Kingdom Hearts 3 game leaks weeks before January 2019 release date

Square Enix is preparing to release Kingdom Hearts 3 late next month, but some people will already be familiar with (parts of) the game. For reasons that aren't publicly known, the game has leaked six weeks ahead of its planned release date. Kingdom Hearts 3 director Tetsuya Nomura confirmed the leak, but also offered reassurance to players waiting for the official release.

The leaked game appeared for sale online via a Facebook user going by the name Broderick Jackson, according to Kotaku. The pirated copy was reportedly being sold for $100 over the weekend, though the pirate wouldn't reveal how they got a hold of the game so many weeks before release. It's unclear how extensively the leaked game has circulated.

The leak was confirmed by Kingdom Hearts 3 director Tetsuya Nomura, who released a statement (above) on the breach. According to Nomura, the game's team knows how the illicit copy was acquired, though it hasn't publicly disclosed that detail.

The good news for faithful fans — and bad news for people who may have paid for the pirated copy — is that it's an incomplete release. Neither the Kingdom Hearts 3 epilogue nor secret movie were included with the pirated release. These two components are described as the game's "biggest spoilers," so players shouldn't worry about having the entire game ruined if they happen across a video.

Despite that, the team has asked game fans to avoid sharing videos made with the leaked game. "We want everyone to be able to equally experience the full game after its release, so we ask for your continued support on this matter," Nomura said.

Kingdom Hearts 3 will officially be released on January 25, 2019.