Final Fantasy VII Remake devs reveal a forgotten area will be a major focus

How the other half lives.

by Tristan Cooper

Fans looking forward to Final Fantasy VII Remake have likely run the recent demo into the ground at this point, and to keep anticipation high, Square Enix is steadily trickling out fascinating new details about the game. In a new video called "Inside Final Fantasy VII Remake," the franchise's official YouTube channel dives into the development of the long-awaited reimagining. In it, the developers said players will see a dramatically different aspect of Midgar when the game releases on April 10.

The 22-minute long documentary includes in-depth interviews with producer Yoshinori Kitase, co-director Motomu Toriyama and a rare appearance of director/character designer Tetsuya Nomura. Together, they share fascinating tidbits on how the world of Final Fantasy VII has changed, and in some cases, how it's stayed the same.

Most obviously Cloud and crew have received a substantial visual upgrade over their original PlayStation counterparts. It's also a massive leg-up over the Advent Children movie As highlighted in the video, FF7R looks noticeably better than the 2005 animated feature, a stunning achievement in its own right.

Familiar areas in Midgar have been expanded and some will be entirely new. Nomura says fans will see more of one location in particular: The luxurious upper plate, where the high-class citizens look down on the slums where Cloud, Barret, and Tifa live.

Nomura explains how he jumped at the chance to add more depth and complexity to the iconic setting:

You travel through the slums quite a lot, but it didn't really feel like we used the upper city all that much, and I thought we should have done that. Of course, you do go back to Midgar later and see some different scenes there, but I felt it would be nice if we could see more of the upper layer in the earlier part of the story. I thought it would be good to open up some of the locations, so players could explore more of those places that they wanted to see when they played the original.

The first of a series, the Inside FF7R documentary also explores the reasoning behind the dynamically shifting orchestral score and the action-oriented battle system. But by far the most tantalizing moment of the video comes near the end, when Nomura attempts to nail down the appeal of the project.

It's made in a way to make players really keen to know what happens next. The longtime fans will certainly want to see the next developments too. Even though they might think they know what comes next!

That last sentence has already set off wild speculation in the Final Fantasy community. Could Nomura be hinting at the possibility of big story changes coming in future chapters of FF7R? The demo alone contains significant plot tweaks, such as AVALANCHE's bomb malfuctioning (which may be intended to absolve Cloud and Barret of wrongdoing). As you can imagine, conspiracies are already flying, chief among them: Does this mean Aerith could avoid her infamous death scene? Hopefully we won't have to wait another five years to find out.

Final Fantasy VII Remake comes to PS4 April 10.

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