Square Enix had to laboriously recreate the original Kingdom hearts for the upcoming 1.5 HD ReMIX release, as it had lost the original assets.
Director Tetsuya Nomura revealed the loss in a Square Enix-produced E3 video.
“Kingdom Hearts was created a long, long time ago. The original data was missing already,” he said, as transcribed by Polygon.
“It was lost so we had to research, to dig out the original game and recreate everything for HD. It was not that easy.”
No doubt Square Enix were able to pull the assets from a retail copy of Kingdom Hearts, much as homebrew coders often do, but this would have been far less efficient than working from the original “masters”, which would likely have compressed and otherwise processed during development.
Kingdom Hearts HD 1.5 ReMIX is due in September on PlayStation 3. It bundles up the first Kingdom Hearts and a couple of other games and story materials which take place chronologically before Kingdom Hearts 2. A similar bundle for the second entry is expected, especially as Kingdom Hearts 3 is on the way to PlayStation 4 and Xbox One at long last.