Final Fantasy VII: The Unused Text Series

77 Flares 77 Flares ×

The original Final Fantasy VII is widely known for the many secrets left behind in its code. However, by using a field editor anyone can view the game’s used and unused script. This (as of yet unfinished) series of articles will present to the reader, in addition to entertaining commentary, all the unused text in the game in an order vaguely representing a normal playthrough; starting with the bombing of the Mako Reactor, continuing up to the final confrontation with Sephiroth, and ending with coverage of the debug rooms.

Links to each article provided below. It is highly recommended though that you first of all read the Term Register before diving into any of the articles. Scroll further down to Credits to see the list of people who contributed to this project.

Part 1: Bombing Mission & The Train Ride
Part 2: Sector 7 Slums
Part 3: Train Escape & The Sector 5 Slums
Part 4: Honey Bee Inn – (1) Entrance, Lobby & Dressing Room
Part 4: Honey Bee Inn – (2) Waiting Room & Second Floor
Part 5: Rescuing Aeris, Story Time at the Inn – (1) Wall Market to Shinra HQ Library
Part 5: Rescuing Aeris, Story Time at the Inn – (2) Shinra HQ Library to Kalm
Part 6: Chocobo Farm to Corel Prison – (1) Chocobo Farm to Cargo Ship
Part 6: Chocobo Farm to Corel Prison – (2) Costa del Sol to Corel Prison
Part 7: Gongaga to Wutai
Part 8: Keystone Quest to End of Disc 1
Part 9: Over the Glacier and to Attack on Junon



Term Register

The commentary was written by the leader of this project: Shademp. To flesh out these sections and to provide the reader with a deeper understanding of FFVII pertinent game mechanics and script formatting are explained below. The former are important for describing the relative in-game accessibility of the unused text.

Plot Progression Value
Plot Progression Value (PPV) points represent where in the game’s plot you find yourself. The game begins at PPV = 0 and ends at PPV = 1999. Events occur only at fixed PPV intervals. Occasionally I will use the symbols “>” and “<” to write that PPV must be “greater than ___” or “lesser than ___” in order for an event to occur.

Another valid term is “Game Moment” (GM) which is what Makou Reactor calls it. In retrospect I regret not using GM instead of PPV, but to prevent confusion I will let the latter term stay in all published articles.

Flag
Flags register variables such as whether a chest is opened or closed, whether you’ve spoken to an NPC, and whether a scene has occurred. Whether and how a scene occurs is determined by which flags have been set. While this is merely a technical way to describe, for example, that you must have spoken to Tifa outside the bar in order for the scene inside the bar to occur, the term flag may pop up now and then.

Unlockable versus Locked Text
Many pieces of unused text have references in the game code; they have data for the size of the dialogue window in which they will appear, the character or object that the text code belongs to etc. This is what qualifies as “Unlockable Text”. The “Locked Text” in contrast only exists as text data, but no code confirms the exact context in which it was meant to be used. Entire scenes can be written in Locked Text without any additional choreography, meaning that unless we are dealing with Unlockable Text there is no chance of watching a scene unfold complete with character animations and dialogue windows. This should make it clear why some unused scenes have videos devoted to them while others do not.

That is, unless one feels brave enough to completely mod forth the context for the locked text to appear in.

Borders
Invisible lines on the field that act as prompts for scenes are called “borders”. Borders can be on or off. Naturally if a border is off it won’t register that you crossed it and thus no event will take place.

Duplicate Groups
The game’s maps, or “fields”, are what contains both the used and unused script. For certain groups of maps, there is more than one field that contains the same script. For example, each map of the Mythril Mines has its own text plus the text of all the other fields in the cave. Though their dialogue is present in every field, this does not mean that you can, for example, encounter the Turks anywhere in the Mythril Mines. These are merely duplicates; likely created by the author to review large sections of the game without having to toggle between multiple maps.

This is important for two reasons:

  1. We can not always discern with 100% certainty which one of the maps the text was intended for.
  2. Sometimes instances of the duplicate text are different from their cloned counterparts. Cases like these are included here. Any exactly duplicated lines or text entries which are empty and can’t be figured out are not. Aside from those, these articles cover the unused field script in its entirety.

Love Points
Aeris, Tifa, Barret and Yuffie can accumulate Love Points based on how the player decides to treat them during the journey. In general, a negative dialogue option will diminish the Love Points for the relevant character and a positive option will increase it. The character with the most Love Points is the one with whom Cloud ends up going on a date at the Gold Saucer. Naturally, with unused dialogue options comes unused situations that once affected Love Points.

Article and Script Layout
The introduction mentions the main events that the article covers. This is followed by embedded videos, uploaded on my channel, showing the parts of the unused material that can be triggered. The Honey Bee Inn article is the exception in that the embedded videos are scattered throughout the article rather than placed at the very beginning.

Framing the text of an area is a title with the location’s name and/or a description of its theme, followed by the field’s file name encased in brackets. Either a clean image rip of said field, or an in-game snapshot, then helps visualize the area. The actual text then follows.

Example:

Great Glacier, Aeris Resurrected (HYOU3)

{Used English Text} {Japanese Text} {Retranslation}

A couple of notes:
-Used dialogue is included to add context to that which is unused. The used text is written in bold letters.
-The English text is from the PC version of FFVII which is slightly different from the PSX script. All screencaps are from the PSX versions.
-There are two Japanese versions of FFVII: The first release, abbreviated here as JORG, and the second release, called “FFVII International”, abbreviated as JINT. Any script differences between JORG and JINT will be detailed in the commentary.
-Retranslations are provided where the original English text is misleading or where it simply was never translated to begin with.
-Retranslations are sometimes given even if the official localization was not wrong, just to show how the same meaning could be translated and written in multiple ways.
-When a text entry is empty in the English game it is represented by an empty column. When there is no empty column left of the Japanese text, that entry was deleted in the English version.

{Unlockable Text}

Any text that requires script editors, cheat codes or other additional tools to read qualifies as unused text. If a text entry is unlockable, the field data refers to this text at some point in its code. This normally means the text has a given dialogue window size and placement on the screen. Often times this is coupled with additional scene choreography, such as character animations or map jumps.

{Locked Unused Text}

Locked text contains no information other than the text itself. All locked text entries are marked with thick borders.

Location Name

{Unlockable Location Name}

Location Name

{Locked Location Name}

Location names, the area names seen by accessing the menu, are marked with the title “Location Name” right above the table. Often times menu access will be denied in a field, hence the location name’s status as unseen, but some location names are completely unused even with menu access. If a field lacks a location name it will assume the name of the previous field that the player visited.


Credits

I want to thank the following individuals for making this compilation possible and for improving it with their various contributions:

- GlitterBerri: For translating Part 1-8 in the article series, the importance of her contribution can not be understated. You can find all of her translation work, including these articles, on her website.
GlitterBerri was also the editor for Part 1-4 which greatly added to the quality of these articles.

- The_Kusabi: For translating Part 9 and enriching the article commentary with his knowledge on the Japanese language, a huge thanks to The_Kusabi.

- BrutalAl: This guy not only made complete rips of the script of both Japanese versions of FFVII, but automized an immense part of the script research in addition to supplying tons of useful cheat codes. Visit his YouTube account to see his FFVII videos.

- Myst6re: Creator of the FFVII script editor
Makou Reactor. Without this piece of software the commentary would not be nearly as extensive.

- Lasyan3: Creator of the program
Mass Field Update. With the combined use of this software and Makou Reactor one can easily mod the PSX versions of FFVII. This has been essential for unlocking text that otherwise would have gone unseen in-game.

- Robert Seddon: One of the first people to deeply investigate the unused field text of FFVII. He shared his work via his blog, The Face of the Moon. His work is part of what inspired this article series.
Robert Seddon also provided the technical explanation for the erroneous kanji, seen and explained in Part 4.

- Kay: Pointed out the developer interview from page 569 of the FFVII UO, which is used at the end of the Honey Bee Inn article. See Kay’s own article work, posted on electrolit.

- Fangu: For helping with the new code that had to be implemented to the articles after the site redesign.

- Everyone else: Thank you to all of you for supporting us during this project!

77 Flares Twitter 5 Facebook 68 Pin It Share 0 Google+ 4 77 Flares ×