Pokémon Mystery Dungeon: Explorers of Time and Explorers of Darkness
- If you were looking for the anime special based on the games, see Pokémon Mystery Dungeon: Explorers of Time & Darkness.
- If you were looking for the manga based on the game, see Pokémon Mystery Dungeon: Explorers of Time and Darkness (manga).
Pokémon Mystery Dungeon: Explorers of Time (Japanese: ポケモン不思議のダンジョン 時の探検隊 Pokémon Mystery Dungeon: Explorers of Time) and Pokémon Mystery Dungeon: Explorers of Darkness (Japanese: ポケモン不思議のダンジョン 闇の探検隊 Pokémon Mystery Dungeon: Explorers of Darkness) are a matched pair of Pokémon games for the Nintendo DS. These games are the second pair of entries in the Pokémon Mystery Dungeon series, an adaptation of the Mystery Dungeon games for Pokémon.
The games are successors to Pokémon Mystery Dungeon: Red Rescue Team and Blue Rescue Team. They include the new Generation IV Pokémon and have some Wi-Fi features, as well as more dual-screen features than their predecessor for the same system (Pokémon Mystery Dungeon: Blue Rescue Team).
An anime adaptation of these games has been produced.
Forming an Exploration Team
The story begins with a cut-scene where the player, as a Pokémon, winding up unconscious on a beach due to a time-traveling accident, causing them to become a Pokémon. Meanwhile, the partner is nervous about joining the Wigglytuff's Guild, a local exploration club, and gives up early. Walking along the beach, the partner encounters the player, and informs that the player has been turned into a Pokémon. The Relic Fragment the partner holds is then stolen by Zubat and Koffing, members of Team Skull, which the player helps recover. After a brief exchange, the partner explains their motivation for joining the guild: the partner loves legend and lore and their life dream is to find the secret of their personal treasure—a Relic Fragment with a strange pattern on it. The partner, reinvigorated by the player's courage, resolves to join the Guild as a new team with the player, who, due to having obtained severe memory loss that erased everything from their past life except their name and the knowledge that they were once human, agrees as a way to piece together who they were.
Over the next few days, the team gets accustomed to life at the Guild and the nearby Treasure Town. Among the folks they meet are Wigglytuff, the kindhearted Guild Master, Chatot, the hot-tempered yet well-meaning second-in-command, Bidoof, the newest recruit prior to the team joining, senior apprentices Corphish and Sunflora, the Guild chef Chimecho (also in charge of maintaining the team), Diglett and Loudred, the Guild sentries, Dugtrio, maintainers of the job boards, Magnezone, the local sheriff, brothers Marill and Azurill, various shop owners, and other exploration teams. As they are introduced to the Guild, they learn of the fact that rogue Pokémon have been wreaking havoc in the world due to the disruption of time, Pokémon cannot evolve, and new "Mystery Dungeons" have been revealed and open to exploration.
The player discovers not too long after that they have the ability to spontaneously see things in the past and future, but only when touching an object of some kind. This comes in handy when the player and partner arrest Drowzee when he attempts to manipulate Azurill into collecting some treasure for him. Later, the partner tells the player the story of the Time Gears, the artifacts that maintain the flow of time in their respective regions. The partner theorizes that if a Time Gear is stolen, time in that area will stop. Despite this, a mysterious thief is seen stealing a Time Gear.
After several days of completing minor jobs, Chatot gives the player and partner their first real job: the exploration of a nearby waterfall that he feels holds more than it lets on. Discovering a cave on the other side and exploring to its depths, they discover that it houses a huge gem. However, their attempts to remove it result in them triggering a bobby trap that flushes them off to a nearby Hot Spring. Despite being unable to claim the gem, Chatot and the partner are convinced that the cave alone is a major find for the Guild. However, the player, after piecing together several visions his ability caused (and Chatot later confirms), discerns that Wigglytuff had already discovered the cave, but had completely forgotten by the time they were told to go.
The legend of the Time Gears
One day, the player and partner, along with the Guild, make an expedition to a location called Fogbound Lake, a lake seemingly covered in fog. During this time, they draw the ire of Team Skull, in particular their leader Skuntank, whom decide to make their lives a living hell, including tricking Wigglytuff to let them join the expedition for that purpose. Arriving there, the player recalls the place as being familiar, but cannot ascertain as to why. This point is pushed home when Chimecho relays the story of the Lake Guardian, Uxie, who is said to be able to erase the memories of all who arrive there. Convinced that their memory loss is due to having a negative encounter with Uxie, the player, along with the partner, resolves to find Fogbound Lake in order to discern the truth. After escaping a trap from Team Skull (who are, in turn, assaulted by Wigglytuff after he discerns their true intentions), the two reach the top, where they find and defeat Groudon to find out that it was only an illusion made by Uxie. Uxie does not trust the Guild, fearing that they may take the Time Gear at the center of the lake, hence the reason for erasing the memories. However, after an appeal from the partner, the Guild earns Uxie's trust, and Uxie decides not to erase the memories of the Guild or the lake's treasure. However, Uxie also reveals that he had nothing to do with the player's memory loss due to never having met a human before and the fact that, as far as he knows, he can only erase memories of Fogbound Lake.
Returning home, they meet a famous explorer named Dusknoir, who, after helping the team escape another trap by Team Skull (they had overheard Marill and Azurill talking to them about a personal item going missing and, upon retrieving it first, intended to use it to have them eliminated by a territorial Luxray), explains that the player's ability to see through time is called the Dimensional Scream. Asking Dusknoir how the player had arrived in their condition, they surprisingly get no results. Nevertheless, Dusknoir offers their help in uncovering the secret behind the player's transformation. Just then, however, the Guild reports that the Time Gear from Fogbound Lake has been stolen, and an all-points bulletin has been posted for the arrest of Grovyle. As a result, Wigglytuff has the Guild focus their energies on bringing Grovyle to justice, to which Dusknoir also offers his assistance. The Guild splits up to look for the other Time Gears, while the player's team eventually discovers an underground lake beneath the Northern Desert, which is home to a Time Gear. The Time Gear is guarded over by Mesprit, which the team is forced to defeat when she mistakes them for thieves. Just as the partner explains that they are not there to steal the Time Gear, Grovyle appears. Grovyle easily dispatches the team and the weakened Mesprit, and steals the Time Gear. Fortunately, the team and Mesprit manages to escape before they are frozen in time.
Back at the guild, the failure of the team to stop Grovyle meant that there are no leads to his next location. However, Dusknoir determines that, as Uxie, the being of knowledge, and Mesprit, the being of emotion, were both guarding Time Gears, it stands to reason that Azelf, the being of willpower, is likely to be guarding another Time Gear. Dusknoir further explains that as Uxie and Mesprit were encountered in lakes not likely to be where they were, Azelf is also likely to be found in a similar lake area. Hoping to find a lead, Dusknoir asks the player to touch a treasure that Bidoof took with him at Crystal Cave, in order to trigger a Dimensional Scream. Indeed, after touching it, the player sees a vision where Azelf is defeated at the hands of Grovyle. However, Chimecho is unsure—because the Dimensional Scream cannot tell the difference between past and future, Grovyle may have already made off with the Time Gear. Dusknoir remains confident that it is of the future, as the partner had never heard Azelf's name before Dusknoir had mentioned it. Because there is a chance that the Dimensional Scream is describing the future, the Guild decides to have all hands search the cave. The team arrives at the lake in the middle of the cave, where they find Azelf about to be defeated by Grovyle. However, just as Grovyle is about to steal the Time Gear, Azelf, having been forewarned of Grovyle's intentions from Uxie and Mesprit and anticipating the possibility that he might not be able to slow him down, activates a fail-safe trap that covers the lake in crystals, preventing Grovyle from submerging underwater and reaching the Time Gear. This does not deter Grovyle, and the team is knocked unconscious and the partner is badly wounded. Before Grovyle can finish the partner off, Dusknoir appears. The team discovers that Dusknoir and Grovyle have been long acquainted, but before they can delve any further, Grovyle makes his getaway, and Dusknoir chases after the Pokémon. Just then, the Guild finds the team, and cart them back to the guild.
Some time later, the team reawakens back at the guild. The partner recalls the exchange between Dusknoir and Grovyle, and the information is shared with the Guild and Azelf. Just then, the Guild's emergency alarm sounds, requiring everyone to be in attendance at a town meeting. In town, they find Dusknoir, who reminds everyone that Grovyle is still at large. Dusknoir further claims that Grovyle is a Pokémon from the future—there, Grovyle was a criminal who fled to the past to avoid being captured. In order to prevent any pursuers from coming after him, he plots to steal the Time Gears, which in turn would freeze the world in time, thus causing the planet's paralysis, a dystopian world where water would not flow, the sun would not rise, the seasons would not change, and darkness would cover the world. When Corphish is curious as to how Dusknoir knows all of this, Dusknoir reveals that he, too, is from the future, sent back in time to capture Grovyle and bring him to justice. The Guild and townsfolk all agree to help Dusknoir stop Grovyle. Azelf has a plan to trap Grovyle—as the Time Gear in Crystal Lake still remains, they are certain that Grovyle will return for it. In order to lure Grovyle, the townsfolk spread a false rumor that the lake trio will try to seal the Time Gear away permanently, while the trio will be defending the Time Gear, awaiting the moment to make the jump on Grovyle. Although everyone wants to help, Dusknoir insists on doing so alone as to avoid suspicion.
A few days later, a report from Magnezone arrives, indicating that Grovyle has been captured, and that Dusknoir plans to take Grovyle back to the future to face justice. To do so, Dusknoir has opened a Dimensional Hole in the middle of town square. In town, the townsfolk find the Dimensional Hole, but no sign of Dusknoir. As the lake trio explain to the partner that the Time Gears were recovered and were returned, Dusknoir appears with Grovyle and two Sableye. As Grovyle is carted off into the Dimensional Hole, Dusknoir gives his farewell. But before he steps through the portal, he asks the player's team to step forward. When they step next to the portal, the partner bids Dusknoir a sad farewell, but then, Dusknoir suddenly grabs the team and drags them into the portal. Before the townsfolk can react, the Dimensional Hole closes and disappears suddenly.
Escape from the future
The player is woken up by the partner, who reveals that they have been locked in a cell. Just then, they encounter some guards—a group of Sableye. Six Sableye blindfold them and take them to another room, where they find themselves bound to a pole, awaiting execution. Along with the two is Grovyle, also tied up. Dusknoir appears, giving the orders to the Sableye to execute the three. Grovyle convinces the team to cooperate - while the Sableye to attack the ropes that tie them to the stake, there is a slight chance of breaking the ropes, and it may allow the three to escape. Fortunately, the ropes break free, and the three overwhelm the Sableye. This allows Grovyle to use a Luminous Orb, and take the team to safety. Back outside, Grovyle reveals that they are indeed in the future, but despite the lake trio returning the Time Gears back to their original places, the planet has been paralyzed.
Continuing to elude the Sableye, the partner loses confidence on whether they will ever return home. The player then proposes to the partner to catch up to Grovyle, who had gone ahead due to the partner's reluctance to trust him, and ask how he had traveled back to the past in the first place. They eventually catch up to Grovyle, and save him from the Spiritomb who had knocked him out earlier. Though Grovyle is reluctant to help them, he proceeds to tell his side of the story. The world's paralysis dated back to the present day with the collapse of the Temporal Tower, governed by Dialga, the legendary Pokémon that controls time. When the tower collapsed, Dialga lost control of time, and it too lost all control. Dialga turned berserk, becoming Primal Dialga. Seeking only self-preservation, Primal Dialga tries to prevent history from changing, and hence its need to exterminate Grovyle. The partner is visibly shocked by this revelation—and even more so when Grovyle reveals that he had pure motivations for collecting the Time Gears: he needed them in order to prevent the tower from collapsing and that the time stop caused by the removal of the Time Gears is merely temporary—the area affected would return to normal once the gears were placed in Temporal Tower. This story contradicts Dusknoir's claims, and Grovyle then reveals that Dusknoir is an agent of Primal Dialga sent to stop him, and had everyone in the past played for fools.
Though the partner does not believe Grovyle, the player believes that Grovyle's assertions are reasonable, and that the partner cannot seem to accept the truth. The partner even thought of going back to the stockade and ask Dusknoir to reveal the truth, but Grovyle stops them by reminding them that, due to their hesitance to trust him, they would decide for themselves what best to do. Grovyle leaves to find Celebi, the time-traveling Pokémon, to start his mission anew. Although the player is determined to follow Grovyle, the partner is more reluctant. Nevertheless, the partner agrees to follow, if only to find a way to return to the present. The group eventually manages to find Celebi, who seems to also be aware of who the player is. However, Grovyle didn't hear what Celebi said, and before the team can react, Grovyle reminds the team to get a move on. Celebi leads the group to the Passage of Time—a secret corridor spanning multiple dimensions that Celebi needs for major time jumps. However, before they can go through the passage, they are stopped by Dusknoir and the Sableye, who had caught up to them. Surrounded, the group has no choice but to overpower Dusknoir and the Sableye. However, when Primal Dialga appears, Grovyle, believing that they are outmatched, has no choice but to surrender, but, before they can go down, he contends that at least hope will remain: when he first traveled back to the past, he and his human partner had been separated, and he is confident this partner will carry out the mission in his stead. Dusknoir, however, believes otherwise, and forces Grovyle to tell the name of his partner - the player. The partner is surprised at this revelation—and Grovyle and Celebi are even more surprised that the player is standing with them. Grovyle refuses to believe that the player has been turned into a Pokémon, but Dusknoir relays his plan to eliminate the player and Grovyle: during his attempts to track the two in the past, Dusknoir ran into the player and, upon discovering their current condition, befriended the team and the Guild so he can trick the player into unknowingly betraying Grovyle, paving the way for him to destroy both of them (and the partner, whom he had likely felt had gotten too close) in one shot. The plan worked to perfection as the player's damaged memory prevented them from recognizing Dusknoir for the villain he was.
While Grovyle is emotionally crushed by both his plans failing and having unconsciously attacked his own partner and the player struggles to process what they heard about their past, the partner has a plan to elude Dusknoir and his underlings—all that is needed is to have Celebi teleport them closer to the Passage. Although Celebi recognizes that Dialga could detect them, Celebi agrees to the partner's idea. They fail to escape Dusknoir, but they get to the Passage. Celebi implores the rest of the group to leave through the Passage, leaving Dusknoir to herself. It is believed that Celebi managed to elude capture as the group returned back to the present.
Racing the clock
Arriving back to the present, the partner explains that the beach that they are on was where the player was first found. However, before the partner can lead Grovyle back to the Guild to plan their next move, he reminds them that in the present time, Grovyle is a criminal. The partner, seeing the complications this may cause, instead takes the player and Grovyle to a cliff known as Sharpedo Bluff (named as the cliff is in the shape of a Sharpedo), which was the home of the partner prior to joining the Guild. That night, Grovyle explains to the partner the common history between himself and the player. The player and Grovyle had been a formidable team investigating the planet's paralysis. The player had the ability to perform the Dimensional Scream, but only in the presence of a trusted partner. Grovyle further explains that the Dimensional Scream is set off by triggers tied to places where Time Gears were hidden. The partner, however, is unsure how accurate Grovyle's statement is: the Dimensional Scream was going off not long after the two of them met and, in several instances, it had gone off in places unrelated to Time Gears. Grovyle is undeterred and states that this is likely due to the player, because of the memory loss, found the partner as a strong support system and theorizes that perhaps the Dimensional Screams had worked differently in the past. In any event, the three quickly agree to plot a new plan to take the Time Gears.
Later, the partner shares their story of the Relic Fragment with Grovyle and the two share a sunrise. Grovyle and the partner agree that the player has a connection to the both of them - the player had made each of them stronger. The trio redoubles their efforts to retake the Time Gears, starting with the one in Treeshroud Forest, where Grovyle had found the one unguarded. However, after arriving there, they find that, despite the presence of the Time Gear, time has stopped—a sign that Temporal Tower is already starting to collapse. That night, back at Sharpedo Bluff, the partner reveals, after a fact-finding mission, that time in other places is also stopped, despite the return of the Time Gears. It appears that the only way to restore time is to take the Time Gears to Temporal Tower. This is easier said than done though: the Tower is located in the Hidden Land, and, as the name suggests, no one knows where the Hidden Land is. Therefore, while Grovyle gathers the remaining Time Gears, the player and partner are to search for any leads on the Hidden Land's location.
Desperate, and running out of options and time, the player convinces the partner to return back to the Guild. The Guild is surprised to find that the team has returned, but is more surprised when the team reveals their story. Chatot, however, acts unconvinced and tries to write it off as shock fueled exhaustion from the two of them going through time, but when the rest of the Guild sides with them due to inconsistencies between the image Dusknoir presented and the actions he took after Grovyle was caught, he reveals it was nothing more than a test in the Guild's faith in the team. With them understanding what the world’s fate will be, the Guild agrees to help search for the Hidden Land, and tells the lake trio to allow Grovyle to reclaim the ones they guard. The team is recommended by Wigglytuff to see Torkoal, the town elder, for advice on finding the Hidden Land. At the hot springs, Torkoal reveals that the Hidden Land is a place beyond the oceans, but also a place which only appears to those with sufficient "proof". However, Torkoal does not recall what is needed for such "proof". The next day, however, Torkoal arrives at the Guild Hall with one new recollection—the "proof" is an inscription of a certain pattern—the same pattern found in the Relic Fragment. What is more surprising is that Wigglytuff and Chatot have also seen the same pattern—found in a distant place called Brine Cave, where bandits had scared the two in an earlier adventure. Nevertheless, the Guild decides to make an expedition to Brine Cave. Meanwhile, the team hears word that Grovyle has taken all the Time Gears, but warns that Dusknoir may also return from the future to hunt them down.
The next day, The Guild (without Wigglytuff, who had left the day before to 'take care of some business') arrives at Brine Cave, where they split up to reach the innermost part, with Chatot following the team. However, partway into the cave, they are ambushed by Team Skull, who coerced the information out of Torkoal and steal the Relic Fragment with the intention of going to the Hidden Land simply for the glory of finding it. Though Chatot gives chase and manages to catch them, by the time the team manages to catch up, they find both Team Skull and Chatot severely wounded, due to themselves having been ambushed by two Omastar and Kabutops. After dispatching them, the team tend to Chatot. Just then, Wigglytuff and Grovyle arrive, with the rest of the Guild in tow. Wigglytuff is particularly concerned, as Chatot had been severely injured by the Omastar and Kabutops protecting Wigglytuff in their last trip to Brine Cave. Urging the team and Grovyle to continue, the Guild return home to tend to Chatot's wounds. Further in, the team discovers a rock wall pointing out to sea, on which is a wall pattern similar to the one found on the Relic Fragment. When the Relic Fragment is presented, a light shines out towards the sea. Just then, a Lapras arrives and informs them that they have been chosen to head to the Hidden Land. At the same time, back at the Guild, Wigglytuff explains to the Guild the story of how he and Chatot had previously encountered the pattern on the Relic Fragment: Chatot had been injured by Omastar and Kabutops while protecting Wigglytuff. Though Wigglytuff had fended off the Omastar and Kabutops, he had felt helpless because he could not help Chatot. Just then, Lapras had appeared to help Chatot on the condition that they not explore the wall pattern further. Back with the team, Lapras, while ferrying the team and Grovyle, explains that she is the gatekeeper to the Hidden Land, a land that exists in a different dimension—within a moment of time. The Hidden Land is as such because Dialga had feared that interference by exploration teams or bad Pokémon could affect the flow of time. Dialga had, however, left one key to entering the Hidden Land, within the Relic Fragment. Wigglytuff had known this, and had realized that the promise to Lapras could not be kept in the interest of saving the world, and thus had set off towards Brine Cave ahead of the Guild to find Lapras. Lapras explained to Wigglytuff then that the Relic Fragment chooses who may visit the Hidden Land, and it had chosen the partner due to the partner's purity of heart. Now, it lies upon the team to explore the land and save the world.
Saving the world
Arriving at the Hidden Land, Lapras tells them that in order to reach the Temporal Tower, they must take the Rainbow Stoneship, located inside an old ruin. Finding the ruin, the partner is astounded at what they can find—pictures of legendary Pokémon Mew, Kyogre, Groudon, Dialga, and Palkia engraved on the wall. Proceeding further, they find a temple where, at the top, they find the Ruin Fragment pattern. The team discovers that the temple itself is the Rainbow Stoneship, and in order for the ship to operate, the Relic Fragment must be slotted in one of the indentations. But before the partner can do so, they are captured by Dusknoir and the Sableye entourage, whom, after discerning that they would likely wind up there, had Primal Dialga warp them there directly. Dusknoir takes their captives to a nearby Dimensional Hole, but before the team can be put through it, they overwhelm the Sableye, prompting Dusknoir to fight back. The team is able to defeat Dusknoir in battle, but while the partner goes to activate the Rainbow Stoneship, Dusknoir pulls out one final trump card: he warns that should they succeed in their quest, the Pokémon of the future, including himself, the player and Grovyle, will be erased from existence because they are from a future that will no longer exist. Grovyle admits that this is the case, but that their sacrifice is worth the trouble if it means that the future can be saved. The player accepts this fate, even though they know that the partner will not take it as easily as the player or Grovyle.
Meanwhile, the partner succeeds in activating the Rainbow Stoneship, but Dusknoir manages to recover and attack the player before either the player or Grovyle is on board. Just as Dusknoir tries to finish off the player, Grovyle intervenes. In a move of desperation, Grovyle pushes Dusknoir towards the Dimensional Hole, hoping that in his own sacrifice, Grovyle will erase Dusknoir from existence. Dropping the Time Gears, Grovyle pushes Dusknoir and himself through the Dimensional Hole, but not without giving his last goodbye. The partner recovers the Time Gears, and the team proceed on the Rainbow Stoneship, with the player keeping silent to the partner about their fate. With a heavy heart, the team head towards Temporal Tower to take on their final mission.
Arriving at the top of Temporal Tower as the tower itself is collapsing, they find a mystical relic with five indentations. Before the partner slots in the Time Gears into the indentations, the team is attacked by none other than Dialga, having just gone berserk but is shifting in and out of varying stages of sanity. Realizing that there is no reasoning with Dialga, the team prepare to battle it out to the end. After a long battle, Dialga is defeated, and the partner takes the opportunity to install the Time Gears. The earthquakes destroying the tower eventually stop, and Dialga is restored back to normal. Dialga quickly uses its powers to restore the world back to normal, though Temporal Tower remains heavily damaged. Dialga explains that the world's paralysis has been prevented with the installation of the Time Gears, and that peace has been restored. Dialga says its thanks to the team, but also warns that the world can only be back to normal in time. Dialga shows the team out of the Temporal Tower, where the Rainbow Stoneship and Lapras are awaiting them for their ride home.
On the way back, the player feels the effects of being slowly erased from existence. The partner notices this, and wonders what is wrong. The player says their goodbyes, regretting that the partner was kept in the dark on the player's situation and requests that they inform everyone what had happen in order to prevent another incident. The player slowly fades out of existence as the partner makes their tearful goodbye. The partner returns home, crying, but knowing that the player has made the partner stronger. Back home, the partner tells the townsfolk and the guild everything—how they had traveled across the Hidden Land, how Grovyle and the player had sacrificed themselves, and how they had saved the world.
Months have passed since the incident, and the damages from time have slowly been healed, and life has returned to normal for most... but not for the partner, still mourning over the player's disappearance. At the beach, the partner is taking a walk, when the partner is reminded of the player and their adventures together, and how now the player is gone—erased from existence. The partner collapses on the beach out of extreme sadness, and starts crying. The end credits roll at this point.
After the credits, Dialga feels the partner's great sorrow in the distance. Using its powers, Dialga brings the player back to life as thanks for bringing it back in control. The player reappears at the beach, where the partner and Bidoof, who was concerned about the partner when they failed to return in time for dinner, are overjoyed to find the player alive.
As with previous games, there is a post-credits story. Several months after the player was brought back, Wigglytuff decides that the player's team is ready for an exam to qualify for graduation from the Guild (apparently only accepting one team per year and ahead of the others as Wigglytuff and Chatot view them saving the world as higher qualification). They are told to go find the treasure found in Luminous Spring, a place where Pokémon used to go to evolve, but are also warned to avoid the "grand master of all things bad" who lives there with his minions. Although Loudred is not allowed to speak of the test, having failed it the year before, Ursaring and Teddiursa, two Treasure Town locals, claim of going to the springs before and meeting no such "Grand Master". Upon reaching the spring, the team run into Ursaring and Teddiursa and conclude that the "Grand Master" does not exist before falling into the lair of the "Grand Master", who turns out to be none other than Wigglytuff and the guild members (revealed due to a slip up by Bidoof), though they continue to (poorly) deny it till the end. After defeating the whole guild, the team continues their journey with Ursaring and Teddiursa. They find that the treasure is actually a Perfect Apple left in a chest by Wigglytuff himself (through the help of the player's Dimensional Scream). They also find the Luminous Spring to be able to evolve Pokémon again, as Teddiursa evolves into an Ursaring after she steps into the spring and made her choice to evolve. The team, however, is told by the voice of the spring that they couldn't evolve yet, due to space being distorted. Later, they return the treasure to the guild and graduate, finding that the only benefit is that they can explore on their own and change the group leader, but they still have to give most of their reward money to the guild. Having graduated, the team moves their headquarters to Sharpedo Bluff.
Then, Mr. Mime appears in Treasure Town stating the famous explorer Scizor has been missing in a place called the Blizzard Island. The team pays a visit and finds Scizor frozen solid by a possessive Froslass. After they rescue Scizor, Scizor gives the team the "Secret Rank" which the team and everyone else knows nothing about. This rank is used for the 7 dungeons home to the great Seven Treasures.
One day, the player finds Corphish at the Guild's intersection, saying to go talk to Sunflora about something. When Sunflora is found on the lower level, she says that there is a Mystery Dungeon that has recently become possible to enter. This dungeon is called the Surrounded Sea, supposedly home to hundreds of rare treasures brought by the currents that run through it. At the end of Surrounded Sea, there are three Deluxe Boxes and a Wonder Egg. The next morning, the Egg hatches into a Manaphy. The team goes to see Chatot, who says that Manaphy are extremely rare. This makes the team take extra good care of it. A day later, the team takes Manaphy for a walk by the beach, which makes baby Manaphy incredibly happy. That night, however, when the team is asleep, Manaphy stays up and longingly stares out at the sea, eventually resorting to go to the shore. When the team wakes and finds Manaphy missing in the morning, they run around in a panic, trying to find it. They finally find it at the beach, where it suddenly keels over in the sand. Once the team reports to Chatot, the bird says that Manaphy are really supposed to grow up in the ocean. However, Manaphy's current ailment could only be cured by the Phione Dew, located in Miracle Sea. At the end of the dungeon, there are six Phione, who are driven away suddenly by an enraged, treasure-seeking Gyarados. After defeating Gyarados, he runs away, and in their thanks, the Phione gives the player the Phione Dew. After Manaphy is cured and with a few days of rest, a Pokémon named Walrein is told by Chatot to take care of Manaphy under the sea. With a tearful farewell, Manaphy is taken to its home.
After a couple of days of plain jobs, Team Charm pays a visit to the Guild. Team Charm consists of Lopunny, Medicham, and Gardevoir. This trio is legendary for their rank, which is the Master Rank, and for their style of treasure hunting. A former member, surprisingly, is Wigglytuff. Team Charm came because they're stuck on a hunt for treasure because they don't have a key to a specific dungeon, Aegis Cave. They ask Wigglytuff and Wigglytuff "claims" that he doesn't have it. But just before everyone thinks Team Charm will leave, Lopunny gives Wigglytuff a Perfect Apple and Wigglytuff finds the key with a big bang from his room. When Team Charm is leaving, everyone asks if they can go to Aegis Cave, including the player's team. Lopunny, the leader of Team Charm, agrees and says everyone can go after they open Aegis Cave with the key. The treasure of Aegis Cave is guarded by three legendary beings, Regice, Regirock, and Registeel. After defeating them, Team Charm, who went on ahead but were defeat by Registeel, assists the player in fighting Regigigas and several Bronzong and Hitmonlee. Upon their defeat, a tremor suddenly hits the cave, forcing everyone to flee. Though initially disheartened at the prospect of failing the treasure hunt, they notice that a separate cave has opened nearby and realize that Aegis Cave was nothing more than a distraction to keep others away from where the treasure really was, though Team Charm concedes the credit to the player's team before departing.
Later, a Pokémon named 'Cresselia' appears in the player's dreams and tells the player that their existence is causing a distortion in space due to being from a future that no longer exists. At the same time, she also appears in the partner's dreams and makes the same claim based on the partner having traveled to the altered future. Though they initially dismiss this, the player and partner later discover that Azurill is trapped within a nightmare and is unable to wake up. As they and the Guild struggle to come up with a solution, a stray comment Bidoof makes about entering the dream causes the player and partner to seek out Drowzee, the first criminal they ever caught. Finding him on a spiritual quest to try and atone for his criminal past, Drowzee is initially hesitant to help, but the partner convinces him when they reveal Azurill's condition. Upon entering Azurill's nightmare (in itself another Mystery Dungeon), the encounter 'Cresselia' again, who tells them that the only way the nightmare and the distortion can be ended is if they disappeared. This devastates the partner emotionally to the point that they consider going through with it, but the player points out several inconsistencies with this: there is no proof that what 'she' said is guaranteed to actually work and that even though the space distortion is similar to what happened with Temporal Tower, the player's earlier sacrifice was nothing more than a byproduct necessary to ensure their dark future didn't come to pass.
Determined to find an answer that doesn't involve them disappearing, the team visits Lapras, who reveals that Palkia, the master of space, might hold some clue as to how to fix it. On the night before going to Palkia for an explanation, Palkia itself attacks the team, spiriting them away to its domain, the Spacial Rift. They battle Palkia for answers, but it gets trapped in a nightmare. After being sent inside Palkia's nightmare, 'Cresselia' tries to finish off the team, but when Palkia, who had been told in its own dreams that the player and partner were a threat, begins to question whether 'her' claims on the matter were accurate, it is stopped by another Cresselia, who reveals that the first was an impostor by the name of Darkrai, who reveals itself to be the one distorting space. When Cresselia attempts to subdue Darkria, he escapes, though he invites the team to confront him at a volcanic dungeon called the Dark Crater.
As Palkia attempts to regain control of the space distortion from Spacial Rift, Cresselia and the team head back to Treasure Town, where Cresselia uses her power to pull Azurill out of his nightmare as well. Although Darkrai invites the team to stop him, Cresselia, who reveals that their 'space distortion' was too small for anyone (even Palkia) to consider it a serious threat, that Darkrai was also behind Temporal Tower's sabotage, and that he was harassing the team out of fear that they might once again interfere with his plans, thinks it is a trap because normally Darkrai would run away when found, doing his work in the shadows and only coming out to finish the job. The team decides to heed Darkrai's call, and Darkrai reveals his plans: by stopping time or space, the world would stop and be covered in darkness, and all Pokémon would share an everlasting nightmare, in which Darkrai would rule. In addition to this, Darkrai also reveals that he had been responsible for the player's very own transformation and memory loss: having discovered the player and Grovyle's imminent arrival from the future, Darkrai attacks the two while they were going through time, but the player protected Grovyle from the attack, which led them to becoming a Pokémon; because Darkrai assumed what he did to the player was sufficient, he disregarded the idea that they might find out what was happening and interfere again, resulting in his initial plan failing. Darkrai lets the team decide if they want to join him ruling the world in darkness. The partner apparently decides that it's useless to resist, so they decide to join Darkrai, but this event is not real. The player realizes this is just another illusion, and breaks free of it. With the partner back on the player's side, the team battles Darkrai and his minions and wins. Darkrai attempts to flee through a Dimensional Hole, but Palkia arrives and attempts to stop Darkrai from leaving by unleashing an attack on him. Instead of destroying him, he attacks the Dimensional Hole, thus erasing Darkrai's memories, much like what happened to the player. Certain that Darkrai has no memory of his evil ambitions, Palkia, foreseeing no other reason to return, heads back to Spatial Rift while the player and partner return to Treasure Town to get back to their usual exploration team duties.
Explore as a Pokémon in a world of Pokémon!
Discover secrets of Time and Darkness and form a team to explore the world!
Send out SOS Mails using Nintendo Wi-Fi Connection
In the beginning of the game, the player takes a quiz. The answers to these questions determine a nature that decides which Pokémon the player starts with.
|Bulbasaur||Lonely||Docile||Bulbasaur's Overgrow Ability powers up Grass-type moves when it's weakened.|
|Charmander||Docile||Brave||This starter Pokémon wears its emotions on its tail—the flame on its tail, that is!|
|Squirtle||Quirky||Bold||With its Water Terrain Ability, Squirtle can lead you across rivers and lakes!|
|Pikachu||Brave||Hasty||Pikachu is one of the starters you can choose from! We wonder if its Ability, Static, will come in to play?|
|Meowth||Sassy||Relaxed||If Meowth sees something Shiny, its eyes sparkle like jewels!|
|Chikorita||Calm||Quiet||Grass-type Pokémon like Chikorita can be found in forests.|
|Cyndaquil||Timid||Calm||Cyndaquil delivers a warm reception when it's angered or startled—its back erupts with fire!|
|Totodile||Jolly||Sassy||Even its friends need to be careful of Totodile—it has a habit of biting anything with its developed jaws.|
|Treecko||Quiet||Hardy||After you battle in the Explorer Maze, Treecko shows up to request a job.|
|Torchic||Hardy||Rash||Those who hug Torchic get an extra warm feeling because a fire burns inside its body!|
|Mudkip||Rash||Lonely||Skilled in Water-type moves, Mudkip checks its surroundings using the fin on its head.|
|Skitty||Hasty||Naive||Skitty is so adorable that its Cute Charm Ability can even infatuate its foes.|
|Turtwig||Bold||Timid||Turtwig is a Grass-type Pokémon. Will it be powerful in grassy areas?|
|Chimchar||Naive||Impish||Using Fire-type moves with Chimchar will definitely help you out in a pinch.|
|Piplup||Impish||Quirky||Piplup is friendly and enthusiastic. It will make a great Pokémon adventurer!|
|Munchlax||Relaxed||Jolly||Let's hope Munchlax's hunger doesn't stop it from being a great adventurer.|
After the player's character is determined, they then choose their partner Pokémon. The partner can be any of the Starter Pokémon from the first four Generations, including Pikachu. However, the partner cannot be the same type as the player.
- Wigglytuff - Leader of the Wigglytuff Guild.
- Chatot - Chatot is Wigglytuff's assistant, whom assigns jobs to the guild as a whole on a daily basis, as well as taking charge when Wigglytuff dozes off.
- Loudred - This Pokémon guards the guild entrance gate and wakes up the player in the morning.
- Diglett - Diglett assists Loudred; he identifies visitors by examining their footprints.
- Dugtrio - Diglett's father; Calm and trustworthy, Dugtrio keeps the bulletin board current with the latest jobs.
- Chimecho - Chimecho runs the Chimecho Assembly and summons guild members when it's time to eat.
- Croagunk - Croagunk runs the guild's swap shop.
- Sunflora - Sunflora is the senior member of the apprentices and is always happy and seems to cheer people up easily. She is optimistic and keeps a journal by her bedside.
- Corphish - Corphish is very high-spirited and is usually quick to trust the player in high-stress situations. He has a tendency to start nearly all of his sentences with the phrase "Hey, hey!".
- Bidoof - Bidoof is the previous newest guild member, prior to the player's arrival. He, too, keeps a journal at his bedside. Bidoof also has a habit of saying "yup yup" and "by golly," similar to Corphish's manner of speaking.
- Kangaskhan - As in previous Mystery Dungeon series, she will store items in Kangaskhan Storage for the player, though this time around there is a storage limit.
- Xatu - Xatu will tell you what's in your Treasure Box - at a price.
- Kecleon - As in previous Mystery Dungeon series, they run two shops, one for consumables, one for Wonder Orbs and TMs.
- Duskull - Operates the Duskull Bank, where the player can store their extra cash, replacing the Felicity Bank run by Persian.
- Electivire - Electivire will link moves and allow the player to relearn forgotten moves, taking the place of Gulpin.
- Chansey - Chansey runs the Day Care, and she is happy to take care of your Egg until it hatches!
- Marowak - Marowak runs the dojo where you can train and improve your battle skills, taking the place of Makuhita.
- Magnezone - When you capture Pokémon fugitives, deliver them to Magnezone, the town sheriff.
- Team Razor Wind
- Team Seedgey
- Team Glee
- Team Skull
- Team Charm
- Team Tasty
- Team Poochy
- Poochyena ×3
- Team Ebony
- Team Slacker
- Team Flame
- Team AWD (Japanese: 盗賊団MAD Team MAD)
- Team Raider
While most of the Bosses in this game are the standard legendaries, there are some average Pokémon added to the mix. Unlike previous Mystery Dungeon games, the player may encounter multiple opponents that appear in certain dungeons. These are the list of boss battles are the following Dungeon based on the storyline order.
||Koffing and Zubat||6
|Beach Cave (Pit)|
|Drowzee||12||Mt. Bristle (Peak)|
|Groudon (Fake)||30||Steam Cave (16F)|
||Luxray and Luxio ×8
Amp Plains tribes
|Amp Plains (20F)|
|Mesprit||18||Quicksand Cave (B21F)|
|Grovyle||44||Crystal Crossing (B14F)|
|Spiritomb||37||Sealed Ruin (Deep)|
|Brine Cave (Lower)|
|Hidden Land (Old Ruins)|
|Primal Dialga||48||Temporal Tower (Pinnacle)|
|Uxie||42||Steam Cave (16F)|
|Mesprit||42||Quicksand Cave (B21F)|
|Azelf||42||Crystal Crossing (B14F)|
|Dialga||48||Temporal Tower (Pinnacle)|
|50||Mystifying Forest (14F)|
|Froslass||41||Crevice Cave (Pit)|
|Gyarados||46||Deep Miracle Sea (4F)|
|Aegis Cave Pit|
|Palkia||48||Spacial Rift (Bottom)|
|Dark Crater (Bottom)|
|Zapdos||49||Amp Plains (7F)|
|Mewtwo||50||Aegis Cave Pit (5F)|
Dark Crater (6F)
|Raikou||46||Concealed Ruins (20F)|
|Entei||47||Deep Dark Crater(10F)|
|Lugia||45||Surrounded Sea (18F)|
|Ho-Oh||43||Mt. Mistral (19F)|
|Celebi||44||Mystifying Forest (10F)|
|Latias||44||Happy Outlook (19F)|
Spacial Rift (10F)
|Latios||44||Midnight Forest (24F)|
Deep Spacial Rift (5F)
|Deoxys||45||Shimmer Hill (17F)|
|Darkrai||53||Miracle Sea (3F)|
Lower Crevice Cave (2F)
Mt. Travail (17F)
Spacial Rift (14F)
Mystifying Forest (13F)
- Krabby - They are the Pokémon that shoots out bubbles to the sky when sunset comes, it's really a great view!
- Grovyle Description - Who is Grovyle, and why is it hunting Time Gears?
- Vigoroth - Advertises the newest shops that open in Treasure Town.
- Spoink Description Spoink always has a spring in its step—until it loses its treasured pearl. Can you help?
- Marill Description Marill and his younger brother, Azurill, shop in Treasure Town. They might be looking for their Water Float.
- Azurill Description Azurill and his older brother, Marill, shop in Treasure Town. They might be looking for their Water Float.
- Celebi (Shiny) - A close friend of Grovyle in the future, and helps him to travel through time.
- Lapras - Does it know the secret of the Hidden Land?
- Torkoal - A very wise elder.
- Scizor - A legendary explorer until he disappeared while searching for a valuable treasure...
- Cresselia - She has been hunting Darkrai for years. Will she finally catch Darkrai?
- Manaphy - Manaphy has hatched from a mysterious Egg found at the surrounded sea.
- Phione - Phione are known for producing a dew that can act as a cure-all...
Wonder Mail exclusives
Like the previous Mystery Dungeon games, some dungeons are unlocked through Wonder Mail codes. However, unlike those in the previous game, the bosses (listed below) are obtained through these codes. There is no reward, other than the treasure, for the Guardians of the Seven Treasures. They are all top-secret and self-deleting. Gabite's is more like a normal Wonder Mail mission. To take any of these jobs, players must have gained Secret Rank, excluding the mission involving Gabite.
|Pokémon||Wonder Mail Code|
The following Pokémon can be directly recruited only in the domains of the Guardians of the Seven Treasures. However, all of them can be obtained indirectly, either by evolution, as a mission reward or an Egg, except for the Guardians of the Seven Treasures.
Certain Pokémon are only in certain versions. However, if the player unlocks an exclusive Pokémon that is not from their version through Wonder Mail, they will be in the same place they would be in the game they were originally exclusive to.
While Combee is exclusive to Time and Burmy is exclusive to Darkness, their evolutions can be found in both versions. Buneary only appears in Darkness, however Lopunny can only appear in the Wonder Mail Dungeon Mystery Jungle, and appears there in both versions. Mewtwo and Celebi could be obtained in the opposite version only through a limited time Wi-Fi mission.
Wonder Mail codes
|Pokémon||Wonder Mail Code|
Many items are more readily available in one version than the other; for example Black Gummi is available in numerous dungeons in Darkness, but only in few specific dungeons in Time.
There are also certain items that are completely exclusive to one of the versions outside of trading with other players, Wonder Mail missions, or friend rescue of that version.
Exclusive to Time
- Vile Seed — Reduces Defense and Special Defense when eaten.
- All-Mach Orb — An item that ups Movement Speed of all team members by one level.
- Foe-Hold Orb — An item that afflicts all enemies on the floor with the Petrified status condition.
- Spurn Orb — An item that warps all foes in the same room to another place on the floor.
- Bounce Band — A held item that makes thrown items bounce straight back from the Pokémon.
- Curve Band — A held item that makes thrown items bounce off walls and fly sideways along walls. It has no effect if the Pokémon has a Pierce status or if throws a rock.
- Detect Band — A held item that boosts the Pokémon's Evasion.
- Heal Ribbon — A held item that speeds up the Pokémon's natural HP regeneration. The Pokémon's Belly will go down faster, however.
- Joy Ribbon — A held item that earns the holder 5 Exp. Points each time it takes damage of any sort.
- Mobile Scarf — A held item that enables the Pokémon to move and attack through walls and move on inhospitable terrain, such as magma.
- Pass Scarf — A held item that passes on attacks to a Pokémon next to it and drains the holder's Belly each time.
- Pierce Band — A held item that makes thrown items go through walls and Pokémon.
- Racket Band — A held item that wakes up every hostile Pokémon in the room it enters. It only works on enemies that are asleep from the start.
- Tight Belt — A held item that prevents the Belly from going down.
- Warp Scarf — A held item that occasionally warps the Pokémon to another place on the floor.
- Lockon Specs — A held item that boosts the Pokémon's accuracy when it throws items at enemies.
In addition to those items, TMs for the following moves only appear in Explorers of Time.
- Bullet Seed
- Calm Mind
- Charge Beam
- Dark Pulse
- False Swipe
- Flash Cannon
- Giga Drain
- Grass Knot
- Ice Beam
- Light Screen
- Iron Tail
- Rock Slide
- Shadow Claw
- Skill Swap
- Silver Wind
- Solar Beam
- Steel Wing
- Stone Edge
- Wide Slash
Exclusive to Darkness
- Hunger Seed — Decreases maximum belly by 5. For non-leader Pokémon inflicts the Hungry Pal status.
- Vanish Seed — Inflicts the Invisible status condition.
- Violent Seed — Boosts Attack and Special Attack stats when eaten.
- All-Hit Orb — An item that makes the user and team go into a Focus Energy status for a short time, raising the critical hit ratio.
- Foe-Seal Orb — An item that afflicts all enemies in the room with a Paused status condition.
- Foe-Fear Orb — An item that changes the status of foes in the room to Terrified, making them run away from the user.
- Pierce Orb — An item that changes the user's status to Pierce. Items thrown by the user will fly through walls and Pokémon without stopping.
- Dodge Scarf — A held item that prevents any thrown item from hitting the Pokémon.
- Patsy Band — A held item that increases the Pokémon's chances of taking critical hits from enemy moves and attacks.
- Sneak Scarf — A held item that prevents the Pokémon from awakening sleeping enemies. It only works on enemies that are asleep from the start.
- Trap Scarf — A held item that prevents traps from activating when the Pokémon steps on them.
- Twist Band — A held item that prevents the Pokémon's Attack and Special Attack from going down.
- Weather Band — A held item that shields the Pokémon from weather, as if it's always in Clear conditions.
- Goggle Specs — A held item lets the Pokémon see hidden traps and Pokémon with Invisible status.
- Insomniscope — A held item that prevents a Sleep status condition, a Nightmare status, a Napping status, or a Yawning status from being inflicted on the Pokémon.
- No-Aim Scope — A held item that causes items thrown by the Pokémon to fly wildly in any direction.
- Scope Lens — A held item that boosts the Pokémon's critical-hit rate for moves and attacks.
- Whiff Specs — A held item that prevents items thrown by the Pokémon from hitting another Pokémon.
- Lunar Ribbon — An Item used for Pokémon that usually evolve at nighttime.
In addition to those items, TMs for the following moves only appear in Explorers of Darkness.
- Aerial Ace
- Brick Break
- Bulk Up
- Dragon Claw
- Drain Punch
- Dream Eater
- Energy Ball
- Focus Blast
- Focus Punch
- Gyro Ball
- Natural Gift
- Rock Polish
- Shadow Ball
- Sludge Bomb
- Thunder Wave
- Trick Room
- Water Pulse
Gaming magazine Famitsu gave Pokémon Mystery Dungeon: Explorers of Time and Explorers of Darkness a score of 35 out of 40. IGN rated the games an "Okay" 6.5/10. Explorers of Time and Explorers of Darkness hold a rating of 62.39% and 61.25%, respectively, on GameRankings.
In the fiscal year of their release, they sold 1.58 million units. As of March 31, 2009, Pokémon Mystery Dungeon: Explorers of Time and Explorers of Darkness have sold 4.50 million copies worldwide.
Pokémon Mystery Dungeon: Explorers of Time and Explorers of Darkness sold 568,888 units on their first week on the Japanese market, being 300,295 from Explorers of Time and 268,593 from Explorers of Darkness, with a sell-through of 64.43% and 61.17% respectively. By December 29, 2013, the end of their 329th week, they had sold 1,516,375 copies, being 805,418 from Explorers of Time and 710,957 from Explorers of Darkness.
Explorers of Time
Explorers of Darkness
- Unlike the previous Mystery Dungeon games, which only had a few characters with confirmed genders, this game provides a gender for most of the characters. Even Legendary Pokémon, who are usually gender unknown in the main series games, have a gender in this game.
- The names of Temporal Tower and Spacial Rift are based directly on the category names of Dialga and Palkia, who are respectively the "Temporal Pokémon" and the "Spatial Pokémon". This is not the case in the Japanese version, however, where Spacial Rift is named Sky Fissure and Temporal Tower is named Dimension Tower.
In other languages
- Pokémon Mystery Dungeon 2 page on Chunsoft website (Japanese)
- Official PDF-file instruction manual for Pokémon Mystery Dungeon: Explorers of Time (English)
- Official PDF-file instruction manual for Pokémon Mystery Dungeon: Explorers of Darkness (English)
- Pokémon.com (US)
- Nintendo of Australia - Pokémon Mystery Dungeon: Explorers of Time
- Nintendo of Australia - Pokémon Mystery Dungeon: Explorers of Darkness
- Pokémon.com (UK)
- Nintendo of Korea
- Pokémon Mystery Dungeon: Explorers of Time Review - IGN
- Pokémon Mystery Dungeon: Explorers of Time for DS - GameRankings
- Pokémon Mystery Dungeon: Explorers of Darkness for DS - GameRankings
- Nintendo Co., Ltd. - Financial Results Briefing for Fiscal Year Ended March 2008
- Nintendo Co., Ltd. - Financial Results Briefing for Fiscal Year Ended March 2009
|This article is part of Project Sidegames, a Bulbapedia project that aims to write comprehensive articles on the Pokémon Sidegames.|