Why Kingdom Hearts’ Xehanort Could Appear in Quadratum

When Kingdom Hearts Dark Road launched worldwide, Square Enix published an official Q&A they conducted with the series director, Tetsuya Nomura.

The end of this Q&A revealed new Tetsuya Nomura artwork depicting Young Xehanort, the protagonist of Dark Road and the primary antagonist of the franchise up to the conclusion of Kingdom Hearts III.

This new Young Xehanort illustration is viewable below:

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So, a little while after this art was first unveiled, some Japanese Twitter users identified seemingly apparent similarities with a real-life location in Shibuya, Miyashita Park. For those unaware, one of the new locales in the Kingdom Hearts franchise, Quadratum, is highly reminiscent of our reality, specifically Shibuya.

To be honest, I find this image comparison a stretch, but several people are rather adamant about the similarities. The only real primary point of comparison I see fans making are the archways in Miyashita Park, potentially matching the vaguely drawn lines in the illustration. Still, even then, it’s difficult to really say they’re a match-for-match. Then again, I don’t live there, so I can’t quite say it’s out of the realm of possibility.

However, there are two pieces of indirect evidence that could lead to Young Xehanort appearing in Quadratum. The first of which originates from the very same Q&A this new art debuted in. The final question contains the following exchange:

Question 13. Lastly, will Xehanort appear in future titles?

Nomura: Just because the “Dark Seeker’s Saga” is now concluded does not necessarily mean Xehanort will never appear again in future titles. If the opportunity arises, then…

While Xehanort making further appearances isn’t exactly new information since he played a role in Melody of Memory, a title post-Dark Seekers saga, this response from Nomura not-so-subtly indicates that he has even more plans in store for this former primary antagonist.

The second piece of evidence comes from the recent Dark Road update, so this is technically a spoiler. Still, it doesn’t really say anything specifically noteworthy about the self-contained story and is more of an overarching series of points.

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At the start of Episode 7, Young Xehanort and Young Eraqus are seen conversing while playing Chess, a common pastime of theirs. In the midst of their talk, the brevity of life is brought up, leading to Young Xehanort discussing how many lifetimes he’d like to have to cement his dreams and ambitions. This neat line in the screenshot above undoubtedly references his takeover of Terra’s body in the future.

Anyway, he eventually says 13 lifetimes, which, aside from being “haha, funny Kingdom Hearts number,” is because, according to him, “That’s what it’ll take to rebuild the world.” Of course, this directly parallels his eventual plans to create Organization XIII, planting the seeds for the 13 Seekers of Darkness set to be part of the Keyblade War.

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However, Young Xehanort adds an addendum to that previous statement, saying that 14 lifetimes would be ideal. He reasons that this additional life would let him “explore the new world.” Now, while this could be a nod to Organization XIII having a fourteenth member, Xion, the context of this conversation seems to be more about the Seekers of Darkness, which specifically required 13 members for the War itself. Xehanort sought a balanced world, and Quadratum, a world supposedly void of light or darkness, may be up his alley.

It’s possible that, in some way, shape, or form, Xehanort could appear in Quadratum moving forward. He does “plan for every eventuality,” so it wouldn’t be a stretch to assume that he’d plan for his failure. Regardless, this is all just speculation, but it’s all quite exciting. The future of Kingdom Hearts is brighter than ever before, and I can’t wait to see what narrative and character elements Missing-Link brings to the table.

Kingdom Hearts: Dark Road

In Kingdom Hearts IV, Sora is in Quadratum with Strelitzia, a prominent character from Kingdom Hearts Union χ. This setting is an afterworld for the two characters following their tragic fates. Additionally, this new saga has been titled the Lost Master Arc. Further, some combat footage was showcased, with Sora performing Keyblade transformations against a giant entity that seems to be a Heartless? We don’t know for sure.

“The heart resides within the soul, which in turn is guided by fate to its rightful place” is a crucial phrase used at the start of this trailer for the upcoming mainline game.


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Orpheus Joshua

Random gamer equally confused by the mainstream and the unusual. Fan of JRPGs, Action, Platformers, Rhythm, and Adventure titles.