The creature is approximately four meters tall, mostly blue in color, and has one yellow eye that glows red when it perceives a hostile unit. In place of hands, it sports two claw-like appendages which can be opened to emit jets of intense heat. Gargantuas can make loud roars that can damage structures. An example of the loud roars is in Half-Life: Uplink; near the ending sequence before the player gets trapped, the creature's loud roar made a vent collapse, and the player is forced to go through and the next roar causes the vent to fall onto the platform the player gets stuck at in the start of the ending sequence. It can also send a shock wave towards its opponents by powerfully stomping the ground. This shock wave can also traverse vertical structures. The Gargantua moves fast and is very strong: it can smash or toss large obstacles from its path with ease. Gargantuas are very determined pursuers, and have been known to wait patiently for their target to come out of an area they can't reach for a considerable amount of time before moving on to do something else.
Gargantuas can be found on Xen, though their true origin is unknown. They share some physical characteristics with Vortigaunts, such as their backwards-jointed legs and hoofed feet. However, each Vortigaunt sports three arms (two at the shoulders and one jutting from the chest) while the Gargantua has four arms (two at the shoulder position and two spiked arms at the abdomen). Note that many of the species of Xen share common morphological characteristics.
The Gargantua is a kind of sub-boss creature. It is completely bulletproof, and requires a large amount of explosive, electrical, or energy damage before being destroyed. It is almost impossible to kill with normal bullets. Gargantuas can be seen in Half-Life in the chapters "Power Up," "Surface Tension," "Interloper," and "Nihilanth." In the Opposing Force expansion, a Gargantua can be seen in the chapter "Foxtrot Uniform" tied up on top of the hydroelectric dam, while marines and Race X Shock Troopers fight around and against it. In most of these locations, there is a convenient way to escape or destroy the Gargantua so that the player does not have to expend scarce ammunition on it, such as detonating explosives on it or calling in an air strike against it. A Gargantua also appears during the final sequence of the Half-Life demo Uplink, where it kills several Black Mesa personnel before slowly heading towards the cornered player, at which point the demo ends.
In Half-Life 2: Raising the Bar, an early script for the beginning of Half-Life 2 mentions that "something that resembles the old Gargantua" was going to be seen from the train ride in the opening scene of the game. However, this introduction scene was heavily cut down throughout development, and the Gargantua is not in the final game.
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