Kingdom Hearts 3 Secret Ending Explained | What You Might Have Missed
***SPOILERS FOR KINGDOM HEARTS III***
After promptly wiping the tears from your eyes for finishing Kingdom Hearts III, you’ll be treated with the secret ending to the game. The secret ending is only unlocked if you located the necessary amount of Mickey emblems scattered throughout the game. Check out our page for how many Mickey emblems you need to find to unlock the secret ending, and where to find every emblem.
Before I dive in, this is your last warning. We are going to spoiler territory now, so in case you didn’t heed the warning for the title of this article, or at the top of this piece, then this is your last chance.
Kingdom Hearts III Secret Ending Explained
Still here with me? Good, let’s dig in.
Happily Ever After?
Kingdom Hearts III ends with almost everyone getting their perfect, happy ending. Roxas, Axel, and Xion are alive again, and hanging out with their new friends at Twilight Town. Aqua, Terra, and Ventus return home to the Land of Departure. Ventus meets with Chirithy, a cat-like dream eater who helped Sora earlier in game. Even Namine, who didn’t physically appear in the game at all up to that point, was given a new body.
All the main characters are then shown playing on the beaches of Destiny Island. Everyone is happy; everyone except Kairi.
During the final battle with Xehanort, Kairi is struck by Xehanort’s Keyblade and her body shatters. In order to save Kairi, Sora uses the power of waking, the ability he has been using to save all his friends. He promises to return to his friends one day. Young Xehanort had warned Sora beforehand the dangers of using the power of waking too many times; his warnings went on deaf ears. The final scene of Kingdom Hearts III, before the epilogue and the secret ending, is Sora disappearing in front Kairi, who sheds a tear.
A surprisingly sour note to end on and it can be interpreted in many different ways. Was Sora there on Destiny’s Island with everyone else before he disappears, or was Kairi imagining him there?
In the epilogue we see a cloaked figure, with a familiar voice, pick up Xehanort’s Keyblade. It is at that moment when four foretellers from Kingdom Hearts Union/Back Cover materialize in front of the cloaked figure. The cloaked figure reveals himself as one of the Foretellers.
The only foreteller missing is Ava, who founded the Keyblade group called Dandelions. The cloaked figure says Ava served her purpose. What he means, we don’t know. He lifts his cloak to show himself as Xigbar, a Nobody who was a part of both Organization XIIIs. The foretellers recognize Xigbar as their long lost compatriot Luxu.
The twist with Xigbar being Luxu was genuinely shocking and recontextualizes Xigbar’s role in the Kingdom Hearts games. Rather than be a loyal lackey for Xehanort’s goals and ambitions, he was secretly manipulating the events that have led to the Keyblade war in Kingdom Hearts III.
The secrets reports, which are available to players who have beat the battle gates post-game, suggests that Xigbar’s main motivation is to bring back his master. The Masters of Masters is the teacher of all the foretellers, including Luxu. His disappearance back in the day is what leads to the original Keyblade war during the age of fairytales. Master of Masters is an enigma; he is very playful and relaxed, yet his motivations are shrouded with mystery.
We don’t know if the Masters of Masters is a villain or not. However, the epilogue of Kingdom Hearts III suggests that the next conflict will be between Sora and the foretellers.
That leads us to the secret movie for Kingdom Hearts III.
It begins with Sora waking up in what appears to be real-world Tokyo, specifically the Shibuya ward. Riku also wakes up in what looks like Tokyo, but in a completely different location from Sora. As the two observe their surroundings, a person on top of a building looks down on Riku. The person is Yozora.
For context, Yozora is the main protagonist in the fictional video game Verum Rex that appeared in the Toy Story world. A faux trailer was shown when you first land on the Toy Story world.
In another part of the city there is a mysterious figure, wearing the same cloak as the Organization XIII members. The figure plays with his hands before he creates a heart symbol, which he places over the moon, symbolizing Kingdom Hearts. The current assumption among fans is that the mysterious figure is the Masters of Master.
What Does It Mean?
What does the secret ending mean? Similar to previous secret endings in the other Kingdom Hearts games, we can assume it’s a hint towards what comes next in the franchise.
First, we know that Sora appears to be alive and well. While the area that Sora finds himself may look like the real life Shibuya, it actually may be the Shibuya from the Square Enix game The World Ends With You. The main evidence that supports it is the Shibuya from TWEWY is that the number on the Shibuya 109 building is replaced with 104, just like it is in TWEWY.
Sora has encountered the cast of TWEWY before, in Kingdom Hearts Dream Drop Distance. He meets with the TWEWY characters in a dream version of Traverse Town. One of the TWEWY characters even told Sora that they would like to meet in Shibuya, possibly foreshadowing Sora’s fate.
It was pointed out earlier in the game that Yozora and Riku look similar, as both have silver hair and relatable clothes. However, more importantly, Yozora has more of a passing resemblance towards Noctis, the main character from Final Fantasy XV.
For those that don’t know, Final Fantasy XV was initially called Final Fantasy Versus XIII. The director of the game was going to be Tetsuya Nomura, the lead director and guiding force for Kingdom Hearts.
Since Versus XIII was in development for so long (the game was in development for almost a whole decade), Nomura was removed from the project so that he can focus more on Kingdom Hearts III and the Final Fantasy VII remake. Versus XIII turn into XV, and a lot of Nomura’s ideas went by the wayside.
Nomura has express sadness for being taken off Versus XIII, and many fans have presumed he may hold a grudge against Square Enix. Yozora’s resemblance to Noctis goes deeper than looks. Yozora’s name is Japanese for “night sky”. Noctis’ name is Latin for “night”. Verum Rex is also Latin for “True King”. Noctis in Final Fantasy XV is the heir of the throne, and is labeled as the one true king.
Some of the music from Final Fantasy XV can also be heard during the secret ending, particularly the music track “Somnus.” “Somnus” is one of the most prominent tracks in the XV.
Is the secret end for Kingdom Hearts III a jab towards Square Enix? Is Nomura going to make his version of Versus XIII in Kingdom Hearts? Only time will tell.