The Square Enix blog is continuing its series of retrospectives on the development of Final Fantasy VII Remake. The latest installment covers FFVII Remake Chapter 4. While FFVII Remake is in large part a retelling of the original FFVII, it takes extra time to expand on Cloud and the party’s adventure in Midgar. As a result, the game does feature a significant amount of new content that expands on moments in the first iteration of the story.
The blog delivers insights and comments on the chapter’s development from Scenario Design Co-Director Motomu Toriyama, Game Design Co-Director Naoki Hamaguchi, Facial Director Akira Iwasawa, Music Superviso Keiji Kawamori, Sound Director Makoto Ise, Battle Director Teruki Endo, and Senior Assistant Producer Yuma Watanabe.
Note: The blog entry contains spoilers for Chapter 4 of Final Fantasy VII Remake.
FFVII Remake Chapter 4 is titled “Mad Dash” and is notably all-original to Final Fantasy VII‘s story. It takes place the night before Avalanche is to destroy Shinra Mako Reactor 5. While Tifa and Barrett rest Cloud is approached by Jessie, who proposes a secret midnight outing to Jessie’s parents’ house in Midgar proper. Tagging along are Biggs and Wedge. The party gets into a running battle with Shinra’s bike soldiers, as well as with Roche, a SOLDIER member.
According to Toriyama, FFVII Remake Chapter 4 was created with the objective of fleshing out the relationship between Cloud and Avalanche. In the original, Avalanche members besides Barrett did not get much screen time or personality. In FFVII Remake, though, players get to see the characters “private relationships” and better empathize with them and the connection they’ve built. It also helps illustrate the connection between Barrett’s Avalanche cell and the larger Avalanche organization.
Hamaguchi revealed that Roche was originally intended to be a generic Shinra SOLDIER operative that acted as a boss for the G-Bike section of the chapter. However, the team felt it would be fun to have the boss recur for the second major encounter of the chapter, at the 7-6 Annex facility. It was then that the team gave him a distinct personality, integrating him into the FFVII Remake Chapter 4 story. As a result, Roche became a breakout star of that moment, using his flamboyant G-Bike maneuvers and freewheeling personality to steal his scenes and act as a foil to Cloud’s taciturn disposition.
The blog contains more detail, including insights regarding the music, summons, cute cats, and Wedge’s cheeks. Final Fantasy VII Remake is available on PS4, and its upgraded Intergrade version is available on PS5 and PC. The next installment, Rebirthis in development.