This week, we begin with exciting news: Clickbait Boyfriend and I are the proud owners of a new PS4! We can finally play all of the games we’ve missed out on the past five years, by far the most important of which is Kingdom Hearts 2.8. Black Friday deals came just in the nick of time for the blog, as we’ve only got two more editions before Clickbait Boyfriend’s PS3 Kingdom Hearts supply runs dry. All that remains: Kingdom Hearts: Re: Chain of Memories.
I actually had this game before the “re,” when it was released for the Game Boy Advance. As a prelude to CBB’s quotes, let me say that I have no idea what Nomura and Co. were thinking when they released this game. Clearly, they misunderstood the target audience for a handheld Kingdom Hearts game, because the card system is far too complicated for a ten-year-old, and the game alternates between too boring and too dark for preteens. I didn’t finish Chain of Memories for the first time until right before I left for college with the PS2 release.
After Clickbait Boyfriend finished the first game, we watched the cutscenes (on double speed because they are SLOW) from Chain of Memories so that Kingdom Hearts 2 would make at least a little more sense. That was roughly a year ago, so it’s safe to say he’s forgotten everything from that watch-through. Will the card system make him quit these games forever? He’s in pretty deep…but you never know.
(New to Clickbait Boyfriend? You’ve got plenty of time to catch up before KH3! Start here.)
“I forgot all about Jiminy.”
-on game-appropriate confessions
Jiminy is the first memory I’d unlink from my chain too.
“This game is gonna suck, isn’t it?”
-on the card system
Clickbait Boyfriend has gone on the record many times about his preference for a Kingdom Hearts play style which consists of mashing the x-button and nothing else. Usually, he slowly comes around to using some magic or combos, or at least pressing a second button occasionally. We’ll see if he can adjust to some much more numerical combat.
“I just picked up Moogle urine!”
-on Moogle P
The Moogles are CBB’s favorite part of the game, but he also has the maturity of a seven-year-old. Combine those two things, and the above quote is born.
-on Sleeping Darkness, part 1
“They say easy to ambush, but they don’t realize how bad I am at this.”
-on Sleeping Darkness, part 2
Nothing like some self-depreciation! Maybe if Clickbait Boyfriend could stay awake long enough to watch Sora swing his Keyblade, he wouldn’t walk into the Heartless mid-strike so often!
“Sora’s memory must be really bad because, last I remember, Traverse Town was not a maze of various rooms with an abyss in either direction.”
-on geographical inconsistencies
There are two possible explanations here. Number one: Organization XIII constructed these cards from Sora’s memories, but they changed up the topography of the worlds to fit their needs. Number two: Sora has a really bad sense of direction. I’ll let you decide which makes more sense.
“A lot better without the voice actor.”
Harsh, but true.
“Oh easy. Do do do dodo do do!”
-on choosing the first world card
Did you guess which world he picked? Can you hear the music, burned into your brain?
“They were like ‘our half-assed Disney worlds that have no connection to the main plot need fewer stakes.’ They’re just fake versions that are retreads of the same half-assed story.”
-on revisiting Kingdom Hearts 1 again
Both Chain of Memories and Coded send you on the same chase through the same Disney worlds that Sora and friends explored in the very first game. Square almost deserves kudos for squeezing three games our of just one story. Almost. Coded is so bad it makes this game look good.
“I’m really enjoying this character animation.”
Footage below. Character animations don’t work so well when you leave the screen open for too long.
“The minute I saw more than two numbers on the screen, my eyes glazed over.”
“You cannot put a green potion in your game and have it not be heal.”
-on video game laws
It’s definitely misleading that potions don’t serve the same purpose in Chain of Memories that they did in Kingdom Hearts and every other game on the planet with green healing items. That said, if you took the time to craft your deck and read the card descriptions, there would be no confusion. So the fault lies with CBB here.
“I haven’t quite graduated to that mechanic yet.”
CBB is learning the card system, but slowly. After all, you still select the cards with only the x-button. He’s not ready to leave his one-button life behind just yet.
“This is everything that was hard about Kingdom Hearts boss battles except now I have to look at a bunch of numbers.”
-on the perils of card games
Emma told me a few weeks ago that she recently played through Chain of Memories on Proud Mode and, while the ordinary Heartless battles were a brutal grind, the boss fights were some of the most fun puzzles she’s encountered. Clickbait Boyfriend, playing on regular mode, did not share this point of view.
“I pretty much always forget Jiminy Cricket exists until he jumps out. Were they giving him the cold shoulder all of Kingdom Hearts?”
-on forgotten friends
Jiminy is so busy taking detailed notes all the time that Sora and the gang just forget about him.
“What is CP? Just give me an HP bar and an x button.”
-on foolish strategy
See what I mean? He’s regressing.
“Premium cards kind of suck! I wanted to make all my good cards premium, so they would be both good and premium!”
-on well-intentioned mistakes
Premium cards have their place, but the name definitely oversells their utility. Especially for players, like CBB, who still haven’t figured out sleights.
“As if my process for when to do a combo isn’t ‘hehe, clicky the triangle.'”
-on gameplay growth…maybe
Well, he’s using sleights now, even if he’s just replaced mashing the x-button with mashing triangle instead. Let’s celebrate progress in all its forms!