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Dive to the Heart

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Dive to the Heart

Dive to the Heart (Art) KH

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Kana/Kanji ダイブ・ター・ザー・ハート
Romaji Daibu tâ zâ Hâto
French Palier de l'Éveil
German Ort des Erwachens
Spanish Descenso al Corazón
Games Kingdom Hearts
Kingdom Hearts II
Kingdom Hearts Birth by Sleep
Kingdom Hearts coded
Gallery for Dive to the Heart

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The Dive to the Heart is a location that appears in Kingdom Hearts, Kingdom Hearts Final Mix, Kingdom Hearts II, Kingdom Hearts II Final Mix, Kingdom Hearts coded, Kingdom Hearts Re:coded, Kingdom Hearts Birth by Sleep, Kingdom Hearts Birth by Sleep Final Mix, and Kingdom Hearts 3D: Dream Drop Distance. It is framed as a world within a dream, and its nature as the dreamer's heart is reinforced by the background music, the gameplay tutorial, and the strange way of speaking used by those within it (a manner also used by the remembered characters of Kingdom Hearts: Chain of Memories).

However, the events that occur within it have a real effect on the waking world, and in two instances they are actually observed by outside forces.[1]

In terms of gameplay, the purpose of the Dive to the Heart is to serve as a tutorial level, where the player will learn the controls of the game, choose how their character will grow, and fight their first boss. The player is guided through the Dive to the Heart by an inaudible, unseen "voice", whose identity is uncertain.[2]

To reinforce the dreamlike setting of the Dive to the Heart, Sora, Roxas, and Ventus each reach it by falling into an ocean. However, instead of drowning they find that they can breathe, and land upon an ocean floor which erupts into doves, revealing the Dive to the Heart. In Roxas's case, this first Dive to the Heart is merely a memory of Sora's, and he enters his true dive three days later. The Dive to the Heart is composed of several enormous, illuminated stained-glass pillars known as "Stations", rising from unseen depths. Each Station has a unique shade, depicts a specific set of characters, and has its own specific part in the tutorial.

In the first game, there is an additional area of the Dive to the Heart based on the Destiny Islands. The background music, "Dive Into the Heart (Destati)", initially begins quietly and hard to hear, but grows in intensity as Sora or Roxas approach the final pillar, where they fight a manifestation of the darkness within them. At the end of their battle with the creature the Dive to the Heart is consumed by the darkness emanating from it, dragging Sora or Roxas with it, but they either wake up or are rescued.

Conception and Design

EarlyCoM

Early screenshot of Sora's Dive to the Heart in Kingdom Hearts: Chain of Memories.

Sora's Dive to the Heart was originally set to return as part of Kingdom Hearts: Chain of Memories, but was removed from the final game for unknown reasons. It is also used as a tutorial for the player that includes how to jump, move around and attack an enemy.

In the first Kingdom Hearts, the stations that Sora visit depict the Seven Princesses of Heart, including Snow White, Belle and Cinderella. Starting in Kingdom Hearts II with Roxas's Dive to the Heart however the designs shown represent the person experiencing the Dive, with Roxas's showing an image of Sora, this Station design also shows up when Riku dives into Sora's Heart in Dream Drop Distance. Ventus's originally show an image of himself, however in his final battle with Vanitas shows both of them. Additionally Sora's is shown to depict items from the Destiny Islands during his youth.

Story

Kingdom Hearts Birth by Sleep

Station of Awakening (Art) KHBBSStation of Awakening- Ventus (Art) KHBBSStation of Awakening- Ventus and Vanitas (Art) KHBBSStation of Awakening- Ventus 2 (Art) KHBBSStation of Awakening- Sora (Art) KHBBS

Chronologically, Ventus's Dive to the Heart, here named "Ventus's Mind", is the first to be seen, appearing incomplete due to his broken heart. It is here that Ventus comes in contact with the newborn Sora's heart, and his Station is restored. Ventus does not return to the Dive to the Heart until he involuntarily fuses with Vanitas, his pillar changing appearance with the sudden presence of darkness in his heart, and is renamed "Soul World" (精神世界 Seishin Sekai?).

Ventus's Station is quite similar to Roxas's, but features a sleeping Ventus, without his Wayward Wind, at the Keyblade Graveyard, rather than Sora, with his Kingdom Key, at the Destiny Islands. The inner circle of emblems, which usually contains images of the sleeper's loved ones, only contains a stylized Fleur-de-lis, which also appears on the edges of the pillar. When Ventus is fused with Vanitas, Ventus's Station is modified - Vanitas himself now appears opposite Ventus, and both have their Keyblades.

Half of the outer ring of symbols is replaced with the Unversed emblem, while the other half is replaced with the Mark of Mastery emblem. The field of the Keyblade Graveyard is now filled with the abandoned Keyblades. The inner circle of emblems is replaced with silhouettes of Keychains for the χ-blade, the Wayward Wind, and the Void Gear. After Ven defeats Vanitas, his station changes to a form similar to its original appearance, with some modifications. Ventus is now holding the Wayward Wind and wearing both his Keyblade Armor pauldron and his silver Mark of Mastery charm, while the outer circle of emblems is filled with the Mark of Mastery emblem and the inner circle of emblems is filled with his friends' Wayfinders, signifying that he has regained control of his completed heart.

After the tutorial chapter, the player enters another Dive to the Heart, where they can choose whether to continue the story with Terra, Ventus, or Aqua. This Station displays the trio's Wayfinders, but is purely a gameplay mechanic.

After Ventus's body is placed within the Chamber of Waking, his heart connects with that of a young Sora, who appears in his own Dive to the Heart, named "Sora's Mind". His Station displays the landscape of Destiny Islands on the bottom, with Paopu Fruits and different elements found on or around the island encircled separately on the top.

Kingdom Hearts

Station of Awakening- Snow White (Art) KHStation of Awakening- Cinderella (Art) KHStation of Awakening- Princess (Art) KHStation of Awakening- Aurora (Art) KHStation of Awakening- Belle (Art) KH

In Sora's dream, he falls from the sky into the sea below with his eyes closed and slowly descends onto the ground with abyss surrounding him. As he steps into the ground, the darkness below his feet starts to transform into birds and fly away, showing a radiant light that slowly forms into a circle. Each of the Stations in his later Dive to the Heart illustrates one or more of the Princesses of Heart, as well as the characters related to them. The four that are clearly depicted are asleep, perhaps signifying their comatose state in Hollow Bastion.

  • The first pillar, shaded green, depicts Snow White, the Seven Dwarfs, the forest animals, and The Queen in her hag form. While Snow White is asleep, all the other characters are depicted as awake.
  • The second pillar, shaded violet, depicts a sleeping Cinderella, the castle, one of the mice turned horses, the pumpkin chariot, silhouettes of her and the prince dancing together, and the glass slipper.
  • The third pillar, shaded pink, depicts three princess silhouettes, representing the three free Princesses of Heart, Alice, Jasmine, and Kairi.
  • The fourth pillar, shaded red, depicts a sleeping Aurora holding a rose, surrounded by thorns and silhouettes of Flora, Fauna, and Merryweather, and the silhouette Maleficent makes when vanishing into green fire. This Station is named Awakening.
  • The final pillar, shaded yellow, depicts Belle, the Beast, his servants and the rose with its petals at the bottom.

On the first pillar, Sora is asked to walk, then is shown three weapons, the Dream Sword, the Dream Shield, and the Dream Rod. He is directed to choose one and discard another, and his choice determines his specialty, initial stats, and ability growth throughout the game. After choosing, the Station shatters and Sora falls to the second pillar, where he first encounters Shadows, and is taught about battling and its rewards.

The Station then sinks into darkness, and Sora awakens on the third pillar, where he is taught how to examine and interact with objects. By opening a treasure chest, moving a crate, and destroying a barrel, he materializes a door that leads to a dream version of Destiny Islands, where Sora meets facsimiles of his friends, Tidus, Wakka, and Selphie, which ask him enigmatic questions that determine how he gains experience throughout the game.

On the fourth pillar, Sora is again attacked by Shadows, but after defeating them the first Save Point is revealed, as well as floating steps to the final pillar. However, the steps vanish as he climbs them, trapping him on the fifth pillar. As he approaches a strange light, his shadow grows and becomes his Darkside; though he fights it, its darkness swallows him, and he reawakens on the Destiny Islands.

The door reappears, this time on Destiny Islands, when the island is attacked by the Heartless, revealing that it is in fact the world's Keyhole. It reappears a final time with the false Destiny Islands at the Final Rest within End of the World, but this time contains the final confrontation with Ansem, Seeker of Darkness, and Kingdom Hearts itself.

Interestingly, the order of the the stations of the first three sleeping Princesses reflects the order that Ventus visits their respective worlds in BBS.

Kingdom Hearts II

Station of Awakening- Sora (Art) KHIIStation of Awakening- Sora 2 (Art) KHIIStation of Awakening- Sora 3 (Art) KHIIStation of Awakening- Sora 4 (Art) KHIIStation of Awakening- Sora (Art) KHII

On the third day of his story, Roxas encounters a Dusk in the Sandlot and is sucked into his Dive to the Heart. Like Sora's, Roxas's Dive to the Heart consists of five stained glass pillars, but each of these depict the same image of Sora, Riku, Kairi, Donald Duck, and Goofy at the Destiny Islands, and the pillars are divided between only three Stations. Sora's eyes are closed, showing that he is asleep, while Kairi and Riku's are open, showing that they are awake; strangely, Donald and Goofy's eyes are still open, even though they are asleep as well.

Roxas awakens on the Station of Serenity (やすらぎの園 Yasuragi no Sono?), where he chooses between the Dream Sword, Dream Shield, and Dream Rod. While this choice determines the order in which he learns abilities as before, the weapon he chooses is immediately transformed into the Kingdom Key (This is different than in the original Kingdom Hearts Dive to the Heart as he does not have to give anything up in exchange for his weapon). He goes through a door to the Station of Calling (いざないの園 Izanai no Sono?), consisting of three pillars shaded blue, green, and red and connected by floating stairs.

Here, he encounters Dusks and learns about Reaction Commands and treasures. Going through another door, he enters the Station of Awakening (めざめの園 Mezame no Sono?), and finds an apparition of himself in his black coat which soon becomes his Twilight Thorn. Similar to Sora's Dive to the Heart, after defeating the Twilight Thorn, Roxas and his Dive to the Heart are consumed by darkness, but unlike Sora, Roxas is rescued by Naminé at the last minute.

Much later, as Sora approaches Memory's Skyscraper, Roxas reawakens inside him and takes him to the Station of Awakening, where they battle and come to peace with each other. This arena is replicated in the Garden of Assemblage for the fight against Roxas's Replica Data.

Kingdom Hearts coded

Station of Awakening- Snow White (Art) KHStation of Awakening- Princess (Art) KH
SoraEncountersAHoodedFigure

Sora encounters a hooded figure in Kingdom Hearts Re:coded

Data-Sora manifests in a digital version of the Dive to the Heart that is virtually the same as the real Sora's dive. He spots Data-Roxas, but does not recognize him before he disappears, and later mistakes him for Data-Riku. Sora is given the choice to choose between the Dream Sword, Dream Shield, or Dream Rod and which one he is willing to forfeit.

Doing this also effects the starting commands Data-Sora begins with. However, due to Chip and Dale's reprogramming, the Dream weapons immediately change into the Keyblade, as in Roxas's dive. After fighting off an ambush by a swarm of Shadows, Data-Sora enters the same door that Sora did in his own dive, but this door leads directly to a data Destiny Islands, rather than a dream version.

Kingdom Hearts 3D: Dream Drop Distance

Station of Awakening- Sora (Art) KHII

After succumbing to the deepest sleep of darkness, Sora's consciousness arrives at his own station. Ventus' heart follows him, giving Sora Ventus' Keyblade Armor to protect him from the darkness. However, by the time Riku dives into Sora's heart to wake him from his sleep, the armor is converted into a Nightmare that Riku battles before causing it to shatter with Sora swallowed by the darkness. Intent on finding Sora, Riku then uses the Kingdom Key to dive deeper into Sora's dream and finds himself in a data projection of the Destiny Islands where he meets Ventus, Roxas, Xion, and a copy Ansem the Wise who reveals that the defeat of the Armored Ventus Nightmare and Riku's answering of the questions asked to him by Roxas, Ventus, and Xion have reawakened Sora.

Characters

KH1 icon Name Journal Entry
Sora KH
Sora (ソラ Sora?)
See Gallery

The one who fights the Heartless. Upon reclaiming the Keyblade from his rival, Riku, Sora sacrificed his heart to free Kairi and became a Heartless. Kairi's deep feelings for Sora restored him. Now he must confront Ansem, the seeker of darkness.

KH2 icon Name Journal Entry
Sora (Official) KHII
Sora (ソラ Sora?)
See Gallery

A boy chosen by the Keyblade, a mysterious weapon.

Not long ago, Sora journeyed with Donald and Goofy in search of his longtime friend Kairi, who had been spirited away into the darkness.

In the end, they saved the world of all worlds from the darkness that was closing in.

After that, Sora continued journeying in search of Riku, who was trapped on the other side of the door to darkness. And somewhere along the way, Sora fell into a deep slumber.

With a new outfit and strengthened resolve, Sora has set out once more on a search for his friend Riku.

Roxas-2
Roxas (ロクサス Rokusasu?)
See Gallery

Organization XIII's Number XIII, a Keyblade wielder and denizen of darkness.

He vanished with a satisfied look after battling Sora—but Sora was the only one who could see him in the first place.

KHREC icon Name Journal Entry
Data-Sora KHREC
Data-Sora (データ・ソラ Dēta Sora?)
See Gallery

A boy chosen by a strange sword called a "Keyblade." After his island home was lost to the darkness, he joined forces with Donald, Goofy, and Mickey and saved all worlds. All these adventures were carefully recorded in Jiminy's journals.

Inside the datascape generated within the computer, a digital version of the real Sora (Data-Sora) quests in our hero's stead.

DataRoxas
Data-Roxas (データロクサス Dēta-Rokusasu?)
See Gallery

A boy who used cards to guide Sora in the datascape version of Castle Oblivion.

While he bears an uncanny resemblance to another boy deeply connected to Sora, it is more than coat and hood that prevent Sora from seeing.

Was this boy just a phantom, a glitch? Or does this data tie into hurtful memories that sleep within Sora’s heart?

BBS icon Name Journal Entry
VEN1
Ventus (ヴェントゥス Ventusu?)
See Gallery

One of Master Eraqus's pupils. He usually goes by "Ven" for short. He, Terra and Aqua train together, sharing both a healthy rivalry and a strong bond of friendship.

Haunted by the masked boy's warnings about Terra, Ven defied Master Eraqus, ran away from home, and set off for the outside world to find his friend.

Since Ventus is younger, Terra and Aqua tend to be very protective of him.

Vanitas and X-Blade
Vanitas (ヴァニタス Vanitasu?)
See Gallery

A mysterious boy who hides his face behind a mask. He has ties to Master Xehanort.

Vanitas warned Ventus that Terra was in some kind of danger, but disappeared before explaining any further.

KH3D icon Name Journal Entry
Sora KH3D
Sora (ソラ Sora?)
See Gallery

A boy who wields a Keyblade. He has used its power to save the worlds from crisis more than once.

Now, he has agreed to take the Mark of Mastery examination in order to retrieve a new power.

Roxas-2
Roxas (ロクサス Rokusasu?)
See Gallery

One of Organization XIII's members, and also Sora's Nobody. He was especially close to Axel, another of their members. Roxas ceased to exist after reuniting with Sora.

Xion 2 KHD
Xion (シオン Shion?)
See Gallery

Organization XIII's mysterious fourteenth member. She was an experimental replica used to "catch" Roxas's memories and create a Keyblade wielder for the Organization. In the end, she was erased from existence and returned to Sora where she belonged.

VEN1
Ventus (ヴェントゥス Ventusu?)
See Gallery

One of three Keyblade wielders who played a pivotal role in a historic clash more than a dozen years ago. His heart is sleeping, and he has been laid to rest in a secret chamber of a certain castle until someone can wake him up.

Enemies

Heartless

Nobodies

Dream Eaters

Somebodies

Treasures

Kingdom Hearts

Type Items found Locations Notes
Regular Potion Open the chest to make the box disappear. After pushing the box, destroy it with your weapon and the potion is inside.

Kingdom Hearts II

Type Items found Locations Notes
Regular Potion x 2 Station of Serenity, Station of Calling

Notes and references

  1. In Kingdom Hearts II, the Organization observes and comments upon Sora's battle with Roxas on the Station of Awakening. In Kingdom Hearts coded, Data-Roxas appears before Data-Sora on the Station of Awakening.
  2. Throughout the Kingdom Hearts series, there are only four characters who have "spoken" like the mysterious voice: Mickey Mouse, Ansem, Sora, and DiZ. However, every other time Ansem speaks in this manner he insults or criticizes Sora, and during Sora's Dive to the Heart, DiZ did not yet know that Sora was the Keyblade wielder. In Final Mix, Riku encounters a similar voice after his body is taken by Ansem, and he identifies it as belonging to Mickey. It has also been confirmed that Sora's heart is the voice talking to Ventus in his own Dive to the Heart; it could be possible that Ventus's heart is the voice speaking to Sora and Roxas.

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