When it was announced that the new iteration of Final Fantasy VII would be a remake and not just a remaster, fans knew it would probably come with a slew of changes.
Although many aspects of the original game are expanded and built upon, the most noticeable are the members of Avalanche: Jessie, Biggs, and Wedge.
Spoiler Warning: This article will be talking about some scenes in the game involving Jessie, Biggs, and Wedge. Nothing that happens towards the end of the game, but if you don’t want to spoiled on anything at all, please click away.
In the original, the Midgar section of the game is about five hours, and in the remake, it’s the entire game. Thus, you get to spend a lot more time with Jessie, Biggs, and Wedge (all of whom are beautifully voice acted), who help you gain a perspective into the lives of people that live in Midgar.
It becomes clear rather fast that Midgar is a socio-economical society, with the less fortunate living in the slums, and the middle-class living in pleasant neighborhoods. The game not only tells you this, but it shows you this and gives it emotional weight through the characters of Jessie and Biggs.
At a certain point in the story, you get to accompany Jessie to her neighborhood in the more lavish part of Midgar, which can be quite jarring after you’ve spent so much time in the slums. Even though people are living better, you still get to see how Shinra’s influence affects everyone, regardless of class.
This is contrasted by the Sector 6 Slums section where you do odd jobs for the orphanage and get to know the kids who live there. You soon find out that Biggs grew up there, and the kids who live there now give you a glimpse into what his life used to be like.
The kids of this orphanage have nothing but each other, which is probably the reason why Biggs wanted to join a cause like Avalanche and is so willing to help out Cloud when it comes to being accustomed to life in the slums.
Then there is Wedge, even though the game doesn’t go into his backstory, we still get to experience the motivation for his actions. It’s clear from the get-go that Wedge is insecure, and wants to be more than just a wacky sidekick. He wants a skill like Jessie and Biggs.
He constantly looks for approval in Cloud despite knowing nothing about him, and he always laments about wanting to be more helpful.
It is unfortunate that Wedge is often reduced to being the punchline for fat jokes, and the trope of overweight people being the comic relief, but Wedge does have many other instances of being comedic which are genuinely heart-warming. Along with being helpful, you do see how much Wedge cares about his cats, which is very cute.
When these three are paired together is when the expanded story is at its best. Seeing their personalities play off of each other led to some fantastic dialogue when juxtaposed to Cloud’s often indifferent and apathetic attitude.
Seeing how much they care for each other, and for Cloud, in the end, gives a great sense of character development and builds these characters out in a meaningful and impactful way.
Although I loved many of the characters in Final Fantasy VII Remake, I often found to be drawn to these three. Their sense of comradery was endearing and heartfelt, along with the makeshift family ties that brought them together.
Their differences are shown to the player in a meaningful way that builds out the world and their backstories but then is roped back in by how alike they are despite different backgrounds.
Jessie, Biggs, and Wedge really shine as some of the best characters in the game despite not having a lot of screentime in the original, which shows that even with little source material, a lot can be done.