First seen jumping out at Sonic from under the bridges of Green Hill Zone, this deadly Piranha robot is back and still hungry! — Profile, Sonic the Hedgehog 4: Episode I website
Chopper (バタバタ,Bata-Bata?) is an enemy in the Sonic the Hedgehog series. It is a mass-produced, piranha-based Badnik model created by Dr. Eggman. Choppers are not very menacing, but they can launch surprise attacks from below bridges and water routes.
Based on piranhas, the original Choppers have a red mechanical body with a white dorsal fin, pectoral fins, anal fin and fishtail. Their pectoral fins in particular are attached to blue bases. They also have serrated teeth which they flash at all times. The original models had several bolts on their body, and black eyes with white sclera. The Choppers' size has also varied over the series. They have been smaller than Sonic himself, but in Sonic Colors and Sonic Generations they are much larger.
The Choppers' design has varied over the course of the series. In Sonic the Hedgehog 4: Episode I, the Choppers received a more mechanical design with white fins, yellow underbellies, slightly longer teeth, and more slit-like eyes with pale yellow sclera. Later, in Sonic Colors, the Choppers retained their mechanical look, but with more flexible-designed bodies, less bolts around their bodies, and round, cyan eyes. These Choppers also came in two colorations: red with white underbellies, and purple with yellow underbellies. In Sonic Generations, the Choppers retained their red and white-colored design from Sonic Colors.
In Sonic Lost World, the Choppers returned to their original design, with the addition of normal-looking cyan eyes and the absence of bolts. Later, in Sonic Forces, the Choppers were redesigned so they retained much of their original design, but also gained more pronounced jaws, black fins, and completely yellow eyes.
Sonic the Hedgehog (1991)
In their first appearance in the 16-bit version of Sonic the Hedgehog, the Choppers appear in the Green Hill Zone as enemies. In gameplay, they will leap up from pools of water under bridges to attack the player when they approach, their touch itself causing damage. Although their attack patterns rely on the element of surprise, they are easily destroyed with a simple attack while they are above the bridges. Upon their destruction, they also release an Animal.
In the 8-bit version of Sonic the Hedgehog 2, unnamed, Chopper-looking Badnik enemies appear in Crystal Egg Zone. In gameplay, unlike the attack patterns the Choppers exhibited in Sonic the Hedgehog, they slowly float around backwards and forwards while chomping on empty air.
These enemies are barely a threat to the player as they do not cross the player while running. They can easily be defeated with a Spin Jump and do not have an organic battery like the other Badniks in the 8-bit games.
Sonic Adventure 2
In Sonic Adventure 2 and Sonic Adventure 2: Battle, the Choppers made an appearance as enemies in the extra stage, Green Hill. The appearance of the Choppers is almost identical to their original appearance, but is more cubic and larger. Their eyes are also smaller and they have silver-lined backs.
In gameplay, instead of the Choppers jumping up and down like in the original Sonic the Hedgehog, they jump over bridges in an arching motion. It is while they are in midair that they can be destroyed. Upon their destruction, they will award the player 100 points and release an Animal.
In gameplay, the Choppers appear in two of the three Seaside Hill race courses (Lost Palace and Ocean Ruin) as hindrances that the player will encounter at water pits. A toy version of this Chopper can also be purchased as an Xbox 360 Avatar Prop.
In gameplay, the Choppers usually have the same attack pattern from their debut game, where they jump up from pools of water at waterfalls when the player has to cross a bridge. Like always, they can be destroyed with a single attack while they are in midair. Also, upon their destruction, they release an Animal
In both the Nintendo DS and Wii version of Sonic Colors, the Choppers return as enemies. In this game, they were given another redesign. They also come in two color variations: red and white (Wii version only), and purple and yellow. The player encounters them in the underwater sections of every act of Aquarium Park on both versions of the game. In the Wii version, eight Choppers also appear in the underwater tunnel section in Asteroid Coaster Act 6 and in several underwater sections in Game Land which are related to Aquarium Park and Asteroid Coaster.
In gameplay, the Choppers exhibit two kinds of behavior. In the sections where Sonic can run on water, the Chopper will be lurking just beneath the surface; once Sonic gets close (by running across the water), they will jump up to attack him. These attacks pose no threat if the player is boosting however. In the underwater sections on the other hand, the Choppers simply swim around. On the Wii version in particular, schools of normal-sized Choppers and very large Choppers infest the many waters that Sonic travels through.
In both the console/PC and Nintendo 3DS versions of Sonic Generations, the Choppers appear as enemies. In this game, they possess their classic red and white color scheme while retaining their overall design from Sonic Colors. They can be found in Green Hill on both the versions of the game, and in Seaside Hill on the console/PC version.
In gameplay, the Choppers' behavior depends on the Acts. In the first Acts of the stages, the Choppers jump up from water pools in intervals, much like in the original Sonic the Hedgehog. In the second acts of the stages they appear in, the Choppers jump in arches over their bridges. Like always, the Choppers can be destroyed with one attack during their jumps.
The console/PC version of the game also feature the Giant Chopper. It first appears in Green Hill Act 2, where it briefly chases after Modern Sonic. The Giant Chopper later reappears in Seaside Hill Act 2; if the player attempts to abuse the hydroplaning effects of the Boost and leave the stage's boundaries, the Giant Chopper will eat Modern Sonic. A statue of the Chopper can also be unlocked in the Statue Room on the console/PC version.
In Sonic Dash, the Choppers are featured in Seaside Hill. A single Chopper can be seen jumping out of the ocean at same time the player has to jump between two routes. To proceed with the endless running, the player has to jump and use the Homing Attack on the Chopper to get to the another side of the gap. If the player cannot perform the Homing Attack in time, the player may fall into the water while losing life or fail the Stage.
Sonic Lost World
In the Wii U version of Sonic Lost World, the Choppers reappear as enemies. In this game, they were given a more cartoony look reminiscent of their original design. During the game, Dr. Eggman's Badniks, including the Choppers, got hijacked by the Deadly Six after the group betrayed the Doctor.
In gameplay, the Choppers are featured in Windy Hill Zone 1 and 2, Frozen Factory Zone 1, and Sky Road Zone 1. In the 3D sections of the game, Choppers usually jump over bridges that lead across rivers or oil lakes instead of directly attacking the player, while in the 2.5D sections, they retain their attack patterns from Sonic the Hedgehog where they jump up from pools of water to bite Sonic when he crosses bridges. However, their jumps are slower in this game, giving the player an easier time to destroy them with Spin Jumping or the Focused Homing Attack while they are above the bridges. Also, when a Chopper is destroyed, it will release an Animal.
Sky Road Zone 4 features skeletal Choppers that jump out of the sand at Sonic.
In Sonic Mania, the Choppers appear as enemies. In terms of design, they look exactly like they did in their debut game. In this game, they are only encountered in Green Hill Zone.
In gameplay, the Choppers come in two variants. The first variant behaves much like they usually do: when a playable character tries to cross certain bridges over pools of water, this Badnik will jump up from below to bite them. Like before, they can be destroyed with an attack while they are in midair. The second variant resides in shallow water pools. Like the Chop Chop in Sonic the Hedgehog 2, these Choppers slowly swim horizontally through the pools, and speed up while snapping their jaws if the player gets too close.
Upon its destruction, a Chopper will also release an Animal.
In Sonic Forces, the Choppers appear as enemies. In this game, they acquired more militaristic designs. The player encounters them in Green Hill.
In gameplay, the Choppers once more attack the playable character by jumping up at them when they try to cross certain bridges. While they are in midair, the player can destroy them with an attack. Also, near the end of Green Hill, a series of Choppers appear as the bridge collapses into a cinematic style while the player passes by.
Powers and abilities
The Choppers are excellent swimmers who can jump up of waterfalls. They also possess powerful jaws that can deliver deadly bites.
The Mega Chopper is a variant of the Chopper that, despite its name, is smaller than the original Chopper and lacks many of its features. However, these Badniks can attach themselves to their victims, reducing their movements and Ring count. They first appeared in Sonic the Hedgehog 3.
The Giant Chopper is a gigantic and more menacing version of the original Chopper model. Matching its size, this model possesses incredible speed, strength and durability, making it one of the deadliest Badniks around. It first appeared in the console/PC version of Sonic Generations.
The toy company TOMY has released Chopper action figurine during the release of Sonic & Knuckles as it also includes a series of 21 Sonic figurines and these figurines came in packs of four under the Sonic & Knuckles label and were also released individually under a Sonic the Hedgehog label.
Chopper's Japanese name, "Bata-Bata", is the Japanese word for a clattering noise, expressing the jaw clutch noises that the Chopper often makes.