Thursday, 16 April 2015

Eldar: A Flame In The Darkness - Hopes And Predictions

Many of you active on Youtube will likely have seen this trailer by now, and the leaks going with it. While the odd fabrication is always a possibility, images have shown signs of a Codex: Eldar - Craftworlds on the horizon, and with it a great deal of new models. Some to potentially replace ones such as the aging jetbikes, others to just offer a greater variety to their HQ choices. However, while it would be traditional to cover the hopes and a few necessities in a list, personally I feel that the previous article is still very relevant. Many of its core points still ring very true and need to be better emphasised in this new edition, whatever its direction. Personally I would also not rather base a few suggestions on something which could be easily made up. As such, this is going to analyse a few points from the trailer and go with the direction I hope this new book might be suggesting for the eldar.

Now, the key thing to note is three points: The craftworld used in images, the language and statements made, and some of the terms present in the quotes. Each of these seems to be emblematic of a different craftworld and bound to no single identity. The eldar there is, obviously, from Saim-Hann, yet the talk of conquest and reclaiming the galaxy is far more in line with the more militant Biel-Tan and their ways of war. Atop of that however, the use of flame and being a bright light against an all encroaching darkness is far more akin to what's usually found with Iyanden. This is both due to their sigil and some of the signs of hope shown in their newer lore. Even the better stuff such as Valedor.

As a result of the above points, I am personally hoping that this might finally see something the Craftworld Eldar have long needed: A better established identity. As cited previously, while as old as the chapters found in Codex: Space Marines, the eldar lack even a fraction of their fleshed out nature and detail. Much like so many alien races, their major factions are usually given one or two paragraphs at best, but little else. What i'm personally hoping is that this might be giving the Craftworlds a similar treatment as to what was found in the previous Codex: Space Marines, with each being gifted an entire section of the book. Rather than being narrowed down, several are allowed multiple pages to fully flesh out their lore and expand upon past details known to us, perhaps even incorporating older lore such as what was found within Battlefleet Gothic.

The primary advantage of such a change in approach would be to really give the race a far more substantial identity and fleshed out elements. The reason I personally believe that the astartes remain the poster boys for the setting so often is because they made better use of their elements. The Index Astartes gave massively fleshed out background details, tactical information and mythical elements to multiple chapters and the ball kept rolling from there. The same goes for Chaos. The thing is though, the eldar retain those exact same strengths, more if you count the fact their equivalent of the primarchs (the phoenix lords) are still alive. This could be a serious point to help boost the chapter's popularity among those starting out, or those more interested in the lore than they are rules.

There's certainly more to say on this, perhaps even a few clarifications, yet it would be better to save that until we know more about the upcoming release.

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