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What's kraken?

"On a scale of one to ten, there is no number large enough."
Flavor Text for Cawh (pictured), Magi-Nation
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These are the big ones. These are the sea monsters whose size not only matches ships but dwarfs them. When these are introduced, all you'll see is an overhead shot of a small boat on top of a much larger shadow in the water — and "small boat" ranges from fishing ship to aircraft carrier. These beasts aren't just big, they're leviathan.

They'll live in the deepest depths and their appearances are saved for the end of days when the world is to be shattered by their movements. If they're not Eldritch Abominations, they're the next best thing. There will be little shyness about their inspirations, they'll be unabashedly named after the Scandinavian legend of Kraken or the biblical Leviathan. The Kraken tends to take the form of a tentacle-laced Giant Squid or octopus, while the Leviathan is more variable, ranging from a colossal whale to a massive sea serpent. However, since Our Monsters Are Different, the title of kraken or leviathan may be given to all kinds of terrors of the deep. Lobsters occur with surprising regularity, for some reason.

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The Leviathan in the Bible is often taken to be a view of a whale and is sometimes translated directly as whale. (Notably, the "big fish" that swallowed Jonah was often interpreted as a whale or leviathan but nowadays people are having a lot of fun with it as a Megalodon.) Indeed, the modern Hebrew word for whale is לויתן, or leviathan. Strangely, the actual biblical description of a leviathan suggests that it has legs and is able to move on land, and seems to refer to armour plates or scales (in fact, if one ignores the Word of Dante and the fire-breathing, it sounds quite like a very large crocodile). In modern fiction, leviathans are typically interpreted as outsized sea dragons, Sea Serpents, giant fish or Monster Whales.

Kraken, on the other hand, are Tentacled Terrors believed to be inspired by giant squidnote , and when most people think of a kraken, they tend to imagine a a squid-like creature that is simply many times bigger than a real one. However, since actual Nautical Folklore says that the Kraken could be mistaken for an entire chain of islands, one can reasonably infer that it was imagined to be much bigger than most film depictions.

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Interestingly, a common theme in sea monster stories is of two contrasting sea beasts that are each other's mortal enemy, and sperm whales, the largest predatory whale and deepest diver, are believed to hunt giant squid.

In video games, Kraken often have Cognizant Limbs, with their tentacles being considered separate from the body as enemies. They usually reside in the Eldritch Ocean Abyss.

If you were looking for the book by China Miéville, see Kraken.


Examples:

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    Anime & Manga 
  • Berserk has the Sea God, a massive, island-sized abomination that seems to be amalgamation of numerous sea creatures, including mollusks, slugs, sea cucumbers, and whatever humans it was able to assimilate.
  • In Delicious in Dungeon, Team Touden encounter a kraken in the underground lake. After killing it, they cook up some grilled squid.
  • In Digimon Fusion, Taiki unleashes Leviamon upon a Bagura Digimon.
  • Doraemon: Nobita's Great Adventure in the South Seas have Doraemon and friends battling hostile sea monsters, the most powerful of the lot being the Leviathan. Turns out those monsters are created by an Evilutionary Biologist from the future who escaped to the Age of Piracy to evade the authorities, resuming his experiments to sell them off in the black market.
  • I've Been Killing Slimes for 300 Years and Maxed Out My Level: Leviathans are actually demonic Giant Flyers who look like winged baleen whales and are large enough to build palatial structures on their backs. They're also benign and intelligent and can Humanshift. Beelzebub explains that they like to swim in the ocean to relax, causing the confusion.
  • Tohru from Miss Kobayashi's Dragon Maid is apparently on bad terms with Leviathan, mentioning he once tried to kill her.
  • In One Piece, the Straw Hat Crew discovers a gigantic kraken that feeds on ships that pass. Luffy, of course, has intentions of making it the Team Pet. And succeeds.
  • Saint Seiya: Hyoga was told the legend of the Kraken by his fellow disciple Isaac, who admired the creature as he believed the rumors that it only attacked ships with wicked people, like pirates and other criminals. However, this particular Kraken has no Combat Tentacles and looks like a giant Manta Ray fish, and it's implied that the creature itself saved him from drowning in the Arctic sea after he rescued Hyoga.
  • In Yu-Gi-Oh!, the mythological Leviathan of Atlantis seems to be a cross between a dragon and a sea serpent. Mako Tsunami also has several monsters like these in his deck.

    Arts 
  • The Carta Marina depicts numerous "pristers", which are whales "as big as mountains" and which can capsize a large ship just by surfacing from the water.

    Card Games 
  • Drunk Quest has and ocean based expansion pack called the 90 Proof Seas. The toughest monster is, naturally, a Kraken.
  • Duel Masters features the Leviathans as one of their Water Civilization races.
  • Magic: The Gathering: Many Blue creatures, which includes Leviathans, Krakens, and other deep sea monsters. In the backstory, a demonic leviathan fought Nicol Bolas in what would be the very first Planeswalker duel. Millenia later, Nicol Bolas still savors that victory and visits the site of the battle on occasion to bask in the memories.
    • Generally speaking, Leviathans are massive whale- and serpent-like creatures, and not always limited to the water — nearly a third of printed leviathan creatures are airborne. Krakens, by contrast, are much more varied in appearance, generally being based on cephalopods but often blending in crustacean and vertebrate limbs and body plans. Krakens, in keeping with Blue's focus on intelligence, knowledge and the mind, are sometimes portrayed as a lot more intellectual than they usually are in fiction. Zendikar's krakens are reclusive, contemplative beings dedicated to plumbing the many secrets of their world's oceans, while Tolarian Kraken's flavor text notes that it's contemplative, resourceful, and original, and would make a perfect student if it weren't, you know, a giant destructive sea monster.
    • Kiora is probably the most pro-kraken/leviathan planeswalker currently active. She's looking for sea monsters powerful enough to throw down with the Eldrazi, and given that her ultimate produces kraken tokens large enough to throw down with a Hand of Emrakul and win, it's probably only a matter of time.
    • Outside of the actual Kraken and Leviathan creature types, there are creatures like absolutely gigantic whales and the legendary octopus Lorthos, the Tidemaker, a monster from Zendikar and incidentally the beast summoned by Kiora to take down the Eldrazi titans. It didn't work. The titan Kozilek tore it half when they fought. Also, while most serpent creatures (mixes in various amounts of snakes and long-bodied fish) are fairly sedate in size, some are easily as big as true krakens and leviathans.
  • Magi-Nation: Cawh, a creature from the ocean realm of Orothe, is a crustacean so big that a Giant Parathin, a type of sea turtle large enough to carry a city on its back, would fit comfortably within its mouth.

    Comic Books 
  • In Cilia, the cilophytes either are krakens or they have a symbiotic relation with krakens. Whatever the case, revenge for Cilia's murder consisted of at least one kraken tearing down the fishermen's ship.
  • As you might expect, both the Sub-Mariner and Aquaman have tangled with these types of creatures. For obvious reasons, they stand a much better chance than do the land-dwelling, air-breathing humans.

    Fan Works 
  • Abraxas (Hrodvitnon): In addition to the whale-like, crocodilian Godzilla and the part-cephalopod, part-crustacean Scylla featuring in this story, there are a couple undersea Kaiju battles against a giant Dracolich.
  • Avengers of the Multi-verse: Episode 8, "Dawn of the Dragons", has the threat of the Dark Dragon unleashing the Leviathan, which was created by and then destroyed the Kim Possible/American Dragon world's version of Atlantis before being sealed away. Once freed, it's revealed to be a massive serpent.
  • The Bridge has the Leviathan as the God of Destruction, appearing to strike down Godzilla-Earth after it slays the four heroic incarnations of Godzilla. Whether it is some spiritual entity whom incarnates itself through the slain heroes or a dark god form of Godzilla Junior is left unclear. Resembling a monstrous version of Super Godzilla, its power is off the charts even compared to high end Kaiju.
  • In The Cadanceverse, the ponies searching for the Elements must deal with one of these as they journey through the Everfree.
  • The Elements of Friendship: A Kraken is stated to have once threatened Aquastria before being driven off.
  • In Leviathan (My Hero Academia), Izuku Midoriya's quirk is the ability to transform into the terrifying title creature should he ever lose control of his emotions.
  • In The Lunar Guardsman, this is two out of the four Leviathans. One of them is an underwater creature that creates a whirlpool to feed, much like Charybdis, and the other one is described as akin to a kraken, though according to Luna they only saw one tentacle before it smacked them away.
  • One World: A Kraken attack is blamed for the disappearance and death of Bernard Gibbon and his squib partner. In reality, they are killed in a firefight with MI-5 Agent Kim Hunter.
  • The Palaververse: Theia's oceans are home to numerous colossal sea monsters, including actual krakens, larger and sedentary relatives of the same living in the deepest abysses, and island-sized avancs. Parlous features Cirein-cròin, a sea-monster vast enough to be capable of reaching as high as the clouds when rearing out of the sea. Luna notes that his fangs alone are the size of redwood trees.
  • Romance and the Fate of Equestria: Evade identifies himself as a leviathan, though Soledad insists on calling him a Sharktopus. Either way, he’s the last one left.
  • Sword And Claw has a kraken for the villain of its underwater arc. This particular kraken is intelligent and is able to organise an army of sea monsters to attack humans.
  • Various Vytal Ventures features a Kraken in its opening chapter, which takes place at the beach. In the story it's presented as an aquatic Grimm, no more dangerous than a Nevermore or a Deathstalker.

    Films — Animation 
  • According to Atlantis: The Lost Empire, the Biblical Leviathan is actually a giant mechanical lobster that guards the entrance to Atlantis and looks nothing like the Biblical Leviathan. The Kraken was actually featured in the first act of the film's sequel.
  • The host and resident Lounge Lizard of Atlantis in Hotel Transylvania 3: Summer Vacation is a friendly Krakken, whose job is to welcome guests and provide musical entertainment.
  • Ursula's One-Winged Angel form in The Little Mermaid (1989).
  • Sinbad: Legend of the Seven Seas features a leviathan which the crew mistake for an island, complete with vegetation. It isn't actually aggressive, and is actually quite useful, as they can use it to tow the ship where they need to go. This leviathan gets points for being one of the comparatively few depictions that actually is big enough to be reasonably mistaken for an island.

    Films — Live-Action 
  • Aquaman (2018): Before engaging in combat with his half-brother Arthur, King Orm tells him the legend of the Karathen, a gigantic sea-monster from the ancient days said to have been feared by Atlan, Atlantis' first king. Later on, we get to meet the Karathen in person, and it is every bit as formidable as Orm made it sound. In terms of appearance, it has a crustacean body with jointed legs and pincers, massive squid tentacles that can whip out and cut through entire Atlantean warships, and a head like that of a prehistoric fish/reptile. Her name's even a portmanteau of the words "Kraken" and "Leviathan". Additionally, we learn that the Karathen's female, and far from fearing her, King Atlan befriended her because he could communicate with her, and when Arthur reveals he can do it too, she lets him collect Atlan's armour and trident and carries him into battle against Orm's Atlantean legions.
  • Big Octopus is a 2021 Chinese B-movie about... well, a big octopus. Kaiju-sized, to be precise, and it predictably goes on a rampage. Although it turns out the monster is a case of Monster Is a Mommy, seeking her lost child.
  • Most people know of the Kraken thanks to Clash of the Titans. Never mind what a Scandinavian creature was doing in Ancient Greece. Not to mention that it is... you know... nothing resembling a squid that pretends to be an island. According to the director's commentary, they didn't even know about the Kraken's mythological origins and attributed its creation to the poem by Tennyson that most people these days have never heard of. In Ray Harryhausen's book, The Art of Ray Harryhausen, he claims that the writer, at least, did know enough about the Kraken to know that it wasn't from Greek mythology, but put it in anyway because the name sounded so cool. The thing from Clash was supposed to be Cetus/Ketos, the sea monster that Princess Andromeda was supposed to be sacrificed to, but they changed its name for no clear reason.
  • Word of God states that the creature from Cloverfield is a sea monster and not an alien like some believe (the 'falling object' was a satellite that awoke the creature, not the creature itself). Though said creator seems to have taken on the anger of the co-Gods by saying as such, since the others went with the alien explanation, or at the very least wanted viewers to make up their own truths.
  • Deep Rising has a gigantic, killer mollusc attacking a cruise ship.
  • In the script for the first attempt at an American Godzilla, the parallels between Godzilla and the biblical description of the Leviathan are lampshaded heavily.
    • In Godzilla (2014) both the film and viral marketing depicting Godzilla as he was seen by various ancient cultures, as well as his general appearance, status as an untamable force of nature, and ties to the ocean to the point his arrival causes a tsunami all heavily imply he either is Leviathan or that he inspired the story.
  • While called "kaiju" (the term for Godzilla and other strange, gigantic monsters in Japanese film), most of the monsters in Pacific Rim are closer to this tropic thematically, often modeled on aquatic animals. The biggest and scariest, for instance, has tentacles and the head of a hammerhead shark.
  • The Kraken from the Pirates of the Caribbean series gets bonus obfuscation points for being called "Davy Jones' Leviathan" once. Maybe they just meant leviathan as in "really big thing". The Pirates visual dictionary actually contains a picture of the entire Kraken rather than just its tentacles, and it seems to combine both monsters. Imagine either a whale with tentacles where its head should be, or a squid with a head long enough to act as a tail. Sort of like an inverted Sharktopus.
  • Star Wars:
    • In The Phantom Menace, the Naboo ocean seems to be filled with monsters each getting bigger and bigger as you go deeper and considering the fact that the planet is meant to be hollow and full of ocean that gets you some pretty big fish. The biggest — the Sando Aqua Monsters — are in a class of their own: their official description puts them at between 160 and 200 meters long, meaning their maximum size is over six times a blue whale's thirty meters. Also the oceans of Kamino. Ah hell, any planet with an ocean in the Galaxy Far Far Away is bound to have sea monsters in it.
    • Solo features a monster known (in the supplementary materials) as a Summa-Verminoth, a gargantuan tentacled monstrosity with dozens of eyes that attacks the Millenium Falcon during its historic Kessel Run. Several kilometers long, this abomination is easily one of the biggest creatures in the franchise to date and it's clear that "space Kraken" was likely the main idea behind it.

    Literature 
  • The Terrible Dogfish from The Adventures of Pinocchio, which was turned into a Monster Whale by Disney's Pinocchio (and thus, the 'big fish' from The Bible's Book of Jonah that inspired it).
  • J. R. R. Tolkien's "Fastitocalon" in The Adventures of Tom Bombadil.
  • The sixth Artemis Fowl book features a kraken. It's actually a peaceful giant mollusk that lives off of microorganisms and krill filtered out of seawater (just like a blue whale in fact). You still don't want to be on top of it when it sheds its skin, though...
  • Kraken are part of the novel The Blue World and short story "The Gift of Gab" by Jack Vance. In the latter, they are mostly man-sized squid called "dekapods", but there is something larger that is only glimpsed as a prehensile tentacle.
  • Book of Imaginary Beings: The Kraken is a mile and half wide, and often mistaken for an island.
  • Book of the New Sun has the kraken-like Erebus and Abaia. Millions of years in our future, two heavily tentacled alien Eldritch Abominations that are the size of mountain ranges, will live in our oceans and breed out a race of giant undine daughter/wives while plotting the subjugation of humanity.
    • Erebus and Abaia are unseen aquatic antagonists who are said to be the size of mountains. Mankind's continued existence is apparently due to them counting only enslavement, rather than destruction, as a victory.
    • Further, Severian reads a Future Imperfect story in which the legend of the Minotaur is conflated with USS Monitor, the ironclad battleship supposedly being the armored head and shoulders of an aquatic monster.
  • A Chorus of Dragons: Krakens — properly known as the Daughters of Laaka, the sea goddess — are immense, tentacled sea monsters capable of preying on ships and whales with ease. They are said to have been artificial creations of the God-Kings who have since thrived in the ocean depths thanks to their remote habitats, immortality and resistance to magic. In truth, they are natural beings, and in fact long predate humanity.
  • Codex Alera has its own leviathans, something like enormous turtles with no shells. Word of God is they're descended from plesiosaurs, and the smallest ones are 12 meters (40 feet) long. The larger ones... well, they're probably the single greatest threat to oceangoing ships. Alerans have to use watercrafting to get around them, and the Canim maintain elaborate maps of their territories to avoid making them angry by sailing in too close.
  • Cthulhu Mythos:
    • The mollusc-like, world-ending Cthulhu may count, as it is imprisoned in the ocean on Earth, but originally came from space...
    • Father Dagon and Mother Hydra (the titanic leaders of the Deep Ones, at least from the expanded mythos) also count. Plenty of the other lesser-known Great Old Ones may count as well.
  • Destroyermen has World War II warships fall into an Alternate Universe where the Cretaceous extinction event didn't happen. Among the sea creatures in this world is the "mountain fish" (apparently actually a whale), so big it can wreck a steamship — by biting it. At one point, it's stated that the locals' massive city-ships known as "Homes" are almost as big as mountain fish — and a Home is the size of an Essex-class aircraft carrier. For bonus points, the sailors of the Empire of New Britain actually call the beast the Leviathan, likely referring to the Biblical one.
  • Discworld: Krakens are mentioned as living in the Disc's oceans in some early books, although they're never seen, are mentions of the Midgard Serpent from Norse Mythology circling other flat worlds in The Colour of Magic and Equal Rites.
  • Dracopedia: Both are present in Dracopedia: The Bestiary.
    • The Kraken, also known as the titanic squid, is a fearsome 200 feet-long predator capable of feeding on whales and sea orcs and infamous for taking down ships. Its body is covered in crab-like armor to protect it from sperm whales during its juvenile stages. However, the development of mechanized ships and industrialized whaling in the 19th century led to its extinction as humans deprived the Kraken of its main food and were no longer threatened by the possibility of being pulled into the ocean.
    • The Leviathan is depicted as a colossal mosasaur-like animal so vast that whole ecosystems of kelp-like material grow on its back and pods of whales accompany it in the same way remoras accompany sharks. As it rarely ever comes to the surface, very little is known about it, and it is speculated to be either a relative of plesiosaurs or extinct whales like Basilosaurus.
  • Dragon Series: Shimmer, the dragon protagonist, gets into a fight with a raiding party of krakens.
  • The Ellimist Chronicles: Father is a sponge-like creature big enough to cover an entire planet.
  • Good Omens: The Kraken makes an appearance during The End of the World as We Know It. Since this particular apocalypse has all the Biblical imagery being filtered through a boy who has recently overdosed on pro-environmental new-age magazines, its immediate action is to attack a Japanese whaling ship.
    The Kraken stirred. And ten million sushi dinners cried out for vengeance.
  • Harry Potter: The Hogwarts lake has a Giant Squid living within it. Though regarded as the bane of students seeking to drag them to a watery grave, its actions or lack thereof indicate it's actually quite docile.
  • Illuminatus!: The final book of the trilogy, Leviathan, has the main characters coming face-to-um...something with the eponymous sea-monster, a titanic single-celled organism that's survived and grown since the Paleozoic Era.
  • The Immortals: In the first book, during the attack on Pirate's Swoop, Daine tries to convince a pod of whales to attack the Carthaki backed pirate fleet. When they refuse and leave, Daine sends her awareness far out after them, and wakes the Kraken. He's more than happy to destroy any fleet she wants. She knows full well it's a deal with a demon, but she's desperate and agrees to his offer. He's described as an octopus with too many arms that are a mile long each, with a body that's a mile and a half. He's also fast: Daine found him out past the Copper Isles, a four day sail. He made it to Pirate's Swoop in the space of a morning.
  • Keys to the Kingdom: Drowned Wednesday was cursed to turn into a massive, omniphagic whale.
  • In the Scott Westerfeld Leviathan trilogy, the eponymous beast is actually an airship, that looks sort like the biggest whale you'll ever see. In the next book, the Behemoth (who is supposed to be a land creature) actually lives in the sea. Its picture puts it up with Lovecraft's beasties. Also there are the normal British navies' Kraken, which are massive squid/octopus monsters that can pull a weakened ironclad under given time.
  • Steve Alten writes a lot of books with these; his novel Meg was about a Megalodon — an 18 meter (60 feet) long prehistoric shark — that makes it to the surface after surviving down in the Marinara Trench. Hilarity Ensues. It suffered from some sequelitis though. His more recent novel The Loch deals with, of course, the Loch Ness Monster. In a twist however, Nessie isn't a peaceful plesiosaur but a giant eel with a taste for tourists.
  • Invoked with the title character of Moby-Dick. Although Starbuck insists that he's actually just a particularly large and aggressive whale that should probably be left alone, Ahab — and, increasingly, Ishmael — see the whale as some kind of ineffable Eldritch Abomination — the personification of fate itself, God, Satan, or a combination of all three. Also, among the many, many epigraphs of the book, are quotations from the Bible in reference to Leviathan and the thing that swallowed Jonah, because Leviathan, Moby-Dick the whale, and Moby-Dick the book are all utterly impossible to fully comprehend. Ishmael mentions that Moby Dick has sometimes seemingly been sighted in two different places at the same time, which has led some sailors in-universe to conclude that it is actually infinitely large and the finite whale they see is just A Form You Are Comfortable With.
  • Ology Series: Both krakens and leviathans show up in Monsterology; the former are a gigantic squid that prey on whales and sea serpents, while the latter are vaguely crocodilian beasts that live only in the deepest parts of the Atlantic and Pacific Oceans and prey on whales, sea serpents and krakens.
  • Prince Roger: Large aggressive fish make ocean travel a near-impossibility on the planet Marduk.
  • In Pugs of the Frozen North, Shen, Sika, and the pugs are attacked by one that's seemingly frozen beneath the ice. Thankfully, the pug attack it and manage to drive it back.
  • On Safehold Krakens are megalodon-sized beasts that look like sharks with tentacles along the body (they can be extended forward to catch prey); one character from Earth describes them as "creature that looked as if fish performed an unspeakable act on octopus". There are also sea dragons, beasts the size of blue whales (they have the same position in Safehold's ecosystem as blue whales on Earth), and doomwhales that sink ships by swimming too close and feed on sea dragons. They don't eat humans, though... mainly because humans are too small for them to notice.
  • The Scar: The avanc, a vaguely described creature from an extradimensional sea large and powerful enough to pull a waterborne city.
  • In Sennar's Mission a gargantuan sea monster similar to a kraken is met on the way to the Submerged World. Its hunting method consist in wait for ships and then make them slither on his body to the gaping mouth in the middle, using tentacles if necessary. However, the beast is never named.
  • The Shadowhunter Chronicles: Leviathan is one of the nine Princes of Hell, and is said to be the only one who is not a Fallen Angel. While he has a human form, he is usually seen as a huge tentacled monster. In the second installment of The Last Hours, it is revealed that Belial sought Leviathan's help in his plans to claim worlds, and preventing Leviathan from breaking free in the human world is a major plot point.
  • In A Song of Ice and Fire, krakens and leviathans exist in the setting, although none have physically appeared yet. They live off the coast of Essos, albeit in different directions; the krakens live in the Summer Sea, south of Essos, while the leviathans live in the Shivering Sea, north of Essos. Both are also said to exist in the Sunset Sea, west of Westeros. House Greyjoy use a kraken as their house symbol, so "krakens" are sometimes used metonymically to refer to them. Ironborn legends tell of sea dragons (which, contrary to those two, are probably mythical) which fed on both krakens and leviathans.
  • One of Larry Niven's Svetz the time traveler stories is Leviathan!, in which he is sent back in time to catch a whale, but the first "whale" he latches onto with his tractor beam is just too big to bring back — as it's the Biblical Leviathan, not a whale at all.
  • In The Voyage of the Dawn Treader, the eponymous ship is attacked by a large sea serpent, which almost manages to crush it in its coils.
  • The War Against the Chtorr: The Enterprise fish, part of the ecological Alien Invasion. These massive fish roam the oceans eating everything natural or man-made to fuel their constant hunger and enormous growth. Immune to Bullets thanks to their massive layers of blubber, the only way to destroy them is with a low-yield atomic torpedo. A short story about the Enterprise Fish reveals that their huge size is explained by them being a colony of creatures. When they get too large, the host "fish" dies and breaks apart into smaller creatures.
  • Which Witch?, one witch chooses to summon the kraken as her task in the evilness competition that is to determine who gets to marry the dark wizard Arriman. It works, sort of. Turns out the mommy was killed by a ship, and the little one, that's only as big as a handbag needs a babysitter. In Island of the Aunts, the big one makes an appearance, but there's a little one, too. The little one likes cookies and is quite adorable.
  • The Wishsong of Shannara: A truly massive Kraken is summoned by the villains to help destroy a Dwarven Fortress Dam to accelerate the spreading of the evil taint.

    Live-Action TV 
  • Beast Legends did an episode featuring a digitally animated kraken incorporating the nastiest features of the Giant Octopus, Giant Squid and Colossal Squid, scaled up to 200ft long from the tip of its head to outstretch tentacles, which take up half the body length them selves.
  • Farscape: As Space Is an Ocean, Moya's species of giant living ships called "Leviathans" count as examples of this trope. The budongs that are encountered twice in the series (one dead, and the other alive) fit this trope much more literally, being sea monsters in space. They usually eat rocks and ice, but they're also notorious for eating ships like candy; fortunately, finding a live one is pretty rare.
  • Supernatural: The Leviathans are not giant sea creatures, but rather are perfectly capable of living on land and while they are seldom seen in their true form, there's no sign that this true form is any bigger than the human disguises they use. But there are good mythological reasons for calling them by the name "Leviathan": Their backstory is related to biblical mythology; they are Eldritch Abominations that are all about having a predatory appetite; and when their true form is shown, the view isn't very clear, but it definitely has More Teeth than the Osmond Family.
  • Good Eats: Giant squid-monsters appear several times. One attacks a boat that Alton (and a marine biologist who is studying squid) are on.
  • Jurassic Fight Club: One episode features a battle between a Megalodon shark and its more recently-discovered contemporary, the "biting sperm whale".
  • Monster Warriors: In "The Beast From Beneath the Sea", Von Steinhauer use the Monster Maker to recreate the Kraken from one his old movies and sends it to attack Capital City via its harbour.
  • Odd Squad: In "Good Egg Bad Egg", when attempting to find out what kind of egg Ocean has, he narrows down the list of eggs in the Creature Room database to two. Ocean states that the creature inside the egg could be a Wiggleworp or a kraken. Olympia, suggesting that they can prepare once they know what they're dealing with, asks what a kraken is, leading Ocean to wince as he looks up the creature in the database. What follows is a myriad of terrified screams that are elicited from Olympia, Otis, and even Oprah as they look at a picture of a kraken that is offscreen.
  • Despite the kraken usually appearing as enormous in fiction, in Once Upon a Time it is closer in size to an actual giant squid (which also appears as a separate species), which probably grow larger than currently known anyway.

    Music 
  • Alestorm, a Scottish Pirate Metal band, has a song called (and glorifying) "The Leviathan" on their album Black Sails At Midnight.
    • From the same band, "Death Throes of the Terrorsquid" is the sequel to "Leviathan", about the crew seeking vengeance for their defeat at the hands of the beast, and not only taking it on, but sending it straight to hell. The beast is referred to as 300 nautical miles long.
  • "Belly of the Whale" by Burning Sensations. The video shows the band and others partying in a set that's loosely modeled on a giant whale's mouth, complete with a water-slide entrance.
  • Steampunk band The Cog is Dead has a song titled To the Depths Below on their album, Steam-Powered Stories. It describes a large, mechanical beast referred to as a leviathan.
  • Canadian folk punk band The Dreadnoughts have a song with the somewhat ponderous title of "Mary, The One Eyed Prostitute Who Fought The Colossal Squid On The High Seas And Saved Us From Certain Death, God Rest Her One-Eyed Soul". The squid itself is described along these lines, and referred to as "the kraken" in the chorus.
  • Technical Death Metal band Fleshgod Apocalypse makes an interesting take in their EP Mafia. They play a cover of a song by At the Gates, "Blinded By Fear", which is about an unnamed terror that "unleaashes purgatory and burns the face of the earth"; however, in the cover, after the song is over a sound of waves and ocean is heard, implying the terror is a sea creature. The fact that the cover for the EP features a huge octopus-like creature rising from the sea helps.
  • Mastodon's second album, Leviathan, particularly the song "Megalodon".
  • Metallica's "The Thing That Should Not Be" is about a massive Eldritch Abomination living below the sea.
    • The Lovecraft misquote in the lyrics("not dead which eternal lie / stranger eons death may die") makes it pretty clear this is in fact Cthulhu.
  • Nautilus Pompilius: The lyrical hero of the song "Sea Serpent" thinks he'll become a giant serpent after his death.
  • Revocation has "Leviathan Awaits"; here, the eponymous creature seems to be a borderline Eldritch Abomination with thousands of eyes, enormous barbed tentacles, and a gigantic, fanged maw. It also devours the research sub that decided to go poking around its domain with insulting ease.
  • Pirate folk band Vroudenspil have a song called Leviathan on their album "Fauler Zauber".

    Myths & Religion 
  • The "Leviathan" is described in the Book of Job (Ch. 41, all of it) in the Old Testament of The Bible, and referenced elsewhere. Unlike most sea creatures, the Leviathan has an affinity for fire or something reasonably similar. Job 41:8 ("Lay thine hand upon him, remember the battle, do no more.") seems to either indicate a reasonably high encounter survival rate, considering that this creature is essentially a seagoing dragon, or a very low one ("do no more" as in dead). The usual naturalistic interpretation is a Nile crocodile, which fits everything but the fire breathing. References to Leviathan elsewhere in the Bible give a completely different description; a monstrous serpent with multiple heads.
    • Leviathan represents the sin of Envy. "Envy lurks in the hearts of men, as Leviathan lurks beneath calm waters."
    • In some writings, it is said that there were originally two Leviathans, a male and a female, but when their mating threatened to fill the world with monsters God destroyed the female.
    • Job also makes reference to something called a Behemoth, which has similarly entered the lexicon as a catch-all term for "crazy-great-big-thing". It's thought to be some type of large pachyderm, or a Cape buffalo, or perhaps even some dinosaur bones that the Israelites found.
    • Also, the great fish that ate Jonah. In the Midrash there's a legend or myth that states that the giant fish which swallowed Jonah narrowly avoids being eaten by Leviathan.
    • It should be noted that the Leviathan story may have been lifted from the Ugaritic myth of the sea monster Lôtān, one of the servants of the sea god Yammu, who is defeated by Hadad in the Baal Cycle. It’s theorized that ancient Jews adopted the story to make their beliefs more palatable to outsiders and to propagandize the supremacy of their god.
  • In Egyptian Mythology, Apep was a colossal serpent that stalked the ancient Egyptian underworld, hoping to devour the sun god. According to The Other Wiki one of his nicknames was "World Encircler", making him similar to Jormungandr of Norse Mythology.
  • Greek Mythology has several large marine creatures. They were typically sent by the sea-nymphs and sea deities to ravage land-dwelling kings or queens who offended them, and the royals tried to appease the monsters by sacrificing their beautiful daughters, which the heroes then had to rescue. One particularly worthy of mention being Cetus, the monster who was slain by Perseus. It is very obvious that Cetus was what the Kraken was meant to be in Clash of the Titans.
    • There's also Scylla and Charybdis from The Odyssey. Scylla was a six headed, snake necked creature that sat atop a cliff and snatched sailors from passing ships. The reason they didn't just sail around was because of the creature opposite the cliff, her cousin/aunt, Charbydis. Charybdis was a giant mouth under water. Every time she opened her mouth, a whirlpool formed to suck everything down. The original rock and hard place, or alternatively, "devil and the deep blue sea."
    • Another example was the sea serpent Heracles fought when he promised to rescue King Laomedon's daughter Hesione in exchange for a pair of magic horses. Heracles eventually killed the monster by letting it swallow him and then cutting his way out from the inside with his sword, but Laomedon tried to cheat him by refusing to give him Hesione and the promised treasure. Pissing off the Hot-Blooded Heracles was never a bright idea, and in this case Heracles exacted his vengeance by invading and looting Troy, killing the king and all his sons, save the youngest, Priam.
    • Another example would be the unspecified sea monster sent by Poseidon to help the Greeks in the Trojan War; too bad for Odysseus he forgot to give Poseidon props for that when it was over.
    • The best example to be found in this mythology would probably be the sea-monster gods Phorcys and Keto, children of Gaea and Pontus, the Ocean. The spawn of Phorcys and Keto included Echidna, the alleged "Mother of Monsters", the Gorgons, Scylla, the Graea, the sea nymphs, and everything else scary about the sea that wasn't one of Poseidon's offspring.
  • Jormungandr the World Serpent of Norse Mythology is also under the sea, long enough to wrap around the world, some legends say twice.
  • Norwegian and Icelandic sailor's lore of the 13th century knows of a sea-monster called Hafgufa ("sea-steam"), a gigantic creature of unclear shape living in the Greenland Sea. Hafgufa is the biggest creature in the sea, rises and sinks at fixed intervals, and while it stays at the surface, it looks like an island or a rock. This profile suggests Hafgufa is the same creature afterwards better known the Kraken.
    • According to the Norwegian King's Mirror (a "popular science" encyclopedia from c. 1250), Hafgufa is always seen in the same two places, suggesting there are only two of its species and that they are infertile, for otherwise there should be many more of them. Hafgufa feeds by belching, which expels so much food that all nearby fish gather into its mouth, then swallowing all the fish down in one gulp.
    • In the Icelandic Saga of Arrow-Odd, while sailing past Greenland in search for his archenemy Ogmund Tussock, Arrow-Odd spots two rocks raising themselves up out from the sea, which puzzles him. Piloted by Vignir, the ships pass right between the rocks. When they look back later at the day, the rocks have vanished, which baffles Odd even more. Vignir then explains that the rocks were the jaws of Hafgufa, and that they have sailed right through the open maw of the monster. Vignir knew this was not dangerous because Hafgufa had just surfaced and always stays at the surface for at least one tide, even though Ogmund Tussock had summoned the creature by witchcraft to swallow Odd.
  • And then, of course, there's the Kraken, found in medieval Scandinavian, especially Norwegian, Nautical Folklore. It's generally described as a giant cephalopod that literally drags ships under the sea.
  • Cirein-cròin, a creature from Scottish Gaelic folklore, was a sea monster said to reach such massive size that it would take seven whales to fill its belly.
  • In Aztec Mythology, the land for the Fifth World was created from the body of Cipactli, a monstrous caiman-like creature who lived at the bottom of the sea until he was slain by the brothers Quetzalcoatl and Tezcatlipoca.

    Pinball 

    Professional Wrestling 
  • Inter Species Wrestling's website called Lloyd Cthulowitz "The Legal Leviathan from 20,000 Leagues Under."

    Tabletop Games 
  • Based on satellite observation, Blue Planet's leviathans (Picis ingens) are best described as "exceeding what biologists thought were the physiological limits for a  multicellular animal." Nobody has any idea how it's possible; they're practically cryptids, and their range keeps them so far away from humanity that nobody's ever recovered a body to examine.
  • Dungeons & Dragons:
    • The splatbook Elder Evils has the Leviathan, an immense world-spanning sea monster made out of pure chaos which was a side-effect of the creation of the world. It's so big that it encircles the world in its coils, and its head alone is the size of a small kingdom. It sleeps at the bottom of the ocean and will eventually fade away into nothingness, provided nobody wakes it up. Unfortunately, since this is Elder Evils we're talking about...
    • Kraken and another Leviathan also appear in the various Monster Manuals, the former being a particularly Giant Squid with magical powers, the latter being a really, really big whale that claims large patches of the sea as its territory and attacks any ships passing through it.
    • Forgotten Realms has Leviathan, a superpowered whale working as Earthmother's divine minion for sea missions. She did not spawn avatars before merging with Chauntea, as such improved natural beasts were enough to deal with her problems.
    • Dragonlance: While it never appeared in the original novels, the modules based on the Chronicles trilogy describe the King of the Deep. The King of the Deep is a nightmarish sea monster with the body of a huge fish covered in silver hairs, the head of a giant squid, and a pair of long, deadly lobster claws, created when ten (or twelve in the updated third Edition version) of the corrupted priests of Istar offered themselves to the Queen of Darkness, who turned them into this monster.
    • The 5th edition sourcebook Mordenkainen's Tome of Foes describes the Leviathan as the Elder Elemental of Water, an absolutely massive water elemental capable of causing tidal waves and restructuring the world's geography merely by being summoned.
    • Also in 5th edition, the Kraken is available as a patron for Warlock characters, through the "Fathomless" Pact.
  • Exalted:
    • Leviathan is a Lunar from the First Age who has spent the past few millennia stuck in his spirit shape as an orca, dwelling on his failure to protect his Solar mate, and serving as a god to/tormenting the inhabitants of a sunken city. Appropriately enough, he has a custom shapeshifting Knack that makes him gigantic and allows him to be counted as his own military force in mass combat.
    • Armored krakens are monsters from the Southwesten seas resembling colossal octopi covered in chitinous armor. They mostly live in the depths of the ocean, but are known to attack and destroy ships when drawn to surface waters by the din of combat or rampant Essence use, at which point they typically mistake the vessels for rivals, potential prey or competing predators.
    • Kraken-whales are Wyld horrors resembling immense cetaceans with mouths full of jagged teeth and holding eight tentacles as long as their bodies. They have ravenous appetites, and can devour boats half their own body length.
  • Monsters and Other Childish Things introduced the Leviathan in the supplement Bigger Bads. In this case, it's an Eldritch Abomination that takes the human form of businessman Levi A. Than, and plots to institute a new world order where the only surviving humans are its brainwashed slaves. In its true form, it resembles an absolutely gargantuan combination of parts from virtually every creature that's ever lived in the ocean.
  • In Nomine: The kraken is given as a sample creature of myth in the Ethereal Player's Guide. It is an ancient primal force and one of the oldest ethereal entities, which lived in the depths of the oceans long before humanity existed. It took an entire host of angels armed with powerful relics to slay it during Uriel's Purity Crusade, and it has since spent its time in the Far Marches, avoiding both angels and demons while building up the essence needed to rebuild its immense corporeal vessel. Should it achieve its goal, it will likely vanish back into the abyss and pass from the knowledge of the surface-dwellers outside of haunting the dreams of sailors.
  • Pathfinder:
    • Krakens are a species of intelligent, magical and evil Giant Squid who have been fighting the equally evil, fishlike aboleths for millennia for control of the seas. The most notable individual example in the setting is a kraken named Zhanagorr, who took over the Tian nation of Wanshou after saving it from disastrous storms — which some suspect he created himself to begin with — and turned it into a rain-lashed morass ruled by evil sea creatures.
    • Thalassic behemoths resemble absurdly large sperm whales with crablike claws. They are sent to the material plane by gods wishing to make their displeasure with mortal behavior clear and unambiguous, and are more than capable of destroying entire coastal cities.
    • Leviathan itself is the mightiest of the Tane, a group of creatures created by the Eldest of the First World as weapons of mass destruction in an ancient war. While the Tane are barely controllable at the best of times, Leviathan is so powerful that even the Eldest have come to fear it. It resembles a sperm whale ten times the length of a normal one, with four fins and a hundred red eyes. It spends most of its time slumbering in the seas of the First World, but when awakened its rampages can destroy whole nations.
  • Rifts: The biggest Sea Monster is the Lord of the Deep, also referred to as both Kraken and Leviathan, a massive abomination resting at the bottom of the Marianas Trench with tentacles that can reach for thousands of miles.
  • Amongst the many treasures that can be found in the Bounties of the Abyss expansion of Salvage Hidden Treasures are the Kraken's Tooth and the Kraken's Eye, the latter of which being the most valuable treasure in the entire game.
  • Shadowrun: Leviathans are ocean-dwelling dragons that, ironically enough, actually tend to be smaller than their land-dwelling relatives. The name is also used for Awakened killer whales that grow into some of the largest creatures in the seas. Krakens are Awakened giant squid so big that they can be mistaken for islands.
  • Stormbringer: In the supplement Demon Magic, the adventure "Sorcerer's Isle" had a Megalodon that could sink ships by biting through their hulls and a giant whale-like demon named Lvthn.
  • Warhammer has buckets of these, as detailed in the Seas of Blood supplement to the early 90s naval warfare spin-off Man O War and the 2011 Pirate-themed spin-off Dreadfleet.
    • Kraken appears as the classic giant squid.
    • The Black Leviathan is a humongous deep-sea angler fish that can swallow small ships whole. Dradfleet features a similar creature called an Orb Leviathan, whose animated corpse is used as a floating fortress by a crew of undead pirates.
    • Behemoth is a narwhal-like whale with a horn large enough to impale ships.
  • Warhammer 40,000 has a few, though many are rather obscure to the majority of the fandom:
    • The Space Wolf homeworld has a massive kraken (said to be a Tyranid offshoot) and Sea Serpents straight out of Norse myth, appropriate given the Space Wolves' Viking theme, and a sea monster is said to live on the planet Armageddon, where it attacked Ork ships.
    • The chronologically second and third of the three major Tyranid Hive Fleets so far are named Kraken and Leviathan, respectively (the first being named Behemoth, incidentally). Hive Fleet Kraken lived up to its namesake, as it made it debut by extending itself into many "tendrils" across a vast swath of galactic space, allowing it to consume a great many more worlds than Behemoth did with its blunt "single monolithic mass" approach; it even allowed it to evade Behemoth's fate of total destruction by surviving through numerous splinter fleets. As for Leviathan, look closely at the image with the Hive Fleet's tendrils approaching the galaxy from below the galactic plane; if Leviathan is the sea monster, then the Galaxy is the ship that it dwarfs with its size. And of course, these three fleets are just the vanguard of a larger Swarm that's predicted to arrive within a century of Leviathan's own arrival, i.e. within the first tenth of the 42nd millennium... assuming that the Time of Ending hasn't overtaken the Galaxy by then, that is.
    • Rogue Trader: Void Krakens — named in-universe after ancient myths of a monster said to haunt the depths of Terra's oceans — are immense, space-faring silicate lifeforms kilometers in length, which inhabit asteroid fields and prey on starships passing through them.
  • The World of Darkness:
    • New World of Darkness:
      • The Leviathan is the Kerberos of the Ocean of Fragments. It dwarfs nearly everything else on this list, and pretty much qualifies for Eldritch Abomination status on size alone, even disregarding that it's an unstoppable force of nature that literally the entire human race has nightmares about. To give some idea of the scale, no-one has any idea what it actually looks like or what it is — it's so massive that the most anyone's ever seen of it is a vast, seemingly-infinite wall of flesh that gives no hints to its form. The best guess anyone has is that it's some sort of impossibly gigantic cephalopod, but that's just because it has tentacles.
      • There's also a fan-brew game on RPG.net, Leviathan: The Tempest, which is all about playing the Fish People in human form descended from primordial gods of the ocean. They have the ability to assume ungodly large forms, but don't do it except for dire circumstances as it tends to rend the Masquerade in two and drives humans into a state of holy terror.
    • Wraith: The Oblivion: The New World of Darkness Leviathan above is an Expy of the Kraken, one of the largest and most mysterious of its Whistimmu. Indeed, unlike most Whistimmu, it doesn't seem to truly dwell in the ocean-like storm of the Tempest, but to be able to reach into it from its true home somewhere else. As far as its physical description and power level, it's basically a dead ringer for the Leviathan.

    Theater 

    Theme Parks 
  • SeaWorld Orlando has the Kraken coaster, which is set in the Kraken's lair, where the Poseidon has locked it up.

    Video Games 
  • ABZÛ has the origins of the titular mythical creatures appear a few times, though their most prominent encounter is when you descend into an Abyss after the main character's trek though a field of landmines, which, at first, begins with you encountering three leviathans (Sperm whales) and subsequently following them down into the bottom of a sinkhole that is home to a pair of Giant Squids. Hell, the achievement for riding these strangely ethereal creatures is called 'Kraken'. Unlike the other entries, you never fight these creatures, as they never actually attack you and only squirt ink when ridden, nor do they get eaten by the whales once they come down to the sinkhole.
  • Age of Mythology has creatures called Leviathan and Jormund (Elver), but they're no bigger than most of the other Myth Units, though the Leviathan can serve as a living transport ship, implying a case of Units Not to Scale. The Leviathan is interpreted as rather fish-like in shape, though it has arms that can be seen under the water. The Kraken is also a present myth unit. The Jormund Elver is supposed to be the offspring of the real World Serpent though - the original snakey fellow himself couldn't show, what with how he'd logically block out the entire screen...
  • City of Heroes:
    • Lusca is one of the biggest Giant Monster class enemies. It resembles a colossal octopus that menaces Independence Port and takes over a dozen players to systematically defeat. Oddly, the Kraken in that game is less aquatic, but you don't want to know about the Leviathan...
    • The thing called Kraken is a giant alien from another dimension. During a mission in Cimerora you must fight off the tentacles of the actual Kraken.
    • Cap'n Krak'n Jumbo Seafood sign in Independence Port. Complete with octopus holding a spoon and fork and wearing a bib.
  • Civilization: Beyond Earth: Native alien aquatic units consist of Kraken and Sea Dragons (which are Leviathans with the serial numbers filed off).
  • Crush, Crumble, and Chomp!: One of the monster types available, particularly the Kraken.
  • In Devil May Cry 3: Dante's Awakening, Leviathan shows up in the form of a giant flying whale. After swallowing Dante, its digestive system serves as the location of Level 8.
  • Dishonored: Whales border on this. Most look like and are about the size of sperm whales... except they have bizarre physical traits like tentacles or multiple sets of fins and some are hinted to grow much bigger than the ones you see in game. They’re heavily hinted to be mystical in nature; their fat and oil is an Applied Phlebotinum that can power numerous things, their bones are often used to make magic charms, they’re probably sapient, and they have some kind of connection to the Void. They also may or may not be the only thing keeping the mortal world from being destroyed by the Void... which is bad news, because they’re being hunted to the brink of extinction for their oil...
  • Dragon City: The Leviathan Dragon is an immense, serpentine sea dragon said to have destroyed entire civilizations.
  • DragonFable:
    • During the Pirate side of the "Wind Orb Saga", the Big Bad, Captain Blackberry uses a spell to go One-Winged Angel, first turning him into a Cthulhumanoid dubbed Brakenberry, but after his transformation is complete he emerges as a colossal octopus-like monster called the King Braken.
    • The "Water Orb Saga" features Cthulhu knock-off, Kathool Atchoo, only he has a less-humanoid appearance and one more closer to a traditional giant octopus/squid. Kathool is very much capable of sinking ships by pulling them down with their tentacles, much like the Kraken.
  • Dragon Quest IX: at Port Llaffan, you meet Jona, a girl with the ability to call Leviathan... a gift the other townsfolk abuse by making the great whale provide the whole town with fish, completely giving up their own fishing efforts.
  • EarthBound has the Kraken, who in this game is less squid and more sea serpent.
  • Endless Ocean : Blue World has both of these. There, the Leviathan is a large albino sperm whale with a backstory lifted from Moby-Dick. The Kraken appears in the form of Kraken Jr., a young giant squid.
  • Fallout 4: While you never encounter any, throughout the game you'll occasionally hear people spreading rumors about utterly massive "ghoul whales" that supposedly haunt the ocean. Considering what human feral ghouls are like, you’re probably lucky you don’t encounter one.
  • Final Fantasy has Leviathan as a recurring summon, and Kraken as a Fiend of Chaos who's shown up as a boss fight in a few titles.
    • Final Fantasy II: Leviathan functions as a "Fantastic Voyage" Plot Womb Level.
    • Final Fantasy III has the Nepto sea dragon, who roams the oceans of the Floating Continent. It functions as a Beef Gate preventing you from sailing out of the Bay of Nepto, and its rage can only be appeased by placing the gemstone Eye of Nepto in the Nepto Statue in the Nepto Temple. If the party tries to sail away regardless, the ensuing battle is unwinnable, and the party must run (if they can.)
    • In Final Fantasy IV, Leviathan is a feared monster that swallows ships whole. When Cecil and his companions set sail from Fabul, Leviathan does just that, scattering the party and taking Rydia to his kingdom, the Land of Summoned Monsters, where the party can later fight him and his Queen, Asura, to earn the right to summon them.
    • Final Fantasy V has an additional sea monster, the plesiosaur-like Syldra. She is Faris' pet sea dragon, who can carry the pirate ship on her back even when the destruction of the Wind Crystal keeps all other ships from sailing. Unfortunately, the boss monster Karlabos/Karl Boss drags her under, and Syldra is further weakened by saving the party from the sinking Walse Tower. In a Tear Jerking scene, Faris experiences a Heroic BSoD upon Syldra's death, but the latter's spirit would reappear in the third world and offer her help as a Summoned Beast.
    • Final Fantasy VI: The closest the original release has is the Esper Bismarck, who resembles a giant whale. The Updated Re-release adds Leviathan to the Esper roster, by having the sea serpent preying upon ships sailing between South Figaro and Nikeah. Defeating the creature will reduce it to Magicite, which the player can equip.
    • Final Fantasy IX:
      • Lord Gizamaluke, who functions as an early That One Boss. He is revered as a god/king by the Burmecians, but the capacity to which is never touched upon in the game.
      • There's a boss called Kraken, who is, unsurprisingly, water-themed, and has a knack for blinding your team with ink.
      • You can also run into Zombie Whales, which can shrink their victims with sonic screams or turn them into zombies by spitting toxic dust on them.
    • Final Fantasy X: Sin is an unusual example in that it shows it can fly toward the middle of the game, but otherwise fits this trope, being a cetacean-esque sea monster bigger than a city. It appears in Ansem Retort as "World-killing God-whale", and it's Exactly What It Says on the Tin.
    • Both Leviathan and Kraken appear as bosses in Final Fantasy XIV — the latter, twice. Bismarck from Final Fantasy VI also appears, but as a flying whale terrorizing the Sea of Clouds.
  • God of War II: A Kraken appears as a boss in the Palace of Fates. Kratos, having recently lost his will to fight before encountering the monster, almost allows himself to be eaten before Gaia rallies him. It's not probably not a coincidence that Perseus also appears as a boss in the game (and is voiced by Harry Hamlin himself, no less).
  • Golden Sun:
    • In the first game, the Kraken is the boss of the Karagol Sea arc and must be beaten so the ship can get to safe harbor.
    • In the second game, the Sea Serpent Azul is the most powerful Mercury summon, which attacks by trapping enemies in a sphere of water and then ramming through them.
  • In Golf With Your Friends, a giant blue tentacled creature with red eyes and sharp teeth features in the Pirate Cove course. On the final level, you must hit the ball past its waving arms and onto a platform in its mouth. Its presence is hinted in an earlier level of the course with the appearance of a tentacle.
  • In the Boreas seabed mission of Guild Wars, players have to fight a giant kraken like creature as the final boss. In addition, "Leviathans" are large sea serpent like enemies that the players fight at points in the mission "the deep", as well as being frozen in jade at other locations.
  • Kerbal Space Program: A persistent physics bug that damaged spaceships or made them uncontrollable was nicknamed "The Deep Space Kraken" by the community. That name has stuck, and in version 0.17, when the bug was finally quashed, the dead body of a giant squid-like creature was put on a faraway moonlet as a memento. Of course, it would resurface in a different form later...
  • In Kid Icarus: Uprising, you fight a Giant Space Kraken at the end of Chapter 8.
  • The Legend of Dragoon: the fourth act has the Last Kraken, a giant magical creature created by Wingly magic to guard the magical city of Aglis. It take the appearence of a gigantic crab-like creature with a smooth, round shell, bulging cilindrical eyes and two massive tentacles that can use to attack or to spawn light beings as a backup. The shell can also slide back to reveal a cannon on its back. The party has to kill the Kraken when Zieg takes over its mind.
  • In Legendary: The Box, a colossal blue-skinned Kraken emerges from the Thames to attack the Parliament (which in this game contains the secret base of the good guys) and snaps the Big Ben in half before you get to fight it: this Kraken takes the appearence of a colossal, stocky sea monster with several eyes, plated head and back and a huge round mouth, and has at least four gargantuan tentacles, each tipped by a massive claw and a giant glaring eye. You can only kill it by shooting the eyes on the tentacles with rockets and then shooting rockets in his mouth when it screams in pain.
  • Mass Effect 3: The aptly-named Leviathan Downloadable Content introduces a race of enormous, tentacled aliens that live in the galaxy's deepest oceans. Their species is billions of years old, and was formerly the apex race in the galaxy. Their true name is never given, but they are called "Leviathans" by other races. They were the race that created the Catalyst, and their faulty parameters were the reason the Catalyst started the Vicious Cycle. The first Reaper Harbinger was created from the Leviathans. The few remaining survivors blame themselves for this programming oversight.
    • The Reapers, giant robotic space cuttlefish which, in-universe, are designed to resemble the Leviathans, are a spacefaring version. While they usually rely upon giant red death rays to scuttle ships and raze the occasional city, one point in the final battle shows a Reaper grabbing a Systems Alliance ship that got too close, and crushing it with its mecha-tentacles.
  • Metal Slug: The final boss of Metal Slug 7/XX is called the Kraken. It's a giant mechanical octopus that has six tentacles and is resting on a rock on top of lava. It's big enough that each of its tentacles is an instance of the (itself massive) first boss of the game.
  • Monster Hunter: The Leviathan monster classification is not itself this trope — it holds all flightless reptiles found in water, lava or sand. What is this trope is Ceadeus, a massive whale-like Elder Dragon that's large enough to cause earthquakes when it rams its head into the sea floor.
  • Mortal Kombat X: One update adds stage fatalities to a few stages. One of these provides the reason for the bodies in the Kove: a kraken is dwelling underneath the bridge that will grab the opponent and drag them to the depths below, ripping them apart as they drown.
  • Mousehunt has the Squeaken Mouse and the Leviathan Mouse, which are pretty much a giant octopus and a sea serpent crossed with mice.
  • The Ocean Hunter: The first and second boss. Leviathan is a giant shark in this game.
  • Pokémon:
    • Kyogre has a relationship with Groudon and Rayquaza that's based on that of the Leviathan, Behemoth, and Ziz in mythology, with the former two being sworn enemies, and the latter of the three keeping peace between them. However, it's too small to be considered a proper leviathan (Though still pretty massive by Pokemon standards).
    • The French name for Gyarados is Leviathor, a relatively apt name for a giant marine dragon the size of a bus.
  • Razing Storm has a squid-like Humongous Mecha named the Kraken, complete with Combat Tentacles.
  • Resistance 2 features the Kraken. It's actually kind of puny compared to some of these, but it's enormous and tentacley. It also features a creature called a Leviathan, but that one's more Kaiju than Sea Monster, despite living in the mostly-flooded Chicago.
  • Return of the Obra Dinn in "The Doom" the ship is attacked by a giant sea monster, we only ever see its tentacles coming out of the water but the Captain refers to it as a Kraken.
  • Scribblenauts: You can create both of these. The Kraken is a giant squid-like creature, the Leviathan manifests as a long sea serpent.
  • Sea of Thieves: It's possible to encounter a kraken while sailing. Although you can only ever see its tentacles as they attack your ship, it's clearly massive.
  • Secret of the Stars features the "Clarken," a giant octopus you fight as a boss while at sea.
  • The Kraken serves as an early Beef Gate battle in Shining Force II, and a difficult one as well. Not only does your troops being on a raft limit your movements, each of the Kraken's ten arms counts as an individual unit, which two arms getting enhanced range and attack. Additionally its head is quite capable of performing area attack magic, making it very dangerous to leave your allies bunched up to perform sequential assaults.
  • Poseidon can summon a kraken with his ultimate in Smite.
  • Soul Sacrifice: Both the Kraken and the Leviathan are present.
    • The Leviathan was a young prince who fused with his crocodile and carries his kingdom on his back... which is also named Leviathan.
    • The Kraken was a naval captain whose ship got stolen by pirates. When he found his ship to be beyond repair, he snapped. Hard.
  • One of the special weapons in the original Splatoon is called the Kraken, which turns the user into a giant, invincible squid that trails ink behind them.
  • Starcraft II: A humongous Zerg monster is called a Leviathan. It can fly, shoot a wide variety of things (even other zerg air units), and has tentacles. It is also shown to be twenty or thirty times the size of a Terran Battlecruiser in some images. The Zerg appear to use them as interplanetary transports, and Kerrigan uses one in Heart of the Swarm as her mobile base. Concept art indicates that it was originally going to be a whale-like creature larger than a protoss Mothership that could swarm planets with clouds of some kind of creature. There is also a zerg creature from the novels called a Behemoth, which is a docile manta ray-like creature of similar size (it is hard to tell how big the Leviathan is supposed to be) used for transport.
  • Streetpass Mii Plaza: Both the Kraken and the Leviathan appear as legendary catches in Ultimate Angler.
  • Subnautica features several species of what your PDA designates as Leviathan-class organisms. From smallest to largest, they are the scuttling Sea Strider, the monstrous Reaper, harmless Reefback, the eerie Ghost, the magma-spitting Sea Dragon, and the colossal Sea Emperor. While the Sea Striders and Reefbacks are nonaggressive, the dreaded Reaper is a Super-Persistent Predator capable of killing a player caught in the open in one or two attacks, or grabbing a Seamoth mini-sub in its mandibles to crush like a tin can or smash against the sea floor. Ghost Leviathans are fiercely territorial, and while they'll usually back off after a single ram attack, that attack can do a lot of damage, and they're capable of battering around or even overturning a full-sized Cyclops submarine. And the best that can be said about the Sea Dragons is that they'll often overlook a player swimming outside of a submersible, because you're too small to be considered prey. Despite this selection of nasties, the Subnautica subreddit is full of suggestions for more creatures, like a proper kraken.
  • Sunless Sea:
    • The biggest creature you can actually fight would be Mt. Nomad, which looks very much like a regular, if oddly black and glossy mountain at first. To be fair, it sort of is a mountain, but it's also very much alive, hungry, and far too mobile for a thing of its size.
    • One that cannot be confronted, but can at least be found alive, is whatever the Eye belongs to. The aforementioned eye is bigger than some islands you visit, while the rest is thankfully unseen. One hopes whatever it belongs to doesn't feel like actually moving any time soon, for such a thing even stirring in its sleep would likely destroy several miles of zee-floor.
    • Others are smaller than the aforementioned Eye's owner, but still big enough to count as their very own ports: Nook, which is an anarchic "city" full of hedonists founded in what resembles a giant lamprey with a mouth that could swallow an entire fleet whole, and Hideaway, founded on the back of a living, mobile and relatively friendly humongous crab that the dwellers have tamed.
    • The dead ones are much more plentiful, forming several terrain features like a Ribcage Ridge you can sail multiple Dreadnoughts side-by-side through, a dead turtle so huge it has a large town inside its shell, and a thing so incomprehensibly big just its stony heart, lying at the Gant Pole, can dock multiple zubmarines.
    • One of Frostfound's galleries seems to have several of these, ones that could outsize entire cities, strung up on meathooks and chains like common fish. Much like the rest of Frostfound's mysteries, they're not explained much, and also serve to prove Frostfound is not a normal castle by any means.
  • Sword of the Stars: Liir elders can grow bigger than blue whales before gravity kills them. The Suul'ka Liir who attempted to escape gravity's limits in space are bigger than Leviathan-class starships and have tentacles that can crush dreadnoughts.
  • Tales of Monkey Island: The third chapter is called "Lair of the Leviathan". The chapter starts with Guybrush and his ship being eaten by a giant Manatee, but the title Leviathan turns out to be an even bigger female Manatee, which the first one has to conquer without being eaten.
  • Tears to Tiara 2: The Kraken appears as The Bait in Izebel's battle plans.
  • In Tomb Raider: Legend, Lara fights a creature called "The Leviathan" in England, taking the form of a gigantic, nightmarish sea serpent with frills and glowing eyes.
  • Tomb Raider: Underworld has Lara exploring an underwater ruin which hosts a Kraken (appearing as a colossal, orange octopus). She has to navigate the level while trying to avoid touching its tentacles or falling into the pool where it dwells and has to activate a trap to kill it.
  • In We Need to go Deeper, the submarine crew can fight two bosses, the Leviathan and the "Quadken", a four-armed cephalopod. In general, many of the bosses and even regular enemies are enormous sea monsters.
  • Wing Commander: Prophecy: The Terrans assign Reporting Names to the ships used by the new alien race attacking through the new wormhole in the Kilrah System. These names are pretty much all names for aquatic creatures from Earth, given that the alien ships all look like they would be at home under the ocean. The capital ships are named for mythological sea monsters, including the Kraken and Leviathan.
  • The Witcher 2 and its enormous huge ''Kayran.'' How he (it? SHE?!) actually manages to stay underwater undetected of Pontar river is a riddle.
  • Wonder Boy in Monster Land has a Kraken boss, although not particularly large.
  • World of Warcraft:
    • The Lurker Below, a boss in Serpentshrine Cavern raid whose in-game model and is actually called "kraken". Its brethren are called kraken as well.
    • In Cataclysm, however, there is the more traditional (i.e. giant squid) kraken Ozumat. And that's not even mentioning Nespirah... who is a giant... underwater... something.
    • From the same expansion, the Whale Shark. Nearly ten million hit points, quarter million damage bites and an achievement for killing this beast just because you CAN, in other words, you have to kill him specifically for the Bragging Rights Reward since he doesn't gives loot of any kind.
    • Mists of Pandaria has a few of its own as well. Three squid with the same model as Ozumat — one involved in a quest chain, another swimming in the waters off the coast of Townlong Steppes, and a third seen beached on the coast of the Thunder King's Island. As well as a giant boss eel (and its children) that drops a Bragging Rights Reward. There's also Evermaw, which looks like the Whale Shark and swims around the Timeless Isle.
  • Zeus: Master of Olympus: The Kraken is a colossal Fish Man (presumably an homage to Clash of the Titans) sent by Poseidon to ravage your city's coastlines or defend them if you built his sanctuary. It also takes the role of Cetus in the myth of Perseus.
    Soooooon, you'llllll crrraaaaaaaack!

    Webcomics 
  • Wapsi Square features a creature bearing some resemblance to the kraken. It is ancient and large enough to drop a U-boat on a beach. At one point in the past, Bud made a pet out of it and named it Stinky.

    Web Original 
  • This Cracked.com article discusses various unsolved mysterious and possible explanations for them. One of the mysterious is the Bloop (an extremely loud sound from underwater), and the possible explanation is that it's Cthulhu.
  • Three members of The League of S.T.E.A.M. recount their encounters with a Kraken in "Tall Tails."
  • Looming Gaia: Krakens are a very rare species of giant octopus-like sea creature. They attack ships because they mistake them for whales.
  • Magical Trevor 4 featured a Kraken with the face of a haddock.
  • The Monster Girl Encyclopedia of course, has a Cute Monster Girl edition of Kraken. Though this world being what it is, it's not nearly as big as most depictions of the Kraken tend to be.
  • Protectors of the Plot Continuum:
  • The SCP Foundation has several examples:
    • SCP-169, "The Leviathan", is a gigantic "marine arthropod" of otherwise indeterminate classification, speculated to have existed since the Pre-Cambrian period, whose estimated body length is at least roughly equal to the horizontal length of Europe, and may in fact be four times longer at its maximum estimate (in-universe, it's the source of "The Bloop"). The Foundation has plans of varying effectiveness to contain and/or prevent everything from multiple zombie apocalypses to holes in reality that periodically spew monsters. Their plan for this, though? When you cut through the formal scientific sounding terminology, it amounts to "Hope to hell it doesn't wake up, and if it does, hope it's friendly. The thing is just too damn big to do anything about."
    • SCP-1128, "Aquatic Horror", which is not as big, but still big enough to eat whales, and is ten times more incomprehensible thanks to its appearance being a Brown Note: upon first learning what it looks like a test subject will, if fully submerged in water, find that the water acts as a portal to an ocean containing the SCP, which will then eat them. The longer the subject retains the memory of its appearance the less water is required to activate the effect, eventually reaching the point where merely standing in a small puddle is deadly. In the most extreme case the SCP reached out of a glass of water to grab the test subject.
    • SCP-3700, "Tides of War", which consists of two separate giant sea monsters: SCP-3700-1 is basically a cross between a lobster and a mantis shrimp, while SCP-3700-2 is essentially a giant gulper eel. The duo have been locked in a perpetual conflict that had the peculiar effect of making them fairly self-containing... until the Foundation decided to actively support SCP-3700-1, unwittingly destabilizing the status quo between what are, according to the article's creator, avatars of Orcadian deities.
    • SCP-3000, "Anantashesha", is not quite as large as the Leviathan mentioned above, but still a pretty damn big sea serpent reminiscent of a giant morray eel. This one has an interesting property in that it, after consuming humans, excrets a compound implied to be the distilled thoughts and memories of the humans it eats. While this compound wreaks havoc with human brains (causing serious memory loss and even replacing memories with others), it also makes for a damn fine Amnestic, and since the Foundation is so reliant on amnestics, they have no choice but to feed it more and more humans.
  • Wurser Fings 'ave 'appened @t Sea", matey. Jus' not dat much of 'em.

    Western Animation 
  • In Ben 10, a semi-aquatic Kraken is a Monster of the Week that terrorizes the coast because someone stole its eggs. Interestingly, it's never explained if it is in fact an alien or just an unknown terrestrial species.
  • On Catscratch, Gordon goes hunting for the Kraken, who will supposedly grant a wish to whomever would defeat it in battle. In a later episode, the Kraken is revealed to be from another dimension.
  • In Hilda, krakens have large rocky shells and multiple eyes. They hibernate for long enough to be mistaken for islands. They eat wood when young, and Hilda and friends have to help a mother kraken find a new food source for her babies so she'll stop attacking ships.
  • In an episode of Martin Mystery, a Leviathan was guarding a treasure and attacked anyone who tried to steal it.
  • In the Rocko's Modern Life episode "Fish N' Chumps", after a failed attempt at using a live worm as bait for fishing, Rocko decides to use cheese cubes. As soon as he opens the jar, a giant white squid monster rises up asking for the cheese. Rocko hands him the jar. Later in the episode, the squid appears again, asking for more cheese, which Rocko agrees to give him in exchange for getting him and his buddies back home.
  • A huge beast called the Leviathan appears in an episode of Storm Hawks. However, since Atmos is a world where The Sky Is an Ocean, the beast flies in the clouds.
  • The Kraken appears in several episodes of Wishfart, portrayed as a giant purple squid. It usually stays at the bottom of the ocean but rises to attack the city when disturbed by something, like Tsuni's horrible singing.

    Real Life 
  • Leviathan: Whales, obviously.
    • A prehistoric whale species called the Livyatan melvillei is very much like its descendant the Sperm Whale in appearance, but is far deadlier, with 14-inch teeth. It is named after the Leviathan from Hebrew mythology, and (because it reminds one of the deadly fictional whale Moby Dick, is also named after that novel's author, Herman Melville.
    • The whale Moby Dick from the novel of the same name was based on a real albino sperm whale called Mocha Dick — a 21 meter (70 feet) bull which allegedly survived at least 100 encounters with whalers (destroying about 20 boats in the process) before being slain in 1838 trying to aid a female whose calf had been killed by harpooners.
    • Perhaps not only whales; large salt water crocodilians could be inspiration. Also, there is a chance that Mesozoic sea serpents survived and became a basis, but it's unlikely.
    • However, it is possible that fossils of these creatures could also have provided inspiration for the legend, as well as fossils of archaeoceti (ancestral whales such as Basilosaurus).
  • Kraken: The famous Kraken of legend may have been based on real sightings of Giant Squid, now known to be quite real. However, its deep sea-dwelling nature may have hindered it from having been spotted often.
    • The Giant Squid can attain truly impressive dimensions; it is about 8–10 meters in length on average, though 13 meter specimens may be entirely possible in the wild.
    • The Colossal Squid is even larger, and is the largest cephalopod known (yet). The largest specimen caught was estimated to be 10 meters in length before its tentacles shrank post-mortem. There are indications the species may grow to 14 meters, beaks larger than that of the specimen have been found in the stomachs of sperm whales.
    • Huge prehistoric cephalophods include Cameroceras, which looks interesting as it is the largest of the primitive shelled cephalophods, making it appear like a cross between squids and snail. The creature spans up to 9 meters (30 feet) in length.
  • Others:
  • The largest jellyfish species, the Lion's Mane, varies in size, though large specimens may reach a tremendous 36 Meters (120 feet) in length with its main body at least the size of a man. It is one of the longest animals on the planet.
  • The bizarre and spectacular Deep-Sea Siphonophores definitely deserve a mention — while the Siphonophores you're familiar with are probably the ever-dreaded Portuguese Man o' War, and the By-the-wind-sailor, deep in the ocean lurk some SCARY BIG guys. Being cnidarians, all of them have poisonous stings, some even being dangerous to humans. Fortunately the chance of coming across one is ludicrous, as they are both rare and strictly deep-sea dwellers.
    • The deep-sea siphonophore Praya dubia is one of the better known. Praya colonies form long strings of individuals, some colonies have been recorded at 50 meters long — and that's only the ones they've found. The colonies average out at around a length of 40 meters, though there have been unconfirmed sightings of far longer colonies.
    • This one Appears to be related to the Praya dubia and features a beautiful red glow. The size on this one appears unclear — some shrimplike creatures dart past the camera but they seem to be much closer to the camera.
    • This monster of a Siphonophore looks like something straight out of a cosmic horror story and has the dimensions to match — though not stated in the video this unidentified specimen was later found to be 130 meters long. Stop and think about how big that is. The only reason Siphonophores aren't officially considered the largest living animal is because they're actually made up of tens of to thousands of smaller organisms.
  • The Whale Shark is also one of the largest animals in the sea. It is the largest shark species (apart from the extinct Megalodon). Most specimens grow to 10 meters (33 feet) in length, with larger individuals reaching 12 meters (40 feet).
  • The giant oarfish definitely deserves a mention, as it seems to look straight out of a mythology textbook, looking chillingly similar to most depictions of the Leviathan. This enormous fish may grow to 11 meters (36 feet). It is the longest existing bony fish and may be the source of many "sea serpent" sightings.
  • Prehistoric creatures — the Earth's extensive history is home to many truly gigantic extinct sea creatures. Several are listed below:
    • Fish:
      • The largest fish of all time would have been either Megalodon or Leedsichthys; the former means "big tooth" and is much like a super-sized great white shark that fed on whales and had enough bite force to crush a small car; the latter is the largest known bony fish of all time, and may have grown to 16 meters (50 feet) in length.
      • The Dunkleosteous was also quite large, and very monstrous; reaching sizes of 9 meters (30 feet), this predatory bony fish is hypothesized to have been a voracious cannibal. Its bite force is estimated to have been the greatest of all vertebrates in history.
    • Marine reptiles:
      • The Shastasaurus is the largest sea-dwelling reptile discovered thus far, and possibly one of the largest prehistoric sea creatures; it likely reached lengths of 21 meters (69 feet), roughly the size of a sperm whale. The creature itself looks somewhat like a cross between a dolphin and a dinosaur; it belongs to the group of ichthyosaurs, which are large, fish-like marine reptiles.
      • The mosasaurs probably come in at a close second; the largest species, Mosasaurus hoffmani, reached a length of 18 meters (59 feet) — roughly the size of the mosasaur in Jurassic World. It was one of the ancient seas' superpredators.
      • Pliosaurus funkei, nicknamed Predator X, was the largest discovered pliosaur, another group of large predatory marine reptiles, and may have reached 15 meters (50 feet) in length.
      • The Elasmosaurus is pretty much a sea-dwelling sauropod in appearance. It looks exactly like a Loch Ness monster (though it could not stick its head out of the water's surface and was a saltwater, rather than freshwater, creature). It was the largest of the plesiosaurs, the animal group where the Loch Ness monster is said to belong to. It could grow up to 14 meters (46 feet) in length.
      • The Liopleurodon, of Walking with Dinosaurs fame, was once thought to be larger all the above reptiles with a size of up to 25 metres. Later findings have downsized it to a length of around 6 meters, however.
  • The Kraken Mare is the largest known (methane and other hydrocarbons) sea of Titan, the largest moon of Saturn. It is not known if it would have an alien, methane-breather, equivalent of the monsters described here.
  • In 2021 the National Hockey League is set to welcome its newest team: the Seattle Kraken. Time will tell if they become metaphoric terrors or not.

 
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The Leviathan Attacks

When the Ulysses enters a vast graveyard filled with ships from every era, it is attacked by the Leviathan, the guardian of the entrance to Atlantis. During the attack, Milo discovers that the giant crustacean is an Atlantean machine.

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