Remake, Rebirth… and what next? A little investigation into what Final Fantasy 7 Remake Part 3 could be titled.
So, Final Fantasy Remake Part 2 is real. It’s officially called Final Fantasy 7 Rebirth, and it’s coming ‘next Winter’. That gives us plenty of time to prepare by playing the newly-announced Crisis Core: Final Fantasy 7 remaster, getting primed on the story, and learning who Zack Fair is, and what he has to do with Cloud, Tifa, Barrett, Red XIII and the extended Midgar crew.
But before we get to revisit the second part of the iconic Final Fantasy 7 story, we need to respond to some burning questions we have about the next title in the series. During the Final Fantasy 7 25th Anniversary stream, returning Square Enix director Yoshinori Kitase revealed that there’s a third game in the series already in development. We’ve had Remake, we’re getting Rebirth, and we’re expecting… something else. But what could it be called?
Now, we know that Tetsuya Nomura, Kitase and their Square Enix development team likes a little bit of wordplay. Look at the extended Final Fantasy 7 compilation and I’m sure you’ll notice a pattern: Advent Chrildren, Before Crisis, Crisis Core, Dirge of Cerberus, Ever Crisis. See it? AC, BC, CC, DC, etc. Given that we’ve had Remake and Rebirth, to date, it stands to reason that the third game is going to be RE–something.How much of a role with Sephiroth play in this reimagining?
A quick list of some re- words got us thinking; what could the game be called? There are clearly some more sensible ideas tied to the events and lore of the Final Fantasy 7 world – Resolution, Resurrection, Revenge – but then there’s a ton of others that also fit (if you get a bit creative).
What about requiem, reload, regurgitate, relapse, report, rerelease, restart, retcon, reticent, revisit, respond, reanimate, resurrect, return, restrict, reflect, remiss, redo, reawakening? There are thousands of options.
To cut through the chaff, some of the team here at VG247 has picked what it’d bet would be the title of the next game, as well as a blurb describing the choice and why we think – if you’re a betting person – you should put money on our choices*.
Without further ado, here’s what we think the final game in the Final Fantasy Remake trilogy will be called.
The obvious choice was Reunion, of course - that's a recurring, major theme throughout the whole FF7 universe, referring to the phenomenon of Jenova's cells being drawn back together – something which deeply impacts Cloud. However, with the Reunion subtitle being handed to the newly-announced HD Remaster of spin-off Crisis Core (where, by the way, it fits perfectly), it seems that's off the table.
So, let me put forward my next pick: Final Fantasy VII Resolution. Here's my logic. With the changes FF7 Remake makes to the timeline, it seems that we're finally heading for a final once-and-for-all resolution of the game's storyline.
Right now, the current latest points in the FF7 timeline are Advent Children, where Sephiroth is defeated again but promises to "never be a memory", and Dirge of Cerberus. Both leave some loose ends untied, with Dirge even having a post-credits stinger that was never resolved.
I'm using the word resolve a lot, right? Well, that's because that's what this franchise needs - resolution. I think the newly exploded timeline will allow Tetsuya Nomura, Kazushige Nojima, and the other story collaborators to bring in loose ends from right across the timeline - and offer a final end. Sephiroth destroyed forever – or reformed, whatever makes the most sense. So Resolution is my pick – a title to symbolize how this might be the final entry in the FF7 saga.
In another twist to the FF7 Remake saga, the third game in the trilogy will in fact be a remake of Remake and Rebirth – completely reimagining the first and second remakes into a brand new remake that references the original FF7 and the two existing remakes to create the ultimate remake.
At the same time, Square Enix will finally release the original FF7 Remake on Xbox platforms, confusing everyone in the process as it won’t make any reference to the new Remake, Remade and Rebirthed, which won’t make it to Xbox for a further seven years.
I reckon Renewal is a good shout, since everything in FF7 surrounds the idea of bringing back the planet from the brink of ecological disaster.
Since the Remake trilogy appears to be aiming to breathe some more life into the FF7 story via new narrative twists and modernized gameplay, the third game in the trilogy could very well act as a final act of Renewal for the series. With that context, perhaps we'll see a conclusion to the story with all the cast coming off better? The teaser trailer we already saw seems to imply that Aerith may survive the events of the game – so I don't think it's out of the question that the gang will go about saving the world, with everyone making it across the finish line okay.
Watching that Final Fantasy 7 Rebirth trailer yesterday, one thing immediately stood out to me: Aerith’s voice lines. Anyone that knows anything about Final Fantasy 7 – hell, even video games at large – will know that Aerith dies in the game. Some of you may even have tried to do all the nonsense stuff you heard about on the school playground to try and get her back once she bit the proverbial bullet, but to no avail. Aerith dies. That’s that.
But, what if she didn’t? What if there was actually a way to save the flower girl with the green eyes? What if there was a way to see what happens at the end of the story, with Aeris by your side? Perhaps in the Remake trilogy, that will be the case. Those lines in the trailer – that definitely sound like they’re coming from Aerith’s voice actress – say “Wait, what are you implying? That I died? That I’m some kind of imposter?”
Given that we’ve already seen Sephiroth mess with the continuity of the game compared to its original form, is it really that outlandish to suggest that maybe – maybe – Aerith could live? That the game could depart that much from the source materia(l)?
I like Alex’s suggestion that this game will knit together elements of the entire compilation, but I also think the third game will be so far removed from the actual events of Final Fantasy 7 that – at that point – it’ll be a whole new chapter in the franchise and something that’ll stand apart wholly from the story the original game was telling. As such, Resurrected would be a killer subtitle, no? To represent something that has been finished, once, and brought back again as something totally different to what it once was. Something unknowable, entirely it’s own thing.
Is Square Enix that whacky? A quick look at Ever Crisis, Dirge of Cerberus, First Soldier and Advent Children suggests that yes, it is.
*(Disclaimer: don’t bet on our choices)