|Doctor Ivo "Eggman" Robotnik|
|Sonic the Hedgehog character|
Doctor Eggman as seen in Sonic & All-Stars Racing Transformed
|First game||Sonic the Hedgehog (1991)|
|Created by||Naoto Ohshima|
|Voiced by (English)||Mike Pollock|
|Voiced by (Japanese)||Video games:
Masaharu Sato (1993)
Chikao Ohtsuka (1998–2015)
Kotaro Nakamura (2016–present)
Kōichi Hashimoto (AoStH, SatAM)
Junpei Takiguchi (OVA)
Chikao Ohtsuka (X)
Doctor Ivo "Eggman" Robotnik (ドクター・エッグマン Dokutā Egguman, ロボトニック Robotonikku) is a fictional character and the main antagonist of Sega's Sonic the Hedgehog series. His original character designer was Naoto Ohshima, who created the character as part of many design choices for the company's new mascot. After the creation of Sonic the Hedgehog, Ohshima chose to use his previous egg-shaped character to create the antagonist of the 1991 video game, Sonic the Hedgehog, as well as making him become the archnemesis of the series' titular main character.
In main line of video games, Dr. Eggman is a rotund mad scientist who plans to conquer the world in order to build his own Eggman Empire. While he has gone through several major and minor appearance changes throughout the series, his in-game designs retain several basic characteristics, such as his egg-shaped body, red-black-yellow clothing, pince-nez sunglasses, and large mustache. Eggman possesses ability of creating machines and robots, including wide variety of Badniks. Notably in early games, he has also served as a recurring boss in almost every level for piloting one of his created vehicles.
Dr. Eggman has appeared in almost every Sonic the Hedgehog video game since his first appearance in the 1991 title Sonic the Hedgehog and is also a prominent character in other media, including comics, novels, animated TV series and an original video animation. Dr. Eggman has also been very well received by critics and fans alike, while remaining as one of the most popular and recognizable villains in gaming.
Concept and inspiration
In April 1990, Sega commissioned its AM8 R&D department to create a character who would replace Alex Kidd as the company's mascot, as well as compete against Nintendo's flagship character, Mario. The idea of an egg-shaped character became the basis of the visual design for Eggman. In creating the "bad guy" for the Sonic series, the development team wanted a character who was "the opposite of Sonic"; a character who represented "machinery" and "development" to play on the then-growing debate between developers and environmentalists. The character was also designed to be easy for children to draw.
The English instruction manual for his debut game Sonic the Hedgehog described the character's full name as "Doctor Ivo Robotnik", while the original Japanese version's instruction manual for the same game called him "Doctor Eggman". It wasn't until 1999's Sonic Adventure that the character was called both "Eggman" and "Robotnik" in the English version, with all following English releases to date referring to him as "Doctor Eggman". Yuji Naka has explained that "Robotnik" is the character's true last name while "Eggman" is a nickname taken after his shape. Since then, English language sources have listed his identity as Doctor Ivo "Eggman" Robotnik at least once, and has recognized both the first name Ivo and the last name Robotnik as recently as 2016 in the videogames and 2015 in social media. Despite that, with the exception of Sonic X, no Japanese language media has ever acknowledged it, and his in-game profile in Sonic the Hedgehog 4: Episode II lists his real name as a mystery.
Eggman is described as being a certifiable genius with an IQ of 300. His fondness for machines has also made him a renowned authority on robotics. Ultimately, his goal is to conquer the world and create his ultimate "utopia", the Eggman Empire (alternatively known as the Robotnik Empire, Eggmanland, Robotnikland, or Robotropolis). He selfishly never gives up on this matter, and does not care for others' opinions. He considers those who would interrupt his plans a prime threat. His abominable laughter and maniacal declarations contrast his self-professed softer side. Although Sonic has always ruined his evil plans, Eggman begrudgingly holds a secret respect for his determination.
Voice actor portrayal
Several voice actors have portrayed Dr. Eggman in his game appearances, as well as in other media. His first voice actor was Masaharu Satō, who portrayed him in the arcade game SegaSonic the Hedgehog. In the Japanese game releases from 1998 to 2015, Eggman was voiced by Chikao Ōtsuka, who also voiced him in the Japanese version of Sonic X. Kotaro Nakamura assumed the role following Ōtsuka's death in January 2015, beginning with Mario and Sonic at the Rio 2016 Olympic Games.
In English, Mike Pollock, the voice actor of Eggman in the English dub of Sonic X, first got the role in the 2005 games Shadow the Hedgehog and Sonic Rush. While it was announced that the rest of the cast would be replaced from Sonic Colors onward in 2010, Pollock retained his role as Doctor Eggman, now making him the longest serving voice actor to portray the character in English. Pollock reprises the role in the Sonic Boom animated series.
In video games
In the majority of video games set in the Sonic the Hedgehog universe, Eggman has served as the main antagonist. Most of the Sonic games released before Sonic Adventure featured him as the final boss that the player fights at the end of the game. Eggman also appears as a boss who the player must confront at the end of almost every level in most of the 2D Sonic games, and in Sonic 3D. In each game in which he makes multiple appearances as a boss, Eggman fights the player using a different machine each time he appears. In most of the 2D Sonic games, the player had to hit Eggman eight times in order to defeat him and move on to the next level or next boss. In most 3D Sonic games since the release of Sonic Adventure in 1998, Eggman may serve as a boss at one or more points in the game, although he usually does not serve as the final boss. Many of the final bosses in these more recent Sonic games were former allies of Eggman who then betrayed him, while others were a third party that had no connection with Eggman whatsoever. Eggman has often formed temporary alliances with Sonic and others to help them defeat these foes.
Dr. Eggman (referred to by his full name Dr. Ivo Robotnik in the Western instruction manual) debuted in the 1991 Mega Drive/Genesis platform game Sonic the Hedgehog, where he attempted to collect the 6 Chaos Emeralds and hoped to turn all of the helpless animals inhabiting South Island into robots under his control. Sonic manages to defeat Robotnik and returns peace to South Island.
Robotnik returned in Sonic 2, where he once again sought the Chaos Emeralds, of which there were now seven. He attempts to collect them in order to create the Death Egg: a huge, orbital space station that bears his appearance (also an obvious reference to the Death Star of the Star Wars series), in order to achieve world domination. He attacked West Side Island, turning its animals into robots. He was intercepted by Sonic and his friend Tails who saved the animals and retrieved the Chaos Emeralds before the evil scientist. Sonic raided the Death Egg, defeating Robotnik again and sending the Death Egg crashing back to Earth.
Robotnik, along with his latest creation, Metal Sonic, travels to Little Planet in search of magical gems called Time Stones that have the power to control the passage of time in Sonic CD. Robotnik's seen flying away with a Time Stone, but is shot down by a rock thrown by Sonic in the bad ending.
Following the events of Sonic 2, the Death Egg crash-lands onto Angel Island, causing critical damage to the ship. While repairing the space station, Robotnik meets an echidna named Knuckles, who he tricks into thinking Sonic and Tails are villains after the powerful Master Emerald that Knuckles protects with his life in Sonic 3. Knuckles steals the Chaos Emeralds from Sonic and constantly interferes with Sonic's fight. Robotnik is able to launch the Death Egg, but it fails to get into orbit before Sonic sends it crashing back down into the Lava Reef Zone.
Robotnik later reveals his true plan to Knuckles after stealing the Master Emerald during a fight between Sonic and Knuckles and gets the Death Egg into space once again in Sonic & Knuckles. With help from now-ally Knuckles, Sonic is able to chase the madman into space and Sonic completely destroys the Death Egg. Robotnik makes one last chance to escape with the Master Emerald, but Super/Hyper Sonic defeats him.
Eggman/Robotnik, learns of a legendary monster trapped in the Master Emerald, named Chaos, and seeks out the Master Emerald in Sonic Adventure. Upon finding it, he shatters it, freeing Chaos in the process. Eggman's goal is to control Chaos and obtain the Chaos Emeralds, which he can feed to Chaos so that it transforms into its most powerful form, using its destructive powers to destroy the fictitious city of Station Square in order to build his own "Robotnikland". However, Chaos turns against him and intends to collect the Chaos Emeralds for itself. Towards the end, Eggman teams up with the heroes to defeat Chaos. Like other characters in the series, Robotnik was redesigned.
Sonic Adventure 2 marks Eggman's first appearance as a playable character, as well as the first game where is primarily referred to as "Eggman" in all regions. Eggman revives the antihero Shadow the Hedgehog from dormancy. Shadow, knowing Eggman's desire to rule the world, agrees to help him by using the Eclipse Cannon aboard Space Colony ARK. In the last story, Eggman aids Sonic in trying to stop a fail-safe put in place by his grandfather, Gerald Robotnik, which set the colony on a crash course with Earth.
Eggman creates a series of battle ships called the Egg Fleet, which he plans to use to take over the world in 3 days in Sonic Heroes. He is once again the main antagonist, but it is discovered that he was betrayed and captured by his own creation Metal Sonic, who disguised himself as Eggman, and had taken control of the Egg Fleet for his own plan for world domination.
Eggman is an opportunist who tries to gather the Chaos Emeralds in the middle of the Black Arms' invasion of Earth in Shadow the Hedgehog. He ends up sending his robots to help stop the alien menace in the end. As Shadow interrogates Eggman for information regarding his past, he is met with taunts from Eggman, who claims that Shadow is one of his androids. In some of the game's possible endings, Shadow accepts being an android and seemingly kills Eggman. However, in the true ending during Shadow's fight with Black Doom, Eggman admits that he was lying.
Eggman kidnaps the princess of Soleanna, who harbors the Flames of Disaster within her, in order to control time in the 2006 game of Sonic the Hedgehog. Once again, he is forced to assist the heroes during the last act, much like previous games. In this game, he was given a realistic human appearance; this new look for Eggman has not been used since, as his physical appearance was back to what it looked like in Sonic Adventure in his later appearances.
He appeared in Sonic Rush and Adventure, where he is once again the main antagonist, alongside a parallel version of himself called Eggman Nega. Eggman also appeared in Sonic Rivals 1 and 2, with Eggman Nega appearing as the main villain. Eggman is also a playable character in the Sonic RPG, Sonic Chronicles: The Dark Brotherhood.
Eggman is one of the 2 main antagonists in the game, along with Dark Gaia in Sonic Unleashed. Eggman tricks (Super) Sonic into a trap and uses his energy (of the Chaos Emeralds) to power a gigantic laser cannon, which fires into the Earth and shatters it into pieces, freeing the beast contained within: Dark Gaia. He spends most of the game collecting Dark Gaia's power as well as fighting Sonic with various machines, and much like the original games, flies off in his Egg Mobile when defeated. Unlike many previous games, Eggman actually assumes control of his plans at the end of Sonic Unleashed by creating Eggmanland and makes no effort to join forces with Sonic to stop his own plans once they have spiraled out of control. Still, Eggman suffers a defeat when he gives Dark Gaia a single order and is shot into the atmosphere by the creature.
In the first episode of Sonic 4 (set between Sonic 3 & Knuckles as well as Sonic Adventure), Sonic goes traveling on his own, not knowing Eggman survived the destruction of the Death Egg in Sonic & Knuckles. The doctor remakes his old Badniks, and improves them to destroy his old rival once and for all. Eggman is the main boss in this game and its direct follow-up, the second episode of Sonic 4.
Eggman claims to be seeking forgiveness for his past transgressions, and attempts to make amends by opening up a theme park within the Earth's orbit in Sonic Colors. However, it becomes clear that the park is merely a front for Eggman's true intentions, which involve harnessing the energies of the alien Wisps for his own use; specifically, a mind-control cannon which he plans to use in order to take over the universe. Unlike most 3D Sonic games, Eggman is the final boss, piloting an Eggmobile protected by the Egg Nega-Wisp. After his defeat, he ends up being sucked into his theme park which has transformed into a black hole when the negative energy backfires, consuming the entire park. After the credits, Eggman is seen out in space inside the Eggmobile along with his two robot assistants Orbot and Cubot stating he has his revenge plan laid out.
Eggman appears in both his classic and modern designs where in a twisted plot it is discovered that he is the main antagonist of the game in Sonic Generations. After his defeat in Sonic Colors, while in space, Eggman comes across a being known as the Time Eater; after somehow converting it into robotic form, he attempts to use its time powers to reverse all of his past defeats at the hands of Sonic. By using the Time Eater, however, he causes rifts in time to open, bringing Sonic, Tails and himself to meet their classic counterparts. Eggman works together with his past self to attempt to vanquish Sonic once and for all. During the game, they serve as the Classic Era, Modern Era, and final bosses. Each fights with a different mech: Classic Robotnik with the Death Egg Robot from Sonic 2 (in the handheld version, he used the Big Arm mech from Sonic the Hedgehog 3), Modern Eggman with a redesigned Egg Dragoon from Sonic Unleashed (in the handheld version, he used the Egg Emperor from Sonic Heroes), and together with the Time Eater. Unfortunately for the duo, the Time Eater is defeated when both Classic and Modern Sonic become Super Sonic. In the post-credits cutscene, both doctors wind up stranded in White Space with no apparent way out, leading Classic Robotnik to suggest obtaining their teaching degrees once they escape. Modern Eggman agrees to this as he mentions that he "always enjoyed telling people what to do", although it is unknown if this was a joke or they were serious.
Eggman travels to a world called the Lost Hex, as part of a scheme to use an energy extractor to harness some of the world's energy in Sonic Lost World. Along the way, he takes control of a group of villains called the Deadly Six, using a Cacophonic Conch to control them. When Sonic hastily knocks away the conch, the Deadly Six betray him by using their ability to manipulate magnetic fields to turn Eggman's robots against him. With this turn of events, he is forced to work together with Sonic and Tails, as the Deadly Six plan to use his extractor to drain all of the world's energy to increase their power. However, in the final stage, Eggman ultimately overshadows the antagonistic role of the Deadly Six and is fought as the final boss of the game, by using the energy gathered by the extractor to power a giant mech, so he can rule whatever remained of the world. After Sonic defeated him, when Eggman tried to get away, he found that his jetpack was sabotaged by Sonic, and thus falls to Earth. In the post-credits cutscene, Eggman was shown to have survived his fall by landing on a soft spot of dirt. His servants Orbot and Cubot dig him out, but not before a rabbit chews off half of his moustache.
In Sonic Spinball, a pinball-themed game, Robotnik seizes Mount Mobius and turns it into a mechanical base (the "Veg-O-Fortress",) setting up an elaborate pinball mechanism to keep the Chaos Emeralds safe. After the Veg-O-Machine is destroyed, Mount Mobius begins to crumble, and once the final boss is defeated, the Doctor falls into the mountain which sinks into the ocean.
Robotnik has also appeared in "2.5D" isometric platformers; in Sonic Labyrinth, he secretly replaces Sonic's famous red shoes with the new "Slow-Down Boots," which take away his ability to jump or run fast, and in Sonic 3D Blast, he turns innocent Flickies into robots in yet another search for the Chaos Emeralds.
Robotnik/Eggman is also a playable character in such games as Sonic Drift, R, Adventure 2, Riders as well as its sequels Zero Gravity and Free Riders, SEGA Superstars Tennis, Sonic & SEGA All-Stars Racing, and Sonic & All-Stars Racing Transformed. Eggman made a cameo appearance in Super Smash Bros. Brawl and 3DS/Wii U as a trophy. He appeared as a playable character in all of the Mario & Sonic titles, and as the 2 main villains (alongside Bowser) in the Adventure Mode of Mario & Sonic at the Olympic Winter Games for Nintendo DS and Mario & Sonic at the London 2012 Olympic Games for Nintendo 3DS. Eggman also appears in the crossover title Lego Dimensions as part of the Sonic level pack, in which he attempts to use the game's Keystone Devices to conquer multiple dimensions and defeat Sonic; a haunted parade balloon based on Eggman also appears as a boss in the game's Ghostbusters 2016 story pack.
The only game to feature Robotnik as the central character is the 1993 puzzle game Dr. Robotnik's Mean Bean Machine, in which the Adventures of Sonic the Hedgehog's version of Robotnik, along with his numerous Badnik bounty hunters seen in the first episode of the same show, attempts to rid all the fun and music on the planet Mobius by kidnapping the citizens of one insignificant town and turning them into robots. Despite the fact that he is the title character, he is still the villain and is the final boss.
Sonic and the Black Knight is the only game in the entire Sonic franchise series in which Eggman does not make a physical appearance or receive mention. However, the game makes small references to the character, including a collectible item bearing his emblem, an in-game mission featuring his robots as enemies, and unlockable fan art of the character.
In other media
There have been five animated television series featuring Dr. Robotnik. The first was Adventures of Sonic the Hedgehog where he was voiced by Long John Baldry.[unreliable source?] His appearance in this series was designed by cartoonist Milton Knight. Robotnik was the series' main antagonist, being portrayed as a villain who sought to rule the planet Mobius for no reason other than the fact that he appeared to be motivated by the act of being evil. While the threat he posed to Sonic the Hedgehog and Mobius varied from episode to episode, he was generally portrayed as incompetent and immature, with a tendency to mistreat his dim-witted Badnik sidekicks Scratch and Grounder, and many times when Sonic foils his plans, utter the catchphrase "I hate that hedgehog!". The mannerisms and catchphrases of his television counterpart have attracted several internet memes.
In the 1993 animated series, Saturday Morning show (SatAM) Sonic the Hedgehog, Jim Cummings voiced Dr. Robotnik (whose real name was Julian, which was original to this series). This version of Dr. Robotnik was initially portrayed as a fearsome dictator and darker than his portrayal in Adventures of Sonic the Hedgehog. As season 2 was more lighthearted than season 1, Robotnik was later depicted as an evil but incompetent villain rather than the fierce and intimidating foe he was originally shown to be.
Sonic Underground featured Robotnik in a style similar to the previous Sonic the Hedgehog animated series (SatAM), but much more lightheartedly; he maintains less control and he is far more bumbling. He was voiced by Garry Chalk.
In the 2-part episode Sonic the Hedgehog OVA, Robotnik (or "Eggman" in the original) tells Sonic that he has been banished from "Eggmanland" ("Robotropolis" in the ADV dub) by a metallic doppelgänger of himself called "Black Eggman" ("Metal Robotnik" in the ADV dub). It is later revealed that the mecha was piloted by Robotnik himself, in a scheme to lure Sonic into his base and copy his DNA for his new Hyper "Metal" Sonic robot. Robotnik was voiced by Junpei Takiguchi in the Japanese version, and by Edwin Neal in the English dub.[unreliable source?]
In Sonic X, Dr. Eggman (which he is usually referred to as in this series, though his real last name in-universe is Robotnik as in the games), along with other Sonic characters, including Sonic himself, are accidentally transported from their own world, to Earth. In the second season it is revealed that Professor Gerald Robotnik is his grandfather. In the final season, Eggman returns to his universe and reluctantly joins forces with Sonic and his friends to fight the new menace called the Metarex. This incarnation is voiced by Chikao Ōtsuka in the Japanese version, and by Mike Pollock in the English dub.[unreliable source?]
Dr. Eggman appears as the primary antagonist of the Sonic Boom animated series, with Mike Pollock reprising his voice role. Eggman's physical appearance was the most drastically changed of the cast, now appearing to have a buff upper body and wearing a militaristic uniform, as well as having a fully brown and smoother mustache. He also appears to be less serious than his mainstream counterpart. Little of his background is elaborated on, but he has mentioned going to middle school with girls who cut in line ahead of him brutally.
Dr. Eggman makes a brief appearance in the anime Hi-sCoool! SeHa Girls. In the middle of the Sega Hard Girls' first exam in the game Border Break, Eggman hacks into the game world and begins to wreak havoc until Sonic appears. He leads Sonic and the girls on a chase through several Sonic the Hedgehog games until they finally defeat him using an invincibility power-up. He later appears in the final episode to wish the girls farewell at their graduation.
When the first Sonic the Hedgehog title was released in 1991, Sega of America developed an origin for Sonic the Hedgehog and Dr. Robotnik which diverged from the back-stories created in Japan by Sonic Team. In this back-story, set on the planet Mobius, Dr. Ivo Robotnik was originally a benevolent scientist named Dr. Ovi Kintobor ("Ivo Robotnik" with the names spelt backwards; also, "ovi" is the Latin prefix meaning "egg"), a friend to Sonic who helped to develop the hedgehog's super-speed. In the Sonic the Comic Kintobor was merged with a rotten egg and transformed into Dr. Robotnik after tripping over a cable with a rotten egg in his hand and suffering a severe electric shock. The result created Dr. Ivo Robotnik, who instantly became the opposite of the good Dr. Kintobor and would occasionally use the word "egg" in some words, with an example being "eggsactly". In the United States, a different storyline was featured in a 14-page promotional comic book written by Francis Mao and designed to promote the game. The origin story was also adopted by Sega Europe, featuring in British publications such as the book Stay Sonic and later the comic Sonic the Comic, which was published from 1993 until 2002. In Sonic the Comic, Dr. Robotnik was dictator of planet Mobius for most of the comic's first 100 issues, while Sonic also had access to an AI computer program based on the personality of Dr. Kintobor. Initially, Robotnik's appearance in Sonic the Comic matched that of the video games, but from issue 22 onwards the comic adopted his design from the Adventures of Sonic the Hedgehog cartoon series.
Also in 1993, Archie Comics began publishing its Sonic the Hedgehog comic book. The series is in a sense, a very loose continuation of ABC's Sonic the Hedgehog animated cartoon; as well as a mad scientist, Robotnik is a portrayed as a dictator who took control of Sonic's hometown during a coup d'etat. At the height of this conflict, Robotnik died during a final confrontation with Sonic, only later to be replaced by another Robotnik from a parallel world, becoming the same Dr. Eggman from the video games. In recent years, the plot of the comic has changed to incorporate elements from the video games, with Robotnik being replaced by his more traditional video game counterpart.
Eggman also makes a cameo appearance in the 2012 Disney movie, Wreck-It Ralph. He is seen as a member of the villain support group Bad-Anon. His design is from the current games during the movie itself and in the ending credits his classic design is used instead. Also, Eggman's caricature picture is seen on the Celebrity Wall at Tapper's.
The character has been well-received, going on to become one of the most well-known villains in gaming. GameDaily ranked him number one on their list of Top 25 Evil Masterminds of All Time article, stating "Out of all the evil masterminds in video games, none are more despicable, more cunning, or more menacing". They also included him in their most persistent video game villains list and their craziest video game villains list. In a later article, they listed the "evil mastermind" as one of the top 25 video game archetypes, using Robotnik as an example. He was featured at number three in a "Reader's Choice" edition of GameSpot's "Top Ten Video Game Villains" article, which noted a massive complaint by fans at his exclusion from the original list. Eggman was also named the 15th most diabolical video game villain of all time by PC World. Game Informer notes that in Sonic Chronicles: The Dark Brotherhood, "Eggman's villain ego shows some amusing tarnish after constant defeat at the hands of Sonic." IGN listed him at number nine above Mario-series villain Bowser in their "Top 10 Most Memorable Villains" article, calling him "PETA's videogame public enemy number one", and has also commented that his character is a "pretty clever riff on Teddy Roosevelt" that has added to the attraction of the series. In 2010, IGN listed Dr. Robotnik 11th out of their "Top 100 Videogame Villains". Nintendo Power listed Dr. Robotnik as their seventh favorite villain, also listing him as having one of the best mustaches.
A potential macrocycle inhibitor of Sonic hedgehog discovered by a Harvard University research team was named "Robotnikinin" after the Dr. Robotnik character. The researchers felt that after Sonic hedgehog was named after the Sega video game character, they should "adhere to the convention" in naming the inhibiting compound after the character's archenemy.
The band Intercontinental Music Lab included a song about Dr. Robotnik on their 2008 album, Superheroes of Science. The power metal band Powerglove wrote a song called "So Sexy Robotnik" based on the boss theme from Sonic the Hedgehog 2 and features snips from various other level tunes from the same game. It appears as the first track on their 2007 album "Metal Kombat for the Mortal Man".
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- Eggman: Shadow... can you hear me...? This might be the last chance I have to speak to you, so... What I said, about having created you... it was all a lie. Everyone thought you died during that horrible incident... but I rescued you, with one of my robots... You lost your memory, that's all... You really are the Ultimate Life Form my grandfather created! Sega Shadow the Hedgehog (in English 2005-11-15 (US)
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