The difference between links and summons.



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EliDZ

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Here's is an explanation for why Summons aren't in KH3. You can read it or the bottom is a link to my video in which I read the explanation and provide visual aide.

SO in each main Kingdom Hearts game we have Summons, well actually in KH3 we have links. What’s up with that? Did Nomura one day just decide to go with a more dull sounding name? No, because links aren't even a new function. We’ve seen links in two games prior to KH3. First in BBS in which they are known as Dimensional links. And then in Dream Drop Distance in which the word link is used all over the place in relation to dream eaters. The one specifically used in combat is simply called links and has different properties for Sora and Riku. In BBS D-Links are used with the Wayfinder and the links in KH3 are used via Heartbinder. The common similarity amongst all links across the series many games is that Sora and the rest are calling upon the power of the hearts they are linked to. As opposed to when it’s a Summons(from KH1 and KH2), in which they are actually calling upon who it is being summoned. Pretty straight forward. In KH2 Simba and Mushu recognize Sora, because they had actually met him when they were being summoned in KH1. There’s no doubt that those were the actual individuals said to have been summoned. But can we say the same about links in KH3? I’m proposing that what really sets links apart from summons is that fact that rather than the actual Simba being summoned. It’s more like a Simba being recreated. In hindsight it explains why Simba is all of a sudden a massive fire lion. Even more so it explains why Simba, Ariel, and Stitch look like phantoms. They aren’t real versions of themselves. Well meow wow and ralph don’t look different, but there's a good reason for that. That which seems like an inconsistency actually is more supportive evidence. What is it that separates meow wow and ralph from the rest? It’s the fact that they are inherently artificial beings. While a talking lion, mermaid, and alien may seem like fantasy to us. In the world of KH they are natural beings. However Meow wow is literally from dreams and Ralph is made of Data. In fact Ralph doesn't even look completely normal he has a glitchy/pixelated look to him. Meow is the only one that looks exactly the same. So when sora is manifesting the dream eater, it can appear as the artificial beings that it already is. Meanwhile natural beings look distinguishably fake. So that about cover most of, if like to hear me explain and speculate more then you can check out my video in which I ramble on more after I cover the main topic you just read.

This topic in video form.
 

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They were elemental versions of Disney characters because Disney didn’t want Square Enix to have Sora summon the actually characters this time around, so Square Enix worked around that by relying on a technicality that since Sora is summoning a version of the character made up of some sort of elemental material (Fire, Water, Plasma etc) that it isn’t the actual character. Since Meow Wow isn’t a Disney character from a big movie IP, it isn’t given an element.

That is literally all there is to it. There’s no canonical in game reason for this, not even the explanation of it being people close to Sora’s heart explains why they appear this way. It just all comes down to the restrictions Disney put in place.
 

Sakuraba Neku

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They were elemental versions of Disney characters because Disney didn’t want Square Enix to have Sora summon the actually characters this time around, so Square Enix worked around that by relying on a technicality that since Sora is summoning a version of the character made up of some sort of elemental material (Fire, Water, Plasma etc) that it isn’t the actual character.
Disney relationship with Square-Enix is so strange. After all these years, I expected them to have more confidence in Nomura and his team and give them more free reign, but seems like it just happened the opposite with KH3.
 

EliDZ

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They were elemental versions of Disney characters because Disney didn’t want Square Enix to have Sora summon the actually characters this time around, so Square Enix worked around that by relying on a technicality that since Sora is summoning a version of the character made up of some sort of elemental material (Fire, Water, Plasma etc) that it isn’t the actual character. Since Meow Wow isn’t a Disney character from a big movie IP, it isn’t given an element.

That is literally all there is to it. There’s no canonical in game reason for this, not even the explanation of it being people close to Sora’s heart explains why they appear this way. It just all comes down to the restrictions Disney put in place.
Obviously that would be a technical reason outside of the game. I'm referring to a reason you can see in game that explains this.
this would be a business decision that would cause a creative decision to be made. In away your still saying what I am. The reason they appear that way is because the original characters aren't being summoned. So instead their power is being linked to Sora. As result of their creative work around of making counterfeit characters, the "summons" appear the way that they do. However the in game explanation wouldn't be "Sorry Sora Disney said you can't have the real simba so we'll give you a fire lion instead."
Instead the heartbinder's creator says
Yen Sid: "That is a Heartbinder. Think of this as a good luck charm made just for you. You have a gift, Sora, for connecting with others, and this makes that gift stronger."

In the video I provide visual aide that shows how the precedent for Links were set prior to KH3. So it wasn't as if Nomura would change Simba and call it day and leave summons the same way. There is established lore to support the difference.
KINGDOM HEARTS HD 1_5+2_5 ReMIX_2.jpg

Also can I see a link to where it's said Square had to enter the change into the game? I've never come across that, but if that information is out there I'd add it to the OP and my description.
 

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They were elemental versions of Disney characters because Disney didn’t want Square Enix to have Sora summon the actually characters this time around, so Square Enix worked around that by relying on a technicality that since Sora is summoning a version of the character made up of some sort of elemental material (Fire, Water, Plasma etc) that it isn’t the actual character. Since Meow Wow isn’t a Disney character from a big movie IP, it isn’t given an element.

That is literally all there is to it. There’s no canonical in game reason for this, not even the explanation of it being people close to Sora’s heart explains why they appear this way. It just all comes down to the restrictions Disney put in place.
I'd argue Meow Wow is associated with the element of wind, hence the tornado it creates while bouncing and air when deflating
 

AR829038

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Disney relationship with Square-Enix is so strange. After all these years, I expected them to have more confidence in Nomura and his team and give them more free reign, but seems like it just happened the opposite with KH3.
Disney is just off-the-rails overprotective of their IP. They have absolutely no faith in anybody outside their own company to do anything interesting with "their" characters, and I put "their" in quotations because nearly all of their IP is just lifted straight off of old literature, fairy tales and mythology from around the world, so very little of their IP is actually originally theirs to begin with anyway. They abuse their copyright more than any other company I can think of, and they do such a disservice to their own films and to the general public when they refuse to be flexible with their characters for the sake of artistic creativity. Generally, when you enter into a partnership with someone else, as Disney has done with Square Enix, there's a bit of an expectation that both parties cooperate with each other and trust each other. But Disney has shown zero trust over the years. Only recently have they even started publicly acknowledging the existence of Kingdom Hearts. A lot of people like to point the finger at Nomura for the decline in the series' quality, and it's true that his bad writing does hurt the series in the long run, but honestly, considering the breadth and volume that Disney's material occupies in this universe compared to the Final Fantasy/original material, it's really Disney who is holding the series back from its full potential when they hamstring SE in their usage of the Disney properties. It's like, if you don't trust the company you're working with, then why even work with them at all?
 

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Obviously that would be a technical reason outside of the game. I'm referring to a reason you can see in game that explains this.
this would be a business decision that would cause a creative decision to be made. In away your still saying what I am. The reason they appear that way is because the original characters aren't being summoned. So instead their power is being linked to Sora. As result of their creative work around of making counterfeit characters, the "summons" appear the way that they do. However the in game explanation wouldn't be "Sorry Sora Disney said you can't have the real simba so we'll give you a fire lion instead."
Instead the heartbinder's creator says
Yen Sid: "That is a Heartbinder. Think of this as a good luck charm made just for you. You have a gift, Sora, for connecting with others, and this makes that gift stronger."
I think my wonderment with all this is why this thread was necessary? This information regarding the differences between Summons and Links have been known since Birth by Sleep, something you acknowledge later in your post. Is this whole thing just about getting people to watch a YouTube video because my thoughts boil down to this:
Does it really need an explanation? It's obvious.
Also can I see a link to where it's said Square had to enter the change into the game? I've never come across that, but if that information is out there I'd add it to the OP and my description.
In what might seem like a counter-intuitive approach, Square’s found that the more outlandish a change its wants to make to a character, the more likely it is to be approved with little fuss by Disney. The Lion King’s Simba, for example, appears as what co-director Tai Yasue calls a “fire entity”. It seems like a tall order, but Yasue says they “didn't have a lot of difficulty.”

The point is that, if you’re changing the character enough, it’s no longer imitating Disney. “He's not Simba”, he explains. “So we showed Disney our drawings and everything, and shared that, and we got that approved. But at the same time, it wasn't the real character. So I think, in that respect, it was easier.”

www.ign.com/articles/2019/02/11/kingdom-hearts-3-the-challenges-and-rewards-of-working-with-disney

The more they changed Simba, the less he was "Simba", and thus Disney had an easier time approving him than if it was a Simba summon.

I'd argue Meow Wow is associated with the element of wind, hence the tornado it creates while bouncing and air when deflating
My apologies, I meant that Meow Wow wasn't given an elemental visual flare since it isn't a Disney character.
 
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