- At the end of the prologue, Roxas finds out that he's actually the Nobody of another person — Sora. Depending on your interpretation, either he reluctantly agrees to merge with Sora to restore Sora's memories and self, essentially sacrificing himself, or simply has no choice in the matter.
Roxas: I guess my summer vacation... is over.
Roxas: It's just, I think— I've been running away from the question I really wanna ask: What's gonna happen to me now? Just tell me that. Nothing else really matters anymore.
- Even before that, the events of Day 6 are heartbreaking. Roxas has had to deal with increasing weirdness and danger over the previous few days, fighting to return to the normality of his daily life. On Day 6, he wakes to find that his friends are effectively ghosts that he can no longer interact with, that his town is deserted, and that his head is flooding with strange and unwelcoming memories. As he speaks to Namine it's clear that it's all too much for him:
- Sora begging to Saïx on his hands and knees to see Kairi. Even more powerful with Japanese cultural connotation, as he is doing a bow known as Dogeza (土下座), which is reserved for when you've really fucked up, because by doing that act you literally saying you are worth nothing and purposefully and willingly putting shame and humiliation on yourself. Ain't Too Proud to Beg indeed.
- Goofy apparently dying in Hollow Bastion. Sure, he gets better like one cutscene later, but the loss comes completely out of nowhere. The way Mickey says "Goofy...?" is what really sells the scene. Also seeing Donald get legitimately angry and not Played for Laughs really hits anyone who dealt with a similar, sudden loss and reacted the same way.
- Thanks to Final Mix, the Roxas boss fight. The true kicker is that a remix of Roxas's theme (titled "The Other Promise") is playing in the background, making the fight a really bittersweet one. Watch it here.
- "Part of Your World" can bring a few tears to an eye, especially since anyone who grew up watching The Little Mermaid would enjoy being able to perform the song again, and especially since it's Ariel's signature song.
- The aftermath of the MCP battle, which is also a Heartwarming moment. After giving everyone a goodbye hug as a promise of meeting again, Tron just jumps into the pit where the MCP once stood, much to the horror of his friends. Sure he turns out okay a few minutes later, the scene is still very heartbreaking. The release of TRON: Legacy five years later, and then Kingdom Hearts 3D: Dream Drop Distance, over a year after that, made the scene even more unbearable to watch.
- Especially when taken to account that both times Sora saw Tron for the last time in both Space Paranoids and The Grid, Tron was falling into a pit. The first time, he willingly jumped to free the computer from Organization XIII's data corruption and restore the town, which confused his friends. The second time? Tron was murdered by Clu in a fit of rage and jealousy right after Sora freed him.
- The manga adaptation combines this with both Nightmare Fuel and Too Soon by making Tron a Distressed Dude, and allowing him to be bound to a wall and tortured, and then later being grabbed by a giant Sark, who tries to painfully crush him.
- The memories re-uploading into Sora's head during the prologue. All the most powerful parts of the first game, clipped together with a slow piano melody.
- Axel's death scene. Made even worse in the original unedited Japanese version, where he functionally explodes himself in order to wipe out the Nobodies trying to attack Sora.
- Even more saddening when you realize how exhausted he is when helping Sora. Notice the sluggish movements, panting and slouching as he forces himself to fight. Talk about loyalty. He actually gives his life to protect the complete being of his best friend just because he cared that much. Also the fact that the way he's trying to play off his death is pretty much like him saying, "Hey, stuff happens."
- In the manga the reason he seems so exhausted is explained. And it just makes the whole scenario even sadder. Axel had gone back to the Castle That Never Was in an attempt to rescue Kairi but was caught by Saïx. The two fight and Axel thinks he's won. He turns to ask Kairi if she's okay when Saïx gets a good swing at his ribs. Axel just manages to bail and while he's in The Realm Between he's struggling to prevent himself from fading. Then he hears Sora and Co. on their way to the castle and decides to go help him, since he knows he doesn't have the strength to do anything else. Right before he does his final attack he even says, "Watch this... Roxas!"
- It gets better, or worse, depending on how you view these things. Watch the original, unedited scene; there are still flames flickering all over him as he fades. And the last little spark, as he fades away completely? It's right where his heart would be.
- Since both Roxas and Xion are a part of Sora, they were forced to watch their best friend sacrifice himself, and both of them couldn't do anything about it. The reason you see Roxas breaking off from Sora afterwards is because he was enraged and saddened at Axel's death. The following scene becomes even more sad if you're using Bond of Flame while Roxas attacks...
- And the sorrowful death scenes kept on coming. Saix dragged his half-dead body to Kingdom Hearts and begged for his heart. The kicker? He had a heart the whole time.
- The other reveals in 3D make it even worse: not only did Xemnas conceal the aforementioned fact about Saix's heart, but his true intention the whole time was to supplant Saix's heart with the one belonging to sociopathic monster Master Xehanort. By the time II rolls around, he's pretty much succeeded, and the Secret Reports in 358/2 Days indicate Saix never had a clue what was going on.
- And Ansem, yes, the real Ansem's death scene was also very heartbreaking, particularly due to his monologue of regret that came before it.
- Roxas suddenly learning that he's the Tomato in the Mirror. "Sora... You're lucky. Looks like my summer vacation ...is over."
- Now let's look back from here, Roxas spent 358 days before arriving at the fake Twilight Town, starting from when he was "born" to when he actually got there. Then he spent 7 days in the fake Twilight Town with the friends he never had, making it 365 days. 365 days = 1 year. Considering Roxas being sucked back into Sora on day 7, Roxas "died" on his birthday.
- But there are 359 days in 358/2, the one where you fight Riku. He does die a day after without even knowing that it was.
- The manga adds one more heartbreaking line: "It was real to me..."
- The manga is actually more heartbreaking than the game. Roxas was brought to tears over the fact that he had to give his existence to wake Sora up. After Diz disappears and Roxas meets the sleeping Sora, Roxas began reflecting on his life and how Sora's memories caused him to doubt his existence. He then remembers the days he spent in the virtual Twilight Town before he notices his hand fading away. He then looks back at Sora and, with a sorrowful smile, tells him how lucky he is and that his own summer vacation was over before fading away.
- Roxas crying, through Sora, over Hayner, Pence, and Olette, the friends he never actually had.
- Not to mention the following scene when Sora, Donald, and Goofy are on the train to the Mysterious Tower. Sora looks out the window of the train. He then looks at the munny pouch and the piece of the trophy that used to belong to Roxas and remarks that he feels sad. Both scenes have the somber and nostalgic "Friends in My Heart" playing in the background.
- And because it wasn't enough of a Tear Jerker the first time around in Final Fantasy X, the ending credits has to go and show Auron watching the residents of Olympus Colosseum celebrate and dissipating, unnoticed, back into pyreflies.
- When Auron says "Perhaps... It's time I make my own story." Considering his role in FFX in regards to two generations of heroes and Auron's fate both times...
- The Proof of Existence room in the Castle That Never Was. It's pretty much a Graveyard for the Organization, the portals to their personal rooms looking like tombstones and marked with symbols of their weapons. It's a room they need because Nobodies don't leave corpses behind — they need that room to mark to others that they did exist, even if they're no longer in existence.
- It goes a little deeper than that. Consider this for a second: How do we, in this world, prove the existence of someone who no longer exists? We raise a grave for them.
- The battles with Saix and Luxord are in their personal rooms, which as mentioned you get to via the Proof of Existence. You're essentially challenging and killing them in their own graves.
- Not to mention all the cracked and broken markers to show how many members have fallen by that point, and how few are left.
- And you realize after 358/2 Days: who's the one member who has no Proof of Existence at all? The one member who was never considered a member and is forgotten barely a day after she died? The series really drives home the idea that in the eyes of the Organization, Xion never really existed in the first place.
- The prologue in its entirety, on second and subsequent playthroughs, especially after playing 358/2 Days. Knowing the real reason Axel is trying to stop Roxas, and what's going to happen to both of them... pass the Kleenex.
- Naminé's parting words to Roxas - "Roxas! We will meet again. And then we can talk about everything. I may not know it's you, and you may not know it's me. But we will meet again. Someday soon. I promise!" And at the very end of the game, they do, smiling at each other through Sora and Kairi.
- The ending often works tears, seeing the three friends finally brought home after all those years of separation.
Sora: W-we're back.
Kairi: [holding out her hand] You're home.
- Especially when one takes into account the original Japanese dialogue of that scene, which is literally translated exactly as above, but is culturally powerful.
- Watching Mufasa die AGAIN, complete with Simba's gut-wrenching Big "NO!" taken straight out of the original film, only this time in full 3-D. Thanks, Disney, it's not like that wasn't traumatizing enough the first time around.
- Final Mix+, go watch the dream meeting of Roxas and Axel (warning: HEAVY spoilers). See them say "See you later". Cry when you realize they're just trying to cheer each other up, since Axel is going to disappear into absolute nothingness, and Roxas will be subsumed by Sora's personality.
- Not helping matters is when you see the scene in a better quality, you'll notice Axel is crying.
- The manga makes it even worse. You just see something spill to the ground and Axel comments, "Geez, looks like the ice cream's melting." Then in the next panel it shows his face and that he's started to cry. "Of course, it's still as salty as ever." In the game he gets one tear just as he says goodbye. Here he's crying buckets.
- When Sora finds Riku, and the way he grabs his hand and just breaks down and all he can say is "I FOUND you..." To see Sora, who's normally such an optimistic character, just break down can really get to you.
- Gets even worse when you think for a minute and realize why he reacts like that: The last time he saw Riku, he was being locked in the realm of darkness and trapped there. The players know that Riku's escaped the realm and is all right, from playing through his story in Chain of Memories, but Sora sure didn't. Up until that point, for all Sora knew, his best friend could very well be dead, and he is relieved to see him alive and safe.
- Luxord's death and his last line "How COULD you, Roxas?!" Made more upsetting after playing 358/2 Days, when he seemed to actually somewhat like Roxas, so it's obvious he feels very, very betrayed.
- When Sora first goes back to the 100 Acre Wood, everything's all fine and dandy at first, then the Heartless come and poor Pooh Bear forgets Piglet.
- Also when Sora enters the book for the first time and is forcibly ejected out before saying hello. Then discovering that the book has been torn again.
- The last scene on Starry Hill. Pooh turns to Sora and admits he's been "trying to think of a way to make you not leave." That in and of itself is a sad line, but what made the waterworks flow was Pooh's next line:
Pooh: Sora, if I go looking for you, would I find you?
- Every time Pooh addresses Sora as "Somebody-I-Don't-Know" you can visibly see how heartbroken Sora is, but true to form, whenever Pooh remembers one of his other friends, Sora perks up for them and is excited, genuinely excited, that Pooh remembered them instead.
- The end of the last Halloween Town episode, when it starts to snow and Sora sees himself and Kairi dancing.
- There's a subtle one in Hollow Bastion. Right after the awesomeness that is The Battle of 1000 Heartless, Sora leans against a wall to catch his breath. Just seeing this generally upbeat kid so exhausted (let's face it, you never even see him winded even after crazy boss battles before).
- Goofy being hit with debris from an explosion. The reason Mickey's reaction is such a Moment of Awesome is because many people pretty much wanted to say the same thing. And they would pay for this...
- Donald's heartbroken cry of rage as he rushes off to avenge his best friend also applies.
- In Final Mix, there's a scene where Sora, Donald, and Goofy fight against Terra's Lingering Will. The fact that it's still there after all these years, waiting, and the only thing it seems to have left is its rage and hatred towards Xehanort is heartbreaking after playing Birth by Sleep.
- One worse. Terra's got nothing left but hate and rage. In game, it's against Xehanort, but after Birth by Sleep, he's angry but all he can think about is how hard he messed up, him slaying his teacher/father figure, and how hard he let down his friends. Imagine having to deal with those thoughts and regrets for over a decade.
- DiZ's apparent death is made even sadder with the actual death of his English-language voice actor nearly a decade later.
- Beast getting his treasured rose stolen by Xaldin, and the negative impact the theft has. Beast is almost driven across the Despair Event Horizon, and tells Belle to leave the castle since without that rose, he'll always be a beast, since his hopes and dreams are tied to it. At least Sora was able to snap him out of his despair and lead to it being retrieved... with Belle's help, no less.
- This touched-up version of the Roxas fight makes the already heartbreaking sequence even sadder, especially when you've played/watched through 358/2 Days. Just listen to Roxas at 6:40 when he activates his Desperation Move.
"I want my life back!"
- The reveal about hearts in 3D - that any conscious being can develop one over time by bonding and caring for others - makes everything about Organization XIII (except for Xemnas and Xigbar) even sadder. All of their crimes, manipulations, and plotting, just for the chance to feel human again, were completely redundant.
- Roxas, absolutely losing it when he learns that he's not real, and he never had any real friends. For somebody who is supposed to be a Nobody, he sure took it rather hard...
- Sora, Donald and Goofy's reactions to the burnt village in the Land of Dragons, but Goofy's heartbroken expression is especially sad.
- Demyx's Alas, Poor Villain moment in the manga. He doesn't want to fight Sora in the first place, mainly because he still considers him Roxas one way or another, and only does so when the titular hero pushes him too far. When he is finally defeated, he doesn't stop at letting out his death scream from the game, as he goes on to look at Sora and say "I don't want to fade... Roxas...!" with tears in his eyes. Sora is, understandably, rather upset by this and can't help but wonder whether Nobodies really don't have hearts.
- The manga? Forget that! In the game Demyx is sent to his own death by either Xemnas or Saix: he does say that "we do too have Hearts." As revealed in Dream Drop Distance, Xemnas is lying to the Organization about having no hearts — they can regrow one. And Demyx works it out - so he's sent to be killed as he's too much of a risk to Xehanort's ultimate plan to remain alive.
- Axel's death is arguably worse in the manga, as it's preceded with him actually going back to try rescue Kairi only to take a giant cut right through his side by Saïx's claymore. Axel escapes the dungeon clutching at his wounds and promising to come back for Kairi. In the end, he never does because he makes his Heroic Sacrifice for Sora instead.
- Mickey is genuinely upset that he can't tell Sora what happened to Riku and the look on his face is heartbreaking. Mickey should never look that sad.