Mythological creatures appear in a wide variety of games and stories. They’re a popular source for video games characters, both evil and good. Let’s look at some of the more popular mythological creatures that you will come across in a variety of video games.
This post is a work in progress and it’s kind of long. I’ll be adding more creatures when I get the chance!
The Griffin, also spelled Griffon or Gryphon, is a famous creature described with the trunk body of a lion, though additional animals may be substituted. Nevertheless, the griffin is always demonstrated with the top of an eagle with erect ears and a feathered upper body with the forelegs of an eagle, including its talons.
This mixture indicates intelligence and power. As the lion was typically regarded as the king of the beasts and the eagle the king of the birds, the griffin was regarded as an especially effective and majestic creature. In heraldry, the griffin’s amalgamation of lion and eagle gains in courage and boldness and it is always drawn to fierce monsters. It used to denote strength, military courage and leadership. In medieval times, Griffins were often on a knight’s shield. Griffins were thought to be protectors of gold sources, particularly in India.
Griffins are normally known for guarding treasure. In antiquity it was a symbol of divine power and a guardian of the divine. Most contemporary illustrations give the griffin the forelegs of an eagle, with an eagle’s legs and talons. Its eagle’s head is conventionally given prominent ears; these are sometimes described as the lion’s ears, but are often elongated (more like a horse’s), and are sometimes feathered. Infrequently, a griffin is portrayed without wings (or a wingless eagle-headed lion is identified as a griffin); in 15th-century and later heraldry such a beast may be called a man griffin, an alce or a keythong. In heraldry, a griffin often provides aquiline forelimbs; the beast with leonine forelimbs is usually distinguished as the opinicus.
Griffins mated for life and never sought a new mate if their partner was to die. According to Stephen Friar’s New Dictionary of Heraldry, “a griffin’s claw was believed to possess medicinal properties and that it’s feathers could restore sight to the blind.” By the 12th century, the appearance of the griffin had been settled after and remains relatively unchanged in modern lore. “All of its bodily users are like lion’s but it’s wings and mask are like an eagle’s. It was not yet clear if it’s forelimbs are like a lions or an eagle’s or sometimes it is possible that they had the limbs of baby pigs.
The Hydra (also known as the Lernaean Hydra) was a Greek mythological serpent with any number of heads (usually nine, as it was known to possess). Each time a head was cut off, two new heads regenerated in its place immediately. The middle and dominant Hydra head (the front and biggest) was immortal and breathed fire. This giant serpent’s other heads possessed poisonous breath in addition to poisonous and acidic blood.
The Hydra was the offspring of Typhon and Echidna. It was slain by Hercules and his nephew Iolaus. It is usually depicted as being from anywhere between 7 and 25 metres long and being around 6 to 13 metres tall. This is not correct or incorrect as the hydra is usually fought at different stages of its life depending on the version of the legend. The Hydra is usually often referred to as a girl in myth which would mean that it is the younger sister of Orthrus and Cerberus which are both male. This also might mean that it is the older sister of the chimera, Sphinx, Nemean Lion, Caucasian eagle, Ladon and the Crommyonian Sow. It was said to have been born in the swamps of Lerna which is also where it might be killed by Heracles.
Hercules was sent by king Eurystheus to kill the Hydra as part of his second labour since the Lernean Hydra was terrorising Lerna by attacking it is towns and killing flocks of sheep and cattle. He had taken along his nephew Iolaus. When he reached Lerna, he protected his nasal area and mouth with a fabric to safeguard himself from the stench. He shot a flaming arrow into its cave where it hissed in anger, arrived and started fighting him.
However, he had trouble coping with the Hydra when he understood that two heads regenerated whenever he sliced away one head. He informed Iolaus to burn off the stumps along with his torch whenever he cut among its heads off to be able to prevent the heads regrowing.
When Hera found Hercules was winning, she delivered down an enormous crab called Korkinos to strike him by pinching his feet which he then crushed below his mighty feet. He received a golden sword from Athena, which he utilized to kill the immortal mind. Then took the immortal mind and buried it next aside of the road and positioned a boulder onto the bottom where the still writhing mind of the Hydra was buried. Then went back to your body and dipped his arrows in its poisonous bloodstream, which he found in his later quests. Both crab and the Hydra had been positioned in the sky as the constellations Cancers and Hydra, respectively.
The hydra is actually among the labours of Heracles that didn’t count since he previously the help of his nephew Iolaus so King Eurystheus decreed that he carry out another hence making the ”12” labours of Heracles.
The hydra does not already have a set number of heads because the hydra had way too many heads for the vase painters to paint so they always gave it between 3 and 20 heads. Under normal circumstances the hydra never has less than 3 heads.
The hydra is usually depicted as having either two arms and no legs, two arms and two legs or no arms or legs at all when the hydra actually starts off with having no legs then it develops two arms then two legs. So all of these depictions are partially correct.
There are often 2 kinds of hydra. The serpentine, aquatic hydra with fins on its head and usually no legs was the lernean hydra which Heracles fought. The other is the terrestrial hydra which is the one with 4 legs and horns and spikes which is usually in other tales.
Both of these hydra’s could have any number of heads and does not have a set amount.
The Minotaur is a hybrid creature in Greek mythology that is part man and part bull. He was named Asterion at birth, after his mother’s father-in-law.
In most myths, there was only one Minotaur, which was the offspring of Minos’ white bull and wife Pasiphaë.
Before he ascended the throne of Crete, Minos struggled with his brothers for the right to rule. Minos prayed to Poseidon to send him a snow-white bull, as a sign of approval. He was to sacrifice the bull in Poseidon’s name, but decided to keep it instead because of its beauty.
As punishment, Poseidon caused Pasiphaë, Minos’ wife, to fall madly in love with the bull from the sea, the “Cretan Bull”. She experienced Daedalus, the famous architect, make a hollow wooden cow for her as a decoy in order to fool the bull. Pasiphaë climbed into the wooden cow and the decoy proved successful. The offspring of their unnatural lovemaking was a monster called the Minotaur.
The Minotaur, as the Greeks imagined him, had the body of a man and the head and tail of a bull. Pasiphaë nursed him in his infancy, but he grew and became ferocious. King Minos, after getting suggestions from the Oracle at Delphi, ordered Daedalus to construct something to hold the Minotaur underneath Minos’ palace ( possibly the one in the city of Knossos). Daedalus then built the labyrinth.
It is said that because the king of Athens, Aegeus, had murdered Minos’ child Androgeos in jealousy, Minos made Athens send a tribute of seven youths and seven maidens to Crete to feed the Minotaur every nine years.
When Theseus, son of King Aegeus, reached Athens and found out about these sacrifices, he wanted to put a stop to it and volunteered himself to be one of the youths. It was there that he met Minos’ daughter Ariadne, who fell in love with the young hero. She promised to provide a way through the labyrinth if he agreed to marry her. When he did, she offered him a ball of thread and told him to fasten it to the entrance and carry it with him – then, once he needs to find his way out, he can just follow the path the thread made. Doing so, Theseus made his way into the labyrinth and found the Minotaur sleeping. He killed the beast with his bare hands and rescued the additional youths, following a trail of thread out from the labyrinth.
The Minotaur in Video Games
- The Minotaur and various variations of it, appear in God of War II.
- The Minotaur is one of the various creatures Orpheus must battle in the side-scrolling video game The Battle of Olympus.
- The Minotaur is a unit that can be acquired in Age of Mythology through the worship of Athena.
- The Minotaur appears in Kid Icarus: Of Myth and Monsters.
- Minotaurs appear in the first game of Hero of Sparta.
- The Minotaur shows up in the Scribblenauts games.
Although an unicorn can technically be any one-horned animal, it is almost always that of a mythical, horse-like beast with a horn protruding from its forehead. They appear in Greek bestiaries, in addition to several other mythologies.
Unicorns are thought to have recovery powers, and drinking the bloodstream of 1 can keep you alive if you are ill. They are also thought to have other powers that they perform with their horns, e.g spells and enchantments. Unicorns also live permanently, or until killed. Unicorns horns may bring the dead back again to life and clean polluted drinking water.
The Bible contains references to unicorn-type creatures called Re’ems. They are physically referred to as crazy beasts with one horn appearing out of their mind. They are supposedly untamable, solid, and agile, and so are often used as types of those characteristics. Re’ems are actually discovered with the aurochs and various other bull-related species.
The Qilin may be the unicorn of Chinese mythology. It really is a hybrid species with your body of a deer, the top of a lion, green level, an extended upward curved horn appearing out of the forehead. It is used to symbolize wealth.
The unicorns of Medieval and Renaissance mythology is founded on the Biblical version. It provides one horn appearing out of its forehead. It is normally described as some sort of donkey, equine, and/or goat. In Renaissance mythology and artwork, the unicorn is an equine with a narwhal-like horn appearing out of its forehead. They are more powerful, faster, smarter, and even more viscous than any other sort of horse. Nevertheless; they have an excellent love of fair maidens and virgins. If it sees one it becomes docile. For this reason maidens were used as bait in attempted unicorn hunting. Unicorns were often demonstrated with genuine white or greyish-white coats.
The word “alicorn” was first used in the Renaissance. It is the name the unicorn horn and the compound it is made of.
Since the Renaissance, unicorns have generally been regarded as horses with horns protruding from their foreheads. An exception to this may be the unicorn from the video game “Ghosts and Goblins”. These unicorns are gigantic troll-like creatures with armor, and short upward curved alicorns protruding from their foreheads.
The unicorn is famously used as the national animal of Scotland. To this extent, it is utilized as a supporter in the arms of Scotland and the UK.
The coat of arms of Nova Scotia acknowledges its historical connection with Scotland. In the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries, the Clearances of the Scottish Highlands forced many Gaelic Scots to resettle, abandoning their ancestral lands. Many fled to what is right now Nova Scotia, resulting in a big Gaelic-speaking community.
Where to Find These Creatures in Games
I’m working on a large list/table of mythical creatures and where you can find them in games. My favorite way is to place them as mobs in various Minecraft servers. I’m working on my own Mythology Server but it’s not ready yet. In the meantime, you can try this list of the best Minecraft servers to find a few fantasy and mythology-related ones to play on.
Mythology Books and Resources
You can learn a lot more about Mythology and mythical creatures from these books and online resources.
This is considered one of the original and best resources on Mythology. It focuses mostly on Greek and Roman mythology so it doesn’t contain all of the mythical creatures, but it’s a great starting point.
This is a very easy-to-read book on Norse Mythology by Neil Gaiman, the famous graphic novelist. It focuses mostly on the Norse gods, like Thor, Odin, and Loki, but also references many famous Norse mythical creatures.