I hope everyone who celebrates it had a wonderful Thanksgiving! And if you don’t celebrate it… Well, I hope you had a fantastic meal and good times with family nonetheless! Today’s Flashback Friday is for a GameCube game that I really don’t hear many people talk about, Baten Kaitos: Eternal Wings and the Lost Ocean.
Baten Kaitos: Eternal Wings and the Lost Ocean was released in 2003 for the Nintendo GameCube, and is a role-playing puzzle game. It starred a world made up of islands in the sky thanks to an evil, malicious god sucking the oceans dry before he was sealed away. In time, the people of the world grew wings, and it is a one-winged, cranky young man named Kalas that becomes the protagonist of the story. The game also features a Guardian Spirit character who is, essentially, the player — there are times when Kalas speaks to the Guardian Spirit to make decisions and, if the Spirit has a good relationship with Kalas, the Spirit can help strengthen Kalas’s attacks. The game itself received mostly positive reviews, and had a bit of a cult following when it first came out.
The battle system consists of using cards called magnus. The cards house a variety of attacks catered to the characters, as well as having uses outside of battle to heal the party or interact with NPCs to complete quests. The deck of cards in battle is shuffled, creating random hands that the player must use for each character in order to win the fights. It was quite the challenge to create a strategy with a random set of cards!
The story itself is a giant adventure. Kalas has one natural wing and one mechanical wing, making him a rather selfish protagonist who feels sorry for himself. With a couple of companions, he accidentally releases one of the End Magnus, the set of special cards that had sealed away the evil god. The End Magnus is stolen by a hostile kingdom that wishes to use the god’s power as their own, and Kalas and company are thrown into a journey to save the world.
We bought this game purely for the aesthetics. While we never completed the game’s story, it was always one that I enjoyed because of the gorgeous graphics. The battle system was a little odd to get used to, but the music and imagery kept me enraptured while I played. In 2006, a prequel simply titled Baten Kaitos Origins was released, and I believe we made even less progress in that game. Perhaps its time to dust off the old GameCube and give these games another whirl…
Have you ever played Baten Kaitos: Eternal Wings and the Lost Ocean?