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The Hidden Palace Zone is a large cave located on Westside Island deep below the Mystic Cave Zone. It is lined with thousands of green-colored gems, many of which bare an uncanny resemblance to the Master Emerald.
Many years later, Dr. Eggman had come to this zone in his quest for power. He had fought Sonic the Hedgehog and Miles "Tails" Prower here, where the mad scientist was defeated and forced to retreat. (VG: StH2)
The Shattered World Crisis
- From a reader's perspective, this picks up from where the original Pre-Super Genesis Wave continuity left off.
After Walter Naugus' plans for Eggmanland were foiled by Dr. Eggman and his Egg Bosses, he retreated to this zone to increase his powers through the use of gems and the Master Emerald shards he possessed. Knuckles and Amy came to the zone later on in search of the remaining Master Emerald shards. They were joined by Team Dark, who were looking for Eclipse the Darkling, a rogue alien. SU: #86, #87)
Naugus crystallized Omega so that the latter could get rid of Shadow, Amy and Rouge. Naugus then shape-shifted into a purple echidna named Nixus, tricking Knuckles into believing that he was not the last echidna. "Nixus" led Knuckles to a secret chamber accessed by Hidden Palace's organ where they could assemble the Master Emerald in peace. Knuckles, however, was crystallized and Nixus revealed himself to be Walter Naugus. Naugus stole Knuckles' shards and kicked him out of the secret chamber so that he could assemble the pieces himself. Knuckles was forced to regroup with the others as they faced a crystallized Omega. (SU: #87, #88)
The ensuing battle was so intense it shook the cave, but eventually Knuckles and company freed Omega from Naugus' control and confronted the wizard, who crystallized the group. Walter then tried to get away with the fully constructed Master Emerald using a Teleporter located 300 feet below the secret chamber, but Knuckles and Team Dark caught up with Naugus and stopped him before he could use it. After Naugus was arrested by G.U.N., the Royal Guard was sent to keep constant watch over the Hidden Palace Zone. (SU: #89, #90)
- The Hidden Palace Zone is based on the scrapped zone of the same name from the video game, Sonic the Hedgehog 2, which was later redesigned and reused as a zone in Sonic & Knuckles). While the level was scrapped from the original game (only being accessible through hacking), it was later restored for the 2013 mobile re-release, where it was now a single-act stage that could be accessed through a secret entrance in the aforementioned Mystic Cave Zone.
- Hidden Palace Zone (Westside Island) at Sonic News Network