Alright kiddies, this installment of reviews is one not done by myself but by an esteemed member of the Respawn Point team, Jon. Take a seat and listen to what he has to say in regards to the latest Kingdom Hearts game, Kingdom Hearts Dream Drop Distance.
Many fans of the KH series have been waiting for a game that progresses the story after KH2, including myself, and I must say this game was worth the wait. You play as Sora and Riku as they take the Mark of Mastery Exam to become true Keyblade masters. Their test, unlock the seven sleeping worlds. The characters then dive into the dream worlds to begin their journey. If you haven’t been keeping up with the Kingdom Hearts series than this game is a good one to start with, for as you progress you unlock chronicles of all the past games, which basically act as quick summaries that hit all the parts you need to know. For those of you that have been keeping up, the controls are the same as previous titles, with the sad exception that there are no Shotlock commands. Now you have Flowmotion, which when triggered by rolling into walls, large enemies, or getting on certain objects, you can perform special attacks, jump higher, and bounce from wall to wall. Think Sora with lots of sugar. This became annoying at times when it would trigger while trying to dodge and you end up rolling into something, forcing you to either attack or land so that you can continue rolling. Other than that issue it was fun and made getting around fast. I still prefer Shotlock though.
For the most part the worlds are new, even the ones that aren’t. You return to Traverse Town in the beginning where you meet the cast of The World Ends With You, where you explore some of the same familiar areas that were in KH1, but there are some added areas as well, giving the world a new feel. Other worlds include The Three Musketeers, Hunchback of Notre Dame, Tron Legacy (done much better than the Pirates of the Caribbean world in KH2), and Fantasia. I was happy to find out that no music was made special for the Fantasia level, they just took songs directly from Fantasia.
Each world is played by both Riku and Sora, with each character experiencing different events much like “Birth By Sleep”. However, the difference is you play as both characters on the same save file, and just alternate between them. This would be fine except you can only play each character for a time limit before he falls asleep and you continue the story of the other character. There are items that allow you to reset the timer nullifying this issue, however, my beef with it is you still have the timer after completing the story.
This game also introduces a new enemy called Dream Eaters, of which there are two types, Nightmares and Spirits. Nightmares seek out good dreams and replace them with bad, while Spirits consume the Nightmares, thus making them your allies. The Dream Eaters are very cartoony in appearance. Think Pokémon meets Disney. As you progress through the game you obtain recipes to create Spirits that will fight by your side, grant you various abilities, and allow you to perform Spirit links. Spirit links are different for either character. Sora usually uses the Spirit as a mount or teams up with them for a combo attack, while Riku absorbs their abilities and uses the command styles from Birth by Sleep. Some of the Spirit mini games became a little to childish for my tastes, being that you can raise your Spirit’s stats or points to spend on abilities by rubbing their belly, playing bubble popping games, or going on treasure hunts. This is all optional, but it felt like it was added in place of a Little Mermaid level, which I am ok with not having. In place of tournaments is Flick Rush, a three on three battle pitting your Spirits vs. an opponent’s. This was somewhat enjoyable, being that it was fast paced and well put together.
So far every Kingdom Hearts game I’ve played has made me play it long into the night, and upon finishing, made me sad I have to wait for the next one, and this one was no exception. It’s a great addition to the series, and I highly recommend it for all fans, or just anyone that has a 3DS regardless if you’ve played a KH game before.
Alright folks, that’s all we have for today, please keep an eye on Respawn Points activities here at our main site.