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Sonic surrounded by Zombots, from Sonic the Hedgehog #20.

Quotation1 They're not responding! It's like they're completely soulless! Quotation2
Quotation1 Eggman somehow turned them into zombie robots. So... "Zombots"? Yep! I'm going with "Zombots"!
Quotation2

Amy Rose and Sonic the Hedgehog, Sonic the Hedgehog #15

Zombots,[1] also referred to as the infected,[1] is a term that appears in the Sonic the Hedgehog comic series and its spin-offs published by IDW Publishing. It refers to animals who have been infected by the Metal Virus and had their infection reach its apogee.

Concept and creation

According to Ian Flynn, the metal skin feature from Sonic Heroes served as the inspiration for the Zombots.[2]

Description

Anatomy

TheZombotRough

A Zombot Rough, from Sonic the Hedgehog #15.

Zombots are made up entirely of an unknown metallic compound, giving their bodies a metallic sheen while retaining shades of their original colors. Their bodies are highly malleable, easily deforming from blunt impacts.[1] They also possess dark red eyes with small, bright red pupils, but otherwise retain the general shape of their organic selves. Some Zombots may develop minor additional features, such as sharp claws, spikes, and more angular body markings.[3][4]

Characteristics and culture

Zombot Infection

Zombots aggressively spreading the Metal Virus, from Sonic the Hedgehog #16.

Described as "robot zombies" by Sonic, the Zombots are completely silent, emotionless and without personalities. They do not react emotionally to the environment around them and are completely unresponsive to verbal chatter; noticeably, a Zombot Tumble was unresponsive to taunts from Sonic that would have sent the old Tumble into a fury. This has led Amy to call them "soulless".[1] However, some Zombots can apparently react to physical stresses, flinching or appearing dizzy when struck.[4]

Due to the Metal Virus, Zombots are also deprived of free will, and will instinctively obey the orders of Dr. Eggman alone.[3][5] If left idle, they display aggressive tendencies towards all uninfected living organisms,[3] relentlessly attacking them in order to spread the Metal Virus. However, they appear to be at least docile towards their own kind.[6] If no uninfected beings are present, Zombots behave like they are in a mindless daze.[5]

Powers and abilities

TumbleGrowBack

A Zombot Tumble recovering from Sonic's assault, from Sonic the Hedgehog #15.

All Zombots possess increased strength; Zombot Rough was able to make a crack a rock wall with a single punch[1] and regular citizens were able to smash though a thick wooden door using only their fists.[5] Due to their robotic nature, Zombots are also immune to illnesses and have no need to eat.[5]

Following their transmutation, the Zombots become much more durable; even a sharp object thrown directly into their bodies will just bounce off them without a scratch.[4] If a Zombot does take damage, it can manipulate its own liquid body composition, allowing it to instantly reconstitute and restore its body from damaging blows. This makes them virtually unstoppable opponents.[1]

Zombots are able to spread the Metal Virus to any living tissue, be it either flora or fauna, through the slightest physical touch; however, they cannot pass the virus onto processed or inorganic matter.[3] Once the virus has been passed onto a victim, the infection will slowly spread across the victim until it is fully converted; however, the infection rate can be accelerated by repeated or prolonged exposure to the virus.[6] As such, Zombots will often attempt to pin down a target until they are fully transformed.

History

Infection

The first "Zombot" (not yet named as such) to be created was a Pocky that Dr. Eggman used as a test subject. This Pocky was saturated in the Metal Virus, instantly turning it into a Zombot. Dr. Eggman then had the Zombot Pocky briefly grab a Picky, seeing that the infection had transferred to it.[3] The next Zombot to be created was a Ricky in Eggman's captivity, who had been infected with the Metal Virus during Eggman's experiments; in an effort to circumvent the slow rate of secondary infection, Eggman used the Zombot Pocky to accelerate the virus's spread on it, quickly achieving full conversion.[6]

While fighting Sonic and Amy in Echo Mine, Rough and Tumble unintentionally released backpacks full of the Metal Virus onto themselves, turning them into Zombots. They then resumed fighting Sonic and Amy, regenerating from any damage the hedgehogs inflicted. Although Sonic ultimately got rid of Zombot Rough and Tumble by knocking them into a refuse pit, he got infected with the Metal Virus in the process. Meanwhile, having heard Sonic call Rough and Tumble "Zombots", Eggman decided to call the infected just that, considering the name to be "catchy".[1]

ScruffyZombot

Elder Scruffy and a child turned into Zombots, from Sonic the Hedgehog #16.

After checking in at Tails, Sonic discovered that he could keep his Zombot transformation in check with his speed, although he could not cure himself. In the meantime, Eggman used his Faceship to flood Windmill Village with his Metal Virus, transforming all of the inhabitants into Zombots either directly or by the attacks of their infected brethren. Afterwards, the Zombots followed Eggman's orders and dispersed across the countryside to create more Zombots, infecting plants and animals along the way. One Flicky in particular was transformed overnight as it slept in an infected tree; in the morning, it awoke as a fully-fledged Zombot and flew towards the nearest city.[5]

Crisis City

A new Zombot infection broke out in Seaside City after the Faceship spilled a dose of the Metal Virus into the city. The Zombots soon reached and attacked the Chaotix's office, but the group managed to escape them. In the meantime, Zombots began to take over the city, infecting more and more residents. Vector, Espio and Charmy thus went to work distracting the Zombots while evacuating the uninfected residents. During the evacuation, Sonic saved Vector when a group of Zombots surrounded him and helped keep the Zombots at bay. After a Rescue Shuttle arrived, most of the Zombots headed for the docks where the survivors were gathering. There, the Chaotix fended off the Zombots while the survivors boarded the Rescue Shuttle. Charmy flew back into the city to save a partially-infected civilian that Vector had to leave behind; however, the civilian had already become a Zombot by the time he arrived. Startled by this, Charmy was grabbed by another Zombot and overwhelmed by a horde.[4]

List of Zombots

Trivia

  • The Zombots are similar to the Robians from the previous Archie Sonic the Hedgehog comic series and its spin-offs, anthropomorphic animals that were converted into robotic slaves who acted as the primary labor force for Dr. Ivo Robotnik.

References

  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 1.4 1.5 1.6 Sonic the Hedgehog #15, "Patient Zero"
  2. Ian Flynn on Twitter. Twitter (27 February 2019). Retrieved on 27 February 2019.
  3. 3.0 3.1 3.2 3.3 3.4 Sonic the Hedgehog #13, "Calling Card"
  4. 4.0 4.1 4.2 4.3 Sonic the Hedgehog #17, "Plague"
  5. 5.0 5.1 5.2 5.3 5.4 Sonic the Hedgehog #16, "Infection"
  6. 6.0 6.1 6.2 Sonic the Hedgehog #14, "Misdirection"

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