Gestahl is one of the antagonists from Final Fantasy VI and emperor of the The Gestahlian Empire. Gestahl was born a peasant at the southern feuding area of what later becomes known as the Imperial Capital of Vector. Gestahl, born a child prodigy, quickly ascends the military ranks, and at age 22, he leads his fleet to victory over the northern territory, and thus the Capital City of Vector is born. Along with his conquest he proclaims himself Emperor through divine right.
Ever since Gestahl was a young child, he was fascinated by magic and tales of wizardry. With Vector becoming a highly technological town rapidly, Gestahl appoints the city's most reknown scholars to research magic, and pinpoint its origins or if it even exists. To his surprise, not only did magic exist 1000 years ago, the scholars also discover the existence of Espers and their role in magic based events. Not only that, but they had also pinpointed the Land of Espers where they reside. Once Gestahl finds this out, he leads the assault himself on the Esper world in hopes of conquering it, and harnessing the power of magic for himself and Vector. The Esper Elder opposes him and his army however and manages to create a Seal blocking out access from the Human world, into the Esper world. An Esper, Maduin and his wife Madonna (Madeline in the English version) alongside their daughter, Terra, get caught outside the Seal, and Gestahl imprisons them alongside with many other Espers that Gestahl's troops have already captured. Madonna dies right away, and Gestahl takes Terra and Maduin into his authority.
With the acquired Espers, Gestahl learns how to harness the power of Magic from them, and fuse it with technology in order to create Magitek Technology. Machinery embued with the power of Magic. With this newfound power, Vector begins to slowly conquer surrounding nations, therefore building an Empire for Gestahl. The soldiers from the conquered nations were drafted into the Imperial army, and also fused with Magic in order to enhance their abilities. When the news of Gestahl's plan for Imperialism spread, a group of radicals known as the Returners, began aiding any nation the Empire wished to conquer next.
After a defiance gone wrong, the Espers discover what Gestahl has done with the captured Espers from Vector's first assault, and get infuriated at his actions. The Espers launch an assault on Vector and annihilate the town out of rage. Gestahl pleads with Terra and the Returners for a truce after seeing his Kingdom at risk of being destroyed. Terra agrees to negotiate between the Empire and the Espers, but just as they are about to finalize the peace treaty, Kefka is released from his prison by Gestahl in order to lead his attack on the Espers in Thamasa, while Terra is negotiating. Gestahl's plea for peace was nothing but a deception to draw the Espers out in order for Kefka to kill them and take their Magicite for the Empire.
With Gestahl's newfound power, he leads one final assault along with Kefka on the Esper world, and in return discover the Warring Triads Statues. With the power of the Magicite and the Statues in their hands, the two have more than enough power to rule the world. With the power of the Statues, Kefka and Gestahl raise the Land of Espers above land, and transform it into the Floating Continent, which operates as their base.
Just as the Returners make their way towards the Warring Triads to stop Kefka and Gestahl, they seem to be too late. Gestahl offers Celes one last chance to join them and avoid death, knowing full well how strong she is. After Gestahl offers her a sword to slay her friends in order to finalize the deal, Celes in return assaults Kefka, seriously wounding him. Kefka begs the Warring Triad Statues for more power in order to defeat the Returners, but Gestahl stops and warns him saying that extracting too much power at once will destroy the world. Kefka doesn't care and goes insane, whilst engaging Gestahl into a duel of magic. Gestahl is the superior magic user, however Kefka utilizes the magic of the Statues to absorb Gestahl's spells, then orders them to strike him down. Gestahl becomes fatally wounded from the power of the Warring Triads, and Kefka pushes the once mighty Emperor off the Floating Continent to his demise.
|Final Fantasy VI Characters|
|Terra • Locke • Celes • Edgar • Sabin • Shadow • Cyan • Setzer • Relm • Strago • Gau • Mog • Gogo • Umaro|
Banon • Biggs • Cid • Emperor Gestahl • Kefka • Leo • Ultros • Wedge
Arvis • Darill • Duane • Duncan • Elaine • Impresario • Interceptor • Katarin • Lone Wolf • Madeline • Maduin • Owain • Rachel • Ramuh • Vargas