Final Fantasy 7 won't be an exact rebuild of the 1997 original. Here's why.
Final Fantasy 7 project director and original FF7 character designer Tetsuya Nomura has made it clear that the new version won't just be a visual upgrade: things are going to change.
This has naturally worried the fan base, who fear that major changes to the game - its story, its atmosphere, its gameplay systems - will result in something vastly different to their fond memories. But speaking with Engadget, Nomura has said a 1:1 remake is unnecessary.
"The original is out again: the 'HD' PC version is coming to PS4 already. We don't need two of the same thing," he said.
"Even if we beautified and upgraded the visuals - something that's bound to happen. If it's a full remake, then of course, we want to take a different approach. If we actually just upgraded the visuals there'd be no need for me to direct it.
"If we take everything literally the same, we're turning into the HD port again."
Nomura has repeatedly refused to be drawn on what might change (although he has hinted the Honey Bee Inn section will remain, along with other light-hearted moments) but said he won't do anything too "drastic" like switching genders, for example, and his colleagues are keen to retain as much of the original's spirit as possible.
That said, it's extremely unlikely the combat of the original will be retained.
"We can't have these upgraded, beautiful 3D models of Cloud and Barrett, still lining up in a row, jumping forward to attack an enemy, then jumping back to wait for their next turn," Nomura said.
"That would be bizarre. Of course there will likely be changes there."
Nomura asked fans not to worry too much about the upcoming changes; you may have noticed the cryptic trailer narration asking us to "embrace whatever" the Reunion brings.
The full article has several more interesting comments from Nomura. The Final Fantasy 7 remake has not been dated or even formally titled. We're expecting more details towards the end of the year.