Aerith in Final Fantasy 7 Remake has had a redesign since the last time we saw the opening

Square Enix released what can be assumed to be the final version of the opening movie of Final Fantasy 7 Remake today. It’s very similar to the footage we’ve seen so far, but one significant change is apparent: Aerith’s face has changed. At some time in the past year or so, Square Enix slightly redesigned Aerith’s face to be less angular.

The first part of the final opening, showing Midgar in the daytime, is entirely new, but we’ve seen the latter part a few times already. The FF7 Remake opening was part of the leaked demo, and it was shown to audiences who attended the FF7 – A Symphonic Reunion concert in June of last year.

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Final Fantasy 7 Remake Aerith Face Design Prototype vs Final

In previous versions of the opening, Aerith had a sharper chin, her eyes were spaced slightly farther apart, and she had a “cat smile.” Her final design gives her a rounder chin, fuller lips, and brings her eyes closer together.

We can’t be sure when the redesign occurred. Footage shown at TGS 2019 was still using the older design, but the recently released Final Fantasy 7 Remake Theme Song Trailer has brief shots of Aerith that looks closer to her new design.

I liked the old look better. Aerith was always quick to joke around and act mischievous, so the catlike smile suited her. That and her strong jawline gave her a very unique look. Her new design is still pretty, but her face looks more generic. Square Enix hasn’t commented on Aerith’s new look, so it’s anyone’s guess on why the changes were made. Video game design is an iterative process, and at some point, someone might have looked at the original Final Fantasy 7 art and just decided that her Remake design was too different from the source.

In any case, we’ll get a chance to head to Midgar with Aerith and crew soon. Final Fantasy 7 Remake releases on April 10, 2020.