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Producer Hazama on Final Fantasy VII G-Bike

June 11th, 2014 by Tony Garsow

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Square Enix Presents introduced Ichirou Hazama as the producer of Final Fantasy VII G-Bike, a mini-game spinoff from the original Final Fantasy VII‘s Gold Saucer. Heading to smartphone platforms iOS and Android, the game features 3D graphics reminiscent of Crisis Core: Final Fantasy VII, and Cloud will take center stage to take on challenging courses.

Hazama-san shared that the project got started after fan reaction to Final Fantasy VII character introductions in Theatrhythm and Pictologica, so he pitched the idea to Final Fantasy series executive producer Shinji Hashimoto. The team has just started development on the project and there will be more that will remain up to fans’ imagination. The game isn’t intended to be an endless runner, but more of chase-type gameplay as seen in the trailer. Courses will revolve around defeating enemies or maneuvering through obstacles and clearing them as fast as you can.

Where does this take place in the Final Fantasy VII timeline? Hazama-san asks players to imagine it happening during the original Final Fantasy VII, but the team didn’t want to specific restrict themselves to the sub-series timeline. Since there’s no real storyline, the team’s focus turned to incorporating Final Fantasy VII gameplay elements such as the use of materia. They’d also like to include other characters from Final Fantasy VII in G-Bike, but reiterated that there’s no bearing on canon as a story will be absent.

Hazama-san expressed the team’s interest in customizing the bikes, but want to consider the gameplay design around these customizations rather than pure aesthetics. After the game’s release (it’s also free-to-play) they’d like to support it going forward. Right now the Midgar highway is planned but they’d like to include other areas and items Final Fantasy VII fans would find familiar.

Also a producer on the Theatrhythm games which feature many songs from the Final Fantasy franchise, Hazama said he will seek composer Nobuo Uematsu’s blessings to use his music in the game much in the same way he does for Theatrhythm. The team wants to incorporate familiar courses, so they want the monsters that would appear to be in line with what players remember.

Theatrhythm prepared Hazama to make something of a compendium of Final Fantasy music throughout the years. The same philosophy is being applied to G-Bike with elements of Final Fantasy VII. The first priority for the team is to satisfy fans of Final Fantasy VII, but for those new to the universe, the mobile platform and free-to-play plan were lucrative to get people introduced to the universe.

Two pillars for G-Bike is to reinforce that this is a game in the Final Fantasy VII universe and the “thrill of the chase” fans experienced in the original minigame.

Final Fantasy VII G-Bike is currently announced for iOS/Android.

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