Final Fantasy 7 Rebirth director wants the entire JRPG to be a mini-game extravaganza on the level of Gold Saucer

Final Fantasy 7 Rebirth characters
(Image credit: Square Enix)

Naoki Hamaguchi, the director behind Final Fantasy 7 Rebirth, revealed that the entire game will be stuffed with Gold Saucer-level mini-games.

Speaking to OMG during Thailand Game Show 2023, Hamaguchi said the development team "took what was included in the original Gold Saucer and tried to include everything" in Rebirth. That makes sense since he previously discussed the team's dedication to Final Fantasy's ultra-zany side content, but the upcoming game is taking things a step further. 

"We want to change the image of the game from Gold Saucer having lots of mini-games, to the game as a whole having lots of mini-games," he explained. Though, fans of the original’s snowboard distraction will need to wait until "the latter game" because Rebirth takes place "until the Forgotten Capital" - which points to a potentially heart-breaking finale

Hamaguchi pointed to the revamped Junon parade as an example of a largely expanded mini-game. "Cloud becomes the leader of the parade, and when we get to Junon, he can recruit soldiers to perform with him," Hamaguchi revealed. "Depending on who he recruits, the mini-game will change and offer players a different perspective." The change was apparently made to "fit for modern audiences." 

But the expanded mini-games are symbolic of how the team supposedly approached everything in Rebirth: with players in mind. When asked about the elaborate online theories swirling around, Hamaguchi simply said that the team "always check the pulse of the players regarding feedback for the game." That philosophy extended to the game's sheer size.

One point of contention surrounding recent-ish Final Fantasy games has been their map sizes. Final Fantasy 13? Too narrow for many fans. While Final Fantasy 15 is sometimes criticized for feeling too large and consequently messy. (I somehow love them both, though. Sorry.) But Hamaguchi settled on a middle ground for Rebirth: "If we make it too big and spacious, players might think that there’s nothing to do in such a wide space. If we make it too small and narrow, players might not get a good sense of adventure."

Our Final Fantasy 7 Rebirth preview reaffirmed the game is next year’s most exciting JRPG.

Freelance contributor

Kaan freelances for various websites including Rock Paper Shotgun, Eurogamer, and this one, Gamesradar. He particularly enjoys writing about spooky indies, throwback RPGs, and anything that's vaguely silly. Also has an English Literature and Film Studies degree that he'll soon forget.