When KINGDOM HEARTS III was released in January, one of the things fans felt was missing was a Critical Mode. Traditionally the hardest difficulty in the game, players would take and deal more damage, stats like AP and HP levels would be reduced, and less experience would be gained per encounter. A month later, a save file editor managed to find evidence that a critical mode existed within the game, and in March, Co-director Tai Yasue confirmed the mode would be arriving soon. Critical Mode has indeed arrived today in the game's latest patch, alongside New Game + and a few more gameplay tweaks.
The new Critical Mode will reduce Sora's HP and MP by 50%, as well as reducing the frequency with which players can use situation commands and magic. However, there are also some new abilities that are exclusive to Critical Mode — Critical Counter, Critical Recharge, and Critical Converter — although details on these abilities haven't been revealed.
When starting a New Game, players now have the choice of carrying over their unlocked Keyblades from their clear data on their previous save. Those that are carried over will lose any upgrades and revert back to their default stats, but it does mean that late stage Keyblades are accessible from the start of the game.
Other changes include adjustments to photography that now allow players to save up to 200 images, changes to the behaviour of "some enemy characters", the addition of game help messages, and a small change to the Frozen Slider mini-game. You can check out the full list of changes here, but be aware the patch notes are in Japanese only.
The update that includes all of the above chages is available right now.
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