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Original Grimm ideas + general Grimm discussion

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  • AenarTenthSkraeling

    AenarTenthSkraeling FIRST Member Star(s) Indication of membership status - One star is a FIRST member, two stars is Double Gold

    #33722037 - 1 week ago

    We have a thread for thinking up original Semblances, original weapons, team names, and character creation(x2). But I haven't seen any threads dedicated to the Creatures of Grimm. So I decided to make one. This is a thread for all things Grimm. Have an idea for a original Grimm type? Post it here. Have any wishes for Grimm related plots in future volumes? Post it here. Want to discuss the way the Grimm have been utilized in the show (for good or bad)? Post it here. Etc.

    To start us of, I have had some thoughts for a Grimm type that could show up in the Atlas arc. Its a bit of a no-brainer but I have some specific hopes for it:

    Yeti/Himamānav/Abomination/Frost Giant/Ymir/Jötnar/Risi/Thurs


    The reason this one is named after both Yeti's and Frost Giants is because it could be either. The exact mythical inspiration isn't as important as the nature of the beast, which is a humanoid Grimm with frost powers. Though if it is based on a yeti I imagine it would be a bit more hairy and bestial while the Frost Giant would be more human-like. 

    In any case it would have the same basic traits, the regular version would stand at about 6-7 feet tall and be strong and fast enough to engage student Huntsmen like Ruby or Weiss in melee on roughly equal footing. They would be less overwhelming with their strength and speed than Beringels but in return they have weapons and skill that makes them more threatening. In a 1v1 fight they're not quite good enough to be a real threat but they can put up a fight and they're decently durable. The regular versions are more supposed to be elite mooks that usually outnumber a team by a decent margin, which allows them to work together to land hits they otherwise wouldn't be able to. Elite variants can grow significantly larger and stronger than the base versions. The Yeti/Ymir is also immune to cold but are vulnerable to fire.

    Their special abilities are:

    Frost Breath:


    The Yeti/Ymir inhales air for several seconds, holds its breath for a bit and then exhales a stream of cold air that freezes anything caught within it in ice. The cone of cold has a reach of about 30 meters and expands to a width of about 5 meters at the widest (for mooks, elders have considerably more reach). Things or people caught at the edges of the cone are only partially frozen but people caught within it are frozen completely and sealed within ice. While powerful Huntsmen as well as Maidens can break out pretty quickly with pure force most people need several minutes at least to break free, usually the best counter is to either put up a barrier (with Dust or Aura) to block the cone before being frozen, or to use Fire abilities to melt the ice. While being frozen can leave even Huntsmen completely helpless this ability still isn't considered a major threat since its so heavily telegraphed that even rookies can dodge or disrupt it most of the time. Because of that the Yeti/Ymirs only use it sparingly and usually wait for an opponent to be distracted by one of its kin or other Grimm before launching the cone of cold from behind.

    Ice Generation:


    The second but not secondary ability of this Grimm beast. The Yeti/Ymir has the ability to create ice in various shapes in its hands. This ability is primarily used to create weapons for it to wield. Axes, swords, spears, javelins, clubs, maces, throwing stars, spiked balls, daggers, shields, and many other armaments are created with this ability. Depending on the situation the ice will be formed either into ranged or melee weapons, thanks to their prodigious strength the Yeti/Ymir can throw their javelins over incredible distances. When a flock gathers they can shower distant enemies with a hail of weapons. When an enemy is encountered at close range the Yeti/Ymirs will create whatever melee weapon suits them or in the case of more experienced specimens the weapons will be adapted to the current situation (for example creating daggers when in cramped quarters or using spears and shields to guard an elder). The ice created by these creatures is far more durable than normal ice but it turns to dust a few minutes after being created or when the creator dies so no attempt to harness it has been successful. 

    The basic idea with this Grimm was that they would fight like humans and therefore could be fought like humans. A giant snake might be cool but its often hard to make a fight scene that has the same amount of back and forth as a proper human vs human fight. Their ice weapons also gives them a ranged option which I find sorely lacking among most Grimm types (speaking of which, next time a Nevermore shows up, show it using its feather attack please). The frost breath was a bit tacked on but it was just to cool to not include.  yang

  • competivekid


    #33722086 - 1 week ago

    Honey badger Grimm, look the animal up.

    They're tough as hell.

  • AenarTenthSkraeling

    AenarTenthSkraeling FIRST Member Star(s) Indication of membership status - One star is a FIRST member, two stars is Double Gold

    #33722087 - 1 week ago

    In reply to competivekid

    Honey Badgers are awesome but I'm not sure that awesomeness translates well to the Grimm. Their chief badassery comes from being tough as hell, giving no fucks and being fearless. That already describes practically every decent Grimm type. Although... Badgers are pretty good at digging, I suppose a Honey Badger Grimm could have its "thing" be that its a Grimm with the Burrowing ability of Creeps and Deathstalkers that has the toughness of a Ursa while being more compact than a Creep and more common than a Deathstalker. Oh! Or it could have actual regeneration in addition to elite Grimm durability, that would allow it to be a true "give no fucks" type of Grimm.






    -High durability

    -Regeneration (very fast)


    -Hyper aggressive 

    -Never had any fucks to give

    Anyway, my second suggestion is based on this art piece:


    But while Blue-Hearts idea was to basically give it poison/acid blood my mind went to.... other places.


    It took me 3 days to find info about this creature. All that i could remember was 2 things, it was an Egyptian crocodile, and it had jewels leading to 2 spikes that shot a beam of sunlight (extreme sunburn). Petsuchos was the name given to the live crocodile at Crocodilopolis in Ancient Egypt, which was worshiped as a manifestation of the Egyptian god Sobek. The name Petsuchos means "son of Sobek", as the Ancient Egyptian word "pet" has a meaning of "son" or "offspring". Petsuchoi were worshipped as gods, and were adorned with jewels and gold. When the Petsuchos died, it was replaced by another. Their carcasses were mummified, like those of pharaohs and high priests. Weird. If it doesn't show up, it's because of the school's WiscNet block.

    As it turns out the Age of Mythology unit that I suddenly got reminded of is in fact based on the same Egyptian god that Blue-Hearts named his crocodile after, Sobek. In the myths Sobek was (like many other Egyptian gods) a solar deity, which is were I assume the AoM team got the idea for their light beam crocodiles from. In any case that's certainly an aspect that I want to the Sobek/Petsuchos/Pnepheros Grimm to have. 

    To make it more disctint from the Age of Mythology version I would change the laser/light beam being emitted from between two horns to instead having a system based on this depiction of Sobek:


    The back of the crocodile would be covered in yellow scales like that headdress and would function as mirrors that reflect light towards a red circular lens on its head (which can be retracted like the Sea Feilong's wings). To be on the safe side of I would also either give it a wholly original name or name it after Sobek or Pnepheros instead of Petsuchos. Though I kind of like the idea of having Pnepheros be the base name and then adding Sobek in front or behind it when it advances to a elite version.

    Still, I'm a bit worried about copyright. The Petsuchos and Sobek themselves are about as public domain as they get but interpreting them as laser crocodiles is a bit more specific. To be on the safe side it might be best to have it be humanoid like the original deity and have it use a staff or "hat" as the focus for its laser power. But that seems like something that should be an artificial hybrid between a Imp and a Pnepheros, ala the Imp+Horse hybrid that created the Nuckelavee. Plus while crocodile men look cool:


    I still prefer the pure crocodile version as the basic unit. I like the image of a crocodile Grimm lurking in the water and then suddenly firing a laser to shoot down an airplane or something like that. 

    I don't know... Opinions?

  • AenarTenthSkraeling

    AenarTenthSkraeling FIRST Member Star(s) Indication of membership status - One star is a FIRST member, two stars is Double Gold

    #33722092 - 1 week ago

    Reposting from another thread, might as well gather all this stuff in one place:


    Hm. Had some thoughts on a spellcaster style Grimm. Maybe base it on the Lampads?

    Lampad/Torch-Witches/Torch-Nymph/Flame Nymph/Hecatian


    The Lampads are the nymphs of the Underworld in Greek mythology. Companions of Hecate, the Greek goddess of witchcraft and crossroads, they were a gift from Zeus for Hecate's loyalty in the Titanomachy. They bear torches and accompany Hecate on her night-time travels and hauntings. Some accounts tell of how the light of the Lampads' torches has the power to drive one to madness. The Lampads were probably the daughters or sons of various Underworld gods, Daimones, river gods, or Nyx. The Lampads' Roman name is nymphae Avernales ("infernal nymphs").

    You could have a sort of humanoid Grimm with some form of torch as its weapon. Appearance wise it could be sort of similar to this, have a Grimm mask that gives it a creepy blank face, and I think I like the idea of giving it the ability to hover slightly above the ground, which could be upgraded to full on flight for the evolved version (Lampade Hecate maybe?). Not sure if I want the torch to be more of a regular torch like this, or one of thesehanging brazier things. Maybe both? It could have one in each hand or have a kusarigama style weapon where the brazier is connected to the torch by a chain and used as a medium/long range weapon. I kind of like the idea of the Lampad shooting fire from its torch by swinging it while using the brazier as a ball on chain. On the other hand I also like the idea of it pulling fire from the torch to shape it into fireballs to throw, firebrander style. Either could work.

    The madness aspect might be a bit much, though maybe if its reserved for just the evolved version, turn it into a real boss. It could even work as a great example of why Huntsmen are considered so valuable. The Lampad could have some kind of flare/flash attack that shines bright light that induces temporary madness. 

    Have the effect go full Symbol of Insanity on civilians and about 50% of all mooks affected while the other 50% of the mooks and all Huntsmen student tiers only get a major headache or something as their Aura struggles to protect them from the effect, meanwhile lesser Huntsmen might struggle with the headache thing but veterans like Qrow just shrug it off completely. 

    Basically establish a hierarchy that shows that having a few super elite warriors is better than having many mooks with big guns, since some Grimm have abilities that can take out entire platoons at once while being unable to even affect proper Huntsmen.


    Another idea I had for the evolved Lampad was to use the combined torch and brazier style Lampad but evolve it. The torch would turn into a full on Firebrand style staff while the brazier would go from being attached to the torch and held to instead being attached to the Lampad's "belt" and would just float around on their own. Then when the Lampad flies into the air each brazier could serve as a focal point for one of those magic circles the Geist made and then shoot beams of fire. The regular Lampad would be equivalent to a flamethrower/rocket launcher using infantry soldier, while the evolved version would be more like a flying gunship, raining death from above. The staff could also be used to fire massive streams of fire or giant fireballs.

    In keeping with the squishy wizard theme though and to balance it a bit against other Grimm types it might be far more fragile than other Grimm of a equivalent power-level.


    Alternatively maybe just base the fireball chucking infantry Grimm on the mythical Salamander and have it spit fireballs and secrete hallucination inducing toxins. [shrug]

    Edit: Another oldie


    Recently reread some chapters of a manga called Dungeon Meshi which reminded me of a mythological monster that could make for a really cool Grimm type. 



    In Chinese mythology, the shen or chen (literally: "large clam") is a shapeshifting dragon or sea monster believed to create mirages. The Shen were said to breathe out mirages that formed fantastical images of great buildings. 

    These could make for some pretty cool aquatic Grimm, they could use their mirages to trick ships into running aground and then make fake settlements to lure people into caves filled with Grimm hidden by the mirages. Combine these things with a haunted house Geist and you could have a real mindfuck/thriller episode.

    *To expand on this a bit here are some ideas for what it would be like:

    Powerwise I would base it on the Giant Clam summon from Naruto, which was itself clearly based on the version from mythology. The Clam's shell would be made entirely out of the white(+red markings) bone stuff that Grimm have and would be extremely tough. Even tiny normal sized clam Grimm would be completely immune to small-arms fire and a tough nut to crack even with high caliber weapons like Crescent Rose or Ember Celica. However that's only when their shell is closed. In order to create mirages they need to open their shell a crack in order to let out white mist that fills the area around them, only once it has been properly settled can they start making mirages, and once its in place they can close their shell again and just play mind-games. However since the mirages come from mist a good gust of normal or Dust created wind can blow it away, forcing them to open their shell again if they want to create more illusions. The insides are highly vulnerable so if you can mange to land a hit through the slit when they open their shell you should be able to kill them pretty easy, of course without a way to get rid of their mist it can be a pain in the ass just to find them. 

    The Shens are pretty much completely immobile and vary in size from regular clam sized to the size of a truck. The clam sized ones can only stretch their illusions out to a radius of about 10 meters while the giant ones have considerably more range and are also better at applying their illusions in clever ways. Beowolves, Beringels, Nevermore's and other Grimm that are capable of it sometimes pick up appropriately sized Shens and throw or drop them at humans to sow confusion amongs them. A Shen thrown onto a battlefield like that can create illusions of Grimm that aren't there to distract the defenders, make illusions of fire to scare people away from defensible positions or lure them into wasting time on firefighting, obscure the aim of gunners so that they can't hit incoming Grimm, create illusions of downed or wounded allies, make a Grimm look like human if its close enough, etc. 

    They are a pain in the ass to deal with but thankfully somewhat rare, especially away from the ocean. 

    Giant Shens are more focused on claiming a territory than going on offense, since they're too big to be transported by most other Grimm. Their usual modus operandi is to show up in shallow waters that are often frequented by ships to avoid the larger Grimm out at the open seas, and use their mirages to trick captains into shipwrecking themselves. Sharp eyes on both lookouts and on the ship's sensor arrays are needed to ensure that a ship can pass safely through areas with Shens in it.

  • AenarTenthSkraeling

    AenarTenthSkraeling FIRST Member Star(s) Indication of membership status - One star is a FIRST member, two stars is Double Gold

    #33722276 - 1 week ago



    Credit to Blue-Hearts for the design but for the actual abilities I chose to diverge from his idea (which seems to have been spawned before it was revealed that Grimm are 100% unnatural). I do find his idea of having the antlers have a confusion effect to be interesting so maybe that's something that could be kept? In any case like the name suggests I'm hoping that if a stag Grimm ever appears in the show it will be based on the highly obscure mythological critter known as Eikþyrnir.

    Even more worthy of note is the hart Eikthyrni, which stands in Valhall and bites from the limbs of the tree; and from his horns distils such abundant exudation that it comes down into Hvergelmir, and from thence fall those rivers called thus: Síd, Víd, Søkin, Eikin, Svöl, Gunnthrá, Fjörm, Fimbulthul, Gípul, Göpul, Gömul, Geirvimul.

    Eikthyrnir the hart is called, that stands o’er Odin’s hall, and bits from Lærad’s branches; from his horns fall drops into Hvergelmir, whence all waters rise:-

    So in the myths this stag has so much water dripping from its horns that it basically becomes the source of all water/multiple major rivers. Obviously that would be a bit to mythical to fit into the current era of RWBY but an ability based on creating water from its horns could certainly work.

    Water Jet Cutter


    The way I envision it the Thorndripper could have drops of (possibly black/red) water drip out from all the tip of its horns and "fall" towards a central point to create a orb of water. Then after charging for a bit it could fire that water in a concentrated "beam" that cuts right through thick stone and even metal. It would be a bit telegraphed and might not work past a certain range due to losing momentum, but at short and medium range it would be a deadly attack that can do a lot of damage if it hits. It might also be possible to just fire the orbs of whatever themselves at high speed, basically making them into cannon-balls due to the high speed they're fired at, though it would be less destructive than the cutting jet. The water ball might be the only attack the lesser specimens can use (and a smaller one at that) while the cutting version is reserved for the elite evolved versions. 



    Another one of Blue-Hearts OC Grimm that I really want to see be made canon in some form. This one I don't really want any changes for aside from aside from the mention of attracting mates (which Grimm have no need for) and a suggestion that instead of being 100% effective on everyone who sees them, the hypnotic effect from the tail can be resisted by strong/skilled Aura users or people with strong willpower, making not very effective on Huntsmen and equivalents but highly effective at taking out huge groups of mooks. Edit: Though a older, evolved version of the Mayura could have its hypnosis ability be a major threat even to Huntsmen, or at least Student Huntsmen like Team RWBY/JNR.

    Like the peacock, Mayura have no difficulty flying over short distances. Furthermore, the tail may actually be one of the Mayura's greatest weapon. When fully displayed, their tails reveal up to 100 glowing eyespots, which seem to have a hypnotic effect on anyone that sees them. This leaves the victims vulnerable as the Mayura closes in and rips them apart with their leg spurs and beak. It is recommended that Huntsmen and Huntresses take the necessary precautions when fighting such Grimm to avoid such a fate.. These preparations include learning how to fight while blinded and training the other senses.

    Oh, and I would also add that while it can use its beak and leg spurs to attack, its offensive power is even lower than a Creep's and its durability is even worse. Its a pure Support-class Grimm with very little direct combat power, but its special ability makes it great at battlefield control when fighting alongside other Grimm types.

    Artic Beowolves


    This one is as straightforward as it gets. I want the white Beowolves from Grimm Eclipse to be made canon, but only for Atlas and other extremely low temperature areas. Basically showing that while extreme terrain can help defend against Grimm attacks its no guarantee of safety since the Grimm are capable of adapting. Also, throw in a 

    Polar Ursa


    While we're at it. Since these are basically just palette swaps of existing Grimm models they should be relatively easy to implement. Maybe have some Jackal-version of Beowolves when we reach Vacuo?

  • competivekid


    #33722547 - 6 days ago

    Grimm mole rats 

  • AenarTenthSkraeling

    AenarTenthSkraeling FIRST Member Star(s) Indication of membership status - One star is a FIRST member, two stars is Double Gold

    #33722584 - 5 days ago

    In reply to competivekid

    Grimm mole rats 

    Could you elaborate a bit? I'm not really sure what a mole-rat brings to the table that Creeps and other burrowing Grimm don't. 



    Props to Lightning-in-my-hand for the art, I don't think this is quite how I would want a Khepri to look but it gives a good general idea. I don't think it should have wings but the weak underbelly is a great idea for it, I think the armored shell should be one of its defining features, making it very hardy against attacks from above (such as say counter-battery fire) but very weak against strong fighters (such as Huntsmen) getting up close to flip them over to gut them (if they're small specimens) or just straight up attacking from below (if they're giant sized versions). Hm, maybe they could should keep the wings from Lightning's design, it would make them great at shoot-and-scoot. Scratch that, they should definitively have wings. People who haven't seen my original suggestion for this might be confused by all these artillery terms so let me explain:

    Rising Sun


    In mythology the Khepri was given status as a solar-deity because the Egyptians linked the image of the Scarab Beetle rolling balls of dung across the ground to the movement of the sun across the sky. As a Grimm the Khepri plays up the same imagery, having the ability to generate a orb of extremely hot flame in front of it which it can launch into the air or send rolling across the ground. The range and destructive power of this ball of flame would be comparable to modern artillery, and that's exactly the role it would play for the Grimm. 

    The smaller versions would be of the same size as the Sunweaver and would be comparable to mortars, larger Khepris would be the size of small cars and be comparable to tank cannons and field artillery, while the really large ones would be the size of tanks and be comparable to heavy artillery or naval cannons. There could also be one or two (or a handful) of extremely old and powerful Khepris that are similar in size to the one made by YEEEEEES and with power and range in line with or exceeding the Schwerer Gustav. One of the reasons I suggested Glassroller (or other glass based names) is because I had the idea that the fireball could be hot enough to melt the ground where it hits and leave behind glass.

    Kudos to YEEEEEES for the fantastic Khepri artwork. Aside from grimmifying the design this is exactly how I would want it to look when a Khepri charges up a fireball and prepares to lob it at the enemy. 

  • AenarTenthSkraeling

    AenarTenthSkraeling FIRST Member Star(s) Indication of membership status - One star is a FIRST member, two stars is Double Gold

    #33723024 - 2 days ago

    Today I want to discuss why I think the Lancer fight worked a lot better than the Sea Dragon fight.

    JEfNx4X.jpg       VS    hO8q1Fh.jpg

    I think it comes down to two key factors, threat and consequences. 

    First there's threat. When the Sea Feilong is first alluded to by swimming past the boat and then later reveals itself it succeeds in creating a threatening presence. In the first instance there's the mystery of what kind of creature it is and the knowledge that some sort of Grimm is stalking the boat. What kind of consuquences will that have? Is it going to sink the boat? Kill the Captain? Damage the boat so that it will need to make landfall while it receives repairs? Keep watching and you will find out. Then when it actually shows itself on-screen for the first time it manages to create an epic atmosphere, the music turns ominous, the crew-members look up at it in fright, alarms start blaring, a chorus starts chanting, crew-lady shouts in fear about how this ship has never faced a beast this large before, and the Grimm is revealed to be a fucking Dragon. A great job was done building tension for the fight to come. Unfortunately that was also the last time the Feilong ever appeared threatening in its entire time on-screen. 

    Some of it is the fault of the animation, the CRWBY had never done an aquatic battle before and it shows. I'm not just talking about the animation being stilted either, the match-up for the fight is just plain awkward. You have a big yet fast fucking Dragon going up against a lumbering cruise ship made of wood that uses paddle-wheels for propulsion. It creates awkward scenes where the dragon dives at the big slow target that is right in front of it and yet somehow misses because the captain turned the wheel, which... I mean I admit I'm no expert but I'm pretty sure a big ship like that isn't going to be able to turn that quickly. Plus the Feilong ends up suffering from the "stand around and roar instead of attacking" syndrome that has afflicted many Grimm before it. Why didn't it just attack the ship from below? I think a swarm of weaker Grimm crawling onto the ship could have worked better, crabs or lobsters or something. Or possibly "invisible" octopus Grimm. Make them weak enough that they can't just wreck the ship itself so that there's a reason for the fight to happen on the deck itself. A threat can be presented by the need to protect the passengers, which is a more credible threat than the entire boat getting blown up or main characters like Blake or Sun getting killed by what is essentially a Random Encounter.

    Another problem undercutting its threat level was the way its lightning breath was used. When a big mythic monster like an Asian Dragon starts charging up a big flashy energy attack you expect it to be pretty epic. When it was first revealed it was even done really well, the Feilong charges up its energy attack and Blake starts looking worried. When Sun shows up he solves the problem by redirecting the beam (which is good) into the sky (which is bad). While I think the choice to redirect the beam was good since it implies that the heroes could not withstand this attack directly (at least not seriously draining their Aura) and neither could the ship. This implication makes the beam attack seem threatening and dangerous, its important to prevent the Feilong from using it on the ship otherwise it will sink. However that implication would have worked better if backed up by action, instead of just vanishing into the sky it would have been better if the beam instead hit one of those giant rock formations and blew it up, that would have shown its power and driven home that this attack is dangerous. If the budget couldn't afford it then just use movie magic, show the beam about to hit a rock formation, cut away, add a loud explosion noise and possibly have some small chunks of stone fly past the camera/pelting the ship, cut back and show that the rock formation is no longer there, or at least that a big part of it is missing. 

    Of course this all ended up being redundant because the show undercut even the implication of the Hyper Beam being powerful by later showing Sun being capable of effortlessly deflecting it just by spinning his staff at it (and the ship tanking two direct hits without any noticeable damage). Since the show has not established anything special about his staff that would make it more capable of deflecting attacks than any other weapon this basically serves to make the big flashy lightning beam seem less dangerous than getting punched by a Beringel or Deathstalker. Which is frustrating since the show already demonstrated that they knew of a method by which the big fancy fucking Dragon could fire its ultimate attack without killing everyone and yet they still ended up just making its ultimate attack completely toothless and less threatening than it just ramming into stuff headfirst like a big dumb monster. Having Sun deflect the lightning beam also made the "scare" of it almost zapping him and Blake at the end even more of a joke than it already was.

    Which brings up another problem with the fight. The jokes. And also the music. But mostly the jokes. Now personally I found the "my hero/now you say it" joke pretty funny, and I can see what they were going for with setting that up for later. The problem however is that when you have characters cracking jokes in the middle of a fight and not taking the life and death struggle seriously then it becomes impossible for the audience to take things seriously either. The jokes may be funny but they come at the cost of whatever dramatic moment the show was trying to create. When we see Sun lying around making poses while a giant Grimm is attacking a cruise ship full of helpless civilians that either ends up making Sun look like a sociopath who doesn't care about people's lives being in danger, or the monster ends up looking like a toothless paper tiger that is such a non-threat that Sun can confidently waste time lounging because there's no real threat of it harming anyone while he's doing so. 

    Which brings up the other key factor, consuquences. In the Stowaways fight there are none. The only thing the Feilong accomplishes is to ensure that "starboard defenses are down" in some unspecified way while off-screen. Most likely by shooting the ship with its lightning attack (twice) but we don't even get to see how much damage was done to those cannons, and those cannons never accomplished anything in the fight so there is no sense of danger from their loss. Not a single passenger or crew member is even shown to be wounded during the course of this fight, no visible damage is done to the ship and Sun and Blake only ever look like they're in danger right at the climax of the fight when triumphant music is blaring and we have already seen that the Captain is about to ram the hell out of the dragon. The whole fight ends up being a waste of time. Nothing bad or good happens as a result of the fight, Sun would have had to reveal himself anyway even if the Dragon hadn't shown up, Sun uses it as an example of how the Grimm are getting worse but that point is ruined by the fact that the Dragon ended up being so toothless. Even the music was so light and cheerful during most of the fight that it seemed like even it couldn't take the Dragon seriously. Sun even outright says that the people on board had no need to worry about the fight. Way to undercut the threat of this unheard of new threat Show.

    Well then. That was a lot of words on things I thought were done wrong. Now let's look at how to do things right. The bees! (well, wasps).

    Threat? Oh boy, the Lancers have that in spades. Like the Sea Feilong we are first introduced to the Lancers as a mysterious mostly unseen enemy. Unlike the Sea Feilong which just stalked a protagonists in its introduction however the Lancers are presented as currently being in the middle of attacking someone else, and those people fear for their lives and desperately shout for help. Already the stakes are much higher than the fight with the Feilong. As the Family Guy joke goes "eh, we have two main characters on this ship, I think we'll be fine" but by the same logic ships that only have nameless people on board might as well be under a death sentence. 

    Then when the Lancers first appear they immediately show that unlike most Grimm we've seen up to this point, they mean business. Having them make an entrance by showing a ship they'd already destroyed crash and explode against a floating island was a great way to start the fight with a bang. The follow up where we get to see the Lancers themselves was also perfect. Instead of the usual nonsense of pointlessly roaring before attacking the Lancers go straight for the kill, using teamwork to first immobilize a ship and then having one member of the swarm do a suicide run to blow it up. The abrupt silence on the radio was an excellent way to emphasize the brutality of the scene. And once they notice the cargo ship they don't make a big fuzz about it, they just move on to the next target with zero hesitation and no useless posturing. Their sheer efficiency already makes the Lancers seem far more threatening than the giant freaking Dragon. Unlike the Feilong which spent its entire fight flailing about uselessly the Lancers have already clearly established themselves as a threat by showing that they don't need to defeat Weiss in combat as long as they can bring down her ship. While their stingers are on paper seemingly less dangerous than a Hyper Beam, in practice their grappling hook ability ended up seeming far more threatening because it actually works.

    And where the slow cruise ship vs fast dragon serves as an example of how to make a terrible match-up that makes for awkward battle scenes the fast cargo ship vs fast wasps is the exact opposite. By putting two fast moving and agile flyers against each other Dread In The Air succeeds in having a exiting fight scene from beginning to end. There's none of those awkward moments where the monster just stands around doing nothing because its not allowed to win instantly by slamming into the ship like it slammed into the rocks, instead there's an actual chase because both sides are roughly equal in speed and maneuverability. If there's one complaint to be had about the Lancer fight is that the ones on the roof do to little, the scene where the Pilot plans to slam them into an island got stretched out too much and could have used a scene them ripping open the roof and getting ready to dive into the ship to ramp up the tension. Still, the scene of them ramming their stingers through the solid metal roof and then slamming into the ship was far more effective at building tension than the Feilong shooting multiple lightning beams at the cruise ship while Sun was quipping and then only having the very minor damage be relayed through infodumping.

    When the Queen Lancer shows up she is also used to much greater effect than the Feilong's energy beam. Instead of a comedy act like Sun jumping on Blake for no reason and acting cocky both Weiss and the pilot react with fear when they learn of its presence. And unlike the ineffectual lightning beam it manages to do damage both to the cargo hold and the engines of the ship, showing that the energy barrier Weiss threw up to protect herself is no real defense from it. The massive Dust explosion it shrugged off also did a better job of showing its durability than the kind of half-hearted cannonball explosions used on the Feilong. While the Feilong's threat was undercut by the music the Queen Lancer instead undercut the victory music by launching one last attack right before it died.

    Most importantly there were consensuses. Unlike the Feilong which accomplished nothing, the Queen Lancer even in defeat manages to destroy the cargo ship, kill the pilot and sends Weiss straight into the hands of bandits. Fighting the Lancers served a purpose in the story, while the battle at sea did not. 

    While I don't think the CRWBY should copy the format of the Lancer fight directly for every Grimm fight I do think there are some lessons to be taken from it that can be applied in other fights. First is to make use of civilians. Many lesser Grimm are not much of a threat to Huntresses like our heroines, however they can still be a threat to civilians and mooks that our heroines are protecting. Similarly vehicles such as airships, cars, boats and trains can be a useful tool for ramping up the tension. If our heroes are on a timer and needs to get to a location quickly a threat to their method of transportation can work better for building tension than a threat to their lives. Main characters might have plot armor but NPC's and vehicles do not. If RWBY and co are defending a village or something like it then granaries, gun turrets or other vital pieces of infrastructure can also serve as a tension building tool by giving the girls a way to lose without being in serious danger themselves or as a way to introduce consequences beyond the All or Nothing question of whether or not the named characters will die. A ship can have holes punched in its hull during a fight and need to stop for repairs, a cargo ship can crash and take a character off-course, a train can be derailed and the passengers need to be escorted through hostile territory, a village can lose its main line of defense and need a new one procured before the heroes can move on in good conscience, etc. 

    Another lesson is to just not have the monster spend more time posturing than it does dealing actual damage to the people its fighting. Match-ups be chosen with care, if a fight is meant to last for several minutes then it should not be possible for one side to win in 2 seconds if it just attacked instead of standing around roaring for no reason. If the Grimm can crush the opposition with one attack then the opposition needs to be plausibly fast enough to dodge. 

    And if the Grimm has a special attack demonstrate that its actually useful and threatening. Especially if that Grimm is meant to be unique and powerful. More on that later as I bring up a suggestion for how to fix the Nuckelavee without needing to resort to retcons. For now however this post has already gone on long enough and I have shit to do so ciao.

  • AenarTenthSkraeling

    AenarTenthSkraeling FIRST Member Star(s) Indication of membership status - One star is a FIRST member, two stars is Double Gold

    #33723255 - 11 hours ago

    On death and destruction is what you will get
    When he's coming for you in your kilt you will wet.
    And he's big and he's strong and its quite plain to see.
    That this is the Tale of the Nukelavee.

    The Nuckelavee. Oh boy. If there's one thing in RWBY I have really mixed feelings about its this one. If I had to sum up my final impression of it in two words it would be "missed opportunity".

    The Nuckelavee had a real shot at being epic but the fight against it just ended up being a complete anti-climax. Which is a real shame because the work they put into this thing was phenomenal. The build up was great, first hinting at it right out of the gate in the second episode, then having Raven excuse herself by blaming the Grimm being quicker on the uptake than usual, then the fantastic talk with Ren and Ruby that revealed that just that one Grimm had destroyed a Mt Glenn equivalent by itself, then its initial "appearance" in the flashback where it went full horror movie monster on us, then the reveal that it was intelligent and malicious enough to collect trophies from its victims, and then the shot of it marching towards Ruby and Jaune while hidden by the foliage and that soul rending scream. It was all great. And actually knowing what a Nuckelavee was beforehand just made it better once it became clear what it was. The Nuckelavee is one of the most pants-shitting terrifying beasts in mythology so there was a lot to look forward too. 

    And then the fight itself just kind of sucked.

    Now to be fair, I have seen a lot of people make fun of the whole "whacky inflatable arm Grimm" thing. But personally I don't think that was a problem. The actual mythological Nuckelavee is famed for having incredibly long arms, so giving it the ability to extend its arms was a pretty clever take on that. I also think it was a clever way to solve the awkwardness of its body in general. A human torso glued to the back of a giant horse can make for some pretty awkward fight scenes when going up against agile anime ninjas that easily jump from building to building, giving it basically endless reach so that it could still hit or threaten to hit the group no matter where they went was a good decision. The arms were not the problem, heck the animators deserve props for actually making that concept work with 3D animation.

    No, the real problem wasn't the arms. It was that the arms were the only thing the Nuckelavee had. Stretchy arms are a nice practical weapon that lets the boss keep up the pressure against the heroes. But its not a scary power. At all. And this was a boss that was built up as being incredibly scary. Even leaving that aside the final boss of an entire volume that has been hyped up throughout the entire run of said volume should be more than just a one-trick-pony. Its not like the Nuckelavee is short of cool and scary abilities they could have used either:

    The nuckelavee's breath was thought to wilt crops and sicken livestock, and the creature was held responsible for droughts and epidemics on land despite its being predominantly a sea-dweller.

    When the Nuckelavee first showed up it was already breathing black smoke out of the horse-head. The fact that it didn't start spewing out clouds of toxic fumes that withered plants and organic matter was such a wasted opportunity. Especially since it could have been a great way to add extra tension to the scene by having it start sending fumes in the direction of Qrow when the team dodged, which would force them to get stop evading and go on the offensive to prevent it from killing the already weakened Qrow. 

    Even leaving that aside there was that big show in the middle of the fight where the Nuckelavee seemed to power up, with it growing massive spikes out of its back and snapping its mouth goo and everything. And yet nothing came of it. It's attacks after the "power up" were not noticeably stronger than before, the back spikes were only a cosmetic change when it could have started shooting spikes or breaking the spikes off to use as sabers, anything. 

    Worst of all however was the scream. In several parts of the fight, not to mention in the Kuroyuri flashback, a big deal was made about the Nuckelavee's scream. It was a fantastic scream, easily up there with the Jackson movie Nazghuls. We even see shock-waves being formed when the Nuckelavee screams and even with Aura up Jaune and co cover their ears in pain when it really started screaming (compare with Yang and Weiss having no problems with Flynt's soundwaves that are strong enough to physically push them away). Yet at the end its completely wasted. With no Aura protection Ren stands in front of it and is completely unaffected as its screams itself hoarse right into his face. The big scary monster is made completely impotent and its just such a huge waste because the same "I have overcome my trauma" effect could have been achieved by having Ren stand his ground but visibly struggling, or at the very least bleeding from his ears to. Hell I think it would have been more badass if Ren was clearly bleeding from burst eardrums but stared it down anyway. Making the Nuckelavee seem weak and impotent just made Ren's revenge seem less cool. It could have worked if the fight beforehand was cool but it wasn't, so Ren's whole spiel felt unearned.

    Ruby's speech in Volume 5 about doing stuff people thought was impossible would have also felt more real if defeating the Nuckelavee was actually presented as doing the impossible instead of basically being a game of whack-a-mole.

    Did I say that the scream was the worst part earlier? I take that back. The real worst part of the fight was just how stupid they made the Nuckelavee seem. The Beringel did a better job appearing smart in its fight and that thing thought Ruby falling down from a roof would kill her. It also didn't show any signs of understanding what a banner was so it had less build-up. Ren coming in at the end with the shield would have felt so much more satisfying if he actually did it to save Ruby, because the Nuckelavee should not have been stupid enough to attack Jaune when one of its arms was trapped. God, its like movieverse Smaug all over again. 

    Also, when a freaking Deathstalker in Volume 1 and a Nevermore in Volume 3 show the ability to tank a direct hit to the head by Nora's hammer the scourge of Oniyuri should not be so weak that it dies in one bloody hit that didn't even seem to be enhanced by a grenade explosion. This part in particular is really fucking annoying to me because the writers had already foreshadowed Nora having access to power-ups twice in the volume already, and they had also put emphasis on Ruby having Lightning bullets twice as well, one they they even used it on Nora. Would it really have killed the writers to show a 2 second scene of Ruby tossing the Lightning Dust magazine to Nora and having Nora crackle with electricity when she came down on the horse head? The final boss being oneshotted by a hammerstrike would have felt a lot more satisfying if it had been implied that she was boosting herself with an entire magazine of electric cartridges. Without that scene the Nuckelavee's durability becomes so pathetic that you have to wonder why Mistral didn't just clear it out with some missiles or a spider droid. It wrecking Oniyuri by itself stopped being impressive and started to make you wonder if the people who founded the town were so stupid that they didn't bother hiring any security at all. 

    But enough bitching! Complaining won't solve anything. Its time to suggest solutions. Not much can be done to fix its durability or lack of intelligence without resorting to retcons. However there are some options. For example Ren did sort of collapse shortly after killing it (though with Nora's help) so it could be mentioned that it did bust his ear-drums but he later healed it with Aura. If a Nuckelavee ever appears again maybe it could shatter a bunch of glass with its scream or something. 

    Well, in any case the real solution is in the source material. Since the horse part did basically nothing in that fight there's also nothing stopping the CRWBY from retroactively giving it some abilities. Instead of having to bring in a new Nuckelavee which wouldn't really have the same impact I suggest just bringing in a horse Grimm instead. And I have something specific in mind:



    Originally I had considered just introducing a new Nuckelavee (either greater or lesser) and have it demonstrate a toxic breath ability in line with the myths. Problem solved. However as mentioned earlier that would just make the Nuckelavee feel cheap. As a combination Grimm it should be rare and as a combination Grimm that inherently means that there are Grimm types it was made from. Better to just introduce those. So I started looking up horses in mythology to base the horse part on, something with an ability that could be similar to the Nuckelavee's. And then I came across the Mares of Diomedes:

    Heracles was not aware that the horses, called Podargos (the swift), Lampon (the shining), Xanthos (the yellow) and Deinos (the terrible), were kept tethered to a bronze manger because they were wild; their madness being attributed to an unnatural diet of human flesh. Some versions say that they expelled fire when they breathed. They were man-eating and uncontrollable, and Heracles left his favoured companion, Abderus, in charge of them while he fought Diomedes, and found out that the boy was eaten. In revenge, Heracles fed Diomedes to his own horses, then founded Abdera next to the boy's tomb.

    and I got an idea. 



    Why not have both? My suggestion is that the CRWBY should make a horse Grimm based on the Mares of Diomedes and the Nuckelavee. Its special ability would be to breathe out toxic fumes that are also highly flammable. First the mares would release a black cloud of noxious gas that makes plants wither, small animals and insects choke and die and people with Aura start choking and coughing. For Aura users the cloud itself wouldn't be inherently lethal but they wouldn't want to stick around in it either. However once its had a chance to settle properly the Nightmare could click its teeth to create sparks and just like the Ash Pile Burning technique the cloud would ignite and burst into a inferno of flame. This way you can both get the Nuckelavee's ability to wither crops with its breath and the Mares of Diomedes ability to shoot fire from their mouth. 

    It also comes with a convenient explanation for why the Nuckelavee didn't try this trick against RNJR, while its a very powerful and wide Area of Effect attack its also to slow to use when faced with multiple fast, mobile and powerful opponents like the trainee Huntsmen. It was to risky to use since the human/Imp half of the Nuckelavee would need to go dormant while the Nightmare started gassing the place, which would leave it open for counterattacks from the Huntsmen. 

    It can also neatly explain how that one Grimm managed to destroy a major settlement by itself without having the people in Oniyuri be idiots. Instead of facing the town directly the Nuckelavee could have used its toxic breath to burn down their crops and blight the land, taking care to stay away from the town itself and its defenses but instead putting them under siege and starving them out. Then as people tried to leave to get food or reinforcements it could pick off the stragglers one by one in the wilderness. Eventually its harassment would leave the defenders so weakened that it either waltzed in by itself or created so much negativity that other Grimm stormed the place and overwhelmed the defenders with the help of the Nuckelavee. Since it was the one who brought the rest there it got the credit as the "one" Grimm that brought the town to its knees. 

    Another thing that ability could explain is why Kuroyuri was such a ghost town after all those years instead of being taken over by plant life. Regular visits from the Nuckelavee and its toxic breath wilted all the plant life and kept the town in a perpetual state of decay. 

  • competivekid


    #33723291 - 2 hours ago

    In reply to AenarTenthSkraeling dang man, you should be part of the team in roosterteeth that's in charge of the fight scenes, and Grimm lore. thumbsup