If there’s one that recent weeks have taught us about Final Fantasy 7 Rebirth, Square Enix’s second part in the remake trilogy, it’s the sheer size of its world. Final Fantasy 7 Remake was a bit more confined due to its chapter-wise setup and Midgar setting, but Rebirth goes much bigger and employs a seamless map.
Speaking to Press-Start, director Naoki Hamaguchi was asked whether the map was interconnected or whether players traveled to different regions at a time. He responded, “What we’ve done is we’ve taken the world map from the original Final Fantasy 7, but we’ve created it all in a one-to-one real scale. So all of the dungeons, all of the cities, everything in that world is now included in the same space. One seamless map.
“To add a little bit more detail, because that’s how the world is constructed, but a little bit more about how you’ll actually be exploring that world – I think when you look at open world games with really big seamless worlds like that, is there’s only two ways that games let you explore those worlds.”
“The first one is they throw you into the map, and, from the beginning, you can go anywhere, do anything in any order, and you’re free to approach it in any order you want. In the second kind of game, you start in a fairly wide, expansive area, and you can explore within that. Then as the story progresses, you get more abilities to access different areas [which] will open up, and the world grows and grows until you’ve got the full world in the end, and then you can go back to previously explored areas, and you’ll find maybe new quests, new content which has appeared because of the story progression.”
Final Fantasy 7 Rebirth falls into the second category. Players have a “fairly large area” to explore at the start, which expands further as the main quest progresses. “You get more regions you can go to, and then any time you want, you can go back to the regions you’ve been to before, because it’s a seamless map, and you can find new quests and new bits of story which have appeared in there as you go along. So that’s generally how not just the world is but how you’ll be exploring it.”
Creative director Tetsuya Nomura confirmed that the title has 100 hours of gameplay (in case you wondered about the 150 GB size), but even more interesting is how the side content is double the main quest. You can thus explore numerous areas which don’t even appear in the main story and find different missions, activities and items.
Final Fantasy 7 Rebirth launches on February 29th, 2024, for PS5.
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