Paige FTW: ʻRe:Mind’ Me Why I Love ‘Kingdom Hearts’

Kingdom Hearts was the absolute coolest thing ever when I was in high school. Twelve years later, I can see the flaws and the cheese and zippers and all the weirdness.

And yet … I still love it.

The first DLC in series history, Re:Mind, came out last week, and I made it a priority to finish.

I’m not going to say that it is perfect or even quite worth the $30 I had to spend to get it. It is largely a retread of the final sequence of Kingdom Hearts III, where you fight familiar bosses and watch familiar cutscenes all over again. The premise is that Sora is using his Power of Waking to go back in time to save Kairi by linking the hearts of the seven Guardians of Light.

You learn some new things about the increasingly convoluted plot and a few secrets are “unmasked,” so to speak. You also can play as some of the other Keyblade wielders, which is quite nice. It’s relatively short, too: I spent about three hours finishing the story, though I admittedly haven’t taken on the boss rush that unlocks the new secret ending.

Does anything make sense? What the heck is the story at this point? Reader, it does not.

And yet … the thrill and pain of seeing your friends — yes, your friends, because you do love Sora and Kairi and Roxas and Aqua and all the others — battle on and try so desperately to be together, after all that has kept them apart.

The motifs are almost cliché-like.

I still cried twice.

There’s just something about this big dumb happy series that brings you back, again and again, even if you know that things are going to get more complicated and more stupid as time goes on.

Should you get this DLC? Probably not. But you will anyway.

That’s the magic of Kingdom Hearts.