Here’s an interesting turn of affairs: Series creator Tetsuya Nomura revealed in a Famitsu interview (via NeoGAF) that Kingdom Hearts III has swapped development over to the Unreal Engine 4 for “various reasons”.
Nomura says that they’re still on schedule and that they’re working closely with Epic Games to resolve some rendering issues caused by the switch.
Considering how heavily Square Enix has been promoting their own Luminous Engine lately, it raises some questions as to what prompted the sudden change. Whatever it is, the hope now is that using a tried-and-tested engine will speed up development.
Kingdom Hearts III picks up events from the previous game (released in 2006) and sees our protagonists continue on their fight against the darkness. This time they’ll have to find the previous Keyblade wielders, as well as searching various Disney worlds for the “Key to Return Hearts”.
If you’ve never played the earlier ones then the remastered versions for PlayStation 3 are just the thing. Kingdom Hearts HD 1.5 Remix is already available, while KH HD 2.5 Remix releases this December for English audiences.
As for when Kingdom Hearts III releases? That’s an answer only Square Enix knows but we’ll be waiting for their announcement of an announcement nonetheless.