A town of ruins and ancient customs, now celebrating the Feast of Sun and Moon. — Description, Sonic Unleashed
Shamar (シャマール,Shamāru?) is a Town Stage/Village that appears in Sonic Unleashed. It is a lively country in the middle of an arid desert, where the people are merchants and devoted worshipers of the moon and sun. It is also a famous tourist hotspot and features several ancient ruins. Sonic the Hedgehog and Chip visited Shamar on their quest to restore a powerless Chaos Emerald and the town's broken continent following Dark Gaia's awakening.
Shamar is derived from some Middle Eastern themes such as Petra, Jordan, Iran, Iraq, and Qatar, with a desert landscape. It also has ruins in several areas which are based on Petra's numerous ruins, and has a giant desert landscape in the area.
After Sonic the Hedgehog and Chip had restored Holoska's continent, the duo traveled to Shamar when Professor Pickle had pinpointed a Gaia Temple in that region. At the same time, the Professor decided to relocate himself and his research to his other lab in Shamar to make his analysis of the Gaia Manuscripts more efficient. Upon arriving in Shamar, Sonic and Chip met up with the Professor and Amy at the Professor's lab, where Pickle had them investigate the area (in the 360/PS3 version, Pickle also had them investigate Empire City).
When Sonic and Chip returned to Shamar from Arid Sands (and Skyscraper Scamper in the 360/PS3 version), having found a keyfragment for the Gaia Temple, Professor Pickle revealed he had located another Gaia Temple in Adabat, while telling Sonic and Chip to investigate Shamar further (in the 360/PS3 version, Pickle also had them check Empire City due to reports of Badniks there). Later, after collecting another key fragment from Arid Sands (and saving Empire City on the 360/PS3 version), Sonic and Chip returned to Shamar where they used their collective key to enter Shamar's Gaia Temple, where they returned Shamar and its continent to their proper place with the Temple and the Chaos Emeralds.
When Sonic Chip came back to Shamar from recovering a key fragment in Jungle Joyride, Professor Pickle had them return to Adabat to look further. After restoring Adabat's continent, Sonic and Chip returned to Shamar to learn from the Professor that the last Gaia Temple was located in Eggmanland, promoting them and Tails to head there in the Tornado-1.
A while later, as Dark Gaia began casting the world into darkness while maturing into Perfect Dark Gaia, Professor Pickle, Amy and the inhabitants of Shamar watched in horror as the sky above the village turned dark. Professor Pickle himself succumb to despair as the world's end seemed near, but Amy refused to believe that Sonic would let it end like this. Fortunately, Super Sonic and the Gaia Colossus defeated Perfect Dark Gaia, and everyone in Shamar rejoiced as the world returned to normal. As Amy then told Pickle she was right about Sonic all along, Pickle reflected on how Dark and Light Gaia's eternal struggle was a reflection of the planet's desire for balance. Regardless, Amy had the Professor save his speech, and suggested they should prepare for Sonic's homecoming party.
A controversial review of the game said that "the people of Shamar get blown up by suicide bombers every day, so the events of the game will be somewhat normal to them." This is a reference to the fact that Shamar is based on the Middle East (for the exception of Lebanon) which currently has many issues with terrorism and civil wars. The review has since been banned and the writer was fined for "writing and publishing offensive content that may harm the judgement of others."
On the walls of Shamar's Gaia gates, it reads, in Arabic: "I testify that there is no god but Allah and Muhammad is his messenger" (this motto is written on the flags of Saudi Arabia and Somaliland). This is most likely due to the fact that Shamar is based on Arabian cities, in which most inhabitants are Muslim.
The flag of Shamar is based on the flags of Sudan, Palestine, and especially Jordan.
Shamar - Day
Shamar - Night
↑Sonic Team (19 December 2008). Sonic Unleashed. PlayStation 3. Sega. Area/Level: World Map.
↑ 2.02.12.22.184.108.40.206.7Sonic Team (18 November 2008). Sonic Unleashed. PlayStation 2. Sega. Area/Level: Shamar Village.