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Shemum artwork.png
First Appearance: Kid Icarus (1986)
Latest Appearance:

NES Remix 2 (2014)

Affiliation(s): Underworld Army, Orcos
Enemy Type: Grounded

Shemums (シーマム Shīmamu) are recurring enemies in the Kid Icarus series. They are ubiquitous winged serpents found frequently in the series and are usually the very first enemies Pit will encounter. They just love attacking their foes in groups, despite them being rather weak in comparison to other Underworld enemies. Despite this, Shemums have appeared in every adventure Pit has taken part in, making them some of the most recognizable monsters in the series.


Shemums are some of the most abundant creatures in Angel Land, and can be found everywhere from the deepest caverns to the highest points in the sky. They are small, fanged serpents that are blue in coloration and quite poisonous, although they utilize this weapon very rarely. These creatures also prefer to hide and sleep in tight, enclosed spaces, such as within pottery. Shemums are well-known for their vestigial wings that are too small for them to fly with. By the time of the events in Kid Icarus: Of Myths and Monsters, a portion of their species evolved without wings altogether, in addition to gaining a darker coloration. Many years later in Kid Icarus: Uprising, Shemums evolved again with new feathered wings, although they are still too small to fly with.


Kid Icarus

Shemum in game

In the first Kid Icarus, Shemums are among the weakest monsters Pit will fight. They spawn from jars whenever Pit passes by them (though sometimes appear at the top of vertical areas, such as the Underworld). When a Shemum lands on a surface, it'll automatically orient itself to Pit's current direction and snake it's way to him; however, their vestigial wings are incapable of flight. No more than four appear from a single source and on screen at any given time, even if there are multiple jars in the area. Shemums act slightly different in the Overworld. Once triggered, a jar will spawn four waves of Shemums, the next wave appearing as soon as the previous wave, and the hearts have disappeared (due to the maximum number of sprites on screen has been reached). Jars may immediately trigger as they appear. Though Pit can sometimes stand on a Shemum jar, spawning Shemums may damage him as they appear. In addition, these jars can often be found attached to the ceiling. Jars cannot be destroyed and have finite supply of Shemums except in Fortresses, where there's infinite. Despite the manual's dire description, there's actually no poison to worry about.

Manual Description

Lives in the snake pit. An evolved snake monster with wings. Watch out! It's extremely dangerous. In spite of looking small, its fangs are filled with a powerful, nasty poison. It often roams around in groups.

Hit Points Damage Hearts Score (Experience)
1 1 1 100

Kid Icarus: Of Myths and Monsters

Shemums return in Kid Icarus: Of Myths and Monsters, though they are simply referred to Snakes here. Unlike the previous Shemums, they lack wings and are darker in color. They also spawn from jars like before, although they are now referred to as Snake Pots despite them looking identical in appearance.

Manual Description

The Snake appears from a Snake Pot in any stage, usually in groups of 4.

Hit Points Damage Hearts Score (Experience)
1 1 1

Kid Icarus: Uprising

In Kid Icarus: Uprising, Shemums return as common enemies, and will be the very first Underworld creatures encountered during land combat. These serpentine monsters are now capable of poisoning Pit by biting him with their fangs, and will charge after him quickly if they spot him. The Shemums act almost exactly the same as in the original games, with the only real difference being that the jars from which they spawn can now be destroyed (although they retain a resistance to ranged attacks). The jars are also no longer limited to sitting on the ground, as they can now be found attached to walls as well. In addition, there are also larger variations of Shemums that appear to be slightly stronger.

Aurum Shemums are rare enemies only encountered during the land battle of The Aurum Hive. Unlike ordinary Shemums, their attacks inflict paralysis instead of poison, but are otherwise identical to regular Shemums.

Idol Descriptions

These winged, poisonous snakes leap out of vases to attack enemies, making up for their lack of strength with sheer numbers. These vases are invulnerable to ranged shots, so use melee strikes or attack items to destroy them.

Aurum Shemum
An Aurum copy of the Underworld's Shemum. Like its original counterpart, the Aurum Shemum only appears on the ground and even slithers as it moves!

Other Appearances

Captain N: The Game Master

A Shemum appeared in the Captain N: The Game Master episode "Videolympic", where King Hippo opens a bag and a Shemum pops out and laughs, which made King Hippo drop the bag.

NES Remix 2

In NES Remix 2, Shemums appear as enemies in the Kid Icarus challenges.



  • Shemums were possibly inspired by the various winged serpents of mythology. Although the series draws most of its influences from Greek myths, it is quite possible that Shemums are based on Quetzalcoatl, a feathered serpent deity of Aztec mythology.

Classic Kid Icarus series enemies and bosses
Kid Icarus CollinCommylooseDaphneEelEyeEggplant WizardErinusGanewmedeGirinHewdrawHolerKeepahKeronKobilKomaytoMcGooMedusaMickMinosMoilaMonoeyeMonolithNettlerOctosPandoraPlutonPluton FlyReaperRokmanShemumShulmSnowmanSpecknoseSyrenTamamboTanatosTotemTrosTwinbellowsUranosZuree
Of Myths and Monsters BatBig ToeBusy BeeCyclops HopperCyclops SkullEggplant WizardFire SerpentFireballFuzz BallGlobeGruffGubbleKing KrabKomaytoLunusMercMinotaurMonolithOctusOrcosPuttPythagorasReaperShadow MaskSkullwingSlimeSnakeSpitball BlobSpunkySticky TalonStone GolemTotemWormser

Kid Icarus: Uprising enemies and bosses
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Forces of Nature ArlonBadootBladerBoom StomperBumpety BombCacawCaptain FlareClobblerCragalancheDibble DopFlageForces of Nature GuardHugwormJitterthugLethiniumLunar Sanctum Control CenterLurchthornMahvaMeebaMegontaMudroneNutskiParashooterPew PewPipPhosphoraReset BombReset Bomb PodSkreetleToxiecapTrynamiteUrgleZert
Aurum Aurum BrainAurum CoreAurum CloneAurum GeneratorAurum PyrrhonBagloBiotaBlitClaxisDohzJyokKolmaNukleenPlixoQuoilRezdaRozSioTaklaxTribyteXonemeZaurumZrink
Palutena's Army CenturionCenturion KnightCenturion StrongarmJuggernautPalutenaPit's Body
Chaos Kin Chaos KinShadow Pit
Other Enemies Chariot MasterDark PitGreat Sacred TreasureMagnusMimicutiePhoenixPseudo-PalutenaSoufleeSoul-Eating MonsterSpace KrakenSpace PiratesTreasurefish