More Final Fantasy 7 Remakes

It has been an interesting weekend.

In case you missed it, Sony released a gameplay trailer of the upcoming FF7 Remake:

People are saying that the combat system looks pulled from FF15, but I never played the demo, so I wouldn’t know. What I do know is that it looks a lot more Action and a whole lot less classical Squaresoft. Which is probably to be expected, given how Squaresoft hasn’t been Squaresoft since 2003.

What wasn’t expected, at least not by those without hearts crafted out of solid jade, was this part (emphasis added):

LOS ANGELES (Dec. 6, 2015) – During this past weekend’s PlayStation Experience in San Francisco, SQUARE ENIX® debuted a new trailer for FINAL FANTASY® VII REMAKE, the full remake of the award-winning role-playing game, FINAL FANTASY VII. The new trailer features the first CG scenes as well as gameplay footage. FINAL FANTASY VII REMAKE will be told across a multi-part series, with each entry providing its own unique experience.

It’s difficult for me to even know how I feel at this point. A year ago, I said:

In Scenario B, Square Enix remakes FF7’s graphics and then essentially changes the entire game with a new battle system or whatever. I agree that such an outcome would be bad, but that is because the scenario itself is dumb. That is no longer a remake, it is an entirely new game with the same characters. Which at this point I would probably play, but nevermind.

Six months later, I was a gushing fanboy again. Now? I don’t know what to believe.

The explanation that has been given is that in the process of remaking FF7, the game simply became too big for a single title. Which, to an extent, I can see. Part of what blew my mind 18 years ago (…Christ) was when you defeated those Shinra guys during the highway chase and finally reached the outskirts of Midgar. And… the game kept going. Every single thing that you had been doing up to that point – the grandeur of Midgar, the assaults, the Section 7 destruction, Sephiroth, all of it – was just one town on the world map. I fully expected Midgar to be the only city in the game, and thus I can see Square Enix doing something exactly like that in the Remake.

But, man, there are so many different ways to fuck this up.

When they say “episodic,” do they mean dividing the base game up into individual pieces? Some have suggested Disc 1 would be Episode 1, etc, although that makes Disc 3 rather sparse. Or would they go with the scenario I outlined above, and have the first episode take place entirely in Midgar? I could see that happening, but they would have to change quite a bit to make a full game out of it. Or maybe they wouldn’t, and just leave it as a 10-20 hours or whatever. But what do they mean by “each entry providing its own unique experience?” Different viewpoint characters? Will progression be reset inbetween? Doesn’t this imply that sections of the world will be cut off either way?

I dunno. As I mentioned last time around, a rather large part of me is happy that this Remake is a thing in the first place, even if they screw it up royally. Of course, I would actually like this to be amazing. As they say though: “Wish in one hand, shit in the other, see which one fills up faster.”

Still, I want to believe.

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Posted on December 8, 2015, in Commentary and tagged , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 7 Comments.

  1. I don’t mind getting something rather than nothing, but I don’t know how badly I want to play this. All I wanted was the original with an updated look since parts of the look haven’t aged especially well.

    I am not sure that meant wanting a billion dollar, movie quality experience though…

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    • It’s more or less unavoidable though, right? All the backgrounds were pre-rendered 2D pictures. The moment you start translating that into 3D space, it essentially becomes an entirely different game… unless you start tossing up invisible walls or impassible, ankle-high junk piles. You become committed to filling in the blank space. And once you take that step, you may as well go all the way.

      I kinda agree with you in one sense though: I would have liked to see a version of the game where the character models were replaced with, you know, the same character models used during combat. That would have been enough.

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  2. I just hope we don’t end up with a ridiculous pay model, like $60 per “episode” .. Battlefront-style.

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    • I’m sure each episode will indeed cost full MSRP. The real question is whether we’re getting one game/story split into three parts, or three entire games in the same overall setting.

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  3. This has me worried, especially because even from watching that preview, it’s pretty clear the game is going to be SUBSTANTIALLY different from just taking FF7 and improving the graphics.

    The bar is just too high, especially with the nostalgia factor, for this to turn out better-than-expected. It would almost have made more sense to do a pure graphics upgrade to FF7, and then using that engine, do a FF7 X2 or whatever with new gameplay/story.

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  4. As an unabashed FF7 fanboy (though FF6 was still better), I’m glad they’re taking the opportunity to remake the game. The characters and the story were pretty good, but the combat, exploration, interface, and graphics have all aged badly imho.

    FF7’s combat system is quite simple, and has very little depth to it outside of some esoteric materia combos that are not even remotely required (nothing makes Emerald Weapon paste faster than Cloud with his Ultima Weapon and Cover + HP UP + 14 Counter Attack materia). The grand majority of the game you’re holding down Circle to effectively auto-attack, even in the final dungeon.

    If I wanted to play FF7, I’d play any of the bajillion ports on PS4, PSP, Vita, Steam, etc. I want them to reimagine the game, not just remake it. So seeing that trailer filled me with glee!

    The news of them splitting it into pieces, however, eeehhhhhhhhhh. Not chuffed about that part at all.

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