Feel free to leave a message if you wanna ask a question or just say hello!
Ongoing biography of my KH life~
Le beginning: I played COM somewhen in either 2004 or 2005, don't quite remember. Fell in love with everything about it, and started playing the rest of the games one by one and reading articles to support and develop my theories about the series. I wrote a few fanfictions and drew lots of fanart (Trivia: My favorite ship used to be AkuRoku! Nowadays, I don't have one.)
Social media POV: I started admining this Kingdom Hearts fanpage on Facebook in late 2012, and for two years, I worked really hard to make it one of the best (imo the best) KH fanpage on FB at the time! We even got the official KH twitter to follow our Twitter account!
But my creativity was going in another direction, so I left and started another page, Kingdom Hearts Hypetrain. Still working on its website! You can also follow it on twitter.
Throughout the years, since 2012, I got to know a lot of people who were very active in the KH fandom and some of the best fans of the series. Among these were fan journalists such as Churro. I also got to know some other cool peeps such as the lovely Lauren and Darryl from KHUnion, to mention a few. I've also gotten to meet a lot of cool peeps from the Square Enix PR and marketing team, such as Dan Seto and Mat Kishimoto, and they're some of the most hard-working people ever! We are so blessed to have them market SE products outside Japan! I've also made some irreversible, very close relationships with some of the best people I could ever have dreamed of being friends with who shared my same passion. This includes Leamax, who is literally my partner in crime; Omelette, who is the creator and main manager of KHMemes, a twitter account followed by the official Kingdom Hearts twitter account; and Mihari-chan (pet name: Mihari Chai), arguably one of my bestest friends and project manager of the Keybearers' Alliance (formerly known as Project: Disneyland of Departure), who is also being followed by the official KH account on their twitter!
I've been sharing KH news as soon as it got online over the years, and did quite a bit of writing myself, so why not - I decided to join KH13.com as a News Team Member on March 2016. I've been encouraged by Sora96 to apply for this before, but I was skeptical of the role at first - but a few months into this role actually gave me a lot of insights! I've got to meet people who have read my articles in real life and it's the most amazing thing ever! I'm also Italian, so I've contributed to some translations that were featured here at KH13.com and in various Final Fantasy fansites! By attending certain KH-related events, I've also been able to contribute to the news in first person! The smallest contribution brings me joy, so I think I will continue with news reporting until I get sick of it
A year after joining the team, I am the News Team Leader at KH13.com!
Oh, and I now cosplay Aqua, so I share my cosplay adventures on social media too.
My "real life" POV: I try to attend any event related to Kingdom Hearts.
My first event was the KH 1.5 pre-launch event in London on 2013, where I just managed to win a ticket for (thank you KHInsider for that!). I got to meet Shinji Hashimoto (KH series executive producer) and Yoko Shimomura (KH series composer) and talk to them about their work - it was honestly a dream come true. I managed to ask Shinji Hashimoto a question about whether they'll make a HD remake for Days to make it playable (his answer was "we're not thinking about it at the moment"), and I got to tell Yoko Shimomura that I love her work, that she's a role model for me, and that my favorite track is Musique pour la Tristesse de Xion. Later, when I saw a KH13.com article with pictures from the event, I was literally screaming inside: "There I am in the picture OMG!" Same when I saw my picture from the green screen photo with Halloween Town as the background on the official Facebook page. Such a fangirl. Here's a picture:
As you can see I was a total dork, also I look nothing like that now. Yay for late-onset puberty.
My second event was the KH2.5 launch event in London, where I got to meet KH3 producer Rie Nishi and co-director Tai Yasue - and they signed my keyblade! So honored. This is also where I met Mat and Dan. One of the cool things about having friends who live on the other side of the Atlantic who also attend KH-related events is that you can talk about them with the Square Enix EU/NA team, who are always travelling back and forth - and they say: "Yeah, I met your friends over there, they told me about you!" Hurray for long distance friendships - we share the same sky! Here are some pics from that evening:
As you can see, I was still a total dork. But apparently, after I put that last pic as my profile picture on Facebook, I caught the eye of a talented gamer and former-Youtuber who sent me a friend request, and who later turned out to be my soul mate and someone I am now engaged to... but that's another side, another story. As you can see, everything connects to something else! Our hearts are connected.
After I got my keyblade signed at the 2.5 launch event, I developed this weird sort of habit to get it signed by anyone majorly involved in the production, development, and distribution of KH! Or whoever I like in relation to KH.
So I went to stalk Willa Holland in May 2016 (who btw totally got misled me into thinking she didn't hear anything about voice acting for 2.8, only to have the first trailer with her voice in it released a couple days after I met her!) And she signed my keyblade! Also, I love her performance from Arrow so that was a bonus. Here's a picture collage of Willa being adorable while telling me she's not allowed to say anything about KH
Another bonus was Katrina Law (Nyssa al Ghul), who was sitting right next to Willa, going around and getting instagram usernames from the fans! She ended up tagging me in her group photo with the fans, so that was a very nice experience as a fan of the Arrowverse!
OK by now I feel like I should tell you that yes, I have stalked some other really cool people at events, movie premieres, etc., but I don't actually have that many people I truly like in show biz. so it's not as extreme as it sounds! To me, the only thing I like to do at cons is to eat takoyaki, mess around with friends, buy jewellery and attend panels/signings. So basically, not much!
Anyway, by this time I had already become a regular geeky event-goer. They don't appeal to me as much now, having lost some of their initial novel luster, and I'll probably not go to Hyper Japan again, but while walking around the fair I spotted Kaoru Wada, who is in charge of arranging orchestral pieces for the KH series (Fantasia alla Marcia, anyone?), and I actually managed to have a five minute conversation with him without much trouble with the whole English/Japanese language barrier. But just my luck that I had forgotten to bring my keyblade with me to sign! Here's a picture though - maybe I'll catch him again next year at his Anime Insiders Panel!
After seeing the first proper trailer of KH2.8 I was too excited to play it. So I kept on the lookout for a demo being eventually playable in London. As I suspected, EGX, the biggest gaming event in the UK, confirmed the demo for its 2016 installment. I was so stoked that I went to play it early in the morning on the first day of the convention! I also met Dan Seto again there (pic below), who was promoting all the cool upcoming Square Enix games, including Dragon Quest Builders (LOOK AT HIS HAT OMG). I think the highlight of the convention was meeting a KH fan who told me that they came to EGX purely because they read an article on KH13.com about the KH2.8 demo being playable there. He was very pleasantly surprised to know that I was the one who wrote that article! Those are the moments to live for! Here are some of my pictures from EGX.
Have you booked your tickets for the Kingdom Hearts Orchestra -World Tour- yet? Before booking those VIP tickets in April 2016 (Wildfaery, where my tickets at?! They lost my tickets! > ), I actually booked some tickets back in December 2015 for Symphonic Fantasies, which took place a few weeks ago in early October 2016. The concert featured music from Kingdom Hearts, and even featured a special pre-concert Q&A with Yoko Shimomura! Imagine my luck when I got to talk to her again! She actually answered one of my questions (which was quite a personal one, to me). And the concert was purely amazing. Here is a picture I took for KH13.com:
I can't wait to meet her again at the World Tour in March!
A few weeks after Symphonic Fantasies, I went to the biennial MCM London Comic Con on October 29th and 30th. This had to be my most fun convention ever, even if I didn't do a lot or buy too much! I went to my first KH cosplay meet dressed as Aqua, and actually had the chance to meet Shinji Hashimoto again! This time, he signed my Kingdom Key! I also bumped into Dan Seto again (LOOK AT HIS HAT AGAIN OMG) who was casually representing Square Enix around the expo! But the most fun bit was getting to hang out with many other Kingdom Hearts cosplayers: we had a lot of fun, and I almost got kidnapped by a Sora! Here are some pics and a video!
I am so blessed to be able to attend all these events. It's not really about pictures or autographs or even simply meeting the people behind the things you love, but it's the whole atmosphere of solidarity and the emotions that come with the appreciation of true works of art. I've been able to meet a lot of my online friends, plus make some new ones.
A more personal POV: Most people, even when knowing my real name, just call me Aqua. (No, Aqua is not one of my favorite characters. I had literally no connection to Aqua when I got this nickname, but that story is probably irrelevant to you!)
When I started admining a page on Facebook, I used to post some really dank KH memes. Ever since then, most of the KH fans who know me from FB know me as some sort of a meme queen! (lol) I don't really make so many memes anymore, but people still complain about how I've ruined their childhoods! Memes aside, I love getting people involved in the fandom. Which is why I always try to make any original KH content I make as engaging as possible. I've done all sorts of other things including making vines, streaming Disney movies and KH music, conducting podcasts and Skype parties, modding Twitch streams, organizing KH-themed game nights, and much more. Nowaydays, I manage a brilliant team of KH fans who organize these things, rather than doing them all on my own. You can follow their (our!) work on Kingdom Hearts Hypetrain. You can also follow our Youtube channel for interesting videos - I occasionally work on some of the videos.
I love v-logging about my daily adventures around the UK. I am mostly accompanied by my fiancè, and together we're working on our list to visit all the cool places in the Kingdom and beyond! My KH community usually refers to my fiancè and I as RayQua(za) (Ray being his name, Qua from Aquaberry, and za to spell out the Pokèmon!).
Something else that I love to do is cosplay. By now you must have noticed that I wear a headscarf - also knows as a "hijab" (which also means something along the lines of "covering up", and "modesty"). I am therefore an average (or below average?) "hijabi". Cosplay is thus a bit more interesting for me, seeing how I incorporate the elements of the hijab in my costumes, oftentimes I come up with some really cool costume designs. After producing 4 successful cosplays, I was featured on a trending Buzzfeed article in my Konan costume. After that, I just knew I wanted to keep cosplaying even more characters! I debuted my Aqua cosplay at MCM London Comic Con on October 2016, and look forward to improve it even further for next year! Here are some of my cosplays, and you can follow me on Instagram to find more pictures of cosplay and other things.
Conclusion: KH means so much more to me than just the games: to me, it's really about the story and the different elements of it and how it unites the community. And I love being a part of this community! To me, it's not even about JUST KH anymore. It's all of the little things, perculiar hobbies, different fandoms, and dank memes that connect us all on the basis of our common passion for this videogame.
Anywho, here's (most of) my story so far, but expect this space to be updated with more experiences as time passes! And if you have any questions or just wanna say hi, feel free!
Ohhh, okay! (I just started watching Naruto recently, and Hinata still has short hair, so I didn't recognize your cosplay! My apologies!) That's pretty badass, though! I take it you're a big Naruto fan? :3
Oct 04 2016 08:26 PM
Yeah, I can see that! I'm liking what I'm seeing so far! And actually, I don't mind fillers, so I can just watch them, ya know? :3 But yeah, I wanna see more Hinata!!! She's too darn adorable! <3
Oct 08 2016 08:39 PM
This status update has reached the maximum number of replies allowed
On Thursday, December 15, 2017, the Walt Disney Company announced a definitive deal to secure assets from 21st Century Fox, Inc. for $52.4 billion. Disney hope this acquisition will allow them to "create more appealing content, build more direct relationships with consumers around the world and deliver a more compelling entertainment experience to consumers wherever and however they choose."
The deal was signed by Disney's chief executive Robert A. Iger, a veteran in guiding the company to become a Hollywood leader through a series of acquisitions such as Lucasfilm, Marvel, and Pixar.
Disney will be acquiring the film and television studios of 21st Century Fox, which includes 20th Century Fox Film studios and movie blockbusters such as Avatar, Titanic, The Sound of Music, The Grand Budapest Hotel, Hidden Figures, Gone Girl, The Shape of Water, The Martian, and Anastasia. The deal will also allow Disney to bring the X-Men, Fantastic Four, and Deadpool into their Marvel Cinematic Universe if they so pleased.
The acquisition also includes 20th Century Television studios, which have 36 series currently in production, including The Simpsons, Homeland, This is Us, and Modern Family.
Furthermore, Disney will be acquiring 21st Century Fox's cable and international TV businesses such as FX and National Geographic. Disney will also be obtaining Fox's 30% stakes in Hulu and 39% current stakes in Sky (along with their planned complete takeover by June 30, 2018).
Earlier this year, Disney announced the end of their distribution agreement with Netflix, planning to pull their movies from the streaming service to one of their own new direct-to-consumer streaming service launching in 2019. The deal to acquire 21st Century Fox marks another step in Disney's direct-to-consumer strategy to become a "more viable competitor" to the tech giants in the entertainment business by adapting to the increasing demand of streaming and other digital services.
The acquisition does not include Fox Broadcasting network and stations, Fox News Channel, Fox Business Network, FS1, FS2 and Big Ten Network; these will be listed under a new, separate company called New Fox.
What do you make of this takeover by Disney, including many of 21st Century Fox's remarkable IPs? How do you think this could affect the future content of the Kingdom Hearts series? Let us know in the comments!
Posted by Aquaberry
on 09 December 2017 - 04:25 PM
We have been recently contacted by our friends Jorge and Matthias from Disney Central regarding a petition to bring German, Spanish, and French dubbing in the upcoming Kingdom Hearts III. While this petition has existed for quite some time, Disney Central aim to close this by the end of 2017 (prior to the release of the game in 2018), and send the fans' signatures and comments to Square Enix Europe for consideration.
You can read the petition letter below:
Ladies and gentlemen from Square Enix, ladies and gentlemen from the Walt Disney Company,
As loyal fans of your video game series “KINGDOM HEARTS”, we would like to point out that, according to our opinion, the series could potentially lose much of its quality in matters of localization and the dubbing of each title respectively.
You know as well as we do that the games are well known for their fun factor and story and that these criteria are being referenced when it comes to comparison with other RPG games. After all, they are what many RPG games from Square Enix are all about. There is, however, a difference between a FINAL FANTASY and a KINGDOM HEARTS game: the many Disney characters that starred in KINGDOM HEARTS I and II along with their well-known and much beloved voices made for an outstanding localized game on the videogame market. Not only were the speakers very fitting (which is not always given in other companies’ games), the majority of them were also the original speakers or at least equally good replacements. Thus, the feeling of experiencing a Walt Disney masterpiece has been passed on to these two games. Fans from Germany, France and Spain were able to experience this exact phenomenon.
But that’s not all. If you ask the fans, it is clear to see that a localized dubbing is always the better choice. Even most of the fans who would usually prefer the original Japanese dubbing in games such as FINAL FANTASY said the same thing. The KINGDOM HEARTS series really is a class of its own. Due to the familiar appearance and voice of these many starring characters, the gamers and fans have become emotionally attached to them. Take one of these elements away and the character is no longer the same that we know and love.
The same applies to the English version. Any other dubbing than the one in the own language takes away this magical feeling. When we learned that KINGDOM HEARTS HD 1.5 ReMIX was to be launched exclusively with English dubbing, storms of protest and complaints came up from which arose the idea of this petition and this letter.
We, the petitioners, hereby officially ask of you to publish any upcoming game from the KINGDOM HEARTS series with an adapted localization and dubbing. This also includes the already announced KINGDOM HEARTS III as well any future title including spin-offs.
Furthermore, we request that if you publish games that already have a localized dubbing, to release them with their respectively dubbed version. The fact that games which contribute much to the story, “Birth by Sleep” for instance, do not have a localized dubbing at all is most regrettable. In the case of HD 1.5 ReMIX, we would like you to at least provide us with the existing localized dubbing via DLC. That also applies to the upcoming KINGDOM HEARTS II and the HD 2.5 ReMIX respectively.
With this petition, we would also like to remind you of 2013’s first half-year. Back then, over 3200 fans signed a petition to have Disney re-release one of its animated movies “Arielle die Meerjungfrau” (The Little Mermaid) with the German original dubbing from 1989 (there is a second version from 1998). Disney agreed to this for their fans’ sake. We appeal to you to let us hear these familiar and beloved voices in KINGDOM HEARTS again – be it newly released or older re-released games.
A shining example for this is Ubisoft’s “Assassin’s Creed: Liberation” which was published with English dubbing for the PS Vita in Germany in October 2012. In January 2014, this game was re-released as a HD-remake for the PC and this reason alone led the publisher to add a German dubbing to the game. We would like this procedure to be transferred to KINGDOM HEARTS as well as a subsequent adaptation of the HD 1.5 ReMIX and HD 2.5 ReMIX.
P.S.: please pay attention to the countless comments of the petitioners attached to this letter.
We at KH13.com believe this is a fantastic cause, especially for bringing together fans of different backgrounds in the Kingdom Hearts community! We are committed to promote this petition, and urge all our fans to sign it!
You can sign the petition here. It only takes 30 seconds!
Disney Central have already been receiving statements from the Square Enix team in Germany, indicating interest in the petition.
The following is the initial response from Square Enix:
Unfortunately, we can’t make this decision alone and are bound to coordinate with other territories and economic parameters. […] We will also try to realize all our customers’ wishes and requests for Kingdom Hearts III, including a German dubbing. Of course, I can’t make any promises right now as it is still too early. But I think that things aren’t looking too bad.
Another response followed after a year of campaigning for the cause:
As for the petition, we hesitate to forward information of this type to our team in Japan, of course. KINGDOM HEARTS 2.5 appears, as you know, without German language edition. But that does not mean that it is managed for future titles. We are eager to pass on the feedback from the community directly, so it is not unheard of.
As you may already know, Square Enix have been conducting online surveys and questionnaires asking for fan feedback, including regarding Kingdom Hearts. Disney Central and the European fan community have been voicing the need for dubbing in their respective languages through these surveys as well.
We believe it's high time the English-speaking Kingdom Hearts community joins as well!
Visit the petition website here. Visit the petition Facebook page here.
Posted by Aquaberry
on 29 November 2017 - 12:43 AM
Japanese retailer Secret Honey, a brand for fashionable women's clothing, has announced two new licensed Kingdom Hearts-inspired items for its Disney Collection:
Organization XIII Mickey short coat, selling at 34,000 yen (approximately $306) before tax
Organization XIII long coat, selling at 42,000 yen (approximately $378) before tax.
The coats will be available to purchase at the Secret Honey shops on December 2, 2017.
You can see pictures of the coats below:
Description of the items are as follow:
① Organization XIII coat · short (Kingdom Hearts · Mickey ver.)
Zip-up coat with Mickey's ears with a short length. [Interior pattern includes] Kingdom Hearts world icons · King Mickey · [Kingdom Key] Keyblade, with full pattern print Large zipper and silver bracket points, with hood covering like Mickey ♥ Metal fitting can be removed with a hook. Price ¥34,000 + tax
② Organization XIII coat · long (Kingdom Hearts ver.)
A long-length zip-up coat resembling the Organization XIII coat. It features the same lining and silver metal fittings as the short-length coat. Large half zipper is decorated in the lower half, and it is nice that you can look like a member when you wear your coat. It's possible to remove the metal fitting with a hook. Price ¥42,000 + tax
[Please be sure to check the following notes] ※ Models wearing images and actual things have some modifications and may be different. Please purchase after confirming this. * The design of Disney Collection of Secret Honey is anofficial licensed item under the formal supervision of Walt Disney Japan Co., Ltd.
UPDATE [Dec. 4, 2017]: Secret Honey has listed the Organization XIII Mickey short coat and the Organization XIII long coat on Rakuten. The coats are now available for purchase on the Japanese site. Click here for the short coat or click here for the long coat.
Posted by Aquaberry
on 23 November 2017 - 07:00 AM
After many miscommunications and misunderstandings surrounding the release dates of the Sora, Riku, and Kairi Funko Pop! Vinyl figures, Hot Topic finally resolved the issue by stating that the figures will be releasing on Thanksgiving on November 23, 2017.
As stated, they are out today! They are available to purchase for $12.50 USD each, or you can order all three for $25.00 USD.
You can view pictures of the Sora Pop! Vinyl below. You can order it here.
You can view pictures of the Riku Pop! Vinyl below. You can order it here.
You can view pictures of the Kairi Pop! Vinyl below. You can order it here.
Posted by Aquaberry
on 23 November 2017 - 06:33 AM
You can now purchase Kingdom Hearts Funko t-shirts at Hot Topic that come with two new designs featuring Kingdom Hearts Funko Pop! Vinyl characters! The shirts are originally priced between $20.90 USD to $24.90 USD. However, you can buy them now for $10.00 USD each during the current Black Friday sale!
You can view pictures of the Kingdom Hearts Group Pop! t-shirt below. You can order it here.
You can view pictures of the Kingdom Hearts Comic Pop! t-shirt below. You can order it here.
The figure was originally shown at the Tamashii Nations 10th Anniversary World Tour at Osaka, Japan. It was then shown off at Tokyo Toy Show 2017 along with the S.H.Figuarts figures of Donald, Goofy, and Organization XIII Mickey. The Mickey figure will release in January 2018, the Donald figure in March 2018, and the Goofy figure is reportedly releasing in April 2018. You can read our coverage of the S.H.Figuarts figures to date in the article here.
The figure has an original retail price of 6,264 yen (approximately $56.32 USD). You can view the promotional pictures below.
You can also read the product description below:
Sora from "Kingdom Hearts II" joins the S.H.Figuarts series by Bandai! He comes with 3 face plates, which have been made using digital printing technology to add gradation to his skin and eyes and make them more realistic. Also included are two optional left and right hands, and his weapon of choice, a Keyblade!
5.10 inches (13cm)
Made of plastic
Based on the video game Kingdom Hearts II
Optional face plates made using digital printing technology
Highly articulated figure
3 Face plates
2 Pair of hands
Below is a non-comprehensive list of international retailers to help you order a Sora S.H.Figuarts figure. Keep in mind that many of these retailers ship to different countries. You can comment below if you find an online retailer you'd like us to add to this list.
Posted by Aquaberry
on 23 November 2017 - 03:09 AM
According to a magazine scan circulating on the internet, the Kingdom Hearts II Goofy S.H.Figuarts figure by Bandai's Tamashii Nations is due to release in April 2018 for 5,940 yen (approximately $53.10 USD).
You can view a picture of the scan below:
The scan was procured from The Toyark; we have not been able to trace the original source.
There has not been an official announcement from Tamashii Nations yet, and their website does not feature the Goofy S.H.Figuarts figure at the moment.
The Goofy S.H.Figuarts figure was first shown at the Tokyo Toy Show 2017, along with Sora, Donald, and Organization XIII Mickey S.H.Figuarts figures. Since then, the Sora S.H.Figuarts figure has released, the Mickey S.H.Figuarts figure has been announced for a January 2018 release, and the Donald S.H.Figuarts figure has been announced for a March 2018 release. Both the Mickey and Donald S.H.Figuarts figures are currently available to pre-order. You can read our detailed coverage of the Kingdom Hearts S.H.Figuarts figures to date in the article here.
You can purchase the Sora S.H.Figuarts figure on AmiAmi here and on Amazon Japan here, you can pre-order the Organization XIII Mickey S.H.Figuarts figure on AmiAmi here and on Amazon Japan here, and you can pre-order the Donald S.H.Figuarts figure on AmiAmi here and on Amazon Japan here.
UPDATE [Nov. 27, 2017]: Tamashii has the Goofy S.H.Figuarts figure listed, confirming an April 2018 release, and a price of 5,940 yen (approximately $53.49 USD). New photos of the figure are also available. You can view them in the gallery below:
UPDATE [Nov. 27, 2017]: The Goofy S.H.Figuarts figure is now available to pre-order on AmiAmi and on Amazon Japan! You can pre-order it on AmiAmi here, and you can pre-order it on Amazon Japan here.
Posted by Aquaberry
on 19 November 2017 - 07:36 PM
You can now purchase a Kingdom Hearts Fair Isle Pom Beanie exclusively at BoxLunch and on the BoxLunch website. The original price of the beanie is $19.90 USD; it's possible to get a 20% discount and buy the product for $15.92 USD.
You can view the original article from before EB Games Australia and Zing Pop Culture Australia updated the image and information below:
A new Kingdom Hearts II Halloween Town Sora Funko Pop! plushie has been spotted in the online stores of EB Games Australia and Zing Pop Culture Australia. The product is on pre-order for $20.00 AUD ($15.19 USD) with a listed release date of November 20th, 2017.
You can view a picture of the plushie below:
This Halloween Town Sora Funko Pop! plushie is based off of Sora's Halloween Town outfit specifically from Kingdom Hearts II, which makes it different from the previous Halloween Town Sora Funko Pop! plushie, which was based off of his Halloween Town outfit from the first Kingdom Hearts.
The EB Games Australia product description reads:
Straight from the Destiny Islands and just in time for Halloween comes Funko's new Sora Halloween Town plush!
We currently have no information of the release of the plush in the West.
Keep an eye on this space for more updates! If you get your hand on one of them, don't forget to post a picture and let us know in the comments!
Posted by Aquaberry
on 10 November 2017 - 07:21 PM
A watchman style beanie featuring the Sora stained glass art from Kingdom Hearts is now available to buy at Hot Topic for $14.90 USD. It's currently on sale for $11.17 USD. You can order the product on the Hot Topic website here.
Posted by Aquaberry
on 08 November 2017 - 07:58 PM
During their quarterly briefing on November 8, 2017, Square Enix revealed some interesting information regarding games releasing the next fiscal year* and those being planned for the Nintendo Switch.
Square Enix stated that they have kept their fiscal year forecast unchanged as there are "no big games planned" for release between now and March 2017.
The global titles Square Enix plan to release next fiscal year are being prepared to showcase at E3 2018, and have been described as "sharp," "powerful," and "well made."
On the Nintendo Switch, Square Enix commented that its core architecture is similar to that of the PlayStation 4 and Xbox One; therefore, while some adjustments would be necessary, there is definitely a possibility of developing games for all three platforms. Square Enix also stated that the Switch's momentum is very strong, and unique compared to the positions of PS4 and Xbox One, and that Nintento have done well for the company. They asserted that they are good at making middle-ranged games, and that the Switch is an ideal platform for such games.
Lastly, Square Enix will not rule out any IPs when "agressively" making games for the Switch; this means the Switch could see not only new Square Enix games, but also currently active and non-active ones. These games may possibly be made multi-platform.
*This refers to April 1, 2018 to March 31, 2019.
Kingdom Hearts III is one of Square Enix's international titles releasing next year on the PS4 and Xbox One. Are you expecting to see more of the game at E3 2018, and if so, what kind of showcase and announcements are you looking forward to? Let us know in the comments below!
UPDATE [Nov 20, 2017]: Square Enix has released the outline from the recent FY2018 Q2 Results Briefing Session back on November 8th. The outline details the presentation giving at the press session from Square Enix President Yosuke Matsuda and Chief Financial Officer Kazuharu Watanabe. Their presentation gave more detail into the income from the previous quarter and an update on Digital Entertainment [games, manga, etc.] and predictions for Quarter 3 and beyond.
After the main presentation, several questions were asked about how profit from digital sales could improve game development, the possibility of bring titles to the Nintendo Switch, and new ideas for AI. You can read an excerpt below.
- Why is the balance of your content production account larger now than it was at the end of FY2017/3 even though “DRAGON QUEST XI” has already been released?
Development efforts for major titles are underway at both our overseas and domestic studios. We will be making announcements about the release dates of those titles between the end of FY2018/3 and E3.
- Have your efforts to increase digital sales resulted in any changes to your approach to game development?
Now when we are developing the main titles, we in parallel also plan and develop things like post-launch updates and add-on services.
- Where do you intend to prioritize allocation of your development resources going forward?
We base our development resource allocations on the unique attributes of each platform. In particular, Nintendo Switch makes it easier for us to leverage our back catalog of assets and expertise, so we want to be proactive in creating new IP and rebooting past titles for that platform.
- What do you think about the current state of your smart device game business and where it is headed?
We now have an organization in place that should prevent us from repeating the same mistakes. Once you’ve improved upon quality issues, it all comes down to how fun the contents you produce are, so our next challenge will be to increase the success rate of our titles.
- What do you think of Nintendo Switch, and how are you approaching development efforts for it?
Nintendo Switch is seeing rapid uptake, and we welcome the arrival of such a platform. We intend to be proactive in our development efforts given that it’s a platform that is well suited to the mid-sized titles at which we excel.
- What is your policy on technological initiatives for AI?
We have used AI in some of our games up until now, but we are now researching a variety of potential applications including applying AI or automation to our development processes.
Posted by Aquaberry
on 06 November 2017 - 06:57 PM
Back in February 2017, Leonard and Jessie Maltin invited Scott Adsit, the voice actor for Baymax in Big Hero 6, to guest star in their podcast. In-between talking about Scott's voice acting experiences as Baymax in the movie, the animated series, and a video game (Disney Infinity 2.0), Adsit mentioned his interest in reprising this role if given the opportunity.
You can find the relevant excerpt from the podcast below:
Jessie Maltin: "You said you're thrilled to be a part of something that's gonna last in that way..."
Scott Adsit:"It's weird to think... presumably, the character will live on when I'm gone, and so there'll be people imitating me, because I can't be there. And I will be there anytime they want me to be, at this point I don't wanna hear someone else doing my voice."
Big Hero 6 was announced to have its own world in Kingdom Hearts III back at the D23 Expo 2015, with a plot centered around Heartless taking over the Baymax that was left behind the portal. It is currently not known whether Adsit has been approached about resuming his role as Baymax in Kingdom Hearts III.
Based on his eagerness to reprise the role, do you think we'll hear the original voice of Baymax when the game releases next year? Let us know in the comments!
Posted by Aquaberry
on 01 November 2017 - 04:36 AM
With Series 1 three-packs hitting the comic book and specialty stores today, and more character variations and packaging coming to other retailers in coming weeks, Diamond Select Toys have revealed that they will be rolling out a second series of Kingdom Hearts figures for 2018.
In 2016, Yen Press announced that it will be publishing the Kingdom Hearts II light novel series in English in two omnibuses containing the four original Japanese volumes. Since then, Kingdom Hearts II: The Novel Volume 1, containing the first two original volumes, released in June 2017.
Originally, the Kingdom Hearts II: The Novel Volume 2 was set to release on December 12, 2017. Since then, the release seems to have been delayed to December 19, 2017.
The Yen Press website shows Kingdom Hearts II: The Novel Volume 2, both the paperback and the e-book version, set to release on December 19. The paperback is priced at $16.00, while the e-book is priced at $7.99. The novel summary is the same as the previous volume, and the cover has been finalized. You can view it below.
Kingdom Hearts II: The Novel Volume 2 in paperback is currently available for preorder at:
AAA Anime, RightStuf, and Book Depository are still showing the release date as December 12, 2017.
Yen Press will also be releasing omnibuses for the Kingdom Hearts 358/2 Days and Kingdom Hearts Birth by Sleep light novels. They have yet to announce the release dates.
It is currently not known if there are plans to localize the Kingdom Hearts Re:coded and Kingdom Hearts 3D: Dream Drop Distance light novel series in the West.
All the other light novels and manga series have already been published in English.
UPDATE [Nov 20, 2017]:Kingdom Hearts II: The Novel Volume 2 is now available to pre-order at Barnes & Noble in the form of a NOOK Book and on iTunes in the form of an iBook! You can pre-order the NOOK Book version of Kingdom Hearts II: The Novel Volume 2 on Barnes & Noble for $7.99 USD here, and you can pre-order the iBook version of Kingdom Hearts II: The Novel Volume 2 on iTunes for $7.99 USD here.
UPDATE [Nov 30, 2017]: We now have photos of the back and the spine of the Kingdom Hearts II: The Novel Volume 2 paperback thanks to the official Yen Press Twitter account. You can check them out in the gallery above.
UPDATE [Dec 9, 2017]: You can now pre-order the Kingdom Hearts II: The Novel Volume 2 e-book on BookWalker for $7.94!