Shadow Hearts takes place in an alternate reality of the real world in the year 1913. The major areas that are visited include many real locations in China and Europe.
Shadow Hearts starts in late 1913 on a train going to Manchuria. The game starts with Yuri hearing a voice in his head telling him to rescue a girl named Alice Elliot, whose father was recently murdered in Rouen, France. After a British gentleman by the name of Roger Bacon attempts to abduct Alice from the Imperial Japanese Army himself, Yuri saves her, and starts a quest through China, and eventually Europe, to discover Alices importance Bacons intent the identity of the mysterious voice and his own relevance.