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  1. #1
    Player
    Cilia's Avatar
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    Sep 2013
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    Character
    Temujin Haragin
    World
    Famfrit
    Main Class
    Dark Knight Lv 70

    Soul Crystals and Auracite

    So, with what we learned about auracite in 3.3... it got me thinking... are Soul Crystals made of the same stuff?

    Let's start with the Duma. It's able to take its wielder's wishes and manifest them on the physical plane. This doesn't sound like any Soul Crystal... except for the DRK, which manifests "Fray" out of the Warrior of Light's desire for a mentor in the discipline, as well as the freedom to express their innermost thoughts and desires. "Myste," similarly, is a manifestation of their desire to be forgiven for their sins and to lay down their sword. There is a massive difference in just how far the two go, but the similarity is there.

    Much more importantly - the Otius. It seems to hold the original Ramza's personality, memories, and desires. This isn't dissimilar to how Soul Crystals hold the skills and, in some cases, memories of the wielders. The Otius impressed Ramza's personality on the contemporary Ramza, while Soul Crystals allow their wielders to tap into skills gleaned from previous holders (notably MCH is an exception, as there were none before Stephanivien more or less invented the discipline) - essentially, compressed memories. Again, the scale is very different, but the overall effect is similar (the key difference being the Otius seems to act on its own, while Soul Crystals don't... except, again, in the case of DRK's).

    What do you guys and gals think? Is this a plausible hypothesis?
    (5)
    Temujin Haragin's Way Status (4.4 - End)
    [ ]LOST [X]NOT LOST
    "A thousand pegasi led by one dragon can defeat a thousand dragons led by one pegasus." -Saias: Bishop of Flame, Fire Emblem Heroes

  2. #2
    Player
    Theodric's Avatar
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    Sep 2013
    Location
    Kugane
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    3,492
    Character
    Ryuji Akagane
    World
    Balmung
    Main Class
    Fisher Lv 70
    They do seem to be very similar. FFXIV takes a lot of inspiration from earlier Final Fantasy games and that is especially true in regards to the Ivalice titles and the 'atmosphere' of the games as a whole. I don't doubt that the whole concept of soul crystals may have been heavily inspired by auracite. Whilst other side stories have been fairly self contained, Return to Ivalice has actually dropped some major lore bombs that flesh out elements of the setting quite a bit. This is particularly true in regards to Garlemald, Garleans, Dalmasca and Dalmascans.

    So I think the chances of seeing further elaboration on lore elements elsewhere in the setting is fairly high.
    (0)

  3. #3
    Player
    Iscah's Avatar
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    Character
    Aurelie Moonsong
    World
    Typhon
    Main Class
    Summoner Lv 70
    It sounds quite probable! Although they haven't mentioned soul crystals at all when they were talking in-depth about auracite, so perhaps it's more like a chance connection that could be made canon, rather than something they were actually thinking of when they wrote it?
    (0)

  4. #4
    Player
    ObsidianFire's Avatar
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    Oct 2017
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    Character
    Kharagal Mierqid
    World
    Cerberus
    Main Class
    Summoner Lv 70
    The tool-tip of all the Soul Crystals reads this: "Upon the surface of this multi-aspected crystal are carved the myrid deeds of <job> from eras past." The exception is the Machinest Soul Crystal which reads as this: "Unlike other Soul Crystals, the surface of this multi-aspected stone has yet to be carved with the record of past deeds." So there's two things that seem to make a Soul Crystal: a multi-aspected stone/crystal and the act of recording whatever the job did as time whet on on the crystal. This also seems to be a physical recording and not an aetherial one. It can be inferred that you will be the one carving things on the Machinest crystal to then pass it on to other people.

    The other thing that strikes me about Soul Crystals is that there are multiple copies of most of them and that nobody thinks they are weird in and of themselves. They're treated by most NPCs as just another part of the game like linkpearls and teleporting are treated. And it's not just DRKs Soul Crystal that "does stuff by itself". The DRG Soul Crystal serves as an interface between Nidhogg's Eye and the Azure Dragoons, BLM's Soul Crystal helps regulate their aether so they don't use too much at once and kill themselves or draw voidsent, WAR's helps regulate the Inner Beast, SMN's is the reason they can create and summon Egi, WHM's makes up for the fact the user isn't a Padjali, PLD's is said to stop working if a user betrays their oaths and having too many PLDs who have similar resolves around each other causes their Soul Crystals to behave oddly until they determine a pecking order... the list goes on... However, most of that stuff is seen as what the soul crystal is supposed to be doing. In fact, most of those things are why people use Soul Crystals at all.

    I have a hard time seeing something that has widespread use being related to some parasitic thing that gives people what they think they want. At least not without the game throwing out major hints this entire time. The way everyone reacts to the Auracite makes it pretty obvious they've never seen something like this before (including the Sharlayan!). It's so far removed from what they're used to dealing with that they're struggling to figure out what it is and how it could be doing what it does.
    (3)

  5. #5
    Player
    uvuvwevwevweonyetenyevweugwemu's Avatar
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    Dec 2016
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    361
    Character
    Pa Lin'guine
    World
    Siren
    Main Class
    Thaumaturge Lv 70
    I think of soul stones like electronic/usb devices but instead of depending on electricity, it depends on aether. There's storage for skills, projector for egis/aoes, oscillator for BLMs and MCHs, bluetooth for DRG and nidhogg eyes (wait what?). Aetheronics? just kidding but who knows right Rare, but not impossible to make more from mch storyline, maybe the technology level is catching up with Allagans.

    Auracite feels more like a biological thing that also imprints will or desire, and can transform the user, physically/mentally. It spelled out more like a summoning crystal that needs conduit or an avatar. Could be the same if you want to think of it as a 'viral' soul stone containing parasitic virus but why can it be used by a non-aether person? There's the difference.
    (0)

  6. #6
    Player
    Cilia's Avatar
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    Temujin Haragin
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    Famfrit
    Main Class
    Dark Knight Lv 70
    OK, I goofed - the all the Soul Crystals explicitly state they're "multi-aspected crystals."

    Guess it's just a coincidence.

    Anyway... I meant to imply that the Soul Crystals are closer to the Otius (which seems to be an aetherial floppy disk, for want of a better term, containing the original Ramza's personality if not memories) than the parasitic Duma. The Warrior of Light's own use of the crystals implicitly etches their deeds into the Soul Crystals, which could be seen as a form of benign parasitism. The scale in how they affect their users could be attributed to their size - Soul Crystals are tiny shards, while the auracite shown is about palm or fist-sized...

    ... but it was just me not remembering what the tooltip for Soul Crystals says, as well as a slight coincidence.
    (0)
    Temujin Haragin's Way Status (4.4 - End)
    [ ]LOST [X]NOT LOST
    "A thousand pegasi led by one dragon can defeat a thousand dragons led by one pegasus." -Saias: Bishop of Flame, Fire Emblem Heroes

  7. #7
    Player
    Iscah's Avatar
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    Aurelie Moonsong
    World
    Typhon
    Main Class
    Summoner Lv 70
    Being a "multi-aspected crystal" doesn't definitely stop that 'crystal' from being auracite - or perhaps something different but similar. I'm also not sure that the crystal being 'carved with past deeds' is necessarily a physical act, or at least it doesn't seem the most efficient way of recording skills for future reference! It seems more like a magical thing that you can draw from, rather than actively "reading the instructions", and perhaps the 'etching' process happens naturally somehow. It's also always a possibility that it wasn't translated well, or that the lore wasn't worked out at the time that they wrote that one-sentence summary. (Or you could say it's the character's first impression of it, rather than what it actually is.)

    The lorebook has some information on soul crystals (p.217), which doesn't say anything more specific about what they're made of, but that it is "worn close to the skin, where the uncommonly clear facets of the carefully cut shard catch and transcribe the ebb and flow of a soul's aetherial composition - effectively capturing an imperfect echo of the wearer's memories", and also that those memories can't simply be withdrawn until the user has reached similar "proficiency and maturity" in the art to that of the previous owner.
    (1)

  8. #8
    Player
    Keever's Avatar
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    Sep 2015
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    Gridania
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    122
    Character
    Lyon Polnareff
    World
    Ultros
    Main Class
    Paladin Lv 70
    Parallels can be drawn between just about all magical phenomena in the world of FFXIV. For example, weaving magic requires both aether (sometimes aspected) as a fuel source, and some form of "filter" in the form of thought/will or geometry. If I may go off on a bit of a tangent: DRK uses aetherial abilities by using negative emotions ("darkness") as a filter. PLD seems to use ideas of loyalty and conviction. WAR uses animal instinct (the Inner Beast) as a "filter" for their aether. BLMs somehow attune themselves to ice or fire. Some magic requires spoken incantation as a filter. ACN and NIN use geometry. I'd propose that BRD's music could have a geometrical aspect to it in the form of the actual physical vibration and frequency of the sound, as well as a "willpower" aspect. How about the way Geomancers tap into the natural flow of aether? Feng Shui and the arcane geometry of the natural world, anyone? Then there's the geometrical properties of gemstones, and that can relate to the nature of crystallised aether....

    There's a lot of similarity to be found if you look for it. I don't doubt at all that Auracite and Soul Crystals have some properties in common, in that they're the product of aetherial "waveforms" being recorded in crystalline form. In fact, I'd point to a third member of this family of crystals: materia! Aetherial patterns from a person's spiritbond with a piece of gear condensed into a magical stone, which can then bestow some kind of similar battle ability when embedded in another piece of equipment. Improved accuracy or what-have-you recorded in crystal? It seems to me that materia is very much a primitive version of what a soul crystal is.

    This could also shed some kind of light on what manner of being Tsukumo from the Kojin beast tribe quests was, given that he seemed to become a piece of materia himself. I'm still hazy on the specifics of that one, though.
    (2)

  9. #9
    Player
    Vulcwen's Avatar
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    Mar 2016
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    180
    Character
    Vulcwen Mhasi
    World
    Zodiark
    Main Class
    Summoner Lv 70
    Soul stones and auracite stones could be based on the same aetherochemical concepts, crafted in such a way that it may not only store aether, but also allows it to be released in specific ways (perhaps based on the shape they're carved in). The main difference I'd see here is:
    - Soul stones require active effort to imprint anything, as in, the user specifically channels their aether through it (draw it close to their skin, use it as a focus for certain skills).
    - Soul stones don't actually store (much) aether energy, they only store information, energy is provided by it's user.
    - Auracite can store both energy (although it leaks), and don't require active effort, just being near it will force your aether to flow through it like it has some aether-magnetic properties.

    This last property could allow auracite to actually hold on to full souls (given it's capacity is great enough, and if the soul wants to escape it, it probably can't hold on for long), since souls are essentially just aether energy with specific waveforms. This matches the way we've used white auracite, as that could absorb a full ascian soul.
    (2)