Final Fantasy fans have waited a long time for a remake of its beloved seventh entry in the series. Rumors of a Final Fantasy VII remake have existed since 2000 when supposed plans to remake all the PlayStation 1 Final Fantasy games made the rounds. A tech demo recreating VII’s opening was created to show off the power of the PlayStation 3. We’ve all but begged for this project.
Now that it’s real, we should be happy, right? Every new look at the game looks great. This past weekend’s Electronic Entertainment Expo showed Tifa off, as well as the game’s combat. Journalists have since sat down with the game and received it glowingly. Fans should be universally happy, right? Well, there’s one problem. A big one, really.
We have no idea if this remake project will actually see a finale.
When Square Enix announced the Final Fantasy VII remake, they also told us the game would release as multiple episodes. Each would focus on a different section of the original game, fleshing them out. We don’t know how many. Even now, with the first “episode” set for release in March 2020, we still don’t know. Square Enix doesn’t even know. Now that we know this first episode will only cover the beginning in the city of Midgar, while purportedly the size of any other numbered Final Fantasy game, much of my hype has disappeared.
In the original classic, the Midgar portion of the game takes up the first hour or two of the story. It’s not an insignificant portion of the game, but it’s merely an introduction, with the meat of Final Fantasy VII occurring in the expansive world map outside of the city. It has taken Square Enix years to recreate the Midgar portion of the game? What exactly are they planning for the overworld? Will each city have an episode? What about the portions in-between?
Square Enix has no idea, the fans have no idea, and it puts a serious rain cloud in the way of the happy sunshine here. This remake was announced 4 years ago, and we’re just now getting Midgar. Will it be another 12 before we get to Cid and Rocket Town? Will we still be waiting for the finale in the Northern Crater when the PlayStation 6 rolls around?
I want to be optimistic here. Maybe getting this portion of the game was the hurdle and building more on this engine will be easy. Considering how long I typically have to wait for Square Enix games, I’m finding it hard to believe. And if there are enough fans like me who decide not to buy enough copies of these initial episodes, they may scrap the project altogether, declaring it a financial failure.
Here’s hoping otherwise. After so long a wait, a Final Fantasy VII remake deserves more than angry fans and an early death.