Keyblade transformations are a cool new feature in Kingdom Hearts III, and they've been included in just about every trailer for the game so far. From the keyblade turning into a pegasus cart to dual guns for Sora to wield, the transformations look like they're going to play a big part in the next game. The latest trailer from D23 showed Sora's blade turning into a laser whip and a drill in the new Toy Story world, which looked pretty interesting if not a bit unweildy.
Although they've been on display visually, we still don't know much about how these transformations will work in-game. GameInformer took the opportunity to ask director Tetsuya Nomura more about keyblade transformations and other combat elements in a recent interview.
"First and foremost, each keyblade will have its own form that it can transform into, and it's different per keyblade," Nomura said. "There are at least two different forms it can take. For example, in Toy Story, you saw the giant hammer and then the drill. Another one was at the beginning of the trailer where you saw Sora shoot arrows and it [then] turned into a bazooka, so there are two different forms. It also has multiple layers in terms of transforming; you start out with your first phase of transformation, and if you successfully connect your combos, the [next] transformation will happen."
Nomura couldn't divulge further on how you activate the transformation, as the feature is still in development. I bet it won't require aether currents, but that's about all I'm going to guess about it so far. Summons have already been confirmed for the game, and while Nomura kept pretty mum on them again, he did share part of his new idea of how summons should work in Kingdom Hearts III. "If I could provide a glimpse, I've made it more pretty. Not just the literal modeling, but it's more about how we're expressing it that has become more pretty." So, they'll look good. Cool. Any idea on if they're going to actually be useful or are we going to avoid them at all cost like in Final Fantasy XV? No one is saying.
And it looks like all those moments of Sora running up walls and jumping off cliff faces in the trailers will be a playable aspect of the game, and not just in-engine cutscenes or, 'only for the trailer' reels. "It's a new mechanic that we're implementing in Kingdom Hearts III," Nomura explained to GameInformer. "The Japanese name is Athletic Flow. I don't know what the English final name is just yet. It's based on the Flow Motion mechanic, and it's basically revamped and introduced as a new mechanic in Kingdom Hearts III. You'll be utilizing the environment to propel yourself to an area that you're not normally able to go to, or again, running up the cliff during battle. Those can be expected in each of the different worlds you'll be traversing through."