A fan of the Final Fantasy series spent three years recording the gameplay and all the cutscenes in Dissidia’s mobile game Final Fantasy Opera Omnia to post them on his YouTube channel after the project closed, reports The Verge.

February 29 was the last day of Dissidia’s support for Final Fantasy Opera Omnia, a mobile game based on Square Enix’s Final Fantasy fighting game series. After its launch in 2018, the game brought together over 170 characters from the 30-year history of Final Fantasy, spread across four acts that represent hundreds of hours of unplayable gameplay. Although Opera Omnia has officially ceased to exist, one person has taken it upon himself to make sure the game doesn’t disappear forever.

“On June 6th 2021 I began to work towards my goal of recording and rendering every Dissidia Final Fantasy Opera Omnia cutscene and upload[ing] them to YouTube,” wrote Hatok, a video editor and self-described video game enthusiast.

Hatok recreated the entire Opera Omnia game, recording everything it had to offer. Khatok didn’t just shoot raw footage: he made sure that the saved scenes included characters with their canonical weapons, and that there were no random characters in the battle scenes. This added a considerable amount of time to the project, as each scene had to be reviewed twice.

“With the battle scenes, I also wanted to ensure they matched the story and weren’t just full of [a] random party of characters. So I’d watch through them once, make a note of any characters who spoke, and then reference the scene directly before or after to determine which characters should be in the fight and where they should be positioned,” Hatok says.

The end result was two terabytes of data with more than 100 hours of footage, which was collected intermittently over three years.

Khatok explains that he was introduced to the Final Fantasy series late in life and that Opera Omnia was the only mobile game that really hooked him.

Final Fantasy

The gameplay combined with an ambitious story took the game beyond the typical mobile gacha. Opera Omnia spanned the entire Final Fantasy storyline, creating stories that offered more insight into the characters and their motivations, such as Lightning’s story from Final Fantasy XIII.

“Lightning Returns is heavily focused on doing side quests, and they take that and explore what it is about her that drives her to help people,” Hatok says.

The prevarication of mobile games by uploading segments to YouTube is nothing new; fans have already done similar projects, such as Dragalia Lost. In fact, Square Enix did something similar for Opera Omnia. But, according to Hatok, this is not enough-the company did not record any fight scenes at all.

He emphasizes the importance of fight scenes, calling them connective tissue. Without them, individual cutscenes can lose their coherence and valuable context.

In Square Enix’s official download, cutscenes will directly reference events that took place in the missing battle scenes, creating a hole in the narrative, while characters will appear and disappear from the story without any explanation.