[Spoilers] Material Ultimania Plus discussion

The Twilight Mexican

Ex-SeeD-ingly good
AKA
TresDias
Yeah, I doubt he's being redeemed. I do expect we will fight with him against some enemy (possibly Genesis), but only because they're a common threat to humanity's safety and Sephiroth's ambitions.

At any rate: nice to see the book directly call out that the Sephiroth who appeared at the end of the highway in front of everyone was not the same physical entity they had encountered previously. There were still hold-outs on the meaning of the first Remake Ultimania's comment about this Seph being one not seen in the original -- and even still after all of Sephiroth's battle lines were pointed out.

This is decidedly unambiguous.

“Aerith says the word "Freedom" in response to Zack's line”

CALLED IT
I immediately thought of your other post too. Lol Well done.
 

Eerie

Fire and Blood
Just how many times did I say Aerith saw the Zack flashback and people doubted it, here even? Even after I showed screenshots that were telling, that she was the only one receiving it and making me believe that indeed Sephiroth may have been taunting her with those. And we can see Aerith versus Sephiroth, the reason why she's been crafted this way in Remake, why she has more memories of the future, and is more in tune with the Planet. But we know she can misunderstand too, so it's going to be interesting to see what's going to happen next.

I do think there's a possibility for Sephiroth to find redemption, BUT it will be this chapter's Sephiroth at the very end of the several parts games, and he will find redemption through the acceptation of death - which he still doesn't want right now. The rest will go as usual, so the OG Sephiroth will still show up again in ACC, because he won't be redeemed at this point of his life.
 

The Twilight Mexican

Ex-SeeD-ingly good
AKA
TresDias
I do think there's a possibility for Sephiroth to find redemption, BUT it will be this chapter's Sephiroth at the very end of the several parts games, and he will find redemption through the acceptation of death - which he still doesn't want right now. The rest will go as usual, so the OG Sephiroth will still show up again in ACC, because he won't be redeemed at this point of his life.
I can definitely see that, and I should say I do see the writing on the wall here for some element of "Sephiroth was right" as well. It seems clear that Seph and Aerith are being set up as thematic opposites, as they've always been, but here with regard to accepting loss.

It's now being established that Sephiroth believes the way to preserve the planet is through the sacrifice of (specific? all?) people, and he believes Cloud will grow strong enough to see this job done through suffering loss as well. Aerith, meanwhile, stands opposed to Sephiroth's philosophy and likely wants to find a way to save the planet where everyone lives. Her actions meant fewer people died in Sector 7 this time, and she may also be responsible for a version of Zack being alive in a different timeline.

But as Toriyama reminds us ... loss is one of FFVII's essential themes. A world where everyone makes it would be a different world.

A world where Zack didn't hand off his sword to Cloud is one where Cloud didn't take it up. Both Aerith and Sephiroth have a reckoning to come to terms with -- a balance between them to find.

Whether this squaring of the balance will involve just acceptance or the Terrier and Beagle realities literally merging -- we wait and see.
 

KindOfBlue

Pro Adventurer
AKA
Blue
Funny thing is I didn’t catch Aerith seeing Zack’s last stand the first few times, only after watching a few different playthroughs did it occur to me…I can’t remember if any of the streamers I watched pointed that out either
 
So does Aerith still have extra knowledge or did the Whispers snatched everything away before they got nuked?
She's acting very... I don't want to say clueless, but Aerith feels off to me at the end of the game. Her shaking her head at Cloud's and Tifa's questions really irked me like "OH! You have nothing to say now?"

I'm thinking whatever "memories" she'd acquired have been snatched, but not so much because the whispers succeeded in taking them, but with the destruction of Harbinger and crew. Those rainbow colored strings of events were basically being tossed into the universe each time we injured Harbinger and I get the sense that heavily related to Aerith's foresight.

She also doesn't get to see any of the visions the party does during that fight, and that's why she looks over at Red for an explanation. Each event is also after she died. I personally like this a lot better because now Aerith is on an even playing field with the party and oblivious to what's to come. I won't feel so betrayed by her knowing stuff and withholding it anymore, even if that wasn't what she was doing before.
 

TurquoiseHammer

Pro Adventurer
AKA
Ultimasamune
She's acting very... I don't want to say clueless, but Aerith feels off to me at the end of the game. Her shaking her head at Cloud's and Tifa's questions really irked me like "OH! You have nothing to say now?"

I'm thinking whatever "memories" she'd acquired have been snatched, but not so much because the whispers succeeded in taking them, but with the destruction of Harbinger and crew. Those rainbow colored strings of events were basically being tossed into the universe each time we injured Harbinger and I get the sense that heavily related to Aerith's foresight.

She also doesn't get to see any of the visions the party does during that fight, and that's why she looks over at Red for an explanation. Each event is also after she died. I personally like this a lot better because now Aerith is on an even playing field with the party and oblivious to what's to come. I won't feel so betrayed by her knowing stuff and withholding it anymore, even if that wasn't what she was doing before.
It does irk me how Aerith suddenly reverts to lines like "how long is a day's walk?" and "my tummy hurts" when a few hours ago she was doing hardcore oracle shit. So there is reason to suspect her foresight has been stripped or at least drastically diminished, and I like your way of explaining how that happened sort of piece by piece. Are the harbinger's visions in reverse chronological order? If you count the white materia one as a vision of Bugenhagan recounting Aerith's death then I guess they are. So it makes sense that the future is being gradually peeled back as you chip away at the embodiment of fate.

Having said that, narratively it makes more sense to me that Aerith would retain her special powers and Lifestream connection, if only as a foil for a Sephiroth with future knowledge. I feel like we have to have someone who can sense what's going on in Zack's timeline (assuming it's a different one).
 

Eerie

Fire and Blood
I don't think Aerith has lost her knowledge. I think that she's not sure how everything's going to come into play, now that they have beaten *destiny*. She knows how things are supposed to go *normally* but... her actions have changed that (or at least she believes it). Zack's alive, even if unreachable, for example. So to her that knowledge is... outdated?

About her scene with Barret, I want to say that it's because the NA version kind of really changed Aerith's tone during the whole game. In French, she does sound very childish, and I understand it's the same in JP (did you really think she swears? Think again), so her scene with Barret is actually very in tune with how she is during the whole game - except for chapter 18.
 

Roundhouse

Pro Adventurer
That role is reserved for Genesis.

As for Seph wanting sacrifices and Aerith wanting life, I want the opposite! Seph offers to -save- Aerith's life in exchange for Cloud's help, while Aerith would of course rather die than go that route.
 

cold_spirit

Pro Adventurer
AKA
AlexT
At any rate: nice to see the book directly call out that the Sephiroth who appeared at the end of the highway in front of everyone was not the same physical entity they had encountered previously.
The translation is "Only Aerith notices that this Sephiroth is different from the one they saw at the Shinra Building."

The other three Sephiroth forms listed in the original Ultimania (flashback, illusion, and black cloaked man) all portray one singular "Sephiroth". I'm curious, do people see this forth Sephiroth form as a sperate entity or as a new method for him to manifest himself?

I'm hoping for the latter. Having two identical Sephiroths running around would be... silly.
 
Having two identical Sephiroths running around would be... silly.
But the silliness won't stop there! When the team reaches the Northern Crater and the Reunion is about to happen, Cloud will uncover the face of one of the Black Cloaks only to find...HIMSELF! Cloud encounters his split "Terrier timeline" self who is hopelessly under the influence of Jenova's/Sephiroth's will, even moreso than Beagle-timeline Cloud. But Beagle-Cloud assumes this other Terrier-Cloud to be a clone, which plays into the false narrative of Beagle-Cloud himself just being an experiment, and that's how Beagle-Cloud has his mind destroyed and ends up giving the Black Materia to Sephiroth in the Northern Cave.
 

eleamaya

Pro Adventurer
Sephiroth and Aerith both seem to have access to memories and knowledge in the LIfestream, he might know what Zack and Aerith were to each other
Didn't Sephiroth already know that in Crisis Core when he told Zack to return to the slum in Junon? He was the person who always interrupted Zack's date with Aerith anyway. And by dialogue options, you can get that Zack bragged about Aerith as a girlfriend to fellow SOLDIERs and Kunsel would explain to Sephiroth about Zack spending time with Aerith once more before leaving for Nibelheim. If those dialogues were the canon route, no way Sephiroth never heard that.

But yeah, we dunno yet if her motive to change fate is because of Zack. I think it's plausible as one of many reasons, not sole.

Just how many times did I say Aerith saw the Zack flashback and people doubted it, here even?
Is that you? Not me?
lol, maybe I'm barely here.

Before the confirmation in this Ultimania, I always think Aerith hesitate at first because she's aware there'd be "a steep price" of changing fate since she responds to Zack's line. (freedom = changing fate behind the wall) Now the question for the next game is "What is the price? Is it an alternate timeline/different world?"
 
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Eerie

Fire and Blood
I still have the screenshots that I took for this occasion lolsob. And I mean I don't even ship zerith but it was there, plainly in our faces lol.
 

cold_spirit

Pro Adventurer
AKA
AlexT
On two Sephiroths: I could accept it more if Chapter 18 Sephiroth had some visual difference to help separate him. Maybe tattered clothing or wing, anything really.

If we're leaning towards separate entities, then does pre-Chapter 18 Sephiroth have the same knowledge on "destiny" and the Whispers as Chapter 18 Sephiroth? If not, how does pre-Chapter 18 Sephiroth know to antagonize Cloud about Aerith on Loveless Avenue? Why the newfound interest in Cloud at all? If they share that knowledge, then what's the distinction between them?

It doesn't add up to me. I can only see it working if it's a singular consciousness manifesting in different ways. Like the three other Sephiroth forms.
 

Makoeyes987

Listen closely, there is meaning in my words.
AKA
Smooth Criminal
They said in the Ultimania Plus that these Sephiroths share consciousness. They're not isolated or unaware from each other and want the same thing.

That's why you had the Chapter 3 illusionary Sephiroth mentioning how Cloud can't save anyone or even himself (an allusion to the future), and then the meaning of his words about the planet dying now carries a double meaning.

Sephiroth in Chapter 3 wasn't simply talking about the Planet dying from Shinra in the present. He meant the Planet dying in the far future. And how with its death all their precious memories together would disappear. There's a darker and strange undertone to that scene beyond the present, and it brings to together why this Sephiroth is mentally haranguing and tormenting Cloud in earnest.

He wants Cloud to defy destiny. To become strong enough to ensure that whatever destiny exists that results in the Planet's end gets thwarted. "Through suffering you will grow stronger." etc etc.
 

Makoeyes987

Listen closely, there is meaning in my words.
AKA
Smooth Criminal
Oh, it's very rewarding. :awesome:

I want to know exactly what this Sephiroth is, and where this is going. This is the beginning of the end, after all. Such a culmination only works as the end of everything, because it is extremely complicated. But as a capstone to what this saga has been? I find it very intriguing. It's like the saying, "go big." Go all in and make it something massive. If Sephiroth wants to redo FFVII and fight the inevitable end that comes with existence and make us confront the reality of senescence, I'll bite and see how it goes. :monster:
 

cold_spirit

Pro Adventurer
AKA
AlexT
Okay, so here is Audrey's Ultimania Plus translation: "The Sephiroths that you see throughout the game are all different... All of these stem from the will and conscience of Sephiroth that is at play here."

So Chapter 18 Sephiroth is a separate entity, but at the same time he stems from a single "will and conscience" that the others do.

Still, I wonder why the storytellers added this "unknown" form. Why not just have him manifest from a black cloaked man? His origin must be pretty revealing if they're keeping tightlipped about it.
 
This is all so complicated and solving it doesn't even feel rewarding, it's just "well, huh. Whatever."
People talk about the joy of Square's unexpected direction with Remake giving us so much to speculate on. On the other hand, they've also given us so much to speculate on. It's a blessing and a curse. Plenty of forum activity as a result. But the long wait also means that we'll be running loops and circles for years and years, repeating the same theories and arguments over and over. Square Enix are the Whispers and we are but under their control. I partake in the speculations and theories same as everybody else but a part of me will always mourn the loss of the reality where Remake DIDN'T go bonkers and where most people just moved on and enjoyed the radio silence until Part 2 came out. At least then I wouldn't be spending time on this wonderfully awful and awfully wonderful speculation machine.

tldr: FF7R I wish I knew how to quit you
 
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