The evolution of Final Fantasy summons


As summoned in: 3, 4 (2US), 5, 6 Advance, 7, 8, 9

Signature attack: Tidal Wave

In the Bible, Leviathan is a horrendous sea monster and one of the seven princes of hell. So Hades is not all fire and pitchforks, as you may have originally thought. Thanks to Melville’s Moby Dick, the word Leviathan is colloquially associated with whales but Final Fantasy reinterprets the creature with a decidedly more Eastern aesthetic.  This Leviathan is a blue dragon whose attacks deliver a monstrous amount of damage.

Weirdest one-offs

The Final Fantasy series’ popularity follows Moore’s Law and approximately doubles every year, thanks to the fact that every time a newly minted gamer goes on the internet he is forced to endure endless forum threads promoting Final Fantasy Whichever as obviously the best game evar (NO BIAS.) Consoles follow Moore’s Law too, because they have computer processors in them, so each new generation of hardware has given developers room to expand on the concept of summons. By the time the PlayStation era arrived, Final Fantasy summons were long enough to debut at Cannes and compete for Oscar noms. Bizarre new creatures began appearing in the roster alongside our old faves, only to vanish back into obscurity at the end of the game. What follows is a collection of the weirdest, wackiest one-off summons that made us wonder WTF those guys were smoking when they came up with that. (Ed. note: it was banana peels or possibly old gym socks.)



Doom Train




Mar 5, 2010

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  • ora-gilbert-hendershot - December 25, 2013 11:02 p.m.

    Titan was in Final Fantasy Tactics. Yes it didn't have a number but still a game of the series no matter how you look at it.
  • ora-gilbert-hendershot - December 25, 2013 11:08 p.m.

    Take that back they just forgot FFT!
  • Doro_MMOSITE - August 12, 2013 9:20 a.m.

    What's this!? No FFXI Ifrit and other summons!? They were in that too y'know! (Or do you people still consider 11 a non-numbered title just because it's online?)
  • Palitroke - April 22, 2010 6:16 p.m.

    Sad that there is no FFXI summons here....sure that is "the online one" but nonetheless a Final Fantasy videogame WITH summons
  • avanent - March 13, 2010 1:58 a.m.

    You missed FFXI. While the GBA titles were nice to include, they're just remakes of previous titles. I understand not having the spin-off and the tactic titles... but to not have FFXI at all? Wow... come on guys.
  • rxb - March 9, 2010 2:39 p.m.

    The effort I went through to get Knights of the round in VII was too much.
  • Trrnc11 - March 9, 2010 12:13 a.m.

    Seven words Knights of the round, mime, mime, mime
  • teke367 - March 8, 2010 10:21 p.m.

    Wasn't one for changing the names of the characters (ever since I realized I didn't know who people were talking about in FF7 because I changed all their names), but I did tailor Yojimbo's name a little to Yo'JimBob, I liked to think I had a redneck wizard on my side.
  • IHateMakingUserIDs - March 8, 2010 8:37 p.m.

    In the one of category there should have been a spot for Diablo from VIII i believe. He was pretty sweet.
  • philipshaw - March 8, 2010 5:44 p.m.

    cool article and I can't wait to see how awesome the summons in FFXIII will be
  • pin316 - March 8, 2010 4:51 p.m.

    @reveffect yeah man, by far the two best summons in the game. forget details as it's been ages, but Anima is at some random temple you find once you have the airship....think it's the underwater one you mentioned as you have to fight the underwater boss before you can get it. there's also something you have to have done at the other temples as well. Magus Sisters are bad-ass. something to do with that optional fight where you have to fight crazy versions of all your own aeons, and also the monster arena. Defo remember this - if you get Magus Sisters and get them to overdrive, Delta Attack was insanely powerful! Oh, other awesome thing about 10 - the whoel linking of aeon max damage exceeded when you get ultimate weapons for characters - that was a nice bonus when it happened
  • pin316 - March 8, 2010 3:31 p.m.

    is it just me who during reading this realised just how awesome the summons were in ffX? Both the regular ones (Ifrit in particular was badass), and the crazy new ones (Anima, Yojimbo, Magus Sisters all pretty wicked). Just wish they had gone with Ramuh instead of the skeletor-wannabee unicorn Ixion...
  • alfonso.hdez - March 8, 2010 4:05 a.m.

    What, no Crisis Core? Those summons were great!
  • BobertTheNinja - March 8, 2010 2:11 a.m.
  • Conman93 - March 7, 2010 6:58 p.m.

    Great article! I almost felt sorry for the monster getting attacked by the knights! Anima is freaky but still awesome! Doomtrain...posssible inspiration for spirit tracks!
  • EnragedTortoise1 - March 7, 2010 4:25 p.m.

    the wheels on Bahamut go round and round...
  • Mirako - March 7, 2010 7:34 a.m.

    Why the hell is Bahamut a Transformer in XIII? Do all of the summons do that now? It looks ridiculous!
  • linkganon - March 7, 2010 7:09 a.m.

    sorry for double posting, but forgot to mention, the videos for a certain ds game had bad sound, and one of the videos on page 2 does not seem to work.
  • linkganon - March 7, 2010 7:06 a.m.

    The attack the Knights do on final fantasy 7 summon appears to be like 3 minutes of a long string attack, but i don't know if that is a string or not, is it?
  • ZukotaIsoba - March 7, 2010 6:41 a.m.

    @darkknight03 Must be your computer; they sometimes have difficulty loading. @Yaro I agree; eight is the best.