I was never really into the whole Disney craze. Even as a kid, I couldn’t find a huge interest in the brand outside of a select few Pixar movies like “Toy Story” and “Ratatouille.”
This includes video games, too. When I was first introduced to “Kingdom Hearts,” I didn’t know what to think. It took elements from various Disney properties and threw “Final Fantasy” in the mix. Literally. Cloud and Sephiroth from “Final Fantasy VII” are in the same game as Mickey Mouse.
In the middle of this peculiar clash of intellectual properties lies the series protagonist, Sora. I wish I could say more about his character, but I can’t. I only played like five minutes of the first game when I was six, and thought it was lame.
Did I give the game a chance? No. Was I ever going to give a game series with over 10 entries a chance? Absolutely not! I would need a totally legit and relevant reason to do so. Well, that reason came in the form of “Super Smash Bros. Ultimate.”
Before the final character was shown off on Oct. 5, I wanted anyone but Sora. I knew I was asking too much for the final fighter of the game, since the second volume of the game’s Fighters Pass — the purchasable character packs — was very generous to me.
Following my recent surge of interest for “Final Fantasy,” most notably “Final Fantasy VII,” Sephiroth’s addition to the game was completely out of nowhere.
I will never be able to replicate the excitement I had during that moment I recognized the villain’s iconic boss theme, “One Winged Angel.” It couldn’t get better than that.
Two reveals later, and my childhood came back to me. Around the time I first played “Kingdom Hearts,” there was one game I was super interested in over all the others I was playing: “Tekken 4.”
It’s a 3D fighting game that has a diverse cast of characters, each with an equally diverse move-set.
When I saw Kazuya’s announcement trailer, it reignited my love for the “Tekken” games, and I even took a break from “Guilty Gear: Strive” to revisit “Tekken 7.”
I never expected Kazuya, and him getting added to the roster reminded me of all those nights I spent trying to improve my “Tekken” skills back in the day.
I couldn’t ask for anything more from the Fighters Pass. My relevant interest and childhood interests both got fulfilled. I just had one wish: Sora not being the last character.
Why did I not want Sora? Because of the five confusing minutes I spent playing “Kingdom Hearts” when I was six. Also, Sora getting in “Smash” couldn’t happen, it would be a licensing nightmare!
Long story short, it absolutely happened, and I couldn’t believe it. No matter how much I didn’t want Sora, I realized in that moment that this was what “Smash” was all about. Making the impossible a reality.
Since “Super Smash Bros. Brawl” added Sonic the Hedgehog and Solid Snake, anything was possible. It just depended on what it was.
For the longest time, so many characters were deemed “impossible” by the community.
Ridley from “Metroid” was “too big.” King K. Rool from the “Donkey Kong” games was “irrelevant.” Banjo and Kazooie were “irrelevant and a licensing nightmare.” Against all odds, they all got into “Smash.”
These characters were “impossible”, but Sora was on another level. I can’t even begin to describe how unachievable this character was.
Sora is owned mostly by Disney, from a game that has a lot of Disney characters.
Trying to get a character from a Disney game would not only cost an extreme amount of money, but you’d also have to cut a deal with the world’s biggest entertainment company and come out with a good amount of usable content.
How it happened against all the possible odds is something that will go down in gaming history, and I’m not surprised the “Smash” team was able to do it.
They’ve proven time and time again that the word “impossible” isn’t in their vocabulary. I wonder what six-year-old me would say if I told him I added all the “Kingdom Hearts” games to my backlog.