Crisis Core: Final Fantasy 7– Reunion reviewed by Colin Stevens on PlayStation 5, also available on PC, Xbox, and Nintendo Switch.
Crisis Core pushes the definition of a remaster to the edge, completely renovating the 15-year-old PSP game’s graphics, combat, and more. That said, many of the design choices made for the handheld original – like bite-sized side missions – are left intact, keeping this experience from feeling completely modern. But even with a few aging quirks, Crisis Core remains a fun, compelling, and integral chapter in the ongoing Compilation of Final Fantasy 7, and Reunion is the absolute best way to experience it.
[Music] Crisis Core Final Fantasy 7 reunion is a Perfect example of how a game can blur The line between a remaster and a remake Using the skeleton of its already great 2007 PSP original while completely Rebuilding the muscle around it every Change brings it much closer to 2020's Excellent Final Fantasy VII remake from Its gorgeously updated Graphics to its Considerably faster combat however Crisis Core stopped short of the total Upheaval Final Fantasy 7 remake leaned Into and many design choices made for The original PSP game in mind prevent This remaster from being an entirely Unblemished reunion Crisis Core is an action-focused prequel That follows Zach Fair a Plucky and Likable foil to his far more Moody Companion the iconic Cloud Strife Starting roughly seven years before the Events of Final Fantasy VII Zach hopes To climb the ranks of Shinra electric Company's Soldier program with dreams of Becoming a soldier first class the best Of the best just like sephiroth even Today it's still a great story that Newly ties Zack cloud and zephiroth's Threats together with real-time combat That melts some quirky systems in Interesting ways like the strange Digital mind wave slot machine that Brings a bit of the gold saucer to every
Fight Greater result The most immediate and noticeable change To reunion is its graphical overhaul Using Unreal Engine 4 to get its in-game Visuals relatively close to parody with Final Fantasy VII remake character Models look great environments are Highly detailed and even its menu's new Eye replicate remakes clean look that Blends Form and Function so nicely Though Crisis Core was already one of The better looking PSP games these Visual improvements make it feel far More modern and surprisingly High budget For what Square Enix is classifying as a Remaster Foreign reunion could easily be mistaken For a brand new game in most regards Though there are some remnants of the Original holding it back from looking as Good as it possibly can for example the Original CG cut scenes are reused here They benefit from being presented on Bigger and higher definition screens but They are disappointing when compared to The in-game action they're still fun and Well animated after all these years but That can't entirely hide how noticeably They've aged [Music] Oh Thankfully that thick layer of dust is Easier to forget about than the heat of
Battle especially during incredible Summon sequences which are the single Most visually impressive additions to Reunion if it's fiery lava filled Hellfire never failed throughout me nor Did bahamut's particle effects heavy Mega Flare Well it's understandable why Square Enix May not want to completely redo every Pre-rendered cutscene these summons are A tantalizing look at what could have Been had it decided to remake all of That footage with modern tech and not Just the summits Reunion's graphical facelift may be what Catches your eye initially but its most Substantial improvements are its Gameplay tweaks Crisis Core was always An action RPG but the PSP's single Thumbsticks and two bumper layout Four Square Enix to get creative with its Design making you Shuffle their spells Attacks items and more using the left And right bumpers Got him with a modern controller at your Disposal Zach's basic attack Dodge and Guard commands are now all mapped to Face buttons and triggers and you can Use abilities and cast spells much more Quickly by pressing those same buttons While holding L1 if you don't like how The controls are laid out you can even Remap virtually everything in the pause Menu
The DMW system also returns largely Unaltered for better and For Worse Throughout combat a three-tile slot Machine is automatically running in the Upper left hand corner and when a Particular character lines up or certain Number combinations are achieved Zach Can get some pretty substantial boosts Those include temporarily having Unlimited MP or getting the ability to Execute a powerful limit breaker Summit It's a fun way for combat to feel Consistently fresh but the rate at which These boosts are achieved is incredibly Uneven and random Combat is also faster a lot faster Zach Can swiftly Dodge attacks roll behind Enemies for critical hits sneak in a few Sword slashes and roll back out of the Way to deliver a powerful spell in a way That makes the original seem downright Sluggish I replayed a bit of it while Making my way through reunion as a Refresher and the difference in Pace is Simply night and day combat still Doesn't feel like it has quite as much Depth as the admittedly High bar set by Final Fantasy 7 remix action and doesn't Benefit from that game's ability to Switch between party members on the fly But the changes here are still by far The biggest Improvement made over the PSP version unfortunately not every Aspect of Crisis course gameplay has
Been updated with the same level of Success in the Aging game Underneath It All can rear its ugly head again outside Of combat Interior and exterior corridors are Often strung together with thankfully Brief loading screens and while the 10 Story chapters are mostly compelling and Typically last about an hour each crisis Core's mission system still offers Additional bite-sized quests originally Designed to be played on the go most of Them aren't very substantial and almost All boil down to running through the Same small number of hallways randomly Encountering enemies and collecting Items from a few chests playing these Can greatly extend the run time of the Campaign but I only felt compelled to do A handful of them some to get additional Accessory slots some for high-powered Materia and some to see cute story Beats From a young spunky yuffie Turn your princess hear me roar hey You're that weird kid I met in Wu Thai Given how heavily Final Fantasy VII Remake played with the expectations of Fans I was curious to see if Square Enix Was going to adjust crisis course Storyline at all to account for some of The more surprising changes that had Occurred particularly in regards to Zach However the main story is identical to What was told in the original game a big
Change doesn't exactly feel necessary Either just like the original Final Fantasy VII's plot feeds into the Changes that occur in remake so too does Crisis cores and its story still feels Like the most integral entry in the Compilation of Final Fantasy VII outside Of the first game [Music] Thank you so much aerith I'm Zach The events that transpire in Crisis Core Add intriguing depth to Cloud the Turks And many other characters from Square's Beloved classic and its remake sephiroth In particular becomes much more Humanized during its run time it's easy To play their original Final Fantasy VII And not really know a thing about Zach But his arkan Crisis Core is still as Emotional as it was 15 years ago don't Step on the flowers You excuse me normally people are more Careful with flowers Well I guess I'm not normal Voices for characters like Zach Sephiroth aerith and Maura have also Been replaced by their respective voice Actors from Final Fantasy VII remake Giving a stronger sense of cohesion Between your union and the as of yet Unfinished Trilogy of remakes However while the overall story of Crisis Core remains compelling and
Fascinating as a prequel there are Aspects of the tale that Veer towards The endearingly nonsensical flavor of Storytelling present in other Square Enix games These moments don't derail the story Entirely but awkward jokes strange Obsessions with what it means to be a Monster and some cringe-worthy dialogue Do occasionally distract from the Otherwise enjoyable story whatever [Music] Crisis Core Final Fantasy 7 reunion Pushes the definition of a remaster to The edge completely renovating the 15 Year old PSP games Graphics combat and More that said many of the design Choices made for the handheld original Like bite-sized missions are left intact Keeping this experience from feeling Completely modern but even with a few Aging quirks Crisis Core remains a fun Compelling and integral chapter in the Ongoing compilation of Final Fantasy VII And a reunion is the absolute best way To experience it For more recent RPGs check out our Reviews of Pokemon scarlet and violet or Marvel's midnight Suns and for Everything else keep it locked on IGN Thank you [Music]