Sonic the Hedgehog CD
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!
— Description, Sonic the Hedgehog CD US instruction manual.
Palmtree Panic (ヤシの木の混乱 Yashinoki no konran?, lit. "Palmtree Chaos") is the first Round of Sonic the Hedgehog CD. It consists of a coastal region surrounded by mountains, located on Little Planet. As with the other Rounds in the game, Palmtree Panic consists of two Zones and a third, shorter Zone that features the Round's boss.
Palmtree Panic is a tropical region with sharp mountains, scattered waterfalls in the background, a clean sky with white clouds, and fields covered in green grass. The soil is orange and brown and displays a triangular pattern. Palm trees with pink berries adorn the region, as well as star-shaped green plants that seem to litter the tropical coast. Sometimes, tree trunks with holes in them also appear on the highest mountain tops.
In the past, Palmtree Panic has a more prehistoric coast, with small, purple mountains, a turquoise sky, and fields covered in a lighter shade of grass than in the present. The soil retains the present version's triangular pattern, although it is now peach and brown-colored. Local palm trees also may or may not feature a light bulb-like feature on the top. Also, where there were star-shaped plants are now instead vine-like growths sprouting from the ground. Also, the tree trunks from the present now feature some small branches with small leaves on them.
In the bad future, Palmtree Panic has been completely mechanized and polluted. It is full of dark grey tubes that has a pink liquid running through them, some of which pour this liquid into a lake full of oil. The mountains are now less sharp and darker, lack the waterfalls they once had, and have small factories and machines on top of them. The sky is also pink-colored with light pink clouds. The soil still features its triangular pattern, but it is now purple and dark grey, and is covered in orange grass. Also, the palm trees are mechanical, complete with metallic gray trunks, orange metallic leaves, a glowing red light in the center, and a pink liquid dripping from them. The star-shaped plants are also drenched in the same pinkish-liquid the palm trees have on them. The aforementioned tree trunks are also dark gray and have even more holes in them than before.
In the good future, Palmtree Panic is a bright, vivid, colorful, and clean tropical paradise,. It has a turquoise sky, large mountains with vegetation and waterfalls on them, and a clean lake in the background. The soil features the same triangular pattern, which is now more shiny and bright, and the fields are covered in lime grass. The palm trees are also now mechanized, with their pink berries having been replaced with a pink, neon star. Some are connected to each other via golden pipes which lead water through the area. Some of these pipes even pour clean water into the lake. The star-shaped plants are as well shinier than before, with water dripping from them now. The tree trunks also remain in this timeline. Like in the bad future though, they have more holes in them than they have in the present.
In Sonic the Hedgehog CD, Dr. Robotnik invaded Little Planet and its regions, which included Palmtree Panic. He installed robot teleporters in the past and infested the region with Badniks. He also put some Metal Sonic Projectors to terrorize the animals that lived there. With this, he managed to conquer the future of the planet and write history to his own image. Palmtree Panic ended up being victim of Robotnik's constant pollution in Little Planet. With lots of factories nearby surrounding it, water polluted by oil and chemicals, and mechanical plants, the region was devastated.
When Sonic the Hedgehog arrived on the planet, he started to re-write history on Little Planet, reverting Robotnik's effects in Palmtree Panic. Some time later, the doctor himself attacked the hedgehog in his EGG-HVC-001, although was quickly defeated.
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 Zone 1, which the playable character runs through in a pseudo-3d perspective before being launched into the actual level. 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.
Palmtree Panic features many gimmicks that make it stand out from other first levels in the series. Of note are the 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.
Palmtree Panic Zone 1 is the first Zone in the game, and as such the easiest. There are several speedy sections here that make use of Springs and Winding Tunnels, as well as several secrets that can only be accessed by entering the Time Warp.
In the present timeline, the Zone is notable for starting with a giant ramp/shuttle loop, in which the playable character runs in a pseudo-3D perspective. A similar gimmick is seen near the end of the Zone.
Palmtree Panic Zone 2 is similar to Zone 1, except that it has more alternate pathways to take. The top pathways are the shortest and safest to take, though they lack Rings and secrets. The bottom pathways are more maze-like and feature more enemies, though they normally have more secrets than other pathways. Sometimes, they feature Springs that will take the player directly to the top pathways.
Palmtree Panic Zone 3 is the shortest Zone of the three, as it is where the player fights Dr. Robotnik in his EGG-HVC-001. As with other third Zones, this one takes place in the future. Before the fight against Robotnik, the player can collect many power-ups found in Item Boxes, such as Power Sneakers and Invincibility.
Robot transporter locations
- Zone 1: A robot transporter can be seen on top of a mountain near the end of the Zone. To reach it, the player has to climb platforms, or use a Spring seen earlier in another mountain. A Tamabboh protects the machine.
- Zone 2: A robot transporter appears in the second half of the Zone. The player has to pass through a series of obstacles and Badniks to reach it. Like before, a Tamabboh appears to be protecting the device.
In other media
Sonic the Comic
In the Sonic the Comic comic series published by Fleetway Editions, Palmtree Panic Zone is a Zone located on Miracle Planet. It was where Cam and Bert constructed some Badniks on the orders of Dr. Ivo Robotnik, only for the robots to be destroyed by the Green Hill Zone Badniks. However, the duo used the remains of the destroyed Badniks to create the Seven Badniks.
In the Sonic the Hedgehog comic series and its spin-offs published by Archie Comics, Palmtree Panic is a Zone located in Little Planet. It was briefly visited by Sonic the Hedgehog while trying to free the planet from Dr. Eggman's rule.
- Palmtree Panic was originally named "Salad Plain" early in the game's development.
- With Debug Mode enabled, if the player goes below the boss arena after defeating the boss, three monitors are present, not normally obtainable, and two of them are unused. There is an extra life, the infamous "S" monitor, and a monitor with a timer on it- the "S" gives Sonic invincibility and super speed, and the timer freezes time and all objects for a few seconds.
- As with every other stage, the US and Japanese music for the past is the same track.
- The music that plays in this Round during the Bad Future in the Japanese version of Sonic the Hedgehog CD was remixed as one of the boss battle music tracks in Sonic Chronicles: The Dark Brotherhood.
- In Sonic & Sega All-Stars Racing, the music that plays in the stage's present time can be played in the Seaside Hill racetracks; however, it's based on the Japanese version.
- The same applies to Mario & Sonic at the London 2012 Olympic Games, except 'Present' isn't in the name.
- The JP music of this Round returns as an unlockable track in Sonic Generations, where it is listed as PalmTree Panic.
- The Japanese version of this Round's music appears as one of the songs that can be purchased in Mario & Sonic at the Olympic Winter Games, Mario & Sonic at the London 2012 Olympic Games, Mario & Sonic at the Sochi 2014 Olympic Winter Games and Mario & Sonic at the Rio 2016 Olympic Games, where it is listed as Palm Tree Panic. In Mario & Sonic at the Sochi 2014 Olympic Winter Games, it is listed as Palmtree Panic.
|Palmtree Panic "P" mix||Naofumi Hataya||2:57|
|Palmtree Party||Spencer Nilsen, David Young||1:51|
|Palmtree Panic - Bad Future||Spencer Nilsen, David Young||1:26|
|Palmtree Panic (US)||Spencer Nilsen, David Young||1:22|
|Palmtree Panic (JP)||Naofumi Hataya||1:46|
|Palmtree Panic "B" mix||Naofumi Hataya||1:22|
|Palmtree Panic "G" mix||Naofumi Hataya||1:19|
- Sonic the Hedgehog CD (Sega Mega-CD) United States instruction manual, p. 12.
- Sonic the Hedgehog CD (Sega Mega-CD) Japanese instruction booklet, pg. 26.