gamescom 2019: It was my first encounter with Final Fantasy and now I want to have Final Fantasy VII Remake

My experience with Final Fantasy is close to zero. In the past, if I remember correctly, I gave one a quick try, and with the best will in the world I can’t remember which one it was. I played a little Dissidia Final Fantasy NT, which is not a “real” Final Fantasy in that sense, on the PS4 and that was it. In view of this, it was at least interesting that Martin put the date for Final Fantasy VII Remake at gamescom on my calendar.

This also opens up a new perspective. What is it like to experience this popular title completely without feeling nostalgic? Let’s put it this way: It didn’t do any harm. This is a complete remake, most comparable to Capcom’s efforts on Resident Evil 2. So, thanks to the third-person perspective, you’re more in the thick of it, based on older screenshots.

First of all: You couldn’t play a lot with the gamescom demo. It was a couple of normal skirmishes and a boss fight against a robot. And the German dubbing that leaves a good impression. So mainly at gamescom there were impressions of the battles that take place here in real time.

With Cloud you plunge into the middle of the action and swing his sword to attack opponents. Depending on the opponent, he automatically jumps into the air during the attacks. Basically there are three important actions here: attack, block and evade. Everything is self-explanatory and easy to understand, it basically doesn’t take any training time to master it.

Of course, the combat system is also not lacking in depth. There we have, for example, the ATB bar, which is constantly being filled with its own attacks. If she reaches certain points, you carry out various commands, heal yourself or complete special attacks, each of which takes up a bar on the ATB bar. These then cause damage, among other things, or fill up the shock display of the respective opponent faster.

If the latter is full, the attacked person gets into a kind of shock and is paralyzed for a short time, while he also suffers more damage. It is definitely worth it, especially with larger opponents or boss opponents, to bring them to the maximum again and again in order to temporarily weaken them. There is also a smaller limit bar. It fills up with Cloud and his companions when they take hits. In the end, it also helps you if you are hit, because if the bar is full, you get into a limit rush and have the opportunity to carry out a particularly effective limit attack.

If you choose commands, magic or objects, the game does not pause in the background, but it is extremely slowed down so that you can give the commands in peace. It is also possible in the fights to switch between the individual characters, control them directly and use their attacks. Or you can stay with the cloud and give them orders.

After the minor skirmishes, the gamescom demo went down against a boss opponent. The fight was divided into several individual phases, depending on how much damage you’ve already done. With each new phase, this larger robot defended itself more strongly, received new attacks such as rocket attacks and a charge of electricity that damage everything in the vicinity. And the developers stage all of this with extremely effective effects, both in terms of the individual attacks and the cutscenes. At the beginning of a phase, the robot fires a volley of rockets at the ceiling. As a result, rubble rains down on the battlefield, behind which you hide in the next phase so as not to be hit by a huge laser.

What did not happen here, but is possible: An opponent can, for example, pin Cloud to the ground with his huge foot, making him unable to move. Then you switch to Barret and fire at the enemy until Cloud can free himself.

It was only playable for a relatively short section at gamescom, but here you can already see the high pace of the game during the fights, with boss fights you almost get into a kind of intoxication on the ride until the end of the argument. Final Fantasy VII Remake is going at a high pace here, which suits me, and at the same time does not lack depth through additional commands and the like. I haven’t heard much of the story yet, but I found the gameplay alluded to as thrilling. It made me want more, Final Fantasy VII Remake is well on its way to becoming the first installment in the series that I play through.

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