Final Fantasy 7 Remake Part 3 already has a “tentative first draft

During Thursday’s Summer Game Fest 2023 livestream, Square Enix dropped some intriguing details about the final game in its Remake trilogy. Creative Director Tetsuya Nomura revealed that the team has already begun work on the third part, which doesn’t have a tentative title yet, but does at least have a release window.

Nomura made the announcement during a Q&A session following a discussion on Final Fantasy VII Remake’s development process. In addition to confirming the early 2024 release date, he also revealed that the development team has already completed “a first draft” for the third part.

The article goes on to note that the third game won’t pick up directly from where Final Fantasy 7 Remake left off. Instead, the developer plans to fill in some blanks and address several other questions.

One major blank that this new entry will likely fill in is what happens to Aerith and the other survivors of the Shinra facility raid, a scene that almost made it into the final version of the game. The majority of the playable party was originally going to be killed off during this raid, with the player choosing which characters survived. However, Nomura felt that would have been a cheap way to bring back the controversial scene and cheapened Aerith’s death in the process.

Another area that this new chapter is expected to address is the mysterious lab in the middle of Midgar, which was not featured in the original version of FF7. The early script shows that this lab was originally supposed to be a multi-level building housing various military and surveillance equipment. The player was to have to obtain a key item in order to gain access to the facility. It’s not clear what the purpose of this lab was going to be in the final game, but it may have been a key part of the fight against Sephiroth.

The other big thing that this new entry is expected to do is address some of the loose ends left behind by FF7 Remake’s ending, which differed slightly from that of the original Final Fantasy 7 (1997). It will pick up on some of the threads that were left hanging, including whether or not Zack survives his preordained death and moves between timelines as in canon. It will also explore what happened to Cloud’s initial allies, like Biggs, Wedge, and Jessie, as well as the fate of the Lifestream and other species.

Nomura also touched on how the team is interested in hearing players’ reactions to the game and that they enjoy reading their reaction posts online. But he stresses that the team will not be changing any major established story beats based on what they hear from players. This seems to be a subtle way of saying that the developers will listen to fan feedback but that they won’t change the course of the trilogy just based on player reactions. It’s an interesting point to make, given that the current titles in the FF7 Remake trilogy are all about reinterpreting and refining classic material rather than completely changing the source material.