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Shadow arrives at Circus Park searching for the fourth Chaos Emerald. As he approaches the carnival, he spots Tails flying overhead in the Emerald-powered Cyclone. For an unknown reason, Tails crashes his plane (the fox is most likely shot down in the crossfire between Eggman's defenses and an attacking force of G.U.N. troops, bailing out and leaving the Cyclone to spiral away into the distance), and it is later revealed that he came to retrieve the rings that Dr. Eggman had stolen. Undaunted by his violent arrival, Tails suggests to Shadow that they should team up and recover all the rings Eggman has collected in the park. Further in the level, Shadow runs into the Egg Monitor, who conversely asks Shadow for his help in defeating the "G.U.N. geeks." The player can choose to help Tails recover the rings, eliminate the G.U.N. robots, or simply find the white Chaos Emerald.
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The following weapons can be found in Circus Park:
Although there are not initially 400 Rings in the level, there are special ways to earn bonus Rings. These include:
Shooting Gallery: To begin, shoot one of the large disks that looks like a clock. Balloons will then rise around Shadow, which he must shoot to earn rings. There is also a green bonus gauge which fills as balloons are hit; filling it completely earns Shadow an extra 50 rings. Shooting purple balloons, however, causes the gauge to decrease and Shadow to lose rings.
"Noses" that looks like Eggman: This becomes very helpful, when approaching one of these "noses," launch Shadow into it for 50 Rings.
Flaming Hoops: Jumping through a fire hoop earns Shadow 5 Rings.
Besides the increase in enemies, Circus Park's Expert Mode adds more of the tiny moving platforms. It is important that the player is very careful when jumping to them. Take this Stage slow, and remember It is not about time but completion. The most difficult part is after the rope grinding section. The player must jump over to the small moving platforms, and do some hoop tricks after that. The Rings in mid-air serve as a guide to where to jump to, but it is better if they are just skipped using Chaos Control.
For easy lives, use the Save Point to warp to earlier parts of the Stage and launch Shadow into the "noses" that resemble Eggman. If the Ring count goes beyond 999, the counter rolls over to 0 and the player is instantly awarded 10 extra lives. This tactic works because Expert Mode does not contain the Hero Mission that ends the stage when the player has reached 400 Rings.
Circus Park is the name of a world in the game Billy Hatcher and the Giant Egg, which was also developed by Sonic Team.
The beginning cutscene of this Stage contains the now infamous line, "Where's that damn fourth Chaos Emerald?"