Hey guys! So today’s post is going to be interesting, and that’s because I’m going to be trying really hard not to confuse myself. I’m going to be ranking the Kingdom Hearts intros, and there’s a lot of them! Basically, at the beginning of the majority of the Kingdom Hearts games, you get a little introduction that creatively takes you through what has happened so far. I’ll be including the intros as well so you can see what I mean. Also, disclaimer, this is totally my opinion. Anyway, take a look!
13. Dark Road
I’m sorry, but Dark Road’s intro is super boring to me, but literally as I wrote this, I realized something pretty major about it. At first, Dark Road’s intro will make zero since sense it’s just Player from Union X doing stuff, and their fate after the Keyblade War. A year before Union X’s finale, this would be pointless for a game like Dark Road, which tells Young Xehanort’s story. But in 2021, when Union X ended and revealed that Xehanort is actually a reincarnation of Player, this intro suddenly makes perfect since! Dark Road IS recapping the story; Xehanort’s story. I can’t believe it took me this long to realize that Mr. Nomura was basically telling us who Xehanort was all along, because Dark Road came out in 2020, but we didn’t find out about the reincarnation stuff until May 2021. Crazy stuff!
12. Union X/Back Cover
This intro is actually just a tutorial to the game, so there’s not much going on here. It’s the same for the Back Cover movie. Still, there’s some nostalgic music going on, and the design is pretty cute! However, after I’ve seen it so many times it starts to dull me a little. But it didn’t get into last place because I just like it a little better than Dark Road’s…even if Dark Road’s intro has a heck of a time foreshadowing stuff.
11. Chain of Memories
This one’s pretty tame compared to the others on this list, and it’s very similar to Re:Coded in that it didn’t get any HD animation and just went over some scenes from the first Kingdom Hearts. However, I do like it because of that nostalgic music!
Same thing with Chain of Memories, Re:Coded just goes over the basics (and the basics aren’t so basic anymore once we get to this point). It goes over a large portion of the story, including Birth By Sleep. Funny story time! I believe it was Election Day in 2020 when I turned this game on for the first time (I had only watched the movie versions before). I was playing through the series with one of my best friends, and we totally hadn’t played Birth By Sleep yet. At least, I had, but my friend hadn’t. I turned on Re:Coded and was shocked to see Birth By Sleep spoilers playing in the intro, so I promptly advised him against playing it until we had gone through Birth By Sleep. My bad! Anyhow, it is a cool intro!
9. Melody of Memory
It was full on nostalgia when I turned this on for the first time! This intro is unique, since it allows you to play as Sora to try and grab all the music notes on the track (Melody of Memory is a rhythm based game), and all the while scenes from throughout the series are playing in the background.
8. 358/2 Days
358/2 Days has such a fitting intro: one that rips our hearts out before the game even starts. The intro begins with scenes from 358/2 Days rather than a recap, which I think sets things up nicely. After some normal intro stuff with some actual recap, we return to another scene. I haven’t really though much about why this intro is different from the others, but I think it’s perfect to begin and end the intro with scenes, especially since they revolve around Axel and Roxas.
7. A Fragmentary Passage
I LOVE this intro, and some part of me knows it should be higher on this list, but I just don’t know where I’d move it. So this one gives us a remix of Simple and Clean, which is pretty cool. But more importantly, the way they recapped Birth By Sleep is lovely! But my most favorite part has to be how they foreshadow that Sora will be the one to save Aqua with how his hand reaches into the water to help her, and I really love that!
6. Birth By Sleep
I think this is one of the better intros in the series (fight me if you must!). Like Kingdom Hearts’ intro, it foreshadows what is to come rather than recap what we have already scene. What’s interesting is how they tell it so straight. It’s all rather symbolic, but unlike Kingdom Hearts’ intro, it’s pretty straightforward, and it’s not hard to figure out what’s about to happen in the game. Which I guess you can guess anyway, since Square Enix games rarely end well.
5. Kingdom Hearts
This one is probably the strangest intro of all of them. Since Kingdom Hearts is the first game that was released in the series, it had to foreshadow events to come instead of doing some recap. They did this in pretty symbolic ways, which I think is pretty cool! I think some people might have been surprised that a song like Simple and Clean was the first thing they heard in this game, but today, that has to be one of the most (if not the most) popular song within the Kingdom Hearts fandom. Ask any of us. I promise you we know all the words, haha!
3. Dream Drop Distance
Dream Drop Distance was actually my #1 favorite intro for a long time. However, after thinking it over, I decided that I liked KHII’s and KHIII’s better. But that in no way means that this intro just isn’t as good! I think DDD’s intro is very clever with how quickly and effectively the timeline of KH was shown in the span of a few minutes, and the inclusion of Hikari, the orchestrated version of Simple and Clean, is amazing!
I thought that opening the intro up with a storybook was perfect, and it might actually serve as some foreshadowing…maybe… Anyway, the end of this intro is similar to the end of the KHIII’s intro, which I think is interesting. It’s a great one!
2. Kingdom Hearts II
This one almost got into third place, but the more I thought about it, the more I remembered how much I love this intro. “Sanctuary” is one of my all-time favorite songs, and is just super nostalgic for me. The way they showed the story so far is really clever in my opinion, and don’t even get me started on the ending of it! TO LATE! The scene with them laying in the sand, then Sora turning into Roxas is probably my favorite Kingdom Hearts intro scene of all, because the transition is so smooth! In Kingdom Hearts, Sora sinks into the ocean until he gets to Destati, which is the place with the stain glass pictures (I believe that’s what it’s called anyway, it’s the title of the song). In Kingdom Hearts II’s intro, we get the same thing with Roxas. The mirroring is perfect! We even get the white doves!
But I’ll stop now…
1. Kingdom Hearts III
For my #1 favorite, I just had to go with Kingdom Hearts III’s intro! I was so impressed when I saw it for the first time, because I had been wondering how Square Enix would shove the entire series into three minutes. I was not disappointed! “Face My Fears” is a great song, and it was the perfect touch! The fact that they have Xehanort playing chess just really does it for me, since it emphasizes the weight he has had in everyone’s life and how much of a mastermind he is. Chef’s kiss!
And that’s all of them! I only talked about these intros briefly to avoid making this a long post, so if you want me to break any of these down and do some in-depth talk on the symbolization and foreshadowing that any of these have, let me know and I’d be happy to do it!
For now, God bless and have a wonderful weekend!
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