Operation Backlog Completion 2024
Sep 192018

After the previous trailer, Square Enix promised an extended Kingdom Hearts III trailer, and they did not disappoint!

They also unveiled the official box art, so let’s take a look at that first.

I love this art. It shows all of the major trios, as well as Naminé, for a total of 13 characters. Does this mean that all of these characters will play an important role in the story? I hope so.

In addition to the 13 characters, it also features a Darkling, a type of Pureblood Heartless introduced in Kingdom Hearts Unchained χ/Union Cross. Darklings are Keyblade wielders who fall to the darkness. The Darkling is holding a star, possibly a reference to Lux.

There is also a cat on the roof below it, although I’m not sure why. A nod to Chirithy, maybe?

A clock tower along the left goes up to 13 instead of 12, with 7 blue lights above the clock face. The hands are pointing to 13 and 7, for the 13 Seekers of Darkness and the 7 Guardians of Light.

I really like this art and all the little details. Now, let’s take a look at the new trailer.

There is so much going on in this trailer.

First, we return to the hopeless chess scene. After Xehanort says “Checkmate,” Eraqus lifts his piece to make another move. This could just mean Sora will be surrounded on all sides by enemies but not give up, but maybe it means the light will act outside of the rules Xehanort thinks exist.

(Either way, it contributes to the growing number of jokes that Eraqus doesn’t know how to play chess.)

Next is the Big Hero 6 section, showing more from that world. This includes a section where Sora is sitting up high with the Big Hero 6 characters eating ice cream (of course), and seemingly has a vision of Roxas and his friends.

We see Riku and Mickey talking in the Realm of Darkness again, and then Sora getting a call that he hopes is from Riku, though it turns out to be Ienzo.

It shows some new scenes from the Tangled, Pirates of the Caribbean (hey, just in time for International Talk Like a Pirate Day, mateys!), and Frozen worlds, as well as Sora finding Eraqus’s Keyblade on the beach. I like to think that Aqua cast the Keyblade out of the Realm of Darkness intentionally before/while falling to the darkness, in an attempt to protect Ventus.

This section also includes Larxene telling a surprised Sora that they have all 13 Seekers of Darkness.

Next, we see Hayner, Pence, and Olette asking to help Sora find Roxas, as they prepare to enter “Another Twilight Town.” Does the digital Twilight Town still exist? Is this part of the solution Ansem the Wise left behind?

There’s another gameplay montage, including the first look at Kingdom Hearts 3’s photo mode, and then things really get interesting.

Ansem says they will have to destroy someone if he wavers from their path, and Xigbar says this will mean finding another vessel. Who do they mean? Sora? Roxas?

Then we see Vexen! I’m so happy that he’s finally been shown. I was concerned Even/Vexen might not be in the game at all. He has yellow eyes, which disappoints me since I wanted him to be a good guy, but at least he’s there. And he’s talking to Demyx! Vexen tells Demyx something about a plan, saying, “This whole plan was his idea.”

(The ambiguity gives me hope that they might be on the good side after all.)

Sora confronts the mysterious cloaked figure from the previous trailer, now revealed to be Riku. Riku has yellow eyes, but which Riku is it? Most people think it isn’t the main Riku, but either the Riku Replica or Data-Riku.

We see Ventus in Castle Oblivion, with Vanitas looking down at him from above. Then it cuts to Aqua in the Realm of Darkness, about to attack.

Last time, there was a brief glimpse of a distant figure who appeared to be Master Xehanort, and it is! This is our first look at Master Xehanort in Kingdom Hearts 3, as he narrates his plans over the next few scenes. People seem pleased with his new voice, so I hope his new English voice actor also does a good job.

The next scene shows non-dark Aqua fight Ansem and his Guardian without the use of her Keyblade. Is it already out of the Realm of Darkness? Is this where she’ll fall?

It returns to the scene we’ve seen of Kairi and Lea talking, and Kairi raises her hand in what might be Lea’s old “got it memorized” pose.

Then we see Demyx entering the lab to greet Ienzo. Demyx’s eyes are difficult to make out, but they appear to be yellow. He is carrying someone wrapped in a white sheet. Who is it? And why would he bring this person to Ienzo, who is on our side?

(Like the ambiguous line I mentioned above, this curious scene makes me hope Demyx and Even are secretly helping Ienzo.)

It cuts to a scene of Ienzo being comforted by someone whose face is mostly obscured, but from what we can see, looks like Ansem the Wise! Did he escape the Realm of Darkness? Is he forgiving his old apprentice for his betrayal?

In the next shot, Saix approaches Lea on the clock tower. This is our first look at Saix in Kingdom Hearts 3. Why is he approaching Lea? Will they fight?

The next part goes by quickly, but the silver-haired man removing his hand from his face looks to me like Terra-Xehanort. Is he back as a Seeker of Darkness? Is Terra fighting back?

Then we see Vanitas standing over Aqua’s body, Keyblade raised to strike. Is this when she falls?

The image returns of Aqua clasping Sora’s hand, followed by Sora falling toward a Dive to the Heart stained glass platform with Ventus’s image on it.

Next, Sora and Kairi sitting together on the island as the sun sets…

And then Lea crying?! This scene has me both excited and worried. These tears might be because he remembered Xion (possibly while talking to Kairi), but what if it’s because he’s going to have to fight Saix?

The final shot is of Roxas taking down his hood.

This trailer is packed with scenes to develop theories about. On one hand, I worry it’s shown too much… but on the other hand, without context for most of these moments, I can’t help but try to imagine how they might all fit together and what they mean.

I’m even more excited for Kingdom Hearts III now than I was before. What did you think of the cover art and the new trailer?

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