The characters of Final Fantasy IV are all fantastic, and I adore that the PSP version of this game allows you to play as any party member that you want to! For the intents and purposes of this article, all of the permanently playable party members will be ranked solely off of how they fare in the endgame. However, that does not mean I will leave out the temporary characters—they are too awesome for me to do that! Anyway, without further ado, RPG Ranked presents... Final Fantasy IV: All Characters RANKED!
Fusoya is a cool character, but most definitely not a good character. I love his beard so much, and I aspire to replicate it when I am nearing 1,000 years old. He is also a Lunarian, which is really awesome. However, even though Fusoya has every spell in the game, his stats are far behind Rosa's and Rydia's, and he simply does not have the MP pool necessary for consistently casting high-level magic. Besides, you only have him for one or two dungeons... in my opinion, the only good use of Fusoya is using him to support Rosa in casting Blink to protect from Behemoths in the Bahamut's Lair. That's it. I usually tend to kill him off immediately so I don't waste the experience points on him. Overall, Fusoya is just a really crappy character in battle.
Tellah is one of the most epic old men in all of JRPG history! This guy is pretty epic story-wise, and his death is tear-jearking! However, just like the other old man, Fusoya, he is rather lacking in battle. He can cast every spell in the game, save Holy, Quake, Death, Flare, and Meteor, but his extremely low (and permanent) MP pool of 90 causes him to fall far behind the party's other mages! However, even though he has virtually no MP, this sage's powerful spells are still a boon for the extended period of time you have him in your party, and even though he is worse than Fusoya on paper, he is much better due to the fact that he is a member of your party for much longer than Fusoya is and due to the fact that Tellah isn't completely outclassed by your other mages at the point in the game where you have him in your party. However, even though he is situationally useful, he still is nothing better than a D Tier character.
Here's where things get a whole lot trickier. I really like Porom... but why even bother with her when Rosa is infinitely better? Porom can not attack with Rosa's powerful bows. Her Cry ability has nothing on Rosa's Miracle ability. Her Twincast is not worth using, as it takes two party members to use, it takes way too much time, and does damage equal to or less than Meteor... its just worse than having a Black Mage like Palom or Rydia cast Meteor! Porom also has much worse stats than Rosa across the board, with Porom only having the slight edge when it comes to the Spirit stat. Porom's staves can simply not compare to Rosa's bows, as these bows can deal at least twice the amount of damage of her staves! Basically, Rosa has something she can excel at other than White Magic, as she is also a long-range Archer. One may argue that Porom can be useful to the party if both Porom and Rosa are in the party, but why would you ever need two White Mages in this game? Yes, some games are hard enough that you need multiple healers, but Final Fantasy IV is simply not one of them. Overall, Porom is still usable and I like her as a character, but there is no reason to use her over Rosa or even with Rosa.
Cid isn't complete garbage... I mean, he still is in the C tier. However, he definitely has his own set of issues that place him below all the other physical fighters in the game. Though Cid boasts very high HP, strength, and stamina, he has a couple of issues with his equipment draw. Even though his Ultimate Weapon, the Flare Sledgehammer, is extremely powerful, the fact that its usefulness relies heavily on his essentially non-existent Intellect stat is a huge detriment to his character. In comparison to Cecil's Lightbringer, which casts Holy, Cid's Flare Sledgehammer casts Flare every time he attacks. However, since the Flare spell casted is reliant on Cid's Intellect, it rarely hits over 3,000 damage. However, Cecil's Lightbringer can hit for upwards of 19,998 damage quite easily due to his rather high Spirit stat and due to the fact that a vast majority of endgame enemies are weak to the Light element. By comparison to other Ultimate Weapons, the Flare Sledgehammer is not too great... oh, and did I mention that it is two-handed? This means he can't equip a shield with his Ultimate Weapon, whereas Cecil and Kain can. This means Cecil and Kain have better damage, as well as better defense. This is all sad to me, because I was hoping Cid would be able to rise to the occasion and become a very powerful character like Yang does! But alas, this is sadly not the case. To continue with Cid's issues, he also has the worst Speed stat in the game—Edge can take two turns in the time Cid can take one! Cid also doesn't have any special abilities other than Analyze: arguably the worst special ability in the game. However, there is one place where Cid shines that no other character even comes close to him in: killing Machine-type enemies. Whereas all other characters have a hard time killing these enemies, Cid can devastate them with his hammers because they do quadruple damage against them! If this was a game where you could swap characters out on the fly, this would be a lot more useful, but hauling along Cid as one of your five characters isn't worth being able to kill one enemy type a lot easier. Overall, Cid has insanely high physical stats and great armor pieces that elevate him above some of the other characters in terms of pure brawn and tankiness, however, due to a counterintuitive Ultimate Weapon, a very low speed stat, and lack of useful special abilities, Cid falls in ninth place on this list.
What makes Edge such a useful character is that he has double the speed of the majority of the cast, which allows him to land two turns when other characters are only landing one! To be honest, without his very high Speed stat, Edge would probably end up being worse than Cid, but luckily, that is not the case. Combine Edge's very high speed stat with some Shurikens or Fuma Shurikens, and you can have an absolute boss-killing machine! However, judging that he is in eighth place, he has some pretty big issues that cause him to fall this low on the list. First of all, outside of Speed, his stats are easily the most subpar of all of the physical fighters. Heck, his HP is more comparable to Rosa than to the other physical fighters! Second of all, his Throw ability is extremely expensive to utilize, and his Ninjitsu and Steal abilities are extremely underwhelming. Third of all, his Ultimate Weapons are rather weak. Even though the Sasuke's Katana and the Mutsunokami have good stat bonuses, as well as great attack, they don't have the potential of weapons like the Lightbringer or the Abel's Lance that cast very powerful spells, nor do they deal huge damage to certain enemy types like the Flare Sledgehammer or the Loki's Lute. Even though he can go twice, he'll probably only do around 8,000 damage in two turns, whereas Yang and Kain can do 9,999 in one and Cecil can do 19,998 in one! Overall, even though Edge can potentially deal insane damage with his very high speed and his Throw ability, due to his weaker stats, weapons, the amount of Gil you have to grind for him to be amazing, and his subpar Ninjitsu spells, he simply cannot compare with more dominant attackers such as Kain, Cecil, or even Yang.
Just like Porom, I could not justify placing Palom too high on this list because he pretty much outclassed by the other Black Mage, Rydia. However, unlike his twin sister, Palom does have some really good qualities! First of all, having two Black Mages in a party can absolutely devastate the enemy team. Having two White Mages... just... why? Why would you ever do that? Anyway. Second of all, Palom is more dominant than Rydia physically, as he has higher strength and stamina than Rydia does—however, Rydia makes up for this with her Female-exclusive equipment and her powerful Whip weapons. Third of all, he is more dominant as a Black Mage, as he has higher intelligence, has the Bluff ability, and learns his spells faster than Rydia. However, as a tradeoff for this, his MP is sizably less than hers. However, the biggest problem with Palom is one I'm sure you all see coming: he cannot summon! Rydia's summons are much more cost effective than Black Magic, and using the Sylph, Asura, and Mist Ring-boosted Dragon summons, Rydia can also fill the role of a support character, which Palom has no way of doing. Overall, in my opinion, Palom boasts better stats than Rydia, but is hindered due to the fact he can't have summons. However, the novelty of having two Black Mages in your party is something I cannot ignore, so Palom is still a very viable option to add to your team—which is something I sadly cannot say about Porom or Cid.
It is a pity I have to put Yang outside of the top five! Yang is honestly such an epic character, and he is one of my favorite characters in Final Fantasy IV. I love how selfless he is, fighting alongside the men of Fabul and risking his life countless times to put Cecil out of harm's way. In fact, I would go as far as to say I wish that Yang was one of your endgame characters story-wise, and not Edge, because I simply don't find Edge all that compelling. Anyway, enough about how epic Yang is story-wise. Now it is time to go into detail about how epic Yang is battle-wise. Yang has extremely high HP, strength, and stamina just like Cid. However, instead of having great armor and a terrible special ability like Cid does, Yang has subpar armor but three amazing special abilities. Kick allows him to spread the damage out effectively across multiple enemies, Focus allows him to deal extra damage, and Brace allows him to survive powerful physical attacks! His claws, although weaker than many weapons in the game, are very much viable due to their stat buffs and ability to effectively target elemental weaknesses. But that is not all. If you equip Yang's Discipline Armband, Yang becomes much more of a force. This changes his Focus ability to Deadly, which does three times the damage of a normal physical attack! This ability is second only to Cecil's Lightbringer in terms of dishing out physical damage! Overall, Yang is a very powerful glass cannon with great abilities and stats, and he is a great addition to any team. However, in my opinion, he simply does not have as much to offer as the next characters on this list.
This is easily going to be the most controversial choice on this list, but breaking the top five characters on this list is Edward. I love Edward so much in this version... he rarely left my party once I got him up to speed! Sure, he has some of the worst states in the game, but he makes up for it in his powerful equipment and abilities! The Loki's Lute is extremely deadly and it is my second favorite Ultimate Weapon in the game behind Cecil's Lightbringer. The Loki's Lute deals quadruple damage to almost every enemy type in the game, and it also is a long-range weapon! His Vishnu Vest, Royal Crown, and Harmony Ring are all very powerful pieces of equipment that make up for his bad stats, so even though it takes some time for Edward to become amazing, I believe it is time worth investing! Not only does he have my second favorite Ultimate Weapon, but he also has one of my favorite special abilities in the game... Chant! This overpowered ability casts Protect and Shell on the whole party for no MP cost! This makes normal encounters an absolute pushover! Yes, Porom and Rosa can both cast Protect and Shell, but it would take 10 turns to cast all Protect and Shell on everyone! And even if you had both Porom and Rosa in the party for some reason, you would still have to use five turns to apply it! And due to his decent speed stat, he will likely be the first or second character to take action in battle, so you can use Chant extremely quickly! Combine the effects of Chant with Rydia's Mist Ring-enhanced Dragon summon, and your party will have insane survivability! Overall, even though Edward has the poorest stats in the game, he simply does so much damage with the Loki's Lute, has spectacular support skills, and due to his long-range capabilities, he can stay out of damage in the back row and avoid damage due to his Hide ability. He can do things that no other character can do, and because of this, Edward is a top five character in my eyes. To be honest... Yang and Edward, although not S Tier characters, are my two favorite characters to have in my party. And I'm perfectly fine to agree to disagree on this one.
Rydia is explosive in a way that no other character is able to be: her Bahamut, Leviathan, Asura, and Dragon summons are all phenomenal! Her Whips are very useful to paralyze enemies, so she doesn't have to worry too much about being useless when she is low on MP! Her MP pool is by far the highest in the game, and, of course, her Black magic spells are extremely powerful as well! Using her Asura summon, her Sylph summon, and her Mist Ring-boosted Dragon summon, she can also heal and support the party, which Palom can most definitely not do. However, due to long casting times and the difficulty of obtaining MP-restoring items, she is not nearly as reliable as physical fighters like Kain and Cecil. Overall, Rydia can nuke enemies to deal more damage than any other character in Final Fantasy 4 but she simply is limited by how hard it is to restore MP, making her not as reliable as other damage dealers.
I love Yang and Edge... and I'm okay with Cid, I guess... but Kain outclasses all of them in virtually every way of the word! Kain can deal quadruple damage with Double Jump, he has the second highest speed in the game, the second best Ultimate Weapon in the form of the Abel's Lance, much stronger armor than any character save Cecil, really good physical stats (not the best, but still really good), and much more. Sure, he is a one-note character. But what he excels at, he excels at, and that is one thing: pure, hard, and cold damage. Overall, he is very, very good at dealing damage, and I personally think being the second best physical attacker in the game is more than enough to land Kain in third place on my list.
Being the main protagonist of Final Fantasy 4, and being a mandatory character throughout the entirety of the game, it is a relief that Cecil is one of the best characters in the game! To explain how good Cecil is, I'm going to relate him to the much inferior Cid. Cecil has better stats than Cid. He has better armor. He can equip shields no matter what weapon he is using. His Ultimate Weapon is one-handed and since Cecil has a decent spirit stat, he can potentially do 19,998 damage in a single attack! He has White Magic, and is a very useful out-of-battle healer. He can cover wounded allies to ensure their survival. I could go on, but for the sake of brevity and for the sake of Cid's self-esteem, I won't. Overall, Cecil can dish out unmatchable damage with his Lightbringer, defend and support allies, and tank high amounts of damage. Overall, Cecil is easily the best physical attacker in the game... and its not even close.
I know, I know. I'm going to get some hate for this... but I believe Rosa is the most important character in Final Fantasy IV. Not my favorite... she'd come in sixth or seventh place in that regard. But she is still the most important. Simply put... she is the best healer in the game. And without a healer, the team falls apart. Rosa is the crux of the team! She's not the most fun or flashy by any stretch of the imagination, but she is necessary. It is pretty self-explanatory from there. Overall, as the bet White Magic user in the game and as a decent long-range fighter, Rosa is a must-have in the team and is the most important character to include in your party in Final Fantasy IV.
And as a bonus, I'll toss in five epic party combinations for good measure:
The Five for Fighting: Cecil, Kain, Yang, Edge, Rosa
Goldplay: Cecil, Rosa, Kain, Edward, Rydia
Old Kids on The Block: Cecil, Kain, Rosa, Rydia, Edge
Of Mysidia and Mist: Cecil, Palom, Porom, Rydia, Rosa
Garbage: Cecil, Porom, Cid, Palom, Edge
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