The Scientifically Proven Best Video Games of All Time #17: Final Fantasy VII
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Square Enix is telling investors that Kingdom Hearts III and Final Fantasy VII Remake might not be released until 2018
Back in March, Square Enix held a “Roadshow” presentation for their UK investors, and the slides from that presentation are now available online. While they paint a rosy financial picture for the company, the slides also hint at further delays to a pair of upcoming RPGs.
In a section highlighting recent and upcoming releases, Square Enix listed six games under the heading, “Fiscal Year 2018 and Beyond” (Square Enix’s fiscal year runs from April 1, 2017 to March 31, 2018). Three of the games… Dragon Quest XI, Final Fantasy XII: The Zodiac Age, and Itadaki Street: Dragon Quest and Final Fantasy… received an additional notation that they’re scheduled to launch in Japan in 2017.
Unfortunately, that left the other three games… Kingdom Hearts III, Final Fantasy VII Remake, and the Avengers Project partnership with Marvel… to fill out the “Beyond” half of the section.
While this news is disappointing, it shouldn’t be too surprising. The publisher has never announced an official release date for Kingdom Hears III, and in January, Square Enix’s Tetsuya Nomura said both games “still [had] a ways to go.” The developer also strongly implied that a showcase at an industry event was the most that either game would receive in 2017.
Still, there’s 11 months remaining in Square Enix’s current fiscal year. You never know, they could have a few surprises in store for their fans.
“The Scientifically Proven Best Video Games of All Time” is a statistical meta-analysis of 44 “Best Video Games of All Time” lists that were published between 1995 and 2016. Catch up on how we decided to sort the games and the rest of the Top 100 in the Introduction.
You can also help support the completion of this project through Patreon.
Since the beginning, every new console cycle has existed as its own separate era that video game players speak of with as much reverence as comic fans who use “Golden Age” and “Silver Age” as a shorthand to represent the different decades of comic production. Ralph Baer’s Odyssey (1st Generation) directly lead to Nolan Bushnell’s Atari 2600 (2nd Generation). Atari’s machine gave way to the rise of Nintendo’s NES (3rd Generation), which in turn lead to the “16-Bit Wars” of the Super NES and the Genesis (4th Generation).
Up to this point, Square had only released three Final Fantasy games in America: 1990’s Final Fantasy, 1991’s Final Fantasy II (released in Japan as Final Fantasy IV), and 1994’s Final Fantasy III (released in Japan as Final Fantasy VI). Even though the remaining three games had yet to make their way across the Pacific, the publisher was determined to unify the franchise’s numbering across all regions with the next sequel. But they still had to find the right home for their game. (more…)
Street Fighter II: The World Warrior fought against Mortal Kombat for the hearts (and quarters) of arcade players in the early 90s. Next month, they’ll square off again as two (of the 12) finalists the World Video Game Hall of Fame’s Class of 2017.
Announced this morning by The Strong’s International Center for the History of Electronic Games, this year’s finalists also include Donkey Kong, Final Fantasy VII, Halo: Combat Evolved, Myst, Pokemon Red and Blue, Portal, Resident Evil, Tomb Raider, Wii Sports, and Windows Solitaire.
“These 12 World Video Game Hall of Fame finalists span decades, gaming platforms, and countries of origin… but what they all have in common is their undeniable impact on the world of gaming and popular culture,” said Jon-Paul C. Dyson, the Director of The Strong’s International Center for the History of Electronic Games. “Whether it’s a pop culture icon like Donkey Kong, an innovator and true original like Portal, or a game like Wii Sports that transformed millions of living rooms into interactive zones for all ages, they’re among the most influential games of all time.”
An international advisory committee made up of journalists and scholars familiar with the history of video games will advise the Hall of Fame’s selection of this year’s inductees, which will be announced on Thursday, May 4, at 10:30 AM (Eastern Time).
You can learn more about all of this year’s finalists after the break. (more…)
Tetsuya Nomura says we’ll have to wait “a little longer” for release of Final Fantasy VII Remake and Kingdom Hearts III
Like Valve and Blizzard, Square Enix is well-known for taking their sweet time with projects they have in development. Not surprisingly, the publisher is using the same deliberate pace to produce Kingdom Hearts III and Final Fantasy VII Remake, which have been in the works since 2013 and 2015, respectively.
Director Tetsuya Nomura recently offered an update on both titles to Famitsu (translated by Siliconera), and while progress is being made, it might be quite a while before either is released:
Famitsu: What’s the development status on Kingdom Hearts III?
Nomura: The production process is different than what we’ve had up until now, so I can’t just give you a general idea, but I can say that there are worlds that still remain untouched. We’ve advanced on the production of worlds that have yet to be announced, so we can’t show them for now. As far as development status goes, there’s still a ways to go.
Famitsu: What’s the development status on Final Fantasy VII Remake?
Nomura: We’re making steady progress on its production. While we are indeed working on it, I think we’ll have you guys wait a little longer for both Kingdom Hearts III and Final Fantasy VII Remake.
Nomura apologized for the delays, but assured fans that it takes time to create “something that will meet expectations.” Hopefully, we’ll get the chance to see how both games are progressing later this year, as the Director also said he’s looking forward to showcasing both games at at least one event in 2017.
It sounds unlikely that Kingdom Hearts III or Final Fantasy VII Remake will launch in 2017, especially after Nomura said, “[Square Enix has] many titles releasing this year,” implying that neither game will be available by the end of the year. Though he did say that fans should look forward to some “surprises.”
The size of each Final Fantasy VII Remake episode will be comparable to Final Fantasy XIII
The cover of the latest issue of Game Informer is currently adorned by Final Fantasy XV, but that didn’t stop the magazine’s reporters from asking Square Enix about the status of Final Fantasy VII Remake.
When we last checked in with the publisher in December, the Final Fantasy VII Remake was said to be a “multi-part” release that would eventually “go beyond” the original game. That’s still true today, but now we’ve learned that each part will be equivalent in size to a regular game. Producer Yoshinori Kitase got a bit more specific and said that each episode will be roughly similar in size to the entirety of Final Fantasy XIII:
“It will essentially be a full scale game for each part of the multi-part series […] if we’re just looking at each of these parts, one part should be on par with the scale of one Final Fantasy XIII game.”
“In XIII, each instalment told the story from a different angle. It was kind of like approaching an unknown territory in a sense. Whereas with Final Fantasy VII Remake, we already have a preexisting story, so it wouldn’t really make sense if that isn’t encompassed in a multi-part series.”
Kitase also confirmed that Final Fantasy fans should prepare themselves for the “dramatic changes” that were previously hinted at:
“I, along with [Tetsuya] Nomura-san and [Kazushige] Nojima-san–who are involved with the remake–were also involved with the original Final Fantasy. We were the people who created it, so in that sense, we don’t think anything is untouchable. That isn’t to say we’re changing everything!”
I’ve got to admit, I admire his willingness to blow up everything about his most beloved creation and use the parts to start over. Thanks to IGN for digging these juicy bits out of the Game Informer cover story.
Square Enix has been building towards Final Fantasy VII Remake for a long time now, and Producer Yoshinori Kitase has always said that any do-over of the groundbreaking RPG would require a significant amount of time and effort. Kitase chose to expand upon these thoughts today in a post on the Square Enix Blog, stating that a multi-part release is required for the Remake to “go beyond” the original game:
With Final Fantasy VII Remake, we have the opportunity to go beyond the story, world and experience of Final Fantasy VII in ways we’ve always dreamed of – from the depths of Midgar to the skies above the Planet. The multi-part format enables us to expand the original story and turn it into an epic experience for fans and new gamers alike.
Kitase added that, instead of adding content, cuts to the Remake would have been necessary if it were released in a single package:
We’ve seen everyone’s comments and reactions to the news that Final Fantasy VII Remake will be a multi-part series and many have speculated correctly as to the reason why we have made this decision. If we were to try to fit everything from the original into one remake instalment, we would have to cut various parts and create a condensed version of Final Fantasy VII. We knew none of you would have wanted that.
The Final Fantasy Remake is currently in development for the PS4, though it’ll be released on Sony’s system “first,” so expect to eventually make its way to the PC and/or Xbox One.
In addition to revealing a new trailer for the Final Fantasy VII Remake, Square Enix also confirmed the game will eventually be released as a “multi-part series.”
According to the publisher’s complete statement, ” will be told across a multi-part series, with each entry providing its own unique experience.” That doesn’t give us a whole lot to go on, but it sounds like the Final Fantasy VII Remake could be released episodically, perhaps similar in style to Final Fantasy IV: The After Years.
In anticipation of the PlayStation Experience show, the PlayStation Blog’s YouTube Channel also got a chance to talk with Producer Yoshinori Kitase about the game. While he didn’t offer any new details about the Final Fantasy VII Remake’s release schedule, he did confirm that the real-time nature of the gameplay seen in the trailer will somewhat carry over to the final game:
I can’t say the new game is completely action-based, but it has more of that element and real-time than the previous game. However, what makes Final Fantasy and RPG different from other games is that players have the ability to choose weapons, capabilities, and magic to be strategic minded, so while the new game has more real-time element, it will also maintain that strategy building element, balancing these two factors perfectly to enhance the gaming experience.
The Final Fantasy VII Remake will be released for the PS4 “first,” but when that’ll be and in what form it’ll take is anybody’s guess.
Have you taken a look at the ridiculous new trailer for the Final Fantasy VII Remake yet? If not, I suggest you should. And if you’re feeling nostalgic, the planned PS4 port of the PSone original is now available to download from the PlayStation Store. Believe it or not, Sony actually added a huge number of games to the PlayStation Store today, check ’em out:
- Vlambeer’s roguelike-like top-down shooter Nuclear Throne is now available for the PS4 and Vita. This one has been available through Steam Early Access (and on the convention circuit) for a long time, but it’s exciting that it’s finally complete.
- Supergiant’s action RPG Bastion, which was previously released for the PS4, is now available for the Vita as a Cross-Buy title.
- The Bit.Trip, the entire Bit.Trip series collected in a single PS4/Vita Cross-Buy package.
- Fat Princess Adventures, a “comical co-op action RPG” for the PS4 for one-to-four players.
- Guns Up!, a free-to-play side-scrolling strategy game for the PS4 that merges “enemy base invasion with tower defense”
More details on all of these titles can be found after the break. And don’t forget about all the new PS2-On-PS4 games, which are also available today. (more…)