This is going to include a lot of Final Fantasy Agito and Type-0 spoilers. Probably no Melody of Memory spoilers? I'm going to dissect the MoM's identity at length. idk if you could interpret that concept as a spoiler, so... Use your discretion.
Like Final Fantasy Versus XIII which became Final Fantasy XV, Final Fantasy Agito XIII became "Final Fantasy Type-0." The game was part of the Fabula Nova Crystallis series and was meant to serve as the "ancient past" of Versus XIII. Needless to say, that never came to be the case when the Fabula Nova Crystallis was broken apart.
In 2014, a mobile game called "Final Fantasy Agito" was released. It followed the original concept of Agito XIII. It was discontinued in 2015 without reaching its proper ending and the Vita port which had been planned was cancelled for reasons unexplained. The game is now a piece of lost media, but Japanese transcriptions of the main story as well as various screenshots of character events still exist online. I've taken the liberty to translate the whole main story on my tumblr blog (nanakibh) and I've been trying to translate as many of the character events as I can find, but a lot of it is just gone and will probably never be seen again.
In a sentence, the game is about a war that continually ends the world.
This is going to take a little while, but I'm going to explain the whole thing. Because why not? You need to know this. I'm tired of seeing people not know this. Feel free to tell your local YouTube Men about this so that everybody can know. It's gonna be a while until the next game, so I wanna save you some time thinking about theories that go nowhere.
The MoM did a fairly decent job of spoiling the ending of Agito when he told Luxu about his past. I've seen people try to squint and apply it to things we've already seen in Kingdom Hearts, but... No, that was really a word-for-word description of stuff that happens in the climax of this story.
In the world of Agito, there are Agito cadets, candidates who aim to become "Agito", the name of the legendary savior of the world. Which is to say, (Phil voice) they all wanna be HEROES. The cadets attend a school on an island. The school, town, and island are collectively known as Akademeia. Akademeia is in the country of Rubrum.
Time for a little tour of the most khux-relevant places.
When you arrive at Akademeia, you'll see a fountain in front of you. It's a common meeting place for students. Many conversations are held here. At the center of the fountain is a phoenix, "the Vermilion Bird", the animal symbol of Rubrum. Each country is represented by one of the four mythical Chinese beasts. You know, like Unions. Though, I think that each cadet class is more along the lines of being what Unions are. They're all kind of competing and working towards the same goal. There are thirteen cadet classes with 0 being the most auspicious and 12 being, like, the loser bin.
When the Player joins Akademeia, they're welcomed into Class Twelfth. In the first world, Tohno and Jack are members of Class Twelfth.
When you enter the main hall, there's a prominent clock. What's it for? I don't know. But time is a very relevant symbol. I can tell you right now that time is a lie.
I've pointed this out before, but I'm bringing it back. It's always worth bringing this back. This is a window from the Chancellor's room, located on another floor of Akademeia that the player can't access. You can see it in cutscenes in Type-0, most notably the opening sequence. It's the same design as the Daybreak Town clock tower. If more people had taken this as the clue it's clearly meant to be, we could've all solved this a lot faster. Come on, folks, there are more games in the FNC than just Versus XIII. lol You can also find this design in the artbook.
Another variation of the design is found at the back of the classroom. The classroom is where lectures are held, but it's also where students frequently have to meet to receive mission briefings. There are also hearts on those banners. *shrugs* Because sure, why not. Kingdom Hearts.
Behind the classroom, there's a garden. That's where you'll find Deuce, tending to her flowers. She grows special white flowers that mean "the arrival of happiness" and "reuniting with someone you love." Familiar concept.
Behind the garden is the cemetery where they bury those who die in the war. That's where you'll usually find Tohno, a mysterious girl with long black hair. When the world ends and starts over, everyone forgets, but there are a few who remember, and she's one of them. Her memories are of great interest to the resident scientist, Kazusa. (She's the "Skuld" one, clearly.)
Out on the terrace, you can see the whole town down below. That's where you'll always find Jack, standing in his signature pose with his hands behind his head. This is who we're looking for! This is the boy!! Ahhh, what a cutie. If you couldn't already tell, he looks a lot like Demyx. He also has the same voice actor in Japanese.
See, conceptually, it's just... You get it? Yeah. Nomura's a funny man.
The final battle that ends the world also happens to take place on that terrace.
Final Fantasy Agito begins at the start of the first war. Type-0 takes place in the 600+ MILLIONTH world, so Agito's really goin' all the way back to the beginning.
Just when it looks like the war has come to a close, the sky suddenly turns red. Mysterious creatures appear from nowhere and begin slaughtering everyone indiscriminately. No one knows what they are. Monsters? Soldiers? Nobody knows. And they're never given any answers. Because they die. (God, I recommend reading this part the most. I cry every time, especially in the third world when Lean is with them... The hopelessness is real.)
At that time, Jack is the only one who notices that there's something wrong with Miyu, the Cadet Representative, the girl who acted as the cadets' leader.
Alas, even if he'd spoken up sooner, that wouldn't have changed anything...
Miyu had been possessed by an unknown entity. The entity (Gala) is never given a name in Agito. It's just referred to as just "???" When it isn't possessing someone, it looks like formless darkness. In Type-0, Gala has a masked form similar to Vanitas, but he has no form in Agito like Darkness.
Miyu was transformed into a type of l'Cie known as the "Judge." The Judge's Focus, also known as a "role" (seriously, it's the same word in Japanese), was to conduct trials to test whether the real Agito (the savior of the world) had been born in that world. If they hadn't, it was the Judge's job to end the world and make it start all over again in the hopes that Agito would be born the next time.
Eyes are a symbol of the Judge. They're all over the place in the final dungeon of Type-0. In Agito, the Judge's l'Cie brand appears over their eye.
The Judge is different every time. So, say, even if Jack managed to remember that Miyu was the one who became the Judge, he would've been wrong about who the traitor was in the second world. Ace was the one who got possessed instead. Tohno had her eye on Miyu, so she was totally thrown off guard when it turned out to be Ace.
I've got a lot of thoughts about Darkness here, but I'm gonna keep them to myself and continue with the story.
So just a quick recap: Miyu is the traitor of the first world. Ace is the traitor of the second world. I know that's just two worlds, but it's a lot to think about.
Corporate needs you to find the difference between these two images.
Ace shares a number of similarities with Ventus, so seeing him getting possessed by Ye Olde Unknown Entity is kind of amusing. Ace was known as "the one closest to (becoming) Agito." In a Kingdom Hearts sense, that's gonna make sense in a second and should illuminate the reason why Ventus is so special.
Anyway. Even if they defeat the Judge, it isn't enough to prove that they have the power the Judge is looking for - the "Power of Bonds", a power that connects people together. (It's Sora's version of the Power of Waking. Like, you get it, right?) Supposedly, the power can reveal the gateway between the mortal world and the Unseen Realm. The only person who has that power is the Player, but... Well, I mentioned that this game was discontinued, right? So the Player is never able to use their power.
By the way, don't get the Agito Player and khux Player confused. They're totally unrelated. I sense no connection. I'm pretty sure that Sora is supposed to be the Agito Player because, like, he changes destiny. That's why he's so Special And Important to Xehanort and the MoM.
So you see, the entity and the cadets both want Agito. For the entity, Agito's power can help them reach the Unseen Realm. For the cadets, Agito's power can free them from their destiny of war.
The war basically exists to find Agito, so........ I wonder how this info would make Sora feel.
Jack is Very Angery that he can't become Agito. But he kind of resigns himself to that fact pretty quickly and decides that the world he'll protect is "the world within the distance his blade can reach." In the worlds to follow, he just straight-up says NAH, WE CAN'T DO IT. In Type-0, it's unclear, but in Agito, it seems pretty obvious to me that he's that resigned because he remembers what happened.
Final Fantasy Agito was supposed to "rewrite" the ending of Type-0 where Class Zero all die. But since the true Agito never arrived to save them, you can assume that they were trapped in a continuous spiral of war forever. More specifically, Tabata said that he wanted "the past to save the future." Sooo... Isn't that KH3?
Lean and Tohno put on cloaks and step outside of time in search of the one who could overwrite the world's destiny of destruction. So, now you understand why Luxu encouraged Sora to use the Power of Waking, right? Lean and Luxu had the same mission. I feel like I could write a whole post just about Lean because he's a very entertaining dude. Suffice it to say that he's the perfect combination of young Luxu and older Luxu. He's the "token evil member" of Class Zero. (Depending on how you look at it, they're all evil.)
Since they didn't have the time to reach the proper ending, Player doesn't succeed in becoming Agito, but Lean expresses his belief in them.
Luxu seems weirdly fixated on Sora and Ventus's eyes and I think this is probably why. Their eyes have the "light of hope." When Xehanort referred to Sora as their "hope" I was like THERE IT IS!
Now, back to our boy Jack.
He's interesting because he's one of the few who seem to remember the things that happened in previous worlds. I unfortunately don't have it, but by the third world, he has an event called "Say, if there were other worlds..." in which he almost assuredly talks about what he remembers and what he's probably figured out about the nature of the world.
Jack is determined to keep everything he knows to himself, though. He doesn't want anyone to worry. As a result. he ends up losing his ability to feel emotions.
This explains a lot of things, but it also makes him sound so sad........ Jack is always easygoing and cheerful, but apparently that's just an act. The reason why he acts so cartoonishy over-the-top must be because he's overcompensating.
I feel like this would explain why the MoM sounds legit morose when Young Xehanort talks about how he feels it's important to understand the emotions within hearts. (Is this why the Book of Prophecies emblem looks like a Nobody emblem...?) The fact that Jack can't understand emotions is one of the reasons why he fails as an Agito candidate and can't save the world. He can't form genuine connections. The only one who can connect with him is Player, and, as I've said..... That'd be Sora.
I don't know the context behind Player making Jack feel anger, but we sure have already seen Sora make Demyx display anger. Everybody's gotta start somewhere. They started on the wrong foot. lol
btw, the character events are known as "Kizuna events." Kizuna means "bond." So, literally, it's an event where the Player forms connections with characters. There's a little timed section where you would rapidly tap a heart to earn kizuna points, and the heart looks like THIS:
Is Kingdom Hearts Agito or is Agito Kingdom Hearts? Who can say, tbh.
Anyhow, I think that having no emotions might also be smart for the MoM. In the case of khux, Darkness can possess people and manipulate them by using their emotions against them. If the MoM doesn't have emotions, Darkness can't use him.
When they were little, Jack brought back Deuce's smile by doing a silly dance. Ever since then, she trusted his optimism. In the novels, she finds out that his smiles are fake and it makes her feel like everything she knows is a lie. Likewise, he believes in her kindness, but she secretly doesn't believe she's really as kind as people think she is because she has to kill people in the war. So, y'see, MoM and Ava both admire something fake about each other. It's disastrous. *chef kiss*
...Have I mentioned the band yet? I HAVEN'T MENTIONED THE BAND. God, I'm sorry. There's just so much going on here. It's hard for me to even tell where to start.
I don't have the full scene, but I have enough to know that it sure did exist. lol Jack enlisted Player's help to find people who would form a band with him. It seems like he really wanted to call himself "Angel Jack" as his stage name. Kinda ironic, but cute. I'm not sure what instrument he played in this world, but in the alternate ending world of Type-0, he plays drums. Theoretically, he could've played a different instrument in every world.
I'm also very amused by the fact that Jack is canonically the strongest cadet. Possibly the strongest human character. For real, it says this in his profile, and the Ultimania shows his strength stat going to the edge of the grid. lol
He mastered the blade -- Jigen-ryuu sword style in specific, a style that focuses on beheading the enemy with one powerful downward strike across the neck from the shoulder. The style teaches that one should ALWAYS keep their blade sheathed to avoid killing at all costs. It's not a style made for long, sustained battles. Jack acts like a coward, but............ Rest assured, if he wanted someone dead, they'd be dead. He just can't do anything in between. It's all or nothing.
He's most useful for taking down large enemies with a lot of HP. He does have one special move called "Transience" (JP, "Transient Crimson Blizzard", evoking the image of a shower of blood.) that can instantly wipe out a whole field of smaller enemies, but it costs him everything but 1 HP. For that move, he plunges a hand into his chest to grab his heart and forges a phantom blade in his other hand out of his SOUL. One of his profiles says that he avoids using that move in front of others because he knows how it would make them worry.
idk, I think this more than explains how the MoM forges keyblades. lol
Battle of a thousand Heartless? u are like little baby, Sora, watch THIS. *kills all the Heartless and frickin' dies*
Since he isn't built for running around, most of his other moves involve watching and predicting the enemy's movements to deliver 1HKO's. When he counters, he excitedly shouts, "I predicted that!" (The word he uses for "predicted" combines the kanji for "seeing" and "cutting." Neat.) The original Japanese names of his counter moves are "Clear Mirror, Still Water" and "All-Seeing." The localized names are incorrect. Don't trust them.
Yozora's fighting style seems really similar to Noctis's, so I'm going to guess that MoM's similar to Jack. So he's a glass cannon. But battles with him would probably be frustrating and short. I would expect to die a lot. Frequently. I hope he stays "on our side", like Demyx told Riku. lol
He's part of the idiot trio; him, Cinque, and Nine. They're all a different type of idiot. Just by reading what I already posted, I think you can tell that Jack isn't actually stupid, though. He can erase things from his mind. Having an empty mind is actually really important for his technique. Jigen-ryuu incorporates "munen-muso" which means "no desire, no thought." The idea is that the body can move freely and react more quickly when unencumbered by the processes of conscious thinking. On the battlefield, he's an emotionless murder machine!
This is cute, so I feel like sharing it. His fear of Queen is amusingly similar to Demyx's fear of Saix in the KH manga.
Queen also happens to be a berserker... Interesting. She's also the one who seems like Invi, so now I'm just going to be waiting for Invi to go feral.
This reminds me of another very relevant similarity...
Jack is a frequent practitioner of the tactical retreat. Most of the time, if he shows up in someone else's event, he causes problems and then exits by running away.
Usually, the problems he causes lead to GOOD things happening. That's why nobody outright hates him. He's not trying to do bad things just to mess with people. In most cases, he's actually trying to do good things. It's just hard because he doesn't have real emotions and he doesn't know what's appropriate. It seems like Seven is among the few who figured out what's going on with his emotions, so even if she's strict with him, she's sympathetic.
Now, as for the rest of the Foretellers.
Consider the following...
Deuce is the aforementioned friend of Jack who spends her time tending flowers in the garden. Fellow lover of music. Her weapon is a flute. She's known for being kind and docile, but she can also be firm. Because of how close she is to Jack, she's one of the few people who can break through his act and really make him be serious. Jack mostly keeps a watch on her from a distance, probably because he's afraid of hurting her. He encourages Player to be her friend.
Eight is a discerning lad who likes to visit the garden occasionally to check on Deuce. One time, he stepped on her flowers and he was just about ready to commit seppuku to atone for it. Seeing her cry is just too much for him to handle. Nice guy, but can also be a bit of a snarky asshole, especially towards Nine. He's known for being the calm, rational one, but once he thinks he's right, his judgement gets clouded by his own prejudices.
Nine is a big questioner of authority. Strong but stupid. Always acts before he thinks. If Jack has a stupid plan, he makes Nine take the fall for him. In a way, I'm totally not surprised by how things turned out for Aced. Even the way the MoM acts a little annoyed with him is so... Jack. Yeah. I feel bad for him. At one point, Nine stands up for himself and actually tells Jack that he won't let him use him, but it totally goes over Jack's head because - reminder - Jack doesn't have emotions. He can't comprehend when he's hurting someone. Aced, Nine, I'm sorry you have to deal with him.
btw, he has a move called "Primal Roar." So when Ava suggested that he "growl at them"......... That actually would work. He yells loudly and it does damage.
Oh, Ms. Student Council President... I guess I've come to the conclusion that Queen is the female equivalent of Saix. lol She's one of the few people who can keep Jack under control. She's good at filling the role of an authority figure, but she's bad at controlling her emotions, so if she gets heated, she'll snap at people, and that leads to some very unfortunate situations.
This is Trey. He knows a lot. He probably knows more than anyone. But Jack knows things I'm sure Trey doesn't know. And that's scary.
On Jack's behalf, I would like to apologize to everyone. Are you getting the theme here yet? Jack lowkey treats everyone like shit and they're just like "Well, that's Jack. He means well, I think."
But anyway, you can usually find Trey in the Crystarium, aka the library. He loves books. It drives him nuts if there's something he doesn't know. Ira's whole reaction to the Book of Prophecies is textbook Trey behavior. If there's someone who knows something he doesn't know, that's the most frustrating thing in the world to him.
I don't have conveniently matching images of Luxu and Lean because Lean got horribly shafted in the transition to Type-0 and he barely even appears in that game. He didn't even HAVE a face until Agito... ("Mother!" lmao do you get it? I'm gonna launch Nomura into the sun.)
So if you wanna know what Luxu might've originally looked like under the hood... How about INSANELY HANDSOME? He also makes some of the cutest sad faces I've ever seen. Absolute baby. War criminal. Genius. Made nukes that annihilated a whole continent. He'll get the job done, lemme tell you. He'll save the world HOWEVER IT TAKES. Definitely the most intelligent member, but he's also kind of naive in a way that leads him down a dark path. I've never seen him interact with Jack, but I feel like their personalities would go together like peanut butter and chocolate. (It's just Final Fantasy Xigbar and Demyx. lol)
Hm. Gold eyes.
We already talked about this guy. Total cryptid. Definitely Demyx. lol I think that everyone who's into Type-0 would agree that Jack is a genius. He doesn't have conventional intelligence like Lean. He doesn't have a lot of textbook knowledge like Trey. He doesn't have Queen's mature wisdom. But he's crafty and manipulative af. Serious cult leader vibes. Very lovable, but also...... The scariest character due to sheer deadly potential and unpredictability. Nevertheless, I would trust him.
You might be thinking "But if the MoM is as lazy as this guy, why would he follow this whole plan?" Well, for starters, the MoM gave Luxu the really hard part of physically FINDING "Agito." lol His Eye just confirmed that Sora existed in the future. The MoM said himself that he wanted to take a "break", so. *shrug*
But also, despite his laziness, Jack also has a heroic side. It's complicated because even THAT is just an act. Like, he WANTS to be a hero, but he has no choice but to pretend to be one because he can't really BE anything. He's just constantly swapping masks and one happens to be "hero." There's another scene I unfortunately don't have, but apparently he admits to having no strong sense of self. He has to ask Player what they think he's like because he doesn't know. And then he tells them something along the lines of "I guess I'm whatever each person thinks I am." *gestures at the MoM's convo with YMX*
I feel like I should give King an honorable mention. I'm preeetty sure King was one of Nomura's favorites because when Nomura appears as an SP Unit (Random NPC units that can assist you in battle. Most are named after staff members.) he's represented by King's model. King and the MoM share the same Japanese voice. The MoM and King aren't alike in any other way, though.
Oh, want another fun Jack fact? Deuce is associated with white flowers, but Jack is associated with clover.
Like Deuce's flowers, white clover means "happiness" and "think of me" in hanakotoba. I guess that makes it an honorary reunion flower. It's drawn a bit abstractly, but I'm preeetty sure the MoM is holding a white clover on the KH2.8 boxart, too. Could be a dandelion, but... Placing my bets on clover, seeing as how there's that whole scene in Back Cover where he picks one.
Sice finds a four-leaf clover and gives it to Player because she heard from Jack that it's good luck. She also picked a flower by the road on her way back from a mission to give to Player after asking Deuce what the flower meant. It's just cute to see them spreading this flower-related superstition around the school. lol
Strangely, besides Ace, Jack is also the only cadet to be mentioned in an Agito chapter title; "The Carefree Cadet's Departure For the Frontlines." The chapter is about how his fake smiles fail to keep everyone calm as the war begins to turn against them in the second world. More MoM behavior.
Ugh, I love him.
Okay, this post is huge. I didn't even get to talking about Ven and Lauriam. And Strelitzia... But if I keep going, I'll be here all day. If somebody wants me to explain that connection, let me know.
So what's the conclusion?
Demyx is the young version of the MoM from the first world. Probably. That's the vibe I get from this.
I have no idea what the MoM plans to do in the future. Maybe we'll finally find out how Agito XIII and Versus XIII were supposed to be related. The shot of the MoM standing in the city is very similar to concept art from the cancelled Type-0 sequel, Type-Next. So, whatever's going on, I think that was always meant to be the next stage in a way. iirc, the city in the Type-Next art is Hong Kong, so, like Shibuya in KH, it was based on a real place.
The person in the Type-Next stuff looks like Ace, but he's wearing samurai gear. tbh, it makes more sense for Jaaack to be in samurai gear, but... Whatever. We don't even know if that was really Ace. It might've been a different Ace, like an Ace from the past or future or another world. So on that note, Demyx and the MoM could be the same guy, but from two different times or worlds, existing separately in the same space. But I think it's way simpler to assume that Demyx is just the MoM now. I don't wanna complicate it in my mind more than I have to. lol
Also, obviously, I'm not saying that the MoM IS Jack 100%, just like how Yozora probably isn't 100% like Noctis. But he SURE IS SIMILAR SO FAR.
Needless to say, I recommend reading FF Agito on my blog. I also recommend playing Type-0, but it's not the same game AT ALL. Part of me wonders if Agito and khux ran concurrently because Nomura wanted people to figure this out. But OH WELL. IT'S GONE NOW.
I could probably keep going, but omg... I'm done, I swear. I'm forcing this post to end now.
edits: Don't ask me why it threw in extra images at the end there. lol (How many times will I have to edit this? Hopefully not too much more.)