Sonic the Hedgehog 2
|Hill Top Zone|
|Appearances and Overview|
A mountainous region high above the clouds.
|Number of acts||
Hill Top Zone is the fifth Zone in Sonic the Hedgehog 2. As with most other stages in the game, Hill Top Zone consists of two standard Acts with a boss fight at the end of Act 2. This zone is very similar to Emerald Hill Zone.
This stage features lava pits and underground caverns, which have similar features of the Marble Zone in the preceding game. However, Hill Top features no sturdy ruins of long-gone civilizations; they would have been ground to dust by the frequent earthquakes which ravage the zone and fill the caverns with scorching magma. Outside, pine trees rise over a landscape of blue-tinted rocks, with rickety vine chairlifts connecting one peak to another. See-saws and shuttle loops are scattered throughout the zone; while the former springs our heroes up the mountainsides, the latter invariably sends Sonic and Tails plummeting into the volcanic caves. The see-saws function identically to the ones in the Star Light Zone from Sonic the Hedgehog, except a glowing red sphere sits on one end instead of a spiked ball.
Geographically, the zone is located amidst the high peaks of West Side Island. It can actually be seen from Emerald Hill Zone; the vertiginous ridges of Hill Top's background can be glimpsed on the horizon at the far right of the first stage.
In this zone's boss fight, Dr. Robotnik attacks with a fire-spewing submersible which sets the grassy platforms alight, a similarity to the Marble Zone. After attempting to scorch the heroes with a flame jet, Robotnik submerges beneath the lava, before resurfacing again on the other side and repeating the process. This boss can be defeated easily by continuously bouncing on the machine as soon as it appears. Using this method, Robotnik can be defeated before he sinks into the lava for the first time.
Other Game Appearances
Sonic Drift 2
Hill Top Zone also appears as a racecourse in Sonic Drift 2. This stage (known as "Hill Top 1") is the second track of the Purple GP, after Emerald Hill 1 and before Dark Valley 1. The racers enter the region during the White Grand Prix, where "Hill Top 2" is the fourth track, coming between Ice Cap and Mystic Cave. As with most other races in the 2nd Chaos Grand Prix, you have to complete three laps of the track to proceed, and the fastest racer gets a Chaos Emerald.
This zone sports the same blue soil and high-altitude clouds as it did in Sonic the Hedgehog 2, although trips to the fiery underground are unavailable during this visit. It's for the best, as lava would have a bad effect on the tires! However, the road surface is dotted with mounds of earth created by the frequent earthquakes, so be careful. In Hill Top 1, a lone Moto Bug can also be found shifting back-and-forth.
Appearances in Other Media
Sonic the Comic
Sonic and Tails traveled to the Hill Top Zone in the Tornado, having been summoned by Chief Kordon, leader of a tribe of birds native to the zone. Kordon had summoned Sonic because the Mountain of Destiny, the local volcano on whose slopes the natives had built their homes, had become active. Kordon and his witch doctor believed the gods were angry, and although Sonic considered this to be mere superstition, he decided to investigate.
Descending into the crater of the volcano, Sonic and Tails were taken by surprise by a Rexon and nearly fell into the lava, but the shock caused Sonic to transform into Super Sonic. He discovered that the volcanic activity had been caused by Doctor Robotnik's Seismatron. Super Sonic and Tails escaped moments before the volcano erupted. The berserk Super Sonic then intended to destroy Tails, but he goaded him into preventing the eruption with reverse psychology, allowing Sonic to contain the explosion and carve a giant statue of himself on top of the Mountain of Destiny, which presumably stands there still.
- This level seems to be the 16-bit counterpart of Sky High Zone.
- The trees in this zone's background were apparently going to be used in Winter Zone, a scrapped Zone. However, they lack the conceptualized snow and are also technically a part of the Emerald Hill art assets.
|Hill Top Zone||1:51||Masato Nakamura|
- Hill Top Zone at the Sonic the Comic Wiki
- Sonic Drift 2 page at The Green Hill Zone has more information on all the Sonic Drift 2 tracks.
- Sonic Drift 2 page at Sonic Retro also hosts useful Drift-based factoids.
- The Sonic 2 (Mega Drive) page at The GHZ.