Next stop, the Starlight Carnival. The sheer scale of our illuminated space fleet is sure to make you feel small and insignificant by comparison.
— Dr. Eggman
Starlight Carnival (スターライトカーニバル Sutāraito Kānibaru?) is the second or third Area in Sonic Colors, depending if the player chooses it or Sweet Mountain first. The level is set in space surrounded by a huge fleet of spaceships with colorful neon lights and decorative neon boards, with fireworks and laser beams illuminating the dark night. There are also many lighted statues of the starry nights' star constellations, like the Archer (Sagittarius), the Bull (Taurus), the Lion (Leo), and the Whale (Cetus). Much of the gameplay focuses on Sonic running on a purple translucent path of light and Quick-Stepping to avoid enemies. The Egg Pawns in this area are seen wearing marching band hats, playing trumpets and dancing in order to keep the festive atmosphere at maximum level.
Sonic runs out of a ship onto a purple energy path, a recurring feature of Starlight Carnival. He is soon confronted by two Aero-Chasers who attempt to shoot at him with their lasers, but they are not looking where they are going and soon crash into a parked shuttle. Sonic must then use his Homing Attack on some floating objects to prevent himself from falling as he is launched onto another path, leading to another ship. Inside the ship the player can take numerous paths; the Blue Wisp is introduced, allowing Sonic to smash his way through enemies and boxes blocking his path. In this form, he can also temporarily turn the blue rings above him into blue blocks to stand on, and vice versa. An extra life can be obtained if Sonic makes it all the way to the top here. The Pink Wisp, if unlocked, can be used to access an area containing Rings.
Sonic will then freefall to another path where he will be chased by numerous Motobugs. He can boost all the way and use Quick Step to destroy them, in the process refilling the boost gauge. Eventually more ships warp in and Sonic will be flung into one of them. The Blue Wisp has to be used again to progress here; if the player is feeling daring, there is an area to explore above this path containing Rings, more enemies, another Blue Wisp capsule and a Red Star Ring. Afterwards comes a corridor with crushers, for which Sonic must stop to wait for them to rise up to pass through. One final energy path leads to more objects floating in space that must be Homing Attacked, before falling into one final ship containing the Goal Ring.
This is a relatively short act that takes place entirely indoors. This Act introduces bomb blocks, which explode after Sonic touches them. If Sonic is too close when they explode, he will take damage. The Pink Wisp can be used to access secret areas above the starting position or later on in the act. There is a switch halfway through the act guarded by spikes that can only be accessed while using Pink Wisp. Most of the red rings in this level involve clever use of the Pink Wisps in the level. Eventually Sonic must use Blue Wisps to smash through piles of boxes and Egg Pawns armed with guns. The Goal Ring can be reached afterwards.
This act is entirely outdoors, and features no Wisps. The main focus here is on yellow tri-springs. They will move with Sonic while traveling from left to right, but if traveling from right to left, the spring will carry on moving to the right which could be fatal, so take care. The stomp action can be used to gain extra height and reach rings Sonic otherwise cannot. Halfway through the level there is a checkpoint, where the difficulty increases. This time Sonic will lose a life if he falls, and the platforms will drop a few seconds after Sonic lands on them. Along the way there are numerous bonuses on platforms off to the side to tempt the player. There are also Badniks emitting electrified fields around them, which will cause Sonic to lose control (and possibly die) if he comes into contact, so one should be careful. At the end, the stomp action must be used to achieve the height needed to reach the Goal Ring.
This is another short act, taking place entirely inside a ship, featuring only Purple and White Wisps. The main enemies here are disco ball-like objects randomly firing off balls of green energy in all directions, which can be tricky to avoid. These can only be destroyed while using Purple Wisps. Towards the end of the act, Sonic can take an easier lower path, or the path above which will lead to red special rings with (difficult) use of the Purple Wisp. Either way, the Goal Ring is at the other end. On the Wii version, using AR or Gecko cheats, it is possible to jump on to and run on the disco ball-like dangers.
This act starts off in a similar way to Act 1. The Green Wisp is introduced in this act - Sonic uses this to progress in the act particularly where trails of Rings are present, using Light Dash to dash through them. Sonic uses a zip wire to reach another area with spikes and a Pink Wisp capsule before riding another purple energy path to a wide open area containing many enemies. Sonic must make his way up the ship, defeating enemies along the way to make Green Wisp capsules appear, enabling him to use the Hover ability to ascend. If Sonic goes out of his way as he goes up, he can find various bonuses including lives. The Goal Ring is reached at the very top.
Another outdoors act, this one focusing on the Green Wisp. This act involves lots of usage of Hover and pressing switches to make trails of rings appear. Below the starting level Sonic can find a red ring and an extra life - to obtain the former Sonic can give himself more time if he falls down and activates Hover as soon as he is at the right height. The red ring is at the other end, where a Green Wisp capsule will appear to replenish his energy. The left side contains a similar area with an extra life. On this side there is an alternate path up, containing more Rings. The Goal Ring is found at the top.
Description (Nintendo DS)
Starlight Carnival on the DS is much different to the Wii version. In the first act, the player does not appear to change ships as often. The purple paths on the Wii are replaced by purple (and sometimes switch-activated blue) grind rails. The Wisp introduced is the Orange Wisp, however, the Cyan Wisp is also used to find shortcuts. Most of this level is grinding, using orange rocket, and using cannons. There are two types of cannons. One makes the player hammer the B (A) button until he/she generates enough energy to blast off. The other enlarges Sonic and sends him/her out automatically between a few other cannons before exiting.
Act 2 is more similar to the Wii version. It is much more difficult than Act 1 due to many areas where you can fall off. The majority of this level is grinding and using Orange Rocket (and Cyan Laser if the player has unlocked it). Occasionally, the player will meet a statue that has a bow and arrow. If Sonic steps on the arrow he is then fired across a wide area. At the end of the stage there is a slow parade whale that Sonic must ride without dying to the end of the stage. It is easy to ride if the player goes the basic way, but jumping off and using Homing Attack on the Egg Flappers can lead him/her to extra lives.
A float in the shape of two whales, Frigate Orcan is the boss for this stage. The ship flies forward while firing at a pursuing Sonic with its ventral tail cannon. To destroy it, Sonic must repeatedly damage the float with Homing Attack until it explodes. The ship will occasionally drop crates containing Rings, Wisps and spike balls. If Sonic has a Cyan Wisp, then he can target the ship and inflict double damage. The very left and right sides take 12 hits. The lights each take 4, but will not yield Wisps when destroyed. In total, the frigate must be hit 60 times (without any help from wisps) in order to be defeated.
The boss in the DS version is also Frigate Orcan, but it has many noticeable differences from the Wii version. At the start, the ship will drop three objects randomly, these include yellow spherical-shaped bombs, spike-balls or an Orange Wisp Capsule. If the player performs a Homing Attack against the bombs while in midair, it will provide some rings. But, if he/she spin-jump under the bomb or boost into it, it will ricochet off back towards the ship, damaging it and freeing more White Wisps, filling his/her boost gauge. After repeating this four times, the ships descends and attempts to bombard Sonic with a barrage of missiles, during this time, this also allows Sonic to attack and damage the ship by jump attacks, boosts and Homing Attacks. After the alarm goes off, the warship will fire its frontal dual laser cannons at the player from the background as it slowly approaches him/her. Once it has fully approached, the player can attack and damage it with spin, homing and boost attacks. Also, if the alarm goes off, it will fire bigger missiles. If all of the HP of the warship is gone, it will show its orange weak spot. When Sonic attacks it, it will explode.
At various points during the stage, Eggman's voice is heard in the background over a loudspeaker. He says the following phrases:
- "If you experience explosive decompression, please try to avoid staining the seat cushions. Those things are expensive!"
- "Attention, the anti-gravity toilets on this level are out of order, we are sorry for this inconvenience and hope you can hold it for another 20,000 light years."
- "Please note that this ride is not safe for children under 12, or over 13. It is also not safe for 13-year-olds."
- "Remember for your safety please avoid-- as well as-- never under any circumstances-- as it is a living being and will bite your face off."
- "Attention ladies and gentlemen, please make your way to the main viewing area where the Light Speed Electrical Parade is about to begi.. oh and that concludes our Light Speed Electrical Parade."
- "Just a reminder, please refrain from pushing buttons on the starship, occasionally one might eject you into space, if this happens your next-of-kin will be billed for the replacement hatch."
- "Please refrain from peeling off the special space-age polymer holding the starship together, it may look and feel like duct tape, but it's not, it's called... er... space tape! Very advanced stuff. Thank you."
- "Attention, the muscle atrophy simulator is not open today, we apologize for this inconvenience but we would not be able to find the strength to open it."
- "We seem to be losing pressure on level 17. Please hold your breath against the harsh vacuum of space until you pass out from oxygen starvation. After that, you won't care. Enjoy the ride!"
- "The Hyper-Sleep Ride is now open! Remember, the Hyper-Sleep Ride is not recommended for pregnant women, or anybody who isn't willing to be asleep for 3 years."
- "Please note any mutant powers came from riding the attractions here at the park, are the express properties of Eggman Industries, and must be used in the service of Eggman and his schemes."
- "Rocket your way to the lunch pad for a fine dining experience! You'll have a blast! It's fun for the whole family. Please no old people or children."
- "Attention guests, if there is anyone here who has experience with aerospace technology, specifically upper orbit theme park gravitational control systems, please report to the main office immediately! Thank you."
- (during cutscene, should it be the second world visited) "Visitors are cautioned to avoid feeding, petting, or saving any aliens."
Other game appearanes
Sonic & All-Stars Racing Transformed
Starlight Carnival reappears in Sonic & All-Stars Racing Transformed, under the name Galactic Parade, with the same scenery as the original one, with some elements of Asteroid Coaster put in. Along with the scenery from the original Starlight Carnival, its pathway of light and road with death-defying corkscrews and loops are present. How the transformation gimmick is emphasized is used in the form of an asteroid belt where racers have to fly over, under and through the rocks.
- With hacks or glitching, Players can see that Acts of Starlight Carnival are actually loaded as part of one single map. Depending on which of Act the player chooses to play first (For example, Act 1) any gimmicks such as ramps, rings, Wisp capsules, springs and enemies are not loaded for any other Acts/Segments of the map.
- Starlight Carnival is not actually a planet, which means that the generator of the festive fleet does not need to be shut down, but it is very likely that the generator is a part of a super-heavyweight object, that keeps the fleet in a controlled orbit.
- The Orange Wisp is not used at all in Starlight Carnival for the Wii version, while in the DS version, this is the stage that introduces the Orange Wisp.
- This area could be a homage to Star Light Zone from Sonic the Hedgehog.
- It is currently unknown if the Starlight Carnival was built by Dr. Eggman, or was stolen from another location, since it was not teleported by Yacker in the ending cutscene.
- There is a float (Sagittarius) that is a reference to the comic book hero, Green Arrow.
- The floats are based off of constellations like Orion and Leo.
- The Light Speed Electrical Parade might be based on the Main Street Electric Parade from the real life theme park Walt Disney World.
- In one of the PA announcements, Eggman comments on a malfunction of the toilets onboard one of the ships, saying that guests will have to hold it for 20,000 light years. The way this is presented makes it seem like it will be a long time. However, in real life, a light year is a measurement of distance (about 6 trillion miles), not time.