Tony’s Time: FF VII – Let’s All Calm Down

Let’s talk. Just you and me. We’re friends right? I can talk to you about things that we might disagree on and it’s okay. We’re each going to have opinions that differ from each other and this is probably one of them where it will.

Square Enix finally, after years and years of waiting, announced that they are remaking the smash hit Final Fantasy VII. People everywhere lost their minds. They’re finally doing it. They broke the emergency glass and we’re getting Cloud, Barret, Tifa and everyone else in a new version of the game everyone knows and loves. When it was first announced the world went crazy.

A few days ago they showed off the game again. It looked amazing. Seeing Cloud running around with a new model that didn’t look like a Duplo figure was great. Seeing Midgar in a way we’ve never seen it before was fantastic. This city, which could look incredibly dull and lifeless looked more beautiful than just about anyone probably could have imagined. People were stoked….For a few minutes.

FFVII Remake 2Then you saw the combat. It wasn’t what we remembered. It wasn’t jump in, attack, jump out with little bars running next to each characters name. There were no commands to input. Cloud was running around swinging his sword at anything he could hit. It looked a lot like Kingdom Hearts, or recent entries in the Final Fantasy series. “What is this?” the internet cried? “This isn’t Final Fantasy VII. I don’t like it.” (I’m generalizing just a little bit.)

Then after the event even more news about this new game came out. It’s going to be broken up into multiple parts. Each of these parts, Square Enix promises, will be as long as any regular game that you would get today. “They’ve done it again. They’ve gone up and screwed up the one thing they shouldn’t have screwed up. This is stupid, my childhood is ruined.” (Again, I’m generalizing.)

Let’s all just take a step back. Let’s calm down just a bit. Let’s breath. It’s going to be okay. Square Enix is doing something they most certainly didn’t have to do. They’re releasing one of the most popular games of all time in a brand new, remastered version for new consoles.

FF VII Remake.jpgThey’re making it different, and you know what. It’s okay. If they just re-released this game with graphics that live up to today’s consoles and just gave you the game I would wager the world would cry foul. “This is the same game, why should we pay for this again?” I can hear the internet cry. They have to do what they’re doing.

If all you want is a higher resolution, 100% true to the original experience you can get that. Right now. It’s on your PS4. Go download it. It’s $10. It looks great and you’d get the exact same game you got nearly 20 years ago on your PS1. It’s possible. I’ve seen it. I almost bought it myself, but held off. Many people who will play this game have never, ever experienced it before. The game, as it was back then, was great. It’s still great. I’ve got it on my Vita and I can play it any time I want, anywhere I want. I could play it on my TV right now.

I want this new experience. I want that story, and the changes they’re making to it, in a new package. I want a different experience this time around. I would be furious if I had to pay $60 to play the same game I played back in 1997, only prettier. I wouldn’t do it.

FFVII Remake 3.jpgI want a different combat system. I want a different look and feel to the game. I don’t understand this opinion where all you want is a prettier version of the same game you played so long ago. I love turn based RPG’s. Dragon Quest is my favorite RPG series of forever. I love that they’ve stayed true to the roots of that series and kept it mostly in tact for as long as it has. It’s an oddity in the world of RPG’s today.

I love the Active Time Battle system. Final Fantasy IV is, and probably forever will be, my favorite entry in this series of games where every game is the Final one. I loved FF VII when I played it on PC back in the 90’s and I’m incredibly excited for this game.

It’s being broken up. I’m fine with that too. This game is huge. Really huge. It’s going to take a long time to make and a long time to play. For a lot of people today they just don’t have time to invest in a 40-100 hour game. Breaking it up is smart. People will be able to mentally get behind a game where they spend 10-20 hours playing a fairly self contained story that will ultimately be a part of a larger experience. If we wanted this game in one whole piece we’d have to wait another 2-3 years at least for Square to finish this game. They take a very long time to make any game. They’re going to take every minute they can with this because they know if they screw this up they don’t get another chance.

FF VII PS4.jpgIf you want to play this game, in its entirety, all at once you’ll be able to do that. Wait. Just wait. You’ve waited this long, what’s a little longer? They’re not screwing you over. They’re not forcing you to spend your hard earned money on it. Just wait, and if you want to experience this game the way it seems many people do buy the version of it that’s available right now for nearly every possible Sony platform known to man for little money.

Until then, let’s wait. Let’s have patience. Let’s give Square Enix the benefit of the doubt. This is their biggest game in the history of their existence. They’re going to do this right and in the end it’s going to be a fantastic experience.

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