My dreamcast died before I finished SoA and I had to play like the last 10 hours at a friend's house with constant "you should play FFX, it's way better than this" comments the whole time. It'd be good to play through it again uninterrupted lol.
Even though the ship battles take forever, and sometimes there's a few too many random encounters, Skies is still one of my favorite RPGs ever. Exploring, building your own pirate fort, earning titles, fighting optional bosses...soooo good.
I wonder if SEGA would tweak the ship battles and encounters? Hopefully this is the Gamecube version and we don't have to buy the extra stuff added to the GC edition as DLC (I'm looking at you, Sonic Adventure...)
Almost unparalleled sense of exploration (especially for the time, but even now Xenoblade is the only one I can think of off the top of my head that's analogous), great characters, adequate story, great music, clever ship battles, horribly boring turn based battle system and way too many random battles.
Basically: except for the random battles, it's incredible. Because of them it's merely a great RPG.
edit: I should add, Vyse is basically the GOAT of RPG leads.