The Chocobo Hot and Cold Game
The Chocobo Hot and Cold game is an activity that lets you use your very own Chocobo to hunt for buried treasure in certain zones.
- This activity is not connected to Chocobo Digging, but it will increase your Chocobo Digging skill.
Starting the game
NPC Name Location Collione Southern San d'Oria (I-10) Keturah Bastok Mines (I-9) Bwi Kaghonsa Windurst Woods (K-12)
- A Prairie chocograph and a Bush chocograph.
- Coastal chocograph after successfully digging in any Bush chocograph areas 7 times.
- Dune chocograph after successfully digging in any Prairie chocograph areas 7 times.
- Jungle chocograph after successfully digging in the Coastal chocograph area 10 times.
- Desert chocograph after successfully digging in the Dune chocograph area 10 times.
After receiving these items, examine them to determine which area you would like to search for treasure in. Go to that area and use your Tandjana Wildgrass. After using it, you will be placed on your chocobo and will be shown a map with a green ??? marker. You can review the location of the ??? marker on your area map by switching to the green marker tab. Proceed to the general vicinity of the ??? and proceed to dig. You do not need any Gysahl Greens to dig.
At the beginning of the game, you may receive additional messages about your chocobo, that it is either "especially energetic" or "especially sharp," depending on the amount of time that has passed since your last play of Hot and Cold. If your last play was one day earlier, you will not receive any additional bonuses. If you did not play the previous day, but did the day before, your bird will be "especially energetic." If at least two days have passed since your previous dig, your bird will be extra eager to please you, and will both especially energetic and sharp. An energetic chocobo will take longer to become fatigued, while a sharp chocobo will behave as though it possesses the "Treasure Finder" ability.
Two pieces of gear can be used to improve your digging chances in Hot&Cold:
Other pieces of gear that enhances chocobo performance will have no effect on Hot&Cold.
- You cannot change area with your chocobo while doing the Hot and Cold game.
- Be careful not to dismount while digging for treasure.
- You cannot continue digging by using your Chocobo Whistle to remount.
- You can only receive a Tandjana Wildgrass once per day (following Japanese Midnight).
- You can dig twice in one day if you do not use your Tandjana grass on the day you receive it.
- Completing 7 or 10 successful digs in the proper area will award you a new Chocograph on the following (Earth) day, not on the day of the final dig.
- Much like the Chocobo Whistle, attempting to use Tandjana Wildgrass with any amount of hate on a mob will yield the "Your chocobo senses a hostile presence and refuses to come to your side." error message.
Note: If you raise more than 1 chocobo and you begin your digging with one mount, but then register a new mount to your whistle, you will not be able to progress with that chocobo unless you start over at the Prairie and Bush levels with THAT mount. You can however take your retired chocobo's VCS Registration Card to the "chocoguy" to change the mount back to the original chocobo and pick up where you left off with that particular mount. Progress seems to be per bird and not per player, although once the maps are awarded to the player they can be used for any future mount to dig in that area.
- This seems to no longer be the case. My chocobo dug in Valkrum Dunes for the 6th time, and yet on the next day, I received the Desert Chocograph, likely because I did dig out 4 treasures with a previous chocobo before.
You will receive one of five messages when digging:
Message Meaning ... "Very Cold" Kweh. "Cold" Kweh!? "Getting warmer" Kwehhh!? (The treasure is close!) "Hot" K-KWEHHH!!! (You're right on top of it!) "Keep Digging" KWEHHHHHH!!!!! (You've hit the jackpot!!!) "You may get the chest in only 1 dig" Kweh! Kweh! Kwehhh! (You've found a treasure chest!) "The Treasure Chest spawns"
- The "Kweh!?" message only appears if chocobo has Treasure Finder trait, or you are given the message "Your chocobo seems especially sharp today!" upon using a clump of Tandjana Wildgrass.
Imagine a set of rings around the treasure chest (refer to the graphic to the right). If you do not have Treasure Finder, the textured "Kweh?" ring will become part of the "Kweh." ring.)
- If you dig outside of the colored rings, you will get the "..." message.
- If you dig in the outer ring, you will get a "Kweh." message.
- If you dig in the smaller, darker ring, you will get the "Kwehhhh!? (The treasure is close.)" message.
- If you dig in the bright inner ring, you will get the "K-KWEHHH!!! (You're right on top of it!)" message and should keep digging in that spot.
When your chocobo has the Treasure Finder ability, you break the outer ring into two. This helps you figure out which direction to head: the outer "Kweh." ring is the largest of the three, and can make it difficult to narrow down the direction of the chest (as you could easily dig in four or five spots and get a "Kweh." message in each). The extra clue from Treasure Finder can help you determine the appropriate direction to dig more quickly. This is especially true in the advanced Chocograph areas.
Once you have seen the "(You're right on top of it!)" message, within 1 to 6 dig attempts you will receive the following message:
- Kweh! Kweh! Kwehhh!
- (You've found a treasure chest!)
After 13-14 dig attempts, you may receive the following message:
- Your chocobo seems a little fatigued.
- You can receive this message in as little as after 7 dig attempts.
After 19 dig attempts, you may receive the following message:
- Your chocobo refuses to dig any more. Perhaps you should try another day.
- On average, this occurs after your 6th dig attempt after the fatigued message appears.
With the addition of the advanced Chocograph areas comes the new Jackpot event. When you hit the jackpot ("KWEHHHHHH!!! (You've hit the jackpot!)"), the next dig will not count against the chocobo's fatigue (so if the jackpot is hit on the last dig, another attempt may be made). Since you can only hit the Jackpot while right on top of the chest you will always find it on the next dig, unless you accidentally move.
- While doing Chocobo Hot and Cold in advanced areas (Coastal, Dune, Desert or Jungle Chocographs), you will receive the "Your Chocobo seems a little fatigued." message after fewer digs. This may be affected by chocobo stats and/or abilities; some reports give the fatigue message after 6-7 digs and "Your chocobo refuses to dig any more." after 11-13 digs. Reports seem to vary on the chocobos' stats and abilities. Obviously, comparisons need to be made before a final judgment can be reached on the best stats and abilities for a chocobo bred specifically for Hot & Cold. The area you dig in should also be taken into consideration.
- Your bird tires very quickly in the Dune/Desert areas; often within 4-6 digs you get the fatigue message. A game optimized chocobo fatigues on dig 5 and refuses to dig after dig 10 in the deserts. The Dune/Desert areas have a much larger luck factor since you get fewer digs and thus very little information to go on. Your bird will literally be tired just determining between North, South, East, and West in the Dune/Desert. There are a couple of items that can make it worth your while to dig the desert over the jungles but chances are low that you will get one. Also, prices are dropping fast as more and more of the items are dug up.
- In the Coastal/Jungle areas your number of digs isn't reduced as much as in the Dune/Desert chocograph areas. However, when digging in the Coastal/Jungle areas you must be much more accurate with the chest location in order to be successful. You will notice that when you succeed in the Coastal/Jungle areas the chest will appear almost directly beneath your chocobo. Additionally, the outer dig rings in the Coastal/Jungle areas are much larger than other areas. If your chocobo has Treasure Finder, it may be easier to try the Coastal/Jungle areas than the Dune/Desert areas. The extra digs you get are much more helpful on a bird that gives you the extra information from that ability.
- You DO NOT need your Chocobo Whistle equipped or in your inventory to participate.
- Chest is usually on a ground area that looks different than the majority of its surrounding. ex: Buburimu chest is near the coast, the coast is primarily smooth sand. The chest is almost always >99% chance of being in the areas that look rippled (long dark and light areas), more solid (more dark patches and kind of cracked looking), or -if near the cliff walls- the more stone/orange looking areas. Rarely will it be in the majority of the land looking areas (solid grass in Highlands, smooth sand in Buburimu/Valk, etc.) This has helped me win almost 90% of my runs.
Possible "VCS Crate" Treasure
In addition to other items, each VCS crate contains an EX chocoslip redeemable for chocobucks at your local CRA exchange center NPC. The amount of chocobucks each slip is worth varies with the region where the crate was found, with more bucks obtained in more advanced regions. Prairie/Bush: 1 chocobuck, Coastal/Dunes: 3 chocobucks, and Desert/Jungle: 5 chocobucks.
- Editing note: When updating drop rates the denominator for all items in a zone must be updated and increased by the number of items reporting. The denominator for each group should be the same if revised correctly.
Prairie Chocograph Areas
Bush Chocograph Areas
Coastal and Dune Chocograph Areas
Jungle Chocograph Areas
Note: Your VCS Crate can unload up to four items; 1-2 from group one, and 2-3 from group two.
Desert Chocograph Areas
There is a system to this sub game which works well.
The point on your map which is marked ??? is pretty much where the treasure is. Zoom your map in as far as it goes to get a better idea where the ??? really is. The best idea is to dig on that spot first, then if you still get the very cold message, try about four steps in each direction around that point.
If you try digging on the ??? spot and get either the very cold message or the cold message try four steps north of the ???, then if you have no luck there try four steps east of the ???, then try the same with four steps south and west around the ???. By digging in these five locations you should have a good idea which direction the treasure is, as it does not seem to be more than about nine or ten steps away from the ??? point on your map. Frequently, the crate will be on or near a distinguishing feature on the landscape, such as in a puddle, in an out-of-place patch of grass, at the base of a tree, or in an indentation in a wall of rock.
In the advanced chocograph areas the actual treasure chest will never be where the dot shows on your map. In most instances it will be up to 1/2 of a map square away from the location of the dot shown. (Worst case senario, it can be closer.) Since you get fewer digs you will have to spread your pattern out more in order to be successful. The strategy is the same, but instead of only moving four steps, try moving up to six or eight. If you haven't received a "Kweh" by the time you reach your fifth dig (one on dot and one for each cardinal direction eight steps away)you need to examine your map and re-evaluate things. Also, the chests are often in open areas here instead of near/on landmarks like trees, rocks, dirt patches, etc... This is where the ability Treasure Finder finally becomes somewhat more useful. The outer ring has been made larger, making it more difficult, and the central ring's size is also a bit smaller. So you have to be quite a bit closer to exactly where the treasure is in order to get "K-KWEHHH!!! You're right on top of it." The Jungle chocograph areas may have even smaller target areas. (Confirmed: The jungle chocograph has the smallest bullseye of any area so far. It also has larger outter rings making it very difficult.)
Benefits of rest
Resting your chocobo between playing can be beneficial. Skipping just one day improves your chocobo's digging endurance, and skipping two or more grants your bird a Treasure Finder-like ability, though it is unknown if it functions as well as the learned ability, nor if the bonus from resting improves upon the learned ability at all. Because of these benefits, even players who have not raised a digging bird can enjoy playing the Hot and Cold game in all the chocograph areas. It is advisable to be ambitious with your first game after a break, to go to the area which is more difficult for you, because your bird will be well-rested and extra keen.
You can only get one clump of Tandjana Wildgrass per day, but the game does not care when you use that clump. Thus, you can play the game twice in one day by waiting to use your first clump until the next day. By claiming one clump and waiting to use it until the next day, your bird gains the "especially energetic" condition for the first game. You can then return to the stables and obtain another clump of Tandjana Wildgrass, and play the game again. It does not help to wait another day to use this second item, so it is prudent to play again in an area in which you feel more confident.
Repeat the strategy of claiming your wildgrass, waiting a day, and then playing twice to gain the benefits from resting without losing an opportunity to play.
Once you have mastered the four point system explained above you may want to try a three point system. Especially if you are now digging in the advanced chocograph areas. Basically you pick three points near the ??? marker (but not on it because you already know that in these areas it wont be there, so save that dig!!) in the shape of a triangle. If any of the messages you get indicate that you have moved closer to the the treasure you abandon any points left in the old triangle and start a new triangle with where you just dug being one of the points. You should pick your two new points in the direction you moved from the original ??? marker. Imagine branches growing outward. Here is a very simple paint graphic that explains it a little better. The colored dots indicate messages that show you've moved closer to the chest. With the exception of the green which is where the starting ??? marker would be on your map. If you had dug in position three prior to digging position one or two you would skip those positions. Since you know the chest is never near the ??? marker it is safe to advance on your first clue as it is highly unlikely you would find another clue in the other directions. This method can save you a lot of digs but it is not as easy as the four point method and depends heavily on having Treasure Finder. This method can be used without the ability, just be prepared to get identical messages. If this happens pick one new point as you normally would on either of the previous spots expanding outward. If you didn't move closer try one point on the other and keep going back/forth until you get it worked out. Another important bit to remember is to shrink your triangles the closer you get to the chest. Start out fairly large, a good eight or ten steps apart if not more. Once you find the "the treasure is close" spot it usually isn't more than a step or two away. The most common mistake people make with this method is to spread their points out too far once they get close to the chest.
Some additional tips for using this method:
- When picking new points try to aim for 45 degrees to each side of a line drawn between your last two points (use ??? as first point.) A common mistake is to wildly pick points that are more than 90 degrees to one side.
- If messages seem confusing stop and think. If your first dig was "Kweh" and the second and third were "..." what does that tell you? It tells you that your first dig was on the far edge of the outter ring so you have to backtrack. Choose two branching points from the "Kweh" spot heading back in the direction of the ???. Do NOT pick a totally new random point if you already received a clue. Always advance (or backtrack if you must) on the clues you have. Random digs are wasted digs!!
- PRACTICE! A large factor in being successful is having experience to know how far to space your digs in a particular area. This only comes from having done it many times. Don't get discouraged if you fail everyday for a week or more in a new area. Each failure brings that much more experience.
- Take the time to raise a chocobo with Treasure Finder and either Bore or Burrow.
- Do not assume that you will automatically fail if you've passed a certain number of digs. (ie: give up trying and/or waste remaining digs) Keep in mind hitting the Jackpot is always a possibility in the advanced chocographs!! It happens more than you would think on that last possible dig. In fact, the closer you are to your last dig when you find the "right on top of it" spot, the higher the chances seem to be for hitting the Jackpot.
- ALWAYS be thinking of the rings. Memorize the graphic from above and the messages for each ring. Visualize the rings over top of your dig spots that give the various messages. More often than not, when you've received several clues that seem totally off the wall, a simple visualization of how the rings would have to fall in order for those messages to come about will tell you EXACTLY where the chest is!! Try it, it really does work.