Final Fantasy Wiki

The following is a list of version differences between releases of Final Fantasy VIII.



The original version of Final Fantasy VIII was released in Japan on February 11, 1999.

North America and Europe[]

The western versions of the game underwent a number of changes from the Japanese version:

  • By default, the localized versions of the game use X to confirm, Triangle to cancel, Circle to enter the menu. The Japanese version uses Circle to confirm, X to cancel, and Triangle to enter the menu.
  • Versions outside of Japan use icons for elements and statuses, and the icons for Guardian Force abilities are different.
  • Tutorials now show up automatically in the game's storyline.
  • Junction exchanging between party members is added.
  • Zell's favorite food is changed from flavored bread to hot dogs.
  • Torama, Iron Giant, Elnoyle and Behemoth have different HP formulas.
  • Attempting to leave Balamb Garden the first time without having obtained Quezacotl and Shiva from the Study Panel will result in Quistis giving them to the player, rather than allowing the player to leave without any Guardian Forces.
  • In the Fire Cavern, the player merely has to defeat Ifrit to stop the timer, rather than having to also return to the entrance.
  • Some Guardian Forces can now be obtained in Ultimecia Castle if the player previously missed them.
  • Some depictions are toned down:
    • The weapon Selphie wields is called "nunchaku" in the NTSC versions and "shinobou" in the English PAL version. This doesn't apply to the Italian, Spanish, German and French versions.
    • Gerogero's organs are changed from red to blue.
    • General Caraway's armband is changed from red to blue.
    • The red blood in Ultimecia Castle's armory is changed to green.

Greatest Hits version[]

  • The first sentence of Bahamut's Scan description in the English language release had a spelling mistake, reading "Called the King of GF; its Mega Flare ignores all defense, giving a powerful blo". In the PlayStation Greatest Hits (Platinum) release, this error is corrected so that the first line ends with simply "ignores all defense".

Microsoft Windows[]

The PC versions were released in 2000 with several alterations, some of which still linger in later versions:

  • Higher-quality character and GF models and portraits are used.
  • Higher-resolution 480p FMVs are used, albeit with macroblocking.
  • UV mapping issues are present.
  • A new typeface is used.
  • Saving, loading, and screen transitions are now much quicker.
    • Two game folders with 30 save slots each replace the memory cards with 15 slots each.
  • Controller button prompts are labeled B1-10.
  • Controller vibration is removed.
  • Analog movement is removed; movement is limited to 8 directions.
  • Dual-stick vehicle controls are not featured.
  • Several keys are removed from the organ in Ultimecia Castle: L1 SO, R1 LA, L2 TE, and R2 DO.
  • The music is mixed down to MIDI quality to compensate for the sound hardware available at the time.
  • A Sound slider is added to the Config menu, controlling the volume of the SFX, replacing the option for mono sound.
  • The Credits for the PC version can be viewed from the main menu.
  • The Chocobo World game can be played on Windows instead of PocketStation.
  • The introduction before the title screen is now out of sync.
  • The battle UI operates at 15 FPS instead of 60. Because of this, selection is more sluggish, the cursor doesn't flicker, GF boosting is harder, and Limit Break inputs are harder.
  • Certain visual and sound effects are missing or altered, particularly with GF attacks.
  • The game can suffer from slowdown at times, particularly during Rinoa's Wishing Star, Eden's Eternal Breath, Gilgamesh's abilities, Jumbo Cactuar's abilities, and the battles against Ultimecia.
  • Background music resets after battles.
Behemoth card on the PS
Behemoth card on the PC
  • The Triple Triad card faces use the whole render of the subject at times, rather than a close-up.
  • Siren's Tool-RF can refine 1 Dark Matter from 100 Curse Spikes at any time instead of having to get Siren to level 100.
  • Omega Weapon scales around the party levels instead of always being level 100.


The Steam version released in 2013, and is an upscaled version of the original PC release, with a number of changes:

  • Windows XP and newer are supported.
  • A launcher is implemented before accessing the game. Here, settings can be changed and data not stored in save files viewed.
    • 45 achievements are added to the game.
    • A cloud save feature allows files to be saved to the internet and synced to the web. This does not replace local saves.
    • Controls can be set from the launcher as well as in-game. The ability to change controls from the launcher means minigames and menus that use different control setups will still function with the user's chosen controls.
    • A Magic Booster feature is added, supplying the player with various spells.
    • Screen resolutions up to 1920x1080 are supported.
    • Windowed mode is available.
    • Linear filtering can be enabled.
    • Fixed aspect ratio can be enabled.
    • Original Graphic Mode can be enabled.
  • FMVs are reencoded and upscaled from the original PC version to 720p (1280x896 PAL) with additional post-processing, resulting in a blurrier look.
  • Several other game boosters are added:
    • High Speed Mode (F1), which increases the game speed by about 5x. The speed is somewhat inconsistent and can crash the game during FMVs.
    • Battle Assistance (F2), which keeps the party's HP and ATB gauges full, makes Limit Breaks always available, and prevents damage from enemies and status ailments. Characters can still be KOed when incurring more damage than their max HP.
    • 9999 (F3), which makes all player-dealt damage and healing have a value of 9999, excluding some Limit Breaks and GF attacks.
    • AP MAX (F4), which sets the level and AP of all acquired GFs to max when used on the world map. May not function properly when used during event cutscenes.
    • Magic and Gil MAX (F5), which sets the inventory of each acquired spell to 100 and sets gil to the maximum limit. Cannot be used on menu screens, during cutscenes, in battle, or at shops.
  • The Square Enix logo appears before the "Published By Square Electronic Arts" text and the Squaresoft logo.

Final Fantasy VIII Remastered[]

An enhanced remaster of Final Fantasy VIII was released on September 3rd, 2019 for PlayStation 4, Xbox One, Nintendo Switch and Steam, then later on iOS and Android on March 25, 2021, and on Windows 10 on November 12, 2021, in celebration of the game's 20th anniversary, featuring a number of major changes while incorporating a number of features that were absent in the 2013 Steam version:

  • The Steam version uses a new launcher, with up to 4K resolution supported, albeit with the aspect ratio still locked to 4:3.
    • The Magic Booster is removed.
    • The Original Graphic Mode and Keep Aspect Ratio options are not available.
    • The world map and battleground scenes have linear filtering applied, with no option to disable it.

Rinoa comparison.

Brothers comparison.

Siren's new model.

  • Character models and portraits, GF models and portraits, weapon models, environment models, and card artwork are all remodeled and retextured.
    • Graphical improvements to characters include new hairstyles, faces, and additional animations to accessories. Squall and Rinoa resemble their appearances in Dissidia Final Fantasy NT. Other Non-playable characters have a more detailed look.
    • Weapons have more depth; for example, the barrel on Squall's Revolver gunblade is fully rendered in 3D, as opposed to all the gunblades being flat.
    • Some GFs have more pronounced features, such as the teeth on each of the Brothers. The summon model for Siren is more covered up by feathers compared to her original model, though her original model is still displayed on her Triple Triad card.
  • Animation effects in spells and command actions are updated.
  • Anti-aliasing is added.
  • 2D UI elements are redesigned.
  • A new typeface and dropshadow are used.
  • FMVs are upscaled, but are based on the compressed versions from the original Steam release.
  • Backgrounds are upscaled with bilinear filtering, but they're blurrier, adding a large contrast between them and the updated character models, as well as the untouched characters built into the 2D backgrounds.
  • Slowdown issues are fixed.
  • The music from the original PlayStation version is used.
  • The Quezacotl audio bug is fixed.
  • The missing portals in Leviathan and Tonberry's summon animations and clouds in Bahamut's summon animation are restored.
  • BGM no longer resets after a battle.
  • The full versions of "Ride On" and "Movin'" play when boarding the Ragnarok and after the Lunar Cry FMV respectively.
  • Full controller support is featured with appropriate icons. Controls are remapped as appropriate for each platform. A screen will detail the remappings upon starting a new game. Some features (e.g. gunblade triggers) are not directly documented, though they still work as closely to the original PlayStation controller as possible.
    • The default controls for opening the menu and cancel are now Triangle and Circle respectively, rather than the opposite. Otherwise, the PlayStation 4 version matches the original layout button-for-button with the North American configuration. As in prior ports, the TOUCH PAD replaces SELECT while OPTIONS replaces START. On Xbox One, VIEW replaces SELECT while MENU replaces START. On Nintendo Switch, MINUS replaces SELECT while PLUS replaces START.
    • Control configuration is removed from the console versions. Controls are customizable in the Steam version; pressing F9 or Right trigger & the Right Stick in the main menu will display the control mapping. Also, pressing the Esc key will open the System Menu.
    • The soft reset button combination is replaced with a new Exit option, added to the menu.
  • A brand new title screen is shown after the Square Enix, Dotemu and Access Games logos on PS4, Switch, Steam and Windows 10.
    • Pressing any button or key or tapping the screen will go straight into the Squaresoft logo.
      • On Xbox One, iOS and Android, the new title screen is right before the Square Enix, Dotemu, Access Games and Squaresoft logos. It is in a reversed order for title screen and the developer logos right before the Squaresoft logo.
  • Credits for personnel involved in the port can be viewed in the "Credits" option on the main menu. "The Landing" plays during this sequence.
  • A "Select Profile" option is added in the main menu in the Xbox One version. It also shows the current signed-in profile on the top right of the main menu. This option was removed in the Windows 10 version, but the current signed-in profile is still shown.
  • Chocobo World is removed. Its exclusive items can still be obtained via Angelo Search.
    • Boko can use his upgraded attacks natively based on Squall's level: 7-24 = ChocoFire, 25-49 = ChocoFlare, 50-74 = ChocoMeteor, and 75-100 = ChocoBocle.
  • The PS4 version uses the save interface from previous versions.
  • Saves from the original Steam version can be transferred over.
  • The Steam, Windows 10, iOS and Android versions feature auto-saves when returning to the world map.
  • Three game boosters are available for customizing the gameplay experience and difficulty. In the Steam and Windows 10 versions, the booster icons overlay onto the game screen when in 4:3. In the Switch version, the icons are larger. The iOS and Androids show the icons on the left side of the screen on the bottom of the pause button.
    • Battle Enhancements (Max HP, Max ATB gauge, and Limit Breaks are always available).
    • Game speed boost (x3). This doesn't affect timers, menus, or cutscenes.
    • Turn off random encounters, which replaces the 9999 booster.
  • Seven cheats are available for the Steam version. These disable achievements.
    • Obtain all items (with some exceptions)
    • Obtain all abilities
    • Max GF levels and AP
    • Max gil
    • Max stocked magic
    • Obtain all Limit Breaks
    • Obtain all cards (with some exceptions)
  • Some achievements from the original Steam version are removed:
    • Professional Player (Win 100 games of Triple Triad)
    • Collector (Collect all cards)
    • Magazine Addict (Hold all Weapons Monthly, Combat King, Occult Fan, and Pet Pals magazines)
    • Top Level (Have one ally reach LV 100)
    • Contrived Finish (Finish the game with Squall at LV 7)
    • Blue Magic Master (Teach Quistis all Blue Magic)
    • Dog Trainer (Teach Angelo all tricks)
    • Maximum Gil (Collect 99,999,999 gil)
    • 10000 Kills (Kill 10,000 enemies)
    • Choco Loot (Return Boko to FFVIII from Chocobo World after he's collected an item)
    • Top Level Boko (Return Boko to FFVIII from Chocobo World after he's reached LV 100)
    • Card Club Master is renamed "CC Group Master"
  • The iOS and Android versions uses a virtual gamepad that dynamically shows buttons and/or the movement stick in certain parts, such as navigating the menus and moving the characters, when an external Bluetooth gamepad is not used. During gameplay, FMVs and cutscenes, a Pause button is shown. During battle and exploring the world map, a button showing a Cactuar allows the use of Boosters, changing the opacity and color saturation of the buttons and movement stick, changing the style of the movement stick and accessing the official website for the game.
    • On the main menu, three buttons are shown on the top right of the screen.
      • A trophy icon displays the Game Center or Google Play Games achievements.
      • A SE icon shows other titles available from Square Enix.
      • An FF icon shows the official website for the game.

Patch notes[]

  • Fixes issues where the player may get stuck.
  • Fixes BGM and other audio bugs.
  • Other minor bugs addressed.