Oct 25, 2013I played the remastered version included with the recent 1.5 HD Remix release. I love Kingdom Hearts: FM, but I’ve found Re:CoM so bad that I felt the need to give it its own review. It is still applicable since it’s the same game from the PS2 release only with sharper graphics.
Re:CoM is miserable and tedious. I had thought the switch to a card battling system meant that battles would uld be turn-based and strategic. Instead gameplay is half action RPG like the original KH and half card battler. It fails at both.
Coming straight from KH you will feel the urge to attack like normal since it seems the same engine has been used for combat. The difference now, though, is that you have to pay attention to what card from your deck is active (displayed in the lower-left) when you hit the attack button as well as if the enemies are playing any cards (displayed lower-middle). Whoever’s card is higher carries out the attack, though everything still occurs in real time and with the same drawbacks found in KH’s combat system, like bad camera angles & hitting people with magic often being a pain.
The key to success is choosing lots of “CP” when you level up, which allows you to carry more cards. That in turn, though, makes your deck more difficult to navigate through during battles. This means you will want to arrange your card deck in a way that keeps shuffling through it during battle to a minimum, but since you’re constantly getting new cards & more CP to expand your deck, that means you spend an inordinate amount of time editing your deck. Even then, you may have an excellent deck and plenty of cards to stop that attack the boss is about to launch, but you’re only going to have a second or two to sift through your cards and find it.
You also have to worry about your inventory of special map cards, which are used in moving from room to room in the environment. The map cards have different properties that will be reflected in the rooms you create. It’s another thing that sounds intriguing but ends up being another level of tedium. The vast majority of map cards do nothing but present you with different layouts for grinding levels. And all but two of the worlds are the exact same areas you already went through during KH (Aladdin, Little Mermaid, etc), with the exact same music, so there’s no sense of exploration but repetition, instead. Many of the boss fights are even the same, like Guard Armor & Jafar Genie. The world areas are so redundant, in fact, that I skipped all of their text-only cutscenes after the first area b/c they add nothing to the overall plot of the game.
Re: CoM’s only saving grace is its introduction of new characters and some pretty interesting, fully voice-acted story material. I originally went straight to KH2 from the first game back in the day and felt lost, so it was nice to finally get those gaps filled in. The problem is that you only get to see this new stuff between worlds, so to see it you need to slog through the 90% part of the game that sucks.
I beat Sora’s story & am now having a fierce internal debate as to whether or not to play through Riku’s. I want to see what happened with him, but holy crap, I really, really don’t want to play this terrible game anymore, especially if I can’t build a Sonic Blade deck and carve through bosses with my eyes closed. Ugh.… Expand
kingdomheartsAug 25, 2009This game was horrible. When I first heard about the remake coming out on ps2, I thought it would be great, but I was wrong. In the game, you start off not knowing anything, but you get a little better, but then you start seeing constant card breaks when you are fighting, and just when you try to unleash your most powerful combo...*chink*card break...The reason a rated higher than a zero (and i wasn't inclined to at first) is because it kept me occupied for about 3 hours before i realized that if it is going to take three hours or more of button mashing with cards in each world, this would be an incredibly boring game.… Expand
Seriously, though -- for Kingdom Hearts fans who missed out on COM the first time, this is definitely the best way to play it. While the new stuff is small (a few so-so minigames in Hundred Acre Wood, additional voice acting from the Sixth Sense kid, etc.), my memory of Chain of Memories hasn't changed: It's a pleasant little title that reminds me how much I want Kingdom Hearts 3.