Design Notes- Tal of Jova

Overview

Tal of Jova is one of the top members in the Eternals. A Guild that exists throughout Zeratal and was built specifically to help the world through its constant era of war and strife. Though he came from the peaceful hot spring village of Jova, peace wasn’t meant for Tal who eventually would go on to become a ninja assassin. Tal is a 23-year-old Trelza, a species of humanoids with catlike traits and features. Namely gaining a tail, ears, clawed nails, fangs, night vision, a naturally strong and flexible bone structure, and pads on the bottom of their feet and underside of their hands. The ears in particular lay near the top of their heads above their normal human pair of ears, though the cat ears are naturally mobile. Tal has dark skin and jet black fur on his ears and tail. The fur on both being smooth and straight giving it a nice sheen. His tail reaching down to the floor easily. The hair on his head was similarly straight and was tied back in a ponytail. Like many Trelza, he has an athletic but somewhat slim frame and heterochromia. An eye condition that causes him to have a blue colored right eye and a red colored left eye.

Clothing

Being primarily a Ninja Assassin, Tal wears a traditional black hood with a Plating Mouth Guard to keep his identity mostly concealed. A matching black Obi or belt holds up his Hakama. Plated black shin guards adding a level of protection while keeping the hakama held down. The Armbands cover the entirety of his arms and are fastened by a thin cord connecting around his neck. Leaving his entire torso exposed. While this would normally be problematic, due to his naturally dark skin he is still able to remain hidden in the dead of night. The plating on his mouth guard, shin guards, and arm guards are made of black dyed Crystavo plating. Armor made from the hard shells of a species of massive crabs indigenous to the oceans of Zeratal. On the back of the Obi are two razor-sharp boomerangs with jet black blades. Though Tal has been known to switch outfits as the needs arose, this is his most common and standard wardrobe of choice.

Miscellaneous Notes

As a Trelza, Tal is a human-cat hybrid. Each sharing traits with a particular non-humanoid cat. Tal being modeled after a Panther. His skin, hair, fur, and overall clothing choice serving to improve his stealth capabilities. As a character, Tal was inspired by my Final Fantasy 14 character of the same name who, before becoming a Red Mage, was a Ninja.

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Original inspiration for Tal’s hairstyle
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Original inspiration for Tal
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Original inspiration for Tal (Close-up)

While he is a ninja, I decided to forego the classical shuriken and kunai special for more unique bladed boomerangs. A dangerous and high skill weapon. Being able to fly silently to their target, end their lives, and return leaving no evidence it was ever there. Even being usable at close-range as handheld sickle-like blades should the need arise. Allowing for a range of options in battle, especially when combined with his Ambience, better known as Ninjutsu. Something I think would be very interesting to see for the traditionally up close and personal Ninjas…or you know…the Ninja Wizards who just spam Ninjutsu all day long.

Final Comments

Tal is probably the closest character in personality to myself and many of his interactions with other characters were inspired or based on my time with the real-life Eternals Guild. He’s a quiet but somewhat snarky person. Being more expressive when with people he knows or trusts. While he does skills and talents that help him excel in areas, he has an almost non-existent self-esteem and is consistently depressed. Never seeing himself or his efforts as good enough and easily putting himself down. Openly displaying his chest being both in his nature as a Trelza and subtle overcompensation. He is probably the least confident and stable person I’ve made who also isn’t insane. But despite it all, he does try his best. Even if he doesn’t allow himself to take a win and can’t show himself any mercy when he makes a perceived mistake.

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