Back in the days of the Nintendo Wii, a game by former SEGA employees under the name of Rodea was in development. For reasons unknown, it never received a release outside of Japan, but thanks to the efforts of NIS America and Kadokawa Games, Rodea the Sky Solider has landed on European shores, as well as the rest of the western world. Instead of a direct port of the abandoned software, the entire game has been re-imagined, although it does borrow several elements such as cut scenes and musical interludes.
Rodea the Sky Soldier takes place in a land named Garuda, that has come under attack from the Naga Empire. The Princess of the Naga Empire, Cecilia has decided to rebel her warlord father Emperor Geardo, and steals a legendary artefact known as the Time Key. After splitting the treasure in two, and using some of its remaining power, she sends her robotic bodyguard Rodea into the future, thus preventing her father from taking the land he seeks to conquer. During the thousand year anniversary of their initial defeat, Rodea is awakened in the future, where the Naga Empire has once again begun to attack Garuda. Although his memories have been lost in the time warp, he decides to fight alongside his rescuer to defeat the invading forces.
The gameplay style of Rodea shares its roots with one of SEGA’s greatest creations, Nights into Dreams, which is not surprising given that the original concept of the series was developed by Yuji Naka. The robot protagonist Rodea is able to move around a 3D world in third person view, with the ability to use his boosters to fly to anywhere he can see. He can also use weapon gear provided by his human helper Ion to attack enemies, and scrap components from enemies to upgrade his basic stats, such as his armour, strength and speed. When you jump into the air, it is possible point your reticule at anywhere you can see, and as long as you can see a red dot, you can blast to that location, or home to the enemy for an easy defeat. The current objective is always marked on the map, although sometimes you will need to search the areas with precision as important objects such as collectable items are often missing. If you fly into the first of a line of collectible treasures, you will move along the entire row, increasing your current combo substantially as you do so, allowing you to gain a higher score at the end of the level.