Babylon Garden (バビロンガーデン Babirongāden?) is a location in the Sonic the Hedgehog series. Originally a spaceship used by the ancient Babylonians, Babylon Garden became the ancestral home of the Babylon Rogues after the Babylonians got marooned on earth. However, its inhabitants eventually lost the entire island, accordingly as punishment from the Gods for their crimes.
Babylon Garden was rediscovered generations later by the latest Babylon Rogues, and their subsequent adventures brought it back into space.
Babylon Garden's substructure consists of the Babylonians' interstellar spaceship, Astral Babylon, which has a beautiful, yet alien design. It has an elegant fundament with pillars supporting an upper flat layer, and in the center lies a purple core enveloped by an intertwining structure. Surrounding the upper section are smaller towers with purple bottoms, which are connected by small bridges. Due to having Astral Babylon in its center, Babylon Garden's inner sanctums are highly technological.
After being reconstructed, Babylon Garden came to resemble an island. The entirety of Astral Babylon was obscured by a rock fundament, though it would have some cracks that revealed an artificial shell. On the top lay a lavishly decorated city of mosaic plazas, Byzantine domes and buildings, and winding roads for Extreme Gear traffic. Surrounding Babylon Garden was a fractured ring of tall arch bridges connected to the main structure by bridges at each of its cardinal points. These points also held scaled-down versions of the main structure. Additionally, lawns, trimmed hedges, trees, and giant hanging plants grew all over the island.
When the five Arks of the Cosmos were brought back to Babylon Garden, the island's superstructure was stripped down to its original incarnation.
Defenses and workings
Though ancient, Babylon Garden possesses a couple of technological defenses against unwanted intruders, all of which have remained functional even after being buried for ages. Silver-and-cyan fighter drones patrol the skies and its most secure area is safeguarded by the Babylon Guardian, the guardian God of Babylon.
Babylon Garden can be operated with the Key to Babylon Garden. This key can also summon the garden for its wielder (provided it is powered by the seven Chaos Emeralds). Additionally, the resonance from all five Arks of the Cosmos can call Babylon Garden to their location.
The exact origins of Babylon Garden are unknown. Originally a spaceship, Babylon Garden was used by the ancient Babylonians for their interstellar travels. The vessel's warp drive was powered by the Ark of the Cosmos, devices that harnessed the power of gravity. When the ship arrived at earth in the ancient past, however, Babylon Garden experienced a malfunction due to the Babylonians' inability to control the Arks of the Cosmos, leaving the ship's engine at the verge of creating a black hole―a "lightless black"―that would consume everything. The Arks of the Cosmos were thus jettisoned into earth's orbit by the Babylonians to prevent this catastrophe, making Babylon Garden crash land on earth.
With the Babylonians marooned and crippled, the now-inoperable Babylon Garden was turned into a floating home for the Babylonians on earth, who constructed an island-like shell, with a city on top, around it. The Babylonians thus waited for the Arks of the Cosmos to resurface, so they could relaunch Babylon Garden safely and go back home. During ancient times, Babylon Garden would also become known as the "divine wings" (神の翼 Kami no tsubasa?)―a legendary bird that the gods rode through the heavens. When the Babylonians created the Magic Carpet, the very first form of Extreme Gear, they hid it inside Babylon Garden to be protected by the Babylon Guardian. This would become known as Treasure of Babylon, which vague legends would describe as an invaluable treasure left behind by its creators.
According to legend, the Babylonians, who had become a society of thieves, eventually incurred the wrath of the Gods because of their crimes. As punishment, Babylon Garden was "cast into the depths of the earth," leaving it buried deep beneath Sand Ruins. Though the stories of the treasure within Babylon Garden endured the test of time, the scattered Babylonians' descendants would forget the truth about the treasure and come to regard Babylon Garden as only a fable.
In Sonic Riders, Babylon Garden was rediscovered by the current generation of Babylon Rogues (under Dr. Eggman's machinations), who sought what they believed was a valuable treasure here. Using the Key to Babylon Garden and the seven Chaos Emeralds, Jet hoisted Babylon Garden back up from the underground. Eggman then stole the key and went to Babylon Garden to steal its treasure, convinced it was technology he could use to conquer the world, with Team Sonic and the Babylon Rogues in hot pursuit. At Babylon Garden, Sonic and Jet raced each other to Eggman while pursued by E-10000Gs and dodging Babylon Garden's defenses, Meanwhile, Wave, Storm, Tails, and Knuckles would arrive on Babylon Garden, only to start fleeing from E-10000Rs across the Garden's airborne plazas.
Beating Jet, Sonic disposed of Eggman as he tried to enter Babylon Garden and took back the key, just as Sonic and Jet's teams reunited. While Jet was too proud to take the key, Wave took it on his behalf. The Babylon Rogues then entered Babylon Garden's center, while Team Sonic dealt with an incensed Amy. There, the rogues faced the Babylon Guardian. Hearing the spectacle, Team Sonic and Amy sped in to help out just as the entrance slams shut. Together, the teams faced the guardian God in its illusionary dominion and defeated it, making it disappear and release the chest containing the Magic Carpet. Just as the groups uncovered the carpet, Eggman returned, with dual blasters in hand, to demand the treasure. While the group gladly obliged, Eggman ended up fainting from the shock over wasting so much time and resources on a piece of cloth. Needless, the others were fascinated by the Magic Carpet and how it resembled an Extreme Gear. Though also intrigued about their ancestry, the Babylon Rogues left Babylon Garden to itself to continue searching for treasure.
Sonic Riders: Zero Gravity
In Sonic Riders: Zero Gravity, Babylon Garden was called to Crimson Tower by the five Arks of the Cosmos when Team Sonic and the Babylon Rogues brought them together. However, SCR-HD, possessed by the Arks of the Cosmos' programing, stole the relics and brought them to Babylon Garden, causing the calamity the Babylonians tried to avoid: with the meteorites resonating together, Babylon Garden's engine overloaded, causing the island's shell to fall apart as a giant black hole was formed which would eventually swallow the entire planet.
To stop Babylon Garden, Team Sonic and the Babylon Rogues headed into its engine room to disconnect its core unit. There, they faced Master Core: ABIS, a mutated form of SCR-HD, and destroyed it, causing Babylon Garden's black hole to subside. Its engine now under control, Babylon Garden, in its original incarnation, went into orbit around earth. However, rather than fulfilling their ancestors' wish of returning to their home planet, the Babylon Rogues opted to remain on earth.
Points of interest
In other media
In the Archie Comics, Babylon Garden was a spaceship controlled by the Babylonians, but was forced to crash-land on Mobius a thousand years prior to the current story line. A malfunction inside Babylon Garden threatened to destroy Mobius with a black hole if the Babylonians tried to leave, so the Babylonians deactivated Babylon Garden and hid away underground so no one would find it and risk the destruction of the planet.
A thousand years later, the Battle Bird Armada and the Babylon Rogues managed to find Babylon Garden, which was located beneath New Mobotropolis, and succeeded in reactivating it and made it emerge into the sky. However, before the ship's autopilot could create a black hole when it tried to travel into space, it was stopped by Sonic the Hedgehog, and Babylon Garden itself crashed into the mountains near Mobotropolis.
- Even though it is called garden, Babylon Garden hardly has any plants of any kind.
- Babylon Garden is based on the Hanging Gardens of Babylon, a real-life location that existed is Mesoptamia, which was situated in modern day Iraq.
- Babylon Garden and its points of interest, it seems that they had a connection with Sky Babylon.
- Sonic Team, CRI Middleware (22 February 2008). Sonic Riders: Zero Gravity. PlayStation 2. Sega. "Wave the Swallow: As I’d suspected, the Ark of the Cosmos is an engine unit for the Babylon Garden, invented by our ancestors. / ... / Wave the Swallow: To put it simply, the stone can temporarily charge up gravity, then covert it to power Babylon Garden's warp drive."
- Sonic Team, CRI Middleware (22 February 2008). Sonic Riders: Zero Gravity. PlayStation 2. Sega. Area/Level: Security Corridor. "Miles "Tails" Prower: Sonic, the Babylonians weren’t able to control the power of those meteorites!"
- Sonic Team, CRI Middleware (22 February 2008). Sonic Riders: Zero Gravity. PlayStation 2. Sega. Area/Level: Gigan Rocks. "Knuckles the Echidna: ...We, the children of Babylon, seal one star here, and another within the great scar, formed in heaven’s fall, until the time of the divine's wings rising."
- Sonic Team, CRI Middleware (22 February 2008). Sonic Riders: Zero Gravity. PlayStation 2. Sega. Area/Level: Gigan Rocks. "Amy: Divine wings? / Miles "Tails" Prower: Yes, the legendary bird that the gods rode through the heavens."
- Sonic Team, Sonic Team USA (17 March 2006). Sonic Riders. PlayStation 2. Sega. Area/Level: Opening sequence (Babylon). "Storm the Albatross: I wonder... Could it be true? Could our ancestors have left behind hidden treasure that's just waiting to be discovered?"