The Mythology Behind La Mulana’s Bosses #7: Tiamat

Tiamat,  more than any other guardian in La Mulana, is referential to the events of the story which bore the character. You need to see this boss fight in action to catch all of the bits of Tiamat’s body, powers, and story in action. I suggest you click play and read on.

Tiamat:

When the skies above were not yet named
Nor earth below pronounced by name,
Apsu, the first one, their begetter,
And maker Tiamat, who bore them all.

-translated excerpt from Enuma Elish

Tiamat, according to Mesopotamian creation myth, was a goddess of the salty primeval waters who birthed many lesser gods and monsters within her pantheon. We know she was mostly human, but she is often depicted as having a sea serpent’s tail. Her children were bested by another god named Marduk and were led around by “nose ropes” afterwards. The rings of these ropes hang in Tiamat’s hair in her La Mulana appearance. She was not evil, but her husband’s death at the hands of Marduk brought out her wrathful, chaotic side.

Marduk went on to slay Tiamat as well; In the words of the of the Mesopotamian creation myth, Enuma Elish: He “sliced her in half like a fish for drying.” Her various body parts were dismembered and repurposed as is common in creation myths. Some of the highlights are her spittle being used to make clouds and rain, her tail being bent upwards to make what we now call the Milky Way, and her crotch holding up the sky.

Fighting_tiamat

Tiamat in La Mulana.

Image Source: The La Mulana Remake Wiki

Tiamat’s changing expression throughout the fight, the galaxy behind her, and her death sequence all serve to drive home that you are playing the role of Marduk in this area of the game. By the time you realize you’ve split Tiamat in half, you’ve already fulfilled your fate.

One more thing — try to not stare at her crotch cobra. I can’t find a single mythological reason for it to be there…