The Potential of Real Time Combat


Rookie Adventurer
The decision by SE to implement action based battles in the upcoming FF7 Remake has been controversial amongst the fanbase. I, for one, would still have accepted and enjoyed a turn-based/atb approach. However, I can understand why SE has taken the current route. I believe that an action based system can potentially bring beneficial changes to the remake.

To preface; the original FF7 is widely considered to be one of the most influential games of all time. It is the game that opened up JRPG's to a global audience. In this light, it seems that SE would have interest in trying to replicate the success of the original. In order to do this, SE must attempt to please fans of the original while also creating a game that feels fresh and exciting for new-comers.

The developers have stated that they are approaching the title more as an expanded re-imagining rather than simply a prettier version of the classic. Despite the changes, they have conveyed thier intent to maintain the spirit of the original. However, in the modern gaming climate, turn based RPG's aren't bringing in new fans like they used to. In order for SE to bring in a wider audience they must consider the current gaming landscape in regards to how they approach it's development.

In the original game, party members functioned (apart from limit breaks) relatively the same in battle. For the most part, as long as you equipped the most beneficial materia, characters could be interchanged without much noticeable difference in combat. FF7 has such a memorable and recognizable cast, it'd be a shame to keep it that way for the remake.

With an action based system, the characters will likely play a more unique roll in combat. In the original, an attack was carried out by way of selecting an attack prompt followed by an animation. Aside from the different attack animation for each character, party members largely functioned in the same way. In contrast, for the remake, it stands to reason that each character will have a certain playstyle based on thier weapons and personal fighting styles.

This new take on the battle system can potentially bring new complexity in it's approach to how characters function in battle. The weighty mid-range offense of the buster sword. Tifa's close quarter speedy fist attacks. Barrets long range arm-gun. Each character will feel different to play and, if balanced correctly, may greatly affect the approach to party management.

SE is changing and reworking many elements of the original. Though we won't end up with same classic experience, I think there will be plenty of fresh surprises to enjoy. Perhaps some of them will be things we don't even know we want until we have it in our hands. Though there are potential drawbacks and pitfalls to this new vision of the game, I'm excited to experience FF7:R in the way it seems intended; for the first time.

Please be excited :mon:
Mr. Ite
I like where this idea is going, but I also really like how materia is the primary customization tool in FF7. Since materia is inextricably partnered with the plot, having it inform your combat playstyle is really satisfying to me and makes its role in the story all the more meaningful.

I do like the idea that, at least at each character's base level, there will be a suggested playstyle as well (long range fighters may differ in that, say, Barret might be an HP-sponge, Yuffie the quickest and Vincent the strongest attack) but I would like to be able to use materia and different weapons to alter that (if I want to give Barret the screwdriver and make him a melee tank/thief, I'd like to be able to do that as well.)


Rookie Adventurer
I agree with your points here. I certainly don't want to see the materia system and all it's customization opportunities end up on the wayside. The use of magic, in particular, may be one of the more difficult things to properly implement under the new battle system. I wasn't a big fan of how magic was used in the more recent FF15. Hopefully they will find a way to make using spells feel satisfying.

In terms of the other materia functions, I hope these are maintained in the remake. I would still like to be able to customize characters by way of materia and weapons as well. I suppose that, mainly, I'd like to have some additional incentive to want to play as all the different characters. For example, Cait Sith was probably my least used character in the og. Perhaps in the remake he will have some unique attacks that will make him more worth having in battle.

In the og, this was implemented in a very limited extent. For instance, flying enemies could only be taken down with a long range attack or magic. An action based system is ripe for new takes on this concept. Hopefully this will encourage players to think a bit more about which characters they bring into battle and give new layers of strategy to combat.

Additionally, I think it would be neat if they created some scenarios to where (for a limited time) you were locked in to controlling one specific character for an event. For example, there could be some sort of Avalanche mission that involves sniping and/or flying enemies. The game could have you take control of Barret for this mission. Scenarios like this would be a good way to introduce the battle mechanics of each character. Additionally, they could use these scenarios to better flesh out the character in question and provide new insights into thier personalities and back stories.

In regards to spell casting, it could be interesting if each character used spells in somewhat different ways. For example, with the fire spell: Cloud might use the spell as a mid-range aoe burst of fire, Barret might charge up a fire based projectile, Aerith might have a longer cast time but with a larger aoe, and so on. This idea is probably unlikely, however, considering that the developers would have to re-tool each individual spell for each character.

Really, I'm just exploring thoughts and ideas as to the potential of what we might see under the new battle system. Many of these concepts could end up being entirely different in the final product. SE knows that FF7 has an esteemed legacy. Hopefully we'll end up with something worthy of the name. At the end of the day, it's up to them to create something that feels satisfying. In the mean time all we can do is speculate, wish, and hope.


Pro Adventurer
There's magic in FF15? xD But seriously, I used it in like two battles, once when I was required to, the other time accidently. Warp-strike made ranged battle non-existent. Now there's no warp-strike in FF7 so basic spells could be used as a means to deal damage while trying to close in on the enemy, while some more devastating spells could restrict your movement.
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