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Analysis of the Kingdom Hearts III – D23 2017 Toy Story Trailer
The trailer begins with various clips of gameplay from Olympus Coliseum and Twilight Town with text of the quote "Don't assume your dreams are just fantasy. If you can imagine a world, believe in it...and dive in," which was seen in the Kingdom Hearts III Orchestra Trailer, sliding across the screen. The Kingdom Hearts Orchestra - World Tour - version of Destati is playing. The first clip shows Sora using Flowmotion to slide on a rail in the clouds of Olympus Coliseum. The HUD changes to only three options while he's on the rail: Blaster, Superslide, and Jump. He also has an aiming target while he's on the rail that he uses to target Heartless that appear in the sky. He shoots various blue blasts at the Heartless, which would presumably be the Blaster attack. The Heartless are the Yellow Opera-looking Heartless we've seen in the Jump Festa 2016 trailer. Hercules is in the party, as well as Donald and Goofy.
The next clip shows Sora using Shotlock to target and lock onto various broken segmented building pieces in the sky. The HUD for the Shotlock displays the options Unleash and Flowchain, which was also shown in the Orchestra trailer. After he locks on to several of them, he quickly dashes and jumps off of each one, which is presumably the Flowchain move. Doing this, he makes his way up to the gates that lead to Olympus where we can see a save point.
The clip after this shows off Sora fighting Neoshadow Heartless and Dusk Nobodies in the grassy area in front of the Old Mansion in Twilight Town. Sora activates a Situation Command titled "Double Arrowguns" where his clothes change blue (presumably a new Drive Form) and his Keyblade transforms into the gun-type Keyblade transformation we've been seeing in previous Kingdom Hearts III trailers. This Drive Form appears to be tied to the Double Arrowguns Keyblade transformation, just like how the other Drive Forms and Keyblade transformations have been appearing to be. He continues to shoot blasts from the Double Arrowguns at various Neoshadows and Dusks.
Sora then further transforms his Keyblade using a Situation Command titled "Magic Launcher" where he transforms his Double Arrowguns into the big cannon-type Keyblade transformation we saw in the E3 2015 trailer. He hits the Neoshadows and Dusks with the cannon as well as shoots a massive blast from it that rains down.
The following clip shows Sora fighting the big Heartless, that was previously revealed in a screenshot, in the city of Thebes in Olympus Coliseum. The city appears to be burning down. Sora hits the giant Heartless with various attacks and magic, even knocking it down, but strangely, it doesn't take any damage. The Situation Commands Counter Shield and Firaza appear. This clip ends with the Heartless using its weapon to smash down, knocking Sora away.
The quote "Don't assume your dreams are just fantasy. If you can imagine a world, believe in it...and dive in" then comes together the middle of the screen and transitions smoothly by disappearing towards the screen. That concludes the beginning segment of the trailer. This segment was also uploaded to YouTube by the official Kingdom Hearts channel without the quote played over the clips, so you can see the gameplay in all it's glory.
It then transitions to the first person perspective of Sora walking out from under the bed in Andy's room in the Toy Story world and looking up at everything. Sora wonders where they are and realizes Donald, Goofy, and him are way smaller than normal and their appearances have changed. They now have the appearance of plastic blocky action figures with several joints. Donald explains it's to protect the world order. If you recall, in previous Kingdom Hearts games, Donald would use his magic to change the appearance of Sora, Goofy, and himself in some worlds to make them fit in better and to not disturb the world order. Donald and Goofy appear to have new outfits as well as being toy figures. It's unknown whether these are new outfits in general or are just new outfits specifically for their toy forms. The music changes to the Kingdom Hearts HD 2.5 ReMIX version of Working Together.
They then spot some Heartless, summon their weapons, and run after them. The Heartless are new and appear to have goggles, jetpacks, and blasters. Also, the Keyblade Sora summons has a new Keychain equipped. It's changed the Keyblade's appearance to look like a cactus with a cowboy hat and bandanna on it, as well as a lasso wrapped around it and a sheriff badge for the teeth of the blade, obviously to represent Woody. The hilt has a Buzz Lightyear theme to it with little wings. The actual Keychain itself is a tiny one of the green aliens, connected to the Keyblade with a claw in reference to the claw machine the green aliens come from in Pizza Planet. It then changes to gameplay of Sora, Donald, and Goofy battling these Heartless. He uses Flowmotion to grind on the trail left behind by his Blizzard spell and performs a slamming attack which appears to be a new version of Shock Dive. The Situation Commands "Hyper Hammer" and "Blizzaza" appear.
It then transitions back to a cutscene where Sora, Donald, and Goofy hear a voice and turn around. Woody, Buzz Lightyear, Hamm, and Rex walk out and ask if they're Andy's new toys. They discuss the Heartless and that they had materialized after their friends had vanished. The toy soldiers and the green aliens from Toy Story can be seen in the cutscene now as well. Buzz explained that after Andy and the others went missing, the intruders didn't come alone. They arrived with a guy wearing a hood, and dressed in black, just like Sora is. Sora, Donald, and Goofy conclude that he must be talking about Organization XIII. Sora says he has a hunch on what's causing this, and asks them if it'd be alright if they handled it. Woody refuses and says he and the other toys need to help to because since it's their friends that are missing, it's their problem as well. He says they gotta work together and him and Sora proceed to shake hands. Sora asks where they can find them, then Woody asks Sarge about it. Sarge says that the latest recon reports place him in Galaxy Toys. He then points up at a poster on Andy's bulletin board for Galaxy Toys. It appears to be a toy store in town.
Woody tells Sora and the gang to follow him out the window and onto the roof. It transitions to gameplay once more. Sora's running on the roof of Andy's house. Donald, Goofy, Woody, and Buzz are all in the party at once. The Yellow Opera-looking Heartless are shown again as well as the similar-looking pink Heartless that was also shown off in the Jump Festa 2016 trailer. Sora jumps off the roof and spreads out his arms and legs and glides down and slams to the ground. This is the same thing we saw him do in Olympus Coliseum in the Orchestra trailer. Large Bodies and the aforementioned new Heartless seen in Andy's room are on the driveway and front lawn of Andy's house. Sora then activates the Situation Command "Hyper Hammer" where his clothes change red (presumably the Power Form Drive Form we saw in a screenshot that was released a while back, but in his Toy Story form) and the Toy Story Keyblade then transforms into a big hammer that Sora uses to smash the ground and enemies with. This hammer was also seen in that previously seen screenshot, but it was blurred out in order to not spoil the Toy Story world announcement. He also casts a Fire spell that acts differently while he's using the Hyper Hammer. It acts as more of an AOE instead of the regular Fire spell that aims for one target. The Situation Commands "Firaza" and "Drill Punch" appear. Then, Sora uses the hammer to smash the ground with much more impact than the previous smashes. You can also get a glimpse of a pink trampoline next to the house that could maybe allow you to easily bounce back up to the roof of the house.
Next, Sora activates the Situation Command "Drill Punch". The Hyper Hammer transforms into a big drill that Sora uses to hit enemies with and dig into the ground with. He slams the drill into the ground and various other drills pop up out of the ground after. Then, he casts a Wind spell, and after, does a spinning dash through the air with the drill. The Drill Punch transforms into a claw attacked to a long glowing rope that Sora uses to grab a large body and swing and slam around.
The trailer changes to gameplay of Sora, Donald, Goofy, Woody, and Buzz inside of Galaxy Toys running towards various mechs called Gigas and the aforementioned new Heartless. The song changes to the Kingdom Hearts Orchestra - World Tour - version of Wave of Darkness. They begin battling the Gigas and Heartless and the Situation Command "Thundaza" appears.
Sora enters the cockpit of one of the Gigas and begins controlling it. The red one specifically. The HUD changes and now has the options: Tackle, Blaster, Punch, Booster, Danger Dash, and Eject. There's also transparent dials and radars around the screen to give the illusion of being in a mech suit. Sora uses the mech to shoot blasts at, punch, and ram into other Gigas and Heartless. He then jumps out and dashes towards another mech. The Situation Command "Ride" appears and Sora jumps into one of the other Gigas' cockpit. Instead of Tackle, this mech, the blue one, appears to have the command Exploder. It jumps up and uses that command and several blasts shoot out and fall to the ground. Sora jumps out of that mech glides down and slams into the ground and into a mech. He, again, gets into the cockpit of another mech. The purple on. And instead of Tackle or Exploder, this mech has the command called Cannon. It then uses Cannon and shoots two big blasts out of cannons on its shoulders. During this battle, you can see one of the toy display stands get destroyed and tumble down when Sora shoots some blasts at it, confirming destructible environments in the game.
Lastly, it transitions back into a cutscene. Young Xehanort is shown speaking to Sora. He explains how one heart's shadows fills the emptiness of another, and that like Heartless and Nobodies, they fit together. It's unknown what or who Young Xehanort is referring to. Sora dismisses what Young Xehanort said and asked why he's doing this. Young Xehanort then explains that there's a darkness they're missing and they must reclaim it, and that the way hearts connect in that world could provide a clue.
The Kingdom Hearts III logo appears on screen, and fades away, and "Coming 2018" appears, confirming the game to be releasing in 2018.
Speaking completely subjectively, I felt like this was definitely the best Kingdom Hearts III trailer yet. I felt like it was the first time we saw a trailer and everything looks complete and finished with pretty much zero issues with graphics or animation or anything. Also, the Toy Story world and character models look pretty much on-par with the CGI of the Toy Story films. The only difference is slightly less detailed lighting, but it's at the point where you don't notice any differences from the game and the movie without directly comparing them. The gameplay also looks very flashy and fun. I'm still not sure how I feel about Drive Forms being tied to the Keyblade Transformations, but there's no knowing how it'll truly and truly play like be until the game releases. Overall, a very solid trailer, and a very solid release year as well. I personally believe just revealing a year like they did, instead of a complete release date, was the best decision, so they don't feel rushed to complete the game in a specific amount of time and possibly end up delaying the game.
What was your favorite part of the trailer? Did you notice anything we missed in our analysis? Let us know in the comments below!