When it comes to thinking of RPGs, one of the first franchises that come to mind is “Final Fantasy”. This franchise was one of the leading forces that brought RPGs over to the States. While the games were originally licensed by Nintendo, it wasn’t until Squaresoft, decided to move Final Fantasy to Sony, and the rest is RPG history.
I have just recently played through the whole game of FFVII, and this was the first one that I can say I actually beat. I’ve played quite a few different FF titles, but I hate to sound like the FFVII fanboys, but it was probably the best one I played. Everything about this FF flowed greatly, when it came to the battle system (I was really confused in some parts of the game) and the characters the plot revolved around. Seeing Cloud and his gang of misfit rebels defy Shinra, and chase down Sephiroth was awesome, and even when level grinding I never seemed to be bored with the game.
Now the Final Fantasy 7: Remake has been something that has been discussed ever since the PS3 was released many moons ago. From reading boards about remakes, and what ones video game fans wanted, it seemed like Final Fantasy 7 was a pretty in demand remake. Then finally Square Enix officially confirmed their development on this long-awaiting fan boy dream game.
Now for awhile Final Fantasy games have been going through some moments of identity crisis, while Final Fantasy 14 has been a pretty successful online game (No thank you), the last major installment was the ever-so polarizing Final Fantasy 13. Personally, I didn’t mind the game that much, but by 24 hours into the game, I got to a frustrating boss, and kind of gave up on it. The game was very linear for the most part of when I was playing it, and something about the older games was the World Map, and traveling. The one thing about Final Fantasy 7 was going around in the Highwind, going to different parts to collect the best Materia to level up, and beat Sephiroth.
Now since the gameplay trailer that was released very recently, and a teaser of the battle system, fans have been going crazy. Add the fact that everyone’s heads did a full 360 when Square announced that this remake would be in an episodic format. From what I’ve seen many people are looking at this remake already in a negative light. But for myself, I think that Square is doing something very smart with their release of Final Fantasy 7 remake.
Now here’s some speculation, and personal preferences of what Square could be up too.
THE EPISODIC FORMAT
Now for myself, after they confirmed that the games would all be full sized games, I was a little relieved to here that. When the original Final Fantasy 7 was released on PSone, the game was in a 3 disc format. Disc One ended at the very sad moment, Disc Two was pretty much the cleaning up the world part, with the third Disc being basically the final boss battle scenario.
Now Square is defending this option with saying they will be giving us more of an in-depth storyline for the game. I’m totally okay with this, because I would love to see Yuffie, and Vincent get their own moments to shine in the main storyline. Both of these characters were unlockable, and they were omitted from the CGI scenes, and didn’t contribute to the main storyline unless they were in your party for the most part.
You can for sure, also expect Zack Fair, the protagonist of Crisis Core to get a more involved role, as I bet their will be actual gameplay surrounding Zack’s flashback scenes. These games will give the story a more in-depth approach, and since there’s going to be voice acting in this one, they’ll be able to convey the emotions of this dark story even more. (Please don’t mess up the Voice Actors)
THE BATTLE SYSTEM
Now this has been something fans have been talking about before the game has even been developed. We all knew the dated turn-based system was going to be replaced (Even though Final Fantasy 7 is an excellent game, it’s still pretty dated) with something more action based, and geared towards this generation of gamers. The first worry I had was “They better not make you only control Cloud” or Final Fantasy 13 one person at a time system. The cool thing about the turn-based system is that you could strategize out your attacks, so that the enemy couldn’t stand a chance. I will gladly say that some of the most intimating bosses in Final Fantasy 7 were a piece a cake (Thanks to IGN, and grinding a little too much).
Now from what I’ve heard they said that the battle system is still in the works from the teaser. From what I saw, the gameplay looked very similar to FF: Type 0’s type of battle style. In the remake you are able to switch between three characters in real time, something you could to in Type-0. Personally I would hope if they are doing action based style, I would much rather Type-0’s type rather then the Final Fantasy 15 demo’s style. Personally I didn’t find the Final Fantasy 15’s demo battle style to appealing, but when that gets released in 2020 we shall see.
Now one thing that cannot be changed and I don’t think Square would ever do that is the Materia magic system. The Materia system made me want to travel to every town, and see what Materia was offered in those areas. One of the main reasons why I grinded so hard in the forests of Mideel is because I wanted to have some serious Materia when I went up against Sephiroth in the North Crater. Since Materia is a pretty important aspect of the original game, I don’t think that Square would cut out something that was so awesome IMO.
One thing that they keep on saying is that there are going to be changes to the story. While I think that these alterations will not cut out some of the more major factors. If Cloud’s cross-dressing scene in Midgar is staying in the storyline, I can’t see them cutting anything really important out. I’m looking at this remake like the Resident Evil: Remake, while the story was basically the same, and had the same outcome, they added to the story which made in better in the long run.
The original FFVII was released in 1997, in almost 20 years gaming has advanced to the far, and beyond. The storyline of FFVII (we can all admit a little bit) made zero-sense in some of the parts, and honestly I was going on the internet looking for summaries of certain parts in the storyline. So if the added material added to the storyline would make the game’s story flow nicer then I’m all for them tweaking the story. What I don’t want to see is if they decide to cut down some characters significance in this game, all together the cast of FFVII was color, and entertaining so fans would rather see that added too, rather then stripped from.
SPOILERS 20 YEARS IN THE MAKING
THE FATE OF A CERTAIN CHARACTER
Aerith, Aerith, oh sweet Aerith. Since I played this game almost 20 years after the original release, I was fully aware of the fate of flower girl Aerith. Her musical theme is one of the most memorable in the series, and when it plays when Cloud lays her to rest. It’s hard not to feel some sort of emotion. (Especially if you leveled her like I did) Aerith was the love interest that was expected to survive the battles of FFVII, and settle down with Cloud. That’s why her death was so unexpected to many, because in most stories characters like Aerith do not die, and her death went to show the cruel nature of FFVII, and showed how dark it really was.
Now since the game’s release, fans have been almost advocating for “Aerith Lives”, which would make it possible to revive Aerith at the end of the game. While I most certainly do not think that Square would cut anything about Aerith out of remake, I think that they also shouldn’t cave in, and have Aerith be revived at the end of the game. Now I think Aerith was a fantastic character, and I was genially upset knowing that after her death she was gone.done.never coming back.
Aerith’s death was a monumental moment in the game, and I would say it was the turning point for the plot of this game. It went from being about Shinra, to being about stopping Sephiroth, and avenging Aerith. Aerith’s death was just to pivotal to the whole story, for them to be like “Hey let’s bring Aerith back” would kill the emotional depth that made Aerith’s death such an impactful moment not just in the series, but in gaming history.
Personally, I’m going to put my faith in Square for this FFVII remake. I think that they are taking their time, because they are seeing what the fans want for this remake. While no release date has been posted, I heard that it will coincide with the originals 20th anniversary. But if FFXV has taught us anything, it’s to expect a little bit for new FF games.