Nomura On New Possibilities For Kingdom Hearts III

By Sato . October 16, 2013 . 9:35pm

In our earlier report, we got a look at Sony’s last installment of their Creator’s Interview video series, featuring the director of the Kingdom Hearts series, Tetsuya Nomura, who talked about Kingdom Hearts III. Famitsu have posted a transcript of the full interview—which wasn’t included in the video—where Nomura goes into further details about the game and the PlayStation 4.


After giving a brief introduction of Kingdom Hearts, Nomura is asked what kind of changes can we expect to see since the series’ last console release in Kingdom Hearts II back in 2005.


“I think when you look at the screens of what’s currently in development, you can get a good feel of the depth that will be possible to have as a console title,” Nomura replies. “For mobile [portable] releases, we’re pretty limited in the amount of information we can convey, but console versions make it possible to have a wider field of vision. It’s been a while since Kingdom Hearts was on a home console, so I believe its [increased] scale will be considerably noticeable.”


With a much larger scale, one can expect even more dynamic action in Kingdom Hearts III, Nomura says. He explains how the development team worked on trying bold new changes for past spin-off titles, but since Kingdom Hearts III will continue following the flow of the first two main-numbered titles, one of the key points will be implementing the “bold actions” and “special systems” that were featured in the spin-off titles.


“The protagonist Sora’s mobility will be vastly improved,” says Nomura. “Since we now have so many things we can do, it can be a little overwhelming, so we’re currently thinking about particular elements, and how much freedom they’ll allow. While Kingdom Hearts III is an action title, it is also an RPG. There will be action characteristics that will allow you to fly as far as you want, if you actually try doing it.”


He elaborates, “While there will be some sort of limit, this time, there will be the ‘Free Run’ feature that is seen in other action games as of late, that allow you to run and climb all over the place. Moreover, the ability to fly and jump will be seeing a much greater improvement, and I believe that the mobility has become much greater. For those of you who’ve played Kingdom Hearts II, we already have something that has higher mobility than the Final Form.”


In an earlier interview, Nomura briefly talked about the “Kingdom Shader” that was created for Kingdom Hearts III, and will adjust according to each world. As the director previously mentioned, it will be a key into making Disney’s 2D brush-style drawings into 3D. Nomura is asked if it’s something he’s always wanted to do for the series.


“Originally, since the first title, the graphic gradient was made to replicate the brush-style of Disney’s work,” he replies. “With the hardware at the time, we didn’t have the ability to freely adjust the lighting, so we dropped the idea of creating visuals from a brush-style texture. However, this time, the hardware capabilities have increased, and ‘not using light’ is no longer an option.”


“Simply taking the previous graphics and making them into HD won’t bring out a feeling of evolution,” he continues. “Furthermore, reproducing Kingdom Hearts and Kingdom Hearts II’s pre-rendered scenes into real-time isn’t the goal we have in mind for taking the series into the next generation. After giving some thought to the visual concepts, the representation of the ‘Kingdom Shader’ was born.”


Nomura also mentions that since Kingdom Hearts III will be on the PlayStation 4, they are currently brainstorming different ideas on how they’ll be using the Dual Shock 4’s touchpad. While they haven’t decided on anything yet, he believes that it will be used in one way or another. As far as tablets and PlayStation Vita goes, they are currently testing out different possibilities with the game connecting to external devices.


Finally, a message for the fans, from Nomura.


“When you take all the past titles into consideration, and their own representations, I believe that [Kingdom Hearts] has become a game [series] of profound depth. We are working hard on development so the day you all will get to play [Kingdom Hearts III] will come sooner. Please look forward to our next announcement.”


Kingdom Hearts III is currently in development for PlayStation 4 and Xbox One.

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  • RovCal


  • APA

    Are they sure, they don’t mean PS5?

    • Lloyd Christmas

      That would just be… too damn cruel.

      • School Idol Addict

        Well, they have been quite cruel with Versus XIII, making peoples wait 7 years just to tell them it will be a next generation game, so i wouldn’t put that past them.

    • $36487238

      I don’t think so. At least with KH, they’re a bit consistent that if they will release it on their selected console, then they will put it in the said console.

      As for Versus XIII… yeah, that was cruelty indeed. They have been a bit inconsistent with that.

      But I trust KH3 will be released for the PS4 and Xbox One, not the next-next gen.

    • EX+

      I can assure you, this will be nothing like the situation VSXIII. The PS3 was a pain in the ass to develop for. PS4 and Xbone are much easier.

      • Laer_HeiSeiRyuu

        I wouldnt be too sure of that. Square Enix finally got their engine crap sorted out, but 8th gen games are indeed more expensive, and time consuming to make. Its a big under taking. We might not see KH3 for 2.5 years

        • neocatzon

          They have to answer DIsney by producing actual result so Versus’ development time is out of question. But, I agree it might be no less than 2 or 3 years until we see KH3.

        • EX+

          I think we’re going to have this game on our hands in late July 2016. Thoughts?

          • Laer_HeiSeiRyuu

            September release then delayed for November

  • Sardorim

    I still await word on Kairi and Aqua being playable!


    Edit –

    I’m so glad many agree that Kairi needs to be playable as well as Aqua and the others!

    If I had my way the playable characters for story segments would be…

    Sora(Most of the story), Riku, Kairi, Aqua, Lea, Roxas, King Mickey, Axel, Ventus, Xion, and Terra.

    Multiplayer I hope they have it like Mirage Arena in BBS. Let us go crazy with character choice here!

    There’s also racing, mission mode, and the stuff too for multiplayer!

    • 栗場 江理久

      Is it wrong for me to want Roxas playable too? D:

      • Utku Savaş

        Well, it’s a bit late for Roxas. Ventus maybe?

        • Shady Shariest

          Isn’t Ventus lore wise even more improbable that Roxas? :3

          • Utku Savaş

            You don’t know what will happen in KHIII.

          • Shady Shariest

            If you haven’t played BBS, i will not spoil you, but i will tell this much: Roxas is far gone to be brought back… But in the meh-range compared to Ventus.

        • $36487238

          Uhm, yeah, what @leevikoskivuori:disqus just said.

          Like I said, if there’s some kind of multiplayer mode, maybe. But still.. improbable.

          • Ramón Navas

            Maybe the should let you choose which character do you want to use in the coliseum

          • $36487238

            Yup, that would be good :-D

      • $36487238

        Uhmm dood… can’t be. Sorry, it cannot happen.

        If you’re keeping with the lore, it cannot happen. Unless, of course, if they make a multiplayer mode. Then you can play him ^_^

      • Sardorim

        Have Lea meet Roxas, Axel, and Xion.

        He may get jelly seeing them eating ice cream together.

        Which is why Lea always has Ventus!

    • $36487238

      This is possible! I would love this to happen.

      What I want to know: how will Nomura branch the path to make this happen, story-wise? That I hope to wait!

    • Shady Shariest

      I am honestly more surprised if Kairi ISN’T playable :3

    • enorka miho

      TERRA too!!

    • Ronldbx6

      Don’t forget about Lea. I think they should just make everyone playable even if it’s not in the main story but multiplayer. There’s to many people that want to play with everyone..

    • Samsara09

      if they don’t make Kairi playable after showing that Yen Sid would train her…well,I am going to go wild.

    • Ric Vazquez


  • safeto20scroll

    I swear theres like two other articles on Siliconera about the Famitsu interview with Nomura. Or I might’ve just read it 3 times… (too much hype)

    • Aushe


  • Tenabrus

    They should at least make all previously playable characters available (Terra, Ventus, Aqua, Sora, Riku, Roxas and Xion)and then after that Lea and Kairi would be amazing to have as well. although that may be asking for too much for the game right away, it may have to be something we see as DLC.

    • Utku Savaş

      I detest the thought of DLCs on Kingdom Hearts. But in that case, it will be sweet. Otherwise, if all the characters are playable in full retail version, it will be a mess.

      • Kurizu208

        i personally would like to see mirage arena return and all dlc related to that

        • Ixbran

          If KHIII does have a multiplayer feature. I would much rather it be akin to that of KHDays Mission Mode. The Mirage Arena was just … not fun to play at all, constantly being stuck in single areas with pointless endless enemies coming after you. KH Days allowed you to explore entire worlds environments if you wanted.

          I loved getting to re-play story based missions, and being able to fight against any of the bosses from the games story.

          They could easily make a multi player function like that. Give players free run of a world, with a mission board to give them specific objectives that require players to work together.

          and make it so by visiting old areas that held boss battles, like in KH3D, make it so players can take the bosses on together.

          • Sardorim

            Eh. Why not both?


            And whatever they can think of.

            Just no more Ice Cream song stuff.

    • $36487238

      If there’s some kind of multiplayer mode (like Mirage Arena) all of them can be playable sure. But in the main story, I think only Xion, Roxas and Ventus can’t be playable. There’s a bunch of reasons why, if you’ve played all KH games. I know, ‘cuz I played EVERY. SINGLE. ONE. OF. THEM.

      BUT…. if Nomura somehow came up with a reason to make them playable, despite my reasons why they can’t be, then so be it. Still, he’s got to find a way to tie up the loose ends about them. We’ll see how it goes. After all, this is the end of Xehanort so I’m sure Nomura’s got something up his sleeves.

      • Rayhan PromisedGallery

        or they can make it like 358/2 days, which Sora is the only one playable in main story. But later more characters playable ONLY in multiplayer mode.

        • $36487238

          That’s a possibility. I guess in the end, Nomura will decide. He writes the story, so we’ll see what he’s got.

      • EX+

        There are many ways they could be playable. For one thing the wind could awaken from the white building.

        • $36487238

          That could work. Either way, Nomura is the master of it all. We’ll see what he’s got cooking. I’d like to see how he’ll finally tie up all the loose ends, since this is the end of the Xehanort saga.

          • EX+

            Of course! I think we can also expect some new elements in the plot for KH games afterwards.

        • Chiupon

          This is KH

          all it takes is another retcon and more bad writing and voila

          fanservice granted

  • Utku Savaş

    At the beginning, when I saw E3 trailer of KHIII, the graphic style was extremely awkward. I can’t put it on the words correctly, but it had a plastic feeling on it. I don’t know why but I always imagined that when they do KHIII in next gen (I thought KHIII will be on PS3 back then, naively) it will be pre-rendered cutscenes of first two games on real time, despite the decleration of Nomura here. But Kingdom Shader felt awkward somehow. When they released the new gameplay trailer recently, it’s not awkward to me anymore, especially when I see Donald and Goofy, I relieved. I don’t know if they completed or improved Kingdom Shader but the awkwardness is gone.

  • hazelnut1112

    Please no tablet or smartphone stuff added to it. Just keep it on the DS 4 please.
    So does this also mean that the PS4 is the lead platform for this game?
    So I guess the whole tablet and smartphone thing could be of some use for the Xbox One version. I hope that will be the only case for it.

    • $36487238

      Yo, remember Sony said ALL PS4 games (sans those using the EyeToy) are required to also use Remote Play? So if tablets/smartphones can’t be used, then the Vita will be Remote Playing. It’s up to the developers on HOW to adapt it to the Vita.

      So yeah, there’s still us playing KH 3 on-the-go!

  • AndyLC

    Square-Enix is single handedly keeping Disney’s classic characters alive, they know Mickey, Donald, n’ Goofy better than Disney now.

    • Shady Shariest

      European comic-scene could be credited more for keeping those characters alive and kicking :3
      EDIT: Don Rosa’s work shouldn’t go unmentioned either :3

      • Göran Isacson

        Fellow European here, stepping in to support this statement. If people here haven’t read The Life and Times of Scrooge McDuck yet, do so as soon as you can.

        • Shady Shariest


    • metaxzero

      The Classic characters really didn’t need it though. They have the Disney amusement parks, the new shorts, and that one playhouse show to keep them in new generation’s minds. Kingdom Hearts is just extra.

  • EX+

    Can’t wait for this game. I want Ventus to be playable though. I also can’t wait to see the mobility that Sora has.

  • Azurelegance

    Higher mobility than final form? omfg. This is going to be slicker than oil guys.

    • EX+

      My reaction as well. Sora’s gonna be flying and jumping like nothing else. Also, did you see that part about enemies picking up buildings that you’re in?

      • Azurelegance

        I skimmed through the new info so I’ll have to read it again oTL. Thanks for letting me know!

    • ShadowDivz

      This is going to be crazy.

  • Kelohmello

    My major hope for this game is that they don’t go overboard with how powerful Sora can get. Kingdom Hearts 2 on any mode other than Critical was kind of mashy because Sora was too strong and he was going all over the place whenever you wanted him to. On the other hand, Birth By Sleep and Dream Drop Distance were pretty flashy and crazy just like KH2 but were at the perfect level where they weren’t mindless mashers.

    • cameron forsyth

      i’ll take KH2’s ridiculous combat freedom any-day over BBS’s goofy slow-paced invincibility frame abuse.

      • Sardorim

        Hey now…

        Aqua’s invincibility granting Cartwheels were very awesome.

        And they lit people on fire.

      • Ryozaku

        Dream Drop Distance had the best combat system of any KH game.

  • KanjiLikesBoys

    It’s not KH3 I want to connect to my Vita, it’s BBS!

  • Chaos_Knight

    Am I the only one that still wants a Wii U version?

  • ivanchu77

    So when do you guys think this game is going to be released? I say 2019

    • Rayhan PromisedGallery

      on PS5

  • Here’s a new possibility: End the story with a grand finale, give us the closure we’ve been seeking for all these years, and if you must “End the Xehanort Saga” and “make a new story afterward” then ok… do so, but:

    1. End this story with a bang.


    2. For the love of god no more Sora ‘clones’… we have like what… 5… 6 already? Enough please >.<

    • Sardorim

      KHIII wont be complete for me til I’ve seen Terra, Aqua, and Ventus meet up again and have a group hug.

      And Kairi and Sora being more open that they want to be together. Like how they did the cave drawing of them sharing the fruit with each other.

      • ShadowDivz

        No. Let’s keep that romance bullshit for twilight. xD

        Have them be friends scared to take it to the next level until the VERY LAST Kingdom Hearts game. That way it truly ends with a bang.

        • Sardorim

          Sora and Kairi already have a romance set by the end of KHII. They just haven’t officially kissed yet.

          • ShadowDivz

            Exactly. Let’s keep it that way.
            That way, i can pretend Kairi is still my waifu.

      • Ric Vazquez

        I agree on the reunion of Terra, Ventus and Aqua part

    • ShadowDivz

      Sora clones?

      • Rayhan PromisedGallery

        Sora clones:
        1. Roxas
        2. Xion
        3. Ventus in some way, because their hearts are connected
        4. Vanitas
        5. Data-Sora

        Though they become their own person later, they first come up as “Sora”.

        • ShadowDivz


          I wouldn’t really consider Ventus a Sora clone though.

          • Rayhan PromisedGallery

            also NAmine could also be considered Sora clone since she was created from Sora’s body and soul, despite being Kairi’s nobody

  • Chiupon

    “profound depth”

  • I wonder will we ever be able to play with the other party members.

  • harmonyworld

    Everyone wants all these other characters and I’m just here, the only one who just wants good ol’ sora, donald, and goofy.

  • Prinny Dood

    I cant wait to remote play :)

  • KnifeAndFork

    I hope Sion from The Bouncer (aka, Sora’s dad) finally makes it in

  • AkiraScare

    This just means that Kh will come out many many many years later (TT_TT) just like ffXV was to ps3 (TT_TT)

  • Leonardos5

    Bleh, I’m not a fan of the Kingdom Shader

  • Azurelegance

    Utada is confirmed for KHIII?!?! IS THIS TRUE?!

  • Ridho Siregar

    TOWNSPEOPLE! This game needs TOWNSPEOPLE!! Breath lives to those Worlds!

  • Ric Vazquez

    Get to work Nomura and stop announcing announcements lol

  • rax

    I wanna cry. :’)

  • Justin Roy

    So here’s whats going down. the keyblade that Sora picks up on the beach in Destiny Islands is none other than Master Eraqus’ keyblade. The last person to be in possession of this keyblade? Aqua. What did she do with it? Transform the Land of Departure into Castle Oblivion and create a safehouse for Ventus while he sleeps. Aqua is currently trapped in the Dark Meridian (where she encountered Ansem the Wise). As we saw at the end of KHII, Sora and Riku were transported to a similar place after the fight with Xemnas. This area is directly connected to Destiny Islands. So now that Sora has Eraqus’ keyblade, he holds the key to entering Castle Oblivion without harm to his memories and being able to reach Ventus and return his heart to him.

    As for Terra, there is still some speculation as to where his body is. In KHII: Final Mix, there is a secret boss battle in the Keyblade Graveyard, against the Enigmatic Soldier, aka, Terra’s Lingering Will. As seen at the end of KH:BBS, Terra was still fighting Xehanort’s control. To end this, Xehanort imprisoned Terra’s heart inside the Guardian. Some of you may argue with me but here’s something that might stop you. During the final boss battle in Dream Drop Distance with Riku against Ansem, Seeker of Darkness, after you beat him, his Guardian begins to fade, but almost looks sad and is reaching out to Riku. If my speculation is correct, this is because the Guardian is actually Terra and he recognizes the young boy he met on Destiny Islands all those years ago.

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