"From the blackness of the deepest ocean it came.
The one called Mantis brought its evil army and built a fortress to protect itself from me.
It has wasted its time.
My swords shall taste your evil blood."
- In-game introductory text for the Terrestrial Plane of Water
Chakan, Sega Genesis
A vile hybrid of snake (which satisfies the reptilian requirement of this Scales & Tails contest) and praying mantis, this aquatic fiend is one of the legendary evil forces that must be slain in 1992's Sega Genesis and Game Gear Chakan: The Forever Man video games. Said titles were based on the Chakan graphic novels written and illustrated by Robert A. Kraus (R.A.K. Graphics.)
Despite its intimidating visual design, Mantis represents a rather disappointingly easy boss fight. Most of the time, all the creature does is leap around its lair, attempting to land on, and crush, Chakan with its enormous bulk, but it will also occasionally stick to the ground in order to take swipes at our immortal hero with its scythe-like forelimbs. In the Genesis version, you can simply go to the bottom right corner of the chamber, hold your weapons out, and the fool will oblige you by continually impaling itself on your blades until it dies. In the Game Gear incarnation, having Chakan repeatedly perform jumping spin-slashes, while Mantis is airborne, will quickly put an end to the monster's existence.
Mantis was modeled from scratch over a period of three days and finished with acrylic paint and ink.