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For a more comprehensive take on the Kingdom Hearts game series, please visit the Kingdom Hearts Wiki! Certain links present here automatically take you to the corresponding KHWiki page for that term. Multiple spoilers for the series are present here.

Kingdom Hearts is a video game series born as a collaboration between Square Enix (formerly Squaresoft) and Disney. It is an action RPG that includes appearances of characters from the Final Fantasy series, Disney movies, and in a recent title, The World Ends with You, as well as some characters original to the series.

The first titular game was released in 2002 to massive approval and widespread acclaim. Kingdom Hearts was followed by a sequel, Kingdom Hearts: Chain of Memories, released in 2004, which connected to Kingdom Hearts II, released a year later. Since the release of Kingdom Hearts II, four more games in the series have been released: Kingdom Hearts 358/2 Days for the Nintendo DS, acting as a prequel to Kingdom Hearts II, Kingdom Hearts Birth By Sleep for the PlayStation Portable, acting as a prequel for the entire series, Kingdom Hearts coded for mobile phones (and later the Nintendo DS), acting as a "bridge game" to the latest installment Kingdom Hearts 3D: Dream Drop Distance on the Nintendo 3DS system. It will lead into the recently announced at E3 2013 Kingdom Hearts III.

Much like the International versions of Final Fantasy games, the series also has updated versions of Kingdom Hearts and Kingdom Hearts II known as Kingdom Hearts Final Mix and Kingdom Hearts II Final Mix. In Japan, Kingdom Hearts II Final Mix+ was a two-pack collection that consisted of Kingdom Hearts II Final Mix and a PS2 remake version of Kingdom Hearts: Chain of Memories known as Kingdom Hearts Re:Chain of Memories; the latter was later released as a standalone title outside of Japan.

GameplayEdit

The series contains elements of both action and role-playing games. The games are driven by a linear progression to the next story event, usually told in the form of a cut scene, though there are numerous side quests available that provide bonus benefits to the characters. The player is primarily in control of the principal protagonist of the series, Sora, who is usually accompanied by Donald Duck and Goofy as NPC supports whose behavior can be altered to fit the player's needs by preset commands that determine how they act in different situations. The games feature real-time combat that incorporate physical attacks, magic, and summonings. Kingdom Hearts II introduced the "Reaction Command" feature, wherein hitting the Triangle button in response to an on-screen prompt at the right time provokes a special reaction, usually a special cinematic attack unique to the enemy being fought.

Gummi Ships are another common theme in the series, though they are only featured in the first and third installment. The Gummi Ships serve as the main mode of transportation between worlds in the games. The gameplay for the Gummi Ships sections is more akin to a rail shooter, where players shoot enemies as they fly along a preset course, earning new Gummi parts as they defeat enemies and completing the course to unlock the next worlds. The games also feature a journal which is accessible from the main menu, keeping track of information regarding the story, characters, enemies, and locations. In games where Sora is the lead character, the journal is kept by Jiminy Cricket, who was appointed by Queen Minnie as the royal chronicler.

The games are influenced by their parent franchise, Final Fantasy, and carry its gameplay elements over into their own action-based, hack-and-slash system. Like many traditional role-playing games, Kingdom Hearts features an experience point system which determines character development. As enemies are defeated, the player gains experience which culminate in a "level-up", where the characters grow stronger and gain access to new abilities. The amount of experience is shared with all party members and each character grows stronger as experience is gained.

StoryEdit

Spoiler warning: Plot and/or ending details follow. (Skip section)

Kingdom HeartsEdit

Kingdomhearts U.S. cover

North American cover art of the first game.

The Kingdom Hearts series focuses on the adventures of Sora and his friends, Kairi and Riku.

The first game shows how Sora is separated from his friends when their world is invaded by an army of shadowy creatures known as the Heartless, obtaining a special weapon known as a Keyblade. Soon after, Sora meets Donald Duck and Goofy, residents of Disney Castle sent to find the "key" per instructions from King Mickey. Teaming up with the King's men, Sora travels to various worlds to save them from the Heartless while searching for his friends and Mickey. Finding Riku, and a comatose Kairi, Sora later learns his friend is helping Maleficent, a sorceress who enlisted the aid of the Heartless and various villains to help her gather the Princesses of Heart to open the way to Kingdom Hearts. However, after defeating Maleficent, Sora learns that original researcher of the Heartless, Ansem, manipulated Maleficent to do his dirty work before possessing Riku's body to personally extract Kairi's heart within Sora's body. After apparently defeating the possessed Riku, with Ansem purging the youth's heart to have total control, Sora turned himself into a Heartless to restore Kairi. In turn, Kairi gives Sora the strength to turn back into a human. Soon after, Sora pursues Ansem to the merged remnants of worlds taken by the Heartless where Kingdom Hearts. After an epic battle, Sora defeats Ansem with the light from Kingdom Hearts vaporizing the villain. Learning that a restored Riku and King Mickey are at the Realm of Darkness on the other side of the door, Sora is forced to seal the door at their behest. As the worlds that Heartless consumed begin to be restored, Sora sees Kairi and promises to see her again as he intends to find Riku and the King.

Kingdom Hearts: Chain of MemoriesEdit

In Kingdom Hearts: Chain of Memories, in their search for Riku and King Mickey, Sora and his companions end up at a mysterious fortress called Castle Oblivion, and upon entering it lose their memories. As they journey through the castle to reclaim them, Marluxia of the mysteriousOrganization XIII attempt to manipulate a girl named Naminé to erase Sora's memories and replace them with new ones befitting their plans. After defeating Marluxia and aide Larxene, Naminé puts Sora, Donald, and Goofy to sleep for a year to regain their memories. At the same time Sora began his venture up Castle Oblivion, Riku finds himself in the basement levels and faces no only members of the Organization determinate to subvert Marluxia's intentions, but also the lingering remnants of Ansem within him. Luckily, with the aid of King Mickey once able to return from the Realm of Darkness, Riku fights the darkness in his heart and learns to accept it, departing to offer his services to the mysterious man DiZ as Sora sleeps.

Kingdom Hearts 358/2 DaysEdit

Kingdom Hearts 358/2 Days focuses upon the story of Roxas, the thirteenth member of Organization XIII who came in being when Sora became a Heartless. Send on a few missions, Roxas suddenly loses consciousness at the time that his friend Axel was sent to Castle Oblivion alongside other Organization members. Coming to a while later, Roxas continues his missions for the Organization while he and Axel befriends a girl named Xion, the "fourteenth" member of the Organization who can also use a Keyblade. As she and Roxas begin to question their identities, Axel learns that Xion is imperfect replica of Sora created from his memories. When Roxas learns the truth after Xion leaves once told the truth by Riku, he follows her out of feeling betrayed by the Organization. However, Xion is captured and reprogrammed to absorb Roxas to become a perfect replica of Sora. Forced to kill Xion, absorbing Sora's memories in the process, Roxas attempts to make his way to the Organization's leader to kill him. However, Riku intervenes and battles him, defeating Roxas and capturing him for DiZ, setting up the opening of Kingdom Hearts II.

Kingdom Hearts IIEdit

Kingdom Hearts II- Final Mix+ Cover

Cover art of Kingdom Hearts II Final Mix, the international version of Kingdom Hearts II only released in Japan.

In Kingdom Hearts II, after Roxas has merged back into him, Sora awakens as he, Donald, and Goofy continue their search for Riku and King Mickey. Meeting Mickey's master Yen Sid, they learn of the {{KHWiki|Nobody|Nobodies]] that Organization XIII controls, and their desire to use the hearts of the Heartless Sora kills to empower Kingdom Hearts to bestow them with hearts of their own. When they meet King Mickey, he reveals the true nature of Ansem, the antagonist of Kingdom Hearts, as the Heartless of Xehanort, a student of Ansem the WiseXemnas, the leader of Organization XIII, is the Nobody of Xehanort. The three arrive at the headquarters of Organization XIII, a castle in the realm of nothingness with Kingdom Hearts looming overhead. At the top of the castle, Sora and his friends defeat Xemnas, and return to their home on Destiny Islands, reunited at last. However, some time after, Sora and his friends receive a letter from Mickey.

Kingdom Hearts codedEdit

Kingdom Hearts coded takes place after Kingdom Hearts II. Jiminy discovers a message written in his journal that he didn't write; "We must return to free them from their torment". In order to discover the meaning of the message King Mickey digitizes the journal, awakening a virtual Sora on Destiny Islands. The digital Sora battles both digital enemies and real enemies who have crossed over, Mickey learning that the people mentioned in the message are three Keyblade Apprentices connected to Sora's heart. Mickey later writes the letter he sends to Sora and his friends detailing who these three Keyblade Apprentices mean to them.

This was originally a Japanese-only release for mobile phones, but was later released internationally on the Nintendo DS, under the name Kingdom Hearts Re:coded, which also revealed at the end that Xehanort has returned and Yen Sid tells Mickey that Sora and Riku are to undergo a Mark of Mastery Exam to properly counter him and his apparent followers.

Kingdom Hearts Birth by SleepEdit

Kingdom Hearts Birth by Sleep is a prequel set ten years before the original Kingdom Hearts. Kingdom Hearts Birth by Sleep revolves around three Keyblade apprentices of Master Eraqus: Terra, Ventus, and Aqua. On the day of Aqua's rise to the rank of Keyblade Master, their mentor's old friend Master Xehanort came to oversee the event before suddenly disappearing with appearances of mysterious creatures called Unversed. Meeting with Xehanort prior, Terra pursues with Ventus following and Aqua sent by Eraqus to retrieve them. Though their experiences vary, encountering King Mickey as he undergoes his own Mark of Mastery, Terra encounters Maleficent who encourages him to use darkness while Ventus confronts a mysterious youth named Vanitas. Eventually, having orchestrated the death of Eraqus, Xehanort reveals his scheme to merge Ventus with Vanitas, revealed to be the personification of the former's darkness and source of the Unversed, to recreate the χ-blade to open the path to Kingdom Hearts. Though the blade is formed, the χ-blade is unstable due to the incomplete fusion with Aqua defeating Vantias who is metaphysically destroyed by Ventus. But the latter fight resulted with Ventus's damaged heart leaving his body and entering the body of a young Sora.

After placing Ventus's body in Land of Departure's Castle, reformatting it into Castle Oblivion, Aqua finds Terra in Radiant Garden. However, it turned out Xehanort's scheme also involved transferring his heart into Terra's body. This act, with his mind transferred into his armor, results with Terra's possessed body becoming the Xehanort that Sora faced in his Heartless and Nobody incarnations. Though she attempted to save Terra, Aqua ends up in the Realm of Darkness while an amnesic Terra-Xehanort is found by Ansem the Wise and became his apprentice Xehanort. Under Ansem, joined by his original incarnation's ally Briag, Xehanort studies the anatomy of light and darkness before regaining his memories and enacting a scheme that splintered his being into "Ansem" and Xemnas while setting the events leading up to the first Kingdom Hearts. In the aftermath of Kingdom Hearts coded, having read Mickey's letter, Sora and Riku head out to the Mysterious Tower to undergo the Mark of Mastery Exam.

Kingdom Hearts 3D: Dream Drop DistanceEdit

Kingdom Hearts 3D: Dream Drop Distance focuses on Sora and Riku's Mark of Mastery Exam under Yen Sid. Fearing the coming threat of the revived Master Xehanort, Yen Sid sends the two apprentices into the World of Sleep, where they are assigned to travel across several worlds which were submerged in sleep instead of being restored following "Ansem's" defeat.

However, the exam is interrupted by the arrival of a young man that reveals himself as a younger Master Xehanort who traveled through time, and seeks to bring about the birth of a "true" Organization XIII made up of Xehanort in various incarnations and bodies and lead by the original Master Xehanort. Saving Sora from becoming the final incarnation of Xehanort, Riku learns of Sora's significance from a hologram of Ansem. Riku passes the exam and brings Kairi to Yen Sid to train to help them in the fight while Sora fails and embarks on a journey to strengthen himself to prepare for when Master Xehanort's Organization XIII will make their move.

Kingdom Hearts IIIEdit

At the Sony E3 presentation on June 10th, Kingdom Hearts III was announced as being in development by Square Enix. It has been confirmed that Kingdom Hearts III will pick up directly after the ending of Kingdom Hearts 3D: Dream Drop Distance and serve as the final chapter of the Xehanort Saga, presumably culminating in the final battle between Sora and Master Xehanort.

Kingdom Hearts III is now in development by Square Enix Osaka depart, without Tetsuya Nomura, the original director of the series since he's busy with Final Fantasy XV.

CharactersEdit

Kingdom Hearts Characters

The main characters of the first three games of the Kingdom Hearts series. Sora is seen twice in the middle, being flanked by Roxas (left) and Riku, with Organization XIII on the bottom.

Main CharactersEdit

  • Sora - The main protagonist of the series, Sora is a young boy who dreams of seeing other worlds. He gets his wish after the Heartless destroy his home and circumstance causes him to team up with Donald and Goofy to search for his friends and the King. After learning more about the true nature of the Keyblade, he journeys to various worlds to defend them from the Heartless and Xehanort's incarnations while unraveling the mysteries surrounding those tied to his heart. His name means "sky" in Japanese.
  • Riku - Sora's friend and rival who lives with him and Kairi on Destiny Islands. Having encountered Terra in the past, Riku was intended to wield the Keyblade, but thew weapon passed to Sora after he gave in to the darkness in his heart. After initially acting as Sora's enemy, Riku reformed and came to wield the powers of darkness in the name of good, acquiring his own Keyblade and returning to help Sora in his battles. After the events of Kingdom Hearts 3D: Dream Drop Distance, Riku became a Keyblade Master in preparation for the final battle with Xehanort. His name means "land" or "shore" in Japanese.
  • Kairi - A young girl who arrived on Destiny Islands during a meteor shower several years prior to the beginning of the first game, revealed later to have originated from Radiant Garden. Having vanished when the Islands were destroyed, she was found without her heart later in the first game, but was restored and returned to Destiny Islands. She was later captured by Organization XIII and freed by Riku, and accompanied him and Sora in the Organization's stronghold, acquiring her own Keyblade to help them fight. Her name is based on the Japanese and Hawaiian word for "ocean" ("kai").
  • Roxas - Sora's "Nobody", created when Sora took his own heart in the first game. Due to the unique circumstances of his birth, his form resembling Ventus, Roxas was initially unaware of his origins and had no memories of his past self. Roxas became a member of Organization XIII and befriended Axel and Xion, but left the Organization when he realized he was being manipulated with the intent to discover the truth of his existence. After forced to defeating Xion, absorbing the memories of Sora that compromise her being, Roxas is captured by Riku so Diz can fuse the Nobody back into Sora. Despite being absorbed back into Sora, Roxas continued to have a supporting role in the series due to his role in the nature of Sora's existence. As Sora's Nobody Roxas has the ability to wield the Keyblade and dual-wields the Oathkeeper and Oblivion Keyblades, the latter originally Xion's Keyblade. His name is an anagram of Sora with an "X" added to it.
  • Lea- Lea is a resident of Radiant Garden who is introduced through his Nobody self Axel of Organization XIII who was one of Roxas's few friends. While a younger Lea appeared in Kingdom Hearts: Birth by Sleep, befriending Ventus, Axel made his first appearance in Kingdom Hearts: Chain of Memories as a wildcard antagonist sent by the Organization to keep an eye on their member Marluxia. In Kingdom Hearts II, after the events of Kingdom Hearts 358/2 Days, Axel left the organization in order to save his friendship with Roxas. Axel later sacrificed himself to save Sora from a horde of Nobodies, resulting in his own death and Lea's rebirth by the events of Kingdom Hearts 3D: Dream Drop Distance where he gained his own Keyblade. Lea/Axel's character is based on Reno from Final Fantasy.
  • Naminé - Kairi's Nobody, born when Sora took his own heart and released Kairi's heart inside him. Due to her unique birth she is able to manipulate Sora's memories and the memories of those close to him, modifying them or even erasing them. The Organization uses her to manipulate Sora, but aids DiZ in restoring Sora's memories before taking her leave once her purpose is fulfilled. Naminé later helps Kairi escape the Organization, merging into the girl once the worst has resided. Like Roxas, her role in the series has continued beyond her initial existence as she reveals Sora's ties to Terra, Ventus, and Aqua. Her name is derived from the Japanese word nami, which means "wave".
  • King Mickey - The ruler of Disney Castle, Mickey is a Keyblade Master trained by Yen Sid who assists Sora at various intervals with information and power-ups. He also took part in the fight against Master Xehanort in the past, and helped Riku learn to conquer his darkness and reform.
  • Donald Duck - The court magician in Disney Castle and a friend of Sora's. Tasked to assist Sora by Mickey, he is skilled with magic and uses a variety of abilities to enhance his spells.
  • Goofy - Captain of the royal guard at Disney Castle and a friend of Sora's. Traveling with Donald to help Sora, he is very defense-oriented and learns a variety of support abilities to help his allies.
  • Terra, Ventus and Aqua - The protagonists of Birth By Sleep, they are three Keyblade warriors training under Master Eraqus with Aqua made a Keyblade Master at the beginning of their story. Due to the machinations of Master Xehanort, Ventus and Terra were manipulated to leave their home with Aqua sent to retrieve them. Ultimately, after Eraqus was killed off, the three face Xehanort in an epic battle that resulted with Terra made into one of Xehanort's first vessels while Ventus ends up in a coma after defeating his personified darkness Vanitas. As Aqua hid Ventus's body in Castle Oblivion, his damaged heart took refuge in Sora's body. Aqua later ends up trapped in the Realm of Darkness after an attempt to stop Terra-Xehanort and remained there since. Their names are the Latin words for "earth", "wind" and "water", connecting them thematically to the original trio who they each had been in contact with during the events of Birth by Sleep.

Final Fantasy CharactersEdit

The majority of the Final Fantasy characters in the series act as "neutral" characters and appear in the worlds that are not based on Disney worlds, specifically Destiny Islands, Traverse Town, Twilight Town and Hollow Bastion/Radiant Garden. The exception is Olympus Coliseum, where a handful Final Fantasy characters pass through. So far, twenty-four characters from the Final Fantasy series have appeared in the Kingdom Hearts games.

The series implies that Radiant Garden is the "Final Fantasy world" within the series, as Leon, Aerith, and Yuffie claim it was their home until it was taken over, and in Kingdom Hearts II, Cid, Cloud, Tifa, and Sephiroth also appear there. In Kingdom Hearts, the cast of Final Fantasy characters was much smaller, with only nine of them playing a major role.

This count was increased dramatically in Kingdom Hearts II to over a dozen, and their importance to the storyline also increased. In both games, several of the characters appear in Olympus Coliseum as opponents.

  • Setzer from Final Fantasy VI - A top "Struggle" fighter and a flashy ladies man.
  • Yuffie from Final Fantasy VII - One of Leon's allies and a skilled ninja, she helps him fight off the Heartless.
  • Aerith from Final Fantasy VII - One of Leon's allies and a healer, she assisted in the restoration of Hollow Bastion.
  • Cloud from Final Fantasy VII - A swordsman with a dark past, he has been hunting Sephiroth across several worlds, seeking to end a mysterious grudge between them. Although he is focused on Sephiroth, he also helps Leon defend Hollow Bastion.
  • Cid from Final Fantasy VII - A merchant and Gummi ship engineer, he helped Sora build Gummi ships in the first game and oversaw the security systems for the defense of Hollow Bastion in Kingdom Hearts II.
  • Tifa from Final Fantasy VII - An ally of Leon who is searching for Cloud, she has followed his trail across several worlds and wishes to help him in his battle with Sephiroth. She also assists Leon in the restoration and defense of Hollow Bastion.
  • Sephiroth from Final Fantasy VII - An evil swordsman wielding strong dark powers, Sephiroth is the embodiment of the darkness in Cloud's heart. Their rivalry has led them to search for and battle each other across several worlds, with neither so far being the victor. Although Sora has fought and defeated Sephiroth twice, Sephiroth survived as apparently only Cloud can truly kill him.
  • Zack Fair from Crisis Core -Final Fantasy VII- - A young boy training at Olympus Coliseum in Kingdom Hearts Birth by Sleep, he hopes Phil will take him as a pupil and train him to be a hero.
  • Squall from Final Fantasy VIII - Going by the name "Leon", he is the leader of a resistance group against the Heartless. He assisted Sora against them with advice when possible, also taking up arms to defend his group's home from the Heartless when needed.
  • Seifer, Raijin, and Fujin from Final Fantasy VIII - The disciplinary committee for Twilight Town, they abuse their authority and take a quick dislike to Sora. Seifer is a top street brawler and "Struggle" competitor. In the game, Raijin and Fujin are known as Rai and Fuu respectively.
  • Selphie from Final Fantasy VIII - One of Sora's friends on their home island, she was left behind when Sora, Riku, and Kairi vanished. She plays a minor role in determining the difficulty of the first game during the introductory sequence.
  • Vivi from Final Fantasy IX - One of Seifer's fans, he is another "Struggle" fighter and admires Seifer's strength.
  • Tidus and Wakka from Final Fantasy X - Two more of Sora's friends, they were left behind at their home when Sora, Riku, and Kairi were lost. They played a minor role in determining the difficulty of the first game during the introductory sequence.
  • Auron from Final Fantasy X - A dead spirit revived by Hades to defeat Hercules, Auron initially betrayed him and worked with Sora, but was forced to fight Hercules after having his free will stolen. Sora later restored him and the three worked together to defeat Hades, after which Auron departed back to the afterlife.
  • Yuna, Rikku, and Paine from Final Fantasy X-2 - A trio of treasure-hunting pixies called the Gullwings, they were initially allied with Maleficent but switched sides on the promise of treasure from Leon and helped him defend Hollow Bastion.
  • Moogles from various Final Fantasy games - They run the various shops around the worlds, usually selling commands, accessories, and items, all of which can be bought with munny, the games' currency. Most shops are run by holograms, as moogles don't enjoy having their pom-poms ruffled. Organization XIII had its own resident moogle, until it followed Roxas to Twilight Town when he left. This is the only moogle to wear an article of clothing (being an Organization member, it wears the black coat).

Secondary RolesEdit

Other CharactersEdit

  • Neku Sakuraba from The World Ends With You - A young boy who Sora encounters in Traverse Town in the World of Sleep. While searching his partner, Shiki, he teaches Sora about Spirits.
  • Shiki Misaki from The World Ends With You - Neku's partner, after being saved by Riku, her "knight" she follows him around. Eventually meeting back up with Neku.
  • Raimu "Rhyme" Bito from The World Ends With You - A young girl missing most of her memories as well as her partner, Beat.
  • Daisukenojo "Beat" Bito from The World Ends With You - Rhyme's partner, he desperately searches for her, eventually running into Joshua and Riku.
  • Yoshiya "Joshua" Kiryu from The World Ends With You - a mysterious young boy who tells Sora and Riku about a different version of the town they each are in.

VillainsEdit

Most of the villains in Kingdom Hearts are taken from the various Disney films that are featured in the game. The most notable Disney villains in the series are Maleficent (from Sleeping Beauty) and Pete; Maleficent appears at first to be the main villain of the first game. However, it is later revealed that an original character, Master Xehanort, is the main antagonist of the series, acting through various incarnations of himself to further his desire to cause a Keyblade War that would destroy the universe, allowing him to seize the power of Kingdom Hearts and recreate the universe as he sees fit.

Master Xehanort

Master Xehanort, the main antagonist of the series.

  • Master Xehanort - An elderly Keyblade master, Xehanort is main antagonist of the series who is intent to recreate reality by obtaining the χ-blade. During the events of Birth by Sleep, Xehanort, manipulates Terra into using the powers of darkness to condition him as a vessel having Ventus and Vantias become of equal strength so their reunion could recreate the X-blade. Though it failed at both fronts, due to Terra's resistance, Master Xehanort had a series of back-up plans like the creation of Organization XIII and the recruitment of his younger self to see his plan come to fruition.
    • Terra-Xehanort - Originally Terra, his body and heart were taken over by Master Xehanort as a vessel to continue his work. However, when Terra and Aqua almost expelled him from the former's body, Xehanort is forced to seal his own memories to remain in his host who only remembered the name "Xehanort". Found by Ansem the Wise, Xehanort became his apprentice in Radiant Garden. However, when his previous incarnation's memories resurface, Xehanort betrayed his master and cast him into darkness, stealing his name and research into the darkness of the heart for his own purposes. He later was split into a Heartless and a Nobody to enact Master Xehanort's scheme.
      • Ansem, Seeker of Darkness - Xehanort's Heartless who was originally a bodiless spirit who traveled back in time to recruit Young Xehanort. By the events of Kingdom Hearts, Ansem possesses Riku's body to regain physical form after the seven Princesses of Heart light the way to Kingdom Hearts. Though destroyed by Kingdom Hearts, remnants of "Ansem" were still in Riku before they finally purged with Master Xehanort's restoration drawing near. However, "Ansem" is later summoned from the timeline as member of the new Organization XIII.
      • Xemnas - Xehanort's Nobody and the leader of Organization XIII, given the taken to form an artificial Kingdom Hearts while converting the Nobodies under him into vessels for Master Xehanort's heart. In the case of the former task, Xemnas used Xion and Roxas to defeat Emblem Heartless to achieve his quota before relying on Sora to do his dirty work. After being confronted in his castle, his Kingdom Hearts damaged and his forces defeated, Xemnas battled Sora and Riku before being destroy by them. However, Xemnas is brought back as a member of the new Organization XIII.
    • Young Xehanort - A younger version of Xehanort who was contacted by his future self and given the power to travel through time to help his plans to form the new Organization XIII.
  • Organization XIII - Originally, they were a group of thirteen powerful Nobodies, bodies that have lost their hearts, who conduct research and experiments on hearts as they pursue Kingdom Hearts to use it to bestow hearts on themselves and all Nobodies. However, as a new guard raises from the old, the true goal and purpose of the Organization is tied to Xehanort's agenda. Planning for such an event when the original group was wiped out, Xehanort enlisted the aid of his younger self to gather various versions of himself to establish a new Organization XIII: Thirteen Seekers of Darkness.
    • Xigbar- Number II of the original Organization XIII, Xigbar was an ally of Xehanort when he was a complete being named Braig. Though defeated by Sora, Xigbar endured and is revealed to house part of Master Xehanort's heart in him.
    • Saïx - Number VII of the original Organization XIII, Saïx is the Nobody of Lea's friend Isa and thus was originally a friend of Axel's before they became enemies. Though defeated by Sora, Saïx is brought back as an enforcer in the new Organization.
    • Marluxia- Number XI of Organization XIII and lord of Castle Oblivion, he is the main antagonist of Kingdom Hearts: Chain of Memories. He uses Naminé to rewrite Sora's memories in an attempt to win Sora's allegiance and take over the organization, but after Axel's betrayal and Naminé's escape he tries to kill Sora and is defeated.
  • Vanitas - The arrogant apprentice of Master Xehanort, Vanitas is actually an entity created from the extracted darkness of Ventus's heart. Though his purpose is the ensure the recreation of the χ-blade, Vanitas desires nothing more but to merge with Ventus in order to end his own painful existence. Though succeeding in entering Ventus's body, Vanitas finds their reintegration incomplete as Ventus risks destroying his heart to defeat Vanitas while Aqua and Mickey fight his possessed body.
  • Maleficent from Sleeping Beauty - The leader of the Disney villains and a mistress of dark magic. She wished to capture the seven Princesses of Heart to open the path to Kingdom Hearts, but was defeated by Sora. She was revived in Kingdom Hearts II and resumed her plans, though Xehanort and Organization XIII have overshadowed her as larger threats. She returned as a major antagonist in coded, where she attempted to use the simulated worlds as a route past the defenses of Disney Castle.
  • Pete - Maleficent's assistant. For attempting to attack Minnie after an award snub at a festival, he was sealed in the Realm of Darkness until Maleficent freed him to serve her. He acts as her messenger to other worlds and other Disney villains and sows Heartless to cause trouble wherever he goes.

HeartlessEdit

The Heartless are living beings, whose hearts were corrupted by darkness, and they play the roles of the "common enemies" Sora and party must defeat. They exist for no other purpose than to consume hearts, be it the hearts of other living beings or even that of entire worlds. The hearts that Heartless take from others become Heartless themselves. There are two types of Heartless, the shadowy Purebloods which are naturally created Heartless and the Emblem Heartless created by Xehanort and Ansem's apprentices.

NobodiesEdit

When a Heartless is created, the empty shell may reform into a Nobody. By comparison, Nobodies are rarer than Heartless due to the shell having to have a strong heart to reform, but they are typically much stronger. They are also capable of speech and thought, and the members of Organization XIII are all exceptionally intelligent and powerful Nobodies.

As they have no hearts, Nobodies do not truly exist yet have the memories of their original selves and sometimes act like their complete selves. The only exceptions were Roxas and Naminé, because of the circumstances behind their creation from multiple hearts (Sora, Kairi, and Ventus) forced them to establish new identities. It would later be revealed that Nobody would eventually grow a new heart over time and that if a Nobody and its Heartless counterpart have ceased to be, their original self would be recreated at the site of their birth.

UnversedEdit

The main enemies of Kingdom Hearts Birth by Sleep, they are embodiments of the negative emotions within Vanitas that were a side effect of his creation. As a result, the Unversed are extensions of Vanitas, who learned to create them at will and absorb their scattered remains, using them in Master Xehanort's plans for Ventus and Terra. The Unversed ceased to be when Vanitas merged back into Ventus's body.

Dream EatersEdit

The main enemies of Kingdom Hearts 3D: Dream Drop Distance, they are in a way the Heartless of the World of Sleep, produced from the darkness of that specific realm. As with the Heartless, Nobodies and Unversed, they come in a variety of shapes and sizes. They are also notable for also serving as allies for Sora and Riku once captured.

Connections to the Final Fantasy seriesEdit

Besides the numerous characters from the Final Fantasy series that appear, several other aspects of the series directly influence the gameplay of Kingdom Hearts. The series uses the same naming patterns as Final Fantasy for its spells and items, items and spells such as Hi-Potions, Tents, Fire and Stop appearing, among many others. The series also universally uses the same spell suffix systems as Final Fantasy, "-ra" denoting tier two spells and "-ga" denoting tier three. There are Summon spells that can call allies into battle, using mechanics similar to the summon sequences of Final Fantasy X. Although the summons are all Disney characters (except for a Cloud summon in Chain of Memories), a Bahamut summon was meant to be in the original game, but was later removed as the development team decided that all the summons in the game were to be of iconic Disney characters instead.

Several weapons are named after Final Fantasy weapons, including the Ultima Weapon, Fenrir, and Save the Queen. The various Gummi ships used to travel between worlds are named after Final Fantasy ships and concepts, and include Highwind, Falcon, and Invincible. Ability Points are used to assign various special attacks and support powers to party members. In Kingdom Hearts II, Limit Breaks appear as techniques that allow Sora and an ally to unleash a series of powerful attacks at the cost of all Sora's MP. Some of these Limit Breaks, like Bushido and Comet, again take their name from Final Fantasy games. In Birth By Sleep the player is able to fuse commands together to create stronger ones and can infuse items in the fusion to attach abilities to the new command, identical to Materia Fusion in Crisis Core.

The Nobody enemy types are based on recurring Final Fantasy jobs and show some similar behavior - Dragoon Nobodies fight with lances and use Jump attacks, and Gamblers battle using dice and cards. The Organization members themselves also roughly fit such profiles - for example, Zexion can mimic the attacks of enemies similar to a Blue Mage. Each member also controls one element, such as Water, Light, and Earth. Besides Nobodies, several Heartless are named for Final Fantasy enemies, such as the Behemoth and Darkside. Several enemies also masquerade as pots or jars until attacked, or hide in treasure chests and attack when they are opened, a reference to mimics and Monster-in-a-box.

When fighting in Olympus Coliseum, Sora uses victory poses based on Squall and Cloud's, while Roxas uses Squall's victory pose in 358/2 Days. Riku's growth through the series parallels Kain Highwind, and to a lesser degree Cecil Harvey. Similar to the two, Riku began the series as an antagonist using the powers of darkness and was manipulated by Xehanort, but reformed and become a heroic character that joined Sora on his adventures, now using the powers of darkness to fight for light. Riku's signature weapon, Soul Eater, is named after Cecil's ability as a Dark Knight, and similar to Kain and Cecil's love triangle with Rosa, it is strongly hinted Sora and Riku have romantic feelings for their mutual friend Kairi, with Sora being the victor in the competition.

The Kingdom Hearts series in turn has retroactively influenced the Final Fantasy series. Kingdom Hearts was the first game to feature Sephiroth with a single black wing behind his right shoulder, an element of his appearance that was later included in the Compilation of Final Fantasy VII. Gameplay elements of Dissidia Final Fantasy are influenced by Kingdom Hearts, such as chaining attacks in different ways based on the timing of button presses. Quickmove and Chase Sequences are similar to Reaction Commands in Kingdom Hearts II, and EX Mode is similar to Sora's Drive Forms in the same game, granting an enhanced set of abilities and an altered appearance for a short time while Sora's Drive Gauge depletes over time, reverting form when it empties.

TriviaEdit

  • Kairi is featured in Dead Fantasy, where she fights alongside Rinoa Heartilly, Yuna, Rikku and Tifa Lockhart against characters from the Dead or Alive series, and which she is equipped with her "Destiny's Embrace" Keyblade.
  • Cloud and Zack are the only Final Fantasy characters to be featured as a summon in the Kingdom Hearts series. Cloud appeared as a summon in Kingdom Hearts: Chain of Memories, and Zack as a D-Link in Kingdom Hearts: Birth by Sleep.
  • Tifa's EX Mode weapons in Dissidia 012 Final Fantasy, the Premium Heart gloves, have the Kingdom Hearts logo on them.
  • Cloud, Sephiroth and Squall's Kingdom Hearts attire are downloadable content for Dissidia 012 Final Fantasy.
  • Dissidia Final Fantasy was originally planned to be a Kingdom Hearts game; however, it was decided that having Disney characters fight each other would not be appropriate, so it was made into a Final Fantasy game.
  • Kingdom Hearts: 358/2 Days's multiplayer mode, with Organization XIII as playable characters, was inspired by Dissidia.[1]
  • Laguna Loire was originally meant to appear in Kingdom Hearts: Birth by Sleep as the head of the Mirage Arena. However, he was removed in favor of him appearing in Dissidia 012 Final Fantasy, as developers felt he should only appear in one title or the other.
  • The randomly generated Link Portals and Friendship Portals in Kingdom Hearts 3D: Dream Drop Distance feature the name of a Final Fantasy protagonist, such as Lightning or Zack.
  • Major supporting characters, Master Eraqus and Master Yen Sid, are inspired by the two companies that made the series possible. The design for Eraqus is based off the physical appearance of Final Fantasy series creator, Hironobu Sakaguchi. Also, Eraqus' name is an anagram of Square as Yen Sid is to Disney.

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