The game was a full 41 hours for my playthrough on normal, doing all the side quests. People defended REmake 3 having 6 hours of gameplay during a single run, so that alone should say something. But alas, they are not very comparable are they?
God of War is a game that takes little more than that to plat, and while not a jrpg, is a much more comparable title to establish value. They both ended with a cliffhanger to lead into the next game, they both can be beaten in under 30 hours if your rush through and ignore side content, they both played differently than the games they were based on (or in GoW case, the IP it came from), and both were a joy to play (for me). I would say that FFVIIR is very much worth the 60 bucks.
And there is more to it. It is an entirely new game, that is based on events that already took place, that is going its own direction. Without spoilers FFVIIR is more of a spin off/sequel to the original game, and where we go from here is anyone's guess. It does not have a part 2 of the remake subtitle, because there will be no part 2. The FFVIIR was simply setting the stage for what is to come, rather than just retelling the same story. If it ends up being a trilogy, their stories will tie together more like three different games rather than three parts to a story we already know. If you do not believe me, actually play the game, watch the ending, and take in everything that happened. It is hinted at constantly, and made clear as rain what SE is intending to do.
So all in all, new mainline Final Fantasy with average playtime. New plot based as a spin off/follow up to the original...but not the same. Unique gameplay mechanics that is an evolution/combination of past FF games that feels like a natural progression.
Look I have my nitpicks with the game, and it is certainly not GotY material. But it is a complete experience that I enjoyed, and worth the full 60 bucks. People are focusing on the word "remake" too much, and tricking themselves into thinking that this game is somehow different than other franchises that have direct sequels and a roadmap already planned for them.