The Chao are creatures that appears in the Sonic the Hedgehog comic series and its spin-offs published by Archie Comics. They are a mystical species that dwells in various magical locations around Mobius.
The Chao are small creatures with pudding-like bodies. In general, Chao have round waterdrop-like heads with large eyes but no noses, round torsos smaller than their heads, smooth feet with no legs, and arms with no visible hands. Neither their arms or feet have digits. They also have a short tail, small wings, and an emotion-dot floating above their heads.
While Chao gain various looks over time, basic Chao have light blue skin with yellow tips on their arms, feet and head, blue eyes and pink wings.
Characteristics and culture
Chao are mysterious but cute and lovable creatures similar to infants that live almost exclusively in Chao Gardens, and their mannerisms are pleasant and relaxing. Spawned by Chaos, Chao hatch from eggs and usually spend their existence eating, sleeping, and playing. They grow and mature quickly, resulting in short lifespans. After a certain amount of exposure, a Chao will envelope itself in a cocoon before entering adolescence and mature into an adult Chao. At the end of its lifecycle, the Chao will enter another cocoon and emerge as an egg once more. This egg will then hatch into a new Chao with all the characteristics it had in its past life. In special cases, after a number of "resurrections," a Chao may evolve into a form that makes it immortal.
Chao grow through loving contact and whoever raises the Chao affects its development. If a virtuous person raises a Chao, it will probably mature into a kind of Hero Chao. If someone who is not so virtuous raises the Chao, however, it can turn into a kind of Dark Chao. Whether Dark, Hero or normal, all Chao are cute and loving. Chao can also become attached to individuals, as evidenced by the friendship between Cream the Rabbit and her Chao, Cheese.
Chao can usually only speak one word which is their own species' name. However, they have a very distinct form of communication: their emotion-dot. The emotion-dot, which floats above a Chao's head will change shape depending on what it thinks or feels.
Powers and abilities
All Chao are capable of flight. To compensate for their short lifespans, Chao have developed the natural ability to reincarnate themselves by reverting themselves back to eggs at the end of their lives, thus rejuvenating their bodies, and can potentially achieve immortality. Chao are also very special in that they tend to borrow the traits of animals they come in contact with. Their shape and color changes as they mature into one of five special types: Running, Flying, Swimming, Power and Normal. For example, a trio of Chao gained enhanced speed, flight, and strength after spending time with Sonic, Tails, and Knuckles while a fourth one took on Robian qualities by bonding with Jules Hedgehog. In fact, some Chao can develop incredible power for their kind, such as Cheese who possesses exceptional strength and durability. However, a well-balanced Chao can look like it did on the day it hatched.
Interaction with the Knuckles Clan
The first recorded Chao were found on Soumerca inside the Mystic Ruins of País Misterioso. While the Echidna colony of the Knuckles Clan from Albion were embroiled in a war with the native Felidae, Chief Pachacamac's daughter, Tikal, befriended the Chao and their guardian, Chaos. When Pachacamac and his warriors tried to seize the Super Emeralds the Chao guarded in order to win the war, many of the Chao were hurt in the attack. This enraged Chaos, who turned his wrath on the Knuckles Tribe and wiped them out until the Chao worked together with Tikal and used their powers to seal Chaos and themselves inside the Black Emerald.
The Chaos incident
Centuries later, Dr. Eggman released Chaos with intentions of using it to conquer Mobius as Perfect Chaos. Ultimately though, Chaos went rouge and went on a rampage as Perfect Chaos until Super Sonic stopped Chaos and nullify its rage. Afterwards, the Server Chao reverted back to normal from their emerald forms and returned to the Black Emerald along with Tikal and Chaos to spend the rest of their existence there.
Sometime in 3237, Sonic, Tails, and Knuckles discovered a Chao garden full of Chao at the former Power Ring Grotto and each befriended one that began to mimic their abilities. Eventually, Dr. Eggman detected the energy coming from the garden and went to investigate. At first suspecting it to be a repository of magical energies, he found the garden with Sonic and his friends already there and decided to destroy them all to make up for the disappointing results. Once the battle was over, a Chao followed them back to Knothole and became attached to Jules and took on features similar to his. Following Knothole's destruction, Chao have been seen living in New Mobotropolis. Many of the Chao from Knothole were found relocated in the Chao garden on Cream and Vanilla's estate in the Southern Baronies, but after it was ruined in an attack by Snively Robotnik they reunited with their other brethren in the city.
- Note: From this point, the Chao's history continues from their new life in the altered timeline.
- ↑ 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 1.4 1.5 1.6 1.7 1.8 Sonic the Hedgehog #171, "Data-File: Chao"
- ↑ 2.0 2.1 2.2 2.3 2.4 Sonic the Hedgehog: The Complete Sonic Comic Encyclopedia, "Chao, Chaos & Tikal"
- ↑ 3.0 3.1 3.2 3.3 3.4 Sonic the Hedgehog #173, "See Ya' Later Chao! Part One"
- ↑ 4.0 4.1 Sonic the Hedgehog #174, "See Ya' Later Chao! Part Two"
- ↑ Sonic the Hedgehog #240, "Heroes Part Two: For the People"
- ↑ Sonic the Hedgehog #82, "Door to the Past"
- ↑ Sonic the Hedgehog #83, "Menace to Society"
- ↑ Sonic the Hedgehog #84, "Perfect Chaos"
- ↑ Sonic the Hedgehog #199, "Knocking On Eggman's Door"
- ↑ Sonic the Hedgehog #217, "Welcome Back, Chao!"