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New Riddle for the Eldar

Page 113 of the new Rule Book for 40K has a full spread devoted to the Eldar. A little mystery (but one I'm sure could be solved speedily) is a mysterious extra part to the Eldar family tree.

The artwork is pure classic 40K, from the Blanche-ian style, dripping with gothic metal style. These are re-purposed images. The little mystery piece for me is the third image, the one that was redacted from Imperial records.

What's irritating me right now is that I could swear I've seen it before. The symbol is obviously Slaanesh, and there's every chance that was some early artwork of daemonettes or the Prince(cess) of Pleasure themselves. But I'd like to know...

Symbolism is everything to the Eldar, and you can see how the lines for the Craftworlders, Dark Eldar and Corsairs feed into the Slaaenshi emblazoned image. Clearly they are linked there, but that's nothing new.

What's interesting is that the Exodites are not.

There's a tenuous link between them and the Outcasts, but otherwise there is no solid connection between them and the Slaanesh image, if it is indeed a Slaanesh image. Could this mean that they will be disconnected from the fate of the other Eldar?

The dotted lines also make something of a Venn diagram, grouping the older Eldar factions together. The Slaanesh image is outside of this diagram, hinting at separation between the groups, with the Harlequins half in and half out of the circle. Eldar but not seems to fit the Harlies.

Finally, underneath all of it and wreathed in flames are the Ynnari. Connected directly to the ancient Eldar image, the implication is clear... this is the faction with the most in common with the aeldari of old.

Two big outstreatched arms from the Ynnari image link Slaaenesh and the Harlequins, with a meaning I'm not quite sure about. It could mean control, or it could mean the balance point between the two.

A bit of a hidden message here is that the Ynnari are in the opposite direction of the other aeldar factions. Those spread upwards, with the Ynnari spreading below. The meaning could be that they are a different evolutionary path to the factions we have, as opposed to a natural progression of all the factions.

It's less of a re-forging of the current factions into one, and simply a re-continuing of the ancient aeldar. Back to past glories, wiping out the mistakes of the recent past.

As with everything of the Ynnari, I'm not sure how I feel about that. Whilst on the surface it looks like a good faction, and one with a bright future for the aeldar, I get a little uneasy in the details. It's a death cult, and rather than fix the issues created in the millennia since the fall it simply erases them in favour of a new path.

It's essentially ignoring the hard won lessons learned by each of the other factions in tempering the aeldar racial flaws. Whether it be the discipline of the Craftworld or the carefully orchestrated hedonism of the Drukhari, Ynnead is a little deus ex machina that solves the problems without addressing the core issues of the aeldar tendency towards excess.

Also zombie aeldar. Really not sure how to feel about that.

I'll leave it there, with only his reminder of what aeldar racial relations used to be like:

They've always been complex, and rather than help matters, Ynnead's birth has only made things worse.

Until next time!

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  1. Mystery image is The Fall. Exodites separated from Eldar before The Fall. They are connected with outcast that separated from Craftworlds. whole diagram is more of the spiral then the circle. :)

    1. Thanks for commenting! You're right, that seems to be the most likely answer. Any idea where the image comes from though? I like the spiral idea too, but there's no connection line to the Ynnari from the other Eldar factions.


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