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Aquaberry

Communications Manager
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Aquaberry last won the day on August 6

Aquaberry had the most liked content!

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About Aquaberry

  • Staff Role
    Communications Manager
  • Birthday November 2

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    Female

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  • Wrote over 100 news articles. Lead the news writing team. Contributed over 900 images to our gallery. Represented KH13 at numerous events.

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  1. The entertainment website otocoto have published a column by strategist Shuji Utsumi, who wrote about his involvement in the Kingdom Hearts project and how it came to be approved by Disney. Utsumi joined Disney in 2000 and became the Asia-Pacific representative at Disney Interactive. At the time, he was surprised to learn that Kingdom Hearts was more of an experimental project that hadn't received an official approval by Disney – something Squaresoft was not aware of as they eagerly worked on it. Disney Japan did not have a license to work with a completely new world, and the act of incorporating multiple Disney titles into a single work was unprecedented at Disney. There existed no Mickey Mouse style guide for 3D modeling, and there was no one on the Japanese side who could judge this project, which seems to be the reason why even the head office did not have the authorization to work on it. Some of Disney's veteran staff in Japan advised Utsumi to stop the project early, saying "no way that's gonna work". At the time, he never dreamed that he would present it to Eisner and obtain approval for its commercialization. In the early 2000's, Eisner decided to come to Japan after a long time. Disney Japan representatives were to present a performance report to Eisner, and the Division Managing Director was to give the business report. Utsumi was also a member of the presentation. On the day of the presentation, more than 100 people from both Japanese and American management attended, but everyone's attention was set on Eisner. Eisner sat in the front seat and asked each presenter one question after another. Utsumi says that meetings at Disney without Eisner were completely different. He described Eisner as an "Ancient Chinese Emperor". Utsumi's presentation on that day also included Kingdom Hearts, which he was concerned about. However, it was worth doing well, and the session went smoothly in the end, with Eisner's encouragement and official approval to continue the project. After the presentation, many Disney executives and staff smiled and even asked for Utsumi for a handshake. Thanks to KH13 News Writer @Ryuji_Shiryu for his help translating the column! For more details on the history of Kingdom Hearts, watch KH13's "The Road to Kingdom Hearts III", a 48-minute documentary-style film directed by @HaakonHawk in collaboration with SarahKey, KZXcellent, and other content creators from the fan community. Starting with the first game's inception, the film moves over to how the franchise director Tetsuya Nomura got involved, the famous elevator story, character licensing, voice actors, the announcement of Kingdom Hearts III at E3 2013, and much much more.
  2. The entertainment website otocoto have published a column by strategist Shuji Utsumi, who wrote about his involvement in the Kingdom Hearts project and how it came to be approved by Disney. Utsumi joined Disney in 2000 and became the Asia-Pacific representative at Disney Interactive. At the time, he was surprised to learn that Kingdom Hearts was more of an experimental project that hadn't received an official approval by Disney – something Squaresoft was not aware of as they eagerly worked on it. Disney Japan did not have a license to work with a completely new world, and the act of incorporating multiple Disney titles into a single work was unprecedented at Disney. There existed no Mickey Mouse style guide for 3D modeling, and there was no one on the Japanese side who could judge this project, which seems to be the reason why even the head office did not have the authorization to work on it. Some of Disney's veteran staff in Japan advised Utsumi to stop the project early, saying "no way that's gonna work". At the time, he never dreamed that he would present it to Eisner and obtain approval for its commercialization. In the early 2000's, Eisner decided to come to Japan after a long time. Disney Japan representatives were to present a performance report to Eisner, and the Division Managing Director was to give the business report. Utsumi was also a member of the presentation. On the day of the presentation, more than 100 people from both Japanese and American management attended, but everyone's attention was set on Eisner. Eisner sat in the front seat and asked each presenter one question after another. Utsumi says that meetings at Disney without Eisner were completely different. He described Eisner as an "Ancient Chinese Emperor". Utsumi's presentation on that day also included Kingdom Hearts, which he was concerned about. However, it was worth doing well, and the session went smoothly in the end, with Eisner's encouragement and official approval to continue the project. After the presentation, many Disney executives and staff smiled and even asked for Utsumi for a handshake. Thanks to KH13 News Writer @Ryuji_Shiryu for his help translating the column! For more details on the history of Kingdom Hearts, watch KH13's "The Road to Kingdom Hearts III", a 48-minute documentary-style film directed by @HaakonHawk in collaboration with SarahKey, KZXcellent, and other content creators from the fan community. Starting with the first game's inception, the film moves over to how the franchise director Tetsuya Nomura got involved, the famous elevator story, character licensing, voice actors, the announcement of Kingdom Hearts III at E3 2013, and much much more. View full article
  3. Kingdom Hearts Dark Road has now been live for a week! Upon completion of the first episode, here are our staff's impressions of this new chapter in the series! Gameplay We found the responses to the gameplay of KHUχ to be simplistic and bland. While it is certainly more new-player-friendly than KHUχ, and has the option to speed you through to the story scenes, the lack of depth in gameplay can make it a dull affair to those looking for a challenge. Either way, the lack of AP was appreciated! The KHDR home screen is simply a static screen of the current world, very unlike KHUχ, where you can move your character around and see what quests and events are available. In KHDR, you don't travel around worlds anymore. There are currently 20 brief quests, interspersed by several "Kill X amount of enemies in Y place" missions. You simply start a battle and continue until you either die or just want to stop. You can also put the game on auto battle mode and relax; some members of our staff liked the option to press "World Battle" and progress with the story without having to commit to hours of grinding, which can be monotonous while battling wave after wave of enemies with no exploration. However, the game on auto play can be a bit slower than the speed at which you can play it manually play; there's always a brief pause before the AI selects cards, whereas you can do this right away on manual. If you were not a fan of the card mechanics in Chain of Memories/RE: Chain of Memories and Flick Rush in Dream Drop Distance, you will most probably not like it in KHDR! Battle is a matter of using cards randomly drawn from your (customizable) deck with enemies attacking in real time, but there's relatively little strategy to it beyond making sure the first one is a good one, trying to use 3 of the same color (green/red/blue), and praying that your RNG is decent on which ones show up out of your deck. The chance to get the Key Art cards (some of the strongest cards in the mobile games) is unfortunately very low, sitting at a measly 0.19%. You can change the last party member with any of the four new characters (Hermod, Urd, Bragi and Vor) but it's doesn't seem like they add much to the gameplay. KHDR has the player grind excessive amounts of BP to level up, especially after Level 10. The difference in strength between the Rank 1 and Rank 2 enemies seems disproportionate; you can be stronger than a Rank 1 enemy, but find it incredibly difficult getting through more than two or three enemies at Rank 2. The difficulty spikes on the quests are also enormous, leading the player to grind even more to simply get a chance to complete the quests that are currently avaliable. There are no Keyblades to swap between, no equipment. Instead, there are two main routes to gaining power. The first is pulling for cards depicting various features of the series (enemies, art, Keyblades, and characters) in return for draw tickets, or jewels (shared with KHUχ, so pulling here reduces your jewels there and vice versa), which, if you get duplicates of, automatically merge to power up up to +10. The other is by acquiring BP, which so far serves only one purpose in KHDR: spending it to level up and increase Xehanort's base stats, although there is an empty shop tab labeled for it. As a side note, you can also gain tiny, incremental increases to various stats, mostly HP, either by collecting duplicate cards, or by killing 1, 10, 100, and 1,000 of the same enemy. BP is gained in small increments by defeating Heartless, or in fairly large amounts in the current event, which grants large amounts of it in return for special event keys, which you can of course buy with premium currency, or earn with weekly and monthly missions. You can also gain a minuscule amount of BP while the game is off. But it feels like it's something you might need to save for whatever is available in the future that requires it. Should you use all your BP to level up Xehanort now, or save it for whatever item that the game might have in store in the future? We don't know! But by far, the cheapest (and least soul-crushing) way of gaining BP is by entering an endless battle mode too weak to kill you, and then turning on auto mode. The gameplay is, at its core, very simplistic. While KHUχ has, over the years, veered into being overly complex and convoluted with its numerous ways of powering up the medals you attain, KHDR avoids that by requiring little to no thought whatsoever. If you're playing on auto mode, we suggest you turn it off if you see that you're out of cards, and tap to refill your cards faster. Just try to get through the quests fast to get to the story events. Characters and Story Based on our experience of the chapter available for KHDR, and our experience of playing it in the past week, it seems to have much more of a story-focused feel than KHUχ. But this is compromised by the incredible amount of grinding you have to do to progress to five brief cutscenes, which can demotivate the player into stopping (or turning on auto mode). The characters are interesting and the story is enjoyable. The relationship between Xehanort and Eraqus is one we were excited to see. They have an easy chemistry one expects from a pair of actual, real-world friends. Furthermore, the story has the distinction of moving faster and being more tight and focused than KHUχ, in our experience. The four new Keyblade wielders, however, are effectively entirely interchangeable as party members with no difference to the story, saying the exact same things where they appear, with no difference whatsoever on who you choose despite having different personalities. They unfortunately seem to serve as set pieces and props more than actual, well-written, influential characters, especially considering... KHDR is certainly bound to be even more compelling than its counterpart KHUχ. It seems to be a more personal tale with a shocking twist at the end of Episode 1 (see in spoiler box). The story, though short, has a strong beginning, enticing hardcore fans to follow along, craving future lore and insights into how and why Xehanort became the Seeker of Darkness. Overall Impressions KHDR is a simple, fun game to play on your phone, but not a title with much to write home about. It starts very slow, with only time to tell if it will get livelier or stay an idle experience. While the mechanics may be new-user friendly, we don't actively recommend it for those who have not played KHUχ as it relies, for now anyway, too much on your KHUχ progress to even get to a decent point in it. In fact, as a KHUχ player, it's possible to use it as an easy way to make more jewels for KHDR due to its almost entirely idle nature and fairly generous weekly/monthly rewards. While KHDR's story is compelling, engaging, and appreciatingly fast-paced, and the friendship between the younger versions of Master Xehanort and Master Eraqus are a joy to experience, the gameplay grind is likely to be too monotonous and uneventful and to be skipped over on auto mode. KHDR apparently had a relatively small team that worked on it, and some of the limitations are somewhat understandable given the lack of focus it received. The KHUχ team was still working on KHUχ when developing KHDR, and with only two animators. With time, updates, expertise and a bit more focus on it, perhaps that can be changed. It's too early to tell. Overall Rating 5.8 out of 10 ⭐️ Many thanks to @Allwil13, @Otti#8624, @Ryuji_Shiryu, @Aqua_Wren, @OrpheusJoshua, PowerJusho_KH13 and others for sharing their first impressions of Kingdom Hearts Dark Road! Let us know what you thought about it, and what you expect in the coming developments! View full article
  4. Kingdom Hearts Dark Road has now been live for a week! Upon completion of the first episode, here are our staff's impressions of this new chapter in the series! Gameplay We found the responses to the gameplay of KHUχ to be simplistic and bland. While it is certainly more new-player-friendly than KHUχ, and has the option to speed you through to the story scenes, the lack of depth in gameplay can make it a dull affair to those looking for a challenge. Either way, the lack of AP was appreciated! The KHDR home screen is simply a static screen of the current world, very unlike KHUχ, where you can move your character around and see what quests and events are available. In KHDR, you don't travel around worlds anymore. There are currently 20 brief quests, interspersed by several "Kill X amount of enemies in Y place" missions. You simply start a battle and continue until you either die or just want to stop. You can also put the game on auto battle mode and relax; some members of our staff liked the option to press "World Battle" and progress with the story without having to commit to hours of grinding, which can be monotonous while battling wave after wave of enemies with no exploration. However, the game on auto play can be a bit slower than the speed at which you can play it manually play; there's always a brief pause before the AI selects cards, whereas you can do this right away on manual. If you were not a fan of the card mechanics in Chain of Memories/RE: Chain of Memories and Flick Rush in Dream Drop Distance, you will most probably not like it in KHDR! Battle is a matter of using cards randomly drawn from your (customizable) deck with enemies attacking in real time, but there's relatively little strategy to it beyond making sure the first one is a good one, trying to use 3 of the same color (green/red/blue), and praying that your RNG is decent on which ones show up out of your deck. The chance to get the Key Art cards (some of the strongest cards in the mobile games) is unfortunately very low, sitting at a measly 0.19%. You can change the last party member with any of the four new characters (Hermod, Urd, Bragi and Vor) but it's doesn't seem like they add much to the gameplay. KHDR has the player grind excessive amounts of BP to level up, especially after Level 10. The difference in strength between the Rank 1 and Rank 2 enemies seems disproportionate; you can be stronger than a Rank 1 enemy, but find it incredibly difficult getting through more than two or three enemies at Rank 2. The difficulty spikes on the quests are also enormous, leading the player to grind even more to simply get a chance to complete the quests that are currently avaliable. There are no Keyblades to swap between, no equipment. Instead, there are two main routes to gaining power. The first is pulling for cards depicting various features of the series (enemies, art, Keyblades, and characters) in return for draw tickets, or jewels (shared with KHUχ, so pulling here reduces your jewels there and vice versa), which, if you get duplicates of, automatically merge to power up up to +10. The other is by acquiring BP, which so far serves only one purpose in KHDR: spending it to level up and increase Xehanort's base stats, although there is an empty shop tab labeled for it. As a side note, you can also gain tiny, incremental increases to various stats, mostly HP, either by collecting duplicate cards, or by killing 1, 10, 100, and 1,000 of the same enemy. BP is gained in small increments by defeating Heartless, or in fairly large amounts in the current event, which grants large amounts of it in return for special event keys, which you can of course buy with premium currency, or earn with weekly and monthly missions. You can also gain a minuscule amount of BP while the game is off. But it feels like it's something you might need to save for whatever is available in the future that requires it. Should you use all your BP to level up Xehanort now, or save it for whatever item that the game might have in store in the future? We don't know! But by far, the cheapest (and least soul-crushing) way of gaining BP is by entering an endless battle mode too weak to kill you, and then turning on auto mode. The gameplay is, at its core, very simplistic. While KHUχ has, over the years, veered into being overly complex and convoluted with its numerous ways of powering up the medals you attain, KHDR avoids that by requiring little to no thought whatsoever. If you're playing on auto mode, we suggest you turn it off if you see that you're out of cards, and tap to refill your cards faster. Just try to get through the quests fast to get to the story events. Characters and Story Based on our experience of the chapter available for KHDR, and our experience of playing it in the past week, it seems to have much more of a story-focused feel than KHUχ. But this is compromised by the incredible amount of grinding you have to do to progress to five brief cutscenes, which can demotivate the player into stopping (or turning on auto mode). The characters are interesting and the story is enjoyable. The relationship between Xehanort and Eraqus is one we were excited to see. They have an easy chemistry one expects from a pair of actual, real-world friends. Furthermore, the story has the distinction of moving faster and being more tight and focused than KHUχ, in our experience. The four new Keyblade wielders, however, are effectively entirely interchangeable as party members with no difference to the story, saying the exact same things where they appear, with no difference whatsoever on who you choose despite having different personalities. They unfortunately seem to serve as set pieces and props more than actual, well-written, influential characters, especially considering... KHDR is certainly bound to be even more compelling than its counterpart KHUχ. It seems to be a more personal tale with a shocking twist at the end of Episode 1 (see in spoiler box). The story, though short, has a strong beginning, enticing hardcore fans to follow along, craving future lore and insights into how and why Xehanort became the Seeker of Darkness. Overall Impressions KHDR is a simple, fun game to play on your phone, but not a title with much to write home about. It starts very slow, with only time to tell if it will get livelier or stay an idle experience. While the mechanics may be new-user friendly, we don't actively recommend it for those who have not played KHUχ as it relies, for now anyway, too much on your KHUχ progress to even get to a decent point in it. In fact, as a KHUχ player, it's possible to use it as an easy way to make more jewels for KHDR due to its almost entirely idle nature and fairly generous weekly/monthly rewards. While KHDR's story is compelling, engaging, and appreciatingly fast-paced, and the friendship between the younger versions of Master Xehanort and Master Eraqus are a joy to experience, the gameplay grind is likely to be too monotonous and uneventful and to be skipped over on auto mode. KHDR apparently had a relatively small team that worked on it, and some of the limitations are somewhat understandable given the lack of focus it received. The KHUχ team was still working on KHUχ when developing KHDR, and with only two animators. With time, updates, expertise and a bit more focus on it, perhaps that can be changed. It's too early to tell. Overall Rating 5.8 out of 10 ⭐️ Many thanks to @Allwil13, @Otti#8624, @Ryuji_Shiryu, @Aqua_Wren, @OrpheusJoshua, PowerJusho_KH13 and others for sharing their first impressions of Kingdom Hearts Dark Road! Let us know what you thought about it, and what you expect in the coming developments!
  5. Multiple individual journalists have been claiming to have inside information about a Kingdom Hearts animated series being in the works for Disney+, Disney's subscription video on-demand streaming service. While a Kingdom Hearts TV show has been rumored to be in production multiple times in the past, with one even being canceled in the series's early years, this is the first time multiple reporters from a handful of popular Disney news sites are claiming this to be true at the same time. Jeremy Conrad, founder and editor-in-chief at MCU Cosmic, DCEU Mythic, and Star War Unity, with previous work history with IGN and in supporting roles in video games production, hinted at this earlier today with a cryptic tweet. Daniel Richtman, known as a Disney news insider, had also made a strange Kingdom Hearts tweet earlier, which he retweeted for emphasis. Emre Kaya, a film and TV reporter at The Cinema Spot and former writer for Geeks WorldWide (GWW), followed with a short Twitter thread, claiming that they have inside information about the matter. Skyler Shuler, editor-in-chief at The DisInsider, then reported that Jeremy's post was "true". Shuler also tweeted that the alleged new Kingdom Hearts series would not be live action. We will be keeping an eye on this rumour and provide relevant updates as it develops. What do you guys think – is there any truth to this rumor? Do you think we will be seeing a Kingdom Hearts (CG) animated series at last? Let us know in the comments! View full article
  6. Multiple individual journalists have been claiming to have inside information about a Kingdom Hearts animated series being in the works for Disney+, Disney's subscription video on-demand streaming service. While a Kingdom Hearts TV show has been rumored to be in production multiple times in the past, with one even being canceled in the series's early years, this is the first time multiple reporters from a handful of popular Disney news sites are claiming this to be true at the same time. Jeremy Conrad, founder and editor-in-chief at MCU Cosmic, DCEU Mythic, and Star War Unity, with previous work history with IGN and in supporting roles in video games production, hinted at this earlier today with a cryptic tweet. Daniel Richtman, known as a Disney news insider, had also made a strange Kingdom Hearts tweet earlier, which he retweeted for emphasis. Emre Kaya, a film and TV reporter at The Cinema Spot and former writer for Geeks WorldWide (GWW), followed with a short Twitter thread, claiming that they have inside information about the matter. Skyler Shuler, editor-in-chief at The DisInsider, then reported that Jeremy's post was "true". Shuler also tweeted that the alleged new Kingdom Hearts series would not be live action. We will be keeping an eye on this rumour and provide relevant updates as it develops. What do you guys think – is there any truth to this rumor? Do you think we will be seeing a Kingdom Hearts (CG) animated series at last? Let us know in the comments!
  7. The Kingdom Hearts Series Character Files has finally been released in Japan! Featuring over 200 characters from Kingdom Hearts to Kingdom Hearts III Re Mind over 224 pages, and a short story by Tomoco Kanemaki (the writer of the Kingdom Hearts light novels), it is a collection of information of great interest to hardcore fans of the series! Keep an eye on KH13 for translations of the most interesting excerpts and scans from the book! Find below the translations of Xion's story from the book. Translations have been provided by aitaikimochi! You can also find translations of two pages of Xigbar's story here! You can purchase the book ¥3,080 (approx. $28.03) from the Square Enix e-Store directly or from AitaiKuji, who deliver official and exclusive Japanese pop culture products worldwide! We have covered translations for: Xion's Story Saix's Story Namine's Story Riku Story Riku-Replica's Story Roxas' Story' Larxene's Story Marluxia's Story Daybreak Town's Story Sora's Story Kairi's Story The translations for Xion's Story are below. You can view Xion's character page below View full article
  8. The Kingdom Hearts Series Character Files has finally been released in Japan! Featuring over 200 characters from Kingdom Hearts to Kingdom Hearts III Re Mind over 224 pages, and a short story by Tomoco Kanemaki (the writer of the Kingdom Hearts light novels), it is a collection of information of great interest to hardcore fans of the series! Keep an eye on KH13 for translations of the most interesting excerpts and scans from the book! Find below the translations of Xion's story from the book. Translations have been provided by aitaikimochi! You can also find translations of two pages of Xigbar's story here! You can purchase the book ¥3,080 (approx. $28.03) from the Square Enix e-Store directly or from AitaiKuji, who deliver official and exclusive Japanese pop culture products worldwide! We have covered translations for: Xion's Story Saix's Story Namine's Story Riku Story Riku-Replica's Story Roxas' Story' Larxene's Story Marluxia's Story Daybreak Town's Story Sora's Story Kairi's Story The translations for Xion's Story are below. You can view Xion's character page below
  9. Two new Kingdom Hearts pins from the Disney Parks Collection are now available to buy at Disneyland Parks for $12.95 each! You can see them in the pictures below. Fans tifachu13 and disneypinlover28 report finding these pins at the Disneyland Park in Anaheim, California. Churro has reported that these can be bought at the Main Street Pin Shop inside the park. View full article
  10. Two new Kingdom Hearts pins from the Disney Parks Collection are now available to buy at Disneyland Parks for $12.95 each! You can see them in the pictures below. Fans tifachu13 and disneypinlover28 report finding these pins at the Disneyland Park in Anaheim, California. Churro has reported that these can be bought at the Main Street Pin Shop inside the park.
  11. The Kingdom Hearts Orchestra - World of Tres - tour stopped at Osaka, Japan, on November 30th and brought forward many updates about the Kingdom Hearts III Re Mind DLC (releasing on January 23rd for PS4 and February 25th for Xbox One). A new December trailer was also teased at the concert, which leaked ahead of the official announcement of the DLC's release date and pre-order commencement during PlayStation's State of Play livestream. Most of the new information about Re Mind was announced by director Tetsuya Nomura at the evening performance, accompanied by a video shown on the screen. Due to the exclusive nature of the news, this article is a retelling of different reports from a number of the members of the audience and journalists, namely Famitsu, kyo0607_KH, sonzaisinaimono, wotan_ivalicese, finekh_ephemera, mel_lifluous3, and 0408mark58. Credits for translations go to KH13 Staff @Mio-chan and Ryuji, and Keytotruth. Guest Appearances: Yoko Shimomura, Takeharu Ishimoto & Tsuyoshi Sekito Following the established setlist for the Kingdom Hearts Orchestra - World of Tres - concerts, the evening performance showcased music from the series in the first part of the show, and music from Kingdom Hearts III in the second part. Composer Yoko Shimomura made her usual and clamored appearance as well. In the beginning of the second half, composers Takeharu Ishimoto (who composed music from The Carribean and San Fransokyo and several battle songs) and Tsuyoshi Sekito (who was in charge of Gummi Ship themes and world mini-games' music such as the Little Chef's Bistro and the Kingdom of Corona's festival dance) came on stage. Ishimoto has been involved in the series since working as a synthesizer operator on Kingdom Hearts II (2005), while Sekito worked on the music arrangement in Birth by Sleep (2010). Ishimoto, who usually sits in front of the computer when writing a song, expressed his appreciation at holding a concert for fans to listen to the music as it is played live. Sekito, who listened to the rehearsals and daytime performance, praised the Osaka Symphony Orchestra for their wonderful performance and was happy that the show was taking place in his hometown. Guest Appearances: Miyu Irino, Tetsuya Nomura and Ichiro Hazama After playing the piano for the song 'Rhapsody in Tres for Piano, Chorus and Orchestra', Shimomura welcomed Sora's Japanese voice actor Miyu Irino to the stage. Irino made a notable entrance by saying once of his most famous lines, "My friends are my power!" in Japanese. Shimomura mentioned Irino singing 'Under the Sea' in Kingdom Hearts II as a memorable scene. "For some reason, Sora has a part where he sings "Darling". It was something decided during production, but why would Sora, who is male, say "Darling" in his singing part?!" said Shimomura with confusion. "But then, when I heard Irino sing that part, my heart skipped a beat," she laughed. Irino talked about how he was just in middle school when he was introduced to Kingdom Hearts. He saw it in an introductory article in the Weekly Shōnen Magazine. "At that time, I thought 'I have to buy this game when it releases'," he laughed, "And by the time I noticed, I had already spent half of my life playing Sora." Shimomura then interrupted, "I want to continue talking more, but more guests are coming." This is when director Tetsuya Nomura and executive producer Ichiro Hazama were greeted to the stage with a great round of applause. With the upcoming releases of the Kingdom Hearts III Re Mind DLC this winter and Final Fantasy VII Remake on March 3, 2020, Nomura has been very busy. "I think everyone is wondering why we came," he said, laughing, "I really didn't plan on coming to the Osaka performance, but I decided to come because of Irino-kun!" Irino said, "Thank you!" And the venue erupted with laughter at their seemingly student-master relationship. Irino, who was a middle school student when first recording for Kingdom Hearts, said he had "only fun memories" and that Nomura saw him as an "innocent child". He said recording for Re:coded (2010) was the most difficult thing. Re:coded was released after Kingdom Hearts II, but shows a different version of Sora that is more similar to the one in Kingdom Hearts (2002). “I didn't think much when I played Sora in Kingdom Hearts, but after Kingdom Hearts II, there were times when it was difficult to become [the younger and data version of] Sora,” he said. Therefore, Nomura kept referring back to the sound sources from the first game all the time, like a "ritual". However, thanks to such 'rituals', Irino said that the inner "engine" that enables him to become Sora is now more efficient. He was consequently able to individualize his various versions of Sora. Kōki Uchiyama, who plays Roxas and Ventus, is also able to go back and forth between the characters as he also performed these 'rituals' of going back to the source audio frequently. Kingdom Hearts III Re Mind DLC reveals After the various talks, it was time to reveal more information about Kingdom Hearts III Re Mind. Nomura announced that the new trailer for the DLC is complete and will be released in December along with a release date. (This was subsequently leaked and then officially released during PlayStation's State of Play livestream.) While the trailer could not be shown at the venue at the time, Nomura had a video ready to show to the audience. Nomura warned against filming the video during the event. "Don’t film. There are people that shoot and spread the information even when we say to not to." "No one should shoot! Otherwise Nomura-san won’t give you the trailer!" Irino added. "I don’t know much about overseas, but in Japan, at the KHO concerts you’re not allowed to shoot during the event even when the orchestra is not playing!" Following the warning, Nomura played the video while talking about the new features present in the upcoming Re Mind DLC. Data Greeting (or Photo Mode, as reported by many attendees) - An extended version of the camera mode. This can be accessed directly from the Main Menu and includes a Photo Album option; upon accessing this mode, the player is instantly greeted by a scene of Sora facing the sea in Destiny Islands. In this mode, characters, props, effects, locations and camera orientations can be set up freely for shooting. Multiple characters, including enemies, can be set in one photo, and poses and facial expressions can be customized. In the video shown, this mode was used to recreate scenes from past games using Kingdom Hearts III graphics, eg. the scene of Axel confronting Xion in Twilight Town (from 358/2 Days). A photo of Xehanort with Meow Wow was also shown, to which Irino commented, "Wow! That's unique!" One of the photos seemed to include the new Organizations XIII in a line with Sora in the middle. One of the photos shown reportedly included a photo of Sora, Kairi and Riku excitedly looking at a giant pancake in Destiny Islands. Attendee sonzaisinaimono drew the following sketch of the photo; we have edited it to add translations from the original sketch. Props included a Frog Prince Dream Eater and props related to bosses defeated when rescuing the Seven Princesses. A sketch of this has been provided by 0408mark58. Slideshow - A function that displayes the player's photos in a slideshow while a set music plays in the background. Premium Menu - This enables the player to adjust several difficulty settings in 'Fast Pass' and 'Black Code'. Fast Pass includes adjustments to make the game easier, such as the ability to defeat enemies with a single blow and grand magic and Attractions appearing more frequently (to the point that there can be about 6-7 spells and Attractions stacked up above the Command Menu, as shown in the video). Black Code, on the other hand, uses player-imposed restrictions to crank the difficulty up to ludicrous levels, with options such as choosing how much health you can have and restricting the use of Cure and items. ("Banning Cure?! It will be a challenge just to think about how to clear the game..." Irino commented.) In the video shown, the example battle to show these setting was against Marshmallow in Arendelle. The demo player had to constantly block Marshmallow's swiping attacks and had no way to heal (although he did use a Kupo Coin). The video also showed a setting where Sora’s MP and HP would go down gradually during battle. Irino commented, “Why would you do that?!” to which Nomura responded with a laugh. Unlike the usual difficulty modes, these settings are customizable during the game. However, these setting must meet certain conditions such as clearing certain missions. Irino added, “In Kingdom Hearts III there are several battle voices for grunts like 'ha', 'yah', and 'hyaa' with different variations, so I hope you enjoy those." It was said that these new features will not be showcased in the upcoming trailer (and they weren't). When the talk about the new Re Mind features ended, Shimomura remained on stage and expressed her gratitude for the concert tour, and the last, encore song 'Chikai -KINGDOM Orchestra Instrumental Version-' was performed. Kingdom Hearts Orchestra -World of Tres- has now toured all over the world! The two last perfomances will be held in Yokohama, Japan, on December 26th and 27th. Kingdom Hearts Orchestra - World of Tres - Osaka Concert Photo Album Read our original report of the Osaka concert reveals here. You can read our report of the Kingdom Hearts III Re Mind State of Play trailer here. View full article
  12. The Kingdom Hearts Orchestra - World of Tres - tour stopped at Osaka, Japan, on November 30th and brought forward many updates about the Kingdom Hearts III Re Mind DLC (releasing on January 23rd for PS4 and February 25th for Xbox One). A new December trailer was also teased at the concert, which leaked ahead of the official announcement of the DLC's release date and pre-order commencement during PlayStation's State of Play livestream. Most of the new information about Re Mind was announced by director Tetsuya Nomura at the evening performance, accompanied by a video shown on the screen. Due to the exclusive nature of the news, this article is a retelling of different reports from a number of the members of the audience and journalists, namely Famitsu, kyo0607_KH, sonzaisinaimono, wotan_ivalicese, finekh_ephemera, mel_lifluous3, and 0408mark58. Credits for translations go to KH13 Staff @Mio-chan and Ryuji, and Keytotruth. Guest Appearances: Yoko Shimomura, Takeharu Ishimoto & Tsuyoshi Sekito Following the established setlist for the Kingdom Hearts Orchestra - World of Tres - concerts, the evening performance showcased music from the series in the first part of the show, and music from Kingdom Hearts III in the second part. Composer Yoko Shimomura made her usual and clamored appearance as well. In the beginning of the second half, composers Takeharu Ishimoto (who composed music from The Carribean and San Fransokyo and several battle songs) and Tsuyoshi Sekito (who was in charge of Gummi Ship themes and world mini-games' music such as the Little Chef's Bistro and the Kingdom of Corona's festival dance) came on stage. Ishimoto has been involved in the series since working as a synthesizer operator on Kingdom Hearts II (2005), while Sekito worked on the music arrangement in Birth by Sleep (2010). Ishimoto, who usually sits in front of the computer when writing a song, expressed his appreciation at holding a concert for fans to listen to the music as it is played live. Sekito, who listened to the rehearsals and daytime performance, praised the Osaka Symphony Orchestra for their wonderful performance and was happy that the show was taking place in his hometown. Guest Appearances: Miyu Irino, Tetsuya Nomura and Ichiro Hazama After playing the piano for the song 'Rhapsody in Tres for Piano, Chorus and Orchestra', Shimomura welcomed Sora's Japanese voice actor Miyu Irino to the stage. Irino made a notable entrance by saying once of his most famous lines, "My friends are my power!" in Japanese. Shimomura mentioned Irino singing 'Under the Sea' in Kingdom Hearts II as a memorable scene. "For some reason, Sora has a part where he sings "Darling". It was something decided during production, but why would Sora, who is male, say "Darling" in his singing part?!" said Shimomura with confusion. "But then, when I heard Irino sing that part, my heart skipped a beat," she laughed. Irino talked about how he was just in middle school when he was introduced to Kingdom Hearts. He saw it in an introductory article in the Weekly Shōnen Magazine. "At that time, I thought 'I have to buy this game when it releases'," he laughed, "And by the time I noticed, I had already spent half of my life playing Sora." Shimomura then interrupted, "I want to continue talking more, but more guests are coming." This is when director Tetsuya Nomura and executive producer Ichiro Hazama were greeted to the stage with a great round of applause. With the upcoming releases of the Kingdom Hearts III Re Mind DLC this winter and Final Fantasy VII Remake on March 3, 2020, Nomura has been very busy. "I think everyone is wondering why we came," he said, laughing, "I really didn't plan on coming to the Osaka performance, but I decided to come because of Irino-kun!" Irino said, "Thank you!" And the venue erupted with laughter at their seemingly student-master relationship. Irino, who was a middle school student when first recording for Kingdom Hearts, said he had "only fun memories" and that Nomura saw him as an "innocent child". He said recording for Re:coded (2010) was the most difficult thing. Re:coded was released after Kingdom Hearts II, but shows a different version of Sora that is more similar to the one in Kingdom Hearts (2002). “I didn't think much when I played Sora in Kingdom Hearts, but after Kingdom Hearts II, there were times when it was difficult to become [the younger and data version of] Sora,” he said. Therefore, Nomura kept referring back to the sound sources from the first game all the time, like a "ritual". However, thanks to such 'rituals', Irino said that the inner "engine" that enables him to become Sora is now more efficient. He was consequently able to individualize his various versions of Sora. Kōki Uchiyama, who plays Roxas and Ventus, is also able to go back and forth between the characters as he also performed these 'rituals' of going back to the source audio frequently. Kingdom Hearts III Re Mind DLC reveals After the various talks, it was time to reveal more information about Kingdom Hearts III Re Mind. Nomura announced that the new trailer for the DLC is complete and will be released in December along with a release date. (This was subsequently leaked and then officially released during PlayStation's State of Play livestream.) While the trailer could not be shown at the venue at the time, Nomura had a video ready to show to the audience. Nomura warned against filming the video during the event. "Don’t film. There are people that shoot and spread the information even when we say to not to." "No one should shoot! Otherwise Nomura-san won’t give you the trailer!" Irino added. "I don’t know much about overseas, but in Japan, at the KHO concerts you’re not allowed to shoot during the event even when the orchestra is not playing!" Following the warning, Nomura played the video while talking about the new features present in the upcoming Re Mind DLC. Data Greeting (or Photo Mode, as reported by many attendees) - An extended version of the camera mode. This can be accessed directly from the Main Menu and includes a Photo Album option; upon accessing this mode, the player is instantly greeted by a scene of Sora facing the sea in Destiny Islands. In this mode, characters, props, effects, locations and camera orientations can be set up freely for shooting. Multiple characters, including enemies, can be set in one photo, and poses and facial expressions can be customized. In the video shown, this mode was used to recreate scenes from past games using Kingdom Hearts III graphics, eg. the scene of Axel confronting Xion in Twilight Town (from 358/2 Days). A photo of Xehanort with Meow Wow was also shown, to which Irino commented, "Wow! That's unique!" One of the photos seemed to include the new Organizations XIII in a line with Sora in the middle. One of the photos shown reportedly included a photo of Sora, Kairi and Riku excitedly looking at a giant pancake in Destiny Islands. Attendee sonzaisinaimono drew the following sketch of the photo; we have edited it to add translations from the original sketch. Props included a Frog Prince Dream Eater and props related to bosses defeated when rescuing the Seven Princesses. A sketch of this has been provided by 0408mark58. Slideshow - A function that displayes the player's photos in a slideshow while a set music plays in the background. Premium Menu - This enables the player to adjust several difficulty settings in 'Fast Pass' and 'Black Code'. Fast Pass includes adjustments to make the game easier, such as the ability to defeat enemies with a single blow and grand magic and Attractions appearing more frequently (to the point that there can be about 6-7 spells and Attractions stacked up above the Command Menu, as shown in the video). Black Code, on the other hand, uses player-imposed restrictions to crank the difficulty up to ludicrous levels, with options such as choosing how much health you can have and restricting the use of Cure and items. ("Banning Cure?! It will be a challenge just to think about how to clear the game..." Irino commented.) In the video shown, the example battle to show these setting was against Marshmallow in Arendelle. The demo player had to constantly block Marshmallow's swiping attacks and had no way to heal (although he did use a Kupo Coin). The video also showed a setting where Sora’s MP and HP would go down gradually during battle. Irino commented, “Why would you do that?!” to which Nomura responded with a laugh. Unlike the usual difficulty modes, these settings are customizable during the game. However, these setting must meet certain conditions such as clearing certain missions. Irino added, “In Kingdom Hearts III there are several battle voices for grunts like 'ha', 'yah', and 'hyaa' with different variations, so I hope you enjoy those." It was said that these new features will not be showcased in the upcoming trailer (and they weren't). When the talk about the new Re Mind features ended, Shimomura remained on stage and expressed her gratitude for the concert tour, and the last, encore song 'Chikai -KINGDOM Orchestra Instrumental Version-' was performed. Kingdom Hearts Orchestra -World of Tres- has now toured all over the world! The two last perfomances will be held in Yokohama, Japan, on December 26th and 27th. Kingdom Hearts Orchestra - World of Tres - Osaka Concert Photo Album Read our original report of the Osaka concert reveals here. You can read our report of the Kingdom Hearts III Re Mind State of Play trailer here.
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