Disney’s annual D23 meeting hit over the weekend to deliver all the PR magic from the mouse overlord. Of course for the Disney fan, there is a lot to find, for everyone else, there’s Kingdom Hearts news. D23 brought two new trailers for the highly anticipated sequel including a new song and world.
The first confirms a leak that appeared months ago. One of the new Disney Worlds the gang will be exploring with be the lovable land of Monsters Inc. Before we get to see everyone’s new monster look, we first get a bit of story with Marluxia. Following that, we see some Toy Story and then finally the monsters. The trailer features some gorgeous gameplay shots showing off many of the systems including the return of Dream Eaters from Dream Drop Distance. Finally, we end off with another piece of the story where an old enemy’s return is confirmed.
The second trailer doesn’t quite have the same bombardment of visuals as the first does but instead focuses on bringing the tunes. The trailer displays the sleek new designs of Riku and King Mickey with a few gameplay clips, but Utada Hikaru’s new theme is the main treat. Hikaru lent her voice to the main themes of both the main Kingdom Hearts games earning her a special place in many a gamer’s nostalgia.
Of course, this is only a portion of the track titled “Don’t Think Twice”. While most will have to wait until the game finally releases to hear the full tune, Hikaru did tweet that we may get it early if Square Enix doesn’t release the game quick.
Tadaa! The Kingdom Hearts III trailer and a minute and a half of my song “Don’t Think Twice” If they don’t release the game soon I’ma be tempted to leak the full version of my song, yo… #KingdomHeartsIII #UtadaHikaru https://t.co/431NauRBTi
— 宇多田ヒカル (@utadahikaru) February 10, 2018
While hopes were high, there was no announcement of a release date or even window. While the general belief is still for 2018, a progress update from director Tetsuya Nomura (via Gamespot) has put some doubt on that being the case. Nomura noted that Kingdom Hearts III has the entire Osaka team working on the game along with 100 people from the Tokyo branch of Square Enix development.
He then went on to give the real details by stating that Kingdom Hearts III will feature “more than nine worlds” in the final product. The worlds are broken up into three early game, mid-game and late-game which are all at different levels of completion. Nomura stated that the early worlds sit at 90 percent completion, the mid-worlds at 60 percent and finally he did not give any indication on the latter three. While he was tight-lipped with the end sections, he did tease that they would feature something “he’s always wanted to do and add to Kingdom Hearts.”
It is hard to fully know the process behind the development but considering how long it has taken the game to reach this point, hoping for a 2018 release may be a stretch. It has already been a long wait with the original announcement coming all the way back at E3 2013, encroaching on its five year anniversary.
Based on the reactions to both trailers and the news, Kingdom Hearts III has fans salivating for more. No release date, window or even year has been revealed just yet with the timeframe still very much in the speculation stage. While these trailers tide us over, there is always the option to catch up on the convoluted mess of a story with the PlayStation 4 releases. Hopes are high that E3 finally gives us a release window so we can look forward to it.