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Lithopod family

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The lithopod family (イシツツミ科?, lit.: "Stone wrapper family") is a family of enemies that exists in all four mainline Pikmin games, as well as Hey! Pikmin. Members of this family have the ability to suck in air and spit out rocks. Members belong to the granitus and the granignis genuses.

In Pikmin, the rocks can be destroyed by a punch, while in Pikmin 2, a Purple Pikmin's stomp can destroy them with ease. In Pikmin 2, leaders can also lie down to destroy them without receiving damage.


Arctic Cannon Larva[edit]

Icon for the Arctic Cannon Larva, from Pikmin 4's Piklopedia.
Main article: Arctic Cannon Larva.

The Arctic Cannon Larva is a variety of lithopod that appear in Pikmin 3 and Pikmin 4. It is of a brighter whitish-green color compared to the Armored Cannon Larva with a lavender underbelly. They live in snowy areas, and instead of spitting out boulders, they spit out snowballs that trap Pikmin and leaders, and sends them back on a predetermined path. Like the Armored Cannon Beetle Larva's boulders, Winged Pikmin can fly over them. The only non-visual different between it and its cousin is that snowballs don't flatten Pikmin, but can knock them into hazards or send them back to the end of the path.

Arctic Cannon Beetle[edit]

Icon for the Arctic Cannon Beetle, from Pikmin 4's Piklopedia.
Main article: Arctic Cannon Beetle.

The Arctic Cannon Beetle is the adult stage of the Arctic Cannon Larva. It is seen in Pikmin 4. The Arctic Cannon Beetle appears similar to the Armored Cannon Beetle and Horned Cannon Beetle, with a light blue shell, blue skin, red eyes, and no blowhole. It also spits out snowballs instead of boulders. Due to its lack of a blowhole, it breathes through its mouth instead, allowing it to inhale groups of Pikmin but also forcing it to expose its abdomen as it inhales.

Armored Cannon Beetle[edit]

Artwork of an Armored Cannon Beetle.
Main article: Armored Cannon Beetle.

The Armored Cannon Beetle is the mature specimen of an Armored Cannon Beetle Larva. It is seen in Pikmin. It is a large, black, metallic-looking beetle with a thick, impervious, rounded shell of armor, a blowhole above its head, and a mouth. It attacks by inhaling through its blowhole and subsequently spitting out rolling rocks from its mouth, crushing any Pikmin (or leader) in the way. The only way to defeat it is to clog its blowhole with a Pikmin, which will cause the beetle to expose its steaming red backside.

Armored Cannon Larva[edit]

Icon for the Armored Cannon Larva, from Pikmin 4's Piklopedia.
Main article: Armored Cannon Larva.

Armored Cannon Larvae are enemies in Pikmin 2, Pikmin 3, and Pikmin 4. They resemble large grubs with small blue eyes and a mouth bearing resemblance to that of the Armored Cannon Beetle. It also has a blowhole, but appears to inhale through its mouth, unlike the adult form. This animal behaves in much the same manner as the Armored Cannon Beetle, but turns and spits at a faster rate and has much less health. They do not have the hard exoskeleton the adults are infamous for, and are thus vulnerable on all parts of their body.

Decorated Cannon Beetle[edit]

HD artwork of the Decorated Cannon Beetle from the Pikmin 2 (Nintendo Switch).
Main article: Decorated Cannon Beetle.

Decorated Cannon Beetles have an appearance identical to Armored Cannon Beetle Larvae, except they are red instead of green. They, too, spit out stones, but their rocks home in on the leaders due to a magnetic substance inside the rock which locks onto the leaders' suits. The adult form of this has not appeared in any Pikmin games so far, but they appear to be in the same family as the Armored Cannon Beetle.

Firesnout Beetle[edit]

A Firesnout Beetle in the Creature Log. Enhanced with Citra.
Main article: Firesnout Beetle.

Firesnout Beetles are a lithopod encountered in Hey! Pikmin. They resemble Armored Cannon Beetle Larvae, but are much smaller. Their skin is bright orange and they have a brown striped shell with five "vents" near the front. They also only have two pairs of legs. Firesnout Beetles appear in stages based around descending with Winged Pikmin, and serve as obstacles. They reside inside of walls and periodically spew fire directly in front of themselves, so the player must delay Olimar's descent, lest he and his Pikmin get burned. They can be defeated by a single Pikmin being thrown at them, but it is recommended to use Red Pikmin or wait until they have stopped breathing fire.

Horned Cannon Beetle[edit]

Icon for the Horned Cannon Beetle, from Pikmin 4's Piklopedia.
Main article: Horned Cannon Beetle.

The Horned Cannon Beetle is a lithopod seen in Pikmin 4. It appears very similar to the Armored Cannon Beetle, but with a less metallic and more segmented shell, along with longer mandibles. The blowhole is also larger and higher up on the shell, pointing at an angle instead of being front facing. It's overall more detailed, but as these details are shared with the Arctic Cannon Beetle, these differences are likely due to graphical improvements.

Other members[edit]

Strong-Armed Cannon Beetle[edit]

This article or section features debatable canonical information.
The content here is yet to be confirmed to be canon, but features non-canonical aspects.

Official family unknown

The reel notes and the Player's Guide "Field Guide" description for the Armored Cannon Beetle reveal that is filled the biological niche of something else: the Strong-Armed Cannon Beetle. It apparently has a weaker carapace than the one seen in-game and is a continental breed native to the region, unlike the Armored Cannon Beetle, and later, Horned Cannon Beetle. The New Play Control! Pikmin Prima Guide uses the "Field Guide" description for the Armored Cannon Beetle verbatim except with one change: the one mention of the Strong-Armed Cannon Beetle was changed to the Armored Cannon Beetle's technical name, Greater Lithopod. This may have been a mistake.


The family name itself, "lithopod", is derived from the Greek word lithos, meaning stone, and "arthropod", due to their insect-like appearance.

Some members of this family have the words "armored" (or "armoured", in the European version of Pikmin 3), "cannon", and "beetle" in their name. This is because the adult creature, the Armored Cannon Beetle, has an impenetrable carapace, much like it's wearing armor. Members of this family also shoot projectiles out of their mouth, much like a cannon. Finally, the adult creature also resembles a beetle.

These creatures' Japanese names use the words フタクチドックリ?, which translates roughly to "Two-Mouth Tokkuri". フタ? means "two", and クチ? means "mouth", referring to how they have a blowhole in addition to their mouth. ドックリ? means "tokkuri", the name given to the flask used to serve sake from in a sake set, since their mouths look like the openings of those flasks.

The genus name for members of this family is Granitus, which is Latin for "granite", referring to the rocks they shoot.

Between the English and Japanese versions of Pikmin series games, the classifications of members of this family differ greatly.

In the English versions, the Armored Cannon Beetle and Horned Cannon Beetle are seemingly two distinct creatures. The Armored Cannon Beetle Larva is a young variant of the Armored Cannon Beetle. The two species can interbreed, but pollution of the gene pool from the Horned Cannon Beetle is driving the Armored Cannon Beetle and its larvae to extinction.

In the Japanese versions, the Armored Cannon Beetle and Horned Cannon Beetle are the same creature, as they share the same Japanese name. They have different common names, however. The Armored Cannon Beetle Larva is instead the larva of a different otherwise unseen species, the territory of which the Armored Cannon Beetle/Horned Cannon Beetle is invading and endangering it.

Names in other languages[edit]

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Language Name Meaning Notes
Flag of Japan Japanese イシツツミ科?
Ishi tsutsumi ka
Stone wrapper family
Flag of the Republic of China (Taiwan) Chinese
Flag of France French lithophages The name is a portmanteau of "litho" (stone) and "phage" (eat)
Flag of Germany German Lithopoden
Flag of South Korea Korean 바위보따리 과
Flag of Brazil Portuguese Comelitoídeos Eatlithoidae The name is a portmanteau of "comer" (to eat), "lito" (Greek litho; stone) and the suffix "-ídeos" (-idae), which is used for naming animal family names
Flag of Spain Spanish Litópodos Lithopods

See also[edit]