And why they shouldn't change a thing.
Final Fantasy 7 Remake is probably the most anticipated game to come this year
Final Fantasy 7 Remake will be a hotbed of controversy. I hope.
Standards have changed and with that comes those who seek offence. I may not endorse all the issues presented, however there is a difference between disagreeing with something and tempering it down to pretend it does not happen.
Look back at the Friends controversy on Netflix. Upon it’s release onto Netflix, millennial viewers flooded to their various social platforms to express there thoughts and feelings as to moments of Homophobia and Sexism.
As well as being a different time, these things do happen. Removing these moments would change the show for the worse. Not all character’s traits are desirable even if we like the characters themselves.
This brings me to Final Fantasy 7 Remake, the original was also created in the 90s. 22 years ago the world was a different place and ideas that were acceptable and commonplace then are not deemed as okay anymore.
So what do we do?
Do we remove the scenes?
Replace them with more socially acceptable scenes?
Should we add disclaimers to every scene that may be offensive to gamers out there?
In my opinion the only thing we can do is keep the games exactly as they are and allow people to judge them on their own merits.
So with that in mind, here are five scenes Final Fantasy 7 remake should absolute keep from the original.
1) Cid's attitude towards Shera
Domestic violence is never acceptable. Some may say that Cid’s attitude towards Shera borders on domestic abuse in the original. There will undoubtedly be a temptation from the people of Square Enix to pacify this in Final Fantasy 7 remake.
This cannot happen.
The reasons for this are two fold. Firstly massaging out the knots of Cid’s character will massively detract from his arc. He holds Shera responsible for destroying his dreams of outer space. Although he is one of the main protagonists in the game it is a fact of life that some people who do good things also have some odious attributes.
Secondly removing this darker side to Cid’s nature is the equivalent of sticking one’s own head in the sand and pretending that even those we respect and could be seen to be heroic can also be guilty of some repugnant actions.
Part of what makes Final Fantasy 7 work is the fact that a lot of the characters have obvious flaws. They are able to overcome these and work together for the greater goal.
Finally also Cid smokes, always has, always will. Get over it. I hate smoking and the strain it puts on people’s health but people do it. So Cid better have a God damn cigarette in his mouth with a obscene dialogue to match.
2) The Massacre in the Shinra Building
This is a little more straight forward. I can only see this being removed if the game comes out with a teen rating. Sephiroth/Jenova are ruthless and homicidal in pursuit of their goal. Obviously the original game could show these almost censored by graphical restraints rather than design. This scene shows trails of blood and really exposes the violent nature of the antagonists.
22 years with the graphical realism available these scenes will become a lot more difficult to show in what some may deem an acceptable nature. Especially if the game is hamstrung by a PEGI 12 rating or teen in the US. It is for that reason I truly believe the games must either be a PEGI 16 or Mature rating for our American Cousins.
Not convinced this needs to be the case.
Let’s compare the PEGI ratings for 12 and 16.
As you can see under PEGI 12 the game is limited to non realistic violence whereas under PEGI 16 the door is open up to more realistic depictions of violence. This will be more appropriate to such scenes as the Shinra building in Final Fantasy 7 Remake.
Without it the scene loses much of it’s animosity thus adversely affecting our view of the monsters that are Sephiroth and Jenova.
3) Avalanche are terrorists
Regardless of their motivations, Barret, Tifa, Wedge, Biggs and Jessie are terrorists. There can be no denying of this in Final Fantasy 7 Remake. Some of the acts they commit are horrific, explosions at reactors killed innocent NPCs who are simply working to feed their families.
I for one hope they do not tone this down in the remake. I firmly believe an important part in their character arcs is realising their grave mistakes and working to atone them. The game acknowledges this effectively and pushes them to seek redemption through saving the planet.
4) Aerith Death - Final FANTASY 7 Remake MUSt do it Justice.
This cannot have happened.
Much like Cloud, my eyes were burning.
Gamers new and old need to feel this scene in the same way. Hearing the sword piercing Aerith’s heart. It was unexpected and probably the most emotional scene I have experienced as a gamer to date. Although the death of Meryl came close.
None of this fade to black nonsense, None of this off scene death. I do not want my eyes averted. I want to feel this scene hit me as much as it did in the original.
But that’s just me.
5) Cross Dressing and Honey Bee in
Firstly let’s cover the obvious.
When I say this scene has to be in the game. I don’t mean we need a scene where Cloud is being forced into an unnecessary gang-bang. Even in the original scene the scene fades out somewhat and present its’ own tasteful version of this. It would be impossible to showcase such a scene anyway even were the game to be slapped with a PEGI 18 rating.
In addtional to this The Honey Bee Inn and Sector 6 also have scenes in danger of being, shall we say “Disneyfied”. For Instance the girls who apply make up to Cloud, as well as the cross dressing itself supplemented by the loathsome yet amusing Don Corneo. Although some may argue they are not integral to the plot and narrative, they are nonetheless imperative to world the game creates.
Final Fantasy 7 Remake: Doomed to be Censored
I pray more out of hope than expectation that Final Fantasy 7 Remake receives a PEGI 16 or “Mature” rating. However I cannot see it. Square Enix will want to milk their cash cow for all its’ worth which makes sense. One way of doing this is by making it accessible to a younger audience. The social atmosphere of late, married with Sony’s recent censorship of games from Asia could also be problematic.
One quote sticks out to me when I consider these issues.
“I disapprove of what you say, but I will defend to the death your right to say it”
Evelyn Beatrice Hall (28 September 1868 – 13 April 1956)