SAN FRANCISCO—Last year's inaugural PlayStation Experience closed 2014 with a surprising number of game and product announcements, and Sony appeared ready to double-down on this new end-of-year tradition with a follow-up, fan-focused convention full of playable demos and new products, and its two-hour keynote led off with the big Final Fantasy remaster that Sony announced at this past summer's Electronic Entertainment Expo.
Final Fantasy VII Remake—the classic remaster's official name—had a gameplay-trailer reveal that showed less of a remaster and more of a total overhaul. For starters, the new version of FF7 includes a third-person, over-the-shoulder camera as its default viewpoint. That'll certainly show off the new, fully 3D content better than the original version's pre-rendered, top-down environs—and the footage showed more intense movement maneuvers like slides and hops through the world of Midgar, so the camera change isn't just for show. The trailer's dialogue was entirely spoken aloud, as well, and its combat showed off an apparent active-battle twist, though it was hard to tell whether players will gain as much active control of Cloud Strife and other characters as the trailer appeared to show, or whether the footage simply looked more dynamic from a new perspective.
Final Fantasy big-wig Tetsuya Nomura took the stage after the presentation, but not with news of a release date or when fans can expect any playable access to the remaster. Instead, he announced that the PC version of Final Fantasy VII had already launched on PlayStation 4 via its online store.