Today saw the undoubtedly unexpected announcement trailer of Kingdom Hearts IV, the next console entry in the franchise releasing at a currently unknown time. Those who did not play through Kingdom Hearts III Re Mind, Kingdom Hearts Union χ, or seen the conclusion of Kingdom Hearts Melody of Memory will certainly be confused about particular elements such as the setting of Quadratum and the orange-haired heroine who speaks to Sora near the trailer’s start.
Regarding the latter, who isn’t namedropped in the trailer itself, this girl is Strelitzia, a notable character in the mobile title Kingdom Hearts Union χ. Her sudden, overt presence in Kingdom Hearts IV is immensely shocking for one particular reason; she endured a tragic fate.
Strelitzia initially lived eons before the events of the first Kingdom Hearts entry. She was a reserved Keyblade wielder who worked under one of the five Unions and lacked confidence in her combative magical adequacy. Further, her brother is Lauriam, who most series fans will alternatively know as Marluxia from Chain of Memories and Kingdom Hearts III. The two siblings got along well, though Lauriam often encouraged Strelitzia to grow stronger on her own before overly relying on him for defeating Heartless and gathering Lux (light).
Strelitzia would often find herself following the Player character who she developed an implied affinity for. While she never speaks with the Player character, she considers them a friend, and one of her most transparent desires becomes speaking with them at least once. When Strelitzia is offered to become a leader for the Dandelions, a group of Keyblade wielders trained by the Foreteller Ava to escape the inevitable Keyblade War, she emits trepidation about the idea. Not only does she face her impeding self-doubt, but the Player character is also not a Dandelion, meaning they’re doomed to perish during the forthcoming Keyblade War.
Eventually, Strelitzia musters up the courage to meet the Player character and let them know of the incoming battle that will ruin their life. However, while searching for the Player character, she is disturbingly murdered by a figure we later come to know as Ventus, being possessed by a cognizant Darkness. The Dandelion leader rulebook she was given was the primary reason for her saddening fate. Keeping in mind that these aforementioned events occurred before Kingdom Hearts Union χ, the title itself focuses on Lauriam’s search for her. Unfortunately, he becomes increasingly desperate in his search, actively harming the main cast at later points.
Though, somehow, a ghostly image of Strelitzia appears before him and halts him from enacting his vengeance on Ventus. Additionally, Lauriam has a dream where he sees her don an ominous white cloak and float into the air. The final and albeit questionable mention of Strelitzia in this game is seeing a black-robed figure place a white-robed figure into the Lifeboat, essentially a time-travel device.
There is no confirmation of whether this individual is Strelitzia, though many infer it to be the case. Although, since Strelitzia remarks Quadratum as an “afterworld” for her and Sora, it’s safe to assume she’s passed on in one way or another. Regardless, we’ll have to wait and learn more about why she has found herself here and whether she has any hope of returning to Kingdom Hearts’ native reality.
Strelitzia is a character who never received extensive growth or direct attention during her debut entry, but boundless potential awaits in Kingdom Hearts IV. Seeing Sora hopefully regularly interact with a character from the far past is indescribably enticing, and Strelitzia’s ties to the present with Lauriam’s restoration are equally hype-inducing. Also, she could use a great friend more than ever, and Sora fits that bill to a T.
I provided a cursory explanation of Strelitzia so her backstory would be more digestible, but for a far more intricate dive into Kingdom Hearts Union χ, check out Damo279’s explanation of the narrative.
In Kingdom Hearts IV, Sora has found himself in Quadratum with Strelitzia, a prominent character in Kingdom Hearts Union χ. Additionally, this new saga has been titled the Lost Master Arc. Some combat footage is 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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