Positive Women in Gaming: Tifa Lockhart

First and foremost I love to take this opportunity to thank Amaltheaelanor (a light that casts away the shadow) and the rest who took part in this wonderful, exciting and engaging project, “Positive Women in Gaming”.

I have been reading quite a number of blogs presented in by many wonderful ladies and gents which left me fascinated beyond doubt. Every single one of them had an exciting aspect about their character and it’s due to that I finally decided to come out of the closet I write this piece.

Thank you! For all those who participated in this project and enlightening so many about the positive influence of female characters in gaming.

For those who wish to participate follow this link

After a deep swim through the life stream, I finally came to a conclusion and chose Tifa Lockhart as one of my favorite, inspiring and courageous female characters in gaming.

In spite of the fact that as a character she was often disliked by some and even blamed for the death of Aerith Gainsborough, and subjectively considered as a whorish figure due to her sexy outfit and figure. This however, I consider as a low blow and shallow form of accusations towards the character.

Aerith’s portrait (Had close relationship with Cloud)

What others say about Tifa Lockhart as a character

“A lot of people think that because she has a big chest means that she is just a sex object. Wrong. She is a complex and beautiful character whose willpower helps Cloud to overcome his enemies and finally lets her show her true feelings for him, after keeping them bottled up since childhood.”

Kenan Alpay

“The strength of a lion and the heart of a dove, she can kick butt and assemble the pieces of the most fragmented mind, both at the same time. Says something about her, doesn’t it?” -Peter H.

“She emotionally pushed the game along, providing many hints, and she was powerful.”

Sean Wheeler

“Despite everything that has happened to her, Tifa was always the strong central link that kept Cloud going. With Sephiroth killing her father, that further made her determined to become strong to eventually face him and help defeat him. Before the destruction of Sector 7, she owned her own business (the bar), which isn’t an easy venture. She is an accomplished martial artist studying under Master Zangan. So if anyone ever says that Tifa is a weak character, they should really play Final Fantasy VII and realize just how strong she truly is.”

Galen Henderson

“Tifa is my favorite female character because of the inner struggle that she has to face – her secret childhood love for Cloud versus the reality that she knows Cloud has been lying about his past. Should she allow her affection for Cloud to convince her that her memory is failing her? Or should she openly challenge her love, thereby taking the risk that she might lose him for a variety of reasons? The fact that she supported Cloud 110% throughout the quest and took care of him when he was mentally crippled adds to the list of reasons why I like her so much. Of course, having cute looks can’t hurt either.”

Rick Leung

Anyway, back to the topic at hand………………..

Tifa Lockhart

“Bright and optimistic, Tifa always cheers up the others when they’re down. But don’t let her looks fool you; she can decimate almost any enemy with her fists…”

Character Profile

Birthplace: Nibelheim

Weapon: Glove

First Person Pronoun: 私 [Watashi]

Character History

Tifa Lockhart is one of the three female protagonists that first appeared in Squaresoft’s Final Fantasy VII. A bartender, a skilled martial artist and a major character in the game’s story line, having grown up in the same town as the main protagonist Cloud Strife. She has also appeared in numerous other games and productions set within the universe of Final Fantasy VII.

Tifa was born in the small town of Nibelheim, and she lived right next door to Cloud Strife. They were not close friends during that time, but they knew each other. Cloud had always admired her from a distance, and Tifa had always admired Cloud as well, though she is reluctant to admit it.

“Tifa’s personality is kind and nurturing”

Tifa Lockhart is one of the main protagonists of the Compilation of Final Fantasy VII. A childhood friend of Cloud Strife, she is instrumental in getting him to join AVALANCHE and reconstructing his memories. Tifa’s personality is kind and nurturing, but her shyness is what keeps her from truly opening up to Cloud.

Tifa is also featured in the prequel games Before Crisis: Final Fantasy VII and Crisis Core: Final Fantasy VII, as well as the OVA Last Order: Final Fantasy VII. In each, her appearance relates to Nibelheim’s destruction. The novella “Case of Tifa”, written as part of the On the Way to a Smile series, is a story set between the original game and Advent Children. Told from her point of view, the story details how she creates a new 7th Heaven bar in the city of Edge, and attempts to hold onto the concept of a normal family with herself and Cloud, despite him beginning to isolate himself from others.

Tifa also appears briefly in the game Dirge of Cerberus: Final Fantasy VII, set one year after the events of Advent Children in which she helps the protagonist Vincent Valentine defend the Planet against Omega WEAPON. She later appears in the game’s epilogue, discussing Vincent’s apparent disappearance.

Other appearances

Tifa appears in the fighting game Ehrgeiz, as an unlockable character and an optional boss, electronic board games Itadaki Street Special and Itadaki Street Portable, Kingdom Hearts II, Dissidia 012 Final Fantasy, which features characters from various Final Fantasy games.

In Little Big Planet 2, Tifa is featured as a downloadable character model.

(Information as collected from various sources)

My personal perspective

The first time I laid my eyes on Tifa Lockhart was in Final Fantasy Advent Children among the best animations I have watched with great CGI effects and visuals. Tifa does not only remind me of someone so dear but she also presents a true picture of a caring friend that you can always trust.

Tifa is a strong, independent and attractive female character that bares strengths and weakness all round. These help to shape her character even the more offering a clear relationship between fictional to a realistic human perspective.

Why choose Tifa Lockhart as a positive woman in gaming

Tifa is a magnificent representation of a mothers love

This can be seen in Advent Children where she and Cloud come up with an idea of opening up a kids orphanage for those struck with Geo-stigma, a mysterious disease that was killing off the population. This act is a direct representation of a mother’s care and strength and lands her a place in that category.

“Bright and optimistic, Tifa always cheers up the others when they’re down”

The kids Tifa and Cloud looked after at their shelter


Strong will and ability to fight

Don’t let her looks fool you; she can decimate almost any enemy with her fists. Tifa possesses a fine set of martial arts skills coupled with her fast and agile approach towards enemy targets. With her gloves intact, she is capable of bringing her enemies down with quick step movements.

One can defend this character basing on her fight with Loz at a church in Advent Children, where she displays her strong will to protect those dear to her including her fight against a summoned beast called Bahamut SIN.

Tifa protects Denzel from Bahamut SIN

Her character has a close relationship with human concept

Her relationship with Cloud presents a common aspect that occurs within our community on a daily basis. Two close friends from childhood and yet they still have not fully shown their emotions to another. Though a number of Final Fantasy fans claim this relationship as a flaw to her character, to me this is a good way to show off one’s soft touches in things like emotion, love and how they react towards another character. All these create an whole round personality which is a positive aspect when trying to communicate to an audience.

Memorable quotes from Tifa Lockhart

tifa 1

A memory is something that is consciously recalled, right? That’s why sometimes; it can be mistaken or wrong. It’s different from a memory locked deep within your heart.” (FFVII)

Words aren’t the only way to tell someone how you feel.” (to Cloud – FFVII)

Which is it? A memory or us?” (to Cloud – Advent Children)


I for one find this character a standing model to great women in gaming history, even though considered as clingy to Cloud Strife, one should also consider the fact that despite all what happened to her as a character. She has managed to maintain a strong will of self-independence with her calm, cheerful and caring personality, she offers a sense of warmth and happiness to other characters in the game.

Her beauty and dark long hair with a set of gloves ready to punch a hole through anything and with her graceful martial art techniques she is surely a top notch bargain.

Thank you again Amaltheaelanor for coming up with such an wonderful idea and all those who took part in the project. All those who took time to read this blog Arigato!!

Signing out………..

Allan Bangirana

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