Rodea the Sky Soldier is an action-adventure game for the Wii, Wii U and 3DS. The Wii U and 3DS versions are mostly identical, while the Wii version features a very different gameplay.
The story follows Rodea the machine soldier as he tries to regain his memories after being buried in a desert for 1000 years.
Development & ReleaseEdit
The game was first announced in January 2011 for the Wii and 3DS, under the name 天空の機士ロデア (Tenkuu no Kishi Rodea), with a trailer released a few days later. The Wii version was developed by Prope, while the publisher, Kadowaka Games, was working on porting the game to the 3DS. The original announcement trailer can be found here: http://tinyurl.com/h4qbfz8
In September 2011, Yuji Naka from Prope announced that the Wii version had been completed for a while, and they were waiting for Kadokawa Games to publish it. Apparently the release was held back because the 3DS port was taking longer than expected. In July 2013, Kadokawa Games announced that the 3DS version was about 70% completed, and since the Wii U had been released at that point, a Wii U port of the 3DS version was made.
The game was released for the Wii U and 3DS on April 12, 2015 in Japan (published by Kadokawa Games), under the name ロデア・ザ・スカイソルジャー (Rodea the Sky Soldier). First-print copies of the Wii U version were bundled with the Wii version as a bonus.
In the West, the game was published by NIS America, and released in November 2015. First-print copies of the Wii U version included the Wii version, on a separate disc within the same case, and a reversible cover.
NIS America also released a limited edition of the game, both in the US and the UK, containing an art book, a soundtrack disc and a Key of Time pendant in addition to the game (either the 3DS version, or the Wii U version with the Wii game included).
Garuda, a floating sky continent, is under attack by the machine soldiers of the Naga Empire which are trying to invade it. To protect Garuda, Princess Cecilia of Naga takes the Key of Time, an artifact that is integral to the success of Naga's invasion. Followed by her robot bodyguard Rodea, she flees to Garuda with the Key.
They don't get too far before Cecilia's airship is shot down by Naga's machine soldiers. Rodea is able to get her out of the ship before the machine soldiers get to her. Cecilia recognizes that she would only weigh Rodea down, and explains that the Key will only work if in one piece, as she divides it in two and gives one half to Rodea. She promises that they will escape and save Garuda, and teleports Rodea to safety in a desert area.
1000 years later, Rodea wakes up to a red-headed mechanic named Ion. She claims to have fixed him up, but Rodea has lost most of his memories, only remembering his name and his mission to save Garuda. Soon after, they encounter Ion's grandfather, Asimov. He freaks out initially, and thinks that Rodea's appearance can't be a coincidence, as today, the Chronos Towers have shown up after 1000 years.
As Ion begins to explain that Rodea is good, a beam of light shoots out of the Chronos Towers, and the emperor of Naga, Geardo, appears in the sky to announce a new invasion. Hundreds of machine soldiers pour out of portals in the center of the Towers as Geardo tells the citizens of Garuda that their continent will be the basis of his new, mechanical empire.
Remembering that he must protect Garuda, Rodea sets off to fight the machine soldiers, and Ion follows him aboard her airship, the Ion Wave.
*** SPOILERS FOR THE REST OF THE STORY ***
Inside a large, hollow tree, Rodea encounters a flying robot that looks like him, and that seems to recognize Rodea, calling him "R0". Rodea fights him inside the tree, before being cut off as the robot is literally called away to do something else. Rodea is just about to go after him, when Ion hears a crying child, who happens to be a small boy named Tonio, one of the residents of Garuda, and a friend of Ion's. He explains that he is looking for herbs for his sister, Sonia. Rodea initially refuses to gather the medicinal herbs for Tonio when Ion asks, but she convinces him by telling him he has a heart, which jogs Rodea's memory. This causes Rodea to regain his regular, lifelike voice in place of his cold, monotone robotic voice.
After gathering the herbs, and traveling some more, Rodea arrives at the first Chronos Tower. He goes through a portal that opened up in the center of it, and faces off against a giant, humanoid robot, which seems to be protecting the tower. After defeating it, Rodea escapes through the portal as the arena begins to crumble, and meets up with Ion again. They watch the tower's central mechanism, a huge clock, lose power and stop moving, and head off to the next one.
The second Chronos Tower is found in the desert region. There, Rodea and Ion run into the flying robot again. He tells Rodea to meet him in the arena up ahead. There, the robot appears again, and declares his name is Unit R1, Lord Orthos, before challenging Rodea to another fight. As they fight, Orthos explains that both he and Rodea are part of the R-Series. He asks Rodea why he betrayed the Naga Empire, but discovers that Rodea truly doesn't remember.
Rodea defeats Orthos, and in the ensuing conversation, he remembers that he made a promise to save Garuda. Soon after, just as Rodea remembers Orthos's name, Orthos falls to the ground and shuts down. Disheartened, Rodea continues toward the Chronos Tower. After coming across and subsequently blowing up a Naga base, he reaches the Chronos Tower and defeats its guardian.
In the volcanic region, Rodea and Ion stop by Ion's hidden village, where Asimov berates Ion for following a machine. As he lectures her away from Rodea, Ion suddenly gets captured by a machine. Another villager accuses Rodea of being responsible by having revealed the location of the village, but Tonio defends Rodea. The machine that took Ion was seen heading toward Mt. Ebon, so the villagers board the Ion Wave, and Tonio leads Rodea to Mt. Ebon.
Rodea eventually locates Ion, but another R-Series robot, who was seen earlier spying on Rodea and Ion, shows up. He introduces himself as Unit R2, Rylus and asks Rodea to give him the Key of Time in exchange for Ion. Remembering that the Key was given to him to keep safe, Rodea refuses to give it away, and instead fights Rylus above the Ion Wave to rescue Ion. When Rylus is defeated, he jumps down, taking Ion with him, but Rodea catches her, so Rylus decides to fall alone.
Later, Rodea and all the villagers reach the third Chronos Tower. Rodea defeats its guardian and stops it. Ion parts ways with the rest of the villagers, as she wants to keep following Rodea to the last Chronos Tower, located in the snowy region.
There, Rodea enters a cave which Rylus previously mentioned to Ion, and finds the wreckage of Cecilia's airship. As memories start coming back to him, Rodea is greeted by a female R-Series robot, Unit R3, Kelvis, who tries to destroy him. Rodea defeats her and escapes the cave as it starts collapsing. He remembers Princess Cecilia's name, and Ion secretly worries that Rodea will forget about her if he recovers all of his memories.
Ion learns that the Naga Empire is about to send a warship to bomb Garuda, so Rodea sets up bombs on the warship to blow it up, but before he can get away, Kelvis returns and activates the bombs, then attacks Rodea again to take the Key of Time. Rodea manages to defeat her again and flees before the warship explodes. He proceeds to the last Chronos Tower and defeats its guardian.
Back in Garuda, Rodea and Ion watch the machine soldiers shut down and fall, believing they have successfully stopped the invasion. Rodea suddenly recovers all of his memories, and remembers that he failed to protect Princess Cecilia. Soon after, Unit R4, Valghis appears. He paralyzes Rodea and Ion, combines both halves of the Key of Time and uses it to open the R-Gate, a time-travel portal that connects to 1000 years in the past. He explains that the Naga Empire will continue the invasion by bringing machine soldiers from the past.
Valghis crosses the R-Gate, followed by Rodea and later Ion. On the other side, 1000 years in the past, Rodea finds Princess Cecilia near her crashed airship, just before her demise, but he fails to save her again. Rodea and Ion decide to go to the Naga fortress to take down Emperor Geardo to stop the invasion definitely.
Rodea defeats Geardo, then Valghis shows up and, because he wants to turn Garuda into a machine empire, Rodea defeats him as well. Geardo reappears in a new, giant mechanical body, and wants to keep Ion with him, as he mistakes her for his daughter Cecilia. Rodea defeats him again to save Ion.
As Rodea and Ion are about to cross the R-Gate to return to the present, Rodea decides to stay behind to close the R-Gate, despite Ion's protests. Rodea waves her goodbye and promises he'll never forget her.
Ion wakes up among her friends, in a new present where Naga hasn't attempted a second invasion. Later, Rodea wakes up in Garuda next to Ion, and still remembers her as he promised. As they hug, the villagers and the other R-Series units gather around them.
- On the results screen of every stage in the 3DS version only, a map is seen in the background, with only one distinct location, Mare, in the center of the visible part of the map. This is undoubtedly a reference to NiGHTS into Dreams, another one of the director's previous works. The reference pertains to how in NiGHTS into Dreams, each level or dream has 4 sections, called 'mares', a play on the word nightmare.
- The game has strange, likely coincidental similarities to the 2015 indie hit, Undertale, such as the song Rodea Conjunction sounding very similar to the song, Another Medium from Undertale, and Valghis' appearance being very similar to that of the Undertale character Mettaton EX.
- None of the English voice actors are ever credited, only those who voiced characters in the Japanese game.
- The two countries in the game, Garuda and Naga, are both species that are a part of Buddhism and Hinduism. Garuda is a giant, birdlike creature, intelligent and organized, while the Naga are snake/dragon creatures that are the embodiment of chaos and evil. As a result of a foolish bet the mothers of the two made before their births, the Garuda was forced to bow to the will of the Nagas. The Garuda asked the Nagas what he needed to do to get out of his slavery, and the Nagas told him that if he brought a sacred drink from the gods that would make the Nagas live forever, (represented as the Key of Time in the game), the Nagas would let him go. Garuda was successful in stealing the drink from the gods, but after doing so, purposely kept the Nagas from drinking it, and from then on, the Nagas forever loathed the Garuda.