The Los Angeles Times have published an interview with the director of the Kingdom Hearts series, Tetsuya Nomura. Here, Nomura discusses Kingdom Hearts III, revealing new details such as the philosophy of Kingdom Hearts III's development, a confirmation that the series will continue after Kingdom Hearts III, and a mention of the gameplay having a strong relation to that of Kingdom Hearts 3D [Dream Drop Distance]. Thanks to the Los Angeles Times, we have created a full transcript of the interview for you below.
Nomura: First and most important is the determination in my mind. That will launch the project. It’s difficult to explain what kind of determination I am talking about. As you can imagine, expectations by the fans for franchise with sequels go up each time. Fan expectation for ‘Kingdom Hearts 3′ is extremely high. To respond to those expectations, I have to provide something really good. Technology is really important, as is the Disney world.
Could Pixar-inspired lands make their way into “Kingdom Hearts 3″?
Nomura: We can't comment on what's confirmed for the game.
What is the biggest challenge in designing the “Kingdom Hearts” titles?
Nomura: Working with Disney to see which brands Square Enix will have at its disposal. What world is available for the title is an important question. The story — it has to be great enough to meet the expectation of the fans. When that’s ready, and I feel like I am ready, then the game can start. The counterpart that I’ve been working with at Disney the past 10 years is the same person. We have very heated discussions about this franchise, and we’ve done that for the past 10 years, but we have a steady relationship.
[And though there was never any doubt that “Kingdom Hearts 3″ would eventually be released, Nomura bristles when the word “trilogy” is used. He intends the primary games in the series to tell a story, but the franchise will continue long after “Kingdom Hearts 3″ is released.]
Nomura: There was never a plan. As a core game, this is finally the third, and 10 years have passed. I couldn’t call this a trilogy. There have been so many spinoffs. In ‘Kingdom Hearts 3,’ the battles that the characters have been fighting for the past 10 years will come to a conclusion. That is the plan. But the series will continue. Only the particular enemy they have been fighting the past 10 years will come to an end.
[From a design standpoint, Nomura suggested fans get their hands on “Kingdom Hearts 3D: Dream Drop Distance” if they’re looking for clues as to where he’s heading from a game-play perspective. The 3DS game was released last year and Nomura said he is using the hand-held title’s combat functionality as an early guide for “Kingdom Hearts 3.”]
Nomura: We tried many experiments in that game that will be applied to ‘Kingdom Hearts 3. If you play ’3D,’ you will get some hint of ‘Kingdom Hearts 3.’