— Neo Metal Sonic, Sonic Heroes
Neo Metal Sonic (ネオメタルソニック Neo Metaru Sonikku?) is a transformation that appears in the Sonic the Hedgehog series. He is one of Metal Sonic's transformations which he once used to disguise himself as Dr. Eggman and to copy the data of those he fought against in order to make himself more powerful.
Neo Metal Sonic shares some distinctive traits with his normal form, such as black eyes with red irises, similar torso with a rocket engine, and the primary blue color with red shoes, but he has a number of differences too. His head has five long quills as opposed to his regular three, with white stripes and markings around his eyes, similar to that of Shadow's. The yellow color in his ears has been replaced with red and his nose is now black.
He also possesses more pronounced body armor, with black and curved shoulder plates, larger gauntlets and leg armor with pointy knee caps that have white outlines, a plate covering his pelvis and elf-like shoes. He also sports a spiky belt with a black cape that protrudes out of the back of his waist.
Prior to Sonic Heroes, Metal Sonic assumed this form as he sought to defeat Sonic on his own and conquer the world himself. To this end, he betrayed Dr. Eggman, took control of the Eggman Empire and began seeking out the data needed for him to transform into Metal Overlord. To achieve this, Neo Metal Sonic needed to copy the lifeform data of other beings. Using his shapeshifting abilities to pass as the real Sonic, Neo Metal Sonic would also kidnap Froggy and Chocola in order to obtain their data on Chaos as well.
When Team Sonic, Team Rose, Team Dark, and Team Chaotix began their adventures, Neo Metal Sonic would cross paths with the groups on various occasions in the guise of Dr. Eggman and get the lifeform data he needed from them. At the time Team Sonic and Team Dark defeated the Egg Albatross, Neo Metal Sonic had successfully copied Team Sonic's and Shadow's data, and when Team Rose defeated Neo Metal Sonic in the Egg Emperor, he had copied Chaos' data as well, making him release Froggy and Chocola from captivity.
With all the data he needed, Neo Metal Sonic revealed himself to the heroes and destroyed the Final Fortress' tower before using the debris to transform into Metal Madness, and later Metal Overlord. However, he was later defeated by Team Sonic and reverted to Neo Metal Sonic, and then back to his original form with Sonic promising him a rematch at any time.
Powers and abilities
Neo Metal Sonic is, like his normal form, able to scan the life data of other life forms, allowing him to copy and replicate others' attributes and abilities flawlessly. Due to his actions throughout Sonic Heroes, it can be assumed that he possessed the abilities of all the teams, plus those of Chaos itself, at the climax of the story.
Neo Metal Sonic has the power to shapeshift, allowing him to change his appearance and body structure. When shapeshifting, he turns into a puddle of liquid metal and then emerges in a new form. This allows him not only to perfectly imitate the appearance of organic creatures, but also the appearance of robots as well, such as fake Dr. Eggman robot copies, though Tails could tell it was not an Eggman robot. He can also safely contain creatures such as Froggy and Chocola inside of himself until he had copied Chaos' data.
As demonstrated when he first revealed himself, Neo Metal Sonic can create lightning bolts from his hands, launch them into the sky and then bring it back down with enough power to blow up the Final Fortress' largest tower. He can also manipulate outside elements through unknown means to rebuild himself, such as when he used the debris from the Final Fortress' tower to rebuild himself into Metal Madness.
By combining the data from Team Sonic, Team Dark, Team Rose and Team Chaotix with the data from Chaos, Neo Metal Sonic is able to rebuild himself into a much stronger form called Metal Madness. In this form, Neo Metal Sonic's strength and power are highly increased and he gains new abilities and weaponry, such as launching the spines on his back which will sprout into a sharp spike formation, a large flamethrower, missiles which can trap his enemies in crystal cages, and a powerful sweep with his tail.
After completing his transformation as Metal Madness, Metal Madness grows a pair of mechanical wings on his lower body, becoming Metal Overlord. In this form, Metal Overlord is nearly invulnerable and is powerful enough to fight on par with Super Sonic, Super Knuckles and Super Tails. He is capable of flight and is strong enough to throw entire battleships. As Metal Overlord, he can fire a barrage of crystal pillars from his torso, launch the spikes on his back as homing missiles, fire crystal encagíng missiles, and perform Chaos Control.
In other media
In the Sonic the Hedgehog comic series and its spin-offs published by Archie Comics, an army of Neo Metal Sonic robots, called the Metal Sonic Troops, appeared. These robots were created by Sir Charles Hedgehog and Rotor to serve as protectors of Knothole after Sonic was lost in the battle with the Xorda. While they were never activated by their creators, when Sonic returned, A.D.A.M. managed to assume control of them and send them on a rampage against Knothole and Dr. Eggman. The entire army was destroyed however, when Shadow the Hedgehog used Chaos Control.
In the Sonic the Hedgehog comic series and its spin-offs published by IDW Publishing, Neo Metal Sonic is a transformation of Metal Sonic. Much like in the games, Metal Sonic first became Neo Metal Sonic when he took over the Eggman Empire. However, he lost that form after he was defeated by Team Sonic. Metal Sonic later became Neo Metal Sonic again with Dr. Eggman's aid for the purpose of aiding Eggman during his war with the Resistance, but was completed too late. Armed with Eggman's bio-data however, Neo Metal Sonic set out to conquer the world on behalf of his creator after he went missing.
- "All life form data... successfully copied."
- —After Team Sonic runs to Eggman's air fleet.
- "Ultimate life form data... has been copied."
- —After Team Dark runs from Egg Albatross.
- "Chaos data... has been copied."
- —After Team Rose reunites with Chocola Chao and Froggy.
- "It's no use... but why can't I defeat you?"
- —Neo Metal Sonic's final words before he deactivates.
- The only game that features Neo Metal Sonic's name is Sonic Rivals, in which he appears as a collectible card.
- To avoid revealing his identity as Metal Sonic, the instruction manual for Sonic Heroes lists him as "Mystery Monster".
- In Sonic Heroes, in Hang Castle, when the player looks at the Eggman statue upside-down, they can see Neo Metal Sonic. This hints at his role in the game.
- Another hint is in Team Dark's Egg Hawk level. When "Eggman" saw Omega, he said, "You must be Omega...".
- Another hint is when Team Chaotix is about to fight the Robot Storm, Vector refers to "Eggman" as a "mustached moron", their "mysterious client" becomes enraged and says "I'm the world's greatest..." before catching himself and telling Team Chaotix to defeat him.
- Neo Metal Sonic was designed by Kazuyuki Hoshino, who also designed the original Metal Sonic for Sonic the Hedgehog CD.
- It is unknown how Metal Sonic achieved his Neo Metal Sonic form.
- Despite Neo Metal Sonic's large role (albeit behind the scenes) in Sonic Heroes, the player never actually fights him in this form.
- Neo Metal Sonic's shapeshifting ability is similar to Mimetic polyalloy, a shape-shifting liquid-metal the T-1000 from Terminator 2: Judgement Day was made from.