Like many of you probably are, I’m still surprised that Final Fantasy 7 Remake ever saw the light of day, given how it seemed like it had been in development hell since Square showed that old demo of the original Midgar intro running on PS3 spec hardware. 1000 lifetimes ago in video game terms. I’m even more surprised, frankly, that we’re seeing Part II, Rebirth, within a decade of the first instalment.
It’s not actually that surprising though, as Alex notes in his preview and in the video above. Rebirth doesn’t reinvent the wheel. Rather, it builds on the solid foundation set up by Remake, which arrived at the end of the PS4’s life and proved to be one of the most impressive looking games on the machine. Assets have been reused and retooled, character models are pretty much the same level of quality.
The game’s systems and mechanics, too, have been iterated rather than rebuilt from scratch: even the new Synergy attacks are something that already appeared, albeit in a more basic form, in FF7 Remake Intergrade on the PS5.
REMAKE SPOILERS AHEAD
Aside from that, Rebirth continues to plunder the rich story and lore of the PS1 original for materials to build a new, rejigged story. Following the quasi-sequel meta-narrative of the first game’s shock conclusion, this sequel can confidently take things in new directions, without being strictly beholden to the events and chronology of the original story. In short: we genuinely don’t know if Aerith’s gonna die. She might not. You might actually get to save her after all these years. Imagine that.
Maybe you can convince ol’ Seph to kill Tifa instead, she’s a rubbish healer after all.