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Excellent 'Final Fantasy VII Remake' drops big exclusivity hint

It's the remake of an iconic classic that was too big and too ambitious to fit inside one game. The first part of an extended "Final Fantasy VII Remake" releases April 10 on PlayStation 4.

Following a downloadable demo preview in March, "Final Fantasy VII Remake" has launched to a round of high-scoring reviews, an 88% top critic average from OpenCritic earning the aggregator's Mighty rating, and an 87 from Metacritic's own weighted equivalent.

Just like its taste-making, era-defining 1997 ancestor, "Final Fantasy VII Remake" is debuting on PlayStation 4 first and arriving on other platforms afterwards.

This much was suspected since box art uncovered early in December 2019 claimed a one-year limit on PlayStation exclusivity.

While it's true that the franchise was closely associated with Sony's console brand for a solid decade between "Final Fantasy VII" and 2006's "Final Fantasy XII," things haven't always been so PlayStation-centric.

Xbox owners had an unusually short six-month wait after "Final Fantasy XIII" debuted on PS3; 2016's "Final Fantasy XV" launched on PS4 and Xbox One the same day.

In the same way, up until the original "Final Fantasy VII," the series had been landing on Nintendo's home hardware before anything else.

That's why a video thanking franchise fans for their loyalty and patience is being taken as further proof of Square Enix's future intentions.

Despite being distributed through PlayStation's social media channels, the publishing and developing giant affixed a small-print footnote at the start of its one-minute reel, alerting viewers that gameplay was captured on PC -- and not, as one might expect for a promo of this kind, the highest spec PlayStation 4 Pro. A sign of things to come?

Releasing on April 10, "Final Fantasy VII Remake" is the first in a multi-part recreation of the 1997 game.

Play is limited to a greatly expanded city of Midgar which, in its first incarnation, formed around a fifth of the original's total span.

The implication is that Square Enix could comfortably produce another four or five games over the coming PlayStation 5 and Xbox Series X console generation to complete the "Final Fantasy VII" saga.