A Final Fantasy 7 Remake Part 2 is inevitably releasing sometime in the future, but would this FF7 Remake sequel benefit from having an overworld map?
Final Fantasy 7 Remake changed so much of the original that it’s more new game than remake, in many ways. Players experienced a new combat system reminiscent of games like Kingdom Hearts, along with changes to the story that veterans might not have seen coming. It also delivered restrictive level design that kept players on a linear path for the majority of the experience. Some speculate Final Fantasy 7 Remake Part 2 could have an overworld map, but is that really a good thing?
Players spend almost the entirety of FF7 Remake in Midgar, a bustling city that served as only the starting area of the original game. Since the remake hyper-focuses on this segment, there are all kinds of additional scenes that flesh out existing characters in a way the original never did. But the Midgar section is the most linear part of the original, so FF7 Remake ended up being extremely linear from start to finish. Luckily, FF7 Remake Part 2 will likely pick up right after the party leaves Midgar, and it’s very likely the game will be more open, as a result.
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FF7 Remake’s restrictive level design is its biggest weakness, and an overworld map could greatly help fix this issue. In the remake, most dungeons are straight shots to the end, with only the occasional branching path leading to a single chest and nothing else. There are exceptions to this, of course, but a fair chunk of the game follows a similar structure.
How An Overworld Could Help (& Hurt) FF7 Remake Part 2
After the linear gameplay of FF7 Remake, a more open Part 2 would be extremely refreshing, since players would have an opportunity to break away from the gameplay of the original. Square Enix could hide optional mini-dungeons, loot, super bosses, and other quests within the overworld to reward players for exploring. Plus, a massive world in FF7 Remake’s graphical style would be a great way to take advantage of the PS5’s extra power.
Still, while the linearity of the first part hurt its gameplay, it was also what helped improve certain aspects of the story. Characters like Jessie and Leslie have significantly more screen time and backstory in FF7 Remake, now being far more present in the narrative, which makes them far more interesting than they once were. An open overworld map doesn’t mean plot elements like these can’t happen, but it’s almost certainly easier to make dense stories in a linear game than in a more open one. It might sound like a minor argument against an overworld, but these segments really help Midgar feel like a real place filled with genuine issues. The rest of FF7 Remake’s world would surely benefit from a similar treatment. Ultimately, though, the gameplay-focused pros outweigh the story-focused cons, so Final Fantasy 7 Remake Part 2 should have an overworld map.
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