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Color Powers are unique abilities that are unleashed when the user harnesses the power of a Wisp by temporarily absorbing it and tapping into its innate Hyper-go-on reserves. This will grant the user new abilities and/or powers, such as laser mimicry, fire explosion induction or even manipulation of objects within an area. In gameplay, this allows the player to execute specialized abilities for highly powerful attacks, traversing and completing the Acts more easily, or a combination of both. After a Color Power wears off, the Wisps will pop back out of the user, unharmed.
When using a Color Power, the user only needs to harness a fraction of the Wisps' total of Hyper-go-on. Color Powers can only be maintained for a short period of time in gameplay, however, and requires that the player collects more Wisps of the same type before the active Color Power runs out in order to maintain it (the only exception is Red Burst which can also be refilled by touching fire).
Each type of absorbable Wisp grants the user a different Color Power with its own unique abilities; the Yellow Wisps grant the Yellow Drill, the Green Wisps grant the Green Hover and so forth. Most Color Powers cause the user to physically transform into a form better suited for the Color Power's abilities, while others simply allows them to execute powerful abilities, such as the Boost or the Final Color Blaster.
When activating a Color Power in gameplay, an in-game announcer will say the second word of the Color Power, such as "Laser" for the Cyan Laser, and "Drill" for the Yellow Drill.
In the 2 Player mode in the Wii version of Sonic Colors in Eggman's Sonic Simulator, two players (using either the Mii or Virtual Hedgehog) are able to combine Color Powers with each other by activating the two Color Powers at the same time when they are within a certain distance. This will create a new special Color Power move, with the combined effects of both. However, not all Color Powers are compatible, resulting in separate effects. The Color Powers that can be combined and their effects are:
Cyan Laser + Cyan Laser: Two lasers that shoot in a specified direction, spiraling around each other
Yellow Drill + Yellow Drill: Two Yellow Drills that steer cooperatively, spiraling around one another with magnified power while attracting Rings.
Pink Spikes + Pink Spikes: Two Pink Spikes that are connected by a white beam of light, which destroys any enemy upon contact.
Yellow Drill + Cyan Laser: A Yellow Drill that can turn into a Cyan Laser before the Color Power ends.
Yellow Drill + Green Hover: A Yellow Drill that can move through air as well as water while attracting nearby Rings.
Orange Rocket + Cyan Laser: An Orange Rocket that can turn into a Cyan Laser before the Color Power ends.
Yellow Drill + Orange Rocket: A Yellow Drill that can rocket upward. This Color Power ends once above ground.
Green Hover + Green Hover: Creates a white beam between the two players which can be used it to knock out enemies that come in contact.
The Color Powers' duration is determined by the remainder of energy in the player's Wisp/Boost Gauge. Activating the Color Power will cause the Wisp/Boost Gauge to be used, and once it is depleted, the Color Power will end. While the Color Power is in effect however, collecting a new Wisp with the same Color Power will replenish the Wisp/Boost Gauge and extend the duration of the Color Power.
In the Wii version of Sonic Colors and Sonic Colors: Ultimate, when Super Sonic is enabled, the player is unable to perform any Color Powers. Touching any Wisp Capsule will free the Wisp contained in it but it will not enter Sonic's body (except for White Wisps) and will instead float upwards and disappear. However, to compensate for the lack of Color Powers when playing as Super Sonic, some of the Acts' designs are tweaked so Sonic can traverse them without resorting to Color Powers.
The player can obtain a Color Power by collecting a Wisp from a Wisp Capsule. To activate a Color Power (besides the Boost granted by the White Wisps), the player has to use the following controls:
In the console/PC version of Sonic Generations, the Color Powers' duration is determined by a set time limit. While the Color Power is in effect, collecting a new Wisp with the same Color Power will extend the duration of the Color Power. On the 3DS version of Sonic Generations, however, the Color Power's duration is determined by the remainder of energy in the player's Wisp Gauge. Once it is depleted, the Color Power will end. Like in Sonic Colors though, while the Color Power is in effect, collecting a new Wisp with the same Color Power will replenish the Wisp Gauge.
In the console/PC version of Sonic Generations, when playing as SuperSonic, the player can still obtain a Wisp. Activating a Color Power as Super Sonic will make Super Sonic de-transform however. Transforming into Super Sonic is also not possible while using a Color Power.
The player can obtain a Color Power by collecting Wisps from Wisp Capsules. To activate a Color Power in the console/PC version, the player has to press /. On the Nintendo 3DS version, the player has to press .
On the Wii U version of the game, there is only one Color Power per Zone, but on the Nintendo 3DS version there can be more per Zone. The Color Powers' duration is determined by the remainder of energy in the player's Wisp Gauge. Activating the Color Power will cause the Wisp Gauge to be used, and once it is depleted, the Color Power will end. While the Color Power is in effect however, collecting a new Wisp with the same Color Power will replenish the Wisp Gauge and extend the duration of the Color Power.
The player can obtain a Color Power by collecting Wisps from Item Boxes. To activate a Color Power, the player has to use the following controls:
PC (Xbox 360 controller)
PC (Xbox One controller)
Tap the Wisp icon in the top right corner of the GamePad screen.
In gameplay, the player can either obtain Color Powers from Item Boxes in the stages, upon which they will activate, or equip them before-handed and manually activate them in the stages by pressing their icon on the screen. The Color Powers' duration is determined by the remainder of energy in the player's Wisp Gauge. Activating the Color Power will cause the Wisp Gauge to be used, and once it is depleted, the Color Power will end. While the Color Power is in effect however, collecting a new Wisp with the same Color Power will replenish the Wisp Gauge and extend the duration of the Color Power. If the player falls into a bottomless pit or takes damage without Rings, the player can resume gameplay by paying five Red Star Rings while automatically receiving one Color Power.
In Sonic Forces, a multitude of Wisp made an appearances. However, the only Color Power that technically appears in this game is the Boost; all the other Wisps are used for the Wispon gimmicks, which can utilize special actions that are based on the Wisps' Color Powers.
Team Sonic Racing
In Team Sonic Racing, the Color Powers make a reappearance as products of the Wisp power-ups that can be obtained from the racetracks. In this game, the player can obtain Color Powers by picking up an Item Box from the race courses. Most of the time when using a Color Power in this game, rather than the playable character transforming, the user manifests the Color Powers separate from themselves and uses them either defensively or offensively against rivals. For example, using the Orange or Crimson Wisp will manifest the Orange Rocket or Crimson Eagle and fire them as projectiles against rival racers. Similarly, the White Wisp can be used to give the user's vehicle a boost of speed, while the Blue and Black Wisp lets the user drop Blue Cubes or a Black Bomb on the tracks. However, the Yellow Wisp and newly added Jade Wisp are an exception to this, as upon use the player transforms into the Yellow Drill and Jade Ghost respectively.
To use a Color Power in gameplay in this game, the player has to press // while in possession of a Wisp.