A Letter from the Director
- A Letter from the Director -

KINGDOM HEARTS Dark Road launches today.

I’m sure you’re wondering, “Didn’t the dark seeker saga portraying the battle against Xehanort conclude with KINGDOM HEARTS III?” Well, it’s hard to say if Dark Road is part of the dark seeker saga since this story isn’t about the battle against him, but about his own struggles.

You might think that’s a stretch, and frankly, maybe it is, but this is a story I’ve been hoping to tell for a long time. It just never seemed to fit in with what the team wanted to do, so I shelved it. When the Union χ team approached me about creating another game with a new main character, and seeing how Xehanort has a surprising number of fans, we decided to do it. It was fate.

KINGDOM HEARTS Union χ is part of the χ series that began seven years ago as a browser game. This series depicts past events in a time before Sora’s existence, which is how Dark Road fits in. “Well, even if Dark Road isn’t part of the dark seeker saga, didn’t KINGDOM HEARTS conclude with KHIII?” I’ve seen comments like this here and there, but I’d like to say that we have never made any official announcements to that effect.

The KH series previously showed Xehanort in his younger years, and the protagonist of Dark Road is the teenage Xehanort from KH III who enjoys playing chess. The first installment of the story was long enough to make the team pale, and for good reason. They’d recently reduced their animators, leaving only two who could create cutscenes in Flash, and with the workload of Union χ, it was more than they could handle. Speaking of, if you’re familiar with Flash, please send us your application. Going back to the game, the story will reveal who Xehanort crossed paths with, what he was thinking, and where he was headed. Well, we all know he was headed toward darkness, but I hope you will accompany him on his journey.

I also hope you enjoy KINGDOM HEARTS Union χ. I’ve shared with the team ways to make it more accessible for those taking a break from the game or those starting with Dark Road, and these changes will be implemented in the near future.

I have so much more to talk about, like the mystery behind the initial Dark Road concept, DP, or secrets about how the title came to be, but it’s a hectic day, and I’m on the move while typing this on my dying phone, so those stories will have to wait for another time.

I hope you enjoy KINGDOM HEARTS Dark Road.

Director of the KINGDOM HEARTS series
Tetsuya Nomura

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