Fang the Sniper
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|Fang the Sniper/Nack the Weasel|
|First seen: Sonic Triple Trouble (1994)|
|Species: Jerboa & Wolf hybrid (as Fang) or Weasel (as Nack)|
|Created by: Shinichi Higashi|
Fang the Sniper (ファング・ザ・スナイパー) is a character in the Sonic the Hedgehog universe. He was known as Nack the Weasel in the North American and European releases of Sonic Triple Trouble, but reverted to the name Fang in all subsequent games. Despite being called a weasel in his western debut, he was established as being half jerboa and half wolf in Japan.
Fang is a treasure hunter who lives in subspace. He wears a brown cowboy hat, brown boots with white gaiters, a brown belt with a gold buckle and brown gloves with metal plates. He is known as Fang due to his large and pointed upper left tooth. His fur is purple and white and he has a long, thick, tail that he uses for bouncing on and attacking his foes. Sonic the Fighters introduced his signature weapon: a popgun that fires corks. He is often seen on his flying bike, which he takes great pride in.
During development, the character was known as Nack. However, a character named Knuckles had been created for Sonic the Hedgehog 3. Since the pronunciation of the two names would be similar in Japan, it was decided to change Nack's name. A contest to decide upon a name for Sonic's new rival ran in the gaming magazine Shūkan Famicom Tsūshin. In the end, the name Fang the Sniper was decided upon.
In America and Europe, the name "Nack" was retained for Sonic the Hedgehog Triple Trouble, since "Nack" starting with an "N" and "Knuckles" starting with a "K" was deemed to be enough to differentiate the two.
Since Fang likes to collect shining things, he was designed with attire evoking that of an explorer. His four fingers, instead of the usual five for a Sonic character, are derived from the species he is based on.
Sonic Triple Trouble
Fang makes his debut as a thief/treasure hunter in Sonic Triple Trouble (Sonic & Tails 2 in Japan). In this game, Fang antagonizes Sonic and Tails in their quest to claim the five Chaos Emeralds he gathered. He is found at the end of every Special Stage as a boss, except the first, in which his own trap backfires. He attacks Sonic/Tails whilst riding his flying bike, which has different attachments and attack patterns in each boss battle. He later shows up in Atomic Destroyer Zone Act 3, but is scared off by Dr. Eggman's machine before he can confront Sonic/Tails. If the player completes the game without collecting all of the Chaos Emeralds, Fang appears in the "Try Again" screen after the ending, dropping the Emeralds the player had missed.
A prerelease screenshot for the game found in a gaming magazine shows that Fang would have been seen holding a gun up to Sonic in a classic "stick 'em up!" situation.
Sonic Drift 2
Fang is also a playable character in Sonic Drift 2, driving his aero bike, the Marvelous Queen. The Marvelous Queen differs in appearance to his flying bike from Sonic Triple Trouble. His special ability is to drop bombs on the track to stop opponents in their tracks.
Sonic the Fighters (Sonic Championship)
In Sonic the Fighters, Fang is a playable character who holds one of the eight Chaos Emeralds. Although Fang's alignment is generally evil, he is very much willing to destroy the newly designed Death Egg II, and thus save the world from Eggman's potential grip... although he may very well intend on keeping and selling the Emeralds afterwards.
For moves, Fang mostly uses a popgun, which shoots corks. Fang also makes use of his tail and feet in a few fancy moves such as his Tail Whap. Fang can use his magenta emerald to go into Hyper Mode and perform the Cannon Barrage, a move which fires a barrage of corks toward Fang's opponent, potentially hitting them many times. As in previous installments, it appears that Fang is unaware of the Chaos Emeralds' true power, though he can make use of Hyper Mode as mentioned earlier. Fang is the sixth character that must be defeated in arcade mode to reach the Death Egg II. His home stage is Casino Night, based on the same stage from Sonic the Hedgehog 2.
In Sonic Mania, the Heavy Magician, a member of the Hard Boiled Heavies, becomes an illusion based on Fang. At the end of Mirage Saloon Zone Act 1, the illusion of Fang may show up to shoot down the Tornado and bring Sonic and Tails to the ground. When the player fights the Heavy Magician at the end of Act 2, she can turn into Fang, proceeding to bounce around and shoot corks at the player.
Fang, along with Bean the Dynamite and Bark the Polar Bear, can also be seen on "Wanted" posters in both Acts of Mirage Saloon (though they can only be seen in Knuckles' Act 1, as well as Encore Mode's Act 1).
Tails Adventures has an item named Fang, featuring his face on the icon. Simply having the item in Tails' inventory will increase the chances of enemies dropping rings without any activation necessary.
Fang was to appear in Sonic X-Treme as a boss fight.
In other media
Fang appears in the Archie Sonic comics with the name Nack the Weasel. He has a sister named Nic, and is a member of Team Hooligan alongside Bean and Bark. In the UK Sonic the Comic series, Nack initially appears as a member of the Chaotix Crew, but shortly betrays them for profit. He often uses a special device to shrink and grow himself and other objects, which he has used for heists and for him and Grimer to reach Shanazar in order to find Robotnik.