Square Excites Me Again With Final Fantasy XV And Kingdom Hearts 3

Last night during Sony’s press conference, Square Enix made a splash. Although there was not a person on stage to physically represent them, their two announcements have made me more excited than I have possibly ever been during an E3 conference. After announcing a handful of indie games, Sony handed the reigns over to a video of famed Square developer Tetsuya Nomura who apologized for Final Fantasy Versus XIII’s numerous delays and provided us with a lengthy trailer of the game. The trailer also included over-the-top action as the series is known for and a glimpse at the cast of the game. The trailer ended as the logo for the game appeared on screen and instantly morphed in order to read “Final Fantasy XV.” Nomura then confirmed that Final Fantasy Versus XIII is being rebranded as the fifteenth entry in the main Final Fantasy series. Most people were actually expecting this, and thought that Nomura’s time was done until he stated that they have one more trailer for us.

“Disney” flashed on the screen, and at that point, my eyes and mouth were wide open. A montage began that went through all of the entries of the Kingdom Hearts series, ending with its most recent release, Kingdom Hearts 3D: Dream Drop Distance. My first thought was that this could be a trailer for the second part of the HD re-releases, and my mind was made up on that, ignoring the unfamiliar voiceover…until the video began to roll past Kingdom Hearts 3D. The Keyblade that we have all grown to love appeared on the shores of the familiar Destiny Islands. Suddenly, a pair of large, yellow, signature shoes stood next to the blade. A hand bent down and picked it up bringing it to his face. This, is our first look at the Sora of Kingdom Hearts 3. The short trailer continued to show a small snippet of gameplay which included what seemed like thousands of heartless all battling Sora, Donald, and Goofy (bringing to mind a toned down version of a certain battle from Kingdom Hearts 2). Both games will appear on the PlayStation 4 and Xbox One.

Square Enix has been in a bit of a rough patch as of late, but I strongly believe that they can turn it around with these titles if they are up to snuff. Final Fantasy XV impressed even when it was announced as Versus XIII, and Kingdom Hearts is exciting simply because we never expected that it would come. Hopefully, Final Fantasy XV can find a balance between its action-centered trailers and the RPG elements for which Square are known. I am equally as hopeful that Kingdom Hearts 3 will feature more classic Disney worlds and less of the newer ones such as Pirates of the Caribbean or Star Wars. Only time will tell, but until then, I will wait for these two games with open arms.