Welcome back to inMotion Gaming’s seven-part presentation of the Kingdom Hearts storyline. this installment covers Kingdom Hearts II, widely considered to be the best game in the series, and a truly epic game nonetheless.
In case you missed last week’s article, you can find it here.
We begin with Sora nowhere to be found—still asleep, if you recall from the end of Chain of Memories. Instead, we’re following Roxas, enjoying his summer vacation with his best friends. He starts to have weird dreams, one of which is his Dive to the Heart. Strange things start occurring around town, and eventually he finds himself facing a lower-leveled Nobody called a Dusk. The Keyblade mysteriously appears in his hands and he defends himself from the Nobodies. He comes across Axel, who appears to know him even though Roxas has no recollection of their friendship. After a brief skirmish, he defeats Axel and makes his way to an abandoned mansion on the outskirts of town where he meets Namine (from Chain of Memories). She informs him he is a Nobody, even though he has no clue what that means.
Roxas then finds Sora, Donald, and Goofy in the basement of the mansion. He merges with Sora, who awakens along with Donald and Goofy, from a year-long sleep. They have no memory of what happened after they defeated Ansem. The only clue they have is in Jiminy Cricket’s journal, which has a single note reading, “Thank Namine.”
The trio meet a villain named Pete (from Disney lore) and meet Master Yen Sid, who is still acting as Mickey’s mentor. He informs them that they need to attempt to stop Organization XIII and a revived Maleficent, by traveling to several worlds once again. They eventually learn that the Ansem they fought, was actually the Heartless of Xehanort, and is more correctly referred to as ‘Ansem, Seeker of Darkness.’ The leader of Organization XIII, Xemnas, is Xehanort’s Nobody. Both were created when the Xehanort-possessed-Terra (referred to as ‘Terranort’ by the KH fanbase) unlocked his heart at the end of Birth By Sleep. They then learn that Terranort was actually the apprentice of Ansem the Wise (the real Ansem), who has been missing for quite some time.
Sora, Donald and Goofy take to the worlds once again. After the war-sized Battle of 1000 Heartless at Hollow Bastion, Xemnas appears to the group and reveals the organization’s true goal: to create another Kingdom Hearts, a doorway to the heart of all worlds that will allow them to reclaim their hearts. Sora then goes to The World That Never Was (the Nobody home world you could say) to confront Xemnas. He finds Kairi, who was captured by Axel, and Riku, who has been working behind the scenes with a mysterious man known only as DiZ. However, Riku had tapped into the powers of darkness in his heart (if you recall, from the end of 358/2 Days), and he now resembles Xehanort’s Heartless. Sora also learns the truth about Roxas and Namine; they are Sora and Kairi’s Nobodies, created when Sora used Riku’s Keyblade to unlock his and Kairi’s heart.
Meanwhile, Mickey has finally found Ansem the Wise. He was posing as DiZ the entire time, working on bringing Sora back and creating a machine to destroy Xemnas’ Kingdom Hearts. He uses his machine (the Encoder), and while it does work, it explodes in the process and takes Ansem the Wise/DiZ with it. All is not lost, however—it miraculously turns Riku back to his true form.
The group battles their way through The World That Never Was in a series of high-octane fights with the remaining Organization, during which Kairi is revealed to be able to wield a Keyblade (recall her ceremony with Aqua in Birth By Sleep). Xemnas then separates Sora and Riku from the rest of the group for one last battle. After they take him down in a string of fights, they are returned to the Destiny Islands along with the rest of the group. The game ends after King Mickey, Donald, and Goofy leave, with Sora, Riku, and Kairi receiving a mysterious note from King Mickey.
Stay tuned next week for the sixth episode of Re:Cap, covering Kingdom Hearts: coded.
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