Kingdom Hearts 2.8 Final Chapter Prologue

Game review by
Marc Saltzman, Common Sense Media
Kingdom Hearts 2.8 Final Chapter Prologue Game Poster Image
Remastered Disney-focused tales, movie have mild violence.

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A lot or a little?

The parents' guide to what's in this game.

Positive Messages

Positive message about friendship, determination, fighting evil. This collection features a couple games, including a remake of a previous one, and a film tied to franchise.

Positive Role Models & Representations

You play various characters, but they all seem noble, brave, want to fight evil. But in doing so, they use weapons, special powers to destroy enemies, which might not seem so positive.

Ease of Play

Simple controls, except when using touchpad in some areas of Kingdom Hearts 3D: Dream Drop Distance.

Violence

Some mild violence. Players wield a sword-like Keyblade weapon, use magic blasts to take down baddies. No blood, gore; enemies simply disappear.

Sex

Aqua, protagonist in Kingdom Hearts 0.2 Birth by Sleep, wears tight, revealing clothing, with some skin showing off her thighs; player can customize her clothes, too.

Language
Consumerism

Features many familiar Disney characters including Mickey and Minnie Mouse, Donald Duck, Goofy, others. Many levels built on popular Disney films, including Hunchback of Notre Dame, Fantasia, Tron, Pinocchio, more.

Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that Kingdom Hearts HD 2.8 Final Chapter Prologue is a compilation of two games remixed for PlayStation 4, Kingdom Hearts 3D: Dream Drop Distance and Kingdom Hearts 0.2 Birth by Sleep (now subtitled A Fragmentary Passage), as well as a movie entitled Kingdom Hearts χ Back Cover. The third-person action-adventure games does include plenty of combat -- using sword-like weapons and magic to defeat enemies -- but there's no blood or gore, and the enemies simply disappear. Aqua, the heroine from the remastered version of Birth by Sleep, is provocatively dressed, and there's a focus on adjusting her clothing as well. Players will also be shown a wide range of characters from Disney properties, including Mickey Mouse and Goofy, and will fight across locations such as Fantasia and Tron-inspired worlds.

User Reviews

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What's it about?

KINGDOM HEARTS HD 2.8 FINAL CHAPTER PROLOGUE includes Kingdom Hearts 3D: Dream Drop Distance (originally released on Nintendo 3DS) and Kingdom Hearts 0.2 Birth by Sleep - A Fragmented Passage (originally for PlayStation Portable in 2010), but with the latter game you now play as a different protagonist, Aqua. This collection also includes a high-definition movie entitled Kingdom Hearts χ Back Cover. The games use third-person combat, exploration, and some puzzle-solving and features imaginative worlds and familiar faces. This includes many Disney characters (such as Mickey Mouse and Donald Duck) and villains. Depending on the task at hand, you'll play as two spiky-haired teenagers, Sora and Riku, in their quest to become masters of the Keyblade, a magical key-shaped weapon wielded like a sword.

Is it any good?

These games look and sound good, especially if you're a super fan of the series and want to experience them on a powerful console instead of on the go. Plus you can experience Kingdom Hearts 0.2 Birth by Sleep - A Fragmented Passage from Aqua's perspective for the first time and watch this film that attempts to tie everything together and sets up the final chapter, Kingdom Hearts III. (The story is still convoluted -- it possibly got lost in translation from its Japanese game developers.) The best piece of this three-part compilation is Birth By Sleep. It's fun to explore the beautiful and atmospheric Dark World as Aqua, engaging in nimble and fast-paced combat against all kinds of enemies, and you're encouraged to explore these big outdoor levels (even vertically). The largest problem with this title is that It's a short adventure that only lasts a couple of hours.

The new take on Kingdom Hearts 3D: Dream Drop Distance fares well, too, with players controlling Sora and Riku to perform parkour moves, fight, and navigate strange worlds. Some of the parts that require the touchpad (carried over from the Nintendo 3DS game) don't feel as intuitive as the rest of the game, but it's still very enjoyable to play through. Overall, this compilation is a lot of fun for fans of the series and should help pass the time until Kingdom Hearts III is eventually released.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about marketing to kids. Does it seem as if integrating Disney characters, villains, and locations are a natural and complimentary fit, or does it feel like a marketing ploy, leveraging these beloved Disney mascots to increase game sales and open up new merchandising opportunities?

  • Talk about violence in games. Is the violence in these games acceptable because it's presented in a cartoonish fashion, or is it a problem because it uses family-friendly characters and settings?

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