Kingdom Hearts HD 2.5 REmix launched in Japan yesterday, and Square Enix has a new batch of screenshots to show off the PlayStation 3 HD compilation. While the main attraction is no doubt the debut of Kingdom Hearts II on an HD console, the bundle also comes with Kingdom Hearts: Birth by Sleep and pre-rendered cutscenes from Kingdom Hearts Re:coded.
With all three games now running in the same resolution, the fascinating side of this bundle is being able to see the differences between the original powers of the PSP and PlayStation 2 when put next to one another. Kingdom Hearts II‘s world is full and vibrant with plenty of detail put into the backgrounds and character models. The graphics found in Birth By Sleep are blockier and lack the crispness of its console big brother.
Not that this is a bad thing mind you. I’ve been singing praises of Square Enix’s Final Fantasy Type-0 HD because I think seeing a portable game from a powerful handheld like the PSP being brought to a console shows how far the handheld market has come. Putting it next to Final Fantasy XV defeats the purpose of its existence. The same goes for the God of War console and portable games.
The sacrifices needed to make a game fit in the palm of your hands have to be made up for with good design choices and a whole lot of fun. I’ve always been fascinated by this idea ever since the days of Nintendo making simple black and white Game Boy games be more fun than NES counterparts. Birth By Sleep doesn’t have the flair that Kingdom Hearts II does, but seeing them side by side in the same package is like a window into entirely different approaches to game design.
Kingdom Hearts HD 2.5 REmix will be released in America on Dec. 2 for the PlayStation 3.