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The Hero's Shade is Not A Stalfos: A Statement of Truth
  • Introduction

    Hello everyone. It goes without saying that there has been quite some contention since the release of Twilight Princess as to the physical identity of the Hero's Shade. While we do all know and agree that he is the former Link known as the Hero of Time from Ocarina of Time, there seems to be some disagreement as to what he is as the Hero's Shade.

    I am here to dispel the prolific misconception that the Hero's Shade is a Stalfos. I hope by the end of this journey of facts, the truth will come to light that the Hero of Time being a Stalfos is no more than false conjecture not unlike the Tetraforce theories. Good for making your own stories, not so for trying to stick to facts of Zelda lore.

    I've separated this article into 3 different parts: The Facts We Know, The Fact I'm Presenting, and Rebuttals Against Common Arguments





    The Facts As We Know Them


    I am not going to showcase why the Hero's Shade isn't a Stalfos straight away. Instead, I would like to lay down a base composed of facts that we, as theorists, know is 100% fact and can be sourced from either the Games, Hyrule Historia, or Developer Quotes.



    Fact 00: The Hero's Shade is The Hero of Time From OoT and MM

    Obvious, yes, but nonetheless as a base to this theory it must be stated. Confirmed by Hyrule Historia.
    Hyrule Historia p118:
    Link, the Hero of Time's Descendant
    The ghost of his ancestor, the Hero of Time, teaches Link his secrets.




    Fact 01: The Hero of Time Has A Direct Bloodline/Descendent


    A Direct Bloodline is one where the descendants/ancestors of a particular individual are directly related through blood - an individual's child, child of that child, parent, grandparent, etc.

    This fact is hinted at within the game Twilight Princess. The Hero's Shade tells TP Link about hidden skills only found within their bloodline, which at least cements a blood relation.

    The concrete source of the Hero's Shade's specific relation to TP Link comes from Hyrule Historia, where it states that the Hero's Shade and TP Link are directly related.

    Hyrule Historia p115:
    This young man from Ordon Village was Link, a descendant of the Hero of Time himself.
    Hyrule Historia p118:
    Link, the Hero of Time's Descendant
    The first time Link sets foot in the Twilight, the crest of the Triforce of Courage on the back of his hand shines forth and he takes on a beastly form. When he returns to human form, he is garbed in the clothes said to have been worn by the hero. The ghost of his ancestor, the Hero of Time, teaches Link his secrets. Ever since his return to the Child Era, the Hero of Time had felt regret that he would not be remembered as a hero. Therefore, he addresses Link as his son and passes down the proof of courage, in addition to his secrets.
    Note that it specifies that TP Link is a -descendant- of MM Link -himself-. The phrasing leaves no doubt that this is a direct, not indirect, ancestry.

    What does this mean for the Hero of Time? It means that he has had sex with a woman that resulted in a baby who grew up and had other babies and so on and so forth until TP Link was born. That is a fact.



    Fact 02: The Hero of Time Survived His Childhood

    This fact has no direct proof, but nonetheless is 100% true. This fact stems as a result of Fact 01: The Hero of Time having a direct descendent. Since a direct descendent requires for the individual in question to be mature enough to have viable sex, we can safely presume that the Hero of Time reached puberty.

    In addition, due to the child-friendly nature of Nintendo and general societal aversion to child sexual activity, we can also safely assume that the Hero of Time reached the age of consent before having a child, and most definitely before his death.

    (funnily enough this fact alone completely debunks a related theory that MM Link died during MM)



    Fact 03: All Stalfos Are Evil Physical Skeletons (sometimes with armor)

    Since we are figuring out the identity of the Hero's Shade, it would do to figure out the identity of what he is often incorrectly assumed to be - the Stalfos.

    Stalfos have been present in the Zelda games and lore since the very first game, and while their appearances have varied over the course of the years, there are nonetheless very strict guidelines to their appearance and behavior. Here I present to you the Stalfos over the years:
    Display Spoiler

    LoZ Stalfos


    Dead Samus AoL Stalfos


    ALttP Stalfos


    LA Stalfos


    OoT Stalfos


    TWW Stalfos


    TP Stalfos


    SS Stalfos



    As can be seen, while their appearances vary, they nonetheless have several key elements in common. All Stalfos are made completely of solid bones. All Stalfos are a hominid skeleton. All Stalfos lack skin, muscles, and cartilage. All Stalfos have glowing eyes. They are not spirits, but undead - the animated bones of the dead that exist in the physical world like any other "living" creature.

    In addition, their natures appear to be very hard set, unlike other monsters like the Moblins. Stalfos have been strictly evil, created either through Ganondorf's evil magic, the magic of the Lost Woods, or otherwise. Some may have shown intelligence, but all are strictly against the living and against the Hero, attacking without much reason.



    Fact 04: The Hero's Shade's Golden Wolf Form Manifests in The Physical Realm of Hyrule (and Others)

    I am honestly surprised that the fixation on the Hero's Shade's mental form is so strong that no one bothers to comment on his other one - the Golden Wolf. This is the form we first see him in, as well as the form that appears in the physical realm of Hyrule. He also appears as the Golden Wolf in Meta-Physical Howling Stone Space, and also initially appears as the Golden Wolf in the Spirit Place whereupon he finally transforms into his hominid form to teach you the Hidden Skills. The wolf appears in all places, while the hominid strictly appears in the Spirit Place, and needs to transform from wolf form first.

    So, the Hero's Shade's wolf form manifests in 3 planes of existence: Physical Hyrule, Howling Stone Hyrule, and the Mind Space. His humanoid form manifests in 1 plane of existence: Mind Space.



    Fact 05: The Triforce Pieces Abandon Its Host Shortly Before Death

    This fact is presented to us through various events in the games. In Twilight Princess, the Triforce of Power abandons Ganondorf as he is about to permanently die, represented by the glow on his bearer mark dying out. This is quite interesting, as the ToP prevents Ganondorf from dying from mortal wounds like in his supposed execution by the Sages - thus it must not be present in order for him to actually die.

    Do note that the reincarnation of Ganondorf in FSA lacks a Triforce Piece, suggesting that TP Ganondorf's murder shattered the link between the King of Evil and the ToP (in fact, the Triforce is completely absent from FSA, despite being the next game in the Child Timeline after Twilight Princess), unlike how MM Link's passing on also passed on the ToC to someone else. This is further evidenced by the Triforce Pieces being released from Ganon after his slaying in the original LoZ and other games, whereupon they were immediately gathered by Link.

    ALttP used to be further evidence, until it was revealed/retconned in ALBW that Ganon was merely sealed away, and thus kept his piece of the Triforce, since he was not actually dead. And then again in the finale,
    Display Spoiler
    the ToP and ToW were expelled from Yuganon upon being murdered and again collected by Link
    .

    Ultimately, this means that dead and undead creatures cannot bear Pieces of the Triforce.





    The Fact Being Presented


    So, now that we have the facts laid out, it is time to present the fact based on them all: The Hero's Shade Is Not A Stalfos.



    Reason 01: They Do Not Look/Act The Same!

    The first and most obvious reason why the Hero's Shade is not a Stalfos. This can be found in/supported by Fact 03. Compare an image of the Hero's Shade with that of a Stalfos - he's clearly a wolf!

    *beat* And for the form I'm actually comparing, do take note how the Hero's Shade completely lacks any bones. He has armor, yes, but not any donned by any Stalfos known. This armor is worn by something that is obviously see-through and very ghost-like. No Stalfos to date has ever been see-through or ghostly.
    [espoiler=Warning, Big Image]

    [/espoiler]
    Another thing that has to be taken into account is their placement in reality. In Fact 03 we know that Stalfos are undead, physical creatures made of reanimated bones and they exist in the physical world. The Hero's Shade's hominid form, however, only exists in a metaphysical state - in someone's mind. This goes completely against the nature of a Stalfos, and like I was teasing earlier, due to this discrepancy we would have to compare the physical form of the Hero's Shade with a Stalfos and as it turns out his physical form is most unlike a Stalfos because his physical form is a wolf as per Fact 04.

    Since the physical forms do not match up, and the metaphysical form has no bearing on physical reality, the Hero's Shade cannot be a Stalfos.

    As for their actions, the Hero's Shade acts completely unlike any Stalfos. He has intelligence, memories of when he was alive, and most importantly is not out to kill Link or any civilians, whereas any Stalfos worth his salt would do so.



    Reason 02: Link Never Got Lost in The Lost Woods

    As far as can be discerned, the Hero of Time was never lost in the Lost Woods. Thanks to Fact 01 and Fact 02 we know that he survived his childhood, which meant not getting lost during his search and leaving of Navi in the woods. Furthermore the woods seen in MM are not specified to be the Lost Woods, and in fact is called a "Mysterious Forest". While possible the Mysterious Forest could have the same properties as the Lost Woods and turn adults who get lost into Stalfos, it is nonetheless clear that Link still lives and goes on to be an adult, quite likely far away from that Forest and the Lost Woods.

    He has no reason to return to either of these places, as far as the knowledge we have obtained lets us know.



    Reason 03: The Hero's Shade Is A Ghost Filled With Regret at Being Forgotten

    The precedent for this is set in Fact 01, with a quote from Hyrule Historia.
    Hyrule Historia p118:
    The ghost of his ancestor, the Hero of Time, teaches Link his secrets. Ever since his return to the Child Era, the Hero of Time had felt regret that he would not be remembered as a hero.
    The term ghost coincides with the Hero's Shade's humanoid form, which as stated earlier is very ghost-like. "Ghost" also contradicts Fact 03 - that Stalfos are physical bones, not ghosts. In addition, this quote also reveals why the Hero's Shade exists in the first place: the Hero's Shade exists because for the rest of his life in the Child Timeline, he regretted not being remembered as a Hero.

    As such, the Hero's Shade came into existence until he could ease that regret. He was only able to accomplish this goal by aiding his direct descendent TP Link, and teaching him things that would enable him to save the day and be the hero that the Hero's Shade no longer was in people's memories. Again noting Fact 03, this is very unlike a Stalfos.





    Rebuttals Against Common Arguments


    Now that I've laid out the groundwork and presented this statement, there is bound to be some arguments against it. I have taken the liberty of gathering the more common arguments and rebutting them to a complete standstill here.



    Rebuttal 01: The Hero's Shade is A Special Stalfos

    Under what possible circumstances can that claim be made? Because he looks different? It is far more likely that the reason he doesn't look like a normal Stalfos is because he's Not A Stalfos.

    Additionally, we do have instances of "special" Stalfos already. And guess what.
    [espoiler=Majora's Mask examples may be exempt from this due to the surreal and alternate-universe nature of Termina and various curses and may not in fact be representative of actual Special Stalfos]
    Master Stalfos

    Stalkids

    Captain Keeta

    Igos du Ikana (who became Not Automatically Evil after freeing his soul)

    Stalhounds

    Stallord

    [/espoiler]
    They still look like Stalfos, if a bit fancier with their clothing or skeletal type. But they still look like a bunch of bones playing dress-up, and are still Evil/Cursed by nature, and thus remain in the archetype set by Fact 03. Hero's Shade does not and is not. He is not made of strictly bones and is not automatically evil. Even his face appears more of extreme gauntness brought on by decay rather than an outright skull.

    In addition, this very premise brings up a secondary theory, based upon Fact 04: The Hero's Shade is a "Special" Wolfos. The reason to back up this claim is exactly the one used to claim that he is a special Stalfos - that he "looks like" a Wolfos, but looks/acts different because he is "special" and turned into a Wolfos because he is "special". And yet no one has ever felt inclined to support this position.
    [espoiler=See, they totally look the same!]
    Hero's Shade Wolf Form

    OoT Wolfos


    TP Wolfos

    [/espoiler]
    This is because the Golden Wolf, does not, in fact, look like a Wolfos, just like how the Hero's Shade does not look like a Stalfos (see Fact 03). The Golden Wolf may be similar in appearance to a Wolfos like how the Hero's Shade is similar to a Stalfos, but this does not automatically mean the Golden Wolf is a Wolfos nor does it automatically mean the Hero's Shade is a Stalfos.

    One cannot deny this Wolfos Theory and yet accept the Stalfos Theory at the same time. One cannot say the Golden Wolf isn't a Special Wolfos because he doesn't look like a Wolfos and then go around and say the Hero's Shade is a Special Stalfos because he doesn't look like a Stalfos. It is a contradiction. And thus we are left with two options:

    Either the Hero's Shade is both a special Stalfos and special Wolfos, or he is neither of these. The most sensible answer, of course, is that he is neither. There is no precedent for someone dead to turn into two monsters and switch between them depending on metaphysical aspects.

    Lastly, as per fact 05, the Triforce has nothing to do with his death beyond disappearing and taking all of its magic with it, so the Triforce cannot have magically transformed him into one after his death, because it left him before he even died.



    Rebuttal 02: He Went Back to The Lost Woods [While Trying to Find Navi] And Got Lost

    Again, what evidence is there at all to back this up? This is pure speculation, and one that has an extremely weak jumping-off point. Yes, it is possible that he may have gone back, however, there are HUGE problems with this as glaring assumptions being made:
    There is no guarantee that he would get lost and suddenly not know how to get around his back yard anymore.
    There is no guarantee that he lost the protection of the Great Deku Tree and the Kokiri.
    There is no guarantee that the Triforce of Courage wouldn't have protected him from being too lost.
    There is ABSOLUTELY NO REASON that he would continue to search for Navi.

    That last part irks me particularly, because the entire point of Majora's Mask was to let Navi go. That game WAS when he went to search for Navi - his search for Navi at the beginning of the game was the very catalyst that sent him on this nearly never-ending hell ride, and by the end of Majora's Mask he learned some pretty damn important lessons about loss, grief, determination, friendship, and letting things go/saying goodbye.

    Skull Kid is a clear parallel to Link - someone who lost a dear friend and attempted to get them back, which ended up making Bad Things Happen. The difference here is that while Skull Kid went completely loony and mind-controlled, Link realized that it was foolhardy to chase after the past, and that he and Navi still cared for each other even if they were to be separated forever, based on the reconciliation between Skull Kid and the Giants, and the parting words the Happy Mask Salesman gave to Link.

    There is NO reason why, years later, he would suddenly and stupidly cast aside all that he learned to go and search for her again.



    Rebuttal 03: The Triforce Did It

    See Fact 05, as well as the end of Rebuttal 01. As the Triforce of Power did for Ganondorf, so does the ToC do for MM Link. Shortly before MM Link's death, the ToC leaves him in search for a new bearer. Thus, when MM Link finally does die, he does not have any mystical or magical powers, let alone any that would oddly transform him into an evil creature. It his regrets alone that caused his spirit to become trapped in the physical world until he is set at ease.





    Conclusion


    The Hero's Shade isn't a Stalfos because he doesn't look like one, act like one, smell like one, have the same origin as one, and doesn't exist in the same existential space as one.

    THANK-YOU AND GOOD NIGHT *collapses*

    "FUCK YOU NINTENDO" by Topaz Mutiny



    Thanks to Sugarpoultry for the pretty sig! <3

    The post was edited 3 times, last by Topaz Mutiny ().

  • First things first, I agree with you.

    But what about...Igos Du Ikana, a character that the Hero's Shade greatly resembles?

    Igos Du Ikana was a Stalfos, wasn't evil, was filled with regret and was able to turn into a ghost to attack Link in Majora's Mask. He was also very wise and stayed behind simply because he had unfinished business...like most ghosts do.

    The other thing is...You don't have to turn into a Stalfos if you get lost. And likewise, you can turn into a Stalfos even if you aren't lost. What I mean is...any non-fairy folk who gets lost will turn into a monster. That monster could be anything from a Stalfos to a Skullkid. But...you should ask yourself why these people turn into monsters. They turn into monsters because no one is around to bury them or mummify them or cremate them or anything! They leave a skeleton because no one found them. That skeleton becomes a Stalfos. It's an unhappy and lonely way to go and seems to suggest that that person died without any peace.

    And I think Link might have died that way too. Not necessarily from getting lost in any particular forest...but it seems to me that he died in isolation...at least.

    Ahem. On a final note, I don't think it really matters if he was a "Stalfos" or not, he was still very obviously an undead that wouldn't move on. He's benevolent of course, but in the same way Igos or Darmani was. If you're just trying to debunk the idea that he died in the forest...then that's fine. But I still think there's evidence that he died away from everyone else.
  • Hey, thanks! :)

    Zeldablue777 wrote:


    But what about...Igos Du Ikana, a character that the Hero's Shade greatly resembles?

    Igos Du Ikana was a Stalfos, wasn't evil, was filled with regret and was able to turn into a ghost to attack Link in Majora's Mask. He was also very wise and stayed behind simply because he had unfinished business...like most ghosts do.


    The Hero's Shade still fails to look anything like a Stalfos, including Igos du Ikana. Igos is made of bones like every other Stalfos, Hero's Shade is not. Having fancier armor doesn't mean much. Secondly, the Hero's Shade is inherently benevolent, whereas Igos Du Ikana is inherently hostile which can only be broken by lifting his curse - Hero's Shade has no "curse" to break. This is another key difference that separates them. As for the ghost thing, having the power to become intangible is a completely separate thing from what the Hero's Shade is (and the Hero's Shade can be hit and interacted with in any form, therefore is not intangible).

    In addition I also mentioned in the e-spoiler (Rebuttal 01) that due to the strangeness of Majora's Mask, Igos may not actually be worth much as evidence. He and all of Ikana were cursed by the Skull Kid and Stone Tower, in an alternate universe where hundreds of weird unusual things happen, with Link stuck in a time loop.

    Zeldablue777 wrote:


    The other thing is...You don't have to turn into a Stalfos if you get lost. And likewise, you can turn into a Stalfos even if you aren't lost. What I mean is...any non-fairy folk who gets lost will turn into a monster. That monster could be anything from a Stalfos to a Skullkid. But...you should ask yourself why these people turn into monsters. They turn into monsters because no one is around to bury them or mummify them or cremate them or anything! They leave a skeleton because no one found them. That skeleton becomes a Stalfos. It's an unhappy and lonely way to go and seems to suggest that that person died without any peace.


    I suppose I should say "Lost" instead of "lost", since this kind of Lost (pretty much synonymous with Death) is quite different from being normally lost. So you are right: Being "lost" does not automatically mean you are "Lost".

    I am very aware that the Lost Woods is not the singular way of becoming a Stalfos (fact 03) nor that the Lost Woods only turns people into Stalfos (we do know that kids turn into Skull Kids while adults become Stalfos); nonetheless there appears to be no foothold for why MM Link would become one.

    Woods aside, MM Link cannot be cursed or raised into a Stalfos by Ganondorf because Ganondorf was already sealed into the Twilight Realm. And the statement based on loneliness and lack of burial is conjecture at this point. Do you have any concrete proof supported by the games, HH, or dev quotes that supports this notion? Because otherwise it cannot be said that MM Link became a Stalfos based on his regret and loneliness and possibly a lack of burial - there's just no evidence in-game, and that argument could be applied to any kind of undead: poes, gibdos, redeads, and more. There's nothing saying that it applies to Stalfos, and only applies to Stalfos.

    Asking "why" without evidence will only lead to fanfiction (which I want to re-state isn't a bad thing! It's just not the purpose of this article).

    Zeldablue777 wrote:


    And I think Link might have died that way too. Not necessarily from getting lost in any particular forest...but it seems to me that he died in isolation...at least.

    Ahem. On a final note, I don't think it really matters if he was a "Stalfos" or not, he was still very obviously an undead that wouldn't move on. He's benevolent of course, but in the same way Igos or Darmani was. If you're just trying to debunk the idea that he died in the forest...then that's fine. But I still think there's evidence that he died away from everyone else.

    I feel it does matter, because to me it doesn't make sense that the Hero of Time would turn into an evil (who for some strange reason isn't evil at all) monster (that only exists in people's heads) as opposed to something else. That's why I'm debunking the Stalfos thought as a whole.


    ... And I agree that he died a very lonely man. :'( He's such a tragic character that it only seems fitting.
  • Topaz Mutiny wrote:




    I suppose I should say "Lost" instead of "lost", since this kind of Lost (pretty much synonymous with Death) is quite different from being normally lost. So you are right: Being "lost" does not automatically mean you are "Lost".

    I am very aware that the Lost Woods is not the singular way of becoming a Stalfos (fact 03) nor that the Lost Woods only turns people into Stalfos (we do know that kids turn into Skull Kids while adults become Stalfos); nonetheless there appears to be no foothold for why MM Link would become one.

    Woods aside, MM Link cannot be cursed or raised into a Stalfos by Ganondorf because Ganondorf was already sealed into the Twilight Realm. And the statement based on loneliness and lack of burial is conjecture at this point. Do you have any concrete proof supported by the games, HH, or dev quotes that supports this notion? Because otherwise it cannot be said that MM Link became a Stalfos based on his regret and loneliness and possibly a lack of burial - there's just no evidence in-game, and that argument could be applied to any kind of undead: poes, gibdos, redeads, and more. There's nothing saying that it applies to Stalfos, and only applies to Stalfos.

    Asking "why" without evidence will only lead to fanfiction (which I want to re-state isn't a bad thing! It's just not the purpose of this article).




    ...you shouldn't write off MM since its all about easing regrets before/after death. :/

    The Hero's Shade has a skeletal face and vines all over him. I think that's why the Stalfos idea is so popular. In the Zelda universe...if your skeletal remains start moving again then you're a Stalfos. If your corpse starts moving again, you're a Gibdo or ReDead. I don't think you need Ganondorfs evil magic to be an undead or a ghost. You just need to die unfairly to become an undead.

    But saying how the hero's shade is a manifestation of old Link's regrets...there's a good chance that he is just something hidden away in TP Link. A left over memory after being reincarnated as his own descendant. And if that's the case, he's not a ghost or Stalfos. Just an unpleasant memory that awakened from his past life.

    The post was edited 2 times, last by Zeldablue777 ().

  • Zeldablue777 wrote:

    ...you shouldn't write off MM since its all about easing regrets before/after death. :/


    <_< I'm not -quite- writing off MM so unabashedly, I'm making aware that Termina is Fricken Weird, and what applies there may not actually apply to Hyrule.

    Zeldablue777 wrote:


    The Hero's Shade has a skeletal face and vines all over him. I think that's why the Stalfos idea is so popular.


    And those superficial reasons aren't strong enough to make a case, which I've demonstrated quite clearly in my original post. Which is why I disagree with it so strongly.

    Zeldablue777 wrote:


    In the Zelda universe...if your skeletal remains start moving again then you're a Stalfos. If your corpse starts moving again, you're a Gibdo or ReDead. I don't think you need Ganondorfs evil magic to be an undead or a ghost. You just need to die unfairly to become an undead.


    I just said I am aware that there are other ways of becoming an undead. :| The thing is, the Lost Woods, Ganondorf's magic, and Stone Tower/Skull Kid's curse are the only ways that we currently and concretely know of and I asked if there was actually something else, some evidence (Not. Conjecture.) that I may have missed. I can't discuss something that's nonexistent in the lore. And what's nonexistent in the lore is this "you need to die unfairly" you keep bringing up.

    Believe me, I looked. The only source I could find for the origins of these creatures is in Super Smash Brothers Melee. For the ReDeads in OoT's Castle Town. Which weren't even former people but completely made of magic anyway. Which, if this could even be considered canon, is clearly not "dying unfairly". It's additionally irrelevant since the Hero's Shade isn't even a ReDead, let alone a Stalfos.

    For the record, I found nothing on Stalfos' source of origin that isn't the Lost Woods or Ganondorf, or Skull Kids/Stone Tower's curse.

    Going back to not writing off Termina for a bit, I will bring up Pamela's father. He's not even dead and already halfway to becoming a Gibdo, which is also not dying unfairly (but this time from a canon source that isn't Smash Bros). But like I said, Termina, weird, maybe maybe not the same as Hyrule. Also irrelevent since we really should just be talking about Stalfos.

    The thing is, we don't even know how MM Link died. We know he did die, and we know his regrets, but we are completely in the dark about his condition on his point of death. We can't make assumptions based on nothing. Some people have even declared that the appearance of the Hero's Shade isn't even what he looked like when he died, and because of the lack of knowledge about how he died there's nothing to say that they're wrong (nor any to say they're right, but I digress).

    Zeldablue777 wrote:


    But saying how the hero's shade is a manifestation of old Link's regrets...there's a good chance that he is just something hidden away in TP Link. A left over memory after being reincarnated as his own descendant. And if that's the case, he's not a ghost or Stalfos. Just an unpleasant memory that awakened from his past life.


    Except the "Hero" isn't being reincarnated - it's the "spirit of the Hero" which is a concept, not a person, and more or less a self-fullfilling prophecy.

    Well, if it reincarnated in the first place anyway. People tend to misconstrue what Demise said a lot. To paraphrase, it's Demise's Hatred that keeps reincarnating, so that he will forever haunt Zelda's bloodline (which as time goes on would involve more and more people) and the spirit of the hero - those who would stand up to demons. Heroic reincarnation need not apply.

    Secondly if this were leak-throughs of a past life, wouldn't there have been scenes that actually depict that? Like cutscenes of stuff from OoT? Flashbacks? Unwarranted PTSD? Since there's none of that in the game and the Hero's Shade most definitely exists as a separate entity (Gold Wolf) we cannot even begin to presume that he's a figment of TP Link's "past life" or that TP Link actually has Hollywood Schizophrenia.

    "FUCK YOU NINTENDO" by Topaz Mutiny



    Thanks to Sugarpoultry for the pretty sig! <3

    The post was edited 1 time, last by Topaz Mutiny ().

  • The reincarnation thing is iffy. And the hero's spirit isn't a literal spirit.

    But Faron gives Link the last hero's tunic after saying the past Link was awakening inside him. Literally 10 minutes after that the Hero's shade appears and yells at Link for not respecting the green tunic. All of that seems to imply TP Link was literally reawakening himself from OoT, which would explain the scary spirit that only he sees and passes out from when meeting.

    I think with TP and OoT Link, there's proof that the reincarnation thing is more than a concept. Those 2 seemed to be more linked than the rest.

    Look at your awakened form... The green tunic that is your garb once belonged to the ancient hero chosen by the gods... His power is yours. His is the true power that slept within you.


    I guess you can see it metaphorically, but this seems to imply that as soon as Link put the tunic on, his past self/regret started haunting after him until all of his own skills had been past down.

    As for the undead thing, I never took the melee thing as absolute. This is mostly because when you're in the graveyard you can find redeads no problem. They don't seem to be greatly tied to Ganondorf. Neither does the bottom of the well. We know that poes manifest from hatred and regret, so I imagine anything that dies a weird death can manifest in someway without much help from an evil villain.

    Also:

    Tell me...Do you ever feel a strange sadness as dusk falls?
    They say it's the only time when our world intersects with theirs...
    ...The only time we can feel the lingering regrets of spirits who have left our
    world.
    That is why loneliness always pervades the hour of twilight...


    Aaaaand Old lady in TP's Castle Town

    But there was a time when Hyrule was torn by conflicts that swept the land...
    And these recent disturbing events may be caused by the leftover anger and
    misery of the souls who departed in that conflict...


    All this seems to suggest that Ganondorf, or the Twili aren't the sole reasoning behind undead stuff. Sure, it sounds like she's talking about the Twili, but it also sounds like she's talking about the dead in general too. It seems that bad things just happened to people from the wars and they started haunting up a storm. Hero's Shade might be a part of that group of sad dead people. The Hero of Time's Quest never happened, and instead we hear more pronounced talks about prolonged wars. As if there was more to fight and angst about after the Era of Chaos and the Civil War in OoT's era.

    I don't plan on solving the mystery...but I hate turning down a potential theory too. I mean...how many people fought against the idea that the Shade was OoT Link? A lot of people. And they were wrong. :P So I'd rather not turn down the Stalfos theory completely either.

    The post was edited 2 times, last by Zeldablue777 ().

  • Since I assume this is directed at me from my comments in that one thread, allow me to form a rebuttal. For the record, I don't claim it to be so, but it hardly lacks any more likelihood than any other theory because you're making a lot of assumptions here.

    Topaz Mutiny wrote:


    Fact 03: All Stalfos Are Evil Physical Skeletons (sometimes with armor)

    Since we are figuring out the identity of the Hero's Shade, it would do to figure out the identity of what he is often incorrectly assumed to be - the Stalfos.

    Stalfos have been present in the Zelda games and lore since the very first game, and while their appearances have varied over the course of the years, there are nonetheless very strict guidelines to their appearance and behavior. Here I present to you the Stalfos over the years:
    Display Spoiler

    LoZ Stalfos


    Dead Samus AoL Stalfos


    ALttP Stalfos


    LA Stalfos


    OoT Stalfos


    TWW Stalfos


    TP Stalfos


    SS Stalfos



    As can be seen, while their appearances vary, they nonetheless have several key elements in common. All Stalfos are made completely of solid bones. All Stalfos are a hominid skeleton. All Stalfos lack skin, muscles, and cartilage. All Stalfos have glowing eyes. They are not spirits, but undead - the animated bones of the dead that exist in the physical world like any other "living" creature.

    In addition, their natures appear to be very hard set, unlike other monsters like the Moblins. Stalfos have been strictly evil, created either through Ganondorf's evil magic, the magic of the Lost Woods, or otherwise. Some may have shown intelligence, but all are strictly against the living and against the Hero, attacking without much reason.


    Here is where I first disagree with you. Just because the ones encountered in-game have largely been anti-living, this does not mean it applies to all Stalfos, not to mention we haven't seen any significant or powerful person turned into a Stalfos, so there's entirely the possibility that normal people have no control, but the more "legendary" people could retain control. Kinda like (pardon the weird analogy) in Dragon Ball Z when Vegito is turned into a piece of candy. Everyone else was just a normal piece of candy (from what we can see) but Vegito had full control and proceeded to kick ass. Relevance you may ask? Just that it's not exactly a foreign concept in fantasy stories. There's no evidence (that I've seen) to suggest it's completely impossible in the world of Zelda, not much to support it, but I don't claim it to be anything beyond speculation.

    Fact 04: The Hero's Shade's Physical Form Is A Golden Wolf

    I am honestly surprised that the fixation on the Hero's Shade's mental form is so strong that no one bothers to comment on his physical one - the Golden Wolf. This is the form we first see him in, as well as the form that appears in the physical realm of Hyrule. He also appears as the Golden Wolf in Meta-Physical Howling Stone Space, and also initially appears as the Golden Wolf in the Spirit Place whereupon he finally transforms into his hominid form to teach you the Hidden Skills. The wolf appears in all places, while the hominid strictly appears in the Spirit Place, and needs to transform from wolf form first.[/quote]

    To be fair, I don't have much experience with this game and don't know much about wolf forms, but is it confirmed without a shadow of a doubt that is his "true" form? Is it possible that it's just preference (seriously asking, no clue)

    Fact 05: The Triforce Pieces Abandon Its Host Shortly Before Death

    This fact is presented to us through various events in the games. In Twilight Princess, the Triforce of Power abandons Ganondorf as he is about to permanently die, represented by the glow on his bearer mark dying out. This is quite interesting, as the ToP prevents Ganondorf from dying from mortal wounds like in his supposed execution by the Sages - thus it must not be present in order for him to actually die.

    Do note that the reincarnation of Ganondorf in FSA lacks a Triforce Piece, suggesting that TP Ganondorf's murder shattered the link between the King of Evil and the ToP (in fact, the Triforce is completely absent from FSA, despite being the next game in the Child Timeline after Twilight Princess), unlike how MM Link's passing on also passed on the ToC to someone else. This is further evidenced by the Triforce Pieces being released from Ganon after his slaying in the original LoZ and other games, whereupon they were immediately gathered by Link.

    ALttP used to be further evidence, until it was revealed/retconned in ALBW that Ganon was merely sealed away, and thus kept his piece of the Triforce, since he was not actually dead. And then again in the finale,
    Display Spoiler
    the ToP and ToW were expelled from Yuganon upon being murdered and again collected by Link
    .

    Ultimately, this means that dead and undead creatures cannot bear Pieces of the Triforce.


    Would it not leave him in the instance he became a Stalfos and go to his descendant?



    Reason 01: They Do Not Look/Act The Same!

    The first and most obvious reason why the Hero's Shade is not a Stalfos. This can be found in/supported by Fact 03. Compare an image of the Hero's Shade with that of a Stalfos - he's clearly a wolf!

    *beat* And for the form I'm actually comparing, do take note how the Hero's Shade completely lacks any bones. He has armor, yes, but not any donned by any Stalfos known. This armor is worn by something that is obviously see-through and very ghost-like. No Stalfos to date has ever been see-through or ghostly.
    [espoiler=Warning, Big Image]

    [/espoiler]
    Another thing that has to be taken into account is their placement in reality. In Fact 03 we know that Stalfos are undead, physical creatures made of reanimated bones and they exist in the physical world. The Hero's Shade's hominid form, however, only exists in a metaphysical state - in someone's mind. This goes completely against the nature of a Stalfos, and like I was teasing earlier, due to this discrepancy we would have to compare the physical form of the Hero's Shade with a Stalfos and as it turns out his physical form is most unlike a Stalfos because his physical form is a wolf as per Fact 04.

    Since the physical forms do not match up, and the metaphysical form has no bearing on physical reality, the Hero's Shade cannot be a Stalfos.

    As for their actions, the Hero's Shade acts completely unlike any Stalfos. He has intelligence, memories of when he was alive, and most importantly is not out to kill Link or any civilians, whereas any Stalfos worth his salt would do so.


    Goes back to the question about the Wolf. If the humanoid form could possibly be one of his forms, it's perfectly plausible, all design changes are purely aesthetic for the gamer, if the games all take place in one timeline, any change as massive as each game changes Stalfos would just be odd. In the game world, they all either look very similar in each instance of adventure or each Stalfos is incredibly individual and based on the person they used to be. Maybe each person has a form based on who they were. If there's legitimate evidence that the Hero's Shade can only be a Wolf in the physical realm, then it would be a killer for the theory, but if not, it's still a possibly, especially with the way the like to retcon things, hell, they'll probably somehow make him out to be an Octorok in 10 years >_>

    Reason 02: Link Never Got Lost in The Lost Woods

    As far as can be discerned, the Hero of Time was never lost in the Lost Woods. Thanks to Fact 01 and Fact 02 we know that he survived his childhood, which meant not getting lost during his search and leaving of Navi in the woods. Furthermore the woods seen in MM are not specified to be the Lost Woods, and in fact is called a "Mysterious Forest". While possible the Mysterious Forest could have the same properties as the Lost Woods and turn adults who get lost into Stalfos, it is nonetheless clear that Link still lives and goes on to be an adult, quite likely far away from that Forest and the Lost Woods.


    Why is that likely? Why could he not bang one out with one of those healing women during a time he comes out of the woods. He could go in and out multiple times over the years but it only takes one time.

    He has no reason to return to either of these places, as far as the knowledge we have obtained lets us know.


    Why do you say that? He could have reasons to abandon the search or go other places only to not find her. He could have given up as a kid and returned as an adult just to try again. There are many scenarios, he doesn't have to get lost in just one trip.

    Reason 03: The Hero's Shade Is A Ghost Filled With Regret at Being Forgotten

    The precedent for this is set in Fact 01, with a quote from Hyrule Historia.
    Hyrule Historia p118: The term ghost coincides with the Hero's Shade's humanoid form, which as stated earlier is very ghost-like. "Ghost" also contradicts Fact 03 - that Stalfos are physical bones, not ghosts. In addition, this quote also reveals why the Hero's Shade exists in the first place: the Hero's Shade exists because for the rest of his life in the Child Timeline, he regretted not being remembered as a Hero.

    As such, the Hero's Shade came into existence until he could ease that regret. He was only able to accomplish this goal by aiding his direct descendent TP Link, and teaching him things that would enable him to save the day and be the hero that the Hero's Shade no longer was in people's memories. Again noting Fact 03, this is very unlike a Stalfos.


    Indeed, a normal stalfos is just a bucket of bones, but my theory is that because Link was different, he has different "capabilities" after death/stalfosification. His essence living on forms the ghostness maybe? "stalfosification" and "ghostness" are totally real words.



    Rebuttal 01: The Hero's Shade is A Special Stalfos

    Under what possible circumstances can that claim be made? Because he looks different? It is far more likely that the reason he doesn't look like a normal Stalfos is because he's Not A Stalfos.


    See above.

    Additionally, we do have instances of "special" Stalfos already. And guess what.
    [espoiler=Majora's Mask examples may be exempt from this due to the surreal and alternate-universe nature of Termina and various curses and may not in fact be representative of actual Special Stalfos]
    Master Stalfos

    Stalkids

    Captain Keeta

    Igos du Ikana (who became Not Automatically Evil after freeing his soul)

    Stalhounds

    Stallord

    [/espoiler]


    Because they're different, they're irrelevant? I don't see the logic in that, all Zelda games come with their share of metaphor and symbolism, if you try to apply pure logic to it, you're not always going to come to a correct solution. Majora's Mask was heavy on the metaphorical and symbolic side, but by no means could it POSSIBLY be non-canonical.

    They still look like Stalfos, if a bit fancier with their clothing or skeletal type. But they still look like a bunch of bones playing dress-up, and are still Evil/Cursed by nature, and thus remain in the archetype set by Fact 03. Hero's Shade does not and is not. He is not made of strictly bones and is not automatically evil. Even his face appears more of extreme gauntness brought on by decay rather than an outright skull.


    Graphics, design and emotional attachment on the side of players and developers could all result in that. In Majora's Mask, it was partly to let you know "hey, these are definitely stalfos" and partly do to hardware limitations. When it comes right down to it, the aesthetics of the Zelda series have absolutely no relevance in the canon of it all.

    In addition, this very premise brings up a secondary theory, based upon Fact 04: The Hero's Shade is a "Special" Wolfos. The reason to back up this claim is exactly the one used to claim that he is a special Stalfos - that he "looks like" a Wolfos, but looks/acts different because he is "special" and turned into a Wolfos because he is "special". And yet no one has ever felt inclined to support this position.
    [espoiler=See, they totally look the same!]
    Hero's Shade Wolf Form

    OoT Wolfos


    TP Wolfos

    [/espoiler]


    It's a conspiracy, it was the Hero's Shade that left that scar on the tree in Lake Hylia.

    One cannot deny this Wolfos Theory and yet accept the Stalfos Theory at the same time. One cannot say the Golden Wolf isn't a Special Wolfos because he doesn't look like a Wolfos and then go around and say the Hero's Shade is a Special Stalfos because he doesn't look like a Stalfos. It is a contradiction. And thus we are left with two options:

    Either the Hero's Shade is both a special Stalfos and special Wolfos, or he is neither of these. The most sensible answer, of course, is that he is neither. There is no precedent for someone dead to turn into two monsters and switch between them depending on metaphysical aspects.


    Well that conclusion makes no sense. As far as the canon goes, Wolfos are just animals. No where in Hyrule (as far as I know) is there a location that transforms people into Wolfos, however, in the same game the Hero of Time was spawned, the Lost Woods turned people that got lost into Stalfos.


    Rebuttal 02: He Went Back to The Lost Woods [While Trying to Find Navi] And Got Lost

    Again, what evidence is there at all to back this up? This is pure speculation, and one that has an extremely weak jumping-off point. Yes, it is possible that he may have gone back, however, there are HUGE problems with this as glaring assumptions being made:


    Every theory ever is speculation. Until there are definitive canon sources that outline the entire process, there's no factual reason for the Hero's Shade's existence, so it's all down to interpretation and speculation.

    There is no guarantee that he would get lost and suddenly not know how to get around his back yard anymore.


    There's no evidence to the contrary, either. I thought the Lost Woods were impossible to navigate? It's easy for players, but the linear design we see has nothing to do with the navigation of the actual Lost Woods. It's not just tunnels and clearings, they're actual woods. Maybe that section is indeed possible to traverse, but there's no reason to only stick to that section of the lost woods.

    There is no guarantee that he lost the protection of the Great Deku Tree and the Kokiri.


    Well, the Deku Tree itself offered no more protection once it died and the Kokiri just view adult Link as a stranger. When he goes back in time, unless he returns to living in his old home, there's a chance he never meets the Deku Tree Sprout or even any evidence it holds any power of its own until it grows. There's nothing but speculation on both sides, so this particular argument is irrelevant. It's like both sides of the God argument. One person says there must not be a God because there's no evidence and one person says there must be a God because there's no evidence to the contrary. I, as well as the other people that prefer this theory don't claim it to be fact, we claim it to be POSSIBLE and we speculate, as with other theorists.

    There is no guarantee that the Triforce of Courage wouldn't have protected him from being too lost.


    Back to my previous response, however, we've seen it didn't protect him from being defeated in one timeline, so...

    There is ABSOLUTELY NO REASON that he would continue to search for Navi.


    Idk, if I went on an adventure that determined the fate of the world with one other person, I'd want to stay close to them, seems like it would be like losing close family. Maybe he gives up and the thought remains in his mind and he still just wants to talk to her again, he's old and goes back into the Lost Woods one last time. There are countless reasons and scenarios, Navi was the closest friend he had as a child, arguably more so than Saria.

    That last part irks me particularly, because the entire point of Majora's Mask was to let Navi go. That game WAS when he went to search for Navi - his search for Navi at the beginning of the game was the very catalyst that sent him on this nearly never-ending hell ride, and by the end of Majora's Mask he learned some pretty damn important lessons about loss, grief, determination, friendship, and letting things go/saying goodbye.


    Isn't the entire existence of the Hero's Shade based on the fact that he DIDN'T learn to let things go? He wasn't able to pass on his abilities or whatever, so he hung around as a tortured spirit.

    Skull Kid is a clear parallel to Link - someone who lost a dear friend and attempted to get them back, which ended up making Bad Things Happen. The difference here is that while Skull Kid went completely loony and mind-controlled, Link realized that it was foolhardy to chase after the past, and that he and Navi still cared for each other even if they were to be separated forever, based on the reconciliation between Skull Kid and the Giants, and the parting words the Happy Mask Salesman gave to Link.


    That would make sense if it were totally impossible to reunite with his old friend, if she had died or something, but that's not the case. Even if he felt better about it as a kid, it could easily have come back, and because he's the Hero's Shade, we know he's not good at the whole "closure" thing.

    There is NO reason why, years later, he would suddenly and stupidly cast aside all that he learned to go and search for her again.


    Older people chase the past. You're assuming his closure as a child remained the same into adulthood/old-age. Let's say for instance that as a child, you're told you could never see a brother or sister again. You come to terms with it and let go, but as you grow older, you start thinking about them again and want to find them. Stuff like that. Just MANY reasons, the most simple explanation: family.

    THANK-YOU AND GOOD NIGHT *collapses*
    [/SIZE][/align]


    HAVE AT YOU!
  • Zeldablue777 wrote:

    The reincarnation thing is iffy. And the hero's spirit isn't a literal spirit.

    Are... you attempting to agree with me? I literally just said it's a Concept - not a person. And I also said I didn't believe in the hero spirit reincarnating. And if you meant Demise's reincarnation is iffy, I'm good with that too. He still cursed them and is haunting them through his successors.

    Zeldablue777 wrote:


    But Faron gives Link the last hero's tunic after saying the past Link was awakening inside him. Literally 10 minutes after that the Hero's shade appears and yells at Link for not respecting the green tunic. All of that seems to imply TP Link was literally reawakening himself from OoT, which would explain the scary spirit that only he sees and passes out from when meeting.


    Faron wrote:


    In the land covered in twilight, where people roam as spirits, you were transformed into a blue-eyed beast... That was a sign... It was a sign that the powers of the chosen one rest within you... and that they are awakening. Look at your awakened form... The green tunic that is your garb once belonged to the ancient hero chosen by the gods... His power is yours. His is the true power that slept within you. Your name is Link. You are the hero chosen by the gods.

    He's... he's referring to the Triforce of Courage.

    I honestly just didn't know people could think otherwise. So give me a moment.

    *deep breath*

    I'm not here to argue what the Hero's Shade is, I am here to dispel a singular creature that he is not: A Stalfos. Feel free to make your own thread about this topic, as it does seem genuinely intriguing, but for the time being I am no longer going to address these tangents, interesting though they may be.

    Zeldablue777 wrote:


    I think with TP and OoT Link, there's proof that the reincarnation thing is more than a concept. Those 2 seemed to be more linked than the rest.

    Of course they're more linked, they're related by blood. :P

    But as I just declared, I will say no further than that. ^_^

    Zeldablue777 wrote:


    As for the undead thing, I never took the melee thing as absolute.

    Which is why I said "if we took it as canon". I'm not considering it canon. The point was it was the only source that even had an origin (for an irrelevant creature no less). Which means there are no canon points. Therefore no canon footholds.

    Zeldablue777 wrote:


    This is mostly because when you're in the graveyard you can find redeads no problem. They don't seem to be greatly tied to Ganondorf. Neither does the bottom of the well.

    Which is fine because it was talking about the ones in Castle Town. Which I recall mentioning.

    Zeldablue777 wrote:


    We know that poes manifest from hatred and regret,

    Poes are also irrelevant for the same reasons as redeads and gibdos. Which is generally why I overlooked this origin, because I was looking specifically for Stalfos origins that weren't already Woods, Termina Curse, or Bad Dude.

    (I mentioned Melee to point out that there is nothing else for Stalfos)

    Zeldablue777 wrote:


    so I imagine anything that dies a weird death can manifest in someway without much help from an evil villain.

    Perhaps I am not making this clear.

    I am aware evil villains aren't the only way undeads can manifest. I am aware there are/can/probably alternative ways.

    I said this twice already.

    But there is nothing in the Lore to support a Stalfos manifesting aside from the ways already listed. I am aware that there can be other ways. But those other ways are unknown to us. Which means claiming the Hero's Shade is a Stalfos based on an Other Way Of Becoming Stalfos is making a claim on false evidence. Which is a fallacy.

    And as a fallacy, it cannot be considered.



    EDIT: HOLY JESUS GABORA. XD

    I will get to yours in the morrow. 'Tis far too late and my fortitude drained to continue this battle o wits.

    (No, it wasn't you, not exactly. I've had my mind for a thread like this for a while, and actually had another smaller post on this topic that was unfortunately eaten by the Great Valentines Crash the other year. Though you did inspire me to finish :) )

    "FUCK YOU NINTENDO" by Topaz Mutiny



    Thanks to Sugarpoultry for the pretty sig! <3

    The post was edited 1 time, last by Topaz Mutiny ().

  • @Gabora

    Wh...who are you quoting?

    I believe Majora's Mask was a journey that taught Link to move on and deal with his problems. I think after MM he went home and stopped looking for Navi so he could spend more time with the loving people he left behind in Hyrule.

    But I'm sure he was still a bit of a depressed wreck. =/

    I honestly just don't like the idea of him dying over Navi. I like to think he learned a valuable lesson from MM. Then again, he was described as being stubborn on several occasions in Majora's Mask. Soooo...I suppose OoT/MM's most definable trait is his terrible inability to more on. That much is apparent from the existence of the Hero's Shade.
  • Gabora, I would just like to address your various points regarding the Hero of Time's regrets and how he could easily have continued searching for Navi or returned to the search in later life:

    You're right, he could have done. However, there is no evidence that he actually did this. It's equally likely that he went home and made his family, then up until his dying day regretted that he never picked up his search once again.

    I'm not saying you're wrong, and I'm not saying I'm right. I'm just saying that when there's no evidence to support either side's case, you can't really use it to argue against someone.

    That being said, the same is true for Topaz. Gabora's right; we don't know whether or not Link died in the Lost Woods. He could have. In fact, Fado from OoT says that non-Kokiri who get lost in the Lost woods becomes a Stalfos. This would imply that the Kokiri can get lost in there too, just that they won't turn into a Stalfos. If that is the case, then clearly there is more to the area than we see in OoT for them to get lost in, and thus it is quite plausible that Link could get lost there in later life despite having prior knowledge of parts of it.
  • I got 'dis. Let's dane.

    Gabora wrote:

    Since I assume this is directed at me from my comments in that one thread, allow me to form a rebuttal. For the record, I don't claim it to be so, but it hardly lacks any more likelihood than any other theory because you're making a lot of assumptions here.


    Then we'll apply Occam's razor and see which side makes the least assumptions.

    Here is where I first disagree with you. Just because the ones encountered in-game have largely been anti-living, this does not mean it applies to all Stalfos, not to mention we haven't seen any significant or powerful person turned into a Stalfos, so there's entirely the possibility that normal people have no control, but the more "legendary" people could retain control.


    Igos du Ikana was king of an empire. Does one need more?

    Admittedly the Stalchildren army in Termina is whacky and does not apply properly to how Stalfos work in Hyrule.

    To be fair, I don't have much experience with this game and don't know much about wolf forms, but is it confirmed without a shadow of a doubt that is his "true" form? Is it possible that it's just preference (seriously asking, no clue)


    Because of Twilight blanketing the land, and because of his Triforce of Courage, Link is turned into a magnificent beast rather than turning him into a shadow. It is supposed to be a reflection of his soul.

    His free transformation is only because Midna touches him with a piece of Shadow Crystal.

    Wolf Link does not exist in the Twilight Realm. He always shows up in places that aren't blanketed in Twilight, so it's not a transformed form.

    Would it not leave him in the instance he became a Stalfos and go to his descendant?


    Why not the instance he died? Doesn't that make much more sense?

    Goes back to the question about the Wolf. If the humanoid form could possibly be one of his forms, it's perfectly plausible


    Assumption spotted, there's no proof to support he could be humanoid in Hyrule and the fact that he's insistent of transporting you to a different realm seems proof enough that he can't.

    all design changes are purely aesthetic for the gamer


    That doesn't make a ghost a special type of skeleton. A Golden Cucco is a special Cucco. A Pink Zora is a special Zora. A wooden door is not a special boat.

    The physical difference is so incredibly large that calling him a Stalfos would require an incredibly skewed view.

    BATTERY RUNNING OUT PART TWO COMING SOON
  • I completely agree that the Hero's Shade is NOT a Stalfos, it is canonically confirmed, and even if it wasn't, it is very evident. You bring up many good points, Topaz, some that I myself have never thought of (you should be proud).

    I do, however, have one problem with the OP. You say that Link could not have had kids until he grew up because:

    1) he hadn't reached puberty
    2) Nintendo would never imply that a kid had sex
    3) kids don't have sex ewwwwwww

    I don't want to sound creepy, and I'm not saying that I support youth intercourse, nor that Link DID have children as a kid, but it's not impossible. None of the above three points are good reasons.

    1) Link is a fictional character of a fictional race in a fictional world. Although Hylians share similar characteristics to humans, there is no reason why their anatomy cannot be different from ours. It is entirely possible that puberty happens at a different age for them.

    2) That's developer intent. Developer intent ruins theorizing.

    3) There have been countless cultures throughout our history, many still extant today, in which it is the norm for children to be married with children at age 12. While we may view it as uncivilized, to many people it is nothing strange and the Hylians could be among those people.

    Again, great job and I do not disagree with your overall theory.

    Signature courtesy of the very Snurtly Snurtlicious
  • if the games all take place in one timeline, any change as massive as each game changes Stalfos would just be odd.


    The Hero's Shade is twice as large as TP Link, I'd say the S.S. "Weird Changes" has sailed off and is having adventures in the afterlife.

    In the game world, they all either look very similar in each instance of adventure or each Stalfos is incredibly individual and based on the person they used to be.


    Based on the person they used to be? I've never seen a before and after, why would you think they look the same?

    Maybe each person has a form based on who they were.


    Careful, that's another assumption.

    If there's legitimate evidence that the Hero's Shade can only be a Wolf in the physical realm, then it would be a killer for the theory


    It would have no affect on the theory at all since the non-physical realm where you meet the Hero's Shade is magical. The Hero's Shade starts off as the Golden Wolf in that realm the first time you meet him but transforms before your eyes. Then the Hero's Shade shows his control over the realm when he splits into clones.

    However, he does none of those things in the physical realm, indicating the Golden Wolf form is the only one he takes in Hyrule.

    Why is that likely? Why could he not bang one out with one of those healing women during a time he comes out of the woods. He could go in and out multiple times over the years but it only takes one time.


    Because people are generally told not to go into the woods and Link would have to be a pretty crappy dad to just go hanging out in dangerous areas for no reason. He has a child, why would he put himself at risk?

    And again, Link heading into the Lost Woods as an adult? Major assumption.

    Why do you say that? He could have reasons to abandon the search or go other places only to not find her. He could have given up as a kid and returned as an adult just to try again. There are many scenarios, he doesn't have to get lost in just one trip.


    Because his regret of not being remembered as a hero and not being able to pass on his skills have absolutely nothing to do with Navi. If he got lost while trying to find Navi, that would have been his regret.

    Indeed, a normal stalfos is just a bucket of bones, but my theory is that because Link was different, he has different "capabilities" after death/stalfosification. His essence living on forms the ghostness maybe? "stalfosification" and "ghostness" are totally real words.


    These different capabilities include:
    • Not looking or acting like a Stalfos at all
    • Being called a Stalfos anyways


    C'mon, you gotta admit denying the antecedent is no way to argue a theory. And, you know, it's another assumption to say Link is affected differently.

    Because they're different, they're irrelevant? I don't see the logic in that


    Topaz is showing you a pear. You call it an apple. She show's you an apple. You say the pear is just a special type of apple. She shows you special types of apples and how they're also not pears. You don't see the relevance.

    Point is, if it doesn't walk like a duck, talk like a duck or taste like tasty tasty duck meat, why call it a duck?

    all Zelda games come with their share of metaphor and symbolism, if you try to apply pure logic to it, you're not always going to come to a correct solution.


    Even metaphorically speaking, a pear is not an apple.

    Graphics, design and emotional attachment on the side of players and developers could all result in that. In Majora's Mask, it was partly to let you know "hey, these are definitely stalfos" and partly do to hardware limitations. When it comes right down to it, the aesthetics of the Zelda series have absolutely no relevance in the canon of it all.


    Of course they do. To throw the symbolism right back at you, the aesthetics make links between things painfully obvious at all times. Literal icons for every Zelda race in Ocarina of Time. Same skeletal structure for every Stalfos in Twilight Princess, humanoid transparent armored beings in otherwordly places for dead folks who aren't Stalfos in Twilight Princess.

    It's a conspiracy, it was the Hero's Shade that left that scar on the tree in Lake Hylia.


    Chris Houlihan is the fourth piece of the Tetrahedonforce on Hilda's Staff.

    Well that conclusion makes no sense. As far as the canon goes, Wolfos are just animals. No where in Hyrule (as far as I know) is there a location that transforms people into Wolfos, however, in the same game the Hero of Time was spawned, the Lost Woods turned people that got lost into Stalfos.


    The suffix -fos has so far indicated the creature is a humanoid monster, just like the prefix Stal- seems to indicate a creature is a skeletal monster. Lizalfos are man lizards, stalhounds are skeleton hounds.

    Every theory ever is speculation. Until there are definitive canon sources that outline the entire process, there's no factual reason for the Hero's Shade's existence, so it's all down to interpretation and speculation.


    Just because there's no definite proof does not mean every theory is equally (in)valid.

    There's no evidence to the contrary, either.


    There's no evidence that I'm not typing this just outside of your field of view. That doesn't make it very likely either.

    I thought the Lost Woods were impossible to navigate? It's easy for players, but the linear design we see has nothing to do with the navigation of the actual Lost Woods. It's not just tunnels and clearings, they're actual woods. Maybe that section is indeed possible to traverse, but there's no reason to only stick to that section of the lost woods.


    Assumptionnn! Nowhere does it say the game's version of the Lost Woods is not the "actual" Lost Woods.

    There's nothing but speculation on both sides, so this particular argument is irrelevant. It's like both sides of the God argument. One person says there must not be a God because there's no evidence and one person says there must be a God because there's no evidence to the contrary.


    No serious theist would ever use an argument like that, because it's a classical case of shifting the burden of proof.

    I, as well as the other people that prefer this theory don't claim it to be fact, we claim it to be POSSIBLE and we speculate, as with other theorists.


    Theorizing is not speculating; one uses evidence, the other doesn't need to.

    Isn't the entire existence of the Hero's Shade based on the fact that he DIDN'T learn to let things go? He wasn't able to pass on his abilities or whatever, so he hung around as a tortured spirit.


    But nothing about Navi in there.

    That would make sense if it were totally impossible to reunite with his old friend, if she had died or something, but that's not the case.


    How do you know?

    Even if he felt better about it as a kid, it could easily have come back, and because he's the Hero's Shade, we know he's not good at the whole "closure" thing.


    Because he's passed on at the end of Twilight Princess, we know he's pretty okay at the whole "closure" thing.

    HAVE AT YOU!


    DIE MONSTER! YOU DON'T BELONG IN THIS WORLD!
  • ElectricGoose wrote:

    1) Link is a fictional character of a fictional race in a fictional world. Although Hylians share similar characteristics to humans, there is no reason why their anatomy cannot be different from ours. It is entirely possible that puberty happens at a different age for them.


    Though we haven't seen any (that I know of) proper teenagers in the games, you can see from comparing the typical physical traits of puberty (breast size, beard growth etc) that Hylians seem to share their ages of puberty with humans quite consistently. Not only that, but the stage of development in terms of puberty for Link himself seems pretty human when you compare his age in each of the games with a human of the same age (even if there is a bit of a debate on his exact ages).

    3) There have been countless cultures throughout our history, many still extant today, in which it is the norm for children to be married with children at age 12. While we may view it as uncivilized, to many people it is nothing strange and the Hylians could be among those people.


    I don't want to be that guy, but, well, Link could have been raped. Ethics and culture kinda get thrown out of the window in that situation. (For the record I'm not saying he actually was raped, just that it's not outside the realms of possibility) However, for the purposes of this discussion, there's no real evidence to suggest that such a culture exists (same as the puberty thing), and Occam's Razor would really suggest that Hylian nature and culture is in fact very similar to ours.
  • Spagh wrote:


    I don't want to be that guy, but, well, Link could have been raped. Ethics and culture kinda get thrown out of the window in that situation. (For the record I'm not saying he actually was raped, just that it's not outside the realms of possibility) However, for the purposes of this discussion, there's no real evidence to suggest that such a culture exists (same as the puberty thing), and Occam's Razor would really suggest that Hylian nature and culture is in fact very similar to ours.

    ...
    You're right but...
    GEEZ.
  • Looks like Gamtos got to ya before I could Gabora. And he worded it much better than I ever could.

    I just have to say that, if I were to give a nod and acknowledge every "it's possible" out there, I'd be an old lady. :P And we'd be making no ground at the same time, since most of my points would remain standing, and the possibilities are only that.
  • gamtos wrote:

    Then we'll apply Occam's razor and see which side makes the least assumptions.


    As I've stated before, both sides are 100% speculation and therefor equally assuming.

    Igos du Ikana was king of an empire. Does one need more?


    Now notice that special design I mentioned before.

    Admittedly the Stalchildren army in Termina is whacky and does not apply properly to how Stalfos work in Hyrule.


    Why? Because they're being shown as different? I don't believe that makes Termina non-canonical, it means that Stalfos and Stalchilds CAN BE DIFFERENT THAN STOCK AUTO-ATTACK ENEMIES. We almost only see Stalfos that align with Ganon because...why would see any more?

    Because of Twilight blanketing the land, and because of his Triforce of Courage, Link is turned into a magnificent beast rather than turning him into a shadow. It is supposed to be a reflection of his soul.

    His free transformation is only because Midna touches him with a piece of Shadow Crystal.

    Wolf Link does not exist in the Twilight Realm. He always shows up in places that aren't blanketed in Twilight, so it's not a transformed form.


    And how did this happen to living Link? Is it possible the Hero's Shade met the same fate?

    Why not the instance he died? Doesn't that make much more sense?


    Idk about you, but I would considering becoming a Stalfos as dying. Skeleton and all...which gives me a thought. What if people becoming Stalfos in the Lost Woods are a metaphor for just getting lost and dying. Hell, that might just be how the transformation works. Kinda like dying and turning into a zombie Walking Dead Style.

    Assumption spotted, there's no proof to support he could be humanoid in Hyrule and the fact that he's insistent of transporting you to a different realm seems proof enough that he can't.


    That's not proof, it's assuming as well. Maybe it's that whole symbolism thingy going on. It's all assumptions until there's a source that explains what happened. You say your side is somehow more based in fact, but it's pure speculation on both sides, but thaaat's theorizing Zelda canon.

    That doesn't make a ghost a special type of skeleton. A Golden Cucco is a special Cucco. A Pink Zora is a special Zora. A wooden door is not a special boat.

    The physical difference is so incredibly large that calling him a Stalfos would require an incredibly skewed view.

    BATTERY RUNNING OUT PART TWO COMING SOON
    [/quote]

    I don't see it as being that large, he has a somewhat visible soul, but it's not that big of a difference. In a dumbed down explanation, possessed Stalfos...kinda.

    gamtos wrote:

    The Hero's Shade is twice as large as TP Link, I'd say the S.S. "Weird Changes" has sailed off and is having adventures in the afterlife.


    All Stalfos are bigger than Link, are they not? Don't forget that skeletons are smaller than the people they once were, so either all Stalfos are giants or...aesthetics.

    Based on the person they used to be? I've never seen a before and after, why would you think they look the same?


    You're misunderstanding my point. My point is that every Stalfos in each game look EXACTLY the same because no game designers cared enough to give them a sense of individuality, but each game, Stalfos are INCREDIBLY different than the last. If you want to say that the Hero's Shade looking different is a reason to consider, you have to explain why their designs change. Are there different types of Stalfos?

    Careful, that's another assumption.


    That's why I said "maybe"

    It would have no affect on the theory at all since the non-physical realm where you meet the Hero's Shade is magical. The Hero's Shade starts off as the Golden Wolf in that realm the first time you meet him but transforms before your eyes. Then the Hero's Shade shows his control over the realm when he splits into clones.

    However, he does none of those things in the physical realm, indicating the Golden Wolf form is the only one he takes in Hyrule.


    See, that last part is what I'm questioning, is there anything to suggest he can ONLY take the form of the Golden Wolf in Hyrule or does he just so happen to only do so?

    Because people are generally told not to go into the woods and Link would have to be a pretty crappy dad to just go hanging out in dangerous areas for no reason. He has a child, why would he put himself at risk?


    It's possible his child was unborn or grown...or maybe he WAS just a shitty dad. Maybe he was unaware of the existence of his kid, maybe he formed an 8-piece rock group called Octorok and he toured Hyrule getting mass-tail.
    Display Spoiler
    Maybe Nabooru gave him his present


    And again, Link heading into the Lost Woods as an adult? Major assumption.


    Why is it an assumption at all? It's there, he has a past there, to suggest he would never return is an even bigger assumption. Hell, in his timeline, Saria is still around (unless I misinterpreted things) so he still has friends in the woods. Maybe it wasn't JUST looking for Navi, maybe he tried to take a short cut to get to the next gig and bam, Octorok becomes Skalfols (because dead people always love Ska)

    Because his regret of not being remembered as a hero and not being able to pass on his skills have absolutely nothing to do with Navi. If he got lost while trying to find Navi, that would have been his regret.


    Perhaps in death he realized his mistake of not spending more time passing down his abilities, instead wasting his time looking for a fairy.

    These different capabilities include:
    • Not looking or acting like a Stalfos at all
    • Being called a Stalfos anyways


    I disagree with the first part

    C'mon, you gotta admit denying the antecedent is no way to argue a theory. And, you know, it's another assumption to say Link is affected differently.


    I agree, good thing I haven't done so. Remember, I said this is a possibility, not fact, it's just the possibility I particularly lean towards.

    Topaz is showing you a pear. You call it an apple. She show's you an apple. You say the pear is just a special type of apple. She shows you special types of apples and how they're also not pears. You don't see the relevance.


    If by pear and apple you mean she calls it a fact and I call it fellow speculation.

    Point is, if it doesn't walk like a duck, talk like a duck or taste like tasty tasty duck meat, why call it a duck?


    I know some paraplegic, mute ducks that would take offense to that.

    Even metaphorically speaking, a pear is not an apple.


    You should probably read more symbolic/metaphorical stories.

    Of course they do. To throw the symbolism right back at you, the aesthetics make links between things painfully obvious at all times. Literal icons for every Zelda race in Ocarina of Time. Same skeletal structure for every Stalfos in Twilight Princess, humanoid transparent armored beings in otherwordly places for dead folks who aren't Stalfos in Twilight Princess.


    Then please explain the graphical/design differences between games and consoles in-universe. What made Link stop being this vague little guy made of some squares into a far more detailed humanoid. There have been nothing BUT design changes between games.

    When did Octoroks stop looking like:



    and start looking like:



    and WHY?

    Chris Houlihan is the fourth piece of the Tetrahedonforce on Hilda's Staff.




    The suffix -fos has so far indicated the creature is a humanoid monster, just like the prefix Stal- seems to indicate a creature is a skeletal monster. Lizalfos are man lizards, stalhounds are skeleton hounds.


    If Stalfos only means skeletal humanoid monster, then you just confirmed that the Hero's Shade is a Stalfos, but this only applies to the English translation.

    Just because there's no definite proof does not mean every theory is equally (in)valid.


    I agree, saying that Link turns into a Dinolfos is absolutely invalid, but there's just as much validity in Link turning into a Stalfos as any theory I have yet to read about the Hero's Shade.

    There's no evidence that I'm not typing this just outside of your field of view. That doesn't make it very likely either.


    I'll just let you keep believing that...

    Assumptionnn! Nowhere does it say the game's version of the Lost Woods is not the "actual" Lost Woods.


    I'm saying that the in game version is not the ENTIRE Lost Woods. I'm saying there's more there than some tunnels and clearings.

    No serious theist would ever use an argument like that, because it's a classical case of shifting the burden of proof.


    Eh, it's the only argument I've ever really seen when discussing the subject with theists (but let's avoid this subject by a few miles)

    Theorizing is not speculating; one uses evidence, the other doesn't need to.


    Well until the Zelda universe exists, there's only speculation. The explanation for the process of becoming the Hero's Shade does not exist, so there are no facts and nothing to test, so arguably, it's all speculation, but I do have in game examples that have backed up the possibility.

    But nothing about Navi in there.


    As I suggested earlier, maybe his death taught him the errors of his ways, that he wasted his life searching for Navi instead of preparing an heir. He DID learn the error of wasting his life on SOMETHING or dying too soon. Something caused him not to be all "yo Link Jr, here's a sword, spin dat shit". I find it silly to think that he WOULDN'T have taught his alleged progeny some techniques if he were around. There has to have been SOMETHING that preoccupied him because in a world of monsters and gerudo thieves, seems like it would be a priority. I could understand if he were sad about not telling everyone about the skulltulas or something that could have slipped by, but just forgetting to teach his song how to use a sword?

    How do you know?


    I don't, but she didn't just die at the end of Ocarina of Time, he never knew her fate. Though, it probably went something like this:



    Because he's passed on at the end of Twilight Princess, we know he's pretty okay at the whole "closure" thing.


    After actually GETTING closure.

    DIE MONSTER! YOU DON'T BELONG IN THIS WORLD!


    ...not sure how you knew what made me think of that

    Spagh wrote:

    I don't want to be that guy, but, well, Link could have been raped. Ethics and culture kinda get thrown out of the window in that situation. (For the record I'm not saying he actually was raped, just that it's not outside the realms of possibility) However, for the purposes of this discussion, there's no real evidence to suggest that such a culture exists (same as the puberty thing), and Occam's Razor would really suggest that Hylian nature and culture is in fact very similar to ours.


    Dat Nabooru