Ffamran "Balthier" Mied Bunansa is a playable character in the game Final Fantasy 12. He is a sky pirate who travels Ivalice with his partner Fran in the Strahl.
Born in 684 Old Valendian, Balthier, then Ffamran, is the third son of Dr. Cid. At the age of sixteen, he was made an Archadian Judge, though in both versions he did not rise to the position of Judge Magistrate. Six years prior to the game's storyline, after his father returned from Giruvegan, he noticed that his father's sanity was slowly fading, as he was constantly talking to someone who wasn't there, raving on about "bringing the reins of history back to the hands of man". This strained their relationship, and eventually Ffamran couldn't stand the sight of his father. This, combined with the way Archadia was moving, made he decided to leave his post as Judge and run away, stealing the new prototype fighter ship as a means of escape from Archades. Since then, having gone into hiding, he has heavily updated the ship, so much so that it no longer resembles the original design and named it the Strahl. During this time, he took on the name Balthier as an alias to help cast aside his ties with Archades. Also during this six year time period, he eventually partners up with Fran, though the game doesn't state specifically when, where, or how.
Balthier comes into the main story while Vaan is stealing from the Royal Palace of Rabanastre. Seeing the young thief steal the Goddess' Magicite, also known as the Dusk Shard, Balthier demands that he hand it over. When Vaan asks who he is, Balthier responds with "I play the leading man, who else?" Before he can take it, the Ifrit attacks, causing him to reluctantly run away, with Vaan in tow. During their escape, Fran's hover crashes into the Garamsythe Waterway, and they are forced to work together.
Balthier and Vaan in Nalbina dungeon. In the waterway they meet up with the Resistance come to storm the palace and confront the new Consul Vayne Solidor. The woman they end up working with, calling herself "Amalia", is none other than Ashelia B'nargin Dalmasca, the princess who was reported dead. The group gets captured and Balthier, Fran and Vaan are thrown into the Nalbina Dungeon.
While in prison, Balthier avoids capture by Ba'Gamnan, a bounty hunter bangaa who wants the bounty on Balthier's head. With Fran being a viera, she is able to sense a way out of the dungeon. On the way, the group finds Basch fon Ronsenburg kept in a private cage in the remote part of the dungeons. The group takes Basch along and manage to escape the dungeons via Barheim Passage.
Back in Rabanastre Vaan's friend Penelo has been kidnapped by Ba'Gamnan, who has mistaken her as someone close to Balthier. Initially reluctant to help, Balthier is persuaded by Vaan, who promises to let him have the Dusk Shard if Balthier takes him to Bhujerba on his airship.
In Bhujerba the group meets up with Larsa Solidor, who introduces himself as "Lamont". Balthier is suspicious of him, but allows the boy to accompany them to the Lhusu Mines where the Empire is mining magicite to be used in Draklor Laboratory in Archades. Hearing about magicite perks Balthier's interest and he attempts to force the boy to reveal his true identity, but the group is interrupted by Ba'Gamnan and are forced to escape.
After escaping the Lhusu Mines the group hears Penelo has been taken to Marquis Ondore's estate by Larsa. They manage to get in, but are turned over to the Empire. On board the imperial airship Leviathan the party is reunited with Ashe and the Dusk Shard Vaan was still holding onto is taken. The group manages to escape back to Bhujerba, but Ashe asks Balthier to kidnap her, because she doesn't want to stay with the marquis. Ashe promises Balthier the riches from the Tomb of Raithwall if Balthier agrees to take her away on his airship.
Inside the tomb the party finds another piece of nethicite, the Dawn Shard and the Esper Belias, which was the King Raithwall's treasure, much to Balthier's disappointment. They are betrayed by Ashe's old Resistance companion Vossler, who turns them in on the Empire. Judge Ghis takes the Dawn Shard off the group and attempts to evaluate it himself, but manages to unleash the nethicite's magick and destroy the entire Archadian fleet, while Balthier and the others escape.
After seeing the power of nethicite Ashe decides to uses it as her weapon to protect Dalmasca, but she doesn't know how to use it. She wants Balthier to accompany her on her way to Jahara to ask the Garifs' help, but Balthier is sceptical. Balthier takes Ashe's ring promising her she will get it back once he has found a better treasure. It's usually believed that the ring was Ashe's wedding ring, however, that is incorrect, as she is seen wearing her wedding ring after Balthier makes his loan (it notably serves as a trigger to a flashback about Rasler at the Phon Coast). It is likely that it was Rasler's wedding ring, explaining why Ashe wore it next to her own, matching wedding band and valued it so highly.
The Strahl was damaged as the Leviathan exploded, so the group is forced to walk their way to Jahara, and then through Golmore Jungle to Mt. Bur-Omisace and Stilshrine of Miriam where Ashe retrieves the Sword of Kings. With the sword she vows to destroy the Empire's nethicite and the group heads to Archadia and to the Draklor Laboratory.
Balthier finally realizes that his father wasn't insane, but rather, he was talking to the Occurian Venat all this time. Wanting to confront his father, he travels with Ashe to Archades, his home. After getting into the Draklor Laboratory, they finally confront Dr Cid, where Balthier tries to convince his father that what he's doing is insane. Cid has none of it and runs away.
Finally, they catch up to Dr. Cid at the Pharos at Ridorana, where Ashe has come to destroy the Sun-Cryst. After a long fight with Cid, where he summons the Esper Famfrit, Balthier has to watch his father die, and up to his dying breath, he believes what he was doing was best for mankind, much to Balthier's disappointment.
During this time an all-out war is about to break out on Dalmascan ground. Balthier pilots the group on-board the Sky Fortress Bahamut, where they confront Vayne. After Vayne's defeat Balthier and Fran remain behind to start up the Bahamut's engines and stop it from falling on Rabanastre. Balthier manages to fix Bahamut's glossair rings in time to save Rabanastre, but together with Fran they are stuck inside as Bahamut crashlands outside the city and he and Fran were believed to have died in the crash.
It would only be a year later that Balthier took back the Strahl from Vaan and Penelo whom he had entrusted it to, leaving them a note and Ashe's ring, signifying he has found the 'treasure' he was looking for. On the note, Balthier explains that he is going for the Cache of Glabados at Bervenia Palace, wishing Vaan and Penelo to join in on the spoils
Balthier's HP growth is fairly high, though lower than Vaan and Basch, and his Strength and Speed are high as well. However, his MP and Magic growth are very low. He joins the party with the Licenses "Guns 1", "Guns 2", "Shields 1", "Light Armor 1", "Light Armor 2", "Heavy Armor 1", "Steal" and "First Aid". He is equipped with an Altair, Onion Shot, Headgear, and Chromed Leathers.