Preview: Dirge of Cerberus: Final Fantasy VII (PS2)


Publisher: SquareEnix / Developer: SquareEnix / Genre: Action / Release: 2005

Dirge of Cerberus, eh? I would be lying if I said that I understood exactly what that meant in the context of this game. I did a quick search and discovered that “dirge” is a sad song, usually accompanying a funeral. Hmm, I wonder if Cerberus will be singing that song (an amusing thought, actually) or will it be for Cerberus? To be perfectly honest, the latter sounds fine with me! I have always found the entire concept of the three-headed dog terribly creepy (but, then again, werewolf movies terrified me so much as a child that I would not go outside at night, and I would try to fall asleep with my bedroom light on.), but it has been quite a popular subject in the field of entertainment fairly recently. For instance, Fluffy created a problem for Harry, Ron, and Hermione in Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone. This concept is not foreign to the gaming industry either; players fought the dark-vomiting Cerberus in Kingdom Hearts (and if you read my preview of KH2, which I’m sure you have, you’ll know that he will be making a return), and a Popsicle version appeared even more recently in Devil May Cry 3 — and these are just the most obvious examples. Just what does the mythological dog have to do, if anything, with Dirge of Cerberus: Final Fantasy VII, though? Does Square Enix just love mythology?

I am sure you are familiar with Square Enix’s Compilation of Final Fantasy VII, something they refer to as their “‘polymorphic’ vision,” which simply means they want to pimp the franchise to as many people as humanly possible — through the use of mobile phones, film, and the PS2. Most hardcore fans, however, won’t mind how hard the company is beating the cash cow.

Dirge of Cerberus is the third installment of the Compilation and the one that is intended for the PS2. It is set three years after the events of Final Fantasy VII in familiar territories and starts off with the appearance of Deep Ground soldiers, warriors who live underground, who raid and plunder the towns. It is acknowledged that the hero, Vincent Valentine, has some sort of connection with what’s happening, but it’s all very mysterious. Other than that, the details concerning the plot of the game are virtually non-existent.

In terms of style, this game will likely be extremely different than what you would expect. First of all, it appears that the game will be a third person shooter, judging by the images that have been released up to this point and the fact that Square Enix claims that the dirge I mentioned in the introduction will come from Vincent’s revolver (his trademark weapon, of course). It appears that Vincent, aside from just third person shoot-’em-up, will be able to go into sniper mode, which insinuates that stealth will play a part in how the game is played.

The graphics seem to be progressing nicely — with colors that appear to be shrouded in shadows (though I’ve definitely seen darker games). Access to graphical examples, like so many other aspects of this game, is difficult to come by at the moment.

And, yes, it appears as though other Final Fantasy VII characters will be joining Vincent at some point in the game (and I did have to throw that in last).

As more tidbits become available, you can bet that I’ll let you know.