Dr. Robotnik's Flame Craft is a single-person, sphere-shaped hovercraft. It is dark blue in color and is equipped with two large, steerable cannons on either side. It also has a small orange dome on the bottom of the main pod.
In SEGA Heroes, the Flame Craft's design is simplified. Here, it is much smaller, about the same size as the standard Egg Mobile. Its cannons are much smaller as well and are cylinder-shaped. The dome on the bottom of the Flame Craft is also crimson instead of orange.
Features and abilities
The Flame Craft is capable of flight. It can also fire intense fireballs.
The Flame Craft first appears moments after the player outruns the bombs dropped by the Flying Battery. It flies past the player in the Act's background, before disappearing behind a huge waterfall. When Sonic crosses a wooden bridge, the Flame Craft emerges through the waterfall and drops a fireball on the bridge, destroying it. The player is able to fall into a bottomless pit if the playable character is standing on the bridge when it is destroyed.
The Flame Craft will then disappear behind the waterfall, becoming impossible for Sonic to hit, and emerge again in a new location to fire its weapons at Sonic again. Robotnik will move in certain patterns, either to the far right, upper left corner or left side. Robotnik will fire two fireballs each time it emerges, and Sonic will only be able to use the Spin Attack on it again during those times. After eight hits, the Flame Craft will be destroyed, and the player will be able to proceed to the Capsule and finish the Zone.
When playing as Knuckles in Sonic the Hedgehog 3 & Knuckles, the player enters the arena from a different pathway. An EggRobo is seen piloting the vehicle using a similar pattern of attack, but is able to fire four fireballs at one time. After landing eight hits on the vehicle, the player will be able to proceed to the Capsule and finish the Zone.
In other media
In Sonic Adventures, the Flame Craft appears as Dr. Robotnik's main transportation vehicle instead of the regular Egg Mobile. While not having the important role in the story, the arm cannons have motors behind them and function as flamethrowers instead of launching fireballs.
The Flame Craft appears on the US box art for the Sega Genesis version of Sonic the Hedgehog 3. Like in Sonic Adventures, Robotnik is seen firing flames instead of fireballs in the box art.
If the player is playing as Sonic and Tails and Sonic goes for the early hit when Robotnik destroys the bridge and gets Tails stuck behind the boss, Tails will bounce between the locked screen and the boss, defeating it within a few seconds.