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Will KH4 be the last part of the series ?



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SuperNova

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When was this?
That's almost as important as Phil recognizing him as a hero.
In the press release that was released alongside the screenshots of the game. The Director of Walt Disney Games herself said he was an "original Disney hero beloved by our team and fans alike" which means people in Disney do indeed recognize him.
 

the red monster

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Lmao we are at mid point at best. there's yozora, foretellers, master of masters, luxu, demyx, luxord, the black box, maleficent and who knows what else to deal with.
 

Luminary

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There is no reason whatsoever that a company can't make a videogame in a reasonable range of time.

This is simply not true and I would say your definition of a reasonable range of time seems flawed and out of touch with the reality of what is happening in the world right now. COVID is still happening. Sickness and supply chain issues are still a major issue and are getting worse in many ways. But honestly, there are plenty of understandable reasons for why development would take 4-6 years, even pre-COVID.

There’s a lot of warranted criticism toward Square Enix, but this ain’t it. This kind of no-nuance mentality around game production is why we have game companies like Activision putting out lackluster games every year with hostile work conditions for their devs.

Even though the game is in early development, that is usually the longest part of any production process as it is the planning/groundwork stage. If they take their time with early development, they can then execute their plans for mid-late development more effectively and efficiently with less delays.

I think 2024 is most likely with 2023 likely being FFXVI’s year. Either FFVIIR-2 or KH4 will be next up, but it’s a toss up as to which one will come first until we get more info on where FFVII is in the process.
 

alexis.anagram

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That said, with PIXAR and Star Wars on the cusp of overtaking this series and Nomura clearly not interested in the characters for their own sake but as vessels for enacting his lost XIII, I think I'd prefer if they just closed the book on Sora and Riku already and moved on to a new cast
Yeah, I think I could understand what Nomura's done if he had simply rebooted the brand (call it Verum Rex or whatever) and made it clear that he's not committed to finishing what he started, creative intent is ephemeral and working on any project for too long (particularly in a hyper corporate environment) can cause contradictions to emerge. It's hard to shake the sense that KH is increasingly tortured as a product, caught between so many different creative and commercial designs the only way to make space for all of them is to continually and endlessly balloon it in scope until it really is just an unrecognizable chimera of conflicting identities. One sentiment I read that really struck me was the dysphoria someone expressed contrasting their experience getting to know the series and what it must be like to be introduced to it now, in its current form, where it's so mired in this opacity of vision that it's hard to even agree on any core driving ambition (beyond make big $$$).

It's not unreasonable that Nomura wants to find a back door to his other passion project but KH3 could have been a respectable bookend for the original material and characters and he could have spun whatever he wanted off from that. It's a shame that the justification for its continued existence seems to be predicated pretty much solely on its marketing profile at this point; I remember during its more niche period between 2 and 3, the ideas (and arguments) that circulated about what constituted the series' raison d'être seemed a little more sophisticated.

In the press release that was released alongside the screenshots of the game. The Director of Walt Disney Games herself said he was an "original Disney hero beloved by our team and fans alike" which means people in Disney do indeed recognize him
Well if this isn't revising the historical record...
(not you, the suits)
 

Elysium

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My point is that the storylines of all characters were completed by the end of KH3. Sora saved all his friends and the world, Kairi and Sora shared the paopu, Riku became a master and no longer deals with the darkness inside and a long etc. The fact that more games with those characters, starting whole new storylines, will be made is a self-imposed reason not to drop the series. Anyone who wants to drop it, should be satisfied after KH3, maybe not how everything got resolved, but the fact that everything got resolved. If anyone is dissatisfied with how thing are going, they can leave now, as the storyline it's starting is brand new, almost free from the baggage that carried between KH -> KH3.
The majority of KH3 is hocking the next game more than resolving anything. Why should I leave, because it bothers you to read deserved criticism of "your" game? I've been following this series for twenty years, you don't own this and I don't need permission on how to react to it or the company that makes it, as if I should give one iota about what this fanbase does or doesn't like to hear after years of them bitching about the things I've liked themselves anyway. What's good for one side of the fandom is good for all. I think I've always been pretty positive about KH3, for example, it is in my top 3 of the series which is why I'd been optimistic of what was coming next, but because some fans have always refused to accept anything less than literally worshiping at its altar with blood sacrifice as "positive," any nuance has been written off as hating KH3 regardless. So I certainly have no reason to hold my opinions back now or feel the least bit bad about voicing legitimate anger over things like what will be an unjustified enormous wait for KH4, the XIII bodysnatching of KH characters, or the infusion of garbage like Star Wars and Marvel into what was once a Disney/FF crossover where only one side of that equation still exists and is now on the verge of being diminished to barely nothing itself. And if you don't like that, don't read. You have a block function, use it.

7 of those worlds are waaaay bigger than anything KH has done before.
This is blatantly false. 3D existed before 3 and all of its worlds are enormous, partly why I loved that game. On top of that, it didn't take nearly as long to make and it also had strong original worlds and a midpoint (both of which KH3 lacks). 0.2's worlds are also huge, so no.

Saying it took them 6 years to make 8 worlds is dishonest at best.
I think it's exactly what happened.
There’s a lot of warranted criticism toward Square Enix, but this ain’t it.
Who cares if you agree, you ain't changin' my mind with spin. This shit's been going on for 15 years. COVID ain't the reason, so you can miss me at that lie.
 

Luminary

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This is blatantly false. 3D existed before 3 and all of its worlds are enormous, partly why I loved that game. On top of that, it didn't take nearly as long to make and it also had strong original worlds and a midpoint (both of which KH3 lacks). 0.2's worlds are also huge, so no.

3D was built off of reused graphical assets and an engine the team had been using for a decade at that point. And it still took 2-3 years to develop.

Who cares if you agree, you ain't changin' my mind with spin. This shit's been going on for 15 years. COVID ain't the reason, so you can miss me at that lie.


I care. And I have as much right to voice my thoughts as you do.

COVID is real. There’s no “spin” about it. You’re deflecting a legitimate argument. Do you think it just magically doesn’t affect these people or the production? Around 5000 people in Osaka alone have died and their total number of cases is close to a million which is 50% of their population. And that’s just scratching the surface as the repercussions of it extend far beyond the number of deaths and cases. Not to mention the war in Ukraine now making the global coming even worse.

And please share a list of AAA games developed in 2-3 years that actually strive to innovate instead of just being asset rehashes like CoD and Assassin’s Creed.

I’ll preemptively provide some examples of my own and even leave out Square Enix titles:

Spider-Man PS4: 4 years
God of War (2018): 4 years
Horizon Zero Dawn: 6 years
Uncharted 4: 5 years
Last of Us Part II: 6 years
Breath of the Wild: 6 years
RDR2: 8 years
Super Mario Odyssey: 4 years
Elden Ring: 5 years

Some of the most acclaimed games from the past 5-6 years have all had similar turnaround times.

You’re also not entitled to a game coming out on your desired schedule unless your name is in the producer credits. And even then you must have reasonable expectations based on the resources available to your team and ensuring they have a work-life balance. KH isn’t the biggest money maker when it comes to games, especially since Square doesn’t collect all the profits. If Rockstar, FromSoftware, and first party studios are taking this long to put out games with the astronomical amount of revenue they generate, it’s a wonder for Square to be able to match those production times and still receive critical acclaim on many of their games. They also manage to get some kind of yearly KH content to make the wait more tolerable, which can’t be said for other companies.

Sorry to OP for contributing to derailing of the thread topic, btw. I may look for another one to continue the development timeline discussion or start a new one.
 

Elysium

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3D was built off of reused graphical assets and an engine the team had been using for a decade at that point. And it still took 2-3 years to develop.
Yeah, 2 years. That's a third of what KH4 I'm willing to bet will take now since I'm betting a Spring 2025 release, no amount of arguments about reused assets for a couple of character models are going to make that any less embarrassing. The vast majority of the levels--including both TWTNW and Traverse Town--and the flowmotion system were entirely new.

And I have as much right to voice my thoughts as you do.
I never said you didn't, you're the one who wants to dogpile onto someone who disagrees with you, but I'm never going to change my mind no how many of you come at me. If anything, this attitude will just ensure I keep saying it more, not less. So if your plan was to shutdown someone into silence, you pretty much did the opposite.

You’re deflecting a legitimate argument.
I'm deflecting an excuse. KH3 also took a decade. COVID had nothing to do with that, so spare me the faux moralizing as if you care about COVID, all you care about is keeping Nomura or Square Enix from being criticized in the slightest. This is just more of the same from the same company and same director with a long-running problem with time management.
You’re also not entitled
Typical, resort to casting your opponent in moral terms--been there, done that, got the postcard--as if expecting to get more than two main titles every two f-in' decades is "entitled." Don't blame me that every fan isn't some braindead zombie who simply slops up whatever PR nonsense Nomura craps out on a platter to explain his delays.

And I'd say you're the main one who derailed this topic. I had planned to leave HenryP's response at the end of the last page alone until you dragged it onto this one because you couldn't resist keeping it going. Then I decided, hey, if you want to destroy this thread, screw it. I don't owe it to you to give you the last word when you responded to me in the first place.
 
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Luminary

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COVID had nothing to do with that, so spare me the faux moralizing as if you care about COVID, all you care about is keeping Nomura or Square Enix from being criticized in the slightest.
I work in the healthcare industry and have also lost people I’ve loved to it. You have no idea the impact this has had on me directly and yet you assume I don’t care about the impact COVID has had others? I’m fed up with people who don’t take this shit seriously or give any consideration to how it has impacted everyone’s lives.

You’re essentially saying that you’re going to stick your fingers in your ears and ignore anything anyone says to you that you disagree with. How is that any different from the people who ignore any criticism of the franchise?

I’m all for criticizing them where it’s warranted. In fact, there are plenty of your criticisms of the series I completely agree with. I just don’t voice my criticisms as often because I usually have more productive things to do. But you’re stuck in this mindset that anyone with a nuanced take on this franchise is automatically a shill for Nomura and Square.
But here’s a handful of my criticisms off the top of my head so you can stop assuming I have none:

- KH3’s need to explain everything that has happened so far in the series rather than trusting the audience to figure it out and get in with the story was atrocious. The original cast spent way too much time standing around and talking.
- The lack of Final Fantasy and full fledged original worlds was a terrible choice.
- I NEVER skip video game cutscenes, but I can’t watch that god awful Terranort scene any of the four times it happens.
- While I relatively enjoy the story in them, the mobile games are an awful cash grab and are one of the worst things to happen to the franchise.
- Nomura needs to let go of some characters and storylines for good. The series has a chance to let go of a lot of baggage, but it seems like it’s still going to carried along.

Yeah, 2 years. That's a third of what KH4 I'm willin to bet will take now, no amount of arguments about reused assets for a couple of models are going to make that any less embarrassing. The vast majority of the levels--including both TWTNW and Traverse Town--were entirely new.

A couple of models? That’s a huge under-exaggeration. Most of what you see in DDD as “new” is actually stuff that has been repurposed from older games with a fresh coat of paint. That goes for character models, attack animations, levels, etc.

And you still continue to ignore that KH3’s development time was par for the course for current gen games with only one year of a significant delay. (That mismanagement of the project at the start I will absolutely say deserves criticism as Luminous caused so many issues across multiple games.)

But anyways, I started a thread for this discussion to continue there if you want to comment further. I would say let’s not derail this one further since the debate on the development time is really not related to whether KH4 will be the last game in the series. I’m not blaming you for derailing it. I literally apologized to OP for doing it taking ownership of that.

 

Recon

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Lmao we are at mid point at best. there's yozora, foretellers, master of masters, luxu, demyx, luxord, the black box, maleficent and who knows what else to deal with.
Finally, someone who remembers the Black Box…we need answers
 

Henryp

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The majority of KH3 is hocking the next game more than resolving anything. Why should I leave, because it bothers you to read deserved criticism of "your" game? I've been following this series for twenty years, you don't own this and I don't need permission on how to react to it or the company that makes it, as if I should give one iota about what this fanbase does or doesn't like to hear after years of them bitching about the things I've liked themselves anyway. What's good for one side of the fandom is good for all. I think I've always been pretty positive about KH3, for example, it is in my top 3 of the series which is why I'd been optimistic of what was coming next, but because some fans have always refused to accept anything less than literally worshiping at its altar with blood sacrifice as "positive," any nuance has been written off as hating KH3 regardless. So I certainly have no reason to hold my opinions back now or feel the least bit bad about voicing legitimate anger over things like what will be an unjustified enormous wait for KH4, the XIII bodysnatching of KH characters, or the infusion of garbage like Star Wars and Marvel into what was once a Disney/FF crossover where only one side of that equation still exists and is now on the verge of being diminished to barely nothing itself. And if you don't like that, don't read. You have a block function, use it.
I ain't going to further fuel this discussion, but just to recap, you said you wanted Sora and Riku to stop being used in the series so you can drop off. I just said that dropping off or not is your decision, making a comment that I believe anyone who wants to jump off the series after KH3 at least won't leave with any important unanswered questions except what will happen to Sora next, and that de idea of not leaving just because these characters will be used forever is a self-imposed reason to stay. You can leave if you want, without the series having to do a certain thing so you can leave peacefully. Never said you are against KH3 or that KH3 was "my" game devoid of any criticism. Never said you should like where the series is going. I didn't even give my own opinion on how KH3 resolved many things or what I think the story is going forward. End of discussion.

This is blatantly false. 3D existed before 3 and all of its worlds are enormous, partly why I loved that game. On top of that, it didn't take nearly as long to make and it also had strong original worlds and a midpoint (both of which KH3 lacks). 0.2's worlds are also huge, so no.


I think it's exactly what happened.

3D had massive worlds, yes. But they also had, for the most part, smaller explorable areas than KH3, and only had 5 disney IPs plus two originals. Point still stands that the number of worlds in KH3 was right on the mean number of worlds KH produced. And 0.2 was built as the prologue of KH3 so I think it's obvious they share similar builts.

8 worlds or not, KH3 is still a complete game with a explorable and playable scope similar or bigger than many games from the era, and right in what could be expected of a KH game. It took them 5+1 years, and while the migration of engines is surely Square's ego fault, the other 5 years are pretty reasonable time period for a game like that. And if they take 5 years for KH4 because COVID delayed some of the progress, that would also be a reasonable period of time. You don't get to dictate how long a game production should be, when reality is telling you this waiting times are fairly normal for many reason.

But anyways, I started a thread for this discussion to continue there if you want to comment further. I would say let’s not derail this one further since the debate on the development time is really not related to whether KH4 will be the last game in the series. I’m not blaming you for derailing it. I literally apologized to OP for doing it taking ownership of that.

Guess we can continue here, although I have little more to say.
 

Elysium

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I work in the healthcare industry and have also lost people I’ve loved to it. You have no idea the impact this has had on me directly and yet you assume I don’t care about the impact COVID has had others? I’m fed up with people who don’t take this shit seriously or give any consideration to how it has impacted everyone’s lives.
I take COVID seriously fine, I just know that has nothing to do with this and it's your emotion-based card to win this argument. The problem is slow development has plagued this series since 2006, it didn't just begin now because COVID happened.

A couple of models? That’s a huge under-exaggeration. Most of what you see in DDD as “new” is actually stuff that has been repurposed from older games with a fresh coat of paint. That goes for character models, attack animations, levels, etc.
You're the one that's using hyperbole. I agreed that there are things re-used for 3D (Mysterious Tower, the models for Sora, Donald, Riku, Goofy, Yensid, Ursula, Disney Castle also only in cutscenes, perhaps the models for Pinocchio and Jiminy Cricket, etc.--although Sora and Riku did receive new designs in 3D still), but nearly everything in the worlds themselves is new. They do have the old part of Traverse Town there, but it's almost irrelevant to the new parts of the world that were built. And TWTNW was almost nothing like the KH2 world, where hallways were the design style.

HenryP said:
You can leave if you want, without the series having to do a certain thing so you can leave peacefully.
You can feel free to leave anytime, too, I won't stop you.

3D had massive worlds, yes. But they also had, for the most part, smaller explorable areas than KH3, and only had 5 disney IPs plus two originals. Point still stands that the number of worlds in KH3 was right on the mean number of worlds KH produced. And 0.2 was built as the prologue of KH3 so I think it's obvious they share similar builts.
Yes, 3 has one more world than 3D... I don't think the extra four years of time makes that a significant gain on 3D's 7 worlds in 2 years, especially considering its original worlds humiliate 3's.

You don't get to dictate how long a game production should be, when reality is telling you this waiting times are fairly normal for many reason.
And you don't get to dictate what I think. Whether or not you think the wait time is excusable, I do not.
 
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2 quid is good

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Yeah, I think I could understand what Nomura's done if he had simply rebooted the brand (call it Verum Rex or whatever) and made it clear that he's not committed to finishing what he started, creative intent is ephemeral and working on any project for too long (particularly in a hyper corporate environment) can cause contradictions to emerge. It's hard to shake the sense that KH is increasingly tortured as a product, caught between so many different creative and commercial designs the only way to make space for all of them is to continually and endlessly balloon it in scope until it really is just an unrecognizable chimera of conflicting identities. One sentiment I read that really struck me was the dysphoria someone expressed contrasting their experience getting to know the series and what it must be like to be introduced to it now, in its current form, where it's so mired in this opacity of vision that it's hard to even agree on any core driving ambition (beyond make big $$$).

It's not unreasonable that Nomura wants to find a back door to his other passion project but KH3 could have been a respectable bookend for the original material and characters and he could have spun whatever he wanted off from that. It's a shame that the justification for its continued existence seems to be predicated pretty much solely on its marketing profile at this point; I remember during its more niche period between 2 and 3, the ideas (and arguments) that circulated about what constituted the series' raison d'être seemed a little more sophisticated.
I didn't quite realise until I had read this post just how muddy the waters are with regards to KH for me, and maybe that's why I kinda get tunnel vision when I just see people say they're all for "Nomura's wild ride". I'm not opposed to the sentiment, I was all for the wild ride til like, 3D, myself, but even til then it felt like the identity of the series was intact-ish. Like, the basics were still there. I don't really see what there is to the wild ride now except for what seems like KH being used as a canvas for Versus 13. I hope I'm wrong, but that was my first thought. Hell I could hardly recognise Sora until he summoned the Keyblade.

What is the reason to make new KH games? After KH2 it was fairly obvious that it was to explore the history of the world up to that point, and after BBS it was clear that the reason was to give the characters closure (YMMV on how well that was achieved by KH3). I keep up with UX and all but post Strelitzia dying it just became so tedious to me and completely uninteresting. But at least it seemed like the direction was "we're going to explore what happened to all these characters and the tragedy of what happened". So I guess it was similar to BBS in that regard. Now it's all versus. I mean, what can I even say? I wanted Versus just as much as anyone else but I don't want it at the expense of KH. But now I'm thinking, what is the point of KH in 2022?

Because when I booted up KH2 for the first time and got lost in a brilliantly trippy GMV and had no idea what was going on but I got the point of KH instinctively. Something that explores what it means to be, and KH1 has this too I feel, but I think people don't recognise it because it has the archetypal tropes of the Hero's Journey all through it. You feel it immensely when Sora turns into a heartless, especially because everyone's a little hesitant at first with him but Kairi doesn't care because that's still Sora. And he clearly hadn't lost his sense of self either. Contrast to Riku who still looked like himself visually, but no longer existed. I dunno, maybe I'm reaching, it always felt like KH had the theme of discovereing a sense of self constantly running through it. Even CoM had it, it and KH2 were just a lot more on the nose. In most games, it feels like a coming-of-age, I think only KH3 wasn't really like that.

But I've played KH3 and I've watched the cutscenes for Re:Mind and MoM and even made myself read all the UX and DR updates, and most glaringly all I can see is there is no room for exploration and mystery in KH anymore. Everything has to be overexplained to the point where if something is left on the backburner it's seen as a flaw. It's not a bad thing people watched the trailer and didn't know who Strelitizia was! We should let KH be more explorative and be open to discovering these things for ourselves without crappy mobile games to paper pver holes that are no doubt going to be filled in the main game anyway. Like be honest everyone, every important or necessary plot beat of KHUX will be explained in KH4, the only difference being that some people will find out about this stuff during a playthrough rather than having that prior information, and probably have a better experience for it.

I mean forget the plot, KH these days doesn't even really seem to explore characters anymore, and I guess I'll reserve judgement on DR when it's all released because the interactions between Eraqus, Xehanort and everyone else was fun! But why is it being released through the worst medium possible? Other than that, the only recent examples I could give is 0.2 and Back Cover, and one is better than the other, but they were released SIX years ago. That's not even recent anymore.

What is appealing about the current direction of KH? I legitimately wanna know, because it seems like a fascimile of what it used to be to me. Any good aspect of it right now is something that's been done in the past already and better, so I just don't understand why.
 

Elysium

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I think that feeling of exploring a sense of self may have disappeared around the time Riku's plotline of dealing with his inner demons resolved. Sora from 2 onwards isn't really a character with conflict within himself like in those first two games, which is why a great deal of it revolved around Riku (well, and Roxas and the Organization characters dealing with their identity).

Funny, I've never thought of it, but you're right that all the games up to 3 deal with identity in one way or another. CoM with Sora's memories and what matters most to him as well as Riku attempting to change from being a villain in 1; 2 of course with Roxas, the Organization, and Riku having become Ansem SOD; Days being more of Roxas and the Org; Coded with Data Sora and Data Riku; Terra dealing with darkness, Aqua with being a Master, and Ventus with not knowing his past in BbS; 3D is less tangible, but there's Sora nearly losing his identity by being Norted as well as the visions of Roxas and Ventus throughout his last world, not being named a Keyblade Master (and the whole plot being a test to become Master in the first place), as well as Riku having one last fight with Ansem SOD.

I suppose you could argue MoM has a little of that feeling even if KH3 doesn't, with Kairi going into her past and seeing the memory of Terranort sending her out of Radiant Garden. I don't know... Would Sora trying to understand the Power of Waking in 3 sort of fit in that territory to a degree? Perhaps they explore that theme a little with some of the characters around the edges more than the main characters, since we see several heel turns in 3. Before 3, I thought Young Xehanort was going to sort of rebel against Old Xehanort's plans; that would've played into this if they'd actually done that, with Xehanort's identity (the younger and older parts of himself) being in conflict with one another.
 

2 quid is good

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I suppose you could argue MoM has a little of that feeling even if KH3 doesn't, with Kairi going into her past and seeing the memory of Terranort sending her out of Radiant Garden.
I was going to mention this but utimately it was such a tiny amount and it wasn't really the driving point of MoM, but I won't discount it either. There was so much potential to Kairi exploring her past and of course, MoM couldn't do it justice, nor would I expect or want it to because it is a rhythm game at the end of the day. The plot aspect shouldn't have even been in it but alas, I know what type of franchise KH is
 

DraceEmpressa

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I suppose you could argue MoM has a little of that feeling even if KH3 doesn't, with Kairi going into her past and seeing the memory of Terranort sending her out of Radiant Garden. I don't know... Would Sora trying to understand the Power of Waking in 3 sort of fit in that territory to a degree? Perhaps they explore that theme a little with some of the characters around the edges more than the main characters, since we see several heel turns in 3. Before 3, I thought Young Xehanort was going to sort of rebel against Old Xehanort's plans; that would've played into this if they'd actually done that, with Xehanort's identity (the younger and older parts of himself) being in conflict with one another.

I think that does happen, but oh so subtly. YX says " not this time" in Toy Box meaning there is another timeline where Old Nort won but he changes that , as he tells Sora to find hearts connected to him ( which saving the others at the final battle) . He also says " you already paid the price" when the old master says " are you ready to pay the price? " meaning old man thinks Sora haven't paid the price whrn YX know he already did.
 
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