I have been slowly grinding my way through the Kingdom Hearts 1.5 + 2.5 Remix for the PlayStation 4 and never realized that the choices you make at the start of the game determine your playstyle for the rest of the game.
Who the F knew?!
Right off the bat, you’re given a few choices, Here are the differences…
+Sword -Shield (Arguably the hardest starting route and the route I’ve always taken. DOH!)
+Staff -Sword (good for beginners, very balanced)
+Staff -shield (tied with the +Sword -Shield Route for hardest staring route)
As you can see the stat differences are minimal at best. The big changes are in Defense, AP, and MP. Of these three, Defense and AP you will feel the hardest. The game does generously give you defense, AP, and strength ups pretty quickly and that more or less eliminates the difference.
No matter what route you choose you’ll still acquire the same abilities but at different levels and all three routes have pros and cons. Sword, you get a nice beginner route but you’re lacking in some prime magic and defense abilities. Shield, you get all the nice defense abilities and a good spread of attack abilities but the nicer magic abilities all come very later. Staff, you get a nice selection of magic and attack abilities and a critical defensive ability or two but the majority of defensive abilities that are important come very late. So this all comes down to personal preference.
Essentially you’re setting up your future. Picking Sword gets you one extra item slot, Shield gets you two extra item slots, and the Staff gets you two extra MP 1’s at the start and one much later in the game. Items slots are not to be confused with equipment slots. As for MP, there is no way to raise it unlike strength, defense, and AP. So this means if you don’t choose the staff you’re permanently missing 2 MP you can’t get in any other way.
While 2 MP doesn’t sound like a lot the fact is strength, defense, and AP work in large numbers but MP works in small numbers. The difference of two MP points is very apparent more so than two strength, defense, or AP, especially around mid-game. Furthermore there is no magic stat in this game, everything about your magic is determined by your Max MP. Max MP dictates how powerful you spells are, how much you can heal, the power of your summons, the move Ragnarok’s lasers, Trinity limit, and several combo finishers like stun/impact/ripple drive/gravity break.
Ultimately, it doesn’t make a massive difference but it’s worth knowing your actions have consequences.
If you haven’t yet I highly recommend picking up Kingdom Hearts 1.5 + 2.5 Remix. And if you’re confused about the Kingdom Hearts world my guide should help.