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Kimberley Wallace
E3: Kingdom Hearts: Birth By Sleep Impressions
Holy crap, it's Stitch!
06.17.10 - 3:03 PM

As a diehard Kingdom Hearts fan – which, by the way, right now at this E3 I am wearing one cool Kingdom Hearts shirt – I was more than delighted to get a hands on look at Birth By Sleep. Thankfully, we won't have to wait too much longer to experience this title in all its full glory, as it's looking at a September 7th release date. For those of you who don't know, this is a prequel to all the Kingdom Hearts titles, so you can expect a great deal of history and backstory to what we previously knew about Sora and company. The game focuses on explaining what happened when the original keyblade masters were defeated and the keyblades selected new masters like our a good friend Sora. Birth by Sleep features three different campaigns for you to play, all with unique stories, but they are still directly connected to one another. What looks promising is that you'll have a difference experience depending on which campaign you choose to play. Can we say replay value? I love it. From what I played in the campaign mode, I was pleased. Not just because I got to see Stitch, because, let's face it, Disney characters are what make Kingdom Hearts games a fun time, but also because I was surfing through space to unleash my fury on one badass monster. Yes, I was dodging the monster's attacks, but I was also flying through a futuristic galaxy, and there were lasers, which made me want to go play some laser tag. Let's just say, it was a cool experience, and as long as the rest of the environments come close to this one, we've got nothing to fear with this game.

Besides having fantastic graphics that look on par, or dare I say better, than we experienced with the PS2 Kingdom Hearts games, the game really shines in its multiplayer mode. There's an arena where you can duel monsters with your friends, or if you are the competitive type you can play against your friends in versus mode. Combat is pretty similar to past Kingdom Hearts games, without any major surprises. Its Action-RPG elements are fairly basic, yet there's still some challenge in dodging attacks from enemies who are surrounding you from every angle. The controls are pretty fluid and while the camera angles will never be perfect, they're probably the best they've ever been. Not that there ever was a doubt, but after playing this game at E3, my preorder remains, and my excitement? Probably the highest it has ever been. September 7th can't come soon enough.


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