Square Enix stole the recent State of Play with the announcement of Intergrade, the PS5 upgrade of Final Fantasy 7 Remake that will include a Yuffie DLC. It also revealed a mobile battle royale game called Final Fantasy 7: The First Soldier, as well as Final Fantasy 7: Ever Crisis. While the sequel to the highly successful Final Fantasy 7 Remake has not been announced yet, fans of the series can still expect to return to Midgar very soon. Ever Crisis is probably the most mysterious announcement of the three due to a wide range of unique features that combine the nostalgia of Final Fantasy 7 with the updated combat system from the remake.
Final Fantasy 7: Ever Crisis is a mobile game coming in 2022 that will compile the entire Final Fantasy 7 timeline. That’s a lot of content; so far, Ever Crisis is confirmed to include the events of the original Final Fantasy 7, Advent Children, Before Crisis, Crisis Core, and Dirge of Cerberus. It feels unlikely that Square Enix will release the entire timeline at once, however, simply due to the volume of content it needs to develop. Additional stories will probably be made available in updates or in-app purchases following the game’s launch.
In the trailer showcased at the State of Play event, one of the most surprising features of Ever Crisis is the polygonal character design, which is reminiscent of the original Final Fantasy 7 that introduced so many players to the world. In non-combat story and exploration sequences, the characters look like a combination of the updated models from the remake and the original game. Every character also has a 2D avatar that appears on the screen during dialogue, which appears to be text-only.
The combat was another big surprise. The new 2D avatars are still present on the screen, but the blocky character design switches to graphics indistinguishable from Final Fantasy 7 Remake. The trailer showcased some of the combat against the Scorpion Sentinel, the first boss in the remake, and it looked almost identical to the remake. By combining an updated, but not a completely redesigned, original graphics with the updated graphics, Ever Crisis promises to balance nostalgia and newness in a way that the remake didn’t. This should be exciting for fans of Final Fantasy 7 who felt like the remake took too many liberties.
The biggest thing that seems to separate Final Fantasy 7 Remake combat from Ever Crisis is the possibility for party selection. In the remake, players only have access to up to 3 party members at one time (which means if Cloud, Tifa, Aerith, and Barret are all present, one will be excluded from player control) and party members are selected according to the plot. Tifa cannot join the party, for example, if Cloud is exploring Sector 5 with Aerith while Tifa is back in Sector 7.
This type of automatic party selection is different from what players of the original Final Fantasy 7 experienced; party selection in the original game is complex but does allow for players to customize their party after reaching a certain point in the game. Unlike previous Final Fantasy games, it doesn’t 100% depend on the needs of the plot.
Ever Crisis seems to be employing this latter method of party selection because Aerith is shown in the trailer fighting the Scorpion Sentinel with Cloud and Barret. This is significant because Aerith wasn’t present for the Scorpion Sentinel battle in the remake and didn’t accompany AVALANCHE on their mission to blow up the Mako Reactor at the beginning of the story. Aerith’s presence could hint at customizable party selection in Ever Crisis, allowing players to include characters from later in the story in whatever battles they choose.
As previously mentioned, Ever Crisis will compile the entire Final Fantasy 7 timeline. The only major exclusion is The First Soldier, the battle royale mobile game releasing this year. The First Soldier takes place 30 years before the events of Final Fantasy 7 and, as of now, is not included in the Ever Crisis timeline.
Chronologically, the first game in the timeline is Crisis Core. Crisis Core took place seven years before Final Fantasy 7 and focuses on Zack Fair, a SOLDIER 2nd class. Zack is the original owner of the Buster Sword that Cloud carries in Final Fantasy 7 and the first love of Aerith Gainsborough. The story of Crisis Core follows Zack as he rises through the SOLDIER ranks, meets Aerith, battles Sephiroth, and eventually dies after fighting hundreds of Shinra soldiers with Cloud. It’s after this battle that Cloud inherits the Buster Sword and, plagued by insecurity, adopts Zack’s persona as his own.
Before Crisis is the second game in the narrative timeline, taking place six years before the start of Final Fantasy 7. It focuses on the Shinra Company and the Investigation Division of the General Affairs Department, also known as the Turks. They are present in most Final Fantasy 7 games and play a large role in the remake as well.
Before Crisis also explains the rise of AVALANCHE, the eco-terrorist organization opposed to Shinra’s consumption of Mako energy. Players take control of eleven Turk members fighting against AVALANCHE, leading up to the start of Final Fantasy 7. Before Crisis provides a lot of insight into the Turks, including characters like Reno, Rude, and Tseng, as well as new information about the formation of AVALANCHE and the inner workings of the Shinra Company.
Chronologically, the third game is the original Final Fantasy 7. Final Fantasy 7 Remake will eventually tell the complete story of this installment, but players will also be able to experience the full narrative in Ever Crisis. Final Fantasy 7 focuses on Cloud Strife, an ex-SOLDIER with a bad case of mistaken identity as he works with AVALANCHE to overthrow Shinra, discover the truth about his past, and defeat Sephiroth.
Final Fantasy 7 is an incredibly nostalgic game for a lot of gamers who experienced it on the PlayStation console in 1997. It was one of the first video games to tell a fantasy epic of its scale and remains one of the best and most complex stories ever told through a video game. The impact of the original Final Fantasy 7 has obviously not been forgotten, as it was the starting point for all the games being released today. Most of the Ever Crisis footage featured scenes from Final Fantasy 7, and it will probably be the first narrative featured in the mobile game.
Unlike the other installments in the Final Fantasy 7 metaseries, Advent Children is an animated movie that takes place two years after the events of Final Fantasy 7. Sephiroth was defeated, but remnants of him remain in the world with the mission to find Jenova and resurrect Sephiroth’s full form. The Remnants of Sephiroth are the primary antagonists in Advent Children, with the primary characters being the main cast of Final Fantasy 7. As they work to prevent Sepiroth’s return, Cloud is seen still recovering from the traumatic events of the original game.
Advent Children being included in Final Fantasy 7: Ever Crisis is an especially big deal because it was originally a movie, not a video game. It will be the first time players can interact with the story, unlike the others which have all been told in video game format. Advent Children was criticized for having an overly complex plot, which isn’t hard to do when it comes to Final Fantasy 7, so maybe spreading out the story in a game format will help provide some clarity.
The last game in the timeline included in Ever Crisis is Dirge of Cerberus, which takes place three years after Final Fantasy 7. This story centers around Vincent Valentine and is more of a spinoff than a sequel, similar to Before Crisis.
As a victim of Professor Hojo’s experiments, Vincent has a dark and mysterious past. In addition to being experimented on, he’s also a former Turk and wields a handgun called Cerberus. Unlike other games in the Final Fantasy 7 universe, Dirge of Cerberus is a third-person shooter. The story has Vincent being hunted by the Deepground organization, which is looking to awaken the superweapon Omega. If successful, Omega could destroy the planet.
Dirge of Cerberus is the last major Final Fantasy 7 spinoff and the last existing story being remade in Ever Crisis. Altogether, these five stories make up the entire narrative of the Final Fantasy 7 universe. If Ever Crisis is successful, it’s entirely possible Square Enix will add even more original stories to the lineup.
With so much Final Fantasy 7 content going into Ever Crisis, it will be exciting to be able to experience every story in one place and to see how Square Enix updates the other games. Final Fantasy 7 Remake introduced players to an exciting, fast-paced new combat system and beautiful graphics that should translate well to the other stories, and the exploration system that looks so similar to Final Fantasy 7 should be a great trip down memory lane.
For fans who didn’t like the new direction Square Enix went with Final Fantasy 7 Remake, Ever Crisis could also prove to be a more pleasing alternative. Ever Crisis has the potential to tell the Final Fantasy 7 story in a way that’s more faithful to the original while the remake goes in a different direction. Ever Crisis might look more like the remake many were hoping for.
Fans are already wondering whether there will be a Nintendo Switch version of Ever Crisis, which seems like a no-brainer and has become common for mobile games, but so far it has only been announced for iOS and Android devices. Ever Crisis will be free to play, but it will have in-app purchases. Right now, it’s unclear what those in-app purchases consist of. Many details still remain unknown and there’s a long wait ahead, but Final Fantasy fans will definitely be following the development of Ever Crisis and anticipating a nostalgic reunion with their favorite characters and stories.
Final Fantasy 7: Ever Crisis will be available on Android and iOS mobile devices in 2022.