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What even IS Maleficent's motive at this point? Like...seriously?



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AmaryllisMoth

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I think Maleficent hasn't had the greatest of showings since the first game, and that is because her purpose in KH2 (imo) was mostly just to highlight the massive shift of power between the Heartless and the Nobodies. She was essentially just there to be like "hey, see this super strong villain who was almost the final boss from the first game? She just got trashed by a literal trash mob of Nobodies. That's how threatening/strong these things are."

Or that was the intention.
...Unfortunately the side-effect of that is it makes Maleficent kind of look a bit pathetic afterwards, rather than making the Nobodies look super capable.

But in order to fulfill that intended purpose they crafted some excuse to bring Maleficent back for the second game and she's been puttering around ever since.

That, and I think Nomura and his team just really wanted to put Disney Castle in KH2. It originally appeared in the KH1 beta trailer, so we know that at one point there were plans to put it in the first game. In fact, the entire plot of Timeless River and Maleficent's/Pete's appearance and interference with the Castle almost seem like they could have come straight out of KH1 (with a bit of tweaking). I feel like they likely had this really cool idea of Maleficent trying to take over Disney Castle and REALLY wanted to put it into the story, so they used KH2 as the time to do it, even though it has very little to do with the rest of KH2 storyline, really. As a result Maleficent's motives feel a bit jarring and an afterthought, like they were unused concepts from the first game they cobbled together and stuffed into KH2 just because they could.

That being said: I think she has something up her sleeve. I don't know if that will necessarily work out for her...because I don't think Nomura wants her to be the "biggest baddie" out there. And I don't think that's because Disney doesn't want us fighting her. Originally she WAS the final boss but Nomura specifically objected and was like "naw, we need a deeper story than that". It would go against a lot of what he wants for the series for her to suddenly then be this super ultimate villain in the end.

Maleficent has always been a bit manipulated with incomplete information since the series has started. She has always been outshined by the OC villain in every game. I don't know if that pattern will ever change, because as I said, Nomura isn't going to want Maleficent to be the final boss.

However, I think the general consensus of compromise is that people want her to be more capable, and actually pulling some strings here and there with an actual position of power.

I think she stands a really great chance of doing that post KH3 and here is why:

We don't know everything yet that she knows because UX still hasn't finished, but she has knowledge of and desire for not only the Black Box, but of the Data World. And I think the Data World is going to be very, very important in the upcoming series.

There are tons of theories out there that the Black Box somehow can create datascapes, holds its own universe (the UX timeline), created the universe we know, etc. There are also some very compelling questions raised by the Secret Boss/Secret Endings that possibly suggest the KH universe as a whole is one large data simulation. Events throughout KH3, especially Twilight Town are very suspect if you view them as hints towards this point.

1) Donald and Goofy specifically mention Data Sora when they land. This might have just been a way to make Coded a bit relevant (See! We didn't forget about Coded!) but I think it was actually a very clever clue. They specifically note that "no matter if its a Data Sora or not, all Sora's tend to be the same!". Then, directly after this, Sora has a weird "vision" where he hears the Dusk quote in his head "we have come for you, my leige" just before a bunch of Dusk enemies spawn. Not only is this just weird timing, but it is exactly what happened to Roxas in his digital simulation. Weird coincidence to remind him of Roxas? Or was it just a hint that maybe, just maybe, this current Sora is also in a digital simulation right now? But we wouldn't know it because "all Soras are the same".

2) When Sora has a chat with Xemnas and Nortless outside the mansion they discuss his plans to save Roxas and put his heart in a simulated Twilight Town. And one of them (I forget which) mentions something along the lines of "wouldn't it be a prison? To be trapped inside of a fake, digital world?" Huh. Wouldn't it be interesting if that was actually what was happening to the cast right now?

3) Less of a strong point, but more of a weird narrative thing: the computer systems in the Mansion and Radiant Garden. They spent a long cutscene with Ienzo and Pence kind of discussing how computers could be connected and communicate with each other to create a shared network. Sora doesn't get it, falls asleep, the whole matter is brushed aside. I feel like this is almost setting up something--if computers can be connected, then surely different data worlds and datascapes made by them could be connected in a similar way. (Like...
Spoiler Spoiler Show
?) Without having a narrative reason for this cutscene down the line, it feels like such a random thing to keep in the game. The fact that it IS in the game, leads me to believe it is far more important than just explaining how computers work to the audience.

Again, that's not conclusive evidence or anything, but there are far too many weird hints and nods towards the data universe, and there possibly being something funky going on for me to dismiss it as irrelevant.

I might be off track , but if Maleficent can somehow get her hands on something that can control the data (which she is searching for), and if the data can actively manipulate the whole UNIVERSE of Kingdom Hearts as we know it...well that could be really bad, couldn't it?

That's why I see potential in her in the future, and why it made sense for her not to play much role in KH3. The digital stuff was only being ground worked in that game and it will have its role in future installments. However, it is just as likely that the Master (or someone else) knows all this stuff and is going to steal control away from her just like all the other OC villains in the past, but at least then she would have a brief period of time to be actually threatening, which is what I think people want.

I'm not upset in the slightest about her "treatment" in KH3 because it seems fairly obvious that her goals and intentions are far more suited for the next arc of the series.
 
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SweetYetSalty

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I wonder what it would take for Maleficent to get back in power? Nowadays only villains with a Keyblade are truly dangerous and in KH1 she did have Riku on her side. I think in addition to her new Disney court Maleficent needs a new enforcer to even the odds and counter the heroes. Maybe Darkness will be that...until they betray her.
 

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Yeah and we know that different data worlds can be connected because that's what happened in UX with Wreck-it-Ralph's worlds
Exactly. It's a point that has come up to almost make it a bit too suspicious for me to dismiss. It IS Nomura after all. He loves to hide weird little hints in ways like that.

I wonder what it would take for Maleficent to get back in power? Nowadays only villains with a Keyblade are truly dangerous and in KH1 she did have Riku on her side. I think in addition to her new Disney court Maleficent needs a new enforcer to even the odds and counter the heroes. Maybe Darkness will be that...until they betray her.
See, the thing is, I'm not entirely convinced that "Darkness" is evil yet. I have no idea what he wants, we have no clear idea what the Master wants, if Darkness and the Master are enemies or allies, and it's still unclear who is on whose side of Eraqus' new "chess" game. True, his name being Darkness kind of naturally lends him to being seen as an evil entity (and if he indeed has something to do with Vanitas, we all know that guy wasn't exactly a straight and narrow kind of guy)...

But darkness (as a concept, not the guy) is not necessarily bad. Riku uses it, Terra as well, and the world is supposed to be balanced with both. And, as I recall at the end of KH2, Riku said "If the world is made of light and darkness, we'll be the darkness." Would that make Sora and Riku bad guys? Certainly not.

I also follow the theory that the Master's identity has something to do with "light" and that he and Darkness are mortal enemies. And if the Master is going to be the big baddie...what does that say about Darkness?

Personally I lend myself to the theory that the whole concept of Light and Dark are going to be somewhat flipped in the following game. I think our main villain (the Master) is going to be coming from a place of light "supremacy" whereas the mystery character Darkness is actually going to be helpful in bringing about balance in some way. Not that I think our main characters are going to be on team baddie, but I think it will be far more interesting for the series to explore the good sides of "darkness" and the corrupt side of "light". (Somewhat unrelated, but this is actually a current ongoing theme in the FF14 shadowbringers expansion, which already has quite a lot of KH parallels and Nomura has done design work for. Makes me wonder if we might see some characters from there make an appearance in future games if it does go in this direction?)

Anyway...back to the point about Maleficent: maybe she will actually end up being on our side unintentionally? I wonder if people will go for that or if they want her to be her stereotypical evil threat.
 

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I wonder what it would take for Maleficent to get back in power? Nowadays only villains with a Keyblade are truly dangerous and in KH1 she did have Riku on her side. I think in addition to her new Disney court Maleficent needs a new enforcer to even the odds and counter the heroes. Maybe Darkness will be that...until they betray her.
I REALLY do not want any Disney characters besides Mickey to wield a keyblade. I also don't want her to have an enforcer, she has shown to be strong already, and we've been denied a Maleficent boss fight for almost a decade.

I am a little worried that DISNEY won't allow Maleficent to be a boss fight anymore. The most striking thing about Maleficent's role post-KH1 has been that we never fight her. The only time we fight her is in BbS in her own world, but that's before she's the even more powerful Maleficent that we know from KH1 going forward.

I think Maleficent should be the final boss of a spinnoff game and be the main antagonist of such a game. Either that or make her the threat/boss of the first portion of KH IV, before transitioning to the Foretellers. I guess we can tell how useful she can be to the plot once we actually know what is going on with the box and other unknown aspects of the future KH storyline.
 

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I REALLY do not want any Disney characters besides Mickey to wield a keyblade. I also don't want her to have an enforcer, she has shown to be strong already, and we've been denied a Maleficent boss fight for almost a decade.

I am a little worried that DISNEY won't allow Maleficent to be a boss fight anymore. The most striking thing about Maleficent's role post-KH1 has been that we never fight her. The only time we fight her is in BbS in her own world, but that's before she's the even more powerful Maleficent that we know from KH1 going forward.

I think Maleficent should be the final boss of a spinnoff game and be the main antagonist of such a game. Either that or make her the threat/boss of the first portion of KH IV, before transitioning to the Foretellers. I guess we can tell how useful she can be to the plot once we actually know what is going on with the box and other unknown aspects of the future KH storyline.
Maleficent having a enforcer doesn't mean she herself won't fight, as Riku was her enforcer and she still fights. I hear she has a boss fight in Re:Coded, correct me if I'm wrong. If it's true then that must be the last time she was fought. Sadly Maleficent just doesn't have it to be a main antagonist role even in a spinoff right now. She'd need a massive power boost and a new form beyond just her Dragon form that's been defeated several times now. It's not impossible for this to happen, just unlikely.

I also don't want anymore Disney characters with Keyblades. That includes characters like Oswald.
 

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Exactly. It's a point that has come up to almost make it a bit too suspicious for me to dismiss. It IS Nomura after all. He loves to hide weird little hints in ways like that.



See, the thing is, I'm not entirely convinced that "Darkness" is evil yet. I have no idea what he wants, we have no clear idea what the Master wants, if Darkness and the Master are enemies or allies, and it's still unclear who is on whose side of Eraqus' new "chess" game. True, his name being Darkness kind of naturally lends him to being seen as an evil entity (and if he indeed has something to do with Vanitas, we all know that guy wasn't exactly a straight and narrow kind of guy)...

But darkness (as a concept, not the guy) is not necessarily bad. Riku uses it, Terra as well, and the world is supposed to be balanced with both. And, as I recall at the end of KH2, Riku said "If the world is made of light and darkness, we'll be the darkness." Would that make Sora and Riku bad guys? Certainly not.

I also follow the theory that the Master's identity has something to do with "light" and that he and Darkness are mortal enemies. And if the Master is going to be the big baddie...what does that say about Darkness?

Personally I lend myself to the theory that the whole concept of Light and Dark are going to be somewhat flipped in the following game. I think our main villain (the Master) is going to be coming from a place of light "supremacy" whereas the mystery character Darkness is actually going to be helpful in bringing about balance in some way. Not that I think our main characters are going to be on team baddie, but I think it will be far more interesting for the series to explore the good sides of "darkness" and the corrupt side of "light". (Somewhat unrelated, but this is actually a current ongoing theme in the FF14 shadowbringers expansion, which already has quite a lot of KH parallels and Nomura has done design work for. Makes me wonder if we might see some characters from there make an appearance in future games if it does go in this direction?)

Anyway...back to the point about Maleficent: maybe she will actually end up being on our side unintentionally? I wonder if people will go for that or if they want her to be her stereotypical evil threat.
Well it wouldnt be the first time Maleficent got portrayed as a force for good. They did try to paint her in a more sympathetic light in her 2014 live action film.

In regards to the series I could see her being forced to ally with the Guardians of Light against the Foretellers on some occasions. Whether or not she turns good at the end is anyone's guess
 

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Maleficent having a enforcer doesn't mean she herself won't fight, as Riku was her enforcer and she still fights. I hear she has a boss fight in Re:Coded, correct me if I'm wrong. If it's true then that must be the last time she was fought. Sadly Maleficent just doesn't have it to be a main antagonist role even in a spinoff right now. She'd need a massive power boost and a new form beyond just her Dragon form that's been defeated several times now. It's not impossible for this to happen, just unlikely.

I also don't want anymore Disney characters with Keyblades. That includes characters like Oswald.
I don't remember a boss fight with her in re:CODED. I think the rumour was that it was a boss fight in plain coded (the phone game).

I don't think she would need a massive power boost to be accepted as a main villain. I mean
Spoiler Spoiler Show
, at this point anyone can become credible if the plot requires it. If anything, they can show a quick cutscene where "Darkness" makes her glow and she's like "true darkness... true power" and bam, she's on Master Xehanort's level. Also, it's weird that Maleficent would need a power boost to be a credible villain, but the Organization rehash (who theoretically should be weaker than their original iterations) were accepted as strong enough to fight 2 or more keyblade wielders. Maleficent didn't even die, so I actually think of her as gaining strength over her time.
 

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I don't remember a boss fight with her in re:CODED. I think the rumour was that it was a boss fight in plain coded (the phone game).

I don't think she would need a massive power boost to be accepted as a main villain. I mean
Spoiler Spoiler Show
, at this point anyone can become credible if the plot requires it. If anything, they can show a quick cutscene where "Darkness" makes her glow and she's like "true darkness... true power" and bam, she's on Master Xehanort's level. Also, it's weird that Maleficent would need a power boost to be a credible villain, but the Organization rehash (who theoretically should be weaker than their original iterations) were accepted as strong enough to fight 2 or more keyblade wielders. Maleficent didn't even die, so I actually think of her as gaining strength over her time.
Maleficent was the penultimate final boss of Hollow Bastion in Re:Coded before Sora's Heartless. She's also a boss in Union X in her dragon form as well, but no one counts UX as having real "bosses" the same way the other games have (swipe-to-win does not exactly make for riveting combat).
Considering Maleficent hasn't trained in any way that we know of, she'd be EXTREMELY weak against most of the main characters at this point. Remember, every time she's ever been a boss, it's been against relatively weak Keyblade wielders, and she's gotten her butt handed to her each and every time. In BBS, she got thrashed early in the game by each of the Wayfinder trio, one of whom was basically a kid, and while each had training, all still managed to take her with very little real combat experience. In KH1, she got whooped by a totally inexperienced child who was still a complete novice with the Keyblade, and in Coded, she got beat again by an even less experienced data copy of that same child. She would need a MASSIVE power boost in order to hold a candle to any of the main characters at this stage in the game.
 

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Maleficent was the penultimate final boss of Hollow Bastion in Re:Coded before Sora's Heartless. She's also a boss in Union X in her dragon form as well, but no one counts UX as having real "bosses" the same way the other games have (swipe-to-win does not exactly make for riveting combat).
Considering Maleficent hasn't trained in any way that we know of, she'd be EXTREMELY weak against most of the main characters at this point. Remember, every time she's ever been a boss, it's been against relatively weak Keyblade wielders, and she's gotten her butt handed to her each and every time. In BBS, she got thrashed early in the game by each of the Wayfinder trio, one of whom was basically a kid, and while each had training, all still managed to take her with very little real combat experience. In KH1, she got whooped by a totally inexperienced child who was still a complete novice with the Keyblade, and in Coded, she got beat again by an even less experienced data copy of that same child. She would need a MASSIVE power boost in order to hold a candle to any of the main characters at this stage in the game.
Whoops, I completely forgot about that fight in reCODED.

Maleficent's defeat in BbS was 10 years before KH1. It was her first encounter with the keyblade, so it's expected that she would lose easily there.

In KH1, I don't think she should be dismissed so quickly. By that point in KH1, Sora is very competent with the keyblade to the point where he could kill Riku possessed by Ansem and Ansem himself (and even Xemnas). The very fact that for 10 years Maleficent went around to almost all the worlds and destroyed them should count as combat experience. Her magic is clearly very powerful.

Sora's strength level is always questionable. Dare I say, everyone's strength level in KH is questionable. Sora is weak when the plot needs him to be weak, for example in KH3, yet he is able to decimate everything in the Disney worlds and even perform more abilities than he had in KH1 and 2. Riku and Mickey are amazing keyblade masters, but because of "darkness reasons" they get beaten like an egg in the Realm of Darkness by the weakest heartless. Master Xehanort - a keyblade master for decades, prepared for his fight against Sora for decades as well, and in control of the X-Blade/Kingdom Hearts itself - loses to the boy who lost all of his abilities and basically retrained himself in whimsical Disney worlds over the course of a few days.
Spoiler Spoiler Show
Does that instantly mean that Master Xehanort is trash and needs a massive power boost? I don't know how much more he could get beyond the power of Kingdom Hearts itself.

If the plot requires a main character to get beat by Maleficent - it will happen. If the plot requires Sora to get beat by Clayton, Hans, Cruella De Vil, or whoever - it will happen.

I think this idea that "keyblade wielder" equates instantly to "stronger than Disney/Final Fantasy/non-keyblade wielding character" needs to be done away with, otherwise you'll end up seeing more and more keyblades handed out and less of Disney/Final Fantasy characters mattering. I believe that Donald and Goofy could hold their own, maybe even beat, Terra or Ven in a fight.
Spoiler Spoiler Show
 

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Whoops, I completely forgot about that fight in reCODED.

Maleficent's defeat in BbS was 10 years before KH1. It was her first encounter with the keyblade, so it's expected that she would lose easily there.

In KH1, I don't think she should be dismissed so quickly. By that point in KH1, Sora is very competent with the keyblade to the point where he could kill Riku possessed by Ansem and Ansem himself (and even Xemnas). The very fact that for 10 years Maleficent went around to almost all the worlds and destroyed them should count as combat experience. Her magic is clearly very powerful.

Sora's strength level is always questionable. Dare I say, everyone's strength level in KH is questionable. Sora is weak when the plot needs him to be weak, for example in KH3, yet he is able to decimate everything in the Disney worlds and even perform more abilities than he had in KH1 and 2. Riku and Mickey are amazing keyblade masters, but because of "darkness reasons" they get beaten like an egg in the Realm of Darkness by the weakest heartless. Master Xehanort - a keyblade master for decades, prepared for his fight against Sora for decades as well, and in control of the X-Blade/Kingdom Hearts itself - loses to the boy who lost all of his abilities and basically retrained himself in whimsical Disney worlds over the course of a few days.
Spoiler Spoiler Show
Does that instantly mean that Master Xehanort is trash and needs a massive power boost? I don't know how much more he could get beyond the power of Kingdom Hearts itself.

If the plot requires a main character to get beat by Maleficent - it will happen. If the plot requires Sora to get beat by Clayton, Hans, Cruella De Vil, or whoever - it will happen.

I think this idea that "keyblade wielder" equates instantly to "stronger than Disney/Final Fantasy/non-keyblade wielding character" needs to be done away with, otherwise you'll end up seeing more and more keyblades handed out and less of Disney/Final Fantasy characters mattering. I believe that Donald and Goofy could hold their own, maybe even beat, Terra or Ven in a fight.
Spoiler Spoiler Show
I don't think Maleficent is weak, but to carry a entire game as it's main antagonist? Those days are kinda over for Maleficent. Any of the Guardians of Light could beat Maleficent now, dragon or not. Which is why I suggested she get a new powerup if she wants to be taken more seriously going forward.
 

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If there's ever been a sign that the Xehanort saga did us all dirty, it's the fact that this meme didn't end with it. The number of arguments from 2006 still being debated in our post-KH3 apocalyptic world because they were never properly settled makes me view this franchise with ever greater skepticism. What I demand to know is, what are Nomura's motives here. Hasn't he depleted this character's shameful mistreatment quota? What will it take to satisfy him? A game where all of her scenes consist of one room which she paces about, endlessly monologuing about the mean things she intends to do when Pete figures out how to get the door open?

Kill your darlings, Nomura, even the ones who are Mistresses.
 

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I don't think Maleficent is weak, but to carry a entire game as it's main antagonist? Those days are kinda over for Maleficent. Any of the Guardians of Light could beat Maleficent now, dragon or not. Which is why I suggested she get a new powerup if she wants to be taken more seriously going forward.
Well "Darkness" can just give her a boost in a 5 second scene, like what she did to Riku in KH1, and then she's serious.

Honestly, I don't see the point of a scene like that... I can buy her as a credible threat. There's never been any evidence in any game that Sora and company view her as weak. The fairies were terrified of her in KH2. It seems kind of unfair for people to think that she's weak while newly formed nobodies like Marluxia/Larxene/Luxord are easily accepted as credible threats. Two out of three of them got killed by a weakened Sora. Their transformation back to nobodies probably also weakened them. Maleficent never died and is always treated as a penultimate boss (except in KHCoM understandably). I really don't get how she's weak except for the fact that we haven't seen her do much storywise, while everyone else is handed keyblades.

It's either that she's a Disney character or lacks a keyblade must be the reason she's viewed as weak. Also that she doesn't do anything plot wise except observe... which I think is great for her character. She spent 10 years to achieve her goal in KH1, this woman is perfectly fine playing the long game. I actually like having a character like her just waiting on the sidelines, it makes you unsure of what she can do or will do. I didn't expect Maleficent to do a lot in KH3, but the secret video where we actually see Maleficent/Pete watching The Foretellers before the unveiling of the box SCREAMS that Maleficent will be relevant in the next game. There wasn't anything that made it clear she would be a big deal in KH3 - whether in Coded or in the trailers for KH3. So I like Maleficent's direction.
 
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