final fantasy XVI the dame guide

Final Fantasy XVI The Dame Guide

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Final Fantasy has built itself as an established franchise in several ways that make it unique, even though each entry is distinctly different from one another. However, if there is one thing you can agree on with me it’s that each game in the franchise has an ensemble of characters that are the soul of our adventures.

And I’m not just talking about main characters or those with much screen time. Some side characters are striking enough to make their relatively brief appearance stand out. Today I will talk about The Dame in Final Fantasy XVI and how her role was essential in Clive’s journey.

Disclaimer: Although the Dame appears in the early parts of the game, she becomes a distinct character towards the end. In other words, expect a lot of endgame spoilers for Final Fantasy XVI’s story in this Final Fantasy XVI The Dame Guide, so reader discretion is advised.

The Dame in Summary

  • Full Name: Isabelle. But previously, she was known as Carla.
  • Occupation: Proprietress of the Veil.
  • Main Quests involved in: Righting Wrongs, Things Fall Apart.
  • Side Quests involved in: Under New Management, Under New Management II.
  • First Encountered: Clive meets The Dame the first time he goes to Northreach.
  • Characteristics: Isabelle is an elegant, level-headed, and righteous woman, being a key ally in Clive’s mission. She has agreed to support Cid’s idealism after the man helped her in the past and extends this courtesy to Clive when the moment demands it.

Main Quest – Righting Wrongs

Final Fantay XVI The Dame
The satchel Otto gives Clive helps us encounter The Dame – Photo by Murillo Zerbinatto.

When Cid informs us of his goal to destroy the Mothercrystals, our first plan is to go to Oriflamme to shatter Drake’s Head.

However, no one gets to the imperial capital without going through Northreach first, and the only way to get through the checkpoint is with the Dame’s approval. To achieve this, Otto delivers a fragrant satchel to Clive. To be inconspicuous, Cid suggests we split up and meet in the city.

Fast Travel to The Dragon’s Aery Obelisk

  • While the game points to Lostwing as the destination to Righting Wrongs, the Dragon’s Aery obelisk is way closer to Northreach.
  • Walk all the way until you reach the city. You’ll notice that you’ve arrived in it because the merchants will curse Clive and his Bearer’s mark.
  • The Dame will be a person of interest, carrying the main quest marker above her head. Talk to her when you’re done exploring.
  • She will first dismiss you but then recognize the satchel Otto gave. The Dame asks you to drop the title and call her Isabelle.
  • Isabelle suggests that she introduce herself as Clive’s master but demands a favor in return. The insinuation of her speech leaves our gallant Dominant quite embarrassed. Well, who can blame him?
Final Fantay XVI The Dame2
Remember Jill, Clive! – Photo by Murillo Zerbinatto.
  • The cruel treatment of the populace in Northreach towards Clive is only tempered by Isabelle’s presence, which shows The Dame’s influence in the town. She takes us to The Veil and asks for a favor: she wants us to find out the whereabouts of one of her girls, Tatienne.
  • Isabelle delivers The Moon and Stars seal, proving that Clive is a trusted ally and guaranteeing safe passage at the checkpoint even when unaccompanied.

Righting Wrongs Subquest – The Dame

  • First, you need to question the courtesans around The Veil. One is just to the left of the Dame. She says Tatianne was in tears for losing a comb the Dame gave her.
  • The courtesan directs you to Tatienne’s Chambermate. The chambermate tells Tatienne needed to meet someone, and she wagers it’s a lad from the garrison with a scar over his eye.

Before going to the Garrisson, three new sidequests will open up: The Want Beyond the Wall, Prides Comes Before a Fall, and Friend of the People. They’re quick to complete since all the objectives are inside Northreach.

  • When you get to the garrison, you’ll question the soldiers. They say Yannick fit the description and last traveled to Moore to talk with a merchant.
  • You need to fill Isabelle in with your investigations. She tells you to find Bertrand, a man who owes her a favor and won’t diss Clive for being a Bearer.

Onwards to Moore

Moore is to the northeast of Northreach. On the road, you’ll encounter two more sidequests: Playthings and All Bark. I highly recommend doing them because they will flesh out more about the Bearers in an impactful manner.

the dame guide sidequests
By the end, I just wanted to squash this lass’s face into dust.
  • At Moore, you’ll find Bertrand stacking hay on the left side after entering the city. Talk to him, and he will tell you Yannick was discussing with a stubborn merchant called the Traveling Trader.
  • The merchant will ease up to you when noticing you’re at the behest of the Dame. He tells Yannick wanted to buy a new comb. After the purchase, Yannick went straight to the ruins, a perfect place to have a romantic encounter with Tatienne.
  • The ruins are just outside Moore. After reaching it, you’ll face five level 21 Bloated Wolves, easy-peasy. Kill the mutts and inspect the body nearby.
  • Yannick wanted to propose to Tatienne in one of the most dangerous places in the region, which led to both of them being torn apart by wild animals. You’ll find the comb the Dame gave to Tatienne.
  • A Garrison Soldier appears and tells you he will handle the bodies. He mentions seeing the Dame at Moore a while back, so he returns to the settlement and gives her the bad news, completing the subquest The Dame.

The Dame Subquest Rewards



Ability Points





1 Meteorite

Isabelle comments that Cid and Jill are waiting for Clive in a nearby chapel and that a loose tongue soldier commented that the imperial forces were marching to the south, which gives our freedom fighters crucial information for their impending invasion at Oriflamme.

After a lengthy cutscene involving Clive, Cid, and Jill in a brothel, you’ll finally be able to sneak into Oriflamme and start the next main quest, The Crystals’ Curse. However, before choosing Drake’s Head on the world map, a prompt will warn you about a pivotal moment in the story.

If you’re a completionist, you should conclude every sidequest available because they’ll disappear forever after completing the Drake’s Head. Should you neglect these sidequests, you won’t miss any collectibles or items, but some have a very intriguing storyline.

Main Quest – Things Fall Apart

After the events in Drake’s Tail, the big-baddie Ultima casts Primogenesis, turning Valisthea into an aether-soaked land filled with Akashic – willless monsters and humans that only seek to cause destruction.

Several settlements are under siege, and their home-guard defenses nor the Hideaway’s cursebreakers can’t handle the berserking horde, leaving Clive to deal with them. Northreach is one of the cities in peril, and The Dame is organizing a force to defend it. However, against Ultima’s thralls or Akashic beasts, the soldiers are losing heart and failing to take on arms.

Fast Travel to Northreach’s Obelisk

Go to the Veil and talk with the Veil Courtesan. She will tell you that blue-eyed creatures are attacking the city, and the Dame is at the garrison questioning the soldiers.

dame ff16
Philippe becomes an essential ally in the defenses of Northreach – Photo by Murillo Zerbinatto.

Things Fall Apart Subquest – Why We Fight

  • Walk to the garrison to find Isabelle arguing with the soldiers. They are afraid of fighting Ultima’s thralls. Her pleas reach the ear of Captain Philippe, who sweet-talks the soldiers into fighting.
  • Isabelle asks you to question the townspeople and learn more about what’s happening. The Injured Soldier is just behind you, while the Refugee is a dash away. Talk to them both.

Go to Moore

  • Your next step is to go to Moore, approximately 500 yards from Northreach. Walk there or call Ambrosia to take you.

In case you don’t have Ambrosia, your steemed Chocobo, you first need to complete the sidequest, The White-Winged Wonder, located in Martha’s Rest. You must talk to Rowan and follow through with his requests. In the end, you’ll be rewarded with the Wall of Wonder’s Ambrosia’s Tack and the capacity to call her while traversing open fields. 

  • When you reach nearby Moore, Ultima’s Thralls will assault you. Slay them all mercilessly. After defeating the first batch, a second wave will pop up, and then a third wave bringing an annoying teleporter Thrall Lich.
  • After the battle ends, you’ll automatically teleport back to the Veil and talk to Isabelle. She tells you that Philippe convinced the soldiers to protect Northreach, and the quest is complete.

Why We Fight Subquest Rewards



Ability Points







100 Magicked Ash

1 Meteorite

Side Quest – Under New Management

The third time we encounter The Dame is in two side quests that share the same name but are separated into two parts: Under New Management and Under New Management II. I did all the sidequests in the game before finishing it, and I know some are a hard pill to swallow. But the last ones are the best, really building up those side characters’ motivations and development. I highly recommend you take the time to do them.

Also, completing these two sidequests is necessary if you want to craft Final Fantasy XVI’s best weapon(s) – both on the first and second playthrough – and collect every item in Clive’s Wall of Memories.

This is because there is a specific Hunt, the Grim Reaper, only unlocked after completing Under New Management II. The hunted monster drops Darksteel, a material essential to the crafting.

The first Under New Management is available after the events in The Naldia Narrow.

Final Fantay XVI The Dame 04
“A strong woman knows she has strength enough for the journey, but a woman of strength knows it is in the journey where she will become strong.” – Photo by Murillo Zerbinatto.

Fast-travel to Northreach’s Obelisk

  • Talk to Isabelle. She will tell you that a High Cardinal from Sanbreque is trying to turn Nortreaech into a military stronghold at the expense of the common folks’ lives.
  • She asks that you try to persuade the High Cardinal by wearing your hero’s accomplishments on your sleeve. Go to the garrison.
  • Once there, a Stern Soldier will reach out to you and let you have an audience with the High Cardinal, who calls himself the Duke of Oriflamme.
  • After listening to the politician’s bullshit, you’ll need to talk with the people to hear their opinions on this upcoming military endeavor.
  • You can find all three required NPCs on the market outside Northreach. Talk to each one.
  • Next, you must talk to the NPCs within the walls of Northreach. From the entrance, you can find a townsperson on the right, passing the Veil.
  • The other two are soldiers located in the training ground near the garrison. Question them to understand their sentiment.
  • After all this interrogation, Philippe is next. He can be found at Northreach’s northern exit. Talk to him and then get back to Isabelle.
  • After sharing your findings with Isabelle, Philippe will have a change of heart, and the first part of the side quest will end.

Under New Management Side Quest Rewards



Ability Points







15 Steelsilk

15 Bloody Hide

1 Meteorite

Side Quest – Under New Management II

The side quest is unlocked at a very inappropriate time, that is, before the game’s last stage. I must confess it was a bit awkward to ignore the final fraction of the story and continue helping the worldly problems of Valisthea, but my fear of missing content forced me to complete everything before the end.

Under New Management II is available after the events in Drake’s Spine.

Fast-travel to Northreach’s Obelisk

  • Go talk to Isabelle. She will inform you that the duke has put everyone able to help build the fortifications, leaving Northreach all but unguarded if not for Philippe and his men. She asks for Clive’s help in dealing with more thralls.
  • Onwards to the market! You will find Philippe engaging in a heated discussion with Sabine. He will tell you that thralls are back at it again and bid you go to Greagor’s Weep.
  • The location is just a few hundred yalms away, on the east side of Claireview. Go there and spank Ultima’s minions. There will be two waves of small, puny, and weak minions.
  • Philippe will appear, and you’ll be instantly teleported back to Northreach to watch a family feud between Sabine and the Duke. During the back-and-forth, Philippe once again jolts to you, asking for the help of the mighty Eikon-eater.
  • Isabelle convinces the people to defend their homes, but the heavy lifting is left to you. While the quest orders you to go to Oriflamme, that’s a stretch. You only need to walk a few steps away from Northreach.
Final Fantay XVI The Dame 5
Sabine’s remarks and youthful demeanor empower Isabelle’s mature personality even further – Photo by Murillo Zerbinatto.

Slay the Enemies in Royal Meadows

  • Reaching the premises of your destination will make thralls spawn. The first batch comprises minor enemies, effortlessly subdued with one Zantetsuken.
  • In the second wave, an Encroaching Undertaker joins the enemy’s party, a big enemy with a stagger bar. He’s big and sluggish, very easy to deal with. Your party member will likely kill all the other minions.
  • Once again, the game will fast teleport you back to Northreach, where the situation seems to be under control. Isabelle asks that you talk to her in the Veil.
  • Speak to Isabelle, and she recounts her past and her life in the Crystalline Dominion, and then the sidequest is complete.

Under New Management II Side Quest Rewards



Ability Points







1 Veil Signboard

1 Orichalcum

1 Meteorite

About The Dame’s Past

Final Fantay XVI The Dame 06
A heartfelt plea from one who shares everyone’s strife is precisely what they needed at the moment – Photo by Murillo Zerbinatto.

Her name was Carla, courtesan to the nobility. She was so coveted that only the nobility could afford her. However, she fell in love with a bearer. When their romance came to light, he was flogged almost to death. Infatuated, they decide to flee and eventually arrive in Northreach.

The two almost died in their aimless wander but finally arrived in Northreach. The Veil took care of them, feeding and healing their wounds. However, the Bearer succumbed and passed away. From that moment on, Isabelle decided to always repay the people of Northreach for the care and kindness they showed her.

The last moment we see The Dame is when she is in the crowd in the Hideaway, bidding Clive farewell on his way to the Origin, Final Fantasy XVI’s last dungeon. She doesn’t say anything but appears beside all the other prominent side characters.


Question: Who is The Dame in FFXVI?

Answer: The Dame is a great ally of Cid and his idealistic quest to create an ideal world for the Bearers. She claims that the man helped her in the past, and since then, she is always willing to help him. When Clive takes the reins of the Hideaway, The Dame extends her help to our protagonist.

Question: What’s The Dame’s real name?

Answer: The Dame introduces herself as Isabelle to Clive, unleashing a slight jealousy in Cid. However, in the last side quest involving her, we find out from a Sanbreque High Cardinal that her previous name was Carla. I suppose she dropped the name when she tried to reset her life, but the past followed her.

Question: Does The Dame dies in FFXVI?

Answer: She doesn’t. Dame is one of the side characters accompanying Clive through his adulthood and is always keen to lend a hand. Or any body part, really.

Final Fantasy XVI The Dame Guide: Conclusion

final fantasy xvi the dame 7
The first Active Time Lore about Isabelle – Photo by Murillo Zerbinatto.

The Dame is an essential side character in our adventure. She proves to be a necessary ally in the Sanbreque arc and help us infiltrate the kingdom even though we are a bearer.

We return the favor when the world is being threatened by the Akashics and Northreach is under siege. If players want to learn more about her backstory, it’s necessary to tackle some side quests in Northreach.

The most important point is to see how Isabelle came from a foggy past but managed to get back on her feet with the help of the common folk and became a champion for them.

The elegance and finesse with which she uses diplomacy should be a role model for many other characters. I view her as a fresh breath of air in an RPG and highly consistent with the mature audience that Final Fantasy XVI aims to reach.

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