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The Sleeping Realm Theory



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Guys, this is a hoot. First let me preface this by saying that this is not my theory nor do I own any part of it.

Moving on, and oh jeez I don't even know where to start, the sleeping realm theory basically states that the events of KHIII take place in the realm of sleep. Some of the key points the theory goes over include:

  1. Riku's hair suddenly changes to his DDD style after passing out (at the end of Olymus, when he gets attacked in the realm of darkness). You even hear the drop sound split in half, the first when Xigbar sais may your heart and the screen blacks out, and the second is while Riku is passed out and is done talking to repliku.
  2. The Keyholes we see are all in the style of DDD.
  3. Summons are all holograms except Meow Wow (a dream eater).
  4. Sleeping Realm portals are all over the place.
  5. The trams in Twighlight Town, along with Ultima weapon, Master Eraqus keyblade, and many other things run or have design details that are in reverse.
  6. Sora and Riku use a reality shift against Anti-Aqua.
  7. Heffalump's appearance in Winnie the Pooh shouldn't be possible. It's a character that only appears in Pooh and Piglets dreams and would make no sense for it to appear otherwise.

I hope you're convinced enough of the potential this theory has to check out the rest of it. It's a lengthy read but I promise you it's worth it. Heck, there's even a catch in the III on the title of the game. Here's the link, please check it out:

https://docs.google.com/document/d/11d1TKd4ZKZd41pJKQ77bKz4YxJx8_Mojz2KMpNvTrvU/edit#
 
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Oh... Well you weren't kidding. That IS a long read. May not have been how I planned to spend my afternoon, but what the hey. I'm sure it'll be a good read. Thanks for notifying those of us who haven't already seen it.

Yeah, this was the theory that made me actually like KH3.
Really?! Now I'm beyond curious to see how this plays out.
 

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Oh... Well you weren't kidding. That IS a long read. May not have been how I planned to spend my afternoon, but what the hey. I'm sure it'll be a good read. Thanks for notifying those of us who haven't already seen it.



Really?! Now I'm beyond curious to see how this plays out.
There will be some things you won’t agree with, but the core concepts of the theory are really hard to deny, and really help explain why certain parts of the game feel...dream-like and off at times. It’s also very much in line with what Nomura wanted to explore in Versus XIII and also mirrors a lot of what Nomura was interested in evoking with KH1.
 

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While I certainly don't agree with everything in the theory I do like the Dream Realm being an explaination for how SDG can breath underwater.

I assumed it was a side effect of their Pirate clothes until they did it again in Scala.
 

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I am not saying that the theory will be 100% true but I would be very surprised if the majority of it was false.

They talked about a lot of stuff that I noticed too and found strange.

- Rikus haircut and how it really is similar to his DDD cut. (And how he got an unexplained haircut there too)
- The missing hints at DDD even though its one recent and quite important game
- How Meow Wow is different from the other summons
- Sora, Donald and Goofy being able to breathe underwater even when at the start of the pirates world they could not (which they perfectly explained as them going deeper into the sleep)
- all the not mentioned attractions and Sora being able to use flow motion that much. (Also the combined keyblade attack)
- How seemingly characters had deja-vu or at least felt like they knew each other. (And why Soras heart was hurting when Anna got hit) Also how Xehanort knew where Sora would attack and his strange sentece that he will not allow it this time...
- The paopu scene being so strange
- Xion knowing about Kairi
- Kairis whole death scene felt just very strange and I even wondered in the game why there was no heart and why her body was destroyed in that way, when we later see Xehanort dieing in quite the more common way.
- The beach scene with Sora and Kairi missing from the tree and the characters looking towards the ocean.

Nice little points that the theory pointed out but I never noticed:
- Sky being different at the end thus Riku and the others did not have the same time as Sora and Kairi
- Sora summoning sleeping keyholes
- Things like the tram going a different direction
- Sora looking at the secret ending at his left hand, which is where the timer was in DDD.
- Drop music at certain scenes
- The talk about having to save seven hearts at the start of the tutorial
- The darkside being similar to the substance that kairis body turned into.

I know that quite some people disliked the theory because it has a lot of Riku and Sora in it thus they believed that this was just those shippers to make their pairing happen, even though a lot of the stuff happens in the game...and even though they point out that love does not just mean romantic love.

I just like how a lot of small things suddenly make much more sense and I also find it interesting that their ending would mean that Kairi will not be with them and that the last moment they had together was at the end which would go nicely with the whole "one day is enough" that he learned in pirates world and that sometimes you have to say goodbye but the person is still in your heart.

Some like to point out that this theory is way out of reach...but we are talking about a story that is written by Nomura here...the same guy that put people on the cover art...the same person that made a sign on someones cloths into a tracking device. And the one that introduced us to the concept of the sleeping realm and sleeping worlds in the first place.
 

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I'm sorry, but that image of Saix in the Google Doc is hilarious.

---

Edit:


My mind has been blown by this theory. KINGDOM HEARTS DDD is really just the start of the Versus XIII legacy.

P.S. Chirity's line: "The edge of sleep and death touch., and one can't help the occasional crossover."

In Roman mythology, Somnus is the personification of sleep. Somnus resided in the Underworld. Somnus was also the brother of Death (Mors), Somnus also had a thousand sons, the Somnia who appear in dreams and mimick others.

Other Roman and Greek tidbits:
Sleep and Death are made brothers, and live close to each other in the Underworld's entrance, reason as to why death and sleep intertwine.

FINAL FANTASY Versus XIII was strongly influenced by Latin, Roman and Greek cultures.

I wouldn't scratch this theory too farfetched knowing what we've seen, especially the new elements TWEWY Final Remix introduced.

Which makes me wonder what roles Yozora and MoM will play along all of this universe building based on Versus.
 
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I'm sorry, but that image of Saix in the Google Doc is hilarious.

---

Edit:


My mind has been blown by this theory. KINGDOM HEARTS DDD is really just the start of the Versus XIII legacy.

P.S. Chirity's line: "The edge of sleep and death touch., and one can't help the occasional crossover."

In Roman mythology, Somnus is the personification of sleep. Somnus resided in the Underworld. Somnus was also the brother of Death (Mors), Somnus also had a thousand sons, the Somnia who appear in dreams and mimick others.

Other Roman and Greek tidbits:
Sleep and Death are made brothers, and live close to each other in the Underworld's entrance, reason as to why death and sleep intertwine.

FINAL FANTASY Versus XIII was strongly influenced by Latin, Roman and Greek cultures.

I wouldn't scratch this theory too farfetched knowing what we've seen, especially the new elements TWEWY Final Remix introduced.

Which makes me wonder what roles Yozora and MoM will play along all of this universe building based on Versus.
We're about to see the creation of the Nomura Gaming Universe unfold lol. I really want to see where he takes this.
 

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I think some things in the theory are reaching, but a lot of it actually makes a TON of sense. It made me get out of the funk of "hate" I saw for KH3. It brought me back to the days of KH2 when everyone was excitedly wondering about the secret ending and theories about nobodies etc. were running rampant.

For me, one of the most confusing things in KH3 was the cutoff to Xigbar saying "may your heart be your guiding key". It never happened again in the game. At first I thought it was going to be a new style of storytelling in the cutscenes, but with it being a one-off it definitely felt special and something we should have paid more attention to. The summons, well, I hate the dream eaters (especially Meow Wow), so I was upset that Meow Wow got a named summon, but characters that we know and love like Simba and Ariel were named something else (and not fully there). So I noticed that, but never NOTICED it like I should have as described in the theory.

I definitely think the theory is on to something and give major props to the people that assembled that document.
 

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I think some things in the theory are reaching, but a lot of it actually makes a TON of sense. It made me get out of the funk of "hate" I saw for KH3. It brought me back to the days of KH2 when everyone was excitedly wondering about the secret ending and theories about nobodies etc. were running rampant.

For me, one of the most confusing things in KH3 was the cutoff to Xigbar saying "may your heart be your guiding key". It never happened again in the game. At first I thought it was going to be a new style of storytelling in the cutscenes, but with it being a one-off it definitely felt special and something we should have paid more attention to. The summons, well, I hate the dream eaters (especially Meow Wow), so I was upset that Meow Wow got a named summon, but characters that we know and love like Simba and Ariel were named something else (and not fully there). So I noticed that, but never NOTICED it like I should have as described in the theory.

I definitely think the theory is on to something and give major props to the people that assembled that document.
I think at the very least, there's possibly more than meets the eye with the story. Near the end of the theory, it starts stretching itself out more than it should be, but there are things that make you wonder. If Nomura is the type to make the Opening Video/Tutorial take place canonically AFTER the events of KH3 but we experience it in the beginning (which is funny in hindsight because even I noticed how weird it was as a cut when I first played it, it just cut right to 2.9...), have an unknown Darkside that hasn't been addressed yet exist (which does have a similar look to what happened to Kairi's body when Xehanort killed her), and somehow have Yozora who's a "video game character" suddenly pop up in "Shibuya", looking very similar to Riku... Who knows. Never mind the fact that Xigbar is bringing back supposedly dead Keyblade masters out of thin air, I have so many questions.

Not to say that the theory is right, but it does raise a lot of questions and I liked reading it a lot. My only thing is that they really lay it thick with the ship stuff and I doubt that's what Nomura was going for.

Oh, also, the Reality Shift stuff... That also stood out to me immediately too, I thought that was a pure Sleeping World type of deal. It made for a cool moment, but still.
 

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Some of it is interesting, thought-provoking for the most part.

I just dislike that there is a very heavy bias in the theory for things that are fairly unrelated for the most part. It goes out of its way to defend that Riku defending Sora is an act of love (which, okay I can buy that) but then equally goes out of its way to say that Kairi doing the same thing to save Sora is an "act of friendship" and "we have no idea why it shows these Disney scenes representing love here, it's out of place!". Like...come on. If Riku saving Sora is an act of love, Kairi saving Sora is one too. It's just being petty and frustrating to say otherwise.

Also, why even break down the paopu fruit scene in such a way? Of course they shared it. Oh but if you squint reeaaaally hard they totes didn't though! Yeah...okay...and how does this relate to the theory in any way at all other than the author(s) not wanting Sora and Kairi to be a thing? Take all that stuff out and the theory itself is interesting.

Some of the proof is also...poor. And stretching. I disagree about the sky color and the direction everyone is looking. We don't actually know WHAT they are looking at. For all we know, they are looking at a portal opening up over the ocean which spits Sora and Kairi out. I dunno. Just because they aren't looking in line with the tree doesn't mean it isn't them they are looking at.
 

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Because imo the paopu scene was strange (which Sora acting unsure and stuff like that) and since things around Kairi and especially her death (and how they noticed the ears on her clothes) are also strange, they may have simply looked at each scene with her in more detail. (And it does look like she did not take a bite)

Well they also point out that the love is not necessarily romantic (and of course there might be some bias at play, nobody is truly 100% objective in such cases) and Riku actively did something for Sora. Kairi might have saved him too but unlike Riku that stood willingly against the enemy, knowing that it will kill him, her act is 100% passive. She just believed and its not like she jumped between the shadows and Sora to save him either. She got caught and her PoH powers passively saved Soras body in the final word. That is a good act but not that great like Riku willingly defending Sora (and giving him back his hope and will to fight) with his very own life. In the game it was only ever Sora that actively choose to save Kairi.

The thing about the end: There is nobody on the tree thus if a portal opens up (and yes everyone is looking at the ocean) why would Sora and Kairi suddenly sit on the tree? That would not make much sense. Why would they not fall out of the sky towards their friends since that was the way they looked at. Them coming from the portal and them sitting on the tree would only make sense imo if time has passed. This could explain the difference in the sky color but then the scene would have been shown a bit strangely. If no time has passend then that would mean that they drop out of the sky where everyone is looking at, then fly or go over to the tree instead of all the friends that are waiting for them, sit down and Sora disappears. That imo sound quite terrible.
 
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Some of it is interesting, thought-provoking for the most part.

I just dislike that there is a very heavy bias in the theory for things that are fairly unrelated for the most part. It goes out of its way to defend that Riku defending Sora is an act of love (which, okay I can buy that) but then equally goes out of its way to say that Kairi doing the same thing to save Sora is an "act of friendship" and "we have no idea why it shows these Disney scenes representing love here, it's out of place!". Like...come on. If Riku saving Sora is an act of love, Kairi saving Sora is one too. It's just being petty and frustrating to say otherwise.

Also, why even break down the paopu fruit scene in such a way? Of course they shared it. Oh but if you squint reeaaaally hard they totes didn't though! Yeah...okay...and how does this relate to the theory in any way at all other than the author(s) not wanting Sora and Kairi to be a thing? Take all that stuff out and the theory itself is interesting.

Some of the proof is also...poor. And stretching. I disagree about the sky color and the direction everyone is looking. We don't actually know WHAT they are looking at. For all we know, they are looking at a portal opening up over the ocean which spits Sora and Kairi out. I dunno. Just because they aren't looking in line with the tree doesn't mean it isn't them they are looking at.
I absolutely agree with most of what you said. They are grasping at straws here and there and stretch things out a bit much.

Nevertheless you're focusing too much on nit picky things as opposed to the big picture, which is that the events of the game take place in the realm of sleep.

I think the beach scene is very fuzzy and whatever is going on is anyone's guess. But a) you do see the tree in some frames and it's quite evident Sora and Kairi are not sitting there, which leads me to b) that the tree scene happens at a different time.

Nomura did state that after Sora disappeared is when he ended up in Shibuya. So if I had to venture a guess I'd say what they were looking at was Sora and Kairi returning after Sora saves her. And later the scene on the tree takes place and Sora disappears, leading into him emerging in Shibuya.
 

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I think at the very least, there's possibly more than meets the eye with the story. Near the end of the theory, it starts stretching itself out more than it should be, but there are things that make you wonder. If Nomura is the type to make the Opening Video/Tutorial take place canonically AFTER the events of KH3 but we experience it in the beginning (which is funny in hindsight because even I noticed how weird it was as a cut when I first played it, it just cut right to 2.9...), have an unknown Darkside that hasn't been addressed yet exist (which does have a similar look to what happened to Kairi's body when Xehanort killed her), and somehow have Yozora who's a "video game character" suddenly pop up in "Shibuya", looking very similar to Riku... Who knows. Never mind the fact that Xigbar is bringing back supposedly dead Keyblade masters out of thin air, I have so many questions.

Not to say that the theory is right, but it does raise a lot of questions and I liked reading it a lot. My only thing is that they really lay it thick with the ship stuff and I doubt that's what Nomura was going for.

Oh, also, the Reality Shift stuff... That also stood out to me immediately too, I thought that was a pure Sleeping World type of deal. It made for a cool moment, but still.
That is exactly how I felt after playing KH3 and that's what made me love it even more. It was like KH2 (vanilla). It felt like it was missing key pieces of information and that left me really curious to see what else is there. If KH2 (vanilla) had just ended there, I would have felt let down. It's the same if KH3 just ended here. This series is all about lore and unraveling the mystery. KH3 ended the Xehanort saga, but the mystique featured throughout the game makes you want to see what Nomura has planned. It's very exciting because it's definitely not about some surprise Xehanort plan which is what the last few games were based on. It's actually on something new and different.

(Not that I didn't love all the twists and turns with Xehanort, but his time has come and gone. It's time for the new saga and this mystery is the perfect way to start).
 

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I guess this is the new Rebirth theory.

Also, I'm gonna stretch and say this:

When Kingdom Hearts was plunged into Darkness, it went to sleep and the events we are experiencing are the dreams of Kingdom Hearts itself. The MoM is a scientist trying to escape from this dream.
 

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Nomura denied this theory?
Of course, for SoRiku and Kairi fans, this theory is an outlet.
But as I said before and without this theory, the relations of Sora and Riku are quite developed. (Although, in my opinion, this type of relationship is too common)
 

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I am not saying that the theory will be 100% true but I would be very surprised if the majority of it was false.

They talked about a lot of stuff that I noticed too and found strange.

- Rikus haircut and how it really is similar to his DDD cut. (And how he got an unexplained haircut there too)
- The missing hints at DDD even though its one recent and quite important game
- How Meow Wow is different from the other summons
- Sora, Donald and Goofy being able to breathe underwater even when at the start of the pirates world they could not (which they perfectly explained as them going deeper into the sleep)
- all the not mentioned attractions and Sora being able to use flow motion that much. (Also the combined keyblade attack)
- How seemingly characters had deja-vu or at least felt like they knew each other. (And why Soras heart was hurting when Anna got hit) Also how Xehanort knew where Sora would attack and his strange sentece that he will not allow it this time...
- The paopu scene being so strange
- Xion knowing about Kairi
- Kairis whole death scene felt just very strange and I even wondered in the game why there was no heart and why her body was destroyed in that way, when we later see Xehanort dieing in quite the more common way.
- The beach scene with Sora and Kairi missing from the tree and the characters looking towards the ocean.

Nice little points that the theory pointed out but I never noticed:
- Sky being different at the end thus Riku and the others did not have the same time as Sora and Kairi
- Sora summoning sleeping keyholes
- Things like the tram going a different direction
- Sora looking at the secret ending at his left hand, which is where the timer was in DDD.
- Drop music at certain scenes
- The talk about having to save seven hearts at the start of the tutorial
- The darkside being similar to the substance that kairis body turned into.

I know that quite some people disliked the theory because it has a lot of Riku and Sora in it thus they believed that this was just those shippers to make their pairing happen, even though a lot of the stuff happens in the game...and even though they point out that love does not just mean romantic love.

I just like how a lot of small things suddenly make much more sense and I also find it interesting that their ending would mean that Kairi will not be with them and that the last moment they had together was at the end which would go nicely with the whole "one day is enough" that he learned in pirates world and that sometimes you have to say goodbye but the person is still in your heart.

Some like to point out that this theory is way out of reach...but we are talking about a story that is written by Nomura here...the same guy that put people on the cover art...the same person that made a sign on someones cloths into a tracking device. And the one that introduced us to the concept of the sleeping realm and sleeping worlds in the first place.
It’s just that this whole theory is crumbling with the words Nomura in Ultima "That the Luxord card will be the path of the return of Sora," and doesn’t it seem silly to you to remove the precondition from the plot that only recently became a keyblade warrior?
 

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Nomura denied this theory?
Of course, for SoRiku and Kairi fans, this theory is an outlet.
But as I said before and without this theory, the relations of Sora and Riku are quite developed. (Although, in my opinion, this type of relationship is too common)
What? No, he hasn’t
 

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It’s just that this whole theory is crumbling with the words Nomura in Ultima "That the Luxord card will be the path of the return of Sora," and doesn’t it seem silly to you to remove the precondition from the plot that only recently became a keyblade warrior?
There is nothing right now that makes the theory crumble. Some say it does because Ultima said that the opening plays after KH3 which includes in their opinion the tutorial too but that seems to not be 100% clear. Other translations makes it seem more like its only about him saying these words at the start and not the tutorial too.

Anything else seems to go along quite well with the theory. Sora is missing. He fell into even deeper layers of sleep (if the theory is true) or just into the deep abyss if we just take the facts directly from the game (which is kinda the same, at least if you compare it with DDD) Thus why Luxords card could of course play an important role in the future and not crumble the theory.

What else is there in your opinon that makes it a crumbling theory?

(I also dont really understand your last sentence. What exactly do you mean with precondition? Sorry english is not my mother tongue)
 
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