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    Has nobody told Vincent about the birds and the bees? 
  • How come it took so long for Vincent to figure out that Hojo was Sephiroth's dad? He should know perfectly well he wasn't the father and he knew that Lucrecia was involved with Hojo.
    • What bugs me the most is actually the fact that Lucretia actually dumped Vincent for Hojo...
      • Well, the first time you arrive at Costa Del Sol you can find Hojo at the beach surrounded by (presumably) beautiful women. Make of that as you will...
      • Chicks dig the labcoat, baby.
      • It's made even worse when Hojo is, uh, less than charming about it. "So you've come to your senses and chosen me." Yeah... a real turn-on...
      • His rendering in Crisis Core really doesn't help highlight his charm either.
      • One trope: Kavorka Man
      • The Kavorka Man usually has some personality to back up his lack of external beauty. Does Hojo seem to even try to be nice, or approachable?
      • He probably did an experiment on himself that brainwashes most women without them realizing it or something.
    • We don't know how deeply involved Vincent and Lucrecia were before she snapped and married Hojo. Or what the exact timing of her pregnancy was. For all we know Vincent may very well have assumed he was the father.
    • For the youngsters out there, Vincent being the biological father of Sephiroth has been a matter of speculation for years until the compilation came out and discredited it. The scene where he gets all surprised after finding out that Hojo is indeed the father is an obvious Plot Hole that nobody had bothered to answer.
    • I always suspected it was a case of Rape as Drama and that the marriage was to cover it up. I wouldn't put it past him. He did try to "breed" Aeris, remember?
      • That would only make better the fact that I stop thinking Lucretia was completely out of her mind.
    • This is somewhat retroactively explained in Dirge of Cerberus. Lucrecia was involved in an expedition with Vincent's father that ended with his death. Lucrecia harboured a lot of guilt over the incident, despite it not being her fault, and that carried through to her budding relationship with his son. Vincent finds out about what happened on the expedition, but isn't particularly bothered, he's more concerned about Lucrecia's guilt over it. Unable to face Vincent, Lucrecia then turns to Hojo for comfort, which eventually becomes a relationship where she marries him and falls pregnant with his child.
  • In his flashback, he clearly sees Hojo and Lucrecia becoming a couple. It's possible that his "...!" after Hojo confesses that he's Sephiroth's father was a oversight by the writers, or a translation issue. But it's also possible that, seeing that Hojo is actively helping his son destroy the world while bragging about the fact that he never saw him as more than another experiment, to the point that he never even told Sephiroth he was his father, made Vincent realise just how truly disgusting that sad, pathetic excuse for a human being really is, and that he should have killed the man thirty years ago.
    • Vincent may have known that Hojo and Lucrecia were dating, but he either didn't realize that Hojo inseminated Lucrecia with his own sperm or was simply in denial about it. Vincent's shock at hearing Hojo's confession might have been his finally just how depraved Hojo was, and that his role in Sephiroth's evil ran even further than Vincent realized.

    Where did the Ancients who aren't Ifalna and Aerith go? 
  • Is it ever explained how Ifalna and Aerith came to be last of the Ancients? Was there a population of them until recently or was Ifalna some kind of genetic throwback born to human parents?
    • It's implied that the Ancient bloodline has been diluted to the extreme, thanks to mingling with humans. Ifalna might not be the last actual Ancient, but the last person to display Ancient powers. This gets passed on to her daughter. So the Ancient race might not have technically died out, just co-mingled with humanity to the point of being phased out as a distinct species.
    • IIRC, an ordinary human (Prof. Gast) was Aeris' father, so her connection to the Ancients must be cultural/spiritual more than it's genetic.
      • No, it's definitely implied to be genetic. In the ShinRa tower, when you listen in on the board meeting, Hojo talks about his research. He says that Aerith isn't nearly as much of an Ancient as her mother was, and so his research into the Promised Land is now going to take 120 years. This would make sense, because Aerith is, at most Half-Ancient.
    • Actually, JENOVA's virus killed off most of the Ancients when she collided into the planet from her last target planet. Us humans retreated into caves and stuff. 1000 years later, all that was left was Ifalna and Aeris.
    • I always figured it was because Cetra/Ancients had Tolkien Elf-esque long life spans, which explains why Ifalna seems to have first-hand knowledge of the Jenova crisis.
      • This is not true for Aerith at least; Hojo says he needs to crossbreed her with Red XIII (who is canonically known to be long-lived) to produce a longer-lived Ancient specimen.
    • The Ancients/Cetra were essentially humans attuned to the 'Planet'. They gradually turned their backs on nature and became regular humans. Even Cloud & co. are able to hear the cries of the Planet from Cosmo Canyon, implying they still carry part of that lineage.
      • There's also the fact that Aerith lived in pretty much the only garden in Midgar. It's likely that her upbringing in an environment like that added to her already higher quantity of Cetra genes, basically a perfect blend of nature and nurture to attune her to the planet.
      • I always thought that Aerith's connection to the Planet was what helped the garden to grow, not vice versa. Of course iirc, we don't know how long that garden's been there.
      • This makes more sense, because flowers also grow at the church where Aerith spends most of her time. She even says something to the extent that not much vegetation grows in Midgar, but for some reason the flowers have no problem growing there.
    • Most were killed by JENOVA the survivors intermingled with humans until their bloodline was too thin to manifest. Aeris and Ifalna were just the last ones whose Cetra genes were dominant, their descendants would have lost their powers and become normal humans a few generations down the line as well if Aeris hadn't been killed.

    Straight out of Corel, into the Gold Saucer? 
  • The geographic layout of the Corel/Gold Saucer area. Corel Prison has the same layout as Corel Town does in the flashbacks, so ostensibly it's supposed to be the ruins of Corel Town. Does that mean that the small, homely coal-mining town of Corel was built in the middle of an inhospitable, inaccessible desert? And that in the 4 years that passed between its destruction and the events of the game, the Gold Saucer, apparently a major worldwide tourist resort, was built directly above its ruins? And its survivors relocated for some reason to be right next door to the reactor that started the whole mess, and the only access point to the Gold Saucer is located right in the middle of that impoverished shanty-town? (Just imagine if the only way to get to Las Vegas was to board a plane from an airport in Compton.)
    • I've wondered about that too. You'd think there's a few murders inflicted upon the presumably rich people who go there. Besides, the fact that there's a prison drop anyway should tell you a bit about the sort of people who run the place...
      • Remember that Shinra burned down Corel because they THOUGHT that the town had something to do with the Reactor's explosion. Everyone was probably scared shitless to mess with their business.
      • Never trust a swarthy middle-aged bear who conducts business affairs while wearing nothing but a leopard-print bikini brief.
      • I second this emotion.
    • Really, this is just a cast of limited storage space. The only reason Corel Prison looks like Corel Town is to save disk space. The survivors never relocated, they always lived near the reactor to begin with. Look at the flashback scene where Dyne is first shot and falls into the ravine-it's clearly set on the railroad tracks near the reactor, where Barret and Dyne saw Corel Town being burned. They were on their way home when Scarlet and her goons attacked them. And while the people of Corel Town may be poor, there's nothing to indicate that they're criminals. The actual murderers and thieves are taken to Corel Prison, where they can't escape.
      • Ridiculous. For one, disk space would only be saved if the locations were precisely the same data. Considerable time was taken to alter the look of Corel Town to make it look wrecked and dilapidated. Furthermore, the ruined house in which the party reassembles after going to the prison is seen in the flashback, intact, as the house in which Dyne raises objections to the reactor. It is very obvious that Corel Prison used to be Corel Town. The reason it is such a terrible desert environment may have something to do with the reactor draining life force... surely the Gold Saucer is powered by Mako and probably needs an awful lot of it. Likely, Corel was once arid and dry to start with and now it's just a lot worse.
    • Presumably, there is also aerial access via helicopters to the Gold Saucer, so wealthy individuals don't have to take the tram. A better question is, why haven't the Corel people setup competing hotels, restaurants, and gambling? (Well, technically there already is a hotel/inn, but preferably one that isn't in shambles.) There are third party-hotels and theme parks near Disneyland; some quite cheaper. I can only assume Shinra gave the Gold Saucer a monopoly.
      • I just assumed that it was because they were all dirt poor ex-miners who don't know how to run a hotel or a restaraunt, and are too poor to even make an attempt. The only hotel in town is a struggling, run-down, little hostel with more rats than customers. I think that would be the fate of any North Corel business. It's an awful little dungheap of a town, and no one's going to stop for the night when they can be on the tram to the Golden Saucer for free in two minutes.
    • I read into it that half the town's income was from tourists with more money than stat points. I could be reading what wasn't there, though.
    • During Barrett's flashback of how Dyne got his gun arm, Corel seemed to be in a more forested area. Besides that, Barrett goes to look at Corel as it's burning down from a cliffside at Mt. Corel - facing in a different direction than the way you go to reach North Corel.
      • I'll try to Handwave this by saying that the fire that burnt down Corel spread to the whole forest, burning it down as well. And the fire was so damn powerful that it basically burned away any and all life in the soil and caused it to turn into a desert...
      • That, and the whole "Mako reactors drain the life from the land" with Corel being an early reactor and all. I imagine the power needed for Gold Saucer is quite immense.
      • This still doesn't make sense seeing as how fires don't decimate whole forests. They burn the foliage down, but the ashes provide the soil rich nutrients that allow the forest to regrow. Seeds usually survive fires and therefore make life possible. Life could be wiped out if the reactor sucked out the life, but Midgar had several reactors sucking the planet dry and yet Aerith could grow flowers in the church dirt. We can guess that maybe the nutrients in the soil had been overworked and that farming loosen it further. That could cause a dust bowl scenario, but there's no proof of farming. If there was negligent farming practices plus the fire plus a huge extraction of mako plus a large deforestation problem PLUS natural environmental cycles such as the planet's tilt changing or the atmosphere or sea currents shifting there might be a chance that the forest would become a desert in a few short years. I don't see how this could occur unless multiple problems just built up on each other until the forest just couldn't survive. Another possibility is that the forest had a large coal or oil reserve underneath it since millennium of growth would easily led to this. The fire could then ignite the coal or oil and that could continue to burn for decades, but we never see fire shoot from the ground so this is unlikely.
      • Many fires don't decimate whole forests, but there are some that do, and they wind up doing far more damage than intended.
    • Honestly, I never actually asked about the layout of Corel and the Gold Saucer. I thought it was pretty cliche for Barret's history to be associated with a prison in the first place. Not to mention that although he presumably grew up in Corel he talks different because he's "black". Anyways, as for the desert I'm sure it was the combined consequences of the forest fire and the Gold Saucer itself. I imagine the Gold Saucer takes up a bunch of mako, even more than Midgar, and there's sure to be some reactor somewhere in it, if it isn't a reactor itself. We could say that Shinra built the Gold Saucer to cover up the real tragedy that happened there — excluding everything but FFVII itself. Shinra just deciding to destroy a town wouldn't go over well. But it could have been someone else who worked together with Shinra to build it. I'm not sure.
    • It seems pretty clear to me. The tram isn't an elevator. The GS isn't above Corel, it's got a pair of cables going there with a car hanging from them. For the specific reason that obviously no one would like to go through to desert to get to it.
    • One question on this tropers mind is that how in the blue mako hell did Dyne get up to the Gold Saucer to conduct his massacre without getting caught out, or if he was already in Corel Prison, Granted there's no evidence he was in there to begin with, But either way you'd think people would get very suspicious of a bulky man with a FUCKING GATTLING GUN walking around the place.
      • No one minded Barret...
  • I recently thought about this having been playing the game again lately, It's kind of established that Dyne had become some sort of boss among the prisoners seeing as the guy in the truck refers to him as such. Which i'm guessing means he has access to the elevator that leads right back up. Perhaps he snuck by (or killed) a few guards in the Chocobo square, snuck into the battle square and then did his spree before sneaking back down in the confusion.
  • Given some of the thoughts below regarding the Junon cannon, could it be that the Corel area was bombarded from Junon, converting the forested landscape into a desert. Of note: the cannon appears to be aimed in the general direction of both Corel and Wutai, it fires Mako shells, and Mako is generally toxic, but especially so in high concentrations. We see that the cannon is effective when scoring a direct hit on a WEAPON, and delivers enough of a punch to destroy the barrier erected over the northern crater, but we've never seen what effect the cannon has against a conventional target. Or have we? Could the Corel Desert result from Mako poisoning of the local environment?

    Phoenix Downs - too awesome to use on Aerith? 
  • WHY DIDN'T THEY JUST USE A GODDAMN PHOENIX DOWN ON AERITH AFTER SEPHIROTH—!! All right, sorry, never mind. Just needed to get that out there. Yes, it was tragic; yes, it was pointless. But it was pointless because The Powers That Be expected us to believe she's Deader than Dead without ever explaining why—!! Sorry.
    • Ever see the Princess Bride? "There's all dead and there's mostly dead..."
    • For all the people who wonder why they can't use a Phoenix Down on Aerith, how come no one wonders why anyone can't spare a single frickin' Soft for Red XIII's father? If we leave the usual gameplay/story segregation alone for a moment, Phoenix Down might not exactly cure "permanent death" - but Red's dad was just turned to stone. He even cries in his scene!
      • Because Red XIII's father wasn't turned to stone by a spell, but by poison. Assuming soft would work on this, it would presumably also restore the poison petrified in his system, turning him back to stone again.
    • You don't actually 'die' in battle. You're knocked out. Phoenix Downs don't bring you back from the dead so much as they take care of those pesky concussions.
      • I always thought that you had to use a phoenix down before the characters died (while in knock out status). The characters then dies and are restored to new life. This fits the myth of the phoenix quite well since this bird is reborn at the end of its life/lifespan (what consists of a lifespan is quite ambigous after all).
      • He could have been Petrified to the point that one dude from Final Fantasy IX was and instead of a soft needed a Megasoft. I doubt the residents of Cosmo Canyon would just leave him like that on purpose.
      • Because no one's gone into the cave in years. They were the first people in there since Seto was petrified. Maybe softs only work to a certain point after which the person becomes actual stone and can't be revived. Otherwise, that would make a pretty good method of storing people in suspended animation.
      • The scene - hell, the whole sidestory of Red and his father would have been cheapened if he could just bring him back. Rule of drama, I guess.
      • The ultimate point is that Seto continued to fight when all others failed, even as he was being turned to stone, and had been left that way with the door sealed behind him so the Gi could never enter Cosmo Canyon. Left petrified like that, his body was irreversibly destroyed, but his soul lived on within the statue to continue this mission. The tears were most likely liquefied spirit/Mako energy rather than any actual material substance. The rage about Aeris' death is because it happens onscreen and the heroes don't do a thing to try to fix it. Seto was believably dead.
      • I think Dragon Quest VII had a situation like this. So did Final Fantasy IV, for that matter. DQ 7 stated that a body turned to stone that was exposed to the elements for too long became eroded and thus impossible to change back. FF4 was a case of magical backlash due to casting Break on oneself.
      • Final Fantasy V also had a situation where someone fights well beyond their limits and nothing can save his life.
      • There is at least one theory that Soft can only be used on party members, otherwise it just brings back a mindless, possibly soulless corpse. Also, I wondered about the Seto thing but not the Aeris thing.
      • If "KO" isn't another word for Death in these games, then why isn't the spell "Life" called "Consciousness"?
      • Holdover from the translation conventions in previous games. The spell is actually named "Rise," and its enhanced versions are "Arise" and "Reraise."
      • Quote from FFX Rikku: (After having a Phoenix Down used on her) "I thought I was gonna die". Phoenix Downs don't work on the actually dead, just the unconscious and mortally wounded. And seeing as how you were caught in a boss fight before you could do anything...
    • For the two complaints above, I present this VGCats comic which feels your agony.
    • The same damn reason they never used one on Tellah, Galuf, General Leo, etc.
      • Actually, they did use a Phoenix Down on Galuf. It just didn't work.
      • What about Ramza frantically asking for a Phoenix Down for Mustadio?
    • Because a Phoenix Down cures the KO status effect, not being, you know, dead.
      • The response from another talk page was too good not to quote here:
        Which explains why spells that summon the grim reaper (usually named "Doom" or % ") can be reversed by Phoenix Downs as well. And we all know that the phoenix is a mythical being fabled for its ability to fall asleep and then wake back up, hence the name.
    • Because if she hadn't died, she wouldn't have been in the Lifestream to use it to divert Meteor. So there was a pretty good reason to keep her dead, and a very bad one to bring her back to life.
    • While this is the stance I take on it, by Word of God, Aerith did not mean to sacrifice herself, because it was "too cliche" & "sent the wrong message." The way I reconcile this is that Aerith's death was necessary, but she didn't know that. As to the Phoenix Down thing? In the spinoffs, you have to use a Phoenix Down on someone before they die, and it kicks in just after they do. I tend to go with that explanation. Even though it isn't the way it is in FFVII, we should remember that gameplay doesn't apply in cutscenes, anyway, but we don't, because we go out of our way to rationalize things.
      • IIRC the "wrong message" sent by Aerith's death would have been if she had died to save Cloud the way your average JRPG self-sacrificing lady-type tends to do; having her die just to hurt the player's feelings and motivate Cloud was their way of avoiding that particular trope. Seriously, we can argue about how dumb it is that you can't save her with a Phoenix down for another twenty years, but the end result? Aerith died because the writers wanted her dead. Word of God is incurable outside of fanfiction.
      • ... What happens when you have no Phoenix Down, then you buy one and use it? Do characters just use a phoenix down, and have their teammates delay the resurrection until they have a replacement Phoenix Down? (Although that could give an excuse for Aerith, if she simply didn't have the phoenix effect active).
      • There was no KO status effect in FFVII. It was called death till FFVIII and then changed to KO (most likely because of this very problem).
      • I checked it. Non lethal KO exists in FFIV and FFVI, in both the English and Japanese versions.
      • Even worse, Sephiroth inflicts a nearly identical wound (with the very same weapon!) on Cloud when Cloud is only Level 1, and it doesn't even KO him.
      • The entry points with the wounds are radically different, actually—one's from the back, the other is from the front, which affects the force of the blow. I think different graphics make it hard to compare the positions. But also, Sephiroth was not aiming for an immediate kill with Cloud. He lifts Cloud up and continues talking to him—he wanted Cloud to suffer. With Aerith, on the other hand, he was aiming for a simple, straight kill.
      • Perhaps dying from wounds inflicted by Masamune makes you unable to come back? I know Tifa's Kung-fu teacher mentioned Cure spells not repairing the wounds she suffered from it.
      • This. Masa's blade is mentioned to cause grievous wounds that are usually impossibly to heal. Which is odd, because that trait is usually associated the Murasame or Muramasa swords, when used in pop culture
      • Possibly, it's because while Sephiroth's sword is a Masamune, it's been tainted by both his own hatred, malice, and madness along with JENOVA's cells, this essentially turning it into a corrupted weapon (think Berserker's Alondite from FATE/zero)
      • Cloud also survived a fall down a cliff with only skinned knees when he was eight. The same fall left Tifa in a coma for a week. Even before getting dunked in Mako there was something odd about that kid.
      • Not to mention Supernova.
    • Actually, FFT is a good example. Phoenix Downs don't work on dead characters, once they are dead, they are gone for good. On the other hand losing all HP doesn't kill someone, but it puts them close enough to death that without serious intervention they will die. The amount of time can vary, some people do instantly die from their wounds, others have a pretty good sized window where they can still be revived.
    • Because the White Magician Girl only has two endings: with her boyfriend, or dead. Since FFVII doesn't do happy endings, Aerith either had to die, or they'd actually have to come up with something new.
      • Because god knows several people reconciling their pasts and growing stronger as people and using that inner strength to save the world and create a chance for a brighter future is the most depressing ending in existence.
      • It is if you don't buy into the sequels and spinoffs and figure that Holy wiped out humanity for being its biggest threat. In either case, the above troper has a point— the game doesn't really deviate from JRPG standard, it just applies them to an extremely deep, complex world and storyline and develops its cast more strongly than most. Aerith's death isn't very different from most Gameplay and Story Segregation deaths, and she's the pretty much the primary example of the White Magician Girl — having her be anything but a martyr would have required the writers to have her be the one character who didn't follow their archetype to its archetypal end.
    • If you want an answer that is slightly plausible and one that doesn't interfere with the rest of the game mechanic, figure that when someone dies their spirit travels to the planet (well, The Lifestream), and a phoenix down stops that from happening by bringing the spirit back. When Aeris died in the Ancient City, a big ol' residual Cetra spirit area, her spirit didn't have a long way to go to join the planet.
      • This might actually be plausible if you look at it from the right angle. However, I don't think the problem here is that they didn't revive her; the problem is that they didn't try. If they even attempted to use a Phoenix Down or Raise/Arise and THAT didn't work - Aeris rejecting it or otherwise - it might have gone over a bit more smoothly.
      • What do you think Tifa was doing, kneeling next to Aerith's body? I figured she was checking for vitals, attempting first aid, or something. It's hard to tell with the blocky way the characters are rendered, but I'm pretty sure they tried something.
      • They didn't try anything because they were too late. Aerith was dead by the time she hit the floor, and before they could do anything else, they had Jenova stopping by to say hi. Once they'd dealt with that, it was already several minutes at the least, possibly longer, and she'd have been beyond the point of resuscitation. What Tifa is doing is stroking her face and saying goodbye, basically.
      • She may have been at a point where a phoenix down would have just revived her and she would have re-died right away from her injuries again. And nobody said that the other party members never tried a phoenix down, it may have just happened off-screen, between cutscenes. Of course, you don't lose a phoenix down, but maybe it came from Hammerspace like the smoke bomb Shadow used in the burning building in FFVI.
  • Hmmmm, I think Phoenix Downs do have the power to restore life, or they are supposed to. Why do I think so? You can kill an undead boss with one in the middle of the game. It's "Holy" power basically has the reverse effect on the undead monster. Note it doesn't KO him, but kills him.
    • Lets just say that those in the 'Phoenix Down only restores somebody from being knocked out' camp already have an answer. For those who don't, well, Aerith was an ancient. Since something happened to them as a result of JENOVA actually existing on the planet in their time, lets just say either phoenix downs don't work of Ancients. Or due to having ancient blood, phoenix downs [or reraise, Life, and everything else.] just don't work. JENOVA cells and whatever is left of her [it?] are much different than having had made contact with the planet-raping original.
      • Good try, but we had been reviving Aerith with Phoenix Downs without problems for a whole third of the game.
  • Remember when Palmer quickly popped a Phoenix Down into President Shinra after he got stabbed to death? Or how Cloud didn't sweat the Nibelheim incident or Tifa's father getting murdered because they have Phoenix Downs? Or how Gongaga doesn't have a graveyard? Or how Bugenhagen on his death bed doesn't just ask Red XIII to go to the nearest vendor? Or how everyone in the setting openly disregards their own mortality and live out their endless lives in bliss and peace because they have unlimited time on the planet and death has no consequence? Of course you don't, because FF7 doesn't actually take place in a setting where its characters can go to the nearest drug store and buy a pancea for death with pocket change. Phoenix downs are a gameplay mechanic and don't exist in the game's narrative. In other words, Gameplay and Story Segregation is a Thing.
    • They do it specifically to infuriate people that can't manage to separate game mechanics from storytelling. Bless them.
    • The manual for FF7 itself made it clear that your HP being completely depleted =/= actual death, so this is not a case of gameplay and story dissonance.
"If all your party members are critically injured or are turned to stone, the game is over.""Death Sentence: a countdown begins, and at zero the character becomes disabled"
  • Cyanide and Happiness demonstrated what would most likely happen if Cloud DID use one on her.
  • A related question, though: If Sephiroth can instantly kill people with one hit, beyond any hope of revival, why doesn't he do that when you fight him? Shouldn't he leap into the air and impale your party members with every attack, inflicting permanent plotline deaths on them each time?
    • The party only fights Sephiroth directly once, at the very end of the game. And they're not absorbed in meditation like Aeris was. The ability to kill isn't some special power unique to Sephiroth. He had a sword, the element of surprise, and a target who was oblivious to the world. You do the math.

    The biggest cannon in the world aimed at nothing? 
  • What was the intended purpose of the Super Cannon at Junon? You can't really aim it, so as a defensive weapon it's pretty useless. (Granted, it stopped the WEAPON, but WEAPON was considerate enough to walk right up to the muzzle from exactly the correct angle.) After it's converted to the Sister Ray it's shown to have transcontinental range, which gives it potential as a weapon of mass destruction (as long as your target is in a direct arc line), but to do that took the total energy output of six Mako reactors, well in excess of what Junon has, and even then it only worked once.
    • It seemed originally to be pointed in Wutai's direction. Assuming Wutai invaded the Corel area/continent, they had reason to bombard it as well as Wutai's island. (Or perhaps Shinra was worried about an uprising from the Corel area.)
    • I always went with the Wutai assumption, but the cannon CAN be aimed. In Before Crisis, AVALANCHE tries to shoot Midgar with it. All that aside, a 100-foot cannon has a pretty big psychological impact, especially when you know it can destroy entire towns.
    • It seriously never occurred to me that the cannon was ever meant to be of practical use. Before even stepping into Junon, just looking at it on the world map, you already see that it's a pure crystallization of absurd, pompous militarism. Why does this city have a huge cannon sticking out of it? Why does Kim Jong-il put on human pixel shows?
  • Another thought about the Sister Ray... what are the odds of it actually hitting the crater shield? Sure, it's a straight line, but the Planet CURVES. Assuming it had power not to have hit the ground by then, it's much, much more likely to shoot off into space, surely?
    • The Sister Ray (despite the name) doesn't fire rays. It fires explosive Mako shells. Shells follow a curving trajectory.
  • The cannon can aim. If you look at the prep sequence for Junon's defenses just before Sapphire Weapon arrives, you can see the cannon swing to the side a bit (as well as move down slightly). Since it's meant for super-long range, the angle that doesn't look like much at the cannon itself probably makes a huge difference the further out the shell goes. They can hit Midgar by literally shooting around the world at a particular angle.
  • Not only can the cannon aim, it's probably the closest thing the Peace Preservation have to an intercontinental weapon of mass destruction, since the space program and rocketry development stalled simultaneously. It's just as ironic as the organization's name, or that old slogan, "Peace is our Profession." The fact that it ends up being instrumental to saving the world is a coincidence. The real question is: how the heck did they move the thing half way across the eastern continent?
  • Arguably, it was more a display of ostentation and opulence first, a weapon second. Building something like that was Shinra's way of basically reminding the world at large just how obscenely wealthy and powerful they are, with the added perk of being able to crater a large area. Think the equivalent of a royal sword in olden times. Mostly meant as a way to flaunt wealth ("look at this beautiful, incredibly made weapon that costs more than you'll ever see in your lives"), but also a well-crafted weapon.

    Why's everyone after Sephiroth anyway? 
  • So they form AVALANCHE and fight the Midgar people, and then the guy's son shows up and is even worse and they completely ignore him and go running off after Sephiroth? I mean, it makes sense for Cloud, but the others?
    • Not really. Barret, "And doin' this'll help us save the planet?" Cloud, "Seems like it." Aerith, "I'll go too. There are things I want to find out." Cloud, "About the Ancients?" Aerith, "... Many things," Red XIII needed a lift to Cosmo Canyon, and of course, Tifa is worried about Cloud. Yuffie, Vincent, Cid, and Cait Sith don't get involved until after this fact, so it doesn't apply to them, anyway.
      • It's as much about getting revenge on Shinra as it is about Sephiroth. Shinra has a habit of turning up wherever Sephiroth goes.
    • Besides, the whole AVALANCHE network had just been demolished, remember? Carrying on with the same urban terrorist tactics wasn't really an option, even if it was appealing — which it probably wasn't, as (a) it seemed like something kind of ineffectual that they were doing out of desperation, for lack of any better ideas, and (b) it had gotten an entire sector of the slums destroyed in retaliation. Rufus probably wouldn't have flinched at openly rounding up and exterminating everyone under the plates.
    • Also, importantly, Cloud's motivation is not really revenge (even though he thinks it is.) His motivation is that, as a failed Jenova-implant/Sephiroth 'clone' created by Hojo, his instincts force him to pursue Sephiroth in order to be part of the reunion, just like the number-tattooed weirdos you see everywhere. The only reason he's more coherent than them is because he had Tifa to help him reassemble his memories (if imperfectly.) He comes up with whatever justifications for this he can in order to fit it into his memories and outlook, then manages to persuade everyone else to go along with it.
    • By the time the party leaves Midgar Shinra is spending its energy pursuing Sephiroth. Following Sephiroth essentially means following Rufus and the rest of Shinra's executives. That'd be enough incentive for Barret to follow Cloud even if he didn't believe that Sephiroth was a bigger threat to the planet than Shinra.
    • Cloud had his obvious reasons. Tifa was connected to the Nibelheim episode and wanted to know more of the truth as well. Barrett didn't at first, but as Shinra and Sephiroth were after the same thing, the goals would cross. Aerith is along to learn of the Cetra but also needs protection from Shinra. Red XIII originally was going to leave at Cosmo Canyon, but the severity of Sephiroth's plans along with what Bugenhagen said about the planet's crisis (it shrieks in the observatory) coerced him further. Cait Sith's a spy, but unlike the other clowns at Shinra, he knows he's got bigger stakes involved with both Shinra and Sephiroth. Cid's there to fly planes.
      • It's implied that part of Aerith's motivation is also to find out what happened to Zack; it's obvious Cloud is connected to him, so sticking with Cloud is a way to investigate that lead.

    The ending of Crisis Core - Zack had the flu? 
  • This is the guy who takes on 1000 Shinra infantrymen in a mission. I wasn't even breaking a sweat fighting all those mooks. And I'm supposed to buy they killed him? I realize they had to make the ending that way, but they could have at least made it believable!
    • The sequence doesn't end until your HP reaches zero. But you can start up a healing spell, have your HP hit zero, and then heal yourself, and the sequence will still end, but it will look like you didn't die because Zack doesn't fall down. When the sequence ends, it's because you WERE killed by the soldiers.
      • Not in my case. I have a thing for Level Grinding and Materia, so my HP didn't even get close to zero during the final fight. After some time anyway I got the normal ending sequence, with the broken DMW etc. They made it look like Zack was killed by the mooks, but he could've defeated all of them (and I would have done exactly that, if the game hadn't stopped me).
      • The plot has Zack die under a mountain of dead mooks. The exact amount is unimportant, so rather than making it an endless survival mode, they just had you die at a pre-determined point. It would have been cool if there was some kind of high score list for that point, though.
      • I, on my second playthrough, with full Genji paraphernalia and maxed-out stat boosting materia and everything, found that it's possible to play the final battle pretty much indefinitely so long as you keep dodging missiles and healing immediately if you get hit by one—I wound up playing that same battle on and off for well over six hours total, as I recall. Finally I decided to just let Zack get hit by two missiles in a row just to see if that would change anything—sure enough, the moment the second missile struck, the first broken DMW came up. I don't remember exactly what the state of his HP was at that point—certainly under half but I'm not sure if it was quite critical yet or not—but it seems it's conditionalized on Zack's HP being below a certain percentage, rather than a time limit or number of kills or something.
      • I may just be old fashion and sticks with just the original game's story, and its problems, but didn't Zack get killed by like, you know, Sephiroth? I never had the chance to play CC to the end and stuff, so reading this whole thing about Zack getting killed by soldiers, when I thought it was pretty clear Sephiroth killed him, it's kinda confusing. Not that this is abnormal in FFVII
      • No, even in the original game, Zack was not killed by Sephiroth. On Disc 2, if you go back to Nibelheim, you can trigger a special cutscene that shows what happened to Zack and Cloud between Sephiroth's rampage and the beginning of the game. Long story short: Both survived Sephiroth's rampage, Hojo stuck'em in tubes under the Shinra Mansion and experimented on them before Zack broke them both out. They almost made it to Midgar before Zack was gunned down.
      • You guys are getting mixed up. It's Gameplay and Story Segregation that's going on here. Sure you could level grind for hours, but, according to the story, Zack didn't have all that time to be working out. Plus they were shooting rockets at him. Even in the OVAs and movies, SOLDIERS are vulnerable to explosions and bullets. Cloud and Zack are so fast and their response times so quick that they can dodge bullets, but they still have to dodge or block them. By the end of the fight, Zack isn't mortally wounded. Flesh wounds maybe, but he's tired. You can't dodge everything when a 1000 guys are shooting everything they have at you. Some things became unavoidable. He may be super strong and fast, but he is still human. At that point, his mind and body are worn out and his reflexes greatly dulled. All it took was being hit by some bullets to bleed him out and drain the last of his strength, then he was a goner.
      • It might not even be Gameplay and Story Segregation, as Zack's downfall starts with mental strain rather than physical exertion. First the connections represented on the DMW reels start fading during the daylight battle, until all he has is his drive to reunite with Aerith. Then even that's insufficient, as the reels physically breakdown during the timeskip to the dark and stormy battle, matching Zack's exhausted move set of shambling, half-hearted swings of the Buster Sword with no items or magic left to restore himself. Eventually, through attrition, the Shinra army wears him down until he collapses and the survivors empty their magazines into him and leave him to bleed out. It doesn't matter the gear you've equipped on Zack, or how fully you've stocked his inventory with items: items are finite and the DMW reels are fickle, you might be able to drag the fight out for hours or even days of real-time, but Zack's going down eventually. The longer you draw out the fight, the more time they have to queue up reinforcements.

    Forget the Phoenix Down, Why Did Aerith Even die? 
  • Am I really the only one who wonders why Aerith died in the first place? She was stabbed in the stomach. There should have been plenty of time to heal her. Normally people don't die within one second from a stomach wound. And we've seen a couple of characters who survived such a wound (and even worse) in the compilation.
    • Sephiroth hit her dead-center through the back. I.e., the spine.
      • A severed spine is a serious injury but not lethal. And Sephiroth himself could walk and talk after suffering exact the same injury, brought to him by the freaking Buster Sword (which should have severed not only his spine but his entire lower body half).
      • You forgot that Sephiroth was injected with Jenova cells from birth.
      • That doesn't change the fact that a severed spine is not lethal.
      • Isn't necessarily lethal, depending on the location and extent of the damage.
      • Sephiroth was a man whom had been literally enhanced by Hojo since before he was born. He was the absolute best of SOLDIER which says something about his abilities as far as surviving wounds that would and should have been lethal for anyone else goes; not saying that it didn't hurt him badly, but simply that it wasn't enough to kill him. And while he was severely damaged, there's nothing that says he didn't patch his body up with a Curaga spell after Cloud stabbed him, which makes more sense than not, considering that he would not have been up and walking around otherwise. There's also the lack of blood to indicate that he did take the time to heal himself before securing Jenova's head when Cloud and Zack see him staggering out of the core of the Reactor.
      • The Jenova cells thing was to explain why Sephiroth was (comparatively) okay while Aerith wasn't.
    • And she was stabbed through the spine... and through her chest. Hell Sephiroth was gentle enough to let her slide down his Katana. She was deader than dead.
    • Her defensive stats aren't the best in the world...
    • A 180 pound man fell from 50 stories and shish kebabed her with inhuman accuracy using an impossibly sharp sword. You don't need to be a practicing doctor to know that's at least *potentially* lethal, which it was. Fictional characters die from single bullet wounds all the time despite a statistically high chance of survival, so that Aerith was killed by a considerably more damaging circumstances should be surprising to no one.
    • It could have been that Aerith had to be a required [Heroic Sacrifice] in order to call in Holy's power.
    • Sephiroth attacked her from above. The angle at which the sword actually entered her is important. Explaining this in words is complicated but basically, because the sword entered her vertically it damaged more than just one general spot [1]. There's also the fact that Aerith is very thin, and doesn't appear to have much muscle; the sword went through her like butter and kept going, with about a foot sticking out by the time it stops[2]. Then her body slid down the sword, with the friction likely causing more damage. Although it's not shown, I'm assuming there's also some blood loss. That injury was definitely enough to kill.
      • One of said likely places? Her abdominal aorta, part of the largest artery in the body. The quick blood loss alone would've been enough to kill her.
    • The Sephiroth that stabbed her and everything he's got on him, including Masamune, is a Lifestream construct animated by his own twisted consciousness and Jenova's power. It's probably safe to say that he can put some seriously bad "You die now" mojo into the sword if he really wants to, and he really wanted Aerith dead.
      • I agree with this. If this Sephiroth that killed her is technically Jenova, then it makes sense that it could kill Aerith pretty quickly, as she's had a lot of practice. Stabbing her like this could easily have given Jenova access to infect and kill her very quickly, if not just make it harder or impossible to recover from the wounds.
  • The real reason that she died is one of the main people behind the game had very recently lost a family member, and the team as a result wanted to write about characters coping with the loss of a loved one realistically. To quote Nomura in an interview about this
    "I mean, Cloud's the main character, so you can't really kill him. And Barret... well, that's maybe too obvious. But we had to pick between Aerith and Barret. We debated this for a long time, but in the end decided to sacrifice Aerith... In the previous FF games, it became almost a signature theme for one character to sacrifice him or herself, and often it was a similar character type from game to game, kind of a brave, last-man-standing, Barret-type character. So everyone expected that. And I think that death should be something sudden and unexpected, and Aerith's death seemed more natural and realistic. Now, when I reflect on Final Fantasy VII, the fact that fans were so offended by her sudden death probably means that we were successful with her character."

    We can't let those Shinra jerks save the world! 
  • They're facing The End of the World as We Know It. Shinra develops a plan to destroy Meteor that involves the use of the Huge Materia. What do our valiant heroes do? They sabotage Shinra's plan to save the entire world! And for what reason, except vague reasons amounting to "precious knowledge within the Huge Materia" or whatever? I mean, seriously, what the hell are these guys thinking, by actively opposing the only working plan to save the world!? What. The. Hell. Heroes.
    • If you fail to save the Huge Materia, it still doesn't actually work. So, technically, you just go and rescue the Huge Materia from being pointlessly destroyed, rather than sabotaging the only "working" plan to save the world...
      • Yes, but the heroes did not know that at the time. No one had any idea if Shinra's plan was going to work or not, but the heroes just decide to sabotage it anyway.
      • While this is all true, the Huge Materia has energy equal to 330 times regular materia. With four Huge Materia, that's like losing 1320 materia. Plus, the Huge Materia are capable of energizing shells to destroy Weapons and towns. Therefore, that's a LOT of energy for the planet to lose, and if you think about it, if it failed, any chance of the planet defending itself (Holy, for instance) would be significantly lessened, because of that.
      • "If" it failed. Our intrepid heroes didn't know if it was going to fail, and at that point, they didn't even know about Holy until after they fixed Cloud's head. But they go off and start sabotaging Shinra's plan anyway.
      • Because Shinra's track record for fixing things was just so compelling that of course this could work and not possibly have any other unintended side effects like everything else they did.
      • Hard to imagine an unintended side effect worse than letting the entire world be destroyed.
      • Don't forget it was their fault the predicament came about.
      • I think the idea was that as the heroes, saving the world was their job, and they weren't happy with Shinra trying to muscle in on their turf.
      • Kind of like a Hero Antagonist, except still evil.
    • The worst part is when Cid makes the Give Huge Materia Bombs a Chance speech about how maybe science can save the world; it's super-heartfelt, with "inspirational" music and shit, none of the characters have any reply to it — as if the writers want you to go "Yes Cid that is right you are right so why are you bumming around with these lunatics?"
    • The first theme off the game is that the sucking of Mako was destroying the planet. The Huge Materia held so much power that losing them would completely doom the planet anyway. And we know what the planet does when it's threatened: More WEAPONS.
    • It's kind of funny because after the rocket fails one of the characters (I think it was Barret) says "I kinda hoped it would work". Then why did you try to stop it?
      • Because while he might have hoped he could work, that doesn't mean he actually thought it would.
      • This topic intrigued me alot so I decided to go back and watch when and how it happened. First off, when they found out the Huge Materia was being used(by means of Cait Sith allowing them to ease drop), they heard doubt from Rufus,which they know is the most competent member of Shinra, about if Shinra had the technology to pull it off only to be reassured by Scarlet of all people. This is probably where they may have gotten the idea that it might not work. Plus it was Scarlet's, Palmer's and Heidegger's plan to begin with so that may have gave them a reason to oppose them even more. At this point of the game, Cloud and Tifa were inactive so Barret made the judgement call to go oppose Shinra's plan right before he appointed Cid as the leader. It didn't help that Barret had another incentive to oppose the plan since they thought of messing with Mt.Corel, again, to retrieve the Huge Materia. So this explains the reason why they were so against Shinra's plan initially. Secondly, the original poster kind of downplayed Cloud's reason for wanting to stop Shinra's plan. He wanted to use the power of the Huge Materia to stop Sephiroth which might be a justifiable excuse since Sephiroth is still mind raping the planet and as shown in Advent Children, could still be a viable threat with or without Meteor. Finally, I doubt that anyone on the team save for Cid and Reeve would willingly put their trust in science. Cloud was stuffed in a tube where he was subjected to only God knows what by Hojo in the name of science. Tifa lost her home and nearly her childhood crush in the name of science. Barret put his faith in science once and was reviled as a traitor in his hometown. Vincent... do I really need to explain his situation and problems caused by science? Fact of the matter is that both parties had interest in the Huge Materia for differing reasons. Both were noble(well if you want to call anything thought of by Scarlett noble) and both had the right intentions. Since the plan would have failed regardless, I believe our intrepid heroes had the right mindstate and weren't being the selfish assholes that you are making them out to be.
      • All of what the troper right above me said is completely valid and explains many of their reasons for going against the plan. There's also the point that, besides being a power source it's also a repository of knowledge. It's kinda like lobbing the Library of Congress at the thing. Only instead of books, it's made up of souls. Yeah. I'd be pretty opposed to that plan, too.
      • Does nobody bother to consider that simply DESTROYING Meteor isn't going to help in the long run? Remember, Sephiroth still has the Black Materia, who's to say he won't simply summon ANOTHER Meteor if the first is eliminated? The best plan of action is to not waste resources on Meteor until the one who summoned it is out of the picture.
      • This guy are smart.
      • Put more verbosely, "I'd like you to meet my gigantic military boondoggle, the Sister Ray cannon. It's going to save the world." And it turns out to be absolutely crucial to it, since it's the only thing that lowers the otherwise invincible barrier.
      • This may be canon vis a vis Holy. Remember how you have to kill Sephiroth before it will even move; it may be a one-time summon (since the summoner is dead), and while it may stop one Meteor, it'll be powerless to stop a second casting by Sephiroth, which he has all the power, and the time, to do.
      • That was the group's idea since they did try to go after Sephiroth first.
    • Why assume the ecoterrorist organization AVALANCHE (introduced to us at the start of the game by destroying a reactor in the flashiest possible way — killing loads of innocent people, causing billions in damage in a city with high taxes and half its people in slums to start with, and causing a long blackout in areas with literally no sunlight or access to fresh water — because it's more emotionally rewarding than an awareness campaign and inventing Energy Star would be) are "heroes"? They're the protagonists. The only character that threatens to be a hero in this game is killed off halfway through.
      • I don't know. Trying to save the world from an evil corporation and essentially a genocidal maniac makes them heroes.
      • It's really rather pointless to argue about it, if I've learned nothing else from TV Tropes it's that there will always be someone with an Alternate Character Interpretation that the good guy is a bad guy and the bad guy is a good guy.
      • Here's another way of looking at it: You can indeed fail each mission. Let Corel get destroyed by the Shinra Trains, Let the Condor get offed, Let the Red Submarine get away, and Screw up the Bahamut ZERO materia passcode. All four materia get loaded into the rocket that way. What happens afterwards? THE SAME DAMN THING!
      • Yes, but the party didn't know for sure it would fail. Even given everything listed above, why is the party wasting their time interfering with Shinra's attempt to save the world? Why not focus on pursuing some other plan instead, like studying the barrier at the Northern Crater or somesuch?
      • "Even given everything listed above, why is the party wasting their time interfering with Shinra's attempt to save the world?" Did you even read any of the above replies that explain quite clearly why destroying the Huge Materia is a bad thing? And now, here's another thing to consider-Shinra's efforts are going to screw over the people of North Corel and Fort Condor by driving them out of their homes and killing who knows how many of them in the process, if the heroes don't interfere. And no, the ends do not justify the means-Barret held that attitude at the start of the game, and it's shown quite clearly that he was in the wrong.
    • An additional piece of information worth considering: When the party discusses the Huge Materia for the first time, one of the main things that gets mentioned as a reason for stealing them is that the Huge Materia can upgrade their own powers. That's what ultimately makes them decide to do it — they see the Huge Materia Shinra is trying to use to save the world as totally sweet loot. Ladies and gentlemen, our protagonists.
    • Well given they have to kill not one, but two physical gods AND destroy a meteor, then, yeah, I would want something a little bit more powerful as well. Sure they didn't realize the plan would fail, but why did anyone think blowing up Meteor was a good idea in the first place? They show Meteor's destruction and it broke into several pieces. If you break an asteroid apart, you are more likely to make the matter worse. It will more likely be broken up into smaller, but still sizable chunks, so instead of one impact site, you would have many. It's like instead of taking a single bullet, you are hit full in the chest by buck shot. Hell, many of the chunks of Meteor were still huge. It probably would've been much worse if it hadn't reconstituted itself at that point. All this is ignoring the fact that Meteor is miles in diameter (really, can you think of anything that can blow up Everest so thoroughly that it's dusted?) and is completely impossible to divert (which would be the best plan and, of course, no one at Shinra is smart to figure this out) because one of the aforementioned physical gods is controlling it.
    • When it comes down to it, they could either let Shinra (who's track record of having any victory against Sephiroth is nil) take these priceless and powerful ancient relics and ram them into the supposedly indestructable meteor and hope it works, or they could take it for themselves and use it for their much more sensible goal of stopping Sephiroth himself and stopping Meteor that way while also not destroying these powerful artifacts in a one shot attempt. And seeing as it grants the party master materia, that was the right call. Likewise, even if it did completely work, nothing really stops Sephiroth from summoning a new Meteor later. The rocket plan is essentially consuming valuable resources to buy time while the party's plan is to use those resources to attack Sephiroth himself with more power. So the deciding factor is whether you think more time or more power is most valuable in defeating Sephiroth himself.
    • Cloud tells Cid why they're sabotaging Shinra when they're in the rocket. The Huge Material represents generations of invaluable Ancient Knowledge, and they plan on using it to counteract Meteor themselves. It's a combination of "this is too precious to lose" and "Shinra is using an invaluable, sophisticated tool as if it's a sledgehammer." With the resources and knowledge available to them, the heroes feel they have a much better chance of making use of the Huge Material than a company who consistently gets every aspect of the Planet wrong. It should have been brought up sooner in the story, but the game absolutely does address it.

    Dude, where's Cloud's respect? 
  • How come nobody in Shinra - assuming they don't actually recognize him as the enemy - trusts Cloud? In the beginning he's attacked for looking suspicious. Even worse is in Junon where he isn't allowed up as it's Shinra only, and when he does sneak up he's forced to change into the blue uniform. And then when they get on the boat, he comments on traveling to the other continent in Shinra uniforms. Cloud is always wearing a Shinra uniform, the entire game! You'd think random grunt soldiers would be saluting him if they didn't know who he was.
    • Just because he's wearing a uniform it doesn't make him exactly acceptable, especially if the uniform is as tattered, damaged, and patched up as it should be after all he's been through. Not to mention he lacks any form of identification, and all the members of SOLDIER encountered in the rest of the game have different-looking uniforms and helmets.
    • He did help bomb a Shinra reactor, you would think that they would have a photo or at least a description of him. There aren't that many SOLDIER members, so he would rather stand out.
    • None of those theories explain the whole Junon thing, though. I was always amused by the whole 'you're not in uniform' scenario as well. And "We'll travel to the other continent, even if we're wearing Shinra uniforms..." Okay then, Cloud.
    • Cloud's wearing Zack's uniform, remember, and SOLDIERs First Class more or less wore whatever they wanted, so there's no reason anyone would trust him, or even recognize his outfit as Shinra military. The only reason that anyone knew that he had SOLDIER modifications was because of his eyes, after all.
    • Sephiroth and Genesis, two of the most arrogant pieces of work don't wear the uniform, Angeal, Zack, Weiss and Nero all wore the same thing. It is recognisable but Cloud modifies his outfit when he reaches Midgar. Take a close look the final scene of Crisis Core, from what we see in our brief glimpse alone he ditches one shoulder plate and replaces the other and has different gloves.
      • It's mentioned in Crisis Core that SOLDIERs 1st Class can use custom equipment, including uniforms, presumably on the basis that anyone that powerful can do what he wants. It's also evident that SOLDIERs 1st Class are recognizable, public figures (they have fan clubs for goodness sake), so if nothing else, Shinra soldiers who see a 1st Class uniform, but don't recognize the face wearing it, are going to be suspicious.

        Also, Cloud isn't wearing Zack's uniform. He's wearing an outfit clearly based on it, but with several differences, but the point is, he's not wearing a "Shinra Uniform."
    • An even more simple explanation- they call his outfit suspicious because it might just be outdated. Military outfits change, and the SOLDIER standard uniform when Zack was in might be very different from the modern variant. Hence, Cloud's old uniform immediately stands out.
    • The soldiers who attack Cloud right after the Reactor bombing at the start of the game might have an Interservice Rivalry going on with SOLDIER. When they find Cloud, they think they have a chance to put one of those high-and-mighty types in his place. Either that, or they're suspicious as to why Cloud is wandering around all by himself instead of being with his unit, especially if there aren't supposed to be any SOLDIER members there. As for what happened in Junon, I always took it to mean that the commanding officer in that sequence is an idiot. He leads Cloud's unit onto the wrong street and nearly misses the parade, blames Cloud for making them late, and his instructions during the parade almost the opposite of what you actually need to do to get a good score. Frankly, it's why I have no remorse killing him or his troops when I steal the submarine later in the game.
  • Actually, Cloud more-or-less is. In the flashback, Zack puts Cloud in one of his spare uniforms after busting them out of the Shinra Mansion. Later on, Cloud modified the uniform by removing his sword-arm pauldron and further armoring his off-hand glove and pauldron with what appears to be leather and steel, making the glove look more like a gauntlet in the process while leaving his sword-arm unarmored and flexible(common practice amongst many swordsman during the Middle Ages). Despite the modifications, Cloud still wears the dark fatigues and the sleeveless turtleneck that all of the SOLDIER grunts, including the 1st Class ones that you fight on the Sister Ray(who wore outfits that are nearly identical to Cloud's), wear when encountered in the game. The only SOLDIER who doesn't wear the uniform at all is Sephiroth, as Genesis definitely wears a SOLDIER uniform though he also wears his Badass Longcoat over it.

    Man, Cloud's missed work all year! Hope he feels better soon! 
  • Does Shinra not keep records on their own employees? You would think someone would check the personal records on "Cloud Strife" at least once. Not to mention no one in Shinra seems all that concerned that Vincent Valentine, then a Turk, disappears while working in and around Hojo (both of whom were at least at one point in love with Lucretia, aka motive).
    • People being TTD'ed (Tested to Destruction) by Hojo seems to be accepted behavior, no matter who the subject is. Both Zack and Cloud were valuable, loyal employees and no one seemed to care too much when Hojo appropriated them for his own ends. In fact, they seem more stirred up by their escape then by their captivity and (probably torturous) experimentation. What exactly Hojo provides that's worth the damage to moral and company image this is courting is unclear.
      • He provided Sephiroth, who has been a perfect weapon for years.
      • He also provided various other mutant monsters like the one you fight when Nanaki first joins the party, and continued developing other members of SOLDIER long after Professor Gast said Screw This, I'm Outta Here.
    • The times Cloud gave his name to someone in Shinra he didn't mention his last name, so it'd be kinda hard to look up his records if they're organized by last name. There was a search done for him when he and Zack escaped, but it was as escaped research specimens. I doubt their names were even included in the information most of the involved parties got. (Tseng had their records, but he's the boss Turk.) As for why this is was all acceptable, my impression of the late President Fatso, I mean Shinra, is that of a complete and total monster. He probably had not problem with loyal employees being experimented on, especially ones who'd found what sort of experiments were being done under the Nibelhiem reactor. Assuming, of course, that he knew about it. Hojo has a tendency to keep secrets.
      • How many people named "Cloud" could there possibly be working for Shinra? Assuming computerized records (which isn't that much of an assumption given the level of tech in the game), a search by first name should be perfectly doable.
      • And if you decided to rename him "Bob Strife"?
      • Honestly, Rufus or somebody probably did do a background check on Cloud and found out that he was a fraud. But since the Shinra people don't ever meet Cloud again on friendly terms, why would they even mention it? If Cloud is a fraud it doesn't really change their perceptions of him: he's still a terrorist who needs to be silenced forever. The Turks and Reeve definitely could not have done a background check, or didn't care what Cloud's background was (or else they might have brought it up). Rufus and the Shinra people are never all that surprised that Cloud wasn't one of them, they're more surprised to find that he's actually in league with Sephiroth. Why would they mention it beforehand? As far as they would know Cloud knows he's a fraud, and being a fake SOLDIER is really the least of their issues with him. (This issue is probably something the writers didn't think of, but its really a mild plot hole that can sorta fit into the universe.)
      • And in that very same vein, Rufus and the Turks might've thought that letting everyone think Cloud was a 1st class SOLDIER would make for a faster resolution — from a managerial perspective, more people on the task means quicker dealing with the issue.
  • Hojo is also a Shinra Department head, tantamount to being a member of the world government cabinet. He could probably doctor records quite easily anyway.
    • There's also a good chance that Hojo's records say something to the effect that Cloud was treated to the SOLDIER process as part of the experiment. Which would basically means he was made into a SOLDIER but wasn't part of SOLDIER. Nobody corrected him because they thought it would just be splitting hairs.
  • This is the same corporation who killed hundreds of people just to eliminate one small terrorist cell. You really think they care much about "Human Resources"? Though smart-assed remarks aside, Shinra was built upon all of the worst corporate tropes imaginable, and they have a well known habit of burying their dirty little secrets. I'd be surprised if Cloud and Vincent's records exist as anything more than "Research Specimen".
  • Cloud's records actually do exist in-game. If you go into the furthest back room of the Shinra Mansion's basement, you can read a series of reports describing the effects of a Mako and Jenova experiment on "A" and "B", which are code for Zack and Cloud. One of the reports mentions that Zack was shot for resisting the Shinra troops who came after them, but that Cloud was left for dead because they thought he already had a foot in the grave. It's quite likely that Hojo never passed this on to anyone else at Shinra. At one point at the North Crater, Rufus tells Hojo that he keeps a lot of things to himself. And it's unlikely either Rufus or President Shinra would have done a background check on Cloud anyway, since it wouldn't change the fact that he's a threat that needs to be eliminated. And when Rufus finally meets Cloud at the Northern Crater, he takes Hojo's claim that Cloud is a "Sephiroth clone" to mean a literal clone, so there wouldn't even be a background to check in the first place.

    Shiny happy pollution in Junon? 
  • If Lower Junon is a really polluted and dirty place with no fish, then why is the water so clean-looking? In the underwater tunnel leading to the Junon Reactor, you can clearly see schools of fish swimming around in there without a problem, and "Mr. Dolphin" swims happily near the beach. Even the music is bright and cheery.
    • Perhaps Junon has a different mode of poisoning than other places? It could be something not visible. Or just not visible from the beach.
    • The water may be TOO clean on the surface. No algae, no seaweed, no plankton... If something was killing the smallest creatures and plants, then there would be no food for the fish. They either die or leave. Mr. Dolphin is, well, a dolphin and can simply swim to greener pastures. In fact, he does do this every once in a while according to Priscilla and, indeed, is gone for the rest of the game. A different problem is something we have in the real world as well. There are entire oceanic dead zones because the water in these places have low oxygen concentration. Fresh water actually flows on top of the salt water (and is usually muddy and full of algae) while the saltwater underneath has no oxygen to keep the animals alive. Since most widely caught fish swim below the surface... Finally, there's a third option. Sometimes, extremely clear water can indicate that something in there killed everything. Pathogens. Chlorine. Stuff like that. Of course, salt is made of chlorine which sea animals need so...

    Let's send Sephiroth to the one town that'll make him go crazy! 
  • The whole incident at Nibelheim seems to have been caused by very poor judgement on the part of SOLDIER officers. I mean, they decided to send Sephiroth investigate a mako reactor... the reactor in which they kept his "mommy", Jenova. Also, the Shinra Manor, which holds all the useful documentation about Sephiroth's origins, is located in the same village. Am I the only one who feels that Sephiroth was the last person they should have decided to send there ? Granted, Crisis Core tells us that SOLDIER had lost about all of its best staff, leaving only Zack and Sephiroth to do the job... well, they'd have been better off sending Zack alone - or even accompanied by a 2nd or 3rd class. Which also makes me wonder why they absolutely had to send their most powerful fighters to do an investigation job... Poor decision indeed. Maybe they just didn't have any capable leader after Lazard left.
    • Hojo pulled a BatmanGambit sending Sephiroth to Nibelheim. Hojo WANTED Sephiroth to find out.
    • In the original game, the battles in Nibelheim were obscenely hard for Cloud in the flashbacks... taken to storyline equivalents, with Cloud as Zack's Expy, Zack would not have been able to survive the battles on the mountain by himself. They needed muscle, and Sephiroth is that if nothing else. Of course, not having played Crisis Core, I don't know if Zack was stronger than Flashback!Cloud.
      • Zack at that point in the game (nearly the end) would have been more than capable of doing the mission solo. He was insanely powerful.
      • Indeed. If Crisis Core is any indication, Genesis orchestrated the incident to let Sephiroth help Genesis cure his body's decay. So he does this by... shattering any illusions Sephiroth has about his mother, accusing him of being an alien born monster and calling him poor little Sephiroth. You know, if you want help there are nicer ways to ask, ya know. No wonder Sephiroth told him to just go and rot.
    • One of the fan theories about the whole situation is that it is not Sephiroth at all, after he discovers the revelation of his conception, but the Jenova cells taking over and just assuming his personality, but distorted to be loyal to Jenova, as Crisis Core had shown, before the Nibelheim incident, Sephiroth was a generally alright, if a bit cold and aloof, person, hell, he even had friends (Angeal and Genesis).

    Does Reeve have issues when it comes to Cait Sith? 
  • Why is Cait Sith in Advent Children? Is Reeve STILL piloting that thing?
    • I always assumed Cait was an AI when Reeve wasn't directly controlling it. The guy has a full-time job, after all, I figured he couldn't be moving it 24-7. So maybe the AC Cait Sith was the AI?
      • His full-time job is running Cait Sith. He's kinda lame when he's not running it, so he sent it along.
    • Reeve's full time job is being a Shinra or WRO executive. One would assume those jobs involve duties other than running a stuffed toy. Not to mention being Cait would be more than a full time position - it would literally be a 24-hour a day job.
    • I seem to remember a scene in Dirge of Cerberus where Cait was acting independently of Reeve(standing right next to him too) and at some parts he speaks about Reeve in the 3rd person. So it's possible Cait is an AI but is given orders by Reeve.
      • One of the Ultimania states that Reeve controls Cait Sith with his special ability, "Inspire", that allows him to bring inorganic things to life and control them at a great distance. Does this mean that he uses a part of his brain to control Cait?
      • If that's the case, maybe Cait Sith's independence depends on how much Reeve is paying attention to it. When he's closed his eyes and immersed himself in the experience, Cait Sith is basically his real-life Digital Avatar. When he's busy doing other things, Cait's taking its cues from his unconscious thoughts instead, which is why it gets a lot more crazy and whimsical.
      • Yes, Word of God says that the Cait Sith is more than just a remote-controlled robot. He's a actually a magically animated golem that Reeve can control telepathically but also has a "life" of sorts of his own. If Reeve's robots weren't alive in some fashion, it'd be hard to explain their ability to use materia and consume potions. Makes that scene where Cait Sith Mark I sacrifices himself a lot darker, huh?
      • It also makes the scene make sense. When Cait Sith the First is hopping his way over to the in-case-of-emergency-break-glass shrine, he talks whimsically to himself (and perhaps the audience) about how he's unique and not to forget him, not even if an identical replacement comes along. That's not something an RC puppet being manually controlled by Reeve would say. That's what a self-aware golem knowingly ending his life would say. That bit of dialogue makes a lot more sense now.
      • Actually, Reeve being able to breathe life into inanimate objects was a dropped plot point from an early draft of the game's characters.
  • Giant monsters and mutant alien menaces? I'll send in a remote-control duplicate for that any time. Reeve is keeping himself from getting killed in battle. He's just a bureucrat, after all.
  • How did Reeve ever manage to escape becoming one of Hojo's "specimens" anyway? Either the guy can put pieces of his mind or soul or whatever into stuffed toys and control them from anywhere in the world telepathically (maybe even subconsciously) or he can imbue stuffed toys with fully functional, autonomous AI using only his mind. Maybe a combination of both. It's hard to say which of these would be a freakier power. Now I have to wonder whether he made Cait Sith as annoying and useless as possible to distract from how insanely weird and useful that kind of ability would be.
    • Two possibilities: Either Reeve realized that Rule #1 of surviving with a unique, special ability is to not tell Hojo, or Hojo decided "bringing toys to life" wasn't a power worth pursuing in light of the possibilities that Mako and Jenova offered.
    • That, or Reeve is so goddamn good at his executive job that Shinra puts guards on him and tells Hojo to shove it every time he brings it up. That and our very own TV Tropes has this to say on him, "The head of Shinra's Urban Development bureau, Reeve is the one who discovered how to refine Mako from the Lifestream and designed the Mako Reactors." Yeah, that's important to that greedy fat ass president. On top of that, his special ability makes him the perfect spy for AVALANCHE or any organization really. Plus, if it wasn't for Reeve keeping the Mako Plants operational and running at top efficiency, then Hojo couldn't perform his experiments in the first place. Unlike Zack, Cloud, Sephiroth, Genesis, and all the others, he was truly indispensable which makes him a badass in his own genius way.
  • The big thing that separates Reeve from the rest of the party is that Reeve isn't a genetically modified superhuman, or a martial artist, or an ex-government hitman, or a self-taught spear expert. He's just a pencil pusher. Reeve isn't a combatant, so why would he risk his life as just another liability when he can send in his golem to fight in his stead?

    Take my town, please! 
  • Going to Nibelheim in the present always bothered me, after all of the residents have been replaced by Shinra actors (I assume). Everyone seems to take it in stride-the party, Shinra, everyone. Considering how much restraint Cloud usually shows, I could never understand why we didn't have a full-on "No, I mean, seriously. This is my house. Get out." moment in his mother's house.
    • I think Cloud being mentally unstable as he is, may actually doubt himself at this point.
    • They came there at a fairly early point. He didn't have any real reason to doubt himself by any extent unless you go to Gongaga with both Tifa and Aerith first. On that subject what about Tifa. Her house rebuilt and infested by being with Black Cloaks didn't bother her at all, I mean yeah they're giving sweet items for free but still...
      • Although personally I also find it strange that the team doesn't just beat the snot out of all the Shinra employees when they accuse Cloud and co. of lying, but maybe it's because Tifa and Cloud felt that it is not worth it. They definintely know Nibelheim was indeed burnt down. So what is sitting there is just a fake copy, not that worth fighting (and alarming Shinra of their location).
      • Tifa's character throughout most of the game is basically just her sitting there knowing things with her/Cloud's backstory are wrong, and not saying anything because, um, she's scared of upsetting him or something. It probably bothered her loads, just like Cloud having the wrong memories bothered her. It's just that she reacts by not saying anything. Plus, they rebuilt the town but if it burned down, that's not really her house (or Cloud's, for that matter). Game mechanics reasons for using the same backdrops aside, those are probably just similar houses in about the same place, and there's no possible way Shinra got them to look identical to the originals on the inside.
      • Tifa didn't tell Cloud the truth because A- she nearly died in the incident and wasn't sure what exactly happened (she even recovered in Midgar without any idea how she got there). And B- she didn't know Cloud was there as a security grunt, so the fact that he knew what happened there in almost perfect detail freaked her out. She spent a good portion of the game bewildered and doubting her own memories of the event.
      • Uh, Tifa didn't stay silent because she was 'scared of upsetting him or something'. Remember what happened when someone confronted Cloud about the holes in his story? That's right, he had a complete and utter psychological breakdown. Also, don't forget that Tifa initally found Cloud half-conscious at the train-station, barely even coherent, before he suddenly recovered with a false persona. I honestly do not blame Tifa for not wanting to question Cloud considering what would obviously happen, especially while they were running across the planet after Sephiroth. This probably also explains why she didn't put up a fuss over who was living in her house; she probably was upset, but didn't want to rattle Cloud.
      • You two are both right. She was afraid of what would happen if she did question Cloud, and she was hesitant to question him because she was not certain of the accuracy of her own memories. Would be kind of depressing if she caused him to have a psychological breakdown and then have it be that she was wrong herself.
      • Besides all that, there have been no less than three 1st Class SOLDIERS that have gone batshit. Throughout the story, until his memories are fixed, Cloud occasionally suffers from crippling and incredibly painful bouts of insanity brought on by Mind Rape and powerful memories resurfacing (not that anyone knew about the former). If you were attacked by Sephiroth, a 1st Class SOLDIER, then you found an old friend, claiming to be a 1st Class SOLDIER who was catatonic when you first meet them, would be willing to question them? What happens to your friend if he finds out the truth of his past just like Sephiroth did? Tifa was just happy to be with him as a friend, so why should she risk Cloud going the way of Sephiroth? How would YOU deal with that? Most people would just ignore it, because they are afraid of what could happen especially after what happened the last time. You know, when 97% of the people she cared about were brutally murdered. She's probably just happy that she has someone left and isn't willing to risk losing it.
    • I thought it was because well they left years ago (Cloud was 16 that means that at least 5 years passed) and people rebuild the houses, meaning they're not their houses anymore.

    So is Marlene just psychic? 
  • Do they ever really explain how Marlene could sense Aerith's presence (in both the end of the game and the movie), or why she even got kidnapped in Advent Children? Seemed like a perfectly good opportunity to reintroduce another Ancient to me. Also, how did she end up escaping from Loz?
    • On the first point: No, and they don't necessarily have to, either. Some things work best as a mystery, and don't need to be explicitly explained. On the second point, she probably ran for it while Larry, Curly, and Moe were fighting Cloud. Or Vincent grabbed her too.
    • Regarding the first point, young children being able to see ghosts or other supernatural things is a fairly common trope.
    • My personal theory (WMG, of course), is that she and her biological father, Dyne, were ALSO Cetras, they just didn't know it. The only evidence for this is that Dyne speaks to his dead wife, but of course he could just be crazy!
    • In Advent Children Complete, it's implicit that Aerith called all the children of Edge to go to the church. As for Marlene in particular, I believe that Aerith being a Cetra, by forming a friendship with Marlene kinda gave them a bond. I guess that childs have sort of special bond with The Planet like the Cetra, and their friendship kinda gave Aerith the possibility of contact Marlene.
    • And on the point of Loz kidnapping her? Simply a hostage to use against Cloud and a hell of a lot safer than trying to keep Bare-Fisted Monk Tifa under lockdown. One of the main purposes of those kids was to cause Cloud to hesitate and having Marlene as well is just insult to injury. Of course the plan works, they knock Cloud off his grove and almost kill him until Vincent pops up out of nowhere and, at that point, it didn't matter. They had the kids and their Jenova cells. Mission succeeded, secondary objective failed. Time to move onto the next part of the plan. They didn't need Marlene after that.

    Cosmo Canyon - No Girls Allowed (unless you're Aerith) 
  • Why do people in Cosmo Canyon appear to be Always Male? And what the fuck was Hojo thinking trying to breed Red XIII and Aerith?
    • Possible explanations for the Cosmo Canyon thing: (1) You don't necessarily run across every person in-game. (2) It's implied that most of the people inhabiting Cosmo Canyon aren't living there on a permanent basis, so maybe they just didn't move their families in with them and/or the work tends to attract single men. (3) It's an artifact of the quality of the character models (I always thought the weapon's shopkeeper was female, for one.)
    • Hojo says in-game that he's trying to preserve two endangered species at the same time. Either he has data that suggests that it's possible, or he's simply running with it to see whether it'll work. It also makes a certain amount of sense that he'd try to crossbreed an Ancient with a species that has a long lifespan, given his earlier comments that the research will take a really long time. He's still a creepy bastard though.
    • Uhh, you can breed the two. Red XIII's parent's are another animal like him and a human, so clearly they can crossbreed.
      • Where on Earth did you hear that? We never see Red's mother, and his father is clearly one of him, and Bugenhagen being called "grandfather" doesn't mean it's biological.
    • Some common fanon says that Hojo is completely inept, and cites breeding Aerith and Red XIII as an example. It's more consistent with other things in the game than assuming he's a great scientist would be.
      • Hojo is certifiably insane. Then again, he also managed to cross human and alien DNA, so who knows? It's certainly possible through the power of SCIENCE!!
      • Sephiroth comments that Hojo is a mediocre scientist unable to fill Prof. Gast's shoes.
      • This is possibly true, but remember also that Gast was apparently one of the few people who was kind to Sephiroth when he was young and Sephiroth clearly has a slight case of hero worship for him. The truth is probably somewhere in the middle... Hojo's probably not as good as Gast, but not the complete incompetent Sephiroth makes him out to be.

    Why don't ya just freeze Aerith, Hojo? 
  • Hojo thought Aerith would grow old and die before they could complete their research on her. Why didn't he try to have someone preserve her with Stop or freeze a DNA sample instead of trying to breed her with Red XIII, which would dilute her precious genetic material even if it did work?
    • Hojo was a scientist, and while insane, he wasn't stupid. Red XIII was likely the first (and 'most viable') breeding partner that Hojo had available that would suit his initial needs. Knowing the human reproductive system, if impregnation didn't work, he would try a different subject, and if it did, he had ~12 months to find the next breeding partner, as well as determine the actual benefits of the first offspring. As for the use of stop or freeze, there is likely no guarauntee as to how long they would last, let alone how well they would preserve (assuming a spell like Freeze didn't kill the subject) someone for that long. But even if such a spell were a viable option, with Aerith barely in her twenties, actually using the spell seems like overkill when there are other methods available.
      • This troper always took Hojo trying to breed Aerith with Nanaki/Red XIII as a joke on his part. A very sick and twisted joke but it is Hojo. No man of science would try to breed valuable (and unique) specimens from separate species without data suggesting it was possible. Even if he did, he'd probably use artificial insemination as it'd be far more likely to take.
    • Also, any decent research on an Ancient would require actually interacting with them. For example, Aerith just knew that her adoptive-father died; you can't scientifically measure that sort of ability while they're unconscious. Not to mention the fact that the Ancients were known for their great wisdom and mental abilities, as well as communicating with the planet. Hojo needed a subject that would be alive and conscious for the duration of the research, which is why freezing was not an option and why he wanted to breed with Red XIII. And breeding her with any creature would dilute her DNA, but Red XIII's people apparently have similar abilities and ties to the Ancients. You gotta work with what you've got.

    Hey Yuffie, your fly's open 
  • How do Yuffie's shorts stay on? She doesn't wear a belt, the top button's un-done, and the fly's only half way zipped. Wouldn't it tend to fall off in the course of all her ninjaing around? I mean COME ON!
    • I always assumed that it was only cosmetically unzipped, and the shorts were made so that there was one of those locking bits partway up the zipper to keep it from opening or closing too much, and the shorts were fitted to stay on like that. Think of it as an upturned collar (like on a shirt) instead of Navel-Deep Neckline (again, like on a shirt).
    • She's just too chubby to zip her shorts up all the way.
      • Too chubby? She's a bloody stick. If that's too chubby, I'm Jabba the freaking Hutt.
    • Or she's just too poor, and hasn't bought a new pair of shorts in 5 years.
      • She's a moderately successful materia thief whose father owns an island nation. (Even in broke countries the leaders have some money.)
      • Maybe it's a really small pants...?
    • Well she has big hips (proportionate to her legs and stomach) to keep them in place
    • It's mentioned that her outfit is quite odd. I'd chalk it up to her own personal (Quirky even in-universe) style.
      • The answer is probably either teenage Fanservice (remember that Japan is... yeah, I'm not gonna finish this one) or just an early example of Tetsuya Nomura's... "unique" style.
    • To be fair, most of the characters look... Unique, Like Vincent, what was up with his outfit "Oh well, I'm a semi immortal who can shapeshift, time to dress up as a vampire with pointy shoes, and Tifa, Miss "I'm going to wear a miniskirt so short every movement that involves bending my legs even slightly will give people ad eyeful and a tank top that one errant jump is going to release my girls so hard that even the WEAPON's will blush" seriously she must have some helluva amazing tit tape under there in the original. But if one thing stuck out about Yuffie it was that stupid-as hell armguard... thing.

    What makes the FF7 heroes so special? 
  • Although it's understandable from a gameplay standpoint, what's the reasoning behind the party being the only one running around? Other games from the series have the main party as The Chosen One, or a large cast would lead to other adventurers joining in. In this installment, we have materia and weapons (some of it quite useful) sold at shops. Ordinary characters like Barret, Tifa, and Cid are perfectly capable of using them. Yet, the party has a total of 9 characters, and, aside from the Turks, you never run into anyone else taking advantage of these items, even when it's The End of the World as We Know It.
    • Because the party members are the only ones who really know what's going on. Until Meteor shows up, nobody else in the world besides Shinra even know that Sephiroth is back, or that there's any trouble at all. They can't pick up weapons and fight against something they don't know about, after all. Plus, Cloud has the direct connection to Sephiroth that pretty much nobody else on the planet does.
      • Though it doesn't explain why the people in Corel don't just buy up some and go after Money Spiders or something.
      • You really want to add to Corel's problems with Sephiroth? "Well Christ, our town is destroyed and it's three times as hard to make a living, let's pick a fight with the super soldier who can probably demolish us with a friendly smile!" Yeah, people COULD arm up, but for what point? Children can stab with knives, it doesn't correlate equal fighters.
      • You've got a super Soldier (or guy with the traits of one anyway) a guy that's had an experimental weapon graft on his arm, the prize pupil of the best martial artist in the world, the last of the Cetra, one of the last of a race of beastmen, a magically animated stuffed toy/robot thing, one of the only Wutai ninja willing to leave their homeland, and a former Turk who's been mutated by a crazy man. The only odd man out is Cid who should be just a regular dude fight-wise but your party are some of the most badass people in the world. Yeah a few other guys like the Turks and Yuffie's father and such could also fight effectively, but most of the world are just too powerless to do much against the likes of Sephiroth.
      • Cid is there equally because of having the guts to oppose Shinra and for the sheer wealth of knowledge and skill he brings to the table. Pilot, machinist, and Dragoon. Good combo

    The Lifestream just hates Lucrecia? 
  • So I haven't got every iota of canon memorized so I may be missing something, but Lucrecia is frozen in time, unable to truly die and be diluted into the Lifestream because of the Jenova cells. But Zack and Angeal have J cells in their body, but they were able to enter. Sephiroth was able to travel through it, and presumably only sheer force of will kept him from being diluted and allowed him to re-form his body.
    • Zack can manifest during Advent Children/ACComplete, and during Crisis Core Angeal's is still around all the way through to the end (and probably after). Flowing with the Lifestream isn't the same as being diluted into it and 'recycled'. The Planet might be stopping them. Which, if so, makes the ending of Crisis Core even sadder.
      • According to later canon (Maiden who travelled the Planet and Lifestream Black & White), people who enter the Lifestream's cycle surrender their memories to it in order to join the other souls. Ancients like Aerith can mantain their selves and help the others to regain their memories. Or, if you are a badass like Sephiroth, you can cling to your most important memories and keep detached from the Lifestream (he still had to give up the memories of his physical form, though).
      • Maiden isn't canon, just so you know:
    • It is a matter of debate if the novella is or is not canon. In other Ultimania guides which list other Final Fantasy VII media including the On The Way to a Smile series, Hoshi wo Meguru Otome has been consistently omitted, its existence seemingly ignored by Square Enix. Thus, officially the novella is not considered canon. Furthermore, much of the material in the novella seems to contradict established canon, but an analysis of the novella's content and a comparison of it to other Compilation material conducted by the fansite The concluded this was not so. The article stated that many perceived contradictions between novella and canon can be explained as misunderstandings of the material, and ultimately while Hoshi wo Meguru Otome has not been acknowledged as canon to the Final Fantasy VII universe, it does not directly contradict the canon and can fit into the established continuity.
    • Trying to use info from established’s known that Sephiroth did manage to avoid dissolution; Cloud killed him in Nibelheim, but Sephiroth’s will allowed him to control Jenova (and those with Jenova cells like the Sephiroth clones) while his body was regenerating at the Northern Crater. So, my theory is that those with Jenova cells can resist dissolution into the Lifestream, but only if they have something very strong tying them down. Zack and Angeal died without any major regrets (having passed on their legacies), so they accepted dissolution. While Zack does reappear, it may simply be the Lifestream taking his form and memories to assist Cloud when he needs it. The other SOLDIERS the party cuts down may also lack a strong tie to keep from dissolution, especially considering they’re working for Shinra. Lucrecia’s guilt may be what’s keeping her from fully passing on; if so, then the only one punishing her is herself. Amusingly, it would appear she passed that trait onto Sephiroth.

    Palmer's ultimate job security 
  • How did a fat moron like Palmer ever manage to become a Shinra executive, anyway? He obviously has no idea what the hell he's doing, so why do President Shinra and Rufus both keep him around, presumably paying what's likely a high salary?
    • Could be he's an old friend of the family who the President wanted to give a cushy job. There's plenty of people in real life getting a high salary when they don't know what the hell they're doing, after all.
    • Shinra is an equal opportunity employer.
    • Or that after the failure of the rocket launch at Rocket Town, he either couldn't take it and broke (since Shinra seems pretty strict about failure) or realized quickly that he could basically do anything since nobody cared about his division anymore.
    • Someone has to be blamed if something goes wrong. And it sure as hell isn't the boss.
  • Heidigger and Scarlet are the same. They're old friends of President Shinra Sr. and were kept on by proxy. Rufus would probably have found replacements for them once the crisis was over.
    • Most likely not. They may be total assholes but they ARE competent on their jobs. Remember all those annoying mechas you fought? Like the very first boss, Guard "Attack while its tail's up" Scorpion or the Carry Armor? Scarlet's Weapon Department built them. Remember that scene when Sapphire Weapon appears and Heidegger gives orders to the soldiers to fire their weapons while the Junon Cannon charges? Oh, remember the Turks? Sure, their loyalty is to Rufus but Heidegger is THEIR boss.
  • Fat, stupid and morally unethical people are in the highest rankings of corporations in our world.
    • Plus, does Shinra look like they check who they hire? They have Elena on board for fuck's sake. Certain Elena moments are enough to clinically qualify her as a moron.
  • Plus it's always nice to keep a high-ranking moron around. If something bad happens, that idiot gets blamed (even if they were only tangentially related to the situation) and consequently thrown under the bus to save someone else's skin. Plus his division didn't have any power any more, why bother finding a replacement for a job that's meaningless?
  • The funny thing, is that once he's actually given something to do, Palmer is good at it. He gets the rocket fixed as good as new in record time, even though it's been rusting for the last three years. Then, once it fires, he makes a point of locking its Auto-Pilot device to ensure that it reaches its target.

    President (Insert Name Here) Shinra 
  • Has President Shinra's first name ever been mentioned anywhere in canon? My Fanon name for him is John Pierpont Shinra, but if his name has been confirmed in some source, I'd like to hear it.
    • I don't recall a first name ever being given in the game, and the Final Fantasy Wiki doesn't mention one either.
    • I took the easy way out in a fanfic I once wrote and just called him Rufus Shinra, Sr.
      • That really bothers me, for some reason. Also, not only does Rufus have his genes and manages to come out a Bishounen orange-haired pretty boy with blue eyes, but other son, Lazard, also is a Biseinen blonde-haired pretty boy. All we really know about him is that he really does care about Rufus, at least. He uses Rufus' birthday as the passcode for everything that needs a passcode. Also, he is apparently enough of a stubborn dick to de-rail the lifestream in one of the novels. Though considering how many times important characters seem to come back from the dead or are already dead, but still show up, that isn't a big deal for anything.
      • It's possible Rufus and Lazard's mothers closely resembled each other or we're seeing the consequences of reaching full maturity well before the Wutai War. The company itself basically catapults much of the world into the industrialized age (at a high cost, as is pointed out by Marlene), it's not too much to think that life was very hard for different reasons when Shinra, Sr., was growing up.
  • In the Japanese version, his first name is actually President. No, seriously, I'm not joking. It's Gratuitous English — to a Japanese reader, "President" isn't totally unreasonable as a bizarre English name, while they were able to constantly call him "head of shin-ra company" when referring to his title (making the joke clear.) Obviously this proved impossible to translate; even the fan-translators trying to do a more accurate translation were forced to give up on it.

    Tifa's immune to mako? 
  • Why didn't Tifa become a mako zombie when she fell in the lifestream like Cloud did? Better yet, why did neither of them dissolve into the lifestream like Sephy apparently did?
    • My guess is because she hadn't been exposed to it like they had. Cloud was experimented on for about five years, and Sephiroth from even before he was born.
    • Also consider where and how they fell in. Cloud had just been mind controlled and Mind Rape'd by Sephiroth, and fell into someplace that was saturated with the Lifestream (remember, that's why Shinra was looking for the place). Sephiroth was just run through by Cloud. He was dead when he fell in. By contrast, Tifa was perfectly healthy, and might've fallen into a place that was considerably less concentrated than the Northern Crater.
    • I always had the impression that Aerith somehow protected both Tifa and Cloud when they plunged into the Lifestream, and she allowed Tifa to try and help Cloud recover. It's the only explanation I can think of to explain why Tifa didn't get Mako poisoning and Cloud didn't get... even more Mako poisoning.
    • The answer is a plot point in the game. The stronger you are mentally, the less likely your mind is to be overwhelmed by all the competing thoughts/memories/feelings of the lifestream, which is what mako poisoning is. That was the difference between Cloud and Zack when Hojo experimented on them. (And all that stuff about failed and successful experiments.) We know Cloud has a pretty weak sense of self because he got mako poisoning back then too, but Tifa must not have that problem. My understanding of the part about Sephiroth is that he should actually have died five years ago from the fight and possibly the fall, but didn't give up his sense of self like dead people are meant to. Cloud and Tifa were just living people exposed to mako.
    • The game hints that Aerith was the reason Cloud survived at all, and one of the novellas confirms that she helped Tifa sort through Cloud's fragmented memories.
    • The first time Cloud fell into the Lifestream at the North Crater, it was much more concentrated with the Planet gathering energy there to try and heal itself. He then ended up apparently getting flushed through the Lifestream's underground channels until he finally surfaced near Mideel. That's much longer than Tifa spent with Cloud when they fell into the Lifestream after the Weapon fight, and the Lifestream was likely also less concentrated. As for why Sephiroth dissolved into the Lifestream at the Nibel Reactor, that was probably because Cloud nearly gutted him with the Buster Sword. Sephiroth is already staggering when he's leaving Jenova's chamber, only being strong enough to take her head, and then Cloud slams him into the reactor's wall before he falls into the Lifestream. In between Cloud backstabbing him, his getting thrown into the wall and then falling a long way, much further than Cloud and Tifa did, Sephiroth might have been dying when he fell into the Lifestream.

    A hot time under the old rocket tonight 
  • In the Rocket Town flashback, Cid aborts the launch to avoid killing Shera. However, the cutscene shows the rocket firing with an enormous amount of flame that lifts it several off the ground, which would have incinerated Shera anyway.
    • Multiple stage rocket. The part that fires isn't directly connected to the bit that Shera's in, so Cid aborts it to prevent the next section from eventually firing. What bugs me more about this one is that the second launch is successful, despite that (a) some of the fuel has been spent and (b) the rocket's tilted at a crazy angle. There's no evidence that Shinra does anything to correct either of these before launching it.
      • Well, the intial launch was supposed to result in a successful outer-space (possibly orbital) flight with a recoverable command module. The Meteor launch was just an armed missile shooting upwards. There's a million and one variables that changed from one mission objective to the other, so perhaps Shinra's Space Division techs and scientists determined that the Meteor launch would work with what they had. Also, Cloud & Co arrived late to Rocket Town (that is, Shinra was already there.) Maybe we just didn't see the refueling?
      • It takes much less fuel to launch a rocket straight up than it does to put it in a stable orbit. (See this xkcd what-if for some details.) With how close Meteor apparently was, I'm sure the rocket had propellant to spare. Considering the damage to Meteor is the same with or without the materia, the leftover fuel may have actually contributed more to the explosion than the payload itself.
      • Hold on, that doesn't make any sense. She was in the section that was filled with at least 10 major fuel containment tanks, and was re-calibrating them at the time of takeoff. In a rocket, if she was in the second stage, which she had to have been in at least the second stage for there to be so much fuel, considering all of that fuel is to push the rocket out of the atmosphere and the ensuing third stage is the rocket discarding the necessary pieces that helped it push out of the atmosphere, she'd be boiled alive. Think about this, the first and second stage are not designed to accommodate human life, nor are they meant to even stay on the rocket after it leaves. Considering the astronauts breathe air from their suits and have a crushing amount of G-force subjected to them, that means Shera would have died from either the sheer tempature, G-force, lack of air or, since the rocket was straight up, would have at least been thrown down to the section of wall burning with the intense heat hot enough to launch a goddamn rocket out of the atmosphere, she should have died at least four different ways during the launch. Also, her standing on the 'Floor' of the rocket, when the rocket was straight up and she was shown to be in a hallway, she apparently can fly.

    Supernova, the apocalypse that keeps on giving 
  • Supernova can be used more than once. Discuss.
    • Well, are they even fighting in reality anymore at that point? It looks like they are in some place full of clouds. One interpretation I read is that that fight is purely "spiritual," taking place in the lifestream. So Sephiroth doesn't really destroy the sun, that's more like a representation of the force he is hitting you with.
      • I suppose that's as good an explanation as any, particularly considering that it also explains how the attack isn't an instant game over (I mean really, being hit by the sun exploding deals only a couple thousand damage?) But what still bugs me is that there's no reason why the attack can be done more than once other than developer oversight. They've already got an attack that's hardcoded so that you will only ever see it done once by an enemy, ever (it's one of the enemy skills, Pandora's Box IIRC.) They could have done that with this one.
      • I heard the super-long Supernova animation isn't even in the original Japanese version. Which doesn't explain why it was added, but it's an excuse to ignore the whole mess. I mean, with the other planets getting named, treating that animation like canon is a bit Planet of the Apes. Let's treat it like "this guy are sick" and move on.
      • How can he blow up our solar system multiple times? I mean, since Sephiroth blows up our solar system and then creates a supernova that [Somehow?] reaches the planet of Final Fantasy VII, doesn't that mean they'd have to be, you know, near us? Not at all near us in distance relative in terms of our measurements, but relatively close to our solar system. I mean, Alpha Centauri is only 0.2 lightyears away, and it isn't even involved in the supernova.
      • Uh, I don't know where you're getting your "facts", but α Centauri is 4.37 light-years from Earth.
      • Like it says above, "Sephiroth doesn't really destroy the sun, that's more like a representation of the force he is hitting you with." There are no solar systems being destroyed at all.
      • A mental attack can miss, it just means it failed to have an effect.
      • Every big bad (ok NEARLY Every one of them) In the Final Fantasy series has some God-Magic in their final arsenal that seems a little extreme and seem to always happen in a place outside reality. The more notable ones include The Emperor who had Meteorite/Starfall, The Cloud of Darkness had Particle Beam, Zeromus had Big Bang, Neo-Ex Death had Almagest, Kefka had Forsaken, Ultimecia had Apocalypse, Necron had Neutron Ring, and that's just to name a few. Even pre-final bosses have stuff like Griver's Shockwave Pulsar and The Creator's Black Hole. Point is... they can do this freaky world destroying stuff because there outside of that dimension at the time.
      • Given how Lifestream is composed of memories of the Planet and her inhabitants and magic is performed by through a solidified form of those memories, perhaps the attack is not so much literal as Sephiroth turning the memory of a supernova into an attack. It already happened once, he's just forcing the Planet to remember it repeatedly.
      • Maybe he actually does bring the attack from another universe and each new attack is another Sol System in another universe being blown up. He would end up killing a dozen alternate realities to our own.

    Reno's a cool guy, except for that mass murder thing 
  • Why are Cloud and Co. so chummy with Reno after FF7, considering how he was the one who detonated the bomb that made the sector plate collapse.
    • Aside from the fact that he's just doing his job, they can't exactly sling mud, considering they've blown up two entire Mako Reactors.
    • Reno was only doing what he was paid to do. It's been shown in more than one instance that the Turks actually LIKE the main crew, in Gongaga, when Reno and Rude talk about what girls they like, in Wutai they directly chose to not attack them, despite being told two seconds ago over the phone, and back in Midgar, when the party meets with them and they can, optionally, not fight. Away from his job... Reno is actually a pretty likeable guy
    • No, this bugs me too. Yeah, AVALANCHE doesn't have much of a higher moral ground, but at least they realized that it was a shitty thing to do when called on it. The Turks have never shown any remorse for what they've done, and they've done a lot worse things than Sector 7.
      • It may be worth noting that the "remorse" felt by AVALANCHE over blowing up two reactor night-shifts of other working class folks and Midgar police (whom, when they're not being killed, seem genuinely interested in their neighborhoods given their unwillingness to abandon them) is a short remark from Barret, which he later dismisses as pointless sentiment.
      • They do show remorse in Advent Children Complete. Reno says "Man, what a nightmare. The planet was nearly obliterated, and we were the obliterators." Reno and Rude have a conversation about the Shinra Co. and Reno says something like "I'm suprised so many employees returned" and Rude replies with "those left have a lot to atone for".
      • This has always bugged me. Just because it's some guys job to kidnap Aerith and turn her over to Hojo of all people, and also their job to massacre all of the innocent people in sector 7, does not make you a good person. Hell, Cloud had a job in Advent Children. He's a courier, a job that requires little to no participation in the slaughter of poor people. Then, just to show you that they really like their job, in Advent Children, they all return to help Rufus (And by extension, the heroes). I think Reeve was really the only person in the Turks as of the time of Final Fantasy VII that deserves redemption, and he had to work for it, putting his life on the line to continue to help the heroes and fight to save the planet, even though his secret identity is eventually exposed. Giving Reno, Rude, Elena and Tseng a free pass feels like a slap in the face to the one guy that was willing to save the world instead of working. Besides, Barret had to go through some Character Development to realize that it was wrong to bomb the Mako reactor, as well as admit that he was using the environmental cause to further his need for revenge. None of the Turks ever go through this 'Sorry for squishing your friends and family' phase. Saying that because they didn't attack you, that means their motivations must be good, is like saying because Hojo was tanning and didn't turn you into ShinRa HQ while in Costa de Sol, he must be a good guy too.
      • First off, Reeve was not a member of the Turks, and had nothing to do with Sector 7's plate being dropped. They get a pass because the worst thing they do is flatten the sector 7 slums, which if they refused Shinra would have just got someone else to do it. And the important distinction to make is that from their perspective the slum houses a dangerous eco-terrorist organisation that has blown up two reactors, killing a lot of people, and whose population (if I remember right) supports AVALANCHE as well. So a combination of Just Following Orders and being shown post game to regret their actions.
      • It'd be hard to claim that the people in the Slums automatically backed AVALANCHE—anymore than they were criminals or mobsters or bandits (all of which are dangerously common in the Slums). However, Fuhito's AVALANCHE demonstrated a willingness to resort to comparable tactics (they're the reason why Sector 6 is being rebuilt—let that set in), including through the use of reactor destruction. Barret adopts the manifesto and battle plan of someone who wanted to kill everybody everywhere and, to his credit, kills a lot less than everybody everywhere. Is he a cool guy except for the whole terrorist bombing thing because he's a foster parent?
      • We don't really know the extent to which the Turks wrestle with their guilt anyway. They might cry themselves to sleep over it every night, for all we know. Really, though, the whole Compilation (Case of Shinra especially) makes it clear that the Turks remaining at the time of FFVII are very much My Master, Right or Wrong types; loyalty is everything to them, and they can't comprehend life outside of the Turks. Case of Shinra even mentions that they have mental "switches" that turn on when they're in the field and off when they're off-duty. This implies to me that they've dissociated from their actions while on missions as a coping mechanism; they're not doing it, Shinra is doing it. None of that excuses what they did, obviously, but it does explain why they'd seem comfortable with doing something so horrible when other events of the story show them to be relatively decent people.
      • This bugs me greatly too, simply saying "it was just their job" or that Shinra would do the atrocities some other way does not make it ok, they had full knowledge of what they were getting themselves into when they joined the Turks and accepted their first missions, they are aware that they are getting paid to do horrible things to people they do not even know and yet they seem to not have any problem with it. Just how would they or Shinra executives justify to the people whose lives they have screwed over that it was simply business? (Of course, I do not approve of AVALACHE's methods either.)
      • The argument that "they're just doing their jobs" doesn't really cut it. Reno's dialogue when he dooms the plate shows that he quite clearly doesn't care about the people he's killing. Heck, his little Warner Bros. shout out in the English version makes it even worse as it implies he sees the whole thing as a huge performance.
        Reno: You're too late. Once I push this button... (presses it) That's all, folks! Mission accomplished.
        Tifa: We have to disarm it! Cloud! Barret! Please!
        Reno: I can't have you do that. No one gets in the way of Reno and the Turks.
      • Really, Reno? Mass-murder is fun to you? You're as bad as Sephiroth. However, Tseng's no angel either. His reaction to Reno's antics is Evil Laughter and Gloating. Again, from the script...
        Tseng: Ha ha ha..... Only a Shinra Executive can set up or disarm the Emergency Plate Release System.
        Barret: Shut yer hole! (fires on the helicopter)
        Tseng: I wouldn't try that.... You just might make me injure our special guest. (reveals Aeris as his prisoner)
        Tifa: Aerith!!
        Tseng:''' Oh, you know each other? How nice you could see each other one last time. You should thank me.
Wow, Tseng... So, not only do you think it's funny that AVALANCHE has completely failed to save hundreds, potentially thousands of people, but you also figured you'd rub their face in their failure to protect Aeris as well?There's just no two ways around it. Reno and Tseng are horrible, horrible human beings and no amount of crying "They're just doing their jobs" will get around the fact that, deep down, they enjoy ending and ruining peoples' lives as much as their bosses do, or at least they're just so removed from the feelings of others to even notice they exist. If there was any shred of decency in them, they might express hesitation at what they're doing. They might reveal themselves to be Punch Clock Villains by expressing shame that they're crossing the Moral Event Horizon to put food on their tables or something similar but they don't.In the real game (let's ignore Advent Children for now, because that's a whole can of Retcon-flavoured worms for every character we could be here all day mulling over), both of these characters clearly have an evil streak. Getting your jollies from the suffering of other people is wrong. Just because they're seen later discussing their crushes on the party's girls doesn't magically absolve them of guilt. In the game, these guys are bad guys. Minor bad guys compared to Sephiroth and Hojo, yes, but bad guys nonetheless and we shouldn't be pretending that they're anything else.We're all entitled to think that Evil Is Cool or Sexy, but let's not break out the leather pants for these sorts of people, okay?
  • I think I'll take the AC retcon over a poor translation any day. What they done is inexcusable but to say someone is not capable of changing their perspective is pretty narrow minded.
  • This is probably a case of Characterization Marches On. In the original game the Turks basically come across as horrible sociopaths, but in the long view of things, it does sort of stretch credulity that there are so many characters who are willing to cheerfully commit mass murder without batting and eyelash. AC's retcon is less mustache-twirlingly evil and more Punch-Clock Villain, which can either seem like a sensible change or a blatant inconsistency, depending on your preferences for that kind of thing. Of course, whether or not you find Punch-Clock Villain tendencies make their actions any more excusable is still up for debate.
  • So the point is...? In the original game the Turks are indeed supposed to be the Bad Guys, along with the rest of Shinra. But the original game wants to eat its cake too so it often descended into silly Goon Squad where after Sephiroth is presented as the villain pretty much all of Shinra becomes comedic sociopathy instead of genuine malice. It doesn't excuse the actions; it's just that on a meta level the plate dropping is no longer relevant to the plot or characters at 'all''.
    • That's not really true though, is it. Shinra tried to execute Barret and Tifa, burned Barret's hometown to the ground, and tried to destroy it again years later when searching for the large materia. All these revelations or events come AFTER Sephiroth is introduced, and none could reasonably be described as comedic sociopathy as none of these actions are treated as comedic by the game. Barret also continues to bring up the deaths of Biggs, Wedge and Jessie at numerous times as caused by Shinra throughout the adventure, and the Turks were used for light comic relief maybe twice in the original game. A handful of scenes aside, Shinra as a whole is really not treated as a joke in the original title.
  • Advent Children is glorified fanservice. The Turks as depicted in FF7 (shamelessly loyal to Shinra enough that they commit massacres like they were ordering pizza) shouldn't be as friendly with Avalanche as they are in the sequel film. At best, they can have a begrudging toleration where they don't get smashed into the ground whenever they show their faces around Cloud and Co. They were fan-favorites who survived the original game's events, so they were just put in AC's plot as more or less back-up fighters against Sephiroth's clones despite their atrocities (which again, are not excused by Just Following Orders since their attitude towards their duties speaks more on how casually they treat mass murder).
  • My thought process is that there were major changes to the Turks' characters throughout the game's development. Poor translations aside, Tseng's characterization in the game alone is completely inconsistent. Tseng throughout the rest of the game is just a black suit who was in charge of the Turks, was relatively friendly and uninstructive aspect of Aerith's life (this is accounting for the fact that Aerith and her adoptive mother knew he was spying on them), and that he had a crush on Aerith. Hell, Aerith has issues seeing him hurt later on in a non-Stockholm Syndrome way. She didn't have any issues with him being around whatsoever, seeing him as an acquaintance whose presence was just a little annoying. The laughably evil portrayal at the plate support beam was out-of-character before we actually see his true character later on. The remake will probably change that scene considerably. More than likely, Reno, Tseng, and the others were meant to be killed later on, but the "Elena captured by Don Cornero" side plot happened instead. Then there's the fact that Reno and Rude refuse to work at all while on vacation. Work has a completely different meaning to the Japanese than Americans. This is to say absolutely nothing of historical Japanese events. Many of the people who helped Kickstart the Raping of Namking and committed horrible biological experiments on entire villages during WWII got off scotfree after the Japanese surrender. This is in stark contrast to the Nazis that were hung and shot for lesser crimes or equal crimes. For the developers to condemn the Turks would indirectly mean they would have to condemn their own culture for similar reasons. A Million Is a Statistic is also at play here. To the Turks, the slums are just filled with undesirables, criminals, terrorists, and terrorist sympathizers. Shinra did everything they could to dehumanize the people below the plates and the Turks are the only ones fanatically loyal enough to carry out the mission. If you want a more indepth look at this from a historical point of view, read up on the Milgram experiment. The Turks are the kind of people who would definitely keep shocking the "test subject" (really just an actor) long after they stopped responding. They are slavishly loyal to authority figures and are good examples of the personality types that Nazis put in charge of death camps because they never question anything that someone in a nice uniform told them to do. Are they cunts? Yes. Are they evil? Arguable given their character development. Are they redeemable? Well, they did save literally everyone and everything in Advent Children. Is there American and Japanese culture clash going on. Yes. Was that section of the game also completely nonsensical, character inconsistent, and poorly written and translated? Oh hell yes. There are a lot of things to take into account. Take your pick on which explanation(s) help you hand wave it.
    • Although to be fair, the fact that Tseng is relatively gentle with Aerith doesn't mean he should be nice to anyone else, especially seeing as he was tasked by Shinra to keep watch over her. It isn't necessarily out of character for him to be nice to one person that he likes and cruel to others. On the other hand his evil laughter may have not been present in the Japanese language version. Can't remember who it was now, but there was a translator who mentioned in an interview that localisation teams would sometimes add generic evil cackles to villain-dialogue in older games when it wasn't present in the Japanese script. This is, for example, apparently why Edea/Ultimecia seems more hammy in her original appearance than she did in Dissidia. Also, now that the remake is out we now know how it handled that moment: In terms of Tseng's attitude to the situation, he didn't really act all that differently. He doesn't go "Ha ha ha" (As said already, he probably didn't do the evil laugh in the Japanese language version of the original game, either) but instead he's more subtly mocking and clearly doesn't care about the fact that people are about to die.

    Sephiroth got distracted by the Gold Saucer? 
  • Why didn't Sephiroth go on a killing spree when he was in Gold Saucer?
    • He was too busy betting on the Chocobos.
      • Sephiroth never went there. The one that asked Dio for the Black Materia was Sephiroth clone number 1.
      • A meaningless distinction, seeing as he was clearly using the clone as an avatar. That being said, he likely thought killing random people was a waste of breath and would keep the trail too warm for Shinra to follow, and superhuman power or not, having Shinra hot on your heels would be a bit of a hassle. Even Sephiroth knows the value of discretion.
    • Sephiroth never entered the Gold Saucer due to the cover charge.

    Rubble, Cloud's one weakness! 
  • Why did Cloud and Co. have such a hard time moving that rubble off of Cid in the Rocket Town Huge Materia sequence considering how overpowered the characters are shown to be in spinoffs?
    • The Dragon Ball Z clause. Any transformation, no matter how ridiculous, even if it's just a change of clothes, will make a character stronger. does anyone but Cait Sith/Red XIII/Vincent wear the same clothes in AC as they do in the main game?
    • It's hard to tell with the video quality, but considering that the rubble in question consists of twisted pieces of metal and wire, I imagine the trouble was figuring out how to move it without causing more damage. With Shera's help they were able to find a way to dig out Cid without killing him.
    • There's also the fact that he may be impaled under there by rebar. Just cutting it off him or tossing it aside could shred his body. Just because Cloud can cut buildings in half with his sword doesn't mean it's a good way to remove rubble off a guy especially since Cloud get set that concrete on fire with a swing of his sword. Imagine Cid was impaled and Cloud tried to cut it, but the rebar wasn't cut through immediately and instead acted like a crowbar on Cid's insides. Cid could get gibbed Mortal Kombat style; Cloud is definitely that strong.

    No fighting in the Shinra elevators 
  • Why didn't the team just kick Rude and Tseng's asses when they caught them in the lift of Shinra HQ?
    • Two guesses: Either the space was too small to fight without hitting an ally, or Rude and Tseng were simply too strong for them at that point in the game.
    • Third guess: It might just be two guys, but the very fact that two Turks have shown up means that all of Shinra is onto them and they've probably got an entire army backing them up. That's why Cloud complies when they ask him to - they've basically shown up to personally demonstrate that they're fucked.
    • Canonically, the Turks are very strong. Especially at the beginning. In every Turk fight except one, the Turks are never KO'd by the party. They finish their job of delaying the party or whatever, they get bored, and leave the fight. Only in one fight, when you 3v1 against Rude, do you actually *beat* him.
    • Also if they are not careful with their attacks, they can damage the elevator which either cause them to get trap in it if it gets short-circuit and stop or cause it to freefall which can kill or at least seriously injure them.
    • Plus whatever floor they stopped on would probably be full of more soldiers, security, and Turks. They could Captain America their way off the elevator, but only Tifa is packing weapons that wouldn't damage the elevator. On top of that, the heroes were okay with getting captured as long as they were allowed to talk to President Shinra. Escape was on their mind after that and it allowed them to get deeper into the building. Now why Shinra didn't have them killed immediately, well... They're stupid and they like to gloat and the heroes exploited that.

    Tifa's slap-fu battle with Scarlet 
  • It still bugs me to this day that Tifa got in a slapping match with Scarlet. She's a freaking martial artist who can pick up and body slam things three times her size, fer the love of all. Just uppercut the bitch and go home.
    • Slapping has a bigger humiliation impact to it.
      • Which doesn't explain why Tifa let Scarlet slap her in the first place. Someone as good as her should have seen it coming a mile away and blocked it. Heck, I could have blocked that as much wind-up as that slap had. Besides, I'm not really buying the "more humiliating" thing when utterly crushing your opponent is pretty damn humiliating for them.
      • The game cut scene showed Tifa looking away for a while, maybe Scarlet manage to catch her by surprise for the fist slap. As for the subsequent slaps, I'd say Tifa was just so angry she did the first thing that came to mind — slap back. Plus, it makes for an awesome mini game.
      • If by "awesome", you mean "mash X for a few seconds", I suppose. The only way Tifa could have missed that wind-up is if her peripheral vision is completely shot, and it still doesn't excuse getting hit with subsequent slaps. Tifa, a martial artist who has been training for at least 5 years, can lose a slapping match. Seriously not buying the handwaves, here. It was either a) an excuse to cram in yet another minigame (and not a particularly fun or inspired one - there's no luck or skill involved, winning only involves pressing X as quickly as you can over and over) or b) an excuse to make Tifa's rescue seem more exciting, even though a couple of guards and Scarlet were no real threat or c) both. This is the elegant art of feminine conflict.
      • Didn't Tifa spend at least a minute in a room filled with poison gas and then have to make a run for it just before the slap match happened? Not to mention that she had been in a coma for about a week before even that. Maybe she was too weak at the moment and so she couldn't send Scarlet flying.
      • She'd still know the most effective ways to use the energy she had.
      • Tifa's own humiliation at being an accomplished martial artist caught in a slap fight with someone who tried to kill her should outweigh any damage she could to Scarlet by slapping her.
      • I think you're underestimating the effects of poisonous gas... And slapping, for that matter. Also, Tifa isn't the kind of person to be "humiliated" by something so stupid. However, Scarlet is. Tifa would've known the limits of her body and would understand that she shouldn't feel bad or guilty for not being able to utterly pwn Scarlet's ass at that point. So what do you do when your body is in bad shape and you're fighting against a woman that's vain and full of herself? Easy. You slap her. Not only is it humiliating to Scarlet, it's a small action that doesn't take a lot of energy to carry out and definitely hurts on impact to the face. I also want to point out the possibility of it being a "who's going to last longer getting slapped?" kind of thing—an endurance test between them, in which if you attempt to run or block, you lose. And regardless, it's amusing as heck to people who don't take it so seriously and are willing to suspend disbelief.
    • It's just Rule of Sexy. The devs couldn't resist sticking in a catfight even when it doesn't fit the situation or characters.
    • It's simply that Scarlet indulged in slapping Tifa around so Tifa is giving her a taste of her own medicine. It actually does make sense to only use her martial artist skills on a genuine physical threat, which Scarlet clearly isn't.

    It's not the size of the materia... 
  • It really bugs me that they never really confirmed exactly what size is a materia. In the original game, materia is apparently attached to bracelets and weapons, so we can reasonably assume they are, say, like a size of pearl. In the movie, we see that they are almost christmas ball big. Try holding eight christmas balls and a sword at the same time, while fighting a enemy potentially twice your size.
    • The christmas-ornament sized Materia were mastered Materia, we still don't know exactly how big the average Level 1 Materia is, but in the game it generally shows spheres somewhere between baseball and softball size (it's difficult to tell for sure because of the SD style, though). And you're attaching them to "slots" in the armor and weapons, which (if the Sephiroth genes' use of the materia in the movie is any indication) is actually the number of materia that can remaim stable while (or just be) partially or almost completely absorbed by the weapon, the article of clothing, and probably the person's body underneath the clothing.
      • Except that if you look at the official artwork for the bangles, you see a matching number of Materia slots to how they are described. The Sephiroth Genes putting the materia into their own bodies is supposed to be freaky.
      • No... Tifa's materia worked the same way. Her Materia was inside her body, you could see them glowing at times.
      • Tifa never uses materia at all during the movie. Neither do any of the other heroes. Perhaps you're thinking of her appearance in Dead Fantasy instead?
      • The bangles and the Buster Sword, yes have holes in them. What about everything else. Did they prance around with six Materia hanging off of each accesorie they wore and weapon they carried? What exactly was Yuffie going to do with the Materia she brought to the final fight in ACC had she not been shot down? For that matter, what does Zack do with his Materia?
      • Presumably, all of the equipment has the cooresponding number of slots in them. If the Buster Sword and bangles do, then it doesn't seem like much of a stretch to assume all the other weapons do too. I don't see how that's a sillier idea than them sticking them inside themselves, which does come across as freaky and unnatural. Also, I'm sure Yuffie was going to pass out all the materia to Cloud and the other party members. Everyone was there, you know.

    Yuffie's Plan: Steal Materia, ???, Revive Wutai! 
  • Yuffie's plan for reviving Wutai really bugs me. I mean, how exactly does it work? Step 1: Mug people of their materia. Step 2: Sell it. Step 3: ???. Step 4: Restore Wutai to it's former glory. PROFIT!! The only thing I can see it resulting is Wutai becoming a famous black market for materia, and how is that supposed to help glorify your home town?
    • By selling it in other cities, and using the resulting capital to revive the city- start-up capital to make new city infrastructure or businesses to bring legitimate income into the town. Alternatively, she's a kid who has no idea what to do, and so is just trying to get as much money and/or power into the place the only way she knows how.
    • Simple, she's Yuffie, the immature childish clumsy 16 year old girl, you expect her to come up with a monopoly plan or something?
    • Wutai is stated in game to have next to no Materia (The only significant one is Leviathan, and there's only 1 of those), which was a weapon Shinra harvested to power up its armies along with SOLDIER. Yuffie figures that if she had more of these powerful fighting tools, she could effectively fight back, like the Afghans stocking up on AK-47s to fight the Soviets.
    • It does make sense. She can sell off the generic materia for extra gil so her home won't be so dependent on tourists and keep the stronger and rare materia to make her home physically stronger. Yuffie may be hoping to drop kick Shinra out and while that may seem extreme given they seem to be progressively clamping down on the world, one city at a time it might actually be necessary. Or would have been if things had continued on as they had been.
    • Or, since she notes once on the airship that materia always have something to do with combat or magic, she may have been looking for them to use as weapons that might help Wutai fight for independence from Shinra.
    • You ever sell a mastered "All" Materia? Fiscal problems go away forever once you do.
  • The reason Yuffie's "plan" seems to have so many holes in it is because she came up with it when she was 9.

    Tseng slapping Aerith 
  • I was always confused about why Tseng slaps Aerith during the Sector 7 plate bombing to silence her. Aerith wasn’t yelling something that would endanger the bombing, like an abort code or something. She was just telling the team that Marlene was safe. Where’s the harm in that? You’d think the man didn’t actually have a crush on the poor girl or something.
    • Yeah, that one moment flies in the face of literally all the other characterization Tseng has in both that game and Crisis Core. Maybe it was from a point in development where someone else was supposed to be on the chopper, or something, and nobody got around to changing it?
    • The only other explanation for the slapping incident which is remotely consistent with majority of Tseng's characterization (especially in Crisis Core), is that he was somehow trying to protect Aerith by keeping her quiet — i.e., he slapped Aerith to keep her from saying something that might further endanger her (Aerith) or Marlene.
    • I think this was addressed in the novel On The Way To A Smile: Case of Shinra . Here's the specific paragraph I don't fully understand Tseng's reasoning here, but I think he's basically refusing to lie to her and act like everything's going to be okay, when he knows that being captured by Shinra means hell for her.
  • Characterization Marches On. Tseng was never shown as especially caring towards or concerned about Aerith's well-being in FF7. Going from his interactions with Elena, he just might've been a man with a taste for notably younger women with his eyes on the flower girl. The Turks as as a team were a Psycho for Hire crew who had bits of office humor and were willing to let Avalanche leave in their last run-in as thanks for a favor, but certainly weren't comic relief anti-heroes as depicted in the Compilation. They were casual monsters of Shinra who carried out orders of smashing civilians to death like they were writing papers.

    Aerith - flower girl by day, working girl by night? 
  • Aerith as participating in Compensated Dating. Explain please.
    • If Cloud goes into the Honeybee Lounge in Sector 6, when he comes out he'll find Aerith has been flirting with all of the men gawking at her in order to sell her flowers. She clearly knows how to get attention.
    • Regardless, that doesn't make her a mean person; she clearly never did anything to them out of spite. She sells flowers to make a living, so why not try to sell them at the Honeybee Inn if she's already there?
      • How would compensated dating make her a mean or spiteful person?
    • These rumours might have been also fueled by Final Fantasy Tactics. The Flower Girl Aerith in that game (who is not the same Aerith) is rescued by Cloud (who is the same Cloud) from someone who is evidently not a common thug, but a bona-fide criminal leader, to whom she owes money, and who suggests to her to "sell her body" instead of flowers.
    • It's not that far-fetched. When you met her she tried to sell you flowers, then act surprised when you actually bought it. Now think about it. Her flowers are just one friggin gil a piece and she barely sell them at all, how could she make a living selling them then? The obvious answer is that the flowers are just a cover, she sells something else. With that conclusion she's either a prostitute or a drug dealer.
    • Well she could be a doctor, what with those Cetra super-healing powers of hers. A Back-Alley Doctor, mind you, but better than that other Shinra.
    • Remember, Aeris can charge whatever she wants for the flowers. Sure, one gil may be the base price but she seems to increase it for people who annoyed her or she knows has money to burn. While flowers may not seem like much to us remember that they're very rare in Midgar, only growing around Aeris' home and the church near her home, so she has a monopoly on something that cheers people up, makes them happy, and has a sully that costs her nothing and keeps replenishing itself. Factor in that her mother likely owns the house instead of just renting it and that she doesn't seem to have any real frivolous possessions, not even a piece of common materia to use on monsters/attackers, and I can buy her making a living on the flowers alone.
    • We should also remember that Cloud is 5'7" man in a military/mercenary uniform carrying a sword that is 70.5 inches tall from the end of the hilt to the point of the blade and, depending on the material, can weigh anything from 20 to 75 pounds. And this tough looking dude just bought a flower after a terrorist attack while people are panicking. Yeah, no shit she's surprised.

    Aerith likes schmucks? 
  • Most of the Relationship Values for Tifa/Aerith date sequence in the original game makes sense. But in Crisis Core, it really bugs me that the way to increase Aerith's affection with Zack is to be a schmuck continuously. You have to believe in all the market NPCs while they help you, when they are obviously treating you like an idiot and letting the thief run away. So... what exactly does this say about Aerith — she likes her men naïve to the point of being a Cloud Cuckoo Lander?
    • I interpreted it as "points for being in-character", since Crisis Core's date points differ from FF7's in that the only possible outcome is Aeris, and, to be fair, Zack is pretty much a grade-A sucker. I mean—look at how suggestible he is when interacting with, say, the other 1st Class SOLDIERs, or with Yuffie, or even with freaking Hojo, who, if you inspect the giant sample tube while you're protecting him, manages to trap Zack inside just by telling him to look closer for what's in it (nothing, until Zack himself).
    • I think she's just into schmucks. Corneo's mansion, anyone?

    So many Jenova cells, so little time 
  • A minor nitpick but what exactly are the differences between certain Jenova cells(J Cells, S cells, whatever the hell Genesis and Angeal has cells) if not being able to tell power levels or something like that? Throughout the series, Cloud has shown to be succeeding where most, if not all, SOLDIERs failed and doing things that not even Zack, Genesis, or Angeal could even fathom(such as defeating Sephiroth without any help or surprise attacks). Sure, it has been said that Sephiroth was holding back, but even then, the white haired wonder has always toyed with his opponents and still kicked their asses.
    • Starting from the top, Gillian had Jenova's pure cells implanted in her, Genesis consequently had Gillian's cells mapped onto him at the fetal stage while Angeal was bred inside Gillians body. All this was deemed a failure because initially, Genesis and Angeal didn't show any abnormality while Sephiroth, who was given pure Jenova cells as fetus was deemed a success, after that he was put to extensive Mako experiments. Zack, Angeal, Genesis and all the other SOLDIER applicants also have to go through Mako showers and have Jenova cells put inside them but being full grown men (or 14 years old as seems to be norm) it had a reduced effect. As is established at the nibelheim reactor, Sephiroth's Mako levels are much higher then Zack or any other SOLDIER. Afterwards Cloud and Zack were put into Mako shower for 4 years by Hojo. Zack was the failure of the experiment and showed no change while Cloud was overdosed and was dying, now we all know what Cloud had to do to survive the treatment, but in the end he probably had much higher Mako levels then a person would after the normal SOLDIER treatment. Same goes for Shelke and to a lesser extent Deepground. And thus the pecking order goes Sephiroth>Cloud>Deepground SOLDIER>Type G SOLDIER>SOLDIER, Genesis and Zack are a little higher then expected because they are just that good. But on the whole it's all about Mako.
      • Addendum to the above: The G cells eventually cause cellular degeneration and prevent injuries from healing properly, which is why Genesis and his clones appear to age and degrade later in Crisis Core. This is the other main reason Project G was considered a failure. G Cells can be stabilized with S cells, which is why Genesis is after Zack in the endgame.

    Barret's final limit is a "catastrophe" 
  • Barret's final limit, Catastrophe, uses an attack that's implied to be fueled by the very life essence of The Planet. But he captained an entire ecoterrorist organization to make people STOP fueling things with the very life essence of The Planet. Nice and hypocritical, Barret.
    • Well, it's possible that the shot only takes the same amount of essence that a dead soul brings back into the Lifestream with it. Better not miss though...
    • It's probably the same difference between Magicite and Magitek in Final Fantasy VI: one is freely given, the other is forcibly extracted. Being fueled by the Planet doesn't necessarily mean it hurts the Planet; for all we know, all that spent energy goes right back into the Lifestream.
    • Where is it implied that it's fueled by the Planet's life essence? I always just thought of it as another type of energy blast similar to All Creation or Cosmo Memory.

    50% Demi + Weak = ... 50%? 
  • This one is fairly minor compared to most of the above examples... but, there are enemies that are listed as being weak against Gravity. Except Gravity spells consist of the three Demi spells, which deal a set percentage of damage depending on the level of the spell. So... how exactly does that work?
    • I'd take a guess at hit rate. Seeing as how Demi has a horrible hit rate generally, when you find something weak to it I imagine they're far more succeptible.
    • It does seem to affect the damage. I once cast Demi 3 (does damage equal to 75% of target's current HP) against a group of Ancient Dragons (weak to gravity) in the Temple of the Ancients and it killed them.
    • To my memory, it does still affect damage. Basically, while Demi and it's sister spells do damage based on a percentage, it still deals it as numerical damage, with the enemy's HP being just a figure in how much. That number is, in turn, ramped up by vulnerability. So where a 50 damage fire spell against a vulnerable might calculate as "50x1.5" damage, a 50% demi spell against a vulnerable might look like "(Monster Current HP/2)x1.5". Don't quote me on 1.5 being the vulnerable multiplier, just trying to make an example.
    • Laser is an enemy skill that you can learn with the appropriate materia, that causes 50% damage to enemies. If you use it on an enemy weak to Gravity (like the monsters that swing on ropes in the Shinra Mansion) it'll instantly kill them.

    Supernova and Phoenix Downs 
  • Two questions here...

    a) How the heck can Supernova miss? If it's a mental attack, then it should hit. If it's a physical attack... well, I don't think you can dodge the sun destroying the solar system.

    b) Why doesn't Shinra (or any government/corporation like them, in any FF game) buy cheap-as-heck phoenix downs for their soldiers. Evil governments and corporations could just requisition them from shops, while 'good' governments and corporations could spend the money that goes to giving their soldiers weak status spells on phoenix downs instead. Reviving soldiers mid-battle would revolutionise warfare. And only one game has done this that I know of (Lost Odyssey. The opening cutscene shows how white mages can properly use all-raise spells). For one status materia you can get a couple of phoenix downs. Can you imagine Avalanche invading Shinra headquaters (TWICE! Needs new security) if all the people they fought had 5 or so lives?
    • Answer to both: Gameplay and Story Segregation. You're expecting gameplay mechanics to apply outside of battle in a game that demonstrates that this is clearly not the case. Especially with Supernova. The attack blows up the sun, and you're worried about it being "dodged"? If the attack was really happening, that would be it, no planet, no saving the world. And Phoenix Downs do not revive you from the dead.
      • Ok, I'll go along with the Supernova answer, but the phoenix down thing is still there. If a Shinra guard attacks you and you reach 0 hp you can use a phoenix down. If a Shinra guard is confused and attacks a fellow and they reach 0 hp, why do they die permanently as opposed to you. Both took damage from the same weapon, from the same sort of soldier, etc etc. The only differnce is that you are the player, and the computer is the computer. So why do they die from the exact same wound and you get put into whatever state Phoenix Downs help with?
      • That's what Gameplay and Story Segregation is. But if you want to fanwank it, think of 0 HP as not dead, but fatally wounded. When the character is fatally wounded, a Phoenix Down is enough to keep them from actual dying. The player, it's assumed, will be doing so post-hast, while the enemy guards are cut down by you before they can administer treatment.
      • Well in Crisis Core they are apparently testing a potion that gives you preemptive ReRaise. But only to SOLDIER 1st Class, maybe anyone else is expendable?
      • Shinra is using Phoenix Downs on their troops. Why else do you think that you never run out of random encounters, no matter how many soldiers you cut down?
    • Phoenix downs are not necessarily all that cheap relative to the actual salaries of the soldiers; buying them is a pain at the beginning of the game when you're still in Midgar. On top of this, Shinra may not expect that many of them to actually fall in battle, seeing how little competition they have for dominance around the world, except when they're fighting major badasses like your party.
    • Plus if you take Last Order as a Canon, that Buster Sword hits hard. Zack hit guys so hard with the damn thing that the soldiers he killed were gibbed so thoroughly as to be unrecognizable against the dirt he terned up from the blow. Try reviving from that. Same with Barret after pops your head like a grape or Tifa after she's punched your heart straight out of the back of your chest. The "Phoenix" part of Phoenix Down is a metaphor, not literal. It doesn't actually unscramble your brain after it's being plastered all over the wall.

    Why do they keep trusting the brainwashed guy? 
  • Why does anyone - and I mean, ANYONE - trust Cloud with any part of this mission? As soon as he starts going crazy in the Temple of the Ancients, that should be a big giant red flag that he should not be given any sort of item that Sephiroth is searching for. Instead, the party cheerfully hands him the Black Materia as soon as they get it - which Cloud gives to Sephiroth in a bout of hypnosis, no more than sixty seconds later. Even worse, later in the game the party manages to get the Black Materia back, and Cloud, under Sephiroth's influence, again asks for whoever was keeping it to give it back to him. Instead of this person saying "Hell no, you told us not to give this to anyone, and I'm not - especially not to someone who already has a history of freaking out in Sephiroth's presence", they willingly oblige. Sure enough, Cloud has another one of his Wangst episodes and ends up giving the Black Materia to Sephiroth again, thus summoning the meteor, awakening the WEAPONs and essentially throwing everything into chaos. It's as if the whole planet is Too Dumb to Live or something.
    • It's unclear how Cloud's catastrophic mental breakdown from Sephiroth's repeated, sadistic psychic and psychological attacks can be casually dismissed as wangst, especially when wangst generally implies an excessive or unjustified whining about one's suffering.
      • It's also unclear why they would trust a person prone to these "catastrophic mental breakdowns" with such important items. Wangst or not, the question stands - the rest of the team ought to have been like, "Give you this thing again? Hell no!" In fact, if you don't consider it wangst, then it's even worse; it's like giving a remote controlling the world's nuclear arsenal to a guy desperately in need of mental therapy, who has proven to be easily manipulated by bad guys to boot.
    • What can I say? I tried not giving it to Cloud, but apparently SquareSoft didn't like that idea.
    • The answer is simple: Sephiroth/Jenova tricked the holder of the Black Materia into giving it to Cloud. IIRC, just after beating Jenova DEATH and retrieving the Black Materia, Cloud states he can't hold onto it because he might get mind controlled again and you are given the choice of giving it to either Barret or to Red XIII. A few scenes later, whoever was chosen to hold the Materia is approached by Sephiroth, disguised as Tifa, and told that Cloud is in danger. When that character reaches Cloud, they give him the Materia at his request while the real Tifa warns them to stop. On the surface, it seems as though the writers decided to throw the party a huge Idiot Ball for the sake of extending the game by another 10 or so hours, but when you think about it: Even though Cloud is the only one with Jenova Cells in him, the rest of the party still fall for Sephiroth's illusions, therefore it's entirely possible that he can at least partially influence anybody regardless of whether or not they have Jenova Cells. The two characters that can hold onto the BM are also both very trusting of Tifa, and furthermore, one of them, Red XIII, is starting to believe that he too is a Sephiroth Clone, that mentality probably making him more susceptible to mind control. As for Barret, well, at this point he is probably the most clueless about the whole situation, and this probably makes him a good candidate for mind control as well. Either that, or the Black Materia is a literal Idiot Ball.
  • In a larger sense, though — why not just kick Cloud off the team entirely after the Temple of the Ancients fiasco? It's clear at that point that, for whatever reason, he cannot be trusted (in fact, Aeris concludes this, quite reasonably — and when he meets her, he nearly gives in to mind control and kills her himself.) Why doesn't the team just gently but firmly tell him to stay behind at the Golden Saucer while they deal with Sephiroth? Nothing about him makes his participation in the adventure necessary; no matter what, you're leaving lots of people behind due to the three-person limit.
    • The three-person limit is purely gameplay and irrelevant to a storyline perspective. Cloud is the leader of the group, and the person most directly against Sephiroth. Not to mention the strongest, best fighter. Kicking him off the team isn't an option because he's basically the thing holding the team together at that point.
    • Second this notion. As soon as the team loses Cloud later on, they turn to Tifa who falls apart as soon as they rediscovered Cloud who's gone comatose. Barrett rejects the role of team leader because it's gotten way too cerebral for him and he's questioning every moral choice he's made for the last few years. Barrett then elects Cid because he's the only one left with any type of command presence left and the most he can do is be the motivated/motivating Sergeant. He has the drive, but lacks the "this is what we know, this is what we have, and this is what we will do" mentality of a tactical and strategic leader. Cloud may be insane, but he's the only decisive one on the team who also understands what's going on AND can formulate a plan that might actually work.
    • The answer to this is actually pretty simple. Cloud is the only one who can lead them to Sephiroth. Due to his Jenova cells-induced mental link and the fact that Sephiroth is calling out to him. You see a demonstration of this in the Forgotten City where Cloud is psychically told by Sephiroth which direction the party must head to next in order to find him.

    What's with Vincent's shoes? 
  • Does he just like wearing weird stuff or are his feet really, really big?
    • Its Nomura, that alone should answer your question.
      • A possible in-universe reason: They're weapons/armor sort of like the gauntlet on his arm. It seems like a reasonable explaination after viewing his CGI rendition. A kick from those can cause some serious damage. As to why he doesn't use them, it's most likely because he's not that kind of person. Kicking someone with metal shoes when you could just shoot them implies some kind of extreme hatred towards your opponent, or a love of violence. He probably wears them as a backup weapon incase something happens to his gun.
    • They're sabatons, a kind of armor that goes over the boot or shoe. The medieval ones were long and pointy, which both mimicked a fashion of the time for long pointed shoes (called poulaines) and also probably was no fun to get hit in the face with, if you were a foot soldier and a mounted soldier rode at you. They're not designed for the fancy footwork of kenjutsu, though, are they?
    • I doubt a normal person could do kenjutsu wearing them. But I don't think Vincent ever does anything that would be hindered by his shoes, anyway. His fighting seems to consist of shooting his target. Other than that, he has his transformation forms. The most athletic thing I recall him doing in his normal form is jumping.
    • In Dirge of Cerberus he can physically attack with legs, these attacks are quite powerful. So, he does use them.

    Mommy, where do Limit Breaks come from? 
  • This one has bugged me since 1997 and still does. We've seen what can be done with materia and powerful weaponry. We know non-Soldiers and people who haven't been enhanced by Hojofuckery are just regular folks, even Tifa. How then we explain Final Heaven or Barrett's Catastrophe, both enormously powerful moves releasing vast energies at their foes?
    • Gameplay and Story Segregation, of course. In order for the game to be balanced, all playable characters have to be close to equally viable in combat.
      • According to the Ultimania, Limit Breaks are just concentrated fighting spirit or some DBZ shit like that. Just like Videl learned to fly and shoot thunderbolts although she's not a Saiyan, Tifa can suplex monstrosities a few hundreds or thousands of times her size. Same, same, but different.
      • Not so segregated: Cloud can coach a young girl on using her limit break in the Sector 7 training hall. The conversation isn't a long one, but demonstrates that 1) limit breaks are something anyone can use and 2) their strength is greatly increased by it.
  • All life on the planet ends and begins in the lifestream. Everything is connected to the lifestream. Everyone has a small current similar to the lifestream within them. A limit break is using the energy from the current to perform superhuman feats (using Materia, which is crystalized lifestream, they can perform even greater superhuman feats). Everyone can perform a limit break, although many wouldn't ever need to, and don't have the experience or fitness to do it. This article on The expalains it best.
  • Where the hell does the dragon in one of Cid's limit breaks come from?
    • It's his desire for flight made manifest. He's a dragoon, after all.
    • Or it's a magical concentration that boosts his abilities. Essentially how some anime attacks take recognizable forms.

     Dragons - Zack's one weakness? 
  • Okay, so if Crisis Core taught us anything, is that by the time we get to Nibelheim (pre-FFVVII game), is that Zack is pretty awesome in terms of fighting skills, enough to become a 1st class soldier and train a bunch of noobies too. And when Cloud flashes back to Nibelheim years later, he is imagining himself as Zack, fighting alongside Sephiroth. My question is simply this — Why does Cloud suck so much in that fight against the dragon? Seriously, if the dragon so much as sneezes at Cloud in that battle, he is dead, and entirely at the mercy of Sephiroth to revive him. It doesn't make sense, if we imagine Zack in Cloud's place there, for a first class soldier to be so friggin weak.
    • You're right, a SOLDIER 1st Class wouldn't be so weak. That's the whole point. You're not supposed to be imagining Zack in Cloud's place, it's Cloud standing in for Zack. Of course Cloud is going to be ridiculously weak, because he's not a SOLDIER 1st Class. It works on two levels: On first blush, it looks like the game is just telling you how awesome Sephiroth is compared to Cloud; later on, you realize it's subtle foreshadowing that Cloud wasn't a badass Super-Soldier.
      • Considering when in actual OG flashback Zack when fighting either mooks or Sephiroth he does significantly worse then Cloud, I'd have to disagree.
    • Cloud's memories are, as they do so many other times, conflating two persons in one. The SOLDIER with the big sword was Zack. The mook getting pounced on and having to be revived by Sephiroth was Cloud, who joined the fray.
    • If Crisis Core taught you anything it *should* be that the Ensemble Dark Horse can change canon if the creators capitulate to the wild imaginations of the fanbase. In the original game Zack wasn't just one tier below Sephiroth, he was completely outclassed by those around him and the situation he was put in. Sure, a First Class Soldier probably should have been able to hold his own a little better, but the main point is that Zack wasn't a master class demigod before the extended universe came along and turned him into one.
      • Exactly. Until Zack became unexpectedly popular and they gradually retconned him to be one of the most powerful people in the setting, possibly even stronger than Cloud the original game shows Zack as not really being all that strong. We don't see his fight with Sephroth just him running after him into Jenova's chamber and getting tossed out defeated about 15 seconds later, which assuming Zack monologued at Sephiroth like he did in Crisis Core means he probably spent most of that time talking and got defeated near instantly. And he's taken out by a basic Shinra squad of two Troopers and a Commander. Crisis Core changes this to Zack having an epic several minutes long duel with Sephiroth before Sephiroth barely eeks out a win and Zack having to face off against what seems to be half the Shinra Troopers in Midgar to make him look ridiculously badass while also playing out his part in the original story but in the original Zack honestly comes off as pretty pathetic barring their escape from the lab.

     Midgar - Worst Urban Design ever? 
  • The design of Midgar City has always bugged me for a very long time. Ignoring (and it's a big thing to ignore) the fact that somehow the president loves Mako so much he feels necessary to live straight next to the reactor... But why suspend the city at all? From the games, it is pretty consistent that the upper to middle class citizens lives on the plate, suspended above the slums below. The cost of the structure and piping for an operation like that is huge, with no obvious benefit. They are suspended high, but no high enough such that they could rise above pollution and get some natural sunlight.
    • When imagining about rewriting the script one of the dialogues that came to mind about the city on the plate is "Looks like some rich douchebag got bored on burning his money on hookers, blow and rehab".
    • With Shinra literally on top, they dominate the city and make a show of their power. The Shinra Co. building is quite intimidating and sends the message "We're in charge, don't screw with us" to the surrounding towns. It's what makes them more than just an electric company.
    • Only thing I can think of is somewhat similar to the under-city in Final Fantasy XII's Rabanastre - the "under-plate" regions might have started out as underground storage areas, then been hollowed out to the point where support beams had to be put in. In other words, rather than the upper city being built on a pointless, expensive gigantic metal platform, the bedrock beneath the city was gradually removed until the plates were all that kept the upper city from collapsing. Well, until Shinra decided to install explosives under 'em.
    • There's a strong possibility that this monster of architecture, engineering, and city planning has been entirely intentional since Shinra came to control Midgar and most of the planet. The Shinra elite literally sit on top on throngs of people who are poor, down-trodden and probably receptive to regime change, especially in the slums. That's why the pillars supporting the plates above are designed to be blown to bits easily; The threat of this happening, as well as the total control of narrow bottlenecks of escape (the train ID-card scanning system, for example) keeps the poors in their proper place. And it's not like the people living on the plate that gets sent down can't be evacuated beforehand. And, as somebody else pointed out, nothing creates more Mako energy quite like a couple-thousand newly dead people.

     What the hell, Zangan? 
  • This has bugged me since I first played the game. Zangan is supposedly highly selective about his students (even if he does claim to have 128), so naturally, one might expect him to have some sort of attachment to them—even filial. So what does he do when his ("dearest") fifteen-year-old student gets slice-'n'-diced? Dumps hers in Midgar and is never heard from again. Now am I the only one whom this struck as a bit cocked up? I understand he's a nomad and all, but leaving her before she even woke up, with no clear memories and no prospects, was a bit much. It's the Midgar slums, after all. Putting aside the game's general light-hearted cartoon-y-ness, even as a martial artist, how safe is a homeless teenage girl in a big city she knows nothing about? The game didn't really explore what Tifa did in the time between her arrival in Midgar and her opening Seventh Heaven (IIRC), so it's not impossible that she was a streetkid for sometime, scavenging for food or doing sordid jobs for money.
    • Zangan seems to have been a fairly well-known figure in the FFVII world. It may be that, assuming that Shinra would be hunting down any survivors of Nibelheim, he left her so as to divert attention away from her. Shinra's capital or not, Midgar is far and away the easiest place in the game's world for someone to go off the radar. Besides, she was his best student. He probably assumed (rightly, apparently) that she'd do fine on her own once she recovered.
    • According to supplemental materials released along with the Compilation, after the Nibelheim Incident Zangan had traveled to Midgar because Tifa needed advanced Medical care. Plus, a big city like that would be easy to dissapear in, and he'd seen Shinra rounding up the other survivors. However, he never intended to stay there. As a wanderer by nature, Zangan had a hard time staying in one place for too long, and Midgar in particular really grated on him. He didn't just up and dissapear, however. He waited several months until Tifa was healthy enough that he could discuss the matter with her. Apparently, he'd hoped that Tifa would come with him, but Tifa had already met Barret by that point, and was being drawn into the anti-Shinra movement. Tifa was also old enough to make her own decisions, and had also proven herself to be a resiliant and independant young woman, and Zangan respected that. Tifa, for her part, had probably known that Zangan intended to leave as soon as he could, and was likewise willing to respect his wishes. So they parted on good terms.
      • Also Zangan is a world renowned martial artist who's was probably known by Shinra to have been in Nibelheim at the time of it's raising. Given they rounded up the survivors for Hojo's experiments, and how they rebuilt the town and probably don't want anyone who could point this out running around (granted when Cloud and Tifa do return the Shinra plants just deny it but Zangan's word probably carries more weight than theirs) Zangan can reasonably assume Shinra will probably not want him free and/or alive and staying in their capital city would be very dangerous. He'd constantly be looking over his shoulder for a Turk assassination attempt or worse. It's for his best interest to be as far away from Midgar as possible. Tifa would just seem to be a random girl to them, even if they knew there was a Tifa that was unaccounted for at Nibelheim they wouldn't be able to go off the name alone and it was a few years, so going off old info for a cowgirl tourguide, not a busty barmaid. Tifa could blend into the crowd at Midgar, Zangan can't and worse he'd hurt her chances of blending in by being with her since Shinra could possibly better identify Tifa as Zangan's Nibelheim student if he's hanging out a young woman with the same name who clearly has been trained in his fighting style.

     So am I the only one who noticed this? 
  • All right, admittedly this isn't some enormous plothole or mindbogglingly irritating detail, but why the hell does Tifa only have one earring? Seriously. It's been bugging me for years now, since I first saw AC/C.
  • She's not the only one to have one earring — Zack only has one, and Genesis has one normal one and that... thing that dangles from one of his ears. It seems to be a trend in the heroes of these games. I'm guessing it has to do with maybe the Japanese term for the earrings equipment: maybe it's just earring?
    • Cloud also has one in AC.
      • I never noticed Zack's earring. Huh. But it's not uncommon for men to wear a single earring... on the other hand, I've never seen or met a woman who has intentionally done the same.
      • 27 year old woman here. Been wearing a single earring since I was 15. It may not be common where you live, but where I live it's not that rare.
      • Well, I'll be damned.]

     Cloud beat Sephiroth, spread a deadly disease around the world and got himself infected while searching the cure, he'll take tequila with that. 
  • At first I thought that this should go to WMG, until it really started to bug me. In On the Way to a Smile: Case of Tifa, we can read about Cloud and Tifa's relationship, also we can see how Cloud gradually becomes cold with them and starts to show his depression. At one point he starts drinking, Tifa is serving him and asks if she can drink with him, and he replies "I want to drink alone", Tifa pisses off and tells him that he then go to drink in his room. Now, call me paranoic, but one of the habits that can end in alcoholism (and also a sign of a secretly alcoholic person) is drinking alone, and doing it while you're depressed only makes it worse, raising the chances of it becomes a problem.

    Call me crazy, but if Cloud is bad in the movie, who knows what would happened if he had this problem. Add to that that all his problems, in the Real Life, leads people to drinking their problems, like he seems started to do. Someone in another folder talked about Cloud's emotional and mental fragility (a pretty darn good argument), and, if we asume Cloud would have another relapse and gets depressed again, he could resort to booze and maybe things would get nastier than before Advent Children, in the subject of Cloud's problems. For me, this almost crosses the Fridge Horror territory, if we take in count that the children and Tifa would have to see Cloud in such state, slowly deteriorating, specially Denzel, looking at his hero state. Tifa would be like this too, but as far as I read, she was angry with him when he refuses her company while drinking, and most likely wouldn't call him of that until it was too late, maybe resulting in Tifa kicking him out, and/or Cloud leaving them for real if he represented a menace to the children (we don't know if he's an aggresive drunk or something). Add to that Tifa being seriously hurted emotionally, something like this could break her too.

    So, Yeah. Cloud's acoholic tendencies steps in Fridge Horror territory for me.
    • So... you're upset because Cloud has emotional problems, and deals with them in a bad way. This was not apparent to you at first glance?
      • Not when I saw the original movie, and I didn't read the novellas at that time; I realized when I read them and it were more apparent to me once I watched Complete (I admit that I tend to ignore things or not realize until much latter... Ooh, shiny!). And it doesn't upset me, it just... That I didn't realize about it earlier, and damn it's depressing seeing him like that (it looks like his status is contagious). The fridge horror part kicks me from the possible scenarios that could came from Cloud's problem (I tend to let my mind fly with possible scenarios, and the ones I have with this in particular are not pretty). On the other side, my sadistic and masochistic side, I sorta like this as it shows us how bad he's at the moment, letting up grasp how much his survivor's guilt and PTSD is hitting him, also showing more of his deep, complex character and personality, and many other reasons that I'm not going to list because I'm too tired, forget about it.

     Looks like it's just you and me, Barret. 
  • So, if the What Could Have Been page is to be believed, the game was originally only supposed to have three player characters: Cloud, Barrett, and Aerith. Aerith was always planned to die, because Cloud's the main character and Barrett dying would be too cliche. What would have happened after she died? Would it just be Cloud and Barrett? One could say that this is the reason they added more characters... but if the What Could Have Been page is to be believed again, the fourth character to be added was Tifa, and she was added to add character conflict, not to solve this problem. What was the plan before Tifa was added?
    • They weren't going to be the only characters, they were just the first three they came up with.
    • If that's true, my guess is that Tifa would have replaced Aerith once she died. But that seems unlikely, given how Final Fantasies 4, 5, 6 and 8 all have multiple parties' worth of characters. I wonder if that idea came from some early demo screenshots using the three of them as the default party.
    • They were actually going to be the only characters - Cloud, Aerith, and Barret. It was only after they decided they wanted Aerith to sacrifice herself that they realized they should add more than 3 or else the player would be stuck with just Cloud and Barret for the last third of the game.

     AC's Bahamut's name 
  • Exactly WHAT is this thing's real name? I've heard it called Bahamut SIN, Bahamut TREMOR, and some people say it's one from the game. So... What?
    • It's SIN in the English version and TREMOR in the Japanese. Or vice-versa, but I think I have it right. Never mind that it's never actually called by name in the movie.
    • SIN is the Japanese one. Tremor is a translation.
      • More accurately, it's Bahamut SHIN. Some people translate the "shi" character as "si," but Japanese doesn't naturally have the terse "si" sound. "SHIN" generally means new/true (though apparently in this case they used "tremor"), which would go with the Neo/Zero suffixes given to it in the game.
      • The "shin" in question is the kanji 震, which does mean "quake" or "tremor."

     Too limited wardrobe 
  • In Crisis Core Zack had to change Cloud’s clothes because his old uniform was soaked with mako which was preventing his recovery, but when they find him in Mideel he’s wearing the same clothes he fell in the lifestream with.
    • Yeah, and? They find him days or weeks after he must have washed up on shore. Plenty of time for the doctors who found him to clean him up and give his clothes a wash.
    • It's just like Aerith's flowers, she only grows one type, but she sells different ones, a mistake in development.
    • Perhaps because the Crisis Core scene was when Cloud was essentially suffering from Mako poisoning, whereas the second time around he wasn't?

     The exact nature of Cloud's and Tifa's relationship. 
  • The fade-to-black cutscene where Cloud and Tifa chat and snuggle under the Highwind is interpreted by fans as them having had sex. Square-Enix partially confirmed this in one of their Ultimatium guides, stating said scene was going to be far more suggestive and that Cloud and Tifa are the official couple of FF7. However, Tifa's rant towards Cloud after finding out about his Geostigma in Advent Children, about them "needing to be a real family" to make things work, hints they are not in an intimate relationship.
    • That whole arc in Advent Children is about Cloud having grown distant since the events of the original game—it might hint that they're not being intimate now, but it doesn't mean they never were. By "needing to be a real family," Tifa doesn't necessarily mean that Cloud hasn't up to then been with her, it means she wants him to get his shit together and come back to her emotionally.
      • I thought she meant that she and Cloud are unmarried, and Denzel and Marlene are not their biological children.
      • There's also Tifa's case in On a Way to a Smile, which pretty much confirms they weren't intimately active. At one point, she tells a sleeping Cloud she loves him, but when he wakes up she can't bring herself to repeat it. She can't even tell him how she feels about him and they supposedly had sex? I dunno about you guys, but Tifa doesn't seem like the kind of girl who'd one-night-stand her childhood friend and then deny having feelings for him, especially when in the Ultimania it was said they "confirmed their feelings without speaking". IMO, the scene was intentionally left vague for others to form their own opinions about what happened that night under the Highwind.
      • Actually, what she asked in that scene (in Co T) was "Do you love me." When Cloud wakes up disoriented, she changes it to "Do you love Marlene." This could be arguably ambiguous, but the scene makes most sense being interpreted as a woman who's become unsure of her relationship because of her significant other's increasing emotional distance. The alternative is that Tifa regularly sneaks into Cloud's room in the dead of the night to ask awkward questions. Which is hilarious but... a bit creepy.
      • Though that scene at the same time also confirms they were sleeping in the same bed before Cloud left.
    • The official Word of God is that Cloud and Tifa were engaged previous to Advent Children and his contraction of Geostigma, which caused him to grow distant and ultimately leave her, Denzel, and Marlene. This can be seen in that they wear the same ring on their hands, oftentimes a sign of an engaged couple.
    • The cynical way to put it is that the developers of both the original game and later sequels/prequels had something of a schism over whether Cloud X Tifa is the One True Pairing or if Cloud X Aerith is (which could make Cloud X Tifa ultimately just Cloud settling). It helps that what little we're told about Zack in the original FF7 leaves it open just how close he was with Aerith (he can be interpreted as a womanizer who just had Aerith as a girl to hang off his arm). Taking it all together, it comes off that the 7verse's handlers have ended up bulldozing greyness in the characters' relationship but still couldn't be bothered to have Cloud openly date/marry Tifa post-FF7.

    Sephiroth's hair versus the Buster Sword. 
  • Okay, here's a real headscratcher; why oh why did Sephiroth's hair survive the Buster Sword? Honestly. Were the animators just lazy about it? In all three incarnations of the scene where he gets impaled on the Buster Sword, his hair remains just fine. Shouldn't he be missing a quarter or more of that luxurious mane? That's something that's amused and baffled me for a few years now ever since I noticed it.
    • Apparently the man goes through entire bottles of shampoo in single showers to maintain his hair. It's probably more durable than titanium now.
      • Shampoo genuinely does not work that way. Trust me on this one.
      • One, the buster sword is probably not anywhere near sharp enough to cleave through hair in a single stroke and two, it's still hair. Just because it's a series of blocky polygons doesn't mean it's supposed to be a bunch of silvery wooden blocks coming out of his head. If you take a knife, even a razor-sharp one, and run it across a loose ponytail without holding the hair in place to make it taut enough to have enough resistance to be cut, nothing will happen. Also, shampoo doesn't make your hair physically stronger (and, for the record, neither does conditioner: shampoo manufacturers that claim otherwise are basically just big fat liars).
    • In Crisis Core at least, his hair ends up bunched on the blunt side of the Buster Sword. Look closely at 2:56.

    The North Crater is a Big Mystery?. 
  • This has been bugging me for a while. Shinra's goal at the beginning of the game is to use Aerith to find the "Promised Land" a land rich with Mako energy. Shinra eventually follows the party to the North Crater where they find a vast resevoir of mako energy, along with Sephiroth's body and the sleeping Weapons. Hojo and the president declare this location the "Promised Land" they've been searching for, due to how much Mako they find there. But it brings up the question... how the heck did Shinra NOT know about this place before? Its not like its some hidden secret incredibly difficult location to find, like the Temple of the Ancients or something, its a freakin huge GIGANTIC crater on the Northern part of the globe, spewing geyesers of Mako energy into the air. And no one in Shinra happened to see this place while flying around in a plane or something and think to investigate? Heck, isn't the northern crater where Jenova's body was found? Why didn't Shinra think to check out the massive Mako resevoir nearby while they collected that thing?
    • From how they were talking about it, they expected the Promised Land to be a big fertile land. They probably knew the crater was there, but didn't realize it was a huge Mako reserve until they actually went there and looked around, because they were looking for a fertile Garden of Eden, not an apparently-lifeless scar.
      • Plus, really, the Promised Land and Neo-Midgar were the goals of Rufus' father, while he had a more concentrated goal in mind of finding and stopping Sephiroth. No mention of the Neo-Midgar project is made after Sephiroth kills President Shinra, nor their goal of acquiring the Mako necessary for the project. It's not Hojo or Rufus who declare the heart of the Crater to be the Promised Land, either, but Scarlet and Heidegger, both of whom were leftovers from President Shinra's nepotism and were both heavily involved with the project. When they speak of the crater as such, for instance, Rufus ignores them while Hojo outright scoffs at their proclamations.
    • The Northern Crater is where Jenova crashed in the past, her actual body was buried elsewhere.

    Cloud's Jesus impersonation 
  • After a series of rather touching scenes involving Aerith's death, it ends with Cloud walking into a waist-deep pool of water while carrying Aerith, and gently setting her down on the surface to let her drift down to the bottom of the 50-foot deep pool... wait, what? Did he suddenly develop water-walking abilities for that scene? And yet we still can't cross shallow water on the World Map.
    • Rule of Drama. Odds are, if a remake is ever made, there will be some sort of cliff or something that Cloud will be standing on when they redo that scene.

     Cloud gains Zack's fighting skills 
  • How the hell does Cloud gain his acrobatic moves and sword skills? He was physically tough enough to make soldier if not mentally, yet those moves take practice
    • You just answered your own question. Cloud was a pretty strong guy even before the experiments, which is why he decided to go off and join Soldier. He also idolized Zack, so it would only make sense that he would incorporate some of Zack's moves into his own style.
    • There's also the question of how much of Zack's skills Cloud actually received. While Cloud got SOLDIER-like mako modifications and was able to swing the Buster Sword competently, he wasn't at Zack's level of performance at the beginning of the game. Cloud apparently developed his own style and moves over the course of the game, even if he was heavily influenced by his memories of Zack.
    • Few things to note here. One: While he failed to become a 1st Class Soldier, he received higher than average marks for his melee combat as an infantryman. Two: SOLDIER and SOLDIER applicants are treated with Mako Showers. It is probable that Cloud had such a shower, but failed to keep up with SOLDIER's standards at mental control. Three: When Cloud fights Sephiroth in Last Order Final Fantasy VII, he surprises Sephiroth when his eyes start glowing green suggesting that Cloud's anger and deserve for revenge made him strong to unlock the powers of the Mako in his body (and since Sephiroth was already impaled by the Buster, Cloud was just strong enough to finish off the cocky, insane, and weakened Sephiroth.) Four: While Cloud did eventually go insane from Hojo's Mako Treatments, it is implied that he held on for awhile as the tube he was in had writing on the inside (marked into it by smearing the smug. Cloud and Zack communicated in this way.) Five: Even has an infantryman, Cloud had Zack as a role-model and a friend who supported him and his dreams. He admired Zack kind of like he admired Sephiroth except they were more personal pals. Six: In a weird combination of Mako poisoning, Jenova cells, personal experiences, and anecdotes from Zack himself, Cloud may well have received some of Zack's memories when he died. He took Zack's request to be his living legacy too literally and may well have been given some of Zack's memories somehow.
    • In the original game SOLDIER have the same fighting stance as Cloud and Zack. It's possible that this is simply the trained style used by most members of SOLDIER, and that Cloud either received some training during his attempt at joining or was able to pick up enough of it through analysis and personal practice.
    • Also, maybe Zack occasionally gave Cloud some lessons during their downtime. He knew Cloud looked up to him, so he taught Cloud a few of his moves.

    How many Midgar Zoloms are there? 
  • Just how many Midgar Zoloms are there? I mean, Choco Billy's grandpa told Cloud that he'd need a chocobo in order to cross the swamp and access the Mythril Mines. However, once Cloud and co. cross said swamp, they come across the Midgar Zolom impaled on a tree (obviously Sephiroth's doing). Cloud was only warned about "THE" Midgar Zolom, not "A" Midgar Zolom. Why does Cloud need a chocobo if Sephiroth did the work of getting rid of the Midgar Zolom already? (I've played the game before, and I know that even if your party beats it, you can fight it indefinitely.) Of course, Gameplay and Story Segregation is the obvious answer, but still...
    • A simple explanation comes to mind: The plural form could be "Zolom" rather than "Zoloms," in which case Cloud and co. were warned about the entire species, not just a singular creature.
    • When people say, "Watch out for the rhinoceros!" they don't mean that there is and always has been only one rhinoceros. It would be more correct for them to say, "Watch out for the rhinoceri!" but somehow they never do.
    • Many species, mostly fishes admittedly, will have a single large member with a harem of much smaller ones. When the large dominate member dies the next largest will undergo a metamorphosis to grow into the new dormant member (usually changing it's sex as well). It could be something like this happens with the Zolom. There is only one dangerous one alive at a time, but when Sephiroth killed that one the next biggest changed to replace the existing one.

    Sephiroth's motivation 
  • Given that Sephiroth spent time in the Lifestream and gained ancient knowledge, wouldn't he have gained knowledge that Jenova was no ancient? If that's the case, why did he go through with the plan? He had no reason to avenge her.
    • I don't seem to recall any dialogue outside of the Nibelheim flashback where he states he wants to avenge Jenova, but I'm not entirely familiar with the compilation either. But there's a good chance that he does learn about Jenova's true nature, which is why his plan changes from 'take the Planet back from the humans' to 'become a god... because I can'.
    • This is cleared up with Advent Children. Sephiroth's stated goal is to destroy all life on the planet by corrupting the Life stream with those killed by Geostigma, absorb the planet dry, then ride around the universe on it like it's a giant spaceship. Once, they arrive on another fertile planet, then they will make that their "Promised Land" like his Mother did before him. So eventually he realized what Jenova was in principle, but he just wants to take his time and kill Cloud first mostly because of his wounded pride from losing to him twice, but also because he knows Cloud is his only real threat on the planet.

    Vincent's surname 
  • Each Turk has Only One Name — Tseng, Reno, Rude, Elena, Cissnei — for security purposes. Cissnei doesn't even go by her real first name; it's a mythology gag, but seems to make sense for the same reason. But Vincent Valentine used to be a Turk — so why doesn't he just continue being mononymous? It would make the most sense (to me, at least) if he continued only to be "Vincent": not only more safe, but also less soap opera.
    • As far as I remembered it, he didn't even introduce himself when he join up (or even if he did, I'm sure he didn't mention his surname). We only know his first name from the screen interface and his surname only shows in the official materials. Cloud & Co. could have only know him as "Creepy Dude from the mansion".
    • Generally, the naming screen can be seen as a stand-in for the character telling you his name. Vincent only really has a last name because every other PC (except Cait Sith, sort of) does.
  • Vincent's been MIA for thirty years. He's legally dead and technically undead. He doesn't give a flying fuck about Shinra's security purposes.

    Rufus and the Tiny Bronco 
  • Even after playing this game dozens of times and reading this entire page of headscratching moments, the only thing in the game that really breaks my suspension of disbelief is why on earth Rufus Shinra was in Rocket Town asking for the Tiny Bronco. He claims he wants it to chase Sephiroth, and is clearly desperate enough that he's tasked Palmer with stealing it; but why? At this point in the game, the Highwind is docked at Junon, under Shinra's control, just sitting there. Later in the game we see Rufus and his cronies arrive at the Crater in the Highwind, so clearly the President has access to the airship. Why is his first choice for keeping up with the man in the black cape a dinky, pink passenger plane? For that matter, why does he need an extra vehicle at all? Twice in the game we see him board his personal helicopter, likely the same one his father used before him. In fact, the last time we see him before Rocket Town, he's leaving Costa del Sol in said helicopter! How do you think he even got to Rocket Town in the first place? I doubt he walked through Mt. Nibel on foot. Even barring the helicopter and the Highwind for whatever reason, what about the Gelnika? What about anything other than the Tiny Bronco? This one really bugs me.
    • In all likelihood, a prop plane like the Tiny Bronco travels faster than the Shinra first and second type helicopters (though maybe not their post-game Sikorsky clones). Of course, that's probably undone by the enormous detour he has to take to Rocket Town in the first place. Assuming something was wrong with the Highwind, the ever-efficient Rufus might have thought the Tiny Bronco (which is probably corporate property, just like the No. 26 and the Highwind) might save him time in the long run. Or he might have intended to do something else in Rocket Town that is simply off-camera (you never known when a giant obsolete rocket might turn out to be handy down the line). OR it is just a stupid coincidence that led up to Palmer being hit by a truck.
      • He's using the "chasing Sephiroth" bit as an excuse to get the Tiny Bronco for his own private aircraft collection on the company dime.
      • The "using Sephiroth as an excuse to claim the Tiny Bronco as his own personal toy" might actually be confirmed in-game. If you go back to Rocket Town right after you fight Palmer and Cid joins the party, one of the townsfolk says Rufus was so enraged at losing the Bronco that no one could get near him. He probably wouldn't have been so mad if he needed to use the Bronco to track Sephiroth, since Shinra's airship fleet was still at his disposal.
    • This is actually explained way earlier in the game when they took the boat to Costa del Sol: the Highwind was currently under maintenance at the time and was unavailable for use, and Rufus was in a hurry. By the time Cloud's team got to the northern continent, the ship was refueled and ready to go.
    • Plus helicopters aren't really know for their range of flight or their stability for that matter. They were planning on traveling over the ocean to a wind swept continent in the icy tundra. That is not the type of place you ride helicopters into. Granted, finding a landing place for a longer ranged and more stable plane would be difficult, but the Tiny Bronco can land on land, ice, or water so it had almost as many options.

    The Makonoid Misconception 
  • Why is the Compilation insistent on the idea that monsters can be produced from mako energy alone, and that makonoids are the proof of this? It's like even the creators don't understand that Sephiroth was WRONG in that scene! He believed SOLDIER to be created by mako energy alone, and extrapolated that the makonoids were the result of overexposure. But as we later learn, Jenova cells are the other half of what makes a SOLDIER. Even the original game makes this apparent: the room is full of giant red umbilicals leading from Jenova's chamber - they're labelled JENOVA in big letters, and they lead straight to the womb-like pods of the 'makonoids'. These tubes are even present in the Compilations' remake of the room, and yet the creators missed this? Nowhere in VII, outside of Sephiroth's misguided monologue, is it implied that mako alone creators monsters. On the contrary, many characters are exposed to huge doses of mako without any effect except mako poisoning.
    • Honestly, I wouldn't think too hard about anything in the Compilation. A lot of what was written for the subsequent games, Advent Children and the novellas conflicts with what was established in FFVII proper... and sometimes it even conflicts with itself.
    • I haven't played or read the Compilation materials, but in the game itself Sephiroth mentions that the Nibelheim reactor has been malfunctioning and producing vicious creatures. When the truck taking the Shinra troops to Nibelheim is attacked, Sephiroth says "that would be our monster" before going out with Cloud to fight the Dragon. It's implied that at least some of the nonhuman monsters you fight in random encounters are mutants produced either by Shinra's deliberate experiments or by malfunctioning Mako reactors. We don't know exactly how long Hojo's makonoid experiments were confined in those tanks. It's possible that Hojo exposed his test subjects to mako over a much longer period of time and under much more controlled circumstances than Cloud or Tifa were when they fell into the Lifestream. Cloud was in the Lifestream long enough to suffer mako poisoning, but he wasn't exposed long enough to suffer a permanent mutation, along with whatever other parts of the process Hojo developed.
      • While what you're saying is true, the "mako = mutations" is supposed to be part of Sephiroth's ignorance in the Nibelheim sequence, not a statement of fact. That's easy to support: he later says that SOLDIERS are made the same way (with a big ol' dose of mako), completely missing the role Jenova cells play in the process (clues to which are provided in the environmental art of the scene). It's only later in the game we find out that mako alone isn't responsible for creating SOLDIER members, and that accords with what we actually see in the scene, not what we're told—which seems to be a detail the creators later forget. Apart from Sephiroth loudly displaying his ignorance, we don't see evidence of this mako mutation anywhere in VII, and the game even visually contradicts Sephiroth's words in that same scene.

  • Why, when Final Fantasy VII established Gongaga was destroyed during the time Cloud and Zack were locked up in the Nibel basement, does Zack not even react to the fact his hometown has been all but demolished? It's like he didn't even notice the change. What should've been a fairly important character moment, not least because it comes so soon after Shinra has destroyed every other aspect of his life, is instead completely forgotten by the writers.
    • He never found out because he never made it home; if he had, his parents wouldn't be asking about him, and they would have recognized Cloud. Because he was escaping from a Shinra scientist and hunted by Shinra goons, staying away from a town whose livelihood probably centered on the nearby reactor was the smartest thing he could have done.
    • The question is in reference to Crisis Core, which shows quite clearly that Zack did indeed visit his hometown, where he has a complete lack of reaction to its destruction.
    • Only the reactor was destroyed. The village of Gongaga itself was okay.

    Flunkies? What flunkies? 
  • When the party is in the bowels of the Temple of the Ancients, Aeris points out that the Black Materia is in some respects the Temple itself. The more puzzles you solve, the smaller the Temple gets, until whoever's solving the puzzles is crushed. This is actually a pretty clever safeguard to keep the Black Materia from being easily taken, and whichever party member is with Cloud and Aeris suggests leaving the Black Materia there. Cloud, however, is adamant that they take it. He says that Sephiroth has "lots of different flunkies", whose lives he would readily throw away to get the Materia. My question, though, is what flunkies? Every time we see Sephiroth, he's pretty much operating on his own, with no Mooks to speak of. I suppose Cloud could be referring to the Sephiroth clones in the black capes, but I'd have thought Sephiroth would need them for the Reunion. About the only other minions I can think of are those creatures you fight in Shinra HQ after Jenova/Sephiroth massacres everyone on the top few floors, but those could easily be experimental monsters that were set free during Jenova's rampage.
    • He's almost certainly referring to the black-caped men. At least one of them is known to operate as his agent alongside the shape-shifted Jenova body, and many of them die along the way to the Reunion - the Reunion isn't a 100% process anyway, so sacrificing one of the black-caped men wouldn't be much of an issue. He only 'needed' the Reunion to get his hands on the Black Materia in the first place, though it obviously had other benefits. Sephiroth, in fact, is almost never operating alone - he chills in the Northern Crater and uses his puppets to do the heavy lifting. Also, to stray into wild-massing guessing, there's no telling whether Sephiroth could actually have extracted Jenova's cells back out of the materia once he got his hands on it. It's certainly the case that Jenova's raw material isn't easily destroyed.
      • May cross into Fridge Brilliance seeing as we later learn that Cloud is being controlled by Sephiroth/Jenova; Cloud was so insistent on taking the Black Materia because he was one of Sephiroth's "flunkies."

     Cloud? Honey, who you talkin' to? 
  • Cloud hears voices at various points in the game, usually Jenova/Sephiroth or Aerith or whoever... but who the Hell was it in the No. 1 reactor at the start of the game? All the people who are usually communicating with him telepathically haven't been introduced yet! I think it's the only time he ever has it happen to him and the screen flashes red instead of black, and it can't really have been himself, either, because he crumples a little and the voice says "It's not just a mako reactor!", but Barret doesn't react, indicating he didn't hear it (and he would have reacted, if Cloud had objected like that.) So who the Hell was it?!
    • It was probably his original persona, the one what wasn't a copy of Zack. That's my interpretation of most of the voices in Cloud's head before Sephiroth is revealed to be alive. They could be Seph or Jenova, but I don't think so because they're genuinely kind.

     Where the Hell did Vincent get his outfit? 
  • Okay when you see him get shot and experimented on, he's in his Turk suit. He gets put to rest for thirty years after that. The next time you see him, he's in his goth outfit and has been down there the whole time. So where did that get up even come from? What happened to the suit?
    • Hojo dressed him up. He's a sick fuck anyway and he described finding Vincent as a game; if you go by Vincent's hair, he definitely hasn't had enough hair growth to account for thirty years' worth, so Hojo was probably experimenting on him and torturing him for at least a few years before sealing him up, and his Turk uniform was long since destroyed. Being a ladies' man as well as a complete nutcase, Hojo preferred to dress Vincent up like his own vampire doll than torture him with his junk all hanging out. Maybe it was his way of working out a pent-up passion for fashion buried under decades of stanky lab coats.
    • Whatever Vincent was wearing when he went into the coffin was surely eaten up and threadbare and both utterly horrible smelling and possibly moldy by thirty years of accumulating sweat. My theory is he scrounged up what articles of clothing in the manor were still wearable, and they just didn't want to have to make another sprite to represent his messed up clothes.
    • Given how his attire seems to move of its own volition, perhaps it was formed after he became Chaos, and is simply a part of that?

     Destruct Materia? 
  • So if you go into Shinra Mansion's library, Sephiroth shows up, taunts Cloud about the reunion, chucks the Destruct Materia, and flies away. Is it possible to trigger this scene after the Reunion? What happens if you show up here without Cloud in your party during his BSOD?
    • I've never personally checked but the game is usually consistant with missable scenes as far how far in the plot you've gotten. (ie Wutai quest can't be done after disc 2 because the Turks show up and are still working for Shinra but Shinra's finished at the end of disc 2.) My guess is Sephiroth is no longer there once Disc 1 ends (or possibly you reach the crater for the first time in Disc 2)
    • The scene in the mansion is mandatory, there's a man in a black cloak who refuses to move until after you've talked to Sephiroth.
    • Maybe a bigger question: Why does Sephiroth throw a Destruct materia at you? Like seriously. Who does that?

     The Plates 
  • The game's intro shows that Sector 6 is still under construction, while the rest of Midgar is fully completed. Yet at Zack's death, set not long before the game, the plate for Sector 4 is entirely missing. To thicken the plot, Crisis Core mentions that Sector 4, not Sector 6, is the last on schedule to be completed. For this to reconcile, the Sector 4 plate would have to go from absent to fully completed in the time (weeks at the outside?) between Zack's death and Cloud arriving in Midgar, while Sector 6 remains half-completed.
    • IMO Sector 4 was completed between Zack's death and Cloud's arrival. As for Sector 6, it was massively damaged by Zirconiade in Before Crisis (with the battle happening shortly before Final Fantasy VII begins), which is why large parts of it are in ruins.

     Is Jenova a corrupted Goddess? 
  • It's never been fully revealed just what Jenova is or where she came from, but is it possible that she was once a Goddess on another Planet, similar to how Minerva is the Goddess on Gaia? Think about it-we know Jenova can infect and manipulate the Lifestream; we know that she can mess with peoples' heads, since the Lifestream is in part formed by peoples' thoughts, ideas and memories, which explains how Sephiroth is able to Mind Rape Cloud via Cloud having Jenova cells within him; and even her name suggests it. It's entirely possible that Jenova originally poisoned her own Planet's Lifestream and reduced it to a lifeless rock, after which she began her cycle of "crash land on a Planet, poison its Lifestream, mutate its inhabitants into monsters with her cells, have those monsters spread the infection all over the Planet until every living thing is corrupted, gather all of those creatures and the Lifestream back as per the Reunion, and use the now dead Planet as a vehicle to to travel through space and crash land on the next Planet." As to what originally corrupted her in the first place... well, that I can't really explain.
    • That is actually kind of a cool theory and would go some way to explaining how Seph developed his god complex.
    • I've always thought so. In my own opinion, the only explanation for Jenova that keeps her from being a random enemy and that ties in with the theme of the game is that she's the Lifestream of an alien planet who either decided to or had to essentially become a planetary vampire.
    • This probably belongs more in WMG, but that was my conclusion as well. As a theory for what corrupted her, could be that the inhabitants of her original world also learned how to turn mako into electrical power ala ShinRa; they depleted their planet badly and somehow managed to stop Jenova from just launching their Lifestream into space, Omega-style, and once they'd gotten past the point of no return, Jenova was forced to choose between dying on a lifeless rock or wandering the stars and snacking on other worlds' Lifestreams in order to perpetuate her own existence.
    • Jenova was a Lavos expy, whose role was to be the bigger bad of the backstory and to be kicked upstairs by the time we get to the present, as by this point she is pretty much just a tool for seph to control.
    • Also notice how Omega Weapon, the most drastic contingency plan of the Lifestream, is nothing more than the Jenova life cycle 2.0 (become abomination, consume local lifestream, migrate to Space, repeat). Jenova may be simply an extraterrestrial Omega in that sense, landing on planets to propagate its own version of life, except that her/its biology and offspring are so completely alien to the Planet's inhabitants that they end up viewing it as a dark god heralding the apocalypse (similar to how H. P. Lovecraft's protagonists interpret extraterrestrials as eldritch omnipotent gods beyond the limits of reality)

     Does no one care about safety? 
  • In all the times Cloud is seen riding a motorcycle, the most protective gear he has on is his sunglasses/goggles things. That's acceptable until he loses them. How come neither him or the silver haired men wear helmets? Aren't they concerned about getting a bug in their eyes? I would.
    • They'd rather go blind from bugs in their eyes than risk getting helmet-hair.
    • Also, you would have to find a helmet that fits over Cloud's hair, which is impossible. (And, more seriously, he stole it from a store display, so there may not have been a helmet on-hand.)

     Aerith is the 1 percent? 
  • Aerith's abilities always seemed a little over-hyped to me. "She can make flowers grow where nothing else grows," right? Well, so what? That's really easy when you're living in an immaculate two-story cottage next to the only source of clean water for miles, while everyone else is scraping by in shacks held together with duct tape and dick jokes. What part of her gardening is supposed to be magical again?
    • Her garden by her house wasn't magical. Her garden in the church is what was special.
    • You're also sort of choosing to ignore the whole "can speak to dead people, can talk to the Planet, can possibly discover a whole and untouched paradise" aspects of her abilities.
    • You also forget that Aerith is growing flowers on land next to power generators that siphon life energy from the very ground. Even the garden by her house is pretty auspicious as the land around Midgar was barren from a combination of Mako drain and pollution. That anything could be grown in the native soil of the city limits, clean water or no, is a sign of her abilities.
      • What does any of that have to do with gardening, though? Do dead people give good gardening advice? The Planet would make more sense, except that it's not really a sentient creature and it doesn't really seem to have just one voice, so talking to it doesn't seem to have much practical use. We know she can manipulate the Lifestream, but that's only after she's dead, and the whole "can possibly discover a paradise" thing doesn't matter because she never actually does that (and how would doing that improve her gardens in Midgar anyway?). Even the garden in the church doesn't seem that weird to me, it's got sunlight somehow, even though the whole thing is under a giant plate that supposedly blocks all natural light from the slums, and we know she's not responsible for that. And since the church garden was made by somebody/something digging up the floorboards, we know the ground hasn't been touched by anything but rotting wood since the church was built. It's really not surprising that the only person in the entire city who owns clean water and a greenhouse would be awesome at gardening.
      • That's just ignoring the logic of the game. Aerith making plants grow was special because they shouldn't have been able to grow there according to the games lore, fresh water and sunlight or otherwise. Anyone else attempting to cultivate a garden there would have failed because the land was barren, and only Aerith's Cetra heritage allowed her to do so, through whatever means.
      • Well, no, the logic of the game is conflicting with the lore, hence the headscratcher. Aerith lives in and takes care of the only two places in Midgar that aren't polluted or drained by the Reactor: her home (completely separated from the destitute areas in a luxurious house with access to clean water) and the church (an abandoned area with access to direct sunlight where all the natural-wood construction is rotting (ie, fertilizing the nearby ground, which isn't inherently infertile, because at the very least Wall Market has visible grass growing around its scummy buildings), as opposed to cheap metal everywhere else). It's not "magic Cetra powers" for Aerith to be able to grow flowers when she has all the completely-mundane resources necessary to do so and none of the hardships that everyone else has to suffer with. If she were living in a corrugated tin shack with nothing but bare earth all around it— like, say, everyone living near the Bar— and it still had flowers in the yard, there wouldn't be any question that there were Cetra powers at work, but as it is, she's just wealthy.
      • No, the other responder is right. The mako reactors actively suck life energy away from Midgar's soil (that's the lore we're talking about), so no (debatable) amount of nutrients from rotten wood can help her grow flowers without her gifts. The only other vegetation we see in the slums is some crappy grass that might even be moss, and even Aerith's home is just dry dirt outside the flower beds. And you make out that the church is the best place in all of Midgar to grow flowers while forgetting that it sits at the foot of the Sector 5 reactor — one of the 8 epicenters for the ecological destruction of Midgar. The main lore point to remember is that sunlight and nutrients are only two of three required variables for a healthy ecosystem in VII's world. The other is spirit energy, which is what Midgar lacks and where Aerith's Cetra powers make up the difference. Without the reactors sucking up spirit energy, Midgar's only ecological problems would be those faced by a real-world population centre.
      • If that's the case, then how is she making the sunlight and the clean water? Because those things shouldn't be there either, for the same reason there's no spirit energy in the ground: the plate overhead and the reactor nearby are ruining it. The sunlight, maybe, just because there might be gaps in the plate overhead, but the water, which seems to have sewage pipes from Aerith's own house dumping into it? Does she have magic water filtration powers in addition to talking to the Planet? Maybe I'm overthinking it at this point, but it seems weird for the residents of Midgar to just leap to "she can make things grow where nothing grows" because she ...grows things in the only place anything could grow.

     Tortured for five years? 
  • Did Zack and Cloud spend five years prior to the start of the game being tortured and experimented upon? They were in Nibelheim five years ago with Sephiroth. They were there for a couple of weeks, which Sephiroth spent reading and going insane. Then Sephiroth burns the place down. Zack and Cloud are (immediately?) captured by Hojo, taken in to the Shinra Mansion basement and experimented upon. How long does this last? There can't have been that long in between their escape and their apprehension outside Midgar (their pursuers, after all, are still on their trail). The idea that Cloud, immediately prior to the start of the game, has recently come out of a five-year-long imprisonment is mind-boggling.
    • Yes, that's what happened. All of this is clearly explained in the game itself and in Crisis Core. How is this a question?
      • It's a question if you haven't played Crisis Core. Which to judge from sales figures, is the vast majority of FFVII players.
      • No, it's in FFVII proper, you just have to go see the Easter Egg scene in the Shinra basement after Cloud gets his memories back. And yeah, you can see after Zack gets shot and Cloud picks up the Buster Sword that they're on a cliff overlooking Midgar.
      • While in the lifestream Tifa implies Cloud had been hanging around for at least a few months after she found him in the train, presumably doing mercenary work. It was only when he said he was going to leave Midgar to look for work elsewhere that she introduced him to Barret because she wanted him to stay longer to figure out why they're memories didn't seem to add up. So he's had plenty of time to recover before the actual first mission of the game.

     Cloud has a flashback in his imagination. 
  • Really simple one but what exactly is happening in the scene right after you get back to the hideout after you blow the first reactor? Cloud looks up than we get a crane-shot screen transition. Cloud and Tifa are in their present day forms and looking at a fountain. Then Cloud has his flashback where we get a little backstory. So let me see if I got this right, Cloud was imagining visiting the water fountain again and then imaging having a flashback?
    • They're having a flashback, their present day forms just represent that they're talking about it in the present.

     Aerith's House 
  • How can Aerith and her mother afford such a nice house? Why is there even such a nice house next to the slums. I know this sometimes happens in real life but the president of Midgar seems like the kind of man who would want to expand the city even if it meant demolishing that place. How can they even keep it.
    • Slums don't start out as slums. They start out as regular or even nice places to live, then fall into disrepair. Elmira and Aerith presumably just maintained the place.
    • Yeah but I wonder how their safe given how desperate the rest of the population must be. I know their usually Apathetic Citizens but given how much they probably all want a place to stay and how Barrett had to shew out the people in Tifa's bar in Sector 7 it doesn't make sense to me how they were safe there for so long.
    • Because people love their land, no matter how polluted it gets. Money could also be a factor in it as well. Most people didn't have the money to live on the plate and so they made out a living in the slums. Nobody lives in bad neighborhoods for shits and kicks, but sometimes it's the only place where one can go and live.
    • We don't know what their living costs are, it seems nicer from the outside than the inside, and Aerith has a monopoly on flower selling and can charge whatever she wants for fresh flowers (sure, that seems like nothing to use, but we don't live in a polluted slum where nothing green ever grows).
    • Also, Aeris is under protection of the Turks. I doubt Shinra is going to be that petty and raise the Cetra's freaking taxes...
    • Answered with recent lore: Elmyra's husband came from a wealthy family who did business with Shinra.

     Cait Sith, the World's Weirdest Mole 
  • Does the whole Cait Sith thing strike anyone else as insanely bizarre? The giant Moogle is clearly robotic, but the flying cat-thing riding it... is that meant to pass as the Moogle's controller, or is it supposed to be an obvious robot too? If the former, what the hell is it supposed to be? And if the latter, are Cloud and Co. meant to believe that the whole thing is a self-aware robot, when we haven't seen such a thing anywhere else in the world? And regardless of which is the case, why would Shinra expect them to take this bizarre creature along and trust it with all their secrets? And finally, why are they right?
    • It was supposed to be a robot that Reeve controlled, and it's unknown whether the robot had an A.I., but fans heavily suggested it has because Reeve can't control it all the time.
    • Oh, and no one in universe considers Cait Sith a bizarre animal. We considered it as one because its nature makes Sith prone to Fridge Logic.
    • Cait Sith's model clearly has a giant zipper on the back (you can see it in cutscenes), so presumably he's supposed to be taken for a guy in a suit. Now, as for why on earth the party would accept someone traveling alongside them inside that suit 24-7, fighting in that suit, and never removing it ever...
    • Why does the party trust Cait Sith anyway? He's blatantly suspicious. More than that, almost immediately after you get him, if you go to Gongaga the Turks are waiting for you and someone in your party suggests there may be a spy among you, to which Cloud responds that he trusts everyone. Why? He just met Cait Sith five minutes ago!
    • 1) We kind of have to assume these kinds of things are more common than they seem (he does mention there's lots of similar toys like his body in the world) 2) they don't really trust him, he forces his way into the party and follows them around. He never develops any friendships, nobody ever expresses an interest in him, basically until he stole the keystone and kidnapped Marlene they were all treating him just as the weird thing that won't go away. After that they were stuck with him.
      • "They don't really trust him", except for right after he joins, when the party suspects a mole and Cloud says he trusts everyone in the group implicitly as opposed to, "A mole, huh? What about this weird cat robot thing that's been following us since the Gold Saucer? What's his deal?"
      • Cloud’s a mentally disturbed young man who’s basically living in denial for 60% of the game. Barrett is running off anger and adrenaline, and is basically accepting everyone who claims to hate Shinra. Aerith is absurdly nice and seems to be the type to believe the best in everyone. Nanaki’s only major human observation since he was captured was Hojo, Dastardly Whiplash would look downright subtle compared to Hojo. Yuffie IS a thief who plans on stealing their Materia, no need to increase paranoia when the leader is keeping things cool. Only Tifa would really suspect anything...and it’s established she has issues with speaking up.

     What on earth is up with the whole Corel Train Huge Materia quest? 
  • Nothing about the Corel Train Huge Materia quest makes any sense at all.
    • First, if the tracks are in disrepair, how on earth is it still possible to send a Huge Materia over them (and why wouldn't Shinra inspect them first?) There are visible gaps in the tracks where you broke them while walking through before.
    • Second, why are there people living on the tracks? If they're still active, it's insane, and even if they aren't... well, why do that? It's about five feet wide, why not leave that area clear just in case? (Given that the rail connects a valuable electric institution with the Golden Saucer, it's fairly hard to picture them being unused, but whatever.)
    • Third, if Shinra does intend to use the rails, shouldn't it warn people first to clear the tracks? Even if Shinra is too evil to care about hitting people, a train collision involving highly volatile huge materia (which they need to save the world) helps nobody.
    • Fourth, why is Shinra sending the Huge Materia via rail anyway? They're big, but not that big. You can just carry one around, which is demonstrably safer (your party does it for quite a while.)
    • Fifth, why are they sending the Huge Materia in that direction anyway? Unless they want to give it to Dio, that's exactly the wrong direction — they should want to move it towards their port in Costa del Sol, which is just a short walk down the hill from the reactor.
    • Sixth, with all this in mind, why is everyone hailing your party as heroes at the end (if you succeed?) Obviously Shinra can't have intended to cause a train collision with the Huge Materia resulting in a massive explosion that kills everyone while wasting the materia they desperately needed, so the only reasonable interpretation is that they intended to stop the train before it collided with the town and your party's train robbery was what endangered everyone.
      • One: Not ALL of the train tracks were in disrepair. There was enough to get your party over the bridges, so there was enough to get them to work. The only reason why nobody in North Corel used the trains was because there was no reason to Coal Mine to them and as far as they cared, no need for the trains.
      • Two: Nobody in North Corel CAN work because as far as they cared (without Shinra nearby), the trains were out of service and there was no point in Coal Mining anymore, so they lay derelict. Since no trains were running, there was no harm in resting nearby them. Remember what Barrett said: "Some people just love their land, no matter how polluted it gets". While not polluted, the people of North Corel had just enough to carve out a weak living while not straying too far from their land.
      • Three: Shinra does not care about anybody or anything regarding Corel. In the way? Get hit by train tracks. Odds are good that they planned to get around MASSIVE destruction anyway to keep the huge materia safe.
      • Four: They ARE that big and the party decides to store them into Cosmo Canyon because they don't feel safe with lugging them around. It does paint a huge bullseye on the person in general.
      • Five: Conglomerate is run by a president who wanted to hi-jack a tiny plane to chase Sephiroth despite the company having the resources to get another plane ready. They're not being run with the best decisions as is; and frankly it's in line with them. If you want an in-game reason, it would be to be incognito.
      • Six: And who is to say they wouldn't? With North Corel being destitute thanks to no work, there would be suspicions about a train working all of a sudden, and then they'd get shot by the Shinra Army. Shinra didn't give two fucks and a shit about Corel when they decided to burn it down to the ground and slaughter many innocent people; do you think they'll care NOW after meteor is falling to the ground while they're desperate? They wouldn't think twice about murdering the populace of nobodies and doing some cleanup afterwards (see Nibelheim for cleanup). Would they intend to do that? With a man who declares that he'll rule the world with fear, he'd do it.

     Why is Yuffie so completely disinterested in the Black Materia? 
  • The Black Materia is introduced as vaguely-defined 'ultimate destruction magic'. Yuffie's motivation is to steal materia that will allow her hometown to fight back against Shinra. Isn't the Black Materia a once-in-a-lifetime chance for her? It's vastly more powerful and valuable than all the other materia you possess combined. In Wutai's hands, the simple threat of using it would completely change the global balance of power — unlike the lesser materia she actually steals from you, this one actually has the potential to make a difference. Yet she shows zero interest in it once you actually get it, making no attempt to grab it — and, much much more weirdly, if you try to hand it to her in the Northern Crater when you get it back, she refuses to take it! Why? It is something of incomprehensible value to her, personally — she could go her entire life without another chance like this. Why doesn't she at least attempt to steal it?
    • Because she only knows about it in the context of, "This shit will end the world," and that is not something she is willing to even approach. She's not an all-or-nothing terrorist; she's someone who wants to see her homeland uplifted again. The only use of the Black Materia is full-on world-wide genocide, and even holding it makes her a target for everyone with half a brain.
    • On top of this, she's terrified of Sephiroth. Anything, such as the Black Materia, that could draw his attention to her is, in her mind, a Bad Idea with a capital B and I.
      • This, exactly. The Black Materia is basically every WMD ever made put together times a hundred. That’s not the sort of weapon that should ever be in the hands of a single person. In real life, smugglers will purposely refuse to deal in certain goods simply because any potential profits would be undercut by every single developed nation going for their blood (GTA 5 shows a good example: Trevor’s heist is ultimately a bust since the item the crew ended up stealing was a NUKE. Their fence tells them outright there’s no way they can sell it, forcing them to leave it behind for the government to reclaim).

     Why does Shinra leave an entire mansion full of its secrets completely empty and unguarded, with its library intact? 
  • The Shinra mansion makes no sense. It has a huge library filled with important and extremely dangerous Shinra secrets, yet it's left completely unguarded and at no point in the game does anyone but the party and Sephiroth show any sort of interest in it whatsoever. Shouldn't they keep a tighter grip on things like that?
    • Well, it's hardly completely empty and unguarded; it's stuffed to the gills with freaky ghost-monsters and genetic abominations to ward away the curious. Still, you've got a point, it would make sense to either strip the library or leave a contingent of troops guarding the front door just in case.
    • It was burned down to the ground along with the original Nibelheim. The building was rebuilt with no problem, but I'd think they removed any and all information relating to the projects and Shinra's involvement in the restructure of the Shinra Mansion.
    • Hojo seems to work from the mansion from time to time and the town is populated by ShinRa employees putting on an act, there's nobody around to really go snooping.

     Why was Sephiroth told that Jenova was the name of his mother? 
  • Telling Sephiroth everything about his origin would have been a reasonable thing to do (so he wouldn't have his trust in his handlers shattered if he found out later, possibly under undesirable circumstances.) Telling Sephiroth nothing about his origin would also have been a reasonable thing to do, if cold. But why on earth would anyone tell him his mother was named Jenova, and nothing else, while leaving a bunch of bio-tanks labelled Jenova and books talking about Jenova, all tailor-made to freak him out?
    • Sephiroth finding out about his origin flipped him the fuck out. The only difference between finding out the way he did at Nibelheim as opposed to in a personal conference is a bigger mess for the janitor to clean up in the board room and a massive rehiring of the Shinra upper heads. If he was told nothing, he would've gone to find it out anyways and then flipped the fuck out against Shinra who would then have to answer why they didn't say anything (and end up with the aforementioned mess in the board room). I don't think they told Sephiroth the whole truth regarding Jenova because if they did and he interpreted it wrong (which is what happened in the game), he'd have flipped his shit anyways. He was going to revolt and go nuts as soon as he found out; how he goes nuts is kind of irrelevant.
  • My money is on Hojo's egomania. He was most likely the only person who knew the real truth and wasn't sealed up somewhere, and his obsession with the Ancients combined with his creepy desire to breed various creatures would have made it easy to just slap the name Jenova on the record and erase Lucretia from history altogether.

    Why is Shinra so utterly disinterested in the mental state of their super-soldiers? 
  • Yes, yes, There Are No Therapists. But seriously, they're testing bizarre treatments on human beings; isn't it logical to want to know how the treatments affect their mental stability? Investing a small amount of money in psychologists to constantly analyze their star super-soldiers would have saved the world a huge amount of trouble down the line.
    • I would consider it bad writing myself, but Shinra's science department was run by Hojo. If you think he cares about something as superstitious as Ethics, then you've missed the point of the Mad Scientist.
    • If they figure out how to create functioning super soldiers then their stability becomes irrelevant as they can be disposed of and replaced when necessary.
    • Well, they sorta do. Cloud not being mentally stable enough to handle the mako treatments was one of the reason he got rejected from SOLDIER in the first place. Also what help put him in that mako coma after the 4 years in Nibelheim. So, they at least make a token effort?
    • Whose to say they didn't have therapists? Maybe Sephiroth did have a leather couch to sit on and talk about his mommy issues when he was working for Shinra. Cloud certainly never had a therapist, but he only really needed on after he became a kidnapped science subject and then transitioned into an Eco Terrorist.
    • It actually seems perfect in character for Shinra, who have basically been about short sighted abuse of science and get ahead quick techno advantages fromt he beginning to do this. These are the guys that jumped at the chance to make a huge monopoly on sucking out the life energy of the planet for quick riches and power without caring that maybe using the life energy of the planet as a cheap resource might be bad long term. Them going "oh boy we can use Hojo's horrific research on people to get super soldiers to kick ass for us and help us conquer our enemies, do it do it" without bothering to think that maybe some of these guys might go crazy turn on them and be too dangerous to stop because of the power they gave them seems right up their alley.

    Barrett, eco-terrorist, too honorable to fight outside of a pitched turn-based battle? 
  • Barrett has a gun-arm. He stands in front of President Shinra at the reactor, Rufus on top of the Shinra building, various other enemies and Shinra executives who are alone and vulnerable, and never once thinks "Hey I am going to shoot these suckas and win my personal war." Seriously, Rufus is alone on the rooftop, surrounded by the player party, no backup on the upper floors is left alive, and the president is dead inside. A few rounds from the gun-arm and Shinra would be nearly entirely wiped out on the top. Dyne showed us that the gun-arms are plenty enough lethal on their own, and Barrett's never had any problems with the idea in general of getting his hands (well, hand and gun) dirty. Further, when the party is escaping on the highway, Barrett sits in the back of the truck and lets the cyclists hit him and the party members while an out-numbered Cloud tries to protect them with the buster sword. Barrett could have iced all of them without Cloud having to swing his sword the entire time.
    • In the Shinra reactor, Barret and company were surrounded by Shinra troops. If he tried to shoot at the President, the troops would have turned him, Tifa and Cloud into Swiss cheese. As for Rufus on the roof of the Shinra Building, Rufus is not alone. He's got at least two armored vehicles on standby, both of which attack Aeris, Barret and Nanaki when they go onto the elevators. The Shinra Building is also surrounded by a small army of motorcycle-riding soldiers, who would tear the heroes to shreds if they tried to fight and kill Rufus. It's unlikely Cloud was hoping to kill Rufus-he only fought to buy time for Barret and Nanaki to get Aeris out of there. And finally, even if Barret shoots Rufus, who's to say that he'd even kill him? Rufus fights Cloud to a standstill, taking a few whacks from Cloud's BFS in the process, and guns are not more effective than swords in the FF7 world. Bottom line: Even if Barret and the team had killed Rufus, they would then have been slaughtered themselves. Shinra would endure, and so would Sephiroth, and the Planet would be screwed. Instead, they firmly grasped the Smart Ball by escaping while they still had a chance. Oh, and as for the highway sequence? Barret is stuck on the back of a moving vehicle, trying to line up a shot against a bunch of constantly dodging motorcyclists, one of whom is Cloud. It's entirely likely that, in aiming at one of the Shinra bikers, he could just as easily hit Cloud in the process.
    • There's a lot of Gameplay and Story Segregation and Cutscene Incompetence, so it can't be really be called a Smart Ball. First, it's not like Barret and the team try to avoid combat against Shinra forces. Their way of getting to the reactors isn't using stealth, but basically "go there and kill everything that gets in our way", so they apparently think they can handle whatever Shinra throws at them. After pushing their way to the reactors through brute force, it's not like some soldiers no different from the dozens they're already (and successfully) fought would seem an obstacle between them and their objectives. Second, how not trying to kill the president or Rufus made things better? They didn't make a move for them, yet they were still attacked. President Shinra sent Air Buster (if Air Buster hadn't been available, you can be sure he would have ordered all those soldiers who were surrounding the team to attack them), those armored vehicles attacked as soon as they left, and they were chased by those motorcycle-riding soldiers (the latter couldn't have done anything to help Rufus, anyway, they were on ground and Rufus was on floor 70 or something, Rufus would've been dead long before they actually got up there). No difference, they still had to put a hell of a fight to escape, so they could have made sure the job there was finished before trying to leave. And seriously, if they really cared that much about escaping as soon as possible that they couldn't stay a little longer, they shouldn't have stayed motionless during Rufus's long speech about governing with fear: that was quite a long time they could have better spent on either attacking Rufus or heading immediately for the elevators as soon as he opened his mouth (What could have Rufus done in either case? Sent them the two Gunners? Oh, wait, that's what he did anyway).
    • I thought the whole point of having Rufus take over as president (as opposed to him being president from the start) was to establish Shinra as being bigger than just one person. It isn't like (for instance) Final Fantasy VI where the Empire is pretty much done for after their leader is killed. President Shinra is ultimately unimportant and replaceable, and by logical extension, so is Rufus. Killing both of them would just leave someone like Scarlet, Hojo, Heidegger, Palmer, or (if you're lucky) Reeve to take their place. The real enemy is the organization itself, not any one person in it, so it literally takes something much bigger than a handful of terrorists to bring Shinra down for good.
  • Gameplay story integration. If Barrett had shot Rufus then Rufus would have been dusted off his clothes, been mildly peeved and then responded by pegging Barrett in the face with a shotgun shell, which Barrett would have been moderately enraged by. Dyne certainly killed people with his gun, but we have no clue how strong those people were, nor how long it actually took him to kill them.

    Were the Ancients really as nice as they seem? 
  • If you talk to Bugenhagen at Cosmo Canyon in Disk 2 (at one point during the Huge Materia hunt) he will tell you that you shouldn't use materia, since it's part of the Planet's life force. He then says that the Planet will continue to get weaker unless people stop using materia, which is what eventually happens. If you talk to Yuffie at one point on the Highwind, she'll ponder the Fridge Logic of why materia always has to do with battles or magic. She thinks that the Ancients must have always been fighting. This raises two questions:
    • One: Why would it be alright for the Ancients to use materia, but not humans? Would the Ancients have only harvested naturally occurring materia (like the kind at the materia fountain that Sephiroth and company encounter on Mt. Nibel), as opposed to humans directly sucking mako out of the earth and processing it into manufactured materia?
    • Two: Who exactly would the Ancients have been fighting, besides Jenova and her offspring? Each other? Dangerous monsters? Or is Yuffie wrong in suggesting that the Cetra used materia on a regular basis?
  • Judging from what I could glean from the game, I have the following theories:
    • One: The Ancients probably didn't use them on a widespread basis, but in rare situations of massive danger that would have warranted them. Three people using Firaga on a monster tearing their camps apart wouldn't be so bad, but hundreds of people using Firaga all over the world every day would. Yes, they probably harvested natural materia, but didn't have the technology to make them on their own (and with as much mako as they'd be sucking up, they wouldn't mass-produce them anyway).
    • Two: Behemoths and such were probably still around, not to mention the odd dragon (yeah, it's likely that the monsters weren't as strong as they were by the timeframe of FFVII, but even non-mako-enhanced dragons would be no picnic). Even then, it probably wasn't the lifestyle of the Cetra to load everyone up with materia. Remember, with a few exceptions, most of the materia in-game is artificially created for fighting purposes (why they're perfect spheres rather than the natural crystal shapes).
    • This is only speculation, though, and I could be wrong.
  • I submit that Bugenhagen is a big bag of sloppy farts on the subject, for the following reasons:
    • Most of the commonly-used materia is artificially crystallized Mako made by Shinra, the guys that the heroes are actively trying to fight. If the party gets their hands on any materia at all, then the damage is already done, and can't be undone, until the heroes win. "Don't use materia to fight Shinra because it's made of the Lifestream" is like saying "Don't use guns to overthrow the government because they were made in a federal sweatshop".
    • Materia is naturally occurring. Extracting Mako might be damaging to the planet, but the Lifestream will crystallize on its own, if left to its own devices long enough.
    • Materia doesn't have to be made from crystallizing Mako. There's a world full of monsters and dangerous animals that can be exterminated to grow and birth materia without doing anything bad to the Planet.
    • Cosmo Canyon sells materia.

     Why does Shinra rebuild Nibelheim? 
  • Why does Shinra rebuild Nibelheim, stock it with actors pretending they'd lived there their entire lives, and pretend nothing happened? And when exactly did they do it? Immediately after it burned down, or later? Because if they did it only after Cloud emerged as a threat to their plans and solely to mess with his head, they sure did a bang-up job on very short notice.
    • To cover up that anything happened. Despite how sparse the world map is, there would be other towns surrounding the area that would interact with Nibelheim and other such settlements. Someone would be bound to notice if a town suddenly was burned off the map and not there anymore, so Shinra rebuilt it to keep up appearances.
      • If that's the motive, it seems like the standard "blame the town's destruction on terrorists; send in Shinra peacekeeping troops and cleanup crews to build goodwill" tactic they used in Corel and Sector 7 would have been cheaper and easier.
      • They might have had different policy in the past, or the fact of Sephiroth's involvement might have made things more complicated.
    • They rebuild it for several reasons: 1) They've got to stay somewhere while they investigate what exactly happened and Sephiroth's ultimate fate 2) Hojo set up shop there for a while and was experimenting on Zack and Cloud 3) there's a fully functional mako reactor in a mako rich area that needs a nearby population to maintain it. 4) as a cover up for what really went down since as far as they know everyone involved was killed off by Sephiroth or the Turks.
    • I'm not the most versed on the universe's canon, but the game itself seemed to explain it. That's where Sephiroth fell into the Lifestream, and it's where all the Sephiroth clones were being drawn toward for the Reunion (until he reformed his body at the North Crater). Shinra, and specifically Hojo's research staff wanted to be able to observe them discreetly, but some of them were coherent beings like Cloud. The "Sephiroth" that the party is following for most of the game's first half was merely Sephiroth Clone No. 1, who is specifically said to have had conversations with multiple Non Player Characters. The Shinra actors needed a plausible reason to be in the area, so pretending to be townspeople fit their purposes. There's no reason given why they needed to precisely replicate the town and pretend like there was never an accident, but they might fear that the Sephiroth clones could experience some memory bleed-over and go mad from the revelation.

    A deconstruction? 
So from what i have read this game was meant to deconstruct rpg tropes used at the time. now besides everything that has to do with Cloud what else was this game deconstructing?
  • Well, the Chosen One trope gets its due in the form of Sephiroth.
  • It deconstructs a lot of things, but really only the primary cast, and not really very well:
    • Cloud is supposed to deconstruct the idea of the Hero Protagonist, except he actually does turn out to be the guy who swings a giant sword and saves the world with it. He circles around a deep self-delusion into Becoming the Mask. Zack deconstructs it better: he's obviously the hero, so the evil mega-corporation guns him the fuck down.
    • A deconstruction means to examine a trope more realistically than usual, not subvert or undermine it. Zack getting gunned down is not deconstructing the Hero Protagonist trope nor is Cloud ending up as a hero a failure to deconstruct it. Cloud is an amnesiac protagonist. In most stories with such characters, amnesia is usually a plot device where a character discovers nothing but perfectly accurate information about themselves and the plot point is neatly resolved. In FFVII however, it's a major source of confusion and trauma. Cloud misremembers events, fills in gaps with preferred delusions and is lied to by people (including by himself). By the end he doesn't know what to believe and has a breakdown. These implications that come with being unable to remember your real history is usually glossed over in amnesia stories(I.E. The idea that the character could be misdirected about their past, even to the point of being tormented), whereas FFVII instead explores it. That's why it could be seen as deconstruction of this plot device.
the main character's inability to remember his real origins is a major source of trauma and confusion
  • Aeris is a deconstruction of bringing party members back from the dead. No, she dies, and she's gone for good... except she's not, because she's explicitly the scion of a spiritual race who has a definite life-after-death and her influence is omnipresent in the story's universe.
    • Aerith is a Deconstruction of a Heroic Sacrifice. In most stories, when a hero gives their life, it's because their death has an obvious utilitarian need, it's the last gift they give to the world as they leave it. In this story, the heroic sacrifice is made by someone who could have done a lot more, but recognized the greater need; it acknowledges that the sacrifice being made isn't being made by the person who dies because they're not the ones to live with what they leave behind. Aerith's death is tragic for everyone except Aerith herself, she gets to move on to the afterlife that she, and only she, knows exists, will be under her control, and will reunite her with the one she loved. Aerith's death doesn't hurt her, it hurts everyone who has to go on without her, and that was such a brilliant subversion of the trope at the time that fans of a certain other, less widely-known sci-fi fantasy series are still salty about how much credit she gets for being gaming's "first" major party-member permadeath.
  • Tifa is the deconstruction of the typical love interest: in the story she exists to do nothing but serve Cloud's development as a character, even at the very end she's clinging lovingly to him while they're about to fall to their death, with her being totally uninterested in the current threat to their lives and focused on making Cloud happy while he does more important things, like keeping them from dying. She's a super tough combatant, because if you want to be the hero's love interest, you need to be able to keep up with him, but she's still just walking boobs in a skimpy outfit following her childhood boyfriend like a puppy the whole plot.
    • In other words: where the trope would normally call for the Love Interest to be the sweet, flower-themed Staff Chick, it's the tough, no-nonsense and serious Action Girl to be the one who has no higher calling than The Hero, because that's what it really takes to love someone through the trauma of being The Hero. It's an ugly job that calls upon Tifa to abandon home, work, and anything else she might do, except take care of Cloud. She even abandons the mission to save the world until Cloud gets better. The Staff Chick with the destiny of being The Last Of Her Kind has way more important things to deal with than a man who isn't even really the one she cares about. Cloud's characterization as being traumatized by his role in the story informs the caretaker and absent savior roles of his main Betty and Veronica dilemma.
  • Sephiroth is the Chosen One! Except he's seriously not, and without a real villain to fight against, he becomes one.
    • The Chosen One (Sephiroth) is the villain, the Hero (Zack) is gunned down like a rabid dog by faceless mooks, the Main Character is a nobody who is more of a product of bad luck than destiny, the traditional Betty (Aeris) is the Veronica, and the traditional Veronica (Tifa) is the Betty. If you're looking for a point by point deconstruction tour de force you won't find one in Final Fantasy 7, but for its time FF7 was fairly smart and analytical in its picking at tropes and conventions that other role-playing games took for granted.
    • Maybe there is some miscommunication here, but from what it seems some of what was written above was neither an example FFVII deconstructing a trope nor an example of it failing to deconstruct a trope or doing it poorly. A deconstruction is not subverting a trope or turning a trope on its head, nor is it meant to be some edgy exercise in referencing a bunch of tropes and then cynically undermining them. It's taking a trope and exploring its implications realistically. As such, what's written below would an actual example of FFVII deconstructing something.
  • The biggest Deconstruction is Cloud. The idea was it's taking the idea of fans of these games wanting to be a hero like in them, but not only showing the sheer trauma that comes with the role, but also how being so obsessed with it to the point of delusion is nothing but damaging. It's about Cloud learning to be a hero on his own merits, not trying to live up to any fantasy.
    • The deconstruction aspect looks a bit more clear after playing previous FF games (6 in particular). Sephiroth has a similar backstory as Terra (half human hybrids given immense natural power) but his nature causes him to freak out and become the villain. The rampant use of Magic becomes streamlined and industrialized in FF7 due to the power of mass commerce, whereas only the Empire was fielding Magicite in FF6. Buganhagen even tells them that they’re not out of the woods yet, even if they do kill Sephiroth.

    Don't worry everyone, the ground broke my fall... 
  • How the hell did Cloud survive the enormous fall after the second reactor exploded? He fell all the way from the top plate down to the slums, straight through a church roof and into a flower bed. No one could survive that.
    • Unless you're a magically enhanced super soldier/attempt at cloning Sephiroth's power.
    • Have you seen the size of the world map? The Planet must be tiny compared to Earth, and have appropriately tiny gravity. (This also explains how dragoons work, and how airships can fly with hardly anything holding them up.)
    • Cloud also fell off Mt. Nibel as a child and got skinned knees. It’s clear that the guy simply doesn’t take fall damage.
    What actually happens to you when you join the Lifestream? 
  • So from what I've read and heard it sounds like when a person dies they become apart of the Lifestream, losing all their memories, etc. But if so, that sounds like a terrible afterlife! So you basically become nothing when you die? You lose all your memories and consciousness? Please help me out here, 'cause I'm confused. I think joining the Lifestream is supposed to be a good thing but if you basically lose all your memories and can no longer think or anything (basically become the equivalent of a rock) that sounds more like a terrifying afterlife!
    • So what? At what point was anyone promised an afterlife of any kind, let alone an appealing one? The cycle of life energy via the lifestream is simply the natural process of death and rebirth. Your memories might linger if you were strong willed but otherwise you're wiped clean and used to make new life.
      • Smug, bratty nihilism aside: actually, yes, we are shown that there is an afterlife in FFVII, and it's not just a cycle of life energy and it's not only accessible to the Ancients, because Zack is clearly shown to be there with Aerith. It's implied at various points that a person's body dies and the energy and matter that gave them mortal life returns to the lifestream to become new life, but a person's consciousness clearly survives after death.
      • Zack and Aerith shown together in the Lifestream (or wherever they went) is only seen in Advent Children. Not FF7. Sticking strictly with the lore in the original game and ignoring later retcons like Genesis, there's no evidence that humans in FF7 have separate souls/essences/whatever which continue themselves after death as opposed to becoming their source in the Lifestream. Aerith was a Cetra who had the backing of the Planet, so it's no surprise she was able to maintain herself to a point long enough to ensure Cloud's victory over Sephiroth. Sephiroth was a half-alien baby carrying Jenova's head who after getting attacked and thrown into a mako pit by Cloud had the ability to project his will onto his clones. Nothing says Zack would be capable of such, or any other human off the street (even an extraordinary one).
    • But throughout the game it's implied that joining the Lifestream is a good thing, that it's the most desirable outcome if/when a person dies. That remaining outside the Lifestream is a fate worse than death. But as I stated previously, it doesn't sound good at all. In that sense, it was promised that the Lifestream was an appealing afterlife.
      • If most of the world accepted that when they died they'd no longer be individuals struggling with money, work, disease, war, etc. but instead one soul/consciousness in a permanent state of bliss/contentment, I figure plenty of men would be okay with that. Look forward to it. Note that FF7 is a Japanese video game and like other Far Eastern lands Japan is well steeped in Dharmic religion/philosophy (namely Buddhism). The abolition and/or denial of the solo self is key in such creeds, in contrast to more Western ones that focus themselves on such.
    • My headcanon (I don't recall if this is backed up anywhere in the game) is that while you may lose your personal identity (unless you're strong-willed like Sephiroth or Aerith) you don't become "nothing." Your thoughts join with the thoughts of every being that has ever lived as a sort of gestalt consciousness. While that's a far cry from most people's conception of heaven, I don't think that's a bad existence. Also, it's entirely plausible that you retain your sense of "self" for a while after death (anywhere from a few hours to a few years) before your consciousness is fully absorbed into the collective consciousness of the lifestream.
    • Final Fantasy VII was the first game where Square actually tried to create an overarching mythology for the series. Final Fantasy IX talks about the cycle of souls (and the liquid inside the Iifa Tree is a dead ringer for the mako pool Cloud and Tifa fall into) and how everyone's memories contribute to the planet's larger evolution. Final Fantasy X also has this with the Farplane and dead souls needing to travel there to rest in peace, with Child Prodigy Shinra seeing it as a potential energy source. So the concept of Lifestreams and cycles of souls probably apply to every game in the series. If this is true, when you die your soul rejoins the Lifestream, and all your thoughts and memories are added to it. That accumulation of knowledge and memory then spawns a new soul to be born in a new body, and when that person in turn dies their memories join the Lifestream. The Lifestream continues to evolve for millennia until eventually a planet gets too old to continue and it returns to the cosmos. Your physical body will die, but your memories and experiences will continue to live on for centuries to come as part of the Lifestream, the Planet's overall memory.
    • I mean, yeah. That freaked me out already when I played the game for the first time that scene in Cosmo Canyon where you actually see visual aids of a person dissolving into the lifestream. Though what we have seen from the compilation of FF VII it seems more like your merging into a hive-mind and your memories become part of that and help life grow and develop.

    Sephiroth's parentage fabrication 
His biological father, Professor Hojo, told the young Sephiroth his mother's name was "Jenova" and that she died giving birth to him. His real mother being Lucrecia Crescent, why did Hojo chose to fabricate Sephiroth's parentage?
  • Hojo is a crazy asshole. That's the reason. But there are (to his perspective) a few practical reasons to do this:
    • He didn't give a damn about Lucrecia and considered her worthless. To him, she was about as much of a mother to Sephiroth as a petri dish is the mother of a bacterial culture. The point was to infuse an unborn child with Jenova's cells, so in his opinion, he wasn't fabricating anything.
    • Lucrecia was a Shinra employee who, after the experiments on her, couldn't die. Hojo planned on Sephiroth eventually seeking out the truth of his parentage, that was part of his goal for him from the beginning. If he told Sephiroth that his mother was an ordinary woman named Lucrecia, Sephiroth would have found her eventually and the much less glorious truth would have derailed Hojo's plans for him before they began. It also would have exposed his probably-way-too-illegal-to-ignore practices to the Shinra executives; Vincent was an expendable Turk, Lucrecia was a scientist with a long history within the company. If he gave Sephiroth any reason to go looking for her, that's the end of his plans.
    • Hubris in general. Telling Sephiroth that his mother was basically sentient cancer wouldn't have given him the proper amount of pride in his parentage or faith in his own powers. It's implied that Hojo knew quite well that Jenova wasn't really one of the Ancients, especially after Ifalna's death, but he couldn't let a little thing like that stop him.
    • Recall that Sephiroth seems to care about his mother, and was a good guy for a time. Since Lucrecia was immortal, she couldn’t be silenced. If Sephiroth were to find her, find out the full story between her and Hojo (which he could confirm by finding Vincent’s in the Nibelheim Mansion)...Hojo would now have a near-invincible super soldier gunning for him.
  • On a less practical side, there's also a chance that Hojo told Sephiroth that Jenova was his mother purely to protect Lucrecia... or that she herself told him not to say anything to their child about his real parentage, and he honored that promise (or some actual confidentiality agreement). While Hojo is an irredeemable crazy asshole, Lucrecia presumably saw SOMETHING in him to get with him in the first place, and he does seem to think well of her abilities as a fellow scientist, if nothing else. He also could have been thinking about his own contingency plan. Anyone who designs an experiment whose sole aim is pretty much to breed a powerful superhuman must think through what happens if said superhuman goes totally off the deep end and decides to target its creators. Jenova isn't strictly alive, and probably can't be killed by brute force alone the way a person could(and whether they knew at that point that Lucrecia also couldn't die seems dubious). TL:DR maybe either this is the only Pet the Dog moment in Hojo's resume, or he's a scientist protecting his team/assets.
    Gast's body 
What happened to Gast Faremis's body?
  • Probably destroyed, one way or another. The dumbest thing they could have done is leave it for people to find, and since virtually nobody knows about him at all (in VII, anyway) the simplest answer is Hojo dumped him over the side of a frozen mountain and let the wolves have him.
    Geostigma Cure 
My knowledge on the subject is sketchy so bear with me but if Aerith's healing water in Advent Children cures Geostigma, does it just cure the disease or does it remove the Jenova Cells/Corrupted Lifestream from their systems as well? Because if removes the Jenova Cells, wouldn't that remove Cloud's Soldier/Sephiroth Clone enhancements? Or if it doesn't, does that mean people still have bits of Jenova inside them?
  • It’s explained that the Stigma is the body going into self-destructive overdrive trying to expel the bits of corrupted Lifestream in their bodies when Holy got supercharged at the end of FF7. So, she’s probably purifying that corruption with the water from Great Gospel. The Jenova cells in Cloud are basically inert at that point, so he should be fine.
    Experiment Designation Over Real Name? 
  • Why does Red XIII tell the party his name is Red XIII and not his real name, Nanaki? Even by "Insert Name Here" standards, they still could've put Nanaki as his default name. So what's up with this?
    • Firstly at that point in the story Nanaki is ashamed of his father (who is presumably the one who named him) and sees an opportunity for a fresh start. Secondly it's mentioned later that in human years he would be a teenager, which is a key age for self-reinterpretation.
      • Could be that "Nanaki" is a dorky name in Cosmo Canyon. Imagine you have the mind of an insecure edgelord teenager and you've spent the last twelve or so years being treated like an underfoot little brother to everyone in your small, isolated community. Now, imagine that you meet a group of total strangers who think you're a cool, mysterious, badass firewolf because they don't know anything about you or your culture, and they ask your name: do you deepen your voice and tell them, "It hardly matters; you can just call me.... Red XIII," do you tell them "Hi, I'm Ogbert"?
    • What's preventing you from deliberately changing his name to Nanaki? That's what I do every playthrough.
      • A first-time player wouldn't be able to, that's why it's a headscratcher. Red XIII is obscuring his real name for no apparent reason, just to set up the reveal at Cosmo Canyon.
    • He was only originally planning to go with the group until he got home and wasn't planning on becoming friends or invested in their adventure. Also he's a teenager trying to sound cool. Eventually he just keeps going with whatever you suggest as a friendly nickname.
    • Teenage angst aside, Nanaki seems to be a pretty private person. He's willing to help the human party members because they saved him from the Shinra, but he originally only planned to go with them as far as Cosmo Canyon. He also apparently never told Bugenhagen his feelings about Seto, indicating that he may have been reluctant to talk about them. He only reveals more about himself once he's become Fire-Forged Friends with the rest of the party and he's more willing to trust them.
    Why Single Out Barret? 
  • The Corel survivors seem to hold Barret as being uniquely responsible for the town's destruction, but the flashbacks make it clear that everyone except for Dyne was pushing for Shinra to take over. I can see Barret being too hard on himself, but why do the townsfolk take it out on him? From what little information we're given, they're just as responsible as he is.
    • We're witnessing The Scapegoat trope in action. It's all too common in Real Life for people to blame someone else for their problems as a way to avoid owning up to any responsibility on their part. The rest of the townsfolk are just as much to "blame"-and in fairness, as Tifa alludes to, the only thing Barret and the rest of the townsfolk are "guilty" of is negotiating in good faith with Shinra. One of the townsfolk you talk to in Corel even Lampshades the issue, saying that everyone rationally knows what happened, but they won't be satisfied until someone specific takes the blame.
    • Based on how Scarlet tries to get Barret to talk Dyne into accepting Shinra and the reactor in the flashback, as well as the towns comments back Barret being a "techno freak" it always seemed to me that Barret was the loudest champion of Shinra and switching to Mako energy and being one of the most senior miners and respected member of the town basically was the one Shinra approached to talk the whole town into it which Barret agreed because he believed in Shinra's future through technology pitches and wanted to spare his family and town the pain and stress of living a coal miner's life (which can be very dangerous and rough and usually ends with the miners having a whole host of health problems). Hence the town blames him because Barret was the one that basically talked them all into it with "We should welcome Shinra, they'll give us Mako power and technology and we won't have to half kill ourselves mining coal anymore" only for Shinra to promptly destroy the town and kill most of them anyway and they blame Barret for getting them involved instead of just sucking it up and living a poor and harsh life that at least wouldn't have gotten the town destroyed. It would also explain why Barret took it so personally. He believed in Shinra and they screwed him over.

    Superstitious Shinra 
  • On one hand it's refreshing that Shinra is genre-savvy enough that they believe in the existence of the Promised Land when they see evidence of how special the Ancients were. On the other, isn't it a little absurd that they instantly jump to the conclusion that the Promised Land is: A) A physical location, B) Mako Rich, and C) Unquestionably worth the resources they're willing to expend to get there? President Shinra justifies causing a billion gil worth of damage to Midgar by asserting they'll build a New Midgar with the bounty they reap from the Promised Land, and Rufus seems to gear 100% of Shinra toward locating it. Did it never occur to any of the higher-ups that they were putting their eggs in one basket based purely on an interpretation of a mythical "fertile" land?
    • Considering Shinra's worldview, what else would they interpret it as? It's called a "land", and it's not hard to assume that, if the Ancients had these cool powers, that said land must be swimming in Mako. One of the elders in Cosmo Canyon alludes to there being no single "Promised Land", but Shinra certainly doesn't think so.
    • Given Shinra's executive board are all either drunk on acquiring absolute power or get off performing unethical, horrifying science experiments. No I don't think it ever really occurred to them they *might* be jumping the gun on news of a mythical land of infinite energy.
      • But it wasn't described as having infinite energy, insofar as I can recall. It's just "fertile." It's the equivalent of BP setting up shop in Israel under the belief that "land of milk and honey" really means "lots of oil."
      • That analogy misses the detail of the setting, in which the metaphysical and the physical are tangibly linked by mako energy, so that one suggests the other. The logic chain is that legendarily fertile = abundant in mako energy = incredible cash-cow.
    • I see it as Shinra's Utopia Justifies the Means way of rationalizing their current Mako extraction based-world order that would otherwise wipe out the biosphere within a few generations. The "good times" don't have to end, they can have their cake and eat it too, ushering in a new post-scarcity society of free energy simply by doubling down on what they're already doing.

    What is wrong with adults in this game?? 

I'm sure Barret's a great and loving father, and that Tifa's a good mother substitute for Marlene. But who in the hell leaves a FOUR YEAR OLD GIRL in charge of a BAR?!

  • But she makes the best cocktails....
  • Do the Midgard slums really seem like they offer a lot of childcare and babysitting options for eco terrorist families?
  • Besides they can't afford a babysitter, They need that money for Marlene's Schoolin'.
  • There is the implication that Barret and Tifa are friendly enough with the people in the immediate area that they can be trusted to keep an eye on the bar and Marlene while they're gone.

    Who's driving? 

Which of the two ladies are driving the truck during the escape from the Shin-ra tower? I've heard some people say it's Tifa but i've also heard people say it's Aerith. It doesnt help you can't see where the Steering wheel during the FMV.

  • Probably Tifa. She seems like she'd be more familiar with vehicles with her work with Avalanche and before hand when she lived out in the country than Aerith, who spent all off her life in the slums where there doesn't seem to be many cars. Though the original game never shows in the Remake at least it's specifically Tifa who's driving in that part.

    Maybe Aerith is gone for good, but what about Seto? 

  • He isn't even dead, he's just petrified - using a Soft on him should do the trick. Granted he may not survive very long after being revived depending on how serious his wounds are, but it could at least give him a chance to have a proper reunion with his son. And even so, it'd be a definite Mercy Kill rather than being stuck in place for eternity.
    • Seto is almost certainly dead, any chance to save him would have been lost long ago. His spirit lingers to protect Cosmo Canyon.
    • Presumably this also means the tear from his statue isn't meant to be taken literally.
    • Bugenhagen implies that Seto remained to guard the Canyon against any further attacks from the Gi. When Cloud and Nanaki destroy the Gi Nattak, the Gi's threat is permanently resolved and Seto is finally able to join the Lifestream. Seto may also have remained to reconcile with Nanaki once the latter finally learned the truth about him.

    Gold Saucer murder plothole? Or is Dio just stupid? 

  • Dyne getting out of the prison, killing some people, and then apparently going back to the prison on his own can be explained away that he's the boss of said prison and would therefore be able to come and go as he pleases. Fine. But if that's the case, why would anyone who works at the Gold Saucer think it was Barret if they should know that a guy with a gun for an arm is the boss of the prison below the Saucer? Dio of all people should know of Dyne's existence and freedom. The prison has an express elevator to the Chocobo Square, so anyone working there would be able to confirm seeing a clearly mentally unstable man with a lethal weapon walking out of the jockey room and then heading back in not long after. Yet Dio automatically assumes it was Barret and then punishes the entire party for it without even stopping to listen when the party objects? He doesn't even think its odd to punish a group of people with varied weapon types for committing murders that were clearly done by a machine gun? When the surviving clerk explicitly mentions that the perpetrator had a gun for an arm? What, did he think Cait Sith bludgeoned them to death with a megaphone and bullet wounds just magically appeared on them afterwards? Or is he dumb enough to think a megaphone can fire bullets since it vaguely resembles a gun? If Dio DOESN'T know of Dyne's existence, then who the hell put him in charge of who is able to re-enter the Saucer?
    • Considering the party was thrown into the prison immediately without anything resembling a trial, it appears that the Golden Saucer authorities were just looking for someone to pin the crime on and didn't care about actually catching the killer.
    • The person Dio deals with might actually be Mr. Coates rather than Dyne. Mr. Coates seems to be the liaison between the Prison and the Gold Saucer, especially since he's the one who deals with Esther when she comes down after Dyne's death. Mr. Coates also has bodyguards and is the person "rookies" are told to pay their respects to. Dyne is the boss of Corel Prison because he's the meanest and toughest asshole down there, but given his instability he seems content to leave Mr. Coates to deal with outsiders. When Dyne heard about Barret coming to the Gold Saucer, he "pulled rank" on Mr. Coates and came up to the Gold Saucer without Dio's knowledge to frame Barret for his murders and get Barret thrown into the Prison. As for why the rest of the party was arrested along with Barret, most of them came into the Gold Saucer with Barret and Dio probably assumed they were guilty by association.
    • Alternatively. Given how Dio seems to take a shine to Cloud on the first meeting. As well as how quick he was to forgive him with the Buggy afterwards. The whole thing was a ruse because Dio secretly put Cloud and Co in the prison to finally deal with Dyne.

    Nanaki's Thoughts about Seto? 

So something that's been bugging me is Nanaki coming to the conclusion that his father was a coward and left him and his mother. The game is vague about this — we only get Bugenhagen saying 'so that's how he felt all these years', meaning he did not know how Nanaki feels about his father. It would seem strange that in 48 years, the subject of his father never came up. He should be asking questions. It would seem Bugenhagen never got to tell him about it, judging by his lines. My only explanation, based on the 'all these years' line would be Nanaki knew his mother before she died, knew about the war, never got to meet Seto and was captured by Hojo before the war with the Gi was over and before he could ask anything, and then Hojo himself lied about Seto. He is, in fact, quite capable to do that just to psychologically torture Nanaki. His time in captivity are the years Bugenhagen is referring to. Then again, Nanaki's people remember him and he gets around the village quite well so he wasn't a baby when kidnapped. Also I don't think Hojo has been around for 50 years experimenting on animals.

  • He thought his father a coward because he saw Seto run away during the attack, not realising that Seto was running to protect the back entrance into Cosmo Canyon. After that he didn't want to talk about Seto because he was too ashamed of him until the events of the game.
  • Another problem is that Bugenhagen promised to seal the door behind Seto and never tell anyone. Therefore, all he should know at this point is that Seto never returned, presumably killed, but the door was sealed so the attack was halted regardless. Yet Bugenhagen seems to not only know his way through the cave, but also what they are going to find in the end (Seto's petrified body). Did he open the door (thus breaking his promise) to take a sneek peak in the years following the battle?
    • Given Nanaki's reluctance to tell the rest of the party his real name when they meet him in Shinra HQ, as well as his originally only planning to travel with them until they reached Cosmo Canyon, he seems to be a pretty private person. Nanaki may simply have been uncomfortable talking to Bugenhagen about it.
    • As for Bugenhagen unsealing the door and taking Cloud and Nanaki through the Cave of the Gi, I always thought that he sealed the door after Seto's Heroic Sacrifice. He would've already known the path through the cave and the story of Seto's death.
    What exactly is the "Promised Land?" 
  • Throughout the original game everybody from Shinra to Sephiroth to the Cetra have an obsession with finding the "Promised Land". However, I don't recall any mention of what exactly it is, only that it is a place for "Eternal Happiness." Who promised this land, what is actually IN this land... as far as I can recall there's no details at all.
    • This is explained several times in the script, but: the Promised Land was a Cetra belief that a land of rest and happiness awaited them at the end of their journey. The strong implication is that this manifests as a Cetra returning to the Lifestream in peace after death. As Cetra culture died out, this belief became twisted to suggest it might be a physical place on the Planet. Shinra then supposed that any such place of bounty must be flowing with Mako energy. In effect, such a place then became Shinra's version of a Promised Land, and they "found" it in the Northern Crater, because Mako flowed abundantly there.
    • One of the elders in Cosmo Canyon outright says he doesn't think there's an actual Promised Land. It's more a metaphor for what the Ancients felt when, after a lifetime of nurturing the Planet, they were able to join the Lifestream themselves, free of worry and pain. The closest you can get to a physical Promised Land would be the Lifestream, but humans wouldn't feel the same connection to it as the Ancients would because they've mostly lost the knowledge of how the Planet works.
     Cloud defeating Sephiroth in Nibelheim... how? 
  • Somehow Cloud manages to defeat and "kill" the most powerful SOLDIER on the planet bar none, and I don't recall any explanation as to how. First Cloud sneaks up on Sephiroth and stabs him with the Buster Sword. Fair enough, even the best of us can get caught off guard. Then Sephiroth tries to leave the reactor and is pursued by Cloud, then stabs Cloud through the chest. Cloud both somehow No Sells the stab, then uses the guy's own sword for leverage as he picks Sephiroth up, and throws Sephiroth into the reactor, which Sephiroth also is somehow unable to avoid. As far as Cloud's memories of the Nibelheim incident show there's no reason Cloud should be capable of doing any of this. He's a no name Shinra grunt, not some First Class SOLDIER badass or anything.
    • Limit Breaks exist in-universe. Cloud almost certainly went into a Limit Break state as a kind of fantasy version of adrenal strength. It's implied several times in VII and its spin-offs that Cloud had the physical potential of a SOLDIER but lacked the mental fortitude, so this is a brief moment of Cloud's potential made manifest. Of course, the power creep of all subsequent spin-offs has damaged the storytelling of this moment. The Sephiroth we see in the Compilation should at least have avoided falling into the reactor, as you point out. In the context of the original game, Cloud was lucky enough to use that moment of strength to hurl Sephiroth to an unavoidable fate, Vader vs Palpatine style.
    • How Cloud "kills" Sephiroth in Nibelhiem didn't necessarily require superhuman powers to accomplish. He leverages him by his sword after being stabbed (It's more that he's too determined to react right away to the injury rather than No Selling it, as Crisis Core shows him collapsing from the wound right afterwards) and throws him off. Sephiroth, being as arrogant as he is, was too stunned by Cloud's display of defiant strength to properly defend himself. If not for that, Cloud probably would have been killed instead. As for how Sephiroth allows himself to fall into the reactor, the original game didn't really show him as being capable of flight (unless they were actually parts of Jenova taking his form, which don't really count) but Crisis Core takes into account the power creep of the compilation and instead explains this by showing Sephiroth getting slammed against some kind of electrified device on the wall that knocks him out before falling into the reactor.
    • Given that Sephiroth was limping out of Jenova's chamber and could only take her head with him instead of her entire body, he was probably hurt really badly by Cloud's stabbing him. He's bleeding and drained when he skewers Cloud, while Cloud is still running on an emotional high after seeing his hometown burn and two of his best friends nearly killed. That makes Cloud strong enough to pull Sephiroth's sword out and hurl him into the Mako pit, and Sephiroth too weak to stop him.
     Slummers Rain, you can never predict them. 
  • In the Flashback where Tifa found Cloud at the Sector 7 train station, it appears to be raining. The question is How? Shouldn't the plate above be blocking it out?
    • It's not rain, it's supposed to be a filter like for an old, scratchy video reel. Though if the plate was high enough, clouds could pass under it.

    How do Nanaki's hair clips work? 
  • So how exactly are Nanaki's hair clips supposed to function as weapons? We at least get an in-universe justification for Cait Sith's megaphones because he uses them to give his moogle commands, but how do you hurt someone with a hair ornament? Nanaki's attack animation makes him look like he flips at the enemy, but it's not exactly clear what he's doing. My fanon is that Nanaki actually attacks with his claws and fangs, and his hair clips give him some kind of spiritual power that strengthens his attacks.
    • The simple answer is that they don't, they're just something he wears that can hold materia. Increasing his attack power is just for gameplay to keep him on par with the others.

    Nanaki's default name 
  • If the name "Red XIII" was just a label that Hojo put on him, then why didn't Nanaki just introduce himself by his real name?
    • It can probably be deduced that the reason why is because Seto gave him his name and during that point of the story, Red absolutely resented his father out of shame and belief that he was a coward that abandoned his mother for dead. It should also be noted that by his species' standards, Red is just a teenager so it's possible he's going through an angsty phase.

    Cloud's meeting with President Shinra 
  • President Shinra doesn't recognize Cloud, which would be Fridge Brilliance since Cloud never joined SOLDIER. On its own this would be solid foreshadowing. However, at the same time, the president references "the ex-SOLDIER who quit the company and joined AVALANCHE." Except such a thing never happened. The Nibelheim incident officially resulted in two SOLDIER deaths (Zack and Sephiroth), and the only reference ever made to a SOLDIER quitting Shinra to become a mercenary is what Cloud tells Tifa when they reunite. The only possible reason Shinra could be saying this is as a direct lie to the player by giving Cloud's story an outside perspective that supports it.
    • Or it could be that President Shinra has a massive amount of paperwork, reports, quarterly projections, briefings and other materials on his desk at any given time, and he's forgotten some of the details. We know that some details don't seem to make it up the corporate chain. When the Shinra board are flying to the Northern Crater on the Highwind, Rufus tells Hojo he was never briefed on what Hojo knows about the Promised Land, and says that Hojo keeps a lot of things to himself. It'd be perfectly in character for Hojo to be really secretive about his research, so he may not have even told President Shinra many of the details about the Nibelheim incident. The Nibelheim incident also doesn't come up in the dialogue between the President and Cloud, so it's possible that the President simply assumed that Cloud was a member of SOLDIER due to the Mako glow in his eyes and his wearing a SOLDIER uniform. And why would a member of SOLDIER be traveling with AVALANCHE's leaders without trying to kill or arrest them, unless he was a traitor?
    • It seems extremely likely that Hojo never told anyone that he took Cloud and Zack prisoner and experimented on them (and that he lied about what was going on when they escaped.) Nobody would care about Cloud, but they would definitely care about Zack. So Zack and Sephiroth are probably actually listed as "missing, presumed dead", and President Shinra, on hearing about a SOLDIER fighting for AVALANCHE, could simply be assuming that Zack (or possibly even Sephiroth) secretly survived the Nibelheim incident and defected. But when they meet in person he doesn't recognize him.

    Yuffie on Goblin Island and Round Island 
  • As part of the sidequest to unlock her, you can encounter her in any forested terrain on the overworld map. This includes Goblin Island and Round Island, two remote islands in the ocean with forests. Now, I know it's because the game's programmed to make her spawnable in any forest, but from an in-universe perspective, just how is she able to get there?
    • Because she's been tailing Cloud's party since she first spotted them near Fort Condor, stowing away with them on the Shinra cargo ship... the buggy... the Tiny Bronco... the Highwind... the Chocobo... just waiting for the next time they enter a forest, because that's the only place she's comfortable ambushing them. I know, not very believable, but I think it's the answer this sort of question deserves.
    • The same way she was able to leave the island Wutai is on, not to mention reach the eastern continent where you can first meet her near Junon and Fort Condor. She's both very resourceful and very sneaky, so I can easily see her stealing a boat or stowing away on a boat or airship. Her obsession with collecting Materia allows her to overcome her natural queasiness on ships. As to why she'd be on the Goblin or Round Islands, they're almost never visited by humans and are practically untouched. Who knows what kind of naturally occurring Materia they might be hiding? As the Chocobo breeding sidequest shows, the natural Materia you can find in isolated locations is far more powerful than most artificially made Materia.

    Reeve is Cait Sith reveal 
  • The party (or at least Barret, since he's the only one who reacts) realizes that Cait Sith is Reeve for seemingly no reason in the English translation, and by accidentally using the wrong accent when talking to Barret in the original Japanese. Ignoring the translation issues where didn't properly convey any accents, it still doesn't make much sense even in the original because Barret has never met Reeve before. So why would switching accents reveal anything to anyone, especially Barret?
    • Reeve's one of Shinra's Department heads and one of their most public figures in Midgar given he's in charge of developing it, and is the only exec who actually likes the people there and tries to be personable. Barret's been running operations against Shinra for a long time and almost certainly has info on all their higher ups for his attacks so he probably knows exactly who Reeve is and what he sounds out. But even if he hadn't, Barret HAS "met" Reeve or at least knows his name, what he looks like and what he sounds like from when he Cloud and Tifa were spying on the exec meeting from the vents when they infiltrated the Shinra building and Reeve in particular was a big part of the meeting as he reported the damage figures and cost to rebuild. As far as accents go, assuming the slip up in the English version is Cait talking in Reeve's distinctively different voice (it's never officially said if Cait's voice is just how the robot's voice unit is built to sound or if Reeve is a very skilled actor and doing the Cait voice himself) then that would be a big give away.

    Lifeform-Hojo N 
  • What does the "N" in Lifeform-Hojo N stand for?

    Cait Sith's Spy Status 
  • Cait Sith is controlled by Reeve, who's spying for Shinra. This isn't a secret to Shinra, as they use him to attempt to have the Turks ambush Cloud and later straight up steal the Keystone for them. After the Temple of the Ancients however, Reeve turns on them and starts becoming a double agent for Cloud's party instead, messing up Tifa's execution, helping steal the Highwind, and giving them step by step info on Shinra's Huge Materia to plan to the point of the party (assuming the player doesn't screw up) showing up and interfering with every single one of their "Secret" operations. Despite this, nobody in Shinra does anything to Reeve until he demands Heidegger stand down and allow Cloud to enter Midgar, even allowing him to partake in all of their secret exec meetings even though he's feeding the info straight to Cloud. It's not like Reeve had appearances to keep up anymore, since Cait had already been exposed as a spy and Shinra had effectively already won against Avalanche with Cloud gone and Barret and Tifa arrested so all he did was ruin a sure victory. They should well know Reeve isn't on their side anymore the second Cait Sith popped up to save Barret and Tifa and Reeve should have been immediately arrested if not killed afterwards.