Simple and somewhat clean.
My Editor-In-Chief believes that I am the best person on this website to review a Kingdom Hearts game. Yes, I have played almost all of them in some form or fashion, but I can safely say I really don’t know what is going on in the overall story of this series. I have tried. Truly. I have read summaries, watched videos, and played through the main games twice and I still have a hard time figuring out what this is all about.
Still, I play them because I enjoy the characters that show up and the combat. Going with the HD remakes of all the games we finally come to the point that they have caught up with most of the main games. Kingdom Hearts 2.8 HD Final Chapter Prologue brings a new story game, a remastered 3DS game, and a movie to the PS4.
Price I’d pay: $40
Featuring an HD version of Dream Drop Distance, a game I reviewed on the 3DS five years ago, players alternate playing between Sora and Riku as they go between a waking world and a sleeping world. The combat is a refined version of Birth by Sleep, with the card system coming back mixed with a bit of Pokémon for creating their own Dream Eaters to help out in battle. The freeflow traversal and combat is still a fast and fun way to play, and the Drop system where a character will fall asleep and players take control of the other main character is still annoying and completely not needed. In the end, it’s a decent game that has some rather fun combat in it.
Along with Dream Drop Distance, a new teaser game is in this bundle. Kingdom Hearts 0.2 Birth by Sleep: A Fragmentary Passage features Aqua from Birth by Sleep as she traverses the Dark World looking for her friends Terra and Ven. This is the special part of the bundle. It looks fantastic and serves as a sort of primer for Kingdom Hearts 3 when it finally releases. The new engine is really well done and the combat felt responsive and fluid. While it only took me around two and a half hours to complete it, it feels like an extended demo that can be played multiple times with special challenges to complete and unlocks to collect. Playing this got me really excited to finally get my hands on Kingdom Hearts 3.
The last feature of 2.8 HD is Kingdom Hearts X Back Cover. This is an hour long movie that sets up the mobile game Kingdom Hearts X, all of which takes place well before the Keyblade Wars. It was an interesting watch that had some good voice acting in it and explained a little about the mystery of the Keyblade Wars and how it came to be.
For me, the big thing here was A Fragmentary Passage. The new look and style of the game mixed with some great visuals and fun combat made it a fun, yet quick ride. Dream Drop Distance is not a bad game by any means, but it does have a few mechanics that irked me way back then and even now. They all look really nice and for the Kingdom Hearts fans that are looking to finish up the HD collection, this is one that you should get. People looking for a starting point for Kingdom Hearts should not start here. Luckily, Square Enix has made it a plan to remaster basically every game in the series.
While it’s not my favorite bundle they have released, it most certainly has some fun times in it. RPG and Kingdom Hearts fans should not shy away from this one. Still, seeing as how 2.5 HD had both Kingdom Hearts 2 and Birth by Sleep in it and this package only has a full game and a 2 hour episode, I would say at least wait for a slight price drop.
Review copy of game provided by publisher.