Eldritch Abomination
aka: Old One


"There was a darkness outside reality, they say — a darkness full of things. Hungry, nasty things with no shape or form, not as long as they were out there."
Kurt Busiek, "Storms of the Heart," Astro City

The Alien. The Other. The Inconceivable. The Eldritch Abomination is a type of creature defined by its disregard for the natural laws of the universe as we understand them. They are grotesque mockeries of reality beyond comprehension whose disturbing otherness cannot be encompassed in any mortal tongue. Humans suffer Brown Note or Go Mad from the Revelation effects just from witnessing their Alien Geometries. Reality itself warps around them. Any rules that they do follow are beyond our understanding, as are what motives they might have for any of their actions.

Native to H.P. Lovecraft's Cosmic Horror Story genre, the Eldritch Abomination has become a mainstay of horror and fantasy works, along with numerous others that derive inspiration from Lovecraft. They are often used as a Greater Scope Villain, Outside-Context Problem, Mad God, Evil God or Sealed Evil in a Can. As they are defined by existing outside reality as we conceive it, most also come from somewhere beyond the stars or before the dawn of time or outside our universe.

Physically, the Eldritch Abomination is only defined by seeming somehow “off”, hinting at their incomprehensible nature. They can range from humanoid to animalistic to physically impossible to inconceivably bizarre. However, common physical characteristics include similarities to internal organs, genitalia, animals with tentacles, or celestial bodies.

Subtrope of Our Monsters Are Different and Our Monsters Are Weird. One Winged Angels have a tendency to be Eldritch Abominations. For Eldritch Abominations with a specific appearance, see Adorable Abomination, Animalistic Abomination, Humanoid Abomination, and Mechanical Abomination. For specific storylines involving Eldritch Abominations, see the Did You Just Index Cthulhu? page. Compare with God of Evil, The Old Gods, Paradox Person, and Starfish Aliens. Note that a monster being really powerful, weird or ugly is not, in and of itself, an example of this trope. The monster must break the established internal logic of the work.

Thanks to the nature of this trope, potential Real Life examples are very vague and questionable at best. So No Real Life Examples, Please!

Example subpages

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    Amusement Parks 
  • The Nemesis roller coaster at Alton Towers amusement park in the UK (being the titular Nemesis). Nemesis comes from another dimension, a dimension beyond our imagination. There are theories, and then there is the legend... Beneath the ground at Alton Towers, something strange and horrible lurked: a creature put on the Earth 2 million years ago. The creature was disturbed during maintenance work on one of the other rides in Forbidden Valley. The creature, angry at being discovered, caused havoc, ripping up trees and buildings, sending them hurtling skyward. A security silence fell over Alton Towers as historians, archaeologists, and the Ministry of Defence nervously began some serious investigations. What they discovered was Nemesis. It had to be controlled - 250 tonnes of steel and 200 men pinned down Nemesis. The steel holding down the monster was twisted and bent into unusual shapes - the steel was the roller coaster track thrill seekers ride today - Nemesis. In a promotional comic released to advertise the ride, said creature had its own cult with its own Tome of Eldritch Lore.
    • Nemesis: Sub-terra. All we know is that it explores beneath the foundations of Nemesis... and many tentacles are in evidence...

  • Lone Wolf: Several enemies the hero encounters could be considered as such.
    • One of the creepier recurring enemies in the series is the Crypt Spawn. These are essentially swarms of human brains with batwings that, ironically enough, mindlessly attack anything in their path. They always appear in the presence of even greater evils, such as a timeless and bodyless... thing in the Graveyard of the Ancients, two of the Darklords themselves, and the King of the Darkness, Naar himself. The thing in the Graveyard is implied to be Naar.
    • The Akraa'Neonor summoned by Vonotar in Book 3. It even has the Combat Tentacles.
    • The Agtah on the astral plane of Daziarn boast twisted misshappen forms.
    • The master, the horrific Chaos-master. Its appearance is that of a vaguely humanoid giant composed of the many parts of various animals... which keeps moving and changing shape unceasingly.
    • The Kleasa from the World of Lone Wolf series. A Living Shadow from another dimension that eats souls like candy. Worse, the only way you can beat it is by setting it free, to reap evil elsewhere.

  • Found a dime a dozen in Destroy the Godmodder:
    • The Glitch. It was so horrible that it began glitching out the player's posts if they didn't format the text into times new roman.
    • Hell, a player called Erelye has an entire collection of them, and corresponds frequently with uncollectable ones.
  • In Dino Attack RPG, the Maelstrom is depicted as a force of utter destruction the likes of which cannot be comprehended by any ordinary person. It cannot be stopped, only delayed.
  • Any Glitch Pokemon in We Are All Pokémon Trainers
    • One (Missingno.) was a failed prototype of the Mewtwo cloning project, fused with a Reality Warping supercomputer that could have made AM proud. Its brother was a Cipher experiment Gone Horribly Right, which was prone to kidnapping innocent newborns and converting them into soldiers for its army.
    • ♀ was a formless mass that emitted a song that caused any being to go near it to be driven into homicidal insanity.
  • Apotheosis has numerous gods that look eldritch, but the Crawling Chaos takes the cake. It has a thousand eyes, millions of claws, and jaws the size of worlds. When an old man summoned it in an accident, his eyes and organs were liquefied.
  • Infinite Justice, being a crossover between Dragon Ball Z, Marvel Comics, and DC Comics, has numerous creatures from the canon comics, as well as the Leth'hao, the Voidlords. Creatures the size of continents that eat stars and live in black holes, seven of them fought a war against The Starkindlers that nearly destroyed reality, until The Source banished them to the edge of the universe. Word of God says that normal humans that try to see their true forms will have their mind destroyed, unless they're the goddamn Batman.

  • The Boyg from Peer Gynt. "Not dead, not living, slimy, foggy" is the only description given in-play. You Can Not Grasp The True Form, and it is nigh invincible, because it always dodges you. According to the play Peer Gynt gets mind raped, and starts to act and think like it, ending up as a quite incoherent and fractured soul at the end of the play. Avoiding this entity would seem to be a good idea - but as the creature wins through avoiding, you end up playing its game.

    • Tren Krom exists as a Shout-Out to Lovecraft. However, he actually isn't an alien or other; he was created by the Great Beings just like everything else in the Matoran world. Despite this, he's got the looks — tentacles and all — and causes insanity in those who look upon him. He was also one of the first things to exist in the Matoran world, managing it before Mata Nui, who contains the entire Matoran world in his body, was activated.
    Tren Krom: You think me an alien... an "other"... But I am of the substance of this universe, and I walked here long before you or even Mata Nui himself.
    — Federation of Fear
    • Makuta was described like this as first - a kicking, screaming, lashing thing of pure malevolence. As a Makuta he has the ability to shape shift into any form and can create Rahkshi from his own flesh, which are considered as his sons. Then he got retconned into a Magnificent Bastard Chessmaster more akin to The Devil than anything Lovecraftian, and Greg Farshtey himself has stated that he prefers Makuta this way.
    • Annona, which has been described as a small, star-like thing with tentacles and a room chilling aura. It eats dreams.
    • The first Rahi were tentacled monstrosities and other madness-inducing sea beasts. Akin to Tren Krom, they are actually naturally occurring in the Matoran world, but they are still unspeakably ancient and strange.
    • The Energized Protodermis Entity was through excessive backstory rewrites and extensions turned from a one shot bad guy made of Sentient Phlebotinum into this, when it was revealed to have been a mysterious cosmic being that resided in the core of Spherus Magna, and was in fact the engine that set the entire story into motion. It can take on many shapes, but its natural form is a silvery liquid.
  • There are Cthulhu dolls. D'aww. Great, ancient evil.
  • Transformers
  • Funko Pop Cthulhu, it may qualify as Adorable Abomination.
  • Figma:
    • Nyaruko, noted that she is Nyarlaphotep.
    • Kyubey note , you can find him in School Uniform Madoka or Akuma Homura set as accessory.

    Visual Novels 
  • Many of Cthulhu Mythos' deities appear in Demonbane. Although the Great Old Ones are treated as just powerful monsters, the Outer Gods still play it straight.
    • To elaborate, unlike in the mythos, most Outer Gods are sealed in compact universes inside the Shining Trapezohedron. But Azathoth still generate countless universes from inside, making it the center of the multiverse (and the destruction of the Shining Trapezohedron will doom everything, for Azathoth will turn the whole multiverse into an Eldritch Location once it's free). At least two Outer Gods are free, for neither of them can be sealed. One is Yog-Sothoth (being the embodiment of all time and space) and the other is Nyarlathotep (being the will of the Outer Gods, and since the multiverses come from the thoughts of Azathoth, sealing Nyarlathotep will simply drive it from your universe for a while, then it will re-emerge with another mask in an alternate universe. One of the latter's forms, Clockwork Phantom, is an elaborate version of the Tik-Tok Man in the mythos, being a mechanic abomination that assimilated whole universes into itself.
    • Then there's the War God Demonbane, the hidden, second form of the titular mecha. Its sheer size destroys the universe it appears in, and collides with the multiverse. It can also manipulate and weaponize universes. However, that is nothing compared to Elder God Demonbane, the third and final form, who can create infinite amount of the aforementioned universe-destroying, multiverse-colliding abominations.
  • Would you believe that Hatoful Boyfriend has one? The sequel, Holiday Star, has The King, once an unstable and betrayed button quail named Nanaki Kazuaki, now a monstrous Hive Mind that sprouts multicolored extra heads when angry, kidnaps our heroine and her birdy beaus to his Fisher Kingdom, and tries to absorb any souls he encounters, living or dead, out of desire for friendship without betrayal.
  • Nasuverse
  • Though we never see the entire true form, Saya from Saya no Uta is implied to be a Starfish Alien/Tentacle Monster-type alien. She also turns Yoh into one of these as her pet.
  • Not only is Shikkoku No Sharnoth full of these in the form of the <<Metacreatures>>, but M, the protagonist's cryptic guide, benefactor, and possible love interest, is later revealed to be Nyarlathotep.
  • The uncle from The Uncle Who Works For Nintendo, who is implied to be some kind of all-powerful digital being.
  • In We Know the Devil, Venus, Neptune, and Jupiter when the devil takes them. They become monstrosities with symbolism based off their anxieties.
  • In ClockUp's Maggot Baits, we have the titular Demonic Maggots:
    Monstrous lumps of meat that infest the city. Maggots featuring human limbs, eyes, and mouths, theirs is an unsettling, viscerally repulsive appearance.
    Gifted with strong regenerative abilities against physical damage, they secrete a bodily fluid with entrancing aphrodisiac properties.
    They induce a powerful instinctive feeling of dread in Witches, though the reason is unknown.
    They hunt human women and Witches for reproductive and predatory purposes.

    Web Animation 

Alternative Title(s): Cosmic Horror, Great Old One, Old One, Eldritch Horror