Spring Poles (スプリングポール,Supuringu Pōru?), also called as Poles (ポール,Pōru?) and Springpoles, are loose variations of the springs in the Sonic the Hedgehog series. They are flexible bars that are used by playable characters to launch themselves higher into the air, though they have also been known to give a horizontal boost.
Spring Poles in its earliest known form are seen in Sonic the Hedgehog CD and have since then become one of the main gimmicks in several games. Spring Poles are sometimes also poking out of the ground and can function or look different in several games.
Usually, Spring Poles are metallic poles with a small red round pin on one ends, though their appearance have known to be altered to better fit their location's environment, and are set on walls above ramps or springs. When a playable character presses against a Spring Pole from colliding with them, it will result in the Spring Pole launching the playable character high into the air. Usually, the height of the bounce on the Spring Poles is determined by how far out on the Spring Poles that the playable character is presses against it; in other words, the farther out on the Spring Pole the playable character is pressing against it, the higher will the character be thrown into the air.
When the player does not have enough speed to reach the top of the wall, he/she can use the Spring Pole to get launched into the air. In several games, the player can also utilize the Stomp ability to gain an extra amount of boost from the Spring Pole to reach even higher than normal.
Sonic the Hedgehog CD
While not exactly Spring Poles, similar looking, brown bendy poles appeared as minor objects in Sonic the Hedgehog CD. They are featured only in Palmtree Panic Zone 2 where they can be found at all of the Zone's time periods except for the present timeline. They are usually set on the ledges and walls of level structures or Shuttle loops.
When the player jumps on them, it will normally launch Sonic in his Spin Attack mode into the air. Also, the player can be launched higher into the air by bouncing on the pole repetitively.
Sonic Advance series
In all three Sonic Advance titles, the Spring Poles, simply called Poles, differ in terms of appearance and functionality between games.
In Sonic Advance, the Spring Poles are usually set on walls or hills. When the player makes contact with them, he/she will grab onto it and gain an extra vertical boost to reach the top of the hill that the Spring Pole is attached to. In this game, the Spring Poles are only seen in Neo Green Hill Zone and Casino Paradise Zone, where in the latter are decorated with red flags. Casino Paradise Zone also features Poles that are set on the ground, which can give the playable character an extra amount of running speed when making contact with them, similar to the Dash Panels. This only happens, however, if the player has enough momentum before touching them.
In Sonic Advance 2, there are bouncy objects set on the walls which both look similar to and function similar to the Spring Poles. However, the player has to bounce on these objects as far away from the wall as possible to reach the desired height. Additionally, there are also Poles similar to the Spring Poles, but resembles more large pins and are standing upright on the ground. These pins function differently from the Spring Poles as when the player runs into such a pin, the playable character sticks to it and spins around it once before being launched running in the opposite direction from where he/she came.
In Sonic Advance 3, the Spring Poles' appearance and functions are the same as they were in Sonic Advance. While they are regularly seen in the Zones, Spring Poles also appear in the sub-worlds of each Zone. They allow the player to perform Mid-Air Trick Actions.
In Sonic Rush, the Spring Poles are regular objects only seen in Leaf Storm, with their appearance being green stretchy poles like in Sonic Advance 2. The Spring Poles also had mechanics similar to those in Sonic Advance 2 as the player has to keep bouncing at them at one point to gain extra height.
Sonic Rivals series
In Sonic Rivals and Sonic Rivals 2, the Spring Poles have the same mechanics and design as in the Sonic Rush series. Also, the player has to keep bouncing on them at one point to gain extra height.
Spring Poles appear as regular objects in Sonic Unleashed, where they had the same appearance they had in Sonic Advance and Sonic Advance 3, but featured the same mechanics they had in the Sonic Rush games. When the player lands on a Spring Pole, the player keeps bouncing in one place to gain extra height.
In Nintendo Wii version of Sonic Colors, the Spring Poles has the same appearances and mechanics as they had in Sonic Unleashed. However as the player is able to use the Stomp in the game, the player is able to once again achieve high bouncing heights on the Spring Poles by using the Stomp on them.
Spring Poles have also made an appearance in console/PC version of Sonic Generations, where they are only seen in Modern Sonic's acts. Their appearance and mechanics are the same as they were in the previous games.