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Chao Playgrounds, referred to as Chao's Playground by Omochao, are locations that appear in Sonic Advance 3. Similar to Chao Gardens in previous games, Chao Playgrounds are a place in which Chao reside.
Each Zone in Sonic Advance 3 contains a Chao Playground with the exception of the Final and Extra Zones. When the player finds a hidden Chao in the game, the Chao will automatically be transported to that Zone's Chao Playground, where it will reside for the rest of the game. Chao Playgrounds can be accessed from the Sonic Factory through an entrance at the middle left of the area.
There is a total of nine Chao in each Zone, which are scattered throughout all three Acts and the Zone Map. Once all Chao are collected in a Zone, a Special Key will appear in the Zone's Acts, which is needed to use the Special Spring located somewhere in the Zone Map.
Unlike Chao Gardens, the Chao in Chao Playgrounds cannot be interacted with, Chao Playgrounds instead exist as a means to keep track of all the hidden Chao the player has collected.
Once the player has obtained a Chaos Emerald in a Zone, the Chaos Emerald will reside in that Zone's respected Chao Playground.
Whilst in the Chao Playground, the player can press the Select button to open up a Chao Map, which will display all the locations where Chao can be found and if the player has collected any Chao.
All Chao Playgrounds look exactly the same, Chao Playgrounds consist of a small, flat area, with green grass, flowers, trees, and small rock formations. In the middle of each Chao Playground is a stone bridge-like structure with a railing and a pleasant, blue sky and a sea view can be seen in the background. Each Chao Playground is secured by large brick walls and a brick ceiling.
A Chao Playground with a Chaos Emerald in it.
The Chao Map, which can be accessed in the Chao Playground.