Final Fantasy VII Remake’s second chapter is called ‘Rebirth’

During a Final Fantasy VII 25th anniversary celebration, alongside announcements of a Final Fantasy VII Crisis Core remake and news that Remake Intergrade will launch on Steam later this month, we got our first tiny glimpse of the next part of Final Fantasy VII Remake.

It’ll be called Rebirth, and seems to focus on some of the major plotlines of the original (we won’t get spoilery) all while throwing a wrench into our expectations.

We see protagonist Cloud and antagonist Sephiroth marching around a later area of the original game with lush vegetation, while fellow party member Aerith (we think) muses off-screen on whether she’s died. Or not. 

We also get a brief glimpse of Cloud resting on the shoulder of Zack – the hero of Crisis Core. So, er, yeah. Even if you’re totally up to speed with FFVII lore and spin-offs, this trailer is a giant question mark to get fans talking and theorizing for the next twelve months and beyond.

Producer Yoshinori Kitase said during the stream that: “Making the middle part of a trilogy has its own challenges, but there are plenty of classic second installments in the world of film that are defined by stunning story twists and deeper explorations of their characters.”

The game’s director, Naoki Hamaguchi, said: “The Final Fantasy 7 remake project will be a three-part trilogy, but Final Fantasy 7 Rebirth is much more than just one installment in the series.”

There you have it. Final Fantasy VII Remake will be a trilogy. And so very many spin-off games on the side.

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Final Fantasy 5 and 6 Remakes Will Be Removed From Steam

Square Enix updated the Steam pages of its Final Fantasy 5 and remakes with a message announcing that the two titles are being removed from the popular digital gaming marketplace. After July 27, both Japanese roleplaying games will no longer be purchasable. “Instead, please purchase the pixelated remaster version of “Final Fantasy VI,” coming soon,” Square stated.

The Final Fantasy 5 and remakes were widely panned by fans due to both of them being ports of the mobile version, which were poorly received as well. Redone art and gameplay quirks made the experience inferior to the original versions and the Gameboy Advance ports.

While players are usually quick to disagree with a decision like this, it’s the right way to go about ushering in the new Final Fantasy Pixel Remaster collection. The mobile-ported remakes on Steam always came off as a cheap cash grab, and their technical inferiority to the new pixelated remasters will push them to the wayside come release.

The move should remove potential confusion for buyers, as the upcoming remake won’t be on shelves with the old version at the same time. This choice from Square gets rid of the middleman and keeps things as simple as possible while hopefully providing a better product.

Now all we have to do is hope that the new pixel remasters turn out better than previous efforts. Thankfully, Square is already taking a step in the right direction by keeping the sprite work intact. However, the lack of a confirmed console release and sparse details have fans worried.

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Expect even more Square Enix remakes in the future

There’s no question that Final Fantasy VII Remake was one of the biggest games of 2020 – at least among PS4 owners – so now it shouldn’t come as a surprise that we’re hearing of even more Square Enix remakes that are in the pipeline. Apparently, Square Enix has tapped Forever Entertainment to produce a slate of several new remakes, but for now, just what those remakes are is being kept under wraps.

That’s according to Polish site Biznes, at any rate, which says that Forever has been recruited by Square Enix to create “several game remakes” that are all from a single brand. That is probably the most interesting tidbit of information found in that Biznes report – Square Enix is apparently looking to release remakes from an older franchise, not just individual remakes of past one-off releases.

Just what that franchise could be is anyone’s guess. When the topic is Square Enix, our minds immediately jump to the Final Fantasy or Dragon Quest series, and while those could indeed be the candidates, Square Enix may look to other franchises that have laid dormant for far longer. Unfortunately, figuring out which franchise that could be is downright impossible, because Square Enix has a ton of classic franchises and games that seem ripe for a remake (though the person writing this article certainly wouldn’t mind seeing Chrono Trigger and Chrono Cross remakes, for what it may be worth).

The report in Biznes says that Forever Entertainment will get to keep “over 50%” of the revenue generated by these remakes, which seems like a pretty good deal to us, though it will have to cover the costs of development itself, it seems. Forever does have some experience in this realm, as it was the studio behind the Switch version of 2019’s Panzer Dragoon: Remake.

We’ll just have to wait and see what happens from here, but assuming this Biznes report is accurate, Square Enix won’t be hopping off the remake train anytime soon. We’ll let you know if either company reveals more in the future, so stay tuned for that.

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Pokemon Brilliant Diamond and Shining Pearl remakes announced for Nintendo Switch

Pokemon fans have been asking for them for years, and now it seems they’re getting them: The Pokemon Company has confirmed that Pokemon Diamond and Pearl are being remade for the Nintendo Switch. It seems that ever since the Switch was released, Pokemon fans have been wondering when we’re going to get remakes of Diamond and Pearl, and they were finally revealed during today’s Pokemon Presents presentation.

Dubbed Pokemon Brilliant Diamond and Shining Pearl, there isn’t a whole lot that we know about these games at the moment. Obviously, we’ll be returning to the Sinnoh region in these games, and judging from the announcement trailer you see below, the remade graphics are at least somewhat faithful to the original game. While Brilliant Sapphire and Shining Pearl are clearly full 3D games, they have their own unique art style and aren’t being remade in the style of Pokemon Sword and Shield.

On the official Pokemon Brilliant Diamond and Shining Pearl website, Game Freak says that the remakes will “include easy-to-understand, player-friendly conveniences of the modern Pokemon series, plus up-close-and-personal Pokemon battle scenes.” Obviously, Chimchar, Piplup, and Turtwig will be returning as the starter Pokemon in these remakes, while Dialga and Palkia will be the version legendaries.

If games like HeartGold and SoulSilver or Alpha Sapphire and Omega Ruby are any indication, we can expect a pair of remakes that more or less stay faithful to the original while doing things like padding out the endgame and adding various quality-of-life improvements. Also revealed today is the fact that Pokemon Brilliant Diamond and Shining Pearl will be developed by ILCA, Inc – the developer behind Pokemon Home – and not Game Freak. Game Freak will still have a hand in development, though, as Junichi Masuda will serve as one of the game directors alongside ILCA’s Yuichi Ueda.

So, we’re about to see another developer take a crack at the Pokemon series, likely because Game Freak is already working on the next Pokemon installments. Pokemon Brilliant Diamond and Shining Pearl will be out in late 2021 on Nintendo Switch, and we’ll let you know when we hear more about the games.

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