Forum:Hindsight: A Game made from Preexisting Notions and KHIII
To begin this version, we would open in Destiny Islands and show the conversation between Xehanort and Ansem, as I feel as though it would be a nice call back to the events of Kingdom Hearts Dream Drop Distance, especially for new players. This would perhaps also shed some light on how Ansem managed to convince himself to traverse time, as well as young Xehanort receiving this ability (as traveling to the future has thus far only been displayed by Maleficent and Young Xehanort as of yet and we still lack an explanation as to how this works - although KHX is working on it I guess).
We'd see Young Xehanort return to his proper time, forgetting everything that happened on his journey, but utilizing what Ansem had said to drive him into leaving Destiny Islands. Here we would see how Xehanort reached the world (people on Destiny Islands say someone had left the island before so I assume it was on a raft?), with his first interaction being with Eraqus in Scala ad Caelum. From here we'd cut ahead to just before Xehanort and Eraqus are to take the Mark of Mastery, with Xehanort being the playable character. I'd show the various methods of learning to wield a Keyblade in the Scala ad Caelum, including training and going on missions (with Eraqus as a party member, both of them wielding their OG Keyblades, which still have yet to be seen) as well as how Eraqus and Xehanort know Yen Sid.
I would have Luxu introduced here, as it is explained that Luxu had to abandon his OG body to travel to the Data World the Dandelions fled to after the Keyblade War and has been possessing people in order to keep an eye on No Name, as per his role. This would mean that Luxu now possesses a whole new identity, one which no longer wields No Name, potentially posing as another wielder at the time. The set up would be that Eraqus is destined to succeed their Master (who in fact descends from Brain and is Eraqus' actual father) and that Xehanort, although supporting Eraqus, would be jealous of his success and the path set out for him, something which Xehanort believes he lacks. Here is where I would have Luxu approaching Xehanort, the two would have a heart-to-heart about Xehanort's uncertainty, leading Luxu to name drop the Lost Masters. This is when they would play their game of chess as well, which may be sprinkled throughout the game where it applies. In this case Xehanort appears more distrustful of Eraqus because of seeds of doubt which Luxu planted in Xehanort (hence why he asks Eraqus about the Lost Masters). I would build off of their relationship, how Eraqus is like a brother to Xehanort and the two of them went from being equals to Xehanort feeling inferior, and jealous, and giving in to what would grow into his own Darkness. Just as it states in Xehanort's Reports in BBS, I would have Xehanort cast away his Keyblade Armor in the Lanes Between in order to experience the Darkness and learn how to control it rather than succumb to it.
I would have the fight against Eraqus during their Mark of Mastery be a boss battle, and though they would both emerge victorious, as previously stated, The Master would pass down his Keyblade, Master's Defender. At this point, Eraqus would begin spending more and more time away from Xehanort, and once again Xehanort would seek guidance from Luxu, who would guide him toward taking No Name as his own Keyblade and etching his own destiny.
Due to a lack of specifics, we do not know what became of Scala ad Caelum, but I assume it was destroyed somehow based on the way Xehanort talks about it in KHIII and the fact that there aren't as many Keyblade wielders in the present day, suggesting that they were either scattered or destroyed. I predict some kind of cataclysmic event that causes the world to fall to Darkness, likely because Xehanort took No Name as his own in order to prove himself to Eraqus and The Master. Scared and confused, Xehanort drops No Name and attempts to fight for his life through Scala ad Caelum's changing landscape, but in hearing No Name call to him, Xehanort is drawn back to the ancient Keyblade, taking it in hand and opening a Gate in order to leave the world as it becomes a barren wasteland. Feeling overwhelming amounts of guilt, Xehanort would then travel to the Land of Departure to inform Eraqus of all that had transpired.
As The Master had disappeared alongside the other Keyblade wielders of Scala ad Caelum, Eraqus blames Xehanort, bringing up the fact that The Master was his father, not Xehanort's, and that it was Xehanort's fault they'd lost him. Having given in to his anger, and seeking to cleanse himself of that Darkness, Eraqus forgives Xehanort, understanding that No Name was a necessary part of the Keyblade's history which they could not afford to lose, and so even though Xehanort had sought it for the wrong reasons, he was happy it was still safe. Even so, Eraqus would grow wary of Xehanort, sensing a new Darkness within him born from the theft of No Name. A downtrodden Xehanort realizes that he and Eraqus have grown apart, and he runs off, accepting the role of the seeker and dedicating his life to learning about the Keyblade War and the Lost Masters Luxu had told him about.
At this point is where I would have Luxu seek out a new body in Radiant Garden, aware that it was destined to house one of the seven Princesses of Heart because it was the home of the final Keyhole.
Next comes 0.2, which I would have left as part of Kingdom Hearts III. It would play out in the exact same way, with Aqua as a playable character, and Mickey joining her as a Party member after the Enchanted Dominion (albeit with Mickey not name dropping Sora and Riku); a tale initiated by Mickey in order to explain Aqua's whereabouts within the Realm of Darkness.
From here, I would show Riku and Mickey's journey first, who travel to Radiant Garden alongside Kairi in order to introduce her to Merlin and have her enter the Secret Forest in order to train alongside Lea. At the same time, Mickey and Riku would reunite with Leon, Yuffie, Aerith, and Cid, who inform them that Ienzo has taken over Ansem the Wise’s responsibilities at the castle, and that he needed to speak with them. Meeting with Dilan, Aeleus, and Ienzo, Riku is shocked to encounter the latter two again, however they assure him that they no longer side with Xehanort and are wishing to atone for their misdeeds, having been tricked into Xehanort’s plot from the very beginning. Dilan recounts when Braig led himself and Ansem the Wise to Xehanort’s unconscious body in the center square, while Ienzo informs them of the existence of the Chamber of Repose, within which lies a Keyblade and Keyblade Armor. Furthermore, Ienzo delves into what Xigbar had told him about how, on one occasion, he had heard a voice answer Xemnas from within the Chamber. Finally, Aeleus explains that Even has gone missing, hitting a sore spot with Riku. At this time, Ienzo leads Riku and Mickey to the Chamber of Repose, where Mickey identifies Stormfall as belonging to Aqua. Utilizing the Keyblade as a catalyst, Mickey is able to create a tether to Aqua with his Keyblade, opening a door to the Realm of Darkness.
This is when Sora would finally be playable, as 2.9 commences (a callback to KHII, I guess, with the incredibly long prologue lol). Exact same scenario, with Sora going to Olympus in order to regain his strength. This I would also leave alone, as it played out rather well (although I would at least attempt to explain why Sora can suddenly summon Attractions). The only change I really would have made is the presence of more gods in the Heavens. Specifically, Hera, Demeter, Poseidon, and Hephaestus - with Hephaestus being the one to show Sora how to utilize The Forge in order to upgrade his Keyblade, rather than Sora simply stumbling upon it. Pain and Panic should also really be present as well. I would also probably explain Sora's Athletic Flow (specifically how he can run vertically) as being a result of him not being from that World, thereby allowing him to bend the laws of reality ever so slightly. I would change the story a bit, because they cut out the part where Meg is killed rescuing Hercules from Hades, which I think is another missed opportunity because it would not only allow us to revisit the Underworld in order to rescue her alongside Hercules, but it would show Hercules' actual regaining of strength instead of using the time Hades had kidnapped Meg to unlock the Underdrome as the explanation of how Hercules regained his strength. Plus, the most requested thing from fans would be present after finishing Olympus: The Coliseum would reopen, and to celebrate, Phil would host a new tournament. Why create these areas of the world if you are not going to use them all in your grand finale?
A big change to the game that I would make is that, by accepting half of Xehanort's Hearts, it gave the real Organization XIII access to the ability to wield a Keyblade. I would start this reveal in Olympus, with Xigbar struggling to summon his Keyblade, and show the growth of the Org. XIII's abilities. Why, you may ask? Because it makes absolutely no sense to bring back all these characters with pretty much the exact same abilities when we'd already doused them before.
From here, we make it to Twilight Town, where everything would play out the same - except Seifer, Rai, Fuu, and Vivi would be present. I'm not sure in what way, probably building off of Sora and Seifer's ongoing feud between one another, or having them be characters you seek out to ask about Roxas. Regardless, I would also open up the exploration so that we could visit the Market Street, Back Alley, Sandlot, Usual Spot, Station Plaza, Central Station, Sunset Terrace, more of the Under the Tracks area, as well as being able to venture inside the Old Mansion. Twilight Town's exploration in KHIII was disappointing to say the least. Nomura could have even tied all the unicorn paraphernalia within the Old Mansion to Ira and the Foretellers - especially the table supposedly destroyed in some kind of disagreement located in the Dining Room.
Here, I would show Ansem leaving from Twilight Town, leading into the next scene, which is a remastered version of Blank Points, then leading into its continuation. Here, Aqua would be playable again, though she would still be unable to wield her Keyblade (I would mention that she lost it when Destiny Islands was reformed, because that is unclear in the game) I'd have her utilizing powerful magic and physical attacks, the point here is not to beat Ansem, he would beat you, making Aqua feel more hopeless. The One Behind would then grab her as it does in the game and cast her into the depths of Darkness, where Ansem uses his power over Darkness to taint Aqua's weakened Heart, before leaving with Ansem the Wise.
The kicker here, is that the next section would have Riku as the playable character again, as he and Mickey make their way through the Realm of Darkness, during which time Riku is consistently pursued by a Heart shrouded in Darkness - Riku Replica. I think it'd be better to have to face Riku Replica and restore his Heart prior to it joining with Riku's, as he was lost to the Darkness, and thereby should be Darkness that needs to be liberated. I also personally prefer the idea of another playthrough of this world from further away as they are forced to battle the stronger Pureblood Heartless there while following the path to Aqua, but they arrive at the End of Sea JUST after Ansem and Ansem leave, and would then be attacked by Anti-Aqua, rather than fighting the Demon Tower, during which time she'd shatter Riku's Way to the Dawn and force the two to retreat back to the Realm of Light.
Continuing on, I would introduce Kairi as a playable character, and you would get to help her train to become a Keyblade Master alongside Lea. I would abandon all that stuff about the letter she was writing for Sora which was actually just for her anyway, because it is better to show, not tell. This way you would get to experience Lea's constant apologies to Kairi and the guilt he feels, while also providing Kairi an opportunity to connect with Lea over the people they care about, not necessarily completely forgiving him, but understanding what he did as an attempt to save Roxas and redeeming himself through his rescue of Sora in the Realm Between and from being taken as one of Xehanort's vessels. Kairi would develop her own style of fighting, which i would make reminiscent of Aqua's in the way that she's be a powerful Magic user - allowing Riku to be the Power balance reminiscent of Terra, while Sora bears Speed, reminiscent of Ventus. Additionally, Lea would have his own fighting style too as a Party member, with his Flame Liberator being able to transform into the Eternal Flames chakrams. I would make Destiny's Embrace capable of transforming into a baton for close-combat and a bow with magic arrows for enemies that are further away. While Kairi and Lea were meant to train to become Keyblade Masters, and the Mark of Mastery seems to have happened in KHIII with the two discussing their one-on-one fight, nothing seems to have come from this, so I would rather portray Kairi as feeling something was wrong (similarly to how the Princesses of Heart sensed Xemnas' presence in KHI) and abandoning the Mark of Mastery in order to go on her own adventure, with Lea in tow.
I would have Kairi go to Radiant Garden, where she would explore her origins including her grandmother, and being imprisoned by Ansem with the intent of utilizing her to find the Keyblade Wielder. There is potential here for further development with Lea as well, as he became Ansem the Wise's apprentice alongside Isa just prior to his disappearance, so potentially he could've come into a captive Kairi in his youth after losing his Heart. I'm not wholly sure of how I'd approach this, perhaps through flashbacks (sort of like the dreams Roxas experienced in the prologue of KHII)? Kairi could then learn of everything that Sora is trying to do for Roxas, and - wanting to do the same for Namine, initiates a plan with Ienzo to bring Namine back as well, given that her Data would also be present within Ansem the Wise's research. Learning that the Princesses of Heart are being targeted by Organization XIII, alongside her desire to have her own experiences as a Keyblade wielder, Kairi would then set out to visit other worlds
I would have the exchange at the Mysterious Tower be the same with Sora, Donald, Goofy, Mickey, Riku, and Yen Sid, with Sora getting his new vestments and Riku asking to receive a new Keyblade, while Mickey fuses Kingdom Key D with Star Seeker to make Kingdom Key W.
From here, Sora would go to Toy Box and be harrassed by Young Xehanort as he is in KHIII, but this is also where the player could choose which character they wanted to play as - with Riku needing to strengthen his Keyblade and Kairi needing to gain her own experiences, they would both be options here as well.
I would have Sora visit mostly the same Worlds that he does in KHIII - Toy Box, Kingdom of Corona, Monstropolis, and The Caribbean, but with the addition of Agrabah (in order to wrap up the story completely in the Xehanort saga - with the events detailing Aladdin and the King of Thieves).
I would have Kairi visit Wreck-It Ralph World (Kairi would get the story of Wreck-It Ralph World with King Candy and all that, and Vanellope would act as a Princess of Heart, with a corrupted Cybug Heartless acting as the final boss), , Arendelle (same as KHIII, but with Kairi instead o Sora, with her reflecting on Anna and Elsa's relationship in relation to Sora, while also developing an ongoing feud with Larxene), The Great Mouse Detective World (Kairi would identify with Olivia Flaversham and want to help find her father alongside Basil and Dawson), Moana World (Moana is a Princess of Heart; Boss Fight against Tamatoa; Heartless based off of the Kakamora; Boss battle against Te Ka; Te Ka is literally Te Fiti's Heartless and is restored by Moana).
I would have Riku visit Symphony of Sorcery (New areas would be introduced reflecting the Dance of the Hours from Fantasia, Pines of Rome, Pomp and Circumstance, and The Firebird Suite from Fantasia 2000, with the final boss being The Firebird), The Princess and the Frog World (Tiana would be a Princess of Heart, Dr. Facilier would ally with Maleficent and Pete), The Jungle Book World, Atlantis: The Lost Empire World, San Fransokyo (the journey through San Fransokyo would largely be the same, however with Riku instead of Sora, as it would be much more impactful for Riku to interact here with Dark Riku, rather than them meeting for the first time in the Keyblade Graveyard, thus giving them more to build off of when that time comes later).
Additional minigame opportunities would be available to all three characters through a Dumbo World (100 Acre Wood really had no business being in KHIII), as well as a racing element via Keyblade Gliders (harkening back to KHBBS) introduced into Wreck-It Ralph World, and the Coliseum in Olympus. (Levi657 (talk) 15:05, 16 March 2019 (UTC))
Maleficent and Pete would still be going world-to-world searching for the Black Box, but they would have more involvement with the story. They were barely involved in Kingdom Hearts III and they were in some pretty bad need for a redemption since in Kingdom Hearts II they were taken less seriously when the Organization took prevalence in the second half of the game, Re:Coded sort of helped them out a bit but in a game that I know not a whole lot of people were thrilled about, and in Dream Drop Distance they showed up for a cameo where they were once more the butt end of the joke.
I feel like a larger array of worlds opens the door for a more varied experience where you don't just have to worry about the Organization. Why not have Maleficent and Pete use their connections in Darkness to get help in searching for the Black Box alongside the Villains Council? New members could be added, not to mention that Captain Hook is still around. Dr. Facilier, King Candy, and Sa'Luk would've been a welcome addition to the team, and with the suggestion of the Heartless taking the place of the Kakamora Maleficent and Pete would certainly have an active part to play in a Moana world, on top of their presence in Olympus.
Furthermore I would've developed more Unversed and allowed them to be a part of more than just Monstropolis. Vanitas is second in command of Organization XIII, and thus I feel as though he wouldn't regularly have gone down without a fight. I understand that the Unversed helped him gather enough negativity so that he could restore himself, so why not use Monstropolis as a jump off to reach other worlds with the Unversed as well?
While on the subject Sorcerer and Berserk Nobodies shouldn't have been exclusive to the Battle Portals. While it makes sense in a way because Xemnas only directly clashed with Sora in the Keyblade Graveyard and Twilight Town, why not have them appear in Twilight Town? I am a little more understanding with Saix, since he didn't clash with anyone until the Keyblade Graveyard and he was actively thwarting Xehanort from behind the scenes. This is another point I would have expanded on however, because while there were subtle hints in-game, such as when we see Saix and Vexen together in the Keyblade Graveyard and when Vexen tells Demyx about Saix's plan, there wasn't much else to go on and for the longest time I thought that it was Xigbar rather than Saix because of all the Luxu stuff they were piecing together throughout the game.
I would appreciate something more about Demyx, Luxord, Marluxia, and Larxene. By all means, connect them to the KHX storyline, but what worlds did Lauriam, Elrena and the other two return to when they were restored? I assume that Young Xehanort and Xigbar collected them while Saix went after Even, so where did they end up? For that matter, where did Ventus and the others end up when they ended up in the future? All we know is that (probably) Skuld ended up in Radiant Garden. We know that Marluxia regained his memories when he was defeated once more by Sora in the Keyblade Graveyard. Larxene seemed to also have her memories returned to her - as she mentioned coming along for the ride before being restored. But why now instead of the first time? Did Xemnas do something to unlock their memories? I would include a scene sometime after Xemnas drops the news about them all hailing from the past and prior to the final battle in the Keyblade Graveyard where this is explored. (Levi657 (talk) 15:11, 24 April 2019 (UTC))