4Gamer.net talks Kingdom Hearts III and Unchained χ with Tetsuya Nomura - summons, load times, and spinoffs discussed
4Gamer.net has posted an interview with Tetsuya Nomura, where he shares some very interesting details about Kingdom Hearts III and Kingdom Hearts Unchained χ. Nomura confirms that there will be no load times between areas in worlds, discusses the popularity of the series, and talks summons. He also shares his thoughts on the near 10 year gap between the release of Kingdom Hearts II and Kingdom Hearts III. He shares some details about Kingdom Hearts Unchained χ as well. You can read the fully translated interview bellow thanks to goldpanner.
Enjoy action that has evolved more and more on bigger maps in Kingdom Hearts III
4Gamer: Thank you very much for speaking with us. At E3 2015 you released a trailer for Kingdom Hearts III, which is the first new information on it in a while, so let's start by talking about that.
There were quite a lot of scenes of gameplay in this trailer, so we were finally able to see what sort of game it is shaping up to be. What are the features and points you'd like us to pay attention to for Kingdom Hearts III?
Tetsuya Nomura: When it comes to Kingdom Hearts, that would have to be the story and the battle, wouldn't it. I still cannot say anything about the story, but there were a lot of new flashy techniques in this trailer, so I think I was able to convey that end of things.
4Gamer: There were various techniques that strongly resembled theme park attractions, weren't there?
The train, ship and tea cups and such decorated with lights are a skill called 'Attraction Flow'. There's also another feature where the Keyblade turns into things such as a chariot, or a double bow gun that transforms further and shoots magic bullets. That's a system where one Keyblade can transform into several phases, and we have created many more transformations that weren't in the trailer.
4Gamer: It sounds as though even from within the 'action' format battling has become quite varied.
Nomura: On top of that there are also techniques like the 'summon' command and other abilities of Sora's, so there are quite a lot of choices when it comes to battle. There was a scene in the trailer where Sora ran up a wall to fight - that freerunning is also something you can connect techniques to for bold moves.I think that an exhilarating feel is important to battle in Kingdom Hearts, so we are making battles that you can enjoy by unleashing lots of crisp techniques.
4Gamer: Kingdom Hearts III is the first title in the series to release on PlayStation 4 or Xbox One. Are there any features you included specifically to take advantage of the new hardware?
Nomura: Being able to move around flashily on large maps, like in that scene I think there is where Sora jumps off a cliff, is something we could do because of the new hardware. Up until now there have been load times when moving between areas, but now they connect seamlessly and the maps are also bigger, so you can do even flashier actions.Also, the AI during battle has been enhanced quite a bit. There was that scene where Donald and Sora are moving with Goofy has he wields his shield - you don't only execute that sort of thing yourself, Goofy and Donald can invite you into it too. On the other hand, the enemy AI is also more advanced, and we are also including the element of mutual enemies working together, so for example they can join together to charge at you and things like that.
4Gamer: Even though you weren't able to announce the release date this time, how is development coming along?
Nomura: The gameplay and world assignments have been decided, and the foundations are already done, so now we are at the stage of putting our effort into all details.
4Gamer: We are looking forward to more information. Kingdom Hearts is a title that is very popular overseas. What was the reaction on-location like at E3 when the trailer was shown?
Nomura: The reaction was amazing. There are so many fans overseas, I think perhaps it rivals that of Final Fantasy in popularity.
4Gamer: Why do you think Kingdom Hearts has earned so much popularity overseas?
Nomura: I have no clue (laughs).
4Gamer: What an immediate reply (laughs).
Nomura: I wonder why it's so popular? I think maybe the Disney look means it’s familliar and easy to feel affection towards for people overseas. But, I've spoke with people at Disney before who told me that the story of Kingdom Hearts is very Japanese.
4Gamer: Perhaps there's a feel to it that isn't in foreign games that projects appeal.
Nomura: Also, it's been about thirteen years since the first Kingdom Hearts title came out, and about ten years since KH2, so I've heard quite a few people say "Kingdom Hearts was the first game I played." Perhaps these games mean a lot to fans because they are part of their childhood memories.
4Gamer: You mentioned ten years just now. Why did there end up being such a long gap between KH2 and KH3?
Nomura: I personally didn't intend for so much time to pass after KHII. When people around me said it'd been ten years, I was so surprised, like, has there really been such a gap? See, I've been working on Kingdom Hearts titles this whole time. But in the midst of making spin-offs I ended up with fans saying "Another spin-off? When is KHIII coming out?" and yeah, ten years had actually passed. This is bad, I thought.
4Gamer: So that's why you decided to develop the long-awaited legitimate sequel.
4Gamer: You aren't only working on development of Kingdom Hearts III, but also Kingdom Hearts Unchainedχ (hereon Unchainedχ), aren't you? Although Unchainedχ is set the furthest back of any game in the series, it connects to KH3. How does that work?
Nomura: In the world of Kingdom Hearts so far the phrase 'Keyblade War' has come up a few times, which refers to a legend regarding a huge war fought between Keyblade Wielders. Even in the trailer we just released for Kingdom Hearts III, those two boys are talking about the Keyblade War. The world of Unchainedχ is set during the age just before that war. If you play Unchainedχ you will enjoy KH3 even more, so I would by all means love for you to play it while you are waiting for KH3 to be released.
4Gamer: Unchainedχ is the first title in the Kingdom Hearts series to be developed for smartphones. Are there any things you devised for smartphone use?
Nomura: When I play social games, I hate things that are a bother. Sometimes I think, 'this could have been done with just one tap.' So, we are taking care to try and make something that won't be stressful. I especially hate getting frustrated with load times, so we in the development team have been getting passionate, going, "Fast and light! Let's aim to make the fastest game ever!"
4Gamer: With the battles of Unchainedχ, there's the 'one turn finish' element where you try to end battles in short turns. Is that also the result of trying to cut down on bother?
Nomura: Yes, that's right. Any process that requires lots of compact operations on a little screen is going to be a bother, right? We consumer developers end up wanting to keep fiddling with things. In the beginning I was actually thinking of going with an even more different combat system, like fighting by tapping in time or something like that. But that was stupid (laughs).
4Gamer: It seems that polishing your tactics in the opening setup and thinking of how to defeat the enemy in one turn for points will be a fun part of battling.
Nomura: Before, there have been times when I played other smartphone games and thought, "where is the catharsis (for the players) meant to come from?" And then, the bit that made me think "from here!" was when you did something and points started increasing with incredible vigour. When it comes to the operation, it's important to get a response that feels good.From the beginning, in Kingdom Hearts we directed it so that when you defeat enemies prizes come bursting out, and we wanted to translate that kind of good response into a smartphone game. So then, the good feeling from one-shotting an enemy with a one turn finish is incorporated as one of the charms of the battles of Unchained χ.
- Jun 19 2015 10:26 PM
- by Soravids
Kingdom Hearts Unchained χ announcement at E3 2015 was for North America only, release elsewhere is "still TBC"
Following the announcement for Kingdom Hearts Unchained χ at E3 2015, the official Kingdom Hearts Twitter has sent out a tweet to clarify what regions this announcement was for. In the tweet, they reveal that the E3 announcement was for North America only, and that other regions such as Europe are "still to be confirmed". This tweet can be seen below.
Do you think Kingdom Hearts Unchained χ will be released worldwide, or do you think the new game will remain exclusive to Japan and North America? Let us know in the comments below, and be sure to show your support for Kingdom Hearts Unchained χ worldwide by contacting Square Enix on the official Kingdom Hearts Facebook and Twitter pages.
- Jun 18 2015 12:56 PM
- by DChiuch
Nomura discusses the Kingdom Hearts III trailer with Dengeki, explains Attraction Flow & more about the conversation scene
In an interview with Dengeki Online, Tetsuya Nomura, the director of the Kingdom Hearts series, has shared more details about the opening scene of the Kingdom Hearts III E3 2015 trailer with Young Xehanort and Young Eraqus. Nomura explained that their conversation helps connect to the story of Kingdom Hearts Unchained χ. He also explained that their conversation is much longer in the full scene, but that this small part was extracted for the trailer.
You can view a full translation of Nomura's answers from the interview below, thanks to Siliconera!
[About Attraction Flow]
That is called the ‘Attraction Flow,’ and it’s one of the featured elements of the game. After meeting certain requirements, you’ll get the option to activate it, and as far as visuals go, it’s pretty elaborate. As a matter of fact, the UI shown in the trailer is a temporary one, and once you actually get to use the Attraction Flow, it will also change the UI while active.
Also, as far as ledges, elevation differences, and slopes go, Sora’s actions will automatically change as part of the introduction of the “Free Run” feature, which will give it a more dynamic sense of action
[About the conversation between Eraqus and Xehanort]
Yes, that is [the opening scene for Kingdom Hearts III]. The game will start with the conversation between the two,” says Nomura. “It’s actually a much longer conversation scene, but we’ve extracted that part to show in the trailer. As you may have noticed from seeing them, it’s a scene that takes place a very long time ago, and that’s where the story of Kingdom Hearts Unchained X[chi] connects [with the game].
- Jun 17 2015 02:00 PM
- by Jake
Tetsuya Nomura writes a message regarding the Kingdom Hearts III & Kingdom Hearts Unchained χ news from E3 2015
Tetsuya Nomura, the director of the Kingdom Hearts, has written a message for fans regarding the Kingdom Hearts III and Kingdom Hearts Unchained χ news from E3 2015. The message from Nomura has him presenting all of the announcements to us, and interestingly mentions that not all the assets/information available were revealed – just a snippet. The message also says that there will be more news soon, so stay tuned!
You can read the full message below:
After we announced KINGDOM HEARTS III, we went through some redesigning associated with the change in the game engine. Since we were prioritizing those tasks, we were not able to reveal much new information, but this time, we premiered footage that shows the game in action on the new engine.
The video is just a snippet, but I believe you can get a glimpse of all the challenges that the development team is taking on.We leaned toward the flashiest of scenes due to the limited length of time, but I hope that viewers can sense that this new world of KINGDOM HEARTS is something that players can enjoy, not only during the powered-up battles, but even when you’re just traversing the map.
That being said, the true nature of KINGDOM HEARTS III is still to come, so please stay tuned for further information.
Also, we just made the announcement that KINGDOM HEARTS χ [chi], a PC browser game that was previously only available in Japan, will be coming to North America as KINGDOM HEARTS Unchained χ.
It is meant to be a handy way to enjoy the world of KINGDOM HEARTS more deeply, so I hope that you try out KINGDOM HEARTS Unchained χ, and imagine your new journey in KHIII.
KINGDOM HEARTS Series
- Jun 17 2015 02:33 PM
- by Jake
Kingdom Hearts Unchained χ announced for overseas release with English trailer, a free-to-play title for iPhone, iPad & Android
Following last month's announcement of an upcoming Kingdom Hearts χ[chi] port for smartphones, Kingdom Hearts Unchained χ for iOS and Android, Square Enix has today officially announced at their E3 2015 press conference that Kingdom Hearts Unchained χ will also be releasing overseas!
Kingdom Hearts Unchained χ will be coming to both the iOS (iPhone and iPad) and Android platforms. Square Enix has provided the following description of the new title:
Based on the Japan-exclusive PC browser game of the same name, KINGDOM HEARTS Unchained χ (read as Unchained “Key”), allows players to create their own keyblade wielder who harnesses his or her own keyblade to combat enemies across the beloved worlds of Disney. In the game, players will uncover story elements from the earliest parts of the series’ history, as well as the highly-anticipated, upcoming KINGDOM HEARTS III title.
An English trailer for the game was shown, and this can be seen below:
Here are some high quality official screenshots that were uploaded by Square Enix:
And lastly, Square Enix have launched the official Kingdom Hearts Unchained χ English website! Check it out here for more details:
- Jun 16 2015 03:34 PM
- by DChiuch
A Kingdom Hearts Unchained χ poster has been spotted in Square Enix France's conference room at E3 2015
KHDestiny have shared a photo of Square Enix France's conference room at E3 2015, and within lies many posters of a few games that they'll be showing off at the conference – including Kingdom Hearts Unchained χ! This seems to confirm that the game will make an appearance at E3. You can see the photo below, thanks to KHDestiny.
- Jun 16 2015 10:55 AM
- by DChiuch
Interview with Tetsuya Nomura explains a connection between Kingdom Hearts Unchained χ and Kingdom Hearts III
In an interview with Famitsu Weekly, Tetsuya Nomura, the director of the Kingdom Hearts series has revealed that the story of Kingdom Hearts Unchained χ will connect with the story of Kingdom Hearts III. You can read a translation of the interview below thanks to misomilk on Tumblr.
— In terms of story, since KHX was released first, KH Unchained X will simply do catching up, right?
Nomura: Yes. Just that, KHX’s story will continue moving, so it will take quite some for Unchained X to catch up.
—We look forward to how KH Unchained X’s story links to KHIII.
Nomura: That’s right. It’s connected to KHIII. It’s the oldest of tales in the series. Sora and co haven’t even been born yet.......................... The events [in these two games] happen at a time far long past. Regarding a new keyword related to KHIII, if you play KHX and KH Un X it might make you go “Oh?” We keep thinking of ways in order to make players think “I’m glad I played this”.
— So this keyword is significantly related to KHIII.
Nomura: If I explain that, I’ll have to touch on KHIII’s story, so… (bitterly laughs). I’ll say what I can without spoiling anything. KHX’s main story doesn’t reach KHIII’s timeline, but there are some pieces you pick up, and those pieces will be what pushes the plot forward from here onwards. Either way, experiencing the story you’ve gone through KHX in KH Un X again will—
— Again? You said earlier you want players to “get the sense of being in the same world,” but had that implied that “KHX” and “KH Unchained X” are different worlds?
Nomura: I do wonder (laughs). An upcoming KHX story might give you the hint. We’ve set up KHX’s story to deliver it powerfully, so please look forward to the story’s progression from here forward. Now, KH Un X’s story is fundamentally the same as KHX’s, of course, but since they are two games, we’re setting up ways so you’d like to play both.
- Oct 07 2015 01:39 PM
- by Jake
Tetsuya Nomura, the director of the Kingdom Hearts series has written a message for the reveal of Kingdom Hearts Unchained χ, the port of the web browser game, Kingdom Hearts χ[chi] for iOS & Android devices. Nomura explains the reasoning behind the title "Unchained" and confirms the web browser version will continue to run. You can read it below thanks to misomilk from Tumblr.
Dear Users of the Keyblade, it has been a while.
This time, we have announced the smartphone app 『KINGDOM HEARTS Unchained χ』.
Since we've adjusted it for smartphone applications (smartphone usage), you'll notice you can enjoy it in a shorter time, and much more freely [than in browser format]. That's how in calling it "Unchained", we've put in a feeling/meaning/sense of "release".
It also connotes how you can take it out with you on your phone, but you'll see this [release] sense in the story, too.
『χ』 and 『Unchained χ』. These two 『χ』, in terms of world and story, have both similarities and differences they share. Your meeting and parting with Ephemera, the hints of mystery surrounding Chirithy may already come to your mind. Then there's also the Foretellers starting to move according to their own [convictions].
Be that as it may, it will still take some time until 『Unchained χ』 comes out. Of course, 『KINGDOM HEARTS χ[chi]』 will keep running its course. I'd like to extend my thanks to those who keep playing it.
Please expect that there will be more events linking to 『Unchained χ』. It will please us well that you, already Users of the Keyblade, and also those who are to become (will become) Users of the Keyblade, continue to enjoy 『KINGDOM HEARTS χ[chi]』.
Kingdom Hearts Series
- May 13 2015 11:44 PM
- by Sora96
Square Enix has released a batch of new screenshots and renders of Kingdom Hearts Unchained χ, the iOS & Android port of web browser game, Kingdom Hearts χ[chi]. The screenshots show events, battles and menus while the renders show characters like King Mickey, Donald Duck & Goofy. You can view them all below.
- May 13 2015 11:45 PM
- by Sora96
The official teaser website for Kingdom Hearts Unchained χ has launched. The teaser website doesn't include much yet other than basic information, logo and links to the Kingdom Hearts Japanese portal website, Message from the KINGDOM blog and the Kingdom Hearts official Japanese Twitter page. You can view the image below.
- May 13 2015 10:16 PM
- by Sora96
Kingdom Hearts Unchained χ is confirmed to be coming overseas with new servers divided by language, testing already underway in North America
Yesterday, it was announced that a new Kingdom Hearts title known as Kingdom Hearts Unchained χ is currently in development for Android and iOS, and will be released during 2015. The title is a port of the Japan-only web browser game, Kingdom Hearts χ[chi], and today appeared in the latest issue of Famitsu Weekly with a 6-page feature.
This feature includes an interview with the director of the Kingdom Hearts series, Tetsuya Nomura, where he confirms that Kingdom Hearts Unchained χ will be coming overseas, with testing already underway in North America. As a result of the testing, they have decided to change Kingdom Hearts χ[chi] cards into "medals", in order to appeal more to a Western audience.
The full translation of this interview question can be read below, thanks to our translator SkyKeybladeHero.
-- In [KHx], cards are used for the battle system, but in this game they have become medals?
Nomura: Since we are considering developing this game overseas, we have adjusted it accordingly. When our testing team in America had Smartphone users play it, if they saw cards as they appeared in [KHX], they tended to think of it as the so called "card games". Although after having they play it for a while we had good reactions, the first impression of the game wasn't good. Since the first impression of a game is very important, we tried something other than cards.
-- You are considering developing it overseas, but what about the server's configuration and segmentation?
Nomura: We plan on adding new servers. We are also taking into account the chatting element, so I think we will divide it by Language Versions.
- May 13 2015 11:51 AM
- by DChiuch
The latest issue of Famitsu Weekly has included an exclusive look at the mobile version of Kingdom Hearts χ[chi], titled Kingdom Hearts Unchained χ (pronounced as Kingdom Hearts Unchained Key) that was revealed yesterday. The feature reveals the game's logo and shows various screenshots of the new title.
Kingdom Hearts Unchained χ is a port of the Japan-only web browser game, Kingdom Hearts χ[chi] and will be free-to-play with optional in-app-purchases for iOS & Android devices. It is currently scheduled to be released this year in Japan.
You can view the article below, thanks to @bKvEBVAvUq for the find.
Update: You can view translations of the first page of the article below thanks to SkyKeybladeHero.
New Game Scoop
[Kingdom Hearts]'s first smartphone app. The story that connects to [KHIII] is told!
Kingdom Hearts X[chi], the browser game that tells the oldest tale in the Kingdom Hearts series.
Adapting its gameplay to smartphones along with some set up to the story, this new game was born: Kingdom Hearts Unchained X.
The player becomes the wielder of a key shaped sword, the Keyblade and sets out on a journey to the various worlds gathering LUX (Light).
First you need to choose and join a Union commanded by one of the 5 Foretellers.
It's said that in the Book of Profecies of the Foretellers are written the events a far away future.
It has ties to [KHIII] and will be a key to telling the story.
The mysterious creature that supports and teaches many things to the player, Chirithy. It's cute face hides a dreaded and unxpected fate.
- May 14 2015 04:15 AM
- by Sora96
Kingdom Hearts Unchained χ announced for iOS & Android, a free-to-play title for smartphones releasing 2015
Square Enix Japan have announced that a new Kingdom Hearts title will be releasing for iOS and Android in 2015, known as Kingdom Hearts Unchained χ. The title will be free-to-play with optional in-app purchases, the first smartphone title in the series, and an adaption of the PC browser game Kingdom Hearts χ[chi]. We will update as more information becomes available.
Thanks go to @htmk73 for the information (original tweet below, translated by goldpanner), and to @aibo_ac7 for sharing it.
'Kingdom Hearts Unchained Key' for iOS/Android, scheduled to release 2015, free to play (with in-app purchasable items), the gameplay of 'Kingdom Hearts Key' remade for smartphones, setup for the plot has also been prepared for this newest title in the series.
- May 14 2015 04:14 AM
- by DChiuch