NiGHTS: Journey of Dreams is the semi-sequel, semi-remake to NiGHTS: Into Dreams on the Sega Saturn in 1996. It shares some of the basic gameplay elements with the original NiGHTS, with some key additions. Players are given the option to choose between one of two characters: a young boy named Will, or a young girl named Helen.
Each level starts off in full, free-roaming 3D. Like the original NiGHTS, Will and Helen have the ability to "Dualize", which will transform them in to the form of the flying jester, NiGHTS. As NiGHTS, the perspective of the game shifts from 3D to side-scrolling 2.5D on a looping, circular track. As NiGHTS, a timer begins to count down. If the timer reaches zero, the player will fail the given challenge and will be asked if they would like to try again.
Unlike the singular goal in the original NiGHTS, there are five varying mission types in Journey of Dreams, three of which being the most common: Chase, Link, and Boss. Chase missions most closely replicate the gameplay of the original Sega Saturn game, where players are tasked with chasing down a giant bird as NiGHTS, stealing a key it holds, and using that key to unlock the cage blocking the way to the next segment of level. Once three prisons have been unlocked, the player then faces off against a Boss. Link Missions involve NiGHTS flying behind a creature called an Octopaw, who creates rings in the sky. For every ring NiGHTS flies through, his Link counter goes up. The player has five tries to create the highest Link possible. Boss Missions pit the player against an even harder version of the boss they face at the end of a Chase mission.
Also included is the ability to visit a "Nightopian Garden". Similar to the Chao Garden in the Sonic Adventure series, the Nightopian Garden is a space that houses Sonic Team's unique "A-Life" creatures, and the player is given the ability to visit and interact with these creatures by giving them gifts. Using the Nintendo Wifi Connection, players can even visit their friend's Nightopian Garden.
The evil king of nightmares, Wizeman the Wicked wants to merge two planes of reality - the secret dream world of "Nightopia" and the human world. In doing so, he hopes to spread his evil influence and conquer both realms. To do so, Wizeman must collect rare dream energy in the form of "ideya" - sphere-like crystals that represent various emotions, denoted by their color. Wizeman creates an army of nightmaren and enlists them to harvest ideya from the dreams of all the people in the real world.
But there are two special dreamers in particular - William Taylor and Helen Cartwright. Both of them have been saved from their nightmares by NiGHTS, a playful jester who leads them both to Nightopia. Not long after Will and Helen make friends, however, Reala catches up with NiGHTS - and imprisons him for his insubordination against Wizeman. Reala steals all of Will and Helen's dream energy, save for one very rare, very powerful type: the red ideya of courage. Using it to free NiGHTS from his prison, the three team up to assault Wizeman's minions, recover their ideya, and stop his evil plot once and for all.
- Pure Valley (Boss: Donbalon)
- Lost Park (Boss: Chamelan)
- Delight City (Boss: Cerberus)
- Bellbridge (Boss: Reala and Wizeman)
- Aqua Garden (Boss: Girania)
- Crystal Castle (Boss: Bomamba)
- Memory Forest (Boss: Queen Bella)
- Bellbridge (Boss: Reala and Wizeman)
After the release of the original NiGHTS: Into Dreams on the Sega Saturn, the question would always come up in interviews every few years: "Will there ever be a sequel?" Yuji Naka was adamant: he frequently related NiGHTS to the way Steven Spielberg treats the movie E.T.: The Extra Terrestrial: NiGHTS was his "perfect game", and in his eyes, creating a sequel that does not cheapen the impact of the original game would be difficult, if not totally impossible. Still, he did admit that over the years, many prototypes for "NiGHTS 2" were considered, including a Sega Dreamcast version using a tilt sensor that plugged in to the controller's VMU port, tentatively called "Air NiGHTS". But, none of the "NiGHTS 2" prototypes ever got to a point he was satisfied with, and the game remained in limbo.
In Mid 2006, Yuji Naka announced his resignation from Sonic Team and Sega in order to start his own indie development studio, PROPE. Almost immediately after his departure, rumors began to circulate that a NiGHTS sequel was already in production. It would seem as though Sonic Team director Takashi Iizuka had wasted no time: no longer under the jurisdiction of Yuji Naka, nobody was to tell Iizuka "No" regarding a NiGHTS 2 project. Barely even nine months out from Naka's departure, Sega announced the production of Journey of Dreams for the Nintendo Wii.
According to a blog from a disgruntled Sega of Europe employee, Journey of Dreams began its life as an Xbox 360 and Playstation 3 title. However, Sega of Japan did not hold too much faith in the project - the original NiGHTS, while artistically impressive, did not do too well in terms of sales figures, and Journey of Dreams was coming more than a decade later. They saw the game as Takakshi Iizuka's "pet project", something that is typically avoided by most publishers. Still, they allowed the project to continue (albeit with a limited budget and tight deadlines) as respite from the assembly line of constant Sonic games the team had been forced to work on for so many years. The 360/PS3 version was reportedly far enough along that a significant chunk of the game was playable, when Sega of Japan uprooted the entire project. Having seen the runaway success of Nintendo's Wii console, Sega felt Journey of Dreams would be less of a gamble there, and forced Takashi Iizuka and Sonic Team to change platforms or face cancellation. They begrudgingly agreed, and with even less time and less money to complete the game, they did the best they could to finish up what they had.
Music in Journey of Dreams was composed by a wide arrange of musicians, some returning from the original NiGHTS soundtrack, including the main composers Naofumi Hataya, Tomoko Sasaki and Fumie Kumatani. Joining them were Kenichi Tokoi, Tomoya Ohtani, Hideki Kobayashi, Teruhiko Nakagawa, Tatsuyuki Maeda, Jun Senoue, and Yutaka Minobe.
After NiGHTS into Dreams, Sasaki and Hataya were always hopeful for a sequel, exchanging New Years cards every year which all contained promises that they would make the sequel that year. When Takashi Iizuka asked them to compose, they gladly agreed.
The game contains one vocal track with two remixes:
- "Dreams Dreams", Original song by Tomoko Sasaki, with arrangement by Yutaka Minobe, featuring the vocal talents of Robbie Wyckoff, Fiancis M. Benitez, Riley O' Flynn, and Victoria Ashby.
- "Dreams Dreams: Sweet Snow", Original song by Tomoko Sasaki, with arrangement by Tomoko Sasaki and Naofumi Hataya, featuring the vocals of Jasmine Allen.
NiGHTS ~Journey of Dreams~ Original Soundtrack
Release date: January 16, 2008
Total length: 191:28
- NiGHTS: Journey of Dreams
- Eloquent Echo
- Drifting Donbalon
- Eloquent Echo: Fluffy Catch
- Eloquent Echo: River Rescue
- Drifting Donbalon: Hard Version
- Wandering Wildness
- Cacking Chamelan
- Wandering Wildness: Bomb Panic
- Wandering Wildness: Coaster Rescue
- Cacking Chamelan: Hard Version
- Dreams Dreams: Located Link Mix (Instrumental)
- NiGHTS And Reala
- Electrical Entertainment
- Clashing Cerberus
- Electrical Entertainment: Neon City Battle
- Electrical Entertainment: Broadway Guide
- Clashing Cerberus: Hard Version
- Growing Wings
- Persona Non Grata
- D'Force Master
- Win a Goal
- Dreams Dreams: Will Version
- Dreams Dreams: Adult Version
- Sweeping Seashore
- Giant Girania
- Sweeping Seashore: Aqua Challenge
- Sweeping Seashore: Marine Escape
- Giant Girania: Hard Version
- Crystal Choir
- Bony Bomamba
- Crystal Choir: Labyrinth Guide
- Crystal Choir: Jewel Fever
- Bony Bomamba: Hard Version
- Merry Memory Go Round
- Queen Bella's Ball
- Merry Memory Go Round:Forest Adventure
- Dreams Dreams: Sky Concert
- Queen Bella's Ball : Hard Version
- Crusing Together
- NiGHTS And Reala : Theme of A Tragedic Revenge
- Sonatinas for Two Violins
- Dreams Dreams: Helen Version
- On The Way Back
- Memento of NiGHTS
- Dreams Dreams: Sweet Snow
- Fragmented NiGHTS
- Dreams Dreams: Kids Version
- NiGHTS : Journey of Dreams (Short Version)
- Gate Of Your Dream
- When The Night Falls
- Sweeping Seashore: in Daylight
- Cowardly Custard
- Catch Me If You Can
- Duel in Dream
- Al-Di-La: Lavender Version
- Reala Returns
- Peaceful Moment
- Al-Di-La: Sandal Wood Version
- Bad News
- Twist of Fate
- Al-Di-La: Peppermint Version
- Al-Di-La: Bergamot Version
- Precious Orgel
- Sentimental Separation
- Thank You NiGHTS
- Dreams Dreams: Located Link Mix
- Dreams Dreams: Sweet Snow (instrumental)
- Dreams Dreams (instrumental)