The Lake of Rings is a location that appears in the Sonic the Hedgehog comic series and its spin-offs published by Archie Comics. It was a body of water from which generated Power Rings appeared. The Knothole Freedom Fighters often collected Rings from the lake for their own use; someone was usually left to watch over the lake and retrieve its daily generated ring. The site was eventually destroyed; however, a recreation now exists in New Mobotropolis in the Julayla Memorial Park.
In the years prior to the Great War, the Lake of Rings was just an ordinary pond located near the outskirts of the Great Forest. It became something much more significant however, due to the actions of Nate Morgan. Because of Ixis Naugus and Kodos, scheming members of the Kingdom of Acorn, the Overlander geophysicist imposed exile upon himself and, by accident, stumbled across the site of what would become Knothole Village. Here, he came across a lake and decided to discard his prized Ring Forge into the depths below as he feared Naugus and Kodos would try to seize it at some point to create Power Rings for their own sinister designs. Somehow the Ring Forge managed to not become ruined by its submersion and remained active for over fifteen years, generating one Power Ring per day that would float to the surface and remain airborne briefly, disappearing if no one recovered it.
Discovery by Sonic
During a mission to Robotropolis, the Knothole Freedom Fighters were ambushed by Combots, in which through an unlikely accident caused Sonic to temporarily lose his speed. Later, when a group of Combots again attacked the group in the Great Forest, Sonic was forced to jump into a nearby body of water in order to avoid an explosion. As it turned out, this body was water was the Lake of Rings. Penelope Platypus rescued Sonic before he drowned, and he managed to obtain a power ring from the lake, which would later prove vital to returning his speed.
Fly Fly Freddy's attack
Having found the Lake of Rings, the Freedom Fighters decided to keep knowledge of its location restricted to the core group and Uncle Chuck, fearing that Robotnik would seek it out if word spread. Through observation they discovered that the lake produced a single ring every twenty-four hours.
When the Power Rings that Sonic and Tails recovered from the Power Ring Grotto proved ineffectual in Rotor Walrus and Uncle Chuck's attempts to reverse Maximillian Acorn's crystallization, it was determined that the only way to reverse the magical effects of the Zone of Silence was through a magical artifact such as the Crown of Acorns; however, the crown was thought to have been lost during Robotnik's coup d'état. With no leads, it was suggested that another Power Ring be used, as it was said that they also had the ability to bestow knowledge. Sonic, Sally Acorn, and Tails then set out for the lake to get another ring, but were surprised to meet Sleuth "Doggy" Dawg instead of their expected contact from the Robotropolis Spy Network. Sleuth soon revealed himself to be a turncoat and set a division of SWATbots on the three. Bunnie Rabbot joined the fray shortly after as she was on Power Ring patrol and helped turn the tides, which were soon turned back by the arrival of a roboticized Fly Fly Freddy. During the rest of the battle, Freddy focused most of his attacks on Sonic and almost managed to take him out as he leaped for a ring emerging from the lake; however, Freddy was scrapped by Knuckles at the last minute.
When Jules was mortally wounded by an Auto Automaton, Sonic took Jules's body to Uncle Chuck, only for him to conclude that Jules's life force was gone. Just as Chuck pronounced Jules dead, Sonic remembered the Lake of Rings. Sonic then raced to the lake, swiped a Power Ring, and used it to bring Jules back from the dead.
Chao Garden and destruction
One day, Eggman discovered a Chao Garden and sought to destroy it for his own gain, threatening the Chao living there. Sonic, Tails and Knuckles attempted to fight him off, but the Garden suffered regardless, and so Sonic decided to relocate the Chao to the Lake of Rings, effectively making it a new Chao Garden. Eventually, Eggman launched his Egg Fleet and bombarded Knothole in a devastating surprise attack. The entire city and surrounding area was utterly destroyed; all that remained of the lake and its power ring generator was a smoking crater.
When NICOLE took control of A.D.A.M.'s Nanite City, she used the nanites to create New Mobotropolis. While largely identical to the original city, she also incorporated things that had been lost in the Destruction of Knothole, including a new Lake of Rings. As the original ring forge had been lost, NICOLE created the new lake with the ability to generate rings using siphoned radioactive energy from the former Robotropolis; however, this process is still time-consuming. Many Chao from other destroyed Chao Gardens now reside at the new lake.
The Lake of Rings proved crucial when the Iron Queen, attacking the city, took control of Monkey Khan using her Magitek skills. Khan's crown had been forcibly removed and destroyed as it provided him with some resistance to the Queen's control; without it, he was turned against the people of New Mobotropolis as a powerful weapon. However, Sonic remembered that Khan's original crown had been made from a power ring; he hoped that another ring would help him regain his senses. Thanks to NICOLE rerouting power, a ring was generated just in time—as Monkey Khan attacked Sonic, the two struggled in the water and Sonic managed to place the new ring on Khan's head, causing him to regain control of himself. Later, he was left to fish his staff out of the lake where it had fallen.
- Note: From this point, the Lake of Ring's history continues from its new existence in the altered timeline.
- The Lake of Rings was originally a plot device developed for the Sonic the Hedgehog cartoon series. Ironically, the comic series would not incorporate the Lake of Rings until just after the cartoon series was canceled. Ian Flynn would later combine aspects of the Lake of Rings with that of the lakes in the Chao Gardens in the video games.
- ↑ Sonic the Hedgehog #65, "The Fellowship of the Rings"
- ↑ Sonic the Hedgehog #38, "The Ring of Robotropolis... the Fall of Sonic!"
- ↑ Sonic the Hedgehog #42, "In Every Kingdom There Must Exist A Little Chaos!"
- ↑ Sonic the Hedgehog #136, "The Infiltrator"
- ↑ Sonic the Hedgehog #174, "See Ya' Later Chao! Part Two"
- ↑ Sonic the Hedgehog #175, "Eggman Empire"
- ↑ 7.0 7.1 Sonic the Hedgehog #204, "Heavy is the Head Part Two: Iron Khan"