Thanks to FF7AC Reunion for typing up the transcript of the interview with Kingdom Hearts director Tetsuya Nomura featured in the special DKΣ3713 edition of Famitsu PS3 magazine. Apparently these interviews were the only focus on Kingdom Hearts featured in the special magazine, the majority of it relating to Final Fantasy XIII. Please do not repost without crediting to Heartstation.
BIRTH BY SLEEP INTERVIEW
—In the recent trailer, their are lines alluding to Master Xehanort aiming for those with hearts of pure light. Is Master Xehanort’s goal also to take over the world?
Nomura: It certainly indicates what he’s interested in, but that’s the first of Master Xehanort’s intentions.
—The story follows the viewpoints of the three characters individually, but what happens when the three characters interact together?
Nomura: The three characters will start out together, and then afterwards each of their stories will begin respectively. Within the story, the main characters may encounter one another. The three share the main goal of chasing after Master Xehanort who has disappeared, though each character’s exact goal is subtly different.
—As for original masters, they who teach the methods of wielding the keyblade to their pupils, do they exist?
Nomura: Not just that, but also the role of keyblade users, since the thoughts of each master differs, it’s their spirit being taught. The reason why a master must train others to use the keyblade is explained in this game.
—The voice of Snow White is very quiet.
Nomura: Actually, we choice a voice that matched the old version of “Snow White” that was released in Japan (1950), so it’s the original one, so to speak.
About the Birth by Sleep Battle System
—The changes to the style of battling are an interesting idea.
Nomura: Some players might have wanted a change in strategy. Initially, the player was free to rearrange the commands, as proposed by the team in Osaka, now such a form has been expanded upon. They said, “We want a system different than the form changes of Kingdom Hearts II“.
—How about the Shoot Lock System?
Nomura: I asked, “is it difficult to implement?” when the system was being worked on, it was also written into the first planning stages. But for Birth by Sleep, there is still a lot hidden within the system.
—What of the enemies called “unbirths”?
Nomura: There is meaning in various ways, adding “un” creates the opposite meaning of “birth” thus the “unbirth”. With this, the “unborn” is given real meaning. Unbirths designate the feeling of this game’s motif. The kind of existence they have will be revealed soon.
—During a battle, there are various circumstances indicating commands.
Nomura: It’s the developed system of the ‘reaction command’. At first, the Birth by Sleep system was designed to be closer to the original series, but it has evolved a lot. Because it is considerably high speed, the first time players may be a bit surprised.
—Even the boss battles have been elaborated compared to the previous ones.
Nomura: The Osaka team has a lot of affection for the enemies. It was handed over to the staff and they were asked to please try it out. They were watched over as they played it. When the player had to be more offensive, they said things like, “It’s different! I really can be more of a kid!!” or “Ah, it’s strange…” (Smiles)
—Their affection is contagious. (Smiles)
Nomura: Anyways, I think that the testing of various things for the battle system is being finished.