The Kingdom Hearts series is notorious for being the most confusing convoluted adventure in all of gaming. With titles ranging from Kingdom Hearts Birth By Sleep 0.2: A Fragmentary Passage to Kingdom Hearts 3D: Dream Drop Distance to just Kingdom Hearts 3, we can definitely see why people have trouble understanding what game they need to play next.
Now that Sora has been unveiled as the final Super Smash Bros Ultimate fighter, and with the whole series coming to the Nintendo Switch, we expect there may be several new fans eager to take on the series. But we also expect they’ll need a hand understanding the series’ order.
If you’re looking for advice on what order to play the Kingdom Hearts games in then you’ve come to the right place. Here we have the game series’ chronological and release orders, as well as our recommendation for how to play the series.
Before we explain how to play the games in order, you’ll first need to know how to actually play them at all. It’s hard to think of any other series that has managed to span a stranger series of consoles over the past 20 years than Kingdom Hearts, so gathering everything you need has been tough in the past.
Thankfully, for the most part, you can rely on the Kingdom Hearts 1.5 Remix, 2.5 Remix, 2.8 Final Chapter Prologue to cover almost all of the older games – as these collections combine nine adventures into three simple packages on Xbox One, PS4, and Nintendo Switch.
On top of that, you’ll also need console games Kingdom Hearts 3 and Kingdom Hearts Melody of Memories, as well as the mobile games Kingdom Hearts Union X and Kingdom Hearts Dark Road to round out the list.
However, with this method, you won’t actually be able to ‘play’ every Kingdom Hearts game. In the 1.5 and 2.5 Remixes, the Nintendo DS games Kingdom Hearts 358/2 Days and Kingdom Hearts Re: Coded feature as cinematic cutscene-only experiences that just recap the story of the games.
Additionally, some titles such as Kingdom Hearts Union X and Kingdom Hearts Dark Road are no longer playable because their online servers have been shut down. However, offline story-only versions of the games will still let you experience the stories – with Dark Road adding its final chapter later this year. You can also experience a very short segment of the Union X story in the X Back Cover cinematic.
Lastly, before we kick off we’ll be omitting games like Kingdom Hearts 1.5 Remix and 2.5 Remix from the lists below as these aren’t really their own games but a collection of the others.
If you want to play the Kingdom Hearts series in its full chronological order this is the list you need. It takes you from the series’ earliest moments – depicting the great Keyblade War that reshaped the entire universe into what we see in later games – all the way through to the end of the Dark Seeker Saga – which concluded in Kingdom Hearts 3.