Fantasy VII is a game that has been debated down to its very core. At one time it was the most celebrated and loved RPG ever made. Nowadays the "cool" kids like to call it for its short comings and are more likely to nominate FFVI or even FFIV over it. Whatever your personal preference it really doesn't matter. The simple fact is that Final Fantasy VII is the most discussed and the most widely known game in the Final Fantasy universe. I would even go as far to say the most discussed JRPG of all time. If your an JRPG fan you have probably played it and whether you liked it or not it is still the most popular Final Fantasy of all time. Now that I got that out of the way. This is my favorite turn based rpg of all time (and trust me kids, I have played quite a few). Aside from my personal feelings towards this game I wanted to make this post as non-biased as I possibly could. I really wanted to point out why Square is making a big mistake on not remaking this game.
The first thing I wanted to talk about is the materia system and why it is my favorite of all FF systems. The simple concept of practice makes perfect is exactly what the materia system is all about. Buy or pick up a materia, use it, level it, master it. There is no junctioning, no grids, just a simple practice makes perfect. You can set up your character in a multitude of ways and if half way through the game you want to ditch your build, go and pick up some new materia and grind it up! It really is simple enough for a 1st grader to figure out and a key reason why Square should be reproducing it. The younger generations out there are most likely not going to turn to a 15 year old game that features very crudely animated blocks that spew out endless amounts of text. Not saying some won't and if you avoid the game for those reasons you have made a grave mistake. I'm just saying that kids today are spoiled with their fancy HD graphics and their hoola hoops and Dan Fogelberg...but i digress.
The second thing is probably the most debated subject when referring to FFVII, the story...I'm not saying that it is the greatest written work of all time. Yes it is very convoluted, yes it can be very immature and sappy, and yes it is one of my favorite stories! I'm not going to dive into it but FFVII has a very long and robust story with many different characters being spotlighted. Cloud is an awesome lead, not my all time favorite (MR. FREEMAN) but when it comes to Japanese developed games he is one of my favorites. There is a lovers triangle and a bulk of other side characters that all have intriguing back stories. In my opinion the PSX era of FF games was the last great era of Squares story telling. Everything post 9 (and yes even 10 @|) left me unamused and actually quite bored. Final Fantasy XIII and its sequel featured a better story than the previous few but still nothing caught me like the old days. Square has outright said that they will not make an FFVII remake until they produce a better game. Your track record is pretty slim there Square and I don't see that happening anytime soon.
Lastly I wanted to talk about grinding and how they can improve it. Now dare I say that they change anything about the original? I do!!! Streamlining the leveling system is the first thing I would tackle in the remake. Now I know I mention grinding a couple paragraphs ago in regards to leveling materia and honestly I see no other way to do that without making the experience trite. In the motion of the story though having to go off for 2-4 hours to grind to a level just to be able to handle a boss is passe now. Dynamic leveling seems to a perfect fit here. If you want to explore DO IT!!! It will always reward you in some way. If you want to punch the gas and drive straight to the final battle, DO IT!!! Whatever your play style the game should give you the option. The last final change I would make to Final Fantasy VII would be to add visible mobs like the past couple of games have. No more squibbly screen and boom battle. Instead picking your fights through the different maps.
That's it! Slap on a pretty coat of paint and hire some good voice actors and your done 9/10 (if not better). I promise the game would sell and dammit I pray it would also help the team to realize their mistakes over the past decade. Do I think any of this will happen? Not really but you know we gamers have spoken out loud at many things in the past couple years with success. I know were yelling but maybe, just maybe if we yell a little louder. They will hear us. I say we start an AVALANCHE of our own and march to Tokyo. AND FORGET YOUR DAMN MONEY!!!