Overrun by monsters, the island of Esteria has become isolated from the rest of the world. A dark vortex surrounds the island, preventing any ships from entering or leaving its waters. A young adventurer, Adol Christin, hears of this and journeys to the port town of Medea and seeks passage to the island. In the town he meets a sea captain named Norton who gives him a job on the docks, promising to help Adol get to Esteria in return. After working for Norton for some time, Norton gives Adol a small boat with which to sail to Esteria. Adol heads that way, but the vortex destroys his ship. He is shortly after found on the shores of Esteria by a local named Slaf and nursed back to health. When he awakes, he is sent to speak with the fortuneteller Sarah Tovah who recognizes him as the hero of legend who will liberate Esteria from the forces of darkness. She gives him a crystal dagger, of which she knows nothing about but feels it will be important.
Although somewhat skeptical of Sarah's story, Adol agrees to journey to the town of Zepik to meet with Sarah's aunt Jebah Tovah. He soon comes to a destroyed village and fears that it is all that remains of Zepik. A travelling poet, Ruben, who tells him Zepik is some distance away and this village is actually former mining town, Leskan, that was destroyed when the monsters first appeared years before. Together they head to Zepik, but not before Ruben wonders aloud why monsters would be so bent on stealing every last piece of silver from the destroyed village when they first struck. After arriving in Zepik, Adol meets Jebah, who is skeptical of Sarah's claim that he is the hero of legend. Despite this, she tells Adol of six ancient tomes, the Books of Ys. Each was guarded by a priest of the two goddesses that formed the island of Esteria, at that time known as Ys. Now they are each locked away in shrines throughout the island, but Jebah only knows the location of one, the Shrine of Solomon. Adol agrees to go there and, after fighting through a horde of the undead, arrives to find a young woman chained to the wall of the shrine. As he tries to a release her a giant millipede (called Nygtilger in the game) attacks him. Adol defeats it, frees the young woman, and claims the first book, the Book of Huddale.
Following after Adol, Sarah is accompanied by her cousin Goban Tovah, her friend Otto, and a girl named Leah. They arrive in Zepik before Adol returns from the Shrine of Solomon. Meanwhile, Adol learns the young woman he saved's name, Feena, and that she has amnesia and can remember nothing else. They return to Zepik and meet with Jaba. She takes the Book of Huddale and deciphers some of it, discovering that long ago there was a metal used by the ancients in their society. Adol remembers that Ruben mentioned that the monsters have sought out silver and wonders if there is a connection. Elsewhere, Sarah does some soul-searching and begins to feel guilty about getting Adol involved, but feels that fate is guiding him. Otto also helps to comfort her, revealing that the two of them are descendants of the six priests who once ruled the island. Outside of the village, two dark wizards, Astal and Dalles, convene and approach. Astal attacks two of the guards in the center of town, prompting an alarm. Once everyone is present, he smirks and makes a note of how foolish it is that every guard came to fight him. As this occurs, Dalles comes to the room Sarah is in and attacks her, turning her to stone. Both wizards then vanish. The next day, Adol is consumed with guilt over Sarah's fate when Goban appears and tells him to buck up. He gives Adol the Book of Tovah, saying Sarah had been guarding it and wanted Adol to have in case of her death. As Adol accepts the book, Astal appears and attacks. The two battle and Adol is about to be defeated when the crystal dagger begins to glow and strips Astal of his power. Adol takes the chance to finish him off, but the dagger shatters in the process. Goban hears people approaches and vanishes, but not before he informs Adol that he cannot stay because he is a thief. The next day, the town is holding a harvest festival, but Otto, Slaf, and Adol aren't interested, instead staying in Sarah's room bemoaning her fate and trying to figure out wh
In his dark fortress, Dark Fact is seen speaking with Dalles. Dalles informs him of Adol, but Dark Fact blows him off, stating he doesn't believe in "moldly old legends." One of Dalles' familiars enters the sanctuary and informs the wizard that Adol has journeyed to the Mines of Leskan. Dark Fact wonders how he would know to go there, but doesn't worry because his guardian, Tialumass, should be able to handle a single warrior. Elsewhere, Feena is seen praying to the goddesses when she is struck by a vision of a statue of the older one that looks exactly like her. Frightened, she fless the temple, both wanting to know who she is and simultaneously fearing that knowledge. Meanwhile, deep in the mines, Adol is accompanied by his friend Dogi. The two fight their way through a number of skeletons. After the fight, Adol tells Dogi that Leah asked him to try and find her silver harmonica which she lost in these mines years ago. The two continue on, but soon soon run into some human-like soldiers. During this fight, they punch a hole in the ceiling and the mine begins to flood. The two are washed through the mine, down to its lowest level. There, they find an underground shrine. They enter and are immediately attacked by the demon Tialumass. After a lengthy battle, the two defeat the monster and claim the Book of Dabbie, along with Leah's silver harmonica. The two return to Zepik and return to Leah her silver harmonica. As soon as she touches it a flood of memories hit her. She thanks Adol and offers to play him a song, which in turn restores to Feena her memories as she cries outside the temple. Remembering everything, Feena has a look of worry on her face...
In the Tower of Darm, Dark Fact realizes that the goddesses have returned. Elsewhere, Adol meets back up with Goban and asks about the Tower of Darm. Adol is convinced the remaining books are there, but Goban tries to dissuade him from going there. Adol decides to drop it for the night and goes to bed, but is visited in his dreams by a being called Roda. He asks Goban about it the next morning and is told Roda is a tree with a soul that houses the memories of the goddesses. As they talk, Dogi arrives and informs them that Ruben has gone missing. Immediately Dark Fact appears and informs Adol that he has captured Ruben, along with the Book of Messa. Dark Fact challenges Adol to retrieve it from an abandoned temple in the nearby forest. Adol accepts and the party sets out. Meanwhile, Feena and Reah, now with their memories restored, decide it is time to "awaken." Cutting back to Adol and his party, the trio journeys to the Tree of Roda. There, Roda recounts the history of Esteria and the metal claria. Claria, it seems, is a type of silver that has magical properties, but also has the drawback of summoning evil to it. It can, however, do great damage against evil beings. Roda then gifts Adol an armor of claria and tells him to recover the remaining three books. The group moves on to the old temple and are attacked by a giant praying mantis (called Pictimos in the game). Elsewhere, Jaba discovers that Feena is in fact one of the goddesses as she disappears into the night in order to hook up with Reah and fulfill their destiny. Back at the temple, Adol defeats the giant beast and recovers the Book of Messa. As he looks at the cover, he comes to the realization that he can now read the ancient text.
As the goddesses fly towards the Tower of Darm, Dark Fact and Dalles discuss the nature of evil. Dark Fact contends that wherever there is good, there must be evil and good will never be able to fully overcome the darkness. Dalles agrees, then attacks the two goddesses as they are some distance off, capturing Reah. Back in the forest, Adol decides it is time to go to the Tower of Darm and is accompanied by Dogi and Goban. They enter the tower and are immediately in combat. Meanwhile back in the village, Slaf futily argues against disbanding the army. Most of the villagers believe that the monsters are gone and that Adol must have already succeeded. In actuality, Dark Fact withdrew his forces hoping for that conclusion and plans to attack later that night. Back in the tower, Adol becomes separated from the others when he is sucked into a mirror, but finds Ruben. Ruben tells Adol the names of all six priests, including Fact, and how Dark Fact was once one of the most devoted followers of the goddess, but was corrupted by the claria. He then tells Adol about the legend in detail of the hero who will save the island. When he finishes, Ruben gives Adol the Book of Gemma and the two continue on through the tower. They soon are reunited with Dogi and Goban and fight through the floors. Eventually they encounter a snake-like rock monster (called Khonsclard in the game). Adol utilizes the power of the claria to defeat it, but once it is destroyed Ruben, Dogi, and Goban vanish. Adol is left alone, but the voice of Feena urges him to press onward and tells him the way to the top of the tower.
Dark Fact's army begins their assault on the remaining human settlements as Adol continues up the Tower of Darm. In his throne room, Dark Fact tells Dalles that he turned to evil because he feels that humans do not deserve to be saved. Below them, Adol reaches the second highest floor. Feena tells Adol to touch one of the mirrors in this room to teleport to the throne room, but before he can Dalles appears and attacks. Adol defeats Dalles, who is apparently vaporized, and continues on. He finds Leah and saves her, allowing her to return to her sister. The two goddesses then teleport to another section of the tower where Dogi, Ruben, and Goban are and thank them for all they've done. The five then teleport to the throne room and confront Dark Fact. Dark Fact accuses the goddesses of causing all this evil by giving humans the Dark Pearl, the artifact that allowed them to harvest claria in the first place. Goban and Ruben step up and argue that it is human mistakes that caused the evil, not the goddesses. Dark Fact laughs and teleports out of his throne room, saying he must go fight Adol and doesn't care about the rest of them. On top of the tower, Adol and Dark Fact battle while below the goddesses destroy Dark Fact's throne and reveal the Black Pearl. They sacrifice themselves in order to destroy it, which instantly kills every monster on the island. Back atop the tower, Dark Fact realizes this and drops his sword. He tells Adol that the world is saved and that good has triumphed. He then asks Adol to kill him as that is want he wanted as well, and if he is not killed than the darkness will force him to continue to fight for evil. Adol hesitates, but then kills Dark Fact, prompting the priest to thank him before he expires. The final tome, the Book of Fact, appears and Adol claims it. The six books light up and their power destroys the vortex around the island, restores Sarah, and teleports Adol to the floating island of Ys...