Just like in NiGHTS into Dreams, the player first selects a visitor (either Elliot or Claris) and makes them dualize with NiGHTS. The game's goal is to collect 20 Blue Chips to break the Ideya Capture and recover a stolen Ideya, then return to the Ideya Palace before the time runs out. Once all four Ideyas are recovered, NiGHTS will face a boss; Clawz, Puffy, Gillwing or Reala. The player clears the level after defeating the boss.
During the level, collecting Blue Chips and Stars adds 10 points to the score. Once NiGHTS collects an Ideya, the Blue Chips will become Gold Chips, and they will add 50 points to the score.
Hollows, Kircles and Shleeps may also appear to attack NiGHTS during the levels. Avoiding them will also add points to the score; Hollows add 10 points, Kircles add 20 points and Shleeps add 30 points. During the boss battle, defeating Clawz, Puffy or Gillwing will add 100 points to the score, defeating Reala will add 500 points.
If the time runs out, the visitor will unfuse with NiGHTS and they will have a limited to go back to NiGHTS and dualize with them again, as the Alarm Egg will be activated and will try to force them to wake up, resulting in a game over.
In this game, NiGHTS also has a health bar. Not avoiding the Hollows, Kircles and Shleeps will take energy from the health bar. If the health bar reaches zero, it is instantly game over. If the player finds a Nightopian during the level, they will retain their health bar's energy.
- The Nightopians are called "Fairies" in the manual.