CGRundertow KINGDOM HEARTS 3D: DREAM DROP DISTANCE for Nintendo 3DS Video Game Review

Uploaded by CGRundertow on 27.09.2012

2002. I’m in the GameWorks arcade at Disneyworld, wide-eyed like a kid in a candy store, when
I come upon an actual Ehrgeiz arcade machine. I proceed to beat the game with Sephiroth,
step outside, and high-five Goofy. That’s as close to Kingdom Hearts as I’d come before
today. And it’s not out of a particular dislike for the idea - maybe some bitterness
that we’ve had eleven thousand of these games but no Brave Fencer Musashi III - I
just missed out on the first one, didn’t want to play the second without playing the
first, and so on. Perhaps to accommodate folks just like me, Dream Drop Distance (‘CUZ
THERE’S THREE D’S GET IT) is liberal with optional tutorials, optional exposition, an
optional glossary, and optional fake Jeff Bridges.
For whatever reason, despite saving the multiverse on a number of occasions, Sora and Riku with
one K apparently aren’t Keyblade Masters, and need to prove themselves? That seems kind
of ridiculous. So off they go to save the Sleeping Worlds, featuring personages and
settings from The Hunchback of Notre Dame, Pinnochio, The Three Musketeers, Tron: Legacy
(complete with awesome light-cycle minigame)... and if they all sound familiar, yeah, that’s
a plot point. Strangely, though, the only Square-Enix characters to show up in this
version are the cast of The World Ends With You, occupying Traverse Town because having
an actual Tokyo neighborhood pop up in the middle of a Disney-centric multiverse might
be a little jarring. Only Sora and Riku with one K aren’t fighting together, rather,
they’re in parallel instances of each area, and occasionally collapse due to low blood
sugar or some convoluted reason, at which point you’re switched to the other character,
perhaps with a couple power-ups for your trouble. The combat feels a bit compressed on the 3DS,
with the L and R buttons multitasking camera and target-locking duties, and uncomfortable
switches mid-combat between the slider to move around and the D-Pad to select a command
from your deck. You can add the Circle Pad Pro to improve your camera control; without
it, just getting your bearings can be a right bear.
Rather than your usual cohort of Donald and Goofy, you instead get to craft spirits called
“Dream Eaters” from the detritus left from destroying... dream eaters. Evil ones.
(And no, you can’t make Drowzee OR Hypno. Darkrai’s completely out of the question.)
These can be levelled up (via a strangely Sphere Grid-esque interface) through combat
- or by petting them vigorously - and are capable of linking with Sora or Riku with
one K for powered-up attacks. I’ll be honest, I’ve used these as an out when the camera
had me completely jammed in a corner and I needed to get out quick. Build and level your
spirits, complete bonus Portal challenges, get new and interesting monster-bits, build
new monsters. Honestly, I had fun with the game - and it’s nice to see that Sixth Sense
kid can still get work - and I’m a little more eager to venture into the original series.
Just a little, though. I’m still terrified of sentient crustaceans and other aquatic
life singing to me about Finny Fun. That’s a dealbreaker right there.