque, the Dominant is the "Champion" of the Empire and thus most likely either the overall leader of the military or at least at General rank or something similar, yet has no influence on politics like the Phoenix Dominant in Rosaria, being subordinate to the Emperor.
In Dhalmekia Titan's Dominant is stated to be a sort of "Advisor" to their parliament, thus has some political power but is not the actual ruler.
In Waloed the current ruler seems to be a Dominant and it looks like it is either an absolute monarchy or simply a dictatorship, yet said Dominant seems to have taken power by themselves, probably with a mix of their own Eikon powers and some charisma uniting the local populace behind them to defeat the Orcs and beastmen, not being "divinely mandated" like the Phoenix Dominant in Rosaria or the Emperor in Sanbreque is, practically a "self-made" ruler.
The Iron Kingdom on the other hand is said to worship the crystals directly so maybe for them an Eikon should manifest by themselves and they see Dominants as abominations because such powers shouldn't be in the hands of mere humans or as humans "selfishly taking godly powers for themselves".
The fact that they kill every Dominant they discover may thus be their warped view to "set the powers of the crystals free again".
Yeah, you are right he is really set to be The Woobie, the brutality of the attack alone would be enough pay a modern day therapist's kids way through college. And I doubt the trouble for him ends there.
I'm not too surprised, that you like that kind of character, seeing you seem to have quite a soft spot for Ven.
Ahaha, yea, although in such settings Therapists are never available. We'll see about that, but I certainly hope that whatever Joshua's story will be that it won't happen largely only behind the scenes-
Yep, Ven seems to be probably the most obvious but I can think of more than a dozen other fictional characters from KH and also across multiple works who fit the bill and are in my "want to cuddle and comfort them"-corner.
Some of them are both Cuties and Woobies, some only one of the two, like i.e. Terra is more Woobie than Cutie, but whatever.
Indeed the trailer strongly indicates that his governess/retainer was rather protective of him and trying to keep him safe and seperate.
I didn't really consider it, but yeah the five year age difference on top of their different roles could have potentially kept them apart for most of their lives.
I agree with the assumption that the time skip is in the range of 5 to 10 years, with 5 feeling the most right for some odd reason.
Well it kind of depends on how you define child character. If Josh or Jill are playable in the pre timeskip part, I feel like they'd be among the youngest playable characters but I haven't played all FF games, so I can't be certain.
Which can be a double-edged sword really when it comes to develop social skills and looking at it Joshua seems to want
to spend more time interacting with people who aren't just his retainers and guards.
One would also think that if Clive is supposed to be his younger brother's shield that he would spend more time around him to, y'know, actually being said shield.
I'd theorize that roles are probably the bigger factor keeping them apart as while a five year age-gap is rather big if they could interact and spend time around each other I'd imagine they would get along fine even if there might be quite some diverging interests.
A 5year time-skip would make Clive 20, Jill 17 and Joshua 15, way within the usual FF-character age range for a usual party.
If they are playable while being young they certainly won't be the youngest.
In Final Fantasy IX Vivi is a full playable character as just 6 while Eiko is 9.
The magician siblings Palom and Porom in Final Fantasy IV are actually only 5 years old, so it is not without precedence.
From what I understand people are born as Dominants, but they usually don't awaken as young as Josh did. At least that's the impression, I get from some of the descriptions on the website. Maybe people are born as Dominants, but don't always awaken?
But yes, seeing he's the only Dominant we know of now it's hard to really figure out how these things work.
This would beckon the question of course how one can discern if someone is a Dominant or not, especially if we assume one can be a Dominant without the Eikon being actually active. Maybe there's a sort of scan spell that shows some magical aura or something emanating from a Dominant even if dormant? Some mark or tattoo somewhere on the Dominant's body? Unusual high affinity for casting regular magic manifests?
Indeed, I feel this topic can't be much further explored until we get to know and see some other Dominants.
I could see the it being the explanation for an auto-regen ability.
An event like that would leave a mark. I could easily see something like the scenario you described here play out. With the Phoenix needing it's fragments to be recollected to regenerate.
I find it interesting how many mythologies across the world seem have regenerating birds. It'll be interesting how they pick and choose what to incorporate into this story.
Auto-Regen and possibly even Auto-Life which can automatically revive a character upon death in battle.
There is definitely a bucket load of possibilities how they can incorporate the whole Phoenix mythology into the main story, possibly even for all of the characters in a different way.
I'm not exactly sure about the origins of these similar depictions in different mythologies, but them existing with slight variations in many different belief systems is an indisputable fact.
It'd make sense, if they were. Though if you're theory of the brothers being kept apart is true I could also imagine it being part of a pact between the two.
Well, I wouldn't exactly say that they're deliberately kept apart from each other, but more like they can't spend as much time together as they would like to.
Even with this the identical jewelry on their ears could very well being a more "private" thing between them rather than something official of the Duchy as a whole.
Now of course if their parents would wear the same stuff then
it would most likely be something official.
Yeah, it's interesting for them to go with two games after each other depicting Ifrit as the evil Summon, though you could argue that the real evil Summon in FF15 was Bahamut.
Oh good catch if there's one Dark Eikon, there could easily be more. Counter points brought about by the Blight perhaps.
I don't know if "evil" is even the right moniker as if I recall correctly in XV Ifrit mainly turned violent because the arrogant humans of Solheim behaved like assholes and when he confronts Noctis & co. he is infected with the Starscourge and thus not fully in control of his own actions.
Haven't exactly played XV itself yet much beyond the first part of the first chapter though so I can't really judge the XV incarnation of Bahamut.
Correct, and another important question would be if the Dark Eikons work and manifest on their own, maybe as consequences of the Blight of if someone or something can summon and/or control them.
Ties of course also a bit into the question if Dark Eikons have Dominants too or if they can appear without being tied directly to someone.
Isn't it stated on the nation information that the Iron Kingdom and Rosaria squabble over the same mother crystal? So maybe "Dark" Ifrit is actually summoned from said Crystal directly, possibly expected by the Iron Kingdom to replace Phoenix as the reigning fire Eikon and thus make the crystal entirely "theirs".
Agreed there's definitely still room for lower lesser Eikons to exist. I'd imagine they'd be less powerful. In many polytheistic religions/mythologies lesser gods are common and with FF13 doing something similar I wouldn't find it too surprising if less frequently used summons would be put featured in such a role.
Well I wouldn't be surprised if both of those nations were to be portrayed as antagonistic.
Yep, there are some candidates which are more known among the whole FF series itself like for example Carbuncle, Siren, Maduin or Fenrir.
The big players would of course be the usual main summons which appear prominently in most FFs.
Ifrit, Shiva, Ramuh, Leviathan, Odin, Alexander and Bahamut are arguably the seven most famous, as in most other FFs both Titan and Phoenix actually aren't really main summons or really much important story-wise, so that is something XVI already stands out with.
Tbh when I look at the descriptions of the Nations, only Rosaria itself and the Dhalmekian Republic seem to be made out to be non-antagonistic in the classical sense.
Sanbreque appears to be a theocratic "knight-templar"-esque imperialistic entity, the Iron Kingdom is a cesspool of murderous fanatics who also seem to put religion over everything while Waloed is described as a monarchy/dictatorship who just recently made a huge military build-up and now looks to "test its neighbors borders".
Now that's what I'd call an unexpected 11th hour twist.
Everything seems lost, our heroes are at the end of their rope and just before all seems lost, Donald Duck awakens once more to Zettaflare all the Dark Eikons away. But before they can thank him he runs off, panicked, he forgot his date with Daisy!
...and then he realizes he isn't even in his own universe anymore and can't even reach Daisy.
I haven't played too many of the Final Fantasies yet, but from what I could see up until 13 most of the party members got a bit of an arc. Though I do have to admit even in FF10 it seems the focus is more on Tidus and Yuna. So it might be a longer running problem than I thought.
FF15's story telling wasn't optimal that's for sure, while it was mainly focused on Noctis, it still failed didn't really manage to develop and establish him much outside of his friend group.
Still it'd be nice if this time we don't need "Episode Joshua" and "Episode Jill" to get their part of the story.
Very true, there's plenty else to avenge even if Joshua and Jill make it out. I think I'm letting my experience with other stories, color my impression here. I'm sure they're not going to fridge Jill and they're just keeping their cards close to their chest for the time being.
That is correct, in the original FF XIII there also were still arcs for the other characters, aided by them sometimes being split up into different groups with only Fang I think getting a bit of a shorter stick but it was still substantial enough.
In X Auron, Rikku, Kimahri and Wakka all had their own character arcs and substories which were addressed throughout the game's story parallel to the protagonist main narrative for Tidus and Yuna, the only member of the main party who didn't get much of her own was Lulu, with her being more satelliting around both Yuna and Wakka.
Apart from XV the title that comes mostly into my mind when it comes to lacking care and fleshing out of characters would be Type-0, although this isn't a main title and if I recall correctly supposed to be a "world-driven" and not "character-driven" story.
Yep, exactly this.
It can go into many directions actually, like i.e. that it looks like Joshua and/or Jill didn't "make" it all to Clive himself, yet later down the narrative we get to learn that they still are around somehow. I don't remember every second of the trailer so maybe I forgot if she was there but if not there's also the possibility that Jill isn't even present when Ifrit shows up.
Honestly, I wasn't sure what to make of the trailer but reading all the deep discussion and speculation here about the game already has made me really excited for it.
Sometimes it is crazy how much one can speculate out of the smallest scraps of info but to be honest the actual deeper discussing and speculating only got really running when the additional small information bits from the official website came out.
Although I do realize that we may get a little carried away here,