I have played many games but have never shared a review or written one so I’ll start here I hope you enjoy reading them and that I could provide some insight.
FINAL FANTASY VII
Ah to be back at the place my love of games began. At 7 years old I had my first FF7 adventure. I played it rather obsessively over the years wishing that with each new Playstation system release a remake would come. After so many years of hoping I gave up on the idea. Imagine my surprise at the age of 31 when the remake actually did drop. Well with an undying love of the turn based combat and materia system I had my doubts that a live action combat system would work along with the obvious need to re work everything into a next gen game. I avoided it until this year and was overjoyed at the results. Let’s get started.
Let’s begin right with the intro scene. The train screeching to a stop and the daring members of Avalanche spring into action, taking out security on the platform of the reactor they intend to set a bomb in to stop it from draining the life blood of the planet: Mako, which the Shinra electric power company uses to power the metropolis Midgar. Exciting isn’t it? That’s how I felt when I first played ff7 all those years ago. I can Say that the opening to the remake was every bit as thrilling to me as the original. The conflict was swift, intense, and fluid. It really did a fantastic job of showcasing the prowess of not just the characters you get to play as but also Biggs, Wedge and Jessie, in the previous game there wasn’t much to go on for these characters the remake did a beautiful job bringing them to life and making them into likeable and important to the player in the same amazing way the original did getting us all so involved with the story characters.
From the first mission and return to Tifa’s 7th heaven, through the meeting with Aerith and the subsequent adventures nostalgia meets with new surprizes familiar locations in a world rendered beautifully for lovers of the original like myself and newcomers to the story of ff7. The development of the plot focusing on shinras motive was a nice change and gave more as to what they are up to and developing key antagonists like the Turks (Reno, Rude and Tseng) Hojo, Heidigger and president Shinra himself than the original and really kept me invested as player. It was great to see so many fond and fun memories both preserved and renewed as perfectly as one could hope for. I could go on and on about the trip down memory lane I went on but instead ill just focus on one: Wall Market
Wall market, the town that never sleeps. So much is the same but it is ALL so different. From the moment you enter wall market things get way more exciting. Getting to go back to the diner and the clothes maker and the gym were done beautifully to fit with what I feel were necessary changes made to the story aspects here to make it more believable and immersive.
Lots to do here plenty of missions many familiar sights, in particular the Honeybee Inn. I really enjoyed the fresh spin put on that during Tifa’s rescue from the ruthless and elusive Don Corneo. That whole chapter was done superbly, introducing new characters that work for the Don to control the town free of Shinra’s influence giving Wall Market a darker mob rule feel underneath the already shady nature of the place. The addition of the battle arena added nice spice to the visit and yielded decent rewards too! All in all Wall Market like the rest of the game blends old with new in in suprisingly awesome fashion.
As with the original, tragedy in this game is felt by the player. With the remake, it may hit even harder for lovers of the original. It certainly did for me the above scene is a photo taken in the aftermath of one such tragedy. What is really interesting is the elaboration on how the Turks feel regarding carrying out their missions in Shinra’s name.
Combat! My absolute Favorite part of any RPG. The best part of the original’s combat system was the large number of materia combinations their effects on battle and strategic application for winning the harder battles. Sadly however without a huge grind the materia selection is limited as is the strength of each piece. The remake on the other hand, mixes high speed combat with team strategy in real time. Materia placement combined with the newly added weapon development can make for explosive character growth as well as devistating team combos. I’ve seen this combat system compared to Final Fantasy 15 but I don’t feel that’s entirely accurate. The main similarity is the pause in the combat when selecting an action. Other than that materia, team mechanics, learnable abilities, summons, limit breaks, using enemy stagger and attack interruptions all add a different level of complexity and fluidity through team capability than 15. All told its probably the most fun combat in the Final fantasy lineup.
Now if I may take a moment to talk about my favorite character in the game: Sephiroth. I have read that some players of the original don’t like the way Sephiroth was introduced into the story so early as it breaks a lot of his mystery, revealing himself as the antagonist showing what hes capable of like that. I disagree. As a fan of the original I’ll never forget seeing a Midgar Zolam impaled on a tree and wondering how we hoped to win against such power or how creepy the escape from Shinra tower felt seeing the destruction he left in his wake. For newcomers this early reveal accomplishes both of those things, though the creep factor is largely thanks to very nicely reworked Hojo. Sephiroth still does not fail to impress me as an original fan. the display of power and combat prowess was both awesome and terrifying. If he can do all this, what else will he be capable of? And how on earth are we going to beat this guy if he’s only going to get stronger from here?! Well…….I certainly can’t wait to find out!!
10/10 a flawless revision and opening act of a flawless classic RPGIndiandy_jones of Indiandyjones Gaming&Entertainment