The Secret History of Spira's Summoners
Summoners are one of the trademarks of Final Fantasy games. But did you realize there are FOURTEEN summoners in Final Fantasy X? How many can you name?
Not only are there fourteen summoners in FFX -- sixteen, if you count the unmarked graves on Mt. Gagazet -- but Final Fantasy X-2 introduces us to one more.
This page explores all the summoners of Final Fantasy X, not just the High Summoners, but also failed summoners. Along the way, we'll uncover some of Spira's dark secrets and hidden history.
Research based on the Final Fantasy X Script and pmog's translations of the official, Japanese-only Final Fantasy X Ultimania Guides. All characters, names, and images from Final Fantasy X are © Square-enix.
Spoiler Warning: This page contains spoilers to the end of Final Fantasy X and X-2.
Summoner Yevon, Ruler of Zanarkand - 1000 Years Ago
Bahamut's Fayth:Yu Yevon was once a summoner, long ago. He was peerless.
Yet now he lives for one purpose: only to summon.
He is neither good, nor evil. He is awake, yet he dreams.
A thousand years ago, during the end of the Machina War, Summoner Yevon was the ruler of Zanarkand. Both Bevelle and Zanarkand were advanced civilizations, but Zanarkand was stronger in its summoners (magical defense), while Bevelle held the decisive edge in machina (technological weapons).
On the verge of defeat, Yevon hatched a scheme to preserve himself and his city, at least in part. He changed the surviving population of Zanarkand into fayth, souls sealed in stone statues, harnessing their dreams and the magic of pyreflies to create a full-sized simulation of Zanarkand.
To save himself, Yevon used his potent gravity-magic to compress pyreflies into a monstrous, armored shell, Sin. [Source: FFX Ultimania Omega Guide, pmog's translations]. In merging with Sin, Yevon seems to have lost his humanity, atrophying until all that remained was a tick-like blob, Yu Yevon.
He may not actually have intended revenge. There is a hint in the Ultimania guide that Yevon created Sin partly to ensure that Spira never became strong enough to dismantle dream-Zanarkand. However, according to both in-game Bahamut and the UOG, Yevon programmed Sin to ensure his own survival, destroying any concentration of people or technology that might threaten Sin's existence and his own.
The Church of Yevon, of course, invented its own story about Yevon as the mythical founder of teachings that neither he nor Yunalesca had actually authored.
Lenne, the Singing Summoner - 1000 Years Ago: A Summoner of Zanarkand
"A thousand words
Call out through the ages
They'll fly to you
Even though I can't see, I know they're reaching you
Suspended on silver wings..."
It is ironic that Seymour describes Zanarkand as 'the wondrous machina city." It was that. Yet Bevelle, not Zanarkand, was the most advanced machina civilization. Zanarkand had first prospered due to its talented magic-users. When wars broke out across Spira, Zanarkand's chief line of defense was its summoners, along with the brave volunteers who must at some point have offered themselves up as fayth. (The Ultimania Guide mentions that Bevelle later appropriated some of Zanarkand's fayth.)
Zanarkand needed every summoner, even a beloved pop star who raised the people's morale. Therefore Lenne was ordered to the front lines. Her lover Shuyin, powerless to protect her, infiltrated Bevelle and found their doomsday weapon, which he intended to use to end the war by any means necessary. Lenne followed him and died trying to stop his apocalyptic intent. Bevelle's security forces killed them. Then they lingered on as spirits for a thousand years, driven by hate and love respectively.
No reason is given for why Yuna resembles Lenne: although the resemblance is truly more spiritual than physical. Yuna comes across the memories of the dead summoner contained in a "dressphere" which penetrates Yuna's dreams and conveys Lenne's final wishes to her. At last, Yuna delivers Lenne's final message of love to Shuyin, and the two unsent souls dissipate together.
Recommended Link: PEARL, excellent Lenne fansite
Lady Yunalesca, Daughter of Yu Yevon - 1000 Years Ago, First Vanquisher of Sin
Maechen the Scholar: “On the eve of Zanarkand's destruction, Lady Yunalesca had fled to safety with her husband, Zaon. Later, the two used the Final Summoning to defeat Sin. Yet the people of Bevelle still feared Yu Yevon. It was to quell his wrath that they revered him, and first spread his teachings.
“And so were born the temples of Yevon. I suppose it's possible Yunalesca had planned it that way from the start! A fair trade: she defeats Sin in exchange for her lord father's honor.”
Yunalesca's motives are left deliberately unclear, even in the Ultimania Guides. Did she broker a deal with Bevelle in order to preserve her father's honor, a very Japanese concept, or did she remain in Spira to give its people some hope in the face of Sin's ravages? Perhaps both.
What is clear is that her husband Lord Zaon sacrificed himself to become the fayth of the first Final Summoning, creating an aeon powerful enough to destroy Sin. The Final Summoning killed Yunalesca. Yu Yevon then possessed his aeon to create a new Sin, setting in motion an endless cycle. All three endured, after a fashion: Yunalesca as an unsent, Zaon as Sin, and Yu Yevon as...whatever he had become. Seeing only that Yunalesca and Zaon had defeated the awful Sin, the people of Spira revered them as legends.
Lady Yunalesca's father may have dictated some of her actions. He didn't want to destroy Spira, lest he destroy Dream-Zanarkand and himself. He may have taught her the Final Summoning as a way to check Sin's growth, lest it become so powerful that it bring about armageddon.
The Church of Yevon later taught that Yevon, a great summoner, had bequeathed his teachings to his daughter, who spread them to Spira. In fact, the teachings were the church's invention: a code of conduct devised to bring order to Spira and flesh out the new religion. Lady Yunalesca simply played along when summoners started showing up on her doorstep and spouting off the so-called "teachings of Yevon".
Recommended Link: Yunalesca's True Story, Final Fantasy X Ultimania Omega Guide
The Prophecy of the High Summoner
The Church of Yevon Makes a Huge Promise
Forged in the destruction unleashed by Sin, the Church of Yevon hammered out doctrines that would dominate Spira for a thousand years. One of the fundamental tenets of the new religion was that Sin was a manifestation of the people's sins, and would vanish when everyone had atoned for their sins and were living in accordance with the teachings of Yevon. But how could Sin die? The church stated that one day a mighty summoner would follow in Lady Yunalesca's footsteps, achieve the Final Summoning and bring a new Calm.
If the people of Spira had atoned for their sins and were living in righteousness, Sin would never return, and the Calm would last forever.
There were some who questioned this story. The most outspoken, like Omega, were executed for treason.
Others set out to find the Final Summoning. Yet there are hints that some, perhaps all the High Summoners were rebels in their own way...
Gee, That Name Sounds Familiar...
High Summoner Gandof
Six hundred years after Sin arose, Lord Gandof became the first summoner since Yunalesca to acquire a Final Aeon and defeat Sin. We know little about him and nothing about his loyal but doomed guardian. Yet Gandof has a few surprising secrets.
First, Gandof's costume appears to be a combination of priest's robes and a ship's captain's hat. Perhaps it signifies that he was "captain of his flock." Or he may simply belong to another order of monks; Shelinda's hat is a little like Gandof's.
Second, we learn from Maechen in the Calm Lands that the huge canyon on the north side, the Scar, was ripped open during the ferocious battle between Summoner Gandof and Sin.
Finally, a book in the Thunder Plains Travel Agency reveals that Gandof's defeat of Sin was not his only great deed. The final sentence sounds like the speech Seymour gave to Yuna back in Guadosalam just before her party crosses the Thunder Plains:
Long ago, fiends known as Qactuars roamed the Djose Continent freely. They ran rampant, ravaging fields and tormenting travellers.
Then Lord Gandof appeared -- a man later to become high summoner. He scoured the continent for the Qactuars and drove them to these plains. Once he'd gathered the Qactuars together, Lord Gandof linked the sign of (□), whereupon the Qactuars turned to smoke and were absorbed by a stone. The Qactuars were thus sealed into stone, fated to face lightning day and night.
Unless someone again links the (□) sign and releases the seal, they shall suffer within the stone for their deeds. Thus did Lord Gandof bring relief to peoples all over Spira. He believed that the battle with Sin was only one great part of a summoner's greater mission.
The People's Hero, Former Blitz Star
High Summoner Ohalland
“Even if Sin comes back, I ain't budging from this spot. I'm going to use Sin's tidal wave for a crash training course! Just you watch, Lord Ohalland! I've got enough fighting spirit left in me to put you to shame!”
-- Captain Vuroja of the Kilika Beasts
High Summoner Ohalland achieved the Final Summoning 230 years before Lady Yuna.
He was a resident of Kilika Island. In his youth, Ohalland played for the Kilika Beasts blitzball team, training on the steep steps leading up to Kilika Temple. He may have retired from blitzball and become a priest in the temple.
This is not as unusual as it sounds. Mep, one of the priests in Kilika Temple, will tell you that he was once the captain of the Kilika Beasts, and after he retired, "Lord Ohalland took me under his wing." This is not to be taken literally; several of the people of Kilika speak of Ohalland watching over them.
Wakka prays to Ohalland for victory in KIlika Temple. When you obtain Wakka's Celestial Weapon, the Luca bartender who hands it over explains that the "World Champion" is a family heirloom passed down from Lord Ohalland himself. Evidently he, like Wakka, fought on his pilgrimage using a blitzball!
High Summoner Yocun - The Hero of the Crusaders
“This land, where Lady Yocun trained, is sacred to the Crusaders. Lady Yocun was a member of the Crusaders before becoming a summoner. It may be Lady Yocun's divine guidance that has brought our comrades together here.”
-- Crusader in the Scar, the canyon north of the Calm Lands
Lady Yocun defeated Sin about 100 years before Lady Yuna.
Several Crusaders speak of Yocun as a personal hero-- more often than they mention the founder of the Crusaders, Lord Mi'ihen, in fact.
Besides the fact that she's one of the few women in the High Summoner old boys' club, there's one other aspect of Yocun that caught my eye: her guardian is a warrior monk. Considering the historical tension between the Church of Yevon and the Crusaders, and the fact that a powerful bond of love must exist between summoner and guardian for the Final Summoning to work, there is an untold story here.
I've alluded to Yocun and her guardian in some fanfiction, where I named her guardian "Lilith." Other fanfiction writers have borrowed the name. Can we call it fanon yet?
Note a rare glitch in the subtitles/translation early on in the game: contradicting what the priest just told Tidus, the old man of Besaid village names the High Summoners, "Lord Ohalland, Lord Gandof, Lord Yocun and Lord Braska."
Lord Braska, Yuna's Father
Braska: What does it matter? No one truly believes that I, a fallen summoner wed to an Al Bhed, could possibly defeat Sin. This is what they say. No one expects us to succeed.
Auron: Braska, sir...
Braska: (Chuckles) Let's show them they're wrong. A fallen summoner, a man from Zanarkand, and a warrior monk, doomed to obscurity for refusing the hand of the priest's daughter: what delightful irony it would be if we defeated Sin!
Jecht's sphere recordings of Lord Braska's pilgrimage show a man who, far more than Jecht, seems to match Yuna's description of a "kind and gentle man." Quick to laugh, Braska seems to have a quirky sense of humor and a great deal of patience, mediating between his temperamental guardians. It's hard to say how much of Braska's merriment is an act he puts on to reassure his friends. Summoners are role models trained to smile and inspire hope in the people of Spira. Yet Braska cheerfully rebels against Yevon in other ways; ironically, his naïve faith in the pilgrimage seems to carry him through all travails.
As far as Braska's story is concerned, the Ultimania guides offer only a few more clues. Eighteen years before Yuna's pilgrimage, as a priest of Yevon, he visited the Al Bhed Home to "make contact" with them. It's possible he was sent to convert them, as this was not all that long after the Guado converted to Yevon. However, it was the priest himself who was converted. He fell in love with Cid's (never named) sister, eloped with her and lost his standing in the church. Cid severed contact with his sister. Yuna was born a year later.
When Yuna was four, Yuna's mother was killed by Sin on a ship bound for the Al Bhed Home. Then Braska committed himself to a summoner's path. After three years of training, probably in Bevelle, Lord Braska embarked on his pilgrimage with his unlikely pair of guardians and became the latest casualty of Yevon, despite his own unorthodox bent. He tells Auron he is willing to die on even the slight chance that Sin won't come back.
In Braska's final message to his daughter, he urges her to do what she wishes, and promises he will support whatever choices she makes.
If you read only one fanfiction EVER, read "Clarion," the story of Braska's pilgrimage by Justira. It does justice to all three characters, but especially Braska. This is the story that FFX-2 should have told.
High Summoner Yuna - Bringer of the Eternal Calm
Younger than most summoners, Lady Yuna is an oxymoron: unlike every other High Summoner, she survives her battle with Sin, yet can no longer summon; she wins not by summoning the Final Aeon but by killing her own aeons.
Raised in Yevon's teachings, Yuna inherits her father's will and kind-hearted unorthodoxy. However, that rebellious streak lies latent. It takes Maester Seymour's betrayal, nudging by Auron, Tidus and Belgemine, and the shocking discovery of the church's corruption at the highest level to set her on a new path.
It is telling that even after Yuna casts off Yevon, Yuna like her father cannot see how to move beyond it. In the Hall of the Final Summoning, Yunalesca offers her a terrible choice: to choose which friend will be sacrificed as the Final Aeon, the one weapon with power enough to vanquish Sin. Yuna is dismayed, but it is Tidus who demands more answers from Yunalesca. Only then do they learn the missing piece: that Sin is reborn from the Final Aeon. Had Tidus not pressed the issue, what would Yuna have chosen? I think she would have rejected her friends' offers to become the Final Aeon, or that Auron would have intervened, but it's hard to be sure. It's astounding that Gandof, Ohalland, Yocun and Braska chose to accept a loved one's willing sacrifice for Spira's salvation. Then again, there were probably other summoners, like Yuna, who refused the choice -- but Yunalesca would have killed them.
Even after she defeats Yunalesca, Yuna is stumped. Her mismatched eyes, Al Bhed and Yevonite, cannot see an alternative to the Final Summoning until Kimahri presses her to consider "both sides": what lies within the teaching, and what lies outside. Finally, using lesser aeons and Al Bhed technology to make up for the missing aeon -- not to mention six experienced guardians -- Yuna finds the means to defeat Sin.
Although she deviates from the summoner's path, from Yuna we learn the most about how a summoner is supposed to act. We also learn that pyreflies will not only provide air for blitzball players, but will let summoners walk on water!
“It's embarrassing to say this myself... But summoners and their guardians are kind of like Spira's ray of light. A lot of people in Spira depend on us. I learned to practice smiling when I'm feeling sad, you know?” ~ Lady Yuna
Kelk: Branded a traitor, but still you would fight Sin? Lost to the temple, hated by the people, yet you continue your pilgrimage? Everything lost! What do you fight for?
Yuna: I fight for Spira. The people long for the Calm. I can give it to them. It's all I can give. Defeating Sin, ending pain...this I can do.
The Dance: Yuna Sends the Fallen - One of the most famous scenes in 20+ years of Final Fantasy
(Skip ahead to 1:45 to get straight to "The Dance" and skip Lulu's creepy explanation. Also, I suggest watching in 480p.)
Forgotten By History
The Failed Summoners of Spira
High Summoners get the glory, but what about all those summoners who perished or turned aside on their pilgrimage? Most have been forgotten. Yet we do know of seven whom Yuna glimpsed or met. Can you name six? What about the seventh?
The Summoner Who Squandered a Final Aeon for Power
Seymour has a dirty little secret -- no, not that one, and not that one either -- he has a Final Aeon in his back pocket.
Eighteen years ago, when Seymour was ten years old, his father Jyscal found it politic to banish his human wife and half-breed son to a distant island. Their presence had been a point of contention among the Guado and an embarrassment to his position.
Falling ill, Seymour's unnamed mother trained Seymour as a summoner and dragged the little boy to Zanarkand, where she offered herself as a Final Aeon, Anima. He did not want to lose her, and refused to challenge Sin. But it was too late: she was already dead. Seymour must have dwelt alone for eight years. When Lord Braska defeated Sin, the Guado resentment of humans thawed, and Jyscal used the occasion to revoke his son's exile and install him as a priest of Macalania Temple. Sometime afterwards, Seymour secretly smuggled Anima's statue back to Baaj. (source: pmog's translation of Ultimania Omega Guide)
It's unclear whether Seymour used Anima before his show of power in Luca Stadium, when he staged a fiend attack in order to "save" Lord Mika and thousands of innocent spectators with his aeon. What is clear is that he was using summoners and aeons as tools, supported covertly by Lord Mika. What even Mika did not realize is that Seymour was planning to become Yuna's Final Aeon, and then become Sin-- or, even better, he wished to seize control of Sin and so rule Spira forever.
“Lady Yuna--no, all summoners--are charged with bringing peace to Spira. But this means more than just defeating Sin. She must ease the suffering of all Spira. She must be a leader for the people.” Â ~Lord Seymour
Unsent Summoner, Mentor to Yuna
Belgemine is a mysterious figure. We have no idea when in Spira's long history she died, only that she could not bear to leave the job unfinished, and she remained an unsent to train her successors. She evidently predates Braska, since she mentions testing him as well. That suggests her goal was to remain until a summoner arrived with the power to defeat Sin forever.
Belgemine's green garb appears to be modified priestess' robes like those worn by Shelinda and the priestesses in the temples. She has lost faith in Yevon, however, perhaps only after death: "Ah, you shouldn't take what the maesters say too seriously. For summoners, destroying Sin is everything. We are no tools of Yevon, understand?" However, Belgemine thinks that summoners are Spira's only hope: she tells Yuna as much after Operation Mi'ihen, wrongly telling her that machina are useless.
Here is an intriguing possibility. We know that Anima is a Final Aeon (see below). The Magus Sisters are even more powerful than Anima, and they are found in Remiem where Belgemine lurks. Is it possible that they are Belgemine's Final Aeon, and that when Belgemine says, "I was not able to [defeat Sin]," she actually died in the Final Summoning? A difficulty is how their fayth statues arrived in Remiem, but it would not be the only such game/script inconsistency: how did Seymour get his mother's statue to Baaj, and where is Jecht's?
Yuna: Thank you! Perhaps you'll teach me again someday?
Belgemine: (Chuckles) That's not possible. You have already surpassed your father. There is nothing more I can teach you. My work here on Spira is done. Time for me to go.
Auron: Send her.
Belgemine: (Fading) It is in your hands. Destroy Sin and save Spira.
O'aka's Little Sister - Poor "Sis" Never Gets Named
If you know about Oaka and Wantz's lost sister, congratulations: you probably know more about Final Fantasy X than some of the game designers.
Cast your mind back to the last time you played. Do you remember a crazy guy in a blue sweater who chases Yuna all over Spira, snapping photos of her? Probably not. He's playing paparazzi outside Kilika Temple, on both ferries, in the streets of Luca, and probably in other places I've forgotten. You may dimly recall a random moment when everyone steps out of an inn in the Thunder Plains, and some bozo runs past, stops, snaps the party's photo, and keeps going. The photographer is Wantz. Later on you meet him in the snows of Mt. Gagazet, doing business for his big brother after O'aka gets thrown in jail for helping Lady Yuna.
Even if you saw all of those scenes, chances are low that you turned back after leaving to Guadosalam to visit the Farplane again. If you did, you'd see a hidden cutscene where Wantz is showing all his photos of Lady Yuna to his "sis," saying Yuna looks like her (what is it with lookalikes in FFX?) "Sis" died seven years ago on her own pilgrimage. Wantz says he's now older than she was then ( he is 22 in FFX). Near the end of the game, O'aka is freed from prison and will tell you about "Sis" if you bump into him in Luca.
Tidus: Hey, weren't you in prison?
O'aka: Nah, those monks are pushovers, I tell ye! I'll fleece any priest, or my name's not O'aka!
Tidus: Sorry. It was our fault they locked you up.
O'aka: No problem! Anything for a customer, eh?
O'aka: You know...I had a sister. Wantz's older sister, you see. A summoner, she was. Went on pilgrimage at a young age. And that was it. Aaah... Me and Wantz, well, neither of us were fighters enough to be guardians. I think about it every day, I do. If we could've helped her. Least I can do is try to help another summoner, I figure. And Lady Yuna, she looks so much like... (Sigh)
Lady Ginnem - Lulu's First Summoner
Lulu is nearly as secretive as Auron, so we know little about her failed pilgrimage. We know only that it happened two years ago, that Lulu signed up as Ginnem's guardian hoping to head off Yuna by defeating Sin first, and that Ginnem's death haunts Lulu in some ways even more than Chappu's. In the later stages of the game, a few cracks in Lulu's icy calm begin to show: she is worried she will fail Yuna as she failed Lady Ginnem.
We learn more about Lulu's feelings for Ginnem than the summoner's own history, unfortunately, but it's clear that there was at least some bond of friendship between them. If you return to Guadosalam before visiting the Cavern of the Stolen Fayth, you will find Lulu searching for her. There's a different Lulu-Ginnem scene in the Farplane after the summoner is finally laid to rest.
If we go by Ginnem's clothing (and don't just dismiss it as a lazy color-swap on Belgemine's model), she may have been a nun at Macalania Temple, the only place where the clergy wear purple instead of green. She must also have been quite wealthy to afford Yojimbo!
Other unanswered questions: How did Lady Ginnem manage to acquire the aeon Yojimbo, then perish outside his chamber? How Lulu escape the Cavern of the Stolen Fayth, whose fiends are clearly more than a match for her magic at the beginning of FFX? Dark-skinned characters are somewhat uncommon in Spira; could she be a relative of Letty or Jassu?
“There is no human left in you now, is there? Very well, then. Allow me to perform my last duty to you. My last as your guardian.” -- Lulu to Lady Ginnem
Fanon for Lady Ginnem or Lady Belgemine
If in doubt, ship it!
Final Fantasy fanfiction writers have occasionally proposed that Belgemine or Ginnem was Auron's ex, betrothed, or the priest's daughter he refused to marry. We should expect some sort of pointed remark, or at least Auron's habit of changing the subject ([To Kinoc:] "We don't have time for this now, do we?"), but it's fun to play with possibilities.
Former Summoner of Lulu and Wakka
Father Zuke is a priest of Bevelle. He's also a smart cookie. He turned back halfway through his pilgrimage, to Wakka's relief. This pilgrimage began a year ago, just before the Crystal Cup Blitzball tournament and just after the Djose Operation that killed Chappu; it lasted six months.
We don't know much about Father Zuke, but it's remarkable that he chases after Lulu, risking fiends and excommunication, in order to warn her and Yuna that Maester Mika has issued orders to kill them on sight (Zuke video: skip to 3:40).
There is one other intriguing tidbit in the original Japanese. Normally, "Lord" or "Lady" is indicated by the honorific -sama, as in Yokun-sama. Unsurprisingly, Lulu is meticulous in observing this custom. When she sees Lady Ginnem's ghost, she addresses her as Ginnem-sama. However, Lulu twice calls Father Zuke sensei, "master" or "teacher." It could just be a generic title for priest. However, his words to her tend to back up the idea that he has paternal feelings towards her. By contrast, while Zuke addresses the party as a whole and seems a friendly fellow, he doesn't have anything to say his old guardian Wakka.
Lulu: Father, you came all the way here just to tell us this?
Father Zuke: To tell the truth, I was a little curious to see this summoner you are guarding. I hope her pilgrimage goes well. For your sake, too.
Lulu: Thank you, Father.
Father Zuke: I must be off. I shall pray for all of you.
Lady Dona - Yuna's Jealous (or not so jealous) Rival
Dona is quite a character! For most (or maybe all) of FFX, she's is a...word I can't use on a family-friendly website... yet she does have a few wise things to say.
She becomes more complex even before the end of the game. And she's one of several npcs (like Luzzu and Clasko) whose fate changes depending on your choices. On the airship leaving Home, she asks Tidus what he would think if she abandoned her pilgrimage. If he calls her a coward, you'll find her in a foul mood near the end of the game, arriving in Zanarkand with Barthello only to discover it's empty. If he says she should go for it, you'll find them outside of Djose, where Dona says she's going back with Barthello to his homeland -- which is probably Kilika, as we see them there in the next game.
Dona is one of the few characters who actually improves in FFX2. She is an unofficial leader in Kilika, aiding Yuna when it suits her. But Dona has learned wisdom -- perhaps partly from Tidus -- that she must make her own path, and it's not her job to save the world all the time. As a member of the Youth League, she renounces Yevon and has a lover's spat with Barthello over his clinging to the temples.
A couple of fanfictions have helped me appreciate these two more: "Barthello, We're Leaving" and "The Seeker Files," a surprisingly excellent story exploring what Our Heroes might do with themselves after X-2.
“My, what a rabble! As I recall, Lord Braska had only two guardians. Quality over quantity, my dear. Whatever were you thinking? I have need of only one guardian. Right, Barthello?” ~ Lady Dona
Lord Isaaru - An Orthodox Summoner With a Good Heart
Poor Isaaru, pawn of Yevon: a decent man tricked into doing their dirty work. He is honorable and courteous to a fault, but naiveté and faith in Yevon are his downfall.
He and his brothers are ages 26, 22, and 10 at the time of their pilgrimage, concurrent with Lady Yuna's. I wonder if Maroda is a half-brother or adopted.
When Isaaru meets Lady Yuna in Djose following Operation Mi'ihen, Isaaru greets her cordially, says he is trying to walk in the footsteps of her father, and respectfully challenges her to a race to defeat Sin. If you backtrack and talk to enough NPCs, you can reconstruct the rest of Isaaru's ill-fated pilgrimage. From Djose, they turned south and headed for Kilika (my guess is Isaaru started in Bevelle, and was perhaps a priest there). In Besaid, the Al Bhed captured Pacce and held him hostage, forcing Isaaru and Maroda to return with them to the Summoner's Sanctum in Home. They are shocked and horrified by the Guado attack, moved by the Al Bhed's attempts to shield them, and Isaaru gratefully sends the fallen heathens.
From Bikanel they ride Cid's airship to the Calm Lands, but once again Isaaru's pilgrimage is delayed (a frequent complaint of Maroda's). This time, Lord Mika summons Isaaru back to Bevelle to deal with traitors to Yevon. When the kindly summoner discovers he is to kill Lady Yuna, he sends his brothers away. He must obey the church's orders. But after Yuna defeats him, he shows her the way out.
By the end of the story, Isaaru has turned aside from his pilgrimage once more to help settle the chaos in Bevelle while his brothers stand guard outside the palace. He performs much the same role in FFX-2, after a disastrous stint as a tour guide in the ruins of Zanarkand that demeans both Isaaru and the pilgrimage that meant so much to him.
One interesting detail: Isaaru's aeons are named Pterya, Grothia and Spathi for Valefor, Ifrit, and Bahamut. We don't know what he named Ixion.
Isaaru: We owe our lives to the Al Bhed. However, no matter how much they beg, we cannot quit our pilgrimage.
Tidus: Even though you'll die?
Isaaru: I've known since I was a child. My will is set. If I do not do it, someone else must, you understand.
I hope you enjoyed this obsessive compulsive history of the summoners of Final Fantasy X. If you know of any other die-hard FFX fans, please share it with them!
© 2010 auronlu
Guestbook - Thanks for stopping by!
Aesura on May 20, 2015:
this is pretty cool, but if you follow fanfiction i have seen one where the "sister of o'aka and wantz" is Belgemine
auronlu (author) from Spira on January 31, 2015:
Glad you like! I've been fixing everything that was lost. I hope I've got all the images back now.
I'm glad to help provide info! Just please don't repost my articles elsewhere; I've worked on some of 'em for years. A few quotes are fine, with credit/link! :)
rodrigovda on November 04, 2014:
@auronlu haha it's just tht I love this game (I'm in fact making a ffx guide/cool facts compilation and I'm plannign to use some of your articles if you don't mind).
It's too bad tht since squidoo moved to hubpagessome images are gone (or maybe I thought there were more images before?)
I love how much work you made in my favourite videogame!!
auronlu (author) from Spira on June 15, 2014:
@rodrigovda: Whooops. You find all my mistakes. I probably counted all the summoners I'd written up on this page, forgetting one of the write-ups was Lenne. :)
rodrigovda on May 24, 2014:
I think you made mistake... You said:
"Not only are there fifteen summoners in FFX -- seventeen, if you count the unmarked graves on Mt. Gagazet -- but Final Fantasy X-2 introduces us to one more."
But I can only count 14 summoners rom FFX:
1-Yevon 2-Yunalesca 3-Gandof 4-Ohalland 5-Yocun 6-Braska 7-Yuna 8-Seymour 9-Belgemine 10-Oaka's sis 11-Ginnem 12-Zuke 13-Dona 14-Isaaru. Who is the 15th one? because you said that there where 15 in FFX and FFX-2 Introduces us one more =)
anonymous on August 24, 2012:
im going to use some of this info for a quiz!!! thanks so much i was very intriguing!
anonymous on June 24, 2012:
I enjoyed this, although I disagree that Anima is a Final Aeon. The example of Lord Zaon shows that when a final aeon is chosen, the spirit imprsioned in the stone leaves it and cannot be used again. The stone is then dead. Stones for Ixion, Ifrit, Valefor, Bahamut are ALL living and being able to be summoned by more than one summoner. Anima has a 'living' stone that Yuna can interact with and gain her as an aeon, long before Seymour is destroyed. So if the stone is alive, then it is not the focus that was used for a Final Aeon.
Willow Wood on March 18, 2012:
So much fascinating content. Thank you for gathering it all together. I've thoroughly enjoyed reading your lenses and have made a dozens of notes and scribbles. Have a great day and I hope, one day, you'll be posting more to do with FF secrets and lore.
auronlu (author) from Spira on February 01, 2012:
@anonymous: Sorry! I don't know -- I've had literally thousands of people take the quizzes I've built on this site (Squidoo isn't mine, it's a big publishing site), and no one's ever reported that bug before! I'll keep an eye out.
anonymous on February 01, 2012:
Hey buddy..uhh..is there somethin' wrong with ur quiz?cuz i choose one answer and it shows i choosed another :l
check it out buddy