Kingdom Hearts is the nearly two decades old franchise which started when a developer at Square saw his child doodling Final Fantasy characters playing with Disney characters in the margin of their school notebook the evening before a big presentation. The developer had no other ideas, so he decided to steal this nonsense from his kid.
At least you have to assume that’s where it started, because the actual story of a chance meeting between a Square employee and a Disney employee that resulted in a literal elevator pitch seems too weird and coincidental for a series this successful. But there you have it: that’s Kingdom Hearts.
With 17 games, 3 concert tours, an ongoing manga series, novels, and literal text books written about it, it's daunting as hell. But which ones are the best? If you were a crazy person and played them all back to the back, which ones would stand out? With the newest game, Melody of Memory, just released, it seems the right time to look at the games leading up to that. So, let’s look at the 10 games on the collection disc of Kingdom Hearts: All-in-One Package, worst to best.
Going by this collection, that means seven games and three compilation movies - and yes these movies will be ranked amidst the games. Perhaps not the best method, but the alternative is diving into an even more complicated version of a Kingdom Hearts list and let’s not do that.
10. Kingdom Hearts Re:coded
Kingdom Hearts Re:Coded is an intriguing beast. It started off as an episodic adventure game for phones. It was then remade as a Nintendo DS game, which itself was turned into a three hour long movie for the compilation discs. It’s not a good movie, wasn’t a very good game. Really, it just wasn’t a good story.
Taking place shortly after the events of Kingdom Hearts II, King Mickey has received a mysterious message in Jiminy Cricket’s notebook and sends a digital copy of Sora to repeat the events of Kingdom Hearts 1 and 2 in order to solve it. What is the secret message? What worlds will you visit? Will they be in any way interesting? The answers will all be of great disappointment!
Not only is the digital world a huge missed opportunity to bring back Tron, but the digital copy of Sora is super creepy. This thing is basically just one of those Cookies from Black Mirror, and right away he just accepts his false existence and moves on with solving whatever problem is put in from of him.
However the bigger issue with the game is that it has no point. Your entire goal is to solve the secret message’s meaning. In the end, you learn the secret message says that Sora’s heart is connected to all the previous Keyblade wielders you’ve met in the other games, and that they’ll be coming back in future games. Neat.