Last year, Yen Press announced that they will be releasing the final volume to the English Kingdom Hearts II manga series by Shiro Amano, Kingdom Hearts II Volume 4 on May 23, 2017. Thanks to Yen Press again, we now have a look at the front cover for this final volume. View the cover below:
The Kingdom Hearts II manga series finished in Japan in 2015, and now it is finally being finished in English as well. The Japanese Kingdom Hearts II manga series had ten volumes, but for the English series, they've decided to combine them all together to create four large volumes. Kingdom Hearts II Volume 4 contains volumes 8 - 10 of the original Japanese series.
You can pre-order Kingdom Hearts II Volume 4 from Barnes & Noble, Amazon, and RightStuf.
Thanks to KHInsider for the tip!
- Mar 28 2017 04:11 AM
- by Elfdemon_
It is now the 28th of March, which means that the Kingdom Hearts franchise has officially turned 15 years old! KH13.com have comprised this article to commemorate this wonderful series that has brought us together today. Originally released in Japan on March 28th 2002, Kingdom Hearts is arguably one of the most bizarre video games ever released due to the unlikely collaboration between Disney and Square Soft (now Square Enix). Throughout the article we will be discussing the origins of the series and how it has brought many different people together.
The ConceptThe very first idea that lead to the creation of Kingdom Hearts was a conversation between Shinji Hashimoto (now the series executive producer) and Hironobu Sakaguchi (creator of Final Fantasy). The two wanted to create a game that rivalled Super Mario 64 in terms of the way players could move around in the game. The only characters as popular as Mario at the time were in fact Disney characters. Tetsuya Nomura, the lead character designer for Final Fantasy at the time, happened to hear the conversation and asked if he could direct such a project, which the two agreed to. Through pure chance, Disney and Square were working in the same building at the time and eventually Hashimoto encountered a Disney executive in an elevator. The pitch from Square Soft to Disney was somehow a success and hence, development for the first Kingdom Hearts began in February 2000.
The DevelopmentTetsuya Nomura strived for his own original concepts for a protagonist rather than using famous Disney characters. There was a time when Sora was envisioned as a hybrid of a lion and a young boy, who wielded a chainsaw blade. Disney even considered the idea of Donald Duck being the protagonist. There were even restrictions in what Square could do with the Disney properties at the time. Kingdom Hearts was extremely ambitious and in the eyes of many, a huge risk for the company due to its peculiar nature. Square did not want to create a product that would disrespect Disney and Tetsuya Nomura did not consider the idea of a sequel to Kingdom Hearts because of his doubt in the project.
Sora as a lion boy wielding his chainsaw blade.
Hironobu Sakaguchi (working as the executive producer) told Nomura that if Kingdom Hearts did not aim for the same level of quality as the Final Fantasy series, it would fail. Hence, the original Kingdom Hearts went through many drastic changes in its development cycle. Thanks to Sakaguchi’s advice, the story of Kingdom Hearts matured into something similar that you’d find in a Final Fantasy game. The main villain-Ansem Seeker Of Darkness did not appear until towards the end of the game which is similar to how villains appeared in retro Final Fantasy games. His personality is also similar to Sephiroth (FFVII). As a consequence of many of these drastic changes, there was a significant amount of cut content in the first Kingdom Hearts. Some of these include Final Fantasy VII’s Tifa Lockhart as an optional boss battle, Final Fantasy’s Bahamut as a summon and The Lion King as a playable world. However, due to time constraints and hardware limitations, these were not included in the first Kingdom Hearts game. One of the earliest trailers for Kingdom Hearts heavily implied the ability to control Donald and Goofy. Nomura eventually featured this mechanic of controlling party members in another game he would go on to direct-Final Fantasy Versus XIII.
Ansem, Seeker Of Darkness, drawn by Tetsuya Nomura.
The ReceptionFor many Kingdom Hearts fans, their first game in the franchise was the original Kingdom Hearts. With its first title released on March 28th 2002 for Japan, September 17th 2002 for North America and November 15th 2002 for Europe, the Kingdom Hearts series has now sold over 20 million copies worldwide as of October 2013. The first Kingdom Hearts was met with critical acclaim and high praise, receiving a 9.5 from GameInformer, a 36/40 from Famitsu and a 9/10 from IGN! Many critics praised the graphics of the CG opening and ending. Kingdom Hearts was released during a time when voice acting in video games was fairly new, and when compared to Square’s Final Fantasy X (released in 2001), the voice acting was a huge step forward. Yoko Shimomura’s musical score was also highly praised at the time, and the Kingdom Hearts series is now widely respected for its amazing soundtrack. Not all reception was positive of course, with complaints against the tediousness of the Gummi Ship missions, the poor platforming sections and bad camera angles. In spite of all of this, critical reception was still very positive, and this is reflected in the popularity of the series today.
The GamesKingdom Hearts drew heavy inspiration from its older “brother”, Final Fantasy. The lighter themes of Final Fantasy games are drawn from things such as friendship, destiny and good versus evil. Tetsuya Nomura is also a huge fan of Star Wars, hence the themes of light and darkness may be considered as inspired by those films. To his delight, Mark Hamil was eventually cast to voice Master Eraqus in Kingdom Hearts Birth by Sleep!
The story of the Kingdom Hearts series has evolved in a dramatic way that no one would have ever imagined. The original game was extremely straightforward and a tale of good versus evil; a young boy must find his friends and restore peace to the worlds. However, even the first game left a staggering number of questions at the end. Kingdom Hearts Chain of Memories and Kingdom Hearts II helped answer these questions, but also introduced the Organization XIII and the concepts of Nobodies, which to some were confusing. Since KH1, themes of time travel (Kingdom Hearts Dream Drop Distance) and alternate dimensions (χ [Chi/Cross] series) have been introduced. Every Kingdom Hearts game has left fans wondering if their questions will be answered in the next instalment. As a result, Kingdom Hearts III is now one of the most anticipated video games of the decade.
A screenshot taken from the footage shown at Jump Festa 2016
Kingdom Hearts II was released in 2006, and since then, many handheld games and side projects have been released to fill in the story gaps as well as introduce new lore. In a sense, they have created and built up the story for Kingdom Hearts III.
Although there may be a lack of concrete plot details, and many things have been retconned, there are many emotional and character-driven moments that have caused fans to fall in love with the series. A small few include - Xion’s death (358/2 Days), the endings of Kingdom Hearts, Kingdom Hearts II and Birth by Sleep, Riku’s redemption and the battle between Sora and Roxas (KHII). The confusing nature of the plot led to Square Enix slowly bringing every Kingdom Hearts game to home consoles, beginning with the HD ReMIXes on PS3 and ending with both collections being available on PS4 this week.
Kingdom Hearts as a series has managed to reach a very wide audience; for example, KH13’s own staff and forum members come from a variety of age groups, cultures and countries! The Kingdom Hearts Orchestra - World Tour - in London had fans travelling from Germany, Italy, Greece and even Canada! This is because the story deals with a wide range of different emotions that any person can feel, such as empathy, hatred, sorrow and happiness, regardless of their personal backgrounds. Many different people can relate to having these feelings. We feel this diversity makes the fanbase one of the most interesting in the community of video gamers. The fact that such a incredible story can appeal to so many different people is very peculiar!
A photo taken from the KH13MeetUp at the London concert.
The GameplayIn terms of its hack and slash combat, the series has seen many changes due to the switch in development teams after Kingdom Hearts II was released. Both KH and KHII focused on using the command menu, with more of a priority given to combo attacks. Kingdom Hearts Birth by Sleep, Dream Drop Distance and Re:coded made use of a command deck, where players could stack a deck of abilities and would each recharge after being executed. Kingdom Hearts fans refer to the handhelds production team as the Osaka team, and the original team as the Tokyo team; with the Osaka team directing Kingdom Hearts III, many fans are anticipating how the game will feel after experiencing Kingdom Hearts 0.2 Birth By Sleep -A fragmentary passage-. Kingdom Hearts II Final Mix is highly respected by many speed runners due to its in depth game mechanics, and to many fans, it is the best Kingdom Hearts game.
The box art for the western version of Kingdom Hearts II, drawn by Tetsuya Nomura.
Many people have become fans of the series due to the Disney elements such as the various characters and worlds. Exploring worlds based on famous Disney films has always been a delight for players, with continuous discussions about which Disney worlds, characters and cameos should be featured in the next games! The games have always featured some form of treasure hunting: sticker collecting, collecting Ansem reports, finding the 101 Dalmatians and completing Jiminy Cricket’s journal. The platforming mechanics have improved over the last 15 years, with Kingdom Hearts Dream Drop Distance allowing the player to use flowmotion and launch themselves off of walls. Kingdom Hearts 0.2 Birth by Sleep -A fragmentary passage- has a refined version of flowmotion that enables players to better interact with surroundings, something that has many times been addressed as one of the main developments in the gameplay of the upcoming Kingdom Hearts III. Many players have criticised the series for not including enough NPCs in the Disney worlds, which can make the worlds feel like hallways and rooms rather than actual worlds. Kingdom Hearts III is believed to be changing this aspect for the better! Throughout Kingdom Hearts 0.2 Birth by Sleep -A fragmentary passage-, this feeling of emptiness is not present despite the player being alone in the Realm of Darkness, primarily because of the high level of detail in world design, enhanced by lighting and textures that the Unreal Engine 4 is using.
A screenshot from the Kingdom Hearts 0.2 Birth By Sleep -A fragmentary passage- opening.
Allies in each Kingdom Hearts game can be interacted with in a very unique fashion and teamwork attacks. Kingdom Hearts did this through summons; Kingdom Hearts II through Drive Forms, Limit Breaks and summons; Re:COM allowed the player to call for Donald and Goofy’s help; Dream Drop Distance included Spirit Links; and D Links were a main feature in Birth by Sleep!
The gameplay in the Kingdom Hearts series has always varied from one instalment to another, and Kingdom Hearts III seems to be taking the best mechanics from each and implementing them in its own unique way. The game will feature Shotlocks, Drive Forms, Summons, the evolution of Magic, Flowmotion, Attraction Flow, Keyblade transformations and possibly other methods of defeating enemies that we are not yet aware of! Gameplay has always been something that fans of the series have loved because each instalment introduces a new feature.
The KH13.com ExperienceDuring the Kingdom Hearts Orchestra - World Tour - opening night show in London, KH13.com had the pleasure to meet Miss Yoko Shimomura, the composer who has been making unforgettable and heart-wrenching music that reduced us to tears during the concert; music that made everyone in the concert hall rise up simultaneously for a loud standing ovation after the final performance!
The 15 years we individually spent adoring this series, the 8 years KH13.com dedicated to bring out the best in its fandom and the weeks we spent planning our #KH13MeetUp were rewarded in a single moment on Friday the 24th of March. Our “Thank You” booklet containing messages from fans, a KH13 exclusive journal and KH13 stickers were only a small token of our gratitude to her and those who made the World Tour a reality. Her delight when receiving our gift and briefly hearing about our meet-up was more than worth the wait! At that time it was past 1AM, but we persevered!
KH13 social media team leader Andrew Hankinson with Kingdom Hearts series composer Yoko Shimomura.
The video of our KH13MeetUp for the Kingdom Hearts Orchestra - World Tour - in London.
During the Kingdom Hearts Orchestra - World Tour - Paris and London concerts, we put out constant live coverage of the two events, and are planning on doing the same for the future concerts to come. Check out our live coverage on the Paris concert here, and check out our live coverage on the London concert here.
KH13.com is now looking forward to meeting with the passionate fans of the Kingdom Hearts series at other events this year, such as E3 and the other Kingdom Hearts Orchestra - World Tour - concerts!
If it weren’t for the amount of care, work, and trust Square Enix and Disney put into this series for the past 15 years, we would not be where we are now. The series has inspired countless people like KH13.com who dedicate their time to cover Kingdom Hearts news, discuss lore, make video skits, and produce amazing fan art, music covers, crafts, cosplay and more. The wait for Kingdom Hearts III has united Kingdom Hearts fans of all shapes and sizes. There is a light deep down that will never go out, and we would like to thank Tetsuya Nomura and everyone who has been involved in the process of making, distributing and promoting these games for bringing us all together under the same sky.
The crew from the first Kingdom Hearts, drawn by Tetsuya Nomura.
For future updates on all things Kingdom Hearts news and information, follow us on our social media below:
- Mar 28 2017 03:56 AM
- by The 13th Kenpachi
Each year Classic FM holds a "Hall of Fame" poll, where everyone globally may vote for their favorite classical music composers and pieces. The annual poll starts in January and ends around Easter (which falls on April 16th this year). This year's voting has nearly come to a close, but it isn't too late to vote for Yoko Shimomura, the wonderful music composer for Kingdom Hearts.
You can submit your vote for the Classic FM Hall of Fame by visiting their website here. If you would like to vote for Yoko Shimomura you can simply type her name in the search bar, and in the results select "Kingdom Hearts (includes The Other Promise) by Yoko Shimomura." You may submit up to three votes for your favorite musical pieces and composers.
Kingdom Hearts and Yoko Shimomura have ranked considerably high out of the top 300 musical pieces in previous Classic FM Hall of Fames, including finishing at 31st place in 2016 and ranking 30th in 2015. Let's show our support and help Yoko Shimomura and Kingdom Hearts rank higher this year!
- Mar 26 2017 03:16 PM
- by Mystics Apprentice
For those who haven't been able to pick up the paperback Kingdom Hearts publications that have been released in the past couple years, Yen Press has now conveniently begun releasing their English publications electronically via e-books. On March 21, 2017, Yen Press released Kingdom Hearts: The Novel electronically for $7.99 USD.
Furthermore, on April 18th, Yen Press will be releasing Kingdom Hearts Chain of Memories: The Novel electronically for $7.99 USD.
With these electronic releases, Yen Press will also be releasing the newest publications Kingdom Hearts II Vol. 4 ($6,99 USD electronically) on May 23rd & Kingdom Hearts II: The Novel Vol. 1 ($7.99 USD electronically) on June 20th, both available for the first time in English and for purchase electronically on day 1.
You can click on book titles to check the book page and find out where to buy each e-book.
- Mar 28 2017 03:21 AM
- by Dengojin
Kingdom Hearts HD 2.8 Final Chapter Prologue Acrylic Stands now available on Square Enix North American store for $19.99, releasing end of June 2017; available on Square Enix Japan e-Store for ¥1850, releasing May 20, 2017
Update: The fully-colored acrylic stands are now available for pre-order at the Square Enix (Japan) e-Store, releasing May 20, 2017. They are available at 1,850 yen each.
The Kingdom Hearts HD 2.8 Final Chapter Prologue acrylic stands are now available for pre-order on the North American store. They cost $19.99 USD, and are in full color.
The acrylic stands 'COMING', 'AIR', and 'BOND' were available exclusively in Japan for some time as a pre-order bonus for Kingdom Hearts HD 2.8 Final Chapter Prologue, and also in limited stock at Amazon Japan. However, they were not in full color.
These acrylic stands are scheduled for a End of June 2017 release. You can check out pics of AIR, COMING, and BOND below!
- Mar 27 2017 10:28 PM
- by Jake
The Xemnas crash with Limit Form in the English version of Kingdom Hearts HD 1.5 + 2.5 ReMIX has been fixed
In the English version of Kingdom Hearts HD 2.5 ReMIX for the PS3, there was a bug that would cause the game to crash when you went into Limit Form during the first Xemnas fight and activated the first Reaction Command. View footage of this old glitch below:
Thanks to KingdomHops on YouTube, who got the game early, we now know that this has been fixed for the English version of Kingdom Hearts HD 1.5 + 2.5 ReMIX for the PS4. He streamed the game and tested it out. View him testing it out in the archived stream below:
(The testing begins at around 52:26.)
Also, if you didn't catch it, Square Enix has announced that they will be offering a Day One patch for North American and European players for Kingdom Hearts 1.5 + 2.5 ReMIX. It is stated that the patch is to resemble that of which was released in Japan.
Thanks to @Bizkit047 on Twitter for the tip!
- Mar 24 2017 01:10 AM
- by Elfdemon_
Director of the cancelled Kingdom Hearts TV show, Seth Kearsley, recently pitched the idea of rebooting the pilot episode to Disney. In a series of tweets he has revealed that it will not go forward at this time. However, this does not rule out the possibility completely. You can view the tweets below. Be sure to check out KH13's exclusive interview with Seth here.
- Mar 23 2017 08:50 PM
- by The 13th Kenpachi
With the launch of Kingdom Hearts Union χ[Cross] in Japan, five new main story quests have been added. The newest story update introduces the concept of "Union Cross", and the characters within say that it would be good for the player character to do missions with their fellow Keyblade wielders. You can view an untranslated video of the new quests below, courtesy of Everglow. A translated version of this video will be available soon.
UPDATE: The translated video of the new quests by Everglow is now out! Watch the video below:
Are you excited for the launch of the multiplayer update? Let us know in the comments below!
- Mar 23 2017 08:50 PM
- by Raxaimus
Square Enix has released a new trailer for Kingdom Hearts 1.5 + 2.5 ReMIX on March 23, 2017. It has been titled Fight the Darkness, and is available in an English dub with French, German, Italian, and Spanish subtitles.
You can watch the trailer in English below:
Kingdom Hearts 1.5 + 2.5 ReMIX releases for the Playstation 4 on March 28, 2017 in North America, and on March 31, 2017 in Europe.
UPDATE: A new 60 second long version of the Fight the Darkness trailer has been released by the official Kingdom Hearts YouTube channel. View this 60 second trailer below:
At the same time as this 60 second long trailer's release, they also released a 60 second long version of the Familiar Faces and Places trailer as well. You can view that trailer here.
- Mar 31 2017 03:39 AM
- by Mystics Apprentice
With Kingdom Hearts HD 1.5 + 2.5 ReMIX releasing on March 28, 2017 in North America, and March 31, 2017 everywhere else, some fans have already received their copies of the game in English before release.
One lucky fan in particular, YouTuber KingdomHops, already got their hands on an early copy of Kingdom Hearts HD 1.5 + 2.5 ReMIX in English, showcasing on stream how Kingdom Hearts II Final Mix HD is running on the PlayStation 4. You can take a look at the stream below:
- Mar 22 2017 04:17 PM
- by Dengojin
The major update coming to Kingdom Hearts Unchained χ is now available in Japan! Featuring new story elements, multiplayer gameplay, and other additional features, Kingdom Hearts Union χ[cross] is available as a new update for the original application of Kingdom Hearts Unchained χ.
Check out the notes for this new major update that has released in Japan. Thanks goes to Discord user WinterHartz for translating these notes.
New Update [22/03/2017] - Stated in Japanese Google Play Store
- Addition of Multiplayer Mode (Union Cross)
- Addition of Awakened Abilities for Medals (AKA Traits)
- Introduction of Buff and Debuff going for up to 7 tiers.
- Change of Application Icon
- Change of Opening Movie, Title Name and Title Opening Screen
- Addition of Theater Mode
- Change in UI Interface
- Other minor fixes
Title opening screen music
Title opening screen
App Store Promotional Screenshots
- Mar 23 2017 08:53 PM
- by Jake
Today is March 24th 2017, meaning the Kingdom Hearts Orchestra - World Tour - is taking place in the Central Hall Westminster in London! Welcome to KH13's coverage for the concert, which will include music from all titles throughout the series, and will serve as a 15th anniversary celebration since the first game, Kingdom Hearts, was released.
Some of the KH13 team members (including Andrew Hankinson and Fàtima Kàiyum) will be attending; they have planned a KH13 meet-up in London for you to come visit and/or attend the concert with us! We'll be collecting fan messages in a special "Thank You" booklet for Yoko Shimomura, as well as distributing exclusive KH13 stickers! You can RSVP to the event and get updates on our #KH13MeetUp on our Facebook event page.
There were quite a few reveals for the concerts in Japan and Paris, such as Union χ[Cross]'s reveal and the exclusive canon backstory from Kingdom Hearts III with Kairi and Xion's Japanese voice actress, Risa Uchida, and Aqua's Japanese voice actress, Megumi Toyoguchi. Tetsuya Nomura also stated that there is a possibility for new information regarding Kingdom Hearts III to be displayed at one of the concerts taking place this year.
Stay tuned to KH13.com for full live coverage of the event and don't forget to also stay tuned to our social media accounts for instant live updates!
(March 23, 2017 - 10:30 AM GMT) Series composer Yoko Shimomura has already arrived in London and has posted a picture of the orchestra rehearsing for the concert!
(March 24, 2017 - 2:45 PM GMT) The Kingdom Hearts Orchestra - World Tour - in London will still occur as scheduled, though additional security will be enforced around the area.
(March 24, 2017 - 5:02 PM GMT) Zanda (@Door2Darkness_) is arriving to the Kingdom Hearts Orchestra - World Tour - in London!
(March 24, 2017 - 6:01 PM GMT) The KH13 Meet-up has begun. Andrew Hankinson and Aquaberry have arrived and have taken a group photo with everyone there!
(March 24, 2017 - 6:41 PM GMT) Zanda (@Door2Darkness_) shows us the pricing for some of the merchandise available at the concert!
(March 24, 2017 - 6:43 PM GMT) Yoko Shimomura gives us some shots from inside Central Hall Westminster.
(March 24, 2017 - 7:10 PM GMT) The doors are opening. Andrew and Aquaberry are heading in to take their seats for the performance.
(March 24, 2017 - 7:15 PM GMT) Zanda (@Door2Darkness_) gives us a fantastic view of the stage.
(March 24, 2017 - 7:35 PM GMT) Kai (@Kai_Drawings) has a closer view on the stage.
(March 24, 2017 - 7:48 PM GMT) A selfie of Andrew and Aquaberry has been added as they're about to enter the concert in five minutes!
(March 24, 2017 - 8:05 PM GMT) Aquaberry has meet up with Square Enix community manager Dan Seto!
(March 24, 2017 - 8:07 PM GMT) The concert is about to begin!
(March 24, 2017 - 8:30 PM GMT) The concert was delayed due to extra security in Westminster. The concert will begin shortly.
(March 24, 2017 - 8:44 PM GMT) The orchestra has now begun!
(March 24, 2017 - 9:03 PM GMT) Katie Gray (@hownottodraw) managed to get a photo of the orchestra on stage!
(March 24, 2017 - 9:50 PM GMT) The first half of the concert is over! The songs played were Hikari, Dearly Beloved (KH2 ver.), Destati, Organization XIII, Twinkle Twinkle Holidays, World of KINGDOM HEARTS, and Threats of the Land.
(March 24, 2017 - 9:54 PM GMT) Harry Milner (@SkyminHAZBOZ) shared his experiences leading up to the intermission, including text from Andrew's booklet!
(March 24, 2017 - 10:20 PM GMT) During the performance of many of the concert's songs, fans were treated to Japanese recordings of several characters' voices, including Xion, Kairi, and Aqua!
(March 24, 2017 - 11:00 PM GMT) The second half of the concert is over! The songs played were Heroes and Heroines, Lazy Afternoons/At Dusk I'll Think of You, Vector to the Heavens, Wave of Darkness, Daybreak Town -The Heart of χ-, The Other Promise, Let Darkness Assemble, and Passion. At the end of the concert, Yoko Shimomura went on stage and played piano for the final piece, Fantasia alla Marcia!
(March 24, 2017 - 11:30 PM GMT) Fans are waiting in queue for Yoko Shimomura's autograph!
(March 25, 2017 - 1:44 AM GMT) The event is over. Thanks to Aquaberry and Andrew Hankinson for helping put together the Meet Up and thanks to the people the showed up to help sign Yoko's card! Wishing another amazing experience to everyone attending tomorrow's concert!
KH13 Meet-up Gallery
- Mar 25 2017 09:36 PM
- by neil98
Monogram Direct have announced their Kingdom Hearts 3D Foam Key Rings collection will grow with the addition of Series 2. Monogram Direct announced Series 1 back in September.
Included in this series are Final Form Sora, Lexaeus, Vexen, Larxene, Zexion, Ansem (Seeker of Darkness), Yen Sid, Anti-Form Sora, Maleficent, and both Oathkeeper and Oblivion Keyblades.
It's currently unknown when the figures will be available. We'll update once we find the release date. Thanks to KHInsider for the tip.
- Mar 23 2017 08:54 PM
- by Leamax
Welcome to KH13's coverage for the Kingdom Hearts Orchestra - World Tour - in Paris! Taking place in Salle Pleyel today and tomorrow, the concert will feature live music from various Kingdom Hearts games, with series composer Yoko Shimomura overseeing the orchestra. The concert begins at 8pm CET (7pm GMT).
Many exciting reveals for the Kingdom Hearts franchise were displayed at the previous concert in Japan, such as the announcement of Kingdom Hearts Union χ[Cross] and exclusive canon back story for Kingdom Hearts III. Series director Tetsuya Nomura has also stated that new Kingdom Hearts III information is possible at one of the concerts.
Hours prior to the concert, boxes of merchandise were spotted outside the venue! You can view the image here thanks to @kristiswat.
KH13's very own @everglow and many other members are attending the concert, so stay tuned to KH13 and all of our social media accounts for any interesting developments!
(March 18th, 2017 - 5:47 PM GMT) Exclusive merchandise will be available at the concert! This includes a phone case, a T-shirt, a collector's Keyblade and the album of the orchestra.
(March 18th, 2017 - 6:08 PM GMT) People are queuing up for the concert! There is also playable demo of Kingdom Hearts 2.8 outside the hall. In addition, banners for Kingdom Hearts HD 1.5 + 2.5 ReMIX and Kingdom Hearts HD 2.8 Final Chapter Prologue are in the lobby.
(March 18th, 2017 - 7:00 PM GMT) They are showing the trailers for Kingdom Hearts HD 2.8 Final Chapter Prologue and Kingdom Hearts HD 1.5 + 2.5 ReMIX before the concert begins!
(March 18th, 2017 - 7:02 PM GMT) The concert has begun! We hope everyone in attendance enjoys the show!
(March 18th, 2017 - 8:30 PM GMT) The Kairi, Xion, and Aqua backstory from Kingdom Hearts III was showcased during the first part of the concert!
(March 18th, 2017 - 10:25 PM GMT) With the conclusion of the show, VIP ticket holders are now waiting for the meet & greet with Yoko Shimomura!
(March 18th, 2017 - 10:52 PM GMT) Time to go home! Better quality pictures of the French concert guide will be uploaded soon!
(March 19th, 2017 - 4:12 PM GMT) Better quality pictures of the French concert guide are now available, which include interviews and more!
- Mar 24 2017 06:57 PM
- by The 13th Kenpachi
The official Kingdom Hearts Twitter account has released a new trailer for Kingdom Hearts HD 1.5 + 2.5 ReMIX. You can view the trailer below:
- Mar 17 2017 12:53 PM
- by The 13th Kenpachi
Update 1.02 now available for Japanese version of Kingdom Hearts HD 1.5 + 2.5 ReMIX, includes KH2FM damage/gauge 60fps & other defects fix
Square Enix has officially rolled a new update for the Japanese version ofKingdom Hearts HD 1.5 + 2.5 ReMIX. This update, which is 1.02, fixes the damage and gauge problems caused by 60fps in Kingdom Hearts II Final Mix, and has fixed other various defects within the collection.
The update is 235.3 MB big.
You can check out screenshots of the update (in Japanese and English) thanks to @aibo_ac7 and @churroz.
UPDATE: Square Enix has announced that they will be offering a Day One patch for North American and European players for Kingdom Hearts 1.5 + 2.5 ReMIX. It is stated that the patch is to resemble that of which was released in Japan.
- Mar 23 2017 08:55 PM
- by Jake
The European store, GAME, just announced an exclusive pre-order bonus for Kingdom Hearts HD 1.5 + 2.5 ReMIX which includes an exclusive 15 year anniversary poster print, we will provide new images of the poster once they become available. You can take a look at the promotional picture below.
- Mar 15 2017 02:19 PM
- by Dengojin
Thanks to 4Gamer.net, sales for the latest Japanese game releases are now available. Ranking second in sales is Kingdom Hearts HD 1.5 + 2.5 ReMIX, which sold a total number of 62,770 units in Japan for the first week of release.
Kingdom Hearts HD 1.5 + 2.5 ReMIX released on March 9, 2017 in Japan and releases on March 28, 2017 in North America, while releasing everywhere else on March 31, 2017.
- Mar 15 2017 12:19 PM
- by Jake
Square Enix has announced that Kingdom Hearts Unchained χ will be updating to Kingdom Hearts Union χ in Japan on March 23, 2017. Kingdom Hearts Union χ[cross] is the newest updating coming to Kingdom Hearts Unchained χ which features multiplayer gameplay, new story updates, and other different gameplay features.
In addition to the release of Kingdom Hearts Union χ[cross] in Japan, fans can also receive a new wallpaper for their Android or iPhone devices. Check out the different wallpaper designs below. You can download the wallpapers directly here.
In case you missed it, you can check out the Japanese teaser trailer for Kingdom Hearts Union χ[cross] below with English translated subtitles.
Trailer text: Let us meet again here tomorrow
Ava: You are one of the 5 chosen by Dandelion. You 5 have to become a foreseers, lead a union and guide everyone.
Master of Masters: There is no need for memories of the calamity in the next era. Here and in other worlds, I want you to experience a time without calamity.
Ava : Is that really possible ?
Master of Masters: Don't worry I can do it. First take care of these 5.
Third dialogue :
Skuld: Am I the second one ?
Ephemera : Skuld ? Is that you ?
Skuld: More importantly, I wonder who are the 3 others.
Ephemera: I was sceptical when Lady Ava told me to come here so I didn't even think who would come here too.
Skuld: Ah ! Someone is coming
Fourth dialogue :
Skuld: You are the third one.
Ephemera: Did Lady Ava send you ?
Ventus: Yes, she told me to come here once everything is over.
Ephemera: My name is Ephemera, nice to meet ya.
The trailer concludes with a handshake between Ventus and Ephemera.
The English update for Kingdom Hearts Union χ[cross] will be arriving sometime in April.
- Mar 23 2017 08:58 PM
- by Jake
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
Thanks to @Vidxad on Twitter, you can now view the first Japanese Kingdom Hearts Union χ[cross] trailer with English subtitles. Check it out below:
- Mar 14 2017 12:25 PM
- by The 13th Kenpachi
Square Enix have announced that the Kingdom Hearts Orchestra - World Tour - album is now available for pre-order on the Square Enix Japan E-Store. It will be available on the E-Store for a limited time only. The album will release on April 14, 2017.
The album was previously announced to be amongst merchandise merchandise exclusive to the events, along with the concert guide, Keyblade baton, and Kingdom Hearts Orchestra t-shirt, wallet, and purse.
The Square Enix E-Store also features the Kingdom Hearts Orchestra - World Tour - T-shirt and purse among recommended items, with a listed release date of May 8, 2017. However, clicking on them leads to an error page.
The Kingdom Hearts Orchestra - World Tour - officially began on March 10, 2017, with its first show in Tokyo, Japan. Check out the upcoming show dates and locations here!
Will you be attending any of the shows? If you're attending the London show on March 24th, don't forget to come to our pre-concert #KH13MeetUp!
- Mar 23 2017 09:02 PM
- by Aquaberry
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, Rise 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, Rise 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.
- Mar 27 2017 10:46 PM
- by Elfdemon_
With the announcement of a multiplayer function and Kingdom Hearts Union χ, more news for Kingdom Hearts Unchained χ , (soon to be rebranded as Union χ) arrives!
On March 11th, 2017, EvangelKaltz was able to meet and interview Kingdom Hearts Unchained χ Producer, Hironori Okayama, Co-Director Hiroyuki Ito, and the North America Operation's Producer of Kingdom Hearts Unchained χ, Steven Nguyen at PAX East. During this interview, the men confirmed that they are looking to bring the highly-anticipated Mickey & Broom medals into the North American port of the game, as well as raise the "power level" of medals to be on par with that of Japan's Kingdom Hearts Unchained χ. They also stated that they are looking to improve communications between the team and players.
The interview can be viewed below, thanks to player Pigginatti:
UPDATE: During PAX East 2017, The NOVA Project on YouTube asks Kingdom Hearts Unchained χ Producer, Hironori Okayama, about Mickey & Brooms and directly confronts him with a joke "WANTED: Mickey & Brooms" sign. Okayama laughs and replies with a "Soon." View the funny moment in the video below:
- Mar 23 2017 09:11 PM
- by faemarch
During the Kingdom Hearts Orchestra - World Tour - held in Japan on March 10th, 2017, Yoko Shimomura discussed the music played at the event in the Official Concert Guide. You can take a look at her thoughts on the brochures provided by @RedMakuzawa and @jsjunshen.
There is also an interview with her providing information on her inspirations, an image showing the artworks for all three Kingdom Hearts HD collections and how they connect, and some new scans.
We will update the article with higher quality scans once they become available, as well as a proper transcription to read for both Shimomura's thoughts and interview.
- Mar 23 2017 09:12 PM
- by Dengojin