Final Fantasy VII creators talk remake as the classic RPG turns 15

final fantasy vii creators talk remake as the classic rpg turns 15

Metacritic is not a reliable measure of a game’s quality. If you go to that vapid den of aggregation, you might get the impression that Final Fantasy XIII and its sequel Final Fantasy XIII-2 are well loved. They certainly sold well, especially Final Fantasy XIII-2, which Square-Enix credits as one of two retail games released in the past year that returned the publisher to profitability. Actually talk to a human being about these games though, and you’re likely to see peculiar expression cross their mug, some weird cross between wistfulness and nausea. The characters are jerks, the world of Cocoon and Pulse is a garbled mess of sci-fi wankery, and incompetent mythos building obscures the grand melodrama that made the series a staple for years.

Final Fantasy XIII-2 made Square profitable this year, but as of this summer, it’s been 15 years since that game’s most famous ancestor made Final Fantasy a household name the world over.

Final Fantasy VII is 15 years-old now. It can legally work a part time job and get a driver’s permit in most states. To celebrate the milestone, Famitsu sat down with a few of the key minds behind the game that everyone wishes Final Fantasy XIII was. Director Yoshinori Kitase, artist Tetsuya Nomura, and co-writer Kazuhige Nojima reminisced about the game’s development and shed interesting light on what lent that game its particularly memorable flavor.

Just a note for anyone who’s never gotten around to playing it in the last decade and a half: Here be story details.

Believe it or not, marquee characters like Cloud’s mentor Zack and Tifa were never supposed to be a part of the game at all. Aerith, she who caused so many gamers to shed a tear back in the day, was supposed to be the sole female lead, and villain Sephiroth was supposed to be her first love, not Zack. Of course, in a creepy turn, Nomura went on to say that Sephiroth and Aerith were supposed to be brother and sister at another point in development. Gross.

Director Kitase meanwhile noted that horror classic Alone in the Dark was a big influence on the game, which makes a lot of sense really; of all the Final Fantasy games, VII plays the most with horror and suspense.

What of the oft-rumored remake? Nomura put the kibosh once again on fan’s hopes saying that Square’s focus is on making new titles that can best Final Fantasy VII, rather than revisiting old games.

Don’t believe him for a second. That remake will happen, it’s just a matter of when. Nomura’s own team is entering its sixth year of development on Final Fantasy Versus XIII and he’s intimated that their next project is Kingdom Hearts 3. With DLC wrapping up on Final Fantasy XIII-2 though, Kitase’s team is wide open. Square does love money, and its tools for the current generation of hardware are now well in place. They could turn the game around fairly quickly really. Food for thought.

Computing

Nose cam no more. How Dell avoided a notch and fixed the XPS 13’s biggest flaw

The new Dell XPS 13 moves the webcam from the below the screen to the top, finally vanquishing the one obstacle facing thin, sleek laptop displays. We have the exclusive story on how it was done.
Movies & TV

From premiere date to footage: Here's all we have on 'Game of Thrones' season 8

With the eighth and final season looming, Game of Thrones fever has officially become a pandemic. Our list of all the relevant news and rumors will help make the wait more bearable, if you don't mind spoilers.
Home Theater

The best movies on Netflix in December, from 'Buster Scruggs’ to 'Roma'

Save yourself from hours wasted scrolling through Netflix's massive library by checking out our picks for the streamer's best movies available right now, whether you're into explosive action, witty humor, or anything else.
Gaming

Among hundreds of choices, these are the best 25 SNES games of all time

The Super Nintendo Entertainment System might be the greatest game console ever made, but what are the best titles for the system? Here are our picks for the best SNES games.
Gaming

Dataminers discover SNES games, more emulators for Nintendo Switch Online

Nintendo Switch Online may soon launch SNES games and more emulators, according to data miners. The list of hidden SNES titles include Breath of Fire 2 and Star Fox 2, while the other emulators may be the Nintendo 64 and Nintendo GameCube.
Gaming

‘RollerCoaster Tycoon 2’ ride takes 12 years to complete

A RollerCoaster Tycoon 2 player has constructed a coaster in the game that will take more than 12 years to complete from beginning to end, and is actually a tiny ride taking up a small portion of the landscape.
Product Review

'New Super Mario Bros. U Deluxe' is 2D platforming wizardry

New Super Mario Bros. U Deluxe is the latest Wii U game to come back from the dead on Switch. And wow, it’s much better than we remembered.
Gaming

‘Battlefield V’ adds Squad Conquest mode in ‘Lightning Strikes’ update

Electronic Arts and DICE have detailed what is included in the Battlefield V update Lightning Strikes. The update includes access to the mode Squad Conquest through the end of January.
Gaming

Here's everything you need to know to trade in 'Pokémon Go'

After literally years of waiting, Pokémon Go finally gives trainers the option to trade Pokémon with others. It's not easy, though, and the cost is quite high if you try trading with strangers.
Gaming

You're never too broke to enjoy the best free-to-play games

Believe it or not, free-to-play games have evolved into engaging, enjoyable experiences. Here are a few of our favorites that you can play right now, including Warframe and the perennially-popular League of Legends.
Gaming

‘Rocket League’ is the latest game to get full cross-platform play

Psyonix has announced that Rocket League now supports full cross-platform play across PlayStation 4, Xbox One, Nintendo Switch, and PC, joining Fortnite as the only games to do so.
Gaming

Here's what you need to know about 'World of Warcraft: Battle for Azeroth'

World of Warcraft: Battle for Azeroth is the latest expansion for the now 14-year-old MMORPG. It goes back to the roots of the Alliance vs. Horde conflict. Here's what you need to know.
Virtual Reality

Think virtual reality is just for games? These awesome apps will change your mind

Virtual reality isn't all about gaming. Swim with turtles, paint in 3D, and immerse yourself in some unique experiences the platform has to offer with our curated list of the best VR apps.
Gaming

Latest ‘Fortnite’ update channels Halo with a scoped revolver

The latest update for Fortnite, update 7.20, is now available, and it brings a new Scoped Revolver weapon to the game alongside the returning Glider item and a limited-time Snipers-only mode.