The latest Kingdom Hearts III trailer was officially released by Square Enix at their E3 Conference, sending the fandom, already ravenous for any new information, into an all-out frenzy. Since most of us blacked out for a bit due to the excitement, it's time to take a closer look at the trailer and examine the most important revelations.
Moment #1: "You can drop the facade."
We already knew from Birth by Sleep that Eraqus and Xehanort go way back. Now, we're getting a look at their (admittedly adorable) days growing up in what we presume to be the Land of Departure. We already got a dose of the weirdly-hot young version of Xehanort through his older form's time shenanigans in Dream Drop Distance, but this is the first we're seeing of lil' Eraqus.
The trailer opens with them discussing the Keyblade War in an apparent continuation of last year's trailer. When Eraqus plays dumb about the "lost masters," Xehanort calls him out. How long has Eraqus known about Xehanort's ambitions? And why did he forgive him before the events of Birth by Sleep?
Moment #2: New Enemies
Okay, hear me out. While we know Heartless are going to reappear in Kingdom Hearts III, and while these certainly look like Heartless . . . Do we actually know they are? These new water-slinging enemies attack Sora early in the trailer and are noticeably missing the emblem emblazoned on most Heartless. This either means they're of the purebred variety or they're something else entirely.
With Vanitas making a cameo in Dream Drop Distance, rumors are flying that Ven's dark half will be one of the thirteen seekers, priming the universe for a reintroduction to the Unversed. Could these monsters in the trailer be Unversed?
Moment #3: Olympus Coliseum won't just be the Coliseum
Olympus Coliseum has been a staple of the Kingdom Hearts series since the beginning, appearing in every game except Dream Drop Distance. While Kingdom Hearts II let us explore the Underworld and Birth by Sleep gave us a brief foray into town, we really haven't gotten to leave the Coliseum much otherwise.
The Kingdom Hearts III trailer brings us all over, sending us up and down grassy mountainsides and into battle with the Rock Titan. With the recently announced collaboration with Disney animators, we'll be able to explore the world of Hercules like never before. Hopefully all of the worlds will be this expansive.
Moment #4: Sora's new outfit
Ever since Sora got a new look from Flora, Fauna, and Merryweather in Kingdom Hearts II, fans have been expecting an appearance update in Kingdom Hearts III. Following Sora's magical makeover, however, he's ended up sporting is classic red look for most side games, usually because some form of his 14-year-old self is making the appearance. This new look appears to take inspiration from his KH2 and Dream Drop Distance designs, while streamlining some of the messier bits for an older, more mature Sora.
We're glad to see Sora is keeping his trademark necklace, gloves, baggy pants, and over-sized shoes while moving towards a fashion-forward future. The hair, while still in iconic spikes, is a little different too. Kinda swoopy. Not that we're complaining, mind you. Sora 3.0 is fine.
Moment #5: Tangled
After almost ten years of speculation, the first new world of Kingdom Hearts III has been confirmed. And it's Tangled! Since its release in 2010, Tangled has often been theorized as a new world for the Kingdom Hearts series. With Rapunzel and Flynn Rider as natural party member candidates, a lush variety of areas, and a villain guided by the darkness in her heart, the movie will fit in perfectly.
While we loved seeing Sora explore Corona, we were especially thrilled to see Rapunzel's tower. Now all that's left is to see how they're going to animate all that hair.
No word yet on other fandom front-runners like Brave or Frozen.
Moment #6: Disneyland Power-ups
We've already seen Sora smash roller coasters and pendulum pirate ships into his enemies, but with the recently revealed spinning tea cups, we can safely assume that Disney park attractions will be playing a major role in combat.
For years, Kingdom Hearts and Disneyland/World didn't really know what to do with one another. Sometimes there'd be a KH promotion in the park, and you can still find merchandise if you look hard enough, but the attractions have never appeared in the game, despite their popularity and role in Disney culture. They decided to leave that to Epic Mickey. Now it would seem that all of your favorite rides will be hitting the screen (and the Heartless) in Kingdom Hearts III.
Moment #7: Master Xehanort's Keyblade
Near the end of the trailer, Xehanort looks up from his "friendly" chess match to gaze at the mantle, upon which a familiar keyblade hangs. As he stares on reverently, he remarks that "the future . . . it's already been written." Destiny is a pretty big deal to Master Xehanort, playing into his big plans for the Keyblade War.
In a scene exclusive to the 2.5 HD ReMIX, Young Xehanort mentions that his older self's keyblade is the most ancient of all. This appearance suggests that the keyblade was not originally Xehanort's, but the sixth Foreteller's, which has yet to be shown in-game.
What were your favorite moments from E3's Kingdom Hearts III trailer? Which features struck you the most?