Video Game / Sonic Adventure 2

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A sequel to the hit Sonic Adventure and one of the Sega Dreamcast's final releases, and a title to mark the 10th anniversary of the series. It was also the last original Sonic game to be made before Sega quit making consoles.

Mad scientist Dr. Ivo "Eggman" Robotnik has a new plan to Take Over the World: reviving his grandfather's legacy, the abandoned Space Colony ARK. By using the Chaos Emeralds to power the ARK's most dangerous weapon, the Eclipse Cannon, Dr. Eggman plans to strong-arm the world into accepting his new world order. Helping him in this new scheme are two accomplices: Rouge the Bat, a Femme Fatale jewel thief with shady motives; and Shadow the Hedgehog, a super-powered black hedgehog touted as the "ultimate life form".

Enter Chronic Hero Sonic the Hedgehog, who is mistaken for Shadow and falsely arrested by the law enforcement agency "G.U.N.". After breaking out of custody, Sonic is on a mission to clear his name, beat his new-found ebony rival and stop Dr. Eggman. Joining him are Miles "Tails" Prower, a kid genius and Sonic's best friend; and Knuckles the Echidna, who is searching for the scattered pieces of the Master Emerald after it gets shattered... again.

Got that? The plot is much darker than the already-pretty dark Sonic Adventure, as it contains vague allusions to a corrupt military and genocidal insanity, while still retaining the cheese the series is known for. For example, Sonic being mistaken for a black hedgehog with red stripes despite having saved the world repeatedly.

This is the first game in the series — bar racing and party games — where you get to play as the villains, and by extension, the first where you get to play as Dr. Eggman. This game also introduced Shadow the Hedgehog and Rouge the Bat, both of whom would become series mainstays.

The game was re-released for the Nintendo GameCube several months after the Dreamcast version as Sonic Adventure 2: Battle (before its predecessor's remake), which added more Chao stuff and gave 2-Player Mode a complete overhaul (which is probably where the "Battle" subtitle comes in). The GameCube port was the first Sonic game on a Nintendo home console.

Gameplay Types / Playable Characters:
  • Action Stage (Sonic from Sonic Adventure) — Sonic / Shadow
  • Shooting Stage (Gamma from Sonic Adventure) — Tails / Dr. Eggman
  • Hunting Stage (Knuckles from Sonic Adventure) — Knuckles / Rouge

There is also one driving stage each for Tails and Rouge. Beating one of them unlocks the single-player kart racing Mini-Game, while beating the other unlocks the two-player option.

Following the success of its prequel, an HD re-release of the game was released for Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3 respectively through Xbox Live Arcade and Play Station Network on October 2nd, 2012 for $10; the additional two-player modes of Sonic Adventure 2: Battle are Downloadable Content for $3. The game has also been released on PC via Steam on November 19th, 2012, marking its official PC debut.


This video game provides examples of the following tropes:

  • Abandoned Mine: Knuckles' search for shards of the previously shattered Master Emerald brings him to Aquatic Mine, an abandoned coal mine located within the vicinity of Pumpkin Hill that can be accessed via the sewers of Central City. This is aptly summed up by the opening lyrics of the stage's theme, "Dive into the Mellow"
    "Let's take a dive, in Aquatic Mine. Once was a coal pit, but now it's a water ride."
  • Affably Evil: Doctor Eggman, as usually. He's generally an ever-cheerful and pleasant guy, despite his desire to rule the world, and doesn't really want to destroy Sonic like he claims, and though he attempted to do so, he regrets it later, actually stating that he'll miss him. He also manages to get along with Tails, in the end. It was also shown, that he had his deepest respect for his grandfather.
  • All There in the Manual:
    • According to several strategy guides, Project Shadow was meant to figure out a way to achieve Immortality, which the then-President wanted to use for war. Gerald Robotnik didn't want to be a part of it at first because he thought that it wasn't something that mankind needed, but changed his mind because Maria contracted a Soap Opera Disease that he knew he could cure with the research.
    • The ARK was shut down because the GUN higher-ups did not trust Gerald or his research. When they heard about the violent tendencies of the Biolizard, they used it as a cover-up for their massacre of the personnel, placed the blame on Gerald, and forced him to continue working under their scrutiny before executing him. This is explained in full in the Japanese version of the strategy guide.
  • Alleged Lookalikes: Sonic is constantly mistaken for Shadow, another hedgehog. Shadow has upturned spikes, is black and red (rather than blue), and uses hover-skates. Their only similarity is that they're both fast hedgehogs. This is especially bad since, at the speeds they normally move, their superficial similarities would result in being seen as "a blueish blur" and "a red blur." Additionally, Sonic's self-proclaimed girlfriend got them mixed up, glomping Shadow as he stands still in broad daylight.
  • Almost Kiss: Knuckles and Rouge almost have an intimate moment after Knuckles saves Rouge from a fall.
  • And Now for Someone Completely Different:
    • Unlike its predecessor, each story cycles between the Action, Shooting, and Hunting playstyles instead of selecting a character and playing through his/her stages with that character.
    • The Last Story has you play as almost every character in the span of a single level. In order, you play as Tails, Eggman, Rouge, Knuckles, then Sonic; Shadow takes on the stage's boss, and the Final Boss uses Sonic and Shadow at the same time.
  • And Your Reward Is Clothes: The rewards for getting all the emblems/A-Ranks for a character are an alternate outfit in 2P-Mode and an alternate kart in the kart racing minigame, although they do have some different attributes in post-Dreamcast releases (Tails's alternate mech, for example, makes him a lot faster, but robs him of the ability to use special attacks).
  • Animated Adaptation: Like Sonic Adventure, adapted into the Anime of the Game Sonic X.
  • Another Side, Another Story: There are two sides - Hero and Dark. The Hero side follows Sonic, Tails, and Knuckles as they try to stop Eggman, while the Dark side follows Eggman, Rouge, and Shadow as they try to Take Over the World.
  • Antagonist in Mourning: Eggman utters a respectful farewell to Sonic after he thinks he's killed him via exploding capsule:
    Eggman: Farewell, Sonic... My admirable adversary!
    • Also, Shadow watches Sonic's "death", commenting, "I guess he was just a regular hedgehog, after all." in a slightly disappointed tone.
  • Anti-Frustration Features:
    • If you lose a life fighting a boss, Omochao will usually spawn during your next attempt and give you a hint about defeating it.
    • The Hard version of the Hunting stages have fixed Master Emerald Shard/Chaos Emerald/Key locations instead of having them randomized, since the stages are already hard enough without any Random Number God influence.
  • Anti-Villain: Shadow until his Heel–Face Turn.
  • Artificial Stupidity: Chao have an odd habit of repeated jumping into the water feature of each garden, even when they can't swim. You'll sometimes get Chao that will immediately head straight back to the water right after being pulled out, and will repeat this several times. Thankfully, they can't actually drown, just flail their arms in a state of panic.
  • Artistic License – Physics: After Eggman uses the Eclipse Cannon aboard the ARK to blow a chunk out of the moon as a warning shot, everyone becomes concerned about the seriousness of Eggman's threats and possible responses — never mind the fact that the effect on the tides alone would cause incalculable casualties in Real Life.
  • Armor-Piercing Question: Rouge to Shadow, near the end of the Dark storyline.
    Rouge: Here are the results from the research project called the ultimate life form. But, if this picture is of the real ultimate life form named, Shadow... then exactly who or what is standing in front of me?
  • Aside Glance: Rouge does this at the end of one cutscene where she was presumably talking to the government about project Shadow via walkie talkie.
  • Attack Its Weakpoint:
    • Artificial Chaos are mostly made up of water, so you need to hit their heads to destroy them.
    • The penultimate boss can only be harmed by hitting the life support system strapped to its back.
    • The True Final Boss has large boils that spawn on random spots of its body. You need to ram into them to damage it.
  • Autobots, Rock Out!: The final battle with the Biolizard is accompanied by hard rock song "Live and Learn" provided by Crush 40.
  • Badass: Almost all characters have their moments.
    • Sonic: Lands on the ground from a helicopter using only a sheet of metal.
    • Knuckles: Defeats Rouge, and faces his fear of ghosts by beating the crap out of one of them.
    • Shadow: Fights on equal terms with Sonic, and sacrifices himself in the end.
    • Doctor Eggman: Takes out an entire army with no problem, gets the world to bow down at his feet, and shoots Sonic into space.
    • Tails: Defeats Eggman in a brain-power battle, despite being far younger.
  • Badass in Distress:
    • Sonic gets arrested by G.U.N. twice. The first time he got away by himself, but through the second time, he has to be broken out by Tails and Amy.
    • During the Prison Island heist, Rouge gets trapped in the facility that the three Chaos Emeralds were located in.
  • Bat Deduction: Knuckles is able to figure out the identity of the final boss, even though he's never seen it before and wasn't privy to the only information given about it.
  • Batman Can Breathe in Space: None of the characters appear to have any problem while moving around outside the Space Colony ARK.
  • Belligerent Sexual Tension: Knuckles and Rouge show signs of this throughout most of the game.
  • Big Damn Heroes: Shadow manages to teleport Rouge (and three of the Chaos Emeralds, of course) off of Prison Island mere seconds before the whole island explodes.
  • Big Bad: While Eggman's the face of the operation, it's Shadow whose masterminding it. Later, they both teamed up with the Hero side(along with Rouge) in the Last story to fight a Greater Scope Villain.
  • Big Badass Rig: The GUN Military Truck. Even before its overhaul, it's still big, fast, and agile.
  • Bilingual Bonus: An army called G.U.N. is not just a horrible pun in English; "gun" is also the Japanese word for "army".
  • Bittersweet Ending: The final story ends with Shadow preventing the ARK from crashing into the planet at the cost of his life.
  • Black Eyes of Evil: The Boom Boos in the haunted stages have black eyes blinking every few seconds. They will turn into the yellow-eyed, fanged-grinning Boos once you hit them once.
  • "Blind Idiot" Translation: There's one thing that the translators consistently screwed up, and that was whether the word "emerald" is singular or plural. This is because Japanese nouns don't have plural forms, unlike English ones, requiring the translator to take note of the context to determine if a word is singular or plural. However, these translators didn't do that, leaving some characters to say "emerald" when they're referring to multiple chaos emeralds.
    • Shadow's line "Is that what Chaos Control is?" after his fight with The Biolizard has caused many fans to scratch their heads - why would Shadow not know what Chaos Control is? Turns out it was a mistranslation, and in the original Japanese, he just said "Was that Chaos Control?", i.e. "Did it just use Chaos Control?"
  • Blob Monster: The Artifical Chaos on the ARK created by Gerald Robotnik. They're made up of water or some other liquid with a mechanical head controlling the water and its shape.
  • Boss Arena Idiocy: King Boom Boo, like most other evil ghosts, gets weakened when he is exposed light. He has a small ghost following him around to hold an hourglass that lets light into the arena.
  • Boss Rush: Beating a story unlocks a minigame where you fight each of the bosses faced in that story one after the other.
  • Boss Warning Siren: Justified for the boss fight against the Flying Dog. In the cutscene preceding the battle, Rouge is caught sneaking into a maximum-security vault and triggers an alarm that alerts the boss to her presence.
  • Breakout Character: Shadow was originally meant to be a one-shot character for this game, but, not only did he become a series mainstay, he arguably got most of the development and plot focus in Heroes and even starred in his own game.
  • Break the Cutie: Eggman does this to Tails and Amy by shooting Sonic out of an explosive rocket before their very eyes, leaving them to think that Eggman finally killed their best friend (don't worry, he used Chaos Control).
  • Break Them by Talking: In their first battle, Shadow gives one to Sonic, gloating that he isn't good enough to be his fake, but Sonic responds with swearing to make him eat his own words.
  • Broken Pedestal: Even Eggman is surprised when Gerald turns out to be a nutbar. He does appreciate his deranged behavior, however, and would have used the Eclipse Cannon a long time ago if given the chance.
  • Call Back: Eggman trying to steal the Master Emerald is reminiscent of how he stole it in Sonic 3 & Knuckles, even down to using the same machine to do it.
    • The waterslide segment at the end of Sonic's part of Cannon's Core recalls the waterslide from Lost World in Sonic Adventure. The Mystic Melody shrines and the platforms they sometimes create are also reminiscent of Lost World architecture.
    • Sonic runs down a building in City Escape, just like he did in Speed Highway in the previous game.
    • Shadow's first level, Radical Highway, is basically a Call Back to Speed Highway itself.
    • Tails is mentioned to have been awarded a Chaos Emerald for saving Station Square, referencing Tails's ending in Sonic Adventure.
    • Sonic learning how to do Chaos Control by watching Shadow do it is reminiscent of Tails learning how to do the Spin Dash by watching Sonic do it.
  • The Cameo: Big the Cat can be seen during some cutscenes and even in the middle of some levels, as well as used in multiplayer... in the Dreamcast version. The GameCube version erased Big (sometimes with a Ring) in levels and replaced him with Dark Chao Walker in multiplayer, but he can still be triggered in Dark and Final cutscenes. The latest HD release does not return his multiplayer and Hero mode appearances, but reinserts him in most (but not all) levels.
  • Camera Screw: The camera will sometimes pan out at the worst possible moments, such as the outer-space levels.
  • Cardboard Prison: Prison Island, a prison and military base which, despite its name, is not The Alcatraz. Eggman is able to break in all by himself with his Eggwalker, then gets out with Shadow. Later on Tails and Amy break in and get Sonic out.
  • Central Theme:
    • A common motif in this game seems to be misunderstanding. For example, Sonic is mistaken for Shadow and wrongly arrested. Shadow misunderstands Maria's final request and nearly destroys humanity instead of protecting it as she wanted him to.
    • Are people good, or evil?
  • Cerebus Syndrome: This game introduced Shadow the Hedgehog, which essentially started an arc spanned between this game (barring a brief break from it in tone with Sonic Heroes) and Sonic Unleashed, which ended it.
  • Characterization Marches On: At times, Shadow's behavior isn't too different from Sonic's. During the first battle against him, he even says "I'm the coolest!".
  • Chasing Your Tail: King Boom Boo and the Biolizard.
  • Chekhov's Gun: After seeing Shadow disappear in a flash of light as he used Chaos Control as many times as he did — and for that matter, seeing Sonic escape certain death via Chaos Control once before — was it really such a stretch to believe that Shadow had survived his plummet to the earth? On the same note, Tails mentioning that the fake Emerald had the exact same wavelength as a real Chaos Emerald came in handy later when Sonic used Chaos Control to escape Eggman's trap.
    • Those mathematical symbols on Sonic's jail cell in Prison Island? The ones that Amy comments on? Why yes, those were the calculation performed by Professor Gerald Robotnik to calculate how long it would take for the ARK to impact the earth. You see the cell in all of Gerald's diary entries.
    • Also, at the beginning Knuckles tells Rouge that the Master Emerald is capable of nullifying the power of the Chaos Emeralds. At the end of the game, Knuckles needs to use the Master Emerald for that exact purpose.
  • The Chessmaster: Shadow the Hedgehog, who manages to take advantage of Eggman's ambitions in order to further his own hidden plan to get revenge on humanity for the G.U.N. massacre on the ARK 50 years ago.
    • And Shadow's actions, in turn, were the result of Gerald Robotnik placing subliminal messages and tampering with memories during Shadow's 50 year hibernation when he went mad.
    • Rouge also counts for this until her plan to obtain all of the Chaos Emeralds was stopped by Shadow at the end of the dark side story.
  • Chicken Walker: The mech formation of Tails' Cyclone (a Tornado derivative), as well as Eggman's Eggwalker.
  • Chronic Villainy: From an unused voice clip in the ending cutscene, Eggman, after having a civil conversation with Tails about Gerald Robotnik, declares to take over the world without having to rely on ancient relics.
  • Classy Cat-Burglar: Rouge the Bat.
  • Clear My Name: Sonic gets mistaken for the recently-freed ultimate life form and gets captured by G.U.N. (twice) early in the Hero Story. Shortly before Sonic is captured a second time, Shadow steals a Chaos Emerald from a bank. Naturally, everyone assumes that this hedgehog is Sonic. One must wonder how color-blind the people of Sonic's world are. Possibly justified with the bank robbery, since it was night when it took place. G.U.N. has no excuse though.
  • Colony Drop: The Last Story. A relatively minor example is Knuckles' Meteor Herd, where meteors will drop down and explode anywhere you stand for more than a few seconds.
  • Combat Stilettos: Rouge wears these.
  • Comic-Book Adaptation: Archie's Sonic the Hedgehog comic book did not adapt Sonic Adventure 2 originally. Instead they interrupted their own Story Arc for one issue, and used that issue to line up their own canon with that of the game, ending the issue where Sonic Adventure 2 starts. The next issue began some time after the game ends, implying that everything in Sonic Adventure 2 happened. Eventually Sonic Universe #2 showed what happened, with the story largely unchanged.
  • Coming In Hot: In the final speed stages, Final Rush/Chase, Sonic and Shadow will burn up when they drop into Bottomless Pits (read: fall to Earth). The final battle has the screen progressively glow red as the Finalhazard approaches the planet. After saving the world from the Eclipse Cannon, Super Shadow will run out of energy and plummet to Earth.
  • The Computer Is a Cheating Bastard: In the racing minigame, computer opponents can make 90 degree turns instantly without losing any momentum.
    • In the levels near the end of each campaign where you face off against your same-mission-type Rival once again, they can use and abuse the usually 2-player-mode-only special attacks, but you cannot.
  • The Computer Is A Lying Bastard: In Mad Space, the hint computers are very uncooperative. The first hint for every emerald is written backwardsnote . The second and third hints aren't written backwards, but they tell you the opposite of what you need to know (though it's fairly obvious). These computers are one of the reasons behind Mad Space's That One Level status.
    • Even worse, a couple of emeralds have hint sets that are completely irrelevant to its location. This was likely the developers screwing up, though.
  • Conscience Makes You Go Back: When Rouge gets trapped in Prison Island's facility with a ticking time bomb, Shadow initially seems unconcerned, but after having a flashback of Maria, curses Rouge under his breath and turns back. He later claims that he just wanted to save the Chaos Emeralds Rouge found.
  • Contrived Coincidence: Shadow the Hedgehog just happens to not only be a super fast hedgehog with an identical move set to Sonic, but has an uncanny resemblance to Super Sonic and is also able to go super like Sonic does, despite his creation predating Sonic's birth by 35 years. Sonic Battle at least gave a retroactive explanation for this—Gerald Robotnik, Shadow's creator, had researched Angel Island extensively in the past, likely being inspired to base Shadow's appearance on the Hidden Palace mural foreshadowing Super Sonic's battle with Eggman (along with the statues of Sonic in Hydrocity) at the end of the Sonic 3 & Knuckles. The presence of Artificial Chaos and the mockup Master Emerald Shrine inside the ARK support this as well.
  • Continuity Nod:
    • Tails is said to have got a Chaos Emerald for beating Eggman in Station Square, which happened back in the previous game. (Your guess is as good as ours as to how Station Square got the Chaos Emerald in the first place after the events of the game).
    • Also during the Last Story, Knuckles and Sonic stumble upon a temple-like structure that looks oddly familiar.
    • And at that shrine he says the same prayer as Tikal in the previous game.
    • In Sonic's section of Cannon's Core, he slides down a water tunnel similar to Lost World.
      • The Mystic Melody shrines and the platforms that they sometimes create also have a similar design to Lost World's architecture.
    • There are enemies in the game known as Artificial Chaos, which are stated to be based off of the antagonist from the first game.
    • In the Sonic vs. Shadow fight on the ARK, the collapsing pathways shares some similarity to the pathways of Kyodai Eggman Robo boss fight on the Death Egg.
  • Copy And Paste Environments: While there are numbers objects shared between multiple states, the two that truly stand out are Knuckles' level Wild Canyon and Rouge's level Dry Lagoon, which share the exactly same geometry, only having different textures.
  • Criminal Doppelgänger: The reason why Sonic is captured by G.U.N. twice and why him and his friends are constantly chased throughout this game. Justified in that the only times that Shadow is seen by the police is during the night and that there only happened to be one well-known anthropomorphic male hedgehog in the world up until that point. That justification does not apply to G.U.N. though, as they were aware of who Shadow was and should have been able to tell that Sonic was not the escaped ultimate life form once they got their hands on him (twice).
  • Curse Cut Short: In one of the unused voice clips, Sonic says, "Those robots are a total pain in the—" before seeing Shadow.
  • Cute Little Fangs: Rouge the Bat has them.
  • Cutscene Incompetence: Sonic's capture by G.U.N. at the end of City Escape.
  • Cutscene Power to the Max: In the Hero Story, Sonic engages in a boss battle against the Egg Golem. In the same sequence in the Dark Story, the fight is condensed into one flying kick, complete with a Theme Music Power-Up.
  • Damn You, Muscle Memory:
    • Thanks to different controller design, the port for XBLA and PSN changes the action button to the B and circle buttons respectively, screwing with whoever is used to a GameCube controller layout... until you realize that X or square have the same exact function yet aren't showcased as THE button.
      • This is likely so that Omochao's voiceover would remain accurate in the new version of the game, since he specifically mentions the B button out loud.
    • The hint monitors can sometimes give wrong info, and they change every time you play the stage.
  • Darker and Edgier:
    • SA1 was darker than the game series up to that point, and SA2 managed to be even darker. There's more than one character in the game who swears revenge on all humanity, and their motives are revealed in some cutscenes. Furthermore, Dr. Eggman, who you can play as in this game, is willing to use a "weapon of mass destruction" (yes, it is actually described as that in the game) as a means of trying to intimidate people into surrendering to his empire, by threatening to fire it at inhabited parts of the earth, and unlike the rest of the franchise he's played mostly a serious character with very few humorous moments. He demonstrates its power by firing it at the moon, and takes quite a chunk out of it for that matter... add to that, of course, the government conspiracy sideplot, that involves them assassinating numerous innocent people on-board the ARK (with Maria even dying onscreen). Outside maybe the Archie Comics, this was perhaps the grimmest depiction of Sonic yet at this point in time.
    • Though the overall tone of some future titles was a bit darker, NOTHING in the rest of the series comes close to the last act of this game. Gerald's diary/execution speech rivals the most depressing and terrifying messages left behind in any Survival Horror. It helps that both voice actors for Gerald were incredibly good at getting his gut-wrenching despair and hatred for humanity across.
    • Sonic's Disney Death at the near-end of both the Hero and Dark stories are notable in that, while filled with like-you-would-really-do-it, the game seems to be pretty dead serious about it, despite the one involved being the series' namesake. Even more so with the version of the same scene seen in the Dark story, as there's literally no clue that Sonic would survive despite No-One Could Survive That. (That is until he showed up as the Final Boss.)
    • The game also appears to kill off one of its introduced characters at the end. Future titles would retcon this, as said character turned out to be too popular to die.
    • It should also be noted that Maria was an innocent twelve year old. Yes, an innocent twelve year old is shot dead in a Sonic game.
  • Decoy Protagonist: Eggman for the Dark side is this gameplay-wise. Four of his levels are in the first half of the game, but aside from boss fights he only gets one level in the second half.
  • Deface of the Moon / Detonation Moon: Eggman blows up half of the moon with just six of the seven Chaos Emeralds, threatening to do the same to any country that doesn't submit to him. (Oddly, it's perfectly fine in some later entries, and still half-blown-up in others.)
  • Defeat Means Respect: Knuckles and Rouge after the whole Meteor Herd incident.
  • Demoted to Extra: Amy was a playable character with her own story route that gave her some much needed Character Development in Sonic Adventure. In this game, she's more of a supporting character and is only playable in the multiplayer races and doesn't really accomplish a lot until the Last Story.
  • The Dev Team Thinks of Everything: The game's programmed to spawn a Goal Point in stages meant to be completed by Knuckles or Rouge should you hack the game so that you could play as the other characters within those stages.
    • In the HD re-release, Omochao's voiceover lines will be silenced on relevant hints when playing using an input that doesn't have the same button names as the Gamecube controller (such as the Playstation controller or keyboard on PC). It means that the player will have to read the subtitles to learn the tutorial advice he is providing, but does prevent any awkwardness of Omochao's audio referring to buttons that don't exist.
  • Dies Wide Open: Maria, in a very creepy subversion - she slumps against a control panel with her eyes closing, but they slowly open again after she's died. Shadow only sees her being shot at before she's jettisoned.
  • Difficulty Spike: The Hero Story has a huge one that begins at Death Chamber.
  • Dig Attack: Knuckles can dig underground once he finds the shovel claws upgrade. This is mostly used to find Master Emerald pieces that are buried underground. Sonic Battle takes this one step further by having Knuckles' burrow ability as a special move, in which after he goes underground, he can move under an enemy and pop up from below to his or her surprise.
  • Disproportionate Retribution: Gerald held all of humanity responsible for Maria's death, when it was really just G.U.N.
  • Do Not Adjust Your Set:
    • About halfway through the game, Eggman hijacks the airwaves to announce his ultimatum: twenty-four hours until he destroys the earth with the Eclipse Cannon unless the world leaders agree to surrender it to him.
    • In the beginning of the Last Story the airwaves are hijacked once again, only this time it's showing a tape of the late Gerald Robotnik detailing his plan for revenge against humanity for Maria's death.
  • Don't Touch It, You Idiot!: Inside the space shuttle, Sonic tells Knuckles not to touch the lever to get the remaining pieces of the Master Emerald after the shuttle hits a meteor. Knuckles does it anyways.
    Sonic: OH NO! DON'T TOUCH THAT LEVER!!
  • Dragon with an Agenda: Shadow only helps Eggman in order to trigger Gerald's Colony Drop plan to avenge Maria's death.
  • Dueling Player Characters: The game has the story split into two sides — the 'Hero' side with Sonic, Tails and Knuckles, and the 'Dark' side with Shadow, Eggman and Rouge. Each character is matched to another, and fights their counterpart several times through the course of the game. Again, the fights are played from both perspectives.
  • Dummied Out: The game contains a hidden level used by the developers for testing the game engine. It is only accessible via hacking or, in the case of the Xbox 360 and PS3 versions, a glitch.
    • Here are some unused sound clips from the game. There is also some unused sound clips from Omachao.
    • There is also unused dialogue for Shadow for multiple things, such as being grabbed by a ghost, which is impossible due to not having ghosts in his levels.
  • Dying Declaration of Hate: Prof. Gerald gives one to all of humanity before GUN executed him, blaming them for the death of Maria and that he has planned their future demise by programming the ARK to crash towards the earth.
  • Eagleland: The "United Federation" is heavily Type 2.
  • Earth-Shattering Kaboom: The Eclipse Cannon can produce one of these if all seven emeralds are gathered together, and Eggman demonstrates this on the moon. Gerald Robotnik instead has a Colony Drop program for the ARK kick in when all seven emeralds are collected, so as to make absolutely sure this occurs, compared to Eggman, who just intends to raze countries that don't submit to him.
  • Easily Condemned: Sonic falls into this when he was on the run from GUN after he was framed for stealing a Chaos Emerald.
  • Easter Egg: Big The Cat IS...EVERYWHERE! (except in the GameCube version)
  • Eleventh Hour Superpower: For the True Final Boss, Sonic and Shadow both go Super to defeat it.
  • Enemy Mine: The Hero and Dark teams both team up in the Final Story to prevent the Colony Drop.
  • Escape Pod: Maria launched Shadow from the ARK aboard an escape pod. Then Eggman used one in an almost-successful attempt to kill Sonic.
  • Eternal Engine: Trope Namer and an action stage in the Hero Story.
  • Even Evil Has Standards: Eggman may want to use the Space Colony ARK to take over the earth, but he balks at the idea of using its power to kill all humanity.
  • Evil Counterpart: Gameplay and story wise, the Dark Story characters to the Hero Story characters - Shadow to Sonic, Eggman to Tails, and Rouge to Knuckles.
  • Evil Twin: Sonic considers Shadow this due to the latter framing him for stealing a Chaos Emerald. It's also hinted that Shadow himself thinks Sonic is this to him, thinking Sonic was trying to copy him.
    Shadow: "You, comparing yourself to me? Ha! You're not even good enough to be my fake!"
  • Evil Virtues: For Eggman, it's hard work. In the ending, Eggman reveals that he aspired to Gerald's great accomplishments from the time he was little.
  • Expy: King Boom Boo and his minions are strikingly similar to King Boo and his ghosts.
  • Extremity Extremist: Knuckles and Rouge use only punches and kicks, respectively.
  • Faceship: Eggman may have gotten his love for this from Gerald, as the Space Colony ARK was apparently made in Gerald's likeness.
  • Failed a Spot Check: Maybe one of the most egregious examples ever. The fact that EVERYONE seems to mistake Shadow for Sonic is pretty bad, but the fact that Amy Rose - who fawns over Sonic nonstop - somehow fails to notice that this particular hedgehog has the wrong hair, shoes, and colour to be Sonic until she's grabbing onto him is pretty bad. Oh, and she also fails to notice the series Big Bad standing right next to him.
  • Final Boss: Sonic and Shadow serve as this for the Dark and Hero stories, respectively. The Finalhazard serves as this for the whole game.
  • Final Speech: Gerald gives one before being executed by G.U.N.. It basically outlined his Colony Drop plans and pointed out his Disproportionate Retribution to all of humanity.
    • Shadow gives one believing that he has finally fulfilled Maria's final wish as he plummets to the earth. Keep in mind that Sega originally planned to keep him Killed Off for Real when the game was released.
  • Foe Romance Subtext : Knuckles and Rouge, sort of.
  • Fog Feet: A Chao that plays with bats will eventually have its legs disappear; it'll hover above the ground instead.
  • Foreshadowing: There's a bit during the cutscene right before Final Chase, where Rouge reads about "Project Shadow" which not only implies there is more to Shadow's origins than originally shown, but also features a split second shot of a picture of the Biolizard (albeit at a low resolution because of the Dreamcast's limitations).
  • Forgot I Could Fly: At one point Knuckles has to save Rouge, a bat, from falling to her death. To punctuate it, it's from the ledge of the same architecture she was just gliding and clambering on in the previous boss battle.
  • Frame-Up: Shadow framed Sonic with the theft of the green Chaos Emerald. Somewhat deconstructed, as its implied that Shadow did not intend to frame Sonic for the deed, and in fact, had never even heard of Sonic up until after he stole the emerald, specifically shortly after Sonic defeated Big Foot. In fact, through most of the game, Shadow believed that Sonic was copying him.
  • Freeze-Frame Bonus: When Rouge is briefly showing Shadow the paper with information on the Biolizard, the text on the document is actually legible and contains some backstory concerning its development.
  • Fun with Acronyms / Spelling Song: Averted and played straight respectively with Eggman's theme, "E.G.G.M.A.N." — it's spelled out a few times at the beginning by a modulated voice in the background, but it doesn't seem to stand for anything. (Amusingly, it's also one of exactly two songs ever to use the exact phrase "I am the Eggman".)
  • Furry Confusion: Rouge the Bat is a playable character, but regular bats can be found and rescued from the stages. Most confusing is the fact that the bat is only in this game.
    • The level Death Chamber takes it even further: It has actual, real-life bats. That's three different kinds of bats in one game!
  • Game Mod: With the PC release of this game on Steam, the mod floodgates have opened starting with this mod that allows the use of Super Sonic in all levels.
  • Gameplay and Story Segregation:
    • All three of the good vs. evil battles are ultimately seen to end in draws, even though you have to win the actual fight for whichever side you're playing.
    • When facing Egg Golem in Hero Story, you have to (as Sonic) get behind it and jump up platforms on its back in order to homing attack its head's weak point to damage it; you need to do this several times. In the Dark Story, it's defeated by Sonic in a cutscene where he takes a giant leap at its weak point (a leap which, incidentally, is not possible when playing as Sonic) and defeats it in one kick. However, it comes back to life deranged and unstable, so Eggman has to put his golem down the hard way.
    • Knuckles and Rouge actually run faster than Sonic and Shadow in gameplay.
    • Averted in the final boss battle. Shadow's in-story failing super form is represented by his ring count starting lower and lower each time you switch to him after a certain point into the battle.
  • Gameplay Grading: You are ranked at the end of a stage based on your score (although you can automatically earn a perfect A if you collect every single ring in the stage). All 3D Sonics following this game would use a similar ranking system.
  • Gameplay Roulette: Not as pronounced as in SA1, but still present.
  • "Get Back Here!" Boss: The second Sonic vs. Shadow battle
  • Getting Crap Past the Radar: Various BGM tracks have suggestive lyrics, but Wild Canyon takes the cake. One of the radars caught this one; the ESRB rating has "Mild Lyrics" as a descriptor. But apparently, Sega's translators didn't.
    "They wanna play with my Emeralds? They're playing with the wrong guy!"
    "Yeah, Rouge, she's sexy and smooth! A double cross spot-thief, that's out for my jewels."
    • That may not be intentional though, as the song does mean it literally.note . However, they do use "damn" in at least two different songs, and the "Mild Lyrics" did not appear on the back of the box until Sonic Adventure 2: Battle, as the original did not have that.
    • Shoot, Rouge's design by itself does this. The fact the developers actually gave her Jiggle Physics only makes one wonder further if the ESRB missed something.
  • Giant Space Flea from Nowhere:
    • King Boom Boo. The only undead boss in the series, and it's only found in one area: the Death Chamber.
    • Also the Biolizard when it fuses with the space colony and becomes the true final boss, Finalhazard. The Biolizard itself doesn't count, since, technically, it's featured in the Project Shadow report Rouge downloads from the main computer, though the resolution makes it hard to discern its image.
  • Got Volunteered: As Sonic and his friends approach to the center of Eggman's pyramid base, they needed a key to get inside. Sonic suggests that Knuckles should find it since he's "the world's greatest treasure hunter", much to his chagrin.
  • G-Rated Sex:
    • Chao mating, combined with a Happy Dance.
    • Not to mention some of the lyrics in Knuckles' level's songs, especially Wild Canyon.
  • Gratuitous English: Sonic in the Japanese dub, as usual for him. Notably, his rank comments are mostly in English (with the exception of B rank, where he literally says "Too easy! Rakushou da ze!" in Japanese and "Too easy! Piece of cake!" in English), plus his comment of "Hey guy, take care!" after beating Big Foot, as well as a few other examples.
  • Gratuitous Japanese: "Sayonara, Shadow the Hedgehog." Only in the English dub, since...
    • In the English version, Dr. Eggman still says "Yoshi!" when he completes a level ("Yoshi!" being Japanese for "Yes!/Alright!").
    • A strange case of this comes in "Kick the Rock!", as it's more or less Gratuitous English-Pronounced-in-a-Japanese-Way. The lyrics go "Ekidona, that's what I'm representin'" - "Ekidona" is "echidna" spelled phonetically in Japanese (the singer then adds Accent Upon The Wrong Syllable by pronouncing it "Eki-DOH-na").
    • Some other examples include Knuckles saying "Ora ora ora!" when digging, and Sonic yelling "Teriaaaaa!" when defeating the Egg Golem in a cutscene.
  • Gratuitous Spanish: In the Japanese dub, the line "Sayonara, Shadow the Hedgehog" was "Adios, Shadow the Hedgehog".
  • Gravity Screw:
    • Crazy Gadget and its switches that make Sonic walk on the ceiling and walls. A memorable part at the end of the level involves navigating a series of these in space, and it's pretty tough. There are other examples in the part of Eternal Engine where Tails floats inexplicably, and Cosmic Wall, where Eggman's mech can jump incredible heights due to lowered gravity.
    • Rouge's final level, Mad Space, uses the 'planetoid' subtype very excessively, though not nearly as well as the later Super Mario Galaxy.
  • Greater Scope Villain: The plot of the game is ultimately due to the actions of the late Gerald Robotnik, who orchestrated a plan to destroy the earth after what G.U.N. did to him. Shadow was the only one in on it, taking advantage of Ivo's megalomaniacal ways to get it done.
  • Greed: Rouge the Bat, who only works with Eggman so she could have a chance to steal the Chaos Emeralds, the Master Emerald, and in addition finish the job for the government where she will get paid with even MORE jewels. Oh yes, and she also wants to add her crush and rival Knuckles' heart to that list.
  • Green Hill Zone: Rouge's first level, Dry Lagoon, is a textbook example despite being set in a desert. The Trope Namer makes a return appearance if you collect all 180 emblems.
  • Grind Boots: Sonic's shoes were redesigned into this. Shadow's are also able to grind.
  • Guide Dang It:
    • The hidden Secretary and Maria menu themes.
    • Some of the "Find the Lost Chao!" Missions are near impossible to complete without looking in a guide. In particular, all the steps that you need to do in Cannon's Core to find that Chao is pretty daunting.
      • While not as hard as Cannon's Core, the lost Chao in Radical Highway is particularly easy to miss.
      • Let's not forget that you need a powerup that can be a Guide Dang It in itself to find to complete any of the Lost Chao missions in the first place.
    • Cannon's Core: Knuckles' mission is not that hard... If you found the really well hidden Air Necklace in a previous level.
    • Most of the different Chao can be made by experimenting around. The Chaos Chao however have requirements that are so specific you'd probably never know they even exist unless you look up a guide. One of the requirements is giving at least one of each of the TWENTY-ONE different animals to the Chao and have it not be set to a statistical preference (which means it would evolve into a "normal type" otherwise). And once you do that it doesn't even let you know anything changed until a couple hours later when the Chao finally evolves into a Chaos Chao.
    • In some of the Hard Mode missions for Knuckles/Rouge levels, some of the emerald pieces are hidden very obscure areas that they won't show up on the radar no matter where you look, and the hint computers don't help much either. Special mention goes to the second emeralds of Wild Canyon and Aquatic Mine.
    • In most levels, there is a golden beetle enemy that appears, then disappears after a few seconds. Destroying one of these beetle enemies really helps your rank in score-based missions (the first mission, the timed mission, and hard mode) as doing so gives you 1000 points. However, some of them are very easy to miss, particularly those in Pumpkin Hill, Cosmic Wall, Final Rush, and Final Chase.
  • Hammerspace: How Knuckles carts around his emerald pieces. (At least Rouge can claim to have a compartment).
  • Hero Antagonist: G.U.N.
  • Heroic Sacrifice: Shadow, after turning face in what is quite possibly the most famous example of this trope in a Sonic game. Overlaps with Redemption Equals Death.
  • Hints Are For Losers: In Knuckles and Rouge's levels, finding the Master Emerald Shard (or Door Key or Chaos Emerald) in a short amount of time without using any hint monitors would earn you a Perfect 2000 point bonus. In Rouge's Mad Space level, the hint monitors are reversed, as the hints either say the opposite of where the Emerald Shard really is, or are literally written backwards.
  • Hoist by His Own Petard: At one point, Eggman sics the Egg Golem onto Sonic. In Dark Story, Sonic destroyed the restraining bolt on the Egg Golem. Guess what it does with Eggman afterwards?
  • Hong Kong Dub: When the line takes longer to say in English than it did in Japanese, the next line will start while the previous one is still going... even when the next line is spoken by the same character. (It does lend a strange David Mamet flavor to the dub.)
  • Hostage For Macguffin: Eggman takes Amy hostage near the end of the game in order to get the last Chaos Emerald needed for the Eclipse Cannon off of Sonic and Tails. Or so we thought, see Out-Gambitted below.
  • Hotter and Sexier: The debut of Rouge the Bat is enough to make the game this in comparison to the other titles.
  • Humans Are the Real Monsters: Shadow's initial viewpoint. As well as Gerald's.
  • Humongous Mecha: G.U.N.'s Big Foot, Hot Shot, and Flying Dog.
  • Hypocritical Humor:
    • In one scene where Eggman steals the Master Emerald from Knuckles:
      Rouge: "Thief!"
      Knuckles: "Look who's calling who a thief!"
    • In the Last Story where Eggman learns about his grandfather had planned for the ARK to crash towards the earth:
      Eggman: "That mad scientist!"
      Amy: "That should be you, right?"
    • Also the scene where Amy breaks Sonic out of jail.
      Amy: (after Sonic runs away) Wait for me, Sonic! He's such a brat sometimes.
  • "I Am" Song: Sonic's, Knuckles', and Eggman's: It Doesn't Matter, Unknown from M.E., and E.G.G.M.A.N respectively.
  • Image Song: All six playable characters, as well as the NPC Amy have one. Sonic and Amy's are re-used from the first game, but everyone else has new themes.
  • In Case of Boss Fight, Break Glass: Every G.U.N. mech.
  • Infant Immortality: Maria (a twelve-year-old girl) averts this.
  • Insult to Rocks: Shadow finds it almost insulting that G.U.N. mistook Sonic for him.
    Shadow: "You're not even good enough to be my fake!"
  • Interface Screw: The Mad Space hint monitors give you wrong or reversed directions.
  • Interrupting Meme: Some of the dialogue have characters interrupting each other's sentences right before they end it.
  • In the Blood: Batshit insanity, too.
  • Ironic Echo: "Sayonara, Shadow the Hedgehog."
  • It Runs in the Family: The Robotnik family mustache!
  • I Was Just Passing Through: Two instances of this had happened.
    • Shadow shrugs off of the fact he saved Rouge's life, and says that he was saving the Chaos Emeralds.
    • Knuckles does this to Rouge after saving her from falling down the lava, claiming that he was saving the pieces of the Master Emerald.
  • Jiggle Physics: Different parts of different characters have this, the most notable examples being Sonic and Shadow's quills, and Rouge's ears and breasts (yes, they really did animate a cartoon bat's breasts).
  • Jump Scare: The boos in the haunted stages will pop up at the character's face while growing large in form before disappearing. They will do this when in miniature forms if the character gets close to it or just pop up from random places unseen.
  • Just a Kid: Eggman insults Tails for being a kid in the beginning of their first battle:
    Eggman: You're just a kid! You couldn't beat me in a hundred years, stupid little fox!
  • Karma Houdini: G.U.N. Actually averted in that you can destroy their robots and the fact that you can even damage the pilots controlling Big Foot, Hot Shot, and Flying Dog. The squad that executed the entire space colony and scapegoated Gerald fifty years ago likely never suffered punishment though.
  • Keep It Foreign: The iconic line, "Sayonara, Shadow the Hedgehog", is replaced with "Adios, Shadow the Hedgehog" in the Japanese version.
  • Kick Chick: Rouge, to contrast Knuckles' punches only attack style.
  • Kill Sat: Space Colony ARK.
  • Kill the Cutie: Poor Maria.
  • Knight Templar: G.U.N. will do almost anything to preserve world order. They got better eventually. Also, Gerald believed his Colony Drop against humanity to be "justice" for the ARK Disaster.
  • Knight Templar Big Brother: Shadow was a surrogate one for Maria, until Amy reminded him what Maria really wanted.
  • Large Ham: Eggman, Eggman, Eggman.
  • Lawyer-Friendly Cameo: The President.
  • Leave Him to Me:
    • Sonic tells the other heroes to leave Eggman to him as he confronted them in the pyramid base, leading the Egg Golem boss.
    • In the Last Story, Shadow, after realizing Maria's true wish, tells Sonic and Knuckles to leave The Biolizard to him while they head to the Master Emerald shrine.
  • Leeroy Jenkins: Sonic, even more than usual. He's concerned only with stopping Eggman and pays little attention to Tails' strategy sessions.
  • Leitmotif: Many songs throughout the game feature the same recurring guitar riffs, along with some shared lyrics (for instance, in City Escape and the chorus of Supporting Me). It's only at the end of the game that they come together into the game's signature theme, Live and Learn.
  • Level Grinding: Getting an A by getting the set amount of rings may require this. Completing all of the Chao Garden emblems will require quite a bit of this.
  • Luck-Based Mission:
    • Getting A Rank on Treasure Hunting requires you to get all of the Emerald shards without using any hintsnote  and getting a good time. Since the locations are randomized and the radar only works for one piece at a time, getting a good set of easy-to-access locations (i.e. not requiring the use of a switch or in the ground) is necessary to get A rank.
    • Chao Karate gives control of your Chao to an A.I. Roulette and an ill-timed Critical Hit mechanics can screw you over. Sufficiently Level Grinding your Chao will mitigate (if not remove) the effect that the Random Number God has, as the Chao's stats will eventually be strong enough to dish out huge damage and/or take very little in return.
    • Chao races feature an actual hidden luck stat in some races along with randomized tripping.
  • Mad Scientist: Prof. Gerald Robotnik was sane prior to GUN's assault on the ARK. After that his disillusionment with humanity drove him to strike back with his creation.
    • And then, there's Eggman, of course. As usually, he's more of a standard example of the cackling type of Mad Scientist.
  • Mad Scientist's Beautiful Daughter: Subverted. Prof. Gerald was rather sane before G.U.N. offed Maria. Then he ran head first into the "mad" part.
  • Magic Music: The Mystic Melody upgrade, which can be acquired by all the six playable characters. It can allow a character to play a "mystical melody" with a transverse flute when near to the ancient ruins, creating new pathways in a stage. The Mystic Melody is essential for the "Find the lost Chao" missions.
  • Mecha-Mooks: The G.U.N. mechs are the recurrent enemies of the game. Eggman's badniks appear as well, but only for the pyramid levels.
  • Mini-Mecha: Tails and Eggman's stages consist of piloting small mechs through their stages, with Tails' Cyclone being his new Tornado airplane that swaps its wings for a set of legs and Eggman's being his Eggmobile with legs and guns attached.
  • Mirror Boss: Each character fights their Hero/Dark counterpart twice, or in Knuckles/Rouge's case, once.
  • Misplaced Retribution: Gerald's plot to get revenge from beyond the grave was focused on bringing suffering and ruination to people (Pretty much the entirety of humanity) who were not responsible for the ARK Incident or the murder of Maria and his colleagues.
  • More Than Mind Control: It's subtly implied that Gerald "reprogrammed" Shadow to go along with his genocidal Colony Drop plan.
    • More than implied. He "designed its mind to be perfect. Pure..."
  • Mouth Stitched Shut: The Boom Boos from the Death Chamber level have these that conceal their Slasher Smiles.
  • Moveset Clone: The game gives three sets - Shadow to Sonic, Eggman to Tails and Rouge to Knuckles.
  • Ms. Vice Girl: Rouge is secretly a government agent whose job is to protect the world from threats like Eggman and Shadow, and turns out to be Good All Along. Also, her passion is jewels, and in her free time she goes around greedily stealing gems wherever she can find them, not caring whether they're, y'know, necessary to the balance of the planet or not. Somehow, these two things never seem to clash — in fact, she's apparently only a good guy some of the time because the government pays her in jewelry.
  • Ms. Fanservice: This game introduced the world to Rouge the Bat. She has a big bust, a revealing outfit, combined with Jiggle Physics, and wide hips that go hand in hand with a shapely rear.
  • Musical Nod: City Escape appears as an instrumental in Mario & Sonic at the Olympic Winter Games.
    • The Call Back to Lost World in Cannon's Core is also this. There is a water slide similar to the aforementioned level in Adventure, and the music changes to the drum beat of the music that was used in the water slide part of that level.
      • The music played during the cutscenes before and after the Biolizard reuses some parts of the music played during Lost World as well.
    • The Chao Race music used in this game got remixed for the main menu theme in Sonic Advance 3.
  • Mythology Gag: The Egg Golem first appeared as the boss of Sandopolis Zone in Sonic 3 & Knuckles.
    • Eggman attempts to steal the Master Emerald in the exact same way he did in Sonic 3 & Knuckles, even using the exact same machine to do it.
  • Never Say "Die": Averted. Dr. Eggman comments in one of his story reminder monologues that killing Tails will be a pleasure, Sonic is told on a number of occasions that he is going to die. Amy is threatened with death a couple of times. Though Eggman never actually uses it, carrying that big pistol about in a couple of the cutscenes certainly shows that he means Serious Business. There's even a level called "Death Chamber" and the music used for the level constantly repeats those words.
  • New Powers as the Plot Demands: Chaos Control has always been nebulous (and later games would develop Shadow's abilities with the concept that make Adventure 2 look like child's play), but a particular scene near the end of the Hero Story breaks the established rules of the power. Chaos Control is already shown to stop time, and this bears out in the multiplayer... but when Sonic uses it, it gives him the ability to teleport outside of the capsule and into some random hallway in the ARK where Knuckles just so happens to be wandering.
  • Nintendo Hard:
    • Every 5th mission for a level has a Hard mode challenge, where the level's difficulty borders on downright frustrating. Many consider Eternal Engine, Crazy Gadget, Mad Space, and Cannon's Core to be punishingly difficult already. Then you find out that even they have Hard Modes themselves...
    • Getting A-Ranks on the early Action and Shooting stages aren't too obscenely hard, but roughly halfway through the game they become incredibly annoying without resorting to Sequence Breaking shortcuts to get massive time bonuses. And let's not even talk about the Hunting Stages, the system for which has been tweaked to be even more annoying.
  • No Communities Were Harmed: The nation's capital is based on San Francisco, where Sonic Team was based at the time. Route 101, Route 280, and Mission Street all reference major roadways in the city. The Samba de Amigo references in Mission Street may serve as a dual reference to the Mission District, which was (and is still somewhat) largely Hispanic. Shadow's Radical Highway level is also based on the Golden Gate Bridge.
  • No Conservation of Energy: When Sonic and Shadow use Chaos Control to stop the falling ARK, the colony comes to a complete halt. The explosion of light was no where near big enough to be equal to its previous momentum. Of course, SEGA has never bothered to explain exactly how Chaos Control works, so...
  • No OSHA Compliance:
    • In "City Escape", who decided it was a good idea to put a giant loop de loop with speed boosters that sends you hurling down a tall building in a public park area?!
    • Prison Island wouldn't pass OSHA standards either, most egregiously with the giant pit surrounding the area Rouge fights a G.U.N. robot in.
    • The OSHA would've had a fit if they set foot on the Space Colony Ark—the entire station is a giant death trap, most egregiously with its fragile air locks throughout the hallways.
  • No Sidepaths, No Exploration, No Freedom: Adventure 2 does away with Adventure fields and the ability to select characters, instead having the player experience every gameplay style in the same story, with stages coming one after another in sequence. Upgrades are found within the stages as well.
  • Nostalgia Level: Collecting all 180 Emblems rewards you with a 3D version of Green Hill Zone from the original Sonic the Hedgehog.
  • Not Bad: In the Hero Story in the first Sonic/Shadow boss battle, Shadow, who is defeated, says this to Sonic that he wasn't bad for an impostor.
  • Not Me This Time: At the start of the Last Story, Knuckles wrongly accuses Eggman of sending the ARK on a crash course to earth.
    Eggman: "I'd have done this a long time ago if I had the chance!"
  • Not So Different: Eggman and Tails share a moment on the ARK observation deck at the end.
  • Oh Crap!:
    • Sonic's reaction when Eggman traps him in the capsule pod rigged with explosives.
    • Knuckles' reaction when he gets caught by King Boom Boo in Death Chamber.
  • Omnicidal Maniac: Gerald did not take Maria's death well.
  • Once More, with Clarity!: Shadow's flashback to Maria's dying moments in the Last Story plays out like it did the first time, but reveals that all Maria wanted was for the people of earth to be happy, not to see them all die like Shadow originally thought.
  • One-Winged Angel: The Biolizard becomes Finalhazard when he fuses himself with Space Colony ARK.
  • On-Site Procurement: Each of the six player characters has a power-up tucked away in each of his standard levels (i.e. not the racing levels or Cannon's Core). Some are necessary for level completion, while others are necessary only to complete special missions. Because the number of levels is uneven, some of the characters will have a one-upgrade advantage over their rival; these extras are unnecessary, but make things easier.
  • Out-Gambitted: Sonic and Tails plot to give Eggman a fake Emerald that will explode when it's put into the Eclipse Cannon, thus making it unusable. Immediately detecting a spare Emerald signature, Eggman seals Sonic inside a rocket, causes Tails to accidentally spill the beans, and shoots Sonic out of the Ark to a most certain death.
  • Painfully Slow Projectile: The GUN Mecha-Mooks shoot extremely slow-moving shots that even Eggman could probably dodge while rolling out of bed, let alone Sonic.
  • Papa Wolf: Gerald loved his granddaughter Maria, and once she was killed, he almost destroyed the world.
  • The Password is Always "Swordfish": The code to access Project: Shadow and to fire the Eclipse Cannon is "Maria".
  • Path of Greatest Resistance: Because Sonic and Shadow can use the Homing Attack, which was introduced in the previous game, this game has paths identifiable (and accessible) only by finding a trail of stationary enemies. This is most commonly used to begin an expert path or for a shortcut; there are only two levels where this is actually required (excluding hard mode): Metal Harbor and Crazy Gadget.
  • Patrick Stewart Speech: Delivered by Amy of all people to convince Shadow to turn face.
  • Plot Armor: Because Sonic is the hero and obviously can't be permanently killed off, he's given a very contrived way of surviving getting jettisoned into space ala an explosive rigged escape pod by Eggman—he had a fake Chaos Emerald with him and was somehow able to use Chaos Control with it to teleport away. Even Sonic admits he has no idea how he was able to pull it off.
  • Police Are Useless: Even Sonic lampshades this.
  • Posthumous Character: Both Gerald and Maria Robotnik have been dead for 50 years, but Gerald's inventions and Maria's relationship with Shadow are extremely important to the plot. Gerald is also the real villain, as he made sure Shadow would have the earth destroyed as revenge for Maria's death.
  • Power Strain Blackout: Sonic nearly suffers one as a result of the aforementioned Power Copying.
  • Previously On: Upon continuing a story segment, the character that you're about to play as will give a brief summary of what's happened up to that point and what they're about to do. For the Last Story, Amy narrates for the Cannon's Core stage.
  • Product Placement: Due to Sonic now wearing Soap Shoes, ads for them are all over the game.
  • Promoted to Playable: Eggman is playable for the Dark Story Shooting stages.
  • Psycho Prototype: The Biolizard as the prototype of Shadow. It has the mind of an animal and, according to supplementary material, its dangerous behavior was the reason why G.U.N. decided to have the ARK shut down 50 years before the events of the game.
  • Pumpkin Person: You can give Chaos pumpkins to wear on their heads.
  • Punctuated! For! Emphasis!: Eggman when you get an A-Rank.
    "NOW YOU KNOW WHY I! AM! THE BEST!"
  • Reactor Boss: Eternal Engine, in which Tails fights ARK's power generator.
  • Redemption Equals Death: Shadow, originally. Later retconned.
  • Remember the New Guy: This game abruptly introduces the government force of G.U.N. into the series, whose presence is a strong contrast in tone to the previous games, and they wasn't even acknowledged or foreshadowed in previous installments.
  • Remixed Level: Many levels use the same geometry as other levels the character's counterpart goes through, just with different decorations and locations. The noticeable example are Knuckles and Rouge's respective levels Wild Canyon and Dry Lagoon.
  • Restored My Faith in Humanity: Shadow, thanks to Amy's speech.
  • Reverse Polarity: The Chaos Emerald Tails provides to Sonic once aboard the ARK has the power to "reverse the energy field" of the gathered emeralds and cause an explosion. This is because that particular emerald is fake.
  • Ridiculously Cute Critter: Improves on SA1's chao-raising system with the addition of Hero and Dark Chao. The system would go through a complete overhaul for the GameCube versions.
  • The Rival: Sonic/Shadow, Tails/Eggman, and Knuckles/Rouge.
  • Rivals Team Up: All of the Hero and Dark characters with the exception of Shadow team up in the final stage Cannon's Core to stop the Eclipse Cannon. Then in the final boss, Sonic and Shadow (who had a Heel–Face Turn) turn into their super forms to fight the Finalhazard, Biolizard fused with the ARK.
  • Rousseau Was Right: Core part of Amy's philosophy. It's what caused Shadow to back down on his revenge against the world.
  • Sanity Slippage: Gerald Robotnik, as his diary indicates, definitely went through one after Maria died; I became scared as I could no longer control my thoughts... All I knew was that I wanted it to end...
  • Sarcastic Devotee: Even if she was a double agent, Rouge poses as one to Eggman, especially when she mocks him for throwing a tantrum when Sonic interrupted his conversation with the President through the screen.
  • Save the Villain: Knuckles saves Rouge from falling down the lava, despite that she tried to steal the Master Emerald.
  • Say My Name:
    • Shadow yells out "MARIA" when losing a life in levels. Also does this a lot of time during his flashbacks.
    • Amy and Tails both do this separately when Sonic exploded in the capsule or so they thought.
    • Tails mutters "Sonic..." whenever he dies in a level.
  • Scenery Porn: Ten years later, it still holds up well.
  • Schizophrenic Difficulty: Since you jump around from playing style to playing style, this can be in effect if you are much better at some characters than others.
    • Also, each stage has the same five missions in the same order. Depending on which character you are using, some of the missions will be easier or harder than usual. Tails and Eggman's stages have very few rings and LOTS of enemies, so the second mission, 'Collect 100 Rings!', is harder for them than it would be for other characters. The timed missions for Knuckles and Rouge tend to be harder than their 'Complete Hard Mode' missions since for them, while the emeralds are in very annoying and hard to reach places in Hard Mode, they're in the same place each time.
  • Screw This, I'm Outta Here!: After a handful of Master Emerald shards are lost during the approach to the ARK, Knuckles leaves Sonic and the others in the space shuttle to find them, with Tails lampshading that he bailed. After he successfully restores the emerald, he tries to reconnect with the others and finds Sonic, who asks him to look after Tails and Amy.
  • Sealed Badass in a Can: Shadow.
  • Second Hour Superpower: Applies to certain upgrades that all of the characters receive early on, which grant abilities that become essential game mechanics throughout the rest of the game. It can be weird starting a new save file after playing on an old one for a while and realizing that these abilities aren't available from the very start of the game.
    • Sonic and Shadow respectively each get the Light Dash shoes.
    • Tails and Eggman get Hovering boosters.
    • Knuckles and Rouge get digging tools.
  • Self-Imposed Challenge: Try beating Knuckles' section in Cannon's Core WITHOUT the Air Necklace.
  • Sequel Difficulty Spike: Minor, but the Battle port and the re-release significantly raised (read: doubled) the requirements for an A-Rank in Eggman's final level, Cosmic Wall, as the point requirement in the Dreamcast version is extremely easy to reach.
  • Sexy Walk: Rouge, to the point that when she runs, she keeps sashaying.
  • Shifting Sand Land: All of the stages surrounding and inside Eggman's pyramid base.
  • Shout-Out:
    • To NiGHTS into Dreams... and Samba de Amigo.
    • There are also a couple references to Phantasy Star Online. Some unlockable alternate costumes on the GameCube version are similar to what the characters in said game wear, and there are billboards advertising it scattered throughout the city levels.
    • During the famous scene of Eggman's video-message to the world, the mixture of Japanese and English text behind him is awfully reminiscent of Digivolutions.
    • The entire final sequence where Sonic and Shadow use Chaos Control to push ARK back into orbit is a reference to the climax of Mobile Suit Gundam: Char's Counterattack.
    • Some of the Achievements/Trophies for the HD remake are this. Heaven Or Hell & Beyond Good & Evil mainly.
    • Every time you get a B-Rank in Knuckles' stages, Knuckles will say "Yeah, I feel good!", taking the lyrics from one of James Brown's hit songs "I Got You (I Feel Good)".
    • Knuckles' last line towards Rouge from within their first confrontation:
    Knuckles: Yeah, we'll see about that bat girl.
  • Size Shifter: Every time it appears, the Master Emerald has a different size.
  • Sky Face: Shadow's entire body is imposed over the earth. Tecnically an example.
  • Slap-Slap-Kiss: While it's not quite Kiss, Knuckles and Rouge literally have this going on after the former saved her life.
  • Slasher Smile: The boos in the haunted stages have a scary, fanged-toothed smile.
  • Sliding Scale of Linearity vs. Openness: The main game is level 3. There are multiple paths through each level, with more being unlocked as you gain more items, and you can replay levels with different goals for more emblems. The chao raising mini-game, though, is decidedly level 6, for the game gives you no overall goal to accomplish in raising your chao.
  • The Smurfette Principle: Rouge is the only female character of the main 6 playable characters.
  • Soundtrack Dissonance: The themes for all of his stages seem to imply that Knuckles is gangsta.
  • Stealth Pun: The style of music played in Shadow's White Jungle stage, minus the Amen.
  • Stepford Smiler: In the end of the Last Story, Sonic is noticeably grieved of Shadow's sacrifice, and when Amy goes to ask what's wrong with him, he assures that it's nothing and cheerfully informs her that it's time to head back to the earth. As everyone left the ARK, Sonic turns back, waving goodbye to the fallen Shadow in a pensive and solemn tone.
  • Story Arc: This is the first game in the Sonic series to deal with the story of Shadow. It was later continued in Sonic Heroes and finished in Shadow the Hedgehog.
  • Stripperiffic: Rouge's alternate outfit in 2P-Mode.
  • Sugar Bowl: All of the Chao Gardens, where the most pressing issue is an empty stomach; even the Dark Garden, which looks like a haunted graveyard and has a pool of red liquid that may or may not be blood, is a pretty safe place for your cute little guys to reside.
  • Super-Deformed: Curiously, Chaos 0 looks a lot "cuter" than he did in Sonic Adventure.
  • Suspiciously Specific Denial: Mad Space's hints follow a pattern: the first hint is written backwards, the second tells you the opposite of where you need to go (like telling you to go the bottom of the stage when you should go to the top), and the last will tell you that the shard is not in a certain area.
  • Sympathetic P.O.V.: The Last Story consolidates them.
  • Take My Hand: Rouge makes a misstep in the meteor field (wearing stilettos in space doesn't seem as smart now, does it?), almost plummeting into the lava. Knuckles grabs her and hoists her back up.
  • Theme Tune Rap: Most of Knuckles' stages.
  • This Cannot Be!: In the G.U.N. boss fights, a G.U.N. soldier will utter this when defeated. Also, the Dark characters will utter this when they are defeated for the final time (only time in Rouge's case).
    Rouge: This can't be true! I never lose!
    Eggman: No! I can't lose to Tails!
    Shadow: Impossible! I am the ultimate life form!
  • This Is Unforgivable!:
    • Tails vows to never forgive Eggman for blowing Sonic to smithereens, (or so he and Amy think)...
    • Also Shadow's initial thoughts about Maria's death.
  • Timed Mission: Several. Finalhazard breaches earth's atmosphere after 5 minutes, so you better beat it in that time. Metal Harbour has a small example, where landing on a platform by a rocket suddenly gives you just 15 seconds to grab onto it. To make matters worse, there is a second rung higher up, which can only be made with a couple of seconds to spare, and without it, an A-rank is extremely difficult. To round the list off, Security Hall gives you 5 minutes to complete it, and Green Forest and White Jungle give you 8 and 10 respectively. Also, every stage's 4th mission is one.
  • Too Good for This Sinful Earth: Maria's last wish for Shadow was to make sure the people on earth could have a chance to be happy.
  • Took a Level in Badass: Eggman, rather than relying on an army of Mecha-Mooks in this game mostly does work on his, apart from aid from Shadow and Rouge, and he blows away entire armies in a machine that's nowhere nearly as intimidating as the huge machines he had in the last game, and he's FAR more competent than in any other appearance in the series.
  • Totally Radical: Some of the stunt bonus titles ("Jammin'!", "Tight!", etc.) have this feel to them, although it fits with Sonic's Mascot with Attitude style so it isn't out of place.
  • Tragic Keepsake: Although it only happens for one game, Sonic gives Rouge Shadow's inhibitor ring after he supposedly dies.
  • Tube Travel: In the Crazy Gadget stage.
  • Two Lines, No Waiting: There are two stories (three if you include Knuckles' subplot) which all comes to head in the end.
  • The Ugly Guy's Hot Daughter: Maria Robotnik. Eggman's related to her???
  • Ultimate Life Form: Shadow has the honor of naming the trope.
  • Uncommon Time:
    • The intro music starts out in 12/4 as Sonic and Shadow are being introduced, then it changes to 11/4 as Tails and Eggman are being introduced, then 10/4 as Knuckles and Rouge are being introduced. It then switches to Common Time for the rest of the intro.
    • Mad Space's BGM is in 7/8 time.
    • There's one part of Sky Rail's BGM that is in 9+10+9+7+7/4.
  • Underground Level: Aquatic Mine. Doubles as Under the Sea and potentially Down the Drain.
  • The Unfought: This game marks the first time that Sonic doesn't directly fight Eggman. This is justified since this game is mainly focused on heroes fighting their gameplay counterparts (Tails vs Eggman, Knuckles vs Rouge, and Sonic vs Shadow).
  • Ungrateful Bitch: Rouge's response to Knuckles saving her life was angrily snatching her hand away from him, thus leading the two resuming their arguing. Then it's subverted when she gives him back the pieces of the Master Emerald that she stole, under the premise "they stink like echidnas do".
  • Upgrade vs. Prototype Fight: This happens in the Final Story where the two ultimate life forms fight. Shadow, the perfected one, vs. the Biolizard, the failed prototype.
  • Video Game Caring Potential: Chao. If you are nice enough to a Chao, it will have a big smile on its face and clap whenever your character picks it up. Beware, however, that being too nice to a Chao might result in the little guy getting a spoiled personality, making it throw tantrums even when only a little hungry. Balance is the key, but regardless, if the Chao is happy enough, it will reincarnate into a baby at the end of its life.
  • Video Game Cruelty Potential:
    • Chao. You can hit it, throw it, put it in water and watch it flail if it doesn't know how to swim, make it starve, and all other sorts of things. Such abuse will result in the Chao crying a fountain of tears, blowing a raspberry at you, or if it's aggressive enough, it'll charge at you and futilely throw punches. If the chao is more sad/angry than happy, it won't reincarnate at the end of its life. With the introduction of Light and Dark Chao in this game, who is treating the Chao good or bad matters as much as how they're treated. So treating your Chao nicely with Shadow, Eggman, and Rouge will make them Dark as well as being cruel with the good guys will, and vice versa.
    • Omochao is another source of cruelty potential as mentioned above, but even Chao lovers like to torture the thing. Then again, it is a robot that just looks like a Chao and is not an actual Chao...
  • Villainous Legacy: Gerald Robotnik. The main conflict of the story is against Eggman, but it was Gerald's actions 50 years in the past that caused many of the problems in the game... and in a few of the sequels.
  • Villain Protagonist: Eggman, Rouge, and Shadow in the Dark Story.
  • When She Smiles: Rouge is depicted of making seductive and devious expressions, but after Knuckles leaves after restoring the Master Emerald, she gives out a tender smile at him, marking a sign of her true feelings for Knuckles.
  • White Gloves: It seems they are popular, as all six main characters use them.
  • White Sheep: Maria.
  • Winged Humanoid: Rouge.
  • Woobie, Destroyer of Worlds:
    • Gerald becomes somewhat sympathetic once you realize how he lost everything important to him. To see how far Gerald fell, just watch the cutscene in Shadow the Hedgehog where he instructs Shadow (via old video footage) to use the Eclipse Cannon for the good of humanity by destroying the Black Comet. All it took was the death of Maria for Gerald to go insane and completely alter his motives.
    • Shadow the Hedgehog also counts for this to a certain degree. The reason he's attempting to destroy humanity? Because he thought that his promise to Maria was for revenge.
  • "World of Cardboard" Speech: Succinctly phrased by Sonic during the endgame:
    "What you see is what you get: Just a guy that loves adventure. I'm Sonic the Hedgehog!"
  • Worthy Opponent:
    • Eggman displays a sudden spike in competence when he locks Sonic in a space pod and then fires it into space—and then blows it up for good measure. As he overlooks the explosion, Eggman solemnly declares Sonic an "admirable adversary."
    • Shadow had a similar reaction: When witnessing Sonic's seeming death, Shadow says "Looks like he was simply an ordinary hedgehog after all" with a tinge of disappointment. Curiously both Eggman and Shadow are somewhat nonchalant, even amused when realizing he survived, Shadow even directly telling him he managed to impress him.
  • Would Hit a Girl: Knuckles had no qualms in attacking Rouge, who can hold on her own against him. However, he reluctantly apologizes for this after restoring the Master Emerald. Besides, Rouge is a thief, so, Knuckles has a right to do so.
    Rouge: You call yourself a hunter, attacking a lady? Shame on you!
    Knuckles: What kind of lady goes around stealing gems anyway?!
  • You Just Told Me: Eggman pulls a magnificent one on Tails and Sonic when they come to rescue Amy. Meaning, of course, that Tails was outfoxed.
    Eggman: "You thought you could trick me with that fake emerald, didn't you?"
    Tails: "So... how did you know it wasn't the real one?"
    Sonic: "Tails!"
    Eggman: "Because you just told me, fox boy!"
  • Your Princess Is in Another Castle: After Sonic and company board the space shuttle and try to board the ARK, the shuttle is struck by a meteor and the hatch rips open. Master Emerald shards come pouring out and prompt Knuckles and Rouge to go hunting for them.
  • Your Size May Vary: In Sonic Adventure, the Master Emerald was as big as a car. In this game, it's about as tall as Knuckles. Also present with the Emerald within the game itself. In the cutscene before Cannon's Core, it's much smaller than usual even in this game, being able to fit in Knuckle's hand.

"C'mon, let's go home. To the planet as cool and blue as me!"

Alternative Title(s): Sonic Adventure 2 Battle

http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pmwiki.php/VideoGame/SonicAdventure2?from=Main.SonicAdventure2