Kingdom Hearts 2.8 HD Final Chapter Prologue is an action role-playing game. As the prologue to Kingdom Hearts III, there's a short playable segment with Aqua as the protagonist, a short film, and an HD port of Kingdom Hearts: Dream Drop Distance.
Pro Gets you prepared for story events leading into Kingdom Hearts III
This is perfect for players looking to get ready for Kingdom Hearts III. The games and short movie included in this Kingdom Hearts 2.8 package all show crucial story events, acting as a prologue to the next installment in the series. Playing the games in the Kingdom Hearts 1.5 + 2.5 HD ReMIX Collection first, and then the ones in Kingdom Hearts 2.8 will get you all caught up to speed on everything you need to know. Since this is such a story-heavy franchise, it's really convenient to be able to pick this up as a companion piece to the ReMIX Collection.
Pro Includes two games and a short movie in one package
You get a selection of things in a single disc here. Kingdom Hearts HD 2.8 Final Chapter Prologue is more of an umbrella name for everything included. There's Kingdom Hearts 2.8: A Fragmentary Passage that features series character Aqua as the protagonist, an HD port of Kingdom Hearts: Dream Drop Distance, and Kingdom Hearts: Back Cover, a short film that covers additional lore and story information that leads into Kingdom Hearts III.
Pro Wonderful soundtracks
The soundtracks are incredible. In both Kingdom Hearts 2.8 and Kingdom Hearts: Dream Drop Distance, the music goes above and beyond to convey any given tone or theme wherever they play.
Battle and boss themes are catchy even in their classical influences, with epic final boss songs that tell a story about the main villain through music. Songs for Disney worlds stay true to their original material and are sure to make longtime fans nostalgic for their favorite movies and characters. Even the song that plays on the title screen, "Dearly Beloved", is a quiet but emotional song that stays in your heart. The composer Yoko Shimomura does a fantastic job with the music across the series, putting her background in classical music to use here in the best ways possible.
Pro Fun real-time action combat with keyblade swords
The combat in the games is a lot of fun with the unique keyblade weapons: swords that are shaped like keys. Attacking enemies with your keyblade feels swift and smooth, with plenty of abilities to help you dash quicker, jump higher, and more. Elemental magic spells are snappy and pretty to look at; leveling up unlocks cooler and more powerful spells, with giant flare explosions, thunderstorms, and blizzards with detailed particle effects. You also get rewarded for using certain magic spells, letting you chain faster, flashier keyblade attacks where you're practically invincible until the effect wears off. Combat is really enjoyable, especially as you unlock new skills over time.
Con The gameplay in Kingdom Hearts: Dream Drop Distance isn't for everyone
Dream Drop Distance drastically changes up the gameplay formula. Combat is a mix of the usual keyblade fights, along with jumping, dashing, and swinging from various surfaces in the environment. Journeying to different worlds is also different, where you "drop down" from an overhead view into the planet's orbit, with rewards to collect and obstacles to avoid along the way. While different doesn't equal bad, this change is pretty out-there compared to the rest of the games in the series, and some players might not like it that much.
Con Not accessible for newcomers to the Kingdom Hearts series
If you've never played a Kingdom Hearts game before, this isn't the best place to start. The content included here assumes that you're caught up to speed with the series, filling in additional information and expanding on existing plotlines. There are also major spoilers for previous Kingdom Hearts games. New players will have a better time starting with the Kingdom Hearts 1.5 + 2.5 HD ReMIX Collection first before picking this one up.
Con The playable section with Aqua is only two hours long
Aqua's section, A Fragmentary Passage, is way too short. As the main selling point of Kingdom Hearts 2.8, it's the only new playable content, showing off the latest engine that Kingdom Hearts III uses. But there are only a few areas to explore, and the story is a footnote compared to the length of the rest of the games in the series. This is sadly more like a demo of what Kingdom Hearts III is capable of instead of a full standalone title.