Goldeneye 007 was a revolution in the shooter genre. I was late to the game, but wow! The character movements, gun customization, and overall fun of that game hooked me. But that was when I was a Nintendo player. Now that I’m a Final Fantasy player, I’m solely into JRPGs. But if only there were a game that could combine the shooter gameplay with the series I loved…
DIRGE OF CERBERUS: FINAL FANTASY VII IS NOT GOLDENEYE 007!
Yeah, it does feel like a weird anime with Final Fantasy characters, almost like professional fan fiction (with Vincent as a Mary Sue). The story is like a knock off Metal Gear Solid, the gameplay I hear is like budget Devil May Cry and the atmosphere is like haunted house Resident Evil. But it was fun for what it was lol…
At the time, I didn’t play it. I was still rocking the nostalgia of Final Fantasy VII. Crisis Core. I didn’t want Dirge to ruin my childhood memories of the most important Final Fantasy game I played. But how fair is it of me to say what I like of a game. Aruu gilded me for that comment. How could I judge a game that I didn’t play?
Because I have high intuition about these things.
Of course, I didn’t want to be a hypocrite. So I decided to give it a play through. And boy, was I right. I’m not sure if that’s a good thing, but it only shows that sometimes, I just know. Playing the game was like watching Final Fantasy VII characters cosplay as themselves in a sci-fi TV show. Just from looking at the new characters made me realize they were following tropes in anime at the time. But it involved Final Fantasy VII’s characters and settings.
Isn’t this what Sakaguchi tried to prevent? Didn’t he attempt to stop the over-commercialization of his game, to keep them from being mediocre? The cutscenes are pretty cool, but I can’t do much of the stuff Vincent can do there while controlling him.
And there’s so much odd stuff. Shalua Rui wears…I don’t even know what, under a lab coat. What’s wrong with just a lab coat? Why is she cosplaying as a hooker? What’s with Shelke? She’s actually 19 but perpetually stuck in a young girl’s body. Sorry, developers; her age doesn’t make any of this right. Or less creepy. Yuffie is stupid in this game. Not stupid like in Final Fantasy VII, but a clown. Why? Poor girl. I will say, it’s an interesting choice to make the hot girl the butt of the jokes. When they shot Reeves, Cait Sith jumped out his body. That Reeves was a fake? I had to force myself to sit still and NOT turn off the game. What am I playing right now? This is Final Fantasy VII? I thought, well, that’s enough Dirge for today.
But I still pressed on. Speaking of Cait Sith, he’s had in his own stealth section. Only this part of the game SO sucks, it WAS enough for me to turn off the game. It totally sucked. He can’t attack. Even though he so short, these otherwise incompetent soldiers can still spot him. So frustrating suck.
Vincent seemed like a good choice for Final Fantasy VII: Episode Dirge. They considered Barrett, but then they thought against this. We don’t even get him as a temporary player? We don’t get to play as Yuffie, and I’m sure she has mad ninja skills, yo! Instead, we get a sulking Vincent. He’s morally upstanding but lame, and Lucrecia wouldn’t shut up about being “sorry” and “wrong”. I hint these are themes, but why so blatant? Wait, did she really birth Hojo’s child because of her guilt over Vincent’s father’s death? THAT’S why she encapsulated herself in crystal in the original game? I don’t remember any of this.
Well, surprisingly after all I said, I still found something good about it. It was novel for Final Fantasy to expand the genre…again. Sure, it was too odd. Final Fantasy fans didn’t care too much for it. Hardcore players of shooters didn’t know what to make of it. But it was another testament that Final Fantasy is always evolving. Only, this time their evolution is similar in concept to “intelligent design”.
If Final Fantasy VII were a trilogy, Dirge was the intentionally bad last installment. They were telling fans “enough of Final Fantasy VII, you wouldn’t want another one after this”. And they’re right. We want a remake of the classic, please. If you want to get the full Final Fantasy VII experience, play Dirge of Cerberus: Final Fantasy VII. But otherwise, know that it’s a pretty mediocre shooter and a lackluster game overall. The story is interesting. But it feels like a different game due to focus on the other characters.
It’s a strange Final Fantasy games, not good but not terrible.