Wanna ride to the end of the world with me?

Roche

Roche, also known as Speed Demon (スピードジャンキー, Supīdo Jankī?, lit. Speed Junkie), is a renegade SOLDIER 3rd Class in Final Fantasy VII Remake who is obsessed with speed, motorcycles, and competition.

History[edit | edit source]

When Cloud Strife, Jessie Rasberry, Biggs and Wedge headed topside for Jessie to obtain a new blasting agent for a bombing mission, they rode on two motorbikes through the train tunnels. They failed an ID check and were accosted by Shinra Electric Power Company operatives, among them Roche, who antagonized Cloud and challenged him to a race. Cloud outmaneuvered him and damaged Roche's bike enough for him to need to stop. Roche was exhilarated at having found worthy competition and wanted to compete against Cloud again.

Cloud clashes with Roche.

Roche assaulted Cloud at the Shinra Warehouse, demanding a one-on-one duel off the bikes, but Cloud forced him to surrender. As Sweeper mechs surrounded Cloud, Biggs and Wedge, Roche hopped on his bike and took out several of them since he wanted Cloud to live so they can fight again.

Characteristics[edit | edit source]

Appearance[edit | edit source]

Roche is a young man sporting a long mane of blond hair coiffed up at the top. He has the blue mako eyes typical of all SOLDIERs and a small goatee. He wears the SOLDIER 3rd Class uniform of dark blue, combat boots, leather belts with a SOLDIER emblem and large shoulder guards. He drives a fiery red motorcycle of Shinra make, capable of driving sideways and generally handling in a way impossible for a real world motorbike. He wields a SOLDIER issue broadsword, the same style as the one Zack Fair initially had in Crisis Core -Final Fantasy VII-. SOLDIER Sword from Crisis Core -Final Fantasy VII-

Personality[edit | edit source]

Well, aren't we having a wonderful time kicking the hornet's nest?

Roche

Roche is a fearless and reckless thrill seeker, exhilarated by the speeds he can achieve with his motorcycle. He longs for competition that can match him, and elates in taking down delinquents who illegally drive through the Midgar train tunnels. Though arrogant and sure in his superiority, he respects an opponent who can match him and does not get upset if his bike is damaged in "race conditions", only swearing he shall return for a rematch. He wants all competition to be fair, restoring Cloud's health so they can have a one-on-one fight. Midgar Security generally stays out of Roche's way; this is justified, as when he first assaults Cloud and Jessie, he bounces his bike off a patrolman's vehicle, causing the latter to explode.

Abilities[edit | edit source]

For a SOLDIER 3rd Class, Roche is unusually skilled and powerful, described as holding the skill needed to secure a promotion to the higher classes of SOLDIER, but not being interested in it.[1] He is a virtuoso motorcyclist, able to perform seemingly physically impossible stunts. He is proficient in both swordsmanship and magic, able to also fight while riding his vehicle.

Gameplay[edit | edit source]

First encounter[edit | edit source]

Roche is the boss of the motorcycling section in Chapter 4 "Mad Dash". The segment is based on the G Bike minigame from the original Final Fantasy VII. The player needs to hit his bike enough for a cut scene to trigger where Cloud jumps onto Roche's bike and damages his engine.

Motorcycle segment.

The player can steer the bike, brake and accelerate, and swing Cloud's sword left or right of the bike. Cloud has a special attack that takes a moment to charge, unleashed with Triangle, called Spinning Slash, where Cloud spins the bike, dealing more damage than with normal sword strikes. His long range attack is called Sharp Gust, using L1+Triangle.

Roche alternates between pulling ahead or to the sides of the tunnel to unleash attacks onto the party: either crescent energy slashes, which the player can avoid by swerving from side to side, or bolts of lightning that hit the road ahead, which the player should try to anticipate and avoid. After Roche stops his onslaught he slows down enough for the player to get near to him to attack.

The game is over if Cloud takes too much damage and his health is depleted, but the "Continue from Last Battle" option lets the player continue from the segment where Roche first appears, starting at full health. Biggs and Wedge's bike also has a health bar and can take damage, but Roche should focus on Cloud and the player does not need to particularly protect Biggs and Wedge.

Earning praise from Jessie for excelling in this segment (finishing with 80%+ health) yields a trophy.

Second encounter[edit | edit source]

Roche returns at the Shinra warehouse and challenges Cloud to a one-on-one duel, restoring his HP and MP for a fair fight before engaging (this won't happen on hard mode).

Roche employs a flashy fighting style, and uses magic, such as Thunder. After sustaining a certain amount of damage, he will become more aggressive, using dashing attacks that cover great distance and may briefly stun Cloud. At this phase, he'll employ new techniques, such as Ignition Flame, which erupts a pillar of flame towards Cloud; and Combustion Sword, which resembles Cloud's Braver. He dodges most of Cloud's attacks when in his neutral stance.

Spoilers end here.

Musical themes[edit | edit source]

Roche's theme is called "Speed Demon".

Behind the scenes[edit | edit source]

Concept art.

Roche was originally simply created as a boss to conclude the bike minigame. The team felt his originality as a character could pan into something more interesting, and instead used his bike minigame appearance to foreshadow a later role, as well as reusing him as a boss battle in the Sector 7-6 Annex. His role would be used to explain the situation for SOLDIER operatives fighting for Shinra.[2][3]

Roche was intended to appear later. One idea was to include him in Chapter 14, "In Search of Hope", though the developers gave up on this as Midgar's slums had no roads to ride motorcycles along. Another was to include him in the final highway battle, but the developers felt it ruined its serious tone.[4][5]

Voice[edit | edit source]

His Japanese voice actor is Kenta Miyake. He shares this voice actor with Biran Ronso from Final Fantasy X, Gladiolus Amicitia from the Final Fantasy XV Universe and Ignacio from Final Fantasy Brave Exvius. He is voiced by Austin Lee Matthews in English.

Gallery[edit | edit source]

References[edit | edit source]

  1. Roche's profile in Final Fantasy VII Remake Ultimania.
  2. Patrick Shanley, Josh Wigler (July 6, 2020). Inside the 'Final Fantasy VII Remake' Team's "Familiar Yet New" Adaptation of a Classic. Hollywood Reporter. Archived from the original on July 14, 2020.
  3. Robert Ramsey (May 24, 2020). Interview: Final Fantasy VII Remake Producer and Co-Director on Development, Launch, and Being Grateful for the Fans. Push Square. Archived from the original on May 25, 2020.
  4. Sal Romano (July 21, 2020). Final Fantasy VII Remake Part 2 development already underway. Gematsu. Archived from the original on July 21, 2020.
  5. MKillerby translating the July 22nd Famitsu interview with Naoki Hamaguchi (July 22, 2020). Translation: Toriyama and Hamaguchi (FF7R co-directors) interviews in Famitsu. Archived from the original on July 22, 2022.
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