At the core of each Final Fantasy is a selection of characters controlled by the player, usually referred to in-game as the party.
Each of these is usually a blank canvas for the player to mould as they see fit, at least setup-wise (notable exceptions being IV, VI and IX in the main numbered series), though the presence of unique abilities, stat development and individualised weapon choices mean some have a predisposition to be used for particular roles like tank, healer, etc.
Some games have kept the party small, forcing players to use specific characters for some or all of the game, regardless of whether they are useful or not. Others have offered more flexibility, sometimes arguably too much given that perfectionists will want to level and eventually max out all of their party members equally.
Across the board, there are usually a handful of ‘useless’ characters, who whilst possibly important to the overall plot, are rarely used in fights that progress the story, given their limited effectiveness.
Here we’ll look at which characters few - if any - players would voluntarily have representing their party on the field of battle.