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Final Fantasy Adventure
Final Fantasy Adventure NA Logo
聖剣伝説 ~ファイナルファンタジー外伝~
Seiken Densetsu ~Fainaru Fantajī Gaiden~
Developer(s) Square Co., Ltd.
Publisher(s) Square Co., Ltd.
Sunsoft (re-release)
Release date Japan June 8, 1991
United States/Canada November 1, 1991
Europe 1993
Genre Role-playing game
Game modes Single player
Ratings n/a
Platform(s) Game Boy, Mobile phone

Final Fantasy Adventure (known as Mystic Quest in Europe and Seiken Densetsu: Final Fantasy Gaiden (Legend of the Holy Sword: Final Fantasy Gaiden) in Japan) is a spin-off title from the main Final Fantasy series, released for the Game Boy handheld console. Becoming the first game of what would become the Mana videogame series, it was marketed as a Final Fantasy title however its gameplay held more similarities to the Legend of Zelda games of that time.

The story follows a protagonist hero and a young heroine as they attempt to thwart the Dark Lord of Glaive (Shadow Knight in the Japanese version) and his sorcerer assistant Julius Vandole from destroying the Tree of Mana and dooming their world. The game was met with generally positive reviews, noting its strong story but faulting its shaky dialogue in the English versions.

In its Game Boy Advance remake the game was retitled Sword of Mana.



A battle in the Game Boy version

The gameplay is similar to the original Legend of Zelda for the NES: the world is viewed from a top-down camera angle and is comprised of single screens that take up the entire viewing ares. Saving is possible at any point in the game. As is standard in RPGs, the player must interact with individuals within towns to gather information and buy or sell items and equipment.

The hero progresses through a number of different regions, with a different goal in each region. The beginning area is a grassland. There is also a swamp, a rocky coast, a forest, a crystal field, and a mountainous region. The hero is allowed to progress from area to area either by obtaining a key that opens the way or by finding the weapon that will allow him to destroy whatever is blocking the path.

Enemies can be battled in the fields and dungeons to gain experience, GP, or randomly dropped items. Within dungeon areas a number of puzzles may be required to be solved in order for the player to advance. The player starts with a sword and eventually gains a whip, an axe, a spear, and a morning star mace. Each of these weapons can be used to destroy certain features of the environment, e.g. the axe can cut down trees and open up new paths for the hero.

A battle in the mobile version

The main character possesses several statistics, including hit points, power, and stamina, which can all increase upon gaining an experience level. Magic spells, which expend the character's MP, can be used to heal oneself or damage enemies. These spells can only be found in certain locations or obtained from other characters at specific plot intervals. In addition the protagonist has a power gauge that affects his attack strength – the higher the gauge, the stronger his attack will be. The speed at which it fills is directly affected by the character's will level. The gauge will slowly fill up over time but once the main character attacks the gauge is emptied. When the gauge is completely filled up and the main character attacks with a weapon he will perform a special attack. This system is used in many other later Mana titles.


Main article: List of Final Fantasy Adventure Characters

The story follows the hero (called Sumo in the English manual) as he tries to save a young woman (called Fuji in the English manual) from the sorcerer Julius Vandole and the Dark Lord of Glaive. The hero is joined during certain sections of the game by secondary characters who provide essential assistance however the player cannot control any of the secondary characters.

The main antagonist of the story, Julius Vandole, the last survivor of the Vandole Empire, seeks to obtain the power of the Tree of Mana and restore the Vandole Empire to its former glory.


Spoiler warning: Plot and/or ending details follow. (Skip section)

The world is threatened by a Dark Lord who is on a quest for the power of Mana which will, once obtained, allow him to rule supreme over the land. At his side is a mysterious wizard named Julius Vandole.
The hero, a gladiator whose parents were killed by the Dark Lord, is imprisoned and forced to fight daily for the Dark Lord's personal entertainment. One day, the hero escapes and by chance overhears the Dark Lord and Julius in their plans to seize the power of Mana. When they discover his escape, they chase him over a waterfall to what they think is his death.

Having survived the fall, the hero saves a mysterious young woman from monsters. The girl encourages him to help her find the magical objects needed to defeat the Dark Lord in his quest for the Mana Tree. They first journey to the nearby town of Topple to gather information.

One of the last Gemma Knights, Bogard, is now living as a hermit in the mountains. Bogard tells the two to seek out Cibba in Wendel. The pair's journey to Wendel takes them through a swamp and to a mysterious house called Ketts. They spend the night there, but the girl is captured by the master of the house, Mr Lee. The hero must find a magic mirror inside the Swamp Cave, with the help of a Red Mage. With the mirror, the hero defeats the Ketts' doorman, enters the basement of the house, rescues the girl and defeats Mr Lee who turns out to be a vampire.

In Wendel, Cibba shows the girl that she is descended from the keepers of the Mana Tree, which the Gemma Knights protected. But then Dark Lord's forces attack Wendel. The Red Mage offers to take the girl to safety, but he reveals himself to be Julius and rides away with her in his airship.

With the help of the dwarves, the hero makes it through the Gaia Cave, meets up with Bogard and boards Julius' airship. They try to rescue the girl, but Julius catches the hero outside her cell window. The hero gets the girl's pendant before Julius knocks him off the ship and down to the earth below.

The hero lands in Menos, home to another former Dark Lord slave, Amanda. She steals the pendant and takes it to Jadd hoping she can barter it for her imprisoned brother Lester. Instead, Jadd's ruler Davias turns Lester into a parrot and forces Amanda to hunt for his mother, a Medusa who's tears can restore Lester. The hero helps Amanda hunt down the Medusa. They are unable to get any tears after defeating Medusa, but Amanda turns into a Medusa from the battle, forcing the hero to kill her and take her tears. Once Lester is returned to normal, he helps the hero avenge Amanda by defeating Davias. With his last breath, Davias says he gave the pendant to Julius' pet bird, Garuda.

Lester's music clears away the poison gas outside Jadd, opening the path back up the mountains and to Dark Lord's castle, where the hero rescues the girl and battles Dark Lord for the pendant. After defeating Dark Lord, it is revealed Julius has the real pendant. He admits that he is the last descendant from the old Vandole Empire, and he mesmerizes the girl into chanting a spell that causes the Mana Falls to flow upward. The hero falls off the mountain while Julius and the girl ride up the waterfall.

The hero is rescued by a chocobo in the Crystal Desert, which takes him to Ish. Bogard has been here since he fell from the airship. The chocobo's legs broke from carrying the hero, but the town vet, Dr Bowow, replaces them with mechanical legs, allowing it to walk on water. Bogard tells the hero to find Cibba, who has gone to the mountain city of Lorim. Lorim has been frozen by the ice fiend Kary, freezing all the townspeople and trapping Cibba in his room. The hero travels to the Snow Cave and defeats Kary to break the spell and free everyone.

Cibba says the hero must find the legendary sword Excalibur. In the floatrocks region to the northeast, the hero finds a cave that takes him to an island in the southwest (though he first must get past the water fiend Kraken). In the island cave, the fire fiend Iflyte has what appears to be the legendary sword, but it is all rusty.

After beating Iflyte and getting the Rusty Sword. Cibba tells the hero to raise the Dime Tower in the Crystal Desert. Dr Bowow directs the hero to the Cave of Ruins, where he must defeat the earth fiend Lich for the Nuke spell. The spell helps open another cave near the desert shore. At the very bottom of the cave, an altar causes the Dime Tower to rise when the hero holds the Rusty Sword.

Inside the tower is a robot named Marcie, who helps the hero reach the top of the tower. At the very top, they must defeat Garuda, but the tower begins to fall after the battle. Marcie throws the hero from the tower to safety, going down with the tower. The hero is now back at Dark Lord's castle and takes the waterfall up to the Mana Temple.

At the end of the Mana Temple is the Mana Forest, where the spirit of the girl's mother turns the Rusty Sword into Excalibur. At the top of the mountain in the forest is the Mana Tree, but Julius has succeed in tapping the tree's power. Julius first splits himself into three images and then transforms into two different monsters before the hero can finally defeat him for good. Defeating Julius causes the Mana Tree to die. The heroine sacrifices herself to become the Mana Tree and preserve the world. The hero then becomes her Gemma Knight and guardian.


The Seiken Densetsu Original Sound Version was released in Japan alongside the game. Most of the tracks were composed by Kenji Itō, while track 16, "Chocobo Tanjou (Chocobo's Birth)", is credited to noted Squaresoft composer Nobuo Uematsu. Seiken Densetsu: Omoi wa Shirabe ni Nosete (Let Thoughts Ride On Knowledge), a set of arranged tracks was also released the same year. Both albums were compiled into Seiken Densetsu: Sound Collections, originally released in 1995.


Square Co., Ltd. trademarked the title Seiken Densetsu: The Emergence of Excalibur in 1987, intending to use it for a game project led by Kazuhiko Aoki for the Famicom Disk System. According to early advertisements, the game would consist of an unprecedented five floppy disks, making it one of the largest titles developed for the Famicom up until that point. Although Square solicited pre-orders for the game, Kaoru Moriyama, a former Square employee, affirmed that management canceled the ambitious project before it advanced beyond the early planning stages, possibly due to the company's close proximity to bankruptcy.
In October 1987, customers who had placed orders were sent a letter informing them of the cancellation and had their purchases refunded. The letter also suggested to consider placing an order on another upcoming Square role-playing game in a similar vein: Final Fantasy.

Four years later, in 1991, Squaresoft developed a Game Boy game under the working title Gemma Knights, and then revived the name they had trademarked back in 1987 and released the game as Seiken Densetsu: Final Fantasy Gaiden, fusing the concepts of both games together. It was later released in Europe as Mystic Quest and Final Fantasy Adventure in North America.

In 1998, Sunsoft obtained the license for the game and re-released it along with the Final Fantasy Legend games.

The game later received an updation and overhaul for the Game Boy Advance handheld, the game was renamed Sword of Mana.

Revealed during Square Enix's E3 2006 press conference, the game received an additional port for mobile phones in Japan. The gameplay of the port is said to be more like the original version of the game, but featuring updated graphics and sound, as well as an improved world map and other minor changes.

Packaging Artwork


  • In the English manual of the game, the name of the protagonist is given as Sumo while the girl is called Fuji. These names are generally not considered canon.

External Links

This article uses material from the "Final Fantasy Adventure" article on the Final Fantasy wiki at Wikia and is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike License.

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