Previously, I linked to Ikkin’s videos on Final Fantasy XV*, which related to her view of the Catholic symbolism and influence in the game’s world and story. Her arguments are quite compelling and very useful for Catholic and/or Christian authors to study, as they will help a great deal with tailoring one’s fiction to be more Catholic without being explicit. If not for her video essays, this piece over on SuperversiveSF’s website may never have been written.
In the videos below, Ikkin takes on the novelization for the Final Fantasy XV video game, which is titled Dawn of the Future. Through these videos, all of which are short and easily digested, she takes apart the novel to show how it is entirely antithetical to the message found in the game. Specifically, she takes the time to break down the Gnosticism at the heart of the novel’s plot and how it affects not only Final Fantasy XV, but the wider world as well.
Her definition of Gnosticism is somewhat different than that found and described here; I think her idea of Gnosticism might better be called nihilism. That being said, the two are not mutually exclusive, as one of Gnosticism’s recurring characteristics is that it begs, borrows, and steals from multiple belief systems to make itself appealing. The Gnostics in the Ancient and Classical sense “…borrowed their terminology almost entirely from existing religions, but they only used it to illustrate their great idea of the essential evil of this present existence and the duty to escape it by the help of magic spells and a superhuman Saviour. Whatever they borrowed, this pessimism they did not borrow…” (From NewAdvent.org – emphasis mine.)
No religion that existed prior to Christianity was so dour as Gnosticism, and Nihilism could easily be seen as a child of old Gnosticism. It has the same pessimistic outlook but hyped up on steroids; where the old Gnostics considered all matter evil and, thus, something to be escaped, Nihilism declares that there is no God at all and entropy will claim everything. In essence, Nihilism takes the Gnostic idea of matter being evil and man needing a superhuman savior, but substitutes matter and man in place of the Gnostic’s belief that the good God was decaying into matter. Nietzsche’s ubermensch or Superman (not to be confused with the superhero of the same name*) takes the place of the superhuman savior in the Gnostic system of old.
Although I differ with Ikkin in her choice of terms, her point is a good one and worthy of consideration. Her video on Ardyn, the antagonist in the game, is particularly useful and instructive. Embodying the ideal of the ubermensch or “superman” who overcomes the “superstition” of God, the character has a strong following among the game’s fanbase – one that says more about the world we presently live in than about the character himself.
I rather wish Ikkin could have gone into more depth in her videos on this subject, as I think the topics which she discussed deserve closer inspection. Nevertheless, she makes the most of the time she has available and her insights are worth hearing. Should you be curious about this installment of the franchise or are just searching for something to fill half an hour, her videos will more than satisfy. Promising that you will enjoy them may be a stretch, however I think they will provide a great deal of food for thought and discussion.
With that, I will leave you to listen to the videos in your own time and form your own opinions on them. Have a good day, readers, and may God bless you – every one!
Dawn of the (Gnostic) Future – Part 1 – Echoes of Prometheus
Dawn of the Gnostic Future – Part 2 – Ardyn’s Gnostic Fantasy
Dawn of the Gnostic Future – Part 3 – The Sun of Solheim
Dawn of the Gnostic Future – Part 4 – Mankind Is Always Moving Forward
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2 thoughts on “Ikkin Returns – A Look at the Novelization of Final Fantasy XV”
Once was in an online debate with a woman who insisted I wasn’t allowed to cite what Gnosticism was when she insisted she was one.
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