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|First game||Nights into Dreams (1996)|
|Voiced by||Elara Distler (Sonic Shuffle)
Julissa Aguirre (Nights: Journey of Dreams, Sega Superstars Tennis, and Sonic & All-Stars Racing Transformed)
Nights (stylized as NiGHTS) is a video game character from the games Nights into Dreams and Nights: Journey of Dreams, developed and published by Sega. Nights is a "Nightmaren" who resides in Nightopia, a dream world where the dreams of all human beings are acted out every night.
Creation and conception
Naoto Ohshima was the original Nights creator and designer, while Kazuyuki Hoshino was the character designer for the video game Nights into Dreams. The character design incorporated Japanese, European, and American stylistics in order to give Nights as universal an appeal as possible. In the context of the games, Nights is a part of every human's subconscious, and so was purposely designed to be neither male nor female. By the time of the sequel, Nights: Journey of Dreams, Ohshima had left Sega, and Kazuyuki Hoshino was placed in charge of character design for the game. Takashi Iizuka, the lead game designer, felt that, with Hoshino, they captured the style used for the character in the original game.
Nights' personality is described by Iizuka as "a mirror of the child's personality." Nights' speaking role in Journey of Dreams was performed by Julissa Aguirre, who gave the character an English accent. In addition, Nights was made genderless, leaving the impression of the character "totally up to the player", according to Iizuka.
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Nights wears a purple jester-style hat and outfit, with a diamond-shaped, red jewel on the chest. In the miniseries published by Archie Comics, this was said to be a piece of a red Ideya (the personality orb which contains courage) that broke off and latched onto the character's chest.
Yuji Naka and Naoto Ohshima explained that the character is "not a hero from the good dreams, but a hero from the nightmares. In other words, there's just a little bit of a scary element to him. He's cute but frightening. ... With that image in mind we then bring in the circus like element. The nightmare world is similar to the circus. In the darkness a single spot-light shines, creating the vividly coloured stage. This kind of element is included inside the nightmare's darkness to show the beauty of the place. So with the Nights character and the Nightmarens all gathered together it gives the impression of a circus group. Although Nights looks a little like a jester, when you find him in your dreams wonderful things happen and a new hope is born within."
Nights behaves childishly, never for a moment thinking of the consequences of its actions, for example sometimes scaring people just for fun, but mostly Nights' actions can be considered chivalrous. Nights is also merciful, as shown with Reala in Journey of Dreams. Nights likes new and unusual things, but hates being bound and told what to do. Nights dislikes Wizeman for confining Nights and denying its freedom. Sometimes, when very relaxed, Nights will pull out an invisible flute and start playing "Dreams Dreams", the game's theme song.
Nights has the ability to transform into just about anything, an ability that was expanded upon in the sequel with the introduction of each persona mask. Even without the persona masks, Nights is still able to change forms and abilities as desired.
Nights can also create small portals called "Paraloops" with its Twinkle Dust if the dust is spread to form a closed circle.
Nights comes from the dream world of Nightopia (also referred to in-game as the Night Dimension) and takes shape according to the thoughts, ideas, personalities, and will of the Visitors (humans from the real world). Nights lives alongside Owl, a brown owl who acts as elder and guide in the sequel, and the Nightopians. Nights, however, is a Nightmaren and henceforth its origin is the dark realm of Nightmare. Nights attempts to stop Wizeman from taking over Nightopia.
Nights is kind towards the children (Claris, Elliot, Will, and Helen) in both games, helping all four of them to defeat Wizeman on two separate occasions.
Nights shows disrespect for Owl on a regular basis, but also shows a sort of friendship with the bird. Owl often seems frustrated with Nights' rambunctious behaviour, and his lectures are often to no avail.
Nights was once loyal to Wizeman, but eventually began to view what Wizeman was doing as wrong and in need of being stopped. Nights also wished to have free will, which Wizeman didn't allow; Nights therefore decided to rebel. Their hatred for each other is strong and neither show mercy in battle.
Nights' relationship with Reala appears complicated. Nights still holds Reala as a friend, or at least a former one. Reala often plays on Nights' mercy, using it as an opportunity to imprison Nights. Reala sometimes refers to Nights as a "sibling" and, in almost every instance in the sequel, will try and talk Nights into surrendering before starting a fight.
Nights first appeared in the video game Nights into Dreams on the Sega Saturn. The second game in the series, Nights: Journey of Dreams, is on the Wii. Sega Superstars for PlayStation 2 features a game with Nights, which utilized the EyeToy peripheral. Nights also appeared in the sampler game Christmas Nights on the Sega Saturn. Takashi Iizuka reported that he is very interested in making Nights 3, but it is the management's decision whether or not to proceed.
Nights has appeared in many other games besides the series, including Sonic Adventure (in the Casinopolis level), Sonic Adventure 2 (in the City Escape and Radical Highway levels), Shadow the Hedgehog (in Lethal Highway, the title screen appears in a billboard without any text), and also in Sonic Adventure and Sonic Adventure 2, the player can raise a chao that resembles Nights. Nights also appears in Sonic Pinball Party, Sonic Shuffle, Billy Hatcher and the Giant Egg, Sega Superstars, both Sonic Riders and Sonic Riders: Zero Gravity (as a secret character) and Sega Superstars Tennis. Nights also makes a cameo appearance in Sonic & Sega All-Stars Racing as the flagman, and later appears playable alongside Reala in Sonic & All-Stars Racing Transformed. The character also makes a cameo appearance in a downloadable level of Sonic Lost World. The level is named Nightmare Zone, which consists of multiple boss battles from the original game in the series.
Nights has also made a guest appearance in Phantasy Star Online I & II Plus, in Episode 2.
Nights has also appeared in Archie Comics' Worlds Unite crossover between its Sonic the Hedgehog and Mega Man titles, where they are one of many Sega and Capcom heroes recruited by Miles "Tails" Prower and Air Man to battle Sigma.
In Sega's Shenmue series, Nights appears in the form of two capsule toys, NiGHTS 1 & NiGHTS 2, that protagonist Ryo Hazuki can collect from one of the various machines scattered throughout Shenmue and Shenmue II.
- "Game Credits for NiGHTS into Dreams". MobyGames. Retrieved 2007-12-21.
- "Pillow Talk: An Interview with Team Sonic". Sega Saturn Magazine. No. 11. Emap International Limited. September 1996. pp. 38–41.
- NGamer staff (2007-04-20). "NGamer exclusive - NiGHTS: Journey of Dreams interview". NGamer. Retrieved 2007-12-21.
- James Mielke (2007-11-08). "NiGHTS Journey of Dreams Takashi Iizuka interview from 1UP.com". 1UP.com. Retrieved 2007-12-21.[permanent dead link]
- Justin Towell (2007-11-27). "Nights team prefer Gamecube pad to Wii-mote". GamesRadar UK. Retrieved 2007-12-21.
- Mike Taylor (2007-12-05). "Interview: Takashi Iizuka Talks Nights". nintendolife.com. Retrieved 2007-12-21.
- "NiGHTS Is In ASR".
- Phillips, Tom. "NiGHTS playable in Sonic & Sega All Stars: Racing Transformed". Eurogamer.
- "The Best of '96". Electronic Gaming Monthly. No. 92. Ziff Davis. March 1997. p. 90.