Since I think I'm getting close to the end of it...it's beyond time to talk about Kingdom Hearts II!
I loved playing the original Kingdom Hearts, so I played the second one as soon as I was done with the first. It felt different immediately. Of course, a big part of that was the fact that I was suddenly dealing with completely new characters and not seeing any old ones and wondering what the heck happened here? The story was new, the locations were new...it felt like I'd stumbled upon a new game entirely. But I checked the box. This was definitely Kingdom Hearts II.
It wasn't until Sora appeared on the scene practically out of nowhere that things felt familiar. (He's the main character from KH1.) Then Roxas, the guy I had been playing that I thought was the new main character? He disappeared. And I'm not talking a I-must-have-looked-the-other-way-during-that-plot-point disappearance. That little dude literally faded into thin air.
The plot is using different events and characters - along with help from Ansem's Secret Reports - to slowly let me in on what happened between the two games to change everything. Although the writers seem to enjoy dragging out all the particulars of that explanation to last the entire game. But that doesn't bother me at all.
...Okay. You don't have to drag it out of me. I'll admit that if it wasn't so interesting to slowly learn what happened to Riku and what's up with the Nobodies in Organization XIII and stuff like that, the fact that it's taking so long would be annoying.
It might be just a little annoying as it is.
Anyway, circumstances aren't the only thing that changes between the first game and the second one. The bosses in KHII are significantly easier to defeat. I mean, I've left worlds after fighting the boss only once. If it doesn't take me a good chunk of time to beat someone, I hardly feel like it was a challenge at all. And if I don't die at least once fighting it, is it really worth defeating?
That doesn't apply to Organization XIII members, though. Those guys take some work.
Thank goodness Sora has his forms, which are new too. When I first saw Valor form, I might've freaked out a little. (Feel free to pretend you fell for that understatement.) Add Wisdom and Master forms, and the game just got that more epic! It's almost hard to imagine boss fights in the first one now without those forms to rely on if you got stuck in a tight situation.
The graphics are different, too. Sora has a kick-butt new outfit that I just love to look at. Heck, if I could, I would probably wear those clothes all the time. On top of that, each of the forms I mentioned earlier has its own look, and they're all equally awesome.
But there are drawbacks, too. Does anyone else notice that the graphic designers alternated between giving Sora a full range of expression and using a puppet-Sora to just move his mouth and save them the trouble? When they use puppet-Sora, I don't feel like I'm looking at the same character at all. He feels lifeless and fake. It's pretty disconcerting, actually. Puppet-Sora creeps me out.
Well, as you can probably tell, I could talk about Kingdom Hearts all day. But if I did that, what would I say when I want to make another post about it? I have to save some of this back for another time!
Because it looked so nice last time, I have another picture for you guys today, courtesy of Google:
Does anyone else out there play Kingdom Hearts? If so, get your geek on and leave a comment on this post! We can all geek out together. Or nerd out. Or whatever you call a person who plays video games a lot.