The Final Fantasy VII remake has officially been released and is pulling gamers worldwide into the dystopian city of Midgar and the story of ex-SOLDIER Cloud Strife.
But while the game is based directly upon the 1997 original, Cloud’s popularity as a character has also ensured that he spread his wings beyond the comfort of his Final Fantasy story. He hasn’t merely battled a megalomaniac hell-bent on destroying the Planet with Meteor – he’s fought in various fighting tournaments and saved the day in other worlds beyond his own.
Here, we list the top 5 appearances that Cloud has made in other games beyond FFVII. Let us know if you agree or disagree with our choices…
5) Dissidia: Final Fantasy (PSP)
There are three Dissidia: Final Fantasy games and all of them feature Cloud – so, we went with the first and original PSP game. If you’re not clear on what Dissidia is, it’s mostly a hardcore FF fan’s wet-dream, where the various heroes of the Final Fantasy franchise team-up to battle their enemies, led by Chaos. Your side – Cloud included – fight for Cosmos, Chaos’s good counterpart.
Cloud’s appearance in Dissidia is notable for having FFVII: Advent Children and General Hospital actor Steve Burton reprise the role, and he aces it as usual. But it’s also when we see Cloud at his most energetic – Dissidia is a fast-paced anime-inspired fighting game that is far from the turn-based patience of FFVII. Not only is Cloud utilizing his famous limit breaks like Braver and Omnislash here, but he’s packing combos like you wouldn’t believe. This was way before the remake was even announced, so it’s hard to appreciate the novelty of this now. But it was very much there back then.
4) Super Smash Bros. Ultimate (2019)
Oddly, Cloud was included in Super Smash Bros. for Wii and Super Smash Bros. Ultimate. Final Fantasy VII would not be released on a Nintendo console until March 2019, on the Switch. Both of the Smash games above were released long before that ever came to fruition. But the character was so heavily requested, the Powers-That-Be at Nintendo just couldn’t resist.
Unlike Super Smash Bros. for Wii, where the character was DLC alongside the Midgar stage, Cloud was there right from the start in Ultimate. Both his original and Advent Children costumes are available, and he kicks major ass. He can utilize a variety of limit breaks, including Cross-Slash, Omnislash, and Blade Beam. He can hold his own against Nintendo’s long roster of iconic characters any day of the week.
3) Ehrgeiz: God Bless the Ring (PS1, 1997)
Ehrgeiz is an oft-forgot arena fighting game from the late ’90s that featured an arcade mode, an action RPG side-game, and a cast of Tekken lookalike characters. But there was another big selling point for this classic – it also had the cast of Final Fantasy VII as playable fighters. Most of them were available from the very start of the game – Cloud included.
Cloud wasn’t flailing madly about like a Dragon Ball Z character in those days, but it was the first time players could control him outside of a turn-based battle setting. The spiky-haired ex-SOLDIER could go all-in with his fists, but by tapping Triangle, you could wield his infamous Buster Sword and chain together sword-based attacks. This meant his moves were a lot slower, but they could cause more damage (the remake’s Punisher mode comes to mind here). This one comes third, just because of the novelty of seeing your favorite FF hero in a fighting game and how it laid the foundation for his appearances in future games and spin-offs.
2) Kingdom Hearts I (2002)
Kingdom Hearts isn’t just notable for successfully blending Final Fantasy elements with Disney – it also deserves credit for being the first game to give actual voices to classic FF characters. From VIII‘s Squall Leonhart (known in the game by a nickname, Leon) to VII‘s Aerith, the game gave life to these characters with advanced animations and admirable voice-acting talent.
But where Cloud is concerned, Square did good by bringing on board General Hospital‘s Steve Burton to voice the brooding warrior. Here, Cloud not only rocks a cool, interesting design, perhaps influenced somewhat by FFVII’s Vincent, but he has a unique situation. In essence, he’s been hired by Hades to kill Hercules in the Olympus Coliseum fighting tournament. Cloud eventually frees himself from the obligations of Hades and makes peace with Sora, later appearing as an actual contestant in future tournaments.
Steve Burton also aced it so much as Cloud that he reprised the role for the animated movie Final Fantasy VII: Advent Children and the Dissidia games. He would remain in the role until replaced by Corey Christian for the 2020 remake.
1) Final Fantasy Tactics/War of the Lions (1997)
Released the same year as Final Fantasy VII, Tactics is considered one of the best games of all time. Combining elements from the Final Fantasy franchise with that of Tactics Ogre, the game is a favorite amongst franchise fans worldwide. And if it’s addictive tactics-based gameplay, intriguing story and a world of Ivalice weren’t awesome enough, and it also benefited from the inclusion of a certain blonde-haired hero.
In the game, Cloud is accidentally teleported to the world of Ivalice by an ancient object called the Celestial Globe. It isn’t too long before he runs into a flower girl called Aerith, who looks almost exactly like the flower girl he knew and loved in his own world. But upon engaging with a group of thugs assailing her, Cloud finds himself surrounded. It isn’t until Ramza, the hero of the game, and his team appears, that he is able to beat the thugs. He then pledges to join Ramza’s party until he finds a way back to his world.
It’s Cloud’s first-ever crossover into another game, but it’s a notable one since he can become another a member of the actual in-game party. The addition of the Aerith scenes, the Materia Blade as well as iconic limit breaks such as Climhazzard and Omnislash make the character a nice extra touch to an already fantastic game.
What are your favorite appearances from Cloud in non-FFVII games? What do you think of the remake? Share your thoughts in the comments below..