Ecco: The Tides of Time

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Description: 

Ecco; The Tides of Time was a sequel to Ecco the Dolphin for the Sega Genesis, Game Gear, and Sega CD. It continued the story of the first game and featured similar gameplay with a few new additions.
Gameplay

Tides of Time was the direct sequel to the original Ecco, released in 1994, again developed by Novotrade International. As with Ecco the Dolphin, the Mega-CD version of Tides of Time featured an alternate soundtrack composed by Spencer Nilsen. The controls for the first game were kept, and Tides of Time maintained the same high level of difficulty as its predecessor. New puzzles were added, such as following another dolphin around and a 'scavenger hunt' of sorts later in the game. One of the additions was the Metaspheres, which could transform Ecco into different animals. The transformations were level-specific, and included a seagull, a jellyfish, a shark, a school of fish, and at one point a Vortex drone. A few pseudo-3D levels were also added to the game. The health meter, the air meter, and the Glyphs returned in Tides of Time. Both the "charge song" and the "confusion song" upgrades returned from Ecco the Dolphin and were usable from the start of the game.

The Tides of Time picks up right where the original Ecco the Dolphin left off. Ecco discovers that the Vortex Queen was far from vanquished, and had, in fact, followed Ecco to Earth to build a new hive for herself. Ecco loses his powers from the Asterite early in the game, and soon after meets a dolphin with unusually long fins. She is his descendant, Trellia, and takes him to the distant future.

In the future, dolphins are shown to have evolved helium sacs, and can therefore fly; they also display limited telekinetic powers. The ocean is said to have developed its own mind, as well as waterways that float through the skies (called the Sky Tides in Tides of Time and reproduced as the Hanging Waters in Defender of the Future) apparently connecting all the oceans of the Earth. After exploring the future for a while, Ecco finds the Asterite.

The Asterite tells Ecco that when Ecco used the time machine to save his pod, he split the stream of time in two. One possible future for Earth is this bright, happy future of flying dolphins; the other is a dead, mechanical world, sucked dry by the Vortex. The Asterite refers to Ecco as "the stone that split the stream of time in two". The Asterite itself had been 'killed' in the past by the Vortex Queen; how it is able to talk to Ecco is not explained until later. The Asterite returns Ecco to his own time after their conversation.

Back in his own time, Ecco must restore the Asterite to full health and power by bringing the globes that make up the creature back together. The final pair of globes have been taken by the Vortex to their future; Ecco must therefore go there and retrieve them so that the Asterite can help him defeat the Vortex once and for all. The Atlantean time machine is not an option as it only allows travel into the past. Ecco makes his way to the "Lunar Bay", which the Vortex have claimed as their own. Two Vortex drones then capture Ecco and take him to their future.

The Vortex future is shown to be full of strange machines, reminiscent of the final levels of Ecco the Dolphin. None of these levels auto-scroll, however. One of the levels is Gravitorbox, in which gravity behaves in unusual ways. Ecco eventually locates the Asterite's last two globes held in a chamber called the Globe Holder. After freeing the globes from a bubble-chained holding device, another time portal returns Ecco to the present.

With the Asterite complete again, it is able to bestow upon Ecco the same powers that it had previously given him — breathing underwater and a song that can destroy the Vortex. It also calls all of Ecco's fellow Singers to help in the fight against the Vortex in the now-transformed Lunar Bay. Ecco himself fights the Vortex Queen after fighting his way through another crushing Vortex Machine; however, she again escapes, reverting to a larval state and bolting for the Atlantean time machine. The Asterite tells Ecco to destroy the time machine to prevent the stream of time from ever being split again. The Vortex Queen, arriving in ancient Earth after using the time machine, finds creatures she cannot rule over, and through the aeons, the Vortex are forced to simply integrate into the ecosystems of Earth as exopods and arthropods (ants, scorpions, roaches, crabs, lobster, spiders, etc.). Ecco, instead of destroying the time machine, uses it and disappears into the Tides of Time.

Cheats/Hints/Walkthroughs: 
No posted cheats for this game yet.
Platform: 
SEGA Genesis
Genre: 
Action
Game year: 
1994
Publisher: 
SEGA of America, Inc.
Developed by: 
Novotrade Software Kft.
Ecco: The Tides of Time - Cover Art Sega Genesis
Also known as: 
"Ecco the Dolphin II" -- Japanese title
"Ecco: Les marées du temps" -- French MegaDrive title
"Ecco II: The Tides of Time" -- Genesis in-game title
"エコー・ザ・ドルフィン2" -- Japanese spelling

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