kingdomhearts-iii-worlds

10 Disney Worlds That Would be Great to See in Kingdom Hearts III

I’m not super excited about Kingdom Hearts III at the moment… but that’s only because what we’ve seen so far was so generic and abstract – and, according to Tetsuya Nomura, so early in development that it’s not really indicative of much about the game anyway aside from its visual style. Until we see more of its characters, story, and worlds, it’s going to be hard to get me too excited.

But which Disney worlds should play a part this time around? I decided to crack open that question to see which worlds would get me most excited about the game, and I came up with ten never-before-used worlds that I think really ought to appear.

Toad Hall and/or Sleepy Hollow
The Adventures of Ichabod & Mr. Toad (1949)

toad-hall-khBack in 1949, Disney produced a two-part animated feature titled The Adventures of Ichabod & Mr. Toad, based on two stories: “The Legend of Sleepy Hollow” and The Wind in the Willows. The story was told by a narrator who kicked off both stories as if reading them from two books. Both stories featured more or less ordinary tales, free of connections to “magic,” though the adventures of Mr. Toad featured anthropomorphized animals that fit right into the Disney universe.

Truthfully, either story (or both!) could work well in a Kingdom Hearts game. Toad Hall with its secret passages has a lot of potential as an explorable level; the Headless Horseman would make a fantastic world villain.

Sherwood Forest
Robin Hood (1973)

robin-hood-khDisney’s adaptation of the legend of Robin Hood is one of the studio’s more-beloved features, but I imagine it’s been difficult to include it in a game because the rights to the Robin Hood name get tossed around so frequently. Still, it’d be a nice choice for a Kingdom Hearts game due to its adventuresome setting, and I think the “steal from the rich to give to the poor” social justice plot could mesh well with a more mature Sora who has to tackle other evils apart from magical ones.

Realm of the King
The Sword in the Stone (1963)

sword-in-the-stone-khJust as Sora is chosen by the Keyblade, King Arthur is chosen by Excalibur. Disney’s adaptation of the King Arthur myth – The Sword in the Stone – features Merlin, a character who has already appeared in Kingdom Hearts as a wise old wizard who hails from Radiant Garden. Merlin was supposedly once tied to the Keyblade and to training young heroes, and as such his tutelage of the young King Arthur could perhaps play a role in the next entry.

Given Merlin’s supposed “timeline” those events should have happened years before the series kicks off, but that doesn’t necessarily have to stop the story from turning there. We could always visit this world via time travel or some other kind of magic…

Marshes of Morva
The Black Cauldron (1985)

black-cauldron-khAn obscure feature from the 80s, The Black Cauldron‘s plot eerily mirrors that of the Kingdom Hearts series. A wicked king seeks the Black Cauldron, which would enable him to raise the dead as his slaves, but he is opposed by a hero wielding the only sword that can effectively repel the evil king’s minions.

This story could very easily be adapted to turn the Cauldron into an origin place for Heartless, and the “dark” setting of the story could just as easily be interpreted as a world within the Realm of Darkness – something we’ve never quite seen in the world of Kingdom Hearts.

Manor McDuck
DuckTales (1987)

manor-mc-duckWith the revival of the DuckTales brand in DuckTales Remastered, Disney’s got a perfect opportunity to give the character Scrooge McDuck more of a spotlight in Kingdom Hearts III by taking us to his place of origin: Manor McDuck.

While Donald’s away fighting Heartless in the final battle, we could see his three nephews left in McDuck’s care…until Heartless come seeking ol’ Unca Scrooge’s riches. The question is… which of Scrooge’s nemeses should be the villain?

The New World
Pocahontas (1995)

grandmother-willow-khI’ll be honest: I mostly want to see the world of Pocahontas come to life because the movie is so gosh darn beautiful. There are plenty of scenes from the first encounter between Pocahontas and John Smith that would come alive in magnificent colors if adapted for the video game world, and the wise tree Grandmother Willow could serve as an interesting source of series lore.

Kingdom of the Sun
The Emperor’s New Groove (2000)

emperors-new-groove-khKuzco’s kingdom in The Emperor’s New Groove, like other kingdoms within the Kingdom Hearts series, would be a great site for adventure. It’s got a gigantic city, a vast countryside, and rural villages – all of which could intersect, making for a massive world to explore.

It might not be one of the most-beloved stories in the Disney canon, but it’s one of my wife’s favorites, and I know it’s gotta have more diehard fans.

Atlantis
Atlantis: The Lost Empire (2001)

atlantis-khThe Kingdom Hearts series could use a few more unorthodox stories and worlds, and Atlantis fits the bill nicely. Because the world of Atlantis is more or less dormant, having been lost long ago, it could also exist within the Realm of Darkness. The voyage of Milo and crew to discover the lost city could coincide with Sora’s own efforts to pierce into the Realm of Darkness.

The Sea of Stars
Treasure Planet (2002)

treasure-planet-khIncluding both Treasure Planet and Atlantis themed worlds might be a bit redundant, as they’re both voyage stories and both have similar twists. However, the setting of Treasure Planet could be even more appropriate for Kingdom Hearts, which already features a similar form of travel between its universe’s worlds in the form of the Gummi Ship.

Should the story feature multiple destinations within the Realm of Darkness, it’s also possible that, like the scenario proposed above for Atlantis, Sora could need to recruit assistance in reaching many of these darkness-shrouded worlds. If that’s the case, Treasure Planet could be just one of these destinations. The question is: what role would Treasure Planet play in the overall plot?

Kingdom of the Flower
Tangled (2010)

tangled-khProbably the best example of a modern-day Disney classic, the setting of Tangled, with its secluded tower, vast woodlands, and colorful kingdom, would fit nicely amidst all the other fantasy kingdom settings we’ve seen across the series’ history. The challenge would, as always, be to find a way to make it stand out from those other worlds.

However, for Rapunzel’s kingdom, I think its most unique qualities could come out with cutting-edge next-gen visuals. The scene with the lanterns, for example, could be positively stunning on PS4 and Xbox One, as could the tranquil grove where Rapunzel’s tower is hidden. The evil witch Gothel would also make a fantastic villain due to her use of deceit, which could extend beyond Rapunzel to Sora & Co.

These are just a few examples of unused Disney universes, chosen because of their adventuresome settings – and in a few cases, because of their connections to existing Kingdom Hearts characters. I’m sure the team at Square-Enix will shock and amaze – there are even rumors that we’ll visit Pixar-themed worlds or the universe of Star Wars. In the meantime, however, all we can do is guess. Which worlds would you most like to see? Share your thoughts in the comments!

  • Alex Hernandez

    Love some of these ideas. Only problem with a few (namely Treasure Planet or Robin Hood) is that they’re based off other stories and only changed to look like Disney movies. It would be a bit expensive for the company to get rights for said ideas.

    • Golossus117

      Well, most Disney movies were made that way, I’d love to see those two in KH3.

    • CChaplin

      Not to worry, the stories of “Robin Hood” and “Treasure Island” are easily in the public domain by now. They wouldn’t have to pay anyone.

    • Molly Cornelison

      All Disney movies are based off of something. Mostly fairy tales or children’s literature (Alice and wonderland is a book and most of the princesses are from grimm’s tales).

  • Nicholas Benjamin Wolford

    Andy’s Room
    (Toy Story)

  • Breno Henrique

    My day is a ittle better now, just by thinking in Sora and the others in the univers of Treasure planet.
    That’s a excelent movie, one of my favorites in the whole Disney world, and i’m really wishing for it to happen now; just think about that scene where they flee from the supernova, in the new genereation consoles, that sure would be epic stuff lol

  • Ryan

    I think it would be great to see Sora in NYC with the Avengers. Maybe that’s just me?

  • PokeChristian

    I wouldn’t get my hopes up, because Treasure Planet and The Black Cauldron didn’t make a lot of money at their releases. Then there’s Atlantis and Emperor’s New Groove who are less successful.
    What I would like to see is Toy Story (which could serve as a mini-game world), Brave and Jungle Book as the new worlds.

    • Julian Delarosa

      I think it’s funny how the Disney movies I enjoyed the most seemed to do the worse when it comes to profit

    • Iftekhar Rahie Ahmed

      Mickey, Donald and Goofy: The Three Musketeers was a direct to DVD release and that world was in Kingdom Hearts 3D: so I guarantee you that Treasure Planet will be Kingdom Hearts 3.

  • Colin McIsaac

    Anybody else wanna see the Cartoon Wasteland idea live up to its full potential? I’d love to see the Wasteland in Kingdom Hearts III

  • gwarfan

    would love to see a Pixar world based in monster INC and maybe each door left u another part of a Pixar film? I would also love to see them tap in to some studio ghilbli flms

    • CChaplin

      Unless I’m mistaken Disney doesn’t *own* studio Ghibli though, I’m pretty sure they just own the localization rights.

  • Paul McCollum

    Kingdom of the Sun!!!!!!

  • Joshua Anderson

    Duckburg for the win! My favrite Dinsey Show! All these are great Ideas!

  • Pokemaniactim

    What about star wars, or a marvel themed world? I think that be cool. It’s also be cool to actually see the jungle book finally added in, after so many times of it being scrapped.

  • takoda

    anywhere from toy story would be awesome perhaps sunnyside? :O or literally any place named above, i would also like to see some returning maps like tarzan or alice in wonderland and maybe they can add like a spectrobes world cause its a disney game :D

  • Leon

    I would love to see Sherwood Forest and & Marshes of Morva. The only problem with Black Cauldron is just that nobody really knows that the movie even exists nowadays….I don’t know how people would react to that world if they never heard of the film.

    The thing I want to see in KH3 is something from “The Rescuers” like maybe Devil’s Bayou or something. Think about it: Make Sora a mouse, make Bernard and Bianca team members, and make a Medusa battle that plays like Shadow of the Colossus. That would be so cool.

  • Michael Philliber

    Star Wars….come on….i just want a lightsaber keyblade T_T

  • Meng Vang

    If they were to do a cross over with Naruto that would be badass even though Naruto isn’t a disney

  • Sketchie

    Yes.

  • Jackson Carroll

    I Like Toy Story 12&3 Bug Life Wall-e and Cars to Be in Kingdom Hearts 3

  • Molly Cornelison

    I would DEFINITELY love to see Treasure Planet! And Tangled those are the ones I would like to see next. All of the rest sound enjoyable as well :)