Pokémon Scarlet/Violet DLC Part 2: The Indigo Disk – A Crystallising Journey of Discovery​

Pokémon Scarlet/Violet DLC Part 2: The Indigo Disk - A Crystallising Journey of Discovery

Continuing on from the precedent started in Pokémon Sword/Shield, Pokémon Scarlet and Violet have split their DLC into 2 parts.  With the story driven DLC of Part 1’s The Teal Mask leaving everyone on an intriguing cliff-hanger, it’s now time to move onto Part 2’s The Indigo Disk and round out the story that is The Hidden Treasure of Area Zero.

After receiving a call from Director Clavell, you are directed to meet up at the academy with the Director of the Blueberry Academy with an opportunity to become a foreign exchange student and study abroad.  With full backing from your respective academy, you are then whisked off on a flight to the Unova region where the Blueberry Academy is based.  After being introduced to one of the Blueberry Elite Four trainers, you are then taken to the DLC’s main area – the Terarium.

When introduced to the Terarium to the first time, I was excited by the amount of scope the area had to offer.  The Terarium is split into four distinct areas; each with their own particular ecosystem and while the whole area is smaller than Paldea, it feels larger than Kitakami from The Teal Mask.  The first thing I wanted to do was to explore every inch of every area.  Having new Pokémon to find in amongst the new areas was great as you were never really sure of what was around the corner apart from having an idea based on the climate provided to the Pokémon.  I literally spent my first 4-5 hours just exploring every nook and cranny as it was just a load of fun and even picked up a Shiny Pokémon in the process.

Being that the Blueberry Academy is based in the Unova region, there is a distinct flavour provided from the music in both wild and trainer battles.  People that have played Generation 5’s Black and White (and Black 2 and White 2) versions will immediately be familiar with the tones being played.  Generation 7 fans will also note an Alolan flavour within a couple of the areas and with the different regional versions of Pokémon throughout the Terarium.  While the DLC is designed to appeal to everyone, it does push its appeal more with players who grew up with the DS and 3DS Pokémon games.

Back to reason you have come to Blueberry Academy.  While initially you participate in a study class with one of the Elite Four members, you are soon roped in by the Elite Four and Blueberry League Champion to participate in the academy’s Pokémon League.  Each member of the Elite Four is located in a different area of the Terarium and can be done in any order and each have a distinct trial to clear before battling them.  Tasks are varied from each member and can vary from being dull to really interesting.

During your stay at Blueberry Academy, you will be given various side quests to complete as your journey progresses.  These usually involve very minor tasks such as picking up a certain numbers of items, travelling an amount of distance, taking a photo of a Pokémon in a particular area, and many more.  Completing these quests will earn you Blueberry Points (BP) which, once you have accumulated some BP, will allow you to customise a number of places around the academy, customise your Poke Ball throw, and many other benefits.  The accumulation of BP is very slow however, and some of the rewards are worth it in the end, but even though the tasks given can be completed very quickly, it still takes a long time to get enough points to get the best benefits so more points on offer for the more menial tasks would have been helpful.

Throughout the Terarium, you will find students dotted around the areas wanting to battle the newcomer to the academy.  All Pokémon battles within the Blueberry Academy are Double Battles, which provide a much more refreshing take than the usual Single Battles and includes a more in-depth take on strategy.  If you were to continue to bring over your main party from the base game, the battles will continue to be straight-forward, however you will find that even your level 100 team may struggle with some of the students and that is actually great to see.  Everyone uses held items on their Pokémon to accentuate particular strategies ranging from your classic Earthquake paired with a Pokémon with the ability Levitate to even more interesting strategies using abilities to create additional attacks within the turn of them being used.  It is awesome to see something different like this for a change and while I don’t see these type of battles being fully integrated into a base game going forward, it would amazing to see this come to DLC in future games.

Once you have become champion, you are then given a task to travel back to Paldea to further explore The Great Depths of Area Zero in search of the legendary Pokémon Terapagos.  Area Zero is, in my opinion, one of the best areas to explore within the whole series.  It is completely distinct with its own music and Pokémon, but the vibe that Area Zero gives is that unsure feeling in that you shouldn’t be there and that is definitely complimented with the Paradox Pokémon that populate the area.  Being able to further dive into Area Zero to unlock what is hidden below filled me with excitement as to what to find and I was not disappointed in the slightest.  The progression of the second part of the DLC takes roughly 8 to 10 hours depending on how much exploring you wish to complete and the story very much rounds out in an exciting manner and completes the story that started from Part 1’s The Teal Mask.

Speaking of disappointments though, anyone looking for improvements in the performance of the game will continue to be unsatisfied.  Slowdowns continue to occur, though from my personal experience, there were only certain spots where this happened and there were still graphical glitches here and there.  While these issues will continue to put off the people who are waiting for a performance upgrade, those who continue to persist despite the issues put forward will be rewarded for their efforts with the game play and story that is on offer.

Pokémon Scarlet/Violet’s The Indigo Disk completes the 2-part DLC package in a great fashion with the adjustments to battling and bringing in more of challenge to the player while continuing to push forward with giving the player the ability to explore and take on tasks in any order.  I hope to see this trend continue with future games and provide more opportunity to challenge veteran players while still being readily available to play for newcomers and with an Epilogue DLC announced to come out this month, we hope to see off Generation 9’s games with a bang.

Pokémon Scarlet & Pokémon Violet’s The Hidden Treasure of Area Zero Part 2: The Indigo Disk was reviewed on Nintendo Switch with code kindly provided by Nintendo Australia

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