The Sector 1 Reactor is one of the eight Mako Reactors built by the Shinra Electric Power Company to power the city of Midgar, appropriately found in Sector 1, in Final Fantasy VII. Its layout is the same as the Sector 5 Reactor. The Sector 1 Reactor is the northernmost reactor in Midgar, and is even referred to as the "Northern Reactor".
The eco-terrorist group AVALANCHE, in an attempt to save the Planet from the corrupting ways of Shinra, attacks the reactor. The effort is led by Barret Wallace who is accompanied by Biggs, Wedge, Jessie, and the recently hired mercenary Cloud Strife. The team captures a train and uses it to break into the reactor grounds, which are defended by Shinra guards.
The team fights its way down into the main generator, and prepares to put the charges in. Cloud has a brief flashback to the incident in Nibelheim and suffers a psychic disturbance. Before the charges can be pulled, the robot Guard Scorpion attacks, and is defeated by Cloud and Barret before they and the rest to AVALANCHE make their way back out before the reactor explodes.
The explosion causes massive destruction with unknown numbers of civilian casualties. Cloud and AVALANCHE scatter to regroup at the train heading for the Sector 7 slums. The reactor remains closed, and when Shinra places the Sister Ray cannon within Midgar, seven reactors charge up its blast, Sector 1 Reactor still out of commission.
The Sector 1 Reactor is reached through a walkway connecting Sector 1 and Sector 8. After entering it is a set of rooms filled with machinery leading to an elevator, which travels down to a series of vast rooms and piping. Ladders can be traversed to eventually lead down to the core of the reactor. The interior of the Sector 1 Reactor has a brown-ish tint, in contrast to the Sector 5 Reactor with a similar layout.
The entrance is a metallic, brown-ish area full of large pipes, rusting doors, and machinery. It is a set of joined rooms with terminals, and the doors between the room are locked until their codes are deciphered. At the northeast-most location, an elevator leads down to the lower areas of the reactor.
The elevator connects the entrance with the main staircase. It is a dimly-lit enclosed space with a purple tint, and has a valve and flashing lights on the wall at the back, while the elevator door is located on the left.
The main staircase is a large, expansive room, with a red tint on the stairways, dark brick walls, and metallic pipes, accessed by the elevator.
The elevator opens atop a large structure within the room, with a staircase used to descend this structure to the floor of the room, where a door leads to the upper piping. The structure also contains a small, round tower atop it that can be climbed using ladders, though it contains nothing of interest.
In contrast to the main staircase of the Sector 5 Reactor, the Sector 1 Reactor has no pipe leading down from the door in the back-end of the room, which is instead unreachable.
The upper piping is a damaged area full of rusting metallic pipes. It is reached through a door at the bottom of the main staircase room, which opens to a damaged stone wall. At the end of this stone wall, a ladder across a huge pipe leads down to a set of beams suspended above the core's main room. To the right of the beams is a set of steps leading down to a pipe below them. At the end of this pipe is a tall ladder leading down to the lower piping.
The lower piping is a set of large pipes suspended above the walkway leading to the core. They are reached using a ladder down from the upper piping, and themselves lead to another ladder down to the walkway by the core.
The core is where Cloud and Barret fight the Guard Scorpion and set the bomb. It is a large expansive area with only a single walkway leading towards it, surrounded by metallic pipes and heavy machinery. The walkway contains a save point, and an inaccessible door. On the end of the walkway is the core itself, which is a large, tubular structure built into a wall, with "1998" written at the top, and a set of pipes leading to a valve at the bottom.
Various enemies are fought as random encounters within the Sector 1 Reactor, though most are dispatched with only one or two hits by Cloud or Barret, and deal little damage. The Sweeper, fought around the lower piping, is the most durable among them, which takes several hits to be defeated first. When encountered alongside other enemies, the smaller enemies should be defeated first to remove the damage they deal; otherwise, they are best dispatched by casting Bolt from Cloud.
The Guard Scorpion is fought as a boss in the core. This boss should be attacked by Cloud's Bolts while Barret uses normal attacks. When the Guard Scorpion raises its tail, it will counterattack until the tail is lowered. The player should either use Potions to heal in this time or simply avoid attacking until its tail is lowered, and then continue to damage it until it is destroyed.
|Potion x1||Entrance, upper piping|
|Assault Gun||Core (dropped by Guard Scorpion)|
A Potion is found in a treasure chest in the room on the southeast of the entrance, and another is found lying on the ground at the bottom end of the upper piping. By the reactor core, a Restore Materia can be picked up before reaching the core, and after defeating Guard Scorpion, the Assault Gun is obtained.
Destroying the Reactor
After infiltrating the Reactor, Cloud and Barret begin at the entrance. Here, the player must interact with Biggs to decipher the code of the first door, and then with Jessie to open the second door and the elevator. After this, the elevator must be activated to the main staircase. Dialogue with Barret will initiate until the elevator reaches its destination.
Following this, the player must descend down through the main staircase to reach the piping. Along the way, the player will encounter a variety of enemies in random encounters, though these enemies are straightforward and can be defeated in one or two hits. After reaching the piping, the player must interact with the ladder to descend down further. A Potion can be picked up in the upper piping before descending down to the lower piping. The Sweeper can be fought as an encounter here; this enemy is more durable and can take multiple hits, meaning that it is best to defeat its accompanying enemies before focusing against it.
Eventually, the player will reach a walkway towards the core. Along the walkway, a Restore Materia can be picked up before reaching the core. Here, a short scene commences, and the Guard Scorpion must be fought. Once defeated, a timer initiates. The player must run back and ascend up the Reactor to the exit before the ten minutes expire, at which point the Reactor will explode. Though the player can still fight random encounters, it may be wise to run away if time is low. Along the way, Jessie will be found caught in the pipes; she needs to be rescued along the way or the player will be unable to escape. Upon escaping the Reactor, the next quest commences in Sector 8.
"Mako Reactor" plays inside the reactor itself until the Guard Scorpion battle begins, where the background theme changes back to "Bombing Mission".
Behind the scenes
During the mission Cloud has a moment where he breaks down and hears a voice that says, "This isn't just a reactor". In a scene that was scrapped from the final version of the game, Cloud would have had a conversation with Sephiroth where the latter would have explained what Mako Reactors really are. The "This isn't just a reactor" memory is a remnant of this deleted scene.
The PC port had a bug that occurred intermittently to crash he game at the start of the game as the train pulls into the station and an AVALANCHE member kicks a soldier. QA reported this bug as the port was being finalized, and all the programmers were scrambling to reprogram and debug it.
Final Fantasy VII demo
The Sector 1 Reactor bombing mission is the setting for the two PlayStation demos of Final Fantasy VII. Two versions of the demo exist, often differentiated by the third playable character: Aeris or Tifa. The Aeris demo is of earlier build and still has many changes from the final version. The Tifa demo is closer to the playable segment in the full game. In the final game of course, neither girl is playable, and only Cloud and Barret are in the player's party. Both demos end when AVALANCHE escapes the exploding reactor.
A former member of SOLDIER has come to destroy one of the Mako Reactors--machines that harness the planet's Lifestream to generate power.Description
Mako Reactor No. 1 is the first dungeon available whose completion unlocks Mako Reactor No. 5 in the Final Fantasy VII realm.