Relic Castle

Volcarona and the Relic Castle Catacombs

Desert Resort

Right as you're about to enter the Relic Castle, Prof. Juniper will magically be inside of there, popping out to say hello. Why hello there, Prof. Juniper! She points to the strange statues outside of the Relic Castle and tells you they're actually Darmanitan. Oh! She'll give you a RageCandyBar before leaving you to your business. RAGE! In a CANDYBAR!

You can use it on the Darmanitan statues to have one battle you! They loooove chocolate, and RAGE, apparently. Just keep in mind that it'll be used up afterwards, so you might want to save before fighting one. (You can get more either in the winter in Icirrus City or by battling it out in the Royal Unova in Castelia City, although they are both somewhat cumbersome to get.)

Desert Resort
Darmanitan Darmanitan  Lv. 35
x5. Each has the Zen Mode ability.
 

These Darmanitan are particularly special in the fact they have the Zen Mode ability, which transforms them into Zen Mode when they reach less than 1/2 of their HP. That's their blue form, and it has insanely high Sp. Atk and pretty good Sp. Def. It basically switches Darmanitan's strengths to more Special-oriented, which may or may not be a bad thing. At least it combos VERY well with Belly Drum!

Anyway, enter the castle whenever you're ready.

Relic Castle

Not much to see or do here since last time. Make your way to the very bottom room and you'll find that there's now a sand hill leading up to that previously inaccessible door. Awesome! Climb on up and head on inside!

Head forward and you'll see a Plasma Grunt. Oh snap! He'll run off in a jiffy, so go on and follow him down the stairs and into the other room.

He'll insist to battle you right away when you enter the next room. He has a vicious Krookodile L64, so be careful! After beating him, you'll need to navigate your way through the Relic Castle Catacombs.

Relic Castle Catacombs

Relic Castle Catacombs
Wild Pokemon Types Level(s) Rarity
Krokorok Krokorok Ground / Dark Lv. 47 ~ 50 35%
Sandslash Sandslash Ground Lv. 47, 49 30%
Cofagrigus Cofagrigus Ghost Lv. 48 ~ 50 20%
Onix Onix Rock / Ground Lv. 48 ~ 49 15%

Heading west will lead you to some stairs that take you out of the place, so that's obviously not the direction you want to go! Noooo, so head south from the Plasma Grunt instead.

The best way to get through this place is to head south from the Plasma Grunt, then west, then south, then west twice. That will lead you right to the room with... one of the six Plasma sages, Ryoku!

Talk to him and he'll say some stuff, then he'll give you TM04 (Calm Mind)! Woohoo! Afterwards, Looker shows up to arrest that guy, putting him in his place. Take that, Team Plasma!

Now head north and you'll reach Volcarona's chambers...

Relic Castle (Volcarona's Chambers)

Relic Castle (Volcarona's Chamber)
Wild Pokemon Types Level(s) Rarity
Claydol Claydol Ground / Psychic Lv. 47 ~ 50 100%

Thar be Claydols in here! Nothing but Claydols as a matter of fact. Well, nothing except that huge flippin' Volcarona in the back!

Make your way to the back of the room, SAVE YOUR GAME, and then take on the fiery moth Pokemon!

Relic Castle
Volcarona Volcarona  Lv. 70  

Despite Volcarona's high level, it is not a legendary Pokemon. It is just a very strong Pokemon that would make an excellent addition to your team at this point in the game. It is harder to catch than either Zekrom or Reshiram were, but it is still easier to catch than, say, Thundurus or Cobalion.

It is a very tough Pokemon in general, possessing incredible Sp. Atk and formidable Speed to boot. It has Silver Wind, Heat Wave, Bug Buzz, and Quiver Dance available as moves. Watch out for Quiver Dance, because that will only make Volcarona faster while also raising its Sp. Atk and Sp. Def. It's like an upgraded Calm Mind, sheesh!

Don't spend your time reviving your Pokemon. Weaken it the best you can, then just keep chucking your best types of Poke Ball at it (Ultra Ball, Dusk Ball, etc.) in hopes of catching it. If it sweeps your entire team, just reset and try again.

After catching it, don't wimp out and use an Escape Rope. Heal with a Revive or something if you're really weak, or just use some Repels, because you'll want to leave this place in style — and by in style, I mean by taking the long way.

Exit Volcarona's Chambers and then make your way northwest. This will eventually lead you to some some stairs leading you out. Make sure you have your Dowsing Machine active, though, because there's a PP Max hidden in the sands on your way up!

At the very top, you'll be in that western "tower" of the Relic Castle that had virtually nothing in it other than a ledge you couldn't figure out how to get up on. Ha! Now you know. And up there is your reward for taking the long way, the incredibly useful TM26 (Earthquake), one of the best TMs in the game. It teaches your Pokemon Earthquake, which does massive damage to all adjacent Pokemon in a battle, including your partner Pokemon. It's great in Single Battles or when teaming up with a Pokemon that is a Flying-type or has Levitate, though!

Alright, now you can leave and head back to a Pokemon Center to both heal and admire your new Volcarona. And figure out where you want to go next.