Final Fantasyway takes place in a world similar to that of the original Final Fantasy Tactics, but expanded. For those unfamiliar with that game the world is basically medieval. Horrific monsters wander the world, mostly attacking the unwary and unprepared. Ever now and again they may join together and attack the towns and cities, but this is rare. However the fear of monster attacks lead most people to live in a few cities. Only the fool-hardy or strong live away from the protection of these. The world is called Gaia, and it seems to be just a single large continent. The world is generally green and lush, however there is the large desert kingdom of Bikanel placed in the centre of the world, the swamp lands of Tul’ka towards the north, and the polar lands of ice to the far south. There is also the costal port of Kilika, located on the western edge of the continent. There is little trade between the cities, as travel is difficult and dangerous. As a result of this although aware of the other kingdoms, few have much knowledge of them, and most are distrustful of foreigners. The few regular travellers seem to be the Monks of Gaia (who have no home but have found places amongst the various cities), the White Mages (although these mainly stay in the grasslands and Kilika port), and the caravans of Kilika (the only source of fish throughout Gaia, and the source of dancers). The currency of Gaia is the Gil, small gold coins. A fish would cost 1 Gil, a Potion would be 5 Gil and a Chocobo could be worth as much as 50 Gil.
Most people on Gaia follow the teachings of Shovuk. This religion says that Shovuk was the light, and in the everlasting light that was him he created Gaia. The world flourished, and eventually life was born on Gaia. But the life couldn’t survive with Shovuk’s light on it constantly, it was too intense and the life began to flicker and fade. So Shovuk in despair pushed Gaia away from him, so it was half in the light and half out of the light. In this way life could survive, but no-longer completely in his light this life became corrupt. The priests of this religion say that if people let the light into their hearts, and do as Shovuk would want them then eventually the people will become able to survive in the everlasting light, and Shovuk will return Gaia to his bosom.
There are two main myths associated with this religion. The first is the myth of the Avatar. It is said that at the critical time Shovuk will send his Avatar to judge to people of Gaia. If they are not ready to be re-embraced at that time then Shovuk will cast Gaia from the light and begin anew. Many believed this was started by the church itself, to help ‘encourage’ people to follow the faith. However the appearance of Alexander and its ability to harness Shovuk’s light is converting many.
The second myth is that of the opposed, Diablos. It is told that when Gaia was thrust from Shovuk the ripple of it’s passing brought life to the darkness. Over time this life became Diablos, and his power rivalled Shovuk. However the only way he could attack Shovuk was by travelling through Gaia into the light, and when on Gaia his strength was weakened. There Shovuk sent his Avatar, but the Avatar could not appear for it was not time, so the Avatar gave unto a warrier the blade Excalibur. Using this blade the warrior, Odin, fought back Diablos, and eventually won, losing his left eye in the process. Once beaten the giant Titan opened a hole in the earth and sealed Diablos into the darkness. Finally Odin returned the blade to the Avatar and vowed to return if Diablos ever came back. Many believe that Diablos was sealed away underneath Tul’ka and that it is his corruption that has twisted the land. Others think he was sealed under Bikanel, and that is why the land is dry, burned by the heat of the flames of hell.
There is another religion on Gaia however, that upheld by the Monks of Gaia. They say that Gaia herself is alive, and every living thing on her is a part of her. When things die their essence goes back into Gaia, and in this way Gaia evolves as those that live on her evolve and die. They want to help Gaia evolve as best she could by helping others to be kind and caring. They also want to stop those that harm Gaia by digging into her, or extracting her substance, metal, from the earth. They have no qualms about killing to help others, since they are purely returning Gaia back to herself. They say that a long time ago a great rock collided with Gaia, and her pain was excrutiating. To save herself she sundered the southern lands from the rest of herself and took away their heat, adding it to the place the rock fell to melt it and heal the wound. That land is the Bikanel desert. After being healed Gaia felt regretful of what she had done, and created the 3 huge stone bridges that link the Realm of Ice to the mainland. They also believe that the Dark Knights conduct sacrifices of their essence in the Dark Temple, and it is this act of sacrifice which rips the magic from Gaia, making Tul’ka ripe for mages.
There are also those on Gaia who believe in neither of these, instead putting their faith in magic or the elements.