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  1. New Organization XIII Roxas Prototype & Kingdom Hearts III Sora Play Arts Kai shown at San Diego Comic-Con 2016 + more

    San Diego Comic-Con 2016 has begun! Starting on July 20th for a preview night, and running through the 24th, San Diego Comic-Con is an annual event where various video game demos are available for attendees and Play Arts Kai figures are on display. This year, Square Enix has decided to display a never before-seen Organization XIII Roxas Play Arts Kai prototype, along with the recently announced Kingdom Hearts III Sora Play Arts Kai.

    In addition to those two Play Arts Kai figures, new Kingdom Hearts Static Arts figure prototypes were revealed of Kingdom Hearts II Sora, Chirithy, Shadow, and Meow Wow.

    Kingdom Hearts HD 2.8 Final Chapter Prologue is also available as a playable demo for those who are attending. Don't forget to check it out!

    You can check out pictures of all the Play Arts Kai displays below, in our gallery.

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    • Jul 20 2016 11:14 PM
    • by Jake
  2. (UPDATE) New Kingdom Hearts III Sora Play Arts Kai releasing January 30th 2017 available for pre-order at the Square Enix Store NA, box contains KH3 story teaser

    Update 1: The official Square Enix Japan online store has updated with the Kingdom Hearts III Sora Play Arts Kai. It is listed on the store as 15,240 yen with tax included, which translates to about $142 USD. The release date for the Play Arts Kai figure is scheduled for a November 6, 2016 release, which is about 2 months earlier than the North American release.

    Update 2: An English foretext is provided within the packaging of the Kingdom Hearts III Sora Play Arts Kai figure. It reads as follows:


    With the world under the control of a single Master, the final struggle for true peace begins.

    Through countless adventures across many worlds in his long battle against the darkness, Sora, once a little boy who only dreamed worlds beyond his island even existed, has grown up to be a dashing young man. Now he is realizing that that battle has played out exactly as Master Xehanort had planned, and the second Keyblade War, the final struggle between light and dar, looms ahead. To counter the overwhelming darkness, Sora and his friends must gather the seven guardians of light. His best friend Riku and King Mickey seek out a battle-scarred Keyblade wielder, while Sora, Donald, and Goofy set off on a journey to find "the Key to Return Hearts." Never-before-featured Disney worlds set the stage for another daring adventure to save the universe!

    Chosen by the Keyblade, he is the one whose heart's light never fails to shine as a beacon of hope.

    Sora, the brave hero chosen by the Keyblade, has always had a strong sense of justice. Through his many battles against darkness, he has grown and learned about the world immensely. Drawn to his light, many friends have lent him their support and granted him their powers to counter the darkness: Riku, the childhood friend he grew up with on Destiny Islands; Donald and Goofy, the two comrades with whom he has shared his adventures from the very beginning; and King Mickey, who unfailingly supports Sora with his own mighty strength. As the world becomes enveloped in another battle against darkness, the Keyblade wielder and his friends must rise up against Master Xehanort and thwart his plot to incite another Keyblade War.

    The text has been procured thanks to @ArikaMiz.

    Update 3: The figure is now available on Amazon, with a listed release date of February 22nd, 2017, and a price of $149.99!

    The original article follows.

    A new Play Arts Kai of Kingdom Hearts III Sora, to be released on January 30th, 2017, is now available for pre-order at the North American branch of the Square Enix Store at $149.99 retail price. The figure displays Sora in his Kingdom Hearts III outfit wielding an unnamed Keyblade that was previously featured in the trailer released during E3 2015. Pictures are shown below.

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    A description of the figure follows:

    From the latest chapter in the globally beloved KINGDOM HEARTS series by Disney and Square Enix, KINGDOM HEARTS III, the protagonist Sora now makes an appearance to the Play Arts Kai action figure line!

    Accompanying the improvements in the graphic technology of the game, our designers have paid close attention to expressing the minute details in the sculptwork of Sora in his slightly more mature and grown-up figure.

    The costume design is based on the look of Sora’s KINGDOM HEARTS II outfit, with the predominantly red and black color scheme of KINGDOM HEARTS 3D: DREAM DROP DISTANCE.

    He is highly poseable due to the utilization of flexible materials. The Keyblade that can change form into a double crossbow – which could be called the trademark of this title — is also included as an accessory part. With all these features and more, this figure is certainly an eagerly awaited collector’s item for fans.

    Figure includes display stand.

    Figure Size (inches): W 3.14" x D 2" x H 8.8" tall

    Release: January 30, 2017

    What Play Arts Kai figures do you own? Will you be adding this Kingdom Hearts III Sora to your collection? Let us know in the comments!

  3. Square Enix lists new jobs for Kingdom Hearts III; Positions focus on post-production

    Square Enix recently updated their job opportunities in the career section of their website, and some of these new listings are for positions on the Osaka team of Square Enix Business Division 3, which is the team currently working on Kingdom Hearts III. We previously reported on the majority of the listings found on the site, but four new positions on the Kingdom Hearts team have opened up. The titles of the positions and brief descriptions of the jobs are listed below, thanks to R Kane.

    Assistant Director: Responsible for planning, administration, and management assistance on BD3's new and/or existing projects.

    Effect Designer: Duties include effect creation using the company's customized version of Unreal Engine 4.

    Production Planner: Duties include camera and production work during explanations of maps, the game player's skills; introductions, advancement, and completion of missions and battles.

    Lighting Artist: Duties include working on KH3's lighting and general post-production.

    Interesting to note is the role of the Lighting Artist, which hints at a role in post-production. For those who don't know, post-production usually implies the final stages of the development process, which are used to polish and tweak minor things before development ends. Major thanks goes to KH13 user SnowPint7Fourths for the tip!

    Based on these new job openings, how far along do you think Kingdom Hearts III is? Let us know in the comments below!

  4. Tai Yasue discusses Kingdom Hearts HD 2.8 Final Chapter Prologue & Kingdom Hearts III with GamesBeat, KH 2.8 slated for early December

    GamesBeat, a video game-related website, recently interviewed Tai Yasue, co-director of the Kingdom Hearts series. In their interview, they discuss topics such as the combat system in the Kingdom Hearts series, the console exclusivity for Kingdom Hearts HD 2.8 Final Chapter Prologue, and more. One important quote by Tai Yasue is that he states that Kingdom Hearts HD 2.8 Final Chapter Prologue is slated for an early December release. This means that we shouldn't have to wait too long into the month of December to get our hands on the game.

    You can check out the full interview below.

    GamesBeat: One of the things I find interesting about Kingdom Hearts is the combat system. It’s gotten a bit flashier and more complex as the series goes along. Is that a challenge when designing the Final Chapter Prologue and Kingdom Hearts III? Is it something that you felt the need to rein in, or did you want to make more complex?

    Tai Yasue: With our handheld games, we did a lot of experimentation with new systems. With 0.2 and 2.8 we’re coming back to the basics, I guess, but at the same time, Kingdom Hearts 0.2 is sort of a continuation of Birth By Sleep. So we wanted to incorporate a lot of the moves from Birth By Sleep. Aqua’s magical spells, for example, and her style changes. We wanted to change toward an enhanced version of that.

    The moves look a lot flashier, but at the same time not too difficult. We have the same sort of command menu as the numbered titles, II and III. That’s very similar in 0.2. It’s sort of a mixture between Birth By Sleep and Kingdom Hearts III, both aspects of that coming together.

    GamesBeat: Kingdom Hearts II came out in America in 2006. Since then, the series has seen a number of games on handhelds, and they’re still important to overarching story. Do these compilations make it easier for players to catch up?

    Yasue: Definitely. The story is very complex. There’s a lot of threads. Right now we’re sort of depicted the Dark Seeker side, and all the portables as well. We wanted — when we were planning for Kingdom Hearts III, we wanted all of our previous Kingdom Hearts titles in HD so everyone could play them again, and new players could be introduced to the Kingdom Hearts series story.

    GamesBeat: Kingdom Hearts II.8 was at E3, but Kingdom Hearts III hasn’t made much of an appearance at the show. Is a reason to hold it back from E3?

    Yasue: It was a difficult decision for us. We want to share as much as possible. We’re excited about Kingdom Hearts III. But II.8 we’re releasing globally at the beginning of December. We wanted to concentrate on that first. We want what’s best for the moment. We’re currently making III and 2.8 at the same time, but we wanted to concentrate on 2.8 right now.

    GamesBeat: You talked about experiments with the battle system. It’s seen a lot of variety. It had a mana system, like in the first game, and cooldowns in some of the recent games. What works best for Kingdom Hearts?

    Yasue: Each has its own fun aspects, but I think the magical points system, using MP, is very accessible. That’s worked well. But we don’t want to do the same thing over and over again. In Kingdom Hearts III and 0.2 we wanted to enhance this system for the next generation. Using magical spells, we wanted the environments and enemies to react in a meaningful way. It doesn’t just explode. It lingers on afterward. If you shoot a Blizzard, for example, it creates a place where you can skate on the ground. We wanted the magic to dynamically interact with the environments.

    GamesBeat: When the series started, the Final Fantasy element was very important — not just in story, but in gameplay. The magic came directly from Final Fantasy, as did the summons. A lot of those aspects seem less prominent now that Kingdom Hearts has developed more of its own identity. Is it fair to say you’re doing more things that are unique to Kingdom Hearts?

    Yasue: As a whole, the story and the worlds and the gameplay — everything we incorporate, we want aspects of the Disney world throughout. For the combat systems as well, we don’t have that much for 0.2, but having Disney aspects combined with Sora’s aspects is important. Obviously the worlds, for example, we don’t want them all to be Kingdom Hearts original worlds. We want the rich Disney worlds as well as the original worlds.

    GamesBeat: At this point we’ve had a lot of playable Keyblade users. First Sora, then Riku, and many more. How do you differentiate all these characters from a gameplay standpoint?

    Yasue: When we first come up with ideas for the characters, we have an easy sort of concept. For 0.2 Aqua, she’s a female character, she’s related to water, and she’s very strong with magic. She’s also very strong and elegant. You have these keywords for each character, enemies and player characters alike, to define them. That’s very much linked up to the story. We want to integrate those keywords into her movement and her abilities. Aqua uses powerful magic in a flashy way because she’s a magical character.

    GamesBeat: Why focus on Aqua for 0.2?

    Yasue: For 0.2, that was sort of the untold story that we hadn’t shown our users yet. At the end of Birth By Sleep, she was trapped in the dark world. We felt we had to explain her story. When you have a good story, it makes you care about each character. Sora’s adventure is intertwined with Aqua’s story as well. We wanted to give players a reason to care about Aqua and her adventure. That way, when you play Kingdom Hearts III, you understand Aqua’s standpoint, and that makes Sora’s experience richer as well.

    GamesBeat: With Kingdom Hearts III tying up all these plot threads and being the last installment in this series of Kingdom Hearts, would you say there’s a lot of pressure on that game specifically?

    Yasue: Definitely. There’s a lot of strings and a lot of strands in the previous Kingdom Hearts. They all come together. Right now we’re depicting the Dark Seeker saga, with Xehanort and his group that Sora’s battling. Them and the other Keyblade masters will have a sort of showdown. And so I think all the — everything is going to come together at the conclusion of the Dark Seeker saga in part III.

    GamesBeat: A lot of people want to know what’s the next Disney thing for Kingdom Hearts III. Has it been stressful to keep so many secrets about development?

    Yasue: Like I said about not showing much of Kingdom Hearts III at this time, there’s always a right time for everything. We want each announcement to be special. We want to exceed our fans’ expectations and we want to do it in a good way. We want to plan things out, the way we announce things. It’s not that stressful, at least for me.

    GamesBeat: Do you think there’s a chance that I.5, II.5, and 2.8 could ever be bundled together into one package?

    Yasue: We haven’t really decided on bundles or how we’ll set up things for how we’ll sell those. No decision or announcement has been made.

    GamesBeat: 2.8, is that just PlayStation 4, or is it also Xbox One?

    Yasue: It’s PlayStation 4 only.

    GamesBeat: But Kingdom Hearts III is multiplatform.

    Yasue: Right.

    GamesBeat: Is there any fear of Xbox One owners feeling left out?

    Yasue: Kingdom Hearts III is very much — it’s a game that will be better if you understand all the other stories. But at the same time, you can enjoy it without following the whole arc. As you know, all the Kingdom Hearts stories have a conclusion at the end of each Disney world. You can still enjoy that as well. For the whole arc, it might help to understand, but there’s still a lot of fun in each Disney world.

    GamesBeat: What would you say makes up the Kingdom Hearts fanbase? Is it Square Enix fans, or Disney fans, or this unique combination of the two?

    Yasue: We have great fans. They’re very passionate, very warm, very supportive. They’re very special. For me, I think they’re the reason why we’re doing this, more than anything. Compared to other games — it’s hard to compare. But I feel they’re warmer, nicer on the whole. That’s my honest opinion. They seem a lot nicer than some others.

    GamesBeat: They’ve got a bit of Disney in them.

    Yasue: I guess! They’re wonderful. Today I talked to a lot of people, and they’ve been very supportive

    What was your favorite part of the interview? Let us know in the comments below!

    • Jul 16 2016 11:25 AM
    • by Jake
  5. Kingdom Hearts at E3 2016 summary

    With E3 2016 coming to an end, this means it's time to wrap our coverage of Kingdom Hearts at E3! This year's E3 was filled with announcements by Square Enix, including the big one that Kingdom Hearts HD 2.8 Final Chapter Prologue will have a worldwide release date, yes you heard right -- The first Kingdom Hearts title to have a simultaneous worldwide release! Could Kingdom Hearts III join that group in the future? Let's hope! Additionally, Kingdom Hearts Unchained χ has been released in Europe! Exciting news, isn't it?

    Check out all the interviews, trailers, and more from E3 2016!

    Kingdom Hearts III/Kingdom Hearts HD 2.8 Final Chapter Prologue

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    - New Kingdom Hearts HD 2.8 Final Chapter Prologue trailer released announcing December release WW; Kingdom Hearts III news coming this winter
    - Square Enix announces playable demo of Kingdom Hearts HD 2.8 Final Chapter Prologue at E3 2016
    - Kingdom Hearts HD 2.8 Final Chapter Prologue banner spotted within LA Convention Center; Background includes similar item included in the E3 2015 Kingdom Hearts III trailer
    - Kingdom Hearts HD 2.8 Final Chapter Prologue confirmed to appear in the next Famitsu Weekly article
    - Impressions of the Kingdom Hearts 0.2 -A Fragmentary Passage- E3 demo by Toominator!

    Kingdom Hearts Unchained χ

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    - Kingdom Hearts Unchained χ to release in Europe at 12 AM, USA PDT! Aqua medal to be gifted to all players at 12 AM PDT as well!

    Tetsuya Nomura & Tai Yasue Interviews

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    - Dengeki releases interview with Tetsuya Nomura about Kingdom Hearts HD 2.8 Final Chapter Prologue and Kingdom Hearts III!
    - No Final Fantasy based worlds will be featured in Kingdom Hearts III says Tai Yasue
    - Tai Yasue says Kingdom Hearts HD collections on PS4 not ruled out completely!
    - Famitsu posts interview with Tetsuya Nomura focusing on Kingdom Hearts HD 2.8 Final Chapter Prologue and it's connections to Kingdom Hearts III!
    - Square Enix Presents discusses Kingdom Hearts HD 2.8 Final Chapter Prologue with Tai Yasue!


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    Kingdom Hearts HD 2.8 Final Chapter Prologue - E3 2016 Trailer

    Kingdom Hearts HD 2.8 Final Chapter Prologue - E3 2016 Gameplay Trailer

    SEP (x) Tai Yasue

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    Even though E3 2016 has ended, we will more than likely receive even more Kingdom Hearts HD 2.8 Final Chapter Prologue news in the fall as it nears its release, and we will definitely be receiving Kingdom Hearts III this winter. Expect our News Team to continue providing coverage for Kingdom Hearts throughout the 2016 year. We hope you enjoyed this year's E3 and we hope to see Kingdom Hearts at next year's E3!

    • Jun 25 2016 02:47 PM
    • by Jake
  6. Famitsu Interviews series Director Tetsuya Nomura about Kingdom Hearts HD 2.8 Final Chapter Prologue, Discusses Progress on English Recording

    Kingdom Hearts series director Tetsuya Nomura recently sat down with Famitsu to give an interview on Kingdom Hearts HD 2.8 Final Chapter Prologue, focusing on specific details in each of the three portions of the collection. Though the interview covered many of the same topics as the earlier Dengeki interview, Famitsu's team managed to pose some interesting questions, and received equally interesting responses.

    Here is a summary of each of Nomura's responses in the interview. A full translation will be added as soon as possible.

    In regards to Kingdom Hearts Birth by Sleep 0.2 -A Fragmentary Passage-:

    • Nomura remarked on the ability for the product to be easily altered with Unreal Engine 4, especially in regards to lighting, as previously mentioned in Dengeki.
    • What is in the demo will be in the retail version of the game. He wanted to give the players something to explore in the demo, someplace where they would have to get up high to get a lay of the land before proceeding. Nomura says KH3 will have a similar feel, where free-running to a high place and scoping out the map will be necessary.
    • Nomura states that time has stopped in this place only, and that moving to different locations will result in different 'effects'.
    • As in the Dengeki article, Nomura explains the battle system, and also says that the concept of Command Styles has been transferred to Keyblade Transformations in Kingdom Hearts III.
    • Nomura calls the Heartless Swarm a 'Devils Wave', mentions they've been present since the first KH3 trailer, and that they're still not at full power.
    • Aqua will only gain strength through leveling up--there are no new Keyblades for her to obtain. (Famitsu's interviewer hypothesizes that this is why the Command Styles remain in 0.2, when they won't really be present in KH3, where you can change Keyblades. Nomura doesn't remark on this point one way or another.)
    • When discussing the length of Kingdom Hearts Birth by Sleep 0.2 -A Fragmentary Passage-, Nomura says that it will feature a lot of cutscenes.
    • The intended play order is Dream Drop Distance, then -A Fragmentary Passage-, then Kingdom Hearts III.
    • Kingdom Hearts Birth by Sleep 0.2 -A Fragmentary Passage- is not exactly scrapped content from Kingdom Hearts III. It was something he felt the need to make, but Nomura didn't want to bog down the pace of storytelling in KH3 with backstory, so he separated it out and created a separate installment around it.
    • Kingdom Hearts III will have a short prelude before the game really starts to make sure everyone is caught up.
    In regards to Kingdom Hearts Dream Drop Distance HD:
    • Nomura mentions the Catanuki, explaining it was something the Osaka team really wanted to add to the game. He also discusses PS4 trophies, 60fps, and the difficulties in transitioning to a game without two screens to work with. He mentions the 'spirit' of developing for the unique properties of the 3DS continues, in now developing for the unique properties of the PS4.
    In regards to Kingdom Hearts χ Back Cover:
    • Kingdom Hearts χ Back Cover is being made with the same tech as Kingdom Hearts III.
    • Famitsu asked directly if the Black Coat is the Foreteller's Master. Nomura says yes! He is a 'unique glue' between them, and he apparently has nicknames for each of the Foretellers.
    • Kingdom Hearts Unchained χ has recently hit 4 million downloads, and after the North American release, there was a very strong demand to release in the EU. He is happy for this chapter of Kingdom Hearts to be brought to fans all over the world.
    • Nomura also hints that the Kingdom Hearts Unchained χ story will soon branch from the Kingdom Hearts χ [chi] story. Kingdom Hearts χ [chi] is complete, but Kingdom Hearts Unchained χ can be considered 'Season 2'.
    • Nomura anticipates that Kingdom Hearts III may hit Japan slightly earlier than the rest of the world, but it will be nearly simultaneous.
    • Kingdom Hearts HD 2.8 Final Chapter Prologue is in the final stages of production, with English recording currently being mastered and timed. He also told fans to please be patient and anticipate this winter for new Kingdom Hearts III information, and focus on Kingdom Hearts HD 2.8 Final Chapter Prologue for now.
    • Next year is the 15th anniversary of Kingdom Hearts, and also the 30th anniversary of Final Fantasy; he told fans to anticipate a lot of features next year relating to those series.

    Which of these answers has you most intrigued? Let us know in the comments!

  7. No Final Fantasy based worlds will appear in Kingdom Hearts III

    When asked by Gamespot about the possibility of Final Fantasy based worlds in Kingdom Hearts III, co-director Tai Yasue answered that they would not be adding any.

    Tai Yasue's quote follows:

    "We're not adding any Final Fantasy worlds. A lot of the original [to Kingdom Hearts] worlds [Hollow Bastion, Traverse Town, e.t.c.] had Final Fantasy characters in them. At this moment, we are not really coming up with any plans for that, we're making original worlds and Disney worlds."

    Yasue also went on to add that worlds are often selected for gameplay and how well they would mesh in with the Kingdom Hearts series, going on to say that they want to make sure there's a variety, with Disney worlds that are recognized but also distinct and unique.

    Co-director Tai Yasue will be featured in a Square Enix Presents livestream during E3 on June 15th, 2016 dedicated to discussing Kingdom Hearts HD 2.8 Final Chapter Prologue. This livestream will take place from 4:00 to 4:30 PDT. For all the latest E3 news, please check out our coverage article.

    How do you feel about this news and what Final Fantasy character cameos would you like to see in Kingdom Hearts III? Let us know in the comments!

  8. New Interview with series Director Tetsuya Nomura about Kingdom Hearts HD 2.8 Final Chapter Prologue and Kingdom Hearts III

    Following the official start of E3 2016, Dengeki has posted a new interview with Kingdom Hearts series director Tetsuya Nomura focusing on the newly revealed Kingdom Hearts HD 2.8 Final Chapter Prologue demo that premiered at E3 2016 as well as other details surrounding the game and it's development in conjunction with Kingdom Hearts III.

    Here are a few snippets gathered from the interview.

    • Even though the news is not incoming as quickly as fans would hope, development is not delayed
    • Kingdom Hearts Birth by Sleep 0.2 -A Fragmentary Passage- being the length of one world pertains more to the length of one world in Kingdom Hearts III. Tetsuya Nomura promises that this volume will be a decent length.
    • The battle system in Kingdom Hearts Birth by Sleep 0.2 -A Fragmentary Passage- is a mixture of Birth by Sleep as well as Kingdom Hearts III; the command deck is not present but special attacks and such consume MP as they would in previous games like Kingdom Hearts II. Magic will effect the surrounding area, as previously talked about for Kingdom Hearts III. Using magic in different sequences will also create different effects on enemies (such as using Blizzard and then Thunder).
    • Lighting is something they focused on a lot during design for Kingdom Hearts HD 2.8 Final Chapter Prologue and Kingdom Hearts III even though it hasn't been much of a major focus previously in the series.
    • Height within the playable features of the world is something that was also focused on for these games.
    • Kingdom Hearts Dream Drop Distance HD plays with 60 frames per second.
    • A new Dream Eater is introduced in the version of Dream Drop Distance included in Kingdom Hearts HD 2.8 Final Chapter Prologue named Catnuki (or Pondanyan in Japanese) which is a combination of a cat and a racoon dog (more commonly known as a Tanuki)
    • Tetsuya Nomura would like to give more Kingdom Hearts III news but at the moment it is important to focus on Kingdom Hearts HD 2.8 Final Chapter Prologue so he asks fans to please look forward to winter of this year for more news.
    • Information will be released regularly from Autumn until launch in December for Kingdom Hearts HD 2.8 Final Chapter Prologue
    • Tetsuya Nomura is hoping to get a playable demo for their Japanese audience to experience.
    Correction to the previous translation: Tetsuya Nomura talks about the possibility of another installment of TWEWY itself (as in a sequel) being difficult rather than it's involvement in the Kingdom Hearts series.

    Some screenshots of Kingdom Hearts HD 2.8 Final Chapter Prologue were also included with the interview. You may find those below.

    dengeki five dengeki four dengeki One dengeki three dengeki Two

    What are you most excited for in Kingdom Hearts HD 2.8 Final Chapter Prologue in relation to it's relationship with Kingdom Hearts III? Let us know in the comments!

  9. Coverage: Kingdom Hearts at E3 2016

    Our official coverage for Kingdom Hearts at E3 2016 has begun! Held from June 14-16, E3 2016 is a gaming trade show where many companies will be showing off their announcements, including Square Enix. We will be including a livestream of all important E3 conferences on our YouTube channel, with Churro (@Churroz) and Logan (@ToominatorKH13) representing us on the E3 floor. As those two are representing KH13 at E3, our wonderful News Team will be updating live with all coverage on Kingdom Hearts from E3 here on KH13 and all our social media channels (Twitter, Facebook, Tumblr, Google+), so stay tuned!


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    Kingdom Hearts HD 2.8 Final Chapter Prologue Gameplay

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    Kingdom Hearts HD 2.8 Final Chapter Prologue Trailer

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    (June 7th, 2016 - 10:02 AM, USA EST) - New mystery medal to be released in Kingdom Hearts Unchained χ Japan on 6/9; New Kingdom Hearts HD 2.8 trailer coming 6/8
    (June 8th, 2016 - 8:00 AM, USA EST) - New Kingdom Hearts HD 2.8 Final Chapter Prologue trailer released announcing release date; Kingdom Hearts III news coming this winter
    (June 8th, 2016 - 8:10 AM, USA EST) Square Enix announces playable demo of Kingdom Hearts HD 2.8 Final Chapter Prologue at E3 2016
    (June 8th, 2016 8:26 AM, USA EST) Mystery medal in Kingdom Hearts Unchained χ revealed!
    (June 8th, 2016 7:39 PM, USA EST) Kingdom Hearts HD 2.8 Final Chapter Prologue set to be featured on Square Enix Presents program on Wed. June 15th from 4:00-4:30pm PDT
    (June 9th, 2016 3:46 PM, USA EST) Kingdom Hearts HD 2.8 Final Chapter Prologue trailer recapped in Square Enix's The Road to E3 2016 Part 3 blog post, mentions playable demo at E3 booth
    (June 10th, 2016 6:35 PM, USA EST) Kingdom Hearts HD 2.8 Final Chapter Prologue banner spotted within LA Convention Center
    (June 12th, 2016 5:40 PM, USA EST) Churro picks up his badge for E3!
    (June 12th, 2016 6:30 PM, USA EST) Clearer image taken of Kingdom Hearts HD 2.8 Final Chapter Prologue banner, depicts item similar to one shown in last year's Kingdom Hearts III trailer
    (June 13th, 2016 11:20 AM, USA EST) AU/NZ retailer MightyApe lists possible release date for Kingdom Hearts HD 2.8: December 6, 2016

    Day 0
    (June 13th, 2016 10:34 AM, USA EST) 2 hours till Microsoft's E3 conference, with Churro and Logan receiving their showcase bands!
    (June 13th, 2016 6:56 PM, USA EST) KH13 & KHInsider group picture at E3 featured on YouTube Live at E3

    Day 1
    (June 14th, 2016 3:00 PM, USA EST) Dengeki releases interview with Tetsuya Nomura about Kingdom Hearts HD 2.8 Final Chapter Prologue and Kingdom Hearts III!
    (June 14th, 2016 3:09 PM, USA EST) First image of the Kingdom Hearts HD 2.8 Final Chapter Prologue demo appears! For the Dream Drop Distance part of the demo, you can play as Sora in Traverse town or in The Grid/Cite des Cloches with Riku.
    (June 14th, 2016 3:11 PM, USA EST) Gears in the BbS 0.2 demo will set the clock back! There are five in total to collect.
    (June 14th, 2016 3:12 PM, USA EST) Shot lock returns in BbS 0.2!
    (June 14th, 2016 3:15 PM, USA EST) Double Jump/Flight returns!
    (June 14th, 2016 3:17 PM, USA EST) Some footage of Dream Drop Distance HD's demo!
    (June 14th, 2016 3:18 PM, USA EST) Footage of playing as Riku in Cite des Cloches
    (June 14th, 2016 3:19 PM, USA EST) Footage of a brand new Dream Eater named Catnuki in Dream Drop Distance HD!
    (June 14th, 2016 3:20 PM, USA EST) Another look at the Kingdom Hearts HD 2.8 Final Chapter Prologue banner as well as one for Kingdom Hearts Unchained χ!
    (June 14th, 2016 3:21 PM, USA EST) After obtaining the 5 gears in the BbS 0.2 demo, the road to the Castle of Dreams is restored and Aqua learns Spellweaver!
    (June 14th, 2016 3:22 PM, USA EST) Spellweaver in action!
    (June 14th, 2016 3:25 PM, USA EST) Footage of Aqua walking towards the Castle of Dreams
    (June 14th, 2016 3:26 PM, USA EST) An image of Terra in BbS 0.2!
    (June 14th, 2016 3:26 PM, USA EST) Footage of the scene involving Terra in BbS 0.2!
    (June 14th, 2016 3:30 PM, USA EST) Churro's screenshots of gameplay!
    (June 14th, 2016 3:31 PM, USA EST) An image of Rhyme from The World Ends With You in Dream Drop Distance HD!
    (June 14th, 2016 3:32 PM, USA EST) A closer look at Catnuki!
    (June 14th, 2016 3:40 PM, USA EST) More footage of BbS 0.2!
    (June 14th, 2016 3:45 PM, USA EST) Footage of BbS 0.2's boss battle!
    (June 14th, 2016 4:00 PM, USA EST) Footage of opening scene for BbS 0.2 [SPOILER WARNING]
    (June 14th, 2016 9:16 PM, USA EST) Kingdom Hearts HD 2.8 Final Chapter Prologue confirmed to appear in the next Famitsu Weekly article
    (June 14th, 2016 9:33 PM, USA EST) No Final Fantasy based worlds will be featured in Kingdom Hearts III
    (June 14th, 2016 9:49 PM, USA EST) Tai Yasue says Kingdom Hearts HD collections on PS4 not ruled out completely
    (June 14th, 2016 10:39 PM, USA EST) Famitsu posts interview with Tetsuya Nomura focusing on Kingdom Hearts HD 2.8 Final Chapter Prologue and it's connections to Kingdom Hearts III

    Day 2
    (June 15th, 2016 2:30 AM, USA EST) Impressions of the Kingdom Hearts 0.2 -A Fragmentary Passage- E3 demo
    (June 15th, 2016 4:00 PM, USA EST) KH13.com, KHInsider, KH Union and Project Destati take over the official Kingdom Hearts Twitter account!
    (June 15th, 2016 4:10 PM, USA EST) Churro and Branden from KH Union surprise attack Co-Director Tai Yasue with a χ Back Cover question!
    (June 15th, 2016 4:21 PM, USA EST) A big Kingdom Hearts family photo including KH13.com, KHInsider, KH Union, Project Destati, Co-Director Tai Yasue, and Producer Rie Nishi!
    (June 15th, 2016 7:39 PM, USA EST) Kingdom Hearts Unchained χ to release in Europe at 12 AM, USA PDT! Aqua medal to be gifted to all players at 12 AM PDT as well!

    Day 3
    (June 16th, 2016 7:58 PM, USA EST) Kingdom Hearts HD 2.8 Final Chapter Prologue given awards and nominations from Gamerspack, LEVELCAMP, and Monstervine!


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    • Jun 16 2016 06:59 PM
    • by Jake
  10. Voice actor Quinton Flynn claims he has not started recording for Kingdom Hearts III

    In a recent tweet, Axel/Lea voice actor Quinton Flynn claims that he has not begun recording for Kingdom Hearts III. This comes just a few months after other voice actors in the series, namely Jim Cummings (Pete, Tigger, Winnie the Pooh) and Bill Farmer (Goofy), claim they have finished their recording process, or at least some of it. You can view the tweet made by Quinton Flynn below:

    Posted Image

    Flynn confirms that he is referencing Kingdom Hearts III and not Kingdom Hearts HD 2.8 Final Chapter Prologue in another tweet:

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    With the information given to us by these voice actors, how far along do you believe Kingdom Hearts III is? Feel free to discuss in the comments!

  11. Steve Burton, voice actor for Cloud, claims to be recording for Kingdom Hearts III in the coming weeks

    In response to a fan on Twitter, voice actor Steve Burton, the voice of Cloud in the Kingdom Hearts series, claims he will be recording for Kingdom Hearts III "in a few weeks". This would obviously mark the return of Cloud in Kingdom Hearts III, and seems to validate recent remarks from Jim Cummings and Bill Farmer, who both also claim they have done some recording for Kingdom Hearts III.

    You can view the tweet itself below:

    Posted Image

    What do you make of all these English voice actors claiming to be recording for Kingdom Hearts III? Are you taking this all with a grain of salt, or is Kingdom Hearts III closer to releasing than we think? Feel free to discuss in the comments below!

  12. Bill Farmer interviewed about Kingdom Hearts and confirms he recorded for Kingdom Hearts III in 2015

    Bill Farmer, the voice actor for Goofy in the Kingdom Hearts series, was recently interviewed on an episode of the "2 Men and The Mouse" podcast. The host asks Bill about his experience with the Kingdom Hearts series, and Bill explains the process and why he thinks Kingdom Hearts is so popular. Bill is then asked about recording for Kingdom Hearts III. He confirms that he has been recording for Kingdom Hearts III off and on for "years, now", thus solidifying his questionable tweet made last year in which he claimed he was finished recording for Kingdom Hearts III and that it would release in 2015. In this podcast, he again clarifies it was Kingdom Hearts III he was referencing in his tweet, and not one of the side games. According to Bill, since he was done recording, he figured the game would be released relatively soon. He is now unsure when the game will release, and is also unsure if he will be recording for Kingdom Hearts III again soon.

    You can listen to the entire podcast here. The questions regarding Kingdom Hearts begin at 57:54, and the question regarding Kingdom Hearts III begins at 1:03:00.

  13. Jim Cummings claims he has finished recording for Kingdom Hearts III & discusses the voice acting process

    At the Albuquerque Comic Con 2016 event in New Mexico, Jim Cummings, voice actor in the Kingdom Hearts series (Winnie the Pooh, Tigger, Pete, etc.), held a Q&A panel where fans could ask questions about his works or anything in general about him.

    Throughout the Q&A panel, held on January 9th, a fan asked Jim Cummings about the recording process for video games (Kingdom Hearts in particular) and how it differs from TV and movies, and he replied stating that he has finished his part for Kingdom Hearts III and goes into detail on the process of voice acting for the Kingdom Hearts series.

    You can check out the video below (Kingdom Hearts is specifically mentioned starting at 5:15) in which he replies to the fan concerned on his work for Kingdom Hearts III. Thanks goes to YouTube user StephanieWorld for capturing the footage.

    • Aug 07 2016 12:33 AM
    • by Jake
  14. Hashimoto & Nomura state their plans for 2016 to Famitsu; Nomura says Kingdom Hearts III is in a significant time of development

    In the most recent edition of Famitsu Weekly, Tetsuya Nomura, director of the Kingdom Hearts series, as well as Shinji Hashimoto, executive producer of the Kingdom Hearts series, have stated their future plans for 2016 and beyond. Tetsuya Nomura is continuing to work on titles such as Kingdom Hearts HD 2.8 Final Chapter Prologue, & World of Final Fantasy, titles that are set to release in 2016. The progress for those titles and more are going smoothly and Nomura hopes to get those two titles within the scheduled arrival date.

    Other big titles Nomura is working on is Kingdom Hearts III & Final Fantasy VII Remake, where they are currently in a significant part of development, and when Kingdom Hearts III is further in development, PR will release more information to the public.

    Shinji Hashimoto hopes to continue challenging himself and he has a surprise project he is hoping to announce this year. Additionally, Hashimoto hopes to offer more surprises throughout 2016 in general.

    You can read all the plans Tetsuya Nomura & Shinji Hashimoto have for 2016 and beyond below thanks to @tokyofog.

    Nomura: Development of World of Final Fantasy and Kingdom Hearts HD 2.8 Final Chapter Prologue is the highlight, and PR for those 2 titles will start to pick up. We are moving into an important period for Kingdom Hearts III and FINAL FANTASY VII Remake development. As in previous years, this year will be one dedicated to development, but I think we’ll be able to share some news and do some PR. For other projects that I’ve continued to be involved in, be it arcade, smartphone, or otherwise, I am working hard to deliver contents that will prove to be even more enjoyable.

    Current status:
    For the 2 titles that are nearest to launch, development is progressing favorably, and they will most likely arrive as scheduled. Before all else, I would like to express to fans the appeal of World of Final Fantasy.

    Hashimoto: While keeping in mind the changes of the times, I constantly strive to challenge myself. In 2016, I hope that we’ll be able to offer even more surprises to you all. Also, we will boldly draft plans for a new project, and we hope to be able to present it. In addition to this new project, we want to take on new, global challenges. I humbly ask for your support during this year as well.

    Are you excited for the plans Nomura & Hashimoto will bring to 2016 and beyond? Let us know in the comments below!

    • Feb 25 2016 06:44 PM
    • by Jake
  15. Yoko Shimomura discusses composing for Kingdom Hearts III and Kingdom Hearts series in new interview with RPG Site

    In an interview with RPG Site, Yoko Shimomura, composer of the Kingdom Hearts series, describes the challenges she's faced while working on the Kingdom Hearts series and how that process has changed as the series continued to grow and expand. She also briefly touches on her work for Kingdom Hearts III, discussing the differences between composing for that game and Final Fantasy XV.

    An excerpt of the interview can be found below:

    Besides her work on new arrangement albums, Shimomura is of course knee-deep in working on Square Enix Japan’s two largest upcoming releases – Kingdom Hearts III and Final Fantasy XV. While she’s had an impressive career spanning everything from her incredible, seminal work on Street Fighter II to Parasite Eve, Terra Battle and the Mario RPG series, these two titles are undoubtedly her biggest undertaking yet – and a slightly daunting one.

    “Well, of course, they're completely different,” she says of the two. “The story is completely different, the image is entirely different, the tone... For Kingdom Hearts, I've been working on it for quite a while now. Because of that I can make new suggestions myself, I can change the direction and I have ideas about where to take it myself.”

    Shimomura’s history with Kingdom Hearts is an interesting one. At one point in our meeting, she detours to explain that though she now has the confidence and history with the series to be bolder in pushing it in new musical directions, initially her instructions were quite different to what her gut told her to create.

    “In my mind, Kingdom Hearts is very simple - very much Disney, cute and sweet,” she explains. “My original ideas for it were in that area - but on the contrary, I was asked to make very heavy stuff. There was quite the gap between my original idea and what was requested... filling that gap is really the heart of my job! That was what I did with the first Kingdom Hearts.”

    One of the greatest challenges that series has provided to Shimomura since becoming a success is balancing the wishes of fans with presenting new musical themes and ideas.

    “A lot of game fans feel special feelings towards the original versions of pieces, always,” Shimomura laughs, going on to explain that recreations or evolutions of tracks that fans have already built up a love for are some of the hardest to create. “A lot of the time I consider it brushing up and improving, rather than outright rearranging,” she concludes.

    Are you looking forward to hearing Yoko Shimomura's latest compositions in Kingdom Hearts III? Let us know in the comments!

  16. Tetsuya Nomura answers fan questions about Kingdom Hearts HD 2.8 Final Chapter Prologue, Kingdom Hearts χ[chi], and Kingdom Hearts III

    After the release of the new trailer featuring Kingdom Hearts HD 2.8 Final Chapter Prologue and Kingdom Hearts III, many fans had questions circling around in their heads. The folks over at KHInsider had the incredible opportunity to formally relay fan questions to Tetsuya Nomura himself. His answers to some of the questions can be read below, and you can read the blog post in its entirety here.

    1. Since you were at the Kingdom Hearts 2.5 Launch Event in Burbank, how did it feel to finally have the Kingdom Hearts Premium Theater in Japan?

    Nomura: What sets KINGDOM HEARTS apart from other titles is that this is a title in which we have been sharing a connection with our fans for many years. So rather than being a one-time relationship like a festival, it does feel like we are partners or friends that have spent a long time together, but I do cherish these kinds of events as there aren’t very many opportunities like this where we can interact with our fans. Japanese fans are more shy than fans overseas but I was very happy that I was able to feel that the Japanese fans were having fun this time too.

    2. The Kingdom Hearts Premium Theater event was very well received in Japan. If the opportunity for future events is presented, would they follow a similar format? If not, what would you like to do differently?

    Nomura: The content of the event would change depending on the location and timing, so the format would most likely depend on those two factors. Also, as for D23, location becomes restricted as there are rules set by the host. Since we had more applicants than the amount of participants that we could accommodate this time, if we did have another opportunity to hold an event like this one, I think I will first consider the capacity of the venue instead of the format of the event.

    3. The newest update to Kingdom Hearts X [chi] introduces a new world, Beast’s Castle. Why was this world chosen to be added to the game?

    Nomura: We are prioritizing the worlds of the seven princess’s based on the “fairy tale era” concept in KINGDOM HEARTS χ[chi].

    4. Is there any significance in the timing of Beast’s Castle’s introduction to Kingdom Hearts X [chi]? After so many main story updates, it was surprising to travel to a new world rather than continuing to investigate Ephemera and the Foretellers.

    Nomura: There is no significance to the timing. We had already made a decision on which worlds to select a while ago, but because new world additions are the most time consuming, we were finally able to implement it this time.

    5. In one of the recent updates of Kingdom Hearts X [chi], the term “unchained” was officially introduced and has caused quite a bit of speculation among the fans. Does this play a role in how you previously said that X [chi] and Unchained X were not exactly the same game?

    Nomura: I cannot explain this without any spoilers but there is a connection between the two. Who is trying to do what will be depicted in KINGDOM HEARTS χ[chi] or KINDGOM HEARTS Unchainedχ, and the reason behind it would be told in KHχ Back Cover (included in 2.8).

    6. In 0.2, Yen Sid tells Riku and Kairi that it is imperative to rescue Aqua, Terra and Ventus, prompting Mickey to tell them of his recent visit to the Realm of Darkness. Is he referring to the time in the first Kingdom Hearts when he ventured in to find the Kingdom Key D?

    Nomura: It is an episode that I was waiting for a long time to tell. Please wait for KH0.2 for that answer.

    7. Did Mickey meet Aqua during his time in the Realm of Darkness? If so, why did he refrain from speaking of such an important matter until this moment?

    Nomura: This will also be told in KH0.2 so please wait for it.

    8. The conversation between Young Xehanort and Eraqus, first shown at E3, is the opening scene of Kingdom Hearts 3. Since then, more and more of the scene has been revealed through the trailers and at D23, we were able to view it in its entirety. Why was the decision made to show the scene in this manner?

    Nomura: There are many reasons for this, but one of them is that we are prioritizing the creation of new worlds in KH3, and we would have to consider the reveal timing of those worlds, making sure that we discuss with Disney. That opening scene is very versatile, since it doesn’t involve those new worlds, plus it’s a great asset to use as a prologue to build up excitement towards KH3.

    Also, the scenes that we have currently have released is not the final product so please look forward to any changes that we may make in the future as well.

    9. We learn from Xehanort and Eraqus’s conversation that Eraqus is under consideration for masterhood, but what about Xehanort at this time?

    Nomura: I’m sure that you can sense that there is some kind of thought behind Xehanort’s expression and tone of voice at the end. Xehanort’s interest is something other than a title of honor.

    10. It was surprising to see the return of Nobodies in the recent Kingdom Hearts 3 footage. What sort of role will they play in the game? Can we expect to see any more enemy types besides Nobodies and Heartless?

    Nomura: I want to make it so that you can tell who had come to that world by the enemies that appear there. I am thinking of the enemy types as a part of the total production this time.

    11. The new Kingdom Hearts III trailer featured a new Nobody design with a scythe and flower petals, is this particular Nobody alluding to a certain former Organization member?

    Nomura: I think that it’s easy to imagine but I do believe that it will appear in promotional materials sooner or later so please wait for that.

    12. Mickey was seen at the Premium Theater wearing his Kingdom Hearts 2 clothing holding the Kingdom Key D Keyblade, is there a chance we can see this Mickey at Disney Parks?

    Nomura: As far as I know, there are no plans right now, but I think it would be really neat if they did one day!

    What intrigues you most about this surprise interview? Let us know in the comments below, and have a wonderful holiday season!

  17. Analysis of the Kingdom Hearts III gameplay footage from Jump Festa

    New Kingdom Hearts III gameplay footage debuted towards the end of a new Kingdom Hearts HD 2.8 Final Chapter Prologue trailer that premiered at Jump Festa 2016. This new footage featured the use of magic, the return of Shotlocks and Nobodies, new Heartless, as well as a new Attraction Flow named "Shooting Ride".

    The footage begins with a cutscene of Sora, Donald, and Goofy in the Kingdom of Corona, seemingly heading towards Rapunzel's tower. From there, the cutscene smoothly transitions into a battle against the dandelion Heartless that were initially revealed at E3 2015. As Sora battles with the Heartless, he uses several magic spells including Aero and Fire. When these spells are used, they effect the environment as well; Aero will move the individual blades of grass while Fire spells will leave tinder marks on the ground. While the Heartless are somewhat spread out in the beginning of the battle, the smaller ones begin to circle around the bigger Heartless and begin to work as a group, as detailed by Tetsuya Nomura in a past interview.

    In the next scene, Sora encounters several Nobodies floating down in a valley. These Nobodies twirl about through the air while showering petals of light below. With the use of dodge roll, Sora is able to avoid the petals before being launched into the air with the help of Flowmotion. The design of these Nobodies seem to heavily suggest the return of Organization XIII member, Marluxia.

    On Mount Olympus, Sora, Donald, and Goofy are walking along a path when they encounter a group of flying Heartless. The HUD starts off blue when in a state of peace, but turns orange as the group encounters enemies and as Sora summons his Keyblade. From there, the screen zooms in and enters a Shotlock mode, an attack tactic featured in Kingdom Hearts Birth by Sleep. The player is given two options: "Shot Flow" or "Athletic Flow". Athletic Flow is chosen for this battle, and Sora launches into a high speed attack, easily moving between the flying Heartless with a technique that seems similar to Flowmotion. In order to keep the attack going, the player must push assigned buttons as they pop up onto the screen. Sora is surrounded by a blue glow during this period and unleashes a powerful spinning attack to finish off the Athletic Flow.

    When a Shotlock command is used, this will deplete the yellow bar featured above Sora's health and magic bars on the bottom left portion of the screen. Though buttons are not assigned yet, it can be assumed that each button will lead into a different Shotlock.

    Moments later, Sora falls into the river and is swept away by the current. In this state, it seems that Sora is defenseless against enemies, but the current is moving so fast that he could potentially escape without damage. As Sora is swept away, we also catch our first glimpse at a treasure chest.

    The next scene features a battle in Twilight Town and focuses on new Nocturne Heartless. These new Heartless use elemental attacks, just as their predecessors, but feature a ring around their bodies that they include in their attacks. Sora uses magic skills as well as classic maneuvers such as dodge roll, guard, and air slide against these new Nocturnes, Large Bodies, and Soldiers.

    Lastly, the new footage ends at the Mysterious Tower. As the trio enters battle, Sora raises his Keyblade and creates a portal from which the Shooting Ride Attraction Flow appears. Sora, Donald, and Goofy all jump into the car and Sora puts on a pair of glasses. Once the glasses are on, the screen changes into a sort of first person shooter state. From there, the player can send out short blasts that will launch enemies into the air. Once the Heartless are launched into the air, the player can do more damage with these blast attacks. Just like the Shotlock attacks, the Attraction Flow attack Shooting Ride also ends in a powerful finisher, featuring a bright swirl of many lights and launches several Heartless into the air at once.

    The Shooting Ride also keeps a record of the points the player gains while shooting down enemies. Just as it will do more damage, the player will also earn more points for shooting enemies that have already been launched into the air. Taking advantage of the finishing attack will also help to give players a higher score.

    After showing off dodge roll, magic attacks, as well as physical combos, Sora performs a Shotlock attack once more and starts to use "Shoot Flow" before the trailer fades into the Kingdom Hearts III logo.

  18. Kingdom Hearts HD 2.8 Final Chapter Prologue & Kingdom Hearts III trailer shown at Jump Festa 2016

    As promised, Square Enix have released a brand new trailer for Kingdom Hearts HD 2.8 Final Chapter Prologue during Jump Festa 2016. In addition to new footage from Kingdom Hearts HD 2.8 Final Chapter Prologue, the trailer also includes brand new footage from Kingdom Hearts III. You can view the trailer below:


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    Check out some screens from the trailer below:

    CWeLI57WEAY82Lx galleryitem2 galleryitem3 galleryitem7 galleryitem8

  19. Coverage: Kingdom Hearts HD 2.8 Final Chapter Prologue & Kingdom Hearts III at Jump Festa 2016

    Our coverage of Kingdom Hearts HD 2.8 Final Chapter Prologue & Kingdom Hearts III at Jump Festa 2016 has begun! Jump Festa 2016 is a Japanese-oriented event where future game releases, as well as current releases, go on to display by many game publishers. Square Enix has confirmed that Kingdom Hearts HD 2.8 Final Chapter Prologue will go on display with a brand new trailer, along with new Kingdom Hearts III footage. As Jump Festa goes on, we will be keeping you updated with live coverage here on KH13. Square Enix starts their Jump Festa showcase at 8:20 p.m. (USA EST). Kingdom Hearts does not have any confirmed stage presence, however all the trailers may appear between stages.


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    Live Updates

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    - Kingdom Hearts HD 2.8 Final Chapter Prologue Jump Festa 2016 trailer shown at SE's booth, but not publicly available online yet!
    - Kingdom Hearts II Play Arts Kai of Halloween Town Sora & Riku in display with full color!
    - Kingdom Hearts HD 2.8 Final Chapter Prologue/Kingdom Hearts III trailer footage seems to be from the D23 Expo Japan trailer.
    - Kingdom Hearts Unchained χ iPhone 6 cases in display!
    - Chirithy has been spotted at Square Enix's booth!
    - Kingdom Hearts HD 2.8 Final Chapter Prologue & Kingdom Hearts Unchained χ are among the list of games for trailer appearances at Square Enix's booth! This means Kingdom Hearts III is part of Kingdom Hearts HD 2.8 Final Chapter Prologue.
    - Close up image of the Chirithy plush is available!
    - Square Enix Presents has started their stream!
    - Kingdom Hearts Unchained χ Christmas card!
    - Kingdom Hearts HD 2.8 Final Chapter Prologue trailer released with Kingdom Hearts III footage!


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    - Kingdom Hearts HD 2.8 Final Chapter Prologue confirmed to appear at Jump Festa 2016 (December 2015) with a new trailer
    - Jump Festa 2016 event details w/ Kingdom Hearts III footage confirmation
    - Kingdom Hearts HD 2.8 Final Chapter Prologue trailer shown at Jump Festa 2016, new Kingdom Hearts III footage included!


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    CWeLI57WEAY82Lx galleryitem2 galleryitem3 galleryitem7 galleryitem8

    • Dec 18 2015 10:36 PM
    • by Jake
  20. Analysis of the Kingdom Hearts III Gameplay Footage from D23 Expo Japan

    On the 13th December a brief summary of the D23 Expo Japan 2015 event, was televised in Japan. The majority included sections from the Kingdom Hearts Premium Theater event, which included a small sneak peek of brand new gameplay footage from Kingdom Hearts III.

    The design of the attraction flow ride

    The gameplay begins with the newly revealed attraction flow, shooting ride, (based on Buzz Lightyear's Astro Blaster) being displayed in real time. Let's take a quick look at the design of the ride. The front has been replaced with the Kingdom Hearts symbolic gold crown, instead of the traditional star-command logo. In addition the attraction flow rides' color scheme differs from the original Disneyland ride from green to a dark blue, possibly to better suite the games overall design. Furthermore the design from the original has also changed. The ride looks sleeker and more compact to give greater maneuverability for Sora to attack.

    The attraction flow attack

    The attraction flow ride appears out of an invisible golden door at a fast pace. Sora smoothly black-flips on to the shooting ride to begin the attractions' attack. Donald and goofy then quickly drop behind their shooting pistols in support.

    The camera then transitions into a first-person shooter mode from Sora's perspective, displayed by him placing protective glasses over his face. From this it's also revealed The Mysterious Tower is officially confirmed to return as a world in Kingdom Hearts III. We can also see what appears to be, Pink Concerta heartless from Kingdom Hearts 358/2 Days. Also the Yellow Opera heartless, which are now confirmed to return. Sora begins to attack with a red projectile, Goofy green and Donald blue respectively.


    Each time Sora hits a solider heartless he receives 10 points displayed in the upper-left hand corner. When he juggles them continuously in the air the points increase from 10, 20, 30, to 60, as the word 'CHANCE' is displayed above the enemies' head. This is the first time a mini-game point system will be introduced inside a time-based attack. Assuming Kingdom Hearts III will have trophy support, is it possible to unlock a trophy based on a high-score? This is supported with 'HI SCORE' and '1000' being displayed under the current points earned.

    Notable aspects

    Whilst using the attraction flow ride there is also a full green bar that's divided into sections on the left-hand side. It's possible that this will decrease over time to show the duration of the attack.

    What are your thoughts on the new Kingdom Hearts III gameplay footage? Have you noticed anything we may have missed? Please leave your response in the comments section below!

  21. Extra Kingdom Hearts III footage from D23 Expo Japan 2015 surfaces online

    During a televised recap of the D23 Expo Japan 2015 event, which was held from November 6th through the 8th (or November 3rd for the Kingdom Hearts Premium Theater), snippets from the Kingdom Hearts Premium Theater event were shown. These snippets include footage from the Kingdom Hearts III trailer shown at D23 Expo Japan. Aside from extra Kingdom Hearts III footage, footage from the Kingdom Hearts Premium Theater in general was shown and can be seen below thanks to YouTube user I Love DCS JP who originally captured the footage.

    Kingdom Hearts III no watermark Kingdom Hearts HD Dream Drop Distance no watermark Kingdom Hearts 0.2 Birth by Sleep no watermark Screen Shot 2015 12 13 At 13.28.37 Screen Shot 2015 12 13 At 13.28.53 Screen Shot 2015 12 13 At 13.29.07 Screen Shot 2015 12 13 At 13.29.23 Screen Shot 2015 12 13 At 13.34.38 Screen Shot 2015 12 13 At 13.36.40 Screen Shot 2015 12 13 At 13.58.02 Screen Shot 2015 12 13 At 13.58.56 Screen Shot 2015 12 13 At 13.59.26 Screen Shot 2015 12 13 At 13.59.44 Screen Shot 2015 12 13 At 13.59.44 Screen Shot 2015 12 13 At 14.00.33

  22. Square Enix Third Business Division are hiring again for Kingdom Hearts III

    Square Enix's Third Business Division are continuing to hire employees to help complete Kingdom Hearts III. Square Enix were looking for suitable candidates at the beginning of January and are needing further assistance yet again as we head into the new year. Business Division 3 includes a team that is responsible for the majority of the Kingdom Hearts titles, including Kingdom Hearts 3D: Dream Drop Distance, Kingdom Hearts HD 1.5 and 2.5 ReMIX, and the upcoming Kingdom Hearts HD 2.8 Final Chapter Prologue and Kingdom Hearts III, while other teams within the division have worked on other projects. The eleven occupations listed below are the majority of the same jobs Square Enix advertised in January and have been open to apply for all year. The addition to this list is a 'scenario planner' role that is currently being advertised.

    Business Division 3 Positions


    No. 3BD / Cutscene Designer

    No. 3BD / Scenario Planner (KH Series)

    No. 3BD / Menu Designer (Osaka)

    No. 3BD / Character Model Designer

    No. 3BD / 3D Graphics Programmer

    No. 3BD / Technical Artist (Osaka)

    No. 3BD / Battle Planner (Osaka)

    No. 3BD / Level Planner (Osaka)

    No. 3BD / 3D CG Designer (BG, Osaka)

    No. 3BD / Art Designer (Osaka)

    No. 3BD / Game Programmer (Osaka)

    Thanks to @Tokyofog for translating the job description for the new Scenario Planner position:

    Scenario Planner Position Description: "The Scenario Planner will create scenarios and text for the KINGDOM HEARTS series. Main responsibility includes creating messages for people in cities, additional story-based text, and scenario support duties."

    What are your thoughts on the new Scenario Planner role and the pace of Kingdom Hearts III development cycle so far? Feel free to leave your opinions in the comment section and let us know!

  23. Summary of the Kingdom Hearts Premium Theater event

    On November 3rd, Square Enix & Disney held an event dedicated to the Kingdom Hearts series called the Kingdom Hearts Premium Theater. Throughout the event, new footage relating to the Kingdom Hearts series was shown to everyone who attended the event, along with a few extra surprises. While those who couldn't attend the event cannot view any of the footage from the event, Square Enix released a few screenshots from the new footage, along with fans sharing their impressions on all the events that took place at the Kingdom Hearts Premium Theater.

    Below you can check out all articles, screenshots, and fan impressions from the event.


    <3 <3 <3

    - New images featuring attraction flow for Kingdom Hearts III, Riku and Kairi in Kingdom Hearts 2.8, and Beast's Castle in Kingdom Hearts χ
    - New Kingdom Hearts III trailer shown at D23 Expo Japan 2015
    - New Kingdom Hearts HD 2.8 Final Chapter Prologue trailer shown at D23 Expo Japan 2015
    - Beast's Castle Confirmed for Kingdom Hearts χ[chi], and "Mickey Code Together" Event for Kingdom Hearts Unchained χ
    - Famitsu: Kingdom Hearts Premium Theater summary


    <3 <3 <3

    Square Enix officially released screenshots from the new footage shown at the event, which can be seen below.

    01 02 03 04 05 06 07 08 09 10 11 12 13 14 15 16

    Fan Impressions

    <3 <3 <3

    Thanks to @kh_primavera, and translations by News Team member Rin, you can check out fan impressions on the Kingdom Hearts Premium Theater.

    KH Theater - General Outline:
    Opening (CM videos of products that have been released)
    Greetings from Disney Japan, Justin Scarpone
    Greetings from Executive Producer Shinji Hashimoto
    Piano performance by Yoko Shimomura and Hiroyuki Nakayama
    Live performance of: [Dearly] Beloved, The Other Promise, Musique pour la tristesse de Xion
    Short talk by Shimomura and Nakayama
    Tetsuya Nomura presenting the latest information
    KH HD 2.8 new information: Ven, Aqua, and Terra’s voice actors appear in a guest movie
    KH3 new information: Sora, Kairi, and Riku’s voice actors appear in a guest movie
    New KH3 trailer presented (mainly battle scenes)
    Limited KH3 making video presented
    King Mickey in KH attire appears as a special guest
    Mr. Justin, Mr. Hashimoto, Ms. Shimomura, Mr. Nomura, and King Mickey photo session
    Ending (video with each character’s lines and Hikaru Utada’s “Hikari” BGM)

    Latest Information
    KHx - new world,“Beast Castle (from 11/5)
    KHUx - new stronger medals and avatars (from 11/3 18:00)
    KH HD 2.8 - latest trailer. King Mickey, Riku, Kairi, and Yen Sid must find Ven, Terra, and Aqua in order to gather the 7 Guardians of Light. From there, King Mickey says he met Aqua in the Ream of Darkness when he was there. Afterwards, battle scene with Aqua was presented.
    KH3 - latest trailer. Starts with the conversation between young Xehanort and young Eraqus previously released. There’s more to the convo this time than before (I feel like there were things I’d never heard before, like creating Kingdom Hearts out of competing lights…)

    After that, Sora’s battle scenes began to run. Worlds presented: Tangled, Twilight Town, Mysterious Tower, etc. Sora used BBS’s action system (shotlock command) and KH3D’s action system (free-flow action).

    About the new attraction flow: some of it is my own impression, but it kinda looked like it was based on Buzz Lightyear’s Astro Blaster.

    There was one scene that showed the detailed motions of feet being soaked in a river.

    Sora, Donald, and Goofy’s new abilities were also shown (footage of the 3 of them sitting on Goofy’s shield and attacking was presented).

    Limited making movie - Olympus Coliseum (in production) was shown. In KH2 it was a world of spirits, in KH3, I’m not super positive, but it’s probably going to be made with heaven as the main. (Olympus Coliseum’s appearance in KH3 is unknown to begin with.)

    Also, a 3D Daybreak Town (in production) was shown. (Whether this world will be in KH3 or not is unknown.)

    The new Nobody’s bottom half looked like flower petals, and it used to a sickle to attack. (I remember Nomura said that people who have played KH will know who this Nobody is.)

    Some Heartless that look like advanced forms of Yellow Opera were also shown.

    Thanks to KH13 News Team member Kayla Copeland (nichiei.translations@gmail.com), you can read fan impressions from FF-Reunion.net.

    KH: [D23EJ] Kingdom Hearts Premium Theater Report!

    Today from Maihama Ikspiari, we have a report of the [Kingdom Hearts Premium Theater]. The event programs are as follows:

    -Greetings from the higher-ups at Disney, Justin Scarpone and Mr. Hashimoto
    -Yoko Shimomura and Hiroyuki Nakayama held a piano performance (Songs: Dearly Beloved, The Other Promise, Musique pour la tristesse de Xion)
    -Comments from the voice actors: Megumi Toyoguchi, Ryotaro Okiayu, Koki Uchiyama, Miyu Irino, Risa Uchida, and Mamoru Miyano
    -New trailers for KH0.2BbS, KhxBackCover, and KH3, no new worlds shown. New heartless appeared, KH3 creation process opened to public.

    [KH Premuim Theater Opening]

    -After entering the theater, we were given wristbands. Mr. Hashimoto was also at the theater entrance. Inside the KH Premium Theater before the event began, the screen had the [KINGDOM HEARTS Premium Theater] logo!

    -There was a keyblade in front of the screen. Then there was an announcement. No recording the trailers, taking any video, or any photography was allowed during the event. According to the event's twitter, this was all in order not to ruin things for the second round of guests, and the ban would be lifted at 17:00.

    -First, Tetsuya Nomura opened, and Nakamura said, “I'll speak while looking at the cue cards.” It was revealed that on 11/5, Beast's Castle would be a new world for KHx, and that from 18:00, the “Mickey Coordinate” event would start, with a KH2 Mickey present on 11/4 at 4:00!

    -[Below are excerpts from the voice actor's comments about the PV]

    Toyoguchi: Aqua's last line “we're connected” did not go well, and we had to do a lot of takes for it. My heart was starting to break. Recording for 2.8 isn't finished yet, but I'm looking forward to it.

    Okiayu: The first time I met Uchiyama, I met him with the same way Terra felt: “He's Ven!” The line that left a lasting impression on me was what I said to Otsuka, “What did you do to his heart?!”

    Uchiyama: In regards to Roxas, despite not being able to feel that my own world was real, I felt at that time (as a middle school student) that just like me, Roxas was real. In regards to Ven, I went on to give out such cheerfulness that I don't really have. At first, recording felt more like playing around than work.

    -A new trailer for [KH0.2BbS]! The King, Riku, and Kairi stand before YenSid. He says, “The fight with Xehanort is near. We must assemble the seven wielders of light to protect the seven hearts of pure light. In order to do that, it is indispensable that we call back the three keyblade wielders who were lost to the tragedies of long ago: Ventus, Terra, and Aqua.” Then, the King says to Riku and Kairi, “I met (?) in the Realm of Darkness.” (Picture: Aqua from behind in the Realm of Darkness)

    -The [KhxBackCover] trailer was the team's logos on stained glass with voices only. A man said, “Lost (?? couldn't hear the dialogue) piece missing from the Foretellers will enter.” A woman said, “Someone has the full story of the Foretellers, and the person who has that is the traitor?” A second man said, “The darkness is indeed on the move. I can't think that there is a traitor among us.” A second woman said, “We're not for sure that there's a traitor among us, right?” The first man says, “The missing piece of the story tell us of the traitor.”

    -[KHDDD] trailer came next. It was the scene where Xehanort explains things in the dream world. The King and Riku take hands and the trailer said, “Someday, with your strength...” There was the scene with Tron falling, and the scene with Riku confronting Ansem (“Ansem! You've become a part of my heart...”). There was also the scene where Sora takes Namine's hand, only to have her face turn into Xion, as well as Riku fighting the person in the black coat. It showed Sora fighting Braig (“Our hearts are connected--that's my strength!”). The modeling for KHDDD was really pretty! It seems just like a remake, perhaps because it was taken from the 3DS to the PS4 in HD.

    -There was a new trailer for [KH3]. It was the full scene from the beginning of KH3 with young Eraqus and Xehanort! [The music was a piano version of [The 13th Side].)

    X: Do you know about the Keyblade war?
    E: Of course.
    X: Long ago, when keyblade wielders tried to steal away the light.
    E: I've heard it again and again from the Master.
    X: I wonder what they wanted to do, using the light they stole to summon Kingdom Hearts.
    E: Who knows...I can't understand the reason why the fight happened in the first place.
    X: Have you heard of the Lost Masters? They started the Keyblade war.
    E: Never heard of it, where did you hear that from?
    X: No, was it for their sake, I wonder...
    E: I don't get it.
    X: You know the truth, right?
    E: About what?
    X: That at that time, light was defeated by the darkness. I guess you as a candidate for Master wouldn't know.
    E: I guess.
    X: You can see it with your own eyes. It's already decided, the end of the world.
    E: It'd be boring if the end was already decided. If the darkness is supposed to win, I'll rewrite the ending.
    X: You're pretty confident. But aren't you at a disadvantage?
    E: Light is different from darkness, because it's not just something you can see. We won't know until the end.
    X: I'm looking forward to it.

    -There was a KH3 trailer (music: Rage Awakened). Sora, Donald and Goofy battled Heartless that looked like dandelions in front of Rapunzel's tower, then it cut to a new part with new Nobodies that look like flowers with about eight legs?, that would separate and lift into the air while spinning (I saw this during the making video, but the keyblade looked like Marluxia). Nomura said this about the new Nobodies: “These nobodies will make you imagine someone specific. People with good intuition might get it.” It showed a new weapon for Sora. In an area that looked like a valley, Sora was able to lock on to about 10 Heartless (the lock on speed is very fast, about 1.5 seconds!) and teleport around while attacking. It was really cool!

    -There was a new attraction flow for [KH3]! It showed a vehicle kind of like a space ship?, where all three had a launching pad. It was called “Shooting ride.” After invoking AF, it turns into FPS mode and you can attack the enemies! (When it turns to FPS mode, the outline of goggles appears on the screen, giving you the image of playing a FPS game with goggles on)

    -While fighting Heartless in [KH3], there were points where Sora would fall into the river and scream as he slid down. The river looked really pretty! It seems the Heartless can also chase you down the river. When attacking the Heartless that resemble bells (the ones well known in the KH series), they can affect the environment around you, and they can attack that way.

    -There was a [KH2 Making] video presentation by Nomura! He said, “We're developing each of the worlds. Since the developers are still working, we can't show you any new worlds, but I was able to bring this in-production (making) video here today.” When the new Nobodies (shaped like flowers? They resemble Marluxia) attack, they rain down red flower petals. (The drawing below is simplified, but this is the basic idea)

    -What Nomura showed us next in the [KH3 making] video was a 3D version of Daybreak Town that hasn't been used in KH so far, but they might use it in KH3 or something. I understand that the movement of light makes the buildings move.

    -Next in the [KH3 making] video was a making of [Olympus]. Olympus is set up in the heavens, and it looks very divine, with the buildings reflected on the floor it was very pretty! There were buildings in the clouds, and between the clouds were the buildings of Olympus hidden away, making it a very mysterious location! Perhaps because of the use of light, the shading makes it look very three-dimensional!

    -The other parts of the [KH3 making] were shots of different Heartless with no backgrounds (Heartless with hats, bell-shaped Heartless' effects) showing their movements, etc. Nomura said, “There will be other Heartless, but they are spoilers so I can't show them. Just by looking at them you'll be able to figure out the worlds.”

    -There was a [0.2BbS] making video. It was a great display of running around in the darkness and Aqua fighting off Heartless!

    -In [KH3], Sora, Donald, and Goofy can ride Goofy's shield. Riding the shield like that lets you fly! Also, there's going to be a large snake-like enemy to fight.

    -At the end, there was a special PV they showed us called “King Mickey Scene Mash-Up]! Just when I was thinking how it was cool just to hear the music full of the King...King Mickey came out on stage, as well as Nomura and Shimomura, and they walked around the theater greeting guests! They were shaking hands and giving hi-fives!

    -Everyone involved got on stage: King Mickey, Nomura, Shimomura, and Hashimoto looked full of energy!

    -The last PV was a mash-up of scenes from each game. Sora, Roxas, Namine, Xion, Riku, Axel, Kairi, Aqua, Terra, Ven...and so on were in the last scene and climax, showing their goodbyes, reunions, and connections in their hearts... Everything was connected in fragments, and it was beautiful and left an impression. It made my heart feel warm...and I cried.

    -It was a wonderful KH event! There were a lot of clips, and I'm surprised at the quality! It seems some of the trailers were ones only shown at this theater, but I hope they release the other trailers soon!

    Lastly, you can check out tweets from the event, thanks to KH13 News Team member Kayla Copeland (nichiei.translations@gmail.com) for the translations, and thanks to @aibo_ac7 for the original tweets.


    With the Kingdom Hearts Premium Theater passing by, as well as all of the D23 Expo Japan event, there are 2 major events left of 2015: Jump Festa 2016 and PlayStation Experience 2015. While Kingdom Hearts has not been confirmed for any of these events yet, there is a small chance of Kingdom Hearts appearing at these events. If any Kingdom Hearts news appears as these events are starting, we will let you know!

    • Nov 15 2015 07:28 PM
    • by Jake
  24. Famitsu: Kingdom Hearts Premium Theater summary

    After the Kingdom Hearts Premium Theater event, held on November 3rd, 2015, Famitsu Weekly published an article detailing almost every aspect of the special D23 event. Take the time to read about the new details from Kingdom Hearts III and Kingdom Hearts HD 2.8 Final Chapter Prologue, and read special messages from the Japanese voice actors of the series! Thanks to News Team member Rin for the translations!

    To celebrate the opening of Disney’s Fan Event “D23 Expo Japan 2015,” a “Kingdom Hearts Premium Theater” was held on November 3, 2015, at Tokyo Disney Resort’s Cinema Ikspiari.

    Another super-duper Disney Resort KH event

    As previously reported, the “Kingdom Hearts Premium Theater” event took place on November 3, 2015, to celebrate the opening of Disney’s Fan Event, “D23 Expo Japan 2015.” The Theater event took place at Tokyo Disney Resort’s Cinema Ikspiari, located in Urayasu City, Chiba Prefecture.

    Among other things during this rather lively event, Kingdom Hearts series director Tetsuya Nomura introduced recent footage and developments, composer Yoko Shimomura gave a piano performance, and voice actors shared video messages.

    What follows is a report of this “Kingdom Hearts Premium Theater.” Please note that photographs are few, but words are aplenty.

    Opening the event was a retrospective on the [Kingdom Hearts] series done through promotional videos for each title. Afterwards, Walt Disney Company Asia and Disney Interactive Asia’s senior vice president and general manager, Justin Scarpone, appeared on stage to share that the Kingdom Hearts series has shipped 21 million units worldwide and is one of the most successful games in Disney’s long history. “I hope you’ll enjoy to the very end this special experience meant just for Kingdom Hearts fans,” Scarpone said at the start of the event.

    Following Scarpone, Kingdom Hearts series executive producer, Shinji Hashimoto, took the stage. Hashimoto expressed his gratitude for an event such as this that allows him to meet with fans directly. He also introduced the series’ smartphone application released in September, Kingdom Hearts: Unchainedχ[chi], and urged fans to give it a try. “Today, we will be able to share new information, so please look forward to it,” he said.

    Piano performance by Yoko Shimomura and Hiroyuki Nakayama

    First on the program for this event was a piano performance by Kingdom Hearts series composer Yoko Shimomura and pianist Hiroyuki Nakayama. Three songs––“Dearly Beloved,” “The Other Promise,” and “Musique pour la Tristesse de Xion”––were performed. Shimomura and Nakayama, each with their own pianos, played new arrangements in a piano duet form. Audience members listened quietly and attentively.
    Following the performance was a talk given by Shimomura and Nakayama. They first met during auditions for the Kingdom Hearts piano arrangement album [recording] and have known each other for a rather long time. The pair got along quite well during the talk. However, at their very first recording session that started at midnight and took 4 hours, Shimomura kept saying, “One more time,” and wouldn’t give the OK, “so I cried in the bathroom” (Nakayama). In the end, Nakayama persisted and lived up to Shimomura’s demands, and in reminiscence, “it was because of that trial that we have a day like today” (Nakayama). Music is an indispensable element of the Kingdom Hearts series, so let’s all look forward to what Shimomura and Nakayama will be doing next.

    Director Tetsuya Nomura also appears

    Following the piano performance were the eagerly awaited developments. Since this event was called a “Premium Theater,” information was revealed through footage. Series director Tetsuya Nomura appeared on stage and explained the content himself.

    For PC browser game Kingdom Hearts χ[chi], Beast Castle [appeared] as a new world beginning November 5. For the smartphone application Kingdom Hearts Unchainedχ[chi], beginning at 6:00pm on November 3, a new event called “Coordinate with Mickey" began]. In addition, those who [have been logging in] from November 4 at 4:00am and on, have each received a “King Mickey KHII Ver (★5)” medal.

    New information on Kingdom Hearts 2.8 and Kingdom Hearts III revealed

    The next segment was the presentation of the latest Kingdom Hearts HD 2.8 Final Chapter Prologue PV. “I met Aqua in the Realm of Darkness” (King Mickey); “Someone has the complete Book of Prophecies, and that person’s the traitor” (Mysterious Figure) and other dialogue followed in rapid succession and stirred up anticipation! Before the PV, a video message from Megumi Toyoguchi (voice of Aqua), Ryoutarou Okiayu (voice of Terra), and Kouki Uchiyama (voice of Ventus and Roxas) was shared. You can read their comments below.

    Megumi Toyoguchi (Aqua)

    I think the very first scene that I recorded as Aqua was the one together with Maleficient, and it was my first experience having a conversation with a Disney character. Disney character acting is “big” acting, so I remember that, at the beginning, the feeling of distance between the [Disney] character’s acting and me, and the difference in the scale of the acting, was a really tough game. But as you gradually continue, once you can create your character, you’ll know how much to “give,” and it becomes very fun to do.

    One particularly memorable line is, when I said the final line as Aqua, “We’re connected” (English: “There’s always a way.”), I couldn’t really get it done right. I recorded it over and over so many times, and there must have been dozens of takes (bitter smile). I recorded so many times that I felt my heart was going to break into pieces, but at the very last moment, I got an OK, and I felt incredibly relieved. I’d never done so many takes, so that was memorable for me.

    The Kingdom Hearts series are commonly played games, so I was very happy to have been able to take part in it. Prior to [Kingdom Hearts], I played Paine in FFX-2, but playing a character in Kingdom Hearts is different emotionally, so I was very happy about that. Actually, I’ve been playing [Birth by Sleep], but I haven’t finished Aqua’s story yet. Finishing it would bring sadness… even though I have gotten to the end. But, since there’s a sequel coming out, I think I can “beat the last boss.” That’s my mindset.

    Within the 3 works is a new episode, and a new Kingdom Hearts is coming out, so I think you all are extremely excited about that, but I think I’m the one who’s most excited (laugh). I think I’m the very first to want to play it… should I play from the beginning, or should I play alongside Kingdom Hearts Birth by Sleep’s chronology? I haven’t begun recording (for KH 0.2 Bbs) yet, but I’m very excited to know how I’ll get to play Aqua, so I hope you all are excited as well.

    Ryoutarou Okiayu (Terra)

    I first performed in a promotional trailer, and after that, there wasn’t any news about recording lines for the actual title, so I thought, “So I didn’t get picked, huh?” I became quite anxious (laugh). Finally, I got to do the recording, and for the longest time it was just me alone… As you all well know, Terra goes on a journey to find Ven, but I couldn’t really meet Uchiyama-kun (voice of Ven) myself. The opportunity didn’t present itself, I suppose. When the time finally came, I thought, “Oh! So he’s Ven.” I put myself in Terra’s state of my mind and glanced at Uchiyama-kun (laugh).

    For me, the most memorable line was saying to Mr. Chikao Ootsuka, “What did you do to his heart!?” That line was used in the trailer, right? That was a foreshadowing of what would happen in the game.

    While recording, I thought about whether the story of these three people’s journey would continue after [Birth by Sleep]. When I was recording, I pictured the three of us being friends in the past, and at the time, I was able to fall into an illusion where I felt I was in a never-ending story.

    To all of you KH fans, I think you’re waiting for Kingdom Hearts HD 2.8 Final Chapter Prologue that will be released next year. I hear that the Birth by Sleep team will be able to talk a little about what happens from [Birth by Sleep] and on, so I’d like you to be excited. “Terra, what happened to him?” “We want Aqua to break out of that place.” “I wonder what happened to Ven… I wonder where Uchiyama-kun went?” (laugh). Along those lines, right? Please look forward to the next title.

    Kouki Uchiyama (Ventus & Roxas)

    About Roxas, should I say [he’s] life-sized…. this character called Roxas cannot feel that the world he lives in is real, and he doubts whether this is the real world. At that time when I was a middle school student, somehow I also thought the same. It hit home for me, or, it was a very real feeling for me. I injected the thoughts I had at that time into my lines, and in that way, I remember [the recording] being rather easy.

    For Ven, I brought out cheerfulness and the strength to invigorate others. I don’t have those traits. Normally, I’m more quiet. It felt like I was adding things on top of what I didn’t have.

    I don’t usually get involved with a single work from a series that is this long. I was young back then, so when I would get involved with a project and thought, “Okay, I’ll do it,” it wasn’t really work, but…. it’s kind of hard to say, but I remember, when I went to the studio, I thought of it as going in to play around, and then I said my lines. During KHII, I recorded lines together with Roxas’s friends, Hayner, Pence, and Olette (their voice actors). It felt like going to school, and I felt excited going into the studio. Time’s passed since then, and once again I’m in the same series, but as a different character in a different title. I’ve played various roles, and made so many memories...call it a life in 1 work or something. The series will probably continue on, I think, and I’m excited how I’ll be able to stay involved. I don’t want [my part] to end just yet.

    The series will probably go on, huh. No one’s told me anything, so I’m looking forward to the future as all of you are. I ask for your continued support in the KH series.

    Making of Kingdom Hearts III” also shown

    Following on the heels of Kingdom Hearts HD 2.8 Final Chapter Prologue were the latest developments on Kingdom Hearts III. This segment also began with video messages from voice actors.

    Miyu Irino (Sora)

    In these last dozen years or so, there have been parts where Sora and I have grown together, and parts where Sora and I have grown in different places. I wonder if these parts that have changed, together with the parts that haven’t, are how Sora has changed in the span of 15 years.

    I’ve worked on the Kingdom Hearts series together with Mamoru Miyano, who plays Riku, and Risa Uchida, who plays Kairi, since we were all teens, and I can feel our incredibly strong bond, as if they’re really my childhood friends.

    Before I was involved with Kingdom Hearts, I had a general sense of Disney’s Donald and Goofy, but now, when I see them at Disneyland or in movies, I feel something different in these characters. Like, they’re my friends. I feel really proud.

    I really like the story of Roxas’s existence, and the scene in the second half of II where he and Sora melt together has left a great impression on me. I feel a closeness to him as well.

    One memorable thing was singing “Under the Sea” in the Little Mermaid world. I was really happy that I didn’t sing it as karaoke, but rather, as my own song.

    The memories of doing recording as a middle school student are linked with the memories of my middle school days, and I feel that [Kingdom Hearts] is a special work. Also, when I go abroad, people know me as doing voice acting for Kingdom Hearts, and I can sense the globalness even more.
    There are more works coming for Kingdom Hearts, and there are plenty of works already available to look back on. I hope you’ll enjoy those until the sequel is here.

    Risa Uchida (Kairi)

    In the world of Kingdom Hearts, Kairi is light. I’ve performed my role with this in mind, but how to capture this light is different between now and before. To continue to stay in the light, one must be incredibly strong; I had felt that when I became an adult. Kairi, who has been able to stay in the light, is a wonderful child, and there are so many things I can learn from her.

    Xion didn’t have a sense of self at the beginning, and gradually she was able to think for herself… representing this course of change was especially difficult. The anxiety of, “I’m just a nobody, aren’t I? I’m just a tool,” is something that I think everyone feels at one point, so I don’t think Xion is unusual in this regard. I thought it’d be great if I could embrace loneliness, anxiety and perform my role…. in the end, I felt quite sad, after all.

    Sora is a beloved person who goes beyond romantic love and friendship. To Sora, Kairi is [his] light, but I think to Kairi, Sora is also her light. Kairi views Riku differently from Sora; I think she sees [Riku] as more of a big brother. In II, when Kairi grows into a person who can wield her Keyblade and fight, I can’t help but think that it must be because she’s watched Riku from behind. They cherish one another, and the three who are growing together are extremely special and amazing. I admire them very much.

    When I accepted the audition, I had done a lot of stage work and thought that voice acting wasn’t my skill, so I wasn’t sure if I should challenge myself and try out. I had all this anxiety, but I received the script and fell in love with the world of Kingdom Hearts. I really wanted to enter into this world no matter what, and my passion grew. I thought, “Being able to be a part of this world is a once-in-a-lifetime and thrilling chance.” I want to keep growing more and more together with Kairi, so I want to thank you for your continued support.

    Mamoru Miyano (Riku)

    The Riku in Kingdom Hearts up until now has had to fight a long battle against the darkness within him. He’s atoned for it, and he’s mustered up the courage to fight against it. Growing into light’s existence has been his salvation, I think. The reality of overcoming this experience and fighting with his Keyblade in hand has been a big change, so I wanted to perform my role with all of that in mind.

    There aren’t many jobs that I can participate in that have spanned as long as Kingdom Hearts has. [Kingdom Hearts] is a work that’s been with me every step in my entire acting life, so Riku’s existence is special. He’s growing, and I think I’ve also been growing a little bit, too. There’s a lot of deep emotion in [Riku’s] transformation.

    To Riku, Sora is forever radiant, and his admiration for Sora has never changed. It’s been said that, because of Kairi, Riku was able to connect with Sora, so [Sora] is a special existence, isn’t he?

    The time that I received the Kingdom Hearts role was around the same time that I began my voice acting career. I was young, but being able to act alongside my senior, Miyu Irino-kun, inside the studio was fun. I learned a lot, and that time was invaluable. This is my own whimsical thought, but I think Irino-kun and I are connected by a strong bond, like Sora and Riku are.

    I want to cherish the Kingdom Hearts series together with all of you, and I ask for your continued support from here on out.

    For the latest Kingdom Hearts III footage, an event-exclusive movie was revealed, featuring the full version of the conversation between two people playing what looks like a chess match (the one that begins with “Have you heard of the Ancient Keyblade War?”). Both seem to know something, but they do not utter it. They are friends, but they also appear to be rivals… their relationship is quite palpable.

    In the action footage, new Heartless, a Nobody wielding a sickle, and a scene where [Sora] unleashes a Birth By Sleep shotlock-like attack from an attraction flow (a special technique that can be triggered under certain conditions), among other things, were present. New battle scenes were packed with action.

    Tetsuya Nomura once again took to the stage and presented another event-exclusive PV, a rare movie of the making of Kingdom Hearts. “During development, we proceed by working on each world, and we’re moving into worlds that we cannot, at this moment, show you. I can’t present any new worlds today, so in place of that, I’ve brought some in-production footage that we normally do not make public” (Nomura).

    90% of Kingdom Hearts development is done at the Osaka Studio, and 10% done in Tokyo. The contents revealed in today’s footage are from the Tokyo Studio. In this PV, we saw once again the figure of the Nobody wielding the sickle from the latest trailer. “This is the Nobody that was also in the new KHIII trailer. As to what this Nobody is, I’m sure there are fans who are aware” (Nomura). Is this connected to Marluxia!?

    Other things were also introduced in this PV, such as a new location in Olympus, the heaven map; and development footage of Aqua being controlled on KH 0.2 BbS’s map. Effects have been made more splendid and lighting processing has been increased, making the appearance even richer.

    Kingdom Hearts III will have attraction flows and weapon transformations, and party member coordination is being strengthened, so I hope you’ll look forward to these” (Nomura).

    King Mickey appears!

    Just as we were taking in all of these updates, there was another special movie! This footage featured King Mickey and his activities from titles to date. Once the movie had ended, the King himself appeared on stage! The audience cheered as King Mickey came to the scene! King Mickey, along with Tetsuya Nomura and Yoko Shimomura, left their seats and began to interact with fans. There were curtains and all, and the auditorium turned into an uproar.

    There was much excitement accompanying King Mickey as he made his departure. Hashimoto made his appearance once again and said to the audience, “It is thanks to you, the fans, that [Kingdom Hearts] has been able to continue for 13 years after its release. We’ll be doing our best from here on out, so we appreciate your continued support.” The event concluded with thunderous applause from the fans.

    What did you think about what the voice actors had to say? Let us know in the comments!

  25. New Kingdom Hearts III trailer shown at D23 Expo Japan 2015

    Attendees of the Kingdom Hearts Premium Theater event at D23 Expo Japan were given the chance to watch new Kingdom Hearts III footage. Though the trailer won't be released to the public for a while, we have some details given by attendees on Twitter.

    <3 <3 <3
    What we know so far:

    • The world based on Tangled makes a reappearance, with a new flower Heartless
    • A new Nobody is shown, confirming their return as an enemy in Kingdom Hearts III.
    • The conversation between young Eraqus and young Xehanort is expanded upon from what we've seen previously at E3 2015 and Tokyo Game Show 2015 (Later revealed that this conversation is in the event-exclusive trailer).
    • Sora locks on to 10 Heartless at once within 1.5 seconds and begins to attack at lightning speeds for a temporary period of time!
    • The speedy action of the KH3 trailer surprised some.
    • New abilities of Sora, Donald, and Goofy were revealed. Footage of 3 people riding on Goofy's shield and attacking.
    • Character movements in battle scene are detailed. Especially Sora's legs in the river.
    • There was a river Sora fell into while fighting heartless.
    • Towards the end of the trailer, there is a scene with Sora, Riku, Kairi, Ven, Aqua, Terra, Namine, Roxas and Lea. This is the scene that made many fans emotional.
    Thanks to KH13 user ZeroKitteh for compiling a list of notable moments from the trailer. A sketch of this new nobody can be found below thanks to Twitter user @aibo_ac7. This nobody seems to have possible ties to Marluxia:

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    More impressions will added as we receive and translate them. Thank you for your patience.