- See also: Were-Panther Skeleton
Were-Panthers are werebeast enemies, hybrids of a panther and a human. While originally conceived as such in the Japanese versions of Castlevania (N64) and Castlevania: Legacy of Darkness, in their western localization they were renamed as "Werejaguar" and "Were-Leopard" in both games, respectively.
Interestingly enough, Were-Panthers were actually first introduced much earlier in the series, albeit in skeletal form, and aptly named Were-Panther Skeletons. There were two variants: one that crouched like a beast and behaved pretty much like the standard Black Panther from previous titles, and an upright-walking version which attacked by stretching its neck bones to strike with its head, and could also launch a myriad of bones from its ribcage.
The were-jaguar was both an Olmec motif and a supernatural entity, perhaps even a deity. As the major predator of Mesoamerica, the jaguar was revered by pre-Columbian societies, and adoption of jaguar motifs by the ruling elite was used to reinforce or validate leadership.
The basic were-jaguar motif combines a cleft head, slanting almond-shaped eyes with round irises, and a down-turned open mouth with a flared upper lip and toothless gums. It appears widely in the Olmec archaeological record.
The were-jaguar supernatural incorporates the were-jaguar motif, as well as other features. It was once considered to be the primary deity of the Olmec culture, but is now thought to be only one of many.
The Werejaguar (renamed "Were-Leopard" in Legacy of Darkness) is encountered as a boss during the Duel Tower portion of Reinhardt's quest. Even though it's the weakest of the game's werebeast opponents, it's high speed and agility can make it a frustrating opponent to face.
The Were-Panther is first encountered in the Chapel Tower's belfry area. It keeps its distance away from Nathan's weapon's reach and then rushes forward at great speed, culminating with a powerful blow which will knock him back if it connects. Every time it detects the player attacking, it will quickly leap backward to evade any harm.
To defeat this enemy, the player is advised to wait for it to attack first and then jump as it lunges forward, taking care not to land where it is unleashing the punch; strike with the whip as one lands to score a hit or two and repeat the process until the creature dies.
One of the Were-Panther's drops is the Thunderbird DSS card, which grants Electricity-based spells and infusions to Nathan's offensive repertoire, generally allowing him to deal a considerable amount of increased damage to enemies.
A stronger variant, the Were-Jaguar, is encountered much later in the game, in the Outer Wall and the Battle Arena, albeit besides of being just a palette-swap, it retains exactly the same attack patterns.
The Werejaguar appears in areas located deep beneath the castle, like the Underground Reservoir and the Underground Cemetery. They are usually encountered at enough distance from other enemies to allow for one-on-one brawls, making them manageable most of the times. They hop back and forth, and then quickly rush in to attempt to punch the player when they detect an opening. Gaining dominance on its soul, grants the Mach Punch ability, which allows Soma to perform powerful straight punches to his enemies.
Interestingly enough, its enemy list entry description mentions the Werejaguar having some sort of rivalry against a fellow werecat: the Weretiger.
Order of Ecclesia takes a few interesting approaches regarding the Were-Panther, this time calling it "Black Panther", like the animal-like predators from previous titles, albeit evidently being a werebeast in all regards. Furthermore, this time around the enemy is female and sports a jet black leotard, long boots and sleeves to match with her feline condition, although in reality being nothing more than a simple palette-swap of a previous enemy: the Ladycat.
In case this wasn't enough, she drops the useful Arma Felix glyph, which bestows Shanoa the ability of transforming into a werecat herself, and communicate with any cats she stumbles upon, which will gladly share their secrets with her once they recognize one of their own kin. In addition to this, with this glyph equipped, both Ladycats and Black Panthers will fight for her, being able to deal considerable damage to other enemies. This can become quite handy in heavily-populated areas, like those found in Dracula's Castle.
|Enemy Data: Were-Panther|
|Image||Name - Game|
|'|| HP: 130|| Duel Tower|
|'|| HP: 130 (195 on Hard)|| Duel Tower|
|'|| Strong: Darkness|
| Drop: Wrist Band (5.5%)|
Common Drop: Thunderbird Card (1.1%)
| Chapel Tower|
|'|| Strong: Darkness|
HP: 270/320 ( )
| Common Drop: Gold Armor (2.5%)|
Rare Drop: Ninja Garb (0.4%)
| Chapel Tower, Outer Wall, Battle Arena( )|
|Works on his straight punch so he can defeat Weretiger.|| Strong: Nothing|
Weak: Sword, Poison, Curse
| Common Drop: Mach Punch|
Soul: Guts Straight
| Underground Reservoir, Underground Cemetery|
|A black, female panther.|| Strong: Strike, Light|
Weak: Slash, Flame, Poison, Curse, Stone
Skill Pt: 3
| Drop: Arma Felix (3%)|| Castle Entrance, Library|
|Item Data: Were-Panther|
|Image||Name - Game|
|Type / Users||Attributes / Consume||Statistics / Sell||Found||Notes|
|Cotton armband.|| Arm (Bracelet)|
| STR +5|| Drop: Will O' Wisp, Ectoplasm, Gremlin, Spirit, Devil Tower, Bat, Medusa Head, Were-Panther|
|The legendary Thunderbird is said to have been able to release lightning. Has the power of Electricity.|| Attribute Card|
| Attrib: Electricity|| Drop: Were-Panther (1.1%), Dullahan (1.4%)|
|Armor made of gold|| Body (Body Armor)|
| DEF +80|| Drop: Earth Armor, Thunder Armor, Were-Jaguar|
|A black ninja suit|| Body (Clothes)|
| DEF +80, STR +30|| Find: Franken, Were-Jaguar|
|Throws punches faster than eye can see.|| Weapon|
| ATK +5|
| Common Drop: Werejaguar|| Effect: Multi hits per attack|
|Packs out an extremely powerful straight punch.|| Bullet Soul|
|Consume: 40 MP|| 260 AP|| Rarity: 20|
|Grants cat-like abilities.|| Back Glyph|
|Consume: 80 MP|| Drop: Black Panther|| Effect: Transforms Shanoa into a werecat. She can attack with claw-swipes and rapid tail-whips, both at the cost of MP.|
Special: Shanoa is able to talk to the cats in Wygol Village. Black Panthers and Ladycats become allies.