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- For the World of Remnant episode of the same name, see Grimm (WoR episode).
Overview Image Gallery
They are described as "creatures of destruction" that lack a soul; hence, they are unable to use Aura. They are also drawn to feelings of negativity - such as envy, sadness, loneliness, hatred, etc. - often congregating on the source of these emotions.
- 1 History
- 2 Biology
- 3 Grimm Pools
- 4 Grimm Species
- 5 Notable Characters
- 6 Hybrids
- 7 Trivia
- 8 References
The Grimm were created by the God of Darkness in order to destroy the creations of the God of Light. Eventually, the brothers ended their feud by creating something that could both create and destroy, namely Humanity. However, despite his involvement in creating Humanity, the Grimm were still left to roam Remnant and prey on them. According to the fairy tale The Two Brothers, the Grimm are motivated by resentment towards their younger kin; the God of Darkness was more amused by Humanity's determination and ingenuity and thus ignored his original creation. This explains the Grimm's disinterest in animals in contrast to their obsession with destroying Humans, Faunus, and anything the two peoples build.
Regardless of their motivations, the Grimm have been locked in an existential war with Humanity for as long as can be remembered, seeking to destroy them and all of their creations. After the God of Darkness killed the first wave of Humanity, he left the Grimm alive before he left Remnant. Following the reemergence of Humanity, the Grimm began to attack again. At first, it seemed as though they would succeed, as Humans did not have the strength to fight them. However, Humans discovered the power of Dust, and with it, the Grimm were driven back. During this time, Humans enjoyed a time of peace and soon formed their own Kingdoms, which grew to survive and prosper. However, this time would not last indefinitely.
While Grimm mindlessly wonder Remnant, they have a hidden master in Salem, an ancient and mysterious figure from Remnant's forgotten past that is able to both control and create them. She currently leads the Grimm against Humanity.
While Grimm are initially mindless and heedless of risk during their youths, leading them to simply attack any Humans on sight, some Grimm are so powerful that they have survived to live for hundreds of years. In that time, they have evolved and learned from their experiences fighting Humanity. This leads them to exhibit restraint and the patience to avoid taking unnecessary casualties in futile conflicts; instead, they stay close to Humanity's borders, waiting for the opportunity to come where they can finally strike. Because of this, mankind is in ever-present danger, even in times of apparent peace. Bartholomew Oobleck recounts this in the episode "Search and Destroy" when he tells Ruby Rose how intelligent some species, such as the Goliath, have become over the years.
The Grimm also, for many years, disrupted land-based travel and communications between Kingdoms. After the Great War of Remnant, the invention and production of the CCT towers replace futile land-based communication systems with instantaneous wireless electronic messaging capabilities.
Additionally, the Grimm appear to be the predominant species in the world of Remnant as Humans and Faunus appear to be limited to four primary pocket settlements referred to as Kingdoms, which are guarded by Huntsmen, as well as several villages that exist with mixed success. Attempts by the Kingdoms to expand beyond their borders are often met with resistance, and even failure, such as the loss of an entire sector of the city of Vale to the Grimm.
In recent history, the White Fang attempted to cause a breach in the city of Vale and let the Grimm enter and destroy the Kingdom. However, the attempt ended in failure as multiple Students, Huntsmen and the Atlas Military managed to seal the breach and kill the Grimm that managed to get through.
Later, Merlot Industries began experimenting on Grimm and created mutants using a special serum created by Dr. Merlot. Before he had a chance to use these Grimm to attack Beacon Academy however, Team RWBY/Team JNPR put a stop to his plans and destroyed his main facility.
During the 40th annual Vytal Festival tournament in Vale, the Grimm are attracted to the main city and Beacon Academy due to growing negativity caused by the plans of Cinder's Faction and an attack with the help of the White Fang, Beacon Academy was overrun in an event known as the Fall of Beacon and attempts to retake the Academy from the Grimm are still ongoing.
In the past, the cold climate of Solitas managed to keep the Grimm at bay due to it being too cold for them to survive. However, they have recently begun to adapt to the cold due to Salem making them more resistant and started converging on the Kingdom of Atlas.
Eventually, the Grimm managed to attack Mantle during the Battle of Mantle and the people of the city were beginning to be evacuated until General James Ironwood stopped halfway through and decided to leave Mantle to die when he learned Salem was on her way to Atlas herself.
Once Salem destroyed the Hard-Light Dust Shields protecting Atlas, she landed Monstra on the island and started to create an army of Grimm to attack Atlas. While the Atlas Military tried to hold off the Grimm during the Battle of Atlas, Monstra was eventually destroyed and took many of the Grimm it created with it, although there were still a few left.
In the episode "The Next Step" the births of Grimm are depicted, with Beowolves emerging from black pools in the Land of Darkness. However, most of Humanity is unaware of the origins of Grimm. Ancient Human cultures believed the Grimm were animals possessed by evil spirits or even the tortured spirits of animals themselves. Further study has disproved this theory over time, however, due in part to the discovery of even more species of Grimm which have no animal counterparts, such as Creeps and Griffons. With the discovery of new types of Grimm every day, scientists are left with more questions than answers.
Grimm come in a variety of shapes and sizes; the latter appears to be a factor of age. Grimm are very biodiverse as different individuals may be born with less size, armor, spikes, etc. They are said to be the only creatures without souls, thus being deprived of the use of Aura, but they make up for this with strength, durability and savagery. Some Grimm even have special abilities such as possession or usage of lightning and fire. Grimm are stated to be attracted to generally negative feelings such as sadness, hostility, anger and fear, and even congregate in areas that, although Humanity has long since abandoned, still hold residual traces of these feelings.
This behavior will even lead to them to join in on an attack in progress if the Humans being attacked begin to panic. Grimm typically form packs or other types of large groupings with other members of their own specific species. While some lone Grimm may stray from the pack for hours or even months, they will inevitably rejoin their group to continue their instinctive drive to hunt the people of Remnant and destroy any artificial creations associated with them.
The longer a Grimm lives, the larger it becomes, with species such as the Beowolves growing from just over the size of an average man to massive behemoths that dwarf Atlesian Knight-200s. Although Grimm have a more reckless and aggressive nature during their youth, older Grimm who have managed to survive their battles have the tendency to learn from their experiences. While sometimes requiring hundreds of years, the Grimm's accumulated experiences over the course of surviving their battles with man can cause them to begin exercising caution.
This perverse form of self-preservation can even lead them to avoid unnecessary conflicts altogether. Yet, despite this ability to learn, their instinctual hostility still remains, as shown by their preference to patrol the borders of Kingdoms for any weaknesses they might someday exploit. This demonstrates that for all their apparent intelligence, older Grimm simply use it as a means to become more effective in their singular drive and purpose of killing.
Grimm display no enmity towards normal animals, and they only clash during territorial disputes. Humans and Faunus are the only races they attack on sight. Grimm can also choose not to eat, and it is commonly believed that they do not require sustenance. When a Grimm dies, their corporeal form evaporates, preventing detailed anatomical or biological studies. This also means that Huntsmen that kill for sport cannot stuff and mount Grimm bodies as trophies, making replicas instead.
Also of interesting note is that Grimm usually die off when in captivity if they cannot kill their captors or escape first, implying that they cannot be kept alive by normal means.
Initially, the cold climate in Solitas proved to be inhospitable for the Grimm for a very long time. Over time, however, the Creatures of Grimm grew to adapt to the cold of Solitas, now said to be the strongest species of Grimm. However, in recent history, the Grimm adapted at a supernaturally fast rate, leading many to wonder the cause of this change.
Grimm are shown to have tar-like interiors underneath their skin, which can splash into things as if it were blood before dissipating into smoke.
In RWBY: Before the Dawn, Shade Academy students discover that Grimm are not only attracted to negative emotions, but also their very souls – their Aura. Powerful Auras are like Grimm magnets, causing them to drop their original targets in favor of the more powerful supply of Aura as though they were moths to a flame. It is unclear whether it is just unlocked Aura or locked Aura, and it's specified as only Human and Faunus Aura, despite animals having it.
Additionally, attempting to transfer Aura to the Grimm instead causes them to attempt to drain it from you.
Similar to Semblances, Grimm have different types. While most types are unknown, Possesion-Type Grimm have the ability to posses inanimate objects to use for themselves or even other species of Grimm and people. Most Grimm simply use brute force and some have mental attacks on people.
There is also an as of yet unknown method for grafting Grimm anatomy to a Human body, as seen with Cinder Fall's left arm. However, there are two critical weaknesses to those who undergo such a process. First, Aura cannot protect the Grimm component due to retaining the Grimm's soulless nature. Second, the graft user is vulnerable to the power of the Silver-Eyed warriors due to the Grimm's weakness to their power. On the other hand, such a graft user is afforded several abilities as well. One ability is the power to forcibly absorb and potentially assimilate the powers of a Maiden. Another is the power of elasticity; Cinder Fall was able to extend her Grimm grafted left arm several meters while still appearing to maintain physical strength.
The graft user also appears to "bleed" from the Grimm component in the form of black smoke - the same way a true Grimm does. Furthermore, Cinder was capable of feeling intense pain when Ruby's silver eyes activated and when a glass fragment pierced her arm in her duel with Raven Branwen. Given Salem's demonstrated ability to modify the bodies of Grimm through magic, it is likely that this is the primary means by which the graft is created and attached to the Human host.
Grimm that have been genetically modified to be superior to even Alpha Grimm in every way. They even had entirely new powers like exploding and creating waves of crystal-like bone spikes. Dissimilar to all other Grimm their eyes, markings and inside of their bodies were green instead of red. Even their spikes looked less like bony spines and took on an appearance more similar to glowing green crystals. So far the only species that have been seen in mutated form are Creeps, Beowolves and a single Death Stalker.
- Main article: Grimm Liquid
Grimm spawn from a viscous, tar-like substance. Pools of this substance appear in numbers in the Land of Darkness. Grimm of sufficient size like the Wyvern and Monstra were able to produce this substance and create new Grimm. The Wyvern could create drops of tar that created Creeps, Beowolves and Ursai while Monstra was large enough to create waves of tar from its mouth that created a Grimm army when it landed on Atlas.
Salem created a river of Grimm Liquid under Solitas which she used to in her attack on Atlas.
|Apathy||Willpower-Draining Aura, Ear-Piercing Scream||Humanoid Shape, Long Arms, Deformed Face|
|Beetle||Power Transfer||Beetle Body|
|Beowolf||Lunges, Claws Strikes, Bites||Black Fur, Bonelike Spines|
|Beringel||Grappling, Throwing, Punching||Black Fur, Bonelike Plates|
|Blind Worm||Biting, Head Charging, Spitting Acid, Swallowing||Bone Plates, giant mouth, acidic blood|
|Boarbatusk||Charges, tusks, body rolls||White Bone Plates, Four Eyes, Large Tusks|
|Cenitaur||Acid Spit, Bladed Arms||Black Skin, External Bone Plates, Acid Sac, Bladed Arms|
|Centinel||Acid Spit, Biting, Ensnaring||Black Skin, External Bone Plates, Segmented Body, Strong Jaws|
|Chill||Temporary Human Possession||Glowing Eyes|
|Creep||Ramming, Bites, Tail Swipping||Bonelike Spines, Two-Legged|
|Death Stalker||Claw Grabs, Stinger Strikes||Black Exoskeleton, White Bone Plates, Glowing Stinger|
|Geist||Possession||Black Skin, Bonelike Spines|
|Goliath||Stomping||Black Skin, Bonelike Spines, Giant Tusks|
|Griffon||Charging, Claws||Black Fur, Feathers, Bonelike Spines, Avian Wings|
|Horse Grimm||Charging, Stomping, Kicking||Horse Body, Black Smoke, Bone Protrusions|
|The Hound||Adapting||Canine Body, No Eyes, Wings|
|Imp||Arm Stretching, Screech||Humanoid, Bone Protrusions|
|King Taijitu||Lunges, Fang Bites, Constriction||Bonelike Spines, Grimm Markings|
|Lancer||Firing Stinger, Ramming, Projectiles||Wasplike Body,Armor|
|Leviathan||Fire Breath||Webbed Limbs, Large Tail|
|Manticore||Clawing, Biting, Tackling, Stinging, Fireballs||Black Fur, Feathers, Bonelike Spines, Avian Wings, Stinger Tail|
|Megoliath||Charging, Stomping||Mammothlike Body, Black Fur, Frozen Skin, Giant Tusks|
|Monstra||Flight, Spawning Grimm||Giant Whalelike Body, Gravity Dust Spikes, Red Wings|
|Nevermore||Headbutt Charge, Spearlike Feather Quills||Black Plumage, Wing Claws, Bonelike Headpiece|
|Nuckelavee||Extendable Arms, Sonic Roar||Equine Body, Humanoid, Horns, Slender Arms, Hooves|
|Ravager||Biting, Clawing||Black Fur, Bonelike Spines, Red Wings|
|Sabyr||Biting, Charging, Clawing||Black Body, Large Canines, Frozen Skin|
|Sea Feilong||Lightning Breath, Ramming, Wind Gust, Biting||Scales, Dorsal Fin, Collapsible Wings, Tendrils, Forearms|
|Seer||Telecommunications, Strangulation, Sharp Tentacles||Red Tentacles, Black Body|
|Shadow Hand||Sharp Claws, Elasticity, Energy Absorption||Clawed Arms|
|Sphinx||Bite, Tail Strike, Fire Breath||Wings, Snake Tail|
|Spider Grimm||Illusion Casting||Spiderlike Body, Three Eyes|
|Sulfur Fish||Superheating, Combining Sulfur Swarm||Insectlike Body, One Eye, Three Tails|
|Tempest||Flight, Storm Generation||Black Medusa, Red Tentacles|
|Tentacle Grimm||Tentacles, Merging Grimm||Small Skull Body, Tentacles|
|Teryx||Lunges, Claw Strikes, Bites, Flight||Raptorlike Body, Wings|
|Ursa||Lunges, Claw Swing, Bites||Black Fur, Bonelike Spines|
|Wyvern||Ramming, Flight, Spawning Grimm||Black Skin, Bonelike Spines, Batlike Wings|
- Dromedon - A camel-like Grimm that can spit acidic venom. Fox Alistair battles one in Feldspar. They are shown to have armored humps.
- Jackalope - A huge rabbit-like Grimm with black fur, branching red and white antlers and powerful hind legs. A Jackalope is encountered by Velvet Scarlatina in Feldspar in RWBY: After the Fall. They later make a return in RWBY: Before the Dawn when Coco Adel and Carmine Esclados face a pair of Jackalopes.
- Ziraph - A three-headed Grimm that resembles a giraffe. Their bodies are covered in red spots that bear resemblances to a leopard and each head has two horns. They are described as being five stories tall and having razor-like plates on their four legs as well as long tongues they use to ensnare people and swallow them whole. They are powerful enough to the point where it took the entirety of Team CFVY to defeat one of them.
- Owl Grimm - Owl Grimm are described in RWBY: Fairy Tales of Remnant in the story of The Warrior in the Woods, in which three owls attack a boy in a forest, only to be saved by the Warrior in the Woods.
- Lagartodiles – fearsome Grimm described as being in the swamps of Mistral by Bartholomew Oobleck in RWBY: Fairy Tales of Remnant.
- Grendels – fierce Grimm described as being in the swamps of Mistral by Bartholomew Oobleck in RWBY: Fairy Tales of Remnant.
- Long Tongues – poisonous Grimm described as being in the swamps of Mistral by Bartholomew Oobleck in RWBY: Fairy Tales of Remnant.
- Whisps – tricky Grimm described as being in the swamps of Mistral by Bartholomew Oobleck in RWBY: Fairy Tales of Remnant.
- Capybara - A large, rat-like Grimm from Menagerie, with no connection to the animal of the same name. They make an appearance in RWBY: Roman Holiday.
- Drake - A large Wyvern-like terrestrial Grimm described in the "I Burn Anthology", which is mostly non-canon. As of now they have only been seen via dream sequence so whether this is an existing species or merely a figment of Yang's imagination is unconfirmed.
- Berserker - A hairy, bipedal mammalian Grimm described in the "Mirror Mirror Anthology", which is mostly non-canon. Similar to Creeps it appears to lack an animal equivalent.
- Theropod Grimm - A theropod, dinosaur-like Grimm which first appears in RWBY 6. This Grimm is shown to have a body resembling a three-headed tyrannosaur, and horns on its white face mask. It is seen in Menagerie, being quickly dispatched by Blake and Sun Wukong.
- Combat Ready Grimm - Unidentified Grimm resembling a Beowolf with elements of a Leviathan appears on the objective card Grimm Portal in RWBY: Combat Ready. Whether or not it is a separate Grimm or simply an artistic representation of a Beowolf is unclear.
- DC Grimm - Unidentified Grimm resembling a Beowolf or Ursa summoned by Weiss in the RWBY Comic, which may have simply been an artistic representation of a Beowolf or Ursa rather than a separate species. Another Grimm with less discernable features was shown, although it was likely the same Grimm in the process of materializing.
- Shark Grimm - Seen on a poster in "Strings".
- Grimm Puppy - Seen in "Vol. 5: Shine", which is mostly non-canon. It appears to resemble to either a wolf or husky puppy. Whether it is meant to be a young or infant version of a Beowolf or a separate species is unknown.
The God of Darkness is one of the two Gods who created Remnant and the originator of the Grimm.
Initially, he created the Grimm in order to counteract the creations of the God of Light. However, the two eventually settled their differences and created Humanity together. Following this, the Grimm were largely kept confined to the Land of Darkness. In the tale The Two Brothers, it reveals that the God of Darkness cared immensely for the Grimm, as after his truce with his brother, he chose to live in the Land of Darkness among his own creations as opposed to anywhere else.
Following his departure of Remnant, the Grimm were left to roam the planet, until eventually they came under the control of Salem.
Salem is the primary antagonist of RWBY and the current master of the Grimm. She is the last living member of the original Humanity that was cursed with immortality by the Gods. Desperate for an end she tried ending her life by jumping into the Grimm Pool in the Land of Darkness, but instead simply gained the power to control them.
She can alter the physiology of Grimm and mutate them and is even capable of grafting Grimm body parts to a Human's body. She causes Beringels to sprout wings in "Our Way" and gives Cinder Fall a Shadow Hand to replace her missing arm. In addition, she has the ability to summon multiple Shadow Hands on command as seen in "So That's How It Is". Her preferred method is using them to restrain her opponents.
Doctor Merlot is the main antagonist of the video game RWBY: Grimm Eclipse and founder of Merlot Industries, a research and development corporation based out of the ill-fated settlement at Mountain Glenn. At some point, Merlot gained an unhealthy obsession towards the Creatures of Grimm, believing them to be a "superior species" and that due to their "unbridled raw aggression and lack of sentience" they would make "the perfect vessel".
His corporation began performing experiments on Grimm, research which Merlot believed was vital to the future of Remnant. However, when they began running out of specimens to experiment on, they started attracting Grimm to the city in order to acquire more, with disastrous results. After the fall of Mountain Glenn, Doctor Merlot was presumed dead.
However, Merlot, in fact, survived the destruction of Mountain Glenn and transferred his operation to a highly remote island at an unknown location, and continued his experiments at his new secret laboratory, creating the mutant Grimm using his serum, a glowing green substance.
Years later, Team RWBY would lead an investigation of mutated Grimm traced back to Merlot Industries, eventually arriving on Merlot's island. After Team RWBY infiltrates his laboratory and destroys his mutant Grimm, he self-destructs the laboratory.
Cinder Fall is an antagonist in RWBY and a member of Salem's Inner Circle. She used a Beetle Grimm to steal the power of the Fall Maiden, but after getting severely hurt by Ruby Rose's usage of Silver Eyes, she had to replace her entire left arm with a Shadow Hand. Her arm is capable of physically slashing, stretching, channeling magic and directly absorbing Maiden powers. However because of its Grimm nature it is incapable of channeling Aura, making it vulnerable to direct damage.
The Hound is a Grimm hybrid created by Salem using an unnamed Silver-Eyed Faunus. It was smarter than any other known Grimm and capable of changing its form to suit its needs. Known forms include a humanoid form, a canine form and a winged form. It was also capable of creating a third hand out of its back. It was also resistant to Silver Eyes, possibly because of its hybrid nature.
Behind the Scenes
- The name for the creatures of Grimm may be a reference to the Brothers Grimm and Grimms' Fairy Tales, a famous classic collection of German fairy tales compiled by the brothers. Notable stories include "Little Red Riding Hood", "Snow White" and "Hansel and Gretel", all of which serve as inspiration for RWBY characters.
- Different parts of the world have different species of Grimm. The crew stated that they try to theme the Grimm based on the location they are found. The icy continent of Solitas features Grimm based on prehistoric and ice age animals.
- Miles Luna has compared the Grimm to Pokémon, stating that some will pop up in every region while others are region specific.
- According to the Volume 3 DVD Directors' Commentary, the ability of the Wyvern to spawn Grimm offers a sneak peek towards their creation. Later it was shown that Grimm spawn from dark Grimm pools from the Land of Darkness.
- An early idea for Grimm involved people of Remnant bottling the Grimm oil and selling it on the black market. This essence could be used on animals to "Grimm-ify" them or be used on two creatures to create a hybrid.
- In a deleted concept for Volume 1, Corsac and Fennec Albain would have used the Grimm liquid to summon Grimm in the Beacon Academy Initiation.
- On May 21st, 2020, Rooster Teeth Productions and Full Sail University announced a collaboration for the production of Volume 8. Full Sail University students and graduates are given exclusive opportunities to design a Grimm that will be featured in Volume 8. The RWBY animation team will select the top five submissions for Rooster Teeth fans to vote on, with the contest ending on June 21st, and voting starting on July 7th and ending on July 12th, 2020. Following controversy surrounding one of the finalist designs, Rooster Teeth released a statement addressing the concern over the creature's design, clarifying it was not the artist's intent to be insensitive, and instead compensated both the artist and another who dropped out of the contest during that time. Ultimately, the Sulfur Fish was chosen as the winner of the competition, set to debut in Volume 8. They first appeared in "War".
- All of the Grimm creatures' vocal sound effects are done by William Orendorff, the voice actor of Hazel Rainart.
- When injured or killed, Grimm emit smoke, similar to how Humans bleed.
- In the manga, the Arma Gigas is described as being a possession-type Grimm, having been created by amalgamating several different species of Grimm.
- Grimm typically follow a color theme of red, white, black and a little yellow.
- These are all the colors of the four main characters.
- This color theme was later expanded with the Cenitaur and its green body sack and acid, and the Centinel's acid spit.
- RWBY: Grimm Eclipse introduced mutated Grimm that have glowing green elements.
- The Magic Necklace from RWBY: The Grimm Campaign causes Grimm eyes to glow blue.
- The yellow and red sometimes mix into orange.
- Grimm in Solitas add a slight blue hint to white Grimm bone spikes.
- Monstra has purple in its design due to its Gravity Dust.
- RWBY x Justice League introduces Hypnotic Grimm that are black, yellow, green, blue and purple.
- The White Fang wear Grimm Masks, the faces of monsters, symbolically because Humans tried to make monsters out of them.
- At one point, ancient cultures believed that Grimm were animals possessed by evil spirits or were the tortured spirits of animals.
- RWBY: Grimm Eclipse is named after the Grimm, which serve as common enemies in the video game.
- It is currently unknown if there are plant based Grimm in the series.
- Rooster Teeth Twitter
- RWBY: Amity Arena Megoliath card bio
- RWBY: Amity Arena Ice Sabyr card bio
- RWBY: Before the Dawn Chapter 10
- RWBY: Before the Dawn Chapter 21
- RWBY: Before the Dawn Chapter 21
- RWBY: After the Fall
- RWBY: Before the Dawn Chapter 5
- RWBY: Fairy Tales of Remnant Preview
- RWBY: Roman Holiday Chapter 4: Cheat
- RWBY Volume 7 Crew Commentary - Chapter 1
- RTX 2019 RWBY Panel
- RWBY Volume 7 Crew Commentary - Chapter 1
- Volume 3 DVD Directors' Commentary Chapter 10
- The World of RWBY: The Official Companion (Grimm page)
- Volume 5 Directors Commentary
- Full Sail University website
- RoosterTeeth Blog
- RoosterTeeth Animation YouTube
- Volume 1 Directors Commentary "The Emerald Forest"