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  • If we skip to the final boss battle in Doomsday Zone, Sonic (as Super Sonic) is travelling at super speeds in raw space, against Robotnik's latest giant robotic, humanoid egg, right? Let's go back to the Hidden Palace zone, specifically the battle with Knuckles, look at the mural in the background. It's a blatant image that foreshadows the final boss battle, a rodent consumed by a golden aura, facing off against a giant mecha. It also potentially brings up more justification of why the Hidden Palace zone is REALLY HIDDEN inside/under a volcano, the powers within it, and what it's capable of foreseeing, perhaps it's protecting far more than just the Chaos Emeralds.
    • Another interesting tidbit, notice the mural shows two forces fighting over the Master Emerald. Knuckles probably already knew about the mural as well. Now imagine Eggman showing up and looking like one of the two forces in the mural. Next he tells Knuckles about the other force. Knuckles was probably easier to trick because once he met Eggman, he misinterpreted the roles of the forces in the battle. In addition, the mural shows the Master Emerald in Eggman's hand. Knuckles probably interpreted this as Eggman protecting the Emerald from Sonic.
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    • Building off of that, Knuckles throughout his story has to fight against EggRobo, (specifically, the one emerging from the wreckage of Eggrobos in the ending where the Chaos Emeralds but not the Super Emeralds are obtained) who's trying to finish what his creator started. Then, at the end of his story at Sky Sanctuary Zone (the Death Egg having already been demolished by Sonic and Tails long beforehand), it turns out the still-functioning Mecha Sonic is working with Eggrobo to steal the Master Emerald. Notice how the final boss of Knuckles' story is Super Mecha Sonic empowered by the Master Emerald and suddenly the prophecy gains another layer to it. Knuckles' final boss fight refers to yet another interpretation of the prophecy, namely instead of Sonic protecting the Master Emerald from Dr. Robotnik or vice versa, it refers to both (or at least mechanical duplicates of them) working in tandem to make off with it and how Knuckles is supposed to protect it from them. And they say Sonic games before Sonic Adventure weren't that deep.
  • Launch Base Zone in Sonic 3 is much different from the other final levels in the series, not being a highly toxic nightmare and instead a sort of ruins/construction site thing. Why not a factory-like setting like Sonics 1 and 2? Because Robotnik's trying to prove he's a good guy to Knuckles. If he had built a huge toxic factory, Knuckles would obviously be pissed off at him.
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    • Another suitable explanation would be that it's not a final level in the first place — remember, that game and Sonic and Knuckles are two halves of a whole.
      • That's a gameplay quirk, not exactly a story bit of fridge logic. Best explanation, is he simply wasn't there long enough.
    • Also, moreover to another bit of logic underneath that, he had built factories on South Island and later West Island, which were most likely all built over time and the environmental damage was merely a by-product of his factories, not a goal. Sonic had showed up too little too late in the case of West Island, and got to Scrap Brain on S. Island before anything terrible really happened. Robotnik is nothing short of tenacious, but even he couldn't plan on a blue quilled rodent in red Nikes sending his Death Star knock-off out of orbit and into a floating oasis.
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    • Many of the events of Sonic 3 were really just caused by pure happenstance and coincidence. Death Egg falls out of orbit and just happens to hit a floating land mass in the sky. He had really no time to build anything, let alone create toxic waste, but even so, why would he need to?? His Death Egg is already a flying space station that doubles as a factory! All we knew is that it couldn't return to orbit in the beginning, not that the entire station/factory part was out of commission. Chances are good he didn't need to encroach on the island beyond a launch base because the rest of the Death Egg functioned, it just couldn't fly.
  • In Sonic 2, all you had to do to become Super Sonic (after collecting all the Chaos Emeralds and 50 rings of course) was jump. Then Sonic 3 came around. In order to go super in that game, you had to jump and then press the jump button while in mid-air. Why the change? Since Sonic 2 was the first time Sonic ever transformed, he probably couldn't control this new sudden burst of power, so it easily overtook him. By the time Sonic 3 takes place, he's had some time to master his new form, and can now control when he becomes Super Sonic as shown in the game's intro. It makes perfect sense!
    • Except Sonic 3 takes place right after Sonic 2. Sonic trashes the Death Egg, it crashes into Angel Island, pushing it down into the ocean, Sonic and Tails go to check it out, you know the rest.
      • Perhaps he finally mastered it while he was falling from the atmosphere in Sonic 2's ending?
      • Actually, it you look at Tails' plane in the intro, there is a jet engine on it that wasn't there at the end of Sonic 2. This implies that at least a little bit of time has passed.
      • Not entirely true in regards to the jet engine. The jet engine on the plane is added at the end of Wing Fortress in Sonic 2 to get the plane mobile again after it's shot down at the start of Wing Fortress. Why it's absent again in Sonic 2's ending then present again in Sonic 3 & Knuckles' intro is anyone's guess. Developer oversight perhaps?
    • In addition, Knuckles never had the issue Sonic did when transforming in Sonic 2. Why? Knuckles is the guardian of the Master Emerald, so he's been exposed to chaos energy for much longer than Sonic has. Of course he'd have better control over his super form than Sonic!
  • At the beginning of Sonic 3, Knuckles is able to hit Sonic even though he is in super mode and should therefore be invincible. This seems strange until you realise that you also start the stage with zero rings. Knuckles hit Sonic at the exact moment he ran out of rings and powered down from his super form!
    • Nope. That would have killed him.
    • At the end of Sonic 2, Sonic stormed the Death Egg without rings and was still able to use his super form in the ending. This troper thought it was because, with all the threats gone, Sonic was only partially using the power of the emeralds and thus able to maintain the form without rings. He used his power of flight to re-enter the atmosphere and then his super-speed to reach Angel Island. The one power he wasn't using? INVINCIBILITY! Since he didn't have any rings and he wasn't invincible, he had his emeralds knocked out. This happens a second time in Sonic Adventure where Sonic or Tails gets the emeralds they were holding knocked out after another violent clash with Knuckles.
    • Don't forget that the echidna who cancelled the power of the Emeralds is the same echidna who's been around their power for his entire life.
      • Or Knuckles performed a simple, unseen Groin Attack.
      • It's very possible that he was using the Master Emerald's powers to cancel out Super Sonic. SA2 showed that Knuckles can nullify the emeralds' energies with it, and heavily implied that he can also shrink the Master Emerald and carry it around.
  • In Sonic 3 & Knuckles, when you play as Knuckles in Carnival Night Zone act 2, did you notice how that level has no water while it does in Sonic's run through? Since Knuckles' game takes place after Sonic's, Angel Island is floating, thus the water Carnival Night Zone accumulated when the island hit the ocean has now drained away when the island moved off the ocean.
    • Likewise in Launch Base Zone act 2 — water doesn't appear unless you bust open the pipes.
  • At the end of Lava Reef Act 2, Knuckles drops a boulder onto Sonic which can cancel out his Hyper form. At first, you might call bullshit, because Hyper Sonic is supposed to be stronger than Super Sonic, so Knuckles shouldn't be able to stop Sonic in that form even if he did stop Super Sonic, but then you remember that one of the ways Hyper Sonic can be stopped and the few ways to lose a life as him is getting crushed by things.
  • So why did the Launch Base Zone battle result in the Death Egg crash landing on Angel Island again? It was just a showdown between a hedgehog and a couple of eggmobiles on the Death Egg's hull. But what if the Death Egg had to land anyway? Maybe Robotnik forgot to calculate for the fact that A.I. would begin trying to correct its position as soon as the D.E. lifted off, meaning there wasn't in fact enough fuel to launch it off fast enough? That would explain why the D.E. landed on top of Lava Reef the second time — realising his oversight, Robotnik desperately tried to get out of the rising island's path by flying horizontaly, but failed and landed elsewhere. This would also give Robotnik an even better reason to steal the Master Emerald — fuel for flight and means to prevent A.I. from rising again, messing up his launch.
    • Adding onto that, the moment the Death Egg launches, Robotnik confronts Sonic and fights him. It's possible that he didn't realize the above until it was too late to correct it.
    • In real life, Sonic the Hedgehog: Triple Trouble was released between STH 3 and S&K. In that game, Knuckles appeared as an antagonist, and the plot revolved around Robotnik trying to use the Emeralds and a malfunction scattering them. Maybe he was trying to use the Emeralds to launch the D.E. and screwed up.
  • While Sonic 3 features water in nearly every level, Sonic & Knuckles features none. Until you realize several sand gimmicks in Sandopolis are analogues for water ones and that running from switch to switch in the second act is the same as scrambling for bubbles in a traditional water level, but with the advantage of adding tension to the gameplay without having to restrict Sonic's speed.
  • Why is Knuckles a Genius Bruiser in this game, but not in later installments? Because Angel Island is his home, thus he would be knowledgeable about the nooks and crannies of the environment where he could set up booby traps for Sonic and Tails.
  • Why do Hidden Palace and Lava Reef act 2 share the same music? Because they're both based on Sonic 2's scrapped Hidden Palace! The S2 zone was originally conceived as a hidden underground palace, and the originary place of the Chaos Emeralds. Traveling there with said Emeralds would grant Sonic his Super form. However, due to miscommunication with the zone's artist, the actual implemented HPZ in Sonic 2 prototypes looked less like a palace and more like a cave with sparkling gems. LRZ2 uses the latter concept, while S3K's HPZ was based on the original concept!
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