Final Fantasy 7 (1997), possibly the most iconic game in Square Enix’s Final Fantasy series, is finally getting a remake! Final Fantasy is arguably one of Japan’s most beloved RPG (role-player videogame) franchises. Japan made a heartfelt live-action ad to celebrate the remake of VII, and they even have a Netflix Original J-drama about a grown father and son healing their relationship over Final Fantasy (Final Fantasy XIV Dad of Light).
Many people are familiar with the hero VS villain rivalry of Cloud Strife and Sephiroth and are excited to see it return for a new generation. My best friend introduced me to the characters when were just kids. I’ve only seen bits and pieces of the original game, so I’m looking forward to experiencing the whole story in HD glory.
Some people see videogame remakes as cash grabs, but the lengths Square Enix has gone to to bring this game to a modern platform with completely redone graphics, orchestrated music, and an updated gaming experience shows that it is much more than a cash grab; it’s a labor of love. They could have easily settled with a blocky port of the original game, as many companies do, but they went out of their way to breathe new life into a classic.
Fans of Final Fantasy and people entirely new to the franchise can enjoy the demo for free – with or without a PlayStation Plus subscription. You just need a PlayStation 4, a PSN account (which is free to make), and an internet connection so you can download the demo. I highly recommend giving it a whirl! If you’re unsure, check out this trailer!
If you’ve played the newer Final Fantasy games, such as XV like I have, you’ll enjoy seeing how the game developers were able to integrate real-time fighting mechanics into what was previously turn-based gameplay, while still allowing you to switch between characters in battle like the original game did. If you haven’t played any Final Fantasy games, there’s nothing to worry about; the demo does an excellent job of easing you into the experience in an exciting way.
The demo opens with a realistic-looking scene of Aerith picking up flowers she dropped on a busy sidewalk. The beautifully re-orchestrated Final Fantasy 7 theme is overlaid with a choir eerily singing a few Latin-ish lines of Sephiroth’s unforgettable theme: One-Winged Angel. I already had chills at that point. You are quickly introduced to more characters as they exit a train and take down guards, and then you are Cloud Strife, ex-soldier and mercenary, hired to help these people blow up a power plant that’s sucking the planet’s lifeblood dry.
Stunning cutscenes seamlessly lead into HD gameplay, and you are swept away into the first part of this iconic adventure. I found it refreshing to see how much artistic excellence went into creating this demo, and how much more is promised in the game that will finally be released on April 10, 2020. Those who love the demo are encouraged to pre-order the game so they are ready to play once it’s out. My husband and I pre-ordered it as soon as we could. Whatever you decide to do, soon we’ll all have the opportunity to pick up a controller and experience this timeless story for ourselves. I can’t wait!
Photo by Florian Gagnepain on Unsplash
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