Kingdom Hearts Returns

Kingdom Hearts 3 released Jan. 25, 2019.


Screenshot taken by Raven Nava via Xbox One.

While stuck in Arendelle, Sora fights off the Heartless using his Pirates of the Caribbean keyblade.

Raven Nava, Ad Sales Manager

 The “Kingdom Hearts” video game series started with the first game, “Kingdom Hearts,” which was first released in 2002. This series has grown into one of the most entertaining video games that has ever been created by Square Enix with the magical help from Disney, plus the addition of “Final Fantasy” characters to spice it up. “Kingdom Hearts” has become one of the most iconic video games for the Disney franchise. There are ten games in total, but majority of the games are prequels. This game is about a boy named Sora and the weapon that he holds called a Keyblade. The newest game, Kingdom Hearts 3, came out Jan. 25, 2019.

  The storyline for “Kingdom Hearts 3” starts off with the main protagonist Sora trying to save his friends who are trapped in his heart by using the “Power of Waking.” With help from Donald, Goofy, King Mickey, and his best friend Riku, they travel to worlds that will look very familiar to Disney fans all around the world. Sora starts to discover  how to find this power whilst stopping the main antagonist, Master Xehanort, and his group, Organization 13.

   There are eight worlds that players can travel to in this game, and out of those eight, six of them are brand new to the story. Players can now travel to Arendelle (Frozen), Kingdom of Corona (Tangled), The Toy Box (Toy Story), Monstropolis (Monsters Inc.), The Caribbean (Pirates of the Caribbean), San Fransokyo (Big Hero Six), 100 Acre Wood (Winnie the Pooh), and Olympus (Hercules). Players can also visit Traverse Town and meet all the old classic “Kingdom Hearts” characters along with Sora’s new friends that he will make along the way.  

   Due to technology changes throughout the years, developers making other video games like “Final Fantasy.” and decisions that were made by the company, it took Square Enix thirteen years to make this game! But, many players say it was worth the wait. Many reviewers and developers all agreed that this game has colorful, vibrant, detailed, and spectacular graphics that just made the wait absolutely worth it. The boss battles are challenging but are very entertaining to play, plus with the new combo attacks and special moves, it just makes this game much better than before.

   Kingdom Hearts 3,” in my personal opinion, was way better than expected. The game stays true to the storyline, and the graphics are really amazing, plus the fights are very detailed and spectacular. The only problem I have is the mini-games. One mini-game that was added to this game was for players to find ingredients to help out Remy, the little rat from the Pixar movie Ratatouille, make food for his restaurant. It is nice to have Remy be a part of the game, but the controls were very complicated and difficult. You have to time it just right or else you have to start over whenever you are making something and it can be very hard to pull off. Even though I beat the storyline, I haven’t beaten this game one hundred percent because of this complicated mini-game.

    “After following the series for so long, I expected to be emotionally invested in “Kingdom Hearts 3”’s story, but I didn’t expect to fall so deeply in love with the real-time action combat,” Jonathon Dornbush, writer for IGN, said. “Smacking Heartless, Nobodies, and Unversed around with Sora’s keyblade is the main method of mayhem, but new elements help make battles into spectacles that keeps them varied and fresh even several worlds into the adventure.”

    One thing players were very fond of was the soundtrack. Fans can still hear some of the iconic songs that composer Yoko Shimomura created from the first game, and brand new music to keep the game interesting and exciting. Even though Shimomura created the majority of the soundtrack, the biggest song came from the opening movie trailer called “Face My Fears” by Utada Hikaru and Skrillex. They also released another song for the game called “Don’t Think Twice” for the ending theme. These songs were released to the public on Jan. 18, the week before the release date before the actual game came out. Hikaru’s voice should sound familiar to “Kingdom Hearts” fans everywhere because she sang the opening trailer, “Simple and Clean,” in the first “Kingdom Hearts” game.

   “It sounds kinda crazy but I always said ‘I want to do the theme for Kingdom Hearts one day’,” Skrillex said in an interview. “I told myself that as a kid. I was such an absolute fan of Utada Hikaru and the games, but that was a dream of mine.”

   Square Enix has really stepped up their game for the series and it appears as though many students in Grand Ledge are enjoying this game as much as I have. This game was especially fun to play during the week off break Grand Ledge had due to the polar vortex. I give this game a 9/10. Now I’d better get back to finding more ingredients for Remy so I can say I beat “Kingdom Hearts 3” one hundred percent.