With Kingdom Hearts 3D: Dream Drop Distance out in Japan, and hints by creator Tetsuya Nomura at the series’ next big entry, it’s speculation time. GameInformer has already made their wishlist of what they want in Kingdom Hearts 3, but we here at Front Towards Gamer are going to concentrate on the worlds we want included.
10. John Carter
Based on Edgar Rice Burroughs’ series of novels, Disney’s latest outing would fit right in with the Kingdom Hearts universe. The “world” in question would simply be Mars (or “Barsoom,” as the inhabitants call it), and of course John Carter would join Sora and company in combat. Plus, live action Disney works already jive with Kingdom Hearts fans, as Pirates of the Caribbean‘s Port Royal already graced Kingdom Hearts II.
9. 101 Dalmations
A common complaint of KH fans is the use of Winnie the Pooh in the series. No, the cutesy look is not an issue (this is Disney after all); but Pooh‘s 100 Acre Wood has served as nothing but a platform for mini-games in nearly entry in the series. A mansion-based level for these hundred and one little guys could easily take over the mini-game front, and Cruella de Vil could even serve as an antagonist if Square Enix decided to make it a standard world. The original Kingdom Hearts already had a side quest involving finding all these guys hidden throughout the various worlds, so isn’t it time we gave them their own place?
8. The Rescuers Down Under
The 1990 followup to 77’s The Rescuers is an absolute must-include for the KH franchise. As far as gameplay, shrinking down to mouse size to explore a now-giant Australia would be superb; shrinking down already worked for Birth by Sleep‘s Castle of Dreams. Players could also engage in a Gummi Ship-like sequence while flying on the back of Orville the Albatross. And villains? We’ve got poacher Percival McLeach and Joanna, his pet Goanna.
7. The Great Mouse Detective
The mouse-sized gameplay has already been mentioned, but a world for The Great Mouse Detective‘s Baker Street would work just as well as Down Under‘s outback. Movie villain Ratigan would of course serve as the antagonist, and his sidekick bat Fidget could easily work as a sub-boss. Many scenes in the film occur in sewers, a setting not often seen – and never focused on – in the KH series. Plus, who wouldn’t want to engage in a final battle with Ratigan atop makeshift aircraft that slowly crash into Big Ben?
6. Robin Hood
Fans have been pining for a trot through Nottingham since the first Kingdom Hearts‘ 2002 release. You’ve got the perfect set-pieces: the castle, the woods, the fairgrounds. You’ve got the perfect cast of characters: Robin Hood as a combat partner, King John and Sir Hiss as villains, and the whole band of merry men as support. Players could dive through the moat like Robin did in the film, and even participate in the archery contest (hello, mini-game?). Oh, and l almost forgot Maid Marian – another damsel to save, anyone?
5. Atlantis: The Lost Empire
One of the more modern animated Disney films, 2001’s Atlantis saw professor Milo Thatch leading a team of specialists into the depths of the ocean to find the titular lost city. The movie is known for its unique visual style, which could also lend itself to a stylized world, a la Kingdom Hearts 2‘s Timeless River. The city itself could be a fantastic set piece, and the movie’s cast of mercenaries could easily serve as antagonists. But the best part of this world would be a particularly badass boss fight: the Leviathan. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_w1upGFwyyU
4. Treasure Planet
Here we have another world which KH fans have practically begged for. It’s got Jim Hawkins as a potential combat partner, John Silver as an end boss, and B.E.N. as a goofy support character. Solar surfing – the sport of choice from the film – could also serve as a great mini-game. Getting to this world could work similarly to being swallowed by Monstro in the first Kingdom Hearts, as the Legacy (the ship from the film) could intersect the Gummi Ship on the world map. Finally, if Pirates of the Caribbean replaced Neverland in the numbered entries, why can’t we have Treasure Planet – another pirate movie – take over for the third entry?
3. The Sword in the Stone
Frankly, the fact that Sword has not been included in Kingdom Hearts yet is baffling. Sure, we’ve had Merlin pop up in nearly every entry, but isn’t it about time we visit the guy’s homeland? Camelot holds Arthur as the obvious choice for a party member and Madam Mim as a multi-stage boss fight. The movie’s climax – a melee tournament – could even serve as the setting for an end boss, a duel with Sir Kay. Seriously though, this movie is a damn classic. Where’s the love, Square?
2. The Jungle Book
Tarzan‘s Deep Jungle was possibly the greatest world in the first Kingdom Hearts, perhaps even in the whole series (at least, in my opinion). It was a damn shame when Disney lost the rights to the property, but that’s all the more reason for Square to include Jungle Book, the other jungle-based property, in the next entry. Mowgli, Bagheera, Baloo, King Louie, Shere Khan, Kaa – the list of potential characters is amazing. But the biggest case for Jungle Book to make an appearance? It was already nearing completion for Birth by Sleep. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TxX9huOsGF0
1. Anything by Pixar
It’s difficult to not just rattle off title after title and shout “why!?” for this entry (but seriously…The Incredibles? Toy Story? Monsters, Inc.? Why!?!?). Sure, Woody and Buzz Lightyear were supposed to be included as summons in the second game, but Square should really give some creedance to the boys at Pixar. Hell, I’ll even take that lamp that bounces on a ball as a character. Again, it’s hard not to just rattle off every Pixar title as a reason why they should be included… I’ll tell you what – click here, and you can read the list for yourself.