Content Warning continues for preteens in weirdly-sexual situations, nudity and gore.
After the initial few minutes, this chapter is almost entirely filler, but don’t worry. That just means we’re going to have the opportunity to descend to even greater lows than we have already seen so far. Bear in mind that these “even greater lows” will be releative to our previous chapter, when a twelve-year-old girl’s ass started to glow like a firefly. This is Final Fantasy canon.
After three or so hours of not controlling Sora, the game seems reluctant to return control to him. Instead, it shows Mickey Mouse in his black cloak from CoM, arriving at Twilight Town station grim as a ghost, stepping off the cartoon ghost train? Looks like Twilight Town is a real place after all, and we’ve confirmed it with a look at the most preposterous visual I could imagine.
This OVA is about a preteen girl with a Crystal shoved up her ass.
At this point you should already know whether or not you want to read this journal through to the end. There is nothing I can add that will fix, improve on, or even justify the above summary, nor would I be interested in doing so. For all of you who intend to leave: I respect you. Perhaps even more than I respect myself at the moment. For the rest of us: I’ve maaaaade popcorn!
Before we go any further, though, this is the first time on the blog that I think I should put up a Content Warning. Beyond the preteen girl with a Crystal shoved up her ass, and the camera that continues to linger on her, which definitely counts in its own right, we also have to account for unrelated nudity and gore, namely a lot of blood, child death and (highlight to read) an exposed human brain. We good? Great.
Roxas arrives at The Usual Spot, where his friends are all chatting and laughing. Roxas starts to say hello, but they don’t respond, and when he tries to get their attention his hand goes right through, and they vanish. The game returns control of you in total silence, it’s a wonderful moment as you realize the worst. The narrative told you that there was going to be a big hunt tomorrow, that there were two days left in summer vacation, that it was going to be day 6 out of a full week of 7… and they were all misleading you from realizing that the hammer would fall on day 6, instead. And you know—you just know—that the hammer will land the moment you finish saving and step outside the door. The sense of dread is wonderful.
The Rift was made up of a random variety of interiors, to allow the level designers to essentially… do whatever. While there’s a lot of variety and can be healthy (as seen in, say, KH1), FFV’s mostly re-uses old elements, and I can’t say it makes for very enticing level design. Especially since they just threw the rest of FFV into a blender, leaving only a few spotlight moments to help the dungeon stand out on its own.
Most of the interesting stuff in this dungeon had to do with bosses rather than level design. At the entrance, the Demons of the Rift Exdeath had freed showed up to taunt us, but no, please, don’t attack us all at once, that would be rude.
The sixth wonder is a mysterious ghost train, said to be visible from the hill with the dog. The train has no passengers and no driver, and everyone’s excited to see it even though they shouldn’t reasonably be able to see if there are passengers or drivers in any of Twilight Town’s trains. So they wait. And they wait and they wait. And they wait so long they’re even discussing next summer, when Seifer shows up, and we start one of the most peculiar scenes in the game in hindsight. It’s touching, it’s intimate, and in a strange, stupid way, that’s what makes it weird.
Once we regained control from Mister Aeronautical Road Rage, it was time ot do some innumerable side quests in preparation for the big endgame. We got started by going to the Sealed Castle free our first and most important set of prizes. We picked out the Sage’s and Magus’ staves for our wizards, and the Yoichi Bow for Krile the Ranger.
That wasn’t our only stop. We also went to the town of Moore, where an old man offered us our choice of the “Brave Blade” and the “Chicken Knife.” These were strange weapons: their power was based on the number of times you have or haven’t run away from combat. The Chicken Knife is strongest the more you’ve run, and the Brave Blade strongest the less you’ve run – it’s the strongest weapon in the original game if you haven’t run at all! In our case, we took the Chicken Knife, but had only really run away a moderate number of times, so wouldn’t have been able to make very much use of either weapon. Unfortunately, it turns out that the Chicken Knife has a countermeasure as a penalty for being so easy to manipulate, in that it forces you to run away at random. Wenever made much use of it.
The cast is back in The Usual Spot and the game is doing that weird “mouths are flapping but there is no sound” thing from Day 1 again. When KH2 finally remembers to turn up the volume, it seems our foursome is talking about a take-home independent study assignment from school. Olette is trying to get the others to do their damn homework, and Roxas keeps trying to change the subject. Not because he doesn’t want to do his homework, but because Roxas is convinced that he fell off the tower and died yesterday, but no one else remembers that. Everyone else just thinks he slipped and regained his footing.
Olette finally convinces them to do the homework, and thank goodness. If the game didn’t get me out of all these action-combat situations, why, I might just faint! It’s definitely time for us to do homework.
I tease – and the game deserves it for dragging this prologue on as long as it has – but this is probably the best day of the entire prologue and I look forward to it when I replay KH2. But during my first time through? Yeeeugh. It has to be said and put in bold letters, because we’re 16k words into this and the game has yet to start properly.
Unfortunately, with Exdeath dead (“dead”), the remaining three Crystals shattered. After a lot of shaking and a blinding red light, the cast awoke in front of… Castle Tycoon? The party doesn’t seem nearly as surprised by this as they should.
Inside, and with no archvillain to distract us, the Chancellor rushed at the chance to make a public announcement that Lenna and “Sarisa” were back and Tycoon’s line was secure (let’s not raise questions about who would become queen with Faris technically the older child!). The Chancellor got Faris all gussied up in a dress and threw a royal ball to celebrate. Sir, I don’t want to be rude, but the last time we held a ball in this franchise, a former party member tried to take over the world, and both Satan and God were overthrown in their own domains. I think it’s probably for the best if our player characters never dance again, for the rest of the franchise.
Roxas wakes up, musing on how Sora’s promise to Kairi regarding the Oathkeeper. Drawing a connection to his personal life, Roxas reflects on how he just broke a promise to Hayner before heading out to meet the day.
It’s the day of the Struggle tournament, and a man cuts Roxas off part-way to say “You’re gonna be late!” Thanks for making me even later, stranger!