Kingdom Hearts: The Complete Laser Time Playthrough


Relive the magic of Chris and Brett’s foolhardy quest to perform a complete playthrough of the original Kingdom Hearts. Or just look at all the pretty art we made…

Back in March, Brett and I embarked on a ridiculous mission: Finish the original Kingdom Hearts (1.5 Final Mix). Twenty five episodes, one dead hard drive, and many snide comments later, our journey is finally complete. And here it is for all to see! Somebody once described this series as a bonus Laser Time Disney podcast with 1080p RPG footage in it, so, yeah, I’ll sign off on that. Here’s the entire playlist on YouTube.

Now that a little time has passed, I’m a lot less frustrated in the game than I appear in every one of these videos. I do not mean to excuse the game. Most of the time it’s a maddening slog of antiquated game design, with many infuriating choices, obtuse menus and absolutely glacial pacing. Beyond its admittedly jaw-droppingly gorgeous visual design lies a maddeningly problematic collage of a billion different unrefined ideas.

But just in case I never get a chance to say this again, let me make it crystal clear: Kingdom Hearts is an extraordinarily special experience. That’s precisely why we wanted to revisit it and share it with you. I’m really glad we did. And since this is only the first game, the story never veers into the batshit stupid, unnecessarily convoluted territory the series is now synonymous with, so each and every time we met a new, beloved character, my heart still sang with 2002-esque excitement. TBH, It’s still astonishing this game happened at all. I feel like I’ll someday have to explain Kingdom Hearts to future generations and they won’t believe it ever existed.

Would I recommend playing it? Probably not to someone who hasn’t played it before. If you didn’t care enough over the last 15 years, it’s probably not for you. A lot of the game’s more outdated mechanics aren’t likely to entice you into the series, which admittedly, improve vastly as the series moved forward (yes, as the story got even more insultingly dumb.) That said, you can check it out any time you’d like right here. Hopefully we’ve performed a public service. And if more people watch it, maybe we’ll do the same with Kingdom Hearts II!

4 thoughts on “Kingdom Hearts: The Complete Laser Time Playthrough

  1. My ultimate take away is that George “Rail Road” Martin ripped off Kingdom Hearts when he invented the Iron Throne and Sora is the true king of Westeros.

    You’re right Chris despite the decades between then and now Kingdom Hearts is something special, as a twelve year old I was enthralled by the insipid love story and douche bromance of Sora-Rikku-Kairi. Despite the aged mechanics seeing all of Disney together in a game not attached to a bunch of NFC chips encased in plastic is spectacular.

    I feel really vitriolic about the franchise, but it comes from memories of love, a compounding of Disney, Square, and even KH nostalgia that I wish was more respected than the miasma of spin offs and convolution the series became (but probably always was).

  2. A job well done Chris and Brett. KH is a serious where my opinion on it can change in the span of a single hour, its quite unique in every imaginable way. I actually never played the numbered entries, I’ve only played the portable offerings like Chain of Memories or 358/2 days. You think you’re confused? I played the Roxas solo game without even knowing what a Roxas even is! I guess what I’m saying is thank you, because even tough I definitely don’t love KH, it is a franchise without an equal for better or for worse.

    If you wanna do another games play through, that’s your hill to die on. But lets be honest, I don’t think there is a more appropriate hill for that cause you’ll ever find.

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