This series has so many different narratives yet it managed to conclude in a way I enjoyed
After years of building we finally reach the culmination of four side games that have been slowly building up to this conclusion. Was it worth the wait? Does it upgrade the combat? We shall see as I review Kingdom Hearts III.
Picking up right where 2.8 prologue left off we find Sora heading off to visit Olympus to get some advice from Herc. Since he has lost his powers at the end of the last game and must somehow regain them. Behind the scenes Organization 13 have been revived and are once again using Sora to start the Great Keyblade War. Why they are doing this is a mystery but our hero isn’t just going to let them succeed easily. Story wise this game does 100% what any fan of this series would want to see at this point.
Once the game gives the player control it becomes pretty obvious that the combat remains similar to what it’s been since the first game. Sure they have added to it over the years and since Birth By Sleep it has felt more fun to mash out keyblade combos while using the shortcuts to cast some magic. More ways to dodge has always been a good thing and in KHIII all the different techs you get as Sora levels up can be easily equipped. Kinda makes the fact you need to equip skills like a double jump pointless because you almost never have to give up something else to gain a different advantage.
Combat can also feel quite hectic now. The main way Square Enix upped flights was to up the amount of enemies on screen. Rather basic but it works. Especially thanks to the amount of special moves you can use by being near friends in combat. Almost to a point where it overwhelms everything else. A constant flow of triangle special moves that switch into a mode like riding on a carousel. The carnival rides moves are fun for a while but near the end I just used the big explovie move quickly so I could get back to the normal combat flow. The more cooler use of changing up the gameplay is unique sections in each world. Like in Pirates Of The Caribbean you control your own ship and sail the seas in a mini open world. Which is cool since they don’t overstay their welcome.
Surprisingly the one element that finally got improved was the Gumiship sections. Turning them into a more open environment that you are meant to explore was fun to do. I actually spent some time just running around collecting gumiparts to build a ship. Plus for the first time I built a ship and continued to upgrade it as the game went on. Other than exploring the environment some boss fights are scattered throughout and mini sections focused on blowing up a bunch of enemies. Which breaks up going through different space environments well enough.
As for how well integrated Disney worlds were adapted to KH it is rather hit and miss. Worlds like the Tangled one that was just the plot of the movie were still enjoyable thanks to how well they were adapted and seeing Sora, Donald & Goofy being in the background reacting to different scenes was amusing. Yet in other cases like Monsters Inc the rehash of the movie in a slightly different way didn’t really work. Whether you like it or not seems like it might just be up to how much you like the movie although I do think some worlds got more thought put into them than others.
As a full package KHIII does exactly what most fans would want to see. It intertwined the world of Disney with the lore of KH into a very unique package. Finally wrapping up most of the scattered plots points into a predictable but still heartfelt ending. Really I don’t know why I’m writing this review. Pretty sure anyone that likes KH has already played though this game. If not it’s certainly worth checking out.