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4.7 out of 5 stars
4.7 out of 5 stars
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on 27 November 2002
I was apprehensive at first - Disney meets Final Fantasy? - but after taking the plunge and buying the game, I have to say this is one of the finest PlayStation 2 titles of 2002.
Coming from the makers of Final Fantasy, you may expect a serious story of passion and war, with moving cut scenes and complex turn-based combat. Kingdom Hearts ditches this po-faced approach, gets itself a sense of humour and fun, plus features real-time combat. Its still an RPG, albeit one which is action-based. The graphics are excellent - Disney has never looked so good. The variety and depth of the environments and their inhabitants is stunning. Sound is also good, featuring most of the best Disney tunes.
Kingdom Hearts is relatively simple. There isn't much variety to the gameplay and some people may find this off-putting. But the different environments and wide range of characters means that you probably won't notice.
Squaresoft have created a gem. Kingdom Hearts isn't an all-time classic, but it is a fantastic game, despite the Disney input. I'm 18, and still love it.
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on 18 July 2004
Kingdom Hearts is a mixture of Final Fantasy and Disney.
It may sound like a game for the the very young but this is not the case. There are many challenges that small children would probably have difficulties with. The Disney characters prove to be entertaining at times and it is interesting to see the how the main story links in with all the well known, well loved Disney films. Also there are many Final Fantasy characters tied in.
The story has a strange beginning with the main character falling into darkness, but then, the scenary changes into an island paradise with the main characters of the story:
Sora, A brave 14 year old boy.
Kairi, Aged 14 and possesing a strong will.
Riku, A boy aged 15 with a curious mind.
Then one night a terrible storm erupts and Sora is sent to a different world: Traverse town where he meets up with the other main characters, Donald and Goofy. Sora learns about the Heartless (the evil in the game) and hears about his destiny involving the Keyblade.
You get to control Sora and travel across worlds and unravel the mystery of the heartless.
Kingdom Hearts is a great game. It can get slightly dull at the beinning but soon becomes gripping and exciting.
The fighting unlike the Final fantasies are one on one and as the the game progresses you can upgrade the characters and their weapons.
A must have for PS2 owners. It is enjoyable and quite long especially when completing the many mini games and sidequests.
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on 16 May 2004
To be honest when I first herd about this, I thought "nah it wont work" but because I love the Final Fantasy games so much, I gave it a try.
And thank god I did. This game has it all, a great lead character (called sora, a 13 yr old boy who lives on an island with his friends rikku and kirie), amazing graphics, laughs and a brilliant story line. You start off to some woderfull cut-scenes, a bit of mystery, and some funky tokyo-pop music.
Grapics wise it rocks, (if you've ever played any of the Final Fantasy games, then you'll now that square, (or now square-enix) are the best when it comes to graphics.
You'll travel through some of the most outstanding diney worlds, including deep jungle (tarzan) nightmare before christmas, captain hooks ship, and many more. You'll battle with heartless monsters rightly called the heartless with donald and goofy as your partners, and meet some of your favourite characters, whilst re-kindling some childhood memories of disney. All the bad guys from each film is the boss in there world. For instance in agrabah (aladdin) you fight jafar, and in atlantis(little murmade) you fight Ursala the sea witch.
The only bad thing I can say about it is that this is'nt realy aimed at a certain age groupe. Ok thats not a bad thing, but it's not good either. Little kids will see it an think wow a disney game that's acctualy good, I wannit! But they play it for about half an hour, and get stuck. I foud it hard, an i'm 13! And the older gamers will see it and think phht i'm not gonna get a disney game, i'm too old for it. trust me your not, it's 1 hell of a tasking game and will work your brains out of your head. So I leave you on this comment. your not too old for it. Don't worry about what people say, make them play it and they'll be hooked to.
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on 2 January 2003
This is probably one of the last two gaming companies I would have expected to create a game together. But To my suprise the whole thing worked! Kingdom Hearts is one of the best games I've played, and it came from Disney?
I Did'nt think it would be that good at first but it is! The Real time battles are excellent and I like the different ablities you can gain from around the world using them in battle.
Magic is also a good factor too, levling up as you go along. You can even summon old disney favourites such as Simba and Geine!
You gain ally throughout the story such as Aladdin, Peter Pan or Tarzan. And as for the Final Fantasy in this? Well they are dotted around the worlds waiting for your. Ones include Squall, Tidus and even Cloud!
Most of this game is pretty fun to play and listen too (Donald screaming after he gets hit! He He He!) But there are a few negative points that I do have to pick out. For one the game in my opinion is too short! You can finish the basci story within about 30-40hrs. Also there is the difficulty factor in some places, trying to figure out how to attack a boss or get farther into the game.
All in all, Square and Disney Interactive have made a great game which will be remembered for a long time, and I can't wait for Kingdom Hearts 2!
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on 3 September 2006
Playing Kingdom Hearts has been one of the most bizarre experiences of my life. The concept of bringing together Disney and Final Fantasy is a strange one. However overall I think Square has pulled it off.

I'll begin with the good aspects of the game. The voice acting is of course superb - the game boasts among others the talents of Haley Joel Osment as Sora, Billy Zane as Ansem, David Boreanaz as Squall (Leon), Sean Astin as Hercules and James Woods as Hades. The majority of the Disney characters are voiced by official Disney Actors. The voice acting in other RPGs pales in comparison.

The music is very good and fitting to the mood of the story at the time. Wonderland's music is particularly catchy and of course "under the sea" in Atlantica.

The graphics are splendid; especially the FMV sequences. There are plenty of worlds to explore too, all based around Disney movies. You can swim "under the sea" in Atlantica, fight bandits in Agrabah or follow the white rabbit through Wonderland. Not only this but familiar characters such as Tarzan and Beast help you battle those pesky Heartless along the way.

Without going into too much detail the story although not perfect is good fun and doesn't take itself too seriously - how could it when Donald Duck and Goofy are two of the main characters! You play the game as Sora who has become separated from his friends Kairi and Riku after a storm hits their home on the Destiny Islands. Sora finds himself teleported to a strange new world and with the help of Goofy and Donald Duck, with the mysterious keyblade for a weapon, embarks on a journey to become reunited with his friends... It has a good ending too which is very rewarding, which is to be expected from Squaresoft.

The idea of travelling to numerous Disney worlds and using the villains in these worlds as the villains in the game is inspired. It is somewhat satisfying to defeat the likes of Maleficent, Jafar and Ursula after the nightmares they gave me as a child! Also my heart skipped a beat when Cloud appeared (and Cid for that matter) as I am an avid Final Fantasy fan. It did take me a little while to work out who Squall was though - he looks so different; more like Laguna! It was particularly strange being reunited with Aeris after the trauma of Final Fantasy 7. Even more strange was the lack of references to past plots - it was almost as if Aeris, Yuffie and Cid are complete strangers - and the glaring omission of certain characters such as Tifa, Barrett, Rinoa and the whole cast of Final Fantasy 9 except the Moogles.

The difficulty of the game seems just right to me - you can choose how hard you want the game at the beginning and certain choices at the beginning further determine how quickly you level up. You also get to choose between the sword, the staff and the shield at the beginning - you choose which one you would like and which one you would like to sacrifice in return.

Like other games though Kingdom Hearts has its flaws.

Firstly there are elements to the battle system which let it down slightly. The concept is very good and more akin to platform games than traditional turn-based RPGs as you can freely move around the screen and battle the Heartless in first person format. You move Sora yourself and therefore have direct control over where he stands, his jumping etc. You rely on AI to control both Donald and Goofy. However the implementation isn't as good as it could have been. The camera angles are infuriating: in battle for example you are busy fighting one Heartless and are just about to deliver the killer blow when the camera switches to another nearby monster. Another example is when you are trying to jump across a tricky gap - the camera often won't rotate to the angle you want it to be at which leaves you jumping blindly and ultimately failing numerous times. The battle menu system also causes some problems so using items and casting magic or summoning is quite difficult and time consuming leaving you open to attack. More frustrating than anything though is getting knocked off the screen when you are busy fighting, only to have to go back and start the fight again. It's just best not to fight near any entrances or exits.

The minigames on the whole I found to be pointless and unrewarding. In particular the Gummi Ship building and sliding down the tree trunk with Tarzan were particularly unappealing.

Parts of the story I'm sorry to say were almost vomit inducing. The old chestnuts of "if you believe in something it will come true" and light overcoming darkness are overused clichés. The story is clearly aimed at the younger market and may not appeal to everybody.

Finally if you are going to play this game it is almost essential to have a walkthrough handy because it is not always obvious where you're supposed to be going and what you're supposed to be doing; and I'm not a fan of walking around blindly for hours on end. Some things are very obscure such as how to fight those White Mushrooms so that they'll give you a Mystery Goo. I'd never have worked that out in a million years!

To sum up Kingdom Hearts is a great game which is well worth buying. You just have to be able to stomach some of the cheesiness and be able to put up with the frustration without throwing your computer through the window.
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on 8 March 2004
Incredible is the only way I can describe this game. It is a glorious collaboration between the makers of Final Fantasy & Disney and succeeds in crossing an RPG with a 3D platform game by taking the best bits of both and fusing them together in a gripping story.
The basic story is that You are Sora, the key bearer. Your destiny is to prevent the heartless from taking the hearts of all the disney kingdoms. Along the way you bump in to characters, both good and bad from the various disney films.
The intro sequence when you first start looks very impressive and the music is excellent, although you don't have a clue what's going on and it does make you wonder what you've let yourself in for (that seems to be the idea though and it makes sense the further in to the game you go), the controls take quite a bit of practice to get used to and the camera has its own idea of what you want to see when you're next to walls which makes jumping difficult.
That said though the graphics are excellent, the storyline is superb and it's wonderful to interact with the Disney characters. The background music is continuous and quite pleasant. The little sub-game of flying between planets is very entertaining and you can spend ages just building a ship and flying it round. In all it manages to be a very engaging game without being too difficult. Avid RPG fans will enjoy it as a light hearted break from the norm, disney fans will love it for the sheer number of characters you can talk to and kids will just love it.
I strongly recommend this game for anybody and I'm really looking forward to them releasing a second one.
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on 4 November 2003
In a word, superb. This game does not disappoint. The sheer volume of effort and thought that has went into this game is unbelievable. Even the introduction, which I normally skip on a game, had me gripped. The game does take a little while to actually kick in but when it does it's worth the wait.
The hero of the game is Sora, a young boy from Destiny Islands. The Destiny Islands are the first point of call in the game and are really only a warm up level. That's not to say they're not interesting. The Islands are almost everyones idea of paradise with plenty hidden tunnels and sword battles to do against Sora's friends.
By fate, it seems, Sora is whisked away from Destiny Islands and separated fom his friends. He begins a quest to find them again. Unknown to Sora to begin with, King Mickey has also disappeared and Donald and Goofy are sent to look for him. The three team up and venture through all the best and most loved disney lands. Sora uses combat and magic to fight his way through the "Darkness" which has engulfed each world. Each time Sora seals the world Keyhole, is awarded a new Keychain, which upgrades his weapon.
Areas such as Alice in Wonderland, Peter Pan, Monstro (Pinoccio), Agrabah/cave of wonders (Aladdin), Atlanta (Little Mermaid) and Jungle (Tarzan) are great to play and all have authentic music and characters to interact with. Sora, Donald and Goofy even change costumes in each land to suit their surroundings. The best area, in my opinion, was Hallowe'en town (Nightmare before Christmas) The music is outstanding, the animation superb and the effort unparalleled. Plus the costumes of Sora and co are brilliant!
As well as the Sora's actual quest, there are side quests such as Winnie the Pooh, collect munny and shop in Traverse Town for better equipment, build a gummi ship (your world to world transport) and fly through the galaxy or magic training to summon Simba (Lion King), Dumbo or Bambi, are just a few of the extras
This is the game to which all others should model themselves around. I could not have asked for better value for money. It's entertaining and not overly easy. A lot of quick hand to eye co-ordination is needed to work the controls/spells at the right time. I don't think I'll ever get bored of it. Buy buy buy!
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on 25 August 2003
When I saw the opening sequence to this game in a shop (quite a long time ago), I thought, 'Oh, another RPG'. Then, 'Hang on, was that Sleeping Beauty?', followed closely by 'What?! Donald Duck. And Goofy?!!' To my immense surprise I saw what seemed to be a Disney adventure-RPG type game... that actually looked good! So I got the game (it took me a year to buy a PS2, that's why the long gap between viewing and buying it...)
When you start the game up, the title screen looks fairly inconspicuous, but given a couple of minutes the opening sequence starts where you are treated to a wonderful piece of music accompanying some beautiful cinematics.
The story itself takes place across some of the 'worlds' that Disney created, such as Wonderland and the Jungle from Tarzan, and Squaresoft have included some of the top characters from the Final Fantasy games (now you can find out just how depressed Squall from FF8 sounds!!). The plot: stop the Heartless from destroying all the worlds with the help of Sora, Donald and Goofy. The wonderful thing about this is that on certain worlds, certain main characters join your team to help you.
The story is rather well thought out and some of the sideline plots are so sweet! Hey, when the 101 Dalmation puppies are scattered throughout each world, you just have to go and do something about it (or not if you don't like dogs...) The graphics are fantastic, with some of the best vioce acting I've seen in videogaming to date. The music is fantastic, with some of the most moving pieces I've ever heard in a game.
If you've played games like Zelda on the GC, then the lock-on battle system will be familiar to you. One unique twist (to me) is the ability to use the D-pad or the right analogue stick to choose your commands such as fight and magic in the middle of the battle, while you move Sora with the left stick. It's a little tricky to get used to but it doesn't take too long.
As an RPG adventure game, this is rather simple compared to the Final Fantasy games. There are only a few stats to get used to, with levelling up increasing only one stat at a time (plus the occasional ability learned). The magic system is simple, select the spell and cast! And then there's the Gummi ships, where you can spend quite a large proportion of the day just designing and building your own ship to fly between worlds. There's plenty of mini-quests, and millions of enemies to fight (which isn't that bad, considering you're building up you're experience that way...)
But there are a few bad points with this game, unfortunately. The camera is atrocious. You rotate it with the L2 and R2 buttons, but there's no centering the camera and it has a bit of a tendency to wander when you're against the walls, making it difficult if not impossible to gauge you're jumps correctly. Edge detection is also a bit iffy for jumping too. Both of these make the game more frustrating than it should be. But it's worth it, if only to be able to summon Bambi (or Simba) to your side during a battle!
Overall, this is an excellent game. For all it's flaws, this collaboration between Disney and Squaresoft has made this a wonderful experience. I highly recommend this game to all RPG lovers, Disney fans and people who don't get too frustrated with bad camera systems... Here's hoping KH2 is as good, or even better!
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on 1 April 2017
most retarded ide ever, who thought combinding final fantasy with disney was agood ide because it wasen`t.
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on 26 August 2003
Don't be fooled by the 'Disney' bit!
Many people say that Disney had too much influence! But i disagree!! Squaresoft have put so much into this game it plays just like a final fantasy/chrono cross..erm..cross.
You play as Sora, a young boy who gets washed away from his friends, Kairi and Riku (a young-looking Sephiroth) and your journey is to find them. You meet Donald and Goofy who are looking for King Mickey.
You must pass through various worlds to seel key holes which have released the 'heartless' (strangely cute enemies).
Although the worlds are Disney and so are the characters in them you just get swept away by the return of so many Squaresoft favourites, Cid, Squall, Cloud, Aeris, Selphie, Wakka, Tidus and Sephiroth (no less!!).
Every single aspect of this game is outstanding! graphics, FMV's, music, voices and playability.
The one annoying thing is Sephiroth. Too hard..but that's ok, after playing FF7 you have so much respect for him you don't mind him kicking your back-side again..and again..and again..and again...thankfully he's optional.
A brilliant game! And i CANNOT wait for the sequal!!
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