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Sephiroth

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Sephiroth
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Sephiroth
Sephiroth FF7 artwork.jpg
Artwork of Sephiroth for Final Fantasy VII
セフィロス
Sefirosu
Game appearance(s) Final Fantasy VII
Compilation of Final Fantasy VII
Kingdom Hearts series
Hometown Nibelheim
Age 20s
Gender Male
Height 6'1" (1.85 m)
Species Human
Weapon(s) Masamune
Occupation High-ranked SOLDIER
English voice actor Lance Bass (Kingdom Hearts)
George Newbern (most subsequent appearances)
Tyler Hoechlin (Final Fantasy VII Remake)
Japanese voice actor Toshiyuki Morikawa

Sephiroth is the main antagonist of Final Fantasy VII and other games within the Compilation of Final Fantasy VII. He is described as the opposite of the main protagonist, Cloud Strife. Sephiroth is a tall man with long silver hair, bright emerald green, cat-like eyes, a long black coat, white metallic pauldrons and belted black boots. He carries the Masamune sword.

History[edit]

Final Fantasy VII[edit]

Sephiroth kills Aeris in an iconic scene from Final Fantasy VII

In Final Fantasy VII, Sephiroth was the most famous member of SOLDIER, a paramilitary branch of Shinra, until he mysteriously disappeared five years prior to the beginning of the game. He then returns to enact a plot which threatens the game's world, bringing him into conflict with the game's protagonists, especially, Cloud, who shares a past with Sephiroth.

Notions of Sephiroth's apparent death are put into question when Cloud and his company AVALANCHE are detained in Shinra's headquarters. On the eve before a public execution, their cell doors are opened. A trail of blood leads the group to discover that President Shinra has been impaled by a sword confirmed to belong to Sephiroth. Cloud and his friends decide to pursue him.

Sephiroth's plan, revealed later in the Temple of the Ancients, is to drain the planet of its energy with the aid of the black materia and its cataclysmic power referred to as "Meteor." Aeris Gainsborough, the last Cetra, attempts to stop him with the white materia and its power, Holy. Aeris succeeds in summoning Holy, but Jenova, while in the appearance of Sephiroth, kills her before it can be activated. The white materia remains active, but unused. Later, Cloud procures the black materia, but is manipulated against his will into surrendering it to Sephiroth, who then summons Meteor and barricades himself inside Northern Crater, waiting for its arrival.

In the story's climax, the Northern Cave barrier is penetrated by Shinra's mako cannon, allowing Cloud and his party to descend into the crater for a final confrontation. Sephiroth manifests himself as "Bizzaro Sephiroth" and attacks. Upon being weakened, he transforms again into "Safer Sephiroth", a bizzare angelic figure. After being defeated again, Sephiroth's spirit makes a final mental assault upon Cloud within the Lifestream. However, Cloud has already rediscovered himself and Sephiroth is unable to attack. Cloud easily dispatches Sephiroth and leaves the Lifestream.

Final Fantasy VII Advent Children[edit]

Sephiroth's famous scene reproduced in Final Fantasy VII Advent Children

In the film Final Fantasy VII Advent Children, it has been two years following the defeat of Sephiroth, and a disease known as "geostigma" has spread throughout the world, afflicting many with its ill symptoms of extreme fatigue and open sores on the skin. The now reclusive Cloud finds himself confronted by a strange trio of silver-haired brothers who are the Remnants of Sephiroth, physical manifestations of Sephiroth's will and spiritual energy.

Their leader, Kadaj, later transforms into Sephiroth after absorbing Jenova's head. After his resurrection, Sephiroth reveals that he has been using geostigma in a plan to corrupt the Lifestream and grant him control of the entire Planet. He and Cloud then engage in a duel, in which Sephiroth displays enormous power. Despite being outmatched, Cloud defeats him with his new Limit Break, causing Sephiroth to fade away.

Last Order: Final Fantasy VII[edit]

In Last Order: Final Fantasy VII

In Last Order: Final Fantasy, set five years before the events of Final Fantasy VII, after completing the mission to stop Genesis, Sephiroth and Zack receive orders to investigate a Shinra research mansion and a mako reactor near Nibelheim. Upon investigating the mansion, Sephiroth discovers his disturbing origins as an integral experiment in the Jenova Project. Utterly confused, Sephiroth, still believing Jenova to be his mother, comes to believe that he is the last of the Cetra. Sephiroth, essentially disturbed to the point of emotionally-driven madness, destroys Nibelheim and embarks to retrieve his "mother."

Zack pursues Sephiroth and arrives at the reactor in an attempt to stop him, only to be soundly defeated. While finally liberating Jenova, Sephiroth is caught off-guard and stabbed from behind by Cloud, who is armed with Zack's Buster Sword. Sephiroth exits the chamber with Jenova's severed head while Cloud follows. However, Cloud is impaled by Sephiroth who was annoyed with his persistence to apprehend him. Cloud manages to raise the lance with Sephiroth still holding on and throw Sephiroth into the reactor core where he travels the Lifestream to the Northern Cave. There, he plots to absorb the planet's energy in attempt to achieve godhood, while the world believes him to be dead, until the events of Final Fantasy VII.

Crisis Core: Final Fantasy VII[edit]

Crisis Core: Final Fantasy VII covers many of the events in Last Order: Final Fantasy VII in greater depth. It is explained that Sephiroth and Genesis Rhaspodos were both experimented on at the fetal stages with Alien cells that gave great power (Sephiroth was given Jenova cells while Genesis was given G-Cells). Sephiroth, Genesis and Angeal all became good friends in their youth. Eventually, they all became first class Soldiers with Sephiroth being the strongest and most influential of all. After Genesis left SOLDIER, Sephiroth ended up working with Zack several times and began to develop a friendship with him, which continued after Angeal left SOLDIER as well. Sephiroth goes insane soon after Zack conquers Genesis while on a mission with Zack and his grunt Cloud. Sephiroth severs Jenova's head and defeats Zack but is stopped by Cloud.

Ehrgeiz[edit]

Sephiroth is a playable character in Ehrgeiz, along with other Final Fantasy VII characters. In the game, Sephiroth is playable both in his normal appearance and in the shirtless version that Cloud confronts alone at the end of Final Fantasy VII.

Kingdom Hearts[edit]

In Kingdom Hearts, like every other Final Fantasy character, Sephiroth is developed as an entirely different character. He appears as an optional boss in the game's arena setting using his various techniques from Final Fantasy VII. Among these techniques are the infamous "Heartless Angel" (also known as "Fallen One") spell, as well as techniques exclusive to Kingdom Hearts. A new orchestration of "One-Winged Angel" serves as the background music for this battle. In Final Mix, Sephiroth has a verbal conversation with Cloud in speech bubbles in which Sephiroth taunts Cloud about the darkness within him. Another notable deviance from Final Fantasy VII is that Sephiroth's eyes are blue and he wields the Masamune with his right hand instead of his left.

Kingdom Hearts II[edit]

In Kingdom Hearts II, Sephiroth is featured in another optional boss battle. In this title, his role is expanded beyond its sub-quest status in the original game as he makes an appearance during the main story of the game. He is also involved in a sub-plot involving Cloud Strife, whom Sora met in the first game. Sephiroth's history is not revealed, though he is said to be the manifestation of the darkness in Cloud's heart. Sephiroth states that he has fallen many times to Cloud, but always came back to fight again, suggesting that he has been defeated various times before the main story of Kingdom Hearts. During the game, Sora can choose to fight him alone as an optional boss battle in which Sephiroth displays the ability to control the powers of darkness. When he is defeated, he calls Sora very skilled, and instructs him to tell Cloud to come before him to settle things. He then engages Cloud in battle, continually telling him that he will never let go of the darkness. Tifa eventually appears and gives Cloud her light to help him fight. He and Sephiroth then fight again and disappear in a flash of white light. Then Tifa gives Sora the "Fenrir Blade" and continues to look for Cloud once more. In Kingdom Hearts II, Sephiroth wields the Masamune with his left hand, and his eye color is more green than in the original game. It is unknown if Sephiroth will be featured in future Kingdom Hearts installments.

Itadaki Street series[edit]

In Itadaki Street Special and Itadaki Street Portable, Sephiroth appears as an unlockable playable character.

Super Smash Bros. Ultimate[edit]

At the 2020 Video Game Awards, Sephiroth has been confirmed as a newcomer fighter in Super Smash Bros. Ultimate. He was released as a DLC fighter on December 22, 2020, although players could unlock him early if they did the Sephiroth Challenge event from December 17–22, 2020.

Trivia[edit]

  • Part of Sephiroth's name is actually mentioned in Final Fantasy Tactics. As a secret character, Cloud Strife is brought into the game's setting (Ivalice) by a device called "the Celestrial Globe". His first line after arriving is "What's this? My fingers are tingling... My eyes...they're burning... Stop...stop it.... phiros...." Though the part of his name that is mentioned reads as "-phiros" rather than "-phiroth," this is a translation error due to the interchangeability between "th" and "su" when transliterating to and from Japanese.
  • In Final Fantasy VII, excluding cut scenes and character art, and in Kingdom Hearts, Sephiroth is depicted holding his sword, the Masamune, in his right hand. However, in Ehrgeiz, Final Fantasy VII: Advent Children, and Kingdom Hearts II, he is shown with the sword in his left hand. In Kingdom Hearts and Kingdom Hearts II, his eyes have also been changed from green to blue and he has one wing in Kingdom Hearts and three in Kingdom Hearts II.
  • In the Final Fantasy VII: Ultimania Omega guidebook, Sephiroth's infamous "Supernova" attack is listed in the article on Limit Breaks, implying that it is not a spell or a summon, but rather Sephiroth's own unique Limit Break. It is unavailable, however, when Sephiroth briefly joins the player's party during the Nibelheim flashback, and is not used by Sephiroth when he appears as an enemy except when he is in his Safer Sephiroth incarnation.
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