One of a triumvirate of lion-like beasts, along with the Chimera and the Griffin. It possesses the power of fire and the body, and has dominancy over the Griffin.

His actual name is "Ruka," is bigger than his two brothers (but is shorter than Azhadak), and is the most aggresive of the three. Basically, if you were to approach one of the beasts, Nekuzha (the griffin) would ignore you unless you tried to start something. Azhadak (the chimera) would drive you off, but leave you alone if you complied. Ruka would kill you on sight. In truth, his hostility isn't a result of him being pure evil or anything, but driven by fear.

More Images

Full version of the painting I took the above image from. I borrowed inspiration for the background from the Shadow of the Beast boxart. I botched the guy big time and made him look like either a midget or a little kid, but because of the method in which it was painted - the background is made up of glazes over black and white streaks, but the trees and figures are full paint - I couldn't correct him. Acrylic on canvas, actual size 40" X 30"

I did this one just before the above one, with the most notable change being Ruka sporting a rigid, scorpion tail. By the way, I altered this painting since taking this photograph, and there's lava running down the volcano on the actual painting. Also, whenever I look at this image I get hot as hell, and you can only imagine how uncomfortable it was to actually paint. Acrylic on canvas, actual size 36" X 36".

Random design note: I wanted to give each beast a different part around their mouth, reflecting one of the non-lion animals that composes it. So, the chimera has the snake fangs, and the griffin has the beak-like tusks. I couldn't figure out what to give the manticore, and originally gave it a pair of blades coming down from where the mustache connects to its face; it was impractical and too similar to the griffin's tusks. While making the glaze layout for this painting I painted said blades as a couple of swipes, and noticed they kind of looked like the mustache you see on oriental dragons. Well, turns out, manticores aren't just a lion and a scorpion, they're also often part dragon. So, the mustache stuck, and I can thank a happy accident for finally getting the manticore's design down!

Here's how the three "standing beast" paintings are supposed to be arranged, with each one aimed at the one they're strong against. I figured I'd put this here since the Manticore is last alphabetically, and doesn't have as many pictures as the other two.

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