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Final Fantasy VII Remake Mod Upscales Entire Game, Reworks Aerith's Garden

The FFVIIR mod upscales over 20,000 textures, and Aerith's Garden shines from the hefty rework.

Final Fantasy VII Remake is beautiful, but what if I could make it… more beautiful? There’s a rather impressive mod for that with the release of Altezein’s FFVIIR HD Project, upscaling more than 20,000 textures and fixing some of the RPG’s uglier pain points found in the PC port.

While FFVIIR on PC is undoubtedly an overall upgrade from my original experience on PS4, it’s lacking when compared to its next-gen console counterpart on PS5. There’s a good Digital Foundry breakdown on some of its most frustrating stumbles, like dynamic resolution scaling and framerate issues, but some of my personal biggest gripes are with texture weirdness. There’s been a few scenes where things managed to look worse on PC than on console, and that’s no good when I’m trying to take screenshots of Aerith and Tifa.

As someone who spends more time in FFVIIR‘s photo mode than bullying enemy mobs, massive projects like this are a dream. The Nexus Mods rundown notes “all textures below 2K have been upscaled to twice their original size,” and that’s an improvement that shines the most when snapping screenshots or in a cutscene. In the mod’s demo footage, there’s an entirely reworked version of Aerith’s Garden, and that’s enough to compel me into queuing up a download.

“Ugly orange flower replaced,” has gotta be my favorite feature, but I’m down bad for the vanilla version of the area, and this makes it a million times better. So, look at the flowers (it starts around the 2:20 mark).

Among the port’s more glaring visual issues were those wonky skyboxes, with some worse than others, but the mod should fix those too. It’s mostly relegated to what they note as “small details,” and some only work with DX11, but these corrections make or break the mood in a few areas. Some sectors had strangely off renders, and it’s most noticeable in Sector 5, but the HD Project replaces those plates in the distance with their correct itteration.

These are some of those things I’d wager are enthusiast, but some PC woes for FFVIIR feel rather unfair and disappointing when I look at years of Square Enix port feedback. It always feels a bit bad to watch fans do the lord’s work, but here we are, and I’m downloading a near 60 GB texture pack to make Aerith Garden wallpapers all day. And by the way, that’s no exaggeration on the size; the FFVIIR HD Project is 57.8 GB. You’ll have to grab it via torrent, but it seems well worth the time and space considering SE’s typical trajectory with these ports. Final Fantasy XIV is just an exception to the PC support rule, not the usual.

About the Author

Andrea Shearon

Andrea Shearon is Fanbyte's weekend news editor. She's got a soft spot for most RPGs, but FFXIV occupies a majority of her free time.