Remaking one of the most beloved games ever puts Square Enix in a bittersweet position. On one hand, millions of fans clamoring for a next-gen "FFVII" are ecstatic the adventures of Cloud, Tifa and Barret will arrive on the PS4 in the near future. On the other hand, every decision Square Enix makes will be scrutinized and questioned. After the "Final Fantasy VII Remake" reveal at PlayStation Experience 2015 Saturday, Square Enix announced the game will be "told across a multi-part series."
Those five words have led to an eruption of opinion. After the PlayStation Experience 2015 announcement, Square Enix issued a press release that casually mentions the biggest change to "FFVII." "'Final Fantasy VII Remake" will be told across a multi-part series, with each entry providing its own unique experience," the company announced.
While that would work for more linear games, part of the appeal of "Final Fantasy VII" was the hours spent on the many side quests. Whether it's the Gold Saucer, recruiting Yuffie and Vincent Valentine, Chocobo breeding, the Materia Caves, picking up the Ultimate Weapons, getting the Level 4 Limit Breaks or trying to defeat Emerald Weapon or Ruby Weapon, games spent hundreds of hours playing "FFVII."
"FFVII" character designer Tetsuya Nomura, speaking to Dengeki Online, revealed some of the thinking behind an episodic release. "Since we thought there would be stuff we would probably have to pare down and supplemental things we probably couldn’t add, we decided to divide it up, concluding that we have to do a remake that’s fully packed with content," Nomura said, via Kotaku.
Square made the dreams of many gamers come true when it revealed "FFVII" was coming to the PS4 during E3 2015. While Square only showed off a cinematic during the announcement, the company revealed the first gameplay details and the best look yet at HD Cloud, Tifa and Barret. During the presentation, many quickly noticed the first major change for the "Final Fantasy VII Remake."
In the original, the battle system is a traditional turn-based style with players selecting what each character would do and waiting for the enemy's response. In the trailer, it appears the "FFVII" remake will feature a real-time battle system that includes players choosing whether to attack, use magic, summon spells via Materia, use items or defend.
"Final Fantasy VII," released on the PlayStation in the halcyon days of 1997 was a cultural institution for gamers. In Japan -- where RPGs were always well-received -- " FFVII " broke sales records. In the U.S. where RPGs had a more hit-or-miss relationship, " FFVII " opened a whole new world for gamers. To date, "Final Fantasy VII" has sold more than 11 million units through its various releases.