When is the last time you played a game that sucked you into its world? I’m not talking about just pretty graphics and landscapes. I’m talking about story, culture, lore, music, backstories, history, religion – in short, worldbuilding. It’s a term often thrown around by fiction writers that basically means crafting a believable, imaginary world that isn’t cookie-cutter like most of the drek we see nowadays. Worldbuilding can make or break a book just as it can a video game.
Remaking an old game is both a huge compliment and a biting insult. On one hand, you’re saying that this game is a beloved classic, and we need to devote resources toward recreating its brilliance for a modern audience. But then again, you’re also saying that this game doesn’t hold up to today’s standards, and it needs an update to remain relevant. Whether it’s simply a cosmetic makeover (like most HD remasters), or a ground-up overhaul that changes the game’s design (like Resident Evil 2 and 3’s remakes), the message is clear: these remakes are meant to replace the originals.
That’s what most people assumed Final Fantasy VII Remake was going to do.
Most video games age like bananas. You buy them and they’re really great for a day, maybe two. Then one day you come home, and suddenly they’re all brown, and gross, and have regressive views on gender and sexuality. Just like bananas. But some games age much better than bananas. Some games have visuals and mechanics that don’t wither with age, but rather only seem to improve as time goes by.