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For the PS3 tech demo, see: Final Fantasy VII Technical Demo

The Final Fantasy VII Demo was a BETA release of Final Fantasy VII released in 1996 and was the first playable demo of the game released. It appeared on Square's Preview Extra, released with Tobal No. 1 in Japan and North America. Square's Preview Extra also contained a video preview of Final Fantasy Tactics, as well as Bushido Blade and SaGa Frontier.

The demo includes only the opening bombing missions right up until the explosion. While the basics were the same as seen in the final game, there were a few notable changes to the game. Other differences were used in the demo as a taster of the full game, such as the inclusion of ready-leveled-up materia, a Summon, and a third party member, Aeris. She does not appear outside of battle, however.

The translation is very different, and some terms are different, an example being "Makoro plants" instead of "Mako Reactors," and SOLDIER are spoken of as actual soldiers instead of an organization.


Opening sequence

Opening text

The opening sequence is largely the same as the original. The biggest difference is the text appearing in the starry sky which tells the opening story of Final Fantasy VII. In the game, the story is picked up on only as the game proceeds.

""Shinra Company" --- A large conglomerate that possesses all of the world's energy and controls its politics.

Outraged by the Shinra,the inhabitants formed the revel group 'Avalanche' to resist them.

After coming into contact with Avalanche in a bar, Cloud joins their demolition mission in return for a large reward.

Their target is the Shinra power plant Makoro.

The only other difference is the text beneath the Square logo, which reads "1996 SQUARE" instead of "1997 SQUARE".

Events and restrictions

The menu is not accessible in the demo; therefore, Materia and items are inaccessible except during battles. The characters cannot level up and will remain at levels 9 (only Aeris) and 10 during the entire demo. It is very difficult to die during the demo unless it is tried deliberately.

Helping Biggs, an event not in the final version

Areas are slightly different. Jessie will also get stuck in a different area, just further on her path. Biggs can be found collapsed in the area next to the stairs, and much like the situation with Jessie, the player will have to use the activate button to get him to move. He will claim he was attacked by a guard from behind. Oddly, he wasn't arrested.

There is no save point, as you cannot save your data in the demo.

The scene where the screen goes red and Cloud reacts is missing. If you run out of time before you escape the reactor, it will still say Mission Complete.

Once the timer is activated, the player will get just three minutes to escape instead of the original ten. Instead of the timer appearing in the top-right, a message will appear on the screen reading "3 minutes until detonation", "2 minutes remaining" and so on. Time in battles does not decrease the time, however.

Graphics and display

Note the difference in Cloud's eyes

The battle models have slight differences, as do the out of battle models. This can be seen in character's eyes, which appear as soulless black ovals instead of the more life-like eyes seen in the game. Cloud's menu portrait uses the young Cloud portrait, as seen during the Kalm flashback to the Nibelheim Incident.

The after-battle screen

When a character is speaking, their words are not shown beneath their name as in the actual game. Instead, the demo version presents their name, a colon, and then spacing before it shows what they said.

Messages in battle, such as the name of the enemy attack, appear taller than in the full game.

Music and sound

Controls screen in the menu
"Menu music"
Trouble with the audio sample?

Four pieces of music are featured in the demo. The first plays on the opening menu screen of the demo which isn't used in the final version. The next piece of music plays the same as in the opening of the final version, Opening ~ Bombing Mission, with only minor differences.

In the same place as the final version, preceding the terminals, Mako Reactor will start playing. This version of the track is slightly different to the final. The sounds are slightly different. Those Who Fight appears as the battle music at this point, again, sounding slightly different to the final version but using the same notes. Notably, there is no Victory Fanfare.

Against the boss, Those Who Fight Further does not play, instead the Opening ~ Bombing Mission plays, which continues playing until the end of the demo.


All of the characters have the same name except for Jessie, who is named "Jesse." In the demo, players cannot name their characters, so at the start of the game, Cloud appears in battle as "Cloud" instead of "Ex-SOLDIER".


Just three items appear in the demo. All three are basic, restorative items. The only difference in names is "Hi-Potion" was "Hi potion", lacking a dash and starting the second word with lower case.

Items such as the two Potions retrieved from the guards at the beginning are not present, nor is the Restore materia on the bridge before planting the bomb.

Demo name Final name Demo effect Final effect
Potion Potion Restores 100 HP Restores 100 HP
Hi potion Hi-Potion Restores 500 HP Restores 1,000 HP
Ether Ether Restores 50 MP Restores 100 MP


The Attack command is called "Fight" in the demo, the same as it was called in the six previous installments of the Final Fantasy.

The Limit Break command is called "Special", despite still being called "LIMIT BREAK" in the Japanese version of the demo.

Aeris can only use the Healing Wind Special technique, and Barret can only use Heavy shot, the demo's name for Big Shot. Cloud has access to both Braver and Cross Slash, however, they function differently to the full game as Braver temporarily paralyzes an enemy and Cross Slash does not, the opposite appears in the full game.


Many more spells appear in the demo version that aren't available at this time of the story in the full game. Bolt, Ice, and Fire all appear up to their second stages, Demi appears without an upgrade, though with the same power as Demi2 has in the final version, and all three levels of the Cure spell are available, but Regen is not, despite being in between Cure2 and Cure3 in the full game. Many MP costs are also far smaller than in the full game, likely due to huge MP consumption they would use otherwise. All the spells' animations are the same, bar Ice 2.

The only name differences in Magic materia is the lack of spacing between the spell names and their spell levels. So "Ice2" is called "Ice 2" in the demo.

When an All materia is equipped to another, selecting that materia will give you the option to cast it on All opponents, or just a single opponent. It will also tell you how much more times you can use the All option, changing depending on the level of All materia, although not possible in the demo.

Demo name Final name Demo MP Final MP Effect
Bolt Bolt 4 4 Weak lightning elemental attack
Bolt 2 Bolt2 8 22 Moderate lightning elemental attack
Cure Cure 5 5 Weak HP restoration
Cure 2 Cure2 20 24 Moderate HP restoration
Cure 3 Cure3 40 64 Strong HP restoration
Demi Demi* 5 14* Halves target's HP*
Fire Fire 4 4 Weak fire elemental damage
Fire 2 Fire 2 8 22 Moderate fire elemental damage
Ice Ice 4 4 Weak ice elemental damage
Ice 2 Ice2 8 22 Moderate ice elemental damage
*In the demo, Demi is equivalent to Demi2. In the final version, Demi only reduces quarter of the enemy's health. For the same effect in the final version, Demi 2 costs 33 MP.


Only one summon features in the demo. Leviathan uses the Tsunami attack for a cost of 40 MP. The Tsunami attack is the same attack as Tidal Wave as seen in the full game, just with a different name. The MP cost is also far less than seen in the full game (78 MP).


The demo version of the boss battle

The majority of the enemies appearing in the demo version did appear during the bombing mission in the full game. However, only two of the enemies retained their name from the this demo version, these being the same enemies that don't appear here in the full game. Other enemies have had their enemy name pluralized despite appearing alone.

The Guard Scorpion does not appear as the boss, but is replaced by a larger version of the Sweeper, who is not a normal enemy, accompanied and two Grunts.

Only one enemy appears which does not in the full game, the Grenadiers, which is a recolor of the Security Troops (MP) and therefore not the Grenade Combatants seen later in the game.

1st Ray, Mono Drive, and the ordinary Sweeper are the only random encounters not featured in the demo that do feature in the Sector 1 Reactor mission.

The below abilities in italics are not named in games, and therefore the name recorded for the full game is used.

Demo name Final name Exp AP GP Abilities
Combatants Grunt 31 2 80 Beam gun, Handclaw
Deenglow Deenglow 40 2 15 Ice, Wing Cutter
Grenadiers N/A 24 2 40 Grenade, Machine gun
Guard Hounds Guard Hound 18 1 20 Bite, Feeler
Hedgehog Pie Hedgehog Pie 8 1 5 Bodyblow, Fire
Security Troops MP 12 1 25 Machine gun, Tonfa
Sweepers Sweeper 289 2 200 Double, Machine gun, Smoke shot


The CASE used for enemy attacks is different. Instead of "Machine Gun", the attack is called "Machine gun". Other ability names are also different.

Demo name Final name Description Enemies
Beam gun Beam Gun Shoots a blue beam. Non-elemental attack. Combatants
Double W Machine Gun Shoots machine gun bullets from both guns. Non-elemental damage. Sweepers
Feeler Tentacle Attacks with tentacle. Non-elemental damage. Guard Hounds
Fire Fire Minor fire-elemental damage. Hedgehog Pie
Grenade Hand Grenade Explosive damage to a single target. Grenadiers
Ice Ice Minor ice-elemental damage. Deenglow
Machine gun Machine Gun Fires machine gun. Non-elemental damage. Security Troops
Smoke shot Smoke Shot Fires smoke. Non-elemental damage. Sweepers


Enemy formations are largely different. One formation used features a Security Troops enemy standing directly next to a Guard Hounds enemy, twice. Another formation is six Hedgehog Pies in a 3-2-1 formation.

This article uses material from the "Final Fantasy VII Demo" article on the Final Fantasy wiki at Wikia and is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike License.


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