The following is a list of version differences between releases of Final Fantasy VII. The article uses two h3s, one for PlayStation and one for PC. This is because these are the two significant releases for the game. Both of these releases have seen re-releases based on the specific versions. The PlayStation version will also detail differences between the original Japanese release and the International version (which includes the changes made for North America and Europe).
Final Fantasy VII was released in Japan in January 1997. This was the original version of the game.
The "International" version of the game was released in North America in September 1997, Japan in October 1997, and Europe in November 1997.
- A scenario where the player party fights Diamond Weapon was included.
- The Rising Sun weapon, previously dummied from the Japanese version, is made the item drop for this enemy.
- Ruby Weapon and Emerald Weapon are added superbosses for this version.
- The Guide Book item became the Morph item of the Ghost Ship.
- The Kalm Traveler was introduced to the game, who would trade the above items for prizes.
- The Underwater Materia was used in the game, given to the player in exchange for a Guide Book for help in the Emerald Weapon boss battle.
- Indicators were added for when the Cursor is up. Red indicators show new leads to new areas, while green indicators show places to climb.
- The cutscene at Northern Crater was extended to show Weapon emerging from the crater.
- The complex version of the clock puzzle in the Temple of the Ancients was removed, always giving the player the simple version which would only otherwise be accessible in the Japanese version after falling three times.
- Encounter rates were lowered across the board. Every area has had its encounter rate reduced by varying amounts.
- Random encounters were removed from the square area of Sector 8 at the start of the game.
- The Test encounters were removed from the well in Corel Prison.
- All the Test enemies had their models changed to the Pyramid.
- A battleground relating to some of the Test encounters was changed into a blank screen instead.
- The battleground at Corel Reactor was changed, the battle now being situated on the ground by the reactor.
- Improvements were made to the translation.
- For worldwide versions, the game was translated to English by the Japanese development team. German, French, and Spanish versions were translated from the English translation.
Released in April 2009 in Japan, and June 2009 to the rest of the world, the PlayStation Network version of the game is identical to the original release. The only change made is the way disc changes occur due to not using disks (instead having to access the console menu and changing an option).
The PC version of Final Fantasy VII was not released in Japan, but released to the rest of the world in June 1998. This version is notable for not being fully functional, requiring a patch to function properly throughout the game.
The team that worked on the PC port of the game were originally given an early build of the game, and other things were done wrong. This could help explain a number of problems the game has.
The PC version of the game has gained significant attention over the years due to modding communities accessing the game. A fan also developed a rendering engine was also developed for the game known as Aali's Driver which would fix a number of graphical glitches, as well as other glitches and allow for more modding of the game. This rendering engine would later be re-used by Square Enix for the 2012 re-release.
- The translation was re-done. Most grammatical and typographical errors were corrected. Other changes to the translation also made things incorrect, including time frames and less faithful translations. One thing includes Corral Valley (PS) being renamed Corel Valley (PC) when it has nothing to do with Corel, but is instead literally "Coral Valley".
- Mouths were added to characters.
- The Speed Square minigame is much faster.
- The Chocobo minigame freezes the game. A patch was developed by Qhimm which would later be linked to by Square to fix this.
- A number of graphical glitches occurred in the game, most notably Vincent's glitched animation at the Water Altar.
- The music was changed to MIDI format, and thus reduced in quality from the PlayStation version.
- FMVs were downscaled.
- Character naming screens utilize the keyboard to input names. These screens also now ignore the given controls and will reset all other buttons to their defaults (on the NumPad).
- A "Quit" option was added to the menu.
- When the game is not the active window the game will pause, however the music will continue playing.
Downloadable PC re-releaseEdit
A downloadable re-release of the 1998 PC release was released in August 2012 to North America and Europe. In this version they used and edited Aali's Driver to improve on the files of the original PC version. This release therefore has fixed everything that was previously fixed by the engine. A number of new features were made available, and other minor changes were made to the game. An identical version of the game was added to Steam in 2013.
- A launcher was implemented that serves as a main menu before accessing the game. Here settings can be changed and data not stored in save files viewed (such as achievements).
- Controls can be set from the launcher as well as in-game. The ability to change controls from the launcher means minigames and menus that use different control setups will still function with the user's chosen controls.
- The translation remains the same as the original PC version, however a few corrections were made. These include correcting the list of Greens items in the Chocobo Farm to match the item names, and correcting controls.
- A cloud saving feature allows files to be saved to the internet and synced to the web. This does not replace local saves.
- 36 Achievements were added to the game.
- A Character Booster available from the game's website allows the player to "boost" their save files.
- The music for the game is now in OGG format. The music is identical to the PlayStation music as of patch v1.0.9. (Originally it was an upgraded version of the original MIDI music in OGG format.)
- The FMVs were upscaled to be of better quality than the original PlayStation FMVs.
- Shaders were added to increase the quality and looks of models.
- The Chocobo Minigame works fine without any need for a patch.
- The Magic Defense Bug was fixed.
- Vincent's Water Altar bug was fixed by changing his animations.
- It is possible to play the game in a windowed mode as opposed to full screen.
- When the game is not the main window the game pauses/does not progress.
- Disk change screens were removed, instead saying "End of Part X".
- Minor timing and background scripts were added and changed.
- The Secret Cow Level easter egg was added.
- A number of musical glitches can occur. For example, exiting from Mythril Mine into the Marshes scene will have the Overworld theme play.
The re-release has gone through many updates, although there is no change log and most of the changes have gone unnoticed.
- Between v1.0.1 and v1.0.8
- Cloud Saving can be disabled from the launcher.
- v1.0.9 - 25th September 2013
- The OGG music files were all replaced with the original 1997 PlayStation quality music.