The Shattered World Crisis is an event in the Sonic the Hedgehog comic series and its spin-offs published by Archie Comics. It was a major global catastrophe occurring on Sonic's World as a direct result from Dr. Eggman disrupting Super Sonic's attempt to undo the Super Genesis Wave, causing the excess energy to build up inside the planet and tear itself apart. It also caused the ancient deity, Dark Gaia, to prematurely reawaken from inside the planet's core. The catastrophe saw the Freedom Fighters and their allies embark on a quest to put the broken planet back together with the Gaia Temples, a feat that required the seven Chaos Emeralds.
The start to the Shattered World Crisis was sown when Dr. Eggman and Dr. Wily used the Super Genesis Wave to remold both Sonic's World and Mega Man's World. Super Sonic and Super Armor Mega Man, however, defeated their nemeses and they each prepared to use Chaos Control to return their worlds to normal. However, unlike Mega Man, Super Sonic did not quite succeed in his task as Eggman attacked him, causing his Chaos Control to be distorted when it restored the Prime Zone. As a result, all of the excess Chaos energy from the Super Genesis Wave was applied to the core of Sonic's World, energies which were too much for the fragile planet to bear.
Countdown to Chaos
Because of the excess energies, Sonic's World began to experience global seismic activity manifested as earthquakes. It also made a form of dark mutagenic energy leak out of the ground. During this period, both the Freedom Fighters and as well Eggman sought to survey the state of the planet. In the end, the planet could no longer take the pressure and shattered into multiple continents hanging over the planet's core, marking the start of the Shattered World Crisis.
On hour zero of the Shattered World Crisis, when Angel Island was affected by the planet's break-up, Knuckles the Echidna left to find the weakened Light Gaia, whom was meant to help with the Shattered World Crisis, upon instructions from Tikal. Amidst the chaos, G.U.N. launched Operation: Triage to keep the world from falling into utter chaos.
As the Freedom Fighters got to work doing damage control in Station Square, Dr. Eggman searched for a means to use this new phenomenon to his advantage, in which he learned of Professor Dillon Pickle and his research of the Gaia Manuscripts. The doctor immediately kidnapped the professor and his research, along with Uncle Chuck. The Freedom Fighters were able to save the two from a speeding Bullet Train, though leaving the research behind for Eggman to acquire. Both hero and villain learned of Dark Gaia, an ancient creature which resided in the earth's core whom, due to the Super Genesis Wave's effects, was prematurely awoken during its sleep cycle, and its energy has began to seep through the cracks and manifest into Dark Gaia Creatures, who would ravage the world during nighttime.
Locating the Chaos Emeralds
Learning that the Chaos Emeralds were the key to putting the planet back together, as well as the Gaia Temple located in various locations across the planet, the Freedom Fighters began their world tour to hunt them down. Holding the Gaia Manuscripts, the Eggman Empire would begin searching for the same relics to control the state of the planet.
While Sally, Antoine and Tails recovered an Emerald from the Crystal Cave, Sonic, Rotor and Amy were sent to find an presumed temple in the underwater city of Meropis. While there, the trio learned that Chaos was the one keeping the oceans from draining away into the cracks, as explained by Tikal. She also informed the heroes, in addition, of Knuckles search for the Light Gaia. At the same time, the heroes would aid those affected unfortunately by the world crisis.
Knuckles' quest would eventually coincided with the Chaotix' newest assignment set by Sally to find a Chaos Emerald. In a stroke of luck, the amnesiac Light Gaia (whom Charmy rechristened "Chip") was in possession of the emerald in question. The group were able to rescue Chip and secure the emerald from the hands of the Hooligans.
Throughout the Freedom Fighters' travels, Sonic began exhibiting odd feral behavior when under stress due to the Dark Gaia Energy that Sonic had accidentally inhaled before. Despite Chuck's insistence, Sonic brushed off his worries. Sonic's attempts to bottle up his feral moments came to a head during a mission to retrieve a Chaos Emerald from the Soumerca Egg Army base. When he and his allies were caught in an electrifying trap, Sonic unleashed his strain upon the Egg Army in the form of Sonic the Werehog. The mutated hero fought off the villains, but it took the efforts of Mighty to keep the madden Sonic at bay until his mind had cleared. With a new personal hurdle to overcome, Sonic remained in Soumerca, as Sally and Amy took the Chaos Emerald back to the Sky Patrol, to learn to control his new feral form under the guidance of Mighty's mentor, Moss the Sloth.
During Sonic's training, Dr. Eggman discovered the Shattered World Crisis had proved advantageous for the Eggman Empire, keeping the authorities spread thin while the Egg Army gained more ground. Upon discovering the potent Dark Gaia Energies, Eggman also sought to harness it for his empire. After finally mastering his newfound power, Sonic returned to the Sky Patrol to find his friends have suffered a defeat during his absence, after a failed mission to retrieve an emerald from the Sand Hill Zone.
The Freedom Fighters turned their attention next to the Chaos Emerald Championship, an fighting tournament that was being held at Casino Park by Breezie the Hedgehog, where the winner of the competition received an emerald. Sonic, Tails and Amy entered themselves as competitors in a bid to win the gem, as did Espio the Chameleon of the Chaotix, the Hooligans (attempting to win the emerald for Eggman), Honey Clothing founder Honey the Cat, and Knuckles. During the final round, Metal Sonic attacked and almost made off with the emerald, but was inevitably stopped by the heroes.
Knuckles accompanied his friends back to the the Sky Patrol after the tournament, where the Freedom Fighters learned of the echidnas most recent ordeal: the Black Arms creature known as Eclipse the Darkling had come to Master Emerald with the Master Emerald in his sights. During a fierce battle involving himself, Eclipse, and Team Dark, Knuckles had no choice but to shatter the Master Emerald once again, its shards scattering, to keep it out of the aliens hands. Leaving Angel Island still able to float alongside the rest of the planets shattered land masses, Knuckles set off with Chip to seek out the scattered pieces with Chip.
As Sally, Tails, Nicole the Holo-Lynx and Big the Cat journeyed to Isolated Island to retrieve a fifth Chaos Emerald, the rest of the Freedom Fighters made their way to Apotos on the request of the towns elder, Gregorios, who showed Sonic, Antoine and Chip the Gaia Gate. It was here that the heroes learned how the next step to fixing the planet would be accomplished: the Gaia Gate leaded to every Gaia Temple, but Gaia Keys were needed to access them from the gate. With the next phase of their plan decided, Amy also came to a decision of her own to assist Knuckles in finding the Master Emerald shards, a task that would be made much easier with her newly acquired Master Emerald ability.
With the fifth emerald retrieved from Isolated Island, the Freedom Fighters met up next in the Crystal Desert Zone, where the next emerald had been discovered and was being kept safe at a GUN bunker. The heroes arrived too late to see Metal Sonic making off with the emerald, however, and Sonic gave chase. In a sudden turn of events, both of them had accidentally ran through a Genesis Portal to the Burning Ruin Zone. Fortunately for Sonic, Silver the Hedgehog was in the zone, continuing his quest to close down Genesis Portals, and the two hedgehogs teamed up to outsmart Metal Sonic, sending the robot hurtling through another portal to the Distant Abyss Zone. Sonic returned to the Crystal Desert Zone through another Genesis Portal, with the newly retrieved sixth emerald in hand.
The Shattered World Crisis was temporary interrupted by the appearance of Sigma, a Maverick from another reality who harnessed the power of the Genesis Portals to merge the broken parts of Sonic's World with Earth in the year 20XX as part of his plan to attain godhood. Sigma's actions later would be erased from history by Xander Payne, returning Sonic's World to its earlier state.
Retrieving the Gaia Keys
Although one Chaos Emerald still remained in the clutches of the Eggman Empire, the Freedom Fighters began their search for the Gaia Keys. Sonic and Rotor got the hunt started in Artika, where they retrieved the first set of keys from the local Gaia Key Guardians. Next, Sonic accompanied Sally and Bunnie to the Thunder Plains Zone to acquire the next set of keys from the local guardian, whom turned out to be their old ally Lupe the Wolf. After this, Sally and Bunnie journeyed alone to the neighboring Stone Stormlands Zone, where the Egg Army were holding the final Chaos Emerald within the temple. After battling to a standstill, Clove the Pronghorn (sister to Egg Boss Cassia the Pronghorn) allowed Bunnie to get away with the Chaos Emerald.
Heading next to Shamar, Sonic, Antoine and Big teamed up with the Desert Raiders to mount a rescue mission for Gaia Key Guardian Ehsan, who had been captured by the Midesta Egg Army. They succeeded, but not before Sonic was ambushed by said chapter, under the leadership of Nephthys the Vulture.
Elsewhere, after fetching Metal Sonic back from the Distant Abyss Zone, Eggman's initiative to harvest the energies released by Dark Gaia hit a snag when his refinery, Eggmanland, was infiltrated and taken over by Walter and Wendy Naugus. In an operation that required the doctor to call in all eleven of his Egg Bosses from across the world, Eggman launched an assault to take back the refinery. Eggman managed to ward off Walter, even after being faced with a crystalline-controlled Crystal Sonic. Wendy remained trapped, but her life was spared in exchange for becoming Eggman's twelfth Egg Boss.
A little while later, Sonic, Tails and Chip arrived at the settlement of Mazuri, where they learned that Axel the Water Buffalo had stolen the fourth Gaia key. While Sonic distracted the Egg Boss by challenging his enforcements to a race around the Savannah Citadel Zone, Tails and Chip managed to recover the key and gained access to the Gaia Temple's inner sanctum. Before departing, Chip regained some of his lost memories from inside the temple. Meanwhile, Sally and Rotor learned the identity of Spagonia's local guardian, Lucia, and offered to help her out with her mother's fiftieth birthday party. In gratitude of their efforts, she awarded them with the fifth Gaia key.
The Freedom Fighters soon split ways again. Sonic and the gang traveled to Chun-Nan to retrieve the final key. There, they were attacked by Silver Sonic upon arriving, but were saved by the intervention of Dulcy, an old friend of theirs. The team learned from the Shijin Warriors that the Guardian Zonshen had disappeared during his usual peace offering to the resident Gaia Phoenix, who had been acting strange lately. The group decided to investigate the scene but fell victim to Conquering Storm, who anticipated their move and planned on letting the corrupted Gaia Phoenix destroy them. But in a surprising tactic, the missing members ambushed her ninja troop before they could attack. Using his reawakened powers, Chip was able to restore the Gaia Phoenix to its original state, who proceeded to destroy the enemy base. Afterwards, Zonshen bestowed upon them the next key. Meanwhile, Tails and Bunnie sought the next Gaia Key in Adabat from its distraught guardian, Teanchi, whose family's home was reduced to rubble when the planet shattered. Bunnie would open his eyes to what really mattered, his own family, and she and Tails would depart with the final Gaia Key.
Meanwhile, Amy and Knuckles managed to track down some stray shards in the Rocky Jungle Zone. After partnering with Mighty and Ray to infiltrate Thunderbolt's keep and retrieve the missing fragments, they traveled to Westside Island to conduct their final search.
Though the world was broken, the full extent of what was ravaged is of yet unknown. Station Square was badly hit due to it being near a fault line, and it was stated to have been much worse had the Freedom Fighters not arrived. According to King Acorn however, Westside Island had been spared the worst of it. According to Orbot, the various Egg Army factions had been rendered too busy to help as they were attempting to keep a hold on their captured areas.
The floating continents would also cause considerable problems for Angel Island, with the naturally floating island being caught in the land clusters. G.U.N. air and ground forces have also become spread thin due to the crisis.
- The Shattered World Crisis is an adaption of the story of the similar global event that occurred in Sonic Unleashed.
- The circumstances surrounding the planets' shattering differs between the Sonic Unleashed game and the comics. The crisis was caused by Eggman in both instances. However in the game, it was done deliberately; Eggman directly cracked the planet open with his Chaos Energy Cannon. In the comics, the shattering is instead an unforeseen aftereffect of the Super Genesis Wave, which Eggman decided to use to his advantage.
- The Shattered World Crisis began in Sonic the Hedgehog #256, and concluded in Sonic the Hedgehog #287, making the event twenty-nine issues long.
- Including the events of Worlds Unite, the Shattered World Crisis is forty-one issues long.
- Sonic the Hedgehog #251, "When Worlds Collide - Finale: Best of the Best"
- Sonic the Hedgehog #256, "Countdown to Chaos - Finale: The Princess and the Hammer"
- Sonic the Hedgehog #254, "Countdown to Chaos - Part Two: The Soldier"
- Sonic Universe #63, "The Great Chaos Caper - Part One: On the Hunt"
- Sonic the Hedgehog #257, "Damage Control"
- Sonic the Hedgehog #259, "The Chase: Part Two"
- Sonic the Hedgehog #260, "Waves of Change Part One: First Ripples"
- Sonic the Hedgehog #266, "Ambushed! Part One"
- Sonic the Hedgehog #260, "The Light in the Dark: Part One"
- Sonic the Hedgehog #261, "The Light in the Dark: Part Two"
- Sonic the Hedgehog #262, "The Light in the Dark: Part Three"
- Sonic the Hedgehog #261, "Waves of Change Part Two: Current Events"
- Sonic the Hedgehog #262, "Waves of Change Part Three: Terror in the Deep"
- Sonic the Hedgehog #263, "Waves of Change Part Four: Divine Waters"
- Sonic the Hedgehog #264, "A Nice Day To Start Again"
- Sonic Universe #65, "The Great Chaos Caper Part Three: Chip of the Ol' Emerald!"
- Sonic the Hedgehog #271, "Champions Finale: The One Left Standing"
- Sonic the Hedgehog #264, "Control Part One: Breaking Point"
- Sonic the Hedgehog #265, "Control Part Two: Unleashed!"
- Sonic the Hedgehog #267, "Ambushed! Part Two"
- Sonic the Hedgehog #268, "Champions Part One: The Gang's All Here"
- Sonic the Hedgehog #269, "Champions Part Two: Climbing the Brackets"
- Sonic the Hedgehog #270, "Champions Part Three: Raising the Stakes"
- Sonic Universe #67, "Total Eclipse Part One: Uninvited Guests"
- Sonic Universe #68, "Total Eclipse Part Two: Tipping Point"
- Sonic Universe #69, "Total Eclipse Part Three: Shadow Boxing"
- Sonic Universe #70, "Total Eclipse Final: Last Resort"
- Sonic Universe #71, "Spark of Life Part One"
- Sonic Universe #72, "Spark of Life Part Two"
- Sonic Universe #73, "Spark of Life Part Three"
- Sonic Universe #74, "Spark of Life Part Four"
- Sonic the Hedgehog #272, "A Ray of Hope"
- Sonic Universe #75, "Fury"
- Sonic Universe #76, "Worlds Unite! Part One: Across Time and Space"
- Mega Man #50, "Worlds Unite Part Four: Death and Destruction"
- Mega Man #52, "Worlds Unite Part Twelve: Last Rights"
- Sonic the Hedgehog #276, "Cold Hearted"
- Sonic the Hedgehog #277, "Thunder, Rain, and Lightning"
- Sonic the Hedgehog #277, "Hidden Costs Part One"
- Sonic the Hedgehog #278, "Hidden Costs Part Two"
- Sonic the Hedgehog #279, "Hidden Costs Part Three"
- Sonic the Hedgehog #278, "Face of the Enemy Part One: Friends in Need"
- Sonic the Hedgehog #279, "Face of the Enemy Part Two: Friends in Deed"
- Sonic the Hedgehog #276, "Back in Business"
- Sonic Universe #83, "Eggman's Dozen Part One: Hostile Takeover"
- Sonic Universe #84, "Eggman's Dozen Part Two: Power Meeting"
- Sonic Universe #85, "Eggman's Dozen Part Three: Team Management"
- Sonic Universe #86, "Eggman's Dozen Finale: Synergizing"
- Sonic the Hedgehog #280, "Keys to Victory"
- Sonic the Hedgehog #280, "A Special Occasion"
- Sonic the Hedgehog #281, "Wings of Fire Part One: Slow Burn"
- Sonic the Hedgehog #282, "Wings of Fire Part Two: Fighting Fire with Fire"
- Sonic the Hedgehog #281, "Homesick"
- Sonic the Hedgehog #282, "Shards and Sparks"