Just completed the game wanted to know what others thought. Yes, I know Im late to the party
Maybe a thread was already made for this but I could only find the metacritic one
An occassionally 10/10 game dragged down by some awefully padded level design & convoluted new additions to the story (but I'm by no means a purist).
The presentation often made my jaw drop but there were also bizzare inconsistencies. I can forgive tech struggles like low quality textures in places and the occassional low poly asset but I really could not understand why as a premeditated decision, they let Masashi Hamauzu go apeshit on half of the soundtrack. I'm all for new music, just make it consistent with the rest of the universe. A good half his additions are heavy techno/ electric guitars and feel at complete odds with the other typically superior tracks remastered from the original.
Anyone who's played it will know what I mean referring to the padded level design...
You have an hour or so of the most incredibly world/plot building that increases in tension as you enter the Shinra building, only for it all to come to a screeching holt once you get to Hojo's lab and they decide to make it a 2hour poor mans Zelda Dungeon. To add salt to the wound, the characters often comment about how annoyingly long progress is during these parts of the game where mechanical failures turns a 20mins excursion into 2hours. These moments are scattered throughout the whole experience and are so poorly disguised that it really made me want to put the controller down. Artificially inflating the length of the game really wasn't necessary, cut the fat and you would have a 30hour superior experience.
I was really impressed with the way they fleshed out the characters and brought them to life with more nuances that I never picked up in the original, particularly Tifa and her motivations/doubt about the whole terrorist thing. The relationship between characters like Barret & Red were joyful to watch. The politically commentary seemed even more visible and sharp then before, just reinforcing that VII was ahead of its time. It would have been great if the changes stopped there..
Instead the whole phantoms/whispers constantly rearing their head (as well as sephiroth) was actually a terrible inclusion in my opinion, not only does it go on for far too long (and too frequently) without any explanation to their presence, once its revealed that they're ensuring fate follows its path I think it just feels cheap and takes the end scenarios to ridiculous places (like barret being killed but brought back). Whether they have a grander plan for the them remains to be seen, but in this stand alone game, they hurt the story imo. The grounded narrative being told and built were so strong, i don't know why they felt the need to dilute it with this lazy destiny crap and have you fighting a massive city size embodiment of fate as an end boss. It reeks of insecurity & is an unfortunate fall back on JRPGS tropes. The end honestly left me a bit confused and concerned for where they may try and take things next.
I was mostly impressed with the writing but I just feel like Square could have actually cut down on the cutscenes. Sometimes the scenarios simply weren't adding value to the story. Its like watching a TV season which is 14 episodes long when it should have been 10.
Loved the battle system! Only critique is I would have liked to see more battles enforce specific tactics. I never really had to use slow/stop/Sleep/Silence for example.
Edit: The camera system has definite room for improvement. Both in and out of battle. I often got headaches when navigating the big towns.
Sidequests, bad and poorly intergrated into story.
Platform/puzzles/world interaction etc. Expectedly mediocre but a step up from previous FF games. There were even a few moments I actually found satisfying, like Barret having to shoot through the rock walls.
Overall, I'm happy with how it turned out, just hope that going forward they trim down the fat on the core story and go for quality over quantity. Have a refined selection of side quests that are actually intriguing and expand the world and pit you against especially hard foes.
What about you?Last edited by Otter - on 17 May 2020