During E3 2018 last month, Game Informer had the chance to sit down and speak with Kingdom Hearts series director Tetsuya Nomura to ask him a few questions regarding the highly anticipated Kingdom Hearts III. In the Game Informer article, Nomura was asked questions regarding demo feedback, Sora’s personality, how Keyblades are designed and what Nomura himself is looking forward to in Kingdom Hearts III. Or, at least, what fan reactions he’s looking forward to seeing!
During a premiere event back in May of this year, fans were invited to travel to Santa Monica California to play the first hands-on demo of Kingdom Hearts III. When asked if the development team planned to make any adjustments or tweaks to the game upon receiving feedback after the Premiere Event, Nomura had this to say:
“The event wasn’t really to get feedback from anyone. It was to show it to everyone and hope everyone there would spread the word and the details about the game. That being said, I didn’t really go around asking for feedback, but the dev team, myself included, does look at all the comments that are online. It’s not that we will change things just because one person says this or that, but we’ve been constantly testing the game. We’ve been in QA for a while now, so we’re constantly adjusting the game based on that feedback and some of the comments online have been taken into consideration.”
The Kingdom Hearts series focuses mostly on the heroic deeds of Sora, an incredibly joyful individual who is always looking for ways to help and brighten someone’s day. Interested to know if Sora would be able to retain his joyous spirit in Kingdom Hearts III, Game Informer asked Nomura if Sora’s positivity would be tested.
“He is a very bright character in general, but there will be many serious themes with Sora that involve [him] in Kingdom Hearts III,” Nomura says. “There will be a few times where Sora will be on the edge of despair, but because he’s so bright and he has that personality, he quickly brings it back to a neutral state. I think that’s a strength he has, and another strength he has is this trust and believe in others. I think that’s always been what helped him through the storyline and I think that will be another driving factor for him in Kingdom Hearts III.”
Nomura goes on to discuss what order he feels is best to play the Kingdom Hearts series in, as well as what goes into designing and creating Keyblades. At the end of the interview, he is asked what he is most excited for fans to encounter in Kingdom Hearts III when it launches in January next year.
“There are so many great things to see that it’s really difficult to say [just one thing],” Nomura explains. “I think what we’ve done as an action game with the combat mechanics is just really great, and the story is a culmination of past decade and more. Of course, there are a lot of surprises that are even greater than the Aqua’s surprise [in the Frozen trailer]. But I think I just want to say that the last battle in the game is something I want everyone to see as well as this new original location that I’ve really wanted to create for a long time now. If I had to say just one though, it’d be the last battle.”
Kingdom Hearts III is scheduled to release in Japan on January 25, 2019 and in North America and Europe on January 29, 2019 for PlayStation 4 and Xbox One.