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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. Initially, they would instinctively obey the orders of Dr. Eggman alone.[3][5] However, supposedly due to random mutations in the Metal Virus's coding created from spreading through exposure, the Zombots have begun becoming more disobedient and unresponsive to Eggman's commands.[6]

If left idle, the Zombots 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.[7] 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] They also retain some, if not all, of the abilities they had as organic beings; Shadow, as an example, retained his super speed after being converted into a Zombot.[8] 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.[7] 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.[7]

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; seeing the outbreak consuming the city, Vector, Espio and Charmy set to work distracting the Zombots while evacuating the uninfected residents. During the evacuation, Sonic saved Vector when a group of Zombots surrounded him, taking advantage of his infected state to 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]

ZombotChaos

Zombot Cheese and Chocola, from Sonic the Hedgehog #18.

Another Zombot infection broke out in Floral Forest Village when Eggman's Faceship spilled another Metal Virus dose into the village. As the Zombots began wreaking havoc and infecting more villagers, Sonic came to hold them off and evacuate as many villagers as possible. During this, the Zombots were ordered by Eggman to pile up on Sonic; however, they ignored the command. Orbot then revealed that the Zombots had become increasingly disobedient over time, which worried Starline. Eggman suspected this was due to mutations in the Metal Virus's coding brought about by spreading through exposure, however, he was certain that he would find a way to control the Zombots after Sonic was dealt with. Meanwhile, more Zombots pressed onward towards Cream's residence, but Gemerl got in their way. At first, Gemerl sought to eliminate the Zombots; however, Cream convinced Gemerl to fight the Zombots without destroying them. As such, Gemerl engaged the Zombots non-lethally, taking slight damage after they surrounded him. Meanwhile, a few Zombots managed to break into Cream's house and corner Vanilla. In an attempt to defend their family, Cheese and Chocola attacked the Zombots, but their punches only got them infected by the Metal Virus. A Zombot caught the Chao to complete the infection as Sonic came and blew away a group threatening Cream and Vanilla. When the rabbits escaped to safety, the local Zombots (now including Cheese and Chocola) turned their attention to Sonic, but they were knocked away by Gemerl. Sonic trapped the Zombot Cheese and Chocola in glass jars to keep them grounded before heading over to Sunset City after a call from Rouge; after he left, Cheese and Chocola began to break out of their jars.[6]

Later, a colossal Zombot outbreak erupted in Sunset City after the Faceship released a dose of the Metal Virus into the city; this time, Eggman seemingly did not even try to command the Zombots, leaving them to attack purely on their own. The Zombots swarmed the streets, trying to reach civilians holed up in buildings and attacking Sonic as he passed through; while they failed to stop the hedgehog, a few managed to touch him and accelerate his infection once more. They also came under attack by E-123 Omega, who attempted to destroy them like any other Eggman robot despite Sonic's protests. Fortunately, the Zombots' durability ensured that Omega's gunfire could only keep them away as Sonic helped the civilians out of the building. The remaining Zombots between the building and the Grand Gold Flicky Hotel were soon after blown away by Sonic so the civilians could go to the hotel. At the hotel, another horde of Zombots tried to get the hotel, but the local officers kept them at bay with Burst Wispons. Sonic soon after repelled a large group of Zombots when they tried to catch the survivors before they could reach the hotel's safe zone. Two Zombots were then pulled away from the hotel by Sonic, who met up with Omega, who fought back against more groups of Zombots. As the Zombots started to come from two sides at once, Shadow arrived in a truck and drove straight through the Zombots. Noticing that the truck was being used to gather survivors, the Zombot hordes made it their primary target; however, they were kept at bay by Omega's gunfire. Meanwhile, Shadow engaged another Zombot horde head-on, believing that his status as the Ultimate Life Form would prevent them from infecting him; however, he was quickly proven wrong when he made the mistake of grabbing a Zombot and throwing it. Despite the Metal Virus rapidly infecting him, Shadow refused to back down and continued fighting, allowing the Zombot horde to overwhelm him and complete his transformation. When Sonic returned after his latest run to burn off the Metal Virus, he was pinned against the truck by the newly-minted Zombot Shadow.[8]

List of Zombots

Trivia

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 Sonic the Hedgehog #18, "Victims"
  7. 7.0 7.1 7.2 Sonic the Hedgehog #14, "Misdirection"
  8. 8.0 8.1 Sonic the Hedgehog #19, "Crisis City, Part 1"
  9. Bracardi Curry on Twitter. Twitter (19 July 2019). Retrieved on 24 July 2019.
  10. Bracardi Curry on Twitter. Twitter (19 July 2019). Retrieved on 24 July 2019.

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