BlogIt had to happen, Tetsuya Nomura has come full circle. Sometimes I wonder if I'm out of touch with gaming and that this is what most people really want. Then I think for a moment, and a moment more, and I realize that no, this is definitely not what the majority of people want but simply what they have to live with. The reality is that most gamers don't think too much about what they play when they're not playing it, and while any flaw might bother them while the game is on, once the game is off they would likely move on with life and forget any misgivings they had with the game, ready to buy the next one. I guess this really only affects those of us who take gaming as a more serious hobby instead of just another form of entertainment, but yeah, it really sucks.
So what the fuck am I really talking about? Gackt's "contribution" to Final Fantasy VII, that's what. On a purely commercial and logical level, it makes perfect sense. Gackt is literally the closest thing on this planet to a Nomura design in the flesh. While most gamers in the West will not have experienced the full force of this "Project G" yet, Japanese FFVII fans have already experienced the first wave of it when Dirge of Cerberus: Final Fantasy VII was released on the Playstation 2 early this year. While reactions were mostly mixed, and the game itself fairing poorly critically, the sales more than justified the half-assed effort Square Enix put into this third person shooter featuring Vincent in a post-Advent Children Midgar. That means Project G doesn't end there, it continues indefinitely!
So what is Project G? Project G is the worst nightmare of every hetrosexual male Final Fantasy VII fan unsure about his own sexuality. If you are still interested in maintaining a virgin spoiler-free view of the plot in Dirge of Cerberus for whatever reasons knowing full well that the game is and still will be complete shit when it hits American and European shores, then I suggest you stop reading now and come back to this article after you're done with the game. If you're a normal person like everyone else, read on and experience the horror of Project G.
Here's the main breakdown of Dirge's plot: Three years after Advent Children, Vincent encounters a group of special forces soldiers that resemble every other armored soldier group that Nomura has designed led by a group of stylish misfits that wouldn't look out of place in Kingdom Hearts II's Organization XIII. Eventually he discovers they work for a topless muscle-bound pretty guy with Goku's haircut whose weapon choice happens to be twin katanas. He also discovers this person is in fact Hojo, who survived Final Fantasy VII by transplanting his mind into another body. Now if you think that was really, really stupid, you should worry because that's not Project G. It doesn't even come close to the horror that is Project G. That is only a taste of what Nomura has in mind for the rest of the Compilation of Final Fantasy VII.
You see, throughout the game in Dirge you can collect these mysterious reports scattered around similar to the Ansem Reports in Kingdom Hearts. These are the G Reports. What are they? They detail a top secret Shinra experiment pre-FFVII named Project G. Another attempt to create the super soldier and the perfect weapon. It is said that Project G is the only test subject that can stand against Project S. Sounds like a load of retro-continuity bullshit right? It gets better. If you complete the game with every single G Report collected, there's a bonus FMV at the end. It is here that Project G makes his first appearance. It is here where Square Enix felt the need to employ the special services of Gackt for full facial and motion capture. It is here where you see Gackt, decked out in full Nomura dresswear, belts and buckles galore, holding the body of the dearly departed "father" Hojo. It is here where you see Gackt fly away with one wing (which happens to be the exact opposite of Sephiroth's one wing) with parting words that pretty much cements his eventual return to the official mythos.
I wondered after the release of Dirge why Square Enix would spend all the time and money adding the G Reports and making that one single Project G FMV, when it did not factor in to the actual game at all. It was simply retro-continuity with no pay off. Well it turns out I was wrong! In the most recent issue of Dengeki Playstation and Famitsu, the first official screenshots of Crisis Core Final Fantasy VII were unveiled. The latest in the line of spin-offs, this time it's an action RPG set before FFVII starring the lovable soldier Zack. With the screens and characters revealed, it is clear that Sephiroth will not play a lead villain role this time, as he is still regarded as a great hero in Shinra at this period. Instead the story will dwell on other going-ons within Shinra which only Zack would have known about, including mysterious characters linked to the Project G being conducted. Woo Hoo! Uncontent with simply being a single offending FMV in PS2s everywhere, this century-old vampire rock star has decided he needs to invade gamers on-the-go as well!
Great job Square Enix, you've probably just sold about 400,000 copies of Crisis Core to raving fangirls everywhere who'll probably never understand why their boyfriends want to break the UMD into two viciously. Personally I never cared much for Final Fantasy VII, and thanks to the Compilation of Final Fantasy VII, I care even less. For everyone who cares, there's always: L+R BAIL OUT.