Flashing blocks or cubes with either "Goal", "Exit" or "!" written on them.
Goal ( is an object that appears in the ゴール Gōru ) ? . They are flashing orbs/cubes-shaped objects (although the manual describes them as a block) that appear in Sonic the Hedgehog series Special Stages or Bonus Stages. If the player touches these blocks, they will be transported to the next Act or returned to the same Zone they entered the stage from.
Sonic the Hedgehog (1991)
The Goal first appeared in
, where they can be encountered in the game's Sonic the Hedgehog (1991) Special Stages. Here, they are set in rows within the walls. When the player touches these blocks, he/she will leave the Special Stage without earning a Chaos Emerald, which the player's goal in the Special Stages.
Sonic & Knuckles
Goals later appeared in the
slot machine-type Bonus Stage in . They function as they did in the previous game and can be found in small gaps in each corner of the stage. Here, touching the Goal will send the player back to the Sonic & Knuckles Zone where he/she entered the Bonus Stage. If the player hits the colored blocks multiple times or stays on them for too long, they will change their color and, eventually, transform into a Goal block (blue > green > yellow > red > Goal block).
Exit blocks in the
Bonus Stage of . Knuckles' Chaotix
Different looking, but identically functioning objects titled
Exit appear in the  Bonus Stages of . These objects are simple gray cubes with a red-and-green flashing circle in the middle that has "Exit" written on it. When the player falls onto one of these cubes, he/she will be transported back to the place where the player found the Knuckles' Chaotix Giant Ring for the Bonus Stage.
Sonic the Hedgehog 4: Episode I
The Goal blocks returned in the
Special Stages of . In this game, they are simple red, circular blocks with a white exclamation mark written in their center instead of "Goal". Despite their artistic change, they work exactly like they did in the original Sonic the Hedgehog 4: Episode I Sonic the Hedgehog.
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*Exclusive to the
2013 re-release of . Sonic the Hedgehog
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