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The guys on the right aren't regular-sized humans; the tiny speck on the bottom is.

"A giant's the worst! A giant has a brain. Hard to outwit a giant. A giant's just like us, only bigger. Much, MUCH bigger! SOOO big that we are just an expendable... bug beneath its feet." BOOM. Crunnch.
The Witch, Into the Woods

Legendary creatures that resemble human beings, but super-sized and often incredibly strong. Giants have been around since the times of ancient mythology, and are still around as one of the Standard Fantasy Races. These creatures may range in size from around 7 feet (the average size of the tallest Real Life humans), to truly colossal proportions.

In various mythologies, including Classical, Norse and Celtic myth, alongside Biblical scripture, gigantic peoples often feature as primeval creatures associated with chaos and the wild, and frequently in conflict with the gods. They also tend to appear as apocalyptic beings, who will arise at the end of days to bring about the world's downfall. Less ominously, giants often feature in legend and folklore as hugely powerful and dangerous but often dim-witted beings whom wily heroes to trick and outwit. Their prodigious strength is also a commonly emphasized trait, and it wasn't uncommon for cultures to describe the imposing ruins of older civilizations as having been built by bygone giants — surely no one else would have been strong enough and large enough to shift such huge blocks of stone in place?


The stereotypical giant is a big, dumb brute who grinds people's bones to make his bread and may serve as the Dumb Muscle for a more intelligent Evil Overlord. However, literal Gentle Giants are also featured in both legends and modern stories, and some giants, both good and evil, may be smarter than they are initially perceived.

In Real Life, the profusion of Giants in mythology is usually attributed to memories of childhood, when adults tower over you, and also the rivalry between young men and old men. It may also be partially related to people finding the bones of massive animals (especially elephants or extinct animals like sauropod dinosaurs and giant ground sloths) and mistaking them for the bones of giant humanoids.

Giants don't usually have a lot variation besides their actual size, which can go from just unusual but theoretically achievable statures to absurdly exaggerated heights. However, works taking inspiration from Norse sources may include distinct fire and frost giants of varying levels of elemental affinity. Other types include the one-eyed, monstrous cyclopes and the two-headed ettin; occasionally, trolls and ogres are also linked to giants in some manner.


This is Older Than Feudalism. Not to be confused with The Giant, who may be a big wrestler, but isn't nearly that big. See also Smash Mook, Giant Mook, Attack of the 50-Foot Whatever, Giant Woman (where the giant is specifically a giantess), and Our Titans Are Different.

Really huge giants, in any real-world context, would fall victim to the Square-Cube Law in short order, but the vast majority of such beings tend to exist in fantasy universes that cheerfully disregard such things as the laws of physics in favor of creating a good story.


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    Anime and Manga 
  • Attack on Titan: The Titans are giants of varying size. Some are small at around 3-5 meters, most are around 7 meters, the usual biggest are around 15 meters. Then we have the Colossal Titan at about 60 meters. Also nearly all Titans are horrible monsters, they are VERY fast, and a few people, like Eren, can transform into Titans. There is also the Beast Titan which is 18 meters tall and is highly intelligent and courteous.
    • Then you have the millions of 60-meter tall Colossal Titans that live in the Walls, waiting to be called upon so that they can flatten everything in their path and destroy the Earth...
    • Eventually, the characters encounter a Titan so large, it is more than twice as tall as the sixty-metre Colossal Titan even when it's sitting down (its limbs were disproportionately small, so it couldn't stand upright).
    • Taken Up to Eleven when we get to Eren's final form as the Founding Titan. It's so large that the surrounding army of Colossal Titans don't even reach it's pelvis, and normal Titans can have fights on its vertebrae. Much like the previous largest Titan, it's so huge that it can't physically stand up right. So instead it WALKS ON ITS MILE LONG RIB-CAGE LIKE A GIANT CENTIPEDE. Really, it's as horrifying as it sounds.
  • In Bleach, Sajin Komamura's Bankai takes the form of an enormous samurai with a titanic sword for its weapon. It has an amazing appearance, but a critical weakness: it's designed to defeat the opponent in a single hit, and if such is not done, vulnerable to defeat — and any damage it takes is simultaneously inflicted on Komamura. This weakness has its advantages, though... Komamura is so closely linked to his bankai that when he heals, it heals, too. Recent chapters have shown that this is very important.
  • The Queen of Light from Futari wa Pretty Cure, Mugen Silhouette from HeartCatch Pretty Cure! and Royale Queen from Smile Pretty Cure!. Mugen Silhouette is the strongest Pretty Cure and she's as big as our planet.
  • The defining trait of the Zentraedi from Macross is that they are about three to four stories tall. They were engineered that way so they would be physically tougher and better suited for battle. When they begin integrating with human society, most of them shrink themselves to a regular human size, but there are some communities that prefer to remain giants (which results in some interesting mixed-size accommodations in the later series).
  • Mazinger: In New Mazinger (an one-shot alternate Mazinger Z story published in The '80s), an explosion transports Kouji Kabuto to an alternate dimension inhabited by giant beings. The human beings were sixty-foot-tall and just as big as Mazinger-Z (in fact, when Kouji saved one princess, she thought Mazinger-Z was an armored knight, and she asked him to remove his helmet so she could see his face). They were mostly good-natured and intelligent, although their technology was at a Middle Ages level, and they were in war against a race of monsters.
  • One Piece:
    • Giants vary greatly in size, from Jaguar D. Saul being 19.5 meters or so tall to the likes of Oars and his descendant Oars Jr., who are about 60 meters. Apparently, there are entirely different types of giants and Saul considers it something of an insult to be considered one of the other kind. So far the ratio is 5 good giants to 1 evil giant, who also happened to be a zombie. And, apart from Oars, they do not seem particularly stupid or intelligent.
    • Then there are plenty of characters who are not actually giants, but are still ridiculously huge compared to other humans for no apparent reason, such as Whitebeard, Gecko Moria, Bartholomew Kuma, and Magellan. Word of God is that this is simply how height naturally varies among humans in the One Piece world, the same with how much the size of giants varies.
    • To simplify things, in the One Piece World, you have, from smallest to largest: normal humans as we know them that are around the 1.5- 2.5 meter height (Luffy, Zoro, Robin, Franky, and pretty much the average people seen around the world; this category is the most common), big/tall humans around the 2.5 meter to 5 meter area (Crocodile, Brook, Kuzan, Doflamingo, Katakuri, etc. ), really big humans around the 6 to 8 meter area (Gecko Moria, Pound, Bartholomew Kuma, Whitebeard, Big Mom, etc.), Non-Elbaf giants around 19.5 meters or so tall (Jaguar D. Saul), Morley, Elbaf giants around 12-23 or so meters tall (Oimo and Kashii, as seen above), big demon-like giants that are around 67 meters tall (Oars, also seen above, and Little Oars Jr., his descendant), and lastly extremely big demon-like giants who may very well be over 180 meters tall (San Juan Wolf, though it has since been revealed that his ridiculous size is because of a Devil Fruit that he ate). There are also Fishmen/merfolk that are big due to their fish-race (or sometimes in spite of it) that vary between all categories; the mermaid princess Shirahoshi is about as big as an Elbaf Giant at 17 meters, dwarfing both her giant-sized father and her human-sized mother, whereas the Fishman Wadatsumi is about as big as Oars (slightly bigger in fact at 80 meters tall).
    • At the beginning of the Skypiea arc, the crew run into fog-shrouded figures that seems so tall they reach up into the sky. Turns out those aren't super-giants, just the shadows of people living on a Floating Continent.
    • The Punk Hazard also introduced the concept of artificial giants. Dr. Vegapunk was trying to find ways to make ordinary humans grow to giant size, but failed in doing so. His Number Two, Caesar Clown, somewhat succeeded, but only because he stooped to the lows Vegapunk refused to resort to: experimenting on children. Caesar kidnapped a group of children and experimented on them; this made them huge, but drastically shortened their lifespan to the point that had they not been saved, they would have died in five years.
    • One ironic example is the anime-only Lily Enstomach; her true size is about 50 meters tall, but due to her Mini Mini no Mi Devil Fruit power, she can shrink to a minimum of about five centimeters tall. Because her physical strength does not change and she can shrink and enlarge any item she wears or holds (going so far as to use a dinner fork like a trident) it's a rather useful power to have.
      • And of course her father, who is so big he cooks food with a volcano.
    • Charlotte Linlin, aka Big Mom, seems to be some kind of freak, since she was the size of a normal giant child when she was five-years-old, despite having normal-sized parents. As an adult, she is seemingly taller than a house, but is significantly smaller than actual giants (still around half the height of one at 8.8 meters tall).
  • In The Seven Deadly Sins, the Giant clan is capable of Dishing Out Dirt, Extra-ore-dinary, and capable of shapeshifting into metal.
  • Shintaro Kago's Super-Conductive Brains Parataxis features a race of colossal humanoids cloned from fossils and known as Surdlers. To be used as Humongous Mecha for civilian and military purposes, they are extensively modified — their organic brains are swapped out for computers, their faces and genitals replaced by cybernetic implants, and occasionally, additional limbs or extra torsos are grafted on to suit the tasks they are built for. It's later revealed that the clones are in fact ordinary humans and the advanced civilization enslaving them consists of Lilliputians produced by miniaturization technology.
  • Giants exist in Trigun with no explanation, and offer a quite considerable variety of sizes. Most notable is the Nebraska Family, whose members range from normal, to big but not implausible, to basically Kaiju. The parents of the family are at opposite ends of the scale, implying Hot Skitty-on-Wailord Action.

    Card Games 
  • Magic: The Gathering: Giants are an ubiquitous creature type, often aligned with Red mana. In the main setting of Dominaria, they're just generically big, tough bruisers, though other settings go into their culture a bit more.
    • In Ravnica, giants are mostly soldiers for the Boros Legion, though some outcasts find a life as grunts in the Gruul Clans.
    • Giants in the fairy-tale world of Lorwyn are ancient and mystical, yet still can be clumsy and whimsically dim-witted. Giants sleep for years or decades at a time, dreaming deep dreams, and when they awake they take on new names and purposes in life based on what they dream. Some ride absurdly large goats with wings.
    • In Lorwyn's Dark World, Shadowmoor, giants sleep even longer, to the extent that trees and turf start to grow on their bodies and they become part of the landscape. They're pretty cranky when they wake up, rampaging throughout the countryside and smashing and devouring everything and everyone they come across.
    • The largest giant of all is by definition the Hamletback Goliath, which is large enough to have a hamlet on its back to start with (duh) and magically grows to stay bigger than everything it encounters.
    • Zendikar is home to two types of giant. One type, the more traditional one, lives in tribal societies in the plane's many trackless wildernesses. The second kind, the bestial hurda, is kept by other intelligent societies as enormous, somewhat humanoid pack animals.
    • The Greek mythology-inspired plane of Theros has giants of every color of mana, which are living manifestations of the land itself. They include varieties from Greek myth like Hundred-Handed Ones and Titans.
    • The Norse Mythology-inspired plane of Kaldheim has giants as the natives of Surtland, a realm of climatic extremes where everything is bigger than you'd expect it to be, which are divided into two elemental kindreds. Frost giants are solitary, contemplative beings who live in fortresses on the realm's high peaks, studying magic and hoarding secrets. Fire giants are a barbaric folk who live in larger groups in the volcanic lowlands, eagerly raid other realms when the chance presents itself and lack the scholarship of the frost giant mages, although they can control fire and lava to a degree. The two groups detest one another, and fire giant tribes often attack frost giant holdfasts. Another kind of giants once inhabited Gnottvold, the realm now claimed by the trolls, but they vanished long ago, leaving only overgrown ruins scattered in the wilderness.

    Comic Books 
  • Black Moon Chronicles: They grow really big here, often easily over 50 feet tall. They're also pretty much brutish savages who will happily join the Army of the Black Moon in their war against the empire.
  • The DCU:
    • Green Lantern foe Relic is a survivor of the previous universe which ended due to the Emotion Spectrum being drained away by that universe's version of the Corps the Lightsmiths who dwarfs most humanoids in the current universe. This is explained by the previous universe's life being larger in general — Relic is a Normal Fish in a Tiny Pond, with the "pond" being the universe.
    • Legion of Super-Heroes: Every version of Colossal Boy is a Sizeshifter but the "threeboot" version isn't normal sized human with the power to grow but a member of a race of giants who has the power to shrink (thus allowing him to, unlike the rest of his race, interact with humans on a regular basis — which he thinks of as having adventures in a world of Lilliputians). He actually prefers to be called "Micro-Lad" since it's a better fit for him from his perspective.
    • Wonder Woman:
      • Wonder Woman (1942): The main Silver Age writer, Robert Kanigher, who had a twenty-two year run on the comic, seemed to like stories about giants. Wondy encounters and fights an awful lot of different types of giants during this period.
      • Wonder Woman (1987): The White Magician creates a squad of truly enormous stone giants, all of which share the consciousness of one large stone man of unknown origin who only reaches the new giants' knees at most. These giants are temporary constructs which turn back to stone and dust when the magic tying them to their creator and mind is severed.
  • Gold Digger had an arc where Gina and Brianna's boyfriends were studying a tribe where exposure to mysterious energies caused a shift in size and strength that affected their women much more dramatically than the men. Generations later, while the males barely cleared eight feet, the women of the tribe were more like Zentraedi. Fortunately, their reproductive systems remained compatible with their men, but it also left them with an attraction to the pheromones given off by a frightened or nervous male. This caused problems for Brianna's Jungle Boy boyfriend Zan, who was pursued by one particularly insistent giantess until the chief pointed out that Brianna's pregnancy meant she had already claimed him.
  • Marvel Universe:
    • Ant-Man: Hank Pym can utilize Pym particles to grow to giant size, at which point he takes the name Giant Man or Goliath. At first, he was only able to go up to ten feet, but he's managed to go bigger. Modern portrayals show his normal giant size being somewhere around 25 to 30 feet. In the Ultimate-verse, his maximum height was designated at 59 feet, 11 inches; any bigger and his body would collapse under its own weight.
    • The Mighty Thor: Thor usually finds himself squaring off Frost Giants (the "Jotun") or sub-races like Storm Giants and Mountain Giants. Interestingly, in the older books, Giants looked like 25 feet Gonk-ish, brutish humans but nowadays are more like huge Orcs. Loki is an exception, being a runt among the Frost Giants who bears a stronger resemblance to the Asgardians than he does to his own kin. The Golden Age ice-powered hero Jack Frost was retconned into being an undersized Frost Giant as well.
  • Rulah, Jungle Goddess: In "Land of Giants" in #18, Rulah battles a race of giants who shoot arrows the size of spears and ride elephants as if they were ponies.
  • Tomahawk: In issue #40, Tomahawk and Dan Hunter encounter a tribe of 10 ft. tall Indians dwelling in an isolated valley. Tomahawk speculates that their height is the result of the strange plants in waterholes he observed in the valley.

    Comic Strips 
  • Mandrake the Magician: One story had Mandrake help Qork, an alien giant who is so big he is the size of a country while Mandrake is the size of a micro-organism compared to him. He communicates with him using telepathy.

    Fan Works 
  • Equestria: Across the Multiverse:
    • The Ponies and Giants Arc features these. The ones the Mane Six meet are friendly, and have formed an adventuring party on a quest in the lands of "tinies".
    • The Mane Six later find themselves in a world with giant ponies who are partnered with tiny ponies (tiny even by the Mane Six's size) in a symbiotic relationship.
    • In another world, the Mane Six themselves are the giants, being big enough for Rainbow to flatten an acre of forest just by sitting down.
  • The Keys Stand Alone: The Soft World: George turns into a cloud giant straight out of AD&D to fight off the Tax Monster.
  • The Mountain and the Wolf: The Wolf sneeringly dismisses Westerosi giants as plant-eating midgets compared to those of his world (despite only coming up to Wun Wun's waist).

    Fairy Tales 

    Films — Animated 
  • Willie the Giant in the "Mickey and the Beanstalk" segment of Disney's Fun and Fancy Free is the villain in this Jack and the Beanstalk adaptation. He's several stories tall, looks quite human, and lives in his castle high in the clouds. He's also a giant magician, being a consummate shapeshifter. He keeps a magical animate harp imprisoned, whom Mickey, Goofy, and Donald need to save.

    Films — Live Action 
  • In Gods of Egypt, the gods are roughly twice as tall as a normal person, with Ra being the biggest of them all. By and large, they treat humans in contempt.
  • Hilariously subverted in Italian Z-grade sword-and-sandals clunker Ercole contro il gigante Golia (Hercules against Goliath). Throughout the movie, the few shots of Goliath use camera tricks to make him look enormous... But come the final battle when he dukes it out with Hercules, he's obviously just a really big guy wearing platform boots. Granted, that makes him head and shoulders taller than The Hero... but it's a far cry from the 10-meter/30-foot behemoth he was "shown" as earlier.
  • In Hellboy (2019), the giants are about 30-40 feet tall at a rough estimate. And they wield giant swords, axes and clubs. And they have crude metal prosthetics that make them look like medieval steampunk cyborgs. Oh, and there's three of them. At once.
  • MirrorMask: The giants look like bizarre statues, and they levitate above the ground, orbiting each other. They also SPEAK... VERY... SLOWLY. When one of them is pulled to Earth by shadows, it melts into the ground, and the other floats away.

  • In David Anthony Durhams Acacia trilogy the Auldek are between seven and eight feet tall and a race of Blood Knights whose civilization has fallen into decadence. They are also Nigh-Invulnerable and immortal due to containing multiple souls.
  • The Giant from The Behemoth is an Eldritch Abomination that references the Rage Against the Heavens traits that are found in the mythological roots of giant stories.
  • Where would we be without The BFG? That is, the Big Friendly Giant of Roald Dahl fame. The other giants in the story were VERY nasty, however... also, despite the name, the titular giant is child sized compared to the others.
  • In Clive Barker's "Books of Blood," the story "In the Hills, The Cities" deals with a traditional battle between two unorthodox giants which are beings composed of thousands of human beings from the rival cities of Popolac and Podujevo, all citizens working together to form a single, massive being which then fights the "giant" of the other city. Unfortunately, one year the harvest for Podujevo is less than anticipated, and as a result one flank of the giant is weakened and the city-giant collapses, killing all constituent participants and causing the city-giant of Popolac to go collectively insane with grief.
  • In Brokedown Palace, one of the four royal brothers is a human giant. It's mentioned that the family produces them every few generations, suggesting a genetic proclivity towards gigantism.
  • In The Challenges Of Zona giants are actually mutant humans who both grow at an accelerated rate and never stop growing their entire lives. The two met so far are also Gentle Giants.
  • Most giants in The Chronicles of Narnia are fairly genial and usually on the side of the good guys, although there are some 'evil' wild giants who eat other sentient creatures.
    • The Gentle Giants featured in the fourth book eventually turn out to be less-than-gentle (though smarter than most of the other dim-witted giants).
    • The White Witch is rumored to be Giant and half Jinn. She's a sufficiently advanced alien of unknown genealogy but every member of the civilization was huge.
  • The giants in the The Chronicles of Thomas Covenant series are a friendly and advanced species standing about twice as tall as humans. They have an affinity for stone and are excellent sailors. They cannot be burned, but they still feel the pain of intense heat. They are generally a very sedate and even-tempered people, but can sometimes be provoked into a state of Unstoppable Rage.
  • Dark Shores: Killian's friend Bercola is a foot taller than most people, has white hair, white eyebrows and colorless eyes. She talks loudly and when she pushes Killian to get him moving, she almost topples him. From what we learn in Dark Skies, giants live on the Island of Eoten, worship Gespurn, god of elements, and like fighting.
  • Between the The Divine Comedy's circles of deception and betrayal, Hell is littered with giants who were so arrogant in their strength that they rose against the Heavens. This includes the Greek giants who fought to overthrow Zeus and Nimrod, the mighty warrior from Genesis who organized the Tower of Babel. Dante at first mistakes them for towers, which only tells you how huge the Devil is when Dante observes that he "matches better with a giant's breadth than giants match the measure of his arms." They are held except for Antaeus, who died before the Giant rebellion and so isn't chained. Virgil convinces him to put him and Dante in the Last Circle, which Antaeus does by picking them up from the top of the wall and putting them down at its bottom.
  • The Food of the Gods by H.G. Wells is about the discovery of a food supplement which, when ingested by newborn creatures (including humans), causes them to grow very large.
  • Gargantua and Pantagruel by Rabelais has giant protagonists. Their size is wildly inconsistent, becoming whatever is best for the story. For example, young Gargantua was able to ride common-sized horses and even visited a human brothel. However, usually he rides a horse which is the size of six elephants (making him 10-20 meters high). In another scene, cannonballs are tangled in his hair, and he he mistakes them for fleas (making him 50+ m high). His son Pantagruel is able to argue law in a courtroom, making him probably 10 m high at the most. However, he fights with a ship's mast, making his height closer to 50 meters. And later it turns out that there's a human city inside his mouth, which means he must be hundreds of kilometers tall!
  • The Brobdingnagians in Gulliver's Travels are as tall as church steeples and have a moral superiority in proportion to their physical size. When Gulliver describes European society, the Brobdingnagian king is disgusted. In contrast, the Lilliputians see Gulliver as a giant, and their own society is a parody of the worst aspects of European society. But just beacause they're morally superior doesn't mean there are some who are above tormenting Gulliver for kicks such as the bratty boy who tossed a rock at him, the court's dwarf, and the noblewomen.
  • Harry Potter also features giants. Most of them are the typical nasty brutes, but a few (including the half-giant Hagrid, one of the major characters) are friendly.
    • While Hagrid is more civilized than full blooded giants, he has an overt fascination with very violent and deadly magical creatures, and has a tendency to bring students too close to harm. For example, he sees no problem with keeping the giant spider, Aragog, despite the fact that it would love nothing more than to devour the occupants of the castle, and only spares Hagrid because he raised it.
    • Another giant character is eventually introduced: Hagrid's full-giant half-brother Grawp who, at first, is violent and uncontrollable (even towards Hagrid) but over the course of a few years, becomes "civilized" enough to wear a suit and sit at a funeral and is no longer mindlessly violent. By giant standards Grawp is quite small, being only 16 foot.
  • The Hobbit briefly features giants throwing rocks around in the Misty Mountains. An odd case, since they are mentioned only once The Lord of the Rings note  and never in the The Silmarillion, and there's no explanation of what they are or where they came from. Even in the Hobbit they have zero influence on the plot; the company is vaguely concerned they might get hit by an errant rock, but the huge storm raging at the same time is their main problem. The most common interpretation is that Bilbo just made them up when he was writing the book. In the film adaptation, however, they're absolutely real, colossal creatures of living stone, and the centerpiece of an extensive action scene where their battle nearly wipes out the entire party.
  • Curators of The Vigilance in House of Suns are one-time humans who found a way to live forever at the cost of never-ending growth. Curators live in zero-gravity, so square-cube law is not a problem for them. The only Curator we meet is about 700 meters tall, and has lived inside his spacesuit for 100,000 years, after outgrowing many previous ones. He speaks and does everything else v-e-r-y s-l-o-w-l-y. Oldest Curators are some ten times his size, and ten times slower still.
  • Robert E. Howard works:
  • In Inheritance Cycle by Christopher Paolini, part of the in-universe Dwarven mythologynote  is the creation of the world eight thousand years ago by gods from the bones of slain giants. Also, at one point, while drunk, the dwarf Orik claims that all non-Dwarf races are actually giants.
    Orik: If a fearsome giant were to meet you on the garden path, what might he call you, if not dinner?
    Eragon: Eragon, I would presume.
    Orik: No! He'd call you a dwarf, for a dwarf you'd be to him!
  • In Stephen Sondheim's Into the Woods, the giants are so big that they don't fit on stage, and when one of them steps on a human character all the lights go out... Doom, gloom, BOOM, cruunnnch...
  • In Kane giants are an elder race, described as generally proudly aloof, taciturn and scornful of human civilisation. Dwassllir, the last king of giants, whom we meet in "Two Suns Setting", is about fifteen feet tall, his hands are bigger than spades, and his speaking voice as loud as a man's shout. He turns out to be quite friendly.
  • In The Laundry Files, the Alternate Universe / Bad Future threatening the world in the first book was created when the Nazis of that world used the people killed in the Holocaust as a makeshift Human Sacrifice to summon a frost giant from Norse Mythology. Unfortunately for them (and the rest of that universe), the "giant" turned out to be more of an Eldritch Abomination and embodiment of cold that proceeded to drain all heat, freezing Earth and eventually the entire universe.
  • In Magnus, the giant Tsavo is described "the last progeny of the second preternatural race of supermen spawned by fallen angels."
  • Malazan Book of the Fallen:
    • The various races collectively known as the Tartheno Thelomen Toblakai and their derivatives, the Teblor, the Tarthenal and the Trell, stand over seven feet tall or more and are both wide and muscular, even the women. They are perceived as slow, not particularly smart and most of them, especially the Tarthenal on Lether, only reinforce that perception, though certain individuals greatly defy it. They are all descended from the Thel Akai, although they have acquired a flesh and blood physique somewhere on the way, instead of the stone of the Thel Akai. Also, most of the Tartheno Thelomen Toblakai races have bodies adapted to their size by having multiple organs, such as two hearts and four lungs. They are also mostly longer-lived than humans.
    • Karsa Orlong is a Teblor. He fills a muscular frame and is well over seven feet tall, which contrasts with most characters he meets. His people have once, in the past, been decimated so badly that they had to hide away in the mountains on Genebackis and take on a set of social rules designed to increase their numbers again. However, since most of those still alive were relatives and they continue to live in a remote location, even thousands of years later many children are born deformed. The Teblor live by the Asskicking Equals Authority rule, and Steven Erikson uses Karsa Orlong to deconstruct the Barbarian Hero trope.
  • Ology Series: Monsterology describes both cyclopes and true giants.
    • Cyclopes are colossal, hulking one-eyed humanoids that, despite having had a hand in building the structures of the Minoan civilization of Crete, are only barely sapient brutes nowadays.
    • Giants are only mentioned in passing, being sapient beings and thus not really a subject for a zoology work, but the one shown resembles a well-dressed British gentleman in every respect other than being over twice the height of a lamppost. Giants are also described as aggressive, but easily outwitted.
  • In L. Jagi Lamplighter's Prospero Regained, they are nephilim, the offspring of angels and men.
  • Stan Lee's Riftworld series has a race of giants from Another Dimension — they're basically scaled-up humans supported by telekinesis, genetically engineered by an alien AI. And nearly every one a Jerkass.
  • The Grass Giants from Ringworld are a very large (although they do engage in rishathra — sex with other hominids outside their species — so they're presumably not that much larger than normal) and herbivorous race of hominids that have adapted to fill the niche of big grazers like buffalo. The Ringworld is large enough that, presumably, they're not the only giant hominids present.
  • A member of a prehistoric race of giants, as yet undiscovered by paleontologists, appears in the Riverworld series.
  • Second Apocalypse: the Nonmen, in their flawless, alien beauty, already tower over most humans. A certain number of them, simply called the Tall, tower over normal Nonmen. It's not clear how or why they came to be Tall, or exactly how tall they are, but they are big enough to make a normal Nonman look like a "statuette" and have skulls as large as a man's torso.
  • A Song of Ice and Fire: Giants are a species of shaggy, ape-like people living in the frigid north of Westeros. They stand around fourteen feet tall, are strictly herbivorous, wield crude clubs in battle, and ride woolly mammoths. It's noted that their legs and hips are much larger, proportionally, than a human's, in order to hold up their massive weight. A dwindling species, giants are little more than a legend to the majority of the continent, despite once having been widespread throughout Westeros and Essos.
    • The Wildlings believe that particularly large humans (for instance Hodor at more than seven feet tall, Gregor Clegane at eight feet) have some giant blood, and the Mazemakers — an ancient civilization of very large people who inhabited the island of Lorath in the distant past — are also believed to have descended from human-giant unions. Despite this, it's not clear whether humans and giants can actually interbreed in the series' actual canon.
    • The far east of Essos was once home to the Jhogwin, a race of massive giants twice as tall as those from Westeros, inhabiting the northern end of the Bone Mountains. They were driven to extinction a thousand years before the start of the series by wars against neighboring peoples, although their massive bones can still be found among the mountains.
  • Giants from The Spiderwick Chronicles are hill-sized brutes probably best described as resembling a hunched bipedal mix of a trunkless and earless elephant with some kind of dinosaur, with six fingers on each hand. They can slumber for centuries on end and often eat salamanders or baby dragons to gain fire-breathing abilities. They play a significant role in the second series, as their awakening and search for food drives dragons into a frenzy and disturbs water fey.
  • In Andre Norton's Storm Over Warlock, Thorvald dubs a location Utgard, after a folkloric home of giants from his home planet.
  • There's a friendly giant in one of Mercedes Lackey's Tales of the Five Hundred Kingdoms.
  • The Rukh from The Traitor Son Cycle are smaller than most examples of this trope, but still towering over humans. They're humanoid in appearance (all too humanoid...), but animalistic in behaviour, and any powerful magic user can easily control them.
  • In Gene Wolfe's The Wizard Knight duology we first meet the Angrborn in the first book, The Knight, as massive men taller than trees and very destructive. It isn't until the second book, The Wizard, that it is properly explained that these are only half-breeds, and the real Angrborn are far larger. They in turn are dwarfed by their ancestors, the Giants of Winter and Old Night, who still dwell in Skai. There's also the Ogre Org, who isn't as big as the Angrborn, but is still massive. And invisible.
  • The giants of the Xanth series vary in size (but are always colossal). Some of them are invisible; they became that way by becoming so big that they became too diffuse to see, like a balloon inflated to the point of transparency. An important mountain pass was created by one of the biggest tripping over the range, at least according to in-universe folklore.

    Live-Action TV 
  • Unlike in the source material, where the giants were club-wielding sasquatchs, the giants in Game of Thrones resemble about 4 meters (13 feet) tall humans with massive foreheads and noses, unrivaled strength and oversized thick legs to make them Square-Cube Law compliant. They weave clothes for the cold climate, (this combined with their unique bodily appearance actually makes them rather neanderthalic and caveman-esque) and have advanced weapons like giant bows capable of shooting 213 meters (700 feet) up. They still tame and ride mammoths.
  • Giants are recurrent creatures in both Hercules: The Legendary Journeys and Xena: Warrior Princess, in one bible-based episode Xena meets Goliath himself (shown to be a good-hearted family man). Hercules fights a giant in the first episode.
  • El Chapulín Colorado features a giant in episode "¡Pero como has crecido, muchacho!" and its remakes "El gigante" and "El Chapulín no le tiene miedo a los gigantes", always with the All Just a Dream ending. A real giant appears in episode "La costurerita valiente" of the 80s show Chespirito by the same creator, as the episode is a mash of fairy tales.
  • Sliders shows briefly an alternate Earth with giant size humans while looking for a suitable place to live for a doomed Earth.
  • The Twilight Zone (1959):
    • In "The Little People", the giant spacemen are as big as mountains.
    • In "Stopover in a Quiet Town", the girl and her mother are at least 100 times the size of humans.
    • Subverted in "The Fear": A reclusive woman and a highway patrolman are terrorized by a 500 foot tall alien, which turns out to be an inflatable dummy designed by the real aliens (who are only a few inches tall) to frighten the humans.
  • The Ultras from the Ultra Series are commonly referred to by the In-Series Nickname Giants of Light (or Dark Giants for the extremely rare evil Ultra). Given they're 50 meter tall humanoids with even more strength than that would imply, it's a fitting description.


    Mythology, Folklore, and Religion 
  • Older Than Feudalism: Classical Mythology features various giants:
    • The Gigantes notably had a major conflict against the Olympian gods. The Greeks believed that earthquakes and volcanic eruptions were caused by these giants being buried beneath the earth. One fact about these Giants that aren't widely known was that they were born wearing armor and holding a spear and that they had snakes for legs. Not as much as Typhon's snake legs, though.
    • Typhon himself is a giant so tall that his head could touch the stars. He also had one or more snake tails for legs, and hundred dragon and animal heads. He belches fire and/or lava and has wings that cause storms.
    • The Hekatonkheires are as huge as giants, and each has a hundred arms and fifty heads. They're apparently immortal, like the gods.
    • Geryon, a giant from the Twelve Labors of Heracles, was said to have three heads, and in some versions three bodies and six legs.
    • Cyclopes are giants originating in Greek myth. There were two versions: the immortal smith assistants of Hephaistos; and the brutish, sheep-herding, man-eating fellows such as Polyphemos.
    • The myth of the Argonauts features the Gegenees, a set of six-armed giants marauding around the south coast of the Black Sea. Heracles brawled with them for a time.
    • In late antiquity, writers started getting the Titans (originally a group of gods) confused with the Gigantes, adding yet another bunch to the giant menagerie.
  • The Hadza people of Tanzania have stories of giants so large, they put elephants between their belts and clothes. They also claim that their distant direct ancestors were giants and were the first people to use fire, medicine, and lived in caves, sounding strangely similar to Homo erectus or Homo heidelbergensis.
  • Giants in Norse Mythology:
    • Similar to the Greek giants, the Jotun were perennial foes of the gods of Asgard, particularly the frost giants.
    • The frost giant Ymir was so large that his corpse was used as the construction materials for the entire Earth if not more. When he was killed, his blood drowned all the other giants, except for two that were on a boat.
    • There's also the mountain giants who are right behind their frost brethren in harassing humans and gods. Then there are fire giants, particularly Surt and the Sons of Muspel, who play a major role at Ragnarok.
    • Despite the antagonism between the gods and the giants, there were at least three gods who were also giants. Skadi blackmailed her way into the Vanir/Asar, but ended up staying loyal (despite the marriage she'd extorted falling apart — she became an official lover of Odin instead), Loki hung out so much with his Asar pals that Odin adopted him as a brother, and later went bad. Gerd was goddess of sex and Freyr's wife.
    • Note, however, that Jotun are not necessarily giant-sized. Indeed, "giant" isn't the best translation; a literal translation would be "devourer", but something like "Titan" would probably be more accurate for a modern audience, as we're talking about divine beings aligned to chaos and other primordial forces; another set of "gods" if you will.
  • The Bible and biblical lore:
    • The possibly half-angelnote  Nephilim were described as giants.
    • A similar example of a giant-as-antagonist: Goliath. Some versions of the story have him as a descendant of the earlier race. It's worth noting that Goliath's height is actually a matter of some dispute. The oldest scripts give it as "four cubits and a span", or about six feet, nine inches— big, but still within the range of possibility for a normal human.
    • Some more examples would be the people who lived in the Promised Land, but since we only have the word of some very scared scouts, this may be a bit of exaggeration.
    • The Anakim are another example. Numbers 13:33 in the King James Version describes them thusly "And there we saw the giants, the sons of Anak, which come of the giants: and we were in our own sight as grasshoppers, and so we were in their sight." Which, if taken literally, would make them big enough to qualify as Kaiju
  • Manicheanism, which incorporated biblical texts into itself, explains that giants were accidentally created when matter from the light world was forcibly expelled from the bodies of greedy beings from the dark world that stole and consumed it. Thus they are referred to as "abortions" and are treated the same way fallen angels are.
  • The idea of giants as enemies of the gods and as agents of primordial chaos is a pretty common trope in mythology, particularly the Indo-European kind. Supposedly, it's linked to a cultural memory of the conquest or displacement of palaeolithic peoples by neolithic ones, represented by the civilised gods overthrowing an earlier, primordial race more heavily associated with the elements. The exact "alignment" of the primordials differs from culture to culture, and some, such as the Norse, include primordials ranging from the Lawful Good Vanir, a tribe of nature gods, to the Chaotic Evil Fire Giants. Other examples of this include the Greek Hundred-Handed Ones and Gigantes (the Titans, despite the name, were simply an older generation of gods) and the twisted Fomorians of Irish myth. Outside of Indo-European mythologies, Abrahamic scripture has a similar portrayal of the antediluvian Nephilim ("there were giants in the earth in those days") and of Goliath and his four giant sons.
  • Giants are extremely common in Native American mythologies, where they are almost universally portrayed as cannibalistic boogeymen (sometimes boogeywomen) who capture misbehaving children who venture too far out into the woods and bring them to their mountain lairs to be eaten. Fortunately, they tend to be outsmarted easily. Interestingly, a few folklorists and Native Americans have identified these creatures with Sasquatches.
  • The Caucasian Nart Sagas have Arkhon Arkhozh, a scaly giant. In some accounts, he is a humanoid reptilian demon, while in other variants he is depicted as more serpentine.
  • Daidarabotchi are enormous youkai giants, usually depicted as having pitch black skin or as Rock Monsters. Many folktales across Japan credit them with various geographical features, from lakes being their footprints to mountains being piles of dirt they dug up.
    • Another youkai giant is the Tearai Oni (no actual relation to traditional oni), described as being vast enough to straddle mountains and usually seen vigorously washing their hands in the ocean.
  • The various tall tale stories of the United States and Canada include a few giants, such as Joe Magrac, who was a steelsmith in the early 1900s and may be based on a real giant, Stormalong whose ship had to be built on the Sahara, and the famous Paul Bunyan, who had a blue ox that was over 120 ax handles long across the horns, with Paul being so large that according to some stories, his "pillow" was the Rocky Mountains and his feet touched the Atlantic ocean. The ax blade for instance, carved the Grand Canyon, and a large barrel of water that spilled created the Mississippi river.

  • On the Shaq Attaq playfield, Shaquille O'Neal is five times larger than the other players. This is nothing compared to the backglass, where he is shown 30 times larger than everyone else, crossing the court in two strides while holding a minuscule basketball between his thumb and forefinger.

    Tabletop Games 
  • Bleak World: Giants are a playable race. They are part of the Jotun, a race of mythical giants who were kicked out of heaven by elves.
  • Dungeons & Dragons has a wide variety of giants, including the stereotypically brutish hill giants, the shy and reclusive stone giants, to the Norse-inspired fire giants (who look like gigantic evil dwarves!) and frost giants. Cloud giants (at least the half of them who are good; the evil half of the race is just as sophisticated, though) and storm giants lean more toward the Gentle Giant side of the archetype, plus they have innate magic.
    • Generally, giant types tend to follow a progression from early-game "mighty" giants (such as hill and stone giants), who are big and strong but not much else, to more powerful "magic" giants (such as fire and frost giants), who are more powerful and wield limited elemental magic, to "mythical", late-campaign giants (cloud and storm giants), who are rare to the point of being little more than legends to most people and immense in size, and tend to wield much more powerful magic — storm giants, for instance, are closely tied to weather and lighting-based magic.
    • There are also the giant-kin, a group of species of "giant-ish" beings who are smaller, less physically imposing and usually less intelligent than true giants, but are related to them and in some settings descend from them. The most famous giant-kin are ogres and trolls, but other species include the cyclopes and the hideous fomorians. Different Monster Manuals and other supplements introduce quite a few other races of giants, both "true" and giant-kin, some of which have several subspecies of their own — especially trolls).
    • The 4th edition of the game even references the Rage Against the Heavens subtrope by having giants as the servants of the Primordials, ancient foes of the gods in a very Norse Mythology-esque parallel. It also follows along nicely with Greek/Roman Mythology: First the Gods (Olympians) overthrow the Primordials (Titans), then the Primordials try to use the giants (Gigantes) to retake the throne, but fail. This was taken from the vague backstory of Forgotten Realms giants.
    • Giant society is highly stratified, with a complex social structure known as the ordning determining where each giant stands compared to the others. The various giant species tend to occupy specific places in the ordning: generally, this has storm giants on top, then cloud giants, fire giants, frost giants, stone giants and hill giants, with giant-kin at the bottom.
    • Giants are different in Monte Cooke's Arcana Unearthed/Arcana Evolved Dungeons & Dragons setting. They are only slightly larger than humans, at least without going through rituals to enlarge themselves, and in the backstory they staged a counter-invasion and destroyed the dramojh tyrants. They're the setting's benign dictators, largely embraced as such, and a standard playable race.
    • The Space Fantasy setting Spelljammer had the colossus, a giant roughly the size and shape of a small mountain that could navigate through space by jumping off the planet. (His speed was very low, though, unless he got engines installed somehow.)
    • In the Eberron campaign setting, ancient giants formed a number of highly advanced civilisations across the continent of Xen'Drik. After a series of major cataclysms the empires lie in ruins. Most giants have regressed to a more primitive state, with some powerful exceptions.
    • 3.5's Races of Stone and 4th Edition include the Goliath as a player race. They grow up to nearly 8 feet, which isn't large for a giant, but still the largest of any player race alongside half-giants, which are half hill giants. Before you ask, yes, A Wizard Did It (or maybe a sorcerer). What's more, despite their hill giant parentage, not only are they mentally on par with normal humans, they are arguably superior by virtue of their inherent psionic abilities. And, to further complicate things, in 4th edition version of Dark Sun, goliaths are half-giants.
    • Speaking of Dark Sun, apart from half-giants, (in 2nd edition at least) there were three races of actual Giants: Plains, Desert, and Beasthead (three guesses as to their defining characteristic). The first two were resistant to psionics (which is rather useful given their ubiquitous nature in the setting) while the latter actually had psionics themselves instead.
  • Palladium Books:
    • Palladium Fantasy: Giants are about 14-20 feet tall and come in most of the same flavors as D&D(though with their own names and a few twists, such as the Algor(Frost) and Nimro(Fire) Giants having Breath Weapons), and also include the noble Titans and the mutant Gigantes. There is even an entire kingdom of giants in the shadow of two volcanoes.
    • Rifts: Many species of giants from the Palladium Fantasy world made their way to Rifts Earth in various ways. A Titan runs what's left of Houston, Texas, and a mercenary Jotan (equivalent to a D&D Hill Giant, but smart) wears a suit of Power Armor that makes him look like a mech. The Iotnar of Norse mythology are even bigger and have even greater powers. There are also the Pogtal, an unrelated species of giant humanoids with huge jaws and More Teeth than the Osmond Family hailing from a world dominated by giant predatory reptiles, who are ancestral enemies of dragons.
  • Pathfinder keeps most of the Dungeons and Dragons base races of giant, in addition to adding a great deal of highly specialized varieties of its own and tying them into the setting's core backstory.
    • The first giants descended from the titans, the original rebellious creations of the gods. While most titans were imprisoned in distant corners of the multiverse for a variety of reasons, their passage across the planes resulted in the generation of the gigas, primordial giants closely tied to whichever plane they came from. The gigas in turn were the ancestors of the first true giants.
    • In the ancient past, the giants were slaves to the empire of Thassilon, whose rulers used them as workers to create their grand monuments, soldiers and weapons of war, and subjects for their magical experiments. The Thassilonians are also responsible for creating many, if not most, of the modern giant varieties — they originally enslaved the tribal stone and taiga giants, many of whom were warped with magic to become the ancestors of fire, frost, storm and cloud giants, among many others. Fire giants were further bred with other giant varieties to produce more specialized types, such as with stone giants to create slag giants and with taiga giants to create the enormous rune giants, who were slave overseers for Thassilon and still retain the ability to magically enslave other giants.
    • Much like in D&D, a caste system of sorts exists both in-universe and in terms of the Sorting Algorithm of Evil for gaming purposes. Trolls, ogres and the two-headed ettins are the least of giant-kind, and are usually fought first in adventures. They are then followed by cyclopes, hill giants, stone giants, frost and fire giants, and cloud and taiga giants. Storm giants are usually the strongest, the ones encountered last and the likeliest to lead all of the others... unless rune giants are also present.
  • Shadowrun: Giants are a regional variant of troll found in Scandinavia, and thus are like all other trolls descended from humans who spontaneously transformed when magic returned into the world. They're the largest metahuman type around, reaching three and a half meters on average, and lack the dermal bone deposits and prominent horns of other trolls. For reasons unknown, about one in four female giant births express as normal baseline humans; this does not occur among males.
  • In Spears of the Dawn, the giants of the Mountains of the Sun are roughly ten feet tall, with jet-black skin, flame-coloured hair and handsome, well-proportioned forms. They do not age, but can also not reproduce other than with humans, and with those their offspring is human with only a few giantish features such as an Implausible Hair Color. They were once the allies of the Nyalans and taught them much of their superior crafts, but they have since then grown hostile to humanity and shut themselves away.
  • Warhammer giants are the barbaric remnants of a once-great civilization devoured by the Ogres. Drunken, inbred and incredibly stupid, the giants roam the Old World fighting for whoever can provide them with enough to sate their enormous appetite for booze and bloodshed, most often the Greenskins and the Warriors of Chaos.
    • The Storm of Magic supplement introduces the Bonebreaker Giant, which is almost thrice as tall as a normal giant, which itself is already 5-6 times taller than an average human.
    • The Monstrous Arcanum includes Chaos Siege Giants, which have had armor and massive weapons grafted directly onto their bodies by the Chaos Dwarfs to turn them into living engines of war.
  • Warhammer 40,000: The genetic and surgical enhancements required to become an Adeptus Astares means ending up around seven feet tall before putting on your armour (which adds on another foot at least). And that's just the basic Space Marine. The Primarchs and God Emperor of Mankind were at least half again larger. Horus, when he killed Sanguinius and crippled the emperor, towered over his foes (mostly due to his [frankly enormous] power armor that makes a Space Marine look like an Imperial Guardsman in comparison).

    Video Games 
  • Age of Wonders features universally good-aligned giants who are close allies of the dwarves (and speculated to be related to the dwarves). Even larger and more powerful entities called Titans fight for the High Men, being creatures of intense discipline and righteousness.
  • The Banner Saga has the Varl. They are a proud warrior race standing at least twice as tall as a man, with unknown but finite lifespans lasting centuries, and horns growing from their foreheads. Crafted from clay by a dead god, they can't breed and there aren't too many left.
  • In the second The Battle for Middle-earth game, Mountain Giants are a unit for the "Corrupted Wild"/Goblin side. They are even bigger than Trolls, and due to their attacks of throwing boulders seem to be the same type of Giants listed at the top.
  • The Charlemagne Expansion Pack to Crusader Kings II features a chronicle of your dynasty that will randomly generate a significant event in years where no other significant eventsnote  occur. Such as a giant appearing and trampling villages. It's left as an exercise for the player whether this actually happened, or if it was just peasants telling tall tales.
  • Dark Souls
    • The Giants of Anor Londo in Dark Souls are armored behemoths that the gods conscripted into manual labor. While the three in Sen's Fortress don't speak and are hostile to the player, the Giant Blacksmith is a Gentle Giant that is always happy to see the player. Hawkeye Gough, one of Gwyn's Four Knights, the mightiest warriors in Anor Londo, is also a giant, though he's an archer rather than a melee fighter. He's also very friendly and philosophical, and helps the player take down the Black Dragon Kalameet.
    • Dark Souls II feature an entirely separate race of giants, stone-like beings with gaping holes for faces. The foot soldiers are about twice as tall as the average human, while the Last Giant and the Giant Lord who are heavily implied to be one and the same are twice as tall as the average giant. In the recent past, Drangleic had a Great Offscreen War against the Giants.
    • Dark Souls III features the return of the original giants, mostly as enemies, although there's one in the Undead Settlement who can be befriended fairly easily (he's probably not Hawkeye Gough, because he's nowhere near as erudite, but he did inherit the guy's ring) so that he stops shooting at you and focuses on shooting at enemies around you. It also contains Yhorm the Giant, who looks similar to the Giant Lord from Dark Souls II, with the same hole-for-a-face (though you can make out his eyes and the outline of a skull within it) and a weakness to a giant-slaying weapon that doesn't work on any other giant, suggesting he's of a different race. The Ringed City also introduces the Judicator Giants, the overseers of the Ringed City. The Judicators are some of the oldest beings in the setting, predating the beginning of the Age of Fire. They fight by using the same kind of summoning you use to summon phantoms as allies, but unlike you they are not mere Undead. As a result, they are able to summon a small army of phantoms against you.
  • In Disciples and its sequels, the giants are related to the dwarves, as both as children of Wotan, and often fight by their side. Vithar is a giant who protects the dwarven capital from their enemies and is Wotan's right-hand man. The titans are just as big but fight for The Empire (i.e. humans). They also appear to be all female. Additionally, there are wild giants who have no allegiance to any power. They aren't too bright, but anything using a tree trunk as a club can't be useless.
  • Doshin the Giant: The protagonist is an incarnation of the sun who appears every day at dawn, and his two sides grow larger by absorbing the love or hate of humans. The love giant, Doshin, wants to help humans, while the hate giant, Jashin, wants to kill them and make them suffer. He starts off 10m tall, and can reach a maximum height of 301m.
  • The Qunari of Dragon Age are sometimes called giants by non-Qunari, and not without good reason: they tower over the other races, common specimens being at least seven feet high. The largest yet seen was twice that, and towered over his fellows. Qunari are also born with horns, though some of them have them shorn (the Saarebas Ketojan, for example), and a rare few are born entirely without them (the Sten from the first game). Also unusually for giants in fantasy games, the Qunari have a very ordered society that dictates and cements an individual's place in society based on their talents, a strong urge to spread this philosophy to the rest of the world, a spectacular grasp of gunpowder weaponry in an otherwise Medieval setting, and a caste of mages known as Saarebas who are kept collared and supervised at all times to prevent any form of corruption. In some ways, they represent a Fantasy Counterpart Culture to the Ottoman Empire, though their religious philosophy bears more of a resemblance to Confucianism than to Islam.
    • Meanwhile, the Darkspawn borne from Qunari women-turned-Broodmothers, the Ogres, are the biggest and nastiest breed of darkspawn, outgrowing true Qunari by several metres. Fortunately, there aren't any Ogre Emissaries.
    • Dragon Age: Inquisition features actual giants: ten meters-tall monstrosities that can hold their own in one-on-one combat against High Dragons. They seem to have some overlap with Cyclops, as well, with their tusk-like fangs likely a nod to the theory that the cyclops myth originated with misidentified elephant skulls.
  • The Dungeon Keeper games have giants as hero units — defying the normal convention of them being evil (unless they get tortured into aiding the keeper). They are able to walk on lava without getting hurt and cannot be harmed by the Inferno spell, most likely due to their thick skin.
  • In Dungeon Siege 2, there exist Agallan Giants, a race of Ultimate Blacksmiths who live in seclusion in the mountains and are easily 50 foot tall, and a good deal wide as well. Descended from them are Half-Giants, who are more sensibly sized but still tower over any human. They are the offspring of a group of banished and cursed Agallans who lost their enormous proportions and limitless lifespan. Because the banished group had no female members, they were forced to interbreed with other species, and the result was a One-Gender Race of Half-Giants whose gene pool is doomed to be diluted into nothingness.
  • Dwarf Fortress:
    • A number of giants and related creatures appear as semi-megabeasts, rare and powerful creatures that periodically attack fortresses and can destroy buildings but which are more common and less dangerous than true megabeasts like dragons, hydras and Roc Birds.
      • Giants are the largest of the semi-megabeasts, but their threat is mitigated by their lack of proficiency with weapons. They live in burrows and sally out to plunder fortresses and villages in search of food and treasure. They have rudimentary intelligence yet are able to speak, and typically show up unarmed, though due to a bug they tend to pick up discarded pieces of clothing and beat people to death with them despite their uselessness as actual weapons.
      • Ettins are smaller, two-headed colossi; according to in-game descriptions, their heads have a tendency to argue. They aren't as big as giants, but need to be decapitated twice to be killed and can use weapons.
      • The one-eyed cyclopes are the weakest and least intimidating semi-megabeasts. In practice, they're still dangerous monsters easily able to tear their way through ranks of dwarf militia.
    • Bronze colossi are true megabeasts in the form of brazen giants over thirty feet in height. They feel no emotion, do not tire, are immune to pain and nausea, are extremely difficult to damage and cannot be stunned, making them some of the most dangerous things in the game.
  • The Elder Scrolls:
    • The series, as seen most prominently in Daggerfall and Skyrim, has a race of fairly standard Giants. ES Giants possess moderate intelligence, being capable of fashioning simple tools, clothing, and weapons. They are able to harness fire and are known to herd mammoths. Most Giants are nomadic, living solitary lives (or in small groups at most) as they travel from campsite to campsite, though some groups of giants are known to unite in clans which can number in the hundreds. Female Giants and children are rarely seen by outsiders, leading to the (incorrect) perception that Giants are a One-Gender Race.
    • There are said to be many different variations of Giants in Tamriel, though some are believed to be extinct. Typical Giants are 11-12 feet tall, but there are reports of Giants who are several times the size of an average man. There are also rare "Frost Giants" in Skyrim and Solstheim who are roughly the same size as a standard Giant, but are covered in white fur, have five eyes, and have two long, curved horns on their heads. Likewise, the Ilyadi were said to be "multi-eyed" Giants native to the forests of the Summerset Isle, but were driven to extinction by the ancient Aldmer when they settled the land. There was also a race of Giants native to Elsweyr, who were said to have built the Halls of Colossus, but who disappeared sometime prior to the 3rd Era.
    • Tamriel's Giants also have an interesting Multiple-Choice Past, with multiple conflicting theories regarding their origins. One of the most popular, especially among the Nords, is that they share an ancestry with the ancient Atmorans. The Atmorans were known to be tall, strong, and somewhat primitive. According to this theory, after coming to Tamriel from the northern continent of Atmora, the Atmorans split into two groups — one who would interbreed with Tamriel's Nedes (human ancestors) to become the modern Nords — and another who would, through unknown means, become the progenitors of the Giants. Other sources, however, make it clear that Giants existed in Tamriel before the Atmorans crossed the sea. The Dwemer were said to have gotten the nickname "Dwarves" from Giants they encountered in the Velothi Mountains after splitting off from the Aldmer, which occurred well before the Atmoran migration. The Aldmer themselves drove a "multi-eyed" race of Giants known as the Ilyadi to extinction when they first settled the Summerset Isles, which was even earlier. Standard Giants also have pointed, tapered ears like those of the Mer (Elves). In either case, there are known instances of Giants interbreeding and producing offspring with the other races of Tamriel, particularly Nords. This would suggest that, at the very least, Giants have a shared ancestry with the other races dating back to the Ehlnofey, a progenitor race from whom all extant races (save for perhaps the Lizard Folk Argonians) descend.
  • Final Fantasy:
    • Final Fantasy XI: The Gigas hail from the frozen far northern continent in the world of Vana'diel. They were employed as mercenaries by the Shadow Lord, but after the Crystal War, all the Gigas in the Middle Lands were trapped, unable to come home. They now reside almost entirely in Qufim Island and Delkfutt's Tower, although some of them are in Tavnazia or the Grim Up North areas in or around Xarcabard, or stuck in Korroloka Tunnel.
    • In Final Fantasy XIV, the Ancients of Amaurot were towering figures. Even the tallest of the modern races barely come up to an Ancient's knee. They were also highly intelligent, peaceful, and possessed a mastery of magic that modern races simply cannot match.
  • In Gems of War, the region of Stormheim (which is Norse-themed) features Frost Giants as a general troop. There's also Jarl Firemantle, a fire giant. Both carry large axes.
  • In Grow Cannon, you can build a giant foot after completing its skeleton, but you don't get to see the rest of its body if it has any.
  • Giants in Guild Wars are extremely ugly humanoids, often sporting tusks, horns, or spines on their arms. They stand roughly two to three times the height of a human.
    • Oddly, several races that could be categorized as giants, such as the jotuns, are not; instead they are classified as ogres.
    • It is noted that the modern-day giants have no relation to "True Giants", a now extinct race of much larger giants.
    • The Norns (made playable in Guild Wars 2) are a 9 foot race of Horny Vikings who can shapeshift into their totem animal
  • Mabinogi giants are about 9-10 feet tall and are a player race. They are at war with the desert elves.
    • The prequel, Vindictus, has a currently-unreleased giant character named Karok. He wields a battle pillar, and can use grapple attacks on bosses.
  • In Odin Sphere, the Berserkers of Ragnanival are a race of men that never stop growing throughout their lives, and Odin, as the eldest amongst them, is massive. It could also have something to do with Wagner's blood flowing through his veins, after Odin made a pact with the former.
  • In Phantasy Star Online 2, the native sentient race of the planet Harukotan (or at least the males) are large, tall humanoids that resemble Japanese oni demons. These giants can be further divided in Shironians and Kuronians: Shironians are slightly shorter than Kuronians and bare more resemblence to humans, while Kuronians are more demonic in appearance. Some Kuronians are even larger: the Shironia field boss Gigur Gunnegam towers over most Kuronians, and the Emergency Quest boss Magatsu is big enough to eat other Kuronians for breakfast.
  • The peaceful Sapha of Ragnarok Online are called giants, and with good reason - their sprites are actually one to two heads taller than player sprites. They appear to have very large clawed hands and tree branches for hair, have a caste system and grow up in communal areas, and need to subsist on a mineral called bradium or else they will turn to stone.
  • RuneScape has many type of giants, including ice giants, fire giants, hill giants, moss giants, even a cloud giant.
  • Shadow of the Colossus, the eponymous colossi. The smallest ones are nearly as big as an adult elephant, while the largest is sometimes mistaken for a great tower the first time players see it.
  • In Skylanders: Giants, there are eight giant Skylanders, who canonically were also the first and in the game's backstory fought against the Arkeyans. They're twice as tall as the Core Skylanders, both in-game and in toy form, and trade movement speed for Super Strength (or Mind over Matter in Ninjini's case) that lets them perform impressive feats of strength. Outside of Giants, they can also interact with specific objects in SWAP Force.
  • The Force Unleashed II figures the only way to top the rancor from Return of the Jedi is to throw in a several hundred foot tall monster that is capable of crushing a rancor in its hand. And it still manages to get beaten!
  • Tales of MU: Giants are a mixture of the Dungeons & Dragons version and various mythological influences, as most MU races are. They're apparently primordial beings who warred with the forces of chaos, the gods, and the dragons in some combination before leaving the world for another plane, possibly by climbing a stalk or a trunk. Only one of them has been seen in the main story, a badly undersized storm giant named Pala (Icelandic for "small") who "commutes" to Magisterius University.
  • Total War:
    • Total War: Warhammer: Giants appear in multiple rosters as immense humanoids, generally as tall as siege towers, including the basic one in the Orc army and horned and mutated ones in the Chaos, Norscan and Beastman rosters, with the Beast Giant outright sporting a large pair of ibex-like horns and thick coat of fur. They're best suited for bludgeoning their way through hordes of infantry and for attacking fortifications, but share a combination of low armor, low speed and a large hitbox that makes them very vulnerable to missile fire. There's also the Tomb Kings' Bone Giant, which strictly speaking is simply an enormous stone construct made to resemble a titanic skeleton and which wields a bow the size of a tree.
    • A Total War Saga: TROY: Giants are immense, but very much human, soldiers who can be recruited on certain islands. Their size and heavy armor allows them to serve as living siege engines, as these are otherwise missing in the firmly Bronze Age setting.
  • Warcraft features many different types of giants and similar beings.
    • True giants were created by the Titans to help shape the world. The most common types are sea giants (aquatic giants that look like big scale-covered humanoids) and mountain giants (big roughly humanoid things made of rock). Other types include ice giants and molten giants (recolors of the Mountain Giant model), crystal giants of Outland (basically stone giants with a fancier model) and storm giants (who were afflicted by the Curse of Flesh that afflicted many of the Titan-made elemental races, turning into essentially supersized humans rather than the rocky beings other giants are).
      • Giants in the setting are apparently something along the lines of guardians created by the titans, not unlike the dragons. However, they tend to be more territorial and aggressive. Their second main duty is that they are the titans' craftsmen — for instance, the sea giants sculpted the sea floor and mountain giants made mountains and hills. They're almost all hostile, however, although there is a friendly sea giant god in Azshara and a faction of frost giants in Storm Peaks.
      • The viking-like vrykul probably count too. While they're much smaller than the actual giants, they're still well over twice the height of humans, and even the few vrykul who aren't serving the Lich King are every bit as aggressive as giants tend to be portrayed. The vrykul are also hinted to be an offshoot of giants affected by the Curse of Flesh, and humans are basically outright stated to be further corrupted vrykul... so, in WoW, humans are small giants.
    • The ogres could also count, although they are completely unrelated to the Titans, having originally come from the world of Draenor (the orc homeworld). They are normally dumb, whether they have one head or two, unless they learn magic, at which point they get really smart. Further, the ogres are descended from a long line of increasingly gigantic, cyclopean beings known as the Breakers.
      • The ogres are directly descend from the cyclopean ogron, who in turn descend from the properly gigantic gronn, who further descend from the colossal magnaron, who are made up of as much lava and rock as of flesh. The magnaron themselves descend from an ancient, extinct species of even larger giants known as the colossals, who were so large that entire settlements have been built in their massive skeletons. The first colossals, in turn, were formed from boulders fallen from the body of Grond, a mountain given life by a Titan to fight a tide of alien flora that threatened to overwhelm early Draenor.
      • The ogron also gave rise to the orcs as well as the ogres — meaning that WoW's orcs, much like its humans, are technically a species of very small giants.
    • There are also flesh giants, but these are really big homunculi created by the Scourge rather than actual giants.
  • Warlords Battlecry has them as an Orc subrace, green and relatively dumb just like them. They do, however, tend to occupy important positions among their ranks (Asskicking Equals Authority is in full swing with orcs, and giants are about as tall as a tower, and much wider and fatter), and often bear armor of their making. Oh, and on top of being just as belligerent and warlike as regular orcs, they're almost always hungry, and don't have many qualms with eating food that talks back.
    Who's for dinner?
  • Wizardry VI: Bane of the Cosmic Forge and VII: Crusaders of the Dark Savant feature giants, usually in the transition between the early and middle game. Most are of the big bruiser type, but are also resistant to magic. The Elite Mooks and Superpowered Mooks versions add extra abilities, such as vomiting on the player.
  • The Giants in Xenoblade are a race of humanoids that were among the first lifeforms on Bionis, but are extinct in the current era, to the point that Zanza is possessing Arglas, the last Giant alive. Several sidequests are dedicated to recovering their ruins, tombs, and treasures, and these sidequests reveal that the Giants were sworn enemies of spiders, but the spiders hunted them to extinction. Much later in the game's main story, Dickson reveals himself as the last Giant alive after Arglas's death and Zanza's awakening.

    Web Comics 
  • Averted in Bruno the Bandit where giants are more like André the Giant than fantasy giants; only a couple of feet taller than humans, just much bulkier. They're also the only race with Four-Fingered Hands.
  • In The Challenges of Zona giants are human mutants who grow at an accelerated rate and never stop doing so although their growth rate slows when they become adults. This is a more detailed accounting
  • Erfworld has the Titans, the beings who created Erfworld. They can only be described as omnipotent mile-high Elvis impersonators.
    • In addition are somewhat more traditional giants, being about 10 or so feet tall, the Western Giants are styled after baseball players... complete with a reference to steroid use.
    • Parson himself probably counts. He's not as big as the really big units but all the normal sized humans of Erfworld are the size of children compared to him, and he seems to be classified as a "heavy" unit by the game-mechanics/physics of Erfworld. Stanley, his diminutive superior, barely even comes up to Parson's kneecap (Stanley is short even by Erfworld standards, though; most of the other "human" characters appear to range between about 3.5 and 4 feet tall, assuming Parson is 6' or so). Over the course of the story Parson has been gradually getting smaller as well; he's still the tallest guy around but not by anywhere near the margin he started with, generally about a head taller.
  • In The Inexplicable Adventures of Bob!, Molly's second clone, Jolly, is very, very large.
  • Stars in Nebula, as compared to every other species in the setting. While it's entirely possible that all of the characters (as mixtures of Genii Locorum and Anthropomorphic Personifications of celestial objects) are giants by human standards, stars are easily on a different level. If planets were human-sized, stars would be close to twenty feet tall, with the other main characters barely coming up to Sun's knees. Stars have normal amounts of intelligence, are Wreathed in Flames, and almost always take positions of authority over the people around them.
  • In The Order of the Stick, the heroes find themselves attacked by a legion of rock-throwing frost giants while flying their airship through a narrow mountain pass.
  • Ruby Nation stars Ruby, a young woman who stands at 9' 1" thanks to Applied Phlebotinum.
  • Vápnthjófr saga: The Weapon Thief is a Jotun from Norse Mythology looking like a fifteen-foot-tall white aurochs (undomesticated cow).
  • Riot Girl from Wootlabs — a former high school bully turned 200-ft hero wannabee.

    Web Original 

    Western Animation 
  • A giant appears in episode "Let Sleeping Giants Lie" of the Adventures of the Gummi Bears.
  • Hector Jotunheim from The Amazing World of Gumball, one of the title character's classmates. He resembles a Godzilla-sized Sasquatch, but most of the time only his feet are visible since they're the only part of him that fit into most shots. He's a very Gentle Giant, to the point of dullness to others, as his mother (who is a diminutive witch for some reason) shelters him heavily as his emotions are every bit as enormous as he is.
  • American Dragon: Jake Long had an episode where a giant kid named Hobie ran away from home to become a professional wrestler. Bertha, a female giant with comically smelly feet, appeared in a few episodes in both seasons.
  • Babar has two giants; a King Kong expy giant gorilla in "Conga the Terrible" and a furry bear-like giant in "Adventures on Big Island".
  • Hilda: There are multiple kinds of giants in this shows' universe. In episode 1 and 2 we meet the midnight giant Jorgen and his girlfriend, both of which are tall as mountains (in fact, the female giant actually resembled a mountain while she was sleeping). They are the last two of their kind on Earth. Later, in episode 11, we meet the forest giant, which is hardly taller than a large tree.
  • A gigantic pirate appears in the animated Puff the Magic Dragon, evidently in direct response to Jackie Draper a.k.a. Paper's fear of pirates. He's actually a giant cook.
  • The Ren & Stimpy Show: In "The Littlest Giant", Stimpy cooks up a fairy tale about a giant who gets teased by all the other giants for being smaller than them, but befriends a farmer when his tears of loneliness save the farmer's lands from drought.
  • Giants are also part of the Smurfs universe, they are gentle in general if well treated. One shows prominently in episode "Gargamel's Giant" been manipulated by Gargamel but showing to be gentle at the end. In "The Littlest Giant" is shown that giants may be perfectly well adjusted and civilized, whilst in "The Magic Fountain" a brutish giant tries to kill and eat Johan a Peewit. Bigmouth, the most recurrent character, is technically an Ogre, although he just looks like a oversized human.
  • Super Robot Monkey Team Hyperforce Go! had an episode with a similar plot to the New Mazinger example listed above, where the team and their titular super robot were stuck on a medieval planet of giants, and the robot was mistaken for a knight errant.
  • Disney's Tall Tales features the story of Paul Bunyan. This version has him as being as tall as tall pine trees and small mountains, and is a Gentle Giant.

    Real Life 
  • Persons with gigantism, a pituitary-related health condition leading to extreme height, were commonly featured in old-time sideshows. Promoters of such entertainments often boasted of (and shamelessly exaggerated) the extraordinary tallness of their performers. (To medically qualify as a giant, one must be 7 feet and up.)
  • 18th and 19th century anatomists often collected unusual human skeletons, and those of human giants — the taller, the better — were among the most sought-after. Charles Byrne, an 8'2" Irishman who died in 1783, was so afraid of being skeletonized that he asked for his lead coffin to be sunken in the Thames. It was, but it was empty: Byrnes' body had already been stolen.
  • Gigantopithecus, an extinct primate that our human ancestor Homo erectus may very well have encountered. From The Other Wiki: "Based on the fossil evidence, it is believed that adult male Gigantopithecus blacki stood about 3 m (9'10") tall and weighed as much as 540 kg (1,200 lb)". Zoinks. (Note that while Gigantopithecus has at times been portrayed as a hominid, it was in fact more like a giant orangutan.)
    • A more typical giant would be Meganthropus, an actual hominin close to Homo erectus but that had twice the bone density of a gorilla, and is thought to stand 8-9ft. tall. We say "would be" because the latest analyses of the fossils show that they were identical to Homo erectus, and not as large as previously thought.
    • Similarly, some fossil belonging to Homo heidelbergensis, aka Archaic Homo sapiens, show them to be giants on their own right, standing tall at around 7 feet tall. That said, remains of other heidelbergensis are shown to be smaller, aroiund the size of regular humans or even Neanderthals, which hints at a great diversity amongst them, akin to our species.
  • Purported giant remains have been the subject of many an archaeological hoax, such as the Cardiff Giant.
  • While unconfirmed, the Castlenau Giant of the late Stone Age or Early Bronze Age might have stood at a massive 11.5 feet tall. As seen here.


Video Example(s):

Alternative Title(s): Our Giants Are Different


Yhorm the Giant

Yhorm is a towering, powerful warrior who wields a huge two-handed cleaver in combat. The descendant of an ancient conqueror, Yhorm became a Lord of Cinder through his prowess on the battlefield. He is either the second or third member of the Big Bad Ensemble to be fought by the Player Character, depending on whether Aldrich was defeated before or after him.

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Main / OurGiantsAreBigger

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Main / OurGiantsAreBigger