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Should Kingdom Hearts Take "The Author Is Dead" Approach?



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Evello

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Why, if we are trying to solve a puzzle (which is what theorizing truly is), should we ignore a huge mound of the pieces? Even if each piece in that mound has a 10% chance of being defective, should we toss the whole pile aside and pretend that they don't exist just for the sake of being more creative with the remaining pieces? 9 out of 10 of those pieces will help solve the puzzle, even if 1 in 10 will cause a good theory to be shot down. I agree wholeheartedly that the theories that were shot down by "retconned" interviews should have been given a little bit better chance, but in the same breath I support using all the resources you can, and interviews are a fantastic resource.

I'm sorry if this sounds snobby or elitist or whatever, because I think everyone should be able to share their ideas without fear of ridicule, but I think we shouldn't completely sacrifice effectiveness for creativity. Interesting and unlikely ideas should be taken for what they are worth: good ideas. Even if they aren't likely to be true.

However, I do agree with you that people are too literal about Nomura's words. It should be kept in mind that Nomura does go back on his word every once and a while (only two of SRK are related to TAV, huh?), so a theory shouldn't be immediately ignored because it goes against one or two interview quotes. However, ignoring all interviews just for the sake of creativity sounds a bit counterproductive to me.

This is only regarding plot, though. As for meaning and symbolism, I say screw the interviews. The meaning of a work is really in the eyes of the reader, in my own opinion.
 

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(only two of SRK are related to TAV, huh?)

For the time being it doesn't seem like he went back on his word too much. :\ Compared to HOW Sora's related to Ven, and Terra to Riku (speaking a lot more here on Terra becoming Terranort to possess Riku and - yes interview reference - that eerie comment about something being left in Riku) what happened between Kairi and Aqua's nothing short of a chance encounter.
Also, Riku and Terra meeting in DI and Terra making Riku into a Wielder affected the plot and Riku's character on a much larger scale. Kairi doesn't even remember anything that happened.
I mean, SoVen and RiTer's relations were basically set in stone ever since the FM+. It was the technicalities we needed BBS for.
Aqua and Kairi... wot?

This reminds me of the time people raged at Nomura putting Kairi at all in BBS because he said once there was nothing special about Kairi not remembering her past and people took it as him saying there was nothing special about the content of those Memories. So once BBS came along they ranted and raged, when I never say how they reached the conclusion he meant THAT when he said what he said.

This is only regarding plot, though. As for meaning and symbolism, I say screw the interviews. The meaning of a work is really in the eyes of the reader, in my own opinion.

I basically agree with this in a nutshell. That is also how I've always taken The Author is Dead approach to mean. The plot can't really be argued - but what other things mean on a deeper level, the interpretation of it (like, does Sora love Kairi? Are they only friends?) - That's up to the players.

While plot elements might eventually make their way into the games, they are often already in effect in titles that were released before the statements were "properly canonized". More so than Nomura retconning things, I think it's more a poor job on his part to not keep track of what he let out of his mouth. Though I overall didn't really see all that many contradictions as much as "twists" I didn't like, truth be told.

That's where this falls to personal preference, me thinks. More so than "losing creativity" (I personally find it easier to come up with theories when I have more material to work with), my main issue is that Nomura just spells everything out in the game. About the only thing I didn't really know to be pretty much a fact in BBS was the X-Blade even existing, Vanitas's nature and where Castle Oblivion came from.
That's... not all that much, and pretty much everything else was stated in a vogue manner in Another Report. Granted quite a bit of it made it into the FM+ as well, but it's not until Nomura helped with the plot for the NOVELS (hello secondary canon) that he put things in the FM+ (one very strong reason why I can't consider most of the novels's plot bits nor the interviews as secondary canon - Nomura's still the one pulling the strings, the question is WHERE) because he realized he messed up on KH2.
So really, the interviews I do see as canon. Especially since quite a bit of it does make its way into the games eventually so why call it secondary? It's pre-emptive canon or something.
It's just that I feel that following him that closely basically ruins the games because he can never keep his mouth shut xD;

The author's alive and kicking, at least when it comes to the plot.
 

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I agree that Nomura's words shouldn't be treated as law, but ignoring the interviews entirely would just be silly.
I don't see why it's silly. There are many fans who play these games and don't even know Nomura exists and I'm sure their enjoyment is the same if not better than the people who do follow him. We've been following what Nomura has been saying for so long now that--i admit--it's hard not to imagine going through the rest of the series unaware of him. We've used him as a crutch for so long, how would we act when we have to stand on our own? But I don't think it can be argued (or well, I'm sure it can, but probably not that effectively) that our enjoyment of the games would decrease if we stopped listening to him. Personally, I can only see our enjoyments increasing. So much more would be on the table, and, I think one of the biggest issues with Nomura interviews lately is that he gives too much away. As skyfoxxx pointed out earlier, the whole situation with the Re:Coded secret ending was delivered ridiculously prematurely nearly four years early that, I mean, that part of it just isn't surprising. But that's not all, I feel like a lot of these three games weren't as surprising as they could be just because Nomura revealed too much. And that's another thing, I can totally see the benefit of Nomura interviews in clarifying past mysteries, but, to basically spoil future ones? What is the point in that?

Maybe I'll regret this going forward, but, I am legitimately going to try practicing what I preach. After BBS:FM comes out, I am going to avoid everything related to KH3D until the game releases in North America. No scans, no screens, no trailers, no plot details or spoilers or videos, and, most of all, no Nomura interviews. I mean, just imagine going into one of these games and literally not know what's going to happen. I think that's something worth striving for.

I want the author to be dead, because, I really think this series would be more enjoyable that way.

Nomura needs to let the games speak for themselves.
 

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So much more would be on the table, and, I think one of the biggest issues with Nomura interviews lately is that he gives too much away

My point exactly :D

And that's another thing, I can totally see the benefit of Nomura interviews in clarifying past mysteries, but, to basically spoil future ones? What is the point in that?

's why I started limiting myself to reading mostly the Scenario Mysteries interviews AFTER I played the game they relate to.
Too bad that he goes out of his way to spoil future installments in those too xD;

Nomura needs to let the games speak for themselves.

I think one of the biggest problems is that people who do read the interviews see just how wrong what you said is. It's true that the FM+ for instance fixed some of the stuff but not everyone in the world can get access to it. And just like how people aren't aware of Nomura interviews, they aren't aware of the Final Mixes either and if they are, they might not be able to get them.
So no. The games, as most of the world gets them, do not speak for themselves. Seems to me like that's even part of WHY they bother with the novels, and I fear saying this - but they may have began relying on the novels to clear up those mysteries that don't add up.
 

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Of course not everyone reads his interviews or let alone, recognizes his name. A majority of KH fans don't participate in forums, people everywhere love the game. Many of those people also aren't aware that there are games outside of the PS2 titles. Many who will ignore the portable titles and will be wondering why the hell KH3 took so long to release.

An interview with a developer like Nomura is something to be coveted, in Japan at least, considering what a recognizable figure he is there in the gaming industry. His interviews aren't meant at all to dash the excitement of games, but are there to encourage fans and build anticipation. The difference is that he releases interviews in time with the Japanese releases of titles. For Western fans, that means reading a translation of the interview will obviously spoil what the game holds long before it's English release.

Seeing as that's the case, the best you can do really is avoid sites like this one until the English releases. Your response sounds more like you are suggesting more fans should boycott reading about the games contents before they are released outside Japan.

But like I said before, as "theory-killers", using developer quotes is just brash.
 

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I think one of the biggest problems is that people who do read the interviews see just how wrong what you said is. It's true that the FM+ for instance fixed some of the stuff but not everyone in the world can get access to it. And just like how people aren't aware of Nomura interviews, they aren't aware of the Final Mixes either and if they are, they might not be able to get them.
So no. The games, as most of the world gets them, do not speak for themselves. Seems to me like that's even part of WHY they bother with the novels, and I fear saying this - but they may have began relying on the novels to clear up those mysteries that don't add up.
Personally, I found anything truly required in FMs to make their way into the English titles anyway. I mean, what did FM+ do beside hint at the three new games? Once you have the three new games, it becomes less of a requirement to have seen FM+. Sure they help round some things out, but, I haven't really seen anything included that was a requirement to understanding and that didn't get explained in some way in future English titles anyway.

I DO think the games can easily speak on their own, and perhaps that includes FMs anyway. They're games after all. You don't need to read Nomura interviews to find out what was in an FM.

And personally, I don't count the novels for anything.

The difference is that he releases interviews in time with the Japanese releases of titles.
Even considering that, he still reveals way too much about future titles. I mean, look at what we already know about KH3D before it even has an actual title or trailer:
Spoiler Spoiler Show

All that before a title. And, I feel like I'm forgetting stuff from that list, too.
That's just kind of ridiculous.
And, I mean, can you imagine going into the game not knowing -any- of that? To be surprised by it when those things are addressed? Well, for most of them, you would have been surprised if Nomura had just shut his mouth.

Your response sounds more like you are suggesting more fans should boycott reading about the games contents before they are released outside Japan.
My response was more suggesting fans shouldn't read Nomura interviews at all, but, that's really just how I feel about it.
 

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Would you rather when interviewers asked about future titles that he just smiled and said it was a secret? Your list isn't anymore revealing then the details to any unreleased/proposed title. I get that you want to enjoy the games the same way before you knew what Kingdom Hearts was, but let's face it, as a fan it will be a difficult task. I hope the best for you, ignorance is bliss, right?
 

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Would you rather when interviewers asked about future titles that he just smiled and said it was a secret?
Yes, actually.
My favourite answer Nomura has -ever- given went something like:

---So what is the next game you'll be working on?
NOMURA: The next game is the next game (laughs).
 

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Yes, actually.
My favourite answer Nomura has -ever- given went something like:

---So what is the next game you'll be working on?
NOMURA: The next game is the next game (laughs).

Too bad such answers are far too rare and far in between.
And even if he does give them, it's usually after something like -basically says what the relation between Roxas, Sora and Ven is- but anything more is a secret~
 
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Personally, I found anything truly required in FMs to make their way into the English titles anyway. I mean, what did FM+ do beside hint at the three new games? Once you have the three new games, it becomes less of a requirement to have seen FM+. Sure they help round some things out, but, I haven't really seen anything included that was a requirement to understanding and that didn't get explained in some way in future English titles anyway.

Though, funny enough, the Unknown boss fight in KHFM essentially became the entire basis for Days, when you think about it.
 

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Though, funny enough, the Unknown boss fight in KHFM essentially became the entire basis for Days, when you think about it.

It was already hard enough to understand stuff that related to it in KH2 itself. Despite it being a dream scene, Roxas and Xemnas's meeting in the Dark Ocean referenced that fight as well with Xemnas's "I've been to see him. He looks a lot like you".
I remember thinking that maybe Xemnas was spying on them in CO or even in Twilight Town itself or something xD;;;
 

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Though, funny enough, the Unknown boss fight in KHFM essentially became the entire basis for Days, when you think about it.
This reminds me though, I know it's generally accepted that this is where Xemnas got the data to make Xion but was that ever actually confirmed in the games or elsewhere to be the case?
 

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This reminds me though, I know it's generally accepted that this is where Xemnas got the data to make Xion but was that ever actually confirmed in the games or elsewhere to be the case?

Best I've seen even imply this is a novel reference saying that Namine wasn't needed if all they were going for were fragments of Memories. This took place before Xion was introduced into the Organization, but after Roxas joined.
And as Xemnas sampled Sora's Memories before their fight, it all adds gloriously up.

Unless, of course, the novels say more. I didn't exactly keep up.
 

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Even considering that, he still reveals way too much about future titles. I mean, look at what we already know about KH3D before it even has an actual title or trailer:
Spoiler Spoiler Show

All that before a title. And, I feel like I'm forgetting stuff from that list, too.
That's just kind of ridiculous.
I really don't see how that's ridiculous. I mean, with that little information, this site as a whole has been able to develop, let's see... maybe a dozen even semi-coherent theories. And these theories don't even cover more than just a very vague idea of what the plot might be. I don't see how this is "ridiculous." If you want to play KH games and not have any clue what might happen, my suggestion would be to stop reading topics in the FoKH section. Because here we list news and post theories both of which attempt to spoil you by their very nature.

Theories, the most common non-news topics around here, by their very nature require you have some hints at what is to come, and without the interviews, we have virtually none of that. A very good example is MF. Look at him, we've made virtually no interesting or really thought-provoking theories about him other than "time travel... somehow...". This is because we have pretty much no in-game clues (which is rather typical) or interviews to work from, so we have no way to funnel our imaginations. Anything is fair game, but no one bothers, because it's like to trying to guess the image on a 1,000 piece puzzle when you only have 1 piece. I could say he's Sora's mentally unstable half-uncle, and there is no way you can prove me wrong (other than FAMILY MEANS NOTHING!1!1). However we both know this is ridiculous, and the interviews will be the first source, odds are, to prove that. Theories need background info, and interviews are a key source of background info. In fact, with as loosely constructed as this fictional universe's laws are, there is virtually no background info given to us in the games, so interviews are one of our only bits of reference.

If you don't want to risk ever pondering one possible plot point of a future game, then don't theorize, it's that easy. The whole point of theorizing is to use given information to guess future events. Odds are, out of the thousands of theories that come through here before a game's release, one will be close to right.

And, I mean, can you imagine going into the game not knowing -any- of that? To be surprised by it when those things are addressed? Well, for most of them, you would have been surprised if Nomura had just shut his mouth.

My response was more suggesting fans shouldn't read Nomura interviews at all, but, that's really just how I feel about it.
Again, if you don't want any chance of being spoiled on any detail, you might as well just leave the FoKH section, since that's the whole point of this section. Suggesting that we all stop doing what most of us are here specifically to do is rather... pointless?

I don't mean to be offensive, but it just seems like this is kinda of a "whatever floats your boat" sorta deal. If you don't want things spoiled, then fine, I can understand. In fact, when 3D comes out, I might take off from here for a while to avoid spoilers. But if you want us to knowingly and purposely ignore a vital resource while still trying to guess what will happen in the future games (an action that in itself is an attempt to spoil ourselves), I have to disagree.

Also, that whole Xehanort-is-coming-back thing would have sounded utterly stupid if Nomura hadn't mentioned it before, because it just sounds too convenient. This is a prime example of how his explaining the universe's rules to us can help us understand and theorize about the story. And interviews are one very useful medium to explain these rules.
 
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HeartSeams

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I really don't see how that's ridiculous.
Well, then you'll never get it.

And these theories don't even cover more than just a very vague idea of what the plot might be.
I find a lot of those to be pretty big plot points, personally.

Theories, the most common non-news topics around here, by their very nature require you have some hints at what is to come, and without the interviews, we have virtually none of that.
If you can't make a theory using just the games then, I'm sorry, but you're not that great at it. Speaking generally, of course. The games themselves have plenty of hints, it's just that people are so accustomed to only looking at Nomura interviews for them that they can't even see them anymore.

A very good example is MF. Look at him, we've made virtually no interesting or really thought-provoking theories about him other than "time travel... somehow...". This is because we have pretty much no in-game clues (which is rather typical) or interviews to work from, so we have no way to funnel our imaginations.
I've seen a couple decent theories on it, actually, using primarily stuff in the actual games.

I could say he's Sora's mentally unstable half-uncle, and there is no way you can prove me wrong
That's the best theory I've heard for it.

Theories need background info, and interviews are a key source of background info.
You know what's better? The actual games.

In fact, with as loosely constructed as this fictional universe's laws are, there is virtually no background info given to us in the games, so interviews are one of our only bits of reference.
Uh... Please tell me you're joking. There are far more background info given in the actual games.

If you don't want to risk ever pondering one possible plot point of a future game, then don't theorize, it's that easy.
That's kind of the exact opposite of what I was saying.

Again, if you don't want any chance of being spoiled on any detail, you might as well just leave the FoKH section forever
Thanks, Tips. I already said I was going to do that.

Suggesting that we all stop doing what most of us are here specifically to do is rather... pointless?
I think you've severely misunderstood the entire point of this thread. I never advocated that we stop theorizing. EVER. In fact, this whole thread is more so in support of more creative theories. I was saying that using Nomura as a crutch for everything is making it worse more than it is helping it, in my opinion. Never did I say "stop theorizing".

I don't mean to be offensive, but it just seems like this is kinda of a "whatever floats your boat" sorta deal.
Well, surprise surprise, this is an opinion piece.

Also, that whole Xehanort-is-coming-back thing would have sounded utterly stupid if Nomura hadn't mentioned it before
If it didn't sound stupid when he brought it up in 2007, why would it sound stupid when its brought up in the actual games in 2011?

There's a big difference between theorizing what the future holds, and being told what the future holds. That's primarily one of the things I've been saying.
 

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I find a lot of those to be pretty big plot points, personally.
This is an opinion, but they really aren't. Trust being a theme tells us virtually nothing about the plot that could help in any theory. It's just a very vague idea. It narrows the possible theories from a hundred billion to a hundred million. Not really all that practical in terms of theorizing. Especially not compared to something like "Sora and Riku learn to trust each other by traveling through Riku's memories of his time during KH1." But even that doesn't really tell us all that much that could be used in theories.

If you can't make a theory using just the games then, I'm sorry, but you're not that great at it. Speaking generally, of course. The games themselves have plenty of hints, it's just that people are so accustomed to only looking at Nomura interviews for them that they can't even see them anymore.
I can make theories, but they've got about a .0001% chance of being correct.

I've seen a couple decent theories on it, actually, using primarily stuff in the actual games.
My point was, there is about nothing except the games regarding MF. As a result, there are very few theories, and even fewer that seem plausible. Very little information results in very few theories, not more creative theories.

That's the best theory I've heard for it.
inorite? :)

You know what's better? The actual games.
True. Games trump all in terms of canon. But in areas where the games haven't said anything, why not use interviews? Other than the fact that every once and while they are wrong, but that hardly seems like a flaw worth pretending they don't exist.

Uh... Please tell me you're joking. There are far more background info given in the actual games.
I worded that wrong, sorry. And I'd rather not derail my main point and bicker about this, so I'll just say I exaggerated.

That's kind of the exact opposite of what I was saying.
This wasn't exactly directed at you so much as the people who complain about having BbS spoiled by theories. Personally, I see it as a victory, not a loss.

I think you've severely misunderstood the entire point of this thread. I never advocated that we stop theorizing. EVER. In fact, this whole thread is more so in support of more creative theories. I was saying that using Nomura as a crutch for everything is making it worse more than it is helping it, in my opinion. Never did I say "stop theorizing".
I think we have a different idea of what the point of theorizing is. Personally I see theorizing as an attempt to guess future events, with success being measured by how close we actually get to the truth. And with this being the definition, taking information that may be vital to guessing the future and throwing it out just because it's in an interview and not the games seems extremely counterproductive.

If it didn't sound stupid when he brought it up in 2007, why would it sound stupid when its brought up in the actual games in 2011?
Because in the game it sounds sudden and more like Nomura just needed an excuse to bring Xehanort back in the next game. There is no actual difference between the two (since both explanations are given between KH2 and KH3), but it feels less sudden when we are told that it is possible for Heartless/Nobodies to return (Nomura never confirmed that Xehanort himself would return, just that it was possible) before we hear that Xehanort is returning.

There's a big difference between theorizing what the future holds, and being told what the future holds. That's primarily one of the things I've been saying.
This might be more of a difference in opinion, but I personally don't think Nomura spoils enough in his interviews for it to be considered him "[telling] what the future holds." There's a big difference between saying Unversed are related to Heartless and saying Unversed are the negative emotions emitted by Vanitas, Ven's evil side, given shape. Thus this is similar to how the Heartless are darkness of the heart made real. He says that stuff in interviews after the games are released, to clarify things for confused people. Before the game is released he just tells us that the Unversed and Heartless are connected, which gives us the material we need to make theories about how they are connected. Before that interview, people thought "Unbirths" were dreams, they thought they were souls, and other things that were not even remotely close to true. Yes, some of these theories were cool, but they were also WAAAAAY off, showing that it helps to have some guidance when theorizing.

Honestly, I see theorizing like trying to guess what the image on a puzzle is before we are given all the pieces. And setting aside a huge chunk of the pieces for no reason except that they were given to us in a certain format and they may be slightly faulty just seems very counterproductive.
 

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This is an opinion, but they really aren't. Trust being a theme tells us virtually nothing about the plot that could help in any theory. It's just a very vague idea. It narrows the possible theories from a hundred billion to a hundred million. Not really all that practical in terms of theorizing. Especially not compared to something like "Sora and Riku learn to trust each other by traveling through Riku's memories of his time during KH1." But even that doesn't really tell us all that much that could be used in theories.
I never said everything I listed were big plot points, but the ones closer to the end of the list? I definitely consider those to be.

My point was, there is about nothing except the games regarding MF. As a result, there are very few theories, and even fewer that seem plausible. Very little information results in very few theories, not more creative theories.
That's just MF though. I'm talking about more than just him. He was added to be mysterious, so, of course you can't figure him out (though, there were actually quite a lot of theories about him, so, not exactly sure why you think there were so few).

But in areas where the games haven't said anything, why not use interviews?
why not use imagination and the ability to think for ourselves?

I think we have a different idea of what the point of theorizing is.
Looks like it.

Because in the game it sounds sudden and more like Nomura just needed an excuse to bring Xehanort back in the next game. There is no actual difference between the two (since both explanations are given between KH2 and KH3), but it feels less sudden when we are told that it is possible for Xehanort to return (Nomura never confirmed that Xehanorthimselfwould return, just that it was possible) before we hear that Xehanort is returning.
I don't see it. I think it would have been just as fine (if not better) if Nomura had kept to himself about it. At least the secret ending would have felt a bit more surprising in that regard. Either way I had no problems with how it was delivered in the games.

This might be more of a difference in opinion
Looks like it.


Honestly, I see theorizing like trying to guess what the image on a puzzle is before we are given all the pieces. And setting aside a huge chunk of the pieces for no reason except that they were given to us in a certain format and they may be slightly faulty just seems very counterproductive.
Then I guess it just comes down to what people see the point in in theorizing.
I, for one, see theorizing being about more than guessing the future, but, also putting the pieces together of the present stories.
 

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I just wanna point out that BbS's plot was never revealed in any interviews. Probably will be the same with KH3D, as Nomura said it'll be shocking.

And also, that before Days release, there was one theory that was like 70% correct about Xion, using trailers, interviews and whatnot. It was pretty epic. I'm pretty sure Smile wrote it.
 

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Not to beat the dead horse but.....I bed you made this thread after that forum war on Roxas having Ven's heart crap, lmao, that was funny.
Anyway back on topic, I fully, 100% understand where your coming from, but thats only 1 point of view, you gatta have those that use the "author is dead" mentallity and those that go by "word of God', then you'll have the dudes with wild imaginations thats come up with crazy theories that turn out to be at least 50% accuracte. ANyway point is, You have to consider all the options or else were all thinking in 1 dimension.
 

HeartSeams

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Not to beat the dead horse but.....I bed you made this thread after that forum war on Roxas having Ven's heart crap, lmao, that was funny.
No, I made this before that happened, actually.
 
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