Thanks to Scott Baird of ScreentRants.com for the inspiration!
7. THE CHOCOBO BREEDING SIDEQUEST
Final Fantasy VII began development before the internet became commonly available in homes across the world. By the time Final Fantasy VII was released, it was easy to find complete strategy guides for every quest and activity in the game. In fact, Squaresoft used to make a lot of money from strategy guides, which is why some of the important side quests were almost impossible to figure out without help.
The most annoying sidequest in Final Fantasy VII is the one that involves breeding Chocobos to make a gold Chocobo. In order to do this, you need to know how certain breeds of Chocobo work together. You also need to know where to find a Zeio Nut, which can only be found by defeating a certain kind of enemy in an obscure location on the world map.
It is possible for Chocobo breeding to be fun, as was proven with the excellent Chocobo Hot & Cold game in Final Fantasy IX. For the remake, Square Enix must know that all of the game’s secrets will be revealed in online FAQs within minutes, so they may as well make the remake version fun.
I advocate keeping a lot of material in Final Fantasy VII. Most of the problems we encounter are puzzles. How do we figure out the best method to go about solving them? The Chocobo breeding sidequest is a puzzle that discourages the player from figuring it out. We had no clues, no direction and most of the breeding was based on luck. If we didn’t get it the first time, we’d have to start over a tedious process.
Now we can search for the internet without paying for hidden secrets. The Chocobo sidequest was a big offender. Technically, we could blindly breed the Chocobos. But how would we go about mating them the correct way. And where do you get certain nuts?
So much in Final Fantasy VII’s revolves around most encompassing sidequest: Chocobo breeding. After you breed them, you can race them or use them to explore Gaia. I assume that if Scott wants this side quest gone. He must advocate for another way to find much of the hidden islands around the world. Either that, cut them or make them mandatory. But since he’s a fan of Chocobo Hot & Cold, I’d say he’s open to the idea of including mini-games, just more straightforward.
So in a sense, he’s not advocating cutting the Chocobo Breeding Sidequest altogether, but just making it more fun. Would this involve simplifying it? We’ll see what the developers think.