Sunday, February 21, 2010

FF VII Remake Really Needed?

Final Fantasy is certainly on the collective consciousness of everyone in and around gaming these days, what with the upcoming release of Final Fantasy XIII for the Xbox 360 and Playstation 3. Of course, when anyone thinks of Final Fantasy, all of their thoughts immediately go to one thing: FINAL FANTASY VII (also known as "The only Final Fantasy the gaming community has every (lied about) playing.").

As the masterminds behind Final Fantasy have been making the interview rounds promoting the latest chapter in the fabled RPG series, every journalist has made it their personal duty to ask them about the possibility of a Final Fantasy VII remake because quotes about a VII-remake automatically generate page hits. There's probably only really about 10 gamers with an unlimited number of internet handles and message board screen names that have made remaking VII a top priority. Is it really that necessary?

Square Enix has made the possibility of remaking any classic RPG a reality with their Dragon Quest, Chrono Trigger, and Final Fantasy remakes. That opens the door for any number of unabashedly wasteful projects to be requested of Square Enix. This is completely ignoring the infamous PS3 FF VII Tech Demo from an E3 where everything else that didn't actualize into a playable retail game has been long forgotten. A wag of the finger to Square Enix for teasing gamers with this, but an even more shameful wag to gamers for keeping this wasteful dream alive. If the collective consciousness of the internet were this vocal about cancer or world peace, a lot more would get done. Still, why doesn't the internet play any new games?

I totally get the reasoning behind the rabid fan fascination with FF VII, and I know the fervor is coming from the impending release of a new FF game, but recent comments by Final Fantasy XIII Producer and VII director Yoshinori Kitase make an annoyingly nagging request out to be an impossible one at that.
"If it were possible that we had all the right facilities and the right environment to be able to make and prepare a Final Fantasy VII remake within a year, we'd very much like a go at it! But even Final Fantasy XIII has taken over three and a half years to create. If we were to recreate Final Fantasy VII with the same level of graphical detail as you see in Final Fantasy XIII, we'd imagine that that would take as much as three or four times longer than the three and a half years it has taken to put this Final Fantasy together! So it's looking pretty unrealistic! But if any such situation came about by any remote chance, then yes, we'd do it!"
A 12 year development cycle? Jeez, way to crush those hopes on the PR circuit Kitase! But surely, this man has to feel like he's been talking about a VII-remake for 12 years already, so who can blame the guy.

Honestly, it makes sense. I doubt sales of a VII-remake would ever add up to the sales of a brand new Final Fantasy, what with purists arguing that the original couldn't be touched, or community gamers (like those playing Modern Warfare 2 and whatever else Gamestop is promoting) not bothering to pick up the title based on the fact that it's "just a remake." There are the hardcore, who would surely buy the special edition, the Cloud's Hair edition and the "Giant Sword Collector's Box" edition to boot, but I don't want to think about how scarily devoted those people are, when normal levels of sanity would say to maybe buy the moderately priced edition, enjoy the game, and recognize that you are literally buying the same game you played in 1997.

Please, internet, stop asking for a Final Fantasy VII remake. It's making the rest of us look bad.

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