"I don't care what your names are. Once this job's over... I'm outta here."
Cloud Strife is the protagonist of Final Fantasy VII. He is a reserved young man of twenty-one years whose business is fighting.
Before the game's story begins, Cloud was employed by Shinra, Inc. as a member of its elite military force called SOLDIER. During his time in this group, he trained his way to become a first-class fighter who is devastating with his impossibly huge Buster Sword. Eventually he quit SOLDIER and became a mercenary, using his military training on odd jobs.
The game begins with Cloud on a mission with AVALANCHE, a small group of rebels resisting the operations of Shinra. The group hires Cloud to help them fight their way into one of Shinra's Mako Reactors and explode it with a bomb from within. Cloud's involvement with AVALANCHE leads him into an ever-expanding conflict, resurrecting many dark issues from his past, that forms the main of Final Fantasy VII's plot.
At the game's outset, Cloud speaks only when necessary and in a flat, harsh tone. He seems to care little for sentiment and prioritizes himself and his work over most anything else. The darkness of his personality compliments the dark mood that characterizes the game in general.