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Lynels (ライネル Raineru?) are recurring enemies in the Legend of Zelda series. They are usually portrayed as centaur-like beasts, with the body of a horse, the torso of a human and the head of a lion, complete with a mane of long hair.

Appearances

The Legend of Zelda

Blue Lynel (The Legend of Zelda) Lynels inhabit the mountainous terrain surrounding Death Mountain. They come in two varieties, red and blue, with the latter being stronger. Lynels are depicted in artwork as wielding a sword and a shield, however, the in-game sprites appear to dual-wield swords. They can shoot beams from their swords in the same way Link can at full health. These sword beams do significant damage and can only be blocked with the Magical Shield.

One specific blue Lynel is found guarding the cave where the Old Man who gives Link the White Sword resides.

The Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past

Lynel (A Link to the Past)

Similar to their earlier installment appearance, Lynels are considered to be among the hardest enemies in the game. There are, however, only three encountered in the entire game. Lynels spew fireballs at Link rather than throwing swords at him, and they also maintain their distance. The sword and the Magic Hammer are two of the few items able to damage them, and only the Mirror Shield can block their fireballs. Lynels can be killed with a single Silver Arrow, however.

The Legend of Zelda: Oracle of Ages and Oracle of Seasons

Red Lynel (Oracle of Ages & Oracle of Seasons)

They are very similar to their The Legend of Zelda counterparts, with minor discrepancies in their appearance. Once again, they appear in the blue and red variety, with the blue variety being more powerful than the red. Their main methods of attack are charging at Link and firing sword beams in his direction that can only be blocked with the Mirror Shield. Among the common enemies in the game, they are generally considered the most dangerous along with Ball & Chain Troopers. There is a special Lynel in Oracle of Seasons known as the Golden Lynel. It is one of the four golden beasts Link must defeat in order to obtain the Red Ring. The Golden Lynel appears only in the Tarm Ruins during the winter.

The Legend of Zelda: A Link Between Worlds

They are very similar to their The Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past counterparts, appearing in only the red variety. Their main methods of attack are blowing streams of fire at Link, for which the Hylian Shield is an effective defense. The damage dealt by the fire is very heavy, especially in Hero Mode. The Fire and Ice Rods are good tools for avoiding Lynels.

The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild

Lynels appear in Breath of the Wild as strong enemies. They are formidable giant creatures resembling the Lynel depicted in the artwork from The Legend of Zelda. There are five variants: the eponymous red-maned Lynels, the Blue-Maned Lynels, the White-Maned Lynels, the stronger Silver Lynels, which sometimes drop rare gems and even Star Fragments when killed, and the strongest Golden Lynels exclusive to the Master Mode. They are able to move very quickly, even being able to keep up with Link on horseback. Lynels drop Lynel Hooves, Lynel Horns, and Lynel Guts when killed.

There are over twenty of them scattered across Hyrule (excluding Golden variants), each equipped with various, self-crafted melee weapons, shields, and bows. The melee weapon can either be a sword, spear, or crusher, and the melee weapons, shields, and bows can be from one of three different archetypes. Lynel weapons are the weakest, Mighty Lynel weapons are stronger than regular Lynel weapons, and Savage Lynel weapons are the strongest of the three archetypes, as well as some of the deadliest weapons in the game. Red-maned eponymous Lynels use the regular Lynel weapons, Blue-Maned Lynels use the Mighty Lynel weapons, and White-Maned Lynels and Silver Lynels both use the Savage Lynel gear, However very rarely White-Maned Lynels carry certain pieces of Mighty Lynel Gear.

A Lynel's personal preference of attack is usually a Dash Attack or Jump Attack. They can also spew fireballs at Link, plunge, if equipped, their spear or crusher into the ground resulting in a fiery explosion, and sometimes even charge headfirst at Link on all fours, which will send Link flying up into the air if it hits. From a distance, Lynels shoot at Link with their self-crafted bows, usually using Shock Arrows, which they also drop when killed. If Link tries to escape from a Lynel as he is being shot at, arrows will storm him from above seemingly out of nowhere. Each and every arrow fired from a Lynel can prove to be very fatal.

To defeat them, getting up close to trigger their melee attacks is recommended, as they are much easier to dodge and do less damage then their arrows. Flurry Rush attacks are very effective as well as throwing a boulder on them that deals massive damage. If Link strays too far from a Lynel mid-fight, it will teleport near him to continue the battle.

Lynels

"These fearsome monsters have lived in Hyrule since ancient times. They possess intense intelligence, resilience, and strength, making them amongst the most dangerous monsters in all the land. This is compounded by the fact that they have a natural resistance to all elements. You would be wise to challenge a Lynel only if you're very well prepared."
— In-game description

Eponymous standard Lynels have a red mane and 2000 HP. One is found near the top of Ploymus Mountain; this Lynel is recommended by the Zora as a good place to obtain the Shock Arrows, which are lodged in trees around the area, necessary to enter the Divine Beast Vah Ruta. Unlike others Lynels, this one is not replaced by a stronger variant if Link has freed some Divine Beasts.

Blue-Maned Lynel

"These fearsome monsters have lived in Hyrule since ancient times. Compared to the standard Lynel, those with blue manes are much tougher and are equipped with much stronger weapons. Facing off a Lynel is ill-advised, but if you must, be sure you're well prepared."
— In-game description

Blue-Maned Lynels have blue skin and hair, a mauve mane, and 3000 HP. They can be found in the Deep Akkala and Hyrule Field regions, as well as one found near the Hyrule Castle. If Link has freed some Divine Beasts, many Blue-Maned Lynel are replaced by White-Maned Lynels, though one can still be found in Hyrule Castle.

White-Maned Lynel

"These fearsome monsters have lived in Hyrule since ancient times. Their ability to breathe fire makes White-Maned Lynels among the toughest of the species; each one of their attacks is an invitation to the grave. There are so few eyewitness accounts of this breed because a White-Maned Lynel is not one to let even simple passersby escape with their lives."
— In-game description

White-Maned Lynels have gray hair, gray skin striped white, a white mane, and 4000 HP. They can be found in the Hebra Mountains and Hyrule Field regions. They wield a massive spear, a new more effective bow than the Lynel Bow and have multiple additional moves, including an attack in which it will jump into the air and smash down, creating a shockwave, and a roar that produces a sphere of flame around its general area. If Link defeat the Silver Lynel in the Coliseum ruins after freed all Divine Beasts, many White-Maned Lynel are replaced by Silver Lynels, though one can still be found in Hyrule Castle. In very rare instances certain White Lynels carry Mighty Lynel Gear instead of Savage Lynel Gear, but this is a very rare occurance.

Silver Lynel

Lynel (Breath of the Wild)

A Silver Lynel

"Silver Lynels are not to be trifled with. They have been influenced by Ganon's fiendish magic, so they are the strongest among the Lynel species, surpassing even the strength of those with white manes. The term "silver" denotes not only their color but also their rarity. The purple stripes help them to stand out even more. "
— In-game description

Silver Lynels have white and purple skin and hair, a silver mane, and 5000 HP. A few Silver Lynels, which appears once Link freed some Divine Beasts, can be found in the Eldin, Gerudo and Hebra provinces, as well as one found around the Hyrule Castle and in the Coliseum Ruins. Silver Lynels also drop gems such as Topazes, Rubies, Sapphires, Diamonds or Star Fragments.

Golden Lynel

Screen Shot 2017-07-09 at 23.08.27

Link standing next to a Golden Lynel while wearing the Lynel Mask

Golden Lynels are added by activating the Master Mode of the DLC pack The Master Trials. While their attack methods remain the same as other Lynels, the Golden Lynel possesses a higher total of 7,500 HP.

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