Best Kingdom Hearts characters
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Best Kingdom Hearts Characters, ranked

A legendary cast of characters

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The best Kingdom Hearts characters have a ton of personality, have been through hardship, or simply have powerful and exciting abilities that dynamically elevate the series’ battle scenes. A key element why Kingdom Hearts resonates with so many people is not just the non-stop action; but the passion behind the cast’s motivations.

Characters like Sora and Roxas aren’t afraid to express their emotions: to cry, to scream, to love, to smile. And many of the legendary series characters are more intriguing than the average RPG cast, and it’s refreshing to see heroes, (or in some rare cases, villains), that we are able to relate to.

Warning: There are spoilers for Kingdom Hearts 3 and Kingdom Hearts 3: Remind in this list.

Xigbar Luxu Kingdom Hearts 3
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10) Xigbar/Luxu

One of the best factors of the Kingdom Hearts narrative is how it intrigues its fans with subtle nods and mystery.

Xigbar is certainly one of those characters that make you think. If you’ve played and finished Kingdom Hearts 3you’ll know he is in fact Luxu, the Master of Masters’ right-hand man. His witty humor makes him a great foil for Sora, and his boss battle in KH2 is phenomenal.

Goofy Best Kingdom Hearts characters
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9) Goofy

Despite his clumsy origins in cartoon form, Goofy is a reliable ally for Sora. He’s the one in the Keyblade Hero 3 that gives the spiky-haired hero valuable advice and is the level-headed person in the group.

He’s endearing and kind which makes him a great friend!

Master of Masters KH
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8) Master of Masters

We really don’t know much about the Master of Masters, but from his few appearances so far, fans have been intrigued by his presence. He seems to have everything planned with the Book of Prophecies in his mind and has a strangely goofy (not our pal Goofy) vibe from him.

His personality makes him such an odd antagonist, and the intrigue makes him one of the best Kingdom Hearts characters.

Xemnas KH2+
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7) Xemnas

Xemnas is a badass antagonist in Kingdom Hearts 2.

The Organization XIII leader has dual blades, and his battle skills with these laser swords would put even Obi-Wan Kenobi and Darth Maul to shame. Xemnas is also an antagonist who has a just cause for his actions. He wants himself and his fellow Nobody Organization members to have hearts again but can only do so by making Sora defeat the Heartless. Therefore, he causes chaos throughout the worlds.

Xion Kingdom Hearts
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6) Xion

Xion is another nobody stuck with a dreaded path ahead of her. Those who have played 358/2 Days know that she’s a fun, charismatic character that’s similar to Sora in many ways. Roxas and Axel get to know her throughout the game as she struggles to wield the keyblade.

The story behind her existence is a fascinating mystery that begins to unravel as the days continue. By the end, your heart will be broken as a friendship is torn apart by fate.

Aqua best Kingdom Hearts characters
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5) Aqua

Another character Kingdom Hearts fans love (myself included!) is Aqua. She is strong-willed, disciplined, and has a sharp wit about her that few other Kingdom Hearts characters possess.

She has a stern exterior, but when it comes to her friends, she will do anything in her power to protect them, especially Ven, who drifted to sleep for a decade before she could rescue him again. She’s one of the best Kingdom Hearts characters in my mind because of her adept abilities and strength.

Axel Organization XIII
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4) Axel/Lea

Axel (or Lea) is a Nobody that nearly everyone loved as soon as he appeared on-screen. He has a rambunctious personality and likes to work outside the lines.

His unpredictable nature and break-the-rules flair helped him gain a buddy in Roxas. He also goes through a tragic story as he’s forced to take out his own best friend, who has lost their memories. Axel is just plain one of the best Kingdom Hearts characters: “got it memorized?”

Roxas KH
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3) Roxas

The character that has arguably lost the most in the Kingdom Hearts series is Roxas. He loses his friends, has his body completely taken away from him, and is told that he was never meant to exist. It’s quite tragic! During his time in Twilight Town, he tries to think positively. He is loyal to his friends like Hayner and Axel.

However, Roxas is less trusting of others than Sora in many ways. It makes for a refreshing change of pace from Sora’s happy-go-lucky approach. He’s more critical, able to think on his feet, and is a sharp wise-cracker. He also has a wonderfully dramatic theme song. Hopefully, we get another game with Roxas again, his badass dual-wielding style included.

Sora Best Kingdom Hearts characters
Screenshot by Destructoid

2) Sora

To some, Sora can be a nuisance. He’s loud and obnoxious at times. However, what makes Sora one of the best Kingdom Hearts characters is his compassion for others. Unlike many video game protagonists, he is willing to show his feelings. He begs on his knees to see Kairi again towards Organization XIII member Saix. He cries when the Guardians of Light fail in one fell swoop in Kingdom Hearts 3. 

That willingness to show his emotions, within a genre filled with masculine protagonists, is a breath of fresh air. He’s super relatable.

Riku Kingdom Hearts 3
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1) Riku

It can be argued that Riku has the most character progression of all of the cast in the KH series. He grew accustomed to the darkness as Maleficent convinced him to twist him into a servant. He betrayed his best friend Sora for the wellbeing of Kairi, (even fighting against him). Then, after Xehanort’s Heartless took over his body, Riku suffered for a long time, even taking the form of the person he hates.

But he took that form to protect Sora and fight off the powerful (and angry) Roxas. Riku has an amazing character arc as he tries to reconcile his past mistakes. His struggle is the reason why he’s the best Kingdom Hearts character.

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Chris Penwell
Chris is a writer for multiple outlets, including Destructoid! He loves narrative games like Kingdom Hearts, Life is Strange, and Beyond Good & Evil. However, he does enjoy Fortnite and Super Smash Bros. Ultimate from time to time.