Square Enix recently gave the gaming public some information regarding the pair of upcoming Kingdom Hearts sequels.
First, it was said that the next Playstation 2 installment, entitled Kingdom Hearts II, will boast more characters than the original. These new faces will consist of both original creations and a higher number of Final Fantasy characters. A darker-dressing Sora will once again take the lead role, and Square Enix is currently trying to reassemble the first game's voice cast.
The gameplay of Kingdom Hearts II will remain quite similar to the first title's, with the same battle system in place. Among the slight changes that will occur is an increase in the number of available commands one can enter during battle and a selectable difficulty level. On the development front, some returning Kingdom Hearts veterans include director Tetsuya Nomura, scenario writer Kazushige Nojima, battle planner Yuuichi Kanemori, and Shinji Hashimoto and Yoshinori Kitase as producers.
Moving on, the company let loose several details pertaining to the Game Boy Advance title, which bears the name of Kingdom Hearts: Chain of Memories. A lesser-known company by the name of Jupiter will be cooperating with Square Enix to make the Kingdom Hearts series slide into portability as smoothly as possible. Living up to Square Enix's reputation, this game will feature a voice acted intro sequence, with a new theme song to boot. The development team includes those involved with Kingdom Hearts II, with the exception of Kazushige Nojima, whose job of scenario writer will be done by Daisuke Watanabe.
Both of these titles are expected to be available some time in 2004, with Chain of Memories hitting shelves first.