Final Fantasy 7 Remake Was Delayed To The Worst Possible Day

final fantasy 7 remake release date good friday

People are comfortable buying games digitally, but in Australia there's plenty of circumstances where an old-fashioned brick and mortar dealer offers a better physical deal — especially for console gamers.

Unfortunately, if you were hoping to have a choice for Final Fantasy 7 Remake, that's going to get a lot harder with FF7R being delayed to the no-shopping day, Good Friday.

Square Enix announced earlier this morning that the Final Fantasy 7 Remake had been delayed by just over a month to April 10, from its original launch day of March 3. Yoshinori Kitase, producer of the game, said the delay was necessary "to apply final polish to the game".

What wasn't noted, however, was that April 10 happens to be Good Friday - a day when trading hours in Australia, and many countries in the West, are restricted. Good Friday is one of the regular public holidays that is observed nationwide, as is customary, and Good Friday and Easter Sunday fall under what's called "restricted trading periods".

This means that, unless a business has a specific exemption from the government, they're not allowed to be open on either of those days. There's only five restricted trading days in New South Wales:

  • Good Friday
  • Easter Sunday
  • Anzac Day (restrictions are in force before 1pm only)
  • Christmas Day
  • Boxing Day (restrictions are only outside the Sydney Trading Precinct).

Restricted trading days exist to give retail workers some guaranteed time off with family and friends over the course of the year, but businesses can apply to NSW Fair Trading for an exemption. Small shop retailers are automatically exempt under NSW law, but a business like EB Games would never apply for that exemption under the Retail Trading Act:

(1) A shop is exempted from a requirement under this Act to be kept closed at a particular time if it complies with the requirements of this section.

(2) The occupier or occupiers of the shop must be:

(a) natural persons not exceeding 2 in number (whether or not carrying on the business of the shop in partnership) or 1 corporation, and
(b) the owner or owners of the business of the shop and entitled to the profits of that business.

(3) The number of persons engaged in the shop as employees or otherwise in the conduct of the business of the shop on any day (either at the same time or at different times) is not to exceed 4.

(4) The number of persons permitted to be engaged in a small shop as referred to in subsection (3) does not include:

(a) the occupier or occupiers or, if the occupier is a corporation, not more than 2 natural persons who are shareholders of the corporation, or (b) any person so engaged in an emergency during the absence from the shop for part of a day of a person who is so engaged in the shop on that day, or
(c) any person so engaged outside the normal working hours of any person so engaged on a full-time basis.

The United States has it a little easier: GameStop is typically open on Good Friday, Easter Sunday and Easter Monday, closing only on Christmas Day and New Year's Day. Good Friday is more strictly observed in the UK and Canada, and certain parts of Europe also close down for Good Friday. Many German businesses, for instance, are closed over Good Friday, Easter Sunday and Easter Monday, but not Easter Saturday.

One country where Good Friday isn't observed, naturally, is Japan. And that's probably where the basis of this call was made: it's not a public holiday in Japan, and Square HQ probably didn't think it would be an issue anywhere else. But in a lot of Western countries, it puts gamers into a really awkward spot: if they can't collect their pre-order the day before, they'll have to either wait until Saturday or the following week to start playing, or they'll have to pay full price digitally, which is around $20 more here than what brick and mortar retailers are charging.

Kotaku Australia has emailed EB Games to ask what their plan is to handle the delay, but we haven't heard back at the time of publish. A JB staffer at one major Sydney store Kotaku Australia spoke to confirmed they would be closed and, due to the global embargo, there was no possibility of JB releasing pre-orders a day early for fans. This would mean people would have to pick up their pre-orders on the Saturday, if the store they ordered from was open, unless they wanted to cancel their pre-order and buy digital. Another major JB store confirmed that all JB Hi-Fi stores would be shut on Good Friday, but the manager we spoke to said there was "a chance" that Square Enix might move the release forward a day, although they couldn't outline where they got that information from.

Still, hopefully the public pressure will convince Square to shift the release a day forward or a week back to stave off a nightmare.


    I'm fine with this, I'll just be picking my game up the moment JB opens up then zipping home to download the prerequisite 500tb patch no doubt...

    Oh no! People will have to wait a whole day before buying a game! A whole day! It's cruel and unusual punishment I tell you.

    Sarcasm aside, it just means you can use the Friday to play through the original and get your grump on so you can be ready to complain how the new game is nothing like the original.

      haha. I feel for the kids. A whole day is equivalent to like a week for them.

      Considering we've been waiting many years for this, I'm not sure why needing to wait an extra day at this point is a problem.

    I absolutely hate that nothing is open on Good Friday. It is, by far, the most boring day of the year because, unless you like footy, you basically can't do anything.

      Maaaaate if you think Good Friday is boring, get into the education field. Last day of every term. They always drag on like a sonovabitch. lol

    Have to wonder what sort of improvements they could make in the space of a month? Feels more like giving the team(s) extra time to make the Day one can bet they'll be big!

      That's usually it - fixing the biggest game-crashing bugs that players are likely to run into, not so much dealing with edge cases.

    Good old First World Problems. I'm sure everyone's life will go on if they have to wait 1 day. Geez.

    The deluxe version is the same price digitally or EB, so will be going with digital. Sucks though cause I fly out to Japan a few days later. It’ll be a whole month before I can play it now.

      I was IN Japan for the release of Bloodborne, which I had been eagerly anticipating with collector edition etc.

      I couldn’t play it until weeks after launch! And I was in the country that made it! There were events!

      I considered actually buying a Japanese PS4 just to play while I was there.

        I remember when Advent Children came out on bluray (the extended cut) and I was flying out of Okinawa on the day. Picked it up on the way to the airport and watched when I got home. It’s going to be a painful month waiting to play this... (1st world problems hey)

    The EB I work at is open Easter Sunday and Boxing Day and is outside of Sydney... and they had 6 people on all day last Boxing Day so explain that one.

      EB has been fined for violating Australian trading rules multiple times.

    If they'd like to delay it another month so it's not the week before Cyberpunk, that'd be rad.

    Funnily enough, when I was living in Texas in the US a decade ago, Easter wasn’t celebrated at all. I was surprised how much of a non event it was, and having to turn up to work on both the Friday and Monday after being used to it being a holiday in Australia.

    Looking into this from a skeptical point of view. They probably had a long hard look at Avengers and not only delayed it by 4 months, but pulled their projections right back. With a potential bomb in their 2020 fiscal year and no other major releases, they decided to push back the guaranteed money maker FFVIIR 1 month, to after the end of the current fiscal year on 31/3. Their 2019 would be fine with KHIII and Shadowbringers, they don't need another huge hit.

    Religious holidays should not affect retail trading.
    I can understand Anzac Day but we are not all religious and there shouldn’t be rules around this.

      Cool story bro, hope you get to do a shift all day on Christmas

        Christmas is religious in some way? Man, I thought it was all about presents, catching up with rellies you'd otherwise have nothing to do with and stuffs.

          Christmas has a religious basis, just like Good Friday. You don’t get to pick and choose which ones you get to keep.

            Really? Most of America, and the rest of the world for that matter, seems to think they can choose not to celebrate Good Friday.

            And why aren't we celebrating the St. Stephen's Day public holiday, like they do in Ireland? Or Epiphany, like they do in Belgium, Germany and Greece?

            Of course we get to choose which ones we keep.

            Christmas long ago lost its religious basis. Its a secular holiday now.

            Not to mention it wasnt even a Christian holiday to being with, The pagans say hello.

            Sorry but someone else's imaginary friend should not dictate when I can or can't go to the shops.

    Oh well, by the time it's Friday in America and Europe it'll be Saturday here anyway.

    Remember when we had to wait YEARS for Final Fantasy games to get released here? I'm sure an extra day won't kill anyone.

    Last edited 15/01/20 9:43 pm

    I hope for everyone else’s sake that the pressure works and squenix brings it forward a day, but I shall be unaffected, buying digital and making perfect use of the holiday.

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