The Witcher Season 3: The Jackapace Monster Explained – TheFantasyTimes

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By Nikita Gambhir

The Witcher Season 3: The Jackapace Monster Explained

Quick Links The Purpose of the Jackapace in Season 3 of The Witcher Is the Jackapace Monster Based on the Source Material?

Warning: This article contains spoilers for Season 3 of The Witcher

When it comes to bringing horrifying monsters to life, Netflix’s adaptation of The Witcher has it covered. Season 3 introduces several new creatures for fans to encounter, including the Jackapace monster. Here’s everything you need to know about this formidable beast.

What is a Jackapace?

The Jackapace resembles an armadillo, with a tough, shell-like armor covering its body and head. It has wide, triangle-shaped nostrils and the ability to roll up into a ball for mobility. While it can walk on all fours, rolling allows it to move at incredible speeds. Even Ciri, played by Freya Allan, must use acrobatics to avoid it.

The Jackapace’s shell merges with its flesh where its eyes should be, rendering it blind. It relies on its keen sense of smell to navigate and hunt prey, particularly humans. This appetite for human flesh is confirmed in a scene where the creature is fed, producing an unpleasant sound.

The Jackapace’s Role in Season 3

The Jackapace is introduced in the first episode of Season 3, held captive by the sorcerer Rience. Rience uses the Jackapace, along with other creatures, for his own purposes. The monster is trained to track down Ciri by smelling Elven blood. Rience exposes the Jackapace to a vial containing Ciri’s blood, driving it into a frenzied state.

In a turn of events, Ciri convinces Geralt to take a break and enjoy the Belleteyn festival. However, their relaxation is cut short when they encounter trouble in a maze. The Jackapace has been set loose in the maze and uses its rolling technique to pursue its prey. Through teamwork, Geralt and Yennefer manage to defeat the creature. However, their victory alerts Rience to their location, forcing them to go on the run once again.

Is the Jackapace Based on Source Material?


The Jackapace is not found in the original book series or video game adaptation of The Witcher. It is a completely original creation for the show, designed to fit seamlessly into the live-action environment. However, it bears some resemblance to the Shaelmaar from The Witcher: The Wild Hunt Blood & Wine expansion. The Shaelmaar also has a shell-like protection and rolls like an armadillo to attack prey.

Although the Jackapace is a unique creation, it draws inspiration from the Shaelmaar’s physical design and hunting technique. Both creatures are blind and rely on senses other than sight to navigate their surroundings.

In conclusion, the Jackapace is an intriguing addition to Season 3 of The Witcher, showcasing the show’s ability to bring fantastical monsters to life. Its originality and connection to the source material make it a memorable creature in the Witcher universe.

Quick Links

Warning: This post contains spoilers for The Witcher Season 3

When it comes to bringing grotesque monsters to life, Netflix’s adaptation of The Witcher has that area covered, and the recently released season 3 has introduced several new creatures to become acquainted with.

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From Aeschna, the boat creature, to the terrifying mage monster created from human bodies, season 3 has already flexed its fantasy-horror muscles, but there’s one beast that’s held the attention of fans ever since the first trailer released. Here’s everything you need to know about the Jackapace monster.

What Is A Jackapace?

The Witcher season 3 shows the Jackapace walking through a dark maze

The Jackapace resembles the design of an armadillo–a Spanish word meaning ‘little armored one’– from the real world, carrying a tough, armor-like shell over the back of its body and the top of its head. The creature’s headshell covers the top of its head, leaving its wide, triangle-shaped nostrils protruding out of its snout-like face.

Another similarity the Jackapace has to the armadillo is its ability to roll up into a ball, as this is the primary way for the beast to get around. The creature can also walk on all fours supported by its stocky legs, but its rolling technique enhances its speed tenfold, and due to its size, it’s a tricky obstacle to avoid–even though Ciri (Freya Allan) manages to perform acrobatics to get out of its way.

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The shell of the Jackapace merges with its flesh where the eyes should be. Therefore, the creature is blind and relies on its keen sense of smell to navigate and track prey by smelling the target’s blood. The Jackapace also has an appetite for human flesh, confirmed during a scene in season 3 when we hear the creature being fed, and it’s not a pleasant sound.

The Jackapace’s Purpose In The Witcher Season 3

The Witcher season 3 shows the Jackapace rolling towards Ciri who jumps out of the way

The Jackapace is introduced within the first episode of season 3, titled Shaerrawedd, and it’s being held captive within a dungeon by the sorcerer, Rience (Sam Woolf), who is using the Jackapace and several other creatures to do his bidding.

We see the Jackapace being fed by a young elf, who is visibly nervous about doing so and proceeds to pour a bucket of human remains into small holes for the monster to feed. Reacting to the Jackapace, the elf jumps away, and we learn that the creature is trained to smell Elven blood and it’s being used to track down Ciri. Rience exposed the Jackapace to the scent of Ciri’s blood via the vial he stole from Kaer Morhen back in season 2, which sends the monster into a frenzied state.

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Back with the main trio and Ciri manages to convince Geralt (Henry Cavill) to lie low for a while and enjoy the pleasantries of the Belleteyn festival, advertised by the dwarf Yarpen (Jeremy Crawford). However, their time off duty is cut short when they run into trouble within a maze. The Jackapace has been set loose in the maze, and the labyrinth’s narrow pathways are perfect alleyways for the Jackapace to roll toward its prey. Thanks to some teamwork from Geralt and Yennefer (Anya Chalotra), the Jackapace is killed fairly quickly. However, Rience now knows where the trio is, which forces them to go on the run again.

Is The Jackapace Monster From The Source Material?

The Witcher The Wild Hunt Geralt stands in front of a Shaelmaar and another contestant within an arena

The Jackapace does not have any origin in the original book series by Andrzej Sapkowski, nor does it have an appearance in The Witcher video game series by CD Projekt Red. Instead, the Jackapace is a completely original creature created for the show, likely designed to fit in with the live-action environments.

Even though the creature is an original creation, it does bear some resemblance to the Shaelmaar from The Witcher: The Wild Hunt Blood & Wine expansion. Introduced during The Beast of Toussaint quest, Geralt has to fight the Shaelmaar within an arena, and its physical design and hunting technique likely inspired the creation of the Jackapace. Geralt also encounters a second Shaelmaar during The Monster of Tufo quest later on in the expansion.

Shaelmaars are relics that are also blind and rely on echolocation to get around and track their prey–a technique developed from living underground. These beasts also have a thick shell protecting their back–sporting more of a fungal design rather than an armored shell–and they, too, roll around like an armadillo to charge at prey.

Despite being a brute menace in the arena, the Shaelmaar creatures are not without their weaknesses, as it’s very easy to confuse a beast relying on echolocation by making loud noises to disrupt the sound waves. Their heavy, clumsy nature also makes them slow when they are not rolling, which leaves them open to bomb attacks.

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