As the release date of Final Fantasy XV: Episode Ardyn is just around the corner, let’s have a little recap on the story so far, shall we?
On June 2017, Square Enix launched an in-game survey on what content fans would like to see featured in future updates. Out of the many content listed, Ardyn’s backstory earned the top spot followed by Lunafreya’s story. This led to Square Enix announcing a four-episode DLC set called the Dawn of The Future featuring the stories of Ardyn, Noctis, Lunafreya and Aranea.
However, before fans could see the DLC through, on the 8th of December 2018 the project was scrapped leaving Episode Ardyn the only one in production. At that point, the promotional period for Episode Ardyn started with Square Enix dropping us bits of information through their video teasers.
The key people in charge of Episode Ardyn also brought to light the basic profiles and relationships of Ardyn, his brother Somnus and the oracle of that era, Aera. The video can be found here.
So what does Episode Ardyn have to offer?
It is a story that focuses on the Final Fantasy XV narrative from Ardyn’s point of view. The concept of this particular DLC is “a Final Fantasy with a villain as its protagonist”.
It takes place in the city of Insomnia, approximately 30 years prior to the events of the main game when he begins his revenge on the royal family, and in the midst of all this, we’ll see him come to a revelation regarding his own destiny.
The highlight of this DLC is that we’ll get to see the more human side of Ardyn that we can relate to; his sorrow for the loss of a loved one, his hatred for his brother’s kingdom, and even the hatred he has for the Astrals who have forsaken him. We get a more in-depth understanding on what kind of character he is and what made him into the Ardyn we know today.
To put the icing on the cake, Episode Ardyn is not the absolute end of the Final Fantasy XV story lore, but rather, the ending will be a novel entitled Final Fantasy XV: The Dawn of The Future. As implied in the title, the novel is a compilation of the stories of Ardyn, Aranea, Lunafreya and Noctis that were scrapped from the original DLC set.
(Look on the bright side, with the exception of Episode Ardyn, at least we can still venture through their storyline by reading it.)
The novel is set for an international release with the date yet to be confirmed. For now, it will be released in Japan on the 25th of April in the Final Fantasy XV: The Dawn of The Future Celebration Box which also consists of the animated prologue of Episode Ardyn in Blu-Ray disc, a 48-page art booklet, and other original merchandise.
This is the official synopsis of the novel provided by the Final Fantasy Official Japanese Portal:
Disclaimer: The translations is not official and belongs to THE MAGIC RAIN
Do you deny the Gods or accept your destiny?
Here lies another conclusion hidden within Final Fantasy XV.
The ill-fated man that has saved many from the “Starscourge” and was supposed to ascend the throne, Ardyn.
The commodore of the Nilfheim Empire who was entrusted with the girl of destiny during the fall of the Nilfheim capital on the Empire’s last day, Aranea.
The oracle who upon awakening from her death has noticed her own body mutating, Lunafreya.
And also, the True King who has pondered on his own destiny for a long time, Noctis.
This is a story of the world’s dawn that would spell out a new history for Final Fantasy XV.
It certainly has been a long ride for Final Fantasy XV. With the curtains finally closing on this franchise, do you think Episode Ardyn will be the saving grace Final Fantasy XV needs? Do you think a novel is enough to compensate for the cancelled DLCs? Let us know in the comments!