Thanks to Scott Baird of ScreentRants.com for the inspiration!
6. THE HIDDEN SECRET CINEMA
While Aerith’s death is often regarded as the saddest moment in Final Fantasy VII, the death of Zack Fair in Crisis Core is a close second, as it is a powerful moment that is anticipated throughout the whole game. Those who played Final Fantasy VII know that Zack doesn’t survive the trip to Midgar.
In Crisis Core, you get to play as Zack for several years of his life. You grow to like him, as he is a genuinely heroic figure in a dark world. Zack’s sacrifice is a powerful moment, as he witnesses all of his memories being shattered one by one.
Players of Final Fantasy VII would only be aware of Zack’s sacrifice if they went out of their way to look for it. It can only be seen near the end of the game if the player travels to the basement of the Shinra Mansion (which they have no reason to do). One of the most significant moments in the series is hidden away where no one would think to look. It needs to be incorporated into the main story of the Final Fantasy VII remake.
Did you know about the Hidden Secret Cinema? What is the Hidden Secret Cinema?
Who Cloud tried to be was a mystery to me. In my first playthrough, I had no idea who the guy with the black hair was. I was right about Cloud looking up to. Even Cloud knew very little about him as well. In my second playthrough, I explored and found out more about Zack. I was in the Shinra Manor to recruit Vincent Valentine from beating Lost Number.
I learned about the sad tale of a generally upbeat man who suffered for doing the right thing. The developers gave Zack his own game, fitting of a hero. Crisis Core: Final Fantasy VII is largely a retcon of certain elements in Final Fantasy VII. But the story itself gives the background of the person Cloud modeled himself after.
I never thought his story needed a full game though. I was content to find out about Zack through the game. Crisis Core: Final Fantasy VII is fun, but I could have lived without it.
Either way, this is another case in which I’m glad I took the time to explore. User X7Strife thinks about things the same way:
I want them to keep the optional stuff because it incentives exploration and the feeling of reward is just so sweet.