The big news yesterday (well, it was big news to me, unless you count the poor schmuck who actually got fired for doing his job) turned out to be that legendary game developer Square-Enix has finally caved to massive demand in order to re-release its seminal PlayStation-era game, Final Fantasy VII, on PC, complete with absolutely no new or updated graphics or gameplay except for a tacked-on achievement system, the ability to save you games to the cloud (har har) and some bullshit feature that will let you top off your health, mana, and in-game money – most likely for a real-money micro-transaction. The only reason Square-Enix is doing this is apparently because FF7 fans are a bunch of fucking morons and they think we’ll buy anything as long as there’s a a pair of giant tits on the box.
I am pretty well pissed off about this, as it feels like nothing more than a poorly-disguised cash grab. I can’t believe that all the time and effort that went in to create some bogus, completely useless features like achievement-tracking and cloud saves and not into updating the 1997-era 3d graphics and sound. Not only that, but implementing a real money cash shop? Are you fucking kidding me? If they sell this game for anything more than $10 I am going to start throwing Molotov cocktails through the windows of every Japanese embassy and consulate I can find.
“But wait,” you might be saying, “it’s a pretty serious project porting a console game to the PC, isn’t it? I’m sure they spent a lot of time working on that conversion!” Well, I’m sure they did – when they originally ported it to PC fourteen fucking years ago. I know this because I’m one of those sick idiots who was so obsessed with FF7 that I ran out and bought the stupid PC version, even though I already had the original PlayStation discs in my possession. The best part? It wasn’t even that good a fucking port – it was buggy as hell and the music sounded like shit in comparison to the original digital audio.
Yes, like nearly everyone of my generation, I spent countless hours hunched over my PlayStation controller, staring blearily into an old CRT television into the wee hours of the night and grinding like a mad cunt in order to take on the Ruby and Emerald Weapons. I had not one, not two, but an entire stable filled with S-Class Gold Chocobos, and enough W-Summon, Mime, and Knights of the Round Materia to just sit back and go microwave some Hot Pockets or something during boss fights. I scoured every god damned inch of that game on multiple playthroughs, and I wasn’t even the most obsessed out of my entire circle of friends; someone I know actually played so much that the elapsed play time on their game actually pinned itself at 99:99, so believe me when I say that my friends and I were balls-deep in FF7 back in its heyday.
Well, I’ll be damned if I’m paying for the same fucking game a third time in a row. Those goofy bells and whistles hold absolutely no interest for me, and as I’ve got the entire game burned into my memory like a brand depicting the entire Board of Directors of Square-Enix laughing and lighting cigars with $100 bills, I’ll either find my PC copy – or my original PSX discs – if I want to revisit the heady days of my youth. In fact (and this is something that was pointed out to me last night) the modding community has been hard at work on the PC version that came out a decade and a half ago, and judging from how the game looks on YouTube, Square-Enix can go suck on some big fat Materia if they think I’m going to throw any more of my cash down their gaping maw.
I’m still pissed off about Final Fantasy: The Spirits Within, too.