Final Fantasy director Testuya Nomura spoke about the forthcoming Final Fantasy VII remake in Famitsu earlier this month. He, among other things, allegedly explained how the studio redesigned Tifa Lockhart per the request of Square Enix’s ethics team, but a look at the whole interview has shed more light on the process, confirming the original report wasn’t entirely accurate. Credits for the corrections goes to YouTuber gaijin hunter, who works in Japan as a games translator, and Kotaku’s Brian Ashcraft.
As Nomura explained, the studio aimed to make Tifa’s attire more realistic, using “referencing military (wear) for Tifa’s suspenders and martial arts and biker (wear) for the gloves.” However, while they’ve “aimed to increase the minute details,” her silhouette is identical to her 1997 design. The team also sought to emphasize the character’s athletic nature, and defined her abs accordingly. Regarding her chest, “there were also directions from [Square Enix’s] internal ethics committee that as not to make even the most intense action look unnatural it was necessary to bind [Tifa’s] chest. And thus, for her simple upper body clothing, we put a black undergarment with a fitting tank top for a fitness-conscious, sporty design.”
Ultimately, they wanted to fine-tune the clothing Tifa Lockhart wore so it made sense for the character and her profession. There was not a conscious effort to reduce her chest size as originally reported, nor did Nomura even use that phrase.
Square Enix’s multipart Final Fantasy VII remake has been highly-anticipated since its announcement in 2015. The first part will focus on the iconic Midgar section of the game, and it will launch for the PlayStation 4 on March 3, 2020.