When Final Fantasy VII entered development, it represented the biggest technological leap for the series to date. The PlayStation offered Squaresoft the technology to make a game that used 3D graphics, as well as the inclusion of FMVs and high-quality audio due to the CD-ROMs that the games would use.
The move away from Nintendo and their strict content policies also allowed Square to tell more adult stories than what they had been allowed to tell in the past. The time had come for Final Fantasy to include more violence, as well as content relating to human orientatoin.
The developers of Final Fantasy VII knew that they had something special when the game entered pre-production, which is why edits were being made all through the development process. Ideas were pitched and then thrown out when it was decided that they didn't gel with the world of the game.
There were some amazing and peculiar ideas for Final Fantasy VII that were removed during the scripting stage of the game. There were also some ideas that entered production and had to be removed at a later date, which wasn't discovered until the players went digging through the files of the game.
We are here today to reveal the awesome ideas that never made it into Final Fantasy VII - from the early appearance of a prominent villain from Final Fantasy VIII, to the secrets of one of the dirtiest places in the Final Fantasy series.
Here are Twenty Amazing Things Deleted From Final Fantasy VII (That Would Have Changed Everything)
20 Edea Was Going To Be In The Game
The Final Fantasy games have included subtle references to future titles that are in development. There have even been instances when ideas from one game will be moved from one title to another.
Edea from Final Fantasy VIII is one such character that switched projects. Tetsuya Nomura had designed a character known as the "Witch" to appear in the game, who would likely have been involved with Jenova.
The early idea for Jenova was that it was the name for a part of the brain that could only be accessed by certain people. Once active, the Jenova power would grant the user special abilities. When Jenova was turned into an alien being, the idea for the Witch was scrapped. Nomura liked the design so much that he reworked her into Edea in Final Fantasy VIII.
19 There Was A Materia That Made Fun Of Lawyers
It seems that some of the staff at Squaresoft had an issue with lawyers, as there is a hidden piece of materia within the files of Final Fantasy VII that exists just to make fun of them.
There is an unused materia in Final Fantasy VII called Housoku, which roughly translates to "Law". This materia taught the user the Gil Toss command, which allowed the character to throw a selected amount of money at the enemy in order to deal damage.
The idea behind this materia is that hiring lawyers is the same as throwing away your money. It's unknown why it was added into Final Fantasy VII or why it was removed.
18 Cloud Wasn't The Original Protagonist
The original plot of Final Fantasy VII was very different than what appeared in the game.
The original script for Final Fantasy VII was a crime story, starring a character named Detective Joe. The game would be set in New York City, with Joe hot on the trail of the group who had destroyed the city of Midgar.
A detective character would later star in Final Fantasy VII Lateral Biography Turks -The Kids Are Alright- which is a spinoff novel that is set before the events of Advent Children. The protagonist of The Kids Are Alright is a detective named Evan Townshend, who is sent on the trail of a member of SOLDIER who went missing before Midgar was struck by Meteor.
17 There Were Different Plans For The Ancient Forest
The Ancient Forest is one of the most peculiar locations in Final Fantasy VII. You cannot access the Ancient Forest without either defeating Ultimate Weapon or breeding a green/black/gold chocobo. Once you have found the Ancient Forest, you are treated to an area filled with bizarre puzzles that are poorly explained by the game.
There is cut dialogue in Final Fantasy VII that suggest that the Ancient Forest was going to be part of the main story and not an optional area. There is an unused cave entrance in Corel Valley which many have speculated would lead to the Ancient Forest, as well as unused dialogue in Bone Village which explains how the puzzles work.
It's likely that the player was meant to travel to the Ancient Forest before reaching the Forgotten Capital, but it was turned into an optional area at some point in development.
16 The Ability To Dual-Cast Spells Was Going To Be A Status Effect
Magic spells have appeared in every Final Fantasy game. This started out as using the Vancian magic from Dungeons & Dragons in the original Final Fantasy, before switching to a magic point system in later games.
It's possible for certain characters to be able to cast more than one spell per turn, such as by using the Double or Triple spells in Final Fantasy VIII.
It appears that Final Fantasy VII may have been planning to include its own version of the Double spell, as there is an unused status effect called Dual which fans have speculated would allow a character to cast two spells at once.
The ability to cast two spells was given to the W-Magic materia.
15 There Was A Quest Where You Travel The World & Deliver Letters
There are several items within the files of Final Fantasy VII that cannot be accessed by the player. These include the Letter to a Daughter and the Letter to a Wife, which were intended to be given to the player by a traveling salesman in Gongaga so that they could be delivered to his family in Kalm.
The traveling salesman was intended to inform the player about the existence of the Titan materia which can be found near the Gongaga reactor, but the developers ran out of time and were forced to cut him from the game.
14 Cloud's Mission Would Have Been Revealed Much Earlier
The first time that Sephiroth is mentioned in Final Fantasy VII is during the flashback sequence at the start of the game. We see a young Cloud tell a young Tifa that he wants to join SOLDIER and be like Sephiroth.
Cloud doesn't reveal the details of what happened with Sephiroth at Nibelheim until after the party leaves Midgar.
The scene where the members of AVALANCHE returned to the Seventh Heaven bar after their first mission was originally going to include a scene between Cloud and Tifa that revealed a lot more about the plot.
Cloud was originally going to mention that he was hunting Sephiroth and wanted revenge for what happened to the people of Nibelheim.
13 There Was An Opposite To The Regen Status
The Regen status effect (short for regeneration) has appeared in many different Final Fantasy titles. When a character is under the effects of Regen, they gain some of their hit points back every turn.
An opposite version of Regen was programmed into Final Fantasy VII but it goes unused. This status effect was called Seizure and it would drain a character's hit points over time.
It's possible that this status effect was cut due to how Poison acts in a similar manner and there wasn't a need for two hit point draining effects.
12 The Explanation For What The Summoned Monsters Are
The ability to summon monsters into battle using magic debuted in Final Fantasy III and has been a recurring element of the series ever since. There are some Final Fantasy games where the summonable monsters are important to the plot, while in others they are just another combat ability.
The reason why summon materia exists in the world of Final Fantasy VII is never explained. There is cut dialogue from Sephiroth during the Temple of the Ancients dungeon that would have explained what they are.
The summon monsters in Final Fantasy VII were creatures that had absorbed Mako, which allowed them to seal their consciousness within a piece of materia, allowing their power to live on in the world, so that they can be called on to defend the Lifestream from harm.
11 The Fate Of Bugenhagen Was Meant To Be Ambiguous
Bugenhagen is one of the few characters in the world of Final Fantasy VII who is aware of the destruction that the Mako Reactors were causing and how the planet would eventually be consumed. He is one of the staunchest allies of AVALANCHE and does his best to help the group to stop the Shinra Corporation, as well as Sephiroth.
Bugenhagen passes away of old age near the end of Final Fantasy VII. The scene where he passed away was originally going to be more ambiguous as to his fate, with Bugenhagen telling the group not to worry about him, as he was going to be watching over the future of the world.
10 Aerith & Sephiroth Were Both Siblings... And More
Aerith and Sephiroth have very little communication in Final Fantasy VII. Sephiroth didn't seem interested in getting to know Aerith before he plunged his sword into her back, as all he cared about was preventing the last person with the blood of the Cetra from stopping his plans.
The relationship between Aerith and Sephiroth was originally going to be different. In the early drafts of Final Fantasy VII, they were originally going to be lovers before the events of the game. This was changed to them being siblings, which is why they have such similar hairstyles in the final version of the game before all prior relationships between the two characters were removed.
9 All But Three Characters Were Going To Perish
The moment when Aerith meets her fate at the end of Sephiroth's sword is still one of the most emotional and powerful moments in video game history.
It seems that Aerith wasn't the only character who was going to meet her demise in Final Fantasy VII, as the original plan was for all but three playable characters to have passed away before the end of the game. This plan was ditched when it was felt that it would take away from Aerith's passing.
We don't know exactly who would have survived, but Barret, Cloud, and Tifa would have been the most likely candidates.
8 Sephiroth Was Going To Be Addicted To Mako
We mentioned earlier that the original story draft for Final Fantasy VII had a totally different version of Jenova, which was the name for part of the brain that allowed access to superhuman abilities.
It was possible for some individuals to access their Jenova powers through natural means. It was also possible for the Jenova element to be artificially awakened using Mako, which was going to be the fate of Sephiroth.
The original idea for Sephiroth was that he would be a cruel individual who became addicted to Mako in order to access his Jenova abilities. This led to Sephiroth dealing with withdrawal symptoms and losing his mind to the pain.
7 Members Of SOLDIER Were Going To Be Made With Ifalna's DNA
The most elite fighting force that the Shinra Corporation could field were the members of SOLDIER. These were already incredible warriors when they were first hired, but their abilities were enhanced to superhuman levels when they were injected with Jenova cells, as the Shinra scientists were under the incorrect belief that Jenova was a Cetra.
The original idea for the members of SOLDIER was that they were going to be injected with Ifalna's cells.
Ifalna and her daughter, Aerith, are the last people with the blood of the Cetra, so the members of SOLDIER would have genuinely contained the power of the Ancients.
6 Sephiroth Was Going To Reappear As A Woman
Sephiroth was defeated by Cloud during the Nibelheim Incident when he was thrown into a Mako Reactor. Sephiroth did not perish, as he was able to live within the Lifestream due to his hybrid nature and Jenova cells. The version of Sephiroth that you see walking around throughout the game are actually copies that are being controlled by the original, whose body is trapped in the Northern Cave.
The original idea for Sephiroth's original body was that he would have partially transformed into a woman, most likely due to his Jenova cells.
5 Vincent Was A Scythe-Wielding Supernatural Detective
Vincent Valentine was almost cut from Final Fantasy during pre-production, as there were concerns over whether there would be enough time to include him and Yuffie in the game.
The original version of Vincent was totally different from the final product. The original idea was for Vincent to be a supernatural detective who wielded a scythe in battle. This version of Vincent was meant to be far more talkative and would even have flirted with the female members of the party.
Vincent and Hojo were intended to have been associates since they attended university together. Vincent would run afoul of Hojo when investigating the Shinra Corporation as part of a case, leading to his capture and being put to sleep for thirty years.
4 Hojo Would Have Created Clones Of Red XIII
Red XIII was captured by Shinra agents before the events of Final Fantasy VII, where he was given to Hojo so that he could be used for experiments.
One of the original ideas for Final Fantasy VII was that Hojo would create two clones of Red XIII, called Cobalt XIII and Indigo XIII. These clones would pursue the party throughout the game in order to prove that they are more powerful than the being that they were created from.
Hojo was originally going to be protected by Cobalt XIII and Indigo XIII before meeting his demise at the hands of the party.
3 Yuffie Was Going To Be On The Trail Of Cloud & Sephiroth
The original plan for Yuffie and Wutai was going to be very different.
Yuffie was originally going to be a twenty-five-year-old bounty hunter who had previously been a member of SOLDIER. The party would initially be pursued by Yuffie, as she was on the trail of both Cloud and Sephiroth.
A cold war between the Shinra Corporation and Wutai would have been going on over the course of the game, with Shinra taxing Wutai's goods in an effort to cripple the nation. This would have been part of a plan to destroy Wutai and build a Mako Reactor in the ruins.
2 Reeve Was Going To Shut Off All Of The Mako Reactors
The Cait Sith robot that acts as a playable character in Final Fantasy VII is being controlled by Reeve, who is a high-ranking member of the Shinra Corporation. Cait Sith was originally created to keep tabs on AVALANCHE, but Reeve slowly changes his mind and tries to help the group.
One of the original story ideas for Final Fantasy VII involved the members of AVALANCHE needing to shut off all of the Mako Reactors in order to slow down Sephiroth. This task would have been impossible to complete on time, but Reeve would have helped the group by switching off all of the Mako Reactors himself.
1 The Honey Bee Inn Had Most Of Its Content Removed
The Honey Bee Inn is briefly visited during Cloud's quest to try and find some female clothing so that he can infiltrate Don Corneo's mansion. The Honey Bee Inn is intended to be an interesting place but nothing too crazy happens during your visit.
The Honey Bee Inn has more cut content than any other part of Final Fantasy VII. There are several unused rooms and lots of cut dialogue and events which were more explicit about the true nature of the Honey Bee Inn.
The developers of Final Fantasy VII have discussed the cut content of the Honey Bee Inn during interviews, as it was mostly the work of a rogue writer who went a little too far with the new found freedom of being able to create more adult-oriented stories.