Banora Underground is the final dungeon of Crisis Core -Final Fantasy VII- and a secret network of caves underneath the town of Banora. The caves are mazes of naturally made caverns and waterways, the ruins of Shinra Electric Power Company's laboratories and private prison facility, and an area with a statue of a woman holding the Goddess Materia.
The Banora Underground is home to the most powerful enemies in the regular game of Crisis Core -Final Fantasy VII- and once the player enters they cannot leave save for missions. To unlock the door to the final battles, the player must find seven special Materia, called the Goddess Materia: Light Materia, Star Materia, Heaven Materia, Ground Materia, Life Materia, Sabbath Materia, and Being Materia, that are scattered throughout the dungeon.
The village of Banora was one of many sites examined by the Shinra Electric Power Company for the potential to host a mako reactor. The underground mines were built with this purpose in mind, with the village constructed to conceal the mines' existence. The mining site was closed when Shinra discovered the Emerald Weapon in stasis, and the village was built to hide the discovery with Shinra staffing it with residents. The implication thus is that the Banora Underground leads to the caverns beneath the northern continent.
Shinra employees were placed on the village board of trustees but eventually the company lost interest in the site and Banora became a free village. After the Jenova Project, Genesis Rhapsodos was sent to live in Banora under foster parents, as were Gillian Hewley and Angeal Hewley and others involved in Project G, to live under surveillance. Genesis discovered the abandoned caverns by chance and made his secret headquarters there, which Zack Fair will discover years later and read Genesis's childhood diary.
After the Banora Village is destroyed by Shinra to cover up the latest incidences there, the underground caverns can be reached from above easily. Genesis uses the secret lair as his base of operations as he conducts his war against the Shinra Company. When Zack descends into the caves, Genesis uses the Goddess Materia to transform into Genesis Avatar. When Zack defeats him Genesis returns to human form, now cured of his degradation. Genesis again challenges Zack, but is defeated again.
Depths of Judgement
The first area in Banora Underground. Depths of Judgement has quite complex topography with many narrow tunnels and paths. There are four chests that contain Goddess Materia that needed to unlock the path to the final boss. There are also two LOVELESS plaques in this area.
- Light Materia
- Heaven Materia
- Ground Materia
- Star Materia
Lake of Oblivion
The second area in Banora Underground. Lake of Oblivion is much like a flooded area and has three chests that contain the remaining Goddess Materia. It has a less complex topography compared to Depths of Judgement. There are also five Lifestream spots that will summon a Genesis copy when Zack examines it.
- Life Materia
- Being Materia
- Sabbath Materia
Cage of Binding
A prison-like complicated area in Banora Underground. To unlock the path to Cage of Binding, Zack must first defeat all five Genesis Copies that spawned from the Lifestream spots in Lake of Oblivion.
- River Chocobo Armlet
- Dispel Blade
- Phoenix Down
- Laboratory Key
- Gris-Gris Bag
A prison-like area similar to Cage of Binding. Zack can encounter the optional boss, Behemoth King, in this area. There is also a LOVELESS Plaque in this area.
- MAG Up+
- ATK UP+
- HP Up++
- Silver Armlet
- Iron Bars Key
Portal of Severance
The third area in Banora Underground. Portal of Severance holds the pedestal to place the seven Goddess Materia that will unlock the path to the final boss. There is also a LOVELESS Plaque in this area.
Light of Doom
The last area in Banora Underground. In this area, the final boss awaits Zack's arrival.
Banora Underground appears as a battle background in a Battle Music Sequences.
Behind the scenes
Emerald Weapon can be seen frozen in stasis in the first area, Depths of Judgment. A hill in the northern part of the area looks upon a large crystal formation, and Emerald Weapon's shoulders can be seen extending from behind it, the four slots for its orbs identifying it.
While the rest of the Great Cavern of Wonders uses generic mine and cave-type maps, the area where Minerva is fought is the same area as the Depths of Judgment area where Emerald Weapon lingers in the background. Emerald Weapon being seen at the bottom of the Great Cavern of Wonders makes more sense than in the Banora Underground, since the Weapons are resting in the Northern Cave at this point of time, a cave system located next to the Great Cavern of Wonders.