Part 7: Rollin' In The DeepPart 7: Rollin' In The Deep
Get your spelunking hats on, it's time to go Underground!
Welcome to Sinnoh's Underground! Huh? Where is this, you ask? Doesn't the Radar make it obvious? This is a giant underground network of passages underneath Sinnoh. Huh? What am I doing down in this expanse of a place? That's kind of hard to answer. I mean, you can do pretty much anything you want down here. For instance, you can dig up Treasures, Spheres, and make a Secret Base. You can play with your friends down here, too. You should talk to the Underground Man in Eterna City. I have to get going now. I'll see you around!
Well Roark is returning to his home planet, so we're on our own to figure out this massive place. There's a lot to do in this place, and I mean a lot of it, and we'll see most of it! Let's check our "Trainer Card".
This is a sample of the stuff we can do here, but all we needed to do was head into the Underground, so let's head back up.
No matter where you go in the underground, you'll always pop up where you used the Explorers Kit, but where you use it determines where in the expansive map you end up in, with each section only accessible from specific areas. I won't be really using the Underground much past this update, so I won't show off the various areas you can use.
The Underground is a place where you can go with friends. You might try setting those Traps when you're down there with others. Now, what should I assign you next...
How was it in the Underground tunnels? Big and empty, I would think. But that's only because you are a novice spelunker! There are many hidden things down there that are not visible to the eye. For my next test, I want you to dig up some Treasures or Spheres for me. While underground, check the Radar for yellow spots. Go to such a location and search for Treasure using the Touch Screen.
All the action is down on the touch screen since we'll need to find spots to dig with the radar.
There's various Hikers in and around the passages that'll sell you various Goods and Traps for Spheres, or accept your Treasures for Spheres. Getting Spheres is easy enough, it's getting them at a large enough size that's a pain. Each vendor changes their items and prices each day and most decorations are obtained this way, from Plants, to most Dolls, to Tools, which are traps that can be endlessly triggered, to most other random Goods.
There's a lot of traps, but they're basically useless if you're not using multiplayer. There's a fair few scattered around the Underground and you can even set off ones you put down yourself. We won't be bothering with these.
You can ping in any area to find where there are digging spots, as well as hidden traps.
Let's get into the main meat of this place!
"Digging for Treasure and Spheres!" I've put a sledgehammer and pickax in your Explorer Kit! Use them, and you'll be able to touch walls to dig out all sorts of stuff! I'm sure you can dig them out before the wall comes tumbling down! You can do it! Good luck, youngster!
This pretty intense minigame has you tap on walls with a sledgehammer to remove most of the dirt, and then the pickaxe to slightly chip away and finish digging out the item. We got pretty lucky to begin with by getting a Treasure. Each digging spot has 1-4 items in them and there's a 20% chance one of those items will be a Treasure. It ranges from all sorts of stuff, from old evolution stones, to fossils, to shards and even stuff like Heart Scales, Everstones and Revives. There's a ton of items you can get down here, though most of the fossils and the rarer items like the evolution stones become available and more common after you've beaten the game.
Even if the wall collapses, you'll still obtain everything you dug up, but if you have someone else nearby, they can also join in the digging and uncover stuff with weakening the wall. It's pretty broken!
Let's see what else we can get. These iron chunks can't be dug through and are only there to waste tool useage.
Spheres are the main thing you'll get from this, ranging from a small shape, only being from size 1-11, to a larger shape, size 11-21. Red, Blue and Green are the most common, with Pale and then Prism being the rarest.
Ah dammit. Since Wireless Communication is always on for this place, movement lags a bit so walking into traps is much more likely than you'd expect. It means lots of people can instantly play with each other, but also means if you're by yourself, it's a waste of battery and movement frames.
Traps usually have two levels to them, so this one only has a few bubbles to pop, while the Bubble Trap has many more. Nearby people can also save you from traps, or just set more traps next to you like a dick.
It's a good thing shards are so common, we're gonna need a lot of them!
Crap! Too late we find a large Prism Sphere, the rarest one. Oh well, not like I'll really use them.
Not too long after that, we hit the jackpot. Fossils are pretty rare, but it's the main reason I came down here. The Skull and Armor fossils are version exclusive, so Diamond with Skull and Pearl with Armor. In Platinum, it's instead based on the last digit of your Trainer ID, odd for Skull, even for Armor. The rarity of treasures is also determined by this, making certain evolution stones, weather rocks and postgame fossils more common depending on the version, or indeed, the ID number. This was something I had to make sure about when I started the game, since this Skull fossil will be our next team member! Though we'll have to wait a little bit before we can revive it, it's not too useful in its current form!
That's the main reason I kept digging for stuff, I wouldn't stop until I found it, so let's head back up.
Fossils and Stones can be dug up and brought out from down under. Spheres, which are gems, cannot be brought out, but they can be exchanged for goods down there. Now, what should I assign you next...?
My tests aren't over yet! Next, let's use some Spheres! The Spheres one can find underground are very peculiar. When buried in the ground, they grow daily, a little bit at a time. I want you to go bury these strange Spheres in the Underground. That is my latest test!
Woo, riveting. There's a bit more to this than first appears. Firstly, you can bury multiple of the same kind of sphere in one spot, thus adding to its size. While the max is 99 for size, don't start mashing all your big spheres up, since past the first sphere, the second sphere is put through (X/5)+1, rounded down. UNLESS, the sphere buried first has grown, therefore making the largest sphere otherwise be added to the total. So if you have a 3 size sphere and a 20 size sphere on top, then it'll result in a size 8 sphere. But if the size 3 has grown to size 4 before you add the sphere, or add another sphere after that, then it'll become size 24, plus whatever you add (X/5)+1, unless it's now the biggest sphere. So when you add spheres smaller than the largest one already buried, you should only put in multiples of 5, since it'll round down and be wasted otherwise. Or not, doesn't really matter. Red, Blue and Green grow faster than Pale and then Prism spheres.
Oh yeah, make sure to add treasures to your actual bag! And don't forget where you've buried your spheres, you'll automatically pick them up like a trap, so there's no checking after the fact. Especially remember where you've put them if you won't be using multiplayer.
Just don't forget where you've buried your Spheres. Anyway, well done! This is your reward!
They wander about in the underground tunnels seeing Spheres. They'll happily trade you items for big Spheres. Now, what shall I assign you next...?
Have you grown weary of repeatedly going back to the Underground? Well, it's not over yet! Next up is your Secret Base! That's right, I will teach you have to make your own Secret Base! All you need is the Digger Drill I gave you earlier. Simply go underground and use the Digger Drill wherever you like. That will instantly make you your very own Secret Base! So, you next assignment is: go make your own Secret Base!
So what are we gonna do with all these Goods we've been obtaining? Well, decorate a Secret Base of course! It's a little different to RSE, especially since we have all these damn boulders in the way, but the concept is still the same. We will definitely collect some stuff and make a brand new, underground goon cave! Much more at home than in a tree, or in a cave. Uh, I hope.
Each Secret Base has a flag which you can steal from other people and add to your collection. Hope you're able to do that, cause it's very important!!!
This is only if your leave your base open. If you're inside and decorating, no one can enter, but as soon as you leave and Wireless Communications are back on, then anyone can enter and steal your flag. Oh no!
I thought I might have been asking too much of you, but you did it! Well done! Take these as your reward!
Incidentally, a Digger Drill can be used only once. If you wish to move your Secret Base, you will need to obtain another Digger Drill. You can trade a Sphere for one underground. What should I make you do next...
Hm! You've stuck it out to the end! This is my final test. You've made yourself a Secret Base, but it's totally empty, is it not? Not to worry! You can decorate your own Secret Base as you see fit! So! For my final test, I want you to decorate your Secret Base. Use furniture and interior goods to give your Secret Base character!
Pretty easy for the final task, though obviously we're constrained a bit. At least dolls no longer need to be placed on something and some decorations are interactable, such as the bookcase telling us how many fossils we've dug up.
Don't forget to close the door when you're decorating! We don't want any visitors getting hurt by walking in on you! Also, if you want to place goods you've received, store them in the PC first. Anyway, well done! This is your reward!
You can grow Spheres you've found and trade them for goods. It's also possible to obtain goods from friends. I've taught you all I know, but if you insist, there is one more thing I should tell you. The Secret Base you've made has Big Boulders that get in the way, yes? There is actually a way of moving those boulders aside... however, the task may be dangerous for you. I suppose I could tell you how when you get better as a spelunker...
Fine! I will tell you, but only because you're exceptional! You know that you may go underground with your friends, correct? That means your friends are certain to have Secret Bases of their own. Now, this is what you must do: first, find a friend's Secret Base. Next, go to the PC and steal your friend's Flag. Then, run back to your Secret Base and take the Flag to your PC! If you can do that, I will permit you to move boulders.
I can not do that, or probably could, but cheating past it is just easier. While the Underground Man will not acknowledge my hacking, thus we won't get the praise we deserve...
The game doesn't give two shits. For every flag we steal, our own flag gets slowly upgraded until we hit 50. The music even changes when you steal a flag! So let's see what rewards from the Underground Man we missed out on if we managed to steal 1 flag:
Ah! My spelunker! Are you spelunking with your friends? It's a hundred times more fun to play with friends underground! If you manage to steal a Flag from a friend's Secret Base, you be sure to come show me! Wait! Don't tell me! You've captured a Flag? Excellent! You should already be capable of moving Big Boulders inside your Secret Base! You can shunt aside a boulder by storing it like furniture. Anyway, well done! This is your reward!
We get a Pretty Gem, which is something we an decorate our base with, our flag becomes bronze, the ability to remove three boulders and can have up to 12 decorations in our Secret Base.
There really is nothing else that I can teach you. If you wish to put away more Big Boulders or put out more goods, keep capturing more Flags. Become the spelunking master for me!
3 Flags captured:
Ah, you've captured three Flags! Well done! Take this as your reward!
We get a Shiny Gem, same as before, our flag becomes silver, two more boulders to remove and up to 15 decorations, the maximum. Now for 10 flags captured:
Ah, you've captured ten Flags! Well done! Take this as your reward!
We get a Mystic Gem, our flag becomes gold, five more boulders to remove and something else we'll cover in just a sec. Finally, is FIFTY flags:
Oh! Oh! My goodness! You've captured fifty Flags! Fantastic! Take this as your reward!
We get the Glitter Gem, our flag becomes, well, platinum, and we get a Trainer Card star. Yes, already, you can get this before the SECOND GYM! This won't be the last one we get before beating the game, actually, it's quite nice being able to space them out a bit.
You have been outstanding! There really is nothing left to teach you. From now on, you are the spelunking master!
For reaching Gold, we get a few radars to help us with our hunting. The first tells you of all the mining spots in the entire Underground, which come back over time.
The second shows where you've buried any Spheres. Remember that all of this is tied to local multiplayer, but at least that stills works a treat compared to the... other multiplayer stuff.
Third tells you of all the buried traps in the Underground. Meh.
Now that's much better. We'll come back to decorate this base later, since we don't have all decoration options available to us! And that's everything you can do in the Underground. There's definitely a lot here, even if you don't have any friends, though tying stuff like locating Spheres and having a clear Secret Base to tedious flag stealing is real shitty. You can steal the same flag again and again, but you also need to talk to a fair few people, otherwise you can't complete the Pokedex! Well, you can also exit and enter the Underground and talk to the same person multiple times, that will count towards the total. Still not as bad as Honey trees, I guess. Oh dammit, I'll have to talk about that soon.
Uh, anyway, there's still loads of good stuff down here and you can absolutely spend hours getting Spheres, burying them, collecting treasure, and trading for all kinds of stuff. It's a lot of fun!
Let's go around some more and dig up some cool stuff. We absolutely do not need these Leaf Stones.
...or not? You can get a BSOD in this place? That's pretty scary! Or maybe it's because I'm on an emulator. Anyway, make sure you come up every now and then so you can save your progress.
It feels like one out of every five mining spot yields treasure. That I find and dig up, anyway. But that's about it for now, next time we'll finish up on a few things around Eterna City and then finally head south!