Final Fantasy's Lightning finds fashion enlightening in real, fake interview

If you’re just joining us, here’s something that happened in video games today: The Telegraph published an interview with the protagonist of Final Fantasy XIII (no, not the voice actress - the fictional character) about her recent modeling stint for fancy fashion label Louis Vuitton. In a delightful turn of events, she demonstrates a gracious sense of self-awareness and dignity, and even gets to announce her own retirement.

The Vuitton-vetted and provided Q&A, which forces the Telegraph author to write “stay with us here” earnestly above it, starts with Lightning’s opinion on flaunting gear that, according to designer / real person Nicolas Ghesquiére, was inspired by the otherworldly outfits in video games. If you’ve seen the campaign, you’ll know it’s been a light and glossy affair that ignores traditional photography and just has fun with the fact that Lightning can look snazzy doing anything.

“Though his style was new to me, the moment I laid eyes on his collection, it was as if I was hit by a bolt of lightning,” she says. And what happens to a Lightning when it’s struck by lightning? Contrary to what comic book character Storm told me in an interview last week, the result spurs a new journey of self-discovery.

“I knew that with this, people could change. I could change,” she says. “Perhaps I’m finally learning who I truly am.” Indeed, Lightning emerges as not only a survivor of epic battles - “my clothes were nothing more than armor to stay alive” - but the only part of Final Fantasy that arguably found itself in the last few years.

Now entering a period of “peaceful days,” she says: “I will return to my origins, like a Mobius strip, but it’ll be a new me, one who has evolved.”

Lightning, who wouldn't ordinarily refer to a Mobius strip unless it was the name of a weird-ass leveling system, has clearly become a self-aware entity that will either act as humanity’s greatest ambassador, or its ultimate destroyer.

“I look forward to the day we meet again.”

Ludwig Kietzmann

Ludwig Kietzmann is a veteran video game journalist and former U.S. Editor-in-Chief for GamesRadar+. Before he held that position, Ludwig worked for sites like Engadget and Joystiq, helping to craft news and feature coverage. Ludwig left journalism behind in 2016 and is now an editorial director at Assembly Media, helping to oversee editorial strategy and media relations for Xbox.