Blackstone, Pariahs, Necrons and…Tyranids? How is it all connected? I blame Guilliman.
With the Psychic Awakening happening right now as THE major event for Warhammer 40,000 I’ve been wondering why everyone is after Blackstone. I know what the substance is reported to do – it can amplify or nullify Psychic tendencies (aka the warp). It’s being fought over by most of the Psychic Races in the Grimdark. The Ad Mech is leading the charge for it in the Imperium, Chaos forces want it, and the Necrons seem to be the only ones who actually know how it works. But all this got me thinking – what about the Tyranids?
In many ways Tyranids seem to be the essence of Blackstone. The Shadow in the Warp is the psychic presence of the Hive Mind. It blocks out psyker’s connection to the warp and greatly hinders psychic powers. They aren’t just anti-warp, however, as they bring their own psychic powers to the mix. So they can be both psychic nulls and psychic power-houses. Strange, no?
And it turns out this strange connection isn’t just a tinfoil hat theory. Tyranids are connected to the Necrons via the Blackstone. And it’s Roboute Guilliman’s fault. How? It’s thanks to a little known device called the Pharos.
The Rise of the Pharos
So what is the Pharos? Lexicanum describes it as “a pre-Imperial piece of Necron bio-technology that is able to harness empathy to allow the user to find, communicate, or even teleport to a location they either consciously or subconsciously desired, without the use of the Warp.” It’s basically how the Necrons were able to master the stars and travel vast distances. It uses “empathic power” instead of psychic power and thus made much safer way to navigate the warp. Now, I’m not going to get into all the techno-babble of warp travel. Just know that it’s the McGuffin for Necron warp travel – and it’s built from Blackstone. You following me? Cool.
As you probably know, the Necrons eventually went into their great slumber and all the Pharos arrays went inactive. The various Pharos were lost to time (there were believed to be eight of them and they were powered by C’tan Shards). During their slumber guess who rose-up? The Imperium. And leave it to humanity to start some trouble.
The Guilliman Factor
Humanity eventually discovered the Pharos and the Imperium attempted to use them. Specifically it was on a the planet Sotha and it was discovered by an Iron Warrior named Barabas Dantioch during the Horus Heresy. He was as a loyalist, by the way, and he actually helped Roboute Guilliman utilize the device. The Ultramarines used it to help establish their “new empire” the Imperium Secundus.
During the Heresy, the Night Lords learned about the device and attacked. In an effort to stop them from taking the device/defeat the traitors, Dantioch overloaded the Pharos. It fell silent after the intentional malfunction but because of the overload, it reached out through the warp and attracted the attention of the Hive Mind. Fast Forward some 10,000 years and the Tyranids invade.
It’s All Connected
So there you have it. The Necrons built the Pharos out of Blackstone. Guilliman harnessed it and then the Tyranids attacked! So yes, we can all blame Guilliman for the when the Tyranids devour the Grimdark!
In the meantime, Belisarius Cawl is back and also trying to study/harness the power of the Pharos and Blackstone. He’s learned about more Pharos locations as well as more deposits of Blackstone – so you KNOW that Necrons are going to be around, too. And we’re back to where it all started.
If you want to learn more follow the links above and check out the Lexicanum for even more details!
It’s a lot more complex than this – consider this the CliffsNotes version.