There are two ways to obtain TM90 Substitute in Pokémon Platinum:
- One copy can be found in the Old Chateau, west of Eterna City. It requires the Hidden Move Cut to reach, and is in the farthest eastern room in the long upstairs hallway.
- Unlimited copies can be purchased from the Game Corner Prize Exchange building in Veilstone City. They cost 2,000 Coins each.
TM90 Substitute Locations
Location #1: The Old Chateau (Step-by-Step)
The first obtainable copy of TM90 Substitute is found in the Old Chateau in Eterna Forest. This is located west of Eterna City on Route 205.
This is the forest you helped Cheryl through earlier in the game.
But before you’re able to enter the Old Chateau, you must have a Pokémon in your party that can use the Hidden Move Cut outside of battle.
This means you must first have defeated Leader Gardenia and received the Forest Badge from her.
The quickest way to the Old Chateau is to start in Eterna City and head west from the Pokécenter.
Leave town through the western side to enter Route 205.
Cross the bridge to the west where all the Fisherman trainers are gathered.
On the other side of the bridge, follow the trail north and enter Eterna Forest.
You should see a sign right beside the opening to Eterna Forest.
Head west through Eterna Forest until you see a white picket fence to the north, blocked by cuttable trees.
Use Cut to clear the brush and enter the premises.
Head all the way north until you find a big building—the Old Chateau—and enter the front doors.
Once you’re inside, climb either of the staircases up to the second floor.
At the top, move north and and enter the doorway you’ll see in center of the northern wall. The doorway should be directly between two paintings.
Once you go through the door you’ll find yourself in a very long corridor.
Turn right here and head down the hall.
Enter the very last door at the end of the hall.
Inside this room, there will be a Poké Ball item on the floor.
Pick it up to receive TM90 Substitute.
Location #2: The Veilstone Game Corner
Unlimited copies of TM90 Substitute can also be obtained at the Prize Exchange building in Veilstone City.
Each copy of the TM costs 2,000 Coins, and you’ll get coins either by winning them or purchasing them from the Game Corner next door.
Both the Game Corner & Prize Exchange buildings are found on the same raised section of the city, directly south of the Veilstone Pokémon Center.
The smaller blue-roofed building is the Prize Exchange.
Inside, speak to the clerk and look for TM90 (it’s toward the top of the prize list).
At 2,000 Coins, Substitute is one of the cheaper TMs at the Game Corner.
But if you would rather purchase the Coins directly than win them from the slot machines, it will cost 40,000 PokéDollars in total.
Substitute Details and Uses
Substitute is a non-damaging Normal-type status move that lets the user copy itself using 25% of its maximum HP. The copy acts as a decoy, and it will take hits in the user’s place for a short time.
A substitute is knocked out of play when it loses all of its Hit Points.
|Substitute Move Details|
|PP||10 (max. 16)|
Aside from absorbing all damage from attacks (including the damaging turns of Future Sight and Doom Desire), a substitute also protects against:
- Status conditions
- Trapping effects (like Bind)
- And anything that lowers the original Pokémon’s stats
How To Use Substitute
Substitute works well in myriad situations.
Players often use it for scouting purposes in battle. This works by switching a Pokémon into battle, then creating a substitute on the next turn to see which Pokémon the opponent brings in to counter it.
It’s easier to formulate a counter-strategy from behind a substitute when you don’t have to worry about a one-hit KO in the next turn.
Substitute can also help you finish moves that can be interrupted, like Focus Punch, which has a base power of 150 but is hindered by being a low-priority move that fails if the user is attacked.
Similarly, a substitute can also help glass cannons—Pokémon with superior offensive power but weaker defensive capabilities, like Weavile, Gengar, and Espeon. The substitute helps them make the most of their power without their fragility being as much of a problem.
Inflicting status conditions without fear of immediate retaliation is another use for a substitute, since anyone who has been poisoned, paralyzed, burned, confused, or made to flinch while the opponent hides behind a decoy can attest.
The list is almost endless, really.
Substitute’s innumerable uses have made it a staple in PvP competitions since the first Generation, which also gives it a lot of value in a single-player playthrough as well.
So it’s definitely one move to try working into your own team if you can find a strong use for it.
Miscellaneous information about Substitute:
- A substitute can be passed to another Pokémon using Baton Pass.
- Substitute will fail if the user has less than 25% of its maximum HP remaining.
- Although it is not recommended due to its costliness, copies of TM90 Substitute can be sold for 1000₽ each.
- If Substitute is used in a Pokémon Contest, it earns the user just one Appeal Point, but it will also earn 3 bonus Appeal Points if the user has the lowest score.