From Sonic Retro

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Sonic with Wisps in promotional artwork for Sonic Colours.
Not to be confused with the Badnik known as Whisp.

Wisps are extraterrestrial creatures introduced in Sonic Colours. Dr. Eggman captures the Wisps to power his interstellar theme park, and Sonic is tasked with rescuing the diminutive aliens from the mad scientist's clutches. There are eight Wisp types available in the Wii version and six Wisps types available in the DS Version of the game. As the player progresses, more Wisps are unlocked, which will then appear in both later and earlier stages.

They return once again in both versions of Sonic Lost World with 6 new Wisps: Crimson (Eagle), Magenta (Rhythm), Indigo (Asteroid), Black (Bomb), Ivory (Lightning), and Gray (Quake).

In Sonic Forces, Wisps are utilized by special weapons known as Wispons which are wielded by Avatars, featuring a basic attack and a special ability that can be used when the appropriate Wisp is collected.

Color Power

The small, colour-coded, floating alien creatures each contain a different Color Power that Sonic can harness by collecting them. When a Wisp is collected, the gauge on the bottom-left corner of the screen will display which Wisp is currently active. Upon activating a Wisp's Color Power, the gauge will begin to deplete until the current power is entirely used up.

Colour Image Colour Power Info Game
White Colours BsicPose Wisps.png Boost Power first introduced in Sonic Unleashed (3D) or Sonic Rush (2D). Can be used along side other Colour Powers. Gives Sonic an instant (but limited) burst of speed and will automatically attract any nearby Rings.
Cyan Colours BsicPose WispLaser.png Laser Allows Sonic to ricochet off of walls and mirrors and teleport using the corresponding Prisms and antennas that appear in the stage. In Team Sonic Racing, this Wisp fires a concentrated laser in front of the user's car that can spin out opponents who are zapped for long enough.
Yellow YellowWisp.jpg Drill Enables the player to dig through certain surfaces that contain hidden underground rooms, paths, and pipes. It can also be used underwater to zoom around like a torpedo. In Team Sonic Racing, this Wisp gives the user's car an automated boost and invincibility, spinning out any opponents who get in the way.
Orange Wisp Orange.png Rocket Sends Sonic blasting off directly upward, allowing him to reach higher areas of the stage. In Sonic Generations, the ability can be charged by holding Y/Triangle. In Sonic Lost World, Sonic has to aim where to go. In Team Sonic Racing, this Wisp acts as a missile that ricochets off walls, and is fired in a straight line in front of or behind the user.
Pink Pink Wisp.png Spikes Gives Sonic longer, pointier spikes that allow him to stick to walls and ceilings as well as use the Spin Dash. He also can break wisp blocks. In Team Sonic Racing, this Wisp creates three spike balls around the user that attack opponents who come too close, and is exclusive to Power-type characters.
Green Green Wisp.png Hover Turns Sonic into a slow-moving hovercraft, allowing him to fly through the air and find hidden areas. Allows him to use the Ring Dash.
Blue SonicColorsbluewisp.jpg Cube Turns Sonic into a heavy block that slams the ground. It also creates platforms by transforming blue rings into solid blocks, and vice versa. It can also destroy wisp blocks and enemies. In Team Sonic Racing, this Wisp creates cubes that are dropped behind the user or thrown in front to serve as obstacles for opponents.
Purple Wisp Purple.png Frenzy Turns Sonic into a berserker, chomping anything in his path. He gets bigger the more he eats!
Red NintendoE32010OnlinePressKit SonicColours BsicPose WispBurning.png Burst Turns Sonic into a fireball, similar to the Fire Shield from Sonic the Hedgehog 3. Unlike the Fire Shield, it can propel Sonic upwards by holding and releasing the Jump button. In Team Sonic Racing, this Wisp creates hazardous flame trails behind the user that will spin out opponents who drive into it, and is exclusive to Speed-type characters.
Violet Wisp Violet.png Void Turns Sonic into a ghost form that can float through walls and suck up rings and enemies, similar to what a black hole does. In Team Sonic Racing, this Wisp creates a vortex around the user that absorbs Rings, Item Boxes and even slows down opponents, and is exclusive to Power-type characters.
Indigo IndigoWispRunners.png Asteroid Turns Sonic into a floating orb surrounded by a ring of little cubes, allowing Sonic to destroy everything in his path, with the destroyed objects becoming little cubes that add to the orbit. The more debris Sonic gathers, the bigger his radius gets and the higher he can jump.
Crimson Crimson Wisp.png Eagle Turns Sonic into an eagle that can soar through the air for a limited time. Pressing the Jump button makes Sonic dash, but depletes the Color Power faster. In Team Sonic Racing, this Wisp homes in on opponents ahead of the user.
Magenta Magenta Wisp Art.png Rhythm Turns Sonic into a musical note that can jump to floating musical notes in the air to cross large gaps. In Team Sonic Racing, this Wisp obscures the view of opponents with loud noise, and can only be acquired by Technique-type characters.
Ivory Ivory Wisp.png Lightning Turns Sonic into a lightning bolt that can ram into enemies and obstacles very quickly and generate threads of electricity to shock opponents or cling to coils. In Sonic Forces, this Wisp allows the use of the Light Dash, replacing the original function of Hover in the game. In Team Sonic Racing, this Wisp will zap all opponents with lightning, stopping them in their tracks.
Gray Gray Wisp.png Quake Turns Sonic into an iron ball that can scale walls and generate shockwaves that destroy enemies and obstacles by falling. Also appears in Sonic Lost World Wii U's VS. Mode, where it can be used to stun the other player for a few seconds. In Team Sonic Racing, this Wisp creates stone pillars in front of the race leader in a similar fashion to the Swarm from Sonic & All-Stars Racing Transformed.
Black Black Wisp.png Bomb Turns Sonic into a giant bomb that can roll over enemies and explode on them. The bomb's size increases by rolling over enemies. In Team Sonic Racing, this Wisp allows the user to throw a bomb that bounces around, then explodes with a huge radius.
Jade Jade Wisp.jpg Ghost Introduced in Team Sonic Racing, this Wisp turns the user translucent and makes them unaffected by damage, obstacles and slower road surfaces. When it runs out, a Wisp is taken away from the nearest opponent. In Sonic Colours: Ultimate, this Wisp allows Sonic to phase through the terrain and home in on enemies and Ghost Anchors.

Nature and origins

Mother Wisp and her children at the end of Sonic Colours for the Nintendo DS.

Wisps originate from Planet Wisp, one of the worlds captured by the Tropical Resort tractor beams for Dr. Eggman's amusement park. They seem to be peaceful, playful aliens with no technology to speak of. They move around by floating placidly through the air, and communicate in an incomprehensible, warbling language which proves utterly impenetrable to Sonic and Tails; indeed, the fox spends the whole Wii game tinkering with his Miles Electric to get a translator working.

Just like the small animals of Sonic's world, the Wisps' halcyon nature makes them easy pickings for Dr. Eggman - who has had no shortage of practice oppressing cute defenceless creatures. The Doctor does use wisps (specificly white wisps) as organic batteries for his badniks and Egg Pawns around the park, but his main use for the extraterrestrials is their Hyper-Go-On Energy. This is the wisps' life force, without which they become frenzied, angry creatures: unnatural purple or "nega" wisps, which are churned out in abundance from the Asteroid Coaster harvesting machine. Eggman wants all this Hyper-Go-On energy as it just happens to be the perfect power source for his new mind-control weapon.

Sonic Colours for the Nintendo DS goes into more detail than the Wii version about the Wisps' origins; here Yacker claims that they all originate from a progenitor Mother Wisp, who is responsible for creating Planet Wisp itself. Indeed, mama appears as the secret final boss of the game, gravitating into the region and being none too impressed at the ordeal her children have suffered. Super Sonic fights her as the giant Nega-Mother Wisp, after which she calms down and returns the planets to their original locations.

Although the Wisps returned home at the end of Sonic Colours, they continue to be seen throughout the series, now found throughout Sonic's world. Sonic Runners explained that some of the Wisps liked Sonic's world so much that they decided to live there in harmony with the planet's residents, though their presence did scare the Animals at first. Mother Wisp comes to Sonic's world on a regular basis to visit the Wisps living on the planet.

In other media

Sonic the Hedgehog (Archie comics)

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Sonic the Hedgehog (IDW comics)

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Sonic Colours (Wii) / Sonic Colours: Ultimate
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Sonic Lost World
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Team Sonic Racing
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Characters in the Sonic the Hedgehog game series
Recurring characters
Heroes Sonic (Super, Starfall, Hyper, Darkspine, the Werehog, Excalibur) | Tails (Super) | Knuckles (Super, Hyper) | Amy (Super, Hyper) | Mighty (Super) | Ray (Super) | Espio | Charmy | Vector | Cream | Big | Blaze (Burning) | Silver (Super) | Sticks
Anti-heroes/Neutrals Shadow (Hero, Dark, Super) | Rouge | E-102 Gamma | E-123 Omega | Jet | Wave | Storm
Villains Dr. Eggman | Metal Sonic (Rocket, Neo, 3.0) | Mecha Sonic (8-bit, Mk. II, Mk. III, Super) | Fang | Tails Doll | Metal Knuckles | Chaos (Perfect) | E-Series | ZERO | Biolizard (Finalhazard) | Black Doom (Devil Doom) | Eggman Nega | Orbot | Cubot | Deadly Six (Zavok, Zazz, Zomom, Master Zik, Zeena, Zor)
Teams Sonic/Heroes | Rose | Dark | Chaotix | Babylon
Other Animals (Flicky) | Froggy | Chao (Hero, Dark) | Tikal | Pachacamac | Omochao | Chaclon | Gerald & Maria Robotnik | President | King Boom Boo | Cheese | Chocola | Vanilla | G.U.N. Commander | Wisps | Mother Wisp
One-off characters
Heroes Emerl | Marine | Lumina Flowlight | Chip | Shahra | Knights of the Round Table | Caliburn | Yacker | Avatar | Barry | Trip (Super)
Anti-heroes/Neutrals Bean | Bark | Shade | Merlina | Sage
Villains Witchcart | Hocke-Wulf | Bearenger | Carrotia | Battle Kukku Army (15th, 16th, Dr. Fukurokov) | E-101 Beta | Void | Chaos Gamma | Gemerl | Shugo-hei | Iblis | Mephiles | Solaris | Erazor Djinn | Captain Whisker | Johnny | Master Core: ABIS | Ix (Super) | Dark Gaia | King Arthur | Hard Boiled Heavies | Infinite | The End | Mirage Express
Teams Vector | Eggman
Other Birdie | Illumina | Secretary | Elise | Duke of Soleanna | Sonic Man | Coconut Crew | Vikings | Professor Pickle | Wentos | Don Fachio | Dodon Pa | Koco | Ancients | Conductor | Conductor's wife | Ariem | Heavy | Bomb | Tiara Boobowski | Honey