It’s a new year, and 2020’s first quarter is set to be dominated by the much-anticipated remake of cyber-epic JRPG Final Fantasy VII. Over the weekend, data-miners graced us with a belated Christmas present: tons of leaks, including full gameplay, of a yet-unreleased demo.
There’s a lot of info swirling around about this leak, so we’ve compiled everything you need to know.
Before we get into it, note that any content data-mined from the demo may not find its way into Final Fantasy VII Remake’s final release. There are several aspects that indicate the content hidden in the demo might be out of date, including poorly textured models and scenes from the Wall Market segment depicting Aerith in a pink dress after Square Enix has showcased her donning a red gown in their TGS trailer.
As mentioned before, the leaks gave a lot of attention to the game’s infamous Wall Market segment. According to images, Cloud will indeed be donning a dress and pigtails, a question FFVII fans have had since the remake’s inception. Given the section’s very ‘90s take on cross-dressing as a form of problem solving, it’ll be interesting to see how the section plays out. The Wall Market, which functions as Midgar’s “red light district,” is one of FFVII’s more outdated but beloved sequences, so how it will be reinterpreted sensitively but impactfully is sure to be a point of contention.
The Honeybee Inn, an integral location during the Wall Market segment, is also shown featuring a dance-based rhythm mini-game.
Red XIII, the game’s red lion-like party member, had his model revealed. Being the last companion the party obtains in Midgar, he will likely appear in episode one’s final arc, during the raid of Shinra Headquarters. Previously unreleased models of Shinra Executives Scarlett, Reeve and Palmer, Shinra’s resident mad scientist Hojo, and President Shinra’s son Rufus were also seen.
Perhaps most notably is a major change in the game’s narrative. Most fans of the series, even casual ones, know AVALANCHE as an eco-terrorist organization that engages in direct, violent action: blowing up reactor cores, taking out Shinra’s SOLDIER operatives, raiding the company’s headquarters and the like. According to leakers, this has been significantly altered. FFVII’s iconic introduction begins with Cloud and Barrett planting a bomb to completely destroy the Sector 1 Reactor. The remake instead opts to have the two plant a much smaller bomb, one to simply deactivate the reactor. In turn, President Shinra orders the destruction of the reactor to turn the public’s opinion of AVALANCHE sour.
In our current political climate, it’s understandable why Square Enix would be apprehensive to include blatant depictions of domestic terrorism. On the other hand, this calls into question some pretty big concerns with the game’s narrative.
The developers are aware of the leak. Kazushige Nojima, the scenario writer for both the original FFVII and the remake, tweeted about it on Thursday.
His tweet, in Japanese, roughly translates to: “This leak can really trample over things.” He later posted a link to Oasis’ “Don’t Look Back In Anger,” followed by a thanks to his fans. Seems he got over it quick.
Lastly, the game’s file size has been revealed at 73GB. That’s over 20GB more than Final Fantasy XV’s base file. Given this is only the first episode, the entirety of Final Fantasy VII Remake is sure to bust 200GB, potentially dethroning Call Of Duty: Modern Warfare’s whopping 175GB.
Final Fantasy VII Remake is slated to release for PlayStation 4 on March 3, 2020. No word yet on the release of the demo.