Grungy, gritty and full of life, Midgar is the city to remember when it comes to Final Fantasy 7. At least, that's what the creators of the remake believe and it's difficult to disagree. Midgar is the city that welcomes you to Final Fantasy 7's world in all its dark themes, harsh realities and, sometimes, the beauty hidden within.
You only spend around five or six hours in the city and you don't even get to explore every part of it but the remake aims to change that. With the remake coming in March of 2020 and with it apparently only taking place in Midgar, it's time to take a fresh look at the city. Here are 10 Facts You Never Knew About Midgar From Final Fantasy 7.
10 Midgar As We Know It Is A Young City
You wouldn't think it with all the slums and class divides but Midgar is only thirty one years old. Part of the reason for this is because, before it was known as Midgar, it was actually eight different towns whose names were lost to history. These towns became the various sectors of Midgar, numbered one through eight. The sad truth of the matter is that the city has aged much more quickly because of Shinra's desire for the Cetra's "Promised Land".
Right from the moment you start playing, it's clear that Shinra has no intention of building up the city of Midgar. This makes AVALANCHE's terrorist efforts more of an annoyance than an actual threat. It also shows in their callous disregard for human life and the cities own integrity when they drop the plate to try and get rid of AVALANCHE. The city instead serves as the template for Neo Midgar.
9 There are Nine different sectors
You don't get to visit all of them in the original game but with the remake's focus on Midgar, there's a strong possibility that you will soon.
Fittingly, the first sector you get to visit is Sector 1. It's the first location when you start up the game and jump off the train and leads to the first reactor you blow along with the first boss. Sector 2 and 3 are unknown at this moment. Sector 4's role is pretty small, really only being used to get to the Sector five reactor. Sector 5 is where things get interesting. After fighting the Air Buster boss in the reactor, you fall down and meet Aeris and the rest is history. The remake has plenty of opportunity here to really explore more about Aeris and her life.
Sector 6 starts off tame with a nice walk down memory lane in a park but it leads to perhaps the most memorable area within Midgar - Wall Market. Sector 7 contains Tifa's 7th Heaven, AVALANCHE's home base and is central to showing Shinra's disregard for life after having the plate above it dropped on it. Sector 8 is both where you first see Aeris and where you drop in later in the game to stop Hojo from helping Sephiroth.
8 Midgar's Sector 0 holds many secrets
The last and most secretive of the Sectors is 0. It is here that Shinra Headquarters is located and it is where they hold their secrets. In the course of the game you visit here in order to rescue Aeris and in order to stop the Sister Ray from firing. When you visit it the second time you can re-enter Shinra HQ to pick up any items you missed the first time, such as Cait-Sith's final weapon, HP Shout.
But what you don't find out is that this is also where Deepground is based. Deepground is a secret organization housed in the Sector 0 reactor that started out as a medical division for wounded SOLDIER's. It transformed into an experimentation ground for Project G and is explored in Dirge of Cerberus -Final Fantasy VII-.
7 Midgar is themed after pizza
A oddity to be sure but one that makes sense if you think about it. The whole design of the city, particularly involving the upper plates, looks like a pizza. It's also part of why such a severe class divide exists, because the rich and well-to-do get to live above the filth and pollution where as the people below must live with it. Or, as Barret said, "The upper world... a city on a plate... It's 'cuz of that &^#$# 'pizza', that people underneath are sufferin'!"
Of course the pizza doesn't stop there. The mayor of Midgar's name is Domino and his deputy's name is Hart (his Japanese name could also be translated to Hut). Finally, the main musical theme that plays throughout your time in the city is "Underneath the Rotting Pizza".
6 Midgar's boss battles will change in the remake
There are a large variety of boss battles you must complete while within Midgar, which gives the new remake plenty of material to extend the game with. In the original game the boss battles were not too complicated. Take the Guard Scorpion for instance, it has two forms, one of which you avoid attacking. The only confusing thing about this battle is a mistranslation where the game tells you to attack while its tail is raised.
In the remake, you will have to do a variety of different things tied to the new battle system. The guard scorpion, newly dubbed the Scorpion Sentinel, will require you to block, let Barret attack it while it's on the wall and even stagger it. One more thing to watch for, you will be required to hide behind cover for certain parts of this fight. If the new Scorpion Sentinel is any indication, the rest of the boss battles will also have new mechanics to explore.
5 Midgar housed not one, but two incarnations of AVALANCHE
The AVALANCHE we know and love is led by Barret with members: Biggs, Wedge, Jessie and Tifa. The major driving factor for Cloud in the beginning of the game is getting paid by AVALANCHE to help them destroy Mako Reactors. They plant bombs to destroy them and view the civilians around them as important. When there are civilian causalities they are regretful but firm in their war against Shinra. Overall they want to help save the planet and are willing to be terrorists to do so.
The second, and much less lovable, incarnation of AVALANCHE is actually the first incarnation. Before the start of the game there is a war going on between this version of AVALANCHE and Shinra's turks. While both incarnations are out to save the planet, this version goes to extremes. They eventually set about trying to summon Zirconiade with full intent on the genocide of the human race. Thankfully they are not successful in this genocide.
4 Midgar is based off of Norse Mythology
So much about Midgar has parallels to Norse mythology but perhaps the most obvious one is its name. Midgar is based off of Midgard, a place that, when translated, means "Middle Earth" (or world). But it doesn't stop there; there are nine plates in Midgar just as Midgard is one of the nine plains. Midgard is cut off from the other realms by way of an impassable ocean and endless desert and Midgar likewise separates itself by way of its plates.
The final two parallels are perhaps the most striking. Midgard was created using the body of the first created being, the giant Ymir. Ymir's body sustains Midgard's inhabitants just as Midgar is sustained by the Mako energy taken from Gaia, the planet. Finally, Midgard is fated to be destroyed during Ragnarok just as Midgar is destroyed by Meteor at the end of the game.
3 You can return there early
After the events in Mideel and once you have Cloud back in your party, you can pursue an optional side-quest. In this quest, you can find the key to sector 5 by searching for it in the Bone Village. With this key in hand simply walk into Midgar on the mini-map and walk through the door.
Once you're in there you can go about getting two very useful items. Once of these is Tifa's ultimate weapon, the Premium Heart. To do this, simply have both Tifa and Cid in your party and then enter the item shop and you will receive her weapon. You can also return to the man who you bought the battery from earlier in the game to buy a very expensive item called the sneak glove. It increases your chance to steal items.
2 Finding Aeris's Ghost
There is one more thing you can do when returning to Midgar - see Aeris again. Simply return to the church you originally fell down into after the Air Buster fight and you will see a scene with Aeris tending to the flowers. When passing by a certain point or if you leave the church, she will flicker and disappear. Another interesting note is that the two children's dialogue will be different depending on whether she is still on screen or not.
Strangely, there is another time you can see her ghost but it is most likely not intended. When it happens you'll see Aeris in the middle of the church but only until the area full loads, at which point she will disappear.
1 Midgar never recovers after its destruction
Whether its because the former citizens had bad memories of it or because no one dared risk re-settling it after the terrible Geostigma crisis, Midgar never recovers. After being destroyed by meteor, the reactors that once gave life to the massive city were left destroyed, thereby leaking mako everywhere. To make things worse, Jenova cells corrupted some of the lifestream, leading to what is known as Geostigma.
While these problems are eventually solved, Midgar never seems to recover. Even five hundred years later it has simply been left there to be overun with vegetation. This is shown in an after-credits scene where Red XIII is running along with his children and overlooks a desolate Midgar.