Today marks the 10th anniversary of Final Fantasy VII’s U.S. release, approximately. I say “approximately” because the game was supposed to arrive on 9/7/97 but everyone more or less jumped the collective gun and released it early. Some areas started selling on the 3rd, while my local Babbage’s waited until the 4th to ensure that I was a day behind everyone else on the Internet and could have all the important twists spoiled for me well in advance of my actually getting there.
Me, I already wrote a loving tribute to the game some time ago and have little else to add. But Square Enix has upped the ante in fine style, marking the occasion by desecrating the few good things still associated with FFVII. I mean, my article wasn’t especially nice, but SE’s being downright vicious. Apparently Dirge of Cerberus and Advent Children weren’t enough, because now Tobal No. 1 — the underappreciated 3D fighter that played the “Zone of the Enders” role for the FFVII demo — is getting a punch right in the babymaker.
See, Tobal is coming back — great news for fans of the company’s bygone days of risk-taking and innovation. Oh, but it’s coming to… mobile phones. As “Tobal M.” This comes just a few months after the debut of Parasite Eve 3, a long-hoped-for sequel to the shallow-but-innovative “cinematic RPG” about killing a mutant woman covered in melty breasts. Two PS1 gems revived, and you will never be able to play them, you stupid American with your stupid underpowered phone. Besides, even if you could, you’d hate the experience, because even Japanese cell phones lack a game-friendly interface. Really, it’s a lose-lose situation for everyone… except Square Enix, who can chalk up another victory for antipathy toward gamers.
You can rest assured that sooner or later Square’s going to unveil Dew Prism Mobile, Einhänder 2 and — why not? — ActRaiser 3. All for cell phones. And on that day, we will all rise up and crush them with our collective nerd rage. (Or post persnickety comments on forums, which is almost as dangerous. Almost.)