Sea of Stars isn’t Sabotage Studio’s first rodeo into video game development. Back in 2018, they debuted with a Metroidvania platformer called The Messenger. It tells the story of a ninja, appointed as “The Messenger,” who is tasked to travel east and deliver a scroll to the top of a mountain. If you’ve played Sea of Stars (and vice versa), then you won’t be able to help but nod at certain environments because of their familiarity with the game you played first. Why is that?
Is Sea of Stars a sequel to The Messenger?
Not at all! Probably. I’ll try to keep this spoiler-free, but essentially, Sea of Stars and The Messenger are set in the same “universe.” This is going to make perfect sense after you’ve seen Serai’s (Sea of Stars) backstory.
Warning: If you haven’t gotten far but don’t care about spoilers, read on!
An excerpt from the 'Tale of Two Alchemists' (Artifact story)
Essentially, the Sabotage extended universe is created with the story of The Immortal Alchemist (Resh'an) and The Fleshmancer (Aephorul) as its core.
After finding the Elixir of Life, they spent centuries nurturing the world into a thriving society. However, Aephorul soon became jealous of the creatures who lived a fruitful non immortal life. He dived into the darker sides of alchemy, creating heinous experiments, and grew spiteful of the non immortals. Eventually, he was nicknamed The Fleshmancer for unleashing monstrous creatures into the world.
Resh'an did his best to fight Aephorul down but was unsuccessful. In fact, it only created more strife as two beings with godlike powers collided.
After years, Resh'an discovered that Aephorul’s creations were weak to Lunar and Solar magic, a power that was only bestowed to those born during the Solstices. He then trained these children to be full-fledged warriors and tasked them to rid the world of Aephorul’s creations. It’s this fate that Erlina and Brugaves resented if you’re curious.
However, Aephorul was smart. He created the Dwellers—beings that were impervious to Lunar and Solar magic except during a total eclipse. The Dwellers also needed local life to live, destroying even more places in their wake. If left unstopped, they would evolve into World Eaters. The Solstice Warriors hunted every last Dweller in hopes that this would never happen.
The Messenger references in Sea of Stars
Resh'an wasn’t comfortable in this stalemate, as he knew Aephorul would only cook up something much worse. As such, he split the world into countless timelines and parallel words—two of which happen to be the setting both Sea of Stars and The Messenger played out in. These worlds usually have some similarities! For these two games, you’ll likely find your “references” on Mesa Island. All worlds have their Solstice Warriors. Dwellers would come if Aephorul decides to visit it.
Of course, there is also a small chance that The Messenger is a Sea of Stars sequel, in the sense that they both happened in the same world. But it's too hard to tell at this point! The DLC, which I'll touch on later, could be the link we're missing.
Anyway, Resh'an and Aephorul agreed not to meddle in any of the conflicts in these worlds. Aephorul used the opportunity to unleash destruction onto many places while Resh'an continued to do his research on how Aephorul could be stopped.
What to expect from Sea of Stars 'Throes of the Watchmaker' DLC?
Sea of Stars does have a planned DLC that plans to expound on its story. Called Throes of the Watchmaker, the only thing we know so far is that the Watchmaker will be its main character. The devs would also like to “provide additional insight on the narrative overarching all of [their] games” through this DLC, implying that we’ll be seeing a bigger bridge between Sea of Stars and The Messenger.
Moreover, Clockwork Castle, where the Watchmaker lives, is located on Mesa Island, near the bamboo groves, and beside a mountain. Isn't it such an interesting focus point for a Sea of Stars DLC? It practically has "The Messenger" written all over it!
Interested in picking up Sea of Stars? Check out my review of it here at Pro Game Guides.