The latest Final Fantasy VII trailer has shown a surprising change in the classic RPG — the removal of the turn-based combat system that many fans were expecting to have. Pixelpine’s affiliate podcast, The Platinum Achievement Podcast, initially questioned whether new fans would be supportive of the old gameplay. It seems Square Enix thinks the risk would be too great and have opted for a more contemporary approach.
Fans have had mixed reactions, but the concerns that some have had were addressed by Square Enix in a recent blog post by the game’s original director suggested fans look at FFVII in a new way as the devs are given the opportunity “to go beyond” what they’ve done in the past.
“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.” – Yoshiniri Kotasi, Square Enix Blog
The latest gameplay video shows a more adventure-game feel to the past one — perhaps that’s just a side-effect of being converted to a newer style. The small glimpse of action looks visually stunning.
The new gameplay isn’t the only thing proven to be disconcerting for some fans. FFVII will be released in an episodic format rather than a full single release. Square Enix went on to respond to this in a way that many could expect — claiming it would have been impossible to include all the content they would have liked to include in a single release. “…we would have to cut various parts and create a condensed version…”
Still, the criticisms from the diehard fans looking for a rejuvenated nostalgic feeling of playing Final Fantasy VII again will have to be considered throughout the development process for Square Enix. It’s clear the developer wants to appeal to a larger audience, but maintaining the core fanbase will be crucial to ensure this high-profile title will be a success.
Square Enix has yet to reveal a release date for Final Fantasy VII.