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Rockclaws in Godzilla vs. Kong. This image has been brightened for clarity.
Alternate names Rock Critter,[1][2] Rock Creature,[3] Unidentified Rock Creature,[4]
Arachno-claw,[5][6] Lava Crab,[7]
Rock Crab,PUBG[8] lava creature,[9]
crab-creatureGvK novel
Saxum Brachyura
Species Giant crustacean-like creatures
Height 25-52 feet / ~16 meters[8][3]
Average weight 11,000 metric tons (Northern),[3]
7,400 metric tons (Southern)[3]
Forms Grub, adult
Place(s) of emergence Hollow EarthGvK, Siren IslesGxKTC
Allies Other Rockclaws
Enemies Doug
Designed by Ken Barthelmey, Xander Smith[2][9]
First appearance Godzilla vs. Kong

The Rockclaw is a burrowing species of crab-like monster that resides in the Hollow Earth. It first appeared in the 2021 Monsterverse film Godzilla vs. Kong.


According to artist Ken Barthelmey, the creatures had no formal name during the production of Godzilla vs. Kong, with the staff opting to call them Rock Critters.[1][2] This name was also used in the film's art book and a display at Godzilla Interception Operation Awaji.[10] The film's Japanese theater program indicated that they were not yet identified in-universe either, labeling them unidentified organism (Rock Creature) (未確認生物(ロッククリーチャー),   Mikakunin Seibutsu (Rokku Kurīchā)) and stating that their designation by Monarch is "unknown."[3] They were variously identified as "Arachno-claw[s]" (a creature which appears in Peter Jackson's 2005 King Kong) by Max's English audio description for the film,[5][6] Lava Crabs by VFX supervisor John DesJardin,[7] lava creature[s] by artist Xander Smith,[9] Rock Crabs in PUBG Mobile, and crab-creatures in the film's novelization.

The creatures were finally identified as Rockclaws in the video game Godzilla x Kong: Titan Chasers, which also gives them the cryptozoological classification Saxum Brachyura. The latter is a combination of the Latin word saxum, meaning "rock," and the infraorder of crabs, Brachyura. Juveniles of the Rockclaw species are known as "grubs."


Xander Smith's final 3D maquette for the Rockclaw

The Rockclaw's design was laid down by Ken Barthelmey based on the description that they be a "camouflaged creature that blends in with the Hollow Earth rock."[2] According to artist Xander Smith, the creatures also "might have" been composed of crystals at one point in Godzilla vs. Kong's script.[11] Barthelmey took inspiration from crabs, adding claws which could extend from their shell and experimenting with various head and mouth designs; director Adam Wingard preferred a four-segmented, beak-like mouth.[2] Smith finalized the creatures' design in 3D using ZBrush.[11][12]

Main article: Rockclaw/Gallery#Concept art.


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The Rockclaws are crab-like, with carapaces that resemble boulders when half-submerged in the ground. They have both endo- and exoskeletons[citation needed], clawed hands, and bony, beak-like pincer mouths.


The Rockclaws are classified by Monarch as "destroyers," alongside the likes of King Ghidorah, the Warbats, and more.[3] Rockclaw grubs are geovores, consuming rich minerals to strengthen their armor.


Upon the examination of the stomach contents of Rockclaw specimens, traces of several minerals including granite, peridotite, magnesium, and iron were discovered.[3]



Godzilla vs. Kong

As Kong dashed through the Hollow Earth, his footfalls awakened dozens of Rockclaws half-submerged in the earth. As they scrambled to hide, one was swiftly snatched up by Doug.



The Rockclaws average a top land speed of 52 miles per hour, or roughly 84 kilometers per hour.[3]


The Rockclaws can burrow beneath the ground at average speeds of 36 miles per hour, or roughly 58 kilometers per hour. As a result of this burrowing, the creatures can generate magnitude 2.4 earthquakes.[3]

Physical abilities


The Rockclaws' pincers have a clamping force of 5,400 pounds per square inch, or roughly 37,200 kilopascals.[3]


The Rockclaws use their boulder-like carapaces to blend in with the ground of the Hollow Earth to hide from predators.


According to the Godzilla vs. Kong theater program, the Rockclaws are capable of three unspecified maneuvers: Pincer Bomb (ピンサー爆弾), Scatter Cutter (スキャッターカッター), and Boulder Dash (ボールダーダッシュ).[3]

Video games


Godzilla vs. Kong: The Official Movie Novelization

The Rockclaws act the same as they do in the film, although they are attacked by several reptiles instead of just one.



Main article: Rockclaw/Gallery.


Rockclaw roars


Ken Barthelmey work process on designing the Rockclaw and Shimidah

See also


This is a list of references for Rockclaw. These citations are used to identify the reliable sources on which this article is based. These references appear inside articles in the form of superscript numbers, which look like this: [1]

  1. 1.0 1.1 Rock Critter name.PNG
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 2.3 2.4 Barthelmey, Ken (19 July 2021). "Godzilla vs. Kong - Creature Designs". Behance.
  3. 3.00 3.01 3.02 3.03 3.04 3.05 3.06 3.07 3.08 3.09 3.10 Toho Stella 2021, p. 14
  4. URC.png
  5. 5.0 5.1 Sudomerski, Joshua (12 April 2021). "@KingRexy328 @AstoundingBB Sadly, you can't see it since there aren't any subs for the audio descriptions... but you can listen to it! (Timestamp 1:01:58)". X.
  6. 6.0 6.1 @omegafreelancer (12 April 2021). "@KingRexy328 @AstoundingBB". X.
  7. 7.0 7.1 Frei, Vincent (24 May 2021). "Godzilla vs Kong: John 'DJ' DesJardin – Overall VFX Supervisor". Art of VFX.
  8. 8.0 8.1 GxK sizes.png
  9. 9.0 9.1 9.2 Smith, Xander (16 April 2021). "We did a ton of detailed exploration at @thestudioadi for the lava creature in #GodzillavsKong..." Instagram.
  10. @KaijuNewsOutlet (23 November 2021). "New images from the "Godzilla vs. Kong" exhibit at the Godzilla Interception Operation Awaji attraction". X.
  11. 11.0 11.1 Smith, Xander (14 April 2021). "More sketches from Godzilla v Kong, at one point in the script the rock creatures might have been composed of crystals, so we did quite a bit of exploration with the team at @thestudioadi..." Instagram.
  12. Smith, Xander (19 April 2021). "Congrats to all the artists involved on #GodzillavsKong, it was an incredible experience to design one of the monsters in hollow earth with the team @thestudioadi , here is the final approved concept art for this guy..." Instagram.



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