The Myriad Arms of Balrahn

This page has been archived here from official Square Enix sources. It was originally posted on 02/05/08.


By now the name of Balrahn, great restorer of the Empire of Aht Urhgan, has resounded throughout Vana’diel, reaching the ears of all in the form of both history and legend. Blessed with multifarious talents and gifted in nearly every field of human endeavor, the tales of his exploits and travels have become an undying source of entertainment and delight. The restoration of the reign and dignity of the throne which he ushered in has earned him recognition as the greatest hero that empire has ever known. Though, we would of course be getting ahead of ourselves to posit that his grandeur or regality was on a scale with anything approaching that of our King Ranperre.

During his time on the throne, Balrahn garnered enormous respect amongst the people for his utter lack of interest in the superfluousness of royalty. The magnificent structures, the lush garments, the grand banquets… Rather, Balrahn was obsessed with, and dedicated himself wholeheartedly to, the amassing of rare and powerful weaponry. Indeed, the vast majority of valuable weapons stored in the Imperial armories are from his personal collection. These are weapons heralded to be unparalleled in their artistry in form and efficacy in battle.

However, according to an Imperial spy, the official ledger containing the list of those weapons, though guarded to the utmost and never permitted to pass through the palace gates, was obtained by subversive means and made known to the public. What degree of truth and significance can be ascribed to these entries? Could it possibly be some clever scheme on the part of the Empire to leak false information for its own ends? Or could this truly be an instance of espionage unprecedented in scale throughout history?

But for our purposes here, this is a moot point. The information has been made known, adventurer. Whatever action that knowledge may lead to is entirely in your hands now.

History teaches us that the misuse or misappropriation of weapons of this magnitude can only lead the most disastrous of consequences. We can only pray that a threat so great as to warrant their consideration for use will ever cast its shadow over our Aht Urhgan.

Halver M Borel


Conqueror (Warrior, Great Axe) - This great axe, unconventional in design and unequaled in its powers of subjugation, was passed down along the line of the divine Emperor Alzadaal. In nobler days it was presented as an award once per generation by the emperor himself on the field of battle to the single general whose performance garnered the greatest of praise.
It was by far the highest military commendation one could aspire to receive, and was much sought after by all for the honor and clout it brought with it.

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Glanzfaust (Monk, Hand-to-hand) - As the name entails, these weapons transform the wearer's fists into instruments of glorious destruction. Many consider them to be the only remaining legacy of that unmatched Galkan pugilist of Bastok, Dalha, dear friend to Ironman Mayer and undisputed champion of the Bastok Mines' martial games.

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Yagrush (White Mage, Club) - Also known by its alias, "Chaser," this robust red sandalwood club is plated in phosphorescent gold and exquisitely encrusted with an array of magically imbued sacred stones. It is said to have been the weapon of choice for the legendary admiral, Veydal, who commissioned its creation to master crafter priests specifically for high sea encounters with the dreaded Leviathan.

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Laevateinn (Black Mage, Staff) - Passed down for generations in the myths and stories of the peoples of the north is the World Tree motif, known to those intimately versed in such tales as Yggdrasill. One obscure legend tells of an ambitious Gigas who ventured to the center of the tree to obtain the single branch fabled to grow there, the “Branch of Ruin.” Known to sprout only the seemingly lifeless, skeletal frames of leaves in place of lush foliage, he plucked it at its base and made his way to the lands of the Dvergar, whom he commissioned to fashion the branch into Laevateinn.

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Murgleis (Red Mage, Sword) - The blade of this finely crafted sword is ingeniously armed with a fluke for disarming opponents, and is at its most effective when used in thrusting and stabbing attacks. After the passing of the great warrior king Acheufagais R D'Oraguille, one of his generals, Count Ganelon, left San d'Oria in exile bearing the sword, and came to settle in the realm of Bastok.

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Vajra (Thief, Dagger) - Forged from meteoric iron during the foregone age of the Olduum civilization, this unworldly dagger is fabled to have been wielded by the wargod Indra himself. Thought to have been forever lost within the dark passage of time, it was eventually excavated from within an ancient shrine surviving deep inside the bowels of the Aydeewa Subterrane. The recent discovery of a minute powering device embedded in the hilt has sparked heated intellectual fervor among the Empire's alchemist community.

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Burtgang (Paladin, Sword) - This was once the long sword of the celebrated knight, Alphollon C Meriard, who is still often championed as the very embodiment of chivalry itself. Some say that on one memorable occasion, in an attempt to prove his unflinching loyalty and goodwill to his liege during a training bout, he intentionally sundered the blade. At present, however, the body shows no sign or scar of having been broken or remade.

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Liberator (Dark Knight, Scythe) - Unorthodox by any assessment, this bifurcate scythe bears a name representative of its significant role in history. Balrahn's heroic efforts to quell the rebellions in the south are now a topic of common knowledge. It was on those campaigns that he directly encountered the leader of the insurgency, known to the ages simply as Koja, to whom this scythe originally belonged.

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Aymur (Beastmaster, Axe) - This axe, fashioned of the finest darksteel, bears the inlay of a majestic golden wave, modeled after the Kingdom of Ephramad's royal insignia. Its name allegedly derives from an ancient source and is symbolic of the inexplicable powers of influence the weapon seems to exert over others. It is said that the legendary Admiral Veydal forged the axe in an attempt to harness the power of the mighty Leviathan.

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Carnwenhan (Bard, Dagger) - Wrought of pure silver and designed for self-defense, legend holds that this dagger was the original counterpart to the great Excalibur, designed to be borne simultaneously by the same divine king of old. Though handed down through generations of bards who carried on the tradition of singing that royal line's glories, it was seized by Balrahn and added to his collection, stating simply that bards, "don't need daggers to sing."

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Gastraphetes (Ranger, Crossbow) - Equipped with an incredibly strong compound string, proper operation of this powerful bow typically requires the user to brace the stock against their stomach, from which its name, literally “belly bow,” derives. At present, the empire furnishes automated pulling devices to accomplish the arduous task of reloading.

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Kogarasumaru (Samurai, Great Katana) - Atypical among other members of the great katana tradition, the tip of this blade has been forged to hold two edges, one fashioned in the traditional eastern style, and the other in that of the west. Legend proclaims that the blade was presented to Balrahn after his defeat of the nefarious enemy general Ogarasu in an epic struggle.

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Nagi (Ninja, Katana) - From the epic stage of great eastern battles comes the tale of this dagger which, before entering into his possession, was once trained on the very heart of Balrahn while in the hands of an unknown female ninja. The story that survives tells us nothing more of her than that she was a failed acolyte at a shrine of some notoriety, from which she absconded the ceremonial blade in order to fuel her own twisted drive for power. The katana itself, they say, has at its beck and call all the fury and rage of the most unrelenting winds and torrential rains.

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Ryunohige (Dragoon, Polearm) - Ryunohige is the notorious polearm obtained by Balrahn as an end result of his hundreds of battles with beastman generals in the eastern theater of war. Forged in the image of the imposing beards of the formidable eastern wyrms, the undulating spearhead is said to harbor the powers of tumbling thunderclouds.

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Nirvana (Summoner, Staff) - A powerful staff imbued with the state of gnostic enlightenment that its name implies. Once a sacred relic of the Walahra Temple, it was stolen by Balrahn to combat the twisted thaumaturgy of the denizens of the evil realms. After bonding to Balrahn and making his will its own, it was no longer able to be returned, and remained in his possession. The exact circumstances of this phenomenon are not altogether clear and shrouded in esoteric mystery.

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Tizona (Blue Mage, Sword) - The sword wielded by Balrahn in his younger days. While on his travels it was stripped of him after suffering the only defeat of his life at the hands of a certain mercenary. He later rose up anew, mustering the bravery to again challenge his newfound rival, this time achieving victory and reclaiming the blade. Afterwards the mercenary and Balrahn came to share a lasting friendship until the end of their days.

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Death Penalty (Corsair, Gun) - As its name implies, this high-caliber firearm earned its moniker by doling out swift and often fatal retribution. It was long the beloved weapon of choice of the legendary corsair, Luzaf the Blackheart. Still somewhat unbelievable stories abound of the pistol's sheer destructive force, said to be such that it once sank a great battleship by blowing a hole clean through the hull.

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Kenkonken (Puppeteer, Hand-to-hand) - The very devices that claimed the eye of Balrahn, these ringed fist weapons are said to have been donned by the minion of an evil puppeteer. A vivid and detailed retelling of this encounter came to have a most profound effect upon an impressionable Jalzahn.

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Terpsichore (Dancer, Dagger) - A dagger named after an ancient goddess of dance. Upon first examination, it seems to differ in no particular way from conventional daggers. It bears a concealed button however, which, when depressed, causes the blade to trifurcate. This transforms the weapon into an effective defensive device, capable of entwining an enemy's blade and rendering it near ineffective, if not disarming the opponent entirely.

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Tupsimati (Scholar, Staff) - This sacred relic is said to bear the very inscription of divine will itself. Balrahn took it for his own as a trophy of war following a successful campaign against the Mamool Ja tribes. However, even the most spirited of efforts by the empire's foremost scholars has yet to shed any light on the weapon's true meaning or significance.

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