Roche is a supporting character and minor antagonist in Final Fantasy VII Remake. He is a rebellious SOLDIER 3rd Class in the Shinra Electric Power Company who is obsessed with motorcycles, high speed, and competition.
Roche is a newly introduced character and boss in Final Fantasy VII Remake. He battles Cloud twice, first during the biking minigame and again in a standard battle. Elated to find a worthy opponent, he comes to respect Cloud as competition, as well as a "friend" and rival.
At some point in the past, Roche joined SOLDIER and earned the 3rd Class rank.
In "Mad Dash", Roche was in the Corkscrew Tunnel when Cloud, Jessie, Biggs, and Wedge failed an ID check riding motorcycles in route to Sector 7. He was impressed by their speed and subsequently pursued them, making a dramatic entrance by performing motorcycle tricks and eliminating some Shinra officers. He arrogantly introduced himself to Cloud and challenged him to a race. They exchanged taunting words throughout their competition, but Roche lost, accepting defeat and hoping that when they next meet, it'd be just the two of them competing.
Later that night at the S7-6 Annex, Roche made another dramatic entrance, laughing manically while performing motorcycles stunts and maneuvering around the Shinra officers attempting to apprehend Cloud, Biggs, and Wedge. He demanded Cloud face him in a one-on-one duel, calling it their "second dance", but was ultimately defeated. An elated Roche told him there were "higher heights" to which they could "still soar", created a diversion to help Cloud and company escape, hoped they could someday have a rematch, and encouraged Cloud to stay alive until then.
During "Wutai's Finest" in "Episode INTERmission", Roche traveled to the Sector 7 slums looking for Cloud and hollering for him to come out. He caused quite a commotion among the locals who were unaccustomed to ever seeing SOLDIERs in the slums. He told Yuffie she reminded him of his "dear friend" and asked if she knew him. Yuffie coldly asked if his friend was affiliated with Shinra, to which he replied "perhaps". Roche gave his name, commented on her hostility and "exotic wardrobe", and added that if he were on duty, she'd cause him to pause. However, he assured that he was in the slums for "personal business" involving his "aforementioned friend".
Roche described Cloud's appearance, "need for speed", and complimented his combat prowess while believing he had "love for his mount", but he couldn't recall his name. Yuffie unenthusiastically listened and asked if Roche played Fort Condor, to which he expressed his "scorching passion". He lost, but praised Yuffie for her victory and passion, considering her worthy of being a "friend" and "close companion", which left her bemused. A dramatic and excited Roche hoped they'd next meet on the "open road".
Roche is a man with a muscular build, fair skin, long blond hair styled like a mullet and coiffed up top. He has a small goatee and blue mako-infused eyes. He wears the standard SOLDIER 3rd Class uniform of dark blue paired with black combat boots, black leather belts with the SOLDIER emblem, silver gloves, and silver pauldrons. He wields a SOLDIER-issued broadsword that resembles Zack's from Crisis Core -Final Fantasy VII- and rides a red motorcycle.
Roche is a fearless, reckless, arrogant, flamboyant, and honorable man who acts like a renegade. He is a self-proclaimed "Speed Demon", exhilarated by the high speeds of motorcycles and competition. He has a flair for the dramatic, performing flashy stunts on his motorcycle and speaking theatrically, often using vehicular references in his speech. He is arrogant, claiming his ears are "attuned to the female voice" and longing for an opponent worthy and equal to his level of skill.
Roche has the credentials and skill needed to progress in the ranks of SOLDIER, but is uninterested in a promotion, and has a rebellious streak with questionable loyalties. Though he antagonizes Cloud he appears to do it for sport, even fairly rejuvenating him prior to their duel. After two intense competitions with Cloud that ended in defeat, Roche comes to honorably view him with respect, considering Cloud a worthy opponent of equal measure and a "friend". He then helps Cloud escape and encourages him to stay alive so they can have a rematch someday, perhaps on the account of kinship. Roche is ostracized by many in the Shinra Public Security Forces due to his unpredictable antics and disregard for anyone's safety.
Roche is proficient in swordsmanship and magic, holding the skills needed to receive a promotion in SOLDIER. He is a virtuoso motorcyclist, capable of performing impressive and flashy stunts, fighting at high speeds, and casting powerful spells.
Roche is the boss of the biking minigame in Chapter 4 "Mad Dash". The segment is based on the G Bike minigame from the original Final Fantasy VII. Cloud needs to hit his bike enough for a cutscene to trigger where he jumps onto Roche's bike and damages his engine.
Cloud steers the bike, braking and accelerating, and swinging his sword left or right of the bike. He has a special attack that takes a moment to charge, unleashed with , called Spinning Slash, where he spins the bike, dealing more damage than with normal sword strikes. His long range attack is called Sharp Gust, using +.
Roche alternates between pulling ahead or to the sides of the tunnel to unleash attacks onto Cloud: either crescent energy slashes, which can be avoided by swerving from side to side, or bolts of lightning that hit the road ahead, which should be anticipated and avoided. After Roche stops his onslaught, he slows down enough for Cloud to get near enough 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 him 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; Biggs and Wedge don't particularly need protecting.
Earning praise from Jessie for excelling in this segment (finishing with 80%+ health) yields a trophy.
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 distances 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.
I'm always ready for a round of Fort Condor!Roche
Roche is an opponent for Fort Condor in "Episode INTERmission" as part of "Mastering Fort Condor". He hangs out in the Pillar Plaza. He is a Rank 2 player who has a mix of ranged and vanguard units, making a mix of defense and vanguard units best against him, leaning more towards defense. It is still ideal to have at least one ranged unit against his M.O.T.H. Unit (Defense), though Magic Attacks can also help deal with it. A good strategy is to use a defense barracks against him early, ensuring a stream of defense units to attack him.
In hard mode, Roche is a Rank 5 player and uses a buffed board with the best speed and more ATK and HP for his towers, but keeps the materia and unit loadouts from Easy/Normal mode. The strategy with the Sorcerer Board II is still viable (though alternate strategies also work) of using all three attack spells on Roche's headquarters to deplete 5/6ths of its health, and sending out fast units from the middle to push the territory line up to Roche's towers to shave off the last little bit of HP with the player's units. As Sorcerer Board II charges ATB slowly, it is best to wait for it to fill until deploying any units, also allowing the player to see where Roche is putting his units to start off his advance. When the player has a full ATB bar, they can send out a Guard Dog (Vanguard) from the middle on the side Roche left clear to push the territory line to the towers, and then immediately place a unit right in front of Roche's HQ.
- In hard mode, Roche uses "Assassin Board II", a rarity ★★★★ board with 3/3 speed and buffed towers
- If Yuffie wins against Roche after already besting Jessie, he gives the Battalion Board II. The board can also be bought from Old Snapper after Yuffie becomes eligible to face the Rank 3 player.
Roche is associated with two tracks in Final Fantasy VII Remake, both heard in "Mad Dash". "Speed Demon", track 11 of disc 2 on the Final Fantasy VII Remake Original Soundtrack, plays while Cloud and Roche battle each other on motorcycles. "Ignition Flame", track 18 of disc 2 on the Final Fantasy VII Remake Original Soundtrack, plays during Cloud and Roche's duel.
Behind the scenes
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.
Roche was intended to reappear 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.
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.
- Final Fantasy VII Remake script § "Motor Chase"
- Final Fantasy VII Remake script § "A Little Diversion"
- Final Fantasy VII Remake, Episode INTERmission
- Final Fantasy VII Remake, Episode INTERmission
- Final Fantasy VII Remake Ultimania, p. 54
- 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.
- 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.
- Sal Romano (July 21, 2020). Final Fantasy VII Remake Part 2 development already underway. Gematsu. Archived from the original on July 21, 2020.
- 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.