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Knight Shadows called by Jin-Woo for the first time.

Shadows (그림자, Gurimja) are soldiers that Sung Jin-Woo can create after killing seemingly any type of Magic Beasts (barring Demons) after using his skill Shadow Extraction, one of the skills that Jin-Woo obtained after receiving the Shadow Monarch Class.

Personalities and Emotions

Shadows have varying amounts of personality and emotion, depending on their grade. Soldier and Elite Grade show very little, if not no personality at all. Knight and Elite Knight are where Shadows start showing emotions, albeit simple ones such as nervousness and joy, and gets more complex as their Grade rises.

A similar emotion that all Shadows feel, regardless of Grade, is intense loyalty to their Master, Jin-Woo. Loyalty is a Shadow's greatest emotion and will override any other feelings they have as well as even Jin-Woo's orders if they do so feel like he will be in danger.

This was shown in the quick fight between Beru and Cha Hae-In, where Beru was ordered to only make Cha Hae-In surrender and not hurt her. Beru simply toyed with Cha Hae-In and tried to make her surrender by exploiting her fear for him that she had when she fought him as the Ant King. However, Cha Hae-In's resolve was greater than her fear. During a brief moment in the 'fight', Beru was caught by surprise by one of Cha Hae-In's abilities and due to his pride of easily being able to beat her briefly shattered, as well as being in confusion and in a state of vulnerability, Beru overreacted and deemed Cha Hae-In as a danger to the safety of his Master. Beru's loyalty to protecting Jin-Woo overrides Jin-Woo's order to not harm Cha Hae-In, and then tried to attack her before Jin-Woo stopped him.

After this event, Beru showed humility in disappointing his lord and letting his feelings get the best of him.

Ranks

  • Normal Grade
The most basic soldiers. Typically consists of newly summoned Shadows that Sung Jin-Woo has captured.
  • Elite Grade
Shadow Soldiers that are stronger than Soldier Grades but still pales in comparison to the upper grades like Knight, Elite Knight, and Commander. roughly about as strong as a B-Ranked monster or hunter.

Shadow Grade Example.png

  • Knight Grade
These soldiers have the strength that appears to be around a mid A-rank Hunter to nearly S-Rank. When Igris was first extracted he started at this rank and Jin-Woo explicitly stated that Igris could even go toe to toe with an A-Rank.
  • Elite Knight Grade
Encompasses the spectrum of weaker S-ranks to stronger S-ranks like Cha Hae-In. Tusk was the first extracted Elite Knight Grade as the boss of a high A-Rank dungeon. Igris was also promoted to this rank after climbing the demon tower for a bit with Jin-Woo.
  • CommanderNV/GeneralWB Grade
The third highest and third strongest grade so far. Commander Grade appears to be much much stronger than any S-Rank Hunter and can fight multiple S-Rank Hunters with ease. Before Beru was a Shadow Soldier, he was able to easily manhandle over 10 S-Rank hunters, instantly killing Japan's strongest hunter Goto Ryuji and nearly one punched Cha Hae-In. When Sung Jin-Woo turned the Ant King (Beru) from Jeju Island into a shadow, Beru started at Commander Grade.
The S-Rank Hunter Hwang Dong-Su also started at this rank as Greed, after being somehow killed and extracted. He was described as the "ace" of the Scavenger Guild.[1] Another interesting thing about Commander Grade is that this is seemingly the only Grade that Shadow Soldiers can communicate or even talk at all. As mentioned by Jin-Woo, before Iron and Tusk were turned into Shadow Soldiers, they were able to talk and communicate, but when they got transformed, they were not able to utter a word. Beru however, was able to talk before and after being extracted.
Warning! The following is light novel spoilers that have not been covered in the Solo Leveling Manhwa. Click on "Expand" if you wish to read.
  • Marshal Grade
Marshal Grade is the second highest and second most powerful Grade yet, serving as the final evolution to a Shadow's strength as well as it being their level cap. The second Shadow Soldier to ever reach this Grade was Beru (the first being Bellion) after Jin-Woo and Beru cleared Gate after Gate in Japan as well as Beru's previous battles. After Beru reached this Grade, Jin-Woo let him run amok in a particularly dangerous A-Rank Dungeon, to which he quickly and brutally killed all inhabitants of the Dungeon, save for the Boss as Jin-Woo promised the Guild outside that he would take no credit.
It was stated by Jin-Woo that Marshal Grade was the sole head of an army and there could not be 2 that led an army. And so if Igris or Greed were to reach Marshal Grade as well, like Beru, they would need to fight and show who was stronger to establish the hierarchy on who was more fit to lead the army. However, this was said before Jin-Woo met Bellion.
  • Grand-Marshal Grade
By far, the strongest and highest Grade to exist. This was the Grade of Bellion when he appeared from the super-massive Gate that opened in Seoul, as well as the Leader of the Shadow Army excluding Jin-Woo. This Grade was only seen on one Shadow, Bellion, and as Bellion was part of Ashborn's army even before Jin-Woo became the new Shadow Monarch, this Grade seems to take an enormous amount of time and EXP to reach. Though it has not been seen if reaching this Grade would give power boosts like reaching the other Grades, it has been proven that Grand-Marshal Grade Shadows were highly capable, even being able to easily defeat other Marshal Grade Shadows. This was shown when Beru challenged Bellion for the position of Grand-Marshal and was easily defeated.
This Grade is capable of leading the entire army of the Shadow Monarch, which numbered up to 130,000+ Shadows, as well as 3 Shadow Dragons. This was a clear indication of a Grand-Marshal's power as the first and last time that a single Dragon appeared on Earth, it was Kamish, who was referenced as humanity's worst calamity.

Extra Info : Shadows change their appearance slightly every time their Grade rises.

Shadow List

Notable Shadow Soldiers 

  • Igris (Red Knight, the former guardian of the throne room in class change quest dungeon, level of power - at least A-class)
  • 16 Shadow Infantry
  • Shadow Magicians
  • several Shadow Monsters
  • Tank (Ice Bear Leader)[2]
  • Iron (Tank Class, Kim Chul A-Class Hunter, Chapter 54)
  • Shadow High Orcs (A-Ranked Gated)[3]
  • Tusk (aka Fang or Molar) (Elite Knight Class, Molar, The Great Kargalgan, Boss of High Orcs A-Ranked Gate)[4]
  • Kaisel (Kaisellin, the Wyvern from Demon Castle, Chapter 108)
  • Shadow Ant Army
  • Beru (General Class, Ant King of the Jeju Island S Rank Gate)[6]
  • Ant Queen (General Class, but got send in the Afterworld same as Min Byung-Gyu)
  • Jima (Elite Knight Class, Boss of A-Ranked Gate)[7]
  • 29 Elite Giants (No.6, The Captain of the Giant Corps)(Where giant no.6 became the leader)[8]
  • Kamish (Temporary)[Shadow Extraction failed due to too much time elapsed since it's death](8 years) .[9]
  • Greed (General Class, Hwang Dong-Su S-Class Hunter)[10]
  • 100,000 soldiers (True Shadow Legion from the gate)[11]
  • Belion (Four wings, The General Commander of 100,000 soldiers, Chapter 225)
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