Stal (5e Creature)
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In Hyrule, stal or stal-creatures include animated skeletons of numerous once-living creatures, with the common term "stalfos" referring specifically to humanoid skeletons. More often than not, these bones are animated by nonspecific forces which permeate the land when it is threatened by great evil. The mere presence of Ganon miles away has been known to cause graveyards and prairies alike to suddenly give rise to dozens of stal-creatures every night. Aside from this, necromancers or cruel researchers may intentionally animate these beings to serve as their underlings or mercenaries. Regardless of how or why stalfos are born into undeath, and regardless of the form they take, they all share several unique qualities.
Sunlight Weakness. Most stal-creatures detest sunlight or that which resembles it, and are greatly weakened when touched directly by it. In extreme cases a stal-creature instantly loses animation in sunlight, only to resume animated undeath when the light once again fades.
Language of Stal. All intelligent stal-creatures are able to understand and speak at least a little bit of a primal, mysterious language that itself has come to be known as Stal.
Lightweight. A stal-creature is of much less weight than it was while alive, but retains strength nearly equal to its former self. Consequently its body is extremely lightweight for its body strength. Many stalfos have been known to effortlessly jump dozens of feet or more, and stalchildren have been known to be sent flying by solid but otherwise unremarkable blows.
Ignorance of Undeath. Few stal-creatures truly realize they are dead and what this means for them, as if unable to see that their hands are only of bone instead of flesh. Even though fire barely harms them, for example, they often still retain a fear of it. Stalfos who have been animated may even live among other stalfos and continue to attempt to live the normal lives of living creatures, even going so far as to eat despite having no need to do so, or "sleep" while the sun is up. The relatively few stalfos who come to realize their state can use it to their advantage; with no physiological need to feel pain, they can even rip off their own arms to use them as weapons, or will their bodies to keep moving even after they have been decapitated.
Hatred of Life. Most stal-creatures, particularly intelligent ones, have a seething and indescribable destestation for beings who yet live—especially living humanoids. Stalchildren who were spending time idly among themselves will, upon sight of a hylian all lash out in sudden and vicious violence. Often stal-creatures will wildly attack living beings even when they have no logical chance of winning a battle; so utterly are they dominated by this hatred.
Forms of stal-creatures include the following:
- Stalfos - "stalfos" generally refers to any humanoid stal; stalfos can arise from races as diverse as lizalfos and hylians, and even races which are otherwise extinct
- Blue Stalfos - wielding powerful necromancy spells, a blue stalfos glows with a visible blue aura derived from its sheer magical prowess
- Dark Stalfos - empowered by necromancy magic, a dark stalfos is capable of limited spellcasting
- Master Stalfos - a Large stalfos knight capable of striking with such force that its victims are sent flying
- Stalchampion - a gigantic stalfos knight born into undeath from an unknown race; its sheer strength is unmatched among stalfos
- Stalchild - the animated skeleton of an ancient race, a stalchild is a Small and clumsily-moving form of stalfos
- Stalfos Knight - a hardy, physically powerful stalfos that wields weaponry with unusual skill
- Stalhead - the animated skull of a stalfos, sometimes itself referred to simply as a "stal"
- Stalmaster - an even more skillful warrior than a stalfos knight, this mysterious fighter is able to fight with four arms and four weapons simultaneously
- Stalhorse - the animated skeleton of a horse, often ridden by stalfos knights
- Stalhound - the animated skeleton of a canine beast, known to hunt in packs at night
- Stallord - a colossal animated skeleton of a draconic monster, wielding unparalleled might and magic prowess