Final Fantasy VII Rebirth has been officially announced, and it’s already proving to be a popular talking point – perhaps as you’d expect, given the events of Final Fantasy VII Remake. This is a sequel that seems to stray wildly from the path once promised, and “Rebirth” certainly hammers home that point.
But what do we really want from Rebirth? What can Square Enix do to improve Remake? We decided to get the Push Square editorial team together to talk about the upcoming PS5 exclusive (minus Stephen, who tried his best to like Remake, but gave it up after a few hours).
Lifelong Final Fantasy fan Robert Ramsey
I liked Remake, but I didn’t like it. Overall, I think the game’s high points outweigh its low points, but I still think there’s a lot of room for improvement in Final Fantasy VII Rebirth – especially from a point of view. structural view. For starters, more exploration would be nice. I enjoyed how well done much of Remake’s world was – Midgar will still be a great setting – but the amount of hallway type environments you’re forced to slowly going down is a joke. There’s just too much padding in Remake – borderline terrible side quests included – so hopefully Rebirth finds a better pace and sticks to it.
With Rebirth, the one thing I have complete confidence in is combat. I thought Remake’s system was fantastic – a near-perfect fusion of control-driven strategy and action-based combat. An evolution of these mechanisms could be amazing, especially if more party members are involved.
As for the story, I don’t know what to think. I don’t particularly trust Square Enix to make a “new” narrative that is not a complete mess. God knows what they do with alternate deadlines and all that nonsense. Perhaps Rebirth will defy expectations and take the world of Final Fantasy VII in a pleasant new direction. I sure hope so, but I’m not exactly betting on it.
Ultimately, I can’t wait to see where things go, but my expectations will be tempered.
Liam Croft, first player of Final Fantasy VII
I love Final Fantasy and I love good video games, so playing Final Fantasy VII Remake at launch was the perfect concoction despite the fact that I never played the original on PS1. I have absolutely no nostalgia for this classic experience, and I absolutely loved what happened at the end of Remake. I’m a guy who likes games that go off the rails and get weird – the earlier in history the better – and that’s what Square Enix did. The fact that it’s not really a “remake” anymore fascinates me, and I’m here for everything that happens in Rebirth.
Square Enix, I’ll tell you right now: don’t stick to the 1997 narrative. Keep Aerith alive. Kill Tifa. Let Cloud and Sephiroth kiss for everything that matters to me. I want the most mental story possible. Put it this way: if you piss off die-hard fans, I’ll probably like it even more.
When I actually play the game, let’s make the environments bigger and open for exploration. I played Final Fantasy XIII recently and I’m done with linear corridor after linear corridor. Level up the side quests and you have reason to think outside the box. One of the Final Fantasy VII Rebirth screenshots features a compass with an aim over 1,000 meters, which gives me hope that it might be a slightly more open game. Or Cloud and Sephiroth could just be walking a very long way in a flashback scene, I’m told.
No matter what happens, however, I’m playing this sequel. In 2024, because you don’t get Final Fantasy XVI and Final Fantasy VII Rebirth in the same year. Sorry!
Sammy Barker, Final Fantasy Casual
I came late to Final Fantasy VII, so I don’t have the built-in nostalgia that many others have. That said, while I enjoyed my time with Final Fantasy VII Remake, it left me a bit #Concerned. To be honest, I have very little patience for anime bullshit, and while the ending of the original mostly left me confused, I don’t think we’re considering a remake anymore. The sequel’s subtitle, Rebirth, even implies that we’re going to be heavily diverted in a different direction.
I can see how this comes with some excitement for long-time fans: where will they go next? But for me, I find it frustrating – even insulting, to be honest. My favorite parts of Final Fantasy VII Remake were the times when familiar scenes were adapted – not necessarily beat for beat, but at least recognizable. If we’re heading to a different timeline, a multiverse if you will, then I just don’t trust the writing team at Square Enix to write anything cohesive.
Gameplay-wise, I’m pretty happy with what we got, so the iteration on that will be great – a few less Poundland side quests would be appreciated though. But again, it’s all about the plot for me: I already feel like it’s Kingdom Hearts-ed – and I’m afraid things are about to get worse. Cynicism aside, however, I sincerely hope I am wrong.
Are you looking forward to Final Fantasy VII Rebirth? What are your hopes and dreams for the future? Vote in our poll, then write your own story in the comments section below.