I have been a fan of Final Fantasy IV since the very first time I played it, back in 1992. It was the first RPG I had ever played, and at once something undeniable connected between the game and I. I rented it twice before I finally had enough saved up to buy the game (it took my sister and I six months of saving to get it! @_@). Between the two of us, we must have beaten it a dozen times, and never got tired of it.
Naturally, this story started out as innocent fan art. Everything I am interested in results in a flood of artwork. And from this single picture, things evolved from there.
One of the most wrenching things about the ending of the game was watching the moon leave the Blue Planet’s orbit, and seeing Golbez’s last mental thoughts sent to his brother. “Goodbye…” Something inside me was saddened by the thought that the two brothers who had just found one another would never get to know each other, divided by all that space and darkness. So I drew a fan art dedicated to the two of them, and unknowingly, I had created the character “Ben.”
The more I thought about Golbez, the more curious I became. After all… we knew nothing about the Man of Darkness other than he was Zemus’ pawn and brother to Cecil. Then came the questions. What would a person be like if their mind had been taken at an early age and manipulated to evil, only suddenly to be released twenty-some years later? Slowly, blending this contrasting trait into a person with so much obvious power, I found a very captivating character that became my Golbez. As you can tell, he is the foundation of the whole Darkstar story… and all other projects that followed the writing of this tale.
Even to this day, I am still enthralled with Ben. Writing his character challenges me to see the world in a very different light in order to write through his eyes… while, at the same time, I find my own internal questions and ideas voiced in his words.
It was in 1998 that I chose to start posting my writing on the Internet. And from this story came the projects that span my site at Sygnus.org. The stories and characters of Wayrift, Shimmer and Dreigiau eventually evolved from this first attempt at fantasy writing… which has also undergone many revisions.
So a decade later, I once more thank you for allowing me to share this story with you — a little piece of me that might have remained only an aging notebook in a box under my bed.
Coming of the Darkstar began in 1992 as my fan tribute to the original classic Super Nintendo Role Playing Game, Final Fantasy II (now known as Final Fantasy IV). This fanfic took place a year after the ending of the original game and centered around exploring the characters of Golbez and Cecil and reestablishing the relationship between the two brothers. The final version of this story was completed in May of 2008.See more about Darkstar’s Timeline and development below.
Though Darkstar includes a number of characters that belong to Square/Enix and are under their copyright, much of the work and characterizations are my own in nature and spirit. I don’t claim to own any of the original FFIV characters… however, derivitive personalities (such as Ben) are 100% my own invention.
A number of characters are completely original characters of my own creation. Those belong to me.
Some characters are creations of friends and family members that were used by permission. These include:
Captain Silver – Created by my sister
Leona Pollendina – Created by Syntyche
Deric the Half-Elf Warrior – Created by Deric
Edhan Nightshade – Created by Edhan
Thanks to you for allowing me to cameo your characters in my story! May old legends never die!
Darkstar Vs. FFIV's New Canon
Though the world of Darkstar has grown vastly since I began writing this story, I based the foundation of the world and the characters on the original classic canon of the SNES Final Fantasy II game. This version of the game gave a lot of leeway for fans to interpret the world and characters — for that I am eternally grateful. However far flung some of my theories of the world, I did my best never to step on toes when it came to the “rules” that the original canon gave us.
As some fans might know, the FFIV DS version released in 2007-2008 has gone back and changed quite a bit of the canon… through changing names, bits of storylines… and most of all, defining backstories that never existed before. The DS version included a completely new backstory on Cecil and Golbez’s origins, defining the fate of KluYa and his wife… as well as how Golbez became Golbez. It defined Golbez’s real name as “Theodore”… and various other things that had never existed up until now.
Following that, S/E released a sequel of FFIV, called “The After.” This further defined events and characters from the original game, though taking place many years after the end of FFIV.
Based on these changes, I’m sad to say that Darkstar no longer follows the canon of the FFIV universe. Therefore, I am resigned to complete my decade-long writing project as an AU work… though up until 2007, I could claim that it was not. I will reserve my thoughts and feelings about changing canon 20-some years after a game has been released and the effect that it has on fanwork. Needless to say, I have nothing good to say about it. tongue
Darkstar remains true to the era it was written for, however. Classic FFII/IV is the only canon I will abide by.
Mar. 1992 -- Though it was nearly a year since I first played FFII, it wasn't until this point that the most important thing happened. I drew Golbez for the first time without his armor... in what has come to be known his “Ben” personality. I still have this picture... and little did I know at the time how important that one sketch would be come.
Shortly after Ben was created, I began a set of pencil comics which was the very first version of what later became “Darkstar”. I didn't get very far into this of course. But I got far enough to create a number of important characters that I still write about -- including Chase and Sparrow. I also established Ben's personality during these comics.
May 1993 -- The actual dates for this are ambiguous. But I'll mark May of 1993 as a point where “Darkstar” was in full swing as an actual piece of fan fiction. Of course, this was long before I had even heard the term “fan fic” for the first time. I have lots of art surrounding the original hand-written draft from this time period -- though this version of the story never got past the crash in the Troia forest.
Aug. 1994 -- At this point, I had a much more stable feeling for all the characters of “Darkstar”. I had probably stopped writing the fan fic however, and began on a second set of pencil comics for the storyline. It was shortly after this that I stopped writing/drawing for FFII all together. It was nearly four years later before I picked up anything Darkstar related to work on again.
Feb. 1998 -- I pulled the old story out of its box, dusted off Ben and began to write again. It was about this time that “Darkstar” got its current name... one that it's has kept through out the years. The original drafts of this story were written by hand and then typed directly into a webpage on my old Geocities account. This was before I had a computer at home or access to any sort of word processor.
May. 1998 --I officially released “Coming of the Darkstar” to the public online world. I had created a website and everything for it by this time. I think I opened the site with maybe eight to ten parts posted in full. I found almost instant support on the net for my story back then... and it spurred me on into writing nearly a chapter a day for the rest of that summer break. Once I went back to school that year, however, writing dropped off as other projects/work began to take up time.
Jan. 2000 -- In a massive flurry of writing, I managed to finish the final four chapters of “Darkstar” over my winter break. I posted the fully finished fic on January 9, 2000.
April 2001 -- Darkstar underwent a number of editing sessions after its completion. April of 2001 was the final edit... and it was about this time that I realized I wasn't half as happy with the overall story as I wanted to be. There was no amount of editing that would shape up what was currently there and pull it up to date to my current writing skills. And it became a frustration that plagued me until that summer when I decided that as insane as it sounded, I needed to completely rewrite Darkstar to be fully happy with it.
Jan. 2002 -- This was about the time I actually followed up on what I had decided to do back in the summer of '01. I began to rewrite Darkstar as a whole. And it is that very project that I am still in the process of completing until today. I hope that one day (maybe even this year if I'm lucky) that I'll be able to put a date on this timeline that marks Darkstar as fully complete once again...
-- Jan. 8. 2004