Beginning on July 14th and continuing through the 16th, D23 Expo is the ultimate Disney fan event where major Disney-owned companies and trademarks make various announcements related to Disney movies, games, etc. to create the ultimate experience for Disney fans.
During the Kingdom Hearts Orchestra - World Tour - in Los Angeles, a new trailer for Kingdom Hearts III was shown. At the end of it, a message was shown confirming that on July 15th, at the D23 Expo in Anaheim, California, a new world and a new trailer would be shown for the game. It was later confirmed that Kingdom Hearts III will be at the "Level Up! The Walt Disney Company's Video Game Showcase" at 1:00 PM PDT at the D23 Expo Arena. Yesterday, July 14, 2017, was the beginning of D23 2017, and today, July 15, 2017, is the day that they have had the new trailer revealed. Just as planned, it was shown at the Level Up! conference.
The Kingdom Hearts III segment of the panel was last, with the Star Wars and Marvel segments being showcased before. Kingdom Hearts series director Tetsuya Nomura and Square Enix Product Manager Kaori Takasue came on stage and talked about the Kingdom Hearts Orchestra - World Tour -, Kingdom Hearts Union χ[cross], Kingdom Hearts III, and, of course, revealed the new world, Toy Story, and the new trailer.
After the trailer was shown, Pixar Animation Studio story supervisor Jason Katz and Pixar Animation Studios associate creative director Tasha Sounart came onstage to discuss the new Toy Story world. Tasha Sounart helped work on the Toy Story world with the art style, creative direction, and animation. She said one of her favorite things to work on was to help design the toy versions of Sora, Donald, and Goofy, as well as the Toy Story Keyblade. They also confirmed that the Toy Story world will have a brand new story, never before seen in any of the movies, just like the Big Hero 6 world. To close it off, Nomura said there's more announcements coming and expressed his gratitude. Those who attended the panel were given a double-sided Kingdom Hearts III poster (photos courtesy of Churro)!
Mascots of toy soldiers from the Toy Story film also came on stage and performed an act. And at the end, Buzz and Woody mascots came out.
You can view "Kingdom Heats III – D23 2017 Toy Story Trailer", as well as the Hercules Excerpt from the trailer, below:
You can also view the full Level Up! conference here:
Official renders of Guard Form Sora and Sora, Donald, and Goofy in their Toy Story forms have been released as well. You can view them in the gallery below:
UPDATE: Thanks to the official Kingdom Hearts Twitter account, we now know the name of several of Sora's Keyblade transformations. The gun-type transformations we've been seeing in trailers are called the double Arrowguns and the blaster they transform into is called the Magic Launcher. Also, thanks to the new trailer, we now know that the hammer that the Toy Story world Keyblade can transform into is known as the Hyper Hammer.
- Jul 18 2017 06:13 PM
- by Elfdemon_
At today’s Level Up! The Walt Disney Company’s Video Game Showcase at D23 Expo 2017, Square Enix has showcased a new trailer for Kingdom Hearts III giving us us a first look at a brand new world set in the Toy Story movie through a trailer.
The Toy Story world has been showcased for the first time and is now confirmed to appear in Kingdom Hearts III, which is an exciting addition to the Tangled and Big Hero 6 worlds that have been confirmed previously.
After the trailer was shown, Pixar Animation Studio story supervisor Jason Katz and Pixar Animation Studios associate creative director Tasha Sounart came onstage to discuss the new Toy Story world. Tasha Sounart helped work on the Toy Story world with the art style, creative direction, and animation. She said one of her favorite things to work on was to help design the toy versions of Sora, Donald, and Goofy, as well as the Toy Story Keyblade. They also confirmed that the Toy Story world will have a brand new story, never before seen in any of the movies, just like the Big Hero 6 world. To close it off, Nomura said there's more announcements coming and expressed his gratitude.
Mascots of toy soldiers from the Toy Story film also came on stage and performed an act. And at the end, Buzz and Woody mascots came out.
Official renders of Sora, Donald, and Goofy in their Toy Story forms have been released as well. View them in the gallery below:
What do you think of Toy Story? What other worlds would you like to see in Kingdom Hearts III? Let us know in the comments below!
- Jul 16 2017 10:12 PM
- by neil98
Our coverage of Kingdom Hearts III at D23 Expo 2017 in Anaheim, California has begun!
Beginning on July 14th and continuing through the 16th, D23 Expo is the ultimate Disney fan event where major Disney-owned companies and trademarks make various announcements related to Disney movies, games, etc. to create the ultimate experience for Disney fans.
At the first Orchestra concert in Los Angeles, California, Tetsuya Nomura confirmed that Kingdom Hearts III will make an appearance at D23 Expo 2017 on July 15th. This appearance includes a brand new trailer and a new world announcement. The official D23 website confirms that Kingdom Hearts III will appear during the Level Up! The Walt Disney Company’s Video Game Showcase at 1:00 PM USA PDT inside the D23 Expo Arena.
During D23 Expo 2015, Square Enix revealed a brand new world featuring the Disney film, Big Hero 6. What will they have in store for us this time? Stay tuned throughout the event to find out what announcements will be made for Kingdom Hearts III!
KINGDOM HEARTS III – D23 2017 Toy Story Trailer
KINGDOM HEARTS 3 – D23 2017 Trailer Excerpt—Hercules
Full Level Up! Conference
- Kingdom Hearts III confirmed to be at D23 Expo 2017 Anaheim
- Square Enix confirms a "special surprise" is coming to Kingdom Hearts Union χ%5BCross%5D to celebrate D23 Expo 2017
- New Kingdom Hearts III trailer shown at D23 Expo 2017
- New Toy Story world for Kingdom Hearts III revealed at D23 Expo 2017
- D23 Expo 2017: Kingdom Hearts III releasing on PlayStation 4 & Xbox One in 2018
- New Kingdom Hearts III BRING ARTS action figures of Toy Sora, Donald, and Goofy announced
- New Kingdom Hearts III Bring Arts Sora (Guardian Form) available for pre-order on SENA store; releasing End of September 2017 for $69.99
- Analysis of the Kingdom Hearts III – D23 2017 Toy Story Trailer
- Kingdom Hearts III will feature in Weekly Famitsu with a Tetsuya Nomura interview and a recap of D23 Expo 2017
- Tetsuya Nomura says a Nintendo Switch version of Kingdom Hearts III is possible after the PS4 and Xbox One versions
- Tetsuya Nomura hints that another playable character besides Sora will be available in Kingdom Hearts III
- Tetsuya Nomura discusses the Gummi Ship in Kingdom Hearts III
- Tetsuya Nomura discusses the Toy Story world in Kingdom Hearts III
- Tetsuya Nomura discusses a "higher tier of magic" in Kingdom Hearts III
- Tetsuya Nomura discusses a new mechanic "Athletic Flow", Summons, and Keyblade transformations in Kingdom Hearts III
- Tetsuya Nomura explains why Kingdom Hearts III has taken so long; also says they'll likely reveal all worlds before release
- Tetsuya Nomura is “confident” about 2018 release, and is not changing his original plans for Kingdom Hearts III
- Tetsuya Nomura discusses Attraction Flow in Kingdom Hearts III; says it'll be a surprise depending on the area
- Less Disney worlds in KH3 than KH2, but with more content; Big Hero 6 world development going well and next info is on its way; Toy Story world canon to the Toy Story timeline
- Tetsuya Nomura discusses Maleficient's role in Kingdom Hearts III, the possibility of Roxas's return, and more with IGN
- Every character's story will be settled in Kingdom Hearts III; the world Young Xehanort and Eraqus are at is an original world; Kingdom Hearts Union χ%5BCross%5D 5th Union leader reveal in early August
- Famitsu features Kingdom Hearts III with exclusive interview with Tetsuya Nomura discussing development and promotion of the game, Toy Story, and more
- Tetsuya Nomura answers fan questions about Kingdom Hearts III; discusses Square Enix characters, secret bosses, CGI movie, and more
- Tetsuya Nomura reveals new Kingdom Hearts III details in Dengeki Online interview; discusses tutorial stage, toy robots, and Keyblade transformations
8:00 AM (USA PDT) - Exclusive Kingdom Hearts III posters will be given out to D23 attendees!
8:06 AM (USA PDT) - D23 Expo is already packed with dedicated fans waiting for today's presentations!
10:54 AM (USA PDT) - People are starting to line up. Only 2 hours to go!
11:00 AM (USA PDT) - It's starting!
11:01 AM (USA PDT) - Starting off with a sizzle reel!
11:02 AM (USA PDT) - Jimmy Pitaro, chairman of Disney Consumer Products is now on stage!
11:09 AM (USA PDT) - Kingdom Hearts III news will be last in the panel!
11:51 AM (USA PDT) - Orchestra trailer playing now
11:52 AM (USA PDT) - Testsuya Nomura is on the stage now!
11:57 AM (USA PDT) - New trailer is being shown!
11:58 AM (USA PDT) - Toy Story is the new world in Kingdom Hearts III!
12:02 PM (USA PDT) - Finally! Kingdom Hearts III will release in 2018!
12:04 PM (USA PDT) - A special Kingdom Hearts III Sora medal has been distributed to players of Kingdom Hearts Union Cross!
- Jul 23 2017 09:41 PM
- by Leamax
GameStop have posted two Kingdom Hearts III pre-order listings on their website. According to their listings, Kingdom Hearts III is being sold for the PlayStation 4 as well as the Xbox One for $59.99 USD. The game has no description available and has a placeholder date of 12/31/2019 (please note that this date is merely a placeholder at this point in time). As the game gets more concrete information, GameStop will update these listings to match.
Will you be pre-ordering Kingdom Hearts III from GameStop? Let us know in the comments below!
- Jul 16 2017 10:16 PM
- by Raxaimus
Tetsuya Nomura and Yoko Shimomura comment in Famitsu; full production of Kingdom Hearts III music begins after the Kingdom Hearts Orchestra - World Tour - ends
A new Famitsu article has recently been released, featuring comments from Kingdom Hearts series director Tetsuya Nomura and Kingdom Hearts series composer Yoko Shimomura after the latest, and last, Kingdom Hearts Orchestra - World Tour - concert. Famitsu also released a multitude of photos from the last Kingdom Hearts Orchestra - World Tour - in Osaka, Japan.
Below, you can view translations for the article. We will be updating it soon to provide translations for the whole article.
- World Tour which started from March finally concludes
- Orchestra and recitation plays while showing pictures of the KH world at the end of the orchestra ( not sure if they were talking about new KHIII screenshots ? )
- When the second part of "Passion - instrumental version" ends, the concert will only play encore songs
- Nomura said next week announcement will be normal, but the announcement will make fans happy at least.
- Full production of Kingdom Hearts III music starts immediately after the world tour end
- KINGDOM HEARTS Concert - First Breath - Album will be released on July 26th
View the images of the Kingdom Hearts Orchestra - World Tour - in Osaka, provided by Famitsu, below:
- Jul 16 2017 10:23 PM
- by Master Eraqus
Oh My Disney has announced the livestream schedule for D23 2017! Included on this list is Level Up! The Walt Disney Company's Video Game Showcase, the conference where the new Kingdom Hearts III trailer and new world will be revealed. The livestream will begin on Saturday, July 15th at 1:00 PM PDT and will stream on Facebook (This is Polaris) and on Twitch (jacksepticeye).
Don't forget to tune into our live coverage of Level Up! at D23 Expo!
UPDATE 1: The Level Up! conference at D23 Expo 2017 will also be livestreamed on YouTube (Strawburry17), and on the official D23 website, as well as the official D23 YouTube and Facebook channels.
UPDATE 2: A tweet by series director Tetsuya Nomura states that the conference will also be streamed on the Square Enix Twitch channel and Disney Games Facebook page.
The full list of streaming platforms for the D23 Level Up! conference is as follows:
Official D23 website
This is Polaris
- Jul 16 2017 10:22 PM
- by Leamax
Tetsuya Nomura says that they raised expectations high for the D23 2017 Kingdom Hearts III news, and it will be "normal" info
During the final Kingdom Hearts Orchestra - World Tour - in Osaka, Japan, Kingdom Hearts series director Tetsuya Nomura stated that they raised expectations high for the new Kingdom Hearts III information and news being revealed at D23 2017. He makes sure to note that it will be "normal" Kingdom Hearts III news, and he would like people to spread this word instead of raising the bar in order to not cause any trouble.
- Jul 16 2017 10:24 PM
- by Elfdemon_
Kingdom Hearts III to be featured at the "Level Up! The Walt Disney Company’s Video Game Showcase" at D23 Expo 2017 at 1:00 PM PDT on July 15, 2017
The D23 Expo Team has published an update regarding its schedule for the D23 Expo 2017 in Anaheim, California. The update reveals that Kingdom Hearts III will be featured on its "Level Up! The Walt Disney Company’s Video Game Showcase" segment at 1:00 PM PDT on July 15, 2017.
A description of the segment follows:
Level Up! The Walt Disney Company’s Video Game Showcase (1 p.m., D23 Expo Arena)—
Experience never-before-seen gameplay, trailers, special guests, and other unforgettable surprises from across the Disney, Star Wars, and Marvel games portfolios in this must-see showcase. Jimmy Pitaro, chairman, DCPI, will kick off the presentation, which will feature many show-stopping moments including announcements from Marvel, and more information about highly anticipated games, Star Wars Battlefront II™ from Electronic Arts, KINGDOM HEARTS III from Disney and Square Enix, and more.
The Kingdom Hearts III Orchestra trailer had previously revealed that a new world announcement and a new trailer is upcoming on that day at the D23 Expo.
On the second showing of the Kingdom Hearts Orchestra - World Tour -, director Tetsuya Nomura also stated that the announcements to be made on Kingdom Hearts III at the D23 Expo 2017 will make fans even happier than they were when the Kingdom Hearts III Orchestra trailer was revealed.
- Jul 16 2017 10:31 PM
- by Aquaberry
Earlier today, the D23 Expo site was updated to include the activity schedule for the three-day event. The most recent Kingdom Hearts III trailer confirms that the game will appear at D23 with a new world announcement in addition to a new trailer on July 15th, 2017, but the current schedule released on the D23 website does not list a Kingdom Hearts event on July 15th. There is a note made on the page claiming that the schedule is not final and is schedule to change. You can view the schedule by clicking on the image below:
- Jul 16 2017 10:33 PM
- by Toominator
June 10th, 2017 was a monumental day for the Kingdom Hearts community, due to the Kingdom Hearts Orchestra - World Tour - holding its first show in the United States on this date. According to many who attended this performance, this experience was "once in a lifetime", and as a fellow attendee, this particular sentiment is definitely shared by the writer of this article.
A surprise appearance by series director Tetsuya Nomura and the unveiling of a brand new Kingdom Hearts III trailer, the two largest contributors to fans' enthusiasm, served as the perfect conclusion to this event. This trailer captured fans' hearts and pushed the excitement for the game to never-before-seen heights, to the point where "Kingdom Hearts III" and "Sora" became trending topics on Twitter. Today, however, we would like to peel away the initial burst of emotion and analyze every aspect of this trailer, in order to find out as much as we can about both the gameplay and story developments of Kingdom Hearts III.
Throughout this trailer, the Kingdom Hearts Orchestra - World Tour - version of "Wave of Darkness" is played. Furthermore, if you happened to attend this orchestra event in-person on any of the dates that this trailer was shown, the song was played live by the orchestra!
The trailer begins with a quote; "Don't assume your dreams are just fantasy. If you can imagine a world, believe in it...and dive in." The first gameplay segment thereafter is reminiscent of the Dive sections of Kingdom Hearts Dream Drop Distance. Sora, appearing in his new outfit, is falling toward Olympus Coliseum. As he is about to land, he uses an area of effect attack against the surrounding Heartless. This Dive-esque sequence seems to be seamlessly integrated into the overall world layout, considering that we saw Sora jumping from an alarmingly tall mountain in the E3 2015 trailer. However, considering the quote at the beginning of this trailer, this gameplay element may also be a way of entering each world.
Throughout the Olympus Coliseum portions of this trailer, the bottom right corner of the screen that a four-person party is available. In this instance, Sora, Donald, and Goofy are joined by Hercules. In previous Kingdom Hearts games, a three-person party was the standard, and the capability for guest characters was restricted to certain encounters and boss battles, but it seems to now be a regular feature.
As we see Sora battling the aforementioned group of Heartless, a new command, "Counter Shield" appears above the command menu, in a style identical to that of Kingdom Hearts 0.2 Birth by Sleep -A fragmentary passage-. Activating this Style Change puts Sora into the Counter Shield Command Style, where his outfit becomes the new Guard Form (visually reminiscent of Kingdom Hearts II's Master Form) and his Keyblade takes the form of a shield. Counter Shield uses a large area-of-effect attack as it activates, uses shield bashes as its basic attacks, and can perform a flurry of punches with giant magical fists as a special attack. This is likely a combo finisher, as the "Finish" command is not used.
During this segment, we also get a glimpse at the fact that two Shotlock options will be available for each Command Style, referred to as Unleash and Flowchain. Unleash seems to be the traditional Shotlock variety, consisting of a powerful attack, while Flowchain appears to be the Flowmotion-esque Shotlock seen in the E3 2016 trailer. Counter Shield's particular Unleash Shotlock consists of Sora calling down a ball of energy from the sky, and once it impacts the shield, it unleashes a devastating shower of sparks as an area-of-effect attack.
In the following gameplay segment, we see Sora in another Command Style called "Second Form", which seems to be tied to the Kingdom Key, and is heavily based on Sora's older abilities seen in Kingdom Hearts and Kingdom Hearts II. Perhaps this is the successor to the much-beloved Limit Form from Kingdom Hearts II Final Mix? In this form, combo finishers such as Magnet Burst make a return, and some combo finishers seem to have a slightly more cinematic tone, as the camera zooms in a small amount when Sora uses Magnet Burst.
Returning to the default Kingdom Hearts III outfit, Sora and Goofy activate a Limit, during which Sora jumps onto Goofy's raised shield, the two launch like a rocket, and Sora throws Goofy into a swarm of Heartless below, dealing massive damage to each enemy in the impact radius.
In the trailer's first story segment, Maleficent and Pete exit a corridor of darkness into Olympus Coliseum, with Pete greeting Hades menacingly. When Hades tries to make the duo leave, Maleficent says that she is merely looking for information, specifically the location of a distinctive black box. The scene ends before Hades can answer the question in detail. When taking into account the events of the secret ending to Kingdom Hearts χ[chi], Maleficent seems to have found Daybreak Town and has learned about the Master of Masters and the mysterious box he possessed in Kingdom Hearts χ Back Cover.
The next gameplay segment has often been described as immersive, tense, and gripping. Sora is seen running along a mountain path in the middle of a storm, preparing to confront the Rock Titan. The Titan hurls a boulder in Sora's direction, narrowly missing himdamaging the path in the process. This segment then concludes with Sora using magic against two groups of Heartless. This demonstration of magic continues into the next segment, with Firaga, Blizzaga, Thundaga, and Aeroga all being showcased.
At this point, several different Situation Commands are available to Sora. These commands consist of level 4 magic, with the specific spells being Firaza, Blizzaza, Thundaza, and Aeroza. They appear to have decided to change the "-ja" suffix at the end of the level 4 spells from Kingdom Hearts 0.2 Birth by Sleep -A fragmentary passage- into a "-za" suffix for Kingdom Hearts III's tier 4 spells. Both the tier 4 spells of the Japanese versions of Kingdom Hearts 0.2 Birth by Sleep -A fragmentary passage- and Kingdom Hearts III translate to the same thing, so it's unknown why they decided to make the names different in the English versions of the two games. Counter Shield is also shown to have an ability reminiscent of Ventus' Faith command in Kingdom Hearts Birth by Sleep.
Next, the Kingdom Key's Style Change, "Second Form", is shown yet again. As mentioned previously, the abilities of this Command Style seem to draw from Kingdom Hearts II Final Mix's Limit Form, with abilities such as Stun Impact and an aerial version of Sonic Blade being used. However, it is worth noting that one of the melee combos seems to have entirely new animations, suggesting that this form may be a hybrid between old and new techniques. This segment concludes by showing a brief clip of Flowmotion, as Sora makes his way up a slope using a rail.
The following segment showcases the Rock Titan boss fight. Sora is shown running up a cliff, similar to a brief clip seen in the E3 2015 trailer. Sora is mostly kept from attacking the Rock Titan due to its stomps making the top of the cliff hazardous. However, with quick use of Flowmotion, a few melee attacks are possible.
The trailer's final sequence shows Sora, Donald, and Goofy confronting Xemnas and Ansem, Seeker of Darkness near Twilight Town's mansion. Xemnas asks Sora how he expects to bring Roxas back when he should never have existed. The only way to accomplish this seemingly impossible task, according to Xemnas, is for Sora to call upon the darkness and presumably make himself vulnerable to Xehanort's schemes. While Donald and Goofy remain ready to fight, Sora's response is to drop his guard and assume a neutral yet confused stance. Could he be considering the option presented to him?
The trailer concludes with a note detailing that Kingdom Hearts III will appear at D23 Expo 2017 on July 15th, 2017, complete with a new world announcement and a new trailer. Additionally, given Tetsuya Nomura's comments at the orchestra concert on June 11th, 2017, there is a possibility that he will reveal the game's "final information" at this expo, in his own words.
Speaking entirely subjectively, I think that this trailer was absolutely incredible! The music complimented each scene flawlessly, and many scenes were very gripping in their own right! The inclusion of Second Form appeals to my borderline obsessive love for Limit Form, and that Dive sequence looks quite fun! Finally and perhaps most importantly to me, both of the story elements serve to only make me more excited to see the story unfold! I can't wait to see what Nomura will be revealing next month!
What was your favorite part of the trailer? Did you notice anything we missed in our analysis? Let us know in the comments below!
- Jul 16 2017 10:35 PM
- by Raxaimus
Game Informer interviewed Yoko Shimomura about Kingdom Hearts Orchestra - World Tour -, her career, and Kingdom Hearts III
Kimberley Wallace from Game Informer recently interviewed Kingdom Hearts composer Yoko Shimomura during her visit to Los Angeles for the Kingdom Hearts Orchestra - World Tour - concerts. During this interview, Yoko talked about her career, touching on some of her favorite pieces and moments during the time spent with Kingdom Hearts, the World Tour, and a possible hint of what's to come for Kingdom Hearts III.
You can check out the full interview below:
Kingdom Hearts recently celebrated its 15th anniversary. What has the series has meant to you, and what impact has it had on you as a musician?
Kingdom Hearts was the first franchise that I’ve actually worked on that’s a series. Up until then, I was never able to handle a full-on series, so it is definitely very memorable in that aspect. In terms of its impact on me as a composer, there are many different Disney worlds inside the game and so many memorable songs within the Disney world. I wanted to make sure I was living up to that expectation, [creating] something that wouldn’t pale in comparison, while also being mindful of the [unique] aspect of Kingdom Hearts and combining it with the world that Disney music already has. Adding the original spin to it gives me the purpose. [It's] a sense of accomplishment to able to work on those songs, and they give me new challenges to take on. So it has definitely helped with my own growth. It’s a very inspirational series.
You’ve been in the business a long time now, nearing three decades. How has the process changed over time for game music?
When asked if the process has changed or evolved over time – because my stance toward composing has been stable – mentally I feel the stance hasn’t changed so much. So I can’t say for sure when asked if there’s been a change or evolution. But physically speaking, technology advances and my PC gets better and I get to upgrade my equipment. Things have become very convenient over time. And so, there are areas where I can borrow that newer technology and do what I wanted to do in further detail.
What are some of your favorite memories from working on Kingdom Hearts?
This may have been something I mentioned prior, but “Lazy Afternoon” – I just never got that song to a point where Mr. Nomura would give me the final approval. He kept saying there’s a not enough melancholy or a longing for – that sort of emotional aspect of it. So I actually stood on my patio and just stared at the sunset and took it in and tried to bring out that nostalgic melancholy kind of feel and finally was able to come up with the song.
When composing music for Disney worlds, how much inspiration do you draw from the original scores?
Of course, there are times I listen to the original music that goes with whichever world we’re depicting and I would think about, ‘Oh yeah, this kind of song would match this kind of scene’ and reference some of the original songs for the world. But even if a particular song matches within the same realm, you also have to have your battle music, so that’s not necessarily a song that’s prepared in the Disney works. So it might not be a 1:1 reference; it might be a little difficult to find a direct reference for those songs. In that case, I take not the song itself, but think, ‘What does the world entail?’ I make sure it matches the world we’re depicting in the game. I know that's vague, but I listen to the original and imagine and expand from there.
Don't think hard about this. Pick three of your favorite songs/themes/melodies from the Kingdom Hearts series.
This has been asked by many people before, but all my songs are like my children. I love them all. It’s like trying to pick three children – these three are cute, but the rest are not. It is so hard for me to do. If it would be okay, I’d like to say all of my songs are very important and I love all of my songs.
Pieces like "Dive into the Heart" and "Organization XIII" are much heavier and dramatic in tone than ones like "Traverse Town." Is it challenging to find the right balance of emotion for these scores?
It actually isn’t a matter of wanting to intentionally create something that’s completely different. There’s also the consideration of what type of theme fits the stage best. That feeling is at the core of how I approach those songs. For example, with “Traverse Town” as you have mentioned, that’s something that you’ll be listening to over and over again. Having something that’s sad and somber playing over and over again might seem a little weird, so there was a slight intention of wanting to have something more lighthearted for that area. It’s not something that’s deliberate like, ‘I want to make a heavy song for this area.’ It’s more, ‘What does this stage entail? How does it feel like to me? And what kind of music fits it the best?’
Between all your major projects, such as the Kingdom Hearts games and Final Fantasy XV, you have also produced new music for many Kingdom Hearts compilation titles (2.8 with the 0.2 chapter, for example). How do you keep all these worlds and characters separated in your mind to write for each project?
This kind of relates to what we just talked about with finding a song that fits each particular area with Kingdom Hearts. It’s similar thinking for different games as well. Each game has its own world and its own lore, and so when I’m writing songs for a particular game, I would just fill my head with the lore and the world of the game. It’s not about ‘This is a different game, so I will make a different song.’ It’s not about separating or compartmentalizing, but it’s Kingdom Hearts has its own world and Final Fantasy has its own world, so when I’m creating songs for either one of those titles it just came naturally when I’m immersed in that world. I’m hoping that I was able to accomplish that through the music.
Very few franchises get their own exclusive concert series. Your colleague Uematsu-san has had the honor with the "Distant Worlds" series, for example. Now, you have your own with the Kingdom Hearts Orchestra World Tour. What are your feelings about this, and how much did you contribute to the process?
To answer your first question about how I’m feeling... I’m simply happy about this whole thing happening. At first, I was only thinking with the mindset of, ‘Oh, if I can only do one or two concerts in Japan that would be nice.’ Now we have the series and it’s a world tour! I’m just blown away. I’m just surprised and having so many people come to see the concert just makes me so happy. In terms of how much I contributed, there were certain elements I wanted to incorporate in this concert series, including the songs and the setlist. I made the first proposal of the setlist and I wanted to make sure it had a sense of drama – that the listeners would go in there as if they were enjoying this one big video game from start to finish. I wanted to have a story and have an ending, so I really wanted to bring that out. I’m hoping we executed that. In terms of the different songs that were included in the setlist, I did all the supervising. I feel like I have been a major part of the process.
Do you plan on attending all the shows? How exciting is it to see all the different fans around the world come together for Kingdom Hearts music?
Yes, I have been attending all the concerts and do plan to attend all the future planned ones. In terms of the fan reaction, it’s just beyond what I could imagine. When I enter the stage and the applause erupts, that is just wonderful. There have been opportunities to meet-and-greet with the fans and people have just been wonderful. They’re so passionate about their love for Kingdom Hearts and they would rave about the music. Some people were just shaking and they’re about to cry, handing over their CD to be autographed. It’s just way over expectation. I’m just floored to see so many people just so passionate about Kingdom Hearts music and just thinking about that fills my heart as well.
The Kingdom Hearts fan base is very dedicated and passionate. The music is very important to that experience. Does that put pressure on you, or does the importance of the music to them motivate you?
If I say no that would be a lie, but I don’t want to be restricted or in fear from that pressure because that would restrict me from producing music naturally. I try not to focus too much on the sense of pressure. In terms of how I make sure I’m responding to the fans’ expectations, I definitely don’t want to betray their trust, especially with this concert series. I don’t want this to be something where the fans come in and are like, “This is not what I expected!’ As a creator, I love to make music, but I don’t want it to just be my personal view. I want to make sure I am looking at this from the fans’ perspective, making sure the fans are enjoying what they’re listening to. That’s not just the approach I take for the concert series, but also any songs that are arranged or rearranged for different installments within the game. Same goes for new songs. I do my best to keep that in mind.
For people who can’t make it to the show, has there been any discussion about putting out a live CD or Blu-Ray of the performance?
A live concert CD has not been created yet, but in advance of the concert series, we do have an orchestra arrangement CD. Now, this is not all the songs that are being performed at the concert series, but an excerpt of some of the songs. So we do have a CD for those who are not able to attend our concert. In terms of recording it into any sort of media, when we’re thinking of capturing images or sound from live performances, we also have to consider if we want to include live footage. There may be some hurdles to overcome in terms of the logistics of getting that put together. But, if there is a very high demand for it, if there are a lot of voices that we hear from our fans, if it is something we can overcome and make clear, [it's possible]. I didn’t imagine there was going to be a CD with the orchestral arrangement, but this is proof that if we work at it hard enough we can execute something like that. If there is a demand from our fans, we will consider it.
I have to ask. How is work going on Kingdom Hearts III? How does it feel to finally be working on that game after all this time?
I actually recently saw some reference materials and I am very excited for this project. And yes, everybody is aware this is our first numbered title in a while, and so again I’d be lying if I say there is no pressure, but I’m more excited. My excitement goes beyond that sense of pressure. I’m hoping that just like the finished product of the game, the music is going to be something that people will listen to and feel that it’s wonderful. I can’t wait until we’re able to make the announcement, so I ask for your additional patience and understanding as we get ready to be able to make any further announcements.
What was your favorite part about this interview? Let us know in the comments below.
- Jul 16 2017 10:36 PM
- by Leamax
Tonight at the Kingdom Hearts Orchestra - World Tour - in LA, the Kingdom Hearts series' director Tetsuya Nomura has made another appearance. As translated by the official concert interpreter, Nomura tells fans that he will return in a month for D23 Expo 2017 on July 15, 2017, with "final information" on Kingdom Hearts III. We do not yet know the content of this final information, but we do know that at D23 Expo 2017 we will see a new world reveal as well as a new trailer, as was announced in the most recent Kingdom Hearts III trailer from yesterday's LA concert.
UPDATE 1: At yesterdays Kingdom Hearts Orchestra - World Tour - in LA, Kingdom Hearts director Tetsuya Nomura made his third appearance. According to @SkywardWing on Twitter, who was at the concert, Nomura tells fans that, as translated by the official concert interpreter, "If this month's announcements made you happy, next month's will make you even happier." He is referring to the upcoming news and trailer at next month's D23 Expo 2017 on July 15th.
UPDATE 2: During the final Kingdom Hearts Orchestra - World Tour - in Osaka, Japan, Kingdom Hearts series director Tetsuya Nomura stated that they raised expectations high for the new Kingdom Hearts III information and news being revealed at D23 2017. He makes sure to note that it will be "normal" Kingdom Hearts III news, and he would like people to spread this word.
- Jul 16 2017 10:40 PM
- by Mystics Apprentice
Welcome to KH13.com's live coverage of Kingdom Hearts at E3 2017! E3 is the biggest annual international trade fair for the video game industry, with opportunities by companies such as Square Enix to showcase upcoming technologies in the interactive entertainment industry. It will take place on June 13-15 this year at the Los Angeles Convention Center for the public, with business days stretching from June 10-12.
This year, staff members Raxaimus (@RaxaimusKH13) and Toominator (@ToominatorKH13) will be representing KH13.com on the show floor! The News Team will be doing live updates on any information pertinent to Kingdom Hearts, so please feel free to keep yourself updated with our coverage here on KH13 and on our social media channels!
Kingdom Hearts III Orchestra Trailer
(June 10, 2017 - 10:36 PM PDT) A new Kingdom Hearts III trailer was shown at the Kingdom Hearts Orchestra - World Tour - premiere in Los Angeles!
(June 11. 2017 - 1:22 PM PDT) Tetsuya Nomura interviewed with Famitsu.
(June 12, 2017 - 7:16 PM PDT) Unfortunately, Kingdom Hearts III did not make an appearance at either the Microsoft or Sony press conferences.
Day 1 Public
(June 13, 2017 - 12.03 PM PDT) Kingdom Hearts II Limit Form Sora has been spotted at E3!
(June 13, 2017 - 1:58 PM PDT) Kingdom Hearts III's orchestra trailer has appeared in Square Enix's 'Square Enix Presents' E3 trailer line-up!
(June 13, 2017 - 2:44 PM PDT) Kingdom Hearts III's orchestra trailer has been spotted at Square Enix's E3 booth!
(June 13, 2017 - 2:44 PM PDT) Kingdom Hearts 2.8 Final Chapter Prologue wall scrolls are available to purchase at Square Enix's booth!
Day 2 Public
(June 14, 2017 - 7:15 AM PDT) Raxaimus went to the Square Enix Booth yesterday and found some Kingdom Hearts merchandise for sale, many of them at discounted prices!
Day 3 Public
(June 15, 2017 - 7:00 PM PDT) This concludes our E3 coverage. Please join us on July 14-16 for coverage at D23 Anaheim!
- Jul 16 2017 10:47 PM
- by Aquaberry
During the Kingdom Hearts Orchestra - World Tour -, a new trailer for Kingdom Hearts III was shown. At the end of it, a message was shown confirming that on July 15th, at the D23 Expo in Anaheim, California, a new world and a new trailer would be shown for the game.
Be sure to keep an eye at our website as we will update with anything new shown in the following days!
UPDATE: Kingdom Hearts III will be at the "Level Up! The Walt Disney Company's Video Game Showcase" at 1:00 PM PDT at the D23 Expo Arena.
- Jul 16 2017 10:48 PM
- by neil98
New Kingdom Hearts III trailer shown at the Kingdom Hearts Orchestra - World Tour - premiere in Los Angeles
With the surprise appearance of series director Tetsuya Nomura on stage, the Kingdom Hearts Orchestra - World Tour - showcased a new Kingdom Hearts III trailer today at its North American premiere in Los Angeles, California. The trailer showcased exciting new gameplay from the upcoming game and some cutscenes. The trailer was soon uploaded on the internet by the official Square Enix YouTube channel in Japanese. You can view the trailer with English subtitles below:
The trailer ended with a message that a new world and a new trailer will be available at the D23 Expo on July 15, 2017.
Square Enix Press Center describes the trailer as follows:
Earlier at the KINGDOM HEARTS Orchestra –World Tour– concert in Los Angeles, SQUARE ENIX® and Disney Interactive dazzled fans with a new KINGDOM HEARTS III gameplay trailer featuring never before seen footage based on Disney’s animated hit, “Hercules,” which celebrates its 20th anniversary this year.
In this action-packed trailer, Sora, Donald Duck and Goofy help Hercules battle various forms of Heartless on Mount Olympus through gorgeous visuals and gameplay. Fans will see Sora in a new form, which allows him to perform special powerful solo and joint attacks on his enemies. A new glimpse into the game’s storyline reveals a reunion with Disney villains Hades, Maleficent and Pete as they discuss the location of a mysterious item while Sora is faced with a dilemma in an effort to bring back an old friend.
We will be updating this article with any new information.
Below is the trailer with no subtitles.
Check out over 100 screenshots from the trailer, going frame by frame! All in High Quality.
What do you think of the new trailer? let us know in the comments!
- Jul 16 2017 10:49 PM
- by Aquaberry
Square Enix CEO, Yosuke Matsuda, gave a statement about upcoming titles, including Kingdom Hearts III, during the Financial Results Briefing of the FY 2017 Financial Briefing Report back on May 11, 2017.
Matsuda said that the games that were listed on the FY 2018 and beyond column on the Digital Entertainment－HD Games slide, which currently list Kingdom Hearts III, Final Fantasy VII Remake, and the currently unnamed Marvel IP Project, are planned to be released within "the next three years or so." Read the full quote below:
"This slide shows our release lineup for FY2017/3 as well as for FY2018/3 and beyond. We plan to launch each of these upcoming titles in the next three years or so."
This “release window" for Kingdom Hearts III is exciting! What do you guys think? Let us know how you feel in the comments down below!
Thanks to Gematsu for the tip!
- Jul 16 2017 10:57 PM
- by Qrow
Square Enix Holdings have released their Financial Briefing Report for Fiscal Year 2017, which began on April 1st, 2016 and ended on March 31st 2017. Kingdom Hearts III is listed as "To Be Announced" under the "FY 2018 and Beyond" column on the Digital Entertainment－HD Games section of the report, along with the Final Fantasy VII Remake and a currently unnamed Marvel IP Project.
The slide was previously used in the U.K. Road Show report back in February.
- Jul 16 2017 11:07 PM
- by Leamax
Addressing rumors: New Kingdom Hearts III trailer at E3 2017 and apparent release deadline set for 2018
On May 8, 2017, Twitter user José Álamo (@Jose_Strife), a reporter for the website Koi-nya, claimed to have apparent leaked information coming straight from the development team of Kingdom Hearts III (the Osaka Team). The information he provided, in a series of tweets, has been translated as follows.
Please keep in mind that these are unconfirmed and lack solid evidence, and have therefore been classified as rumors until proven otherwise.
“Seems like Nomura is still ‘in his teens’ with not advancing with Kingdom Hearts III’s development due to his ‘perfectionism’. If everything goes according to plan, there will be a trailer at E3 and the game will be released in 2018, even if it’s unfinished. Seems like it has been exhausting for the Osaka Team to have worked on a home console Kingdom Hearts game. On a flip note, Nomura seems to be more interested in what comes after Kingdom Hearts III than in Kingdom Hearts III itself. The Kingdom Hearts III development team was obsessed with releasing a trailer last April and launching it [the game] around 2017 Fall/holidays with removed content. And, to the surprise of no one, all of this is due to the development hell of Versus*. All of these details came [to me] with a delay of 1-2 weeks, keep this in mind as things can change quickly in-house at Square Enix. The E3 presentation is almost confirmed and Nomura should be at the event in some way or another.”
He also added:
“As many of you may know, Kingdom Hearts II, Birth by Sleep, and Dream Drop Distance ended up having removed content, so it is nothing new for Kingdom Hearts. All that was planned won’t be in Kingdom Hearts III, simple.”
Today, he tweeted some clarifications in English due to some people being confused by his statements because of mistranslations.
“Square Enix is not rushing KH3, that reports [sic] are incorrect. I said that they may cut things, but I didn’t say they are in a rush. People change my words. If they can’t finish something when they hit the deadline, it’ll be cut. There is no rush when you delay a game twice. Reports about KH3 being in development hell like Versus* are also inaccurate. I said that the development of Versus was a hell. And as Nomura has said so many times, this affected him and SE**. If Nomura was a [sic] Osaka Team resident and he set his goals accurately, the game would be out in December like planned. Nomura, as you should know, is working with a lot of teams in SE** in a lot of games/projects.”
KH13.com has contacted José Álamo for further clarifications.
José Álamo’s rumors on Kingdom Hearts III go way back to January 30, 2017, where he stated the following:
“Development on Kingdom Hearts III seems to not be going as well as expected and development team is using assets with subject to change. It should be playable by August and they still don’t have various sections ready. WELP. It is possible that launch (in March of next year) won’t be affected, but they will have to work a lot for it. Kingdom Hearts III’s problem resides in all of the content they have to include: levels, animations, models… And they are very slow in doing it… Every time they make a build, they review it and Nomura says: “No, we should work more on this” and back to work, when there are assets from PlayStation 2 still to be worked on, untouched levels and things of the sort.”
He added: “Obviously, this perfectionism from Nomura assures certain quality standards and the finished parts from the game look really good. In that sense we shouldn’t be worried. Slow, but safe.”
On March 16, 2017, Álamo also talked about a cancelled presentation for Kingdom Hearts III, (which has also been classified as a rumor):
“Seems like Square Enix has cancelled/delayed a presentation for Kingdom Hearts III for the press… The closeness to E3 and other factors could be the reason for this decision. They are looking for a more efficient marketing campaign. Nomura had prepared two trailers: one for the end of last year and one for the beginning of this year. At E3/after E3 we should start getting details and, when Square Enix announces the release date, the big marketing campaign will begin.”
José Álamo is known for having leaked a few things in the past, such as the reveal for The Last of Us Part II a week before its official announcement at PlayStation Experience 2016, and a new Fire Emblem game releasing for Nintendo Switch before the end of 2018.
He also has some other unconfirmed rumors, such as a Pokémon announcement being delayed, a new Assassin’s Creed game announcement coming up on the week of May 15, 2017, a new Animal Crossing and a new Metroid (Prime-style) games coming to the Switch before the end of 2018, and Square Enix internally discussing The World Ends With You IP.
It is also worth noting that in June 2016, there were some leaks in 4chan about the plot and overall game of Final Fantasy XV. Álamo stated that an inside source of his had confirmed that all those leaks were fake, but when the game released, all of those leaks turned out to be true.
With all this in mind, we advise our readers to take what they just read with a grain of salt, as they are all rumors at this point in time that could eventually be proven wrong.
*Final Fantasy Versus XIII, which was officially renamed in 2013 as Final Fantasy XV.
- Jul 16 2017 11:08 PM
- by neil98
Interview from Famitsu with Tetsuya Nomura discussing Kingdom Hearts III, Kingdom Hearts Orchestra - World Tour - and Kingdom Hearts Union χ
Famitsu has posted an article that has an interview with the Kingdom Hearts series' Director Tetsuya Nomura discussing the recent Kingdom Hearts Orchestra - World Tour -, Kingdom Hearts III information, and Kingdom Hearts Union χ. You can read the interview below, translated by goldpanner.
KH3 news somewhere along the World Tour...
On March 10th 2017, the Kingdom Hearts (hereon KH) orchestra concert tour Kingdom Hearts Orchestra -World Tour- kicked off at the Tokyo International Forum. After the very first show in Tokyo, we were able to get a little time with director of the KH series, Tetsuya Nomura. Here is a mini-interview with him where we asked about interesting parts of the concert and things to come.
—Did you have any orders regarding the choice of music for the concert?
Nomura: (Ms Yoko) Shimomura was the one who made the setlist for the show this time. I might have tweaked some things, but the setlist stayed basically the same. I had the order of some things changed based on the performances by the voice actors and such, that was about it. The setlists for both the wind concert last summer and this concert were made at the same time, and we treated them both like two halves of one whole, so I thought about how their structure should match. The way both the last concert ended with and this one began with Hikari was one way it was structured to reflect that.
—So, on the whole, you were mainly in charge of the videos and the dramatic readings, right?
Nomura: Yes. We only just barely got it ready on time, but we made it (dry laughter). For the acting guidance of the dramatic readings, we asked external sound supervisor Mr (Yoji) Shimizu, just like with the games. This concert counts as one of the works in the series, after all. Overseas, we will play recordings of Ms Toyoguchi and Ms Uchida's voices, with subtitles on the videos.
—Our interest was piqued by how the video that played during Kairi's reading was the only one done in live-action.
Nomura: Kairi is speaking pretty specifically about events happening during KH3, so we didn't have any cinematics that really worked. So, we matched it to a live-action video that fit the vibe. There are pieces of imagery that link to the content of what she is saying, for example, how it shows a scene of a sunset at the part where she says, "He stares at my face."
—On the first day, we were surprised when you came on between performances and blessed us with your talk. During the trailer that played, the hall went pretty wild when Ventus came on screen.
Nomura: Well, the first day is special (laughs). It was perfect timing with the announcement planned at an event overseas, so I decided to have it debut at the concert that was happening a few hours earlier. Of the five new Union Leaders, the remaining two will be revealed from April on. I've finished writing the story for the 4th and am about to start on stuff for the 5th, so please look forward to it.
—There was also an announcement that information about KH3 would be revealed during the world tour.
Nomura: We announced that KH Unchained χ will become KH Union Cross right after the release of KH -HD 1.5+2.5 -ReMix-, so we have touched a little on KH3. Please wait for more information on this.
- Mar 23 2017 09:01 PM
- by neil98
Exclusive canon back story for Kingdom Hearts III shown at Kingdom Hearts Orchestra - World Tour - in Japan
During the Kingdom Hearts Orchestra - World Tour - in Japan, the Japanese voice actress of Kairi and Xion, Risa Uchida, came onstage and performed lines. The Japanese voice actress for Aqua, Megumi Toyoguchi, later came onstage and performed some lines as well. These lines are canon to the story of Kingdom Hearts and explain some back story for Kingdom Hearts III.
You can view the translated Kairi lines thanks to @momo_krys on Twitter below:
I didn't notify you but you might've already heard from Yen Sid-sama.
I've come to train to become a Keyblade wielder.
Until now, I've only been waiting for you guys to come back from your journey.
Maybe with this I can at least help out a little.
The magician Merlin-sama can use magic that surpasses time.
Here, we can forget about the flow of time.
Isn't it great?
Lea's training with me.
He apologized to me over and over again.
But he'd keep on apologizing...
At first I was a bit scared but
As we trained together we started talking to each other.
I found out Lea also has a best friend he wants to save.
I felt like, he's not a person that I can bring myself to hate...
Sometimes..... He'd stare at my face
So I'd ask him, what's wrong?
"I don't know, but I feel like it's something I must recall", He'd say...
Your journey is a journey that will help many people
and the people you'll meet from now on
I have a feeling these people you meet will also need your help
The journey might be hard but
Please stay as the cheerful and bright Sora I know
Because your smile, will save many hearts.....
You can view the translated Xion lines thanks to @momo_krys on Twitter below:
On the day you first called my name
It made me feel like I had a heart
If I hadn't met the two of you
I wonder how my "everyday" would've been.
Day by day, repeating the days which were the same as every other,
The red, setting sun,
The taste of ice cream.
Those days when nothing happened were the most precious to me
All of it is my treasure.
Thank you for calling out my name.
Thank you for inviting me to the clocktower.
Thank you for picking up shells for me.
Thank you for coming to bring me back.
Thank you for letting me be your friend.
I wish... those same old days could have continued on longer....
We wanted to go to the sea....
@momo_krys hasn't translated Aqua's lines, but he says they were pretty much something like "Ven, Terra, become the light that will guide me through the darkness!" He says that it was essentially just her saying that she wanted Ventus and Terra to guide her in her darkness and to become the light that shines her path.
If you didn't know, last year during the Kingdom Hearts Concert - First Breath - in Japan, a similar situation to this happened. The Japanese voice actor of Terra and the Japanese voice actress of Naminé came onstage and performed some canon lines for Terra and Naminé. You can view those lines here.
UPDATE 1: View images of Kairi and Xion's voice actress, Risa Uchida, and Aqua's Japanese voice actress, Megumi Toyoguchi, performing their lines thanks to Game Watch below:
UPDATE 2: For all the other orchestras around the world, they played recordings of these voices with English subtitles. The recording of Kairi's voice played while Dearly Beloved played, the recording of Xion's voice played while Vector to the Heavens played, and the recording of Aqua's voice played while Wave of Darkness played.
UPDATE 3: After performing at the final Kingdom Hearts Orchestra - World Tour - in Osaka, Japan, Risa Uchida expressed her feeling of gratitude on Twitter and provided a couple photos of herself at the event.
- Jul 08 2017 10:56 AM
- by Elfdemon_
During MAGIC 2017, Famitsu had the opportunity to interview Kingdom Hearts series director Tetsuya Nomura about Kingdom Hearts III and Final Fantasy VII Remake. During the interview, he stated that the Heartless found in the latest Kingdom Hearts III screenshot is called the "Rock Troll" and it serves as a middle boss. You can view the interview here. Translations will be made available as soon as possible.@churroz for the tip!
UPDATE: We now have translations, thanks to Katie Armstrong! View the translations of the Kingdom Hearts section of the interview below:
Famitsu: Now, if I can ask about some recently published new images. In KH3, we’ve seen a battle scene in Thebes, in Olympus Coliseum. Is that enormous Heartless (Sora) is fighting a boss?
Nomura: It’s a Rock Troll Heartless. We’re treating it as a mid-level boss.
Famitsu: You told us that the Keyblade would be able to transform into two ‘patterns’ (forms). Is this the case for all Keyblades?
Nomura: The ones we’re making right now have two transformations. Still, even though this Keyblade turns into a tank and a shield, [Keyblade forms] won’t necessarily be ‘attack’ and ‘defense’. The Keyblade in the previous video turns into two bow guns and a bazooka. The transformations depend on the Keyblade.
Famitsu: So you’ll have to properly learn your way around them. And about that “Link” in the Commands…
Nomura: Ah, that...next time we release more info, I’ll explain that. (Laughs)
UPDATE 2: Here's the full translation for you to read. Thanks to Catherine Mueller (email@example.com)for the translations!
Announcement Details from Tetsuya Nomura on [Kingdom Hearts III] and [Final Fantasy VII Remake] at [MAGIC 2017]
From Monaco's Grimaldi Forum on 2/18/2017, “MAGIC 2017,” an entertainment event focusing on games and anime, opened, and Square Enix's Tetsuya Nomura made an appearance. We were able to ask him a few things, so we'll show you those answers here.
An interview with Tetsuya Nomura on games in development
--Before at MAGIC, Hashimoto-san was also able to come, it seems, but for you, this is the first time you've come. It's also the first time you've come to Monaco, isn't it?
N: Yes. My schedule has been tightly packed and hasn't allowed me the chance to come before--I haven't looked around very much, but it seems to be a lovely place.
--There are also other special guests here besides you, Nomura-san. Have you been able to mingle with them yet?
N: I like Mike Mignola (Hellboy), so I was very happy to be standing with him today. He also greeted me on the day before MAGIC. Actually, several years ago, I received a signing from him via an acquaintance, and he had written “It'd be a pleasure to do work together someday.” It was very moving to be with him at the event.
-- Did the event also receive international attention?
N: I got the impression that there were a lot of people asking about the Japanese game industry. I answered that, currently in Japan, there are not enough people to develop HD titles, so the upside of this is that I can greater feel the splendor of international titles.
--I see. Your fans are also excited right now. They gave you a standing ovation at the talk event, and there was also a long line for signings.
N: I don't really go to Europe often, so I felt that the fans were very energetic. I did not have a interpreter with me this time, so it's possible I mistranslated or misunderstood some things that the fans told me while we were talking, but many fans brought very rare goods with them to the signings, so I was very happy.
--With Cloud's design, you broke it down into five big steps, there was a phantom sixth step, and we heard a lot of stories we had yet to hear before at the talk event.
N: It seemed like the perfect chance to talk about it. The “sixth” step for Cloud is made to be a bit more realistic, and his sword was made to look more western and was given more detail. We fixed up his head and body as well as added detail to his muscles, so he looks quite brawny (laughs). I didn't have a lot of time, so I actually wrote the script for the talk event late the night before, starting from details that had yet to be discussed, and the marketing team helped me make the slides... … The preparations lasted through the morning of the talk event, so it was tough (bitter laugh).
--The result, though, was that everyone seemed to enjoy it. Not only did you talk about your own character's designs, but you also showed new images, etc.
N: I was surprised, as I did not exactly imagine myself talking a lot. I really wanted to make sure everyone enjoyed themselves, so I talked about the PV making among other things that hadn't really been touched on yet.
--The fans asked about the mysteries behind the making of the PV you helped with, right?
N: When I handle the PVs, I have a pattern of assessing them emotionally. I change my feelings to the feelings of fans seeing it for the first time, hard-core fans, and indifferent people as I watch the PV over and over again. With the feelings of first-time fans especially, I repeat that action many times. Since they are thinking of the PV and the game as part the same production, that way thinking [when watching the PV] is the same.
--Really, after seeing the PV so many times, if someone commanded me to watch it as if it's the first time each time, I don't think I could do it (laughs). Now, could I ask you about the new images you released to the public? For [Kingdom Hearts III], you showed a battle scene taking place in the city of Thebes in Olympus. The enemy was a giant Heartless, but was that a boss?
N: It's a battle with the Rock Troll. It will be a mid-boss.
--You told us before that the keyblade can change in two patterns, but into what kind of keyblade?
N: The keyblade he's using here is in the two patterns. In addition, it won't always be an offensive and defensive division like the tank and shield keyblade we showed this time. The keyblade that came out in the PV before changed into a bow-gun and a bazooka. The transformations will vary depending on the keyblade itself.
--So you can walk around using those for different things. The “link” display on the command menu is...
N: That part we will explain next time we release news (laughs)
--We'd also like to hear a bit about [Final Fantasy VII Remake]. In the screenshot, Cloud was taking cover action.
N: As the story goes, there's a situation where he must sneak in someplace, so that means he can't just continue in the middle of the road the whole time. In the original there were random encounters, and with that we relied on imagination, but since we can smoothly transition into the infiltration, we decided it was an important factor for the game's realism. You can now hide behind things to let soldiers pass, or take their weapons and eliminate them. Of course, people who find that to be annoying can just push straight ahead and fight their way through.
--Can Barrett also perform cover action?
N: He can. However, I still can't say the details about this, but as a gunner, he has a special factor.
--Is that so? The scene with Barrett and Cloud fighting the Guard Scorpion also left an impact.
N: The scaffolding isn't the only place the battle occurs, but rather, we've developed it so that you can use the map's large space, and you can fight as you switch between Cloud and Barrett. For instance, for enemies that Cloud can't reach with his sword, changing over to Barrett will be more beneficial, so the fighting has become more strategic. The Guard Scorpion changes it's mode partway through, and it has behaviors that weren't in the original game. In this time's screenshot, you should be able to see that missiles and other things are falling. It's a very flashy fight.
^ Besides seeing that missiles are falling during the fight with Guard Scorpion, we can also see red circles showing where they will fall.
--That's true. With the battles being so full of action, it seems like the gameplay will be quite different from the original.
N: Parts of the map and other objects will be destroyed, and once you defeat a limb of the Guard Scorpion, it becomes destroyed.
--The UI portions aren't completed yet, but the ATB gauge shows three stock slots, and I also noticed a technique name and level (TN: I don't know the name for the technique, but it appears to be something like “Critical Attack”). I also noticed the “materia” slot...
N: We'll talk more about ATB and techniques another time. You could think of materia as something like a skill. It's different than magic, and you can use it when you've set materia that you're holding for battle use.
--We're all anxiously awaiting more news about both [Kingdom Hearts III] and [Final Fantasy VII Remake].
N: We were able to prepare some new material for the MAGIC event. Since the advertising plans for both titles have been decided, I could not tell you much now, but we've strengthened our organization and work is smoothly continuing, so please wait just a little longer.
- Mar 23 2017 09:26 PM
- by The 13th Kenpachi
Square Enix Japan's 3rd Business Division has listed a new job opening for Kingdom Hearts III on their website for the role of a System Programmer.
Translations for this new job description will be made available soon. What do you think of this new job listing? Let us know!
UPDATE: The job description has been translated thanks to Goldpanner!
#3BD: System Programmer
Developing, optimising and maintaining systems necessary during development of the game Kingdom Hearts III.
Development of game systems to support a 3D action game
Optimisation of all kinds of performance
Maintaining the test environment
Employment type: Contract employee (with potential to be promoted to regular employee)
Hours: Flex time.
Holidays and time off: Saturdays, Sundays, National Holidays, period of New Year's, annual paid leave (※3 days upon starting work, 7 days after 6 months), summer vacation, bereavement leave etc.
Salary: Will take into consideration experience and skill, regardless of age, according to company regulations. Will also take into consideration each time skill and results demonstrated as necessary after joining.
Support/welfare programme: Travel expenses covered, complete social insurance, corporate health insurance association, physical examinations
【Required skills and experience】
Practical experience developing programs with C++
System development experience
3 years or more experience with game development or equivalent
【Welcomed skills and experience】
Practical experience game programming for high end consoles
Experience developing 3D action games
Experience developing with Unreal Engine
Maths and/or physics knowledge
- Mar 23 2017 10:09 PM
- by The 13th Kenpachi
A six inch PVC figurine of Sora from Kingdom Hearts III will be available June 17th, 2017 for the Japanese audience.
A number of Sora's poses from the game can be recreated, according to the official Square Enix e-Store for Japan the model attempts to replicate the in-game CG. Along with Sora and his new Keyblade (name unknown as of this article), the Bring Arts features the Two Shot Blasters (unofficial name), a replacement face and six replacement hands. The figurine is priced at $61, £48 or €57 including tax and can be purchased here, however AmiAmi has listed the figurine at a price of $45, £36 or €42. Please be sure to double check AmiAmi for any extra costs such as shipping.
You can view the Bring Arts Sora below.
UPDATE: The Kingdom Hearts III Sora Bring Arts figure is now available for pre-order on the North American Square Enix store. It has an approximate release of August 2017 and is available at a price of $69.99 USD.
You can check out the official English description below.
This action figure of Sora, the protagonist of KINGDOM HEARTS III, has been re-created with great detail even though it stands at only six inches tall. This easy-to-carry figure is so compact it fits right in the palm of your hands!
With a wide range of motion in the articulated joints, you can recreate action poses and scenes from the game. Sora’s Keyblade, which comes in two separate forms, as well as plenty of other interchangeable hands and face parts are included with the figure to make him even more fun to pose.
Paintwork that faithfully recreates the in-game CG, such as the crisp contrast of colors, creates a small but impressive figure.
Figure includes display stand.
- Feb 21 2017 12:51 PM
- by The 13th Kenpachi
With the 20th anniversary of Final Fantasy VII's Japanese release on January 31st, 2017, Square Enix has released a new Kingdom Hearts III screenshot that shows Sora in a similar pose as Cloud in the box art/key art for the original game.
- Feb 21 2017 01:07 PM
- by neil98
Kingdom Hearts HD 2.8 Final Chapter Prologue story details, gameplay tips, and interview with director Tetsuya Nomura featured in Famitsu Weekly
The most recent issue of Famitsu Weekly has a large spread on Kingdom Hearts HD 2.8 Final Chapter Prologue, which has recently released in Japan. The spread features a few story details, character bios, as well as a few gameplay tips for both Birth by Sleep 0.2 -A Fragmentary Passage- and Dream Drop Distance, including a full list of the challenge locations in BbS 0.2.
Famitsu Weekly also interviewed Kingdom Hearts series director Tetsuya Nomura on Kingdom Hearts HD 2.8 Final Chapter Prologue, Kingdom Hearts III, Final Fantasy VII Remake and the Kingdom Hearts series as a whole.
Translations for both the spread and the interview will be posted as soon as they are available. Images from the spread and interview can be found below.
- Jan 11 2017 12:01 PM
- by soraspromise