Kingdom hearts Birth By Sleep is an amazing game that tells us the amazing yet sad story of how this great game series came to be. Now before I begin writing about the game I must warn you that Kingdom Hearts is a series that mixes Disney with Final Fantasy but don’t fret because it is done really well and it suits the story really well.
- The Main Characters
Now to begin I will tell you about the three playable characters – they are Terra, Ventus and Aqua. All three have a different story and a different play style. Terra is an arrogant and reckless young man who is in constant pursuit of strength and almost never listens to his heart and this is evident in his slow paced heavy combat style that deals a lot of damage. Next is Aqua who is my personal favourite character in the trio. Unlike Terra, Aqua Doesn’t care much for power and always listens to her heart because it never leads her astray and helps her to do what is right and in her play style she is very nimble, light and favours magic over strength which can be very useful in a tight spot. Finally we come to Ventus the third and final character of the Game. Ventus is known to be a broken boy because he has almost no memory of his past and isn’t the strongest mentally. This can be seen through his almost childish actions, however when we come to his gameplay style Ventus has an equal mix between strength and magic not favouring one or the other.
2. The Story
The story starts in a world called the Land of Departure, where the two characters Terra and Aqua are taking their mark of mastery exam. If they pass, they will be qualified as Keyblade Masters. During the exam something goes wrong and Terra starts emanating darkness and due to this the Trio’s Teacher, Master Eraqus (voiced by Mark Hamill), passes Aqua but cannot pass Terra due to the darkness inside him. Shortly afterwards a masked boy named Vanitus corners Ventus in his room and he tells Ventus that he will do terrible things to Terra and Aqua. However, while this is going on a siren is going off and Terra and Aqua have gathered in the hall where Master Eraqus is talking with a former Keyblade master named Yen Sid (The Wizard from Fantasia). We then find out that the seven Princesses of Heart (read my review of the first Kingdom Hearts game to find out about the Princesses of Heart) are in danger and it is then that Master Eraqus decides to send Terra to the different Disney worlds to protect the seven princesses. Just before Terra leaves, Ventus tries to tell him something and Terra doesn’t listen to him so Ventus leaves right behind him and Aqua is tasked with bringing Ventus back home. And so the Trio leaves the Land of Departure and the three of them all eventually find themselves in a twisted plot. I wont get into that now – you need to find that out yourselves.
3. The Gameplay
The gameplay for Kingdom Hearts Birth By Sleep is different to the Usual style of Kingdom Hearts because instead of there being a classic magic meter you have command bars. You can equip these with different Magic like Fire, Blizzard, or Thunder. You ou can also equip them with different attack commands like Blitz, Sonic Blade, or Zantetsuken, which is an attack where you burst past your opponent destroying them with one giant clean slash. Now once you use a command, you have to wait for it to recharge in order for you to use it again but the wait times are relatively short and are usually about 20 seconds at the most. Now you can create stronger commands by melding 2 commands together eg: fire + fire = fira which is a stronger version of fire and you can meld these with crystals that give you new abilities and stat bonuses. For example, melding two thunder spells and a soothing crystal will give you thundara and HP plus which increases your maximum HP. That’s enough about the confusing command system, let’s talk about the actual fights because these can either be extremely fun or extremely frustrating. During Terra’s first boss fight you can just stay on the offensive and you won’t have a problem but for his final boss if you leave the defensive even once you will almost instantly lose. The good news is if you are having a really hard time with enemies then you just need to take a minute to go back and do some level grinding then reattempt the fight and you can win pretty easily with almost no problems.
4. Platforms and Review
All of this is just a rundown of what the game is about so if you enjoyed this and want to have a go at it for yourself then head out and grab a copy. You can get it on the original PSP, the PS3, and the PS4 and I can’t recommend it enough because it really is a great game.
written by Callan Western