7’s success changed much of how writing was done for the series going forward.
While Final Fantasy has always been a pretty big series, without a doubt, it was Final Fantasy 7 that helped break the series out in a way that lead to it becoming a megafranchise. That’s one of the reasons the remake of that title is so hotly anticipated. It’s influence was felt in the franchise’s future with the next game in the series, Final Fantasy 8, having its writing looked at in a very different way than the franchise had in the past.
Speaking with Weekly Famitsu, longtime Final Fantasy scenarist Kazushige Nojima said that Final Fantasy 7‘s success on the worldwide stage was far bigger than the company’s already lofty goals. Because of that, they looked at the writing and script for 8 in a much broader and international friendly way than they ever had before, particularly in how things like jokes and puns would be translated to a worldwide audience, and the type of language that could be used in Japanese that didn’t work as well in other languages (thanks to DualShockers for transcribing and translation).
“Final Fantasy 7 was a huge success outside Japan. So right from the start of Final Fantasy 8’s development, one of our main objectives was making something that would be popular overseas. We didn’t have this in mind at all when making FF7. So I changed my way of writing. For example, in Japanese, you can make a character speak without revealing their gender. You can use that, and make a reveal later about how that character was actually a woman. This isn’t possible in English as the translation will always use either “He” or “She”. Another example would be jokes. Until then, I only thought about Japanese players, so puns were not a problem. But I heard the translators had a lot of trouble with that when translating FF7. So we tried our best to write FF8‘s scenario in a way that would be easier to translate.
While a full remake of 8 probably won’t be in the cards anytime soon (if ever), it did get a recent remaster to be introduced to a modern audience. The Final Fantasy 7 Remake is slated to come out early 2020, so we can rediscover that magic (hopefully) all over again.