An enemy in a video game, or tabletop game, which finds equipment or items that the player character has to be its favorite food. If it gets its mouth (or other form of digestive organ) around you, you might suffer damage but a weapon/item/tool/piece of armor that you have is the real meal.
Or they might even find items laying on the ground. As long as you are going to need it, they are going to try to eat it.
Now even though the item eaten can vary, it's almost never something that would make the game Unwinnable
, or even have the item be Lost Forever
, just something that makes you really hate this enemy
Sometimes you have the chance to get the item back, often by killing this enemy quickly. Other times it's just lost and you have to get another copy of the item.
A Sister Trope
to Bandit Mook
Compare Video Game Stealing
, Ninja Looting
, No Item Use for You
Contrast Feed It a Bomb
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- There is a creature that counts as a curse rather than as a monster. It keeps eating your equipment until it randomly eats itself.
- An item in Munchkin Cthulhu is a set of Bagpipes. Rather than try to eat it, there's a chance the monsters will attempt to mate with it. And yes, if they do, you lose the item.
- Magic the Gathering has a few creatures that can do this including Acid Web Spider which destroys an equipment card when it comes into play and Manic Vandal which can destroy any artifact, equipment included.
- On the world of Titan from the Fighting Fantasy gamebooks, you have the Iron Eater, a Blob Monster that lurks on ceilings to fall on unwary adventurers if it smells metal. It's inoffensive to living flesh, but will devour steel armors, helmets or weapons with glee.
- In Dungeons & Dragons, there are several types of monsters that love eating your equipment.
- Rust monsters are universally loathed by warrior types for their penchant for instantly destroying and eating anything metal that they strike or are struck by, such as prized magical swords and armor. Some crafty players have tried cutting off a rust monster's antennae so they could inflict this trope upon their foes.
- Oozes are notorious for eating away anything they touch that isn't immune to acid.
- Xorn and Xara are monsters that respectively eat iron and enchanted metal, and are prone to demanding adventurers supply them with metal (i.e. their weapons and armor) or face a fight - and then they can try to eat the weapons and armor in the middle of the battle.
- The floating skull in the bridge in The Goonies II, which eat your boomerang.
- Like-Likes in The Legend of Zelda games. They started off eating your shield (and in the first game, only your upgraded Magical Shield), but in later games they can eat other equipment or even rupees. Depending on the game you can save your equipment if you kill/escape them quickly enough.
- There's also the Pikit, which only appears in A Link to the Past. It is a hopping, plantlike creature that can snatch items from Link, not just the shield but fortunately it never eats anything that can't be replaced. You can get back the most recently stolen item by killing it.
- Tingle gives the American audience even more reason to hate him by becoming this in Four Swords Adventures. If you leave force gems (what you need to beat the game) on the ground for too long, he'll show up and try to steal them.
- Sukaritt from Megaman Legends 2 would follow you around but not actually do anything to you. Once you blow up another Reaverbot, though, the bugger goes and tries to steal the refractor shards before you can.
- The Devourer in Alternate Reality. Even has an in-game song about it. This creature appeared when you had too many inventory items and ate them.
- NetHack has acidic monsters whose slime/blood erodes your weapons, rust monsters and rust traps to rust iron, gelatinous cubes that eat organic materials and disenchanters who eat your items' magic. Some can be negated by enchanting your gear to make it rust/fire/rot-proof, but disenchanters are Goddamn Bats for a reason.
- Dungeon Crawl has jellies that eat items left on the dungeon floor or even doors. Feeding items to jellies is even necessary if you want to gain favor with Jiyva, the god of slime.
- Ragnarok Online has the various species of Poring, that by and large like to munch on whatever items are on the floor. It's possible to kill them to retrieve whatever you lost, but if you somehow manage to drop something valuable, have that thing eaten, and are then killed by a high-tier Poring, those items are up for grabs to whomever takes the offending jelly-bulb down.
- There are numerous other monsters like the aptly named Thief Bugs who are fond of doing this, and they have the nerve to drastically increase their already high movement speed when they notice something on the ground. This wouldn't be much of an issue if not for the fact that after a monster picks up a certain amount of items, any further items it "collects" are simply destroyed instead. It just so happens that one of the most valuable items in the game is dropped by a boss found in an area positively swarming with aforementioned monsters...
- Gears of War 3: Feral Tickers.
- Sonic Shuffle features "precioustones", gems you could use for an assortment of effects. One of the precioustones you can pick up isn't a gem at all, but a fairy called "carbuncle" that ate precioustones; once it runs out of gems, it will eat itself.
- In Super Smash Bros. Brawl, Munchlax eats items on the ground.
- Final Fantasy Tactics Advance features Bladebiters, who will eat your weapons if given the opportunity. Also, the Sniper class has several skills that can destroy pieces of armor.Luckily they're not that accurate, but you really don't want to take the chance of your Infinity Plus One equipment vanishing completely. Forutnately nearly ever race has access to the Maintenace support ability, which will No Sell equipment destruction.
- Dark Souls has acid. The Gaping Dragon boss and the pyromancy Acid Surge reduce the condition of your gear dramatically, hope you weren't using unrepairable crystal weapons.
- Kid Icarus
- The game features the greedy Pluton, which will swipe your arrows of strength if they touch you.
- The Pluton returns in Kid Icarus: Uprising, where it'll steal weapons and powers you've collected in the level. Thankfully, now you can kill them to claim your items back, but beware — if you don't do it quickly, they will disappear with your re-appropriated loot.
- Eye of the Beholder, being based on AD&D, has one type of such monsters in each game:
- The rust monsters in EotB1 will eat any metal item.
- The gelatinous cubes in EotB2 can also destroy items on a hit.
- The black puddings in EotB3 will eat your weapons if you attack them in melee.
- The Jestabocky dream eaters in Kingdom Hearts 3D will steal any pick-ups that are on the ground if left unattended, whether they be HP balls, munny, or items. You can't get them back by defeating them, either. On the plus side, if you have them as allies, they'll gather the items for you.
- The objective in Defense Grid: The Awakening is to prevent the aliens from stealing your power cores. If any leave the map, which occurs most easily with flying enemies, they are Lost Forever for that level.
- Iron Grazers in Lands of Lore: The Throne of Chaos can dissolve your armor if you don't kill them quickly enough. There are a few other enemies in the game that do the same thing, but the Iron Grazers are the only ones you get warned about.
- In Pokémon Mystery Dungeon: Gates to Infinity, if an enemy Pokemon successfully damages you with Bug Bite or Pluck, they'll use a random edible item in your inventory, which can be extremely detrimental if they happen target your Reviver Seeds. Not surprisingly, the toughest dungeons tend to have stretches that are swarming with Pokemon that know those moves for the sake of exhausting your supplies.
- Gradius has enemies that grab your options and run off with them.
- Riviera: The Promised Land has the Slime category of enemies. Most of their attacks will drain a point of durability from everything you bring into the battle. Frustratingly, this still applies in practice battles.
- Dokapon Kingdom has the Big Black Bug which can be forced onto you. As long as you have it, it randomly eats an item in your inventory. Y Ou can either wait for it to eventually disappear, eat the last item from your pack, or defeat another player and force them to pick it up.