In the UK-published Sonic the Comic, the Floating Island - home of Knuckles the Echidna - was once populated by an echidna clan who possessed incredible technology for their age. Among their technological achievements were the Guardian Robots, powerful machines used to defend the island from intruders and were great instruments of war from before the island was raised from Mobius's surface. The Guardians could be recognised by their enormous heads, inexplicably attached to bodies of only half the size.
The Floating Island Guardians are highly durable machines, capable of withstanding heavy attacks and returning them in kind. They possess superior strength and their long, spindly limbs have excellent grip. Webbed wings concealed in the arms allow the robots to glide and even fly. Their armaments include pulse blasts fired from the fingertips and focused laser beams fired from their optic visors. As well is operating independently, Guardians can even be piloted from a cockpit housed in the head.
In the four-part Knuckles story The Homecoming (STC Issues 65 - 68) Knuckles happened upon an active Guardian robot in the ruins of Megapolis, the ancient Echidna city. The robot seemed to be searching for another Echidna and fought Knuckles when he interfered with its mission. As it turned out, Dr. Zachary - the only other living Echidna besides Knuckles - was controlling the robot for his own evil ends and used it to shatter the Master Emerald that kept the Floating Island airborne. The robot had absorbed the emerald's energy and used it to try and kill Knuckles, but Knuckles was able to defeat the robot by decapitating it with all his strength. Zachary clung to the damaged body of the robot as it fell to Mobius and the head remained on the island, the Chaos energy it had absorbed allowing it to serve as an emergency power source until Knuckles could replace the Master Emerald.
In the run-up to Sonic the Comic's 100th issue, Dr. Zachary - who had miraculously survived his previous fall from the Floating Island - returned to the island while Knuckles was stranded on Mobius, bringing Dr. Robotnik with him. The two evil scientists had made a deal: Robotnik saved Zachary's life by rebuilding his damaged body with cybernetics and in return, Zachary informed Robotnik of the whereabouts of the Emerald Hill Zone folk who had fled their zone following the threat of the Death Egg. They travelled to the Floating Island and Zachary took control of the secretly stored Guardians using modern software, ordering them to abduct the Emerald Hill folk from the Mushroom Hill Zone. When Knuckles eventually returned to the island, he was captured too and Robotnik had him and the Emerald Hill folk installed on to an enormous biological computer system, which when activated, would run on the power of the victims' brains. However, events transpiring within the Special Zone eventually led to the introduction of an immense electromagnetic pulse that blanketed the entire planet of Mobius, knocking out the bio-computer and the software that Zachary used to control the Guardians, not to mention cripple Robotnik's entire global empire.
Following the fall of RBR, Knuckles took control of the Guardian robots and used them to restore much of the Floating Island's old structures and technological systems. They have since been put to good use in defending the island from outside threats and have continued to do so in STC's online continuation.
- The Floating Island Guardians may have been inspired by the Laputian Robots from Hayao Miyazaki's animated film, Laputa: Castle In The Sky. Both robots possess many similarities, such as the design of their limbs and wings, as well as the fact that they both guard ancient airborne islands.