The July 2010 issue of Dengeki PlayStation magazine has included an interview with the director of the Kingdom Hearts series, Tetsuya Nomura. Although a summary of this interview was previously available, Dengeki Online have now posted the full interview. This interview, which contains information regarding Kingdom Hearts 3D and Kingdom Hearts Re:coded, can be read below thanks to HEARTSTATION.ORG.
I received an enthusiastic proposal from Nintendo, and I wanted to answer their feelings. Also, I started to think about titles that could only be realised on that hardware. I was designated Kingdom Hearts, so we started work on a title, but I think leading from this I’ll also probably be filled with ideas for non-KH titles.
-Where is this title placed in the series?
So far, every title in the series has unfolded on the same time axis. This title also takes place on that same time axis. At present I can’t answer in any more detail.
-Sora is the main character, isn’t he?
Sora and Riku are the two main characters. It’s not like Birth by Sleep, where you clear the game with one character then move onto another; you play along alternating between controlling the two. I am thinking about how to tie this gameplay into the plot.
-The two of them appeared in their clothes from the first KH game. Is this story set in that period?
This story is brimming with unpredictable mysteries. As I said just before, it happens on the same time axis, and it is difficult to imagine that the sorts of things in this game happened at the time of KH1. And so, don’t let the way things look deceive you.
-We would sense some mystery in a development in which Sora and Riku are together at the time of KH1, wouldn’t we?
That mystery is indeed not skipped, so I am in the middle of agonising over whether I should explain the scenario beforehand, or circulate the answers afterwards. There’s still time until the official information ban is lifted, so I can’t answer now anyway.
-Naturally, you’re thinking of gameplay that makes the best use of 3D, aren’t you?
Of course I am thinking about it, but I am unable to answer in detail yet. But, and there should have been clips released already, I want to try thinking about ‘falling’ as for the way to make the best use of 3D depth.
-Please tell us about the possible range of themes and things you want to do with this title.
I want a KH you can touch, a ‘Sora’ that falls, and a ‘Riku’ that flies. I think the theme will probably be ‘trust and reliance’. There are countless things one cannot do alone, and I think it will be about how much you have to trust and rely on other people to do those things.
-Please tell us your impresson of the other 3DS titles you saw at E3.
Of course, I noticed good old director Kojima’s work. And, there was such a lineup of Nintendo’s great efforts announced all at the same time, it instilled such a great encouragement in me. I must work my hardest, keeping in my mind the applause that rang in the venue when KH was announced in the lineup.
-What do you think about the possibilities that 3D technology brings?
As for myself, I’ll be making KH3D (working title) first. I have many ideas. I don’t know if I can put them all into one title, and I have a few ideas for other titles, but first I have to make one and see. I’m sure other companies will find new and surprising ways to make use of 3D, and if we all contribute, of course the possibilities grow.
-What kind of features does KH Re:Coded have?
The development concept for this game was a mix of KH 358/2 Days (Days), KH Birth by Sleep (BBS), and the mobile phone game KH Coded. This title is by h.a.n.d, the team that developed Days, but other staff members, such as the main staff of the original mobile phone game Coded, and Yasue (Mr. Tai Yasue), the co. director from BBS, participated in the development.
For gameplay, there were many players who were not satisfied with the lack of analogue stick control in Days, so we tried to simplify the controls as much as possible. Auto-jump is possible like in the original KH Coded, and we made it easier to hit the enemies when attacking with the Keyblade, various things like that. The story and the game basics is from KH Coded, the levelling system is from Days, and the battle system is from BBS. That’s what it’s like.
-Will there be wireless play?
This time there is wireless support. It doesn’t use ad hoc like Days and BBS, and it’s specialised so that you can continue playing alone even after playing connected. Also using the know-how from working on the World Ends With You for the DS, we have made it so that you will be able to enjoy many different playing styles.
-You can change the difficulty during the game, can’t you?
It’s a gameplay feauture we took from The World Ends With You. We had the main programmer for that game amongst the production staff, and we used his knowledge from that in many places. There’s a ‘cheat’ selection in the menu, and from there you can change the difficulty level at will. This title is packed with features that we couldn’t put in the mobile phone version, and gameplay is one thing that benefited.
-So the highlight of Re:Coded is definitely all the added gameplay?
I think so. When it comes to gameplay it really is a brand new title, and so I’d love for people to play it and see. With the levelling system, battle system, wireless component and secret movie, there are so many new components. My particular recommendation is the wireless content. There’s an arrangement in place that makes it okay even if there’s no one around to connect with, so don’t worry. You can enjoy the component even if it seems silenced. There’s also the trophy system from BBS, so I think you can enjoy this game for a long time.