Final Fantasy VII
Final Fantasy VII is a role-playing video game developed and published by Square (now Square Enix) for the PlayStation platform. Released in 1997, it is the seventh installment in the Final Fantasy series and the first in the series to use 3D computer graphics, featuring fully rendered characters on pre-rendered backgrounds. It was also the first game in the main series to be released in Europe. The story follows Cloud Strife, a mercenary who joins the eco-terrorist rebel organization AVALANCHE to stop the world-controlling megacorporation Shinra from draining the life of the planet to use as an energy source. Cloud and his allies become involved in a larger world-threatening conflict and face off against Sephiroth, the main antagonist.
Development of Final Fantasy VII began in 1994. It was originally developed for the Super Nintendo Entertainment System, but was moved to the Nintendo 64; since the Nintendo 64's cartridges lacked the required storage capacity for substantial prerendered movie footage, Square moved the game to the CD-ROM based PlayStation. It was directed by Yoshinori Kitase, written by Kazushige Nojima and Kitase, and produced by Hironobu Sakaguchi. The music was composed by Final Fantasy veteran Nobuo Uematsu, while the series' long-time character designer, Yoshitaka Amano, was replaced by Tetsuya Nomura.
Helped by a large pre-release promotional campaign, Final Fantasy VII was a critical and commercial success. It was released in 1997 for the Sony PlayStation, in 1998 for Windows, in 2009 on the PlayStation Network, in 2012 on PC Digital Download, and in 2013 on Steam. In 2014, the game was released for Android and iPhone devices through the Japan-only streaming service "Dive In". On December 6, 2014, it was announced that Final Fantasy VII would be released on the PlayStation 4, with upscaled graphics. It has continued to sell solidly, with more than 11 million copies sold by 2015, making it the best-selling title in the series. Final Fantasy VII has been praised for its graphics, gameplay, music and story. Criticism has primarily pertained to its English localization. The iOS version of Final Fantasy VII was released on August 19, 2015, adding touch controls and the ability to disable random encounters.
The game is acknowledged for having boosting the sales of PlayStation consoles and popularizing Japanese role-playing video games outside Japan. It is widely considered to be one of the greatest games of all time. The game's popularity has led to a series of prequels and sequels under the collective title Compilation of Final Fantasy VII. Square Enix announced a high-definition remake of the game at E3 2015 for the PlayStation 4.