The Final Fantasy VII Remake game has taken the world by storm, and everyone is flocking to Midgar. Have you jumped on the wild train yet? Without giving too much away – because this IS a spoiler-free zone – one of the great and commendable things about this remake of the original, released in 1997, is the characterization. Gamers didn’t get a chance to get to know many characters in the original game, but now, in this hella fleshed out remake game, the characters are brought to life with voice actors, quirks and backstories – you start to grow more attached to these folks.
But let’s put aside the obvious favorite characters we know and love – aka Cloud and Tifa. Now that I’ve finally finished the game in 60 wonderful hours, I want to talk about a character I never thought I’d end up loving and I feel is underappreciated, both then and even now.
Y’all know him and you will learn to love him: Barret. He’s the loud, ambitious and fearless leader of Avalanche, and he’s the bad ass bro with a machine gun for an arm.
Need some convincing? Here are the five reasons we should love and appreciate Barret:
1) He is major dad goals.
Have you seen this man with his daughter Marlene? You know, sweet as an angel, cute as a button – aka the most adorable CGI child ever. Even though Barret’s gone a lot for Avalanche activities and missions, Marlene still adores her father, and it’s obvious why. He dotes on her and protects her at all costs, and he wants to make the world a better place, free from evil corporations like Shinra and a-holes like Sephiroth.
Also, Barret almost has a switch when he’s around his daughter, and it showcases different sides to his character. She brings out even more lovable qualities in him. When he’s out on the field, he’s a gruff, tough, rugged big man with a plan, but as soon as it comes to Marlene, that seemingly impenetrable exterior breaks down and he’s putty to protect her. He’s the typical teddy bear you just want to hug when he’s vulnerable, but you also don’t wanna poke the papa bear when he’s angry.
2) He brought together the Avalanche crew.
One of the best things in the first half of this installment of Final Fantasy VII Remake is the Avalanche crew. These are the characters you barely interacted with, aside from the missions, and never got to know in the original, but the remake changes that by a lot. In a nutshell, the Avalanche team is group dynamic goals, and Barret is the ringleader who wrangled up this group of misfits and rallied them together for a worthy cause.
By day they run together causing ruckus toward their goal, and by night they’re palling around at Seventh Heaven for drinks and grub and darts, teasing and jabbing at each other. (And it is hilarious when Barret tries to hug Biggs, but Biggs hella swerves out of it, leaving Barret disappointed with a “Cmon, man…”)
And tell me who isn’t jealous when the Avalanche group demonstrates how close of bros they are when they can look at each other’s asses, no questions asked, for assessing battle damage. Who wants to join Avalanche with me?!
3) Big Bertha
Can we talk for a minute about how clutch Barret’s weapon range is in combat? In the original, it didn’t quite matter as much. However, in the Remake, for those enemies Cloud and Tifa can’t reach suspended in the air, Barret takes care of them with his arm machine gun. But the best weapon he gets in the game, in my personal opinion, is Big Bertha.
First of all, Big Bertha is the also the name of the big drum at University of Texas at Austin, which is where I went to college, so yeah. There’s that. But, no, really – Big Bertha has the bad ass ability of “Maximum Fury.” It requires two ATB bars, but it’s worth it. Even though other stronger weapons came my way, I stuck to Big Bertha being equipped, ‘cause it does the most damage and has a greater chance of Staggering enemies.
4) Barret dancing in Wall Market.
Real talk, I never would have witnessed the greatness that is Barret sporting dance moves when he thinks nobody’s looking if it weren’t for Twitter. He might be dancing elsewhere, but this particular clip is taken from one of the Chapter 14 side quests in Wall Market, which kinda happens during a low point of the game. In the midst of despair spread among the population, Barret still finds the spirit in him to dance along to some jams on the jukebox, and it’s quite entertaining and uplifting.
5) Barret singing the Battle Victory theme.
The mere seconds it takes Barret to loudly and proudly sing the game’s victory theme after a battle were the best seconds of the Remake’s demo and the Remake itself. Admittedly, the original game’s victory theme isn’t played as often – literally after every battle – so it was greatly appreciated to hear someone pay homage to a classic tune and in such a spirited way. That’s all – that’s my point.
Was I victorious in turning you into a Barret fan? Tell me in the comments who your favorite character is from Final Fantasy VII Remake!