The dolphin jump in Junon Town
In the 90s there was a certain obsession with dolphins. Between the pinball reboot, Ecco the Dolphin and Jones, the movie’s hacker dolphin Johnny Mnemonic from 1995 we have a large selection of heroic cetaceans. Final Fantasy 7 he made his contribution to this tradition with the help of a Junon Town girl, Priscilla, and her friend, Mr. Dolphin.
The young girl helps Cloud and the other protagonists to find a way to reach the base of the Shinra right from the waters of the Junon bay. The solution is simple: a jump on horseback of the dolphin, no? At the call of Priscilla’s whistle, Mr. Dolphin loads Cloud on his back and with a crazy jump reached the base of the Shinra tower, making it much easier to infiltrate the base.
Being threatened by a television producer
When we reach the Shinra outpost in Junon, a military parade welcomes us. As the city overflows with soldiers and officers, the best way to avoid getting caught and disguise and participate in the parade, forcing Cloud to steal a Shinra uniform and march with the rest of the military. Everything seems to be going well, until the game decides to tell this scene through a television news, with an evaluation of the performance during the march.
At this point the story can go in two ways: in the first, the players make a great figure by obtaining the highest marks, even winning a large bonus from the producer, or you can ruin everything by infuriating the television crew, so much so that a producer order that a bomb package be sent to you. A slightly exaggerated reaction, as well as the testimony of an era in which references to terrorism certainly did not have the same weight as today.
The appointment with Barrett
The Gold Soucer experience is one of the high points of Final Fantasy 7, and it’s also a lysergic journey inside a cyberpunk amusement park. Among all the different mini games and skits, everyone will remember the sequence of the appointment where, based on the choices made during the game, Cloud can enjoy a romantic evening in the company of Aerith, Tifa, Yuffie or, if you are very lucky, Barrett.
Each appointment has its own lines of dialogue and, in general, there is a genuine atmosphere that underlines the bond between the characters. Aerith expresses the desire to find out what the real Cloud is, Tifa confesses to trying something for him, while Yuffie gives him a kiss on the cheek. Barrett, on the other hand, tries to make him admit which of the women in the group is really interested in, joking that it may be Marlene, who is only 4 years old, the object of Cloud’s attentions. This is clearly a joke which, due to a somewhat clumsy translation, makes the situation even more grotesque.
The first battle against Palmer
The story of Cid’s origins that unfolds when you visit Rocket Town is melancholy, yet it has its comic moments. After Shera tells her and Cid’s poignant story, we find out that Palmer is trying to steal Cid’s plane, the Tiny Bronco. Palmer is the head of Shinra’s space development division, and certainly not a longtime friend of Cid.
The battle that ensues seems to be a normal clash with a second-rate boss, until Palmer wisely decides to retreat to escape death. The point is that in fleeing he immediately ends up under a truck. The accident occurs on a country road, so it also makes sense that there is traffic, but the timing of the scene is quite bizarre and in contrast with the melancholy story just discovered.
Tifa and the duel of slaps
Tifa Lockheart is a memorable character. Longtime friend of Cloud, a faithful companion, she has become one of the symbols of Final Fantasy 7 and the whole series. Of course, however, his slap-based fight with Scarlet will not go down in history.
When Tifa and Barrett try to escape from Shinra’s yoke, Tifa confronts Scarlet in a face to face atop the mako cannon. What could have been a memorable duel is resolved in a fight of insults and slaps, in which Tifa has the upper hand. If it weren’t for her, this moment in history would be largely forgettable.
The Gold Saucer show
Despite the oddity of the hidden dating sim that leads to the unforgettable evening at the Gold Saucer, the appointment itself is a fantastic moment. The fireworks are beautiful, the trip in the gondola lift as well, but perhaps a bit out of tune is the theater show.
A fantasy show is staged, complete with magician, dragon and knight, but the actors are not exactly the best. In the end, it’s the players who, as Cloud, have to save the day. You have to choose between the dragon, the king and the knight and also give the best performer a kiss, to make love on stage triumph. It’s not exactly Shakespeare, and it’s not just two scenes either.
Cid insulting his wife
Finding out the true story that ended Cid’s career as a space research captain is an intense moment. Shera was even willing to sacrifice herself to make Cid’s launch go on smoothly, but Cid, to prevent it, caused an emergency stop, effectively making the space program fail and thus condemning her career.
It seems the beginning of an unforgettable love story, if it were not that Cid does not behave exactly as a balanced person with Shera, since he insults her and her work repeatedly. To say, the first thing he does after he has finished telling their story is to complain that he hasn’t served tea to their guests. In conclusion, Cid is a great driver, but a bad husband.
Cloud dressed as a woman
The entire sequence of Done Corneo at the Wall Market is strange, with the unaware Cloud who volunteers to dress as a woman so as to get closer to Don Corneo. To collect all the necessary items, a sordid fetch quest takes place between double senses and embarrassing moments whose goal is to be fashionable enough to catch the eye of the criminal.
Tifa, in spite of himself, is the object of Don Corneo’s attention until Cloud enters the scene, which proves to be a disgusting person. If we do everything perfectly to “seduce” him, we are rewarded with a phrase that sounds more or less like this: “okay kitten, come to daddy”, which even after twenty years remains a terrible sentence.
English translation is problematic
There is no doubt that Final Fantasy 7 it was a huge job. An expensive project, which required enormous work and all possible efforts from Square. That said, the original English translation is of a swinging quality.
It is not just some typo. The tone and meaning of some scenes are profoundly modified compared to the original, losing any cultural reference. For example, Cait Sith should have been Scottish, since it is inspired by the cat sith, a creature of Celtic mythology, but it certainly does not emerge from the original translation. However, his somewhat lame language style has also gone down in history, giving the game an even more unique charm over the years. In addition to reminding us that, always, working in very short times has never been good for video games.
Invisible cloud during cut scenes
Final Fantasy 7 it was developed during a period of great innovations. The leap from 2D to 3D in home consoles was a revolutionary moment, and the Square JRPG, with its 3 discs full of content, played a fundamental role in this change. However, the transition to the third dimension was not exactly painless, so some tricks were initially used to make everything work. But it wasn’t always all right
One of the most subtle stratagems used by Square was to make Cloud invisible during the cut scenes in play. Whenever there is a dialogue in which Cloud the blond protagonist is not expected to be present, he is not actually out of bounds, but simply the model of his character is hidden. If, through a hack, this function is removed, Cloud finds himself disturbingly present in every dialogue that, in reality, he should not attend. The reason for this choice has never been discovered, although it probably seems it was due to stability reasons. In any case, this oddity has been widely exploited by record-breaking speedrunners.
The evocation of Choco Moguri
The animated sequences of the summons of the legendary creatures of Final Fantasy 7 they are among the most emblematic features that have brought the game to history and even today the various Ifrit, Bahamut Zero and the Knights of the Round are still crazy. However, perhaps to lower expectations before unlocking Shiva or Leviathan, the first evocation that is bestowed on the players is the wacky but delicious Choco Moguri.
A moguri riding a chocobo who charges any enemy, Choco Moguri represents the symbol of love by Final Fantasy for the comedy, the “pucciosi” elements and the will not to take itself too seriously. The summoning has become almost a sort of joke, used only to see which enemies you can defeat with that adorable mount.
Raise a golden chocobo to get the Knights of the Round matter
No Final Fantasy it can be said as such without chocobo, and the seventh chapter managed to get the most out of the nice feathered ones. Among the most memorable secondary missions are those in which you ride or breed chocobo in order to get the breed capable of facing any type of terrain. In practice, they are a fundamental tool for any explorer looking for the rarest matter.
Obviously, to get the most powerful summoning of Final Fantasy 7, the Knights of the Round, you must first breed a golden chocobo. There are four islets on the world map that require different colored chocobos to reach. Knights of the Round can be found in the north east, where there is an island impossible to fly over. The only way to get there is by riding a glorious golden steed and the most bizarre thing is that once there there is no challenge to face and no celebratory moment. Trivially, the game’s most powerful summon is there, at our disposal, simply as a reward for spending so much time on chocobo breeding.
Skip the assault on Midgar
Do you know when I told you about that invisible Cloud trick? Here, there is a moment where this programming ploy can be exploited for the purpose of the game. During the assault on Midgar, in the interlude scene in which Reeves calls Hojo in the conference room, if you press down, right and rush Cloud leaves the room. Doing so skips the fight against Hojo and, in fact, the assault is basically boycotted.
The only real benefit to doing such a thing is saving time is if you are a speedrunner. The items and bonuses obtainable from that game sequence are lost forever, along with the ability to do some grinding before the fight. However, unfortunately, this inauspicious event can happen accidentally and if it happened to you, know that it is a coincidence, and that the game is not broken (or rather, not exactly, here it is).
Castlevania time to find Vincent
Since he even got a spin-off, it’s fair to say that the vampiric character, Vincent Valentine, has his fans. The missions to recruit him and Yuffie are both strange, but that of the dark fighter is very peculiar. Practically, Final Fantasy 7 it becomes for a moment a sort of spin-off of Castlevania, while Cloud wanders through an old abandoned manor house, looking for an access road to the basements to open the coffin and wake from the eternal sleep in the dark avenger dressed in red.
The end of the world is a bad story for everyone, even for vampires who would have preferred to continue sleeping in the comfort of their bed. Vincent joins the group to hunt for Sephiroth, but unfortunately, after his fascinating entry on the scene he does not receive too much attention.
Cait-Sith and Red XIII
Most of the cast of Final Fantasy 7 it is quite usual, but Cait Sith and Red XIII are two rather singular exceptions. A remotely controlled robot cat astride a giant and burly mooguri, Cait Sith is certainly the most eccentric character in the entire gang. He works as a fortune teller at the Gold Saucer, and to get Cloud’s attention he first robs him, then kidnaps Marlene to blackmail the group and basically convince him to accept his spontaneous candidacy. Using Cait Sith in combat is a bit of a gamble, since it only has two Limit Breaks, Dice and Slots, which are somewhat of the double-edged sword.
The history of Red XIII is equally strange. The number next to his name is related to Hojo’s experiments, so much so that you meet him for the first time right after Hojo kidnaps Aerith in the hope of making her pair with XIII. Once it’s prevented from happening, Red XIII, or Nanaki, his real name, becomes a key member of the group. Of course, having a strange hybrid of lion and wolf at your side does not exactly make espionage easy, and at some point Red pretends to be a Shinra soldier and claims to be convincing. Well, maybe yes, standing on its hind legs …
Wutai owes its name to the Chinese mountain famous for its Buddhist monasteries, and is the home of Yuffie, as well as the setting of a splendid, but bizarre, parenthesis very far from the main plot. Forced to explore without matter, the matter can get a little complex and the boss fight against Rapps is not that simple. But the second part, in which only Yuffie is controlled, is decidedly weird.
The Wutai pagoda is a sort of Pokemon-style gym where Yuffie has to prove that she is worthy of her Level 4 Limit Break and Leviathan. He must face five bosses of increasing difficulty and defeat them. The first is Gorky, who would make a fantastic figure in the Gargoyles series, then there is Shake, a giant penguin, the thin Chekhov who leaves room for Staniv, a pile of meat armed with a club that has a threatening red mask embedded in the chest. Finally, there is Godo, who looks like a deformed religious statue that came to life. Five totally crazy creatures, nightmare stuff, hidden in a traditional and pleasant setting.
Rude of the Turks that hangs in the middle of the fight
Rude and Reno of the Turks are two recurring enemies that pop out when you least expect it. Type in the marine abysses in the wreck of the Gelnika ship. After the classic meeting with the two elegant agents, the usual fight starts, even if in this circumstance there is an element that plays in our favor.
Rude has several attacks and spells available in his repertoire, but in Gelnika, if by chance the AI decides to use the attack from behind, a glitch will prevent it from attacking for the rest of the combat. This isn’t the most intense fight ever, and it’s very easy to get rid of it even before this bug occurs, but be careful of it during the next play-through.
Regenerate health by opening the PS1 cover
One of the consequences of the fact that the first PlayStation had a cd player with a top opening panel is that you could open the lid during playback, running the risk of damaging game progress. To combat this phenomenon, the PlayStation always loaded block games, so closing the lid immediately following an accidental opening often and willingly solved every problem.
If you used a Regen potion in the middle of the battle and opened the lid of the PlayStation, the potion continued to take effect until all party members were fully cared for.. At that point, you closed the lid and you could go on as if nothing had happened, with the party fully charged.
7777 is the lucky number
If, by chance, one of the characters ended up having 7777 HP in battle, the Lucky 7s sequence would start where the party member allegedly made 63 attacks dealing 7777 damage each. It is certainly not something that happened often, but there are strategies to do it.
The developers never explained why any of this: there is probably some reference to the game’s title, but let’s say since it happened so rarely, nobody ever paid too much attention to it. However, if by chance you try to verify and succeed, eye that at the end of the fight that character’s HP drops to a minimum.
In 23 years since the release of Final Fantasy 7 we tried anything to stop Aerith’s death or try to resurrect her. Theories are wasted: some have theorized that the fact that she had a level four Limit Break and a final weapon suggested the possibility of resurrecting her later in the adventure but, in reality, it is simply that all the characters have the same arc of growth and a definitive weapon. Another popular theory claimed that his death could be avoided by behaving badly with Tifa all the time, or by bringing the Cure matter to the highest level and then obtaining Restore and resurrecting it. Many theories, but none of them are true.
There is, however, the possibility of meeting his ghost. If you return to Midgar after her death, and visit her church, you can see her picking flowers together with two little boys. The moment you move Cloud to go towards her it disappears, but there is a very romantic glitch so if you can move before the loading of the scene ends, you can approach and give Aerith one last farewell.
With new technological means available, it is clear that Square had the opportunity to experience different types of challenges for Final Fanasy 7. The minigames range between many different genres and accompany you throughout the adventure and also make you experience some rather bizarre moments.
The craziest is definitely the snowboard mini-game, which precedes the first SSX of a few years. Despite being just a little taste of extreme sports, it is undoubtedly a fantastic game design essay that still works well today. Among other things, at the time in Square there was someone who had seen us long enough to consider it a selling point and place the screenshot of Cloud on the snowboard on the back of the package of the European version. On the other hand, it is the moment of the CPR on Priscilla after she is attacked in Junon. Grandpa teaches us the correct technique and then you have to stay there to count Cloud’s breaths to continue. Certainly an ambitious and also fascinating attempt in retrospect, but certainly peculiar at the time.
What is your favorite absurd moment of Final Fantasy 7? Tell us in the comments!
Adapted by Davide Mancini