The third season of ‘The Witcher‘ was officially wrapped up today, and it’s been a wild ride so far. There are some significant changes coming our way in the fourth season, but one aspect that remains constant is the monsters. Witcher books, series, and games managed to build quite an impressive bestiary, and so far, we had the pleasure of seeing many monsters come to life on our screen. The giant bug-like monster that Ciri fought in the Korath desert is one of them, and we decided to tell you more about it. Let’s see what exactly Sand Monster is.
Sand Monsters are giant insectoids that primarily inhabit the Korath desert. They usually attack by burrowing in the sand, hoping to catch their prey off guard in order to suck it dry from all the liquids, including blood. Ciri fought the Sand Monster in the Korath desert as she was ambushed by it, and the monster was strong enough to gravely injure and poison Unicorn Ihuarraquax. The only notable weakness that Sand Monsters have is hard ground, through which they cannot burrow with ease and their soft tissues beneath the hard shell.
Now that we’ve covered the essentials, it’s time to analyze it in a bit more detail. If you’re interested in more information about the Sand Monsters and how to best approach fighting them, stay with us and keep reading!
Ciri is, at this point, an expert monster hunter
Much of season 3 focused more on humanoid enemies instead of monsters, which is a shame, but still, we’ve gotten a glimpse into some impressive monsters. Primarily Jackapace a burrowing creature that has a peculiar ability to smell elves. And Aeschna, an aquatic monster that attacked Geralt, Ciri, and a party of bards in open waters.
Ciri proved herself capable enough to be able to face even the deadliest monsters that the Continent has to offer, and part 2 of season 3 did not disappoint in that aspect.
We’ve seen Ciri wandering the desert, facing several demons, both real and imaginary. Most of the dangers that she encountered were mental in nature. She saw her mother’s and grandmother’s visions, both designed to break her spirit and submit to Falka. Other dangers were more physical in nature, such as the threat of dehydration and starvation and other predators that wander the Korath desert. Ciri and Unicorn Ihuarraquax encountered one such predator at the worst possible time. So let’s find out more about it.
Sand Monsters ambush their prey by burrowing
A Desert is generally an inhospitable environment with few resources to offer, so pretty much anything you encounter in it will be nasty in nature, with a lot of pincers and thick hard carapace.
One such nasty creature is Sand Monster, which inhabits the Korath Desert, known as “The Frying Pan” due to its terrain and high temperatures.
The Sand Monster that Ciri encountered was hiding in plain sight. It was burrowed in the soft sand with only part of its shell exposed so as to appear as a pile of random rocks on the ground. Sand Monsters usually burrow in the ground, creating tunnels and traps into which their prey can easily become trapped.
They have several sharp and venomous pincers and sharp bristles covering their exposed soft parts that aren’t thick shells.
Like most other creatures in Korath, Sand Monsters use their pincers and venom to eliminate their prey and later suck it dry of all fluids, including blood. They can easily move in the sand, but hard ground creates quite a challenge. They can’t burrow in it, which forces them to expose their soft tissues.
How did Ciri manage to defeat Sand Monster?
Ciri knows quite a lot about many monsters that came to inhabit the Continent after the Conjunction of the Spheres. Much of that knowledge was transferred to her from Geralt, Vesemir, and other more experienced Witchers. Geralt grilled Ciri about several monsters, including the Aeschna. Ciri passed each test successfully since she could properly recognize the monsters’ weaknesses, including the weakness of Sand Monster.
Like most animals (monsters) that have thick shells, it’s their primary system of defense. Underneath you can find soft and vulnerable tissues. Ciri decided to use this fact against the Sand Monster. She managed to break away a piece of its shell which momentarily weakened the monster that was looking for a way to kill her. Ciri used a piece of the monster’s shell to bludgeon it to death, revealing green bodily fluids
Does Sand Monster appear in the books or the games?
Sand Monster does appear in the Witcher Books, in the same scene from the Korath desert. However, it’s important to note that the term ‘Sand Monster’ is used because its official name is unknown.
In the games, the closest we have to Sand Monster is Sandcrab, a giant insectoid monster that Geralt encounters during the ‘Through Time and Space’ quest in ‘The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt.’
Sandcrabs can be found in the Ddiddiwedht Desert, situated on one of the random arid worlds that Geralt and Avallac’h visit during the quest. Sandcrabs that you see in the games are much more colorful in nature, but they primarily use the same hunting methods to eliminate their prey.
They tend to jump from the ground, ambushing their prey but are allegedly only dangerous in large numbers. They are notable for having a large horn, and even though they have wings, it’s unknown whether they are able to fly with them.