While many characters have a Catchphrase, it's difficult for a monster, animal, or other kind of non-intelligible creature to have one. As such, they'll often have a recurring noise they make that serves as their calling card: a signature roar.
This is not just a roar that a monster happens to make; it is unique to that creature, or in the very least hearing it will instantly remind one of it, thus making it Recognizable by Sound.
A Signature Roar is usually followed by beating. Compare Hell Is That Noise, Signature Sound Effect and Mighty Roar. When the signature roar comes out of an obviously different creature as a comedic Shout-Out to the original monster, see Silly Animal Sound.
- Chopper's Monster Point in One Piece.
- When Unit-01 goes berserk, she frequently lets out a chilling howl.
- Attack on Titan has the Titan Eren's roar, which he bellows right before doing something incredibly awesome.
- Yu-Gi-Oh! has the Blue-Eyes White Dragon roar, which is oddly high-pitched for such a large monster. Several other monsters also have recognizable roars.
- Naruto has Kurama the Nine-Tailed Fox, who in addition to using stock monster roars has a shrill, rasping howl that contrasts sharply with its deep, gruff speaking voice.
- In more recent comics, Incredible Hulk has one. It's often rendered in green, sound-effect text, regardless of the color of the other sound cues.
- Both Aliens (aka Xenomorphs) and Predators have distinctive roars or screeches that are instantly recognizable.
- Godzilla's iconic and trademarked roar is heard at least Once per Episode. It was originally produced by rubbing a glove coated with pine-tar across a double-bass. Other monsters in the franchise have their own distinctive roars.
- The live-action versions of the Hulk has the title character rarely speaking. He does, however, have a distinctive roar since Lou Ferrigno played him in the TV show and voiced him in the movie, the other movie, The Avengers, and the cartoon from the 90's.
- The T. rex's roar in Jurassic Park is impossible to mistake for anything else and has frequently been recycled. Interestingly, the iconic high-pitched, almost pinched sound in the Rex's roar was provided by a baby elephant's first attempts at trumpeting. The rest of it was built out of a lion, a tiger and an alligator. Ardent fans of the film series will be able to recognize the sounds of the other dinosaurs just as well; some of the notable ones are Brachiosaurus and Velociraptor.
- The lion in Metro Goldwyn Mayer's Vanity Plate.
- Star Wars
- Chewbacca's gargling roar is quite distinctive and a trademark of the character.
- The Sand People have a whooping war cry that sounds like a roar.
- The Grey's alpha wolf, alone among the generic howling of the other wolves, has a distinctive snarl so loud and resonant that it qualifies for this.
- Tarzan: Johnny Weissmuller's iconic and trademarked Tarzan yell. Surprisingly, Disney's Tarzan only uses his distinctive yell thrice: when he kills the leopard that was terrorising the ape tribe, when he leads the attack on Clayton and the hunters, and at the end of the movie, announcing himself as the Lord of the Jungle.
- The Nazgûl in The Lord of the Rings film trilogy have a distinctive screech that is often the first sign of their presence. The scream is a mix of Fran Walsh (Peter Jackson's wife) screaming into the microphone mixed with pig and horse cries. The Balrog was apparently voiced by the sound of a lump of concrete dragged on the ground, then slowed down.
- The Thing (1982): The alien's otherwordly wail, even scarier when it's emitted by an almost human looking being.
- Tarzan's yell qualifies, as despite being a human, he's known for his famous jungle cry.
- The Chronicles of Narnia: Aslan is known in-story for his signature roar.
- Animorphs: The red-tailed hawk's distinctive cry (usually written as "tseeer") for Tobias, and the "keee-row" shrieks of the aptly-named Howlers.
- In Malediction Trilogy sluag (a kind of huge, poisonous snails) have their signature BAROOOM! roar.
- The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim has dragons. They're the only enemies whose voices are given multiple recorded sounds to accommodate for the Doppler effect. The sound of a distant dragon's roar carried to you on the wind is both incredibly subtle and yet simultaneously unmistakable. Much closer to earth, and arguably more terrifying is the roar of the many Bears, Sabre Cats and Frost Trolls, each one unique and each one spelling doom for a low level dragonborn. Hope you have a companion or a summon spell!
- The Cleric Beast of Bloodborne constantly roars at you, unlike most examples, he is screaming in agony.
- In Chrono Trigger, Lavos has a very well-recognized Sreeeeeeaaaaach-sounding roar.
- Ganon's screech in The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time.
- All Pokémon have a distinctive cry; while the anime has them say their own names, the video games have them making digital noises (often being more advanced and realistic sounding the farther along you go). The earlier games had a tendency to reuse sound clips for multiple species with some modulation, though, with some Pokemon sharing cries as a result (Charizard and Rhyhorn's are basically the same, for example, as are Pidgeot and Chansey). As of Pokémon X and Y, almost all of the cries have been redone, making many of them more distinct and/or realistic, as well as giving each Pokemon numerous variations of their cry that are used in Pokemon Amie for the sake of expressing different emotions like joy, anger, and sorrow.
- Going further, Pikachu had its iconic anime cry in Pokemon Yellow ("Pikachu!") and now has a similar cry in Pokémon X and Y. ("Pika Pika!")
- The Ultra Beasts, which hail from Ultra Space, have alien cries that all feature the same distinct metallic "hwoo" sound towards the end. The Cosmog line and Necrozma, which also come from Ultra Space, feature the exact same sound (though Cosmog's is trunciated).
- The Tank's roar in Left 4 Dead is always a signal for disaster.
- Bowser of the Super Mario Bros. games has two different well-known roars from separate eras: the more bestial, hissing roar first heard in Mario Kart 64 and also prominently used in Super Mario Sunshine and Super Smash Bros. Melee, and the deeper, more human-like roar first heard in Super Mario Galaxy and featured in every subsequent game in which Kenny James provides Bowser's voice.
- Most bosses from Terraria use the same roar sound effect when transforming into their second form. Whenever you hear this, you know something bad is about to happen.
- While most bosses use the same roar or no roar at all, the Wall of Flesh has a completely unique roar used for no other boss in the game.
- Mass Effect: the Reapers' distinctive BWOOOOORNGGGGG, which is generally the point when everyone both in and out of universe has to go and change pants. Also, Banshee screams.
- In Final Fantasy VII, the cries of the Planet are pretty distinctive and, while kind of beautiful like whale song, a bit heart-breaking.
Bugenhagen: "Didn't you hear it? As if to say... I hurt, I suffer..."
- Almost every monster in Monster Hunter has a distinctive roar and other vocalizations, to the point where it'd be easier to list the monsters who do not have unique sounds.
- In Evolve, each of the monsters has a unique and distinctive roar, most of which seem to incorporate multiple sounds. Goliath has the standard throaty roar overlapping a steady howl, Kraken's roar has a burbling pattern to it, Wraith has a clacking hiss, Behemoth has a high pitched shriek combined with some standard dinosaur sounds, and Gorgon has insectile chittering layered over more typical roaring.
- Dawn of War has the inimitable BOOM of a Baneblade's main cannon firing.
- Each of the four Divine Beasts from The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild has a unique 'cry' that rings out when the player first encounters them, and whenever the player manipulates an aspect of them to assist with navigating their interiors and solving the puzzles within.
- The Five Nights at Freddy's series kind of zigzags this, seeing as the jumpscare noise changes every game, though for the most part a scream is connected to a certain character; FNAF 1's scream for Freddy himself, FNAF 2's for The Marionette, FNAF 3's belongs to Springtrap, FNAF 4's for Nightmare Fredbear, Sister Location's for Ennard, and Pizzeria Simulator's is split between the four main enemies.
- The main outlier (and a closer take on this trope) is Golden Freddy. Whenever he appears in a game, his jumpscare sound is unique in some manner; slowed down in 1, louder and clipped in 2. Ultimate Custom Night, however, gives him a totally unique jumpscare sound, a Raptor-like demonic screech.
- One of the most beloved and feared of Azeroth's aggressive creatures is the murloc in Franchise/Warcraft. They have a distinctive gargling sound. Although quite cute, their tendency to come in packs earned them a fearsome reputation. Many longtime players will still flinch when they hear the noise. It turns out the sound is created by gargling (unfiltered) yogurt.
- Many animals have a distinctive roar that is impossible to mistake for anything else, such as lions, elephants, bears, and so on. Hollywood creative license, however, can often give people the wrong idea of what animals actually sound like. A good example of this is the Bald Eagle. Most films actually use the sound of a Red-tailed Hawk. The Bald Eagle actually has a very high-pitched call, to the point of seeming like Vocal Dissonance for such a large bird.
- Most lion roars in works are actually edited tiger roars because their roars are considered fiercer and more dramatic.