Square Enix games - Final Fantasy, Kingdom Hearts and so on - make us laugh, they make us cry, and they teach us valuable lessons about fashion and the importance of always wearing at least three belts. But these classics have more to offer than just stunning graphics and dynamic gameplay. The thing that really keeps you playing for 10 hours at a stretch, makes you endure Disney voiceovers and makes Final Fantasy VIII better than Final Fantasy VII (that’s right, we said it) is romance.
From Final Fantasy III to Dragon Quest VIII, love stories have been the beating heart of Square's games, whether it’s a front-and-center torrid romance between main characters or a compelling backstory that tears your carefully balanced party to pieces about 50 hours in. These romances are a key part of the Square Enix experience, and they also offer valuable lessons for gamers - as the 10 best couples from the company's games will now demonstrate.
10) Balthier + Fran (Final Fantasy XII & Final Fantasy XII: Revenant Wings, PS2/DS)
Who they are: A sky pirate and his first (bed)mate.
Why they're the best: This is a well-balanced relationship that will last a lifetime - or at least for a few thousand fanfics. It’s rare when a man has enough confidence that he can completely trust a beautiful woman (elf, Viera, rabbit, whatever) and rarer still that a beautiful woman sticks around through the tough times, knowing she could do better. Fran and Balthier may not be big on public displays of affection, but they’ve got it where it counts: she keeps his ship up and running, and he defers to her for directions.
What they teach us: Good relationships are about giving; piracy is about taking.