Badniks are a series of robots that appear throughout the Sonic the Hedgehog franchise. Created by the villainous scientist Dr. Eggman (Ivo Robotnik), Badniks come in a variety of configurations and can carry out different functions depending on their individual designs. Many Badniks are modelled after animals or insects while others may appear humanoid; others still may have no particular basis for their design.
Badniks have run on various fuel sources over the years. During the early years of the Sonic games and even in some newer titles, Eggman would power his Badniks using live animals he had captured. The animals would be inserted into their Badnik shells on an assembly line and would essentially become organic batteries for the machines. How long a Badnik could operate with a living creature inside its chassis is something that has never been explored within the Sonic universe. When Badniks are destroyed, the animals within are released, apparently unharmed.
Eggman has also powered his Badniks using other energy sources such as regular electricity, fossil fuels and Chaos Drives, an artificial form of Chaos energy.
Dr. Eggman has designed hundreds of different Badnik models over the years and re-designed a select few as well. Not all of these robots have been labelled with the Badnik name, rather they have been a part of another specific line of robots, though these have been listed here as sub-groups under the blanket term "Badnik". The following is a complete list of every Badnik that has appeared throughout the Sonic the Hedgehog video games in order of the game they first appeared in.
In the Sonic Adventure titles, Dr. Eggman's then western name of "Dr. Robotnik" was phased out of the game continuity, and so the term "Badnik" was also removed. For several years onward, Eggman's robots were referred to as the E-Series, though the term "Badnik" would later be reintroduced in Sonic Rivals 2.
Super Badniks - also sometimes called Master Robots or Prime Badniks - are more advanced robots that Eggman has created to function as heavy-duty units or commanders of lesser Badniks. These robots are typically much stronger and larger than normal Badniks, sometimes appearing as bosses or sub-bosses depending on the game they appear in.
In Sonic the Comic, not all Badnik models were created by Dr. Robotnik. Many of them were designed by his assistant Grimer and others still were created by the treacherous Commander Brutus who was a Badnik himself.