Where Anyone is Possible
Title: Empress of time
Markings; on her face and body
Ultimecia's castle dominates the landscape in the era where she lives. It is implied she is the sole ruler of her world, although besides fallen White SeeD no other inhabitants of her world are introduced, their fate unknown. According to the Final Fantasy VIII Ultimania, Ultimecia's actions are driven by a means to escape her destined defeat at the hands of the "Legendary SeeD". Ultimecia's knowledge of this fate could be the main instigation for her desire of bringing about time compression, by which Ultimecia could absorb all time, space and existence, and become "a living god" and thus escape her fate.
With the Junction Machine Ellone Ultimecia sends her consciousness back in time to take possession of Edea Kramer, a sorceress living on the White SeeD Ship. Ultimecia's plan is to send her mind far enough back in time to cast the time compression spell, but the Junction Machine has a limit; to get even further back in time, she needs to find a girl called Ellone with a natural gift to send people's consciousnesses through time, upon whose powers the junction machine was originally built. Ultimecia uses Edea as a host to infiltrate the government of Galbadia, and is appointed ambassador of Galbadia by President Vinzer Deling.
President Deling announces her appointment in the first worldwide televised broadcast in 17 years. The broadcast is interrupted when Deling is taken hostage on-air by Seifer Almasy, a renegade SeeD cadet. Ultimecia (within Edea's body) surfaces from a teleportation spell and offers to save him from his "predicament". When Squall's SeeD party approaches her, they are paralyzed by her magic and Seifer allows Ultimecia to teleport him away to Galbadia.
Although Seifer is announced executed, Ultimecia turns him into her Sorceress Knight and makes him her personal guardian. Nonetheless, Deling continues to publicize his new ambassador and plans a parade in Deling City to honor her appointment. Unbeknown to Ultimecia, General Caraway of Galbadia and SeeD mercenaries from Balamb Garden formulate a plan to assassinate her at the parade to prevent her from usurping power across the world.
General Caraway's daughter, Rinoa Heartilly, attempts to trick Ultimecia into taking a bangle created by Dr. Odine to seal away her sorceress power. Ultimecia recognizes the bangle, telekinetically disables Rinoa and takes control of her body, leading her to the balcony of the Presidential Palace. Ultimecia ascends the podium to give her acceptance speech to the people of Galbadia with Rinoa in tow, but it is a speech of hatred.
According to the Final Fantasy VIII Ultimania guide, Ultimecia casts a fascination spell that drives the crowd into a frenzy of reverence. Ultimecia impales President Deling through his chest with her hand in front of the city and throws his corpse aside. Ultimecia declares herself the ruler of Galbadia, assuring the beginning of a "new reign of terror", and brings two Iguion statues on the side of the Arch of Triumph to life and orders them to devour Rinoa as a sacrifice. Leaving Rinoa to her fate, Ultimecia boards her float which glides out into the street parade.
As Ultimecia passes underneath the Arch of Triumph the gates trap her inside. The sniper working with the SeeDs, Irvine Kinneas, takes a shot at her from atop the clock tower, but she blocks the bullet with a protection spell. Ultimecia is confronted by Squall, Irvine, and Rinoa (who had been rescued from the Iguions), and is disgusted upon discovering Squall is a SeeD. Ultimecia uses Edea's Ice Strike Limit Break to stab Squall through the shoulder.
Instead of killing Squall and his friends Ultimecia has them imprisoned in D-District Prison and orders Seifer to extract information from them via torture, namely, the reason SeeD persecute sorceresses. The interrogation yields no results as the SeeD themselves have not been informed of their organization's true goal. As Galbadia's new dictator, she declares Garden to be her enemy, and orders missiles aimed at both Balamb and Trabia Gardens. Balamb Garden avoids the missile attacks thanks to Squall and the others (who had escaped from prison) making the Garden mobile, but Trabia Garden is annihilated.
Ultimecia takes control of the remaining Galbadia Garden and sets out to find Ellone. Galbadia occupies the towns of Balamb and Fishermans Horizon at her order to search every house, but comes up unsuccessful. Ultimecia attacks Balamb Garden directly, but the Battle of the Gardens ends with Squall leading his allies into Galbadia Garden where she is confronted in the Garden Auditorium.
Ultimecia orders Seifer to dispatch the SeeD, and when he fails, Ultimecia is forced to do battle. The encounter ends with Ultimecia being bested inside Edea's body and Edea inadvertently relinquishing her powers to Rinoa, transferring Ultimecia from within Edea to Rinoa's body. Ultimecia uses Rinoa to revive Seifer, orders him to salvage the Estharian weapon of mass destruction Lunatic Pandora from beneath the ocean, and Rinoa falls into a coma; whether Ultimecia forces this upon Rinoa, or if she collapses due to the strain of having received Edea's sorceress power, is unknown.
Edea, no longer a sorceress, divulges to the SeeD Ultimecia is a sorceress from the future who wants to destroy the world with time compression. Searching for a means to awaken Rinoa, Squall takes her to the Lunar Base—the Estharian space station—to see Ellone, hoping she could cure Rinoa with her powers over time. Ellone had come to the base to meet with the president of Esthar, but Ultimecia appears unaware of her presence and uses Rinoa to unlock Sorceress Adel's tomb, kept in space orbiting the planet overseen by the president of Esthar himself. With a more powerful sorceress in reach, Ultimecia abandons Rinoa in space to die.
Meanwhile, Seifer and the G-Army have taken control of the Lunatic Pandora and triggered the Lunar Cry, which brings monsters down to the planet from the Moon. Adel's unlocked tomb comes down with the monsters. Seifer captures Ellone, who had escaped the Lunar Base on an escape pod, and brings her to the Lunatic Pandora for Ultimecia's use.
Squall and his comrades have saved the now recovered Rinoa from space and figured out Ultimecia's goal. They concoct a plan to halt Ultimecia's scheme with the Esthar scientist Dr. Odine, who explains Ultimecia exists many generations in the future and the only way to reach her is via time travel. Their plan is to defeat Adel, leaving Rinoa the only sorceress in the present era whom Ultimecia could control. After she would take over Rinoa, Ellone would send both of their consciousnesses into the past, allowing Ultimecia to initiate time compression. Ellone would then send both of their minds back to their original bodies. To survive the time compression Squall and his friends would have to keep their bonds strong and wade through the compressing timelines and reach Ultimecia's era.
Ultimecia possesses Adel as she awakes from the frozen state she had been kept in the tomb, and orders Seifer to capture Rinoa. Ultimecia junctions Rinoa to Adel's body, but after engaging Squall and his friends in battle, Adel is defeated and passes on her powers to Rinoa. Ultimecia possesses Rinoa, allowing Ellone to send both of their minds to the past, where Ultimecia casts time compression only to have it temporarily halted when Ellone sends their consciousnesses back to their respective eras. Squall uses the partial time compression to enter Ultimecia's future.
Squall and his allies enter Ultimecia Castle, and after getting past the various traps and puzzles, confront Ultimecia in the Master Room. The SeeD battle Ultimecia who reaches into Squall's mind to find a power he values most. Using this information she summons Griever, the strongest Guardian Force in Squall's mind. In the Japanese version of Final Fantasy VIII, Ultimecia unveils the party's fears of memory loss, but claims it is not what they should fear, but the power of Griever, and orders the GF to unleash its ultimate attack, Shockwave Pulsar. After Griever's defeat, Ultimecia junctions herself to him, amplifying her power.
After Griever's body is destroyed, Ultimecia transforms and begins absorbing time, space and existence into her new body. She speaks of the futility of fighting against time and her final speech is distinctly different from her pre-battle lines, and she seems to be warning the party of something.
Despite her extensive powers, Ultimecia is unable to overcome her fate as the links that bind Squall and his friends protect them from time compression, and she falls in a massive explosion as time begins to decompress. As Ultimecia cannot die until she passes on her sorceress power, she ends up in Edea's Orphanage of the past where she passes on her power to the Edea Kramer of that time. In doing so Ultimecia ultimately perpetuates her predestined defeat, while fading away in a cloud of purple smoke.
Powers and Abilities
due to her own already immense power but also to all the magic she absorbed from every other sorceress of her time, gathering all the Sorceress Power in existence and gaining god-like abilities.
Ultimecia has a very wide array of "common" magic powers, such as an extended perception of her surroundings; enhanced strength and endurance; high-level telepathy, mind-reading and telekinesis; levitation, teleporting and phasing through solid matter; vast control of the weather and the elements; compelling people to the point of turning them into mindless, blindly obedient puppets and making immense crowds do what she wants without them noticing anything; paralyzing many people at once while keeping them able to see and talk; shape-shifting and altering her own body features in seconds; defensive force fields; and infusing objects with her magic to animate them or alter them as she wishes; to name but a few.
Ultimecia's own Sorceress Power is based on Time and Space, which she controls to an exeptional extent. As evidenced when she absorbs her fallen enemies into the void of time, or when she separates the party in different planes during the final battle. (She chooses three opponents at random and isolates the others, making them appear out of nowhere when she brings them forth.) Another example is when she enables Griever, her Guardian Force (a highly powerful summoned monster), to remain in battle for as long as she wants to instead of disappearing after a single attack. In Dissidia, she even displays the ability to freeze time for an undefined length during which she is the only one able to act and to move. She seems able to keep it stopped for as long as she wants and restarts it when she needs.
Ultimecia can perform feats far beyond the normal rules of magic, and warp reality itself to a huge extent. Not only she can give life to creatures and create monstrous clones of people, but she can turn mere statues into flesh-and-blood beings, while possessing a much less powerful sorceress. In her normal state, she can turn Guardian Forces and similar divine monsters into her demonic servants, or create immense buildings that float through the air. She can also seal her enemies' powers, like she does when the protagonists enter her castle, and even destroy one of her opponent entire stock of magic in battle.
When she Junctions two people, she literally fuses them instead of merely linking their minds. (She does it when she junctions Rinoa to Sorceress Adel's body and when she Junction herself to Griever.) She can also use Junction to possess any other sorceress, and gain almost unlimited access to any living creature's mind, enabling her to draw as much power, magic and knowledge as she wants from it, stealing spells from the protagonists during the final battle.
To a further extent, she can make what she finds in her victims' minds into reality. She creates Griever through this mean, by reaching into Squall's thoughts and giving life to his conception of the most powerful Guardian Force that can exist, creating a demon as powerful as she is.
During the final battle, Ultimecia vastly increases her already enormous power twice. First by fusing herself with Griever and adding his might to her own, then by assuming her mightiest form and making her power skyrocket to an unfathomable extent. Under this form, not only does she gain access to unique and highly dangerous spells, but her mere existence is enough to tear through the time and space continuum and to gradually absorb the entire universe. Even worse, her already incredible reality-warping abilities increase to the point that she becomes able to make her own thoughts come true. This is evidenced when she comes up with the most devastating spell she can think off and draws it from her mind, becoming able to cast it for real as many times as she wishes.
Ultimecia wears a skin-tight red gown with a plunging neckline that exposes her neck, chest, stomach and abdomen, and only partially obscures her breasts. A black collar extends down the neckline to her waist; the collar rests over her shoulders and covers the junction of her black feathered wings. In Final Fantasy VIII the collar appears to be made of feathers, but in Dissidia Final Fantasy it is made of fur. The dress has a short train, which drags along the floor, trimmed either similarly to the collar, or torn and frayed and made dirty. Long red sleeves with prominent shoulder pads join with her purple taloned hands.
Ultimecia's skin is tattooed with lined patterns. She wears a gold necklace, earrings and hair jewelry among a headdress designed to pull her hair up to resemble horns; silver bangs are left to frame her face. Ultimecia has yellow eyes surrounded by purple eyeshadow and she wears deep red lipstick. She has no eyebrows, instead having tattoos. She doesn't wear shoes, walking (or perhaps flying) barefoot, and although Ultimecia has a human appearance, her toenails resemble a beast's claws and are accentuated in her Dissidia Final Fantasy appearance.