Yeah, AVALANCHE always kind of looked like the type of people to dress themselves in a way they thought "looked cool" rather than really all that functional. I think these current designs we're seeing look great. An excellent cross between adherence to the original design and a more realistic version for the HD age.
Since these pictures are cropping up, this probably means any embargo on these images is virtually over. I wonder if that means we'll see some of the exclusive stuff in upcoming magazines soon. One can hope...
Also, hope Cloud's redesign is more consistent with the anime-look of the Avalanche members.
I remember, even watching the trailer for the first time, that I found Cloud's overly realistic face to look horribly inconsistent with the more anime-esque features of Jessie and James.
I agree, the shading doesn't look as good as the others either... and also, apparently all the characters from this thing were supposedly redesigned anyway. So even if it were legit it probably doesn't apply.