What Are The Archons in Final Fantasy XIV?

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An “Archon” is a title that the nation of Sharlayan bestows upon mages of incredible power in Final Fantasy XIV. Notable Archons include Louisoix (grandfather to Alisae and Alphinaud) and Matoya, teacher of everyone’s favorite Mi’qote, Y’shtola.

Although we don’t see many of the Archons throughout our time in the game, one of them in particular has played an instrumental part in Eorzea’s history, acting in direct defiance of his homeland’s policy of neutrality.

We’ve had a taste of that in the cinematic for the expansion Endwalker: Y’shtola’s dramatic dialogue with a stuffy looking Elezen painting a vivid picture of their attitude.

“So, Sharlayan would keep its counsel while the world is lost to ruin?”

“It would. Come what may, we shall live on. We must.”


Who Is Archon Louisoix & What Did He Do?

XIV is just as dense in lore as the Final Fantasies that have come before it, if not more so.

Another layer of complexity to its immense backstory is that the game was essentially rebooted in a pretty major way after release.

Before A Realm Reborn (which would form the basis of the game we know and love today) there was a sequence of events that NPCs now refer to as the Calamity.

Basically, the new direction XIV was going to take required a disaster of epic proportions to reset the world and begin anew.

Louisoix Leveilleur was an NPC during XIV’s “legacy” years, the game that existed before A Realm Reborn.

His people knew that a great calamity was coming to Eorzea, but refused to intervene.

Louisoix thought differently and founded the Circle of Knowing: twelve scholars who would come to be known as Archons.

The Circle of Knowing / FFXIV
Image source by Dynamis FFXIV / © SQUARE ENIX CO., LTD. All Rights Reserved.

These Archons were regular figures in XIV prior to the release of A Realm Reborn, and they continue to be pretty big parts of the story even to this day.

Y’shtola, Yda, Papalymo, Thancred, and Urianger were all members of this circle, which would eventually form the basis of the Scions of the Seventh Dawn.

Louisoix wouldn’t make it this far, though.

His legacy lives on through his grandchildren, Alisae and Alphinaud, who will regularly accompany the player on their adventures.

To save Eorzea and create A Realm Reborn, Louisoix perished.

So to sum it up:

The moon broke, releasing Bahamut, a long-imprisoned dreadwyrm. Bahamut rampaged across Eorzea.

Louisoix sent the survivors of the attack into the future and transformed into the primal Phoenix (notice the symbolism there?)

Louisoix used his new immense power to destroy Bahamut, but before his spirit could dissipate, the dreadwyrm dragged it underground.

This would be the end of Louisoix’s story, until players delved into The Binding Coils of Bahamut raid.

Louisoix appears sporadically throughout the different wings, delivering important backstory on the dragon Bahamut and helping the group prevent its resurrection.


What Happened To The Rest Of The Archons?

The group of Archons responsible for saving Eorzea still play a vital part in the current game’s story.

They provided the foundation for the Scions of the Seventh Dawn, the organization our character is drawn into early in the storyline.

Although characters like Y’shtola and Thancred have been changed thoroughly by the events of the last few expansions, they still remain entirely dedicated to Eorzea’s defense.

There are other Archons present in the story though. After all, it was primarily a title handed out by Sharlayan to individuals who distinguished themselves in certain areas.

Master Matoya, Y’shtola’s mentor and the classic crazy old witch of the woods, is an Archon.

She was actually considered Louisoix’s rival back in the day.

Matoya Cutscene in FFXIV
Image source by Ro-Play / © SQUARE ENIX CO., LTD. All Rights Reserved.

Can I Get An Archon Title Myself?

Not quite.

Unfortunately, despite saving the world more times than we can count, our Warrior of Light isn’t eligible for that honor.

Who needs it anyway?

If you are desperate to be an Archon, the closest you can get is Under-archon.

This title is a reward for obtaining the achievement “Hope Enkindled”, which is granted upon completion of the level 59 Main Scenario quest “Hour of Departure”.

Besides that, there’s no way to obtain the title of Archon for your own character.

Apparently we’re not special enough.

But by the time you’ve reached the end of Shadowbringers you’ll have a hundred cooler titles.

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