Final Fantasy VI copyright Square Enix.
Images used for educational purposes only.

Solitary Island

- Well, the world has pretty much gone to crap, leaving Celes alone with Cid on a Solitary Island. There’s nothing to see here save a dinky house, a beach with Fish of varying levels of health, a set of cliffs, and some monsters of overwhelmingly poor stats. The Blackjack is gone; the party is gone.

- Your first goal here is to try and save Cid, as he’s slowly slipping away. You can do this by going down to the beach and only catching Fish that are of the highest quality, ie those that move the fastest. Any others will either not his improve his health or will actually make things worse. Cid will also get worse if you just ignore him for a long enough time. You can get a reading on Cid’s state of health by returning to the shack and speaking to him, with or without Fish. Other Fish don’t help him, so make sure you only go for the best Fish if you want to save Cid.

- If you manage to save Cid he’ll reveal that he’s been working on a raft that can ferry Celes away from the Solitary Island and back to the world at large. If you don’t save Cid you’ll watch a very touching scene, and, well, you’ll find the raft anyway. (I was making rice, so, uh, I may have just let Cid bite the dust this time around. It really makes very little difference in the long run.)

The World of Ruin

Welcome to Kefka’s domain! The World of Ruin is what’s left of existence after Kefka’s been made a god by the power of the Warring Triad, and boy does it look like garbage. The World of Balance, the place you once knew, is now forever gone - there’s no going back. Consequently, many locations (Mt. Kolts, the Lethe River, the Phantom Forest, Baren Falls, Vector, a few other places) are out-and-out gone. All others have been shuffled about, resulting in a geography that, while mildly recognizable, is quite radically different from what you once knew. This also means a shuffle in monsters, and the beasts in the World of Ruin are quite a bit nastier than the old stock. Status ailments are veeeeeery common here.

Final Fantasy VI enters a new phase at this point. Though Celes is still driven forward on a semi-obligatory quest for a little while, the vast majority of the World of Ruin’s content is entirely optional. All you need to complete the game are two more characters, found whether you like it or not, and a means of transportation to enter Kefka’s Tower and assault the madman. Doing so with three characters is not advisable for newcomers to Final Fantasy VI, however, and you’ll want to embark on at least a few side quests to retrieve your old teammates. They’re all out there; you just have to find ‘em.

When you first wash up on the coastline of the southern continent you’ll find yourself a short walk from Albrook. From here you can either go north, where one optional party member is waiting in Tzen, or hunt for a path leading east. Since we’re proceeding with the obligatory stuff first, this walkthrough will ignore the dude to the north for now. (Though I do recommend hunting him down first and foremost, particularly if you neglected Celes in the World of Balance.) Strap on your best gear, hopefully including a Ribbon, and set out to the northeast.

Part Twenty-Two: Recruiting Edgar