Super-Secret Bases in Pokemon Hoenn Remakes!
It's finally confirmed! Pokémon Omega Ruby and Alpha Sapphire will bring back secret bases! Imagine pushing that Mudkip doll around in 3D... Not only that, but with added features.
For those of you who will play the Hoenn journey for the first time, let me give a low-down about how secret bases work. By using the move Secret Power on a specific type of tree or indent in a wall, you uncover a secret room! There are multiple kinds of bases, large and small. (Bulpapedia shows the locations and aspects of each known base.) The player is able to make any one of these locations his or her base, then spend time decorating it with dolls, tables, and even some walkways that will cover up the holes shown in the picture (lower-right).
In the 2003 (2002 in Japan) games, a player was able to share their information with a friend by "mixing records". This would copy the players secret base details and replicate them in their friend's game. Once completed, a player could visit the others secret base in their own game, and battle an NPC version of them (with the same Pokémon). Oh the days before a proper online community in Pokémon...
Sinnoh brought back "secret bases" in an extremely different way, using the underground. When connected to the DS wireless communications, players could play a type of capture-the-flag game by finding another's secret base and stealing their flag.
The new "Super-Secret Bases" coming in the November remakes bring back the old style of secret bases with awesome features. According to the Pokémon website, secret bases can now become like the players own Pokémon Gym with rules and decorations established by the player.
Thanks to the improved Pokémon online community, travelling to friends' secret bases got easier. The player can battle others and even scout them to be "secret pals". This feature lets battles occur between pals and allows for "special skills" to be used to support each other in battles. The capture-the-flag feature returns slightly modified; so the player now can collect the flags of different bases they've visited. This can boost the ranks of the player and their secret pals, plus will bring rewards.
A new character was introduced: Secret Base Expert Aarune. He, along with his Flygon, will teach the player the wonders of secret bases while travelling around.
This news is very exciting! It takes me around 11 years back, after leaving Mauville on Route 111. The moment I first met the boy in front of the tree that gave me TM 43 Secret Power... I hope you're all as excited as I am, and look out for Pokémon Omega Ruby and Alpha Sapphire, releasing world-wide November 21st!