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See also: Endless Ocean: Blue World


Endless Ocean (known as Forever Blue in Japan) is the first game in the Endless Ocean series. It has a direct sequel, Endless Ocean: Blue World (called Endless Ocean: Adventures of the Deep in the European and Australian versions, and known as Forever Blue: Call of the Ocean in the Japanese release).

It was first published in Japan on August 2nd, 2007, and in Europe it was released on November 9, 2007. Originally planned for an October 2007 release in North America, it actually ended up reaching store shelves in the region on January 21, 2008.

While its successor greatly expands upon the base it built, Endless Ocean still features a wide variety of tropical environments to explore and a great deal of sea life to interact with, though it also suffers from graphical inferiority and a far less expansive story.

Characters

Main Characters

  • Player Character: The diver that you control.
  • Katherine Sunday: The only other person of real significance that you ever see in person. Despite her work with marine life, she can't swim - potentially due to a fear of drowning generated from something in her past. She frequently goes by just "Kat".

Other Characters

  • Other divers: People who place requests for photographs and guided tours.
  • Katherine's coworkers: People with whom Katherine has worked in the past. They include:
    • Alfred Thorman: Aubrey Thorman's husband. He's the head of the Marianas Foundation, the foundation that provides you and Katherine with the vast majority of the funding you need. He will also send emails to the player from time to time with new equipment if they've been doing well with tour and photograph requests.
    • Aubrey Thorman: Alfred Thorman's wife. She's the one who will send clients for guided-tour requests your way, as well as telling you how well you were rated after the tour.
    • Douglas Banner: A freelance journalist with contacts in the industry who has known Kat since they were both children. He'll send photograph requests from various magazines to the player, as well as telling them about the odd rumor or two that might actually have some merit and lead to a new discovery.

Story

Warning Spoilers for Endless Ocean ahead!


Part 1
Endless Ocean begins with the player being greeted by someone with a thick Australian accent who helps them craft their new diving license - this is the character creation process, and the person who helps you through it is never seen nor mentioned again. At the end, however, you will have been able to customize your diver's base appearance, including gender presentation, skin tone, hair colour (though only black and brown are offered) and the choice of two different hairstyles to start out with.

Once you're past that, you find yourself diving into the water. The label in the top-left corner should alert you that you're in the Manoa Lai Sea, and once you're fully in the water, you're greeted over an earpiece/radio by someone who introduces herself as Katherine Sunday. She'll walk you through the basics of diving - turning, swimming, and autoswim. You're introduced to the first area of the game that you're allowed to access - the Lagoon. Then, Kat will request that you come back to the boat.

When you get out of the water, you find yourself on the Gabbiano - your home base and workstation while you work on the Manoa Lai Sea. You're soon greeted by Katherine, a cheerful and quirky young woman wearing sandals, jean shorts, and an orange life vest. She gives you the basic rundown of the job - primarily, she describes it as "relaxing and taking it easy", but she adds that you may also be asked to complete requests from the foundation from time to time.

From there, you get a notification that you've gotten an email, and Kat asks you to head to the cabin and check on what it is - this is where you get the basic tutorial for moving around and interacting with things aboard the boat. Upon entering the cabin, Kat tells you about what you can do - at this point, all you can do is check your email, save your game, or take a look at the clock to decide when to sleep until (i.e. advancing the time).

Checking the cell phone will greet you with an email from Alfred Thorman - Kat's boss, the head of the Manoa Lai branch of the Marianas Foundation. He requests that you perform a topographical survey of the area known as Coral Forest.

Once you exit the cabin, Kat approaches you about the email, then tells you where Coral Forest is - just west of your current location (parked at the Lagoon). Then, she gives you access to the map of the Manoa Lai sea so that you can see what she means, and thus unlocks their ability to view and fill in the map. The player character inquires about why she can't do these requests, too, and Kat admits that she can't swim, but protests that "we all have your strengths and weaknesses."

The next time you dive, Kat will teach you about how to interact with the fish and learn their names, and gives the example of feeding them, which gives you the ability to feed the fish you'd like to learn about. When the player swims to the West, out of the Lagoon, they'll reach the Coral Forest - the area Alfred Thorman wanted them to survey.

Suddenly, though, a bottlenose dolphin appears and swims around the player a few times, as if in a playful mood, before vanishing into the ocean. Kat comments on the dolphin's presence, then notes that she as all the data that she needs for the topographical survey, and invites the player to dive at their own leisure.

When you return to the boat, you find Kat crouched next to an African penguin that has made its way onto the deck of the Gabbiano. This is when you learn how to interact with wildlife on the deck of the boat - Kat, at this point, tells the player that she feels as though she can communicate with animals on some deeper level by inferring what she can from body language and other clues, but the player character expresses skepticism.

After the player successfully interacts with the penguin, Kat tells the player that she's curating a marine encyclopedia, and asks for the player's help in filling it with information. This is when you unlock the ability to view the marine encyclopedia in the cabin of the Gabbiano, which allows you to see which fish and creatures you've encountered so far and read information about them.

After this, the topic of conversation changes. Kat compliments your job on the topography survey, then says that, because you're going to need to explore outside of their current position, you're going to need to steer the Gabbiano. At this point, she gives you a set of keys, and from then on you can reposition the Gabbiano to wherever on the map you want. She also adds that the keys also work to unlock the gate - the WFC gate near the bow of the ship on its port side. At this point, you would usually be able to dive with a friend by using it - but, unfortunately, wi-fi support for the Wii was dropped on May 20th, 2014, so this is no longer an option.

You get another email from Alfred Thorman. He thanks you for completing the survey he asked for, then tells you about an area South of the Lagoon - Blue Holes - where "unusual items" occasionally turn up due to the way the currents flow around there. He suggests that you visit the area.

If you go for a dive and then return to the boat at this point, you'll get an email from Aubrey Thorman - Alfred Thorman's Wife. She says she has a client named Will Gayne who is requesting a guided tour around the Coral Forest. This request isn't timed (i.e. it doesn't expire), but after you complete it, Mr. Gayne gives you the Underwater Pen - a necessary tool for learning information about several creatures.

When the player dives in Blue Holes, Kat will come on over the radio to remind them of what Thorman said in the email (that objects sometimes drift into the area), and advises them to keep an eye out for anything interesting. Drawing closer to the green plate coral in the center of the area triggers a short cutscene in which Kat points out something glimmering in the patch of sunlight atop one of the corals. This is where you learn how the salvage mechanics of this game work, and how to enter zoom mode.

After you retrieve the salvage item (the Dolphin Medal), the same bottlenose dolphin from the Coral Forest reappears. Kat suggests that you try to get closer to it, as it seems curious about you - but as soon as you try to interact with it, it swims off to the Lagoon. Kat thinks that you should follow it to see what's going on.

If you're within range, you can simply swim to the Lagoon from here, but if not you can return to the boat and pilot it in the right direction. Either way, the next time you enter the Lagoon, you'll be greeted with that same dolphin, swimming in confused circles. Kat realizes that it's most likely become disoriented by the shallow water - its sonar can't work properly, so it's having trouble getting around. Kat says that you should try to lead it to safety.

If you interact with the dolphin, it will swim around you a few times. Kat will note that it looks like it's following you, and suggests leading it out of the Lagoon and into the comparatively-deeper waters of the Coral Forest.

Swimming out of the Lagoon and into the Forest will prompt the dolphin to swim out ahead of the player and swim in a few circles, as if overjoyed. Then, it will come back and approach the player, allowing the player to reach out and touch it. Kat notes that it seems to have become rather fond of you, and says that you can just explore the area at your leisure now.

When you return to the boat, Kat will compliment you on your successful interaction with the dolphin, and will note that she thinks it's time she gives you the Sea Whistle, which lets you interact with dolphins more in-depth. She suggests that you head down to the gangplank of the boat - off of the stern of the boat - to test it out.

Upon heading down to the gangplank and trying out the whistle, the very same bottlenose you just rescued will approach the boat. Kat will say that it seems like they want to stick around, and from this encounter you get your very first dolphin partner, and the option to name them and teach them tricks.

After you first interact with your new partner, Kat will approach you with good news the next time night approaches. The night-diving equipment she'd been asking Thorman about has arrived - she notes that it's not even that complex, it's just a light that you can attach to your equipment to be able to see in the dark.

At this point, you have access to the vast majority of game mechanics, and the rest of the main Manoa Lai sea is open for you explore. There are sub-areas locked off to you still, but those are unlocked as you go.
Part 2
When you first dive with your partner, Kat will come on over the radio and comment on that fact. She'll give you a short explanation of how diving with your partner goes - if you use the sea whistle, they'll come to you. She notes that it might not work perfectly at first, but that it will improve in efficacy as you and your partner become more familiar with each other.

If you've identified at least ten different species of undersea life, as well as having gone on at least one dive with your dolphin partner, Kat will approach you about helping curate the Aquarium once you're back on the Gabbiano, which gives you access to it.

Visiting the aquarium at least once triggers an email from Douglas "Doug" Banner, a freelance journalist and an old friend of Kat's. He says that he needs pictures from the Manoa Lai sea, but that he can't get them himself, and says that he'll get back to you with a more detailed offer later.

Once you leave the cabin, Kat will approach you and talk to you about Doug's email - when you tell her you don't have an underwater camera of your own, she'll give you her old one, as well as a crash course on using it and replying to photo requests. This unlocks the ability for you to take photographs and respond to any future photo requests that you get from Doug.

After you've received this email, going on another dive and returning to the boat will trigger another email from Doug - this one concerning a strange story about a white cave. He says that he wants to write an article about it, but that he doesn't know if he has enough information for it, and wants you and Kat to see if you can find anything about it.

Kat approaches you after you read this email and notes that a white cave is probably made of limestone - and that there's a lot of limestone to the southeast of the area, so checking there might be worthwhile. She also gives you a crash course on cave-diving, just in case you actually do find the cave from the story Doug told you. Diving in the indicated area leads the player to the Mermaid Tunnel - and, thusly, the Great Aqua Cave.

Once you've explored the Cave, if you've seen Deep Valley (located at coordinates G-6) at least once during the daytime and tried to enter it, you'll get an email from Alfred Thorman. He wants you to test an air mixture designed for deep-sea diving, and once Kat knows about it she'll equip you with what you need. From that point forward, you can enter the Abyss, and head down to Whalebone Chasm.

(It's important to note that, in order for these sub-areas like the Abyss and the Cave to be considered fully-explored, you will have needed to have visited every possible place in the location and dived in the location at least twice, which will prompt dialogue from Kat that alerts you to the fact that the area has been fully explored. While you don't need to completely explore these areas to advance the story, it might change things just slightly, and you'll need to explore them later anyway if you want to unlock other, smaller side features of the world.)

If you've visited Whalebone Chasm and been to the Abyss at night at least once (you can achieve both in the same trip), you'll get an email from Thorman. He wants you to observe whale shark migration routes, and notes that they can be found around the Southwest of the region.

If you dive near coordinates D-6, you'll trigger a cutscene in which you'll see the resident whale shark patrolling the area near the break in Mo'ia Atoll. If you focus in on it, and then - per Kat's suggestion - grab on, you'll be taken to the Underwater Ruins of Mo'ia Atoll. For things to move on in the story from this point forward, you'll need to have reached the Prince's Room, but everything else can wait.
Part 3
Once you've broken through the damaged roof in the Ruins of the Atoll, you'll receive an email from Alfred Thorman - one concerning an expensive equipment request that he has to deny due to the fact that he doesn't really see justification for it. After you read this email, Kat will have a frustrated outburst, and then cease talking to the player at all.

After Kat has started sulking, you'll get an email from Doug that hints at Kat's past. He suggests that the player should visit Green Garden to the Northwest, and implies that Kat's history is tied to the area somehow.

Upon visiting, a short cutscene will play that shows you the location of an object that is reflecting the light from next to the giant clam in the sand. Investigating this shine yields Patrick's Pocket Watch.

The key here is that Patrick Sunday was the name of Kat's late father.

After you've collected the pocket watch and returned to the boat, Katherine will reveal the reason for her expensive equipment request and her moodiness surrounding the issue.

Patrick Sunday went exploring in search of the Ancient Mother, a legendary whale rumored to be a goddess, and dedicated practically his entire life to the legends. He went on a dive one day, and didn't come back up - and Kat is determined to make sure that her father didn't die in vain. The expensive equipment is meant to help detect whether or not the Ancient Mother has been in the area, but because there's no real evidence of her existing, Thorman didn't feel comfortable authorizing it.

From this point on, your mission is to help Kat complete her quest. The first thing you'll need to do is find justification for such an expensive request so that Thorman can authorize it - i.e., evidence of the Ancient Mother's existence. One thing Kat suggests is to visit a locale that many whales frequent and see if the Mother herself perhaps visits - and Whalebone Chasm seems to fit the bill.

If you dive into the Abyss - with one of your dolphin partners - and head to Whalebone Chasm, your dolphin partner will find something that you need to bring back to the Gabbiano: a sample of tissue from an unknown species of whale. Upon sending it into a lab for analysis, you and Kat receive confirmation that the tissue sample, while similar to the makeup of a blue whale, displays unique genetic traits that confirm that it is from a previously-unknown whale species. At this news, Alfred Thorman agrees that this warrants tracking the possibility of a new whale species in the region, and authorizes the purchase of the expensive equipment.

At this point, if you haven't already encountered them, you're going to need to find and learn about the four large whale species in the region. They are: the North Atlantic right whale in Wild Channel; the humpback whale West of Rock Bluff; the sperm whale in the Abyss (or around Deep Valley, depending on the time of year); and the blue whale at the Great Drop-Off.

You need information about all of the whale species to determine where to place the equipment that Kat requested from Thorman. The equipment in question is a set of sonar probes meant to detect movement of something large through the area - based on the genetic makeup of the tissue sample found in Whalebone Chasm, the unknown whale is supposed to be even bigger than a blue whale, so the sensors are programmed to detect something of that size.

A day after you've identified all of the whales, Kat will have determined the best places to set up the sensors, and she will direct you towards them one at a time. When you're in the water at each location, she'll give you specific instructions on where to place the equipment.

There are five sensors in total. At the second-to-last sensor location, however, a complication occurs - the kelp right next to the specified place catches the player in a potentially deadly snare. Kat panics, and asks if there are any tools that you have on hand to help free yourself - your hint to use the sea whistle.

Once you use your whistle, your dolphin partner (or partners, depending on whether you've befriended any more than the bottlenose at this point) will come to your aid, swimming up and chewing away at the kelp until you can free yourself. When you return to the boat, Kat comes up to you, scared and angry, and yells at you to "never do that again". Then, she apologizes, and explains the reason she was so frantic - the same thing happened to her father in Green Garden. The dive he went on but never returned from was doomed by the very same trap that had almost caught the player.

Then, she expresses that she's just glad that you're safe, and continues, determined, to say that you should place the last sonar probe and potentially get the information she and you need to find the Ancient Mother. Placing the last probe goes off without a hitch, and afterwards Kat says that all she and you can do right now is wait for the sensors to detect something.

You should go for a swim at this point.

Once you return to the boat, you'll have gotten an email containing data from one of the sensors - data that suggests a massive whale moved through the area, even bigger than a blue whale, and might potentially still be in the vicinity. When you leave the cabin, Kat approaches you, extremely excited, and exclaims that this could be it, this could be the Ancient Mother. She says that you should go to the sensor the data was from - one placed near the Great Drop-Off.

When you arrive there and get into the water, everything looks normal at first. There are a few seconds of quiet -

And then the Ancient Mother looms out of the water from behind you.

There is a moment of stunned silence. Then, Kat comes on over the radio, overjoyed, saying that she'd imagined this day for so long and that everyone thought she was crazy, but now that the Ancient Mother is right in front of her she feels like she's close to tears. Then, she expresses her gratitude to the player, saying that she owes them everything.

The cutscene ends. You can go up to the Ancient Mother, and interact with her.

The credits roll.

After the credits, a cutscene opens with you lounging in the deck chair aboard the Gabbiano, Kat leaning against the railing nearby. She expresses her shock, noting how sudden the discovery was - she reflects on how long she's been looking for the Ancient Mother, but then the Mother was simply right there, and that the entire world is going to know.

She stands up from the railing and says that, because the Ancient Mother is an entirely new species, there's going to be a lot of paperwork to do, and that she'll be rather busy. She walks over to the railing on the port side of the ship, staring out at the sea, and you get up out of the deck chair to join her. There's a moment of silence, then she says that she thinks her father would be proud right now. She thanks the player once more, stating that she couldn't have done it without you.

The player asks her if she plans to leave the Gabbiano, and Kat responds with incredulity, stating that both she and you are "creatures of the sea. That won't change.". She looks back out across the water, and says that she and you can "keep trying to protect this amazing, endless ocean of ours."

The conversation ends, and you get a notification about receiving an email. When you check, you'll see various emails of congratulations from your coworkers - Alfred Thorman, Douglas Banner, and, of all people, Will Gayne.

There will also be an email from someone named Leonard D., who comments on your notoriety. He says that he's interested in your work, specifically around the various interesting relics and monuments you've discovered, and says that he hopes you and him can work together sometime.

This concludes the main story of Endless Ocean, but there are many side quests for the player to complete, and many places to explore.


Warning Spoilers for Endless Ocean end here.

Locations

Main article: Locations
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