Kingdom Hearts: Why are the Remixes Good?
I see people bashing the Kingdom Hearts development team for “buying time” and “making a quick buck” with re-releasing the Kingdom Hearts games on the PlayStation 3 (and later the PlayStation 4). “They only did it because they needed to sate your hunger with mildly new stuff in each collection, only trying to buy time for Nomura’s ignorance to the final installment.”
JUST STOP. THAT’S NOT AT ALL ACCURATE.
The ORIGINAL Kingdom Hearts, made for the PlayStation 2 way back in 2002
(I was literally a babe when that game came out, can you believe that) is probably the most cherished game in the series, but… also the most annoying to play. Platforming was a little jumpy then and the way the combat rolled out was sorta messy. Nevertheless, the game proved to be fun and full of good story.
The original developers lost the assets to the game and took the collective decision to remake it from the ground-up. This let them fix a LOT of issues the game had with it’s camera work and select cutscenes, including the installation of new bosses, weapons, abilities, and an easier-to-use reaction command system, or as people call it in KH2, “PRESS TRIANGLE TO WIN.”
In addition to fixing the mechanical issues, the in-game models were updated to their HD versions, Yoko Shimomura re-composed the soundtrack for the game, and many cutscenes and textures were upgraded to match the stunning HD of the PS3.
This was only the beginning. Since 358/2 Days came out originally on the Nintendo DS, cutscenes were limited in this game. The story was told through, dare I say, poor quality in-game dialogue with hardly any voice acting to back it. This did make the characters in the game feel a little less like themselves. The HD Remaster of 358 really helps to bring back that tie. It completely scrapped the combat system used in Days, but did well to keep up it’s heart-wrenching story. While there is no gameplay, it was a touching movie that I still shed a few tears over.
Albeit, nothing much changed in Chain of Memories aside from the final boss having a remastered soundtrack, it was nice to see the cutscenes in HD. And if you’re like me, that sweet 60 fps on the PS4.
“Storm, this isn’t selling me. It still sounds like a cash-grab. ”
UNDERSTANDABLE! I honestly thought the same thing a long time ago! Allow me to inform you more on the next addition: Kingdom Hearts 2.5!
Kingdom Hearts II is, arguably, the best game in the franchise via gameplay. The combat system is much less punishing if you get hammered, and very cinematic. You thought Ars Arcanum was a cool way to finish off an enemy? Try having the scripted event be throwing the enemy INTO THE AIR and SMACKING IT IN THE CHEST SEVERAL TIMES, then having it LAND ON THE FLOOR BEHIND YOU AS YOU STRIKE A POSE.
Vertigo Toss is the coolest shit ever and I don’t know how to top it.
How do you make it better in the Remix? Anyone knows, compared to Kingdom Hearts I, this “much better” installment was very lacking in secret bosses and bonus content to do after completing the game. So that’s exactly what the developers added: extra areas to explore, more bosses to fight, new abilities to abuse, cool content to have fun with, AND A HELLISH SECRET BOSS THAT TIES INTO THE LORE.
The game also added in new cutscenes to help explain what’s going on within the Organization, as well as Roxas’ motivation behind fighting Sora, and Sora’s resolve to thank Naminé for what she’d done for him. On top of very beautiful HD graphics and a new soundtrack, the game was enjoyable for the viewer and a challenge for the player.
Birth by Sleep didn’t receive much change aside from the new graphics and a few remastered soundtracks. However, the Mirage Arena was modified for single-player use, new bosses were added, and a new Secret Episode was included in the game after finishing the Final Episode. This Secret Episode would tie into the later release of Kingdom Hearts 0.2 on the PS4.
It’s well-known to hardly affect the plot, but some of my theories say otherwise. Coded was a fun, side-game that delved into the data world of Jiminy’s Journal. While not a whole lot happened there, it was a fun game that did hint towards new releases for the future. The Remastered movie pulled a 358 and completely scrapped the gameplay part of the game. It became a 3-hour movie, mostly for viewing pleasure and not exactly designed to move the plot of the franchise. But there were a few-tear jerking cutscenes in there. It was well-worth the remake.
“Okay, but I’m not seeing the point. This still feels like a time-staller for KH3.”
Patience, my reader. We’re on our latest Remix: Kingdom Hearts 2.8 Final Chapter Prologue
yeah, i know, it’s a ridiculous name, but this is Kingdom Hearts, we all thought Goofy was dead for 2 minutes
Dream Drop Distance is infamous for being a mind-fuck to the viewer. While it has it’s flashy gameplay and interesting mechanics, the game is best known for it’s sudden exceleration in the plot with the introduction of time travel.
Yes, because things weren’t confusing enough. Plot aside, the gameplay didn’t change all that much. A few new Dream Eaters were added into the game, but aside from revamping the touch-screen commands, nothing really changed.
Here’s the real reason everyone bought 2.8: Kingdom Hearts 0.2 Birth by Sleep - A Fragmentary Passage
HAH, YOU THOUGHT THAT LAST NAME WAS RIDICULOUS.
Kingdom Hearts 0.2 was a completely new experience in the franchise. It had only been touched on in the Secret Episode of Birth by Sleep and this short game was only a fraction of what was initially planned. I look at this game to be a demo for Kingdom Hearts III, as it uses the finalized graphics, mechanics, and game engine that is to be used in the final installment, as well as having a final cutscene that connects to the beginning of KH3, as confirmed by developers.
The game should only take the average player about 2 to 3 hours to finish this game. It is VERY short, but very amusing. Featuring absolutely stunning graphics, beautifully orchestrated music, fun gameplay, and an immersive world, I find people replaying this small demo all the time. Not only for it’s fun gameplay, but also the character development and story.
Kingdom Hearts Unchained X Back Cover is an HD recreation of the cutscenes in the mobile game, Kingdom Hearts Unchained X. It’s best understood by watching and/or playing the mobile platform, as the story may not make sense without its guiding game. The remaster touches on the 5 Union Leaders and how they intend to fight the impending darkness, as well as introducing the 6th Apprentice and what his role just might be.
“I can see why that LAST one wasn’t a cash-grab, but it definitely felt like a stall… Storm, where are you going with this?”
I admit, I do believe somewhere in my heart that the Remixes were a way to keep us busy while Kingdom Hearts III was being developed. But in no way or form do I think they were meant to just earn money. Granted, they certainly did, but I doubt that was the goal that the team was going for.
Kingdom Hearts has received MANY new fans since the initial release of Kingdom Hearts on the PS2. And what with how spread out every game is onto different consoles, it’s hard to actually play them all. Tetsuya Nomura, game director and developer, stated in an interview himself that the main reason the Remixes were made was to allow Kingdom Hearts fans new and old to visit and revisit the series without having to dig up old consoles.
Kingdom Hearts 1.5+2.5 released onto the PS4, along with Kingdom Hearts 2.8 and the soon-coming Kingdom Hearts III places each and every game onto the PlayStation 4. Albeit pricey even now, every single game is accessible on a single console. Unchained X, or Union Cross, is still a phone game, but I do think they intend to recreate the story cutscenes and release them onto the PS4 in a potential DLC package.
“So… they made it easier for the fans?”
Not just easier, but they made this series mean even MORE to the fans. The recreation of 358/2 Days and Coded as movies, and the addition of new story content and gameplay material would not have been added if it wasn’t for the fans to enjoy. I don’t think I could love Roxas as much as I do if I didn’t get to see that HD Remaster of Days.
And with the release of Back Cover, it’s proof that they intend to bring Union Cross to the console players in some form or another. I can’t play Union Cross simply because I have a phone that doesn’t allow it to work properly. So being able to watch the “important” cutscenes in stunning HD feels like a privilege that I’m entirely thankful for.
And most important to me was the release of Kingdom Hearts 0.2, a practical demo for Kingdom Hearts III. It was a proof-check for the developers, so they could make sure that we knew their development was coming along just fine, so they could make sure that we LIKED what they were making and to see how they could perfect it for the grand title they’ve been working on for over 7 years. It was a reassurance that Kingdom Hearts III was on it’s way and that we would ENJOY it.
The Remixes were meant to tide us over, yes, but they were meant to make us fall in love with this game even MORE. So it would be beloved by our hearts and enjoyed by new ones. The Remixes, in all honesty, just made the Kingdom Hearts series better. I can say that as a fact.