Kingdom Hearts 3 Journal
I did a month-long game journal with Kingdom Hearts 3. Don't read this. DON'T READ THIS. IT WOULD BE CRAZY TO LOOK AT THIS!!! I DID THIS FOR 1 FUCKING CALENDAR MONTH. I'm posting this for posterity sakes. SERIOUSLY THIS IS LIKE 7000 WORDS ON KINGDOM HEARTS 3 THAT I DID TO TEST IF I COULD KEEP UP A JOURNAL THROUGHOUT THE ENTIRE GAME. You Have Been WARNED...
There may be some spoilers, I tried to avoid anything major but hey they're in there.
I've decided to do a journal on my play-through with Kingdom Hearts 3 because that seems like a long and tedious thing to do to myself, so without further ado... That Skrillex/Hikaru Utada song was alright. Wonder when they made the decision to bring Skrillex in, seems like a 2011 ass decision to make, but hey I thought it turned out pretty good. The 5 recap movies they have off of the main menu screen seem way too short and non-descript. I wish they had organized those by game and in chronological order, that would have helped me, but they are all just loosely named some seemingly arbitrary word that has some ties to the series. Boy, they are just making another Kingdom Hearts game huh. Starts off with the choices of how you want to administer your play style in some cryptic manner again. And the combat is extremely similar to someone who literally just came off of playing Kingdom Hearts 2. Controlling Sora seems way tighter than I remember with KH2, the character control just seems way improved. Just in the first Hercules world, it seems way more open and the level design is already infinitely better than it was with KH2. The world looks great too, everything looks hand done, every tree and building carries personality, the basic heartless enemies are varied and look really clean and filled out. The fighting is very similar to KH2, the buttons and the RPG bar in the lower left of the screen are all exactly the same. ‘Triangle’ prompts seem to appear way, WAY more often, and if they stack it seems like I have to choose them in order, or at least I couldn’t figure out a way to cycle from doing my “2nd Form” move if it popped up first, in favor of doing an attraction move that I was wanting to do at the time. The frame rate seems OKish, but at least to me seems to vary and when it hiccups it can be noticeable. In the settings they offer “default” and “stable” under graphics setting which seems to indicate unlocked and locked 30fps, none of those options seem perfect, also no mention of changing resolution like in many other PS4 Pro titles, hopefully they can clean these options up with a patch shortly. Overall so far, fighting is extremely similar, but control better and is pretty enjoyable and the game looks really great! Solid start!
Watched the Digital Foundry on the game and they went over the framerate issues. On PS4 Pro you can go into the PS4 system settings and manually change the output to 1080p and turn off supersampling (if needed) which creates a mostly stable 60FPS. It is borderline unacceptable that this is not in the games graphics settings alongside ‘Default’ and ‘Stable’, they certainly need to patch a high FPS mode or something that goes to 1080p and provides 60FPS. They seem to be using Mickey and Riku as a way to recap, or maybe clarify the backstory of the games which has seemed more helpful and to the point than the recap videos they have off of the main menu, hopefully this keeps up throughout the game it’ll be interesting to see if they just abandon this in favor of moving this games’ story along. Something I have noticed really early is that they don’t seem shy about giving out munny. You can get them off winning fights but also they are just sprinkled around the worlds in pots and trash cans and whatnot. Potions and general shop items still seem to cost the same amount from KH2 (40 munny for a potion) but I seem to have an overabundance of munny. I don’t know if Pence is the best or worst character in this series, he is really straddling the 360 degree line. His outfit is so absurdly stupid, and I love it so much. Also, I thought it was a basketball jersey in KH2 but it seems more like a hockey jersey in this game, does Dogstreet have a basketball team and a hockey team with the same design. Also where the hell is Dogstreet? Does an individual street have its own sports teams in Twilight Town? Let’s be honest, there are many questions to ask about Kingdom Hearts, but this is the only one that matters. WHERE IS MY PENCE/DOGSTREET RECAP VIDEO!??! They added a cooking element to this game ala Final Fantasy 15 though it doesn’t seem as integral thus far at least, as it was in FF15. In fact I almost immediately forgot I had dishes to use as buffs right after I made them. The setup for how the cooking is implemented into this game is fun and highlights the enjoyment of this series. Apparently a few of the restored humans whose nobodies were a part of the original Organization 13 are now working for you? Oy vey. Sora has a chunky, square-sized smartphone and doesn’t know what the hell it is now, it allows you to take pictures which I believe is the 100th different thing you can do in this game. Also there are Game & Watch style games you can collect for the phone via QR code… WHAT IS THIS GAME. It really seems like they wanted to cram every last idea they’ve ever had for Kingdom Hearts into this game, and it’s kind of neat. They really didn’t need to have mini-games attached to the cooking element or search and take pictures of hidden Mickey logos like it’s fucking The Witness, but what the hell.
I thought I would be a bit worn out of Kingdom Hearts after spending most of January playing KH2, but I’m genuinely enjoying this weird amalgamation of ideas, mini-games and Kingdom Heartness. The gummi ship changes are welcome and much needed, not sure if this is better or good, but at least it’s not another on-rails waste of time. There are like mini-bosses and strange Galaga-like fights with the gummi ship, it’s also easy to get lost, wish they highlighted the world you’re trying to get to better. Once I got to the Toy Story world I let my 9 year old nephew play and he picked it up pretty easily after being excited about seeing Woody and Co. on screen. I didn’t bump the difficulty down or anything, he picked it up and mostly got the basics of how to fight. He especially liked getting into the toy mechs at the toy store level, even though moving and aiming with both sticks tripped him up a little bit. He also loved the attraction summons, they are visually mesmerizing, but he recognized a lot of it from Disneyworld which was neat. I think the Toy Story level has looked the best so far, it’s basically like moving around the Pixar classic, which is a bit mind-boggling. The one thing from today that I’m thinking about the most is the voice acting, and scene cuts. I can’t tell if this is a bug or a feature at this point. The voice acting is all generally fine - good, but the lingering of scenes and weird cuts seem to carry over from KH2. I’m really not sure if this oddness in how the cutscenes playout is part of the charm of the series at this point, or if they just need a better editor on the English side of things. It’s all very strange.
The first real-world - not counting a brief stint in Twilight Town - was the Toy Story world, and it took a good long time to get through. I almost felt like too much time was spent there at one time. One of the things I really enjoyed about KH2 was you spent relatively brief periods of time on each world, like 45 or so minutes, and moved on. Of course you would eventually go back to each world, but it felt like it kept moving forward. With the Toy Story world in KH3, it took a good 2+ hours to get through. I’m curious if you go back to the worlds like you did in KH2 via the main story or if you only go back to mop up collectibles. I really liked the variety of gameplay in the world though and the idea of the heartless taking over different toys added enemy diversity which is much needed with this game series. Started into the Tangled world, and man this game really epitomizes the ideal of this franchise, which is feeling like you, the player, warped into these movies. Visually and (mostly) audibly everything looks like the CG and music/voices from the movies. If you did a direct comparison with KH3 and each movie I’m sure there are both clear and subtle differences, but just hopping into each world truly feels as if you imported yourself into the movie. Still enjoying my time with KH3 and very much wanting to see how each world looks.
I decided to take a Resident Evil 2 sized break from KH3. I was playing both games at the same time and knew I could get through RE2 relatively quickly. Also, having to remember to go into the PS4 system settings to change it to force 1080p every time I switched over to play KH3 was becoming a test in my memory - also it was super annoying. They really, really need to patch in a 1080p mode into the game because having that constant 60FPS is the best, or at least my preferred way to play KH3. On a positive side, I played through the entirety of the Tangled world today and it was fantastic in every aspect. The visuals and voice acting were spot on, I feel like there were no strange lingering shots that has become the norm in Kingdom Hearts. Also, Rapunzel joins your party and is actually fighting with you for a decent amount, which might be the first time a female Disney character actually joins your party! It certainly didn't happen in KH2, not sure about any of the handheld games, but it was cool to see. She of course uses her hair in fights and with her special in which you hang onto her hair and fly around like a merry-go-round. Also saw a new attraction summon for an actual merry-go-round and it's my favorite one so far because you are basically playing a rhythm mini-game to launch the attacks for it which I thought was cool as hell. Once you get to the big town area in this world I thought the visuals of this game really shined and overall I think the Tangled world might be my favorite in the entire series. It didn't seem as long as the Toy Story world and all the sights and sounds felt spot on in a way this series usually doesn't fully nail. Even the Organization guy that keeps popping up was creepy and didn't speak in inscrutable nonsense (mostly). After taking a bit of a break I was afraid I might have a hard time getting back into KH3, but this world totally caught me off guard in the most positive way possible!
Hey, what happened to the Final Fantasy characters/aspect to this thing? I made it half through the Monsters Inc. world and couldn't stop wondering where the hell they are, or if they're even a part of this series any more. They were like all over the place in KH2 and dare I say Leon, Yuffie and Cid (what looked like the Final Fantasy 7 version) were downright integral to that game. Not to mention Cloud, Tifa and Aerith (all from FF7) all played relatively important roles. Super curious if that part has just been cut out or if they phased that out in the handheld games and/or if they will show up at all in KH3. I'm assuming at the very least Leon shows up somewhere because he seemed so important to the PS2 games, but honestly I'm starting to doubt it now. Maybe there is a Final Fantasy world and they're all hanging out there? Anyways, the Monsters Inc. world has been fine, but not impressing or leaving the same mark the Tangled world did. So far it has been super repetitive too, you walk through part of the factory that is scary, turn off the scary part and end up in a enemy cavern fighting for a few minutes and rinse, wash repeat. Hopefully it gets a little more interesting. I started to get a bunch of different rings from various doings and decided to equip Sulley with some that had high AP (ability points) because I had noticed that the world specific party members had a 50 point ability - which is a shit ton for 1 thing - that I wanted to see what it did. Turns out, at the start of every battle you can use the world specific hero ability which was allowing me to just saw through the enemy encounters. It honestly felt like cheating. I'm curious why that ability is on all the world specific heroes, or if I was even supposed to use it right now. The new Keyblade I got from the Tangled world is alright, but I still prefer the one I got from the Toy Story world because the hammer ability lasts a long time and is super effective. Hopefully the Monsters Inc. world ends on a higher note than it's currently performing at because it's been a bit dull and expected thus far.
Finished the Monsters Inc. world. It was pretty run-of-the-mill. The boss at the end was cool though, actually seemed like a more challenging fight, especially in this world where I was just spamming that 50 cost team ability. Also a pretty big story moment at the very end of the world that I thought was handled well, it made sense why that character was in the Monsters Inc. world and it was a fun payoff. The level design really seemed like a step down though, way more linear hallways like the previous games. Even despite this being a more closed level design, I'm consistently having issues getting turned around after using the attraction summons. It was really bad on the Tangled world and I kept backtracking to areas accidentally. I wish there was a button that would ping the location I'm needing to get to or a better way for this to not happen. Like one of those attractions literally shot me down a cliff to a part of the Tangled world that I had to spend like 5 minutes to get back to where I needed to be. It feels like I'm not able to make as much stuff with the Moogle as I felt like I was in KH2. Really felt like I was making rings and whatnot every time I visited one. I have been focusing on trying to level up the keyblade I got from the Toy Story world, so maybe that is taking more gems than I am realizing. Anyways I headed back to Twilight Town and called it there before I moved forward, seems like we might have a little break from the Disney world tour for a bit here?
Didn't get through too much today but, hey, chip damage counts too. Thought I was heading back to Twilight Town to divert some from the Disney stuff, but no, talked to Merlin and hopped back into the Winnie the Pooh book like in previous games. Like previous games this was full of mini-games and here it was like a Bejeweled-like game with fruits and vegetables and flowers. Not super hard but I like Bejeweled just fine. The main issue for me was I was in there for like 20 minutes and it was over and I got a new Keyblade and a trophy... Surely that can't be all from this world, but it kinda seems like it which is a huge bummer. Also WHERE THE HELL WAS EEYORE? WHY WAS A BRITISH PURPLE ELEPHANT THERE AND NOT MY BOY EEYORE!!?!! I DID NOT LIKE THIS. Also looks like they are starting to weave in a deeper narrative here with Sora not feeling as connected to Winnie the Pooh as he has in the past. We shall see where that leads to. The Winnie the Pooh Keyblade seems neat and offers a variant that I think is at least novel at this point. But, my Toy Story keyblade is so powered up at this point it's hard to turn away from that. Made it halfish the way through the Frozen world, they found a place to cram that song in there. It's a good song, I like the song, and of course they were going to figure out a way to get it in the game. I'm really enjoying this world so far, it has jumped around to different looking and playing sections, and they put a 2019 variant on FF7 snowboarding in here. Feels like Goofy's shield has gotten us out of a few sticky situations and all Donald has done is clown on Sora. Pick up the slack Donald. Like I mentioned it feels like I'm about half through and no party members have joined so far which is interesting. That has pretty much happened immediately on the other worlds. I'll also say it just feels like they spent a lot more time on the Frozen and Toy Story worlds, they just feel vast and unique comparatively thus far. I'm curious if this world will have the same length as the Toy Story world as well.
Didn't play too long today and still in the Frozen world. Definitely seems like it's going to have a similar length to Toy Story and furthers my thought that development time was probably spent more heavily on these two worlds. Not all that much going on, I like trucking up the mountain, it feels different at the very least. Some slight more hints at something happening to Sora's heart here as well. Most of the story progression has been just solving the independent Disney world issues thus far though. One thing I will say, after fighting the big ice monster boss on this world, all of the bosses have been good so far. They feel far more menacing with way more health than normal enemies and I like the designs that cater to the particular world you are on. I'll also say that the Simba summon seems borderline broken. Instead of using cure or cura, you can just pop this summon, which heals Sora to full health, and basically destroy everything. I'm not sure if it's some combination of rings/abilities I have on, but it doesn't really take too long to refill the MP and pop the Simba summon multiple times during a big fight or a boss. Also, still nobody has joined the party which seems weird to me. Can't remember this ever happening before in this series. Maybe I have way more left of this world than I thought but it's just been Sora, Donald, and Goofy up to this point in the party.
Well, I only had like 20 minutes left with the Frozen world, so there wasn't as much remaining as I thought. But yoooooo, on the plus side, that big ice monster joins your party! Also it's name is Marshmallow! Haven't seen Frozen yet, guessing I would have known that ice monster if I had seen the movie though. Immediately equipped the 50 point 'Team Effort' ability again which allows you to ride Marshmallow and claw attack the heck out of everything. Utilizing Technician's Rings on joining party members to get that 50 point ability still seems slightly broken and feels like I'm not supposed to do that, but hey, it's there to use right. The big boss sequence was visually really cool, and a good fight. Getting sucked down into the darkness added a change of pace that really helped sell the whole thing. Got a bit into the Pirates world, the realistic visuals look so much better than this world looked in KH2 but Donald and Goofy straight up look like the Pokemon from Detective Pikachu and it's slightly unsettling. The opening gameplay in the Pirates world was not great. You're supposed to catch the pirate ship out in the middle of the desert as it's escaping and enemies and cannon shots are trying to stop you from doing so. Basically you need to just keep running to the ship or it will escape, but once the first set of enemies spawn, Goofy yells something to the effect of you need to fight off the enemies or they will stop you from getting to the ship. So I fought off the enemies but there was no chance I was going to catch up to the ship in time which was misleading and caused a fail state. Not a big deal overall, just seemed like the dialogue was completely adversarial to what actually needed to be done. After some cut-scenes though, you get to control the pirate ship and this game just turned into AC Black Flag now? Man, KH3 is a weird ass game. It's like this game has just taken elements from other games and made small playable parts. From Game N Watch to Galaga to Mech Warrior to Black Flag parts of these games and many others are all crammed into KH3 and it is so strange, but I kind of love it. At the very least it switches up the gameplay from world to world which I thought was a problem with the other games in the series and why I always wished one of those portable games was just a straight turn-based JRPG. I have heard the Pirates world might linger a bit too long, so I guess I'll see what it has in store.
I can't believe this is what this game is... As I ended the last entry, this game is just chunks of every other game. It's like they are taking the best of arcade games, or in the Pirates world case, the best of the Assassin's Creed games and cramming it in here. None of the individual concepts in this game are inventive, or the best example of these mechanics, but each world is different, it's seriously crazy. I'm legitimately having a great time steering a pirate ship around and getting into cannon fights with heartless ghost ships. The whole world might be plugging hours into Apex Legends or Anthem and I just want to collect white crabs with a slightly too realistic Goofy and Donald Duck dressed as first mates. They built an entire open world ship sailing game within this game, WTF. AC Black Flag built a way better ship sailing and combat system, but that was the crux of that entire game, this is just for like an hour and a half of gameplay and I can't get over how crazy that is. There is also an underwater portion of this world that is both amazing and slightly less so too. It's amazing that you can dive into whatever body of water you want. There are no restrictions really, you can just swim around and find stuff or get into underwater fights (which aren't all that great) whether it's the open sea or a coral laced section near a small island. Another aspect of this game that I appreciate, and especially so in this world, is investigating and roaming around always is rewarded. There is most assuredly a ton of stuff I have missed on the other worlds, but I can do as much or as little exploration as I want and know that around every nook and cranny there will be a treasure chest that has something or a Lucky Emblem to photograph. Also, quickly, the CG cutscenes from this world look fantastic. One in particular that was on a small sand island made the sand look so unbelievably real. You just don't see disparities in cutscene and gameplay graphics often anymore so it can be a bit jarring, but it's kind of Square's M.O. and they look great!
Turns out there actually wasn't all that much remaining to this world. After you collect white crabs in Port Royale it directs you to go to a waypoint on the map and that leads into the boss fights and end of the world. So, they made this open world for you to do as much or as little as you want until progressing to the end point of the world. Even though all the open world stuff feeds into just trying to level up your pirate ship, I still enjoyed going to each little island and seeing what was there. Most islands had the same basic content, boxes to break open with crabs and fights, but it was still enjoyable to find chests that had rings or defensive items. Also, there were trophies for completely leveling up the ship as well as destroying 200 heartless ships which helped me keep going through the world longer than necessary. I think because it was such a change of pace I ended up liking this more than I'm assuming most people did (though not too sure have been staying away from reading/watching stuff on KH3), there isn't a ton of content here, but the story did move forward more than it has in a while and it was just fun sailing around to islands ala Black Flag. The boss fight was probably just OK at the end, it was a bit of a let down because I have enjoyed that part of the game a lot so far, but it was a pretty typical boss encounter. In one sense I feel like this is what Kingdom Hearts always should have been, visiting each world and having them feel truly different from one another, but it never quite achieved that aspiration. KH3 really makes that a reality, just not in the way I was expecting. By changing the visual fidelity and the gameplay on each world it has really given each world an identity instead of a pit stop on their weirdo heart obsessed convulsion train. Of course while the Disney worlds have gotten a ton of respect, it seems it's at the expense of eradicating Final Fantasy/Square properties entirely from the game and making the Disney worlds the stars of the game.
Finished the Big Hero 6 world and it seemed really short? At this point I'm not sure if I'm going to go back through each world again like in KH2 because some worlds took a while to get through and some seemed awfully short. The content in the world seemed very boring too, just extremely by the books and predictable. The city if quite fun to traverse, much like the Pirates world it's kinda crazy they built a relatively big open playground just for one world. I should also say I think all the characters in this world are fun and I'm glad the whole Big Hero 6 team gets plenty of screen time, it was just too easy and quick and trite. I may have been overpowered (don't remember what the level recommendation for this world was) because I spent extra time in the Pirates world going for those trophies which may have played a part in the easiness of the world too. If you're looking to level up easily by the way, the Pirates world is the way to do it as I got up to level 41 (I think) just sailing around destroying heartless ships in one shot because they had a very identifiable weak spot on them. Big story chunk at the back end of this world which is starting to show what this game is trying to accomplish story-wise more and more. I will say, there was a spot somewhere towards the end of this world or once I exited that did a great job at explaining things this series has traditionally failed to comprehensively portray. There's actually a pretty neat Sci-Fi story building here which is cool even if it's clearly creeping in on things like Nier: Automata. It's way weirder than it needs to be for a cutesy teen Disney thing, dealing with "vessels" for people to take over and clones and a dead version and human version of folks co-existing. I also got to check in on the dark world goings on and fought an evil Aqua (which was also way too easy) and ended up back on those starting islands from the first game. I get the feeling this is more of the halfway point like Hollow Bastion was with KH2 so I'm ready for some opaque, long Kingdom Hearts ass nonsense and I'm kind of expecting more Disney worlds(?) or revisiting the ones available again, but I guess I'll see.
Only "played" a little today. After - what I'm presuming is - the last Disney world you visit there is a big old Metal Gear-esque series of cutscenes that go all over the place. Kingdom Hearts has a tendency to do this, just dump a big ole cutscene barrage on you and it's usually, for me, the worst this series gets. This one didn't seem too bad, I think mostly on the back of the game doing a better job explaining what has, and is, going on. In the end much of the core keyblade hero team is back together and ready to go. There still isn't a clear identifiable super baddie, they're just kinda rehashing some of the old Organization dummies. The hierarchy of the villains in this game (and the series) might be the most confusing thing because there are clones and vessels and people take forms of other familiar people and everyone has anime hair. I got a little overwhelmed and not in a fun way like with Metal Gear, so when I finally got spit out into a Gummi ship section after half an hour or moving Sora and Co. up one flight of stairs and watching a lot of inscrutable silliness I didn't feel like moving on. Also, I'm not sure if I should use this time to go back and find Lucky Emblems, I know I need some amount to get some hidden cutscene, not sure if I want to go for it or not at this point. I think, finally, some Kingdom Hearts overkill has started to set in after basically starting KH3 right after I finished KH2.5. I'm still curious where this goes and if I'm done with the Disney portion of this game, but it is starting to fill the blueprint this series has abided by.
OK, where to start here. This is going to be scatterbrained so, uh... I guess I should say, it certainly feels like the end is near and some big picture thoughts can start creeping out. For instance, I can't believe they decided to leave out the Final Fantasy characters (presumably I'm still technically not done, but they aren't coming in 30 hours in). This is really baffling to me, in your long awaited big splash sequel not to have those characters that have been important to THIS series, not just be beloved from Final Fantasy games, not in this game at all, like not even a fun small thing is wild. I'm curious why or how that decision was made. Maybe they're holding them back for DLC stuff? I seriously thought there might be like a Final Fantasy world, or you visit specifically like FF7 or FF8 as a separate world. I'm not disappointing by this and it's not making me judge this game in more harshly, I'm just surprised and slightly confused by the decision. OK, what next... I think the Keyblade Graveyard is a fucking cool name for a place in this game and glad this game revisits that area. All the stuff that happens on it I have real mixed feelings about thus far though. I want to say, visually speaking, everything looks really cool. The Dynasty Warriors fight finally happened in this game here, and it was rather bland to play (like it was in KH2) but it looked rad as hell so it was fine. Finally finding Terra here played out as expected given he wasn't with the team ever. Everything visually speaking was rad as hell post Terra, that tornado of Heartless fucking everyone up, Goofy making a huge shield save and Donald FUCKING GOES CRAZY WITH SOME SUPER HADOUKEN MAGIC BEAM THAT ALMOST KILLS HIM. Then everyone is killed. I see what they were going for here, but I never thought... well maybe for a second I was like Oh SHIT, they killed Donald, but come on, I knew this wasn't going to be the actual outcome. After everyone dies, while playing each, other one of the two prominent chess playing characters literally says, "It's not over"... "A game's no fun if you know where it's going." Soooooo WINK WINK, NOD NOD. Sora turns into a blue ghost and is in the weird world that you begin every game in. I think I see where this is headed and if I'm correct, I kinda like it. But it's also up to the writing to nail it, because this could be a cool concept that loses itself in its own convoluted Kingdom Hearts messiness. Also, I could be wrong completely, which is fun in and of itself. After you recollect yourself in the Final world and hear that Sora has visited this world many times before, you reappear at the scene where everyone died before. So it seems like you got another chance, or potentially even cooler, you keep coming up to this conclusion and Groundhog Day craziness is happening. I guess I'll just say if it turns out that each game is a restart on similar outcomes so the start of each game in the Final world is Sora trying again to win this battle, that would be cool as hell. I'm not expecting that level of Sci-Fi intricacy from this game or series, and I can also see some story inconsistencies that wouldn't allow this to be so, but what if, right! I guess I should also mention the literal Nier: Automata part here. I wonder if this game added that in after Nier's success, or maybe Nier got that idea from KH3 (KH3 has been in development since like 2012). It was a neat idea that didn't land as hard and well as it does in Nier, but I still like the idea. I just want to emphasize one more time that the visuals here are really on point, there is a crazy gigantic tornado of heartless at one point and Xehanort walking with the hooded Organization team in a Mighty Ducks Flying 'V' formation was daunting and cool as I half expected JR to step in and say business was about to pick up. I stopped just after Xehanort and Co. pop back on screen, there was more that happened but this entry didn't need to devolve into a play-by-play so I'll leave it here. Real quick, what happened to Maleficent and Pete, they didn't do anything except chase after a box on every other world, man they really seem like an afterthought in this game. I'm assuming they reappear at some point, but still, why have them in here at all?
Much like the penultimate entry, I'm not sure where to begin with this final entry in this month-long journal adventure with Kingdom Hearts 3. I think I have concluded that this will actually be a shorter entry than I thought even though it should probably be the longest entry in this journal because it is the last one, but I don't want to elongate every detail of every scene. Before I get into it, I forgot to mention last entry that Sora can just straight up Peter Pan fly everywhere with an ability I got and equipped. It's insanely stupid but I love it to death because it makes getting around so freaking easy, including the part where I started from for this entry. Also I think I want to put some overall things here at the beginning so I don't end the entry with gripes for a game I enjoyed more than I was expecting to. OK, not patching in 1080 at true 60FPS a month in is a bummer because you have to jump through system settings hoops to get this game running at the best it can which most players aren't going to do. Not being able to switch your difficulty level in the game is a bummer. Like you get one shot to choose what difficulty you want and you're stuck with that choice. Knowing why they did this, because it's tied to earning the secret ending is understandable but it still sucks because I wanted to bump it up to hard after a while and literally couldn't. I was extremely hopeful they revamped the gummi ship stuff, but it's kind of just the same and it's still bad. That Monster's Inc level is a huge oversight. It was just linear hallways with enemy arenas, where I feel like all the other worlds had numerous unique attributes. Alright, I think those were the main things sticking in my reviewers head.
I picked up as the Organization laded labyrinth spawned which scatters Sora's clique into various corners and leaves Sora to make his way to each group of keybladers defending against a specially selected trio of Organization baddies. These groups of fights were clearly to try to wrap up character arcs as this game is coming to a head and it does a relatively good job. The fights themselves seemed way too easy for how relatively important these characters were/are to this series, which ties into a grip I have with this game that I will address in a bit. Also, some of the Organization members had long cutscenes with either sympathetic, sad endings or annoyingly still jerk-off endings, but some of them just kind of disappeared into Undertaker purple and grey darkness smoke - I guess they didn't matter all that much in the grand scheme of things. I will state that the music for all the fights here is probably the best in the game. Going through the labyrinth is pretty dumb, since I have that flying mechanic I think I just straight up broke a few sequences where tall rock walls were supposed to impede my progress and I didn't know they were coming so I just double jumped and started using my newly acquired Glide ability as I had been doing to get around faster, and I just flew over those walls. Later there were light tinglings of push button puzzles that my 4-year-old nephew could figure out and that was about it for getting through the maze parts. I know it was just a vehicle for the character fights, but it was bad and dumb as a gameplay section. They could have done more to make the puzzles interesting and given prudence to the fights that lied within it, but it was mostly useless. Once you get into Scala ad Caelum and the Xehanort fights begin, it really cranks everything to 11. This section is fucking rad, the fights are challenging and visually stunning. It's cool as hell that Donald and Goofy demand to join you even though they aren't keyblade wielders. Also, Tetsuya Nomura or someone really likes Inception over there, that is all I will say about that. There was another understated cool visual scene where this black and red magic ring instantly turns the level into dusk and it just looked really neat. This game really stepped up the visual jolts, especially in this last 1/3 of the game. With all that said, I thought the end of this game with extremely soft. They tried to make Xehanort out to have some appreciable qualifications and everyone is left frolicking in the sun including Kairi who got fucking stabbed to hell and is back? Also, Sora got Infinity War vanished at the end of the epilogue? The ending is messy and too much is squeezed into too short a period of time. However, as annoyed as I was, the epilogue and secret movie saved this ending, not necessarily by fixing any holes, but setting an extremely intriguing potential for the future. The secret movie is insane and potentially answers one of my biggest curiosities about KH3 all while making me noxiously eager to find out where it leads for the next game, or more likely the DLC.