You all remember Tidus – the Final Fantasy X protagonist, Blitzball player, and star of that awkward laughing meme you’ve probably seen here and there on the internet. Well, it turns out he wasn’t always the sports athlete you know and love and was originally going to be a plumber.
Final Fantasy X’s producer Yoshinori Kitase, scenario writer Kazushige Nojima, character designer Tetsuya Nomura, and event director Motomu Toriyama spoke to Famitsu to celebrate the game’s 20th anniversary (thanks, Kotaku), delving into some of the original plans for Tidus. “To get the character in the water, for the initial plan, there was a time in which Tidus was to be an underwater plumber,” Nojima explains.
That would be, until Kitase intervened with a different idea. Inspired by his love of science fiction movies with race or sports elements, Kitase proposed switching Tidus from a plumber to an athlete. “Up to that point, there hadn’t been sport components in the Final Fantasy series,” Kitase says, “so I thought this would be a new challenge.”
Nojima and Kitase discussed the idea further and decided to turn Tidus into an aquatic athlete as it would fit Kitase’s idea while, well, getting the character into the water.
Famitsu also asked Nomura if there were any traces of Tidus being a plumber in his final character design. “The overalls seem to be,” Nomura replies, going on to explain that he drew designs that were inspired by work clothes before making them more sporty to highlight Tidus’ shift in character design.
The ensemble of developers also chatted about the chance of a Final Fantasy X-3, and it “isn’t zero”, it seems.