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For the gimmick in Sonic Boom: Rise of Lyric, see Ener-Rail.

The Zip Line[1] is a gimmick in the Sonic the Hedgehog series. It is a basic pulley suspended on a cable mounted on an incline that can be used as a quick and easy way to reach far away areas.

Description

The Zip Line's appearance is exactly like their real-life counterparts', but with some slight design differences occurring between each game. Overall, they consist of a pulley suspended on a long cable mounted on an incline. These cables usually stretch a long distance through midair. The pulley on an unused Zip Line can always be found at the cable's beginning.

The Zip Line's purpose is to help the player reach far away areas by letting them ride down the Zip Line's cable with the aid of its pulley. When using it in gameplay, the user grabs a hold of the pulley, which will then cause said pulley to automatically roll down the Zip Line's cable from one end to the other at high speed. In some chases, the Zip Line serves as a shortcut, and in others cases, it is necessary to proceed through a level.

To use a Zip Line in in gameplay, the player just has to touch its pulley. In some games, the player can even zero in on the pulley at the beginning of a Zip Line with the Homing Attack. Also, once a Zip Line has been used, it usually cannot be used again, although there are exceptions in different games.

Game appearances

Sonic the Hedgehog 3

Swing me to the other side

Sonic riding a Zip Line in Angel Island Zone Act 1 of Sonic the Hedgehog 3.

The Zip Lines made their first appearance in Sonic the Hedgehog 3. In this game, they appear in Angel Island Zone and Launch Base Zone Act 2, with the Zip Lines' appearance and functionality differing between the two Zones.

This one can be moved to any direction

Sonic riding a Zip Line in Launch Base Zone Act 2 of Sonic the Hedgehog 3.

In Angel Island Zone, Zip Lines are long, horizontal rope-rides set over long gaps. To ride it, the playable character must touch the wooden handle at the top left end of the Zip Line. After reaching the bottom end, the playable character swings around 360 degrees on it before jumping off it. In Angel Island Zone Act 2 however, one Zip Line has fire on the rope that makes it break, causing the player to fall off before reaching the end. In Launch Base Zone Act 2, there are different, steel-based Zip Lines which use hooks. When the playable character hops onto the hook, it will settle and then move straight forward to the end. While riding it, the player can move the playable character left and right and jump off after reaching the end of the line.

When riding a Zip Line, the playable characters hold onto its pulley with both hands.

Sonic Adventure

RMSONIC16

Sonic using a Zip Line in Sonic Adventure DX: Director's Cut.

In Sonic Adventure and Sonic Adventure DX: Director's Cut, the Zip Line only appears in Sonic's version of Red Mountain. In this game, the Zip Line's pulley consist of a single rust-brown wheel with a small gray handle bar attached to it. When using it, Sonic holds onto it with his right hand.

Sonic Advance

In Sonic Advance, Zip Lines appear in Secret Base Zone and Ice Mountain Zone, with their appearance differing between each Zone.

Secret Base II

Knuckles riding a Zip Line that connects to a transverse Zip Line.

In Secret Base Zone, the Zip Lines have gray cables that are connected between simple gray poles, and their pulleys each resemble a gray wheel with a metal handle attached. In Ice Mountain Zone on the other hand, the Zip Lines have white cables that are connected between pillar-like poles that are colored red, blue and yellow, and their pulleys each consist of a blue and red wheel with a handle attached.

When riding a Zip Line, the playable characters hold onto its pulley with one hand. In gameplay, the playable character automatically catches onto the Zip Line's pulley once they get below the latter and rides down it while accelerating. In some cases, a Zip Line will even connect to a transverse Zip Line, causing the playable character to ride down the latter in the opposite direction upon touching it.

Sonic Heroes

Ps2 sonic heroes 65

Team Rose using a Zip Line in Sonic Heroes.

In Sonic Heroes, different types of Zip Lines appear. In this game, they are encountered in the Bonus Challenges for the Special Stages. These Zip Lines have metallic red and white cables for their pulleys to move down along. The pulleys themselves are large red hoops with rainbow-colored inner rims. Tying the pulleys to the cables are rainbow-colored treads, which connect to the pulleys via a red block emblazoned with a bumper symbol.

When riding a Zip Line, the playable characters hold onto its pulley with both hands. In gameplay, while riding a Zip Line, the player can move the playable team left and right with the analog stick to swing around and collect Power Spheres in the air.

Sonic Rush

In Sonic Rush, Zip Lines appear in Mirage Road and Altitude Limit, with each Zone having their own designs for the Zip Lines.

ZipLineAltitudeLimitSRush

A Zip Line in Altitude Limit in Sonic Rush.

In Mirage Road, the Zip Lines have green cables that are connected between simple multicolored poles, and their pulleys each resemble a golden and blue wheel with a golden handle attached. In Altitude Limit on the other hand, the Zip Lines have white and red-striped cables that are connected between high-tech gray poles, and their pulleys each consist of a blue and red wheel with a gray handle attached.

When riding a Zip Line, the playable characters hold onto its pulley with one hand. In gameplay, the playable characters are able to ride the Zip Lines both ways and use the Super Boost/Fire Boost while riding them. Also, if the playable character has build up enough momentum when making contact with a Zip Line, they will be able to ride it up an incline.

Shadow the Hedgehog

GUN Fortress Screenshot 10

Shadow using a coaster in Shadow the Hedgehog.

In Shadow the Hedgehog, the Zip Line is occasionally referred to as the "coaster".[2] In this game, the Zip Lines are encountered in Stages such as Circus Park, Cosmic Fall, Space Gadget and The ARK.

In each of the Stages, the Zip Lines possess a unique design. In general however, they have metallic cables that are kept suspended from above and possess large mechanical pulleys that serve as high-speed transport mechanisms. In Stages such as Circus Park, the Zip Lines' pulleys are large gray handles that rest top of the cables (with wheels between them) and red, box-shaped rockets on the sides of the handles that emit blue exhausts with white stars. Then there are the Zip Lines in Stages such as GUN Fortress, whose pulleys possess a gray open handle and have both two gray wheels on top of them that keep them connected to the cables and a rocket on their left sides that emit a blue exhaust. There are also the Zip Lines in Stages such as Cosmic Fall and Space Gadget, whose pulleys are green-yellow blocks that rest on top of the cables and have both a handle connected to them on the bottom and a rocket on the right side of the handles that emits a yellow exhaust.

When riding a Zip Line, the playable characters hold onto its pulley with one hand. In gameplay, the player can move the Analogue Stick left or right to tilt the pulley left or right while the playable character is holding onto it.

Sonic Rivals

PPSSPPWindows64 2015-07-19 22-57-01-691

Shadow riding a Zip Line in Sonic Rivals.

In Sonic Rivals, the Zip Line is a common gimmick that appears in every Zone in the game. In terms of design, the color of the Zip Lines' cables depend on the Zone. However, the Zip Line's pulleys are all consistently portrayed as white miniature vehicles with a black windshield, small yellow front wheels, large blue rear wheels, and a gray handle hanging from their bottom.

When riding a Zip Line, the playable characters hold onto its pulley with both hands. In gameplay, the Zip Lines are mainly used to travel across bottomless pits safely and take shortcuts.

Sonic and the Secret Rings

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Sonic riding a Zip Line in Sonic and the Secret Rings.

In Sonic and the Secret Rings, the Zip Lines only appear in Levitated Ruin. In terms of design, the Zip Lines' pulleys resemble brown axe-like carriages with Arabian patterns on them that are attached to long ropes.

When riding a Zip Line, Sonic holds onto its pulley with both hands. In gameplay, the Zip Lines' mechanics are much like those they displayed in Shadow the Hedgehog; when Sonic is riding them, the player can move the Zip Lines' pulleys from side to side by tilting the Wii Remote left or right.

Sonic Unleashed

ZipLineUnleashedXboxPS3

Sonic using a Zip Line in the Xbox 360/PlayStation 3 version of Sonic Unleashed.

In Sonic Unleashed, the Zip Line appears in both the Wii/PlayStation 2 and Xbox 360/PlayStation 3 version of the game. In these games, the Zip Line is a common gimmick that is encountered in several daytime levels where Sonic is playable.

The design of the Zip Line differs between the versions of the game. In the Wii/PlayStation 2 version of the game, the Zip Lines consist of floating cables with a pulley on each of them. Said pulleys possess a black wheel with a red handle attached to them that resembles the one from the Pulley gimmick. In the Xbox 360/PlayStation 3 version of the game on the other hand, the Zip Lines have cables that are held up on each end by a red and black pole. These Zip Lines also have pulleys that each consists of a gray wheel with a gray handle bar on the bottom that has square red and cyan disks on the sides and a red grip.

When riding a Zip Line, Sonic holds onto its pulley with both hands. In gameplay on both versions of the game, the player can zero in on the Zip Line's pulley with the Homing Attack.

Sonic the Hedgehog 4: Episode I

ZipLineSonic4Ep1

A Zip Line in Sonic the Hedgehog 4: Episode I,

In Sonic the Hedgehog 4: Episode I, the Zip Lines only appear in Splash Hill Zone Act 3. In terms of design, the Zip Lines have straight cables that are held up on each end by a red, yellow and blue pole. These Zip Lines also have pulleys that have a bumper symbol emblazoned on their wheel and a red handle hanging from their bottom.

When riding a Zip Line, Sonic holds onto its pulley with both hands. In gameplay, the player can control Sonic's speed when moving along the Zip Line by moving left or right with the movement controls. In addition, the Zip Lines can again be ridden in the opposite direction after being used once. Lastly, the player can target the pulleys on the Zip Lines with the Homing Attack.

Sonic Colors

Zip Line (Sonic Colors)

The Zip Line in the Wii version of Sonic Colors.

In Sonic Colors, the Zip Line is a gimmick that appears in both the Wii and Nintendo DS version of the game. In the Wii version, the Zip Line appears in several Acts across multiple Areas, but in the Nintendo DS version, it only appears in Tropical Resort. Its design also differs between the versions of the game.

In the Wii version of the game, the Zip Lines look exactly like they did in the Xbox 360/PlayStation 3 version of Sonic Unleashed: they have cables that are held up on each end by a red and black pole, and they have pulleys that each consists of a gray wheel with a gray handle bar on the bottom that has square red and cyan disks on the sides and a red grip. In the Nintendo DS version on the other hand, the Zip Lines' cables are held up on each end by a floating yellow gear, and they have pulleys on them that each consists of a gray wheel with a yellow cup-like section below it that is decorated with white flowers on a red background and a brown handle.

When using a Zip Line in the Wii version, Sonic will hold onto the pulley with both his hands. In the Nintendo DS version on the other hand, Sonic holds onto a Zip Line's pulley with just one hand. In gameplay on both versions of the game however, the player can zero in on the Zip Line's pulley with the Homing Attack.

Sonic Generations

Screenshot.sonic-generations.3840x2160.2011-11-18.107

Modern Sonic riding a Zip line in the console/PC version of Sonic Generations.

In Sonic Generations, the Zip Line gimmick appears in both the console/PC and Nintendo 3DS version of the game. In the console/PC version, the Zip Lines usually appear in the second Act of the stages and Challenge Acts, although they also appear in the first Act of the stages and Challenge Acts on a few occasions. On the Nintendo 3DS version however, the Zip Lines only appear in Tropical Resort Act 1.

In the console/PC version of the game, the Zip Lines look like they did in the Xbox 360/PlayStation 3 version of Sonic Unleashed: they have cables that are held up on each end by a red and black pole, and they have pulleys that each consists of a gray wheel with a gray handle bar on the bottom that has square red and cyan disks on the sides and a red grip. In the Nintendo DS version on the other hand, the Zip Lines are identical to how they appeared in the Nintendo DS version of Sonic Colors: they have cables are held up on each end by a floating yellow gear, and they have pulleys on them that each consists of a gray wheel with a yellow cup-like section below it that is decorated with white flowers on a red background and a brown handle.

When using a Zip Line in both versions of Sonic Generations, Sonic holds onto the pulley with both his hands. In gameplay on both versions of the game, the player can zero in on the Zip Line's pulley with the Homing Attack.

Sonic the Hedgehog 2 (2013)

In the 2013 remake of Sonic the Hedgehog 2, a single Zip Line appears in Hidden Palace Zone. When the player clings on to it, it will zoom up to a secret area for a few seconds before zooming back to its location.

Sonic Mania

SonicManiaZipLinePromotional

Classic Sonic riding a Zip Line in Sonic Mania.

In Sonic Mania, and its expansion Sonic Mania Plus, the Zip Line only appears in Green Hill Zone Act 2. In terms of design, the Zip Lines consist of cables that are held up by floating circular fasteners and pulleys that each consists of a gray wheel with a handle with a brown grip hanging from the bottom.

When riding a Zip Line, the playable characters hold onto its pulley with both hands. In gameplay, a Zip Line will sometimes connect to a transverse Zip Line, causing the playable character to ride down the latter in the opposite direction upon touching it. There are as well sometimes circular "joints" along the Zip Lines' cables that can change the cables' slopes, thus allowing the Zip Lines to move into and along small passages. There are also a few Zip Lines with pulleys on the bottom of an incline that the player can ride up along if they make contact with the Zip Line's pulley while running at high enough speed.

Sonic Forces

ZipLineForces

Sonic using the Zip Line in Sonic Forces.

In Sonic Forces, the Zip Lines only appear in Sonic's stages. In terms of design, the Zip Lines have the same design they had in the Xbox 360/PlayStation 3 version of Sonic Unleashed: they have cables that are held up on each end by a red and black pole, and they have pulleys that each consists of a gray wheel with a gray handle bar on the bottom that has square red and cyan disks on the sides and a red grip.

When using a Zip Line, Sonic holds onto the pulley with both his hands. In gameplay, the player can zero in on the Zip Line's pulley with the Homing Attack.

See also

References

  1. BradyGames (1 November 2011). "Standard Gimmicks". Sonic Generations: BradyGames Official Strategy Guide. BradyGames. p. 16. ISBN 978-0761555100.
  2. Sonic Team (15 November 2005). Shadow the Hedgehog. GameCube. Sega. Area/Level: Circus Park. "Dr. Eggman: You can move this coaster to the left and right."
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