The story of how I discovered Kingdom Hearts
A tale of pure luck and sadness
This was originally supposed to be part of another Kingdom Hearts related blog post. But it ended up being so long, that I figured it was better to make it a standalone post.
So here it goes…
It was late September of 2016. I was watching a Youtube video about Zootopia (the movie is good, don’t judge me). Although I cannot remember specifically what the video was about, I remember the credits sequence of the video used a “Chillstep” remix of “River Flows in You”.
And I digged it so much that I decided to look for the full version. After scrolling 500 miles and 500 more into the comment section. I finally found someone who had posted a link to it. So I listened to it over and over again for a few days, like I always do when I find a new piece of music to listen to.
Then it happened, one day, in the ‘related videos’ section down in the right corner. Another video from the same channel appeared. A video that happened to be a Chillstep remix of Dearly Beloved, the main theme from the Kingdom Hearts original soundtrack.
I kept staring at the thumbnail for a minute.
Trying to process what I was seeing for two primary reasons. The first reason was that it looked absolutely stunning. The second reason was trying to figure out what Mickey, Donald and Goofy were doing with anime styled human characters. Eventually I clicked on it and omg the music was just beautiful, I just had to look up what “Kingdom Hearts” was.
At first I thought it was some indie game or something. I figured that could be the only explanation as to why I hadn’t heard about it. Until I saw that it was a Square Enix game, I already knew about Final Fantasy, but I never really got into it. My interest in FF came as a result of discovering Kingdom Hearts.
I didn’t own a PlayStation 3 anymore at that point. And the PS4 port wasn’t out yet, so I figured I’d have to play it on an emulator. So I mapped my Xbox controller to the PCSX2 emulator and got started. There’s something truly special about playing a PlayStation game on Windows with a Xbox 360 controller.
The best part about that is, despite only getting into the series recently. No one can ever say to me that I never experienced the pre-Final Mix era. Because I did, just at a much later date. It was kinda like I just went back in time.
Now, usually one wouldn’t recommend playing the sequel before playing the original game. But I’m me, so I did it anyway. And honestly, it wasn’t a problem for me. All the callbacks to the first game kinda just made it all feel more mysterious. And when I played the first game later on, it gave me a lot of “Aah, now it makes sense” moments.
“A scattered dream that’s like a far-off memory… A far-off memory that’s like a scattered dream… I want to line the pieces up… Yours and mine.”
After taking control of Sora and leaving Twilight Town, I had completely fallen in love with the game. Everything about it was just perfect for me. The music, the characters, the design, the visuals. It all made me feel good.
Truth be told, I discovered this game when my mental health was a at a very low point. I was already depressed and I had just lost a good friend. And I’m not sure if I would even be alive at this point if it wasn’t for that game. It became my way to escape real life. Which is why I probably love it so much. I’ve never felt this kind of connection to a video game series before.
I’m wanting to get a tattoo to commemorate it. And I hate needles, in case you’re doubting how much I love the game. Exactly what the tattoo would be, I’m not entirely sure about yet. But it would probably the quote above. It’s such a beautiful and mysterious message.
We’ll see what the future relating to this franchise has to offer us. I mean, obviously Kingdom Hearts 3 but… you know what I mean.