|Dev: Square Enix|
|Pub: Square Enix|
|Release: September 10, 2013|
|Screen Resolution: 480p-1080p||Fantasy Violence|
There is no denying that the entire package is gorgeous. The bump to HD really helps capture the beauty of the game without harming the integrity of the gameplay. The textured backgrounds also make everything in the world feel more alive. Even with this overhaul, there are occasional moments in which certain features of the characters will look flat and thus remove you from the overall richness of the game. This is not a huge thing, but it is noticeable and may be too distracting for some.
In addition to the graphical upgrade, a few other features were upgraded as well. The most notable is the camera. Moving it away from the L2/R2 controls to a right-stick control scheme certainly helps the camera’s functionality and removes a lot of the frustration. You will still, at times, find yourself cursing at the game, though. Couple this with the persistent platforming concerns from the first time around and you have in store for you a “fun” time. This will never make you want to just stop playing the game; it’ll just compel you to take an extended break every now and then.
A lot could have gone wrong in the delivery of this title. It could have been a cheap cash-in on the HD craze, and though that might be part of the motivation, the results are sincere, and Square clearly made this with the fans in mind. It could have easily done nothing to alter the game except slap on a few layers of brighter colors, but as I said earlier, Kingdom Hearts is special. The HD collection may not contain everything we want in a Kingdom Hearts collection, but it gives us enough to remember why we continue to love the series just as much today as we did years ago.
Square Enix sets the bar on HD collections. Whether this and its upcoming Final Fantasy X/X-2 HD collection will be the beginning of the end for HD collections, I don’t know, but if the industry starts looking at this as an example for how to restore the magic of the original games, then we are all in for a pleasant treat. I’m just glad I can finally play Kingdom Hearts without my wife taking the game over...well, maybe.
Date: September 11, 2013