Games

The Ending of 'Final Fantasy VII Remake' Throws a Lot at New Players

The remake does a good job of telling its story in a way old and new players can appreciate. That is, until the final chapter.
April 28, 2020, 9:05pm
Screenshot from Final Fantasy VII Remake. Game antagonist Sephiroth,a man with white skin, long grey hair, and green cat eyes is framed close up with a fire burning behind him.
Image courtesy of Square Enix

Spoiler Warning for Final Fantasy VII Remake and original Final Fantasy VII

It's finally time. Or it's happening again? What is time? This isn't just a question about the hours and days blending together while we are all in quarantine, but also questions we attempt to answer about Final Fantasy VII Remake. Austin, Cado, Patrick, and special guest Matthew Gault gather once more to discuss the differences between the original and Remake, that wild ending, and how you pronounce "Cait Sith." You can listen to the full episode and read an excerpt below.

Patrick: I would have loved to come across a desk and here's a note that explains like the motivations of Shinra or like a little bit more of the world that I think you got a lot more of in Final Fantasy VII which had a lot more dialogue right? You had a lot more talking to people in a way that doesn't happen in this one.

Austin: I think that a lot of the stuff that actually comes out of the original Final Fantasy VII is just the game keeps going from [where the Remake ends] and you end up getting more later.

Patrick: Yeah that's true, I guess that maybe I'm informed by my entire perspective of VII. But given that his is meant to be episodic or it will be a sequel to this, however you want to frame it, I do think it's got to be a challenge for newcomers to fully understand what's going on. Or I wonder if the way things escalate in this remake– Cado can probably speak to this.

Austin: Yeah that's exactly what I'm curious about.

Patrick: And I'll toss to you after this this last point, I wonder if the way [Final Fantasy VII Remake_] escalates comes across as like weirdly and absurdly bombastic for the notion that this is a story that is supposed to continue for a long time? Relative to folks who have played _Final Fantasy VII, the way it twists and turns the narrative is part of the fun of the way it kind of wraps up. But Cado, I'm curious how it how it landed with you, overall.

Cado: You know, I guess I could be called a Kingdom Hearts fan. So, there's a little bit of that ending part that was–

Patrick: Oh it is fully that. I think the tweet I wrote was something along the lines of "there's a disturbing amount of Kingdom Hearts in the ending to Final Fantasy VII [ Remake_], and I find it upsetting how much it actually works." My take away from _Final Fantasy VII Remake was because Nomura gets the chief creative credit, but you know it's hard to figure out exactly the lineage of like who did what work in big productions like this. But there's a different like screenwriter credit, and I found the writing in this really strong in a way that I was like "Make them work with Nomura on Kingdom Hearts!" The people spoke like humans in this game!

Cado: Yeah it was a very Kingdom Hearts-esque framing for things, but they spoke well in the cutscenes, it didn't sound weird because the pacing was off.

Austin: Yeah, there wasn't like a huge delay between sentences.

Cado: Yeah, between like every single sentence.

Austin: Not even sentences, phrases!

Patrick: They even do, this is very common for Japanese RPGs, but there's still a lot of like "mhmm. nod," and it's [in _FFVII Remake_]—

Austin: But it works!

Patrick: In Kingdom Hearts it's like it's like "nod. five second pause. nod. five second pause." Then here it, like fits, or at least it's not disruptive to the pacing of the storytelling,

Cado: It flows more. I have a lot of questions. Here's the thing, it does feel coherent, even though I don't know what the fuck is happening half the time and I am asking questions, but I'm asking questions that feel like "Okay, I get that this will probably be answered later on, or if not, this is something that we're getting rid of given the that whole last section." Which we can talk about when we get there.

Patrick: The whole bit with Zack. Please try to explain to me Cado.

Cado: Who???

Austin: Cado was that is that one of the [questions you had] "Who the fuck is this black haired soldier?"

Cado: Uh, what the fuck is this meteor?

Austin: Oh, sure.

Matthew Gault: Oh yeah.

Patrick: Fair. Fair.

Austin: It's on the cover art of the original I mean–

Cado: I know, it's even it's on the start menu of this one, so I get that it's important! But I don't know what is actually going on!

Patrick: That is funny, it's in the logo and it's not mentioned!

Austin: Well it's because it hasn't happened yet.

Cado: I got as far as that, like either this is–

Austin: Sorry, I mean the threat of it hasn't even occurred yet. There's a moment in Final Fantasy VII where "uh-oh Meteor" becomes the overarching plot at that point, that hasn't happened yet because we haven't gotten anywhere near where that happens. I mean, likewise, did you– Okay, so there's that sequence towards the end of the game, where they show you four clips, they show you, they show you meteor hitting Midgar, they show you something that is like green and a piece of materia falling. Did you know what that was?

Cado: I guessed, because there were some clasped hands that looked familiar.

Austin: Uh huh.

Cado: That I've seen praying a lot during [FFVII Remake,] and I know that spoiler, because everyone fucking knows that spoiler. Have we mentioned we're gonna spoil everything?

Austin: Yeah we have to spoil everything about this game about probably about Final Fantasy VII we need to be open enough to answer questions around stuff that comes up, and frankly I think that this game has told us hey, go learn everything you can about Final Fantasy VII because part of the joy will be seeing it subverted in this game and in future games.


This transcript was edited for length and clarity.

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