Castle That Never Was
The Castle That Never Was is a location found in Kingdom Hearts II, Kingdom Hearts 358/2 Days, and Kingdom Hearts 3D: Dream Drop Distance. This grand castle was the headquarters of Organization XIII and floats in place above The World That Never Was. The Dark City rests below. Playable characters in the area are Sora and Riku (Riku is only playable in the Kingdom Hearts world connected to the Castle). Of the several boss Nobodies in the game, the only ones you can fight in the Castle That Never Was are Xigbar, Luxord, Saïx, and Xemnas.
 Settings and Areas
 Kingdom Hearts II
 Nothing's Call
Nothing's Call (虚無への誘い Kyomu e no Sasoi , lit. "Invitation to Nothingness") is the lowest known area of the Castle That Never Was, acting as a sort of "basement". It appears to be the only entrance into the castle for people who are not members of the Organization. Sora, Donald, Goofy, and King Mickey enter the castle here. While Sora is calling out for Kairi, King Mickey silences him, reminding him that they are in the stronghold of the enemy. He rushes off to find Ansem the Wise. They are soon attacked by Nobodies but make it to the next area.
It is also here where Roxas fights Saïx when leaving the Organization in Kingdom Hearts 358/2 Days.
 Soundless Prison
The castle has a number of dungeons like the Soundless Prison (無音の牢獄 Muon no Rōgoku ) somewhere in the lower sections of the castle. Here, Kairi and Pluto are imprisoned in one of the cells. Kairi is briefly visited by Saïx who explains to her that she will be the bait used to make Sora slay more Heartless in the plan to complete Kingdom Hearts. However, Naminé appears through a portal in the cell and helps Kairi and Pluto escape. Strangely, the bars of Kairi's cell appear to be far enough apart that she could have easily escaped on her own.
This area is not accessible in Kingdom Hearts II, and is only for storyline purposes.
 Crooked Ascension
Crooked Ascension (歪みを貫く柱 Yugami no Tsuranuku Hashira , lit. "Distortion-Bridging Pillar") is an area of the Castle That Never Was that seems to be a giant elevator that ascends and descends without actually appearing to do anything. While inside, Sora, Donald, Goofy and Riku may be attacked by either Samurai or Dragoon Nobodies if going down to Nothing's Call or up to Twilight's View, respectively.
 Twilight's View
Twilight's View (黄昏から望む場所 Tasogare kara Nozomu Basho , lit. "Place Viewed from Twilight") is a stairway leading to the next floor of the castle. Sora can meet a Moogle here and synthesize new items. According to a flashback in Kingdom Hearts II Final Mix, occurring at some point before Kingdom Hearts 358/2 Days, Zexion and Xigbar discuss Xemnas's frequent visits to the Chamber of Repose and the discovery of Castle Oblivion here.
 Hall of Empty Melodies
Hall of Empty Melodies (虚ろなる旋律の空間 Utsuro-naru Senritsu no Kūkan , lit. "Space of Empty Melodies") is a large room in the Castle That Never Was, located in The World That Never Was. This room acts as a combat training station for the members of Organization XIII as well as lesser nobodies. A large platform makes up the room with large walls facing either side of it. Several primary events happen here in the final battle involving Sora, his companions and the surviving members of Organization XIII. Here, Sora, Donald and Goofy encounter Saïx, who informs them that due to the completion of Kingdom Hearts, the Organization no longer needs them. Kairi then appears on an overhead balcony and leaps down with Riku, in the form of Ansem, Seeker of Darkness, to help Sora. At this time, Maleficent and Pete also arrive in the castle.
Xigbar eliminates all of the Heartless so he can take on Sora himself, but the ensuing battle culminates in Xigbar's death. Sora, Donald and Goofy head off to the upper level of the room where Sora has an emotional reunion with Kairi and Riku. Sniper and Assassin Nobodies appear during navigation through the room once it is reentered after this event.
 Naught's Skyway
Naught's Skyway (虚空を辿る道 Kokū o Tadoru Michi , lit. "Road Following Empty Space") is a small outside path in a high section of the castle. This is where Mickey finds DiZ, who is revealed to be Ansem the Wise, being attacked by Nobodies. After they are defeated, the two walk off with Ansem's encoding machine. Sora and his companions pass through here in order to find King Mickey and Ansem the Wise.
 Proof of Existence
Proof of Existence (存在の証 Sonzai no Akashi ) is a room in the Castle That Never Was. Sora, Donald, and Goofy pass through here after reuniting with Kairi and Riku. Kairi felt uncomfortable in the room, saying it felt like a graveyard. The passage through the room was blocked, and Sora was forced to defeat Luxord and Saïx by entering their portals before they could pass through.
The room was characterized with panels on the floor representing the members of Organization XIII (excluding Xemnas and Xion), indicating their title, weapon, and rank by going from left to right. The panels of the Organization members who had died were colored red and damaged. By the time Sora and his friends arrived, most of them were in this state, with only three panels left undamaged; those of Luxord, Saïx, and Roxas. Zexion's panel was so damaged it was unable to show his weapon. After Roxas left the Organization his panel was most likely destroyed, but as Roxas lives on in Sora, his panel is still blue.
The panels seem to update themselves should the member of the Organization they represent gain a new weapon. Roxas didn't have Oathkeeper and Oblivion (which are the Keyblades pictured on his panel) during his time in the Organization; he only wielded the Kingdom Key.
 Havoc's Divide
Havoc's Divide (混沌の狭間 Konton no Hazama , lit. "Ravine of Chaos") is an area favored by Luxord. The area is sloped and leads to a steep drop downwards. Here, Riku reveals DiZ is actually Ansem the Wise. Luxord appears and traps Riku, Kairi, Donald and Goofy in his cards and challenges Sora to a duel. After a close fight, Sora defeats Luxord who fades into darkness, freeing Sora's friends from Luxord's cards.
 Addled Impasse
Addled Impasse (惑わしの空間 Madowashi no Kūkan , lit. "Bewildered Space") is a large chambe with a clear view of the Kingdom Hearts moon. This area appears to be where Saïx spends a large amount of time, due to his presence, and the fact that when Sora and his companions arrive, they see Saïx looking up at Kingdom Hearts (which relates to his moon element). Here, Sora and company battle Saïx and emerge victorious. Saïx is fatally wounded, and fades into darkness while asking Kingdom Hearts where his heart is. Riku also reveals Roxas is actually Sora's Nobody after the battle.
 Naught's Approach
Naught's Approach (虚空を目指す道 Kokū o Mezasu Michi , lit. "Road Aiming for Empty Space") is an exterior passage which leads to Xemnas's tower. Here, Kairi and Naminé escape from the prison cells of the castle and are confronted by Saïx on the stairs, but are saved by Riku. Later, Ansem the Wise and King Mickey set up Ansem's machine so he can digitally absorb Kingdom Hearts. Sora, Riku, Kairi, Donald and Goofy make their way up to the area after viewing them from Havoc's Divide. Ansem realizes the machine cannot contain Kingdom Hearts and monologues what a fool he is. Sora and his friends arrive, as does Xemnas who has a "heart-to-heart" with his former teacher. Ansem tells Xemnas his plans will fall, and apologizes to Roxas and the King before being engulfed by his exploding machine. The explosion damages Kingdom Hearts and restores Riku to his normal body.
 Ruin and Creation's Passage
Ruin and Creation's Passage (破壊と創造の回廊 Hakai to Sōzō no Kairō ) is the biggest area in the castle with platforms floating in the air. Invisible paths can be used to reach each platform and eventually navigate to the other side. Sora, Riku, Kairi, Donald, Goofy and King Mickey make their way across, battling Nobodies on the way. Kairi spots endless Heartless streaming in through the windows towards them. Maleficent and Pete appear and send the group to take down Xemnas, Maleficent reminding Sora and King Mickey that the castle will be hers. Sora tries to help them, but King Mickey dissuades him.
 Altar of Naught
The Altar of Naught (虚空の祭壇 Kokū no Saidan , lit. "Altar of Empty Space") is a giant tower that is high above the rest of the castle. Xemnas often comes here to speak to Kingdom Hearts. Sora, Riku, Kairi, Donald, Goofy, and King Mickey arrive to see Xemnas lamenting over how his plans have failed, asking the group why they hate the darkness, and to find more hearts. They refuse and they converse about how Xemnas cannot show emotions. Xemnas battles Sora but is defeated. Xemnas fuses with Kingdom Hearts and leads the group into a battle against him. He is defeated again and apparently fades into darkness. Trapped in the world, the group seem helpless, until Naminé opens a portal to Destiny Islands. Naminé and Roxas join with Sora and Kairi at long last. Everyone passes through except Sora and Riku who end up trapped when a giant Nobody dragon flies in and slams into the side of the tower. Sora and Riku slide down the tower which tilts sideways. Riku spots an odd aircraft and hops onto it, Sora following. They fly after the dragon as the tower collapses.
 Memory's Contortion
Memory's Contortion (記憶の歪み Kioku no Yugami ) is a strange, wavering illusion of the Memory's Skyscraper that Xemnas draws Sora into to battle. This area was for battle purposes only and cannot be visited after defeating Xemnas.
 Where Nothing Gathers
This room, known to Organization members as the Round Room (円卓 Entaku , lit. "Round table") or Where Nothing Gathers (虚無が集う場所 Kyomu ga Tsudou Basho ) , and inaccessible by any means other than by corridors of darkness, is a circular room containing throne-like chairs ranging in height, where the Nobodies of Organization XIII can gather and discuss developments and for Xemnas to give out orders. There are thirteen throne-like chairs that are rather tall in height, each occupied by a member of the Organization.
Nomura has stated in an interview that the height of each throne is just a gameplay mechanic.
The seats are arranged in a circle with Xemnas at the prominent seat. At Xemnas's left are the odd numbered members, and to his right are the even numbered members, increasing in numerical value up until number 13, Roxas's seat, which is across from Xemnas's. The "fourteenth member", Xion, has no throne as she was neither a true member nor even a real Nobody, but a replica, meant to fuse with Roxas, thus the reason for the group's name remaining as "Organization XIII".
In a trailer for Kingdom Hearts 3D: Dream Drop Distance, Riku and Mickey Mouse battle Ansem and Xemnas in Where Nothing Gathers while attempting to reach Sora, who has apparently been captured by Master Xehanort. Master Xehanort himself sits in Xemnas's throne while watching the struggle.
 Kingdom Hearts 358/2 Days
 The Grey Area
The Grey Area (闇と光を紡ぐ庭 Yami to Hikari o Tsumugu Niwa , lit. "The Garden that Interweaves Darkness and Light") is a room in the castle that serves as a lounge for the Organization's members, as well as the place where the members receive their mission briefings from Saïx. The room is wedge shaped with one wall made entirely out of a giant window, out of which Kingdom Hearts can be seen floating in the distance. The room has couches and tables spread around it, and Organization members are often seen lounging about between missions. There is also a Moogle here, dressed in the Organization coat, that allows Roxas to synthesize panels and access a shop that uses heart points as currency.
 Computer Room
In Kingdom Hearts 358/2 Days, it has been revealed that the castle has a room with a computer that seems to contain information on all the Organization projects including the Replica Program and Castle Oblivion. In the Kingdom Hearts 358/2 Days novel, this room is said to be Saïx's study room.
In Kingdom Hearts 358/2 Days, it was revealed that the Castle contained a library filled with literature on various subjects. One book the player's attention is drawn to is one seen being read by Axel, titled "The Truth about Naminé," composed by Vexen. This one, unvoiced cutscene in Kingdom Hearts 358/2 Days has been the library's only appearance.
In the Kingdom Hearts 358/2 Days novel, this room is said to be in Castle Oblivion, and was Vexen's research room.
Each of the members of the Organization have individual bedrooms in the castle. The rooms are white with metal-like walls, a single bed with the headboard in the shape of the Nobodies' symbol and a window showing the heart-shaped moon of Kingdom Hearts.
 Kingdom Hearts 3D: Dream Drop Distance
 Delusive Beginning
Delusive Beginning (幻想のはじまり Gensō no Hajimari ) lays near the bottom of the Castle that Never Was, just inside the large spinning ring. It is comprised of four hallways connecting to a circular central chamber, two connecting at the ground floor, two high above. In the central chamber rests an energy beam housed in an impenetrable shield that damages enemies of the Organization. It must be destroyed by entering the shield through a portal and using a Reality Shift on it. This will cease its attack, destroy the shield, and create a walkway to the upper levels.
 Walk of Illusions
The Walk of Illusions (幻惑の歩廊 Genwaku no Horō ) is a long, straight bridge leading from the outer edge of the castle to the castle itself, across the open area beneath it. The large spinning ring and several support beams can be seen from the walk.
 Fact within Fiction
Fact within Fiction (虚実を紡ぐ回廊 Kyojitsu o Tsumugu Kairō ) is a large, open area level with the top of the castle's spinning ring and in view of the mechanism that spins it. It consists of several high-walled passages and thick metal pipes. Along one passage, beams of purple energy move back and forth that damage anyone who crosses them. Near the end of the area is a large circular platform where many enemies spawn. After a flight of stairs, there is a lift that rises seemingly magically to higher floors.
 Verge of Chaos
The Verge of Chaos (混沌を見下ろす場所 Konton o Miorosu Basho ) is primarily a large, slightly curved balcony. The only way out of it is to take the elevator back to the lower levels, or to use Flowmotion on the massive pipes attached to the walls. Several other, smaller balconies sit on the wall with no way on or off but through Flowmotion. Eventually up the wall, one reaches another small balcony attached to a larger one by a staircase. A narrow bridge off this area connects to the multi-turreted tower on the side of the castle, that can be traversed by using Flowmotion on a large pipe. The roof of this tower is also considered a part of the Verge of Chaos.
 Sanctum of Time
The Sanctum of Time (時の祭壇 Toki no Saidan ) is an area visited only during the final battle with Young Xehanort. After revealing his ability to move even within a Stopza spell cast by Mickey, Young Xehanort transports Riku and himself to the Sanctum of Time in a similar fashion to how Ansem, Seeker of Darkness transported Riku to the facsimile of Kingdom Hearts in the final battle of Kingdom Hearts: Chain of Memories and Kingdom Hearts: Re:Chain of Memories. The battlefield is a large circular area with several cogs and clockwork devices integrated below the floor as well as atop pillars on either side of the battlefield, and it is surrounded by six different colored hourglasses. The area as a whole resembles a fractured ring dial. Peculiarly, at certain times during battle, the poles sticking out of the ground cannot have Flowmotion used on them.
 Kingdom Hearts II