- “Dang! DEPLOY IT NOW!”
- —Area 6 Commander
The Gorgon was a powerful space weapon created in the weapons labs on Macbeth and utilised by the forces of Andross that was located in Area 6, and Venom's final resort to protect it from invasion. It debuted in Star Fox 64 and appeared in the 3DS remake Star Fox 64 3D.
Gorgon was a specialized war machine of great power with the appearance of a massive disk-shaped machine with three long metal tentacles and a small, vulnerable core in the center. The core reflected its shield's status. At full power, it was blue. With shields slightly weakened, it turned yellow, and when shields were low, it was red. When its shields were depleted, its core would blink red and yellow erratically, indicating vulnerable status. The hard outer shell was capable of opening up in three sections like flower petals, revealing three bonded "energy balls" and what appeared to be metal teeth along the inside of each petal.
Gorgon had a vast array of weapons and defenses. Its thick armor was impenetrable to all attacks, its three tentacles could stretch out several hundred meters to swipe at nearby ships, a payload of fighters at its disposal, it could fire a multitude of heat-seeking missiles behind itself. Its most powerful weapon however was its giant hyper-laser, which fired out from its center in a brilliant rainbow-colored beam (or simply pure red in Star fox 64 3D) capable of tearing up the whole layer of a planet's crust; repeated bursts could penetrate into a planet's core to destroy it. Gorgon was also equipped with a Dimension Transport System that enabled it to phase in and out of reality, which was also something that scientists, up to that point, thought was impossible.
Because the area of space separating Venom from Sector Z and Macbeth was the most convenient atmospheric re-entry point from which to strike at Andross's home base, the legendary battle station Gorgon was specially tasked to control this area of space. It was equipped with a matter-displacement device, which allowed it to teleport in and out of position, something Cornerian scientists had deemed impossible until then.
Two of the most powerful and intelligent of Andross's followers had been promoted to positions of leadership in Andross's military machine, and were given command of a space fleet consisting of thirty-one Umbra-class Defense Stations, seven Harlock-class Frigates, twelve Zeram-class Cruisers, five Ninjin Missiles, and the Gorgon battle station and were always accompanied by fleets of support craft. Andross dispatched these key lieutenants to protect the most effective attack point to strike at Andross's palace, explaining the heavy defences. The units were distributed into three defensive lines to prevent the infiltration of Venom airspace. Cornerian forces simply did not have the strength to punch through these defenses, but a small, quick team like Star Fox might have had a chance.
After Fox McCloud and his team broke through the final line of defense in Area 6, the Area 6 Commander deployed the Gorgon in a final desperate attempt to destroy the four Cornerian freedom fighting mercenaries. The battle lasted long and hard, but Fox managed to bring down the giant weapon's shield down and, after overloading its core with laser fire, damaged it beyond repair. The critically damaged space station was sent hurtling and spiraling backward from the final attack to its core, and expired soon after in a gigantic explosion. Its destruction crushed the final hopes that Venom would remain uninvaded. Gorgon's failure would also be a prelude to Andross's impending defeat and death at the hands of the same person who destroyed it: Fox McCloud.
The Gorgon is named after the gorgons, vicious female monsters from Greek mythology that resembled ugly women with snakes for hair. It is said that one who looked upon a gorgon would be instantly turned to stone. Medusa is probably the most recognizable and well-know of the three gorgon sisters. The Gorgon machine could be named so because of the resemblance of its tentacle-arms to Medusa's famous snake-hair.
- When Pigma is infected by the Aparoids and fused with a space station, he strongly resembles Gorgon, having similar attacks and defenses.
- In Star Fox Zero, when Venom disappears and the teleport begins, it bears a slight resemblance to Gorgon's teleportation.
- The ability to phase in and out of reality is also shared by the Phantron in the original Star Fox, which shares a similar purpose in that it provides the last line of defense before Venom.
- It may have also inspired the Venomian Stealth Bombers in that they are teleporting war machines that produce a light that slip gives their position.
- Superficially, the Gorgon resembles a beholder from Dungeons and Dragons, except with three tentacles that cannot shoot, but the Gorgon itself can still fire missiles and fighters. This resemblance is a mere coincidence.
- The Gorgon may have possibly been piloted by the Area 6 commander. Another theory is that it was actually automated and/or not piloted by the commander, due to the fact that he says "Dang! DEPLOY IT NOW!" shortly before the Gorgon battle. The fact that he says nothing during or after the battle should also be noted as well.
Behind the scenes
- The Gorgon's appearance, combined with its massive hyper-laser (which can commit base delta zeroes) make it resemble the Death Star from the Star Wars franchise.
- The Star Fox 64 3D boss role helps add towards the Death Star's likeness which describes Gorgon as the "Ultimate Space Weapon".
- Its names in both the Japanese version and its alternate name on the official site, "Death Ball," and "Planet Killer" in the guide are even direct references to the Death Star.
Names in Other Languages
|Japan||Death Ball (デス・ボール, Desu Bōru)|
- NINTENDO POWER Star Fox 64: Official Nintendo Player's Guide. Redmond, WA, Nintendo of America. 1997.