ByLiv Sommerlot, writer at
Liv Sommerlot

Kingdom Hearts 3 and its release date continues to reside just out of reach of its eager fans. After nearly ten long years of incessant teasing, releases of side games most fans could do without, and reports of possible delays, even the most devoted players are finding their interest (and hopes) waning. Will 2017 finally, finally be the year? Or is it true that Kingdom Hearts 2.8's delay will further delay Kingdom Hearts 3, as well?

Well, we're not here to answer those questions, unfortunately. But we are here with a little bit of insight director Tetsuya Nomura has given us recently about the box art for the series' various games—in particular, its HD remixes.

Could the Box Art for the Kingdom Hearts HD Remixes Provide Insights into the Story's Direction?

Remember the HD remixes? You know, the ones with really weird numbering conventions? I.5? II.5? II.8? That usually contained at least a couple of different games and/or remasters?

Well, apparently, lining up the box art for those three games reveals a number of things:

"Extremely attentive Kingdom Hearts fans might have already discovered [the secrets], but one is that Sora's movements change from sitting, to standing, to walking..."

"One more is that when you line up the three illustrations, you'll notice that they show the flow of time with changes in the sky. [KH1.5] is sunset becoming night, [KH 2.5] is the middle of the night, and [KH 2.8] is night breaking into dawn."

Looking at the box art does seem to reveal these details. You can clearly see the transition from sunset to night on I.5, II.5 is completely dark, and then the light and dark dichotomy returns with night to dawn on II.8.

In addition, both I.5 and II.8 seem to frame the art of II.5, almost as if they were made to be a three-part piece of artwork. II.5 includes not only the heroes, but the villains, as well, and is the only one of the trifecta that doesn't have three, clear-cut divisions. Instead, all the characters are aligned vertically to form one melded image.

A closer look at the box art for 'Kingdom Hearts II.5.'
A closer look at the box art for 'Kingdom Hearts II.5.'

Could Kingdom Hearts 3 Represent the "Dawn" of the Kingdom Hearts Series?

Nomura also went on to mention that "those three illustrations have a message regarding the final chapter, [Kingdom Hearts III]."

But... what is it?! Could Sora's progression from sitting, to standing, to walking move to him jumping on the cover of Kingdom Hearts 3? And what implications could that have for his character? Perhaps it's trying to artistically imply that he's reached adulthood and will be a mature young man in the third installment?

Image source: Myrtleville Swimmers
Image source: Myrtleville Swimmers

And what of the progression of time? If Kingdom Hearts 2 is the "night" of the series, perhaps Kingdom Hearts 3 will be the "dawn?" Dawn, itself, can have many meanings. The Dictionary of Symbolism describes "dawn" as:

Dawn suggests the notions of illumination and hope, the beginning of a new day and thus a chance for happiness and improvement. Sunrise is a symbol of birth and rebirth, of awakening. The coming of light, resurrection.

Thinking about Kingdom Hearts 3 in these terms brings up some very intriguing ideas about how the story could progress, especially considering how important the concept of "birth" has already been in the series.

But if Kingdom Hearts is Supposed to be a Trilogy...

The one question I have at the end of all this is in regards to Kingdom Hearts as a trilogy. Much seems to point to this—I highly doubt we'll see another main series Kingdom Hearts game after the release of KH3, especially if the "true" and "final" Xehanort will finally be up for a brawl this time around.

So if the main games are supposed to form the "main trilogy" of the series... why doesn't the as-of-yet-unproduced cover of Kingdom Hearts 3 form the final piece of the box art puzzle? Perhaps it's just me, but having I.5, II.5, and then... II.8?! be the three pivotal box art covers seems strange.

Ah, well. Who am I to question their decisions? Perhaps it will end up being a four-part series and Kingdom Hearts 3 will form some kind of tail for the trifecta.

Nevertheless, this gives us something to ruminate on while we continue, as ever, to await more news about Kingdom Hearts 3.

For more Kingdom Hearts here on Now Loading:

Spotted any other details in the trifecta of covers? Any theories on how they could be reflected in Kingdom Hearts 3? Let us know!


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