The Gondola (ゴンドラ Gondora?), also known as the tram, is a gimmick that appears in the Sonic the Hedgehog series. It is a form of platform that works like a cable car, and is used for transportation over pits and gaps.
The Gondolas mostly resemble primitive cable cars. Overall, they are solid platforms for the playable characters to stand on that are hanging from a single cable tied between two tall poles. The platforms themselves are attached to the cable through smaller cables.
The Gondolas are used by the player to cross over large chasms, bottomless abysses or lava pits. To start riding a Gondola, the player simply has to step onto the platform of the Gondola; it will then immediately start moving forward while descending until it reaches the other end of the cable. When riding a Gondola, the player is usually taken through floating clusters of Rings. When reaching the end of the cable, the Gondolas will usually detach and fall off the cable, so the player has to be quick to jump off them.
Sonic the Hedgehog 2
In Sonic the Hedgehog 2, and its lock-on version Knuckles the Echidna in Sonic the Hedgehog 2, the Gondolas are blue platforms with low railings, and the cable they hang from and move along are green vines. They appear exclusively in Hill Top Zone. In gameplay, the Gondolas mainly serve as the main gimmick in Hill Top Zone and appear both above ground and in caverns. Once they reach the end of their cables, the Gondolas will immediately fall off.
Sonic Advance 3
In Sonic Advance 3, Gondolas are depicted as basic platforms. They appear as one of the main gimmicks in Chaos Angel. In gameplay, they are connected to the cables that move along simple ropeways, providing a slow ride to alternate pathways. Unlike in Sonic the Hedgehog 2 though, when the Gondola reaches the end of their ropeways, their platform will not fall off.
In the console/PC version of Sonic Generations, the Gondolas' platforms are flat yellow and blue cuboids, and the cables they move along are simple ropeways. The platforms themselves hang from the ropeways on four metal chains with hooks. They appear exclusively in Rooftop Run Act 1.
In gameplay, the Gondolas function much like they did in Sonic the Hedgehog 2, except that they are more wobbly, meaning that the player has to make accurate jumps on them to reach other sections of the Act. They also make a slight movement before they fall off once they reach the end of the ropeways.
- In the Nick Arcade prototype of Sonic the Hedgehog 2, the Gondola does not break off after reaching the end of its path.