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Kingdom Hearts 3 is Finally Here

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    P1Falchion
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    Kingdom Hearts III

    Rating: 4.0 – Great

    Kingdom Hearts 3 is Finally Here

    Kingdom Hearts is a unique game series that I was always interested in playing. The concept of playing an action RPG with Final Fantasy characters and Disney characters was strange but, as a someone who loves Final Fantasy and grew up with Disney it was hard not to try it sometime. It wasn’t till I played Kingdom Hearts 1.5 on PS3 at the time when I finally got to experience Kingdom Hearts for myself and I enjoyed it but, in that same collection was Kingdom Hearts Chain of Memories and 358/2 Days. I wasn’t interested in playing spin off games only Kingdom Hearts 1 and 2 and boy did I pay the price for that.

    As for Kingdom Hearts 2 it wasn’t until 1 week before the release of Kingdom Hearts 3 that I decided to play through it and I had a blast. The gameplay was faster and there was a lot more style presented in this game. Playing through Kingdom Hearts 2 was the moment where I realized I didn’t really care about the story of Kingdom Hearts because the gameplay is the reason why I love this series. For many people the wait for Kingdom Hearts 3 has been 13 years in the making. Kingdom Hearts fans I salute you for waiting this long for this game because the most anyone got from this game for a while was ¡°Now in Development¡± and ¡°Coming Soon.¡± And if it wasn’t that it was the countless amount of Kingdom Heart spin offs like Birth By Sleep, Dream Drop Distance, or Recoded. Now the time has finally come, Kingdom Hearts 3 is here and how is it you might ask. Kingdom Hearts 3 is one of the best games I have ever played and as person who didn’t care about the story walking in, this game made up with it was fun and style that only Kingdom Hearts can pull off.

    Even though I didn’t care about the story I still knew what moments in this game would hit fans in the feels. I wouldn’t be surprised if tears were in the eyes of fans as early as the opening because the reality was that Kingdom Hearts 3 was finally here. The story of Kingdom Hearts 3 takes place immediately after the end of Kingdom Hearts Dream Drop Distance, where Sora is trying to find a way to get his powers back after almost being controlled by Xehanort. And with that Sora adventure is all about discovering how to regain his powers and it starts was him, Donald, and Goofy heading to Olympus Coliseum to seek the help of Hercules. Meanwhile Riku and King Mickey are trying to rescue Aqua, a character last seen in Kingdom Hearts Birth By Sleep, who has been stuck in the Realm of Darkness for 10 years. And elsewhere Kairi and Lea are training to become Keyblade masters. This is just the intro of Kingdom Hearts 3 by the way and there is more that is happening but, for the sake of not spoiling anything about this game, I feel like what I have just written is enough to just let you know what is happening.

    Other story moments that take place in Kingdom Hearts 3 are whenever you visit a Disney World like the Toy Box which represents Toy Story, Monstropolis represents Monsters Inc, and ect. Most of the stories from those worlds are mainly remixed version of what happen in their respective movie only now Sora, Donald, Goofy, and the Organization are included. Not all of the world have that layout for example, Toy Story and Monster Inc’s worlds have unique stories which is great because I prefer it when the worlds weren’t just rehashes of the movies they are based on. The other addition to the stories taking place is the Organization playing a factor in the stories and talking about Darkness and what not. Again for me the story is something I really didn’t really care about but, every now and then I did get some enjoyment because the game feels like you are part of Disney’s world and it’s hard not to crack a smile every once and awhile.
    In terms of the main story while my investment wasn’t strong because before this game I had only played Kingdom Hearts 1 and 2, I did like seeing the moments that I knew Kingdom Hearts fans would react to. And there were times I said to myself that if I were invested in these characters like the main fanbase was I would probably be tearing up. To hit the nail on head with that statement, this is where the amazing soundtrack by Yoko Shimomura plays a role. There were plenty of moments in this game that I shouldn’t have been affected by because I have no real attachment to any of these characters. However, the music helped me feel for a lot of these characters and I can only imagine how fans will feel when they get those moments.

    If you have played all of the Kingdom Hearts games at this point, then you will feel right at home playing this. If you are new to the series, when in battle you have your action button and the ability to use magic and summons. As you attack with your Keyblade or magic you will have the chance to use special abilities like a stronger version of the magic attack you are using or using the special ability from the Keyblade you are using. As you beat each world you visit you gain a Keyblade that gets an appearance based on the world you just beat. Each Keyblade you get has different stats like one can be better when attacking with your Keyblade or it’s priority can be improving your magic stats. In this game you can power up your Keyblades by collecting materials from enemies and Gummi sections. And speaking of Gummi sections for people who are not familiar with it, they are space sections where you ride your Gummi ship and the game turning into a space shooter. In the past the Gummi sections were always my least favorite thing about the previous Kingdom Hearts but, in this game I had a lot of fun with them. You can create your own ship if you are into that, me however I can’t create a ship to save my life so I always bought the models sold in the game’s shop and only added more fire power to it.

    As for issues I have with the game, there were two worlds that felt underwhelming. I personally just wasn’t a fan of the game whenever the objective was collect a certain amount of something so you can proceed with the game. And I get for some of these objectives it makes sense as to why we are collecting whatever the situation was asking but, there are ways to slow down a game and it can still be fun and in this case it didn’t do that for me. I also didn’t like for one world things got really repetitive to the point of it boring me and it made me want to play something else. There is another problem I had with the game and it involves the story but, before I get to that, I meant what I said from the beginning which is for me my love for Kingdom Hearts comes from the gameplay. And even with some of the issues I had with some of the worlds I can easily excuse it because 75% of my enjoyment came from the gameplay and is the reason why this game will probably be one of my top 3 favorite games this year.

    That being said some issues I had with the story was that some characters had the chance to shine and develop but, it felt like for some characters they didn’t grow after the events from previous games. Another issue I had with the story was that for a game that is suppose to feel like a conclusion to an arc, it didn’t feel like that until the end. What I mean by that is that for ? of the game it never feel like I was experiencing an epic conclusion, it just felt like another Kingdom Hearts game. I personally felt like Kingdom Hearts ll felt bigger and the events in that game was building to something epic. And while I have not played every Kingdom Hearts game I know about the stories from the games I haven’t played, and there were things that happen towards the end that just didn’t make sense. It was shocking to realize after beating Kingdom Heart 3 the lack of Final Fantasy characters. Personally one of the biggest appeal for Kingdom Hearts for me in the beginning was knowing that every once and a while you would encounter someone like Cloud, Tifa, Vivi, or Squall (Leon for you Kingdom Hearts fans). For me not seeing a Final Fantasy character the game lost that element that made Kingdom Hearts exciting to experience.

    The final issue I had with the game is that there was a specific narrative that was going on during the game that I personally was left saying, ¡°Ok I’ll bite what is this all about.¡± Kingdom Hearts 3 would go on and again this narrative would be brought up again and still nothing. Point being this happened a couple of more times and then it was dropped and wasn’t brought up again, so at that point I was disappointed. And later on it gets brought up again only we never find out what is so important about it because we need to create more intrigue for Kingdom Hearts games in the future. I know some people like elements like that in Kingdom Hearts but, for me it just feels cheap and left me with no payoff.

    KIngdom Hearts 3 is one of the most unique games I have ever played. On one hand I love playing Kingdom Hearts because it’s so much fun and it’s great to visit Worlds that I have nostalgia for like Toy Story and Monsters Inc. On the other hand the story isn’t there to raise my love for this game and it’s disappointing because that’s my favorite thing about RPGs is the story and characters. And just thinking about the issues I have with the game one would thing how did you love this game then. And the answer for me personally is because the gameplay was just that good and not to mention there was a moment in this game that made me understand why people love this series. And of all things it involves the story and interestingly enough the character involved in the moment is someone I know nothing of but, the music told me all I needed to know and I bought into the moment. While I’m still not convinced about the quality of the story this is a game I will be revisiting. Kingdom Hearts 3 is a game many people have been looking forward to, and I hope those people got the game they waited so long to experience.

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