AskDefine | Define heartless

Dictionary Definition

heartless adj
1 marked by lack of heart or feeling; "a heartless tyrant"; "heartless words" [ant: hearted]
2 lacking in feeling or pity or warmth [syn: hardhearted] [ant: softhearted]
3 devoid of courage or enthusiasm

User Contributed Dictionary



From heart + -less.



  1. Without a heart; specifically, without feeling, emotion, or concern for others; uncaring.
    His heartless actions and cold manner left her saddened and feeling alone.

Derived terms

Extensive Definition

Square Enix's and Disney's Kingdom Hearts series of video games takes place in an unnamed outer space-like fictional universe with numerous self-contained worlds to explore over the course of play. Many of these worlds are based on animated Disney movies, though Kingdom Hearts II introduced some worlds based on live action Disney films. In addition to the Disney worlds, Square included original worlds over the course of the series. The concept of the games and setting was developed by Tetsuya Nomura, the series' director. The series centers around the main character Sora's search for his friends and his encounters with Disney and Final Fantasy characters on their worlds. The first game, Kingdom Hearts, takes him through each world to lock their keyholes and prevent the Heartless from destroying them. In the Game Boy Advance sequel Kingdom Hearts: Chain of Memories, taking place in Castle Oblivion, he revisits memory based versions of many of these worlds. In Kingdom Hearts II, Sora helps the residents of these worlds again in search of his friend Riku. The Kingdom Hearts games have been both critically acclaimed and commercially successful. The worlds used in the games have received praise from reviewers.

Concept and design

The universe of Kingdom Hearts is a collection of various levels, referred to as "worlds", that the player progresses through. Each world varies in appearance and setting, depending on the Disney world that it is based on. The graphics of the world and characters were meant to resemble the artwork style of the environments and characters from their respective Disney film. Each Disney world is inhabited by characters from their respective Disney film; Hercules and Philoctetes inhabit Olympus Coliseum, and Aladdin, Princess Jasmine, and the Magic Carpet inhabit Agrabah. Each world is also disconnected from the others and exists separately. With a few exceptions, most characters in the worlds are unaware of the existence of the other worlds. Worlds are made up of interconnected field maps where battles and events take place. Players travel from one world to another via a Gummi Ship. The worlds created specifically for the game mirror the overall appearance of the other worlds and feature either new characters or characters from several Final Fantasy games.
Though Disney gave director Tetsuya Nomura freedom in the characters and worlds used for the games, he and his staff tried to stay within the established roles of characters and boundaries of the worlds. Nomura stated that managing and keeping multiple worlds was problematic. After determining the number of worlds in the universe, Nomura then picked the worlds he felt would fit into the scenario. The list was then evaluated by his team and then finally by Disney representatives. Nomura also tried to keep the same number of worlds in each game and made an effort to minimize any overlap in the overall look and feel of each world. He and his staff accomplished this by categorizing various Disney worlds by appearance and setting. For example, the Jungle Book was considered for the first game, but was omitted due to the similarity between it and the Deep Jungle from Tarzan. They also tried to take into account worlds with Disney characters that would be interesting. The inclusion of specific Final Fantasy characters was based on the opinions of both fans and staff. Initially, Nomura was hesitant to use Final Fantasy characters he did not design, because he was unfamiliar with the background work of those characters. For Kingdom Hearts II, he changed his mind after receiving pressure from his staff. The heart gives a being emotion, light, and darkness. Seven maidens, called the "Princesses of Heart", possess no darkness in their hearts. Worlds also possess hearts, and all hearts originate from Kingdom Hearts. Beings are corrupted when darkness takes their heart, producing the Heartless from their hearts and sometimes producing a Nobody from the remaining body and soul. Heartless act as forces of darkness, seeking to consume more hearts, including those of worlds. The "heart of all worlds" and the source of hearts is Kingdom Hearts. An object of immense power, it is desired by many forces of darkness and a path to it is opened by the unison of the Princesses of Heart. Nomura tried to convey a common theme of "hearts" and the strengths and connections of the heart in all three of the Square Enix games. Each world found within the in-between plane are tied more closely to either the realm of light or the realm of darkness by varying degrees. As well as these known realms, Ansem the Wise was banished to a "realm of nothingness", which he described as a realm "where all existence has been disintegrated".

Heartless and Nobody

are hearts corrupted by darkness and without a body or a soul. They serve as most of the battles and challenges that the player must go through in the Kingdom Hearts games. They come in a large variety of types, categorized by being Pureblood or Emblem, both reproducing by taking more hearts and transforming them into other Heartless. Emblem Heartless were artificially created and are labeled with a heart symbol. Pureblood Heartless are black shadow creatures with bright yellow eyes. The Heartless obey those with the will to control them. However, in worlds too close to darkness, the Heartless get stronger and become uncontrollable. The Heartless invade worlds through corridors of darkness—unpredictable pathways that interlink the many worlds.
are creatures without hearts. They are leftovers "born" in the in-between realm, and exist as the body and soul of people who lost their hearts to darkness. As they lack hearts to possess light or darkness, they are nothing, according to the cosmology of the Kingdom Hearts universe, but still exist. Unlike Heartless, Nobodies are able to attack with definite planning. Dusk is the most common type of Nobody. Other Nobodies include Twilight Thorn, Creeper, and multiple kinds of Nobody ships. The members of Organization XIII, being the most powerful Nobodies because of the strong hearts they had when they were "whole", kept human form while weaker ones assumed malformed, inhuman forms. Most of the members of the Organization tend to control one type of Nobody, usually suited to their fighting style.


The is a key-shaped weapon with the power to combat darkness and free hearts from the Heartless. It also has the ability to lock and unlock all manner of doors and keyholes. The Keyblade chooses its wielder and will appear in that person's hand when summoned. Another important power is that it can lock the "heart" of a world, preventing it from being destroyed by Heartless. In Kingdom Hearts II, it can also unlock the pathways between worlds that were closed after the events of the first game. There are different Keyblades, possessed by various characters in the Kingdom Hearts series. There was, at one point, an artificial Keyblade made by the hearts of six of the Princesses of Heart, which was destroyed by Sora.


In the Kingdom Hearts universe, travel between worlds is normally not possible. Worlds are protected from extraterrestrial interference by an invisible shell. When the heart of a world is opened, the shell breaks apart, appearing as a meteor shower. Fragments from the wall are able to be constructed into "Gummi Ships", which serve as the main mode of travel between the various worlds. Gummi Ships are constructed from "Gummi blocks" and can be shaped into any structure; the origin of the Gummi Ship material allows for travel to other worlds. Gummi blocks can serve different functions, from navigation to offense and defense. Another method to travel between worlds are the "corridors of darkness"—interdimensional pathways which erode the user's heart with darkness.

Disney Castle

Disney Castle is the home to many classic Disney characters including Mickey, Donald and Goofy. It is featured in Kingdom Hearts and Kingdom Hearts II, though it is not accessible in the first game. Disney Castle is ruled by King Mickey, and his queen, Minnie Mouse. King Mickey has been absent for more than a year, having left without warning at the outset of the first wave of the Heartless. The world is protected by the Cornerstone of Light, a magical artifact that prevents darkness and the Heartless from entering the world. In Kingdom Hearts II Final Mix, a portal was added in this world. The portal leads to battle with Terra, a Keyblade-wielding knight that was featured in the unlockable trailers of Kingdom Hearts II.

Timeless River

Based on Steamboat Willie and other early Disney cartoons of that era, Timeless River is the "past" of Disney Castle, shortly before it was built. This world is accessed via the door Merlin created in the Hall of the Cornerstone chamber in Kingdom Hearts II. The world is portrayed in black and white. Nomura had intended it to be this way from the beginning of development. The world has many throwback effects including intentionally poor sound quality to imitate old cartoons. In this grayscale world, Sora's character model is simplified to the style of early cartoons, while Goofy and Donald Duck revert to their original designs from when they first appeared in Disney cartoons. Past versions of many Disney characters also appear including Pete and King Mickey, who Pete refers to as the "boat-boy king", a reference to his previous employment on Pete's steamboat. Timeless River also contains reenactments of some popular Mickey Mouse cartoons with locations such as Lilliput and Scene of the Fire.

Traverse Town

Traverse Town is an original world that is featured in Kingdom Hearts and Kingdom Hearts: Chain of Memories. It acts as a hub of sorts for Sora during his journey. Its architecture is reminiscent of the High Victorian style popular in England during the 19th century. It serves as a home for people who manage to escape the destruction of their own worlds by unknowingly drifting through "corridors of darkness".
Traverse Town is separated into three major districts. The First District is generally devoid of Heartless and houses various shops. The Second District contains the bell tower, a gizmo shop, and a small hotel. The world's keyhole is located in the fountain in this district. It also has the entrance to the Dalmatians' house. The Third District is a plaza that has been overrun with Heartless. This district leads to a guarded alcove where Merlin lives. It also is where Leon and his allies have their secret hideout. Aside from these areas, Traverse Town also has a sewer system where Leon practices his swordplay and a back alley behind the hotel.


Wonderland, based on Disney's thirteenth animated feature, Alice in Wonderland, is featured in Kingdom Hearts and Kingdom Hearts: Chain of Memories as one of the first worlds visited on Sora's journey. Its colorful inhabitants seem to speak in riddles and code. Wonderland is ruled by the despotic Queen of Hearts. The most dominant feature of Wonderland's entrance is the Bizarre Room. Many of the items here can be pushed flat into the walls and strange potions here can change Sora's size. The next area is the Queen's Castle where most of her courtly functions are carried out, a verdant hedge maze surrounds this area. Connected to the courtyard is the Lotus Forest, which leads to the Tea Party Garden. Throughout the world are hidden entrances to the Bizarre Room which have effects on the direction of its gravity.

Olympus Coliseum

Olympus Coliseum is featured in all three of the main Kingdom Hearts games. It is based on Disney's thirty-fifth animated feature, Hercules. The Coliseum is protected by Hercules and antagonized by Hades. Sora is able to train here and can compete in various tournaments. Olympus Coliseum is one of the smallest worlds in the first Kingdom Hearts, consisting of only the main entrance, a lobby and the coliseum itself. Because of the popularity of Hades, the Underworld was added to the sequel. In Kingdom Hearts II, Hades opens a portal to the Underworld near the exit of the Coliseum. The Underworld consists of its own "lobby" which is one boat ride across the river Styx to the Underdrome, the Underworld's equivalent to the Coliseum, the Lost Road to the Lock and the Cave of the Dead which leads to Hades' Chamber. All of these Underworld areas are infested with Heartless, as well as mysterious white puffs of smoke.

Deep Jungle

Deep Jungle is based on Disney's thirty-seventh animated feature, Tarzan, Along the way, he makes friends with each of the Wood's inhabitants, particularly Winnie the Pooh, with whom he plays a Christopher Robin-like role. 100 Acre Wood appeared again as a recreated world in Kingdom Hearts: Chain of Memories. In Kingdom Hearts II, Merlin moves to Hollow Bastion and takes the book with him. When Sora returns, he excitedly enters the book to check up on his friends. While he is greeting Pooh, he is suddenly ejected from the book as the Heartless try to steal it. During the battle to recover the book, it is damaged. Upon return, Sora finds Pooh with severe amnesia, unable to remember him. Sora then continues to find Torn Pages which slowly restore Pooh's memory. Shortly after fully repairing the book, Sora admits that he has to leave again but reassures Pooh that they will always be in each other's hearts.


Atlantica, based on Disney's animated feature, The Little Mermaid, Sora's legs become a dolphin's tail, Donald's legs become octopus tentacles and Goofy's body becomes that of a sea turtle.
Halloween Town's nexus is Guillotine Square, which has entrances to Dr. Finklestein's lab, Jack Skellington's house, and the Graveyard. The Graveyard has been overrun by Halloween-themed Heartless and leads to Moonlight Hill. A secret switch in Moonlight Hill allows access to Oogie Boogie's Manor. The back of the Graveyard also houses a forest called the Hinterlands. Here, several trees with strange symbols lead to other holiday-themed towns. The most prominent is Christmas Town, where Santa Claus lives and has his workshop. In the Final Mix version of Kingdom Hearts II, Sora's Halloween outfit is replaced by a Christmas outfit. It is a mixture of both Christmas and Halloween themes. Donald and Goofy also receive new Christmas outfits. Like the mask of his Halloween outfit, the Santa hat of his Christmas outfit changes when activating a Drive Form.


Neverland is a world featured in Kingdom Hearts and Kingdom Hearts: Chain of Memories. It is based on locations from Disney's fourteenth animated feature, Peter Pan and author J. M. Barrie's fictional island. Although the world is officially called "Neverland", there are no signs of the timeless island where people do not age. Instead, it primarily consists of Captain Hook's ship, the cabins and decks therein. Also accessible is a large clock tower which Wendy refers to as "Big Ben". Peter Pan sneaks aboard Captain Hook's ship in order to save his friend, Wendy, whom Captain Hook had captured, believing her to be a Princess of Heart.

Hollow Bastion

Hollow Bastion is an original world created for the Kingdom Hearts series which serves as the home to many Final Fantasy characters in the series. It is featured in all three of the main Kingdom Hearts games, and served as the hub world of Kingdom Hearts II, similar to how Traverse Town did in the first. A previously unknown entrance here leads to Ansem's Study and his computer room.
Hollow Bastion was once a peaceful kingdom called the Radiant Garden, ruled by Ansem the Wise. In his thirst for knowledge, he began studying the darkness in people's hearts, with six apprentices, including Xehanort. Ansem grew wary of the experiments and stopped them. Unknown to him, his apprentices continued his work, producing the Heartless from hearts that were overwhelmed by darkness. A chain of events led to Ansem the Wise being banished, Xehanort splitting into two beings, and the world overwhelmed by darkness. Empty, the castle was later adopted by Maleficent as a headquarters.

Space Paranoids

Space Paranoids is a world inspired by the 1982 live-action science fiction cult film, Tron. Sora, Donald, and Goofy get immersed into a computer world to find clues regarding the past of Hollow Bastion and a caption they found behind Xehanort's portrait in Ansem's Study saying Door To Darkness a.k.a. D.T.D, fighting alongside Tron to defeat the evil MCP and its equally villainous commander, Sark. There is also a Light Cycle mini-game which strongly deviates from the original game. Nomura included this mini-game because he knew people associated the Light Cycles with Tron. The term Space Paranoids comes from one of the games Kevin Flynn created in Tron. Tron can join Sora, Donald and Goofy when they enter into the system. The overall feel of the world was meant to emulate an old computer game. Nomura got the idea to include this world after seeing a Disney employee making a Tron game. Because it was so different from the other worlds, he hoped that it would be enjoyable to players. It is also the home of Chernabog, the huge winged demon from the Fantasia segment "Night on Bald Mountain". Director Tetsuya Nomura has called it the "Nobody" of worlds. The World Terminus is also located here, which gives the Heartless access to the corridors of darkness leading to other worlds.

Castle Oblivion

is a mysterious fortress featured in Kingdom Hearts: Chain of Memories and serves as the main setting of the game. The castle is decorated with a rose motif and has twenty five levels; thirteen floors and twelve basements. The lord of the castle is Marluxia, a member of Organization XIII. This castle is one of the few worlds known to be found in neither the realm of light or the realm of darkness, but is instead found on a plane somewhere in between the two realms. In the balance between light and darkness within this in-between realm, however, Castle Oblivion is more closely tied to the realm of darkness than the realm of light.

Twilight Town

Twilight Town was introduced in Kingdom Hearts: Chain of Memories, in which Sora explored the memories of the other side of his heart. In Kingdom Hearts II, it is a major part in the story where Hayner, Pence, and Olette reside. DiZ created a simulation of the town and its people to keep Roxas trapped and away from Organization XIII until Sora's restoration was complete. Roxas is playable only in this world.
Twilight Town is split into two parts, the shopping district and the residential district, with a train and underground tunnel system that connects the two. There are plenty of stores here, including an accessory shop, as well as lots of houses lined up. Within the world of Twilight Town is also the Tower, the residence of Yen Sid and Flora, Fauna, and Merryweather. Both Twilight Town and Yen Sid's Tower are other worlds to be found between light and darkness. Twilight Town holds the perfect balance between the two realms, while Yen Sid's Tower is more closely tied to the realm of light than any of the known worlds on this in between plane.

Beast's Castle

Beast's Castle is an ornate chateau based on the castle of Disney's thirtieth animated feature, Beauty and the Beast. It is featured in Kingdom Hearts II as one of the first worlds visited on Sora's journey. Despite its large size, the castle is inhabited only by the Beast himself, Belle and the servants who have been turned into objects suited to their names, jobs, and personalities by an enchantress's spell.

The Land of Dragons

The Land of Dragons is an imperial kingdom, based on ancient China, featured in Kingdom Hearts II and based on Disney's thirty-sixth animated feature, Mulan. The Land of Dragons has an oriental atmosphere, characterized by harmony with nature. Nomura chose it for its unique atmosphere, and had already wanted to use it for while. The Encampment is the center of military activity in the area. The Checkpoint leads to both the Imperial City and a mountain village. The summit of the snow-capped mountain is the entryway for invading armies.

Pride Land

Pride Land is a savanna world based on Disney's animated feature, The Lion King. It is featured in Kingdom Hearts II. The in-game graphic for the name displays the name as "Pride Land", as did the same graphic in the Kingdom Hearts II official strategy guide. as well as in content from the guide. Port Royal, named after the eponymous town in real life, is a well-defended port city in the Caribbean. The mystical island where the Aztec treasure is kept, Isla de Muerta, cannot be found except by those who already know its location.

The World That Never Was

, introduced in Kingdom Hearts II, is home to Organization XIII, and is situated next to the realm of darkness in an in-between realm. It also houses the headquarters to Organization XIII, the Castle That Never Was, which is portrayed as a huge white castle decorated with the emblem of the Nobodies, in addition to Dark City, a deserted metropolis of skyscrapers.
The most distinct feature of this world is its seemingly eternal night, with the large, heart-shaped moon, Kingdom Hearts, continually shining in the sky. Kingdom Hearts was designed to appear as the heart-shaped moon from the cover of the first Kingdom Hearts game. When the scenario writer, Kazushige Nojima, created the scenario, he described it as a moon floating in the World That Never Was. Upon reading that, Nomura thought of using the visuals from the first game to create a connection. As of December of 2006, the Kingdom Hearts series has shipped over 10 million copies worldwide, with 2.0 million copies in PAL regions, 3.0 million copies in Japan, and 5.6 million copies in North America. The graphics of the games have received numerous praise. IGN rated the graphics a 9/10 and stated that the "worlds look very much like their filmed counterparts." Japanese gaming site, also praised the look of the worlds. GameSpot referred to the worlds as "wonderfully rich familiar environments", and GamePro described the worlds as "spot-on with the original movies."
heartless in Chinese: 王國之心世界列表

Synonyms, Antonyms and Related Words

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