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- "Biggest... biggest fish I ever caught."
- —Dominic Santiago, after killing a Leviathan
The Leviathan was a species of aquatic animal that lived in bodies of water in the Hollows and later on the surface. These massive beasts were feared by the Locust, who wouldn't go near their territory. Several of these creatures were turned Lambent during the early stages of the Lambent Pandemic, though some remained normal.
Operation: Hollow Storm
- "You'd have to cross the lake, but nobody does except the Locust. Those waters ain't safe."
- —Chaps warning Marcus and Dom of the Leviathans
Before being encountered by the COG, the Leviathan territory was avoided by the Locust at all costs, due to the danger of the beast. The Stranded who had headed into the Hollows to seek shelter from the war had some knowledge on them. The Stranded Chaps warned Marcus Fenix and Dominic Santiago about the lake under Mount Kadar and how it was the only way to reach Nexus. Left with no choice but to advance, the soldiers commandeered a Locust craft and began making their way across the water towards Nexus. They fell under fire by multiple Locust Gunboats, and during the confrontation they got their first view of the Leviathan as it pushed their raft towards the edge of the lake. After boarding and capturing one gunboat while the other retreated, they fell over a massive waterfall. Once at the bottom, the Leviathan, which had been stalking them beneath the water, killed the two Manglers that moved the Gunboat and began to attack it, along with the Gears on board, with its tentacles. The two soldiers were able to cut the offending tentacles off with their chainsaw bayonets before they sank the gunboat. Marcus determined that the Leviathan's weakpoint was its eyes and the inside of its mouth. When the Leviathan bit onto their boat, they forced its mouth open by shooting it in the eyes, and threw Bolo Grenades down its throat, killing it.
Near the beginning of the Lambent Pandemic, while investigating the Sinking of the Harvest, Marcus Fenix remembered his and Dominic Santiago's encounter with the Leviathan in the Hollow and wondered if one was responsible. Marcus suggested that as the Leviathans were sea creatures, flooding the Hollow wouldn't have killed them and instead may have allowed the Leviathans to escape out into the open water. However, they were unsure if there was any more of the creatures other than the one they had killed in the Hollow. Nevertheless, Marcus had a warning passed onto the CNV Clement to keep an eye out for possible Leviathans.
While trading Jonn Massy, the Clement pinged something with strange acoustics, causing Commander Garcia to ask Marcus about the Leviathans, but Marcus didn't know what they sounded like underwater. With the strange acoustics continuing, Garcia questioned if Marcus was sure about the Leviathan and he admitted that he wasn't, but promised to keep an eye out while Dom tried to reassure himself that the Leviathan they encountered had to be a freshwater creature and they should be safe in saltwater. The strange acoustics ultimately proved to be a Gorasni submarine, the Zephyr and not another Leviathan. While discussing the situation with Chairman Richard Prescott, Colonel Victor Hoffman was relieved that it had turned out to be time-forgotten Indies instead of a Leviathan.
Later, three Lambent Leviathans attacked Vectes carrying Polyps. The first was killed after a King Raven emptied an entire belt of chain gun ammo into its head. The second was killed by a combined torpedo attack from the submarines Clement and Zephyr, and the third and final Leviathan was killed by a blast from the Hammer of Dawn.
Another Lambent Leviathan later attacked New Jacinto. COG forces attempted to use the Hammer of Dawn to defend themselves, but the satellites failed, forcing them to find another way to destroy the creature. It was eventually chased to the surface by depth charges and killed by a grenade being thrown down its throat.
During the First Battle of Azura, the Locust used a Leviathan to ferry a recon patrol around the island in a wooden barge before their assault. The Leviathan barge was spotted by KR Zero-Five and warned the island about it. When the King Raven returned to the island after spotting the barge, the Malestrom Barrier was dropped to let them through, allowing the Locust to see the island briefly.
In a separate incident, yet another Lambent Leviathan attacked the CNV Sovereign and was killed after Damon Baird maneuvered a cargo container of Tickers and dropped it on the Leviathan. The resulting explosion destroyed the Sovereign and Centennial Bridge. This one was said to be twice the size of the other Leviathans.
Voyage to Azura
- "It's got us! That son of a bitch is pullin' us by the tail."
"Shoot it in the mouth!"
- —Dizzy Wallin and Marcus Fenix as a Leviathan in the Serano Ocean tries to pull them down with its tentacle
A regular Leviathan attacked Delta Squad's submarine on its way to Azura. After dealing with a swarm of Manglers, it attempted to bite the submarine, but narrowly missed. It chased the sub through a minefield and through narrow archways where it tried to bite through the hull. The Gears retaliated by taking advantage of its gaping mouth and directing their fire into it, while the Leviathan got stuck in the archways of the underwater cave. Unable to reach the sub, it resorted to attempts to crush the submarine with its tentacles. The Gears kept shooting to fend it off and it was finally killed when it caused the tunnel rock to collapse and crush it while attempting to take down the sub.
Interwar Period and Swarm War
Due to their aquatic nature, the Leviathans manage to survive and flourish in the Serano Ocean even with the Imulsion Countermeasure Weapon, suggesting that they were not as exposed as other Hollow creatures to Imulsion. Although still feared by fishermen, their eggs are prized food items and sold amongst humans such as Riftworm Village or as a prime ingredient for snacks like Mega-Tasty Morsel. Moreover, their teeth (specifically the smaller tooth of the inner jaw) was kept as trophies and display items.
The Leviathan had an incredibly thick hide, capable of resisting small arms fire and explosions. It's only viable weak points were its eyes and mouth. In their natural state, they were territorial predators, only attacking those who came too close.
The maw of the Leviathan, like some Hollow creatures, has two sets of teeth. The outer row of teeth possess canines as big as a man. The inner row of pterygoid teeth are much smaller (although still large) and are around 2 feet in length. Instead of being conical to catch fish, the teeth were serrated, like that of a Shark, to rip out the flesh and bones of Whales. Inside the mouth were six tentacles - probably a modified esophagus - used to grab hold of prey whilst the throat itself is filled with rows upon rows of papillae to ensure the morsel cannot escape. The mouth of a Leviathan is the perfect catching mechanism.
Behind the scenes
- The Leviathan is a sea monster referred to in the Bible. In Demonology, the Leviathan is one of the seven princes of Hell and its gatekeeper.
- Leviathans were never seen outside of the Hollow before Operation: Hollow Storm. In Gears of War: Jacinto's Remnant, its suggested by Marcus Fenix that the flooding of the Hollow may have allowed the creatures to escape into the open water, although this theory was suggested before any of the Leviathans were encountered besides the one killed by Marcus and Dom. In Gears of War: Anvil Gate, the same theory was given by Samantha Byrne after spotting the Lambent Leviathan at Pelruan.
- As seen in Gears of War: Coalition's End, the COG's policy for dealing with Leviathans was to avoid it if it was a regular Leviathan and kill it only if it was a Lambent Leviathan. If it was a regular Leviathan, it had been decided that it wasn't worth wasting the ordinance to kill it.
- The Lambent Leviathans appear to be larger than the regular Leviathans encountered by Delta Squad. In Gears of War: Anvil Gate, one of the Leviathans at the First Battle of New Jacinto was described as being whale-sized which was "a baby" compared to the one that sank the CNV Sovereign which was twice the size. In contrast, the Leviathans encountered in the Hollow and the Southern Serano Ocean were relatively smaller, particularly compared to the one that sank the Sovereign, though they were both large in their own right.
- As the outer teeth are 6 feet high or around the height of man like Marcus Fenix, one can estimate and calculate the length of the Leviathan at around 258 feet, or 78.6 meters long.
- The Leviathan has two rows of teeth, of which the inner row is called the pterygoid teeth. Like realworld animals such as snakes, sharks and the extinct mosasaurus, this was an evolutionary adaptation to ensure that the prey cannot escape.
- The throat also have rows of spines called papillae, which was an adaptation to make sure organisms like jellyfish won't slip out. Modern leatherback turtles are animals that are known to have this feature due to their diet.
- Gears of War 2 (First appearance)
- Jacinto's Remnant (Mentioned only)
- Anvil Gate
- Coalition's End
- Dirty Little Secrets
- Gears of War 3
- Gears 5
- Gears of War 2
- Gears of War: Anvil Gate
- Gears of War 2: Act 3: Gathering Storm
- Gears of War: Jacinto's Remnant, pages 307-308
- Gears of War: Jacinto's Remnant, pages 361-374
- Gears of War: Jacinto's Remnant, page 378
- Gears of War: Coalition's End, pages 208-215
- Gears of War: Dirty Little Secrets: No Hiding Place
- Gears of War 3: Act I
- Gears of War 3: Act IV: Watery Grave
- Gears of War 3: Act V: Reckoning
- Gears 5: Act 2 Chapter 1: Recruitment Drive
- Gears 5: Act 1: Chapter 3: This Is War
- Gears 5: Act 2 Chapter 1: Recruitment Drive
- Gears 5: Act 2 Chapter 1: Recruitment Drive
- Gears of War 2: Act 3: Gathering Storm Brackish Waters
- Gears of War: Anvil Gate, page 321
- Gears of War: Coalition's End, page 210