Welcome back to inMotion Gaming’s seven part series on the Kingdom Hearts story. This week will cover 358/2 Days (pronounced ‘three-fifty-eight over two days’), which came out in 2008 for the Nintendo DS. The game covers a lot of ground, and leads right into Kingdom Hearts 2.
In case you missed last week’s episode, check it out here.
Kingdom Hearts 358/2 Days takes place starting before the end of Kingdom Hearts, throughout Chain of Memories, and ends right as Kingdom Hearts II begins. This installment, released on the Nintendo DS, follows the story of a boy named Roxas. Roxas is Sora’s Nobody—the sentient shell left over when a person is separated from their heart. On the day he is born as Sora’s Nobody (when Sora unlocks his heart near the end of Kingdom Hearts) he is found by a man named Xemnas in the realm of darkness, and named the thirteenth member of Organization XIII. Xemnas gives the boy the name ‘Roxas,’ which ‘Sora,’ rearranged with the letter ‘X.’ He’s sent to other worlds to destroy Heartless on a daily basis, so he can release the captive hearts to summon Kingdom Hearts. Being Sora’s Nobody, he has the latent ability to summon a Keyblade. He’s placed under the care of Organization XIII’s eighth member, Axel, who quickly befriends him.
Soon after his induction into the Organization, a mysterious fourteenth member arrives. Named Xion, her appearance changes from person to person, depending on the relationship between her and that person. When most of the members are sent to Castle Oblivion (right before the events of Chain of Memories), Roxas is paired with Xion as a mission partner. The two begin to form a friendship, and Xion begins to open up, revealing her resemblance to Sora’s friend Kairi, and that she can wield a Keyblade, too. A few days later Roxas goes into a coma around the same time Sora is put to sleep to regain the memories he lost in Castle Oblivion.
When Roxas wakes up, he finds that all the members assigned to Castle Oblivion, except Axel, were killed. Roxas, Axel and Xion become close friends, but Roxas begins experiencing Sora’s memories and grows suspicious when no one will answer his questions. Meanwhile, Sora is transported from Castle Oblivion to Twilight Town by DiZ and Namine, who are trying to restore his memories. Xion has a confrontation with Riku, who brings her identity and authenticity of her Keyblade into question and suggests she merge with her former self. Xion is torn between doing so and staying with Roxas and Axel.
Eventually Xion discovers that she’s an imperfect replica of Roxas created by Organization member Vexen from Sora’s leaking memories should Sora turns out to be of no use. Her resemblance to Kairi is because of Sora’s strong memories of her. However, as Namine restores Sora’s memories, they affect Xion to the point where she begins to physically resemble him. Xion becomes confused and leaves Organization XIII wanting to become a true person, before which she has a falling out with Roxas and Axel.
Later Roxas decides to leave the Organization to find himself as well. Xemnas then reprograms Xion to attempt to absorb Roxas and become whole, though it will stop Sora from regaining his memories. She eventually succeeds and dies in Roxas’ arms as the memories she has return to Sora. Roxas then takes Xion’s Keyblade, allowing him to use two at once.
Not long after, Riku seeks out Roxas under orders from DiZ to capture him so they can merge him with Sora and complete the restoration. During the epic clash, Roxas dons the ability to wield two Keyblades, thanks to Xion being absorbed into him. Nearly defeated, Riku taps into the darkness in his heart to defeat Roxas. However, this has an effect that changes his form into that of Xehanort’s Heartless, Ansem Seeker of Darkness. Riku then brings back the unconscious Roxas to DiZ, who digitizes and places him into a virtual Twilight Town.
The game ends with Roxas running down the street to meet with his friends, as the events of Kingdom Hearts II begin.
Be sure to check out next week’s episode, which will cover the epic game of Kingdom Hearts II.
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