The Final Fantasy franchise has been known to draw off of influences from several different religions in every single game. Nods to Christianity, as well as other religions, can be found everywhere if you know where to look. Today I wish to look specifically at Final Fantasy IV (released as Final Fantasy II in the US, which is very confusing), which was released for the Super Nintendo by a company called Square Enix in 1991. This game had a couple of very obvious allusions to the Old Testament.
The first allusion I wish to look is an area in the game called the Tower of Babil. In the game, the tower is said to reach from the Underworld to the Overworld. The origin of the tower is unknown. The tower is used by an evil sorcerer named Golbez to summon a giant of destruction.
The tower houses a large giant, as mentioned before, called the Giant of Babil. This giant is a very large machine which has the capability of destroying the world.
This is of course an allusion to the Tower of Babel found in Genesis 11. In Genesis, the people of the world spoke a single language. As the people expanded they sought to build a tower that would reach up to Heaven. In verse 7 God ‘confounds’ the people by splitting them up across the globe and causing them to speak different languages.
While there were no giant metal monsters in Genesis there is a similarity in the two stories. In both Final Fantasy IV and Genesis a being sought to confound the people, albeit the giant in FFIV seeks to confound the people of Earth by destroying them while in the book of Genesis God merely causes the people to speak different languages.
The other allusion found in Final Fantasy IV comes in the form of the name of a character and his weapon. One of the protagonists who became a tragic figure in the game is known as Kain Highwind. During the course of the game he is brainwashed by Golbez into doing his bidding. As a result, Kain betrays his adopted brother Cecil and nearly kills him. Kain’s most powerful weapon he gains over the course of the game is known as Abel’s Lance.
This is of course an allusion to the story of Cain and Abel, which is found in Genesis 4. In this story, Cain becomes jealous of his younger brother Abel because God had rejected Cain’s offering but had accepted Abel’s. In a fit of jealousy and rage, Cain leads Abel out into a field and then murders him.
Although the circumstances are different, the main narrative is the same in both stories. One brother betrays the other and tries to kill him, although Cain in the Genesis story succeeds.
The Final Fantasy franchise has always drawn from influences from various religions, especially Christianity, although the games never take a religious stance. Final Fantasy IV (Final Fantasy II in the US) is just another example of this.