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Raem

Raem was born shortly after a meteor fell on the unnamed world of Final Fantasy: Crystal Chronicles. This meteor shattered the Great Crystal and brought an alien creature called the meteor parasite that produced a deadly miasma. While the four tribes (races) were able to survive by going into the purifying aura around shards of the Great Crystal, many lives were lost when the poisonous mist covered the planet. This great despair and the numerous memories of death, pain, and tragedy gave rise to Raem. This being, looking like a metallic short-winged golden phoenix, soon discovered that he gained great power from miasma, so he had a vested interest in keeping the meteor parasite alive. Raem fed on people's memories, but loved painful and tragic ones the most, of which the miasma proved to be a constant source.

He controlled the world and kept it in a state that benefited him at the cost of every person on the planet for centuries, if not millennia. Raem protected the meteor parasite from would-be heroes. Not only did the miasma produced by the alien cause many terrible memories, these memories in turn gave rise to even more monsters, creating a vicious cycle of sorrowful memories that kept Raem fed.

Raem can be considered one of the most successful RPG villains ever, getting almost exactly what he wants and maintaining that for a long time. He derives not just nourishment and power from his miasma set-up, but also takes a sadistic pleasure in causing so much tragedy. Not only did he consume the memories of an entire doomed town, finding them to be the best tasting he has had in years, he even tormented one person by wiping out his memories and leading him to a tragic death so that he could eat the new ones. Raem is truly a monster.

While Raem's sadistic and selfish nature hardly makes him a sympathetic villain, there is more to his control of the world than just him getting what he wants. After your character(s) defeats Raem's first form, he is shown to be terrified of the thought of dying. Though Mio, his benevolent counterpart, insists that he could live off of small, unimportant memories as she does, he refuses to listen. He believes that he could only survive by consuming all of a person's memories. He pathetically begs Mio not to let him fade, though he does take matters into his own wings by forcibly merging himself with her anyway.

Raem may not be as multi-faceted as other villains and is obviously evil, but many of his traits make him quite fascinating. He keeps the world in a perpetual dark age for his own benefit, deriving nourishment, power and amusement. His motives are purely selfish, but at the heart of it is the universal fear of dying. Even his late introduction in the game is handled well, with only a few prior hints about his role behind the miasma. He is kept largely a secret to the player just as his existence and control of the world is largely unknown to the inhabitants. After all, he already has the world in his grasp. To top it all off, his battle themes "Sad Monster" and "Unite, Descent" are two of the best music pieces of an already outstanding soundtrack. While it is understandable that Raem is not better known, he is still quite the memorable villain in my eyes. — Cassandra Ramos

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