Back in the day, when Kingdom Hearts first graced my eyes, I was more I excited that I can ever remember being for a game. I exhausted that game to death, and am still absolutely in love with the series. I mean, I grew up a die-hard Disney fan, and FINAL FANTASY…I don’t even need to say more.
I was pretty excited to find out that I’d get to play through the game again – especially since it’s in HD this time around. Besides, I could never get sick of exploring Tarzan’s jungle or the Atlantic with Ariel. Kingdom Hearts will forever fulfill young me’s fantasies about exploring all the Disney worlds. I fell in love all over again with its semi-confusing story line and lovable characters.
For those of you who haven’t played the game before, you play as Sora, an adventurous young lad with a good heart; considering most of the things you’ll find in the KH universe are all HEARTLESS! Sora picks up a keyblade, and teams up with Goofy and Donald to undo all the damage that the heartless have done – and that is no small task.
While this reMIXed edition is in HD, it still looks pretty much like a PS2 game. I mean, it DOES look better, but I honestly expected too much out of it before I played it and thought that it would look even better than it ended up looking, but I’ll take the hit there. It still has some of the same annoyances, like having to pick up each and every bit of munny yourself, otherwise you don’t get it (seriously, maybe I’m just used to being able to hold a button and have all my gold/gil/money float to me by now). At least they fixed the wonky camera controls! You used to have to use R2 and L2 to control the camera but now you just use the joystick like every other game. Also, this time around, you can skip cutscenes! For those of you who have played the game a thousand times, this is a huge bonus.
The biggest addition/change is the fact the version of KH you are playing is the Final Mix. This version of the game was originally only released in Japan. To start, in Final Mix, the difficulty system is a bit different. In this version, the easy setting is a bit more easy, and hard is, well…torture, in my opinion, as I tried it and WOW! A lot of the enemies are different (or reMIXed) in this version, and there are also some new bosses, cutscenes, weapons, abilities, and other such things.
Kingdom Hearts HD 1.5 ReMIX (seriously, long title) also comes with Kingdom Hearts Re: Chain of Memories (also a long title). I’ll admit, I haven’t played much of this game. I know, it IS part of the beginning storyline of the Kingdom Hearts universe, but I just can’t get into it. This one is actually a remake of a remake. Basically, it’s an HD version of the PS2 3D re-make of the original Game Boy Advance game.
Now, I never played the original Chain of Memories, but I can tell you about this version. It is basically a card-oriented game with math! Okay, not really much math, but cards and numbers – and I don’t much like numbers, which is why I’m writing this review and not trying to solve an equation for some awesome new thingy you solve equations for. In battle, you have cards and your enemies have cards, and these cards have numbers. When you fight, you each have a card in play, and if your card number is higher than theirs you get to attack. Otherwise you’re getting hit in the face. A lot. There are a few more technical things, but those are the basics of the gameplay. If you love the series and want to give it a try, I’d say it’s worth a shot at least.
The third and final addition to this ReMIX is Kingdom Hearts 358/2 Days (yay, more math!…kidding). For this release, they made it an entire movie with zero gameplay. I, again, have not played this title. I always meant to, but never got around to it, so it’s nice to see it done in a movie format. At least this way you still get this piece of the story even if you haven’t played – or simply don’t want to play – the game.
Overall, I think it’s worth a purchase for the Final Mix alone. The additions are just an added bonus, in my opinion. If you are a veteran Kingdom Hearts player, or picking up the game for the first time, this is definitely the way to go. After all, not only do you get the best version of the original game, but again, the other series additions from early KH days are a bonus! Even if you don’t like the idea of the card/numbers game, it IS still some additional story. This is also a great way to tide yourself over until Kingdom Hearts III gets here. Kingdom Hearts is still just as fun as it was years ago.