|Final Fantasy character|
Yuffie's concept art for Final Fantasy VII
|First game||Final Fantasy VII (1997)|
|Designed by||Tetsuya Nomura|
|Voiced by (English)||Christy Carlson Romano (Kingdom Hearts and Advent Children)
Mae Whitman (Kingdom Hearts II and Dirge of Cerberus)
|Voiced by (Japanese)||Yumi Kakazu|
|Limit Break||All Creation|
Yuffie Kisaragi (ユフィ・キサラギ Yufi Kisaragi?) a video game character from Square Enix's Final Fantasy series. Designed by Tetsuya Nomura, she was first introduced in the 1997 role-playing video game Final Fantasy VII as a young female ninja princess and thief. She can become one of the game's player characters after finishing a special sidequest. Yuffie reappears in the Compilation of Final Fantasy VII series, expanding her background and showing her after the events of the original game.
Yuffie has also been featured in other Square Enix games, most notably the Kingdom Hearts crossover series, voiced by Yumi Kakazu in the Japanese versions of the games. In the English versions, Christy Carlson Romano provides her voice for Kingdom Hearts and Final Fantasy VII: Advent Children, and Mae Whitman is Yuffie's voice for Kingdom Hearts II and Dirge of Cerberus: Final Fantasy VII. The character has achieved a high level of popularity in Japan, but the English-language media reception has been more mixed.
Final Fantasy VII
One of two secret characters in Final Fantasy VII, Yuffie is a 16-year-old ninja (her martial arts style is called "Ninjyutu") and a thief who fights with oversized shuriken that she can throw like a boomerang. A fiercely patriotic daughter of Godo Kisaragi (ゴドー・キサラギ Godō Kisaragi?), the leader of Wutai (ウータイ Ūtai?), a culture based on real-world East Asia, Yuffie feels her country has lost its former glory and become nothing more than a resort town. After losing the war against Shinra Electric Power Company, Godo began to turn Wutai into a tourist attraction. This did not suit Yuffie, who began running off, stealing the magical Materia from unaware travelers in hope to someday become strong enough to change this situation. Sneaky and arrogant, Yuffie has a tomboyish and charismatic personality and obsessively steals and collects Materia. She also tends to be short-tempered and is prone to motion sickness. Gameplay-wise, Yuffie possesses the special ability "Throw", enabling her to thrown almost any item from the player’s inventory at enemies during combat.
Yuffie is introduced when she ambushes the protagonist Cloud Strife and his allies in either the Gongaga jungle or the forests south of Junon, appearing as "Mystery Ninja". If the player defeats her in combat and then chooses the correct series of dialogue choices, she introduces herself and joins the player's party as one of player characters. However, once in Wutai Village, Yuffie steals the party's Materia and hides, but is kidnapped by a Midgar crime lord, the lecherous Don Corneo. When the group rescues Yuffie, she returns the stolen Materia and continues working with the party. In another sidequest, she proves herself by fighting the bosses of Wutai's five story pagoda, the last of these battles against Godo. These fights, and the sequence of conversations following, enable both father and daughter to understand the other's actions and to come to a mutual respect. At Godo's request, Cloud officially takes Yuffie (who obtains her level 4 Limit Break, called "All Creation") with him on his quest.
Compilation of Final Fantasy VII
In the 2005 computer animated film Final Fantasy VII: Advent Children, Yuffie reunites with her Final Fantasy VII allies to fight against the summon creature Bahamut SIN. In the On the Way to a Smile novella "Case of Yuffie", which is set between the end of Final Fantasy VII and the beginning of Advent Children, the disease Geostigma spreads to Wutai, and Yuffie sets out to find a cure.
In the 2004 action role-playing game Before Crisis: Final Fantasy VII, set six years before Final Fantasy VII, Yuffie encounters Shinra's agents called the Turks in Wutai and unknowingly works with them against the eco-terrorist group AVALANCHE. In the 2006 third-person shooter Dirge of Cerberus: Final Fantasy VII, set one year after Advent Children, Yuffie leaves home and joins the World Regenesis Organization, where she is placed in charge of espionage and intelligence gathering; Yuffie infiltrates Mako Reactor Zero deep within the ruins of Midgar and shuts it off when the ex-Turk Vincent Valentine defeats the Shinra remnant Deepground. The nine-year-old Yuffie also makes brief appearances in the 2007 prequel action role-playing game Crisis Core: Final Fantasy VII, where she fights against Shinra following their invasion and takeover of Wutai; after meeting Zack Fair, she enlists his help to find treasures in several side missions.
Outside the Final Fantasy series, Yuffie has also been featured in the Kingdom Hearts series since 2002. In the first Kingdom Hearts, a younger Yuffie acts as a supporting character in Traverse Town, helping to defeat the Heartless who had destroyed her world. Yuffie's appearance in 2004's Kingdom Hearts: Chain of Memories is a projection from Sora's memories in Traverse Town. In 2005's Kingdom Hearts II, she aids Leon and the others as part of the Hollow Bastion Restoration Committee, this time appearing in her Advent Children attire. In both Kingdom Hearts and Kingdom Hearts II, Yuffie is additionally featured as an opponent in the Olympus Coliseum, while 2008's Kingdom Hearts coded features a virtual simulation of Yuffie. She also appears in the manga adaptations of Kingdom Hearts, Kingdom Hearts II and Chain of Memories published by Gangan Comics and Tokyopop.
Yuffie is an unlockable playable character in the PlayStation version of the 1998 fighting game Ehrgeiz: God Bless the Ring, appearing alongside other characters from Final Fantasy VII. She is also one of the playable characters in the 2006 board video game Itadaki Street Portable for the PlayStation Portable, in a chibi-style design that is similar to her model during the exploration gameplay mode of Final Fantasy VII. In addition, Yuffie makes a cameo appearance in the 2008 action role-playing / fighting game hybrid Dissidia Final Fantasy, as a tutor of the in-game manuals; she also has an unlockable friend card in this game. She was also the first DLC character released for the 2014 rhythm game Theatrhythm Final Fantasy: Curtain Call.
Two large Yuffie action figures were released by Square Enix as part of the Final Fantasy VII Play Arts Vol. 2 series in 2008 (in her original game attire), and Final Fantasy VII Movie Advent Children Series 2 in 2009 (in her film attire). Other merchandise include a small super deformed figurine version as she appears in Itadaki Street Portable, from 2009's Final Fantasy Trading Arts Mini Vol. 4, a 1997 plush doll and a keyholder figurine by Banpresto, a 2001 garage kit figure by Kotobukiya, and a wallscroll poster in Final Fantasy Poster Vol. 5. Her theme music in Final Fantasy VII, "Descendant of Shinobi", is included in a vocal form on the album Final Fantasy Song Book: Mahoroba as "Walking in the Road, After the Rain" by Nobuo Uematsu and Yuji Hasegawa.
Creation and development
During early development of Final Fantasy VII, Yuffie was envisioned as a 25-year-old ex-SOLDIER now working as a bounty hunter, seeking both the game's protagonist Cloud Strife and its antagonist Sephiroth, while also having a bounty on her own head. Her job class was originally listed as "ninja (assassin)" and she was intended to be a daughter of the long-deceased Kasumi Kisaragi. The Wutai sidequest present in the final incarnation of the game was significantly different. Her age and description was different for each of the several wanted posters; what Yuffie looks like, as her level, is determined on the last wanted poster viewed. She would also encounter the party in a random encounter, or attack Cloud when he is sleeping in an inn. The Wutai scenario required Yuffie to be recruited to complete it.
Having a close attachment to Yuffie's character, Final Fantasy VII event planner Jun Akiyama was responsible for the large number of cutscenes featuring her and her actions during fights. Mae Whitman, who voiced Yuffie in the English versions of Kingdom Hearts II and Dirge of Cerberus, said she was not "aware of the extent to which people were familiar with her character already." In a 2012 interview, Whitman recalled Yuffie as "bubbly and bright and nice. But still super cool!"
Yuffie Kisaragi has received a notably positive reception in Japan, having placed as the 42nd best PlayStation character in the 2007 "Den-Play Awards" by Dengeki PlayStation; in 2010, readers of Japanese magazine Famitsu voted her as the 48th best video game character of all time. According to Edge, Yuffie, being one of characters that are "are brands in and of themselves", "created a new anime stereotype -- the, uh, giddy girl ninja." In a 2013 poll by Square Enix, Yuffie was voted relatively low as the 14th most popular Final Fantasy female character (sharing that spot with Beatrix from Final Fantasy IX). In a 2014 poll by Spanish magazine Hobby Consolas, Yuffie was voted one of the eight best ninja characters in video games.
David Smith from IGN ranked Yuffie seventh on the 2008 list of top ten Final Fantasy VII characters, stating that she "belongs in the Wacky Sidekicks wing of the RPG hall of fame." Although commenting that Yuffie can sometimes be "a pain in the neck," Smith said that she became such an appealing sidekick character that Square would go on to use the "Yuffie formula" with Rikku from Final Fantasy X. In 2012, Becky Cunningham of Cheat Code Central ranked her as the fourth top ninja in video games, stating that despite her "cocky, brash, and slightly abrasive personality," Yuffie is "also a compassionate person with an impressive goal," serving "as both comic relief and unlikely hero, a seemingly self-centered sneak thief who always does the right thing in the end."
UGO.com featured her in the 2011 list of 25 most sexy ninja girls in all media for her appearance in Advent Children, adding "that third-dimension certainly adds something." In his review for Advent Children, James Mielke of 1UP.com called her "as cutely jailbait as ever;" the film itself was called "Ogling Legal-Age Yuffie" by Geson Hatchett of Hardcore Gamer. WomanGamers.com gave the character an overall score of 7.0/10, opining that while "a 16 year old ninja girl was a nice refreshing change [...] it would have been nice if her character had matured and developed through this story." In 2013, Liam Gilchrist of What Culture included her ten memorable Final Fantasy characters that deserve their own game, possibly "a Thief-esque title, but more suitable for younger players." Márcio Pacheco Alexsandro of Brazil's Game Hall placed Yuffie at fifth spot on his 2014 list of top female ninja characters in games, commenting on her close resemblance to Makimachi Misao from Rurouni Kenshin.
However, some of the reception was more negative. In her character profile, IGN wrote called her "both impressively useful and incredibly annoying." In 2010, Scott Sharkey of 1UP.com placed her in the category "The Perky Idiot" alongside Rikku and Selphie while discussing the top five character types in the Final Fantasy series. That same year, GamesRadar's Mikel Reparaz included the appearance of Yuffie among the other Final Fantasy VII characters in Ehrgeiz on the list of the 55 best character cameos in video game history, but called her "hyper-annoying". In 2013, Kyle Lowe of Complex ranked her as the fifth most annoying classic video game character. Adam Thomas of Ranker called her "sort of a Final Fantasy Jar Jar Binks, but she's a cute teenage girl so people give her a pass," and blamed her for paving the way for Rikku, Final Fantasy VIII's Selphie and, especially, Final Fantasy XIII's Vanille. Joe Juba of Game Informer included her among "Final Fantasy's particular breed of annoying female companions, like Selphie and Vaan." Lisa Foiles of The Escapist included this "crazy, hyperactive teenager" on her 2014 list of top five annoying princesses in video games, calling her "just a definition of annoying."
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- Square (September 7, 1997). Final Fantasy VII. PlayStation. Sony Computer Entertainment. "Yuffie: "You turned Wutai into a cheesy resort town peddling to tourists...How dare you!? Da-chao Statue and Leviathan are ashamed!!""
- Square (September 7, 1997). Final Fantasy VII. PlayStation. Sony Computer Entertainment. "Yuffie: ...I've been hearing that ever since I was little. Before I was born, Wutai was a lot more crowded and more important... You saw what it looks like now, right? ...JUST a resort town... After we lost the war, we got peace, but with that, we lost something else. Now look at Wutai... That's why... if I had lots of Materia I could..."
- Final Fantasy VII PC special edition official website (Characters section).
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- Square (September 7, 1997). Final Fantasy VII. PlayStation. Sony Computer Entertainment. "Yuffie: Huh? Hey... HEY! Wait! I haven't even told you my name...... I'm Yuffie! Good to meetcha! (to herself) Heh heh...... just as I planned. Now all I have to do is... a little this...... and a little that...... nyuk, nyuk, nyuk...... (to Cloud) Hey, wait up! Wait for me!"
- Square (September 7, 1997). Final Fantasy VII. PlayStation. Sony Computer Entertainment. "Corneo: Hohi! I've finally got a new chicky! Two for me, in fact! Hohi, hohi! (...) / Cloud: ......Ok. Corneo took Yuffie from us. And without Yuffie there's no way we'll get our Materia back."
- Square (September 7, 1997). Final Fantasy VII. PlayStation. Sony Computer Entertainment. "Yuffie: Huh? Oh, it'll be all right... Don't be so picky! Anyways, that sure was close...... No, normally I would kick their butts, Boom, Bang!! That Corneo guy's a real pain. I'd rather deal with my dad than deal with that guy. Oh, by the way, some of those guys from the Turks are good, huh? At least, after all that, we got the Materia back. Now come on everybody, let's continue our journey..."
- Square (September 7, 1997). Final Fantasy VII. PlayStation. Sony Computer Entertainment. "Staniv: The rule is the best fighter on each floor will be your opponent... Although it's a five-storied pagoda, the fourth floor is the highest... In other words, no one has ever defeated me---Master of Weaponry! You still want to try...? / Yuffie: Just come on!!"
- Square (September 7, 1997). Final Fantasy VII. PlayStation. Sony Computer Entertainment. "Godo: I'm glad you made it this far, Yuffie! / Yuffie: Why, why are you...... / Godo: I'll answer you by having you try your skills against me! Hold nothing back. Come as if you're trying to kill me! If you don't...then I'll have to kill you!"
- Square (September 7, 1997). Final Fantasy VII. PlayStation. Sony Computer Entertainment. "Godo: Yuffie...... I am the same now as I was before when I wanted the war. But, after I lost the war, I began to think... Is strength, only for defeating the enemy? ...or just something to show-off to others...? Might begets might. That's the same way as the Shinra... (...) I knew you were looking for Materia for the good of Wutai. But, the reason I hide my strength now, is also for the good of Wutai... And now, I realize both are necessary... Strength without determination means nothing. And determination without strength is equally useless...!"
- William Irwin, Jason P. Blahuta, Michel S. Beaulieu, Final Fantasy and Philosophy: The Ultimate Walkthrough (ISBN 9780470415368).
- Square (September 7, 1997). Final Fantasy VII. PlayStation. Sony Computer Entertainment. "Godo: You there, please take Yuffie with you! I perceive that you all have both determination and strength! (...) Go, Yuffie! For the sake of strengthening Wutai! / Yuffie: Dad... / Godo: I'll take care of the Five Sacred Gods until you return! Go! And come back alive!"
- On the Way to a Smile: Final Fantasy VII (in Japanese). Square-Enix. 2009. ISBN 4-7575-2462-5.
- Square Enix (2004). Before Crisis: Final Fantasy VII (in Japanese). mobile phones. Square Enix. Level/area: Chapter 14: Every Hope and Resolution. "Yuffie: You're Shinra! Were you trying to trick me?! Damage Wutai some more?! / Player: No, you've misunderstood. I wasn't trying to fool you. / Yuffie: I hate them. But! I hate Shinra more!!"
- Dirge of Cerberus: Final Fantasy VII official website (Characters section).
- Square (2002). Kingdom Hearts: Chain of Memories. PlayStation 2. Square. "Yuffie: A female ninja who escaped to Traverse Town when her home world was taken by the Heartless. She stays strong and cheerful in any situation. She works with Leon and Aerith to unravel the secret of the 'key'."
- Jupiter (December 7, 2004). Kingdom Hearts: Chain of Memories. Game Boy Advance. Square Enix U.S.A., Disney Interactive. "Aerith: I don't think I have any memory of it...but somehow I still remember. Maybe Sora's heart is doing the remembering for us. / Sora: How does THAT work? / Aerith: We don't know you, Sora, but your heart is full of memories of us together. Those memories must resonate in our hearts, too. Maybe they tell us things we couldn't otherwise know."
- Square Enix (March 28, 2006). Kingdom Hearts II. PlayStation 2. Square Enix U.S.A., Buena Vista Games. "Yuffie: Everybody's working on stuff over at Merlin's house. C'mon! Meet the Hollow Bastion Restoration Committee!"
- Square Enix, h.a.n.d. (January 11, 2011). Kingdom Hearts Re:coded. Nintendo DS. Square Enix. "Leon: The name's...Leon. I wanted to help with the blocks, but something else needed my attention first. / Yuffie: Hey, I'm Yuffie. Thanks for looking after everybody! It's... Sora, right? Drop by again sometime. I bet we'd make a good team!"
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|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Yuffie Kisaragi.|
- Yuffie Kisaragi at the Final Fantasy Wiki