Sony showed a ton of games during its long-awaited PlayStation 5 showcase, but one that was notably absent was Final Fantasy VII Rebirth. Fans immediately assumed the worst, fearing the remake’s sequel might end up taking years longer to release than previously planned. A new message from the developers at Square Enix strongly implies that’s not the case.
“Development is progressing smoothly and according to plan,” Final Fantasy VII Rebirth producer Yoshinori Kitase wrote in a tweet posted on June 2. “We are currently working on nailing down a release date for the game.” The statement was framed as a response to the question of how the project was going, as if to say, in so many words, “don’t worry everyone, chill out, it’s fine.”
Rebirth was only just announced last year during a 25th anniversary showcase for Final Fantasy VII, the beloved 1997 PS1 turn-based RPG about a spikey-haired amnesiac and his ecco terrorist pals who fight to save the planet from greedy corporations and an extraterrestrial demon. Square Enix confirmed the remake series would be a trilogy, and teased even bigger and weirder deviations from the original game’s plot to build off of its legacy in new ways.
It was given a release window of winter 2023, which seemed both too far away at the time and very ambitious. By comparison, Final Fantasy VII Remake was first revealed way back in 2015 and didn’t arrive on PlayStation 4 until 2020. The quick turnaround time for Rebirth made sense given the first game in the planned trilogy had already laid the groundwork, but players started to worry when Square Enix went silent on the project and it didn’t even get a mention at Sony’s first big showcase in two years last month.
One way to read Kitase’s reassurances is that the game is nearly complete and the team is just deciding on the exact date for winter 2023 to release it. Another way to take it is that development is going well but the exact release date might end up being slightly different than what was first announced. Given major blockbusters are getting delayed all the time now, that wouldn’t be shocking. Hopefully Rebirth doesn’t end up being one of them though.