Remakes and remasters are a finicky topic. On one hand, making a game look better helps it to cater to modern audiences. On the other hand, remasters don't always work. Sometimes, an older game loses its charm because it looks "better" by modern standards. Not to mention, some of the quirks of older games are what makes them so iconic, which is why most remakes don't do nearly as well as the original.
Square Enix knows this all too well. The studio has had mixed success with the remakes it's released for the earlier Mana games.
Having said that, Square Enix has decided to go the remaster route with Final Fantasy Pixel Remaster, deciding to give the first six Final Fantasy games a "pixel-perfect makeover". This sounds a lot like "we'll release the earlier Final Fantasy games with updated graphics without changing the original visual style", similar to what it did with Final Fantasy 9.
Given that Square Enix has announced a lot in recent weeks, it's not easy to keep up with everything going on.
Scroll down below if you'd like to learn more about the Final Fantasy Pixel Remaster games.
Is There a Final Fantasy Pixel Remaster Trailer?
Yes. A teaser trailer for the Final Fantasy Pixel Remaster games was released at E3 2021 during the Square Enix showcase.
Unfortunately, the trailer is only 33 seconds long. It doesn't provide an extensive look at how Final Fantasy Pixel Remaster will look.
When is the Final Fantasy Pixel Remaster Release Date?
Square Enix hasn't revealed any scheduling specifics about Final Fantasy Pixel Remaster. There's no information on whether the individual games will be released at once, or if Square Enix will make them available one at a time until all six games have been released.
Considering that Square Enix showed off Final Fantasy Pixel Remaster at E3 2021, this suggests that the games are close to completion.
According to a since-private video that was posted on YouTube, it seems like at least part of the Final Fantasy Pixel Remaster games will be released in July. The said video featured a 30-minute discussion that included Final Fantasy creator, Hironobu Sakaguchi, among others.
A Twitter user going by the handle, Wario64, was able to capture screenshots of the video before it was made by private.
Final Fantasy Pixel Remaster 30 minute Japanese video (mostly discussions in Japanese including Sakaguchi and Uematsu but does have some new looks into the remasters) https://t.co/aSgWoMu6mV pic.twitter.com/DTmCcT3KV0
— Wario64 (@Wario64) June 29, 2021
Which Games Are Included in the Final Fantasy Pixel Remaster?
The Final Fantasy Pixel Remaster series of games represents the first time that all six games will be readily available in proper chronological order for gamers to play on modern platforms.
The Final Fantasy series first started on the NES back in 1987 with Final Fantasy. The next two games, Final Fantasy II and Final Fantasy III were exclusive to Japan until years later. Because of this, Final Fantasy IV was released as Final Fantasy II in North America, and Final Fantasy VI was released as Final Fantasy III in the west.
1992's Final Fantasy V for the Super Famicom was also exclusive to Japan until 1999 when it was included in the Final Fantasy Anthology compilation series.
All the aforementioned games, from the first Final Fantasy game until Final Fantasy VI, will be included in Final Fantasy Pixel Remaster.
Is Final Fantasy Pixel Remaster a Compilation?
Contrary to popular belief, Final Fantasy Pixel Remaster is not a compilation. Instead, Square Enix intends to release each of the six games individually.
Whether Square Enix will launch multiple entries at the same time or one at a time is not yet known.
Which Platforms Will Final Fantasy Pixel Remaster Release On?
Much to the chagrin of Final Fantasy fans from all over the world, Final Fantasy Pixel Remaster is exclusive to the PC (via Steam), as well as iOS and Android platforms. The games won't be available on other platforms, although the current public outrage might persuade Square Enix to reconsider its initial decision.
Are the Final Fantasy Pixel Remaster Games a Remake or a Remaster?
Final Fantasy Pixel Remaster isn't the first time that Square Enix has remastered the earlier Final Fantasy games. The studio has made numerous attempts to remaster and remake all the Final Fantasy games released before Final Fantasy 7. However, most of the remasters simply reused old assets to make them look "prettier".
The Final Fantasy Pixel Remaster games are different. This time, Square Enix graphically rebuilt the classic titles from the ground up. This allows for a more unified pixel style that mirrors that of the original titles, in order to retain their charm.
How Will the Final Fantasy Pixel Remaster Games Improve on the Originals?
Even though most of the earlier Final Fantasy games hold up well to modern standards, the classic RPG games had to make do with what they had.
For example, in the original Fantasy Games, players couldn't move diagonally. The trailer for Final Fantasy Pixel Remaster shows that players can now do that. This suggests that Square Enix intends to add modern control schemes that were previously unavailable to the older games. Other minor perks include a fast-forward button, as well as better and more detailed maps.