A Final Fantasy VIII Remake Could Be A Beautiful Thing

A Final Fantasy VIII Remake Could Be a Beautiful Thing

Just look at it. This fan art is based on Final Fantasy VIII's Balamb Garden, and it not only looks fantastic, it also screams HD remake for FFVIII.

This was created by Scott Honeycutt, a 3D environmental artist — and a talented one at that. These images have been floating around Japanese web forums, impressing Final Fantasy fans for good reason.

Honeycutt says, "Models, UVs and baking in 3ds Max, textures made with Photoshop and Quixel suite, render and materials in Unreal [Engine] 4. This is a game environment art portfolio piece made of low poly models with normal maps applied, and it uses a physically based rendering setup with metallic and roughness values."

A Final Fantasy VIII Remake Could Be a Beautiful Thing
A Final Fantasy VIII Remake Could Be a Beautiful Thing
A Final Fantasy VIII Remake Could Be a Beautiful Thing
A Final Fantasy VIII Remake Could Be a Beautiful Thing

You can see more of Honeycutt's wonderful work in the link below.

Scott Honeycutt [Portfolio]


    I honestly pray to whatever power would ensure that remakes of FFVII, FFVIII, FFIX, etc, WON'T happen.

    They're sacred, and any form of remake would not only be an insult, but would have no chance of doing justice to them or making them as awesome again as the first time you experienced them.

      I'm fairly sure they won't touch them. Money makes big corporations do crazy things, but from what I've read they have a pretty honorable attitude towards how much of a masterpiece VII, VIII and IX were. One would think that would stop them from butchering it by making them full 3D areas, and hopefully they realise that you can't just slap HQ models onto pre-rendered backgrounds to constitute an HD remake. In all fairness, the fan HD upgrades look pretty horrendous and visually jarring - it's a different era in gaming now.

      But as I said, the amount of money that would go with undertaking a project like that could make Squeenix disregard all that. Hopefully XIV and XV make so much money that they have no need to!

        This guy gets it.

        You're right though - never underestimate the power of money. I think most people have such amazing memories of these titles - rightfully so - that they'd give anything to experience them again in a new sense. I'd pay for that myself if I could. I just don't believe any remake could ever do your memories justice, and nor should they.

        Leave them as the masterpieces they are. Please don't butcher their memory.

        Look, I loved the hell out of FFVIII, but you can't use the word 'masterpiece' with it. As much as I loved it back then FFVIII was a deeply flawed game, and it would benefit more than many people are willing to admit from a remake. Hell, not just a remake, a full revision of the game's scope and content. Doing the concept justice is exactly what a new version could achieve.

      Yeah I've always thought theoretically it would be great, but those old games left a lot to the imagination of the player. As soon as youre roaming a 3d environments with unreachable landmasses, the illusion of a living world dies.
      Those pre rendered backgrounds gave the illusion of scale and distance... the players own imagination filled in the blanks and created their own interpretation of the world player is exploring. I probably make no sense, but what I love about final fantasy 7 and 8 isnt what the creators show us, but what they dont show us. My own personal memories.

        This was and still is one of the main reasons why I loved Fable 1 so much. The narrow, snaking paths through each environment were frustrating at first, but as you walked through the world and looked over the knee high fences you couldn't overcome you could see the forests stretching out and away, leading who knows where. I used to think about where those places would lead, if only I could find a way through, but I'm glad I couldn't.

        This is what games like Skyrim fail to capture. In letting you go everywhere, in making the entire map exist in a single space, it actually makes the world seem smaller, not larger. Just because the player asks for more, it doesn't mean you should always give it to them.

      FF8 might be my favorite but even I wouldn't call it sacred. Having replayed it recently it really doesn't hold up near as well to replays like 6 and 7 do. The story just drags so damn hard in so many places throughout the game.
      If a remake ever happened for 8 I'd hope at the very least they change/add to disc 4 because no matter how much you like FF8 you have to admit how obvious it was that they'd run out of budget by that piont.

        Its the easiest to replay for me.

        VII ive been slowly slogging through with IX since I got a Vita last year but VIII was an easy finish.

      Thing is, FF8 and FF9 you could actually get away with remaking. Upgrade the models, rebuild the prerendered areas and you're basically done. There's nothing particularly broken or out of the ordinary or anything, you can take what's there and largely just add a new coat of paint.

      FF7 you couldn't do that with. It has so many bits that are just broken, so many inconsistent parts and ill-fitting elements. It's also such a well-loved game that even thinking about for example ditching the bit with Don Corneo toward the start would be sacrilege.

        What parts are broken and inconsistent in VII?

          The massive tonal shift when you go into Don Corneo's mansion for one? Wutai. Cait Sith and Vincent being all weirdly disconnected. That bit where you go underwater and stuff. Also the general visual look and feel of the game is all over the place. They were making it up as they went and had never worked in 3D before.

            I loved that about the game, it was so tonally bi-polar and weird. I loved that they crammed in so many different things that didn't match. From snowboarding to that awesome Fort Condor mini-game, it wasn't all perfect, but it was really impressive and appreciated. You could tell they gave it everything they had.

              Yeah I'm not saying those were bad, just that it's all over the place and I think that if Squenix were remaking it they'd end up pissing everyone off because they'd want to smooth all those weird edges and pointy bits off it.

              I wish they'd put a shitload of FUN mini games in FFs again.

            I thought the tonal shift between places just made it feel like a bigger world. If I walked into an actual brothel in a real slum, the decor, feel & people's behavior would be very different irl.

            That was my biggest dissapointment with VIII, you'd change continents & it would feel very similar. But then there was Esthar & the final castle to make me feel better.

            The first time I went into battle & chibi disappeared I was a bit shocked.

    Oh MAN I love the world of FFVIII. I have a huge pair of nostalgia goggles for VIII, mainly because it was the first game I ever played and clocked all by myself, but personally I find it to be the warmest, most interesting and expansive world in all of gaming. You get to go to space! WOWEEE! And don't even get me started on the Ragnarok, the bestest most badass ship in all of fiction!

    In regards to the post, I need some side by side comparison photos because I can't even see the difference. It's probably because I've played FFVIII so many times that I can see the backgrounds in my head, which automatically buffs out all the imperfections. I'm sure it's amazing work though!

    Exploring Balamb Garden was the highlight for me of FFVIII. I'd love a remake but it is my least favourite FF except for XIII. The first bit before Rinoa starts throwing teenager hissy fits are great.

    Also, how come Squareenix tell us the reason there's no remake of any of the psone games in the pipelines is because it'd be too much work to recreate everything from scratch when there's one guy who did this on his own in Unreal Engine 4?

    I'm pretty sure there was an interview awhile back where they said they want to succeed with the current FF's before they redo 7.

    I agree with the headline here: a Final Fantasy VIII remake could be a beautiful thing. But simply slapping a layer of glossy HD paint over everything would be a real waste when some of the more fundamental failings of VIII would go unaddressed. If they were ever to remake VIII (which I'd love to see, regardless of how it'd pan out), I'd want to see them go the whole hog.

    The SeeD concept has potential for so much more than a lazy six-hero JRPG when compared to the likes of the similarly themed Fire Emblem, Valkyria Chronicles or MGS Peace Walker games. The story as presented in FF8 has many ideas and themes that either go criminally under-explored or overlooked entirely. The growth mechanics went hideously underpromoted in the game, leading a whole generation of players to whine and moan about Drawing when they could just Refine stuff. And the less I say about the leading lady the better it is for everyone.

    FF8 is my personal favourite FF, and part of the reason why is because it has the most potential as a fixer-upper. Taking the old concept and applying certain new RPG ideas to it would create a new, beautiful, glorious thing.

    8 was my fav (the first FF I played through).
    Recently I started it again on my phone (FPSE emulator).
    I loved how magic was a resource that you could plug into you attributes to buff them up. But because unlimited amounts of magic can be drawn from monsters you can get REALLY strong with a small amount of grinding, it's kinda unbalanced.

    back on topic. That Balamb Garden looks cool.

    Last edited 13/11/14 3:58 pm

      I hear it's unbalanced a lot. I don't disagree but I counter it with the fact, on a first playthrough you wouldn't realise & on subsequent playthrough it makes the game less of a chore & easier to relive the glory.

      You can always choose not to grind.

      Also, you ever beat Omega weapon? Doesn't matter how much you grind, that dood is tough!

        Absolutely, my first playthrough was thinking what the hell is junctioning? Now when I start a new game I'm hoarding 100 water for each character by collecting fish scales (I think) from the beach outside Balamb Garden. You can get incredibly op'd at level 1

        Also, I beat Omega on my first playthrough when I completed the game including collecting all the cards althoughI was a bit miffed you had to give up one of your cards to get Doomtrain, but now I can't seem to get close to beating him :(

        I think I bet him back when I first played. I haven't got that far in the recent play through.

        On my second playthrough some years later, I didnt get game over till disc 3.

    I would cry if they remade this. Nothing would live up to my memory of replaying it for the bajillionth time last year.


    They look bland & lifeless. There's just something about pre-rendered backgrounds that is hard to match in 3 D

      I think it's because the detail level you could get with the prerendered stuff was way beyond what the machine could have rendered otherwise.

        Yeah, putting that level of detail into umpteen hundred 3d models is going to take a lot more time effort and cash than asking someone to draw a nice detailed pic

    As above, 7, 8 & 9 are indeed sacred, besides, the console technology just isn't good enough yet.
    xbox one and PS4 are unworthy scrap.

    Grab yourself a copy of the original on Vita, very playable unlike the eye tearing visuals on an LCD TV.

      FF9 especially has held up really well. On that platform it doesn't feel that dated aside from the random encounters.

        Is the most boring of the three I think.
        The graphics look a smoother and some of the designs are better realised but the story and art dont interest me as much.

        That world map is great though. Ive redone the chocobo treasure hunt thing all the way through 3 times and might do it a fourth on Vita, see how I go.

        I dunno what the problem is with random encounters, never bothered me.
        I do enjoy games that take into account how the beast touched you before that battle meaning you have to stay aware while adventuring.
        All thos field abilities you learnt in Blue Dragon were great. The bomb to stun and the sphere that just ate low level monsters and automatically granted you half exp so you didnt have to fuck around when back tracking were great.

    God, those images gave me such a powerful pang of nostalgia. That whole period of VII, VIII & IX was such a golden age of gaming for me. Not sure how I feel about a re-make, but those pictures sure luck purtttty.

    Has there ever been a remake that was 100% faithful, with nothing but a visual upgrade? That's all we want.

      Perfect Dark Arcade and the Banjo Kazooies
      FFX was almost exactly the same but they tweaked the music, for the better though.

      These were all games that were fully 3D already.

      Id like to see a remake of these keeping the prerendered BGs and just smoothing out the 3D models if they HAD to do a remake.

    Just to add to that nostalgia trip https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1eU0tRBHnE0

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