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Pokémon Scarlet And Violet: What Are The Ominous Black Stakes And What Do They Do?

The brand new Paldea Region that was introduced in "Pokémon Scarlet" and "Violet" is bursting with new pokemon to catch, items to find, trainers to battle, and places to discover. Not only that, but there are a number of strange and mysterious phenomena in the region that have never been seen in a "Pokémon" game before, such as the gigantic Titan Pokémon that trainers will have to defeat as part of the Path of Legends quest, or the dazzling Terastal Pokémon that can occasionally be found roaming in the wilds.

Some intrepid adventurers may even stumble across another oddity that is unique to the region: the Ominous Black Stakes. There are a few unusual-looking black rods that can be found sticking out of the ground in seemingly random locations throughout each corner of the map. These aren't simply set pieces, however; they glow with an ominous aura and can be collected by players who approach them. They certainly stand out from the scenery, but the games don't do a very good job of telling the player what they are, or what they're supposed to do. It turns out that these stakes are pretty important as they unlock the doors to four shrines, each containing a legendary Pokémon.

Keys to the Shrine doors

During their Pokémon journey, trainers may also stumble across a number of massive glowing circular doors with chains running across them that are embedded into the sides of mountains and cliffs. They are far from subtle, but gamers seemingly have no way of opening them when they find them. Well, It turns out that finding and collecting the correlating set of Ominus Black Stakes in a given quadrant is the key to unlocking these doors and uncovering the treasure inside.

See, while all of the stakes themselves are black, there are four different color-coded auras that they give off. Collecting all of the purple stakes unlocks the Grasswither Shrine in Area One. Getting the yellow stakes unlocks the Icerend Shrine in Area Six. Green stakes unlock the Groundblight Shrine just north of the Casseroya Lake. Finally, blue stakes unlock the Firescourge Shrine in Area Two.

There are eight of each kind of stake for trainers to find that are hidden somewhere close to their respective door, making for a grand total of 32 stakes throughout Paldea (per IGN). It may take players a fair bit of time to collect them all, but the rewards found inside the shrines are definitely worth it.

Unlock the legendary Treasures of Ruin

Collecting 32 hidden stakes in an open world as big as Paldea is certainly a hassle, so why bother going through all the trouble? Well, it turns out that each of these shrines contains one of the legendary Pokémon known as the Treasures of Ruin. These ancient and powerful Pokémon were corrupted by the negative emotions of humanity. They were sealed away by powerful ancient Pokémon trainers after they were unleashed by a greedy king and wrought disaster upon the kingdom that once stood where Paldea is now.

All four of them are dual-type Pokémon with one of their two types always being Dark. The Grasswither Shrine holds the Dark/Grass legendary Wo-Chien. The Icerend Shrine holds the Dark/Ice legendary Chien-Pao. The Groundblight Shrine holds the Dark/Ground legendary Ting-Lu, and the Firescourge Shrine holds the Dark/Fire legendary Chi-Yu. Each of these would make incredibly powerful additions to any trainer's team. Like all legendaries, they boast some of the most impressive stats of any Pokémon in the games, with Chien-Pao in particular ranking among the strongest Gen 9 Pokémon.