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Zidane Tribal
Zidane's CG render
Portrait(s) Zidane's menu portrait
Japanese Name ジタン・トライバル
Romaji Jitan Toraibaru
Race Genome
Age 16
Birthdate September, 1783
Home Lindblum
Job Class(es) Thief
Skill Steal, Skill
Trance Dyne
Weapon(s) Daggers, Thief Swords
Final Fantasy IX Character
"Virtue - "You don't need a reason to help people."
—Zidane's motto

Zidane Tribal is the main protagonist of Final Fantasy IX. He is a thief who works for the Tantalus Theater Troupe. His name has varied in spelling according to the localizations of the game as "Yitán" (his Spanish name), "Gidan" (his Italian name) and "Djidane" (his French name).


Appearance and Personality

Zidane possesses little of the sullenness associated with previous Final Fantasy protagonists Cloud Strife and Squall Leonhart. He is shown to be a skirt-chaser, constantly flirting with Princess Garnet during Final Fantasy IX as well as other females. Zidane also gives advice to the party members at multiple times on several aspects of life, and is overall laid-back and casual in his actions and speech patterns. Though he is highly confident in his abilities, Zidane harbors some insecurities about his past and possible loneliness, though he does not often express them. Throughout the game, Zidane starts developing true feelings for Garnet, and acts like an older brother to Vivi. Towards other party members, even Steiner and Amarant who dislike him, Zidane is generally friendly.

Zidane has shoulder-length blonde hair, greenish blue eyes and a prehensile monkey-like tail, a trademark of Genomes in Final Fantasy IX. In Trance form Zidane's hair becomes longer, and his clothing is replaced with thick fur covering his body. It is not revealed whether or not he has fur under his clothing when not in Trance form.

One main thing about Zidane that differs from the regular thief class is his choice of weaponry. He wields two daggers or short swords at once and at times even uses dual-handed weapons, such as a short double-bladed naginata, commonly referred to as a "swallow blade." This type of weapon bears some resemblance to two short swords merged at the handle, though with the handle being an arms length. He can combine his two blades into a "swallow blade" as well.


Spoiler warning: Plot and/or ending details follow. (Skip section)
Artwork by Yoshitaka Amano.

Birth Under a Blue Light

"Yes, my angel of death. But only until you came of age."

It is revealed that Zidane began his life as an "Angel of Death" created by Garland. Long ago, the people of a planet named Terra realized that their world would soon collapse on itself and they would be destroyed. As they had done several times before, they planned to save their civilization through the assimilation of another planet, Gaia. The people of Terra left their physical bodies and locked their souls in Pandemonium to be watched over by Garland, who was given the task of removing the souls of Gaia's "cycle of souls" and replacing them with Terra's. Garland began to synthesize humanoid vessels called Genomes that would receive the souls of the Terrans once they were awakened from their slumber. To expedite the endeavor of draining Gaia of its inhabitants, Garland gave a soul to a new Genome and named him Kuja. Kuja would be Garland's "Angel of Death", sent to Gaia to cause immense unrest and death. Kuja's will, however, was too much for Garland's tastes. A limit was placed on Kuja's life, and another improved Genome was created who would eventually replace him. This Genome was Zidane. Zidane was experimental in that he would live through a full life, growing up as a child before developing into Garland's "Angel of Death". By contrast, Kuja was created in an adult form, and lacked childhood experiences and such.

Kuja, infuriated by Garland's decision to create another, more powerful Genome, immediately deposited Zidane on Gaia. Young Zidane, completely unaware of his mission, ended up in Lindblum where he was raised by Baku as a member of the Tantalus band of thieves and only remembering one thing of his childhood years: a blue light.


"Listen, Vivi. You gotta do something next time. You should try-- screaming back or whatever. Like... 'Get off me, you scumbag!'"

Twelve years later, Tantalus arrives at Alexandria on a mission appointed by Lindblum's Regent Cid to kidnap Princess Garnet. Although the mission was a success, their airship Prima Vista suffers major damage during the escape, and eventually crashes into the Evil Forest. Baku wished for the thieves to find their way out of the forest, but Zidane insisted on finding the missing Garnet first. He beats Baku in a sparring match and sets out to rescue Garnet, bringing Vivi and Steiner along with him.

Zidane after narrowly escaping the Evil Forest.

Saving the princess from Evil's Forest's unnatural vegetation, Zidane and his friends escaped the jungle with the help of a petrified Blank. The crew decides to travel through the Ice Cavern, where Black Waltz No. 1 casts a sleeping spell upon the party in the hopes of destroying them. Zidane alone resisted and defeated the Black Waltz, reviving the others. Outside of the cave, he suggests that Garnet abandon the formal speaking habits she grew up with and adopt an alias in order to shield her identity from the villagers of the nearby town of Dali. Garnet agrees, and inspecting Zidane's knife, decided to use the name "Dagger". Upon discovering that Dali was making Black Mage soldiers and delivering them to Alexandria, the group commandeers a cargo ship and fled to Lindblum.

Arriving in Lindblum, it is revealed to Zidane and his friends that a great many concerns have been arising surrounding Alexandria and its Queen. Taking advantage of a mission completed, Zidane opts to participate in the Festival of the Hunt, reuniting with Freya while doing so. Before the Hunt began, Zidane follows a singing voice to the observatory of Lindblum Castle, finding Garnet amongst a flock of birds. Garnet reveals that she is preoccupied about her mother and her own inability to steer her country away from war. True to character, Zidane attempts to cheer her up, promising a date with her if he lands first place in the Festival of the Hunt. Confused, Garnet reluctantly agrees, and during the Hunt Zidane manages to convince Freya to let him land the killing blow on a Zaghnol in order to make good on his vow. The festivities are short lived, as a dying Burmecian soldier alerts Regent Cid to an Alexandrian military force moving against Burmecia. Zidane tries to stop Garnet from returning to Alexandria to speak with her mother, but she sprinkles sleeping weed in the group's cuisine and absconds with Steiner nevertheless.

Intent on saving Burmecia, Zidane, Freya, and Vivi encounter Quina Quen while traveling through Qu's Marsh and arrive at Gizamaluke's Grotto just as it was laid under siege from the Alexandrian Black Mages, commanded by Zorn and Thorn. Fighting through the monsters, the group figure that Garnet and Steiner had gone through the South Gate to Alexandria. Arriving at Burmecia, Zidane attempted to help Freya find her king while battling Alexandria's army and evacuating the castle's citizens. They instead discover Queen Brahne, Beatrix and Kuja in the royal palace. Upon overhearing that the King had escaped to Cleyra, the four challenge Beatrix to a duel. The Alexandrian general bests them easily, and Zidane and his friends were left for dead as the villains made haste to Cleyra.

Zidane attempts to help Freya defend Cleyra, but Brahne appears, summoning the Eidolon Odin, completely decimating the settlement and everyone in it. Zidane and co. barely escape as they follow Beatrix's army through their own teleport spells.

Reappearing aboard Brahne's ship, the Red Rose, they overhear Beatrix voicing her doubts about her queen. They also overhear Brahne's plans to execute Garnet, who lay captive in Alexandria. Using the teleportation magic again they arrived in Alexandria ahead of Brahne and, with Steiner and Marcus's help, defeated Zorn and Thorn and found Garnet's sleeping form.


As Freya, Steiner, and a reformed Beatrix hold off the guards, Zidane, Garnet, and Vivi escape through the underground tunnels, reappearing in Pinnacle Rocks they watched as Brahne invaded and destroyed Lindblum with the eidolon Atomos, only relenting when Lindblum surrendered. Sneaking into the city the group reunites with Cid and discuss their options. Deciding to go after Kuja, the source of the problems, they use a tunnel called Fossil Roo to cross continents from their own to the Outer Continent.

Encountering the Black Mage Village on their travels through the continent they stay for a while for Vivi, while Zidane tells Garnet about what he knows about his past and where he came from. The following day they learn of a possible place where Kuja resides, the Iifa Tree, along the way Zidane and Garnet are involved in a marriage ceremony and they meet Eiko, a girl who can summon Eidolons, and she joins the group. Eiko quickly develops a crush on Zidane, and when she realizes that he is oblivious to her attempts at romantic overtones, she begins to question him about his relationship with Garnet. Before setting off to find Kuja, Zidane and Garnet share a moment in a small boat on the shores of Madain Sari, remembering their pasts and uncertainty in which they were both brought into the world.

Arriving at the Iifa Tree they witness Kuja and Brahne fighting each other, and, while Brahne summons him, Kuja uses Bahamut to destroy Brahne's own fleet and kills her. Zidane and the rest return to Alexandria where Garnet is to become the new queen.


"Go on, Vivi. Don't worry about me. Someday, you'll probably do the same thing for someone who's really important to you. Dagger is more important to me than anything else."

Zidane, however, begins to miss her, though he is unable to express his newfound feelings in front of Garnet. Frustrated and unwilling to accept that Garnet must remain isolated as Alexandria's monarch from then on, Zidane is consoled by Vivi, and the party members head to Treno to participate in a card tournament. Eventually, Castle Alexandria comes under attack from Kuja but is warded off when Garnet and Eiko summon Alexander. Kuja attempts to take Alexander but is prevented from doing so when Garland interferes. Flying in on the Hilda Garde II, Zidane leads the group up onto the apex of the castle. He feels that he needs to rescue the two summoners by himself, and as the others prepare the Hilda Garde for departure, Zidane saves Garnet and Eiko as Garland destroys both Alexander and Alexandria. Zidane wakes up later in Lindblum where repairs are still being done, and, as the party discusses their next strategy, they learn that Garnet has lost her voice in response to the tragic events that have happened. Angered about the effect of Kuja's schemes on Garnet's health, Zidane decides to bring the party in pursuit of him.

Artwork by Yoshitaka Amano.

When they arrive at the Desert Palace, the group is captured and imprisoned, and Zidane is momentarily blackmailed into helping Kuja retrieve the Gulug Stone from the ancient ruins of Oeilvert on the Forgotten Continent. While there, Zidane and three of his friends are astonished to find Oeilvert is a haven of lost technological works from a long-gone civilization. Though Zidane does not know it, the artifacts were left by the people of his homeland, the Terrans. Zidane is the only party member that can decipher the various writings on the Terran holograms, though he is unable to conclude what the dire predictions of Terran downfall truly mean. The party retrieves the Gulug Stone and return to Kuja, who flees to the Lost Continent. After retrieving Queen Hilda from Mount Gulug, Zidane learns of Kuja's link to Terra and go to Ipsen's Castle to unlock the portal to the second world. Zidane finally manages to earn Amarant's respect when he uses teamwork to retrieve the four elemental mirrors from the castle, saving Amarant from his own arrogant attempt at the spoils.

Where the Heart Is

"Regrettable... I thought your soul would be perfect for a new angel of death..."
"I AM the new angel of death! Yours!!!
—Garland and Zidane
Concept art of Zidane by Toshiyuki Itahana.

With the mirrors collected and the Elemental Shrines cleared of guardians, Zidane directs their airship Hilda Garde III to Terra, where Zidane is led to the village of Bran Bal by a girl who eerily resembles him. He is further shocked to find that the town is inhabited solely by humanoids with dirty blond hair and tails just like his; these being the other Genomes created by Garland. A perplexed Zidane is given the basic details of his young years in Terra by the girl, who is named Mikoto. With this information, Zidane resolves to meet Garland, his creator, and determine the truth to his life. Within the spires and mazes of Pandemonium, the resting place of Terra's true people, Zidane confronts Garland, who proceeds to explain the full extent of his plans for Terra's revival.

Drained by this new revelation, Zidane attempts to fight Garland, only to have his Terran soul removed and his body chained in Pandemonium's depths. With anguish, he fell into the belief that everything he knew was a lie and his true purpose in life was to aid in Gaia's destruction. When his friends come to his aid, Zidane shuns them, not wanting to draw their lives into Garland's genocidal plot. Remembering all the times that Zidane had helped her to reach within herself and find a reason to live and the strength to carry on, Garnet pleads with Zidane to let his friends believe in him as he believed in them. It was from that point that Zidane realized he did have a true purpose in life: protecting everyone he cares for.

While facing Garland one last time, however, Kuja reappears and uses the souls within the airship Invincible to ascend to Trance. He kills Garland but, after learning that he will indeed die soon, moves to destroy Terra along with everything in it. Zidane and company commandeer the Invincible just in time to evacuate Terra of the Genomes and reappear in Gaia. Summarizing that Kuja would soon destroy Gaia, Zidane resolves to pursue him into the mist of Memoria and stop his brother's desperate endeavor for destruction.

Zidane stays behind to save Kuja.

Memoria's fathomless reaches contains memories from every age of Gaia, as well as memories from the people who dwell on it. Zidane and his friends battle through the Chaos Guardians summoned in opposition to the root of all life, the Crystal, and enter the Crystal World where they face Trance Kuja. Upon his defeat, Kuja defeats the party with a powerful Ultima, and they are transported to the Hill of Despair, where the omniscient harbinger of death, Necron, seeks to prove that all humanity existed merely to die and become consumed by a "zero world". Zidane expresses a hope for the future and a trust in his friends, and together, they defeat Necron. As the true Angel of Death crumbles away to nothingness, a dying Kuja teleports Zidane and his party out of the Hill of Despair. As his friends say their goodbyes and depart on the Hilda Garde III, Zidane stays behind to try to save Kuja from dying. Evading Iifa's crazed roots, driven mad by Necron's defeat, Zidane makes it to the core of the tree, where he finds Kuja near death, and the tree consumes them both.

With the young hero thought dead, time passes by until, during another performance of "I Want to be Your Canary" by Tantalus in a rebuilt Alexandria, the character Marcus throws away his cloak to reveal himself as Zidane. Queen Garnet races to his arms.


Zidane's battle sprite.


Like the name suggests, the "Steal" ability allows players to steal items from an enemy. Some items can only be obtained by stealing, and sometimes, players only get one shot at stealing it. Steal can be augmented with the abilities Flee Gil, Steal Gil, Master Thief, Mug, and Bandit. Also of note is that Zidane's Thievery skill is directly linked to the number of successful Steals he performs times half of his Speed rating (i.e. if Zidane's speed is 28, he will need to steal successfully 715 times for Thievery to hit the maximum of 9,999).


Main article: Skill (Final Fantasy IX)

This ability allows Zidane to use certain Skills in battle. When learning a Skill, he also learns a Dyne attack (see further down), which can be used when in Trance. If equipping multiple items that teaches the same ability, the speed of which the ability is learned is multiplied by the amount of items. E.g. equipping a Dagger and Germinas Boots at the same time, teaches Zidane the ability "Flee" at twice the speed, if trying to learn that ability.


Main article: Dyne (Command)

When in Trance, Zidane's "Skill" ability changes to Dyne. Dyne raises his physical attack power and offers attacks that can damage single or multiple enemies. Zidane's Dyne and Skill abilities are connected, as he needs to learn a Skill to unlock the corresponding Dyne.

Musical Themes

"Zidane's Theme" from Final Fantasy IX
Image:FFIX Zidane's Theme.ogg
Trouble with the audio sample?

"Zidane's Theme" plays during early sections of the game, mostly notably when boarding the Cargo Ship at Dali. It starts out quickly, and becomes more slowly by the middle section, and then reverts back to the faster part of the piece. "Not Alone" is another notable piece, played when Zidane learns the truth about his existence and refuses his friends' help.

Other Appearances

Artwork by Tetsuya Nomura.

Dissidia Final Fantasy

Main article: Zidane Tribal/Dissidia

Chaos has summoned a combined force of Final Fantasy's ultimate masters of evil. Cosmos, in an attempt to protect the Crystals, has summoned warriors to thwart their plans. Zidane is one of these warriors and stands as the hero representing Final Fantasy IX, opposing Kuja.

Traveling with Bartz, Zidane turns their quest for the Crystals into a treasure hunt, which ends abruptly when Bartz falls into a trap and is captured. Blaming himself, Zidane meets up with Squall and reunites with Bartz, only to be captured himself. These traps have been set in place by Kuja, who desires to break Zidane's spirit with feelings of hopelessness and loneliness.

Itadaki Street Portable

Zidane as he appears in Itadaki Street Portable

Zidane has appeared in Itadaki Street Portable as a playable character.


  • All spellings of Zidane's name are phonetically akin to the French word "gitane", which means "gypsy," although this word is used for women.
  • The french spelling is ironically the one that may not make sense. Confirming many people's suspicions, lead translator Vincent Zouzoulkovsky revealed in an interview that the change from the official spelling "Zidane" to the french one "Djidane" was done for the sole purpose of avoiding any misplaced association between the character and the hugely popular soccer player.
  • In game, Zidane may have received his name from the character in Lord Avon's "I want to be your Canary", Baku being his adoptive father and head of a theater/bandit troupe.


  • While walking around as Zidane, he occasionally turns his head toward several female NPCs. This probably hints at Zidane's womanizing nature.
  • The only time Zidane really uses his prehensile tail is when he evades Steiner on the cargo ship.
  • When you equip Zidane with any dagger other than the default "dagger," he does not hold two copies of the new dagger in his hands. Instead, only his right hand is equipped with the new dagger, while the left hand is always holding the default dagger.

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


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