Created By: ginsengaddict2January 20, 2012 Last Edited By: ginsengaddictJune 8, 2013

Enemy Anemone

A mass of Combat Tentacles

Name Space:
Main
Page Type:
Trope
Seen It A Million Times, mostly in Video Games.

The danger of Combat Tentacles is cumulative. The more there are, the more trouble you're in.

Named for the Sea Anemone, which although harmless to humans, is quite literally a mouth surrounded by hundreds of tentacles which snag prey and wrap it up in an inescapable web of tentacled doom.

(Apparently there are examples in Eldritch Abomination which are basically just this without the Cosmic Horror aspect. Shall we move em here?)

Examples:

Film
  • Star Wars Return of the Jedi: The Sarlacc, at least in the updated versions.

Literature
  • Lovecraft. Most of his concoctions featured tentacles.
  • The Lord Of The Rings: The Watcher in the Water who attacks the Fellowship and traps them in the Mines of Moria in The Fellowship of the Ring.
  • Tangle trees in the Xanth series.

Live Action TV
  • One of the monsters from Space 1999 was a tentacled monstrosity that lured its victims into its maw by mind control and then spat out the bones.

Tabletop RPG
  • Dungeons And Dragons
    • The 1st Edition Giant Portuguese Man-O-War was a huge version of the Real Life Earth version. Its tentacles (which could be up to 40 feet long) paralyzed its victims and drew them up into the main body to be eaten.
    • The 1st edition tournament adventure C1 The Hidden Shrine of Tamoachan included a giant polyp (anemone) as one of its Mayincatec-themed dungeon's encounters. An illustration included as a player handout depicts it as looking deceptively like a dead tree.
  • Call Of Cthulhu campaign Shadows of Yog-Sothoth. If the Investigators fail to destroy the Watchers on Easter Island, they will be attacked by a Messenger of the Old Ones while traveling to R'lyeh. The Messenger is a giant black cloud with tendrils deployed beneath it. It uses the tendrils to grab victims and pull them up into the main mass to be eaten.
  • Stormbringer Companion. The Kyrenee is a gigantic monster from another plane of existence that looks like a cloud of black tentacles floating in the air. It attacks its targets by grabbing them with the tentacles, which crushes and poisons them.

Video Games

Real Life
  • With the exception of clownfish, this is actually what sea anemones do.. To fish, not the people.
  • Jellyfish may qualify if they're large enough.
Community Feedback Replies: 36
  • January 20, 2012
    aurora369
    Sarlacc anyone?
  • January 20, 2012
    Stratadrake
    Awesome title. What's the writeup going to look like?
  • January 21, 2012
    ginsengaddict2
    ^ Suggestions? It's been a while since I've written full tropes.

    And definitely, Needs Examples.
  • January 21, 2012
    Arivne
    Tabletop RPG
    • Dungeons And Dragons
      • The 1st Edition Giant Portuguese Man-O-War was a huge version of the Real Life Earth version. Its tentacles (which could be up to 40 feet long) paralyzed its victims and drew them up into the main body to be eaten.
    • Call Of Cthulhu campaign Shadows of Yog-Sothoth. If the Investigators fail to destroy the Watchers on Easter Island, they will be attacked by a Messenger of the Old Ones while traveling to R'lyeh. The Messenger is a giant black cloud with tendrils deployed beneath it. It uses the tendrils to grab victims and pull them up into the main mass to be eaten.
    • Stormbringer Companion. The Kyrenee is a gigantic monster from another plane of existence that looks like a cloud of black tentacles floating in the air. It attacks its targets by grabbing them with the tentacles, which crushes and poisons them.
  • January 21, 2012
    Stratadrake
    BTW, non-naughty tentacles are called Combat Tentacles around here.

    Video Games

    • The aquatic boss Morpheel from The Legend Of Zelda: Twilight Princess resembles a large anemone (at first, anyway), and if one of its tentacles grabs Link it will swallow him, grind him a bit in its teeth, then spit him back out.
  • January 21, 2012
    Ryuuma
    Uhmm, don't now, the title itself is promising, really, but it seems too vague. Anyway...

    • In Okamiden there's a starfish youkai with is, pretty much, a gaping hungry maw in the middle of five tendrils.
  • January 21, 2012
    Stratadrake
    That one doesn't sound like an example because it harms you through Collision Damage and (if I recall) some degree of underwater Bullet Hell. It doesn't have that Personal Space Invader style strategy.
  • January 21, 2012
    Ryuuma
    Uhm... then the only thing I can remember of is a monster that appears in one of the Choose Your Own Adventure gamebooks set in a pirate world: While exploring a sunken ship you're blocked by a giant sea anemone. The right thing to do is to sneak around it and flee. If you try to fight it, you'll be grabbed, paralyzed and eaten.
  • January 21, 2012
    SharleeD
    • Another D&D example: The 1st edition tournament adventure Hidden Shrine of Tamoanchan included a giant polyp (anemone) as one of its Mayincatec-themed dungeon's encounters. An illustration included as a player handout depicts it as looking deceptively like a dead tree.
  • January 21, 2012
    LeeM
    One of the better monsters in Space1999 was a tentacled monstrosity that lured its victims into its maw by mind control and then spat out the bones.
  • January 21, 2012
    ginsengaddict2
    Thanks for all the suggested examples.

    Any clever wording for the description?
  • January 21, 2012
    Stratadrake
    It may be worthwhile to describe a basic sea anemone in horror fashion first: A giant mass of Combat Tentacles surrounding a mouth: If one grabs you, the rest follow suit and the next thing you know your paralyzed body is getting escorted right down its gullet for dinner.
  • January 22, 2012
    Noaqiyeum
    Ooh, we can probably move a lot of misplaced examples here from Eldritch Abomination.
  • January 24, 2012
    ginsengaddict2
    ^ Well, started transferring.
  • January 24, 2012
    Arivne
    ^^^^^ @Lee M: That was the episode "Dragon's Domain".
  • February 4, 2012
    ginsengaddict2
    bump
  • February 4, 2012
    KinaKalamari
    "The Lord Of The Rings:" The Watcher in the Water who attacks the Fellowship and traps them in the Mines of Moria in The Fellowship of the Ring.
  • February 4, 2012
    Dawnwing
    • Tangle trees in the Xanth series.
  • February 5, 2012
    Cider
    Can you please make the laconic more indicative. Such as,

    "A sea anemone attacks"

    Even if I had no knee jerk reaction to the name, Lovecraft implies something which the description does not.
  • February 6, 2012
    ginsengaddict2
    ^ Well, the trope isn't specifically sea anemones, but I can take out the reference to Lovecraft.
  • February 6, 2012
    Josech
    Final Fantasy has the Malboro family of enemies.
  • February 6, 2012
    Stratadrake
    But they generally don't have tentacle-based attacks, just bad breath.
  • February 6, 2012
    ginsengaddict
    ^ Which would make them a non-example.

    ^^ However...
  • February 8, 2012
    ginsengaddict2
    ^ Page image?
  • February 8, 2012
    elwoz
    Some of the nastiest venomous jellyfishes are quite small, e.g. the infamous Irukandji species.

    Sea anemones can irritate human skin if you touch them enough, but I don't know of any genuinely toxic-to-humans species. I suppose someone could have an allergic reaction to the venom, too.
  • February 11, 2012
    ginsengaddict
    Bump
  • January 18, 2013
    elwoz
    Bump
  • June 5, 2013
    ginsengaddict
    Will update description soon.
  • June 6, 2013
    arbiter099
    Another Zelda example,

  • June 6, 2013
    Chernoskill
    Comics

    In Peter Parker, the Spectacular Spider-Man #31, Spidey finds himself strapped to a table in a Mad Scientist's laboratory whose clone unleashes a giant green-yellow amoeba the size of a human that nearly engulfs Spider Man before he is able to break his bounds.
  • June 6, 2013
    StarSword
    Don't forget to index under Sublime Rhyme.
  • June 6, 2013
    KZN02
    BIONICLE: the Morbuzakh and Karzahni, created by Makuta Teridax.
  • June 7, 2013
    Arivne
    This is very similar to the Tentacled Terror YKTTW proposal.

    You can probably mine some examples from it.
  • June 7, 2013
    henke37
    I have seen a kind of enemy called "Roper" more than once that is just a big tube thing with lots of tentacles all over it.
  • June 7, 2013
    randomsurfer
    Subverted in the first appearance of the Ood in Doctor Who, who have anemone-like appendages coming out of their mouth-area. They advance on the Doctor & Rose menacingly.
    We must feed...we must feed...we must feed...lead Ood bangs his translator...you, if you are hungry.
  • June 8, 2013
    Arivne
    ^^ The Roper is from the Tabletop Game Dungeons And Dragons.

Three days must pass before this YKTTW is Launchworthy or Discardable