This takes place in Chapter 2: Covert Ops as part of the INTERmission DLC, once you enter the Shinra Building and meet Scarlet for the first time.
After your introduction with Scarlet, you’ll be prevented from following her, instead, you’ll have to take the bait and head the only way possible. As you head around the corner, you’ll encounter a bench and a vending machine which offers some new armor focusing on pure defense, magic defense or linked slots. Once you’re ready to continue, follow the path around the corner and enter the only door to reach a large room and trigger a scene.
Once you regain control, you’ll be ambushed by a series of enemies. To begin with, you’ll need to deal with a Sweeper and some Slug-Rays, focus on the latter first due to them not having much HP. The Sweeper is best dealt with by sending in Sonon and using casts of Lightning Ninjutsu from a distance. Monodrives will soon follow, switch to Wind Ninjutsu and consider using Windstorm to make short work of them. With those defeated, the next wave will consist of three Slug-Rays and the upgraded Shock-Rays, these are a lot deadlier if you let them surround you so keep up with the Ninjutsu from range and deal with them first.
Once the area is clear, head to the north of the room and toss the Shuriken at the large cargo container to drop it to the ground, using it to reach the upper floor.
Find that Materia
|3-C SOLDIER Operators||Fire||Turbo Ether|
|Armored Magitrooper||–||Armor Core|
|Armored Shock Trooper||Lightning||–|
Following the scenes, you’ll find yourself in the Production section of Advanced Weaponry, somewhere you’d expect to find Materia. As you pass through the large doors, you’ll be ambushed by two Shock Troopers that are weak to Fire, not only will this deal large damage to them but it can also set off part of their suits causing them to explode. Once defeated, head up the stairs to the east and you’ll spot some Materia on display, you’ll have to wait before you can claim it however.
Instead, follow the path to the north and you’ll find a console you can interact with. Use it to switch the power back on and then turn around to claim the Ninja Cannonball Materia, a new Command Materia for INTERmission that see’s Sonon and Yuffie combine to launch her at her opponent. Now head around to the west of the room to pocket a Skill Master Materia and then over to the east to collect the Steadfast Block Materia.
With the floor now looted, return to where the console was and use the left or right pipes to access the security grid and climb it to the next floor. On the eastern side of this floor, you’ll find some Shinra Boxes and a chest containing the valuable Ribbon, this will prevent all status effects so be sure to equip it on Sonon or Yuffie immediately. Pocket this and then take the western door and then head south as soon as possible to discover a chest containing the incredibly useful Volant Armlet. Despite only having one Materia Slot, this armlet will triple the AP to the Materia attached to it making it useful for levelling Materia for a Hard Mode run.
Continue your infiltration to the west to enter the Maintenance Facilities and you’ll immediately be thrust into battle against two 3-C SOLDIER Operators. These foes can be deadly if you give them a chance, especially when they use Vacuum Wave which will deal large damage to any it hits. Consider taking the time to steal (or Mug) from them too, they have the valuable Turbo Ethers up for grabs. With them defeated, destroy the Shinra Boxes here and then head up the stairs to the west and follow the path around to the north to find some hooks that you can just to reach the other side.
Continue along to the east and an elevator will descend along with an Armored Magitrooper, fearsome foes with lots of HP and deadly attacks. They have no discernable weakness, so you’ll have to focus on either destroying the core when it opens to use Pulse Laser or alternatively steal it for the same effect. It doesn’t end there however as an Enhanced Magitrooper will eject from the suit, focus on magic attacks here to drive up the Stagger gauge and make short work of him.
Take the eastern exit once they’re defeated and you’ll find a weapon chest containing the Djinn Staff for Sonon. This is more of a balanced weapon and comes with the ability, Incite, a useful tool to keep enemies focused on him. Continue east to return to the first room on this floor, but now on the other side. Another console awaits you here so head over and activate it to get the power running once more.
Before you continue, you may have noticed the door behind you opening, this leads to a vault full of rare and useful Materia. There is a catch however, to unlock them, you need to take part in the Shinra Box Buster mini-game that contains two modes. You can find more info on the page above but it’s well worth taking the time to complete this, not only is there a Trophy up for grabs but the Materia on offer are very valuable.
|Score||Basic Training Rewards|
|5000||ATB Assist Materia|
|10000||ATB Boost Materia|
|20000||ATB Stagger Materia|
|Score||SOLDIER Training Rewards|
|30000||Gil Up Materia|
|50000||EXP Up Materia|
It does take time to master this mini-game, but the rewards will make the rest of this DLC and your future Hard mode playthrough a lot easier. Once you’re ready to continue, use the left pipe to reach the security grate and climb it to the next floor.
Use the hooks up here to reach the next pipe and follow it to a platform containing some Time Materia, be sure to slot this on someone with the extra Magnify Materia if you picked it up and then take the pole back down. This time, use the right pipe and climb the security grate once more to trigger a scene. Once you regain control, head to the side of the platform and toss the Shuriken above to create a platform over.
Head west up the pipe here to find a chest housing a Healing Carcanet and then head across the beam to the other side and through the door where you’ll encounter a group of Shinra grunts. Once defeated, head through the door in the center and follow the path to eventually reach Scarlet’s room and trigger a scene. Leave the room to the south and follow the path to reach another console to restore the power.
Make your way back to the previous room and you’ll be ambushed by another Armored Magitrooper and an Armored Shock Trooper. This is a tough battle due to the limited space you have to dodge their attacks so focus on the Shock Trooper first by targeting its weakness to Lightning and then the Magitrooper will be a much easier threat to deal with on its own. You’ll trigger another scene after the battle is over bringing an end to the Advanced Weaponry section of this chapter.