Warhammer 40K: The Knights of the Aeldari
The Aeldari have quite a few sleek, elegant Knights of their own. Let’s take a closer look at them!
Eldar Exodite Knights and clan markings.
Eldar Knights are most commonly used by Exodite populations to defend their homeworlds, and are complex machines made of a psycho-plastic known as Wraithbone. These machines were originally developed to help new Exodite colonies and Maiden Worlds survive against the hostile and grim conditions they faced. Eldar knight suits are controlled by a direct mind-link between the pilot and machine, much like Imperial Titans. However Eldar Knights also contain a Spirit stone which supplies the machine with a personality as well as a way for the Eldar pilot to avoid having their soul consumed by Slaanesh should they fall in battle. The spirit stones of Eldar Knights are often ancient artifacts dating before The Fall.
In battle, Eldar knights are rapidly-moving war machines able to swiftly advance and lay down heavy fire to devastating effect. They are frequently used by Exodite populations to aid Craftworld Eldar armies, forging ahead of the main formation and attacking to secure an important position.
Eldar Knights are most frequently equipped with a Psychic Lance and Holo-field Shields. Specialist types also exist, often armed with large Scatter Lasers, Pulse Lasers, Bright Lances, and Sonic Weapons.
Known Exodite Knight Classes
The most common Eldar Knight is also the least durable. The tall, elegant Firegale is fast and mounts a Psychic lance plus a small secondary weapon. While fast by Imperial standards, it is slower than the Bright Stallion and less armed than the Towering Destroyer.
The four-legged Bright Stallion can outpace the fastest Imperial Knights. It is armed with the potent Psychic lance, and small anti-infantry weapons. Despite its speed, the Bright Stallion is rugged and heavily armored for an Eldar machine.
The four armed Towering Destroyer is all all-rounder design mounting not only the Psychic lance and smaller support weapons, but a pair of Knight close combat weapons. Its speed allows it to close the distance and reach melee quickly, often surprising foes who expect the Eldar to hold back and engage at range.
While gigantic and heavily armed with a mixture of mighty Heavy Wraithcannons, Suncannons, Ghostglaives, Scattershields, and other heavy weapons, the Wraithknights advanced design still allows it to be nimble enough to run through the ruin of a scattered city. The shell of a Wraithknight houses the spirits of the dead much in the same way as the Wraithlord and Wraithguard. However Wraithknights differ from their lesser cousins as they also hold a living Eldar pilot within.
These pilots are rare and unusual warriors who were each born a twin. The psychic link between an Eldar and his twin is like no other, and this bond allows them to sense the proximity, mood, and even thoughts of their counterpart. If the twin were to die, the surviving brother or sister will often fade away in sympathy. Sometimes, when such a division takes place, the surviving twin will sacrifice what is left of his life to pilot a Wraithknight. The essence of the dead twin is transferred into a Spirit Stone attached to the machine, whilst the surviving sibling is put into a near-permanent trance within his cockpit. The clarity of thought provided by the living twin ensures that the construct moves with the speed typical of a living Eldar, while the psychic link of the departed sibling allows him to commune with the animating forces of his twin, but also spirits of former pilots of the construct. The great measure of control afforded by this mind gives the pilot mastery over the Wraithknights psychically-powered weapons systems and an acrobatic grace that seemingly defies its size.
Wraithknights are often deployed on Crone Worlds at the forefront of quests for new Spirit Stones, which often involve dangerous encounters with Daemons and other nightmarish denizens. However as the End Times approach for the Eldar and their race dies faster then it can give birth, fewer and fewer twins are born upon each Craftworld. Many Wraithknight pilots are recruited from Revenant Titan helmsmen who have lost their twin in battle and driven to regain their kinship whatever the cost, give themselves over to the life of a Wraithknight pilot. Even more unsettling is that it is rumored that some Craftworld councils have removed the option of choice for such individuals.
A much rarer form of wraith construct than the Wraithknight itself, Skathach Wraithknights were designed to walk the endless paths of the Webway and to purge them of any who would dare trespass. These macabre breed of Wraithknights are piloted by an Eldar torn by the separation from their twin. Grief-stricken, a pilot and his Skathach Wraithknight dwell in the Webway communing with the infinity circuit of their war construct. Usually Skathach Wraithknights protect the Webway from intrusion and rarely emerging into the realspace – only to aid Eldar forces on the brink of defeat or to defend the threatened Webways portals. Equipped with complex Webway Shunt Generators and rare, specialised weapons such as Deathshroud Cannons and Inferno Lances, Skathach Wraithknights are few in number, but devastating in battle.
~Ask not the Aeldari a question. For they will give you three answers, each of which is true and horrifying to know.