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Where Kingdom Hearts is failing



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Does anyone else think Disney needs to stop being so involved

  • Yes, we want Kingdom Hearts not a Disney game

  • No, the loading time was worth Disney Cutscenes


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Cumguardian69

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Why does that quote say something I didn't say
I fudged what I was gonna type and accidently hit post reply (i'm on mobile and havent looked up how to turn off formatting on xenforo yet) sorry about the confusion bro
 

kirabook

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I was disappointed and uncertain about the lack of FF characters before KH3 and now years later, as I've said before, I think it was a big mistake on Square's side to exclude them. That was Square/Nomura's decision, not Disney's.

Nomura said something like he wants KH to stand on its own and he doesn't understand that it already IS standing on its own. I didn't pick up this game when I was 12 years old because of Disney or Final Fantasy. I didn't even KNOW Disney was in the game and I didn't know what Final Fantasy was yet.

I know that sounds weird, but hear me out. I never saw Kingdom Hearts commercials when they were airing for KH1 or KH2. I don't know why, but I guess I was the kind of kid that quickly left the room when commercials came on. My first exposure to Kingdom Hearts was over my neighbors house. She started up a fresh game for me and I instantly fell in love with the opening visuals and the music.

I know a lot of people play these games for Disney, but I don't think there's a ton of FF fanbois who pick up Kingdom Hearts for their favorite FF characters. But, there are people like me who care about the FF characters because they were in KH1. They were a part of the story. They felt "original". Leon, Yuffie, Aerith, Cid, etc. They're all Sora's buddies.

I wish Nomura could understand including FF characters back into the story along with Disney isn't relying on FF necessarily. It's not that you need them to tell a good story. But by excluding them... it feels like the world is much smaller and disconnected. It kinda feels like FF characters are connective threads keeping the Disney worlds kinda relevant throughout the story?

Obviously this isn't always the case, but the whole plot with Tron in KH2 intertwined with the FF crew was so important. To see even Tron missing in KH3 was pretty disappointing. I dunno. FF doesn't make the plot go forward. They aren't required. But I feel like having them there is way better than not.
 
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2 quid is good

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They shouldn't pander to anyone. Do what they want and we can take it or leave it.
They can pander to me all they like, I certainly won't complain

As for the topic.... This is really a very frustrating one to talk about, and definitely frustrating when trying to articulate a position, not only because everyone want to be the first to do a gotcha, but also because people often ruin good points or questions with mountains of misinformation, tarring anyone who holds a similar opinion with the same brush. I'm sure I'm guilty of it myself.

I didn't vote for either option because both feel too disingenuous for me, it's pretty inarguable that Disney meddled in KH3 to a far far larger extent than they ever have before. Does that have a direct impact on the complete dearth of good oc/square content in the game? Not necessarily I think (As a side note, I feel somewhat vindicated for claiming years ago that Twilight Town would be a bad hub world)

Clearly a decision was taken, most likely soon after the engine swap, to trim the fat of the game right down to only the essentials. Now what I and many other fans consider essentials clearly aren't what Square considers essentials, which is fine, that's their prerogative and their game to make, and it's a good statement to make when talking about what Square *ought* to have done, however, I certainly don't think anyone should be surprised when fans consequently get upset or disappointed due to such changes. If you're in favour of the first statement, then you should realise the second is the inevitable reaction to it.

Rightly or wrongly, the previous 19 years of numbered titles, spin offs and inbetweeners have created a certain expectation of what a KH game is for people, if the developers consciously or unconsciously don't hit that mark there will be a negative reaction (and I don't think this is a linear thing, like, oh a KH game HAS to have such-and-such, it's more like, well does what this game have outweigh what I personally feel it *ought* to have had, and I think that applies for any new entry in a long running series. So obviously the criteria is pretty personal).

Yeah maybe it is NOT the point of a KH game to include square characters and strong original content (according to certain users) but at the same time, even in KH1 the more memorable moments came from pieces that were mostly or wholly original KH story (Like the ending), and certainly in later games the more memorable parts have come from this part of the pie rather than the Disney slice, to borrow @KudoTsurugi analogy. So with all this in mind, it's totally understandable that a lot of people out there are more attached to the OC locations, characters and the Square side of KH, especially if you consider its only really KH3 that completely rebuked this section of the KH pie, because what a lot of people don't seem to get is the decline started by the handhelds didn't make fans think "ah, so a new game capable of next gen home console capabilities will have even LESS representation than these games", it made them think "ah, so a new game capable of next gen home console capabilities will be a return to form for representation similar to KH1 and KH2, if not MORE than those games"
 
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Launchpad

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I think KH3 doesn't really fail in any new ways. There's being disappointed that they didn't clean up their act to finish out the saga, but, having just freshly gone through the series with my girlfriend who's never seen KH before, there's nothing surprising about KH3's story fumbles, and all of them were also present in KH2.
 

kirabook

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I guess I'm not as heated about KH3's downfalls because I've been seeing issues in KH's storytelling since KH2. In fact, some things in KH2 really annoyed me and much of the fandom still ignores them.

Where KH2 still has a holdover on KH3 though is KH2 does spend at least a little time investing in OC character interactions and gives the plot some time to breathe.
 
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AegisXIII

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I guess I'm not as heated about KH3's downfalls because I've been seeing issues in KH's storytelling since KH2. In fact, some things in KH2 really annoyed me and much of the fandom still ignores them.

Where KH2 still has a holdover on KH3 though is KH3 does spend at least a little time investing in OC character interactions and gives the plot some time to breathe.
I think when KH4 will be released, people will look at KH3 like we are looking at KH2 right now. When KH2 got released, there were a lot of criticism if I remember correctly.

I think it's nice that people have criticism, but personally the series never bothered me. I like that a piece of media has a signature to it. You can really feel Nomura's touch (with its good parts and its bad parts). It is so much better than flawless generic games in my opinion. Sure it might be less polished, but it is also much more entertaining. I like that Kingdom Hearts is a giant laboratory for crazy ideas. Whenever a game takes risks, I am onboard for it, because we desperately need more of that. Last of Us part 2, God of War ps4, Kingdom Hearts, FF7... All those games have a big signature to them and I want to support them to take more risks.
What's going to happen with Quadratum might be a game changer.
 

2 quid is good

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There's always an element of "new thing bad old thing good", but KH2 didn't have nearly as much of a divisive release as people think.

This board, sure, definitely preferred BBS to KH2, however KH13 was more or less the opposite in the sense that KH2 wasn't criticised to the same extent it was here and gamefaqs etc. I can't talk for KH vids or KH ultimania because out of the two I only spent time on the latter and don't really remember much other than the occasional KH3 thread.

Maybe its because we have youtube and other social media now but KH3's reception feels far more divisive even amongst casual fans, which didn't really seem to be the case with KH2.
 

Katsagu

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Disney just has to stop being filler. And while the current formula exists I don't see that happening unfortunately.

They need to legit get rid of the "world order" and movie rehashs and start implementing both IPs (Disney and FF) in creative ways that boost the story. Because if nomura wants to tell a big epic story with this series, it just won't work untill he actually starts inserting the stuff you do throughout the game into that story (think Epic Mickey concept art).

And this has been a problem since the inception of KH. The problem is that KH3 was a climax for the series, so doing everything you did on the other games here simply did not work.
 

AegisXIII

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Disney just has to stop being filler. And while the current formula exists I don't see that happening unfortunately.

They need to legit get rid of the "world order" and movie rehashs and start implementing both IPs (Disney and FF) in creative ways that boost the story. Because if nomura wants to tell a big epic story with this series, it just won't work untill he actually starts inserting the stuff you do throughout the game into that story (think Epic Mickey concept art).

And this has been a problem since the inception of KH. The problem is that KH3 was a climax for the series, so doing everything you did on the other games here simply did not work.
About that, I really think there is a huge potential using the classic Mickey cartoons to create original new worlds. These are not related to any canon since any cartoon episode can take place in any world/country/era.
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That would give them more freedom rather than rehashing classic movies with no ability to tweak the plot.

Basically that's what they did with Disney Castle/Disneytown. They could expand on that.
 

Raz

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I still think KH2, for all of its problems, has better pacing than KH3 because of the mid-game finale at Hollow Bastion. Shoving all of the plot into the final act was exhausting and made any sense of payoff unearned.

I think where KH has been failing lately is atmosphere. The rooms in the first game may have been tiny but they somehow felt more immersive, evocative of a mood. It is a game where I go to certain locations just to look around. I haven't done that in a KH game in a while. Original worlds being so limited and inaccessible in KH3 contributed to this sense.
 

Hedginka

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Ever since KH3's initial release, I've seen endless amounts of people insinuate that eventually, KH3 will be remembered similarly to how KH2 is remembered now. I normally don't speak on it, because I don't have control over how products are looked back on, nor does anyone else and any opinion I give on it is ultimately paper thin speculation. Besides, while KH2 is my favourite game ever, I'm well aware the game took a while to garner the seemingly universal love it has now, just as I'm aware it was once popular to prefer BBS, at least in certain subsets within the fanbase.

But there's a portion of context and variables missing in that piece of history. We didn't have video essays dissecting what made KH2's combat special and more importantly, we didn't have Final Mix, the fully revitalised, recompleted rendition available outside of Japan. Personally, I think even without final mix, KH2 was always amazing and the flack thrown towards it back in 2006 is more reminiscent of the fandom's desire for simplicity, entirely differing from the modern day's vocal side of the fandom that relishes in every maddening new plot point Nomura declares canon .

But I digress. My central point is KH3 has been available for 2 and a half years now and it's been fully finished, never to be updated again for a year and a half and thus far, the consensus around it seems to have changed very little. Everyone with their own unique take on the game has said what they wanted to say, the consensuses from both the fanatics and those left disappointed have been long set in stone. Yes, ReMind helped increase the positive reception surrounding it, such as the difficulty and lack of engaging boss battles. But in my experience, the issues that weren't resolved, namely in the story and pacing are what cement the general consensuses on the game more than anything else. If you loved KH3, ReMind will have you loving it even more. If you were disappointed with KH3, you'll feel at least less disappointed with the overall package. It's rare to spot someone whose opinion harboured a full on transition into positivity.

In my personal experience, very often when people converse over why they love KH3, there is at least a level of offering the most abundant flaws the benefit of the doubt. Everyone was at least a little saddened Twilight Town's size and everyone was at least a little disappointed by certain, individual character treatment.

And while I'd love to insinuate that KH2's flaws are all overanalysed nonsense and it's an objectively flawless product, immune to criticism, I'm fortunately not quite that immature in the modern day. However, the difference I feel is that KH2 targets a particular audience and it succeeds to the best of its ability. It may not be the exact same audience that fell in love with the series via KH1 and that's why, the grander story, alongside the appeal to the average 13 year old's inner goth wasn't universally accepted in the beginning. But when all is said and done, it has a story it wants to tell and it tells it with remarkable confidence. KH3's audience feels more Disney oriented, despite being an alleged saga conclusion. A conclusion to a saga, in which the fanbase is far more invested in the overarching story outside of Disney. In that regard, I would describe its audience as scattershot.

Of course, it's still entirely possible the following KH games alter its reputation, but if you believe that, there's almost a level of reliance that KH4 is worse than 3, or at least received more negatively. Which it might be. I can't accurately predict if Nomura's once again going to ignore Final Fantasy characters until he garners enough backlash for it. But as a little mind game, let's imagine KH4 comes out and is generally considered inferior KH2 & KH3. As a result, it's entirely possible that KH3 and it's adoring fans would feel vindication. But at the same time, I also imagine we'd see even more discussion about where the series began to falter and while various KH fans have differing takes on that, it feels like DDD is to this day generally agreed as the turning point of the series, for better or worse.

I love DDD and stick up for it in various manners. But what I'm getting at is even after KH3 released and had its story scrutinised head to toe, so many people still look to DDD as the catalyst that lead to the ocean of problems we're all arguing about to this day. If not that, Unchained. And similarly, if KH4 comes out and doesn't get the ideal fan reaction, I wager many will look back on KH3, analysing how it lead to the unfortunate state the series plunged into.
 

Oracle Spockanort

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Sometimes I think it might be for the best to split KH into 2 subseries: 1 Disney heavy series & 1 OC heavy series. At least then they can pander to both extremes.
No, because I don’t want a Disney heavy game or an OC heavy game. I want Nomura and his team to figure out how to combine both equally with the perfect pacing and create something balanced and entertaining. I don’t come to KH for just the OCs or just the Disney. I come here to see it all blended together.
 

MATGSY

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No, because I don’t want a Disney heavy game or an OC heavy game. I want Nomura and his team to figure out how to combine both equally with the perfect pacing and create something balanced and entertaining. I don’t come to KH for just the OCs or just the Disney. I come here to see it all blended together.
Of course that's the ideal, but I was thinking more in terms of a pragmatic fix. The combination of Nomura's overblown writing & Disney's restrictions will probably never allow that happy medium we had in KH1 to ever happen again. So I'm like, "what the next best thing?"
 

KeybladeLordSora

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No, because I don’t want a Disney heavy game or an OC heavy game. I want Nomura and his team to figure out how to combine both equally with the perfect pacing and create something balanced and entertaining. I don’t come to KH for just the OCs or just the Disney. I come here to see it all blended together.
Maybe now that Disney is more lenient on their properties being used by game devs, that can happen. Toy Story and Monsters Inc were really promising, but those were Pixar so...

If not though, and if the Frozen group still acts like Larxene saying "haha loser" to Elsa is gonna friggin' destroy their movie completely...ehhh.
 

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No, because I don’t want a Disney heavy game or an OC heavy game. I want Nomura and his team to figure out how to combine both equally with the perfect pacing and create something balanced and entertaining. I don’t come to KH for just the OCs or just the Disney. I come here to see it all blended together.
This. I'll keep saying this for as long as it takes. I don't want Disney gone from Kingdom Hearts. I want it to be better utilized and playoff the characters and story. It's too bad the series has these mythos and lore along with Disney elements, but rarely uses them together for storytelling. So many KH titles could have used their Disney elements better, especially KH3 instead of just retelling the movies which comes off as filler.

The series story for me is at it's best when it can fuse the elements. Like how they used Vanitas/Unversed in Monstropolis. Imagine if they used more Disney elements throughout the series. We have a entire world made of data and Tron's not a part of it's story? Why not use the Blue Fairy in the story of the Nobodies who want to grow hearts or something similar to Pinocchio? Have the Genie or some other magical character cast a spell to help the Guardians of Light in the war, maybe that's what helps awaken Lingering Will that one time. Use San Fransokyo's technology to build Replica bodies. Instead of Heartless and Nobodies just reforming humans because death doesn't matter why not have Hades revive the Organization due to a age old deal he made with Xehanort in BBS? I could write an essay on all the missed opportunities the series had with Disney utilization with their lore and story.

I know there are Disney restrictions but it's frustrating we have a entire library of amazing Disney content that could relate to and bounce off the entire KH OC cast and it's not being used. I get why there is a divide. The Disney content is mostly filler these days to those interested in the main story, and more casual players probably prefer the Disney aspect, but there needs to be a balance. That's when Kingdom Hearts is at it's strongest, at least for me.
 
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2 quid is good

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Similarly - I don't want to see every individual plot thread given its own individual game where little of substance is happening when many plot threads CAN be woven into just one game. There's absolutely no reason for KH to splinter off anything like it has done so in the past, I'm sure the fandom is more than happy to wait 4-5 years for a fulfilling product than every year for piecemeal story bites
 

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I think Disney was a pretty weak collaborator on KH3. From what we know in interviews, the input from the Disney side didn't really amount to anything meaningful, and probably had a hand in making some of the worlds worse. I don't see much value in having a bunch of nitpickers picking away without having much to offer themselves. It would be another thing if they had a specific artist representing the western side of the production, somehow who could at least sort of approach Nomura creatively. I mean, the one world Disney insisted on being included was Big Hero 6 (sells a lot of merch) and imo it was the weakest world easily. So they couldn't even back the poor Osaka squad up there. I'm not opposed to KH being an east-west brainstorm, but get someone with some brains on our end, please.

But of course I think the quality of KH3 is much more a reflection of the hell that is working for Square-Enix. They fired Nomura from FFXVersus, they somehow rushed KH3, they made him director of FF7R without even telling him lol. The production not being able to find a sense of artistic trust and good working balance with the dopes at Disney is just a symptom of the stress of working for greedy monsters.
 

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There's always an element of "new thing bad old thing good", but KH2 didn't have nearly as much of a divisive release as people think.

This board, sure, definitely preferred BBS to KH2, however KH13 was more or less the opposite in the sense that KH2 wasn't criticised to the same extent it was here and gamefaqs etc. I can't talk for KH vids or KH ultimania because out of the two I only spent time on the latter and don't really remember much other than the occasional KH3 thread.

Maybe its because we have youtube and other social media now but KH3's reception feels far more divisive even amongst casual fans, which didn't really seem to be the case with KH2.

Thank you. lol. This board is a particularly mad tea party that hasn't yet embraced the fantabulous geniosity of KH2. We're all entitled to our opinion and all but you guys... are some nutsy cookoos if you think KH3 will have the same legacy as KH2. The whole point of KH3 is that it's bad. It's a tonsil, filtering out the shadows. The average person who plays KH3 can probably tell, something's a little off here. KH4 WILL be waaay better than KH3. Count on it. Belieeeve.
 

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@SweetYetSalty I'd read that essay ;).

This thread would be better if we had a confirmed list of Disney's restrictions rather than rely on hearsay or fan bias.
 
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