There's all kinds of temptations in the big city. I'd feel better if I knew you'd found a good girl to help keep you out of trouble.
Claudia on Cloud's love life
Being Cloud's mother, she resembles him, with a similar hair style and color but with a ponytail. Cloud describes her as "vibrant". She is not named in the original version, apart from in concept art, but is called "Claudia Strife" in Final Fantasy VII Remake.
Claudia makes a cameo in Crisis Core -Final Fantasy VII-, standing at Nibelheim’s town square, but Zack can only interact with her with generic dialogue. Zack receives mail from Cloud inviting him to come over to her house and try her cooking. Her overall look is different, but her facial textures are similar to her son's.
In Final Fantasy VII Remake, Claudia briefly appears in a flashback sequence earlier than in the original game.
Claudia is a middle aged woman with blonde hair and blue eyes. In the original, she has hair up in a ponytail and wears an orange dress with a white apron and brown shoes. In Crisis Core, her hair is shorter and down and she wears a brown shirt with an apron and green pants. In the Remake, she retains design elements from Crisis Core.
Claudia raised Cloud as a single parent, since his father died when he was young. When Cloud left to join SOLDIER, she remains alone in her house in Nibelheim. When Cloud returns with Sephiroth in the fateful mission, Cloud meets with his mother who worries about him, especially concerning girls. Cloud's memory fails about the rest of the conversation.
Due to Cloud's fragmented memory of his meeting with her, it is likely Cloud's psyche has suppressed the actual details of the conversation to maintain continuity with his adopted persona of Zack Fair. When she supposes Cloud to have been made a SOLDIER, she remarks about his "SOLDIER" uniform. Cloud responds as if he needs to confess something, at which point the memory skips. This is likely because Cloud was actually wearing a Shinra MP uniform.
Because Claudia is among the people killed when Sephiroth ravages Nibelheim, when Cloud visits his old house in the rebuilt Nibelheim, he finds one of the stand-ins whom Professor Hojo employed as part of the cover-up, who claims she has lived there her whole life.
In Final Fantasy VII Remake, when Cloud is confronted by Sephiroth after blowing up Sector 8's mako reactor, he mocks Cloud with the reminder that his mother was killed not by the fire that he had caused, but by his very blade. Sephiroth claims that Claudia had pleaded him to spare Cloud, causing Cloud to remember the Nibelheim Incident where he laid on the ground, powerless to save his mother.
Behind the scenes
In her concept artwork by Tetsuya Nomura, she is named "Claudia Strauss" (クラウディア・ストラウス, Kuraudia Sutorausu?) and is said to be 33 years old. She was never given a name in the games or related materials, instead referred to as "Cloud's Mom" in guides, until Final Fantasy VII Remake, which used the first name "Claudia". Since Cloud's mother and Tifa's father both had names in the original Final Fantasy VII character design documents, the developers decided to use them in the remake.
According to the Crisis Core Complete Guide, her specialty dish is stew.
- Final Fantasy Ultimania Archive Volume 2, p.062
- Final Fantasy 25th Memorial Ultimania Volume 2, p.062
- Sal Romano. Final Fantasy Portal Site: Digging Deep into the World of Final Fantasy VII Remake special interview part one. Gematsu. Archived from the original on 16:17, August 06, 2020 (UTC).