Eldar - Encyclopedia/P

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Eldar Encyclopedia Index:
Named Eldar Individuals and Units
Battles of the Eldar


Some Alaitoc Rangers have trodden the Path of the Outcast for centuries, having managed to resist the dark temptations that the universe offers but losing none of the wanderlust that drove them from their craftworld. They are more adept at survival, marksmanship and infiltration than even normal Rangers and are known as Pathfinders. Travelling the universe is not without its perils, and the Pathfinders have witnessed many things, therefore little moves them to joy or fear. They have seen many of their friends and comrades die over the centuries, and death holds no fear for them (See Alaitoc; Outcasts; Rangers).


Eldar enjoy a naturally long life span and can life for a thousand years or more. During this time, almost all of them pass through a series of distinct lifestyle stages, dramatically changing their social role at irregular intervals. For example and Eldar might become a technician for a few decades before he adopts another role and becomes a warrior, following which he might choose to become a galactic trader or a colonist. Each new role does not totally replace those that went before, but merely adds to the Eldar's accumulated experience. As the Eldar pass through these different stages they explore the many aspects of their own character. An Eldar of a thousand years or more will usually have experienced lots of different roles and attained a very sophisticated understanding of the universe.

This cyclical process is called the Eldar Path. As a social institution it evolved during the time of the decline and Fall of the Eldar, when their ancient society began to break apart and the whole race seemed doomed. The Eldar Path was envisaged as a way of allowing every Eldar to live within their full emotional and intellectual capacity in a safely controlled and progressive manner. By concentrating on only one facet of their complex and overwhelming character at a time, the Eldar are free to explore that area in depth without the dangers of distraction. As total awareness of each facet is achieved, the Eldar move to another, thus building a deeper understanding of the universe and their own capabilities. As the Eldar grows older and his comprehension of his own nature deepens, a wider range of more challenging roles become available to him, including the demanding Paths of that of the Seer and the Warrior.

The Paths of the Warrior and the Seer are just two of the many roles which Eldar can assume during their lives. Some of these roles are quite clearly defined, with traditions and ritualised behaviour patterns of their own. Others are less structured and therefore offer less guidance - they allow a certain amount of freedom and rely on the inner strength that the Eldar has already attained. These roles allow the Eldar to fulfil the functions of technicians, civil administrators, fabricators, colonists, traders, explorers and so on, each function being a single Path within the Path of the Eldar as a whole (See Aspect Warriors; Farseers; Seers; Warlocks).


The Phantom is one of the most deadly Titans seen on any battlefield. Combining an uncanny agility with devastating firepower and elusive Holo Fields, the Phantom has been responsible for the deaths of many Imperial Titans. Its Pulsars are an excellent example of the Eldar's skill with laser weaponry and they are fully capable of shooting many laser pulses within a very short space of time. Typically, Eldar Titans look to get close to their targets and either disabling them in close combat, where their link through the Spirit Stone at the heart of each Titan gives them a far superior edge than any other Titan, or they will knock down their enemy's Void Shields down with Pulsars, before getting the kill shot with a close ranged Heat Lance hit. The Phantom has a crew of four - three living Eldar and one Infinity Circuit. The Infinity Circuit is normally mounted in the centre of the crew compartment in the Titan's head, and the living crew -frequently blood-relatives of the Infinity Circuit - occupy couches around it. Unlike their Human counterparts, they do not have specific functions. Each crew member is equipped with a headband in which is set a fragment of the carrecenad stone; by means of this they merge their minds with the Infinity Circuit, forming a composite mind capable of handling multiple thoughts and actions. This mind is linked to the Phantom's mechanical systems by Mind Impulse Units which are far in advance of those used by the Imperium. The relationship between a Phantom's living crew and its Infinity Circuit is intimate and all-sharing; they know each other totally, and are marked by their ability to finish each other's sentences and thoughts out loud. In any other Eldar, this would be unthinkable presumption, but Titan crews are known for the closeness they develop and the eccentricities that arise from it. To Eldar outside the Titan Clans, they are almost a race apart (see Titans; Titan Infinity Circuits).


Every Eldar wears upon their breast a shining gem or polished stone. This psycho-receptive crystal is called a spirit stone or waystone, and is attuned solely to the mind of its owner. At the moment of death the Eldar's psychic energy is captured by the waystone, denying Slaanesh the chance to torment for eternity, the Eldar's spirit. When an Eldar's mortal body has dies the waystone is placed in the Dome of Crystal Seers where it quickly takes root in the exposed Wraithbone core. The psycho-plastic Wraithbone grows into a tall Wraithbone tree around the stones and the spirit trapped within is released into the infinity circuit where it joins the spirits of all the other dead Eldar. In times of need it is possible for an Eldar spirit to separate itself from the spiritual mass of the Infinity Circuit and flow into a spirit stone set aside for that purpose which can be grafted into the shell of a Wraithguard or Wraithlord. It is all but unheard of for a Farseer to detach from the Infinity circuit, though on occasion a Warlock will do so. A waystone containing the spirit of a Warlock is used to power a rare kind of Wraithlord, the Phantom Seer or Wraithseer.

The main weapon of the Phantom Seer fires potent bolts of psychic energy directed through a series of prisms to amplify the blasts. The cannon may be fired in one of two modes - Splinter or Focus. Before the cannon can be used the firing chamber must be charged with Psychic energy, establishing a link with the warp. During construction the Wraithbone skeleton and external armour of the Phantom Seer is covered with protective runes and sigils that use psychic energy to ward off enemy attacks (See also Spirit Stones; Warlocks; Waystone; Wraithlords).


This is a heavily armed and armoured bomber with advanced sonic weaponry and deadly plasma bombs. Regular weapon armaments include twin-linked shuriken cannon, pulse lasers and twin-linked gatling missile launcher to release the bomb payload. Phoenix bomber are protected against incoming fire by advanced energy fields, designed to absorb and dissipate energy (see Nightwing Interceptor; Vampire).


Typically an Avatar is awakened by ritual as a craftworld prepares for war. However, there is another way of awaking an Avatar; the formation of the Phoenix Court. This rare event, thought by some Eldar to be merely a myth, requires the mightiest of the Phoenix Lords to surround an Avatar while still empty and silent in the craftworld. Each in turn lays their weapons on the spirit stones embedded in the Avatar to infuse the statue with the energy of one of the Exarch souls forming their own consciousness. The resulting Avatar is vastly increased in power and can turn tide of battle alone.


The Phoenix Lords are the most ancient of the Eldar Exarchs. Like the Exarchs of Aspect Warrior Shrines, the Phoenix Lords are immortal after a fashion. When a Phoenix Lord dies, his place is taken by another Eldar who assumes his costume and identity. In this way the Phoenix Lord is reborn into a fresh cycle of existence. His suit includes a spirit stone which contains the spirits of all of the Eldar who have become the Phoenix Lords. Yet no matter how many different individuals a Phoenix Lord may have been, his mind is forever the same, driven by the dominant personality of the first and greatest to wear the suit. Unlike the Exarchs of the Aspect shrines, the Phoenix Lords have no shrines. Once, long ago, they may have belonged to shrines, but these are now long gone. Amongst the most powerful of all Phoenix Lords are those who founded the Warrior Aspects immediately after the Fall. They were the first Aspect Warriors, became the first Exarchs and founded the first shrines. In time their Craftworlds were destroyed, or else their shrines were overtaken with disaster. The Aspect warriors nurture many legends of their heroic deeds (See Aspect Warriors; Asurmen; Baharroth; Fuegan; Jain Zar; Karandras; Maugan-Ra; Rhana Dandra).


Of all the galaxy's ancient races the Eldar most closely resemble mankind. Averaging just over two metres in height, they are slightly built and more delicately featured. In human terms most Eldar are radiantly beautiful. They have pale, porcelain-like skin, almost white in colour and delicately pointed ears.


Some Eldar yearn for the undiscovered vistas of open space. They join fleets of exploration and disappear into the untrammelled warp space tunnels of the Webway. Most do not return, though a few come home laden with alien treasures. They bring tales of new worlds, fabulous discoveries and courageous battles on the edges of the galaxy. It is not unknown for humans to come into contact with these adventurers, for these are the only Eldar a human is likely to meet other than on a battlefield. The wildest of all the spacefaring Eldar become pirates and raiders. They often continue to trade and visit their Craftworld or the Exodite worlds whilst plundering the ships of humans, Orks and even other Eldar. They sometimes hire out their services to alien races. The distinction between Eldar exploration fleets and pirates or raiders is not always a clear cut one as many voyages of exploration soon turn into military ventures. As home and the Eldar Paths become increasingly remote, the naturally wild and amoral character of the Eldar re-surfaces. Eldar pirates are quick tempered and unpredictable, much like the Dark Eldar of Commorragh, equally inclined to magnanimity and wanton slaughter. Notorious Pirate and Mercenary bands have included the Alai-myan Alliance, Void Dragons, Warp Hunters, Sunblitz Brotherhood, Eldritch Raiders and Steeleye Reavers.

Pirate bands commonly organise their entire force around 'Serpent' and 'Dragon' warrior squads. These are grouped together in 'wings' or 'cadres' of between three and ten squads, according to the social standing of the cadre's leader. Each cadre is commanded by a minor Eldar lord or baron who is directly responsible to the pirate overlord. The overlord himself personally commands his own cadre of handpicked warriors and aides.

Eldar Pirate Units commonly include the following:


Pirate leader or prince.


Common name for a cadre capatain.


Psychic lieutenants, often former Warlocks. Uncontrolled Eldar psykers are extremely dangerous due to their exposure to warp attacks.


Lieutentants or minor heroes.


Officers or champions.

Serpent Squads

Standard infantry squads.

Razorwing squads

Pirate squads equipped with flight packs.

Skyraider squads

Pirate squads mounted on jetbikes.

Dragon squads

Infantry squads equipped with heavier weaponry.

Viper squads

Infantry squads equipped with heavier armour.

Grav-attack tanks

similar to craftworld grav-tanks, although typically equipped only with shuriken catapults and a scatter laser.

It is also not uncommon for Eldar pirates to make use of alien mercenaries, including the rare former Tyranid species known as Zoats (see Dael Starborn; Eldritch Raiders; Galadhar the Grey; Karlaen Shadowbound; Marethe; Yriel of Iyanden).


An unsusual vehicle upgrade typically fitted to Falcons or Vypers. The vehicle is equipped with a series of vanes which resonate as it flies through the air. The sounds generated are fed through psycho-sonic amplifiers which create a bow-wave of sonic energy in front of the vehicle causing overwhelming enemy units and causing them to panic (see Falcons; Vypers).