Sonic the Hedgehog CD
Palmtree Panic

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Quotation1 Loop the loops, twist through corkscrew turns, find footing on hidden platforms, and spin the wheels to blast up vertical ramps. This Round promises plenty of action for a fleet-footed hedgehog! Hope you remembered to bring your mosquito repellent, 'cuz some of these enemies take a big bite! Quotation2
— US instruction manual, Sonic the Hedgehog CD[1]

Palmtree Panic (ヤシの木の混乱[2] Yashinoki no konran?) is the first round of Sonic the Hedgehog CD. The boss of the third Zone is Dr. Robotnik, piloting the EGG-HVC-001.



It is a tropical region with sharp mountains and scattered waterfalls in the background. Hence the name, palm trees adorn the region, as well as star-shaped plants that seem to litter the tropical coast. This round shares similarities with Green Hill Zone.


The past features a more prehistoric coast as if in the BCE era, with small, purple mountains and a turquoise sky. Palm trees may even or may not share a light bulb-like feature on top. Where the star-shaped plants would be there are instead vine-like growths sprouting from the ground, presumably the early stage of the star-shaped plants.

Bad Future

The bad future has been completely mechanized. Palm trees are mechanical, but are broken down and feature an ominous red light glowing in each center. The star-shaped plants are also mechanical, but they are rusted, broken up, and share the ominous glowing that the palm trees have. The air has been polluted by smog just as the waters have been by oil.

Good Future

The good future is also mechanized but is bright, vivid, colorful, and clean. The star-shaped plants and trees are both mechanical and seem to act as water transporters. Pipes run water through the area, sometimes making tiny waterfalls of their own. Many plants adorn the area as well, and the region seems to be entirely water-powered.


Palmtree Panic is a rather speedy level, taking numerous cues from Green Hill Zone while also putting a unique spin on them. One of its most iconic level set pieces is a giant shuttle loop present at the start of the first Zone, which Sonic runs through in a pseudo-3d perspective before being launched into the actual level. A similar path is present near the end as well, though this time it is simply a giant ramp that Sonic can run up. Winding Tunnels also return, but now feature many different formations that snake around and even loop in on themselves, and in one instance in Zone 1 even send Sonic zooming through an unseen tunnel inside the foreground, before bursting out of a wall and leaving behind a Sonic-shaped hole.

In terms of level design, Palmtree Panic is relatively fast and straightforward, though often features multiple routes that shake things up. The Round features very tall hills of varying height that Sonic can climb up from the main path, often using small Emerald Blocks to ascend, and are occasionally connected via crumbling platforms. Lower routes that typically take place in internal cave sections are often much more mazelike in design, requiring the player to navigate through spikes, Springs, and other obstacles to reach their desired destination.

Palmtree Panic also features many gimmicks that make it stand out from other first levels in the series. Of note are the aforementioned Emerald Blocks that are not only present in the exact same spots across all timezones, but also feature different properties depending on the timezone as well. Also featured are Spring Poles, as well as spinning turntables that rotate the player around when stood on. Arguably the most iconic "obstacle" present in the level is Amy Rose, who appears at the very end of Zone 1 following Sonic around and latching onto him.

In other media

Sonic the Comic

Main article: Palmtree Panic Zone

Archie Comics





Name Artist(s) Length Music Track
Palmtree Panic "P" mix Naofumi Hataya 2:57
Palmtree Panic Past
Palmtree Party Spencer Nilsen, David Young 1:51
Palmtree Panic Present US
Palmtree Panic - Bad Future Spencer Nilsen, David Young 1:26
Palmtree Panic Bad Future US
Palmtree Panic (US) Spencer Nilsen, David Young 1:22
Palmtree Panic Good Future US
Palmtree Panic (JP) Naofumi Hataya 1:46
Palmtree Panic Present JP
Palmtree Panic "B" mix Naofumi Hataya 1:22
Palmtree Panic Bad Future JP
Palmtree Panic "G" mix Naofumi Hataya 1:19
Palmtree Panic Good Future JP


Palmtree Panic Zone 1 - Sonic CD

Palmtree Panic Zone 1 - Sonic CD

Palmtree Panic Zone 2 - Sonic CD

Palmtree Panic Zone 2 - Sonic CD

Sonic CD Round 1 - Palmtree Panic

Sonic CD Round 1 - Palmtree Panic


  1. Sonic the Hedgehog CD (Sega CD) United States instruction manual, p. 12.
  2. Sonic the Hedgehog CD (Sega CD) Japanese instruction booklet, pg. 26.

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