Preview: Final Fantasy VII Remake

Final Fantasy VII Remake
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Final Fantasy VII released in 1997 on the original Sony PlayStation console. The mainstream success of the PlayStation helped propel the title to one of the best-selling role-playing games of all time. For many people, Final Fantasy VII was their first RPG, and therefore fond memories come up anytime the game is mentioned.

Ever since the Final Fantasy VII tech demo showcased the power of the PlayStation 3 back in 2005, fans have been clamouring for a remake of the game. Final Fantasy VII is available for several platforms, but aside from the PC release there wasn’t significant improvement over the original. However, during Sony’s press conference at E3 2015, Square Enix finally gave fans what they’ve wanted for so long, the Final Fantasy VII Remake!

Final Fantasy VII

New combat system

While the original version of Final Fantasy VII was a traditional turn-based RPG, Remake will offer a new combat system. If you played Square Enix RPGs over the past few years, you should already know the company shied away from turn-based combat. Final Fantasy XV looks more like Kingdom Hearts than the classic Final Fantasy adventures, and while Remake won’t be quite that action-oriented, it will not feature turn-based combat.

When questioned about the combat in Final Fantasy VII Remake, director Tetsuya Nomura and producer Yoshinori Kitase compared it to Dissidia and Kingdom Hearts. The pair stated that Dissidia is about as action-oriented as a Final Fantasy title has ever been, while Kingdom Hearts offers a bit less action and a little more strategy. On the other side of the spectrum you have the original Final Fantasy VII and other turn-based RPGs. Final Fantasy VII Remake will fall somewhere between Kingdom Hearts and traditional turn-based combat, offering more strategy than most action games, but won’t provide a true turn-based RPG experience.

It was made clear that people won’t have to be proficient with action games to enjoy Final Fantasy VII Remake. If you never played Ninja Gaiden or God of War, you’ll be able to not only work your way through Final Fantasy VII Remake, but you won’t have difficulty with the combat system. At present the details on the combat system have yet to be solidified so things may change, but Materia is still involved as well as Limit Breaks. Everything you know about the Final Fantasy VII combat system will still be featured in Remake, despite the combat no longer being turn-based.

Final Fantasy VII

Episodic content

Final Fantasy VII is a massive game. It spanned three discs on the PlayStation and would require an enormous amount of work to remake the entire game. Instead of making fans wait even longer than they already have, Square Enix opted for an episodic release for Final Fantasy VII Remake. There’s no confirmed release date for Episode One, but expect it to debut sometime after Kingdom Hearts 3 and Final Fantasy XV.

The story scenario for the first episode is complete and will add new content. Each episode will be the size of a normal game, with Episode One adding additional story elements delving further into the back-stories of Biggs, Jessie and Wedge. In the original game, these AVALANCHE members worked for Barret but they weren’t fighters. Biggs and Wedge should be familiar to Final Fantasy VII fans, but if you don’t quite recall who Jessie is, she was the second in command of AVALANCHE under Barret and had a romantic interest in Cloud.

Graphics and voice actors

One of the big draws for Final Fantasy VII Remake are the new visuals realized by the power of the PlayStation 4. The development team started with the graphics from Final Fantasy VII: Advent Children and improved on the character models from there. In addition, the same voice actors from Advent Children will be used to voice the characters in Remake.

The trailers currently available for Final Fantasy VII Remake do not showcase what the final product will look like. The development team continues to improve the graphics to make the game appear even better than what’s been showcased to the public. With the game coming to PlayStation 4 first, with eventual releases on the PC and Xbox One, we still have plenty of time for the graphics to improve.