Information

How did knights in full suits of armor eventually die in combat? What were the most common causes of death for soldiers in full-body plate armor?


I've heard about the battle of Agincourt that many knights probably died of drowning as they fell and their helmets filled with mud. It got me thinking: If you're going into battle on foot and in full-plate, what is the most likely cause of death for you? You're either going to walk away from the battle or die there. In the case you don't survive, how is that likely to go down? Did soldiers in full-plate know how their armor would likely be defeated if they became exhausted or disarmed?

Would the enemy soldiers try to disarm you? If so how would they do that and how would they then finish you? How would they get through your armor? Would they knock you down and try to wrestle a piece of your armor off and then stab you there? Or could they find weak points in your armor through which to stab you? Would they just hit you with hammers until the dents in your armor kill you by asphyxiation or trauma? Might they purposefully try to drown you in the mud?


It's a common misconception that knights in full armor couldn't get up when they fell down. In real life they could, without much difficulty. Jumping and running was also not a problem. The could mount a horse without assistance, and run short distances.

Good armour fits the body well, all over. The weight was evenly distributed. If a knight fell in the mud at Agincourt, he would get up if he could.

No armor gives perfect protection. Not even today. There are lots of gaps that cannot be protected. For example, at the groin, the armpits, the neck and the visor. Every soldier had a weapon at hand to finish off a knight in those places. Stilettos and misericordes were designed just for that purpose. The spike on a pollaxe did the same.

In medieval times, knights normally didn't want to kill other knights in battle. They ransomed them. Much more profitable. That didn't apply to common soldiers. A knight killed them whenever he could. Of course, the favor was returned. Common foot soldiers usually didn't give mercy to knights. Unless ordered differently.

In some battles, Agincourt was one of them, no mercy was given. Most French knights weren't killed during the battle, but afterwards. On orders of the king. He feared so many knight-prisoners was too dangerous under the circumstances.

===

Off topic, slightly: Armor was worn… because it worked!! Ask yourself: why on earth would someone wear 5 up to 30 kg of useless metal all day long? Roman legionaries got up, put on their lorica and went to work. Medieval soldiers did about the same. Why would soldiers do that? They have lots of other useful stuff that they much rather carry around.


Names & Titles [ edit | edit source ]

Her full name was "Alusair Nacacia Obarskyr". Ώ] Β] Her father Azoun nicknamed her "Allie". ΐ]

Ironlord Torg mac Cei of Earthfast called her the "Mithril Princess" after the mithril armor his dwarves crafted for her. ΐ] This title stuck with her for the next decade. Α] The young noble-born knights whom Alusair rode with eventually dubbed her the "Steel Princess", however, in admiration of her spirit and her skill in battle. Ώ]

When she became regent of Cormyr, she was named the "Steel Regent". Ώ]


Physical Armor

In the real world, physical body armor is all there is. Non-physical armor is pretty much science fictional force fields.

Since everything old is new again, examining medieval suits of armor might prove instructive. Be sure to see this bit about King Henry VIII's space suit.

A dilatant (also termed shear thickening) material is one in which viscosity increases with the rate of shear strain. Such a shear thickening fluid, also known by the initialism STF, is an example of a non-Newtonian fluid. This behaviour is usually not observed in pure materials, but can occur in suspensions.

A dilatant is a non-Newtonian fluid where the shear viscosity increases with applied shear stress. This behavior is only one type of deviation from Newton’s Law, and it is controlled by such factors as particle size, shape, and distribution. The properties of these suspensions depend on Hamaker theory and Van der Waals forces and can be stabilized electrostatically or sterically. Shear thickening behavior occurs when a colloidal suspension transitions from a stable state to a state of flocculation. A large portion of the properties of these systems are due to the surface chemistry of particles in dispersion, known as colloids.

This can readily be seen with a mixture of cornstarch and water (sometimes called oobleck), which acts in counterintuitive ways when struck or thrown against a surface. Sand that is completely soaked with water also behaves as a dilatant material. This is the reason why when walking on wet sand, a dry area appears directly underfoot.

Rheopecty is a similar property in which viscosity increases with cumulative stress or agitation over time. The opposite of a dilatant material is a pseudoplastic.

Body armor

Various corporate and government entities are researching the application of shear thickening fluids for use as body armor. Such a system could allow the wearer flexibility for a normal range of movement, yet provide rigidity to resist piercing by bullets, stabbing knife blows, and similar attacks. The principle is similar to that of mail armor, though body armor using a dilatant would be much lighter. The dilatant fluid would disperse the force of a sudden blow over a wider area of the user's body, reducing the blunt force trauma. However, against slow attacks which would allow flow to occur, such as a slow but forceful stab, the dilatant would not provide any additional protection.

In one study, standard Kevlar fabric was compared to a composite armor of Kevlar and a proprietary shear-thickening fluid. The results showed that the Kevlar/fluid combination performed better than the pure-Kevlar material, despite having less than one-third the Kevlar thickness.

Four examples of dilatant materials being used in personal protective equipment are Armourgel, d3o, ArtiLage ( Artificial Cartilage foam) and 'Active Protection System', manufactured by Dow Corning.

In 2002, researchers at the U.S. Army Research Laboratory and University of Delaware began researching the use of liquid armor, or a shear-thickening fluid in body armor. Researchers demonstrated that high-strength fabrics such as Kevlar can be made more bulletproof and stab-resistant when impregnated with the fluid. The goal of the “liquid armor” technology is to create a new material that is low cost and lightweight while still offering equivalent or superior ballistic properties compared to current Kevlar fabric.

For their work on liquid armor, Dr. Eric Wetzel, an ARL mechanical engineer, and his team were awarded the 2002 Paul A. Siple Award, the Army’s highest award for scientific achievement, at the Army Science Conference.

The priority for body armour is to save the wearer&rsquos life in the face of battlefield threats, from gunfire to blunt-force trauma in the event of an improvised explosive device detonation. But it&rsquos not all about stopping bullets there are many factors that affect how wearable armour is, which in turn impacts how and when it will be worn. If body armour is too heavy, bulky, restrictive or hot, it will diminish the wearer&rsquos effectiveness in the field &ndash a fact that quickly became apparent in Afghanistan.

The heavy weight of a soldier&rsquos load became a serious issue during the Afghanistan campaign, where a programme driving concept of operations (CONOPS) and equipment rethink issues quickly became a priority. The ever-present threat of IEDs meant that soldiers needed to be protected by as much body armour as possible. However, the difficult terrain and harsh environmental conditions tested soldier endurance to the extreme, meaning that, while the onus remained on safety, new technologies were needed to minimise weight.

Moving towards modularity

A big change came when the US Army&rsquos standard issue outer tactical vest was replaced by the lighter improved outer tactical vest (IOTV) in 2007, addressing the balance between protection and weight with a move towards greater modularity. Compatible with the newer, lighter and more protective enhanced small arms protective inserts (ESAPI) and enhanced side ballistic inserts, the wearer is able to armour the IOTV up or down as required, and the entire system can be released with the pull of a lanyard to allow the wearer to drop the load during water hazard incidents.

The US military&rsquos next iteration of body armour will focus on reducing weight even further while increasing scalability to allow the wearer to adjust his equipment, depending on the threat level and mission at hand. The new torso and extremity protection system (TEP) in development at Program Executive Office Soldier is part of the new soldier protection system. It includes a modular scalable vest, ballistic combat shirt, blast pelvic protection system and a battle belt, which is aimed at getting weight off a soldier&rsquos shoulders and onto the hips.

At its peak, the TEP will provide protection levels on par with the IOTV its minimum level of protection will consist of wearing soft armour garments under uniform. The ballistic combat shirt is made of a breathable fabric, which has smaller ballistic protection parts built in and is to be worn under the TEP&rsquos modular scalable vest. Soldiers also benefit from the blast pelvic protection system that has been designed to protect their thighs and groin against ballistic threats and burns. This system will be rolled-out in 2018 or 2019 following the completion of ballistic testing.

Liquid armour

Technology is moving on and military forces, like the US Army, are investigating new ways of keeping soldiers safe in the field.

Liquid armour is the leading big-ticket item in this area, with companies such as BAE Systems looking to apply the technology to emerging requirements. In June 2017, the company signed an agreement with safety and survivability technology company Helios Global Technologies to do just this. Liquid armour is a material that hardens very quickly when struck by a projectile at speed, in order to absorb the energy of the impact. It offers increased protection with reduced mass, wider area coverage, greater wearer manoeuvrability and can also be integrated with other systems, including being incorporated into standard Kevlar body armour.

According to BAE Systems, when combined with Kevlar, the reduced flow of the fluids in liquid armour restricts the motion of the fabric yarns, thus dispersing the energy of an impact over a larger area. The material is, therefore, less likely to distort than standard body armour, which generally bends inwards when a bullet strikes, preventing death, but causing considerable pain. Indeed, studies show that, when combined, these two materials offer &lsquosuperior freedom of motion and a reduction in overall thickness of up to 45%&rsquo.

Smart fluids

Liquid body armour is also under development at MORATEX. The Polish company is working with the Military Institute of Armament Technology to apply the behaviour of a non-Newtonian fluid &ndash which does not follow Newton&rsquos viscosity law, instead opting for one where viscosity increases with the rate of shear strain &ndash known as shear thickening fluid (STF) to body armour. When integrated into body armour as a protective insert, STF hardens upon impact and disperses the force of a blast or blow over a wider area of the body to not only stopping a bullet or projectile from piercing the body, but also to significantly reduce the shockwave from the impact, which can be as devastating to the body and internal organs as a bullet.

In addition to being lighter than standard ballistic inserts, and allowing a broader, more natural range of movement, materials with STF are proving to be more comfortable to the wearer. The US Army Research Laboratory has put STF-treated ballistic fabrics to the test to measure their breathability by assessing whether a fabric will allow sweat to be absorbed and then released through the fabric itself, in order to keep the wearer&rsquos body temperature stable and prevent overheating.

The resulting report showed that while ballistic fabrics treated with STF showed a slight decrease in breathability compared with uncoated fabrics, the technology introduces &lsquono significant penalty in breathability relative to conventional, uncoated ballistic fabrics&rsquo.

Similarly, D3O has developed a number of armour products for defence from soft, flexible materials with high shock-absorbing properties. In their raw form, the company&rsquos materials&rsquo molecules flow freely, allowing them to be soft and flexible, but on impact, lock together to dissipate impact energy and reduce the transmitted force.

The company&rsquos technology has been incorporated into a range of protective equipment, including vests for blunt trauma impact protection, seat pads for armoured personnel carriers and the TRUST helmet pad system. The latter is a seven-pad system &ndash which uses a material called Decell &ndash comes in the form of pads that are fitted to most ground combat helmets, including the advanced combat helmet, providing comfort and better deceleration under blunt impact. According to the company, its high performance exceeds the required level of protection by 33% in advanced combat helmet testing at 10ft a second.

Looking ahead, research is now beginning to move into even more futuristic arenas, from malleable fabric exosuits, lighter plastic materials to replace Kevlar and armour that can heal itself following a strike.

The basic idea behind body armor hasn't changed very much in the past few thousand years. First, armor stops weapons or projectiles from reaching a person's body. Second, it diffuses the weapon's energy so that the final impact causes less damage. While it's not effective in every situation, armor can generally help protect people from serious injury or death, especially against the right weaponry.

Over the years, people have had to develop stronger and more advanced armor to protect against increasingly sophisticated weapons. However, in spite of these improvements, modern body armor still has some of the same shortcomings as ancient forms of armor. Whether it's made from metal plates or layers of fabric, armor is often heavy and bulky. Many types are rigid, so they're impractical for use on arms, legs and necks. For this reason, medieval suits of plate armor had gaps and joints to allow people to move around, and the body armor used today often protects only the head and torso.

­One of the newest types of body armor, though, is both flexible and lightweight. Oddly enough, this improvement comes from the addition of liquid to existing armor materials. While it's not entirely ready for combat, laboratory research suggests that liquid body armor has the potential to be a good replacement for or supplement to bulkier vests. Eventually, soldiers, police officers and others may be able to use it to protect their arms and legs.

The two primary types of liquid body armor currently in development both start with a foundation of DuPont Kevlar, commonly used in bulletproof vests. When a bullet or a piece of shrapnel hits a Kevlar vest, the layers of material spread the impact over a large surface area. The bullet also stretches the Kevlar fibers, expending energy and slowing down in the process. The concept is similar to what happens when a car air bag spreads the impact and slows the movement of a person's torso during a collision.

Although Kevlar is a fabric, Kevlar armor does not move or drape the way clothing does. It takes between 20 and 40 layers of Kevlar to stop a bullet, and this stack of layers is relatively stiff. It's also heavy &mdash a vest alone often weighs more than 10 pounds (4.5 kilograms), even without ceramic inserts for additional protection.

Two different fluids, however, can allow Kevlar armor to use far fewer layers, making it lighter and more flexible. Both of them have one thing in common &mdash they react strongly in response to a stimulus.

The term "liquid body armor" can be a little misleading. For some people, it brings to mind the idea of moving fluid sandwiched between two layers of solid material. However, both types of liquid armor in development work without a visible liquid layer. Instead, they use Kevlar that has been soaked in one of two fluids.

The first is a shear-thickening fluid (STF), which behaves like a solid when it encounters mechanical stress or shear. In other words, it moves like a liquid until an object strikes or agitates it forcefully. Then, it hardens in a few milliseconds. This is the opposite of a shear-thinning fluid, like paint, which becomes thinner when it is agitated or shaken.

You can see what shear-thickening fluid looks like by examining a solution of nearly equal parts of cornstarch and water. If you stir it slowly, the substance moves like a liquid. But if you hit it, its surface abruptly solidifies. You can also shape it into a ball, but when you stop applying pressure, the ball falls apart.

Here's how the process works. The fluid is a colloid, made of tiny particles suspended in a liquid. The particles repel each other slightly, so they float easily throughout the liquid without clumping together or settling to the bottom. But the energy of a sudden impact overwhelms the repulsive forces between the particles &mdash they stick together, forming masses called hydroclusters. When the energy from the impact dissipates, the particles begin to repel one another again. The hydroclusters fall apart, and the apparently solid substance reverts to a liquid.

The fluid used in body armor is made of silica particles suspended in polyethylene glycol. Silica is a component of sand and quartz, and polyethylene glycol is a polymer commonly used in laxatives and lubricants. The silica particles are only a few nanometers in diameter, so many reports describe this fluid as a form of nanotechnology.

To make liquid body armor using shear-thickening fluid, researchers first dilute the fluid in ethanol. They saturate the Kevlar with the diluted fluid and place it in an oven to evaporate the ethanol. The STF then permeates the Kevlar, and the Kevlar strands hold the particle-filled fluid in place. When an object strikes or stabs the Kevlar, the fluid immediately hardens, making the Kevlar stronger. The hardening process happens in mere milliseconds, and the armor becomes flexible again afterward.

In laboratory tests, STF-treated Kevlar is as flexible as plain, or neat, Kevlar. The difference is that it's stronger, so armor using STF requires fewer layers of material. Four layers of STF-treated Kevlar can dissipate the same amount of energy as 14 layers of neat Kevlar. In addition, STF-treated fibers don't stretch as far on impact as ordinary fibers, meaning that bullets don't penetrate as deeply into the armor or a person's tissue underneath. The researchers theorize that this is because it takes more energy for the bullet to stretch the STF-treated fibers.

Research on STF-based liquid body armor is ongoing at the U.S. Army Research Laboratory and the University of Delaware. Researchers at MIT, on the other hand, are examining a different fluid for use in body armor. We'll look at their research next.

THE SLOW BLADE PENETRATES THE SHIELD
STF-based body armor has parallels in the world of science fiction. In the universe of Frank Herbert's "Dune," a device called a Holtzman generator can produce a protective shield. Only objects moving at slow speeds may penetrate this shield. Similarly, slowly-moving objects will sink through shear-thickening fluid without causing it to harden. In low-speed, or quasistatic, knife tests, a knife can penetrate both neat Kevlar and STF-treated Kevlar. However, the STF-treated Kevlar sustains slightly less damage, possibly because the fluid causes the fibers to stick together.

The other fluid that can reinforce Kevlar armor is magnetorheological (MR) fluid. MR fluids are oils that are filled with iron particles. Often, surfactants surround the particles to protect them and help keep them suspended within the fluid. Typically, the iron particles comprise between 20 and 40 percent of the fluid's volume.

The particles are tiny, measuring between 3 and 10 microns. However, they have a powerful effect on the fluid's consistency. When exposed to a magnetic field, the particles line up, thickening the fluid dramatically. The term "magnetorheological" comes from this effect. Rheology is a branch of mechanics that focuses on the relationship between force and the way a material changes shape. The force of magnetism can change both the shape and the viscosity of MR fluids.

The hardening process takes around twenty thousandths of a second. The effect can vary dramatically depending on the composition of the fluid and the size, shape and strength of the magnetic field. For example, MIT researchers started with spherical iron particles, which can slip past one another, even in the presence of the magnetic field. This limits how hard the armor can become, so researchers are studying other particle shapes that may be more effective.

As with STF, you can see what MR fluids look like using ordinary items. Iron filings mixed with oil create a good representation. When no magnetic field is present, the fluid moves easily. But the influence of a magnet can cause the fluid to become thicker or to take a shape other than that of its container. Sometimes, the difference is very visually dramatic, with the fluid forming distinctive peaks, troughs and other shapes. Artists have even used magnets and MR fluids or similar ferrofluids to create works of art.

With the right combination of density, particle shape and field strength, MR fluid can change from a liquid to a very thick solid. As with shear-thickening fluid, this change could dramatically increase the strength of a piece of armor. The trick is activating the fluid's change of state. Since magnets large enough to affect an entire suit would be heavy and impractical to carry around, researchers propose creating tiny circuits running throughout the armor.

Without current flowing through the wires, the armor would remain soft and flexible. But at the flip of the switch, electrons would begin to move through the circuits, creating a magnetic field in the process. This field would cause the armor to stiffen and harden instantly. Flipping the switch back to the off position would stop the current, and the armor would become flexible again.

In addition to making stronger, lighter, more flexible armor, fabrics treated with shear-thickening and magnetorheological fluids could have other uses as well. For example, such materials could create bomb blankets that are easy to fold and carry and can still protect bystanders from explosion and shrapnel. Treated jump boots could harden on impact or when activated, protecting paratroopers' boots. Prison guards' uniforms could make extensive use of liquid armor technology, especially since the weapons guards are most likely to encounter are blunt objects and homemade blades.

His uniform is black as activated charcoal, filtering the very light out of the air. A bullet will bounce off its arachnofiber weave like a wren hitting a patio door, an excess of perspiration wafts through it like a napalmed forest. Where his body has bony extremities, the suit has sintered armorgel feels like gritty jello, protects like a stack of telephone books.

It is a businessman making money. The orange and blue coverall, bulging all over with sintered armorgel padding, is the uniform of a Kourier. A Kourier from RadiKS, Radikal Kourier Systems. Like a bicycle messenger, but a hundred times more irritating because they don't pedal under their own power &mdash they just latch on and slow you down.

He wanted to do it again. Nessus (a Pierson's Puppeteer) had the blood lust.
He went up a rise, moving slowly, though his feet wanted to dance. He was weaponless, &mdash but his suit was a kind of defense. No projectile short of a fast meteorite could harm him. Like a silicone plastic, the pressure suit was soft and malleable under gentle pressures, such as walking, but it instantly became rigid all over when something struck it.
He topped the rise.
The ship lights might have come from the Court Jester. They didn’t. Nessus saw the airlock opening, and he charged down the slope so the next rise hid him from view.
The Kzinti ship was down. They must have landed with the gravity polarizer otherwise he would have seen them. If they had then captured Jason on foot, he might still be alive. He might not. The same went for AnneMarie.
Now what? The Kzinti ship was beyond this next rise of ice. At least one Kzin was outside. Were they looking for him? No, they’d hardly expect him here!
He had reached the trough between the two swells. They were long and shallow and smooth, like waves near an ocean shoreline.
The top of the swell behind Nessus suddenly sparkled with harsh blue-white sunlight. (The Kzinti are fooling around with some paleotechnology, and accidentally activates the self-destruct. Big kaboom ensues)
Nessus knew just what to do, and he did it instantly. No point in covering his cranial bulge with his necks he’d only get his larynxes crushed. The padding would protect his brain, or it wouldn’t. He folded his legs under him and tucked his heads tight between his forelegs. He didn’t have to think about it. The puppeteer’s explosion reflex was no less a reflex for being learned in childhood.
He saw the light, he curled into a ball, and the ground swell came. It batted him like a beach ball. His rigid, form-fitting shell retained his shape. It could not prevent the ground swell from slamming him away, nor his brain from jarring under its thick skull and its extra padding.
He woke on his back with his legs in the air. There was a tingly ache along his right side and on the right sides of his necks and legs. Half his body surface would be one bruise tomorrow. The ground still heaved he must have been unconscious for only a moment.

The instruments showed Earthlike atmosphere. Hardly surprising. Louis and Chmeee donned impact armor: leathery stuff, not unpleasantly stiff, which would go rigid as steel under impact from spear, arrow, or bullet. They added sonic stunners, translators, binocular goggles. The ramp carried them down into waist-high grass.
“Do you know anything about projectile weapons?”
If we assume chemical propellants, a portable weapon will not penetrate impact armor. We can enter the tower via flying belts. Carry stunners. We would not want to kill our future allies.”
Somebody yelled.
The black-haired woman had dressed herself in shorts and shirt and a backpack. She held a projectile weapon at her side, pointed at Louis Wu. With her other arm she gestured and yelled again.
Vacation was over. Louis became acutely aware that his hood was around his neck. If she tried a head shot&mdashwell, she might just give him time to pull the hood over his face, and then it wouldn't matter if she fired or not. The impact suit would stop the projectiles while he ran. What he really needed was the flying belt. Or did he?
She tossed a heavy thing at Louis's feet. “Cut wood and build a fire.”
Louis picked it up: a length of wood with a wedge of crude iron fixed to one end. “I hate to sound stupid, but what is it?”
She named it. “You swing the sharp edge against the trunk till the tree falls down. See?”
“Ax” Louis remembered the war axes in the museum on Kzin. He looked at the ax, then the dead tree &hellip and suddenly he'd had enough. He said, “It's getting dark.”
“Do you have trouble seeing at night? Here.” She tossed him the flashlight-laser. (Vala thinks the flashlight-laser is just a flashlight. She doesn't know it is also a laser weapon)
“That dead tree good enough?”
She turned, giving him a nice profile, the gun turning with her. Louis adjusted the light to narrow beam, high intensity. He flipped it on. A bright thread of light licked past her. Louis flicked it across her weapon. The weapon spurted flame and fell apart.
She stood there with her mouth open and the two pieces in her hands.
“I am perfectly willing to take suggestions from a friend and ally,” he told her. “I'm sick of taking orders. I got plenty of that from my furry companion. Let's be friends.”
She dropped what she was holding and raised her hands.
“You've got more bullets and more guns in the back of the vehicle. Arm yourself.” Louis turned away. He sliced his beam down the dead tree in zigzag fashion. A dozen logs fell burning. Louis strolled over and kicked the logs into a tighter pile around the stump. He played the laser into their midst and watched the fire catch.
Something thumped him between the shoulder blades. For an instant the impact suit went stiff. He heard a single crack of thunder.
Louis waited for a bit, but the second shot didn't come. He turned and walked back to the vehicle and Vala. He said to her, “Don't you ever, ever, ever do that again.”
She looked pale and frightened. “No. I won't.”
“Shall I help you carry your cooking things?”
“No, I can &hellip Did I miss you?”
“No.”
“Then how?
“One of my tools saved me. I brought it a thousand times the distance light travels in a falan, and it's mine.
She made a kind of arm-flapping gesture and turned away.
Louis said, “Take the money and go. It'll make things easier for all concerned.” His hand was in his pocket, on the flashlight-laser.
Filistranorlry held out a small bag. Fortaralisplyar took it, counted the contents. He walked through the soldiers and descended the stairway. When he was out of sight, Louis pulled the hood of the impact suit over his head.
“I offer a high price. Twelve &mdash” something untranslated. “You would not be cheated,” Filistranorlry was saying. But Louis backed toward the edge of the roof. He saw Filistranorlry signal to the soldiers, and he ran.
The edge of the roof was a chest-high fence: zigzag iron spokes, carved to resemble elbow root. The shadow farm was far below. Louis ran along the fence toward the walkway. The soldiers were close, but Filistranorlry was standing back and firing his pistol. The roar was disconcerting, even terrifying. A slug slammed into Louis's ankle the suit went rigid, and he rolled like a tumbled statue, picked himself up, and ran again. As two soldiers threw themselves at him, he swung over the fence and dropped.
Fortaralisplyar was on the walkway. He turned, startled.
Louis landed flat on his face, in an impact suit gone rigid as steel. The form-fitting coffin supported him, but he was still stunned. Hands helped him to his feet before he really wanted to get up. Fortaralisplyar put his shoulder under Louis's armpit and began walking them away.

(ed note: Nemourlon is a handwavium super-Kevlar. Like Kevlar, Nemoulon is commonly used to make bullet-proof vests in the science fiction stories of Jerry Pournelle)

I looked at my watch. Another hour of flying time. "Sergeant Ardwain."
"Sir?"
"Get them out of those work clothes and into combat leathers and armor. Weapons check after everyone's dressed." Dressed to kill, I thought, but I didn't say it. It was an old joke, never funny to begin with. I wondered who thought of it first. Possibly some trooper outside the walls of Troy.
Hartz already had my leathers out of my pack. He helped me squirm out of my undress blues and into the synthi-leather tunic and trousers. The platform rocked as men tried to pull on their pants without standing up. It was hard to dress because we were sprawled out on our packs and other equipment. There was a lot of cursing as troopers moved around to find their own packs and rifles.
"Get your goddam foot out of my eye!"
"Shut up, Traeger."
Finally everyone had his armor on and his fatigues packed away. The troopers sat quietly now. Even the old hands weren't joking. There's something about combat armor that makes everything seem real.
They looked dangerous in their bulky leathers and armor, and they were. The armor alone gave us a big edge on anything we'd meet here. It also gives a feeling of safety, and that can be dangerous. Nemourlon will stop most fragments and even pistol bullets, but it won't stop a high-velocity rifle slug.
Hamner laughed. "It's my pet worry at the moment. We don't have enough. Let's see, weapons &hellip" The big man sprawled into a chair. He hooked one leg over the arm and ran his fingers through thick hair just receding from his large brows. "No military aircraft, hardly any aircraft at all except for a few choppers. No artillery, machine guns, heavy weapons in general. Mostly light-caliber hunting rifles and shotguns. Some police weapons. Military rifles and bayonets, a few, and we have almost all of them. Out in the streets you can find anything, Colonel, and I mean literally anything. Bows and arrows, knives, swords, axes, hammers, you name it."
"He doesn't need to know about obsolete things like that," Bradford said. His voice was heavy with contempt, but he still wore his smile.
"No weapon is ever really obsolete," Falkenberg said. "Not in the hands of a man who'll use it. What about body armor? How good a supply of Nemourlon do you have?"
Hamner looked thoughtful for a second. "There's some body armor in the streets, and the police have some. The President's Guard doesn't use the stuff. I can supply you with Nemourlon, but you'll have to make your own armor out of it. Can you do that?"
Falkenberg nodded. "Yes. I brought an excellent technician and some tools."
The recruits learned to sleep in their military great-cloaks, and to live under field conditions with no uniform but synthi-leather battledress and boots. They cooked their own food and constructed their own quarters and depended on no one outside the regiment. After two weeks they were taught to fashion their own body armor from Nemourlon. When it was completed they lived in it, and any man who neglected his duties found his armor weighted with lead. Maniples, squads, and whole sections of recruits and veterans on punishment marches became a common sight after dark.
There was less confusion than Howard Bannister had expected. It seemed an incredibly short time before the first men fell back in. They came from their barracks in small groups, some in each company, then more, a rush, and finally knots of stragglers. Now in place of bright colors there was the dull drab of synthetic leather bulging over Nemourlon body armor. The bright polish was gone from the weapons. Dress caps were replaced by bulging combat helmets, shining boots by softer leathers. "Small arms and mortars, nemourlon under license from DuPont weapons are one of our main processed exports, along with intermediate-technology equipment for planets even less industrialized than we are. We can make armored cars and tanks, but there won't be a lot of output. No electronics to speak of we've been negotiating with Xanadu and Meiji for chip fabricators, but &hellip" He shrugged again everyone knew the prices were kept artificially high. "We have the people and the knowledge, energy and resources and opportunity, all the classic requirements, but we're at the tools-to-make-the-tools-to-make-the-machines stage.
Since the development of the metallic cartridge, smokeless powder and the self-loading firearm, small-arms development has gone through a number of cycles. The original generation of magazine rifles were the result of a search for range and accuracy they were bolt-action weapons, capable in skilled hands of accurate fire at up to several thousand meters. In the opening battles of the First War of AntiGerman Encirclement (1914-1918), the professional soldiers of the British Army delivered deadly fire at ranges well in excess of 1000 meters, at the rate of twelve aimed rounds per minute &mdash leading the officers of the opposing Imperial German formations to suppose they were the targets of massed machine guns! By the 1930s, these bolt-action rifles were being replaced by self-loading models firing identical ammunition and of roughly comparable performance.

However, the mass slaughters and hastily trained mass conscript armies of the 20th century rendered the long-range accuracy of such weapons irrelevant. Studies indicated that virtually all infantry combat occurred at ranges of less than 800 meters, and that in any case most casualties were inflicted by crew-served weapons, particularly artillery. Accordingly, beginning with the Wehrmacht in 1942, most armies switched to small-calibre assault rifles capable of fully automatic fire but with effective ranges of as little as 500 meters in effect, glorified machine pistols. For a few decades, it appeared that laser designators would provide an easy answer to the problem of accuracy, but as usual with technological solutions countermeasures limited their usefulness to specialist applications.

Two developments brought the return of the long-range semiautomatic infantry rifle. The first was the development of first kevlar and then the much more efficient nemourlon body-armor. Nemourlon armor of reasonable weight resists penetration by most fragments and any bullet that is not both reasonably heavy and fairly high-velocity. Since modern body-armor covers head, neck, torso and most of the limbs, experiment has proven that a cartridge of at least 7x55 mm is necessary for adequate penetration such a round renders an infantry rifle of acceptable weight uncontrollable if used in a fully automatic mode. The second factor was the gradual decay of the mass, short-term conscript army, as small forces of highly trained professionals once more became common. Sufficient training-time for real marksmanship was available in these forces &mdash thus increasing their advantage over less well-trained armies still more.
He looked around, fighting the savage pain when he breathed, feeling at his stomach and chest. The covering of the armor was ripped, and he could feel the heat of the flattened disks of lead alloy embedded in it, digging into his skin where the tough material had dimpled inside as it came close to parting. One of his ribs might be &mdash was &mdash cracked, but the nemourlon had stopped both rounds. It was supposed to be proof against pistol-calibre, but that had been awfully close &hellip a good thing the local arms industry doesn't run to tungsten. (tungsten is denser than lead, so it has better penetrating power. However it is much more difficult to machine into bullets)

The innkeeper looked at the cases the security detail had opened. Like those of Barbour and Daun, they were filled with equipment. This time, all the equipment was lethal.
Margulies and Vierziger began handing out weapons to the rest of the team.
Vierziger handed each member of the survey team a vest woven from beryllium monocrystal. Moden and Daun had carefully lifted the segments of ceramic plate from the exterior walls of the luggage. The plates fitted into pockets in the vests, forming body armor almost as resistant as the clamshell hard-suits which the FDF issued for normal field operations.
Coke took off his loose outer jacket and paused. "I don't think I want armor for this," he said. He was &mdash
Well, of course he was frightened, a turtle would be frightened if it was about to walk into this one. It was his job, and anyway it'd be all right.
"I think you ought to wear it, sir," Margulies said.
She'd completely emptied the suitcase on which she'd been working. Weapons and ammunition lay in neat stacks on the tile floor around her. She stood up and latched the case, then twisted the hand-grip 180°. She slid the luggage over to him.
"I think he ought to wear armor also," said Johann Vierziger, "though I'll admit I wouldn't myself if it were me."
He smiled. His face was that of an ivory angel. "I prefer the freedom. But what I really think is that I should be the one to go outside, Matthew."
Coke shook his head forcefully. "Its my job," he said. "And anyway, it'll be all right."
He thrust his arms through the holes of the vest he'd prepared, then mated the front closures. His outer jacket was cut to hang the same whether or not there was armor beneath it. He pulled it on.

(ed note: This story is part of the War World series which starts off with the decline and fall of the first empire. On the planet Haven, off-world trade is all but gone, the colonists have to make do with what is locally available. In particular the miracle handwavium armor alloy "durasteel" cannot be created on planet, whatever is currently present is all there is ever going to be.

The Haven government is printing paper money like nobody's business, causing a bad case of hyperinflation. 20,000 Haven marks to buy a single loaf of bread. Silver and gold bullion is the only money that is worth anything.

One protagonist is Albert Hamilton, Baron of Greensward. He views the rise of bandit gangs and the decay of government with alarm. Not to mention the evil politicians at the capital with ambitions of becoming warlords. As it turns out his barony has a secret stash of silver and gold bullion. He has started projects to turn Whitehall manor house into a veritable medieval castle-fortress, to better defend the villagers of the barony. Because the government ain't gonna do it. He also has other plans.

Brigadier Gary Cummings of the 77th Imperial Division's Second Regiment is in charge of the only government troops on Haven. They are the only thing standing against the bandit gangs and the fall of civilization. But due to hyperinflation, he has no money to pay for troops. He has to disband several units.

So Brigadier Cummings goes to see his old friend Baron Hamilton with a proposal for their mutual benefit. Turns out the Baron has a better one.)

The Baron knew where the bitterness in Cummings’ voice came from. He’d talked himself blue in the face&mdasheven before the Marines started leaving&mdashtrying to get the Castell spaceport fortified, then watched as it was wrecked by thugs in a few days.
(Brigadier Cummings) “Manpower isn’t good. We only have two regiments, both at something like three-quarters strength. The raid cost us. Not that we didn’t eliminate about a third of the Castell’s gang members and thugs. Of course, there’s plenty more where they came from. The rest of it’s this cursed inflation. I can’t really crack down on soldiers who desert to take care of families, not when I can’t feed and clothe them properly. But, Albert, maybe you can help me do something about that. Apart from your flocks and herds, I understand you’ve got quite a cache of silver and gold bullion stashed&mdash”
(Baron Hamilton) “Where the devil did you hear that?! It couldn’t have been the servants after all, only Mattie and John knew about it. I can’t imagine they’d talk&mdashno, I won’t believe it. He couldn’t have!”
“As a matter of fact, John didn’t. It was George Morris at the First Imperial Bank.”
“That rat-bastard&mdash!”
“Brigade Security had someone planted at the bank to keep an eye on where the money was going and he did his homework. What could George say, when I laid my cards down on the table? He knew you’d be mad as all get-out, but he stands to lose a lot if the militia can’t meet its payroll.”

The Baron shook his head in weary disgust. “So, what do you have in mind?”
“First of all, I’m not here to rob you. I’m desperate, not stupid. I’d like to propose a deal that should make us both reasonably happy. Al, I know you did your ten years in the Imperial Navy and you can count fingers held up before your face. If we have to pull all the troops out of Castell City to someplace else where we can feed them, what would you give for the Central Valley’s chances by next summer?” (Central Valley is the location of Greensward Barony)
“About one Haven mark.”
“I’d count them in pfennigs, myself. Bandits and gangs of marauders have been pillaging isolated villages and farms for several standard months. Their raids have emboldened them to the point where we’re getting reports of them sacking entire towns. The most we can hope for is to protect the Central Valley and Castell City, maybe help Graysontown and Falkenberg, Hell’s-A-Comin,’ and help some of the smaller towns train their own defensive forces.”

Cummings sat down before speaking again, straddling the chair with his chin resting on the back. “Al, I don’t want to lose your friendship and respect. I need to know if there’s some kind of way we can work out a trade or swap. The Brigade’s paychests are empty I need hard currency to pay and supply my troops. In return, I’ll give you five armored cars, three tanks and a full company of militia assigned to protect Whitehall.”
The Baron shook his head. “Piss on the rest of Haven and I hope the pack of scavengers who call themselves the Planetary Chamber of Deputies drown in it. They bought and paid for their problems. But for an old friend, hell, I’d do anything. In fact, I bet I can make you a better deal than the one you just offered.”

The Brigadier perked up. This is going far better than I expected for a minute there, I thought I’d insulted him. “What is it?”
“First, tell me how many tanks you have left?”
“Ten. My mechanics think they can cannibalize the rest and come up with two more working tanks. The armored cars are in pretty good shape, though. They make smaller targets, can go faster and use less fuel.”
“That means you’ve got durasteel to burn, I suppose.” (durasteel is that miracle armor alloy which Haven cannot manufacture)
“You could say that,” Cummings said, who felt like a traveler who’s already waded halfway across a swamp and knows he won’t get any muckier if he goes the rest of the way.
“The machine shops and software survived the raid, or so I’ve heard.”
“You heard correctly,” Cummings replied. “We can make almost anything you want. So&mdashwhat is it you need?”

The Baron told him.

For a moment Cummings wondered if the metaphorical swamp had just turned into quicksand. Then he laughed. “My first thought was, you’d slipped a cog. But now I’m not so sure you may be crazy like a fox. Okay, I’ll deal. Let’s talk prices and delivery dates.”
They haggled for twenty minutes or so before coming to an agreement that they could both shake hands on. To commemorate the deal, the Baron poured two large tumblers of Covenant single-malt Scotch.
“My lord, we have a visitor. Captain Mazurin of the Colonial Militia.”
(Baron Hamilton) “Send him in.”
“Yes, sir.”
The Captain entered, wearing a travel-stained cloak and field-gray uniform. He bowed to the Baron, then took the offered chair. The butler bowed and left the chamber.
“We have your first shipment, sir,” the Captain announced.
“Very good, Captain. Shall I give you the first chest (of gold bullion) now or later?”
“After we’ve unloaded the truck will be fine.”

“Excellent. If you and your men would like to spend the night, I’ll have the stewards prepare some rooms.”
The Captain nodded. “That would be most appreciated, Your Lordship. We could use the rest it took us over a standard week to make the journey.”
The Baron frowned. At worst, the journey from Fort Fornova, which was just outside Castell City, shouldn’t have taken any longer than four Earth standard days by motor vehicle. “What took so long?”
The Captain sighed wearily. “The roads aren’t safe anymore&mdash”
“Not even for armed men?!” John interrupted.
The Captain shook his head. “No. In many places the roads have fallen into ruin, or there are barricades to stop travelers. We had to fight off a bandit attack today.”

Matilda gasped.
The Captain grew more animated, now that he realized an attractive woman about his own age was interested. He told of an early morning ambush that had ended badly for the outlaws when they discovered that this isolated military convoy had an escort of three platoons made up of the Haven Volunteers.
“Hunting rifles and pistols aren’t much good when they’re up against assault rifles and rocket launchers. I might even have felt sorry for the&mdashfor the bandits, if we hadn’t discovered forty-odd women in the camp. Turns out they’d been kidnapping the wives and daughters of the small farmers they’d killed. Excuse me, ma’am,” he finished, nodding to Matilda.
“You can speak plainly, Captain,” she replied. “I’ve heard worse it’s these times.”
“What did you do with these women?” the Baron asked.
“Some of them were determined to return to whatever was left of their homes, but we brought most of them with us. Couldn’t leave them unprotected&mdash”
“I understand,” the Baron interrupted. From the exasperated look on his face, the Baron could see that the Captain was at his wit’s end over the women. It was certainly a dilemma that would have taxed even an older and more experienced commander.
The Baron smiled. “We’ll be happy to take in any of them who would like to stay here at Whitehall. If not, we can arrange transportation to any surviving relatives. Since we have an abundance of single men on the barony, I suspect the ones who stay will find themselves welcome.”

John followed the Captain and his grandfather out to the courtyard&mdashwhat his grandfather liked to call the bailey. He wanted to know what the militia was delivering to Whitehall the Baron had been very hush-hush over the matter. He certainly wasn’t going to waste his breath asking before his grandfather was ready to answer.

It wasn’t until the militiamen started wrestling heavy crates out of the back of another truck that his question was answered. Captain Mazarin cut one of the crates open and pulled out a Medieval-style armored helmet. John recognized the helm it was a sallet, a late-Medieval style of helmet introduced when gunpowder was changing the face of battle back on Earth.
When Mazarin finished unloading the crate, a dozen gleaming helmets stood in a row on the stone pavement. Now John had another question: Has my grandfather lost his blanking mind? Other than a costume ball, what other possible use was there for these out-of-date helmets? He could easily think of a hundred different things that would be more valuable in exchange for their precious grain stocks.

“Stand back!” Mazarin shouted, as he drew his sidearm and fired point-blank at the nearest helmet.
Sprooonnngg! The sallet jumped and tottered. John was unable to see where the ricocheting bullet went. He was too busy staring at the helmet, unmarked except for a tiny nick and a smear of lead.
“That’s our best durasteel alloy, Baron,” Mazarin said proudly. “It will stop anything short of a spent-uranium slug. Of course, a man can still be knocked down or even break something, if he’s hit in a limb. If he’s hit in the head, he’ll still have to worry about a concussion, whiplash or great murdering headaches. But any brains he has will remain in his head where God put them, instead of scattered all over the landscape!”

The Baron grinned like a proud father.

Someone else opened another crate and started laying out breastplates. A third crate held steel shoulder pieces&mdashvam-something or other, he couldn’t remember just what they were called (upper cannon of vambrace) . He did remember that one wore some kind of padded garment under his armor, an “arming doublet,” he recalled.
“We had to build them a bit heavier than they did in the Middle Ages,” Mazarin said, “but the armor is ten times as strong. You’re not going to be turning cartwheels in these, but a fit man should still be able to run. We built them in six different sizes, so they’ll fit any average or large man less than thirty kilos overweight.”

The Baron smiled. “These will do by damn, more than do!

Mazarin picked up a durasteel gauntlet, put it on and wiggled his fingers. “We’re also working on closer tolerance with computerized machine tools. We can do things the old Milanese and Nuremburg smiths never dreamed of. Here try this, John.”
He handed John Hamilton a gauntlet and a pen. Once John got used to the weight, he found that he could actually write with his armored glove on. He scribbled “Long Live the Empire” on a piece of paper, then removed the gauntlet and handed it to his grandfather.

The Baron cradled it in his arms as if it were a newborn puppy. “Tell Brigadier Cummings he has my undying thanks. He’s done far better with these than what I had expected. Anything I can do to repay him?”
“You’ve already more than repaid us, sir. The specie (gold bullion) and food you supplied will keep the Volunteers paid and fed if we can do that we can do a lot of other things. Now that we’re independent, free of the Chamber of Deputies and Castell, we’ve evacuated Fort El Alamein, so we can concentrate our forces at Forts Fornova and Kursk. All our efforts to date would have been wasted, though, if we hadn’t been able to meet our payroll and keep rations coming in.”
The Baron looked at the grim stone walls around them as if they showed him some other time or place. “I wish I could do more, Captain. Your militia may be the last hope for civilization on Haven. This stuff”&mdashpointing to the armor&mdash“is my insurance. Or the insurance for my grandchildren and their grandchildren and all the grandchildren to come, for God knows how long. If I’m wrong, they’ll pack it away and laugh at me as I used to laugh at the stories of Old Edwin the Hoarder when I was young. But, if I’m right, this may be all that lets my grandchildren have children.”

The Baron shook his head as if to clear it of cobwebs. “How many did you bring?”
Mazarin clearly wasn’t the kind of officer to leave details to his NCOs. He started reciting figures without referring to his belt computer. “A hundred and fifty durasteel sets of armor and five hundred cold-rolled steel sets. The cold-rolled steel won’t stop more than pistol slugs and shell or grenade fragments, but I suspect there’ll be enough of those flying around to make them useful.
The next shipments would include another hundred durasteel sets of armor and a thousand steel sets, as well as fifty durasteel back-and-breast combinations. The final shipment would include fifty more complete durasteel sets of armor, five hundred durasteel helms and eight hundred more back-and-breasts, three hundred of them durasteel.

“Now, sir,” Mazarin said. “May I ask a question?”
The Baron nodded.
“Why so many sets of armor?” He lowered his voice. “As I understand it, you have less than a hundred men of fighting age at Whitehall.”
The Baron gave him a knowing smile. “We’ll have a lot more shortly, Captain. Once they’re all trained, I intend to build a real curtain wall, with towers, around Whitehall. Trust me, I don’t believe we’ll have any shortage of new recruits, either. Those steel suits are for my neighbors, or at least those neighbors who think they’re worth an alliance with House Hamilton. If we all stand together, shoulder-to-shoulder, we should be able to keep this end of the Central Valley peaceful.”


Path to Damnation

A Knight Despoiler issues a mortal challenge to its Imperial counterpart from House Terryn, its vox horns projecting the words of the Fallen Noble above the roar of the surrounding battle.

Where each Loyalist Knight represents a long history of honour and self-sacrifice, the Chaos Knights come from a lineage of horror and depravity. Only through unspeakable atrocities and malefic rituals were these Knightly lines able to be corrupted, and the tally of slaughter has only been added to since their fall.

Those who pilot Imperial Knights are brave and noble warriors, drawn from ancestral knightly houses. In their eighteenth standard year, aspirants face the Ritual of Becoming, a strange rite where the mind of the Noble is fused with the Knight's Machine Spirit (artificial intelligence), allowing the pilot to occupy the machine's Throne Mechanicum and control it with their thoughts alone.

For a Noble to bond with their Throne Mechanicum is a harrowing process. Only the most worthy individuals -- women and men possessed of formidable physical, mental and even spiritual strength -- are able to survive the Ritual of Becoming. Those who do are forever changed.

In the fastness of each Noble house there is a sacred room known as the Chamber of Echoes. Within the Chamber of Echoes the would-be pilot is wired into a Throne Mechanicum and left in isolation so that their worth may be judged.

Residing inside the Throne Mechanicum are the gheist-like remnants of each of its former occupants. Every one of these electro-spirits was once a Noble, and it is they who assess the new supplicant's worth. Coursing through the neural sockets directly into the Noble's mind, they are able to pry open the supplicant's innermost thoughts and closely guarded secrets.

The ritual lasts long and terrible hours, and those Nobles who are found wanting are utterly consumed by the process. But those who are deemed worthy are bonded eternally with the Throne Mechanicum, and with the digital echoes of their forebears who dwell inside it.

The Ritual of Becoming is not only the means by which a Noble becomes a pilot, it is a necessary defence against corruption. A Throne Mechanicum is a shield to prevent the awesome power of a Knight being wielded by one capable of treachery. From the moment they Become, a pilot's thoughts are influenced by their Throne, even when they do not sit upon it.

Notions of fealty, obligation and hierarchy are emblazoned at the forefront of the pilot's mind, as is a deep and undivided respect for the Noble's ancestors and their household traditions. Such organic mental conditioning should make treachery impossible, but the will of the Dark Gods is strong, and their corruptions truly insidious.

To believe any person is immune to the temptations of Chaos is dangerous arrogance. There are many ways that a Knight may stray from the true path laid out in the Code Chivalric, or else be driven from it by force. Most common are those times when Freeblade Knights -- those who have already forsworn their knightly houses due to some shame or tragedy -- find themselves driven to commit ignoble acts to survive.

The ghosts of the Thrones Mechanicum are uncompromising and unforgiving, and the judgemental voices of ancestors long passed will lambaste such a fallen Knight mercilessly. Some pilots take their own lives, or abandon the Throne forever -- to a Noble pilot, there is little difference between these two terrible ends. Those who do not, or worse, cannot, are driven swiftly mad.

It is this insanity that the Dark Gods prey upon, claiming the Nobles' lost souls and twisting the Machine Spirits of their mechanical steeds into ravening beasts. In recent years, covens of Warpsmiths have taken to capturing lone Knights and giving them over for torture until this horrible end is achieved.

There are even whispered rumours that some Renegade Knights no longer contain living pilots at all, but are instead the unwilling hosts to parasitic possessor daemons who clad themselves in the war engine's adamantium plates as a mortal warrior might don a suit of armour.

A Renegade Knight stalks its next prey in battle.

Rarer and more terrible are those instances when an entire lance, or even a whole knightly house falls into damnation. During the dark days of the Horus Heresy, this was a tragedy that played out many times, most famously with the once glorious House Devine who fell to the temptations of Slaanesh, the Prince of Pleasure. With the Cicatrix Maledictum now splitting the galaxy, such wholesale corruption has become a hazard once again.

Here, a compromised Sacristan creeps from one Throne Mechanicum to the next, tainting them with daemonic ichor brewed to drive the Knights' pilots to madness and mutation. There a Baron leads a noble crusade to purge a world of Chaos taint, only to become so immersed in blood that he and his followers degenerate into the very berserk beasts they strode out to slay.

Many Fallen Nobles have been seduced by the poisoned promises of the Chaos Gods, just as the Traitor Legions were before them. In some cases, entire Iconoclast or Infernal houses devote themselves to a single deity. They daub that god's sigils upon their Knight suits, raise profane temples and idols to their chosen patron and dedicate the souls of those they slaughter to their empyric master.

Others are pantheistic in their worship, with individual Fallen Nobles choosing different patron gods to the remainder of their household, or offering dark prayers to whichever deity they believe will aid them in any given moment.

The Chaos Gods are vast entities whose gaze spans all of time and space, and to catch their fleeting regard for even an instant requires deeds so ghastly that they will stain their perpetrator's soul forevermore. Yet for those damned few who earn the gods' blessings the rewards can be great.

Suddenly flourishing psychic abilities, boons of physical might or unholy fortitude, even the sudden conjuration of daemonic armies to fight alongside the chosen Noble -- such are the gifts of earthly power for those who sell their eternal soul to the Chaos Gods.

The Inquisition's agents have gone to great pains in their efforts to suppress reports of traitorous knightly houses, for the mere notion of such loyal warriors turning Traitor is every bit as horrifying as the concept of Renegade Space Marines. Yet more Knights fall with every passing Terran year, and their devastating rampages have become difficult to conceal.


Mentioned-only models

Chinese power armor

The arrival of the first West Tek production model of powered infantry combat armor designated T-45 arrived on the Alaskan frontline in early 2067 was a shock to Chinese military planners. The communists rushed to create its own version, but they were years behind the United States and achieved only limited success due to this handicap. [Non-game 2] Despite that, the United States military invested in the development of electromagnetic weapons to counter the threat of Chinese power armor in the event of its deployment. ⏇]


The Imperial Knights at War

Great Crusade and Horus Heresy Eras

Each Noble within a Knight house, referred to heraldically as a "Scion," is a warrior with their own Chronicle of Battle and the traditions and glories of their forebears to uphold. Each house's bloodline ranges from the "Scions Aspirant," freshly raised up to command their armour in battle and wreathed in dreams of would-be glory, to the "Scions Martial," the experienced fighters who make up their house's line of battle, to the upper echelons of the house who hold the traditional ranks of the household's command and who have already writ their own legends in battle.

In times of open war, when a Knight house takes to the field en masse, each will have their own roles to play, roles founded as much in ancient tradition as in the individual record and reputation of the Knight armour and the warrior piloting it. Unleashed, such a tide of iron and fire is a force few powers in the galaxy can withstand.

Ancient Questoris Knight Ranks

Headquarters Ranks

  • Seneschal - The martial traditions and aristocratic rule of the Knight households demand a rigid hierarchy in battle and at the apex of this order is the Seneschal. Commonly, this august title is conferred on either the head of a particular household's mustered forces in the field or on the master of a particular fortified keep on the Knight Worlds themselves. In both cases it is heavy not only with symbolic authority but also might, as to have attained such a rank, a Knight must have proved their worth both in personal combat and tactical command, as well as the more subtle but no less dangerous battlefield of dynastic struggle.
  • Lord Scion - The term Lord Scion here is used as a collective term that encompasses the upper echelons of a Questoris Knight Crusade force, be they in fact titled Baron, Margrave, Siridar Count, Thane or one of a number of local sub-variations in peerage and rank, and ordered below the supreme authority of a Seneschal on the battlefield. They are each a war-tempered veteran whose position has not simply been bought with age and lineage, but with blood and fire upon the battlefield. A Lord Scion's mettle and record are known to all under their command, just as it is blazoned by the heraldry that adorns their Knight armour an open challenge to any who would oppose them.

Elites Ranks

  • Preceptor - It is unusual, but not unknown, for a Scion to display a particular facility for technology, sometimes even serving time observing and learning from their household's Sacristans, although always retaining their distinction and rank. These Scions, once they have become veterans of warfare in their own right, also make for the most able instructors of the household's Aspirants, able to impart not only the lore of arms but also to teach a deeper understanding of the Knight armour, its scope of operations and the division of machine and man, earning themselves the honoured title of Preceptor within the household. The Preceptor's lore can be put to use on the battlefield, allowing them to use advanced augury and auspex equipment which would be beyond those without their learning, and serve the role of tactical co-ordination and communications for their household in battle.
  • Aucteller - The Aucteller is an archaic rank whose traditions flourished in ancient days when Knight houses battled bloodily for supremacy with one another. Though on many Knight Worlds feuds and affairs of honour were settled through highly ritualised and formalised duels, when the matter was pressed, either with bitter wrath or pure desperation of survival, mass battle was inevitable. In such warfare the Aucteller served not as a champion, but as a forlorn hope, oath-sworn to strike down the foe's greatest warriors at the cost of their own lives if needs be. In the Age of the Great Crusade such desperate tactics were suppressed, but there were still houses that bore this bitter tradition well, and as the desperate wars of the Horus Heresy unfolded, the need for such sacrifices was born again.
  • Legendary Freeblade - Drawn out from the ranks of their former households, either willingly owing to the lure of adventure or the unquenchable lust for battle, or unwillingly as outcast, renegade or last survivor, Freeblades are Knights Mendicant, owing no alliance and no fealty. Of these, many were drawn to the Great Crusade, lured by the thirst for glory or the unceasing clamour of war on the frontier, joining the Questoris Crusade forces and fighting on countless worlds in support of the Emperor's great work.

Troop Ranks

  • Scion Martial - The Scions of the Knights Martial, also known in common parlance as the household's "banners," form the main strength of the Knights' battleline experienced in warfare and expert in the use of the powerful war machines they command.
  • Scion Aspirant - The Knight households are not simply a military force but a hereditary bloodline of war, a bloodline whose sons and daughters must be tempered in the fires of battle from a young age. Such an apprenticeship is a dangerous one, but vital to the sustenance of a household's strength across the generations. Only the most desperate of battles would force a house to endanger all of its Aspirants at once however, and so competition among the youth of fighting age to be picked to join their kin in the field is fierce.

Fast Attack Ranks

  • Scion Dolorous - A title bestowed upon the most famed beast-killers and slayers among the Knights of the house, the epithet "Dolorous," from the ancient tongue encoded into the great Long March Arks which bore the Knights to their founding worlds, means "grievous" or "mournful" in its true form. But within the society of the Knights it has since grown to have a double-edged meaning of Scions who have proved themselves time and again against the mega-predators which populate many of the Knight Worlds, gaining for themselves a tally of trophies and kills worth the envy of their peers. It also implies one perhaps to whom battle and slaughter have become an addiction to the exclusion of all else, and for whom life beyond the confines of their Knight armour is a pale and hollow thing, and mortal danger their only wine and meat. Such Knights often seek to be deployed in the forefront of battle and will often charge ahead irrespective of any orders to the contrary. While their actions in combat by some are judged to be little more than the madness of a death wish, the power of their battlelust is a devastating force in combat. Those who survive long enough after falling into the strange malady that afflicts the Scions Dolorous learn to temper their fury but not the restless desire for continuous battle, and many will become Freeblades, should they not fall in battle first.
  • Scion Uhlan - The Uhlan tradition is one followed by the most hot-blooded and impetuous Knights, both off and on the field of battle. In war they seek above all the glory of rapid victory and delight in high speed manoeuvre, destroying their foes in a fury of close range fire and swift assault. Caution is to them an anathema and valour lies only in the close press of battle. Within the Questoris Crusade forces, the Scions Uhlan are used by the wiser house commanders as advanced scouts, raiders and reavers, either to form the front skirmish line of the household in the open field or as flanking forces to encircle a foe and run down an enemy once it breaks. As a result of their preferred tactics, many Scions Uhlan covet the use of the less common Cerastus Pattern Knights, owing to their superior battle speed.

Heavy Support Ranks

  • Scion Arbalester - An Arbalester excels at dealing death and destruction at a distance, utilising their Knight's firepower to its fullest and most devastating effect. Skilled gunners, while some of their more impetuous or glory-hungry brethren may scorn their tactics as unworthy, they undertake a vital role in the household's battleline, identifying and destroying enemy heavy weapons emplacements to screen their comrades' advance and he!p shield their fellows from aerial attack.
  • Scion Implacable - An epithet applied to a household Knight who has shown a particular aptitude for siege warfare, an "Implacable" is an invaluable warrior in such situations as heavy assault against fortified positions and a!so in the desperate maelstrom of cityscape warfare. In situations such as these, a Knight, despite its power, might become undone if unexpectedly surrounded and swarmed by an enemy, but not so the Implacable, who though may be marked as far more cautious than their brethren in battle, is adept at crushing infantry like vermin.

In the 41st Millennium

Call to Battle

When battle calls, each knightly house rouses their great war machines. A lone Knight is a one-man army, more than capable of turning back a raiding xenos warband or a herd of rampaging beasts. For larger threats, detachments or entire households of Knights march forth -- a sight as stirring and glorious for its allies to behold as it is terrifying for its foes.

When a High King calls for war, his knightly house and all others who owe him fealty are duty-bound to obey. Failure to honour such commitments brings great shame upon a house, a stain of infamy that will never be forgotten, either by the house itself, its peers, or its rivals. However, such is the hold of duty and honour upon the Nobles that it is a rare day indeed when a Knight fails to answer a summons.

Beyond the defence of home and hearth, a High King can muster his detachments of Knights to take part in off-world campaigns. This happens most frequently at the behest of the Imperium -- a call for aid from a Lord Commander of the Astra Militarum or a Space Marine Chapter Master -- but the least slight that besmirches a Knight's reputation is cause enough to mount a quest for vengeance.

The motive behind a War of Honour might be easily understood, such as hunting down a foe that invaded territory under the High King's protection. However, so tightly wound is the Code Chivalric that, to the exasperation of the Departmento Munitorum, entire campaigns have been declared for perceived discourtesies such as the failure to address a Baron with the proper title.

The exact number of Knights in a household detachment varies considerably. However, any Knight marching to war is accompanied by a full fanfare -- the blaring of trumpets and the cheering of the citizenry -- as the machine strides from its stronghold's gates. This dazzling panoply increases exponentially for a Baron, and even more should the High King and his full Exalted Court march out to battle.

Structure of a Questor Imperialis House

The standard organisation of Questor Imperialis Knight House.

At the head of every Knight house allied directly to the Imperium, the true "Questor Imperialis," is a High King. Directly beneath the High King in rank are his Barons. Depending upon the size of the knightly house, there may be any number of additional Barons, each a Noble lord in his own right, owning some stronghold or key territory of a Knight World.

All Barons owe allegiance to their High King, but not all Barons are politically equal. Although each Knight World maintains their own rituals and hierarchy, the highest-ranking Barons are those the High King has selected to join his Exalted Court. These are the most loyal and war-experienced of his Nobles, and typically rule the largest swathes of territory. The baronial rank of Kingsward protects his liege on the field and at court. A pair of crossed swords signify the rank of Kingsward.

Beneath each Baron is his fiefdom -- the lands that owe him tribute. Those Nobles beneath him are his vassals and can be summoned to war at his call. The Knights themselves fight individually or in formations usually called lances. However, Knights may be summoned to war by their High King, his Exalted Court or an individual Baron, and in most cases lances are made up of the vassal Knights of different Barons, according to each member's individual talents, renown and determination.

Questor Mechanicus Knights at War

Through mutual oaths and unbreakable vows, the Adeptus Mechanicus have forged alliances with many Knight Worlds. In return for technical aid and reciprocal protection, these houses of the "Questor Mechanicus," as they are now known, send forth their adamantine Knight suits to honour any request made by their allies. Knightly houses closely aligned to the Adeptus Mechanicus are often called upon by the Martian Priesthood to uphold their ancient pacts.

Most often, the Tech-priests request military contingents from Knight Worlds to accompany the Titan Legions into battle. The chosen Nobles are tasked with fighting directly in support of the Legion's larger Battle Titans or are asked to operate independently as scouts to protect the flanks of the slower-moving war machines.

The Adeptus Mechanicus also petitions for Knights to join Explorator fleets, for they add invaluable firepower to missions sent out to seize lost archeotech. When a threat is deemed sufficient, Knights are also asked to help defend key planets -- especially endangered Forge Worlds or Quarry Worlds. In return for such military aid, the Knight worlds receive greater technological resources.

To honour minor requests, a knightly house might send a single Knight, one of the honoured Barons and an escort of his knightly vassals or perhaps a lance made up of Knights selected for the task in question. Occasionally, the Adeptus Mechanicus will decree that such seconded detachments must remain with a Titan Legion permanently in these cases, the Nobles change their vows of allegiance and heraldry to reflect the legion they now serve.

When a knightly house is faced with the most severe of threats, a Princeps will march out in person with his Exalted Court, these heroes leading forth their entire household. These events are times of great fanfare, but given the increasingly hostile nature of the galaxy, such sights occur with ever greater frequency.

Structure of a Questor Mechanicus House

The standard organisation of a Questor Mechanicus Knight House.

Those knightly houses aligned to the Adeptus Mechanicus, known as the Questor Mechanicus, are also feudal, and are organised in a manner similar to their Imperial cousins. The ruler of the household is known as a Princeps, and his decree is final. The rank below Princeps is that of Baron, and positions within this rank are still hierarchical, based on the individual Barons' influence and battle experience.

For his ruling council -- also called an Exalted Court -- the Princeps will promote four Barons. Known as Barons Prime, these individuals are second in power only to the Princeps himself. Each Baron will have a number of vassals beneath him, and it is their duty to muster should they be called to battle. The number and exact organisation of these knightly vassals varies wildly from house to house, depending upon the size and power of the knightly house itself.

Regardless, when the summons to war is received, lances, groups of oathsworn Knights and entire household detachments will be drawn from the entire house's strength only in unusual circumstances will the Princeps, or one acting in his stead, choose to select only from a single Baron's vassals.

To honour minor requests of the Mechanicus, a knightly house might send a single Knight, or perhaps a lance made up of Knights selected for the task in question. Occasionally, the Adeptus Mechanicus will decree that such seconded detachments must remain with one of its Titan Legions permanently in these cases, the Nobles change their vows of allegiance and heraldry to reflect the Legion they now serve.

When faced with a severe threat, a Princeps of a Questor Mechanicus House will march out with his Exalted Court, these heroes leading forth their entire household. These events are times of great fanfare, but given the increasingly hostile nature of the galaxy after the opening of the Great Rift, they occur with ever greater frequency.

Present-Day Knight Ranks

Headquarters Ranks

  • High King - The ruler of a Questor Imperialis Knight house.
  • Princeps - The ruler of a Questor Mechanicus Knight house.
  • Baron - A lord in their own right, all Barons owe allegiance to their High King or Preceptor, but not all Barons are equal, as positions within this rank are still hierarchical, based on the individual Barons' influence and battle experience. The most experienced Barons in an Imperial-aligned knightly house make up a High King's Exalted Court. The Barons of Mechanicus-aligned knightly house are known as Barons Prime, second only in power to the Preceptor himself.

Elites Ranks

  • Knight Warlord - When fielding an army where the primary detachment is made up of Imperial Knights, one Knight is nominated as the Knight Warlord. A Knight Warlord always has the same rank of Seneschal.
  • Seneschal - Some veteran Knights who prove themselves worthy in the fires of battle, either through countless martial triumphs or by one truly heroic act, are awarded the rank of Seneschal, and are paragons of their house.

Troop Ranks

  • Knight - These are the warriors who have proven themselves in battle, and form the bulk of each knightly house's household detachments. The ranks of the Knights include many types of warriors, from the freshly blooded hotheaded youngling to the solid veteran experienced with dozens of engagements but all will proudly and steadfastly represent their house at war.
  • Knight Apparent - After undergoing the Ritual of Becoming, in itself a praiseworthy feat, a Knight begins his career as a Knight Apparent. He will retain this title until he has been blooded in his first full-scale battle, after which the supplemental title of "Apparent" is dropped and he is accepted by his peers as a full-fledged Imperial Knight.

Knight Formations

Exalted Court

The Exalted Court is nothing less than the ruler of the knightly house and his hand-selected entourage of officers and top-ranking Nobles. Beyond doubt, this is the most powerful formation a house can field, representing the pinnacle of its leadership and martial prowess.

When the Exalted Court marches out to war, it does so with full fanfare -- trumpets blare and the ground shakes. Striding forth in the full panoply of war, they have power enough to level cities or smash entire armies to ruin. The titles of each member in the Exalted Court vary between Mechanicus- and Imperium-aligned houses, and the hierarchy and subsidiary roles of each position are different for every knightly house. However, one fact remains the same -- when the Exalted Court takes to the battlefield, they carry with them the full pride and might of their house.

Baronial Court

A Baronial Court is an army-crushing formation that crosses battlefields like an adamantine avalanche, a ground-churning charge of near-titanic proportions. On his own initiative, or at the summons of his High King or Princeps, a Baron will muster a bodyguard from those household Knights who are pledged to aid his fief.

This formation is classified as a Baronial Court, although some knightly houses refer to it as a Baronial Escort or Cavalier Spearhead. Forming a nigh-impenetrable ionic shieldwall, the Knights march abreast, closing with the foe while their own massed firepower rains down death. Here strides the unbridled power of the Knights, a force that has defeated Mankind's enemies since before the birth of the Imperium.

Tripartite Lance

The Tripartite Lance formation was developed by the Mechanicus-aligned House Vulker, and later adopted by all other houses. This formation consists of three Knights -- one each of the Warden, Gallant, and Crusader classes -- fighting together as one. Co-ordinating these huge machines to fight as a single unit, however, requires not only relentless combat drills, but an ability to predict the actions of the other Knights that borders on prescience.

Through their Thrones Mechanicum, each towering Knight anticipates the movement of its lance-brothers, triangulating their firepower and close combat actions as a single unit. Thanks to their thrones' bond, the Knights of the lance also move with a grace and ease of motion that belie their massive size and crushing weight, allowing the adamantine giants to work in close formation. Fighting thus, the whole is greater than the sum of its parts, as many foes have found out to their cost.

Gallant Lance

With more momentum than a runaway mag-train, a Gallant Lance hits with such ground-shaking impact that shockwaves can be felt kilometres away. Even a Battle Titan must fear such a collision, for each of the three Knights Gallant that make up the Gallant Lance formation is, in its own right, a formidable killing machine.

Given enough time, such a tsunami of hurtling adamantine armour, swinging reaper blades and lightning-wreathed Thunderstrike Gauntlets could completely stave in an Imperial Navy Battleship. Gallant Lances charging full tilt have even been known to crack open the reinforced ferrocrete walls of traitorous hive cities -- once within, their murderous prowess is such that the previously confident foe will flee their stronghold rather than face the Knights in combat.

Skyreaper Lance

When Sacristans fit a twin-linked Icarus Autocannon atop a Knight's carapace they give that enormous walker the ability to command the sky, bringing down winged creatures or turning swooping aircraft into hurtling fireballs that spin crazily into the ground.

When a formation of three Imperial Knights so armed work in concert they can crisscross the sky with stitched patterns of tracer fire, casting a deadly net of anti-air fire into the heavens. Known as a Skyreaper Lance, such a formation can bring down entire flying squadrons, making it rain with exploded aircraft parts or the bloody chunks of flying beasts. It is always possible to tell where a Skyreaper Lance was stationed on a battlefield, for the surrounding ground is littered with furrowed wrecks and spattered gore.

Honorifics and Titles

Although all Knight Worlds have similar feudal societies, local factors and other external influences meant that the exact nature of these emergent cultures varied somewhat between worlds. Nowhere is this more evident than in the names utilised by the knightly houses for their ranks, battle formations and even their strongholds. The ruler of House Griffith, for example, bears the rather pretentious honorific of Grand Master of the Lance.

None, however, would dare claim that Griffith's current ruler, Bryce, does not merit such a grandiose title, for his skill in battle is legend across the galaxy. Similarly, by long tradition the Nobles of House Skandos are known as Jarls, and their household detachments as Jarlhosts, while the largest stronghold of all the Knight Worlds is that of House Raven, which is known as the Keep Inviolate. This titanic edifice is large enough to accommodate each and every one of the many hundreds of Knight suits belonging to the Nobles of House Raven and is one of the mightiest fortifications in the Imperium.

Oaths of Allegiance

An Iron Brotherhood of House Raven Knight Errants hold the line against the horrors of the Tyranids

When Mankind rediscovered the feudal domains of the Knight Houses, they quickly found common cause, exchanging oaths of loyalty. The knightly houses found on each of the Knight Worlds are affiliated with either the Imperium or the Adeptus Mechanicus. The Knight Worlds of the Questor Imperialis are expected to adhere to the Imperial Tithe as does any other planet, but still trade with the Adeptus Mechanicus to keep their Knight suits operational.

Many Knight Houses see the Imperium as their equal partner, and support it militarily out of mutual advantage. Although these houses trade openly with the Imperium, and march to war alongside their armies, they retain a fierce independence.

Other houses found common cause specifically with the ancient Mechanicum, who in turn courted the Knight House with unseemly eagerness. These Questor Mechanicus houses, as they are now known, have forged alliances of reciprocal protection and betterment.

The Knight Worlds of the Questor Mechanicus are often found near to the parent Forge World with which they are associated. This is no mere coincidence, for many of these Forge Worlds were specifically founded near to Knight Worlds in order to harvest their natural resources. The Titan Legions that set forth from these Forge Worlds to battle the enemies of Mankind often do so in the company of their allies from the Knight Worlds. A partnership between both Forge and Knight World is mutually advantageous to both factions, as their combined military strength is great enough to shatter cities and conquer worlds.

Those who look at the fealty of the knightly houses towards the Adeptus Mechanicus often wonder at whether the relationship is not in fact based on jealousy, for the Tech-priests of Mars covet the pre-Imperial technology that lies within the mighty citadels of each Knight House. For their part, the Questor Mechanicus houses seem not to care, since they receive the full resources of the affiliated Forge Worlds from their allies.

While the overwhelming majority of Imperial Knights belong to houses (such as Houses Terryn, Hawkshroud and Cadmus) who are aligned to the Imperium, some houses (such as Taranis and Raven) are sworn to the service of the Adeptus Mechanicus. Each house has its own proud traditions that span thousands of standard years, and will have fought in countless battles on behalf of humanity.

Freeblade Knights

The Freeblade Amaranthine fighting against a horde of Orks

Some Knights, for one reason or another, forsake the succour of a Noble house. These Knights owe no allegiance to any house, and forge their own destiny as "Freeblade Knights" or "Freeblades." The ancient tradition of the Freeblade harkens back over ten millennia ago, during the Great Crusade and Horus Heresy eras. Known as "Legendary Freeblades," these were Nobles who were drawn out from the ranks of their former households, either willingly owing to the lure of adventure or the unquenchable lust for battle, or unwillingly as outcast, renegade or last survivor.

The Freeblade known as the Obsidian Knight fights against the forces of the T'au Empire

These Freeblades were Knights Mendicant, owing no alliance and no fealty. Of these, many were drawn to the Great Crusade, lured by the thirst for glory or the unceasing clamour of war on the frontier, joining the Questoris Crusade forces and fighting on countless worlds in support of the Emperor's great work. Since that bygone era, the tradition has continued to be upheld by the knightly houses of the Questoris Familia.

Ancient tradition ensures that every Noble pilot has the right to leave his knightly house and strike out on his own. These Freeblade Knights are tragic heroes, driven to leave their houses to pursue a cause of their own, continuing to fight for Mankind, but call no man master. The reasons that a Knight becomes a Freeblade are many and varied. In some cases, they simply cannot bear the idea of returning to the crushing rituals of the court, and instead set off alone, rarely removing their suits of armour and living only for battle.

Other Freeblade Knights have made a personal oath or pact to carry out a certain task that requires they travel across the galaxy in order to fulfil it. Most commonly, though, a Freeblade Knight is simply the last surviving member of his house, left without a liege lord and with no option but to travel across the galaxy until he finds a new master or dies in the attempt.

In all these cases, and many more, a Freeblade Knight is no longer a member of the house they once belonged to. If they are the last surviving member of the house, they may retain their former heraldry as a mark of respect, but usually a Freeblade will change the colour of his armour and the markings upon it and take on a new name to mark the change in his status. The names of some Freeblades, such as the Knight of Dark Shadows, who fought in the Reign of Blood, and Retribution Incarnate, who travelled alongside the Lord Solar Macharius during his conquests, are revered as dedicated warriors that would never admit defeat, no matter what odds were arrayed against them.

Freeblades either set out on their own, wandering the stars in search of a worthy cause, or else they settle in further isolation, offering their protection to those who need it. They tend to travel alone, or with a small group of retainers and Sacristans, but sometimes circumstances will result in small groups of Freeblades banding together, fighting in much the same manner as a household detachment, but with a bond forged in battle rather than inherited through blood.

Not belonging to a Knight house does nothing to reduce the effect of a Freeblade's psychological conditioning. Freeblade Knights still place great significance on acts of honour and duty, perhaps even more so than before. Once they have given their word or set their mind on a task, they will follow it through, come what may, even at the cost of their own lives. They also feel it is their responsibility to protect those that are unable to protect themselves, and to punish those that prey on the weak.

They carry out such tasks with a brutal efficiency, leaving only death in their wake and then moving on. This has meant that the Freeblade Knights have gained an almost legendary reputation amongst the ordinary citizens of the Imperium. Such glory, however, means nothing to these lonely, battle-hardened warriors. They are not interested in either praise or reward from those they defend, and their only comforts are found in their long, endless journey and the hot adrenaline rush of battle.


Contents

Stark's suits are each unique in design and purpose. They are made of incredibly-strong, fictional materials bolstered by a force field. Every suit has a self-contained environment, assorted onboard weapons systems, enhanced strength, flight, and various communications arrays and sensors, such as radar and radio. [2] Furthermore, they typically have multiple power sources including a secondary solar energy collection function in the event that conventional recharging methods are unavailable. Earlier versions of the armor could also fold virtually flat, allowing Stark to store them in his bullet-proof briefcase.

The defining abilities of Stark's armor are the jets situated in the boots and the repulsors situated in the gauntlets. [3] The repulsors originated as a hand attachment, but have since become the armor's most important standard armament. They have been referred to as being magnetic, [ citation needed ] a blast of charged particles, [ citation needed ] and as a force beam. [4] In the 2008 film, the repulsors are a form of propulsion and (as hand units) steering and braking jets, though Stark later learned that they could also be used offensively. A later variation on this is the Pulse Bolts, bolts of concussive energy that actually gain energy the further they have to travel, up to a limit of roughly three football fields (about 329 meters).

Another defining trait is the chest-mounted "uni-beam", also known as the variobeam, pentabeam, tri-beam, and chest RT, or chest repulsor transmitter. Originally a spotlight and "proton beam", it has grown to accommodate a number of other weapons, primarily light and force-based.

Armors of the 1960s Edit

Iron Man Armor MK I (Grey) Edit

Stark's grey armor was the first Iron Man armor he made it was built around an iron chest plate designed to prevent the piece of shrapnel he received in Vietnam from travelling to his heart and killing him. The armor, made from ordinary iron, provided protection from physical attacks, small arms, extreme temperatures, some forms of energy, and acid. Powered by flat linear armature rechargeable DC motors, the exoskeleton boosted the strength of the wearer by about 10 times, and employed motion-sensing negative feedback to control movement. Air pressure jets allowed for extended jumps and removable suction cups allowed the wearer to cling to walls and ceilings. Weaponry included a chest-mounted monobeam (proton beam generator), a miniature hacksaw, and magnetic turbo-insulators that allowed Stark to magnetically deflect metal projectiles or bring metal objects to him. Sensors consisted of a short-wave radio. All of the armor's devices and functions were manually controlled by the wearer. Stark used it to escape terrorists in Vietnam who were holding him hostage. He constructed at least one updated, form-fitting (although still rigid) version upon his return to the United States. [5]

Iron Man Armor MK II (Golden Avenger) Edit

In order to make this armor less frightening to the general public, Stark created a gold-colored version with a wide array of improvements over the original. [6] The new armor used the three dimensional, collapsible micro-structure now common in Stark's suits, so that it could be folded up and stored in his briefcase while inactive. The chest-plate was streamlined so that it could be worn under normal clothing without being noticeable. The suit had a semi-rigid interior with 3D knitted metallic exterior of a lightweight iron alloy, providing the same protection as his old suit did. This was also the first suit to be equipped with a force field generator. Power was still provided by flat linear armature DC motors, rechargeable by solar power as well as electrical outlets, and motion sensing was still provided by negative feedback. The Mk II air pressure boot-jets provided limited flight steering while flying was accomplished by bodily movement. Weaponry consisted of the chest-mounted Mk II Monobeam, a sledgehammer, hacksaws extending from the fingertips, hand drills, electromagnets allowing Iron Man to pull things to him and push them away, and an electrical field generator. Communications and sensor arrays consisted of a loudspeaker, short-wave two-way radio, radar, and a tape recorder. When one iteration of this particular armor was partially destroyed by the Melter, a super-villain who could dissolve iron, Stark built an exact copy using aluminium instead of iron, which was unaffected by the Melter's abilities. [ volume & issue needed ]

Iron Man Armor MK III (original red and gold) Edit

Stark's trademark red and gold armor arose from a battle with a villain named Mr. Doll, who could control the gold armor through a replica figurine. To circumvent the villain's ability, Stark withdrew and constructed a new suit with a significantly different look and a lighter build- thus allowing him to devote less of his own strength to moving the armor and more to fighting Mr. Doll's influence, resulting in the streamlined red and gold suit. [ volume & issue needed ]

The red and gold armor was composed of an ultra-fine 3-D knit alloy and incorporated motors into the knitting to allow full mobility. The armor also included a stealth mode. While it ran on the same type of power, the power consumption was much more efficient. The boot jets were upgraded to chemically fueled thrusters, which provided a much faster flight speed. Weaponry consisted of the chest-mounted Mk II Monobeam (useful range was still only several yards), repulsor rays, a proton gun, and powerful electromagnets to pull metal objects to him or repel/push them away. Communications and sensors consisted of a short-wave radio. Other features included an image reproducer and collapsible roller skates. Most functions were controlled by miniature electronic switches mounted on the insides of various pieces of the armor such as the helmet and the gloves by pressing various combinations of them, different systems were engaged. The switches in the helmet were enabled by the wearer's tongue other functions were enabled by wrist-mounted controls. [ volume & issue needed ]

Beyond these features, Stark also occasionally experimented with cosmetic modifications such as adding a nose indentation on his faceplate, or rimming the face-plate with rivets. [ volume & issue needed ]

While the appearance of the armor changed only slightly, over the years its technology improved by leaps and bounds, resulting in vastly increased strength, speed, and firepower. Control of the armor was slowly shifted from motion feedback and internal buttons to cybernetic controls, which could sense and interpret the wearer's own brainwaves and respond accordingly. The pacemaker function of the chestplate was also eventually abandoned, as Stark's heart was repaired using artificial tissue. [ volume & issue needed ]

The 2007 retcon miniseries Iron Man: Hypervelocity hinted that Stark based the new cosmetic improvement on a childhood fantasy, as the red and gold color scheme came from his elementary school's colors, and the whole "Iron Man" motif from the eponymous song by Black Sabbath. [7]

The 3.8 version of the Mark III armor, which appeared in a 2010 storyline, included a self-repair kit hidden inside the pauldron-like portion of the armor covering the top of the right shoulder, which was protected with a fingerprint scanner. [8]

Armors of the 1970s Edit

Iron Man Armor MK IV (classic red and gold) Edit

Armor structure was improved with 3D knitting. In addition, a force-field helped keep the armor rigid. The armor used solar power and integrated micro-circuitry. A thermocouple was used to handle extreme temperature and convert it to usable power, but it could be overloaded. Repulsors were standard weaponry. The variobeam/uni-beam was capable of various effects. A tractor beam could be used to pull or throw objects. The most recent version of the armor was able to use pulse bolts. Gyro-stabilizers were used in the boot jets. Power pods were capable of various functions such as boosting other systems or being set to detonate. ECM jamming was used to evade detection. A hologram emitter created multiple images to make the armor harder to target. In addition to the sonic emitter, a voice distorter helped protect Stark's identity and could also be used to duplicate sounds. The armor could travel underground. Freon could be emitted and a built-in fire extinguisher handled internal and external fire. Finger lasers and a "sabresaw" were available for cutting through objects. Life support was improved the pacemaker was no longer needed after successful heart surgery. A slave circuit was added to control older suits after the incident with Weasel Willis. This was a weakness when Midas attempted to gain control of the armors. Sensors were upgraded with a full-band transceiver, infrared, and a 'life detector' that was keyed to several important personnel. [ volume & issue needed ]

Although Stark subsequently developed more advanced armors, he returned to this armor when situations have forced him to discard his latest armors due to serious damage and lack of time, resources prevented him from creating a more advanced replacement immediately. Examples of this include a 2000 story in which he was forced to destroy his sentient armor and feared designing a more advanced suit in case he repeated the accident that give his previous armor sentience [9] when Stark fled Norman Osborn and H.A.M.M.E.R. during the 2009 "World's Most Wanted" storyline [10] and when Stark and the Avengers confronted Osborn during his invasion of the then-earthbound Asgard during the 2010 "Siege" storyline, [11] which writer Brian Michael Bendis revealed in the follow-up miniseries Avengers Prime was the Mark 3.8 armor. [8]

Armors of the 1980s Edit

Space Armor MK I Edit

While based on the same design principles, this suit's matrix was formed non-collapsible to increase its protection from the rigors of deep space also, its specialized nature made collapsibility unnecessary. Power was provided by a Mk IV micro-nuclear supply pack, supplemented by solar power converters. Systems were controlled via a cybernetic interface, though it proved to be overly sensitive when Stark first used the armor he had difficulty triggering the appropriate command to activate the feature he wanted. The suit was designed for extended time outside of the atmosphere, up to two days in orbit (food and catheterization capable). The life support, boot jets and altitude maneuvering were powered by an on-board supply of liquid oxygen. Weaponry consisted of palm-mounted third-generation repulsors (electron beams which require laser ionized path of air to travel through the atmosphere the beam is moderated using a pulsing beam and early form of adaptive optics objects are jolted away from the beam path by the combination of ionized air and the accelerated neutron beam) and a chest-mounted Unibeam (a variable intensity light source usable as a spotlight or a laser the pentagonal shape of the emitter allowed for more accurate laser pulsing while in an atmosphere), and epaulet-mounted concussion-burst cannons. Sensors consisted of radar, sonar, infrared scanners, and radio. Additional features included ECM against radar and sonar, and the fully articulated hands could be fired out on retractable cables for use as long-range grapples. The most obvious feature on this special armor was its ability to attain escape velocity without aid of an external thrustier, unique to this Iron Man version however, the nuclear jets which allowed this made the suit bulky, heavy and awkward in Earth's gravity. The dangers inherent in an atomic-energy based propulsion system of such immense power seem to have driven Stark to build the thruster unit which he has been using ever since. [ volume & issue needed ]

Iron Man Armor Model 07 (Stealth Armor MK I) Edit

The Stealth armor is another of the specialized suits of armor developed by Stark for specific missions, similar to the Space Armor indeed, its creation was inspired due to him being tracked by radar during his use of the Space Armor. The Stealth Armor was designed using current "stealth" technology to allow Iron Man to foil detection devices and slip unknown in and out of restricted areas. This sleek, jet black suit (composed of impact resistant carbon-composites overlaid on top of layered "flex-metal" which can condense itself like a 3-dimensional accordion pleat) was a polarized metal mesh armor that uses every bit of space for detection and evasion components, and therefore was originally designed with no weapons. A bubble-shaped "backpack" was also incorporated into the armor to expand the space available for the stealth systems. Most of this armor used solar power to charge the batteries and run most of the integrated circuitry, though the pods on the sides were batteries that could maintain the suit's functions for a short time. It was able to recharge itself from electrical sources, a thermocouple to siphon power from extreme heat or cold, and solar power. The suit used force field technology to render Iron Man electronically invisible- a layer of low density plasma would be held in place by a focused magnetic field, and the tripole waveform reflected radar, along with a wave modifier that bent the radar around it. To quash any detectable infrared signature, the armor's boot-jet exhaust was "washed" by bursts of super-cooled air. The micro-turbines on his jet boots possess assisted air liquification devices rings of liquid nitrogen. [ volume & issue needed ]

Iron Man Armor MK VI (Recovery armor) Edit

After climbing back out of the gutter where he had landed after Obadiah Stane's psychological attack had devastated him, Stark started to construct a very basic armor out of spare parts he asked as payment from the companies he advised. More symbolic than anything, this armor had a strong resemblance to the very first, gray armor. While far more advanced than most earlier armors, it was inferior to the regular model James Rhodes was using at the time. It was eventually and unceremoniously destroyed by one of Stane's mechanical pawns. Nevertheless, it served to channel Stark's emotional distress into creative paths and paved the way for the armor that came next. [ volume & issue needed ]

Iron Man Armor MK VII (Silver Centurion) Edit

Stark began creating the Silver Centurion armor as a method of working out ideas and experimenting. The S-circuit, which uses its energy more efficiently, is an example of the breakthrough developed by Stark, using the armor as a model. With the destruction of Circuits Maximus by Obadiah Stane, Stark donned the newest set of armor to battle the foe that stripped him of his business, his friends, and almost his life. The battle with Stane was the first field test of this armor, and resulted in the defeat of Stane and the destruction of Stane International. [12]

The suit had a rigid interior and a 3-D knitted metallic exterior, providing protection from physical attacks as well as acid, heat, cold, most forms of energy, radiation, and electricity. A 3-D knitting pattern on a submolecular construction level gave the armor itself more strength, while allowing for the most comfortable suit interior. By expanding the field that keeps the armor rigid, the armor could encase itself in a protective force field that was effective against most forms of attack Stark could also use this field to polarize the armor to either attract or repulse other items via magnetic polarity. [ volume & issue needed ]

Most of this armor used solar power to charge the batteries and run most of the integrated circuitry, though the pods on the sides were batteries that could maintain the suit's functions for a short time. It was also able to recharge itself from electrical sources, a thermocouple to siphon power from extreme heat or cold. Flight was accomplished via Mk IV boot-jets (which incorporated high-speed duo-source turbines), supplemented by a booster pack that enabled the armor to attain speeds up to 750 mph (1,210 km/h) in the air and 180 mph (290 km/h) in the water. [ volume & issue needed ]

Weaponry consisted of a chest-mounted Mk III Unibeam (search light, heat beams, tractor beam, laser beam, and ultraviolet light beam), palm-mounted Mk III Repulsors (laser-guided particle beam emitters), pulse bolts (slow-moving high energy plasma discharge "torpedoes" that build in intensity as they travel through the atmosphere, picking up static and ambient energy and thus doing more damage the farther they travel), and a sonic emitter (generating high-frequency sound waves). [ volume & issue needed ]

Sensors consisted of a full band audiovisual transceiver simultaneous images of the armor. It could also be used to generate a "chameleon field" around itself the computer in the armor would analyze its surroundings and generate a hologram to make it blend in with the surroundings making it effectively invisible visually and to cameras. The "chameleon effect" ultimately was shown to damage Stark's nervous system, and as such was removed from the armor. [13]

The Silver Centurion armor- or a copy of it, given that the original was destroyed towards the conclusion of the "Armor Wars", was used by Stark to defeat the Mandarin, when his Extremis abilities were temporarily deactivated due to concerns regarding his mental health. [ volume & issue needed ]

Though this armor debuted before the return to the title of creative team of David Michelinie and Bob Layton, the latter revealed in 1996 that he designed the Silver Centurion. [14] He wrote: "Mark Gruenwald and associates came to me and asked me to come up with a "Samurai-type armor" for the series. Gruenie was a big believer in overhauling the Armored Avenger on a regular basis." Layton also revealed the original color scheme for the armor was red and black. He does not know who changed the original black color to silver.

Hydro Armor Edit

This unit was designed for salvage missions at the bottom of the deepest oceans—while Stark's conventional suits function underwater, they were noisy, inefficient, and they leaked. The exact composition is unknown it is assumed to be composed of the same layered "flex-metal" micro-scale suit tiles fabricated by genetically engineered metal-affinity bacteria which assemble themselves in specific orderly arrays and then expire, leaving behind various metallic deposits which form all the metal shapes and micro-electronic circuits. A new aligned-crystal production process allowed the construction of a large, semi-spherical headpiece, as transparent as glass. This unit possessed several ocean-specific weapons, such as the electric field of an electric eel, a camouflage 'ink cloud' and small 'manta ray' torpedoes. It also comprised an inner "Escape Suit" that could be jettisoned from the main suit in case of emergency (this inner suit possessed a Unibeam, 2 torpedoes, and the holding bay). Functions were controlled by cybernetic interface. [ volume & issue needed ] .This is a very interesting addition to the Iron Man arsenal of suits.

Low Observable Armor (Stealth Armor MK II) Edit

This armor was nearly identical to the Mk I Stealth Armor, with two additional features. The first was a camouflage effect, similar to the chameleon effect generated by the Silver Centurion armor. This suit's camouflage effect was entirely manually controlled, providing the wearer with invisibility to visual or camera detection, but only against backgrounds that are mostly of one color. The second addition were palm-mounted Mk IV Repulsors, though they only had enough energy to fire three shots at full power. The stealth systems were far more streamlined, allowing for the elimination of the "backpack" on the first model. [15]

This suit was used by Clay Wilson to fill in for the "real" Iron Man after Stark had been shot. [5]

Iron Man Armor MK VIII (New Red and Gold) Edit

During the Armor Wars, Iron Man found himself facing the government-sanctioned armored assassin Firepower. Against this walking, flying armored arsenal, even the Silver Centurion armor did not stand a chance, and it was destroyed. Reluctant to enter the fray again, but forced into action, Stark designed a new suit, even more powerful and versatile than its predecessor, designed specifically to negate Firepower's original advantages, such as a means of disrupting Firepower's targeting systems, a gauntlet-generated energy shield, and more powerful boosters for increased speed. It made short work of Firepower, and Stark was so horrified of the destructive potential of the armor should it fall into the wrong hands, he resolved to destroy it. After the confrontation with Firepower, he changed his mind, encoding all subsequent armors with a series of complex microchips that would self-destruct if duplication was attempted by anyone else without specific passcodes known only to Stark. This armor resembled the classic armor which had endured for many years, with some minor cosmetic changes. Its appearance changed somewhat, mainly becoming more bulky, ostensibly to increase thruster power (its massive boot-jets earning it the some-time nickname "coffeepot armor"). It was also the first armor to incorporate a beta-particle generator, radically reducing Iron Man's external power needs and boosting his offensive power. [ volume & issue needed ]

Armors of the 1990s Edit

Telepresence Armor Edit

Critically wounded by a bullet near his spine, Stark was paralyzed from the waist down. After some soul-searching, he designed an armor which would enable him to walk. While his paralysis was ended by the implantation of an organic microchip, this proved only the start of his problems, as the biochip was revealed to be a parasitic life form, designed to consume his own nervous system and replace it with one that could be controlled from the outside. He needed the support armor even more to protect himself from the people who controlled his body, since his armor cybernetically responded to his own brain. The cybernetic interface and battle computer were integrated with the Telepresence Neural Net, a more subtle armor he used to simulate his degenerating nervous system. While it was still worn as a suit of armor, the functions and muscle control were carried out by the suit, not by the wearer. It has the same powers as other armours and increased speed of running. [ volume & issue needed ]

War Machine Armor (Variable Threat Response Battle Suit Mark I) Edit

Officially known as the Variable Threat Response Battle Suit, this armor was created initially by Stark to deal with the Masters of Silence threat by using a "respond in kind" philosophy and strategy. It was designed for all-out warfare and was Stark's experiment with laser guided munitions and ballistic weaponry. Since the Masters of Silence were protected against Iron Man's usual weaponry of repulsors and unibeam, those weapons were removed from the Mark I model. The armor included several response devices such as a shoulder mounted electric minigun, shoulder mounted missile box launcher, and wrist mounted gauntlet cannons with additional weaponry such as a laser blade and flamethrower. It was not collapsible, and included far heavier carbon-composite-based armor as well as improved tactical computer systems and automatic targeting. A later version, Mark II Model JRXL-1000, was designed and built for James Rhodes, which became a full-fledged superhero identity for him as War Machine. In Mark I model, both the double-barreled cannon and the plasma blade were fixed with the flamethrower built over the plasma blade casing. In Rhodes' Mark II model, the wrist weapons became modular and the armor also included repulsor and unibeam technology. In both iterations, the shoulder mounted weapons are modular and can be removed and replaced. All further incarnations of the armor were used by Rhodes. [ volume & issue needed ]

NTU-150 Telepresence Armor Edit

Though similar in design to both the Neo-Classic armor and its remote-controlled counterpart, the NTU-150 incorporated the new SE Telepresence technology, enabling the unit to be operated under full Virtual Control. This unit was not a wearable suit of armor rather, it was a fully articulated device controlled by the mental impulses of the user via a remote headset apparatus. The remote headset transmitted commands to the active unit in much the same way as the human brain transmits commands to the central nervous system (in this case, it is via a subspace radio connection, lessening reaction time to almost zero). Similarly, the visual, aural, and (to a lesser degree) tactile information collected by the NTU-150 could be interpreted by the user's brain in the same way as normal sensory data. The primary difference is that the sensory data collected by the NTU-150 includes a full range of electromagnetic spectra and computer-processed data normally unavailable to humans, while the active devices contained in the unit includes not only analogues to the human body, but weaponry, data collection and processing hardware as well, all under autonomic and voluntary nervous system control. In contrast to traditional robotic devices, the NTU-150 contains no mechanical framework to mimic the action of the human body the unit's outer shell is articulated by a multiprocessor-controlled structural integrity field which allows for a much greater range of movement. [ volume & issue needed ]

Modular Armor Edit

This unit is a drastic departure from all of the previous armors. Instead of a single cohesive unit, each piece of the armor is a stand-alone subsystem that can be interchanged at will. As such, while the overall unit is still referred to as the Mark 11, the actual configuration at any given time will vary. The shell was composed of layered "flex-metal" which could condense itself like a 3-dimensional accordion pleat. Micro-scale suit tiles were fabricated by genetically-engineered, metal-affinity bacteria, which assembled themselves in specific orderly arrays and then expired, leaving behind various metallic deposits which form all the metal shapes and micro-electronic circuits.Weaponry consisting of repulsors, Unibeam, wristed mounted protongun, shoulder missiles(which acts according to Tony), laser blades. [ volume & issue needed ]

The Modular Armor is the main armor in the Iron Man animated TV series and Capcom's Marvel vs. Capcom video game series.

Hulkbuster Armor (Modular Add-On)

First Appearance: Iron Man Vol.1 #304 (May 1994)

The Hulkbuster armor is a heavy-duty, exo-frame (an add-on to the Mk. XI Modular Armor) designed for maximum-strength amplification at the cost of reduced versatility and mobility. As its name suggests, it was specifically designed for hand-to-hand combat with the rampaging Hulk. The armor was rated with a lift (press) capacity of 170 tons. During its maiden run, the armor enabled Stark to temporarily hold his own in sustained physical combat with the Hulk.

Arctic Armor Edit

Very little is known about this armor Stark used it to travel to an Arctic bunker. It was blue and silver in color, and possessed a unique hexagonal chest beam.

Crossing Armor Edit

With this armor, Stark did away with the Modular Armor and constructed a version designed specifically for combat. Its appearance was simpler, sporting rivets as its only decoration. Bulky gauntlets housed more powerful repulsors on top of the wrist instead of in the palm of the hand. [16]

Retro Armor Edit

This armor's design history is unknown it stands out because it, out of all the other armors in the armory, was picked by "Teen Tony", a Tony Stark who had been plucked out of an alternate time stream many years in the past to help fight his present-day self. [17]

Teen Tony Armor Edit

  • Not a full armor, but only a chest plate to keep the young Stark's heart beating. Was soon upgraded with a pair of gauntlets. [18]
  • A chestplate and gauntlets, but more powerful and with superior shielding against energy attacks. [19]
  • Based on the Mark 2, this was the first full-body armor constructed by the young Stark from components cobbled together on a moment's notice to fight the villain Frostbite. It was geared at manipulating heat and cold. [20]
  • Finalized armor, like a streamlined, upgraded version of the Mark 3, with design elements of model 16. It only partly consisted of solid metal. Parts of the limbs' armor were holographicforce-fields (which were visually indistinguishable from the original golden armor). [21]

Prometheum Armor ("Heroes Reborn") Edit

During the Onslaught event, Stark was one of the heroes who sacrificed himself to defeat the menace, and consequently was shunted into a newly created pocket universe by reality-altering mutant Franklin Richards. [22]

In the new universe, every person had a new, but complete history- including a childhood, youth and adulthood- and no memory of their original universe. So Iron Man had to be reborn- and he was, this time not as a result of a booby trap in the Far East, but a direct encounter with the newly born Incredible Hulk. His chest pierced by shrapnel from a crashed helicopter, Stark had no choice but to do an experimental exoskeleton (Project: Prometheus Rising) which had cost the life of one of his closest friends before. He had to keep wearing the chest plate constantly to keep his shredded heart beating thereafter. [23]

The paradigm of this armor was quite different from the one Iron Man had worn for years in the baseline universe, but the arrangement of weapons, and, oddly enough, the color scheme, remained similar. Its sensors seemed somewhat more advanced. Writer Scott Lobdell confirmed in an online discussion that the secret of the Prometheum Armor was nanotechnology. [24]

Renaissance Armor ("Heroes Return")/Sentient armor Edit

Fresh upon his return from the "Heroes Reborn" universe, Stark constructed this armor which served as a new beginning, combining cutting-edge technology with classic lines. The armor possessed energy-absorption strips, as well as a "horned" faceplate (writer Kurt Busiek had said he liked Iron Man's helmet from early Avengers issues), [25] reminiscent of the first red-and-gold armor, and a pentagonal chest beam. Its most useful feature was a completely self-contained life support system, allowing Stark to completely cut himself off from the outside world while relying on food pills and the armor's own internal atmosphere if he was in a hostile environment, a feature that came in particularly useful when he was abducted by the Brood to participate in a contest against other heroes, the armor's internal life support allowing Stark to escape infection by the mood-altering nanites the Brood were using to keep the heroes too aggressive to consider their situation in depth long enough to develop a means of curing his allies. [26]

Stark had to eventually abandon this armor when it was discovered it, and to some degree all armors before it, negatively affected his health. The intensity of the armor's force fields and various electronics was likened to "not just living near power lines, but actually inside them." [27]

Stark temporarily returned to a variation of the "Heroes Return" armor in the aftermath of the "Secret Invasion" storyline in Iron Man (vol. 5) #10 (April 2009).

Experimental Safe Armor Edit

Experimental armor incorporating safe power systems, necessary when it became apparent the constant exposure to the powerful energy fields inside the Iron Man armor were harming Stark's health. Iron Man transported to the moon to help the Fantastic Four however a malfunction caused a brief battle between Iron Man and the FF. Despite its rough, unfinished state, it still played a vital role in defeating Ronan, the Kree Supreme Accuser.

EM-safe/Sentient armor Edit

The finished version of the previous armor, it possessed all or most of the power and functions of the 'renaissance' armor, but without the negative effects it had on the wearer's health. The added bulk of isolation and radiation baffling did mean it was too massive to be folded up and stored inside a suitcase, like previous armors, but it could transform into a more compact, flight-capable module, which could store itself in, for instance, the trunk of a car.

This armor eventually achieved sentience due to Stark downloading Jocasta into the armor, a strike from Whiplash's whip and the armor's lack of Y2K compliance. [28] This corrupted the usual failsafes Stark had installed to prevent such an occurrence happening as Jocasta unintentionally infected the armor with the 'Ultron Imperative,' [29] a system that would cause Ultron's creations to rebuild him if he was ever destroyed. Lightning strikes sustained during a fight with Whiplash providing the necessary 'nudge' to push the armor into full sentience based on Stark's own mind.

Although the armor's new tactical abilities made it far more efficient than previous armors, able to evade attacks based on past experience with opponents, its lack of human morality caused it to kill Whiplash in its 'test drive', subsequently becoming increasingly obsessed with merging with Stark so that they would become Iron Man on a permanent basis (on a more practical note, it also suffered from a power supply problem as it ran down its batteries at a far more rapid rate due to the energy required to sustain its sentience). Although it attempted to kill Stark in a final confrontation on a deserted island, when Stark suffered a heart attack, it reverted to its default programming, sacrificing its own central power source to help sustain Stark's heart. It was later salvaged by the 'Sons of Yinsen,' a cult who followed Ho Yinsen to use as a host for Yinsen's brain, only for Ultron to take control of the armor before it was destroyed for good. [29]

Armors of the 2000s Edit

Outer Atmospheric Armor Edit

A completely new space armor design. It requires a booster rig for takeoff, and has therefore been trimmed down to reduce weight. While it offers less protection than previous models, it is also stealthier and far more maneuverable in space, using anaerobic jets for propulsion. It contains a special compression gel to protect the wearer from G-forces, and automatically seals any leaks. To accommodate re-entry, the unit possesses a massive, expanding solar sail. [ volume & issue needed ]

S.K.I.N. Armor Edit

This armor's main difference from its predecessors is its sheer size the torso and shoulders in particular are massive. Its development, starting from scratch, resulted mainly from Stark's fear that an innate factor had resulted in his previous armor developing sentience. Its appearance also differed markedly from the Sentient Armor, perhaps to make it seem as different as possible: it possessed a circular chest beam, a greatly altered overall configuration (including many "industrial-style" details such as external tubing, earning this suit the ignoble nickname "udder armor" [ citation needed ] ) and a restyled helmet. [ volume & issue needed ]

The armor is powered by a Beta Particle Generator and solar power converters and controlled by a Cybernetic Interface and Battle Computer to enhance reactions when in combat. It can absorb directed energy attacks as well as massive non-directional energy discharges (like explosions). It also possesses a new force field. [ volume & issue needed ]

The golden sections of Iron Man consisted of S.K.I.N (Synth-Kinetic Interface Nano-fluid), a liquid alloy that can be manipulated to conform to any desired shape. It is lightweight but has immense structural integrity, being harder than titanium and approaching low-grade adamantium. S.K.I.N. can be contracted to fit into a small container or stretched/shaped into another form. The alloy's wondrous properties were developed by Askew Technologies, and the exact elements incorporated into the S.K.I.N. remain unknown. Stark had set up the S.K.I.N. of his armor to be stored in a small container. On his command, the S.K.I.N. spilled out and assumed its default armor configuration. [ volume & issue needed ]

The larger size of the armor accommodated storage of several new systems, including an improved sonic array, upgraded chameleon field, energy blade, missiles and even a number of grapefruit-sized, spherical drone units which could hover and fly autonomously, and serve as scouts or remote-controlled weapons. [ volume & issue needed ]

Unfortunately, this design had to be abandoned after Ultron proved how easily he could make S.K.I.N. (or a human being it was bonded to) jump through hoops. [ volume & issue needed ]

Stealth Armor MK III Edit

Similar to Stark's earlier Armor, the Mark III Stealth unit was also specifically designed to combat the Black Panther's anti-metal vibranium claws – it is composed entirely of advanced composite ceramics and experimental bio-neural gel-pack circuitry, fused with a kevlar-like polymer and backed by optical fiber networks all of which comes down to an armor which was invisible to electronic detection systems as well as the naked eye, even the Black Panther's. Although the development of Stark's new cloaking technology for the Mark 25 "S.K.I.N." armor probably rendered the Mark III unit's stealth technology obsolete, the Stealth armor is nevertheless an effective weapon against opponents such as the Black Panther and Magneto because of its plastic/ceramic design. [ volume & issue needed ]

Tin Man Armor Edit

After the S.K.I.N. fiasco, Stark once again more or less redesigned the armor from scratch. Improved scanning included GPS and a particle mist that could be used to 'mark' targets. The armor, which went through various evolutions, had originally a generally segmented, almost insect-like appearance later, it became heavier, more industrial, and the ultimate form of this armor (through trimmed down) made Stark sigh, "It's difficult to believe I used to be able to fit this inside a briefcase". [ volume & issue needed ]

Carbon dioxide provides underwater propulsion immediate satellite uplinking even from miles underwater was possible. [ volume & issue needed ]

Repulsors were improved with a 'crowd control' setting. The armor could also release a (tentatively called) "deflector pulse", a shaped force field blasting outward from various points on the suit. Armor could also release a devastating "blockbuster" blast using uni-beam and repulsors in concert, but more potent than either. [ volume & issue needed ]

When commanded, the armor could also adopt a hovering, non-humanoid, autonomous combat mode, equipped with energy and projectile weapons. [ volume & issue needed ]

Thorbuster Edit

In the 2003 storyline "Standoff", Iron Man and Thor come into conflict over Thor's aggression toward the military dictatorship in the nation of Slokovia, whose leader, General Stoykovicz, has slaughtered its citizens for worshipping Thor as part of his ban on pagan worship. When Stark decides to confront Thor, he wears the Thorbuster armor, which he designed some time prior to the story as a contingency plan in the event of such a confrontation. Outwardly the armor exhibits elements of Asgardian technology, resembling a hybrid of an Iron Man armor and the Asgardian weapon known as the Destroyer. The power source for the armor is an enchanted Asgardian jewel fragment originally given to Stark by Thor as a gift, in the hopes of one day being utilized as a new energy source for mankind. Because the jewel possesses the same type of enchantment that gives Thor's hammer, Mjolnir, its power, it allows the armor to absorb and re-channel the energy directed at the armor by Mjolnir. [30] During their battle, Thor neutralizes the armor by ripping off its right arm and removing the jewel fragment. [31]

Cobalt Man impostor Edit

Ablative Armor Edit

This prototype armor possessed armor made up out of three-inch (76 mm), honeycomb-shaped tiles, piled several layers thick. Each tile was made of high-impact polymer. When one of the tiles was damaged, it popped off and the next one below it snapped into place. Furthermore, the suit used repulsor-tech force fields to position new tiles, produced in a "polymer kiln" on its back. It could also create a "storm cloud" of thousands of orbiting tiles around itself to act as "chaff". This armor was originally designed to be used in space, where micrometeoroids provided an impact-rich environment, but was ultimately used to defend against a parasitical alien life form which infected organisms and altered them to suit its needs. For optimal efficacy, the tiles were "loaded" with specialized nanobots which would turn the alien's biology against itself.

Iron Man Armor Model 29 Edit

Stark began using this armor during the time that he served as the United States Secretary of Defense. Standard weaponry including repulsors, uni-beam and sonics. Concussion blasts were used against the Hand. Zero-point energy was used against Michael Pointer (aka The Collective). Via voice command, the armor could adopt an autonomous, robotic Battle Mode. If separated by magnetism, it could reform and return to Stark. Defensively, a repulsor shield could be extended to protect the armor and allies. Security was enhanced by upgrades to anti-tampering devices.

Anti-Radiation Armor Edit

The armor is designed to attract radiation into the armor where it is converted into usable power. This greatly enhances its strength. Through absorbing ambient radiation the armor is able to decontaminate irradiated areas. It also possesses repulsors and a unibeam. [ volume & issue needed ]

Banner's addition was "RG-27", a special compound that neutralizes gamma radiation. Since it is most effective in liquid or gas form, a series of tubes were built into the armor for irrigation. This enables the armor not only to withstand radiation, but also allows it to decontaminate areas. To expose a government conspiracy, the two faked a quarrel over some of their designs. Stark unveiled a finished version of the suit to battle the Hulk. When Stark seemed to be acting strangely while wearing the suit, a problem with the irrigation system was discovered, and The Hulk was able to help Stark shut it down before gamma poisoning set in. [ volume & issue needed ]

High Gravity Armor Edit

Designed to withstand high gravity environments it was bulky, being able to survive long-term exposure to at least 50 G the wearer had blood artificially forced to body parts which would otherwise suffer from the extreme gravity. Unfortunately, the wearer is still susceptible to nitrogen narcosis and the bends. [ volume & issue needed ]

Iron Man Model 30 (Extremis Armor) Edit

After being critically injured during a battle with a nanotech-enhanced foe, Stark injected his nervous system with an advanced nanotech-based weapon to save his own life. This fused Stark's armor to his body, allowing him to store the inner layers of the Iron Man armor in the hollows of his bones as well as control it through direct brain impulses. The Extremis enhancement has turned Stark into a cyborg, whereby the usage of his existing lockchip (a personal area networking implement implanted in his forearm) is directly integrated into his nervous system. [ volume & issue needed ]

Furthermore, the Extremis process endowed Stark with a "healing factor" and possibly even enhanced physical abilities. It was later stated that the Extremis enhancement speeds up a person's repair process and hence the body's cells died and regenerated at a faster rate. [ volume & issue needed ]

In the "Iron Man: The Inevitable" storyline, it was shown that it's not only Stark's body and the interfacing undersheath that has self-healing properties. Even the Iron Man armor has the ability to self-heal and self-repair, presumably through the use of nanotechnology. The armor is also able to store power throughout its structure, indicating that instead of having main batteries mounted around the waist as in the older Iron Man armors, the Extremis armor incorporates distributed and decentralized energy storage. [32]

After the entire Stark 'dataspine', the central data processing center which governed all, or at least the pertinent portion of Stark technology, was infected with a hyper-advanced, Skrull-developed computer virus during the "Secret Invasion" storyline, Stark lost the ability to use Extremis' interface functions and consequently the armor was rendered obsolete. For the during the 2009 "World's Most Wanted" storyline, Stark used older armors, such as the "Heroes Return" and Classic Red and Gold versions. [10]

Argonauts Edit

Sometime after the Extremis transformation, during an attack by the new Super-Adaptoid, Stark realized he could command several armors at once. Building on this, and realizing the world was becoming an increasingly dangerous place, he decided to construct a "team" of Iron Men—hyper-advanced drones that would be under his direct mental command, just as his own armored body. Unfortunately, the "Argonauts" were abused and destroyed before they ever could serve for good. [ volume & issue needed ] They included:

  • "Space Ghost": space-flight capable, could reach low Earth orbit under its own power nearly impossible to detect espionage model possibly intended as a satellite-killer. [volume & issue needed]
  • "Submariner": streamlined for great speed underwater capable of using the ocean itself as a weapon, it apparently unleashed several tsunamis, and was able to overpower Namor, the Submariner, under water. [volume & issue needed]
  • "Adamantium Man": equipped with practically indestructible "Stark-Chobham" armor, an experimental composite of carbon nanotube-reinforced ceramics, laced with adamantium. [volume & issue needed]
  • "Digger": enormous drone, possibly over a hundred tons equipped with (shielded) Antarctic Vibranium (which dissolves any metal) helmet dome and a specialized repulsor/unibeam system which allowed it to tunnel at incredible speed. [volume & issue needed]
  • "Hulkbuster II": also a massive drone, ostensibly designed mainly for raw power and toughness, to take on the Hulk. It proved entirely capable of taking on the Avengers. Like its predecessor, Hulkbuster II bore a distinct resemblance to Juggernaut. [volume & issue needed]

While extremely powerful, the drones were useless once Stark rendered himself clinically dead. [ volume & issue needed ]

Modern Hydro Suit Edit

During the "Civil War" arc of the Wolverine solo series, Wolverine borrows Stark's armor to pursue Namor, who is undersea in New Pangea. A new hydro suit is used by Wolverine which reflects the style of the Extremis generation Iron Man suit. [ volume & issue needed ]

Hypervelocity Edit

This new iteration of the armor possesses enhanced repulsors, housed not in gloves but in high-strength manipulator waldoes (giving the armor somewhat longer arms than usual) multiple-mode bootjets that can operate both with and without oxygen intake improved structural integrity for the armor an improved "chameleon mode" and a "supercavitation spike", projecting upward from the back, which apparently creates a sort of "bubble" so that the armor can travel underwater at near-supersonic speeds. A massive amount of electrical energy is stored in a spinning, superconductive capacitor ring on the back. [ volume & issue needed ]

The most radical feature of this armor must be that its vastly increased computing power allows it to make a "back-up" of Stark's own mind, so that in the event of critical injury of the wearer, the armor can act as him, with all his knowledge, insight and experience. The effect is so complete that the armor, thus activated, referred to itself as "Tony 2.0". [ volume & issue needed ]

After several hours of existence, the armor managed to develop a program that enabled it to function at "hypervelocity" - effectively thinking and moving at a much, much faster timeframe than everyone else. [ volume & issue needed ]

Note that this story is set before "Extremis", though it was published afterwards. [ volume & issue needed ]

Hulkbuster Armor MK II Edit

In the 2007 "World War Hulk" storyline, Stark designs a new Hulkbuster armor in order to battle the Hulk, who goes on a rampage upon his return to Earth from space. He is initially able to hold his own against his foe. The new armor is built as a large exoskeletal shell which fits around his normal armor and is equipped with rocket-boosted gauntlets, capable of punching the Hulk back several miles. It is also equipped with adamantium-tipped injector needles, which Stark used in an attempt to suppress the Hulk's power with S.P.I.N. Tech nanites, though the nanites failed due to sabotage. [33] [34] With the damage done by the Hulk and the entire Stark Tower collapsing on the already damaged armor, it was unable to continue functioning. It briefly re-emerged as a host body for the demon Zom, who attempted to use it to access S.H.I.E.L.D. technology and destroy New York City by shifting it into the Negative Zone Zom was defeated by the efforts of the self-styled "Renegades" (Amadeus Cho, Hercules, Angel, and Namora), and the armor was used by Amadeus Cho as a temporary support to shore up structural damage caused in the battle. [ volume & issue needed ]

Mark 1616 (Rescue) Edit

In the 2008-09 "Dark Reign" storyline, Norman Osborn blames Stark and Maria Hill for the Skrull invasion in the prior "Secret Invasion" storyline. Stark and Hill become fugitives, but before Stark flees, he leaves a suit of armor for his right-hand woman and best friend, Pepper Potts. [35] The suit, which is designated Mark 1616, [36] but named Rescue by Potts, [37] represents a hybrid of repulsor technology and portable electromagnetic superfield generators that give the suit flight, speed, strength, and magnetic field manipulation. [38] Its electromagnetic forcefields are powerful to enable Rescue to stop a falling jet airliner without physical contact with it, [38] and can also be used as an offensive weapon with other armored opponents. [37] The suit's physical strength enables it to hold up a stilt mansion felled by an earthquake, [38] and to rip the lower leg of the Black armor. [39] The armor also features an artificial intelligence named J.A.R.V.I.S. that acts as a guide for Potts. [36] During the 2012 storyline "The Future", Potts and Carson Wyche come to suspect that J.A.R.V.I.S. has been compromised, and when they attempt to troubleshoot the Rescue helmet, J.A.R.V.I.S. takes control of the Rescue armor, and takes Potts and Wyche hostage. [39] J.A.R.V.I.S. is disabled by James Rhodes with a source-focused electromagnetic pulse from the Black armor, [40] and subsequently destroyed by Potts. [41]

A version of the Rescue armor is adapted into the 2019 feature film Avengers: Endgame, in which Potts, who is married to Stark, wears the armor when joining the battle in the film's climax, and fights side by side with Stark against Thanos' forces. [42]

Mark 0 Edit

The Iron Man Mark 0 is the original armor Stark built in Afghanistan, which was improved upon his return to the United States with an onboard operating system, lenses, heating and cooling systems and rudimentary repulsor weapons. Stark used it to escape from Norman Osborn during the "World's Most Wanted" storyline, which ran concurrently with the company crossover "Dark Reign". Stark resorted to donning the Mark 0 after the brain damage he had inflicted upon himself in the course of erasing the Superhuman Registration Act database from his brain made it impossible for him to use any of his more complicated armors. [43] The mentally incapacitated Stark and the Mark 0 armor were easily defeated by Osborn, who engaged Stark while wearing the Iron Patriot armor. [44]

Armors of the 2010s Edit

Space Armor Add-on Edit

This device is a rocket booster-like apparatus which is capable of recycling food and waste materials of the wearer, and can sustain the wearer for a few weeks, it can be equipped to different armors such as the Iron Man Armor Model 29 or Model 30 to allow it to be used for unusual missions, principally in space. [45] [46]

Prison escape Armor Edit

When Stark is accused of destroying the Russian city Vostok, where Anton Vanko lived, he develops an armor similar to the Mark I from the feature film in order to escape the prison where he is being held. He uses it in a fight with Vanko, who has assumed the identity of Whiplash as part of his quest for revenge. The armor is partially destroyed, but Stark escapes both prison and his enemy. [47]

Bleeding Edge Armor Edit

In Invincible Iron Man #25 (2010), Stark creates a new armor in the aftermath of the "Stark: Disassembled" storyline. [48] Created by writer Matt Fraction and artist Ryan Meinerding, this new armor is sleeker in appearance, and is featured in the 2010 crossover storyline, the "Heroic Age". [49]

When asked if the Bleeding Edge is an upgrade to Extremis, Stark comments, "Nah—this is what comes next." As such the new armor is a part of Stark's now-posthuman biology—it is stored inside Stark's body in its entirety, "manifesting" itself when mentally commanded. [50]

The neurokinetic user-controlled morphologic nanoparticle bundles that form the suit reside in Stark's body, and form a fibrous wetweb of iron and platinum, [51] that can be commanded to form any type of structure upon Stark's skin, such as large boxing gloves, [52] or weapons, including large guns extending from his arms [51] or a lightsaber-like energy sword with which Iron Man was actually able to harm one of the Worthy during the 2011 "Fear Itself" storyline. [53] The nano-machines can even mimic the appearance of clothes, and then dissociate to transform into the Iron Man armor whenever Stark wishes. [54] The suit adds less than twenty-five pounds to Stark's body mass, and can stop a howitzer shell. [51]

The armor and Stark's own transhuman body are powered by the high-yield arc reactor mounted in his chest. [50] The high output of the arc reactor has greatly augmented Stark's intelligence and provided him superhuman-level multitasking and learning capabilities. Unlike earlier armors, this new armor does not appear to rely on motors and servos for motion. Instead, the nano-machines create a secondary artificial musculature over Stark's body, upon which additional rigid structures are assembled. This also enables the armor to self-repair and be almost invulnerable, as the armor is capable of transforming and healing itself as long as the power output from the arc reactor is not interrupted or terminated when the armor is briefly apparently destroyed in a fight with an alternate version of the Scarlet Witch, it is restored to normal after only a matter of seconds (although it remains inactive long enough to require Spider-Man to rescue Stark from plummeting to the ground). [55] In the 2012 "Ends of the Earth" storyline, Doctor Octopus is able to disable the armor using technology derived from the armor of Iron Man 2020. [56]

The suit's repulsors, which are located around the knuckles, chest, back and legs of the armor, as well as in the traditional palms, also function as cameras, or "eyeballs", which afford Stark a 360-degree panoramic view around himself. [51] Temporarily replacing the suit's primary composite—iron/platinum—with carbon nanotubes renders it immune to Magneto's powers when he and Iron Man engage in combat over Utopia during the 2012 "Avengers vs. X-Men" storyline. [57]

After Stark decides to retire as Iron Man in the 2012 "Long Way Down" storyline, he undergoes a surgical procedure that expels the Bleeding Edge technology out of his body, rendering the armor inert. [58]

Iron Destroyer Edit

During the Serpent's War, which occurs in the 2011 "Fear Itself" storyline, Iron Man journeys to the realm of Asgard, the home of his fellow Avenger Thor, in order to procure weapons to fight Odin's brother, The Serpent, and his generals, the Worthy, who are ravaging the Earth. In addition to the hand-held weapons he has forged for his fellow Avengers, Iron Man's armor receives an additional coating of Uru by Asgardian blacksmiths, as well as magical enchantments by Odin. [59] [60] [61] Iron Man refers to this manifestation of his armor as the "Iron Destroyer", for its resemblance to the Asgardian weapon, the Destroyer. Its magical enhancements disappear when Odin leaves Earth at the conclusion of the Serpent's War, and Iron Man vents the uru from the suit's molecular structure before returning the metal to Asgard, where it is melted back down with the other loaned weapons. [62]

Phoenix-Buster Edit

When the dreaded cosmic entity known as the Phoenix Force is revealed to be returning to Earth, the Avengers and the X-Men fight over the fate of Hope Summers, who is expected to become its host. The Avengers believe it will destroy Earth, while the X-Men believe that it would restore the balance of life on the planet by restoring the mutant species. Stark and Henry Pym developed a massive armor to disable or destroy the Phoenix Force, but it results in the Phoenix Force splitting into five parts, each seeking out one of the X-Men. [ volume & issue needed ]

Black armor Edit

In the 2012 storylines "Demon" and "Long Way Down", Stark is targeted by Justine Hammer, Obadiah Stane and the Mandarin, who publicly expose the fact that Stark was using his armor while under the influence of alcohol during the previous "Fear Itself" storyline, and manipulate the government into forcing Stark to wear a monitoring device on his arc reactor that gives them the ability to shut down his access to the Iron Man armor. To get the device removed, Stark capitulates to venting the Extremis material from his body, quitting Iron Man entirely, and secretly arranges to fake James Rhodes' death, in order for Rhodes to become the new Iron Man. Rhodes' new armor is a black suit whose only visible features are glowing panels and metallic gray gauntlets and boots. [63] This suit possesses a cloaking device that turns it invisible, and can handle underwater pressures exceeding the tolerance limits of the villain Firepower. [64] It can also project freezing cold in a manner similar to the X-Man Iceman, [65] and can release a multitude of ball bearing-sized explosives from compartments mounted on its shoulders that can be directed at an enemy. Pepper Potts' Rescue armor is strong enough to rip the armor covering the lower leg of the Black armor's occupant, [39] though the Black armor can emit a source-focused electromagnetic pulse that can disable the Rescue armor. [40] The Black armor is later confiscated by Stark, leaving Rhodes without a suit. [46]

Anti-Mandarin rebellion armor Edit

In the final issue of the "Long Way Down" storyline, Mandarin reveals that he has control of Stark's mind, [66] and in the continuing storyline, "The Future", has enslaved Stark, forcing him to build the apocalyptic weapons known as Titanomech in Mandarian City outside of Mongolia, alongside other enslaved enemies of Iron Man, in particular Obadiah Stane. [67] Stark and Stane cooperate in order to escape Mandarin, during which Stark builds another suit. This suit is red and gold like Stark's previous suits, but incorporates a number of metallic grey outer surfaces, particularly on the upper body of the suit. [39] [40]

Black and Gold Armor Edit

This gun-metal grey [68] armor debuted in the first part of the 2012 "Believe" storyline, which launched the fifth volume of the Iron Man series as part of the Marvel NOW! initiative. This version of the armor is a testbed for new suits, and is composed by "smart-metals [that] align to a subdermal ghost of a skeleton". This suit can be stored in a fluid "putty" form in a briefcase, and which Stark can mentally command to cover his body. It is more versatile in this sense, but less effective than rigid armors with their dedicated systems. It has a circular chestplate over the arc reactor, and like the Bleeding Edge armor, secondary repulsors are featured all over the armor, though larger in diameter. They are located on either side of the main arc reactor, on the shoulders, on each hip, on each wrist, and on top of each hand. Weapons include a wrist-mounted gun that can fire armor-piercing tasers. [69] It can be rapidly adapted to new combat situations by means of a mobile, container-sized armory and robotic adaptation system, swapping out systems as the situation demands. [ volume & issue needed ]

Stealth Armor MK IV Edit

This armor debuted in the third issue of the "Believe" storyline, and was used by Stark during a raid on the home of a South American drug lord. The armor uses light-bending and holographic technologies to appear invisible, as well as alter its own appearance in order to impersonate others. Its systems being dedicated to infiltration and espionage mean that its conventional shields and weapons are far less powerful (Repulsor output at 10% normal, for instance), but it does possess the ability to administer a powerful sleeping gas. [70]

Heavy Duty armor Edit

Described as starting "Where War Machine leaves off", [71] the Heavy Duty armor is a large, bulky suit that focuses on firepower. In addition to standard repulsor weaponry, the armor possesses a large rotary cannon that is built into the left arm, and a gun turret positioned over the right shoulder. The suit also sports a personal force field, as well as an automated combat AI and plating that according to Stark, is tough enough to withstand blows from a Hulk. [72]

Space Armor MK III Edit

Making its first appearance at the end of the "Believe" arc, the Space Armor MK III was designed by Stark to enable him to travel into outer space. The suit sports back-mounted rocket thrusters and a redesigned helmet, which looks different from the faceplates featured on the previous armors, [73] though the thrusters were gone by the second issue in which it appeared. The new armor - which caused Veritina, a member of the extraterrestrial race the Voldi, to refer to Stark as "Space Knight" - [74] also contains an A.I. named P.E.P.P.E.R., which is modeled after Pepper Potts. [73] The armor has advanced propulsion options, being capable of inter-atmosphere travel at Mach 10, or warp speed travel for outer space which translates to about one trillion times the speed of light. [75]

Saturn V Armor Edit

An external add-on for the Space Armor MK III, Tony Stark designed this suit specifically for travelling and landing on the moon, since regular traveling would take too much time and warp traveling could crash Iron Man on the surface of the moon. The Saturn V Armor can store much more energy than a regular armor on its back-mounted repulsor batteries and the enhanced boot jets can surpass Mach 10 speed. [76]

Cold Iron armor Edit

Travelling to the mystical realm of Svartalfheim to confront its king, Malekith, who had taken possession of four of the rings of the Mandarin, Iron Man first attempts to use stealth and guile. But when this fails, and he is hunted and wounded, he resorts to having this armor teleported in. It is heavy with iron armor plating, and its weapons include four large, extendable blades on its forearms and the ability to douse its surroundings with fine iron 'chaff' - iron being poisonous to elves. [ volume & issue needed ]

Black and Gold Hulkbuster Armor Edit

A new Hulkbuster model, designed to fight against the Hulk, who at that time considered Tony Stark responsible for sabotaging the Gamma bomb and, as a result, causing the explosion that transformed Bruce Banner. The armor is assembled inside Stark's car or from actual parts of it and it is equipped with the most advanced arsenal to stop the green Goliath, namely Gamma blades, which produce a line of radiation to cut through even Hulk's skin and a powerful 'shock-and-awe' barrage using repulsors and ultrasonics. Though it was possible that this suit would've been capable of stopping the normal Hulk, it was no match for the smarter, Extremis-enhanced Hulk. [ volume & issue needed ] [ original research? ]

Endo-Sym Armor Edit

Stark begins using this armor, which features a chrome finish, in the beginning of the 2014 "Avengers & X-Men: AXIS" storyline. The armor is made of liquid smart-metal incorporating elements of the alien Venom symbiote, which Stark can psionically control to flow over his body like Spider-Man and other hosts to the Venom symbiote could. When covering his body, the material hardens to resembles his other, traditional armors. [77] It is capable of locating and following Tony Stark even in spite of electronic cloaking, since the connection between it and Tony is similar to that between a symbiote and its chosen wearer - so possibly psychic in nature. [ volume & issue needed ] [ original research? ]

Model-Prime Armor Edit

Beginning with the 2015 All-New, All-Different Marvel branding, Tony Stark designs a more streamlined and less complex suit of armor, once again with the traditional red and gold colors. This armor's primary feature is that it can change shape depending on the wearer's needs. It can create blades or blasters on its hands or it can morph entirely into more elaborate armors, like a massive, heavy-duty, Hulkbuster-like armor or a samurai-like armor. It has demonstrated [ when? ] the ability to protect Stark automatically from sonic attacks, has a stealth mode, and can project holograms of Stark. Unlike previous models which were connected to Stark's biology, this armor is connected to his brain synapses and it is confined to a bracer when not in use. [ volume & issue needed ]

Fin Fang Foom-Buster armor Edit

More a giant mecha than an armor, this twenty-story machine assembles itself out of two submersibles, two gunships and two aircraft – a large one and a small one. It was created to take on kaiju-sized threats. [ clarification needed ]

GK II Edit

An even larger mecha, the 2000-foot 'Godkiller II' is usually in orbit around Mars, presumably [ according to whom? ] to keep it out of the hands of potential abusers. It can go toe-to-toe [ tone ] with a Celestial, size-wise, but cannot match its power, despite being powered by at least seven nuclear reactors.

Godbuster armor Edit

Before his buff, he was the worst tech in Marvel Contest of Champions. Now, He's the strongest in the Tech class. However the two strongest champs in the game are Groot and Vision Aarkus (Aarkus gameplay).

"Ultron buster" Edit

A large, powerful armor, possibly [ according to whom? ] partly based on the 'Godbuster', designed specifically to engage and defeat the Ultron/Pym hybrid. However, when confronting him, Tony was exposed to a device designed to meld humans and machines at the molecular level, just like their creator, and himself was fused to the Ultron buster.

Iron Man 2020 Edit

This armor was created by Arno Stark, Tony's brother-by-adoption, after Tony Stark seemingly dropped out of the picture. It was based on the Godbuster armor, the designs for which had been partly copied by Arno.

EScape armor Edit

A fully 'virtual' armor made out of data manifesting in the real world, as a 'solid hologram'. It was created out of the massive-scale virtual environment known as the 'eScape'. It was claimed its only limitation was its wearer's imagination.

  • Iron Man 2020 - Arno Stark bought the corporate identity of Stark Industries, and apparently this included Iron Man. Unlike his heroic ancestor (actually, Stark might be his uncle, once removed) he found himself working as a ruthless mercenary to bolster the financial reserves of his company. His armor was recognized to be both more powerful and more combat-oriented than that of the twentieth-century Iron Man. Decades later, this same armor (although possibly upgraded by Doctor Doom) is worn by Andros Stark, the villainous Iron Man of 2093. [citation needed]
  • Heroes Reborn "Prometheum" Armor (See also "Heroes Reborn-armor") originally an experimental self-contained, armored life-support and combat system. It was a joint project of Stark and Connor "Rebel" O´Reilly, but it proved dangerously unstable, and Rebel was killed in the testing stage. The project was abandoned and Stark went into a spiral towards psychological self-destruction. Ironically, years later, when he went to investigate an incident at one of his more remote business annexes, his helicopter was attacked by the newborn Hulk of that reality and crashed where he was impaled by debris. He was forced to don an upgraded version of the experimental armor which had been stored at the annex to save his own life, and from that day on fought on as Iron Man. Later, he comes face to face with a resurrected Rebel, outfitted with another version of his armor which had been completely reimagined by Doctor Doom. [citation needed]
  • Iron Man of Earth X/Iron Manor - In the world of Earth-X, the whole world has become exposed to an airborne agent which causes everyone to mutate into superpowered beings. Stark sealed off his factory complex while still inside, fearful of being changed into a `super´-version of himself. Over the years, he constructed an army of Iron Men, intended to be used as a worldwide police force, but never used- again for fear of being corrupted by such power. Instead, he built robotic versions of the deceased Avengers, otherwise remaining mostly passive inside his fortress. Forced into action by the arrival of the Celestials, he reveals that his entire factory was a final, titanic armor he manages to delay the Host of the immense aliens, but was finally destroyed. [citation needed]
  • Marvel Mangaverse Iron Man - In this universe, Stark vanishes after fighting Namor one last time. and his position as both industrialist and Iron Person is taken by his twin sister Antoinette (Toni) Stark, a former agent of S.H.I.E.L.D. She expands the paradigm into an entire army of every conceivable form of Iron Man, from flying weapons platforms (one of which is a clear homage to the RX-78GP03 Gundam "Dendrobium Orchis" from the Gundam anime franchise), to 100-foot (30 m) mechas, to platoons of armored soldiers. all of which proves entirely useless against the Incredible Hulk. Meanwhile, it is revealed Stark is still alive - albeit reduced to a head in a life-support unit because of spinal cancer. He initially equips the Avengers (Captain America, Vision, Hawkeye and the Scarlet Witch) with four super-powerful vehicles, capable of combining into yet another skyscraper-sized Iron Man mecha (bringing new meaning to their classic battle cry, "Avengers Assemble"). This, too is destroyed by the Hulk. Later, when targeted by a conspiracy against all superheroes in the world, the disembodied Stark dons a cybernetic body to once again become Iron Man. [citation needed]
  • Ultimate Iron Man - The Tony Stark of the Ultimate Marvel universe wears an armor that is bulkier and more difficult to operate. When the United States was invaded by foreign armies of superhumans, Stark deploys "Iron Man 6", a gunship that might very well be the largest "armor" in any known reality (the flying fortress could be over 1,000 feet (300 m) across). The main armor requires a full behind-the-scenes support team to maintain and operate at full proficiency. In subsequent storylines like Ultimate Comics: Armor Wars, and Ultimates 3, he has built dozens of armors since the Ultimatum wave. [78] As of the conclusion of the "Divided We Fall" storyline, Stark dons a new armor and adopts the identity of the Iron Patriot. [79][80] After the events of Cataclysm, Tony funds and is a member of the Ultimate version of the Future Foundation, donning a purple, blue and white armor and returning to the Iron Man mantle. [81] - An alternate Tony Stark from a world in which the Avengers were drawn into outer space, lured into interstellar battle and effectively destroyed by a warlike alien race. His spirit shattered, he returned to Earth, apparently to find that Reed Richards had planned to take over the world (to date, the exact circumstances behind his descent are unclear). He decided to take control of the planet himself "to save it" and adopted methods more like those of Dr. Doom, killing, among others, the Human Torch, and adopting a bulkier gray armor that resembled his original suit, although possessing far more advanced weaponry than he had back then, including a weapon capable of temporarily negating the FF's powers and a means of escaping from mystical bonds. He was accidentally drawn into the 616-universe, and after an extended battle with the local heroes- initially facing the Fantastic Four and Doctor Strange before his attempt to escape saw him fighting Captain America, the Black Widow, Spider-Man and X-23 - was incarcerated. He escaped, adapting a hyper-advanced LMD into a new set of armor that could shape itself according to his thoughts and form any weapon he could conceive of, and called himself the "Iron Maniac" since everything in this world was backwards from his perspective, this was his way of stating he was sane and everyone else was mad. He is a cyborg at the least his chest is armored. [citation needed]
  • The Lord Iron armor from Marvel 1602. A Spanish scientist who was taken captive by the English in the war and forced, through torture by David Banner, to devise weapons for them. He now needs his massive armor to survive it harnesses electric power from simple chemical cells, but can also absorb lightning bolts. It provides increased strength, electrical attacks and some sensory enhancement. [citation needed]
  • Somatic Combat Vehicle from Iron Man: Crash In the words of Stark himself: "My SCV secondary body protective shielding is formed of a titanium beryllium geodesic alloy doped with nickel iron mylar superstrate and interlaced microcrystalline quartz fiber and synthetic rubber endoform & ectoform substrate layer." This armor's various properties (strength, lightness, structural integrity etc.) are all a result of optimizing the interaction between the properties of various materials, all balanced out on a molecular level. In a sense, this armor is one huge "tile" like the millions of tiny ones the contemporary armor is made out of. [citation needed]
  • Overload armor from What If (vol. 1) #64 ("What If Iron Man Sold Out?") - In an alternate world where Stark went public with his armor instead of keeping it for himself, the "arms race" quickly completely escalated, with more and more advanced armor being developed by all parties from the U.S. government and S.H.I.E.L.D. to Hydra and the Mandarin. Ultimately, the worst threat turned out to be Magneto, who was infuriated by the lack of interest in the plight of the Mutants, who were being hunted by Starktech Sentinels. He used his power over metal to defeat everything that was thrown at him, but was ultimately defeated by Iron Man in a towering suit, which composed completely out of polymers. [citation needed]
  • Sorcerer armor from What If (vol. 1) #113 ("What If Tony Stark was Sorcerer Supreme?") - In a reality in which events led Stark to become the main student of the Ancient One (instead of Stephen Strange), he ended up combining his understanding of technology as well as magic to create an armor which incorporated both. It held a vast storage of magical spells in its memory, ready to be deployed at a moment's notice. This armor was lost when Stark sent it on an endless dimensional quest, carrying the body of the dread Dormammu, forcing the dark lord (in his astral form) to pursue it. [citation needed]
  • Ironheart armor from Avataars: Covenant of the Shield. [citation needed]
  • In What If?: Civil War, released in December 2007, Stark dies from the Extremis injection, and Captain America goes on to lead the heroes in the civil war that broke out when the government tries to enforce the Superhuman Registration Act. To provide the inspiration which Stark had given in life, Captain America briefly wears an Iron Man armor with a red, white and blue color scheme. [citation needed]
  • In What If?: Age of Apocalypse, Captain Britain wears an early model of the Iron Man armor, custom painted as his uniform, as part of the Defenders. [citation needed]
  • In Marvel Zombies, Forge is shown using an enhanced version of the original armor against the zombies. [citation needed]
  • In the 2008 Black Panther annual story "Black to the Future" (a What If?-type story set in 2057) the United States challenges the nation of Wakanda's global dominance with an army of Iron Men. This force is led by an Iron Man giant robot piloted by Stark himself. This huge machine (easily as big as the New Avengers/Transformers giant suit) could only be controlled by direct neural interface, so Stark was physiologically injured when the suit was damaged by Wakanda's panther-shaped giant robot. Stark's death ended the war and inspired a Wakandan-led global peace. [citation needed]
  • In the "House of M" storyline, Stark is still the head of Stark Industries but also the star of the hit TV show Sapien Death Match along with his father and Johnny Storm. His battle armor for the show is similar to his original gold armor. It is then revealed that he was working on a much more advanced armor, more advanced than his current armor in the normal reality. This armor was chunkier, had large wing-like jets coming from the back and a cannon on its right hand. It also has counter magnets built in, to prevent Magneto from controlling it. [82]
  • In the 2007 New Avengers/Transformers miniseries, Stark used a giant armor, the size of a Transformer it allowed Iron Man to go head-to-head with the invading Decepticons. Due to the massive energy requirements, this armor would quickly run out of power, until recharged by Optimus Prime, Jazz and Bumblebee. [citation needed]
  • In Incredible Hercules #125, the evil Amazon Artume had used a mystical object to change the world into her vision of it. In this world, men were an oppressed and debased part of society, and a male resistance movement existed. Practically the last member of it was Hercules, who wore cybernetic armor made for him by Stark, who had long since been executed. [citation needed]
  • Galactus Buster armor, so far known only to be featured in his ending scenario for the video game Marvel vs. Capcom 3: Fate of Two Worlds. [citation needed]

Film Edit

Live-action Edit

In the Marvel Cinematic Universe, Tony Stark, portrayed by Robert Downey Jr., has worn and created multiple armors.

Animated Edit

In the 2007 direct-to-DVD film The Invincible Iron Man, Stark with James Rhodes' help creates a grey and bulky suit of armor (similar to the original Iron Man armor that Stark and Yinsen created in the comics) in order to escape from caves. After returning to Stark Industries in America, Stark reveals to Rhodes that he had previously used his company's resources to create several multi-use armors (including the Hulkbuster armor, the War Machine armor, and Ultimate Iron Man's armor) that he had been keeping in storage until the time was right to reveal them to the public. Stark first uses his Underwater suit to fight off the Elementals, destroying one while sustaining minor damage to the suit. Stark subsequently uses a red-and-yellow suit (resembling Iron Man's standard armor) to destroy two Elementals in a volcano, although there was severe damage to his suit. When he returns to China, Stark returns to using his grey suit to fight the last Elemental, an army of Terracotta soldiers, a giant dragon, and even the Mandarin. [ episode needed ]

Television Edit

1994 animated series Edit

As noted above, Iron Man's modular armor was his standard suit for his appearance in the 1990s Iron Man animated series, but with a slightly modified face plate to give it the traditional mouth-slit. The suit was redesigned in the second season of the show, most significantly by restoring the "mouthless" appearance of the armor. (The season 1 armor appeared in a flashback early on)

The trademark of a changing armor remained a constant in the animated series, with the first season featuring the hydro-armor and deep space armor, straight from the comics. The second season, however, was when the variant armors became a focal point of the series the new modifications Stark made to his suit allowed it to shape-shift into different forms with specialized capabilities that could be called upon for the assorted situations he found himself in. The hydro-armor and space armors were incorporated into this mechanism, and more armors from the comics such as the stealth armor and Hulkbuster armor were introduced. The series also introduced an array of original situational armor designs, including:

  • Subterranean drill armor - brown and gold, with an arm-mounted pneumatic drill for burrowing.
  • Inferno armor - red and gold with pink highlights, this armor was resistant to extreme temperatures and outfitting with fire-extinguishing foam, which proved helpful in combat with Firebrand.
  • Samurai armor - never used in combat, this highly stylized armor was blue and grey.
  • Radiation armor - blue and silver armor to shield against radioactive danger, capable of firing x-ray blasts.
  • Lava armor - red and silver armor that can resist submergence in magma, which proved helpful when Iron Man had to recover one of the Mandarin's rings from within a volcano.
  • Magnetic armor - purple and silver, with the ability to generate electromagnetic pulses, once used by a microscopically reduced Iron Man to fibrillate Hawkeye's heart.
  • Bio-energy armor - DNA-powered red and gold armor, used against the Mandarin's anti-technology field in the two-part series finale "Hands of the Mandarin".
  • Hydro armor - yellow with a glass-domed helmet, is used for underwater situations.
  • Space armor - used to break through the Earth's atmosphere, the only thing that appears to be different is that it has a jet pack.
  • Stealth armor - dark gray, used to stay silent and not traceable by radar.

Destroyer armor. A miniature destroyer in odins Trophy room. Used against Asgardians

The toyline also featured two armors which did not appear in the series an entirely silver Arctic armor and the Silver Centurion suit, dubbed Hologram armor.

Fantastic Four: World's Greatest Heroes Edit

Several types of Iron Man armors were also featured in the Fantastic Four: World's Greatest Heroes episode "Shell Games". The armors that were featured were the Mark I Armor, Stealth Armor, Hulkbuster Armor, Arctic Armor, War Machine Armor, and the Silver Centurion Armor.

Iron Man: Armored Adventures Edit

In Iron Man: Armored Adventures, a teenage Stark initially creates the first armor completely on his own. It is similar to the movie version of the Mark III armor, with a less complex design and more red. Its level of technology is summarized by Obadiah Stane's scientists when they explain the armor is "more advanced than anything we're currently working on" and that "it's years, if not decades ahead of current technology" (Tony even mentioned in the same episode that he may have "outgeniused himself" when he made the armor). In addition to the traditional abilities of the armor (superhuman strength and durability, flight, repulsors, and the uni-beam), it is able to generate a force field around it, uses magnetic manipulation, and has other various functions, including a remote command system to enable Rhodes to control it from a separate computer terminal if Stark cannot ("Secrets and lies"), a security system to prevent people from opening it when Stark is unconscious ("Seeing Red") and a secondary wheeled transportation system that enables him to "skate" when the flight system is damaged ("Masquerade"). It can even adapt to fit any size ("Don't Worry, Be Happy"). In "Ancient History 101", Stark even creates a pack that allows him to don the armor when and where he needs to, combined with anti-gravity devices so as to reduce the suit's weight (possibly based on how the comic version always carried his armor in his briefcase).

The armor briefly gained intelligence in Episode 14 of Season 1 "Man and Iron Man". Problems arose due to its desire to protect Stark above all (including almost killing Whiplash, as it did in the comics) - by constantly keeping him inside itself. However, like in the comics, the armor sacrificed itself in order to save Stark during a cardiac arrest.

The first variation of the armor appears in "Cold War" when he created enhanced Thermal Gauntlets for his armor and used them to help him fight Blizzard. After the fight, he talks about creating Arctic and Space Armor.

New armors then appear in various episodes:

  • Silver Centurion: Red and silver, very similar to the original red and gold armor and its own comic counterpart in both appearance and abilities. Stark created it in the episode "Whip Lash", and used it in the same episode to fight the eponymous villain. The Silver Centurion armor made a cameo in "Don't Worry, Be Happy" and other episodes. [episode needed]
  • Stealth Armor: initially similar to the red and gold armor, but with a different chest plate and lights on the sides. First seen and used in "Field Trip". It allows Stark to become invisible and undetectable to cameras and sensors, including those used by Stark International. Unfortunately, this function eventually burns up the power cells after a short period of time. The armor returned in "Panther's Prey" with a new design that is almost completely a bluish-black with red lights on the sides (more like its comic design). This version made several cameos in later episodes and was shown exploding in "Tales of Suspense (Part One)", though a rebuilt one was used in season 2. At the end of "Iron vs Titanium", Stark upgraded the armor with better weapons and stealth gear. [episode needed]
  • Hulkbuster Armor: A heavy-duty armor designed for maximum strength and endurance at the cost of reduced mobility. It has the ability to redirect energy shot at it and has powerful versions of the repulsors and uni-beam as well as missiles and shoulder mounted Gatling laser blasters. First used to take on the Crimson Dynamo in "Seeing Red" when Obadiah Stane redesigned and weaponized it and sent it after Iron Man. Stark later used it in "Uncontrollable" to fight the Hulk (a reference to its comic roots). The armor was later shown exploding in "Tales of Suspense (Part One)". Its designs were later used to create Firepower in "Armor Wars" (Stark refers to the suit by name in this episode). It has a slight resemblance to the X-Men villain Juggernaut. Stark later used the rebuilt armor to fight the Iron Monger in "Heavy Mettle". [episode needed] It appears again in the episode "Rage of the Hulk", in which Stark wears it over his regular armor, before it is severely damaged by the Hulk.
  • Space Armor: A mouth-less, black and gold armor that has all of the same weapons systems as Stark's standard armor. However, this armor also has extended life-support capabilities and an expanded propulsion system on the back (twin thrusters) for long-term flight and for flying into and maneuvering through space. Stark mentions making space armor at the end of "Cold War" and used it for the first time in "Fun with Lasers" against the Living Laser. It was later worn by Stark's father, Howard Stark, in the season 2 finale.
  • Arctic Armor: A white and gold armor that contains additional systems that project thermal energy from Iron Man's gauntlets and uni-beam. Also, Stark said the Mark II armor's sonic disrupters were adapted from this suit. It has greater life-support functions and generally resists freezing temperatures. This special suit is equipped for long-range flight. Stark mentioned making arctic armor at the end of "Cold War" and used it in "Best Served Cold" against Blizzard. [episode needed]
  • War Machine Armor: Whereas Stark created the Iron Man armor as a multi-environment suit for exploration and rescue, the War Machine armor was created for fighting. The War Machine is as fast as the Mark I Armor, but it has numerous weapons, more powerful and bulkier than the normal armor. Equipped with more powerful versions of the Repulsors and Uni-Beam, the War Machine also sports three shoulder mounted missile launchers as well as wrist-mounted machine guns and a shoulder mounted Gatling laser rifle. While Iron Man is red, War Machine is grey. The War Machine first appeared in the two-part season finale "Tales of Suspense", where Rhodes uses it to bring the Mark I Armor to Stark and help him against the Mandarin and Fin Fang Foom. Rhodey has since frequently used the suit throughout season 2. [episode needed]
  • Iron Man Mark II Armor: In the second season of series, Stark creates a more powerful suit of Iron Man Armor. Its design possibly originated from the Extremis Armor from the comics and the first season's Silver Centurion Armor. In addition to the enhanced versions of all the systems from the Mark I Armor, it also has wrist mounted flame blasters, shoulder-mounted missile launchers, sonic disrupters (Stark mentions they were adapted from the Arctic Armor) and more powerful repulsors and Uni-Beam. [episode needed] Starting with the episode "Extremis", Stark controls the Mark II using his Extremis abilities.
  • Rescue Armor: Also known as the Stark Solutions X-51 Stealth Infiltrator Armor, was created by Stark for Pepper Potts. Essentially an upgraded version of the Stealth armor, but with better Repulsors, the Uni-beam, Energy Grenades and Laser Spark blasters, and just like the Stealth Armor, it has a stealth mode equipped inside it. The suit was given to Pepper at the start of the episode "Dragonseed" as an early birthday present. The armor is recolored purple and white rather than in the comics, where the color is crimson and silver. In addition, it is more feminine looking than the comic version.
  • Hyperpulse Mark 9 Armor: A highly advanced Iron Man armor worn by Andros Stark of the year 2099, that looks like the Cosmic Armor from the comics. This armor utilizes Time Travel capabilities, Ultra-Repulsor Blasts, runs on Extremis 16.5 and can create hard light Holographic photos. Andros's AI for this armor is JARVIS. Through the advanced technology of this armor, Andros alone could take on the combined might of Iron Man, War Machine, Hawkeye, and SHIELD. However, being that Andros prevented the creation of the Vortex Virus, it is unknown if this armor still exists in the future. The Hyperpulse Mark 9 only appears in the episode Iron Man 2099.

The Avengers: Earth's Mightiest Heroes Edit

In The Avengers: Earth's Mightiest Heroes series, in which Iron Man is the co-leader of the Avengers, his standard armors are based on the ones in the film series. In "The Kang Dynasty", he even made special suits for the Avengers to use in the space battle against Kang, excluding the Hulk (who only needed a breathing mask) and Black Panther (who was still in Wakanda).

His current armored suits give him the standard superhuman strength and durability, flight, repulsors and the unibeam projector. They also have energy shields, an electromagnetic pulse generator, arm-mounted cannons and projectile launchers, various tools like a drill or detachable hip tasers, and can absorb and release energy.

Additional armors from the comics that were shown in the series are:

  • Mark I Armor (also based on the movie version, but with full flight capability, repulsors, and unibeam first seen in "Ultron-5")
  • Mark II Armor (first seen in "The Ultron Imperative")
  • Mark VI Armor (first seen in "Breakout, Part 1")
  • Mark VII Armor (his standard armor in Season 1, the design of this armor is the same as the Mark VI Armor first seen in "Breakout, Part 2")
  • Mark IX Armor (his main armor in Season 2. The new suit is based on the Extremis armor and/or the Mark VI from Iron Man 2 first seen in "Alone Against A.I.M.")
  • Classic Armor (first seen in "The Ultron Imperative")
  • Silver Centurion Armor (first seen in "The Ultron Imperative")
  • Hulkbuster Armor (a headless exterior unit over his standard suit first seen in "Everything is Wonderful")
  • Hulkbuster Armor II (a bulky suit that looks like the mainstream Hulkbuster armor first seen in "The Deadliest Man Alive")
  • Space Armor (first seen in "The Kang Dynasty")
  • Arctic Armor (first seen in "Casket of Ancient Winters")
  • Stealth Armor (first seen in "The Ultron Imperative")
  • Thorbuster Armor (an Asgardian Iron Man suit that was built in Asgard by Stark and Eitri the Dwarf using uru metal, making its repulsors similar to Mjolnir's lightning first seen in "A Day Unlike Any Other")
  • Armor Drones: While under the influence of The Purple Man, Tony mass produced various Iron Man like drones referred to as Armors by JARVIS. These bare a resemblance to the Mark II armor from the 1970's and also come in giant size similarly to Sentinels. There sole appearance was in the episode Emperor Stark.

Marvel Anime Edit

The Iron Man anime series features an Iron Man armor similar to the movie's Mark III armor, except that in the anime the armor is only shown to be equipped with the repulsors, unibeam, and mini-rockets. Plus, instead of J.A.R.V.I.S. as the suit's AI It has a female-voiced computer named "Computer" that sounds similar to the AI in the suit(s) of Iron Man Armored Adventures. [ episode needed ]

The plot of the series involves Stark traveling to Japan to build an ARC station and also to test a new armor: Iron Man Dio. Stark intends to mass-produce Dio and then retire as Iron Man. The Dio chest power core resembles the one on the Extremis Armor, but the armor is colored blue and silver rather than red and gold. Dio's head is also slightly redesigned from the typical Iron Man armor with curved features on its faceplate. The Dio armor is stolen in the first episode of the series, and Stark is forced to fight the Dio armor repeatedly over the series. Stark asserts the Dio Armor is a knock-off of the real Iron Man armor, but Dio is demonstrated as being equal to or surpassing Stark's standard armor in terms of performance. [ episode needed ] Maybe it is because the armor's performance depends on how good the pilot is.

The SDF later create a suit of armor called "Ramon Zero", used by Captain Nagato Sakurai. It resembles a samurai's armor. The Japanese armor appears to have a red pentagon-shaped ARC reactor, is armed with powerful swords, and also uses repulsors and missiles in combat. [ episode needed ]

Yinsen, revealed to still be alive and piloting the Dio Armor, builds an army of autonomous drones called Iron Man Sigma. These drones resemble the Dio Armor, except the Sigma armor is colored army camouflage. [ episode needed ]

Iron Man: Rise of Technovore Edit

In Iron Man: Rise of Technovore, Tony Stark dons an armor that could possibly resemble his Marvel NOW! armor from the comics, but with even less gold color and a predominant red instead of black. The abilities of the armor are pretty much the standard, namely extreme physical strength and speed, repulsors, unibeam, and a suitcase transformation module. Its unique feature is the extra thrusters on its back and feet and the small, retractable wings on the shoulder pads. Stark appears with the same armor in the follow-up anime movie Avengers Confidential: Black Widow & Punisher.

Ultimate Spider-Man Edit

In the animated series Ultimate Spider-Man, the episode "The Iron Octopus" reveals several prior suits developed by Stark:

  • Mark I Armor
  • Mark II Armor
  • Mark III Armor
  • Hulkbuster Armor
  • Classic Armor

Hulk and the Agents of S.M.A.S.H. Edit

In the animated series Hulk and the Agents of S.M.A.S.H., the episode "Wheels of Fury" reveals several prior suits developed by Stark:

    Armor
  • Mark I Armor
  • Sliver Centurion Armor
  • Stealth Armor
  • Hulkbuster Armors: Called Mark 17 by Red Hulk, Iron man is revealed to have five different models of this armor, each meant to take out one of the Hulks. These are destroyed during the Episode Hulk-Busted, although at Hulk's request Stark had decided to rebuild only one.

Avengers Assemble Edit

In the animated series, Avengers Assemble, Iron Man battles alongside the other Avengers. Iron Man reveals that he has made numerous armors in the episode "The Avengers Protocol Part 2". In season 2, his main armor looks slightly modified, with smaller shoulder plates and a more "movie-style" detailed helmet. Its prehensile capabilities are shown more prominently and now it has a suitcase module. It is currently unknown which model is this suit. In season 5, Black Panther's Quest, (partly due to the fact that the animation style has changed) Iron Man's armor has become sleeker, resembling an amalgamation of the Bleeding Edge and Model-Prime armors from the comics and retaining the "holographic" activation style from Season 4:

  • Mark XLIX Armor (first seen in "The Avengers Protocol Part 1") This armor is stolen by MODOK and given to Red Skull, converting it into the Iron Skull Armor.
  • Mark L Armor (his main armor, its design is similar to the Mark XLIX Armor, first seen in "The Avengers Protocol Part 2")
  • "Rubber Ducky" Armor (undersea armor first seen in "Depth Charge")
  • "Herald" Armor (the Mark L seemingly infused with cosmic powers by Galactus, first seen in "Guardians and Space Knights")
  • Mark I Armor (first seen in "Exodus" as part of the show's incarnation of the "Iron Legion")
  • "Hulkbuster" Armor (first seen in "Exodus" as part of the show's incarnation of the "Iron Legion")
  • War Machine Armor (first seen in a cameo appearance in "The Avengers Protocol Part 1", later remote controlled in "Exodus" as part of the show's incarnation of the "Iron Legion")
  • Iron Patriot Armor (probably retrieved after Norman Osborn became the Green Goblin again in "Ultimate Spider-Man" first seen in "Exodus" as part of the show's incarnation of the "Iron Legion")
  • Stealth Armor (black and gold armor, resembling Iron Man's Marvel NOW! armor from the comics first seen in "Exodus" as part of the show's incarnation of the "Iron Legion")
  • Undersea Armor II (a new, dark-colored armor resembling the Mark XXXVII "Hammerhead" from Iron Man 3 first seen in "Beneath the Surface")
  • Iron Kid Armor (an armor worn by the de-aged Tony, based on designs he made when he was 8 years old. It resembles a small version of his classic armor with the horned visor first seen in "The Age of Tony Stark")
  • Silver Centurion Armor (an adaptation of the classic red/silver armor from the comics and the Mark XXXIII from Iron Man 3 first seen in the Hulk and the Agents of S.M.A.S.H. episode "Wheels of Fury")
  • Asgardian Buster Armor (an armor which resembles Stark's Uru Armor from the 2011 crossover event "Fear Itself". It was taken over by Ultron first seen in "Avengers Disassembled")
  • A red/gold armor that resembles the Mark VI from Iron Man 2, which was under the control of Ultron (first seen in "Avengers Disassembled")
  • A red/gold armor that resembles the Marvel NOW! Space Armor MK III from the comics. It was controlled by Ultron against the Avengers first seen in "Avengers Disassembled")
  • Mark II (A metallic silver armor, where the design of his current armor probably came from, also with prehensile capabilities first seen in "Terminal Velocity")
  • "New Frontiers" Armor (a massive, enormous armor resembling Ultimate Iron Man's armor from the Ultimate Comics, which even though untested, was deployed to face Thanos head-on first seen in "Avengers World")
  • New "Hulkbuster" Armor (a nearly identical armor to the Mark XLIV from Avengers: Age of Ultron, repainted green and grey by Bruce Banner to battle the Steel Corps. During the episode "World War Hulk" it is shown Iron Man had made each Avenger (except for Thor) their own variation, meant to work with their personal abilities first seen in "Dehulked" and later in "Seeing Double" with its proper colors)
    • Bruce Banner would use a dream conjured variation of this armor in the movie Hulk: Where Monster's Dwell to battle Hulk in their shared subconscious when attacked by Nightmare.

    Iron Man and Hulk: Heroes United Edit

    In this direct-to-video team-up feature, Tony Stark displays three armors. His initial armor, the 'Mark VI', is a slightly bulky hypervelocity armor with a circular unibeam lens. It is somewhat reminiscent of the cinematic Mark III, but with a less complex paint job and more gold color. It is first seen battling a Hulkbuster armor run by J.A.R.V.I.S. in a training exercise. This time, Stark does not wear the Hulkbuster, instead giving the torso armor and the gauntlets to Hulk for extra protection against Zzzax. Stark's final armor is the 'Mark VII', an untested prototype which has better chances of defending against Zzzax. The armor clearly resembles the cinematic Mark VI, with grey plating on the knees and arms, but with a pentagonal unibeam instead of triangular one. The Mark VII is Tony's main and only armor in the follow-up animated movie Iron Man and Captain America: Heroes United. While there was also a Stealth armor, it was stolen and worn by Taskmaster.

    Marvel Disk Wars: The Avengers Edit

    In Marvel Disk Wars: The Avengers, Iron Man's armor is almost identical to the cinematic Mark VI, although the name of this model is not stated in the series. Its weaponry and abilities are the standard, with flight capabilities, repulsor rays, missiles, and the unibeam. When Akira, Tony's partner, inputs the hidden command 'X-W-1-0-1-Alpha-7', Iron Man can unleash his 'Ultimate Unibeam' attack. Because Stark is trapped inside a DISK (Digital Identity Securement Kit), he is always seen in his armor. In episode 28, Iron Man gains the Build Up Plate, an extra piece of armor worn over his regular one, which grants him more firepower thanks to his Final Repulsor attack.

    Marvel Future Avengers Edit

    The standard Iron Man armor featured in Marvel Future Avengers bears a striking resemblance to the Mark XLVI from Captain America: Civil War. The suit has prehensile abilities, shown when Tony Stark is able to control a gauntlet individually and then the rest of the pieces form up on him, completing the whole armor. Two additional modular add-ons were shown during the series: the Hulkbuster armor, an add-on donned over his regular armor that looks exactly like the Mark XLIV Hulkbuster from Avengers: Age of Ultron, and the Booster Unit, an add-on with a pair of thrusters and multiple arc reactors on the chestplate and shoulders that enables Iron Man to reach extremely high speeds during flight. The main operating system of the armor is FRIDAY.

    Marvel's Spider-Man Edit

    Two different armors are shown in the series, the Mark 49 and 50. The Mark 49 appears to be based on the other armors in the franchise. The Mark 50, however, is mainly red with a gold face mask and collar bone, with a prehensile system. According to Tony, it can act as the central unit to an Iron Legion. Both the Mark 49 and 50 debuted (Mark 49 was destroyed by Ghost) in the episode Stark Expo.


    Sources [ edit | edit source ]

    1. ↑ 1.01.11.2 Star Wars: The Clone Wars – "The Mandalore Plot"
    2. Collapse of the Republic
    3. ↑ 3.03.1Star Wars Rebels: Heroes of Mandalore
    4. ↑ 4.04.14.24.34.44.54.6Ultimate Star Wars
    5. The Mandalorian
    6. ↑ 6.06.1Ultimate Star Wars, New Edition
    7. Shades of Reason Trivia Gallery on StarWars.com (backup link)(Slides 3 and 4)
    8. Star Wars: The Clone Wars – "Wookiee Hunt"
    9. ↑ Lucas Siegel. Star Wars Rebels Showrunner Explains Major Knight of the Old Republic Reference. comicbook.com. ComicBook.com. Archived from the original on February 20, 2017.
    10. ↑ 10.010.110.210.3Star Wars: The Clone Wars – "A Friend in Need"
    11. ↑ 11.011.1The Mandalorian – "Chapter 14: The Tragedy"
    12. Star Wars: The Clone Wars – "R2 Come Home"
    13. ↑ 13.013.1Star Wars: The Complete Visual Dictionary, New Edition
    14. ↑ 14.014.114.214.3Star Wars: The Clone Wars – "The Lawless"
    15. Kanan 10
    16. Star Wars Rebels – "The Protector of Concord Dawn"
    17. ↑ 17.017.1Star Wars Rebels – "Legacy of Mandalore"
    18. Star Wars Rebels – "Imperial Supercommandos"
    19. ↑ 19.019.1The Mandalorian – "Chapter 9: The Marshal"
    20. Aftermath
    21. The Mandalorian – "Chapter 3: The Sin"
    22. The Mandalorian – "Chapter 8: Redemption"
    23. ↑ 23.023.1The Mandalorian – "Chapter 11: The Heiress"
    24. ↑ 24.024.1Star Wars: Absolutely Everything You Need to Know
    25. ↑ 25.025.1Sabine My Rebel Sketchbook
    26.  Mandalorian Vambraces in the Databank(backup link)
    27. ↑ 27.027.1Star Wars: The Clone Wars – "Shades of Reason"
    28.  Jango Fett in the Databank(backup link)
    29. Star Wars: Episode II Attack of the Clones
    30. ↑ 30.030.130.2Star Wars Rebels – "Trials of the Darksaber"
    31. The Mandalorian – "Chapter 3: The Sin"

    Psychic Abilities of the Grey Knights

    "A Grey Knight's greatest weapon against the Warp is not his blade or bolter but his mind and the will to bend reality and rend his foes with but a thought."

    — Brother Librarian Clavanus

    Grey Knights Librarian using his formidable psychic abilities against the forces of Chaos.

    The Grey Knights have many abilities that standard Space Marines lack. These powers are psychic in nature and work on a gestalt principle much like that of the Orks in which the more Grey Knights that are present in one location, the more powerful their psychic abilities manifest. Beside these powers, the Grey Knights are highly-skilled close combat fighters. Most Grey Knights who are masters of melee combat are able to win against even the most seemingly impossible of odds. Unlike Space Marine Librarians or other psykers, their power is deemed free of the taint of the Warp and they are the only psykers allowed, for instance, in a Black Templars Chapter Crusade army.

    All Grey Knights possess a degree of psychic ability and are highly-accomplished psykers, their abilities further developed and enhanced by their years of training on Titan. While only a handful of Grey Knights Battle-Brothers ever achieve the levels of power commanded by the Chapter's Librarians, they are all capable of manifesting certain powers and abilities, especially in the company of other Grey Knights where they can combine their gifts to create great effects and more devastating psychic attacks. However, those who prove to have a strength of mind far greater than that of their fellows will go on to join the ranks of the Chapter's Librarians.

    Each Grey Knight is trained to channel his mental energies into protective wards and an array of battle-sorceries. The mightiest Grey Knights of all can banish daemons with but a touch, conjure psychic defences to protect their allies and unleash the destructive power of the Warp itself upon their foes. The Grey Knights' selection of psychic powers has been formed over a millennia of combat against the worst monsters the galaxy has to offer. While these powers are most commonly used by Grey Knights Librarians, it is not unheard of for an Ordo Malleus Inquisitor to learn these abilities or an Astra Militarum Primaris Psyker to train in one of these rare Disciplines. The psychic powers of the Daemonhunter are not subtle -- they are weapons of war against the most terrible foes of the Emperor of Mankind:

    • The Canticle of Absolution - This ancient rite is used by the Grey Knights to banish Daemons and purify locations where they have laired it is also known as the Six-Hundred-and-Sixty-Six Secret Words.
    • Dark Excommunication - The Grey Knight weaves an enchantment that severs a Daemon's connection to its dark master, one of the Chaos Gods, causing it to dissolve into the Empyrean.
    • Holocaust - Units of Grey Knights Terminators are able to make use of the Holocaust psychic power as a whole. A group of Grey Knights can harness their collective psychic powers to manifest this ability as long as the entire group remains focused on the manifestation. If successful, a Grey Knights Terminator can incinerate opponents at close range using this power. It is a manifestation of the hate the Grey Knights feel for the daemonic, and is completely capable of burning a Daemon's physical body to ash. This power is especially terrifying because whatever is destroyed by the Holocaust power dies in the Warp as well, its spirit extinguished like a candle. It can burn the souls of mortals to nothing and can banish Daemons as if they were but a bad dream. This power is a lesser version of the extraordinary final burst of psychic power used by the Emperor of Mankind Himself to snuff out the soul of Horus in the Warp at the end of the Horus Heresy during the final battle on Horus' Battle Barge, the Vengeful Spirit.
    • Might of Titan - Summoning up the power of the Chapter's ancestors and calling on the sacred genetic heritage which all Battle-Brothers possess, the Grey Knight Librarian is able to harden muscles and boost the strength of those allies in close proximity to him.
    • Mind Blades - The Grey Knight imbues the blades and other melee weapons of his allies with unerring accuracy and the ability to seek out even the smallest of chinks in their foes' armour, helping his friends land devastating blows to quickly despatch their enemies.
    • Nemesis Hammerhand - When summoning this ability, a Grey Knight Librarian is able to put the strength of his mind behind the blows of his fists or weapons, striking fiercely enough to wound even the toughest foes.
    • Quicksilver - Quickened by the Grey Knights Librarian's uncanny mind, his fellow Grey Knights' reflexes are increased to an uncanny speed and swiftness.
    • The Shrouding - Through prayer and the combined gestalt psychic power of the Grey Knights, they are able to blind their enemies to their location through their sheer faith in the Emperor and the power from the Warp this faith can draw. This protects them from ranged attacks and enhances their stealth. The Shrouding extends out around the Grey Knight in a 20 meter radius and makes those within it hazy and indistinct when viewed from without whilst not restricting the vision of those within it.
    • Smite - Lethal bolts of lightning leap from the Grey Knight Librarian's fingertips, tearing his enemies apart in a barrage of psychic energy.
    • The Summoning - The Grey Knight Librarian is able to reach out through the Immaterium and call upon his allies, drawing them across the intervening distance in the blink of an eye. The Grey Knight can use this power on a number of allies, though he must have met each one personally and must know them by name so that he can recognise their presence in the Warp across space and time. When he invokes this power he "calls" to these chosen allies and they are instantly aware that he is summoning them. If they choose to answer the call they are instantly transported through the Warp to his side.
    • Warp Quake - The Grey Knight causes the Warp to tremor, causing denizens of the Empyrean to lose their hold on reality and any device or technology that uses its power for guidance to fail.

    Daemonology (Sanctic) Discipline

    • Banishment (Primaris Power) - The psyker bends his will to dissolving the bonds that tether the daemonic to the mortal plane, casting them back into the Warp.
    • Gate of Infinity - The psyker punches a corridor through the roiling Immaterium, allowing him to cross great distances in the blink of an eye.
    • Hammerhand - Focusing the raging power of their minds, Grey Knights and other psykers trained in this skill can augment the already prodigious might of themselves and their Battle-Brothers. Even unarmed, such warriors can crush flesh and bone -- given blade or hammer there is little limit to what they can slay.
    • Sanctuary - Chanting words of warding, the psyker creates a zone of light and psychic turbulence around him that can both protect him from physical harm as well as repel daemonic creatures and other threats of the Warp. This barrier extends out around the Librarian or psyker in a 10-metre-radius and impedes all those who attempt to cross. The barrier does not impede a Grey Knight's movement in any way.
    • Purge Soul - The psyker draws upon every ounce of willpower he possesses to purge the evil of his foes' souls, scouring every trace of corruption even if it destroys them in the process.
    • Cleansing Flame - The psyker harnesses the very fire in his soul, creating a wall of white-hot psychic flame that blasts forth and purges his foes from the battlefield.
    • Vortex of Doom - The psyker rends the material realm asunder, tearing a rift between realspace and the howling madness of the Warp, condemning his foes to total oblivion.

    Contents

    Real World / Sword Art Online / Project Alicization

    Kirito's SAO Closed Beta Avatar.

    Kirito described the appearance of his avatar at the beginning of the game and the beta-testing phase as having the appearance of a ridiculously handsome protagonist from some fantasy animation, looking noticeably older than he actually was. ⎖] His in-game height was equal to that of his height in the real world to prevent the extra height from hindering his movements. ⎗]

    In the full version of the game, during Kayaba Akihiko's tutorial, all player avatars were changed to reflect their real life appearances. After this change, Kirito's SAO avatar had slightly long but neat black hair and black eyes. His delicate face showed no trace of masculinity, allowing people to easily mistake him for a girl. ⎗] ⎘]

    Kirito's clothes later in the game consisted of black pants with a black belt that had a large silver buckle, a black V-necked shirt that was worn underneath a black trench-coat with gray lining going down the sleeves, and black boots with silver plates to protect his shins. He had a silver plate worn on the left side of his coat, and a pair of black fingerless gloves. He wore a strap that went over his right shoulder and under it to wrap around his left side. ⎙] In the last months of the game, he used «Elucidator» and «Dark Repulser» as his main weapons. After being defeated by Heathcliff in a public duel and being forced to join his guild, Kirito donned the red and white uniform of the Knights of the Blood. ⎚]

    At the beginning of Project Alicization, Kirito wore a hand-sewn pale blue short-sleeved shirt with a V-shaped cut on the chest which was tied with a light brown cord along with trousers and hand-sewn leather shoes. ⎛] Two years later, after he became a valet in the Sword Mastery Academy, he wore the standard gray uniform, like all first years and non-elite swordsmen do. ⎜] ⎝] In the second year of the academy, after he became one of the twelve elite swordsmen in the academy and was allowed to choose a color for his uniform, he wore a pitch black uniform. ⎞]

    ALfheim Online

    Kirito's Initial ALO Avatar

    Kirito's initial appearance was that of a default «Spriggan», which he chose because of the race's black-themed equipment. ⎟] Instead of the normal black forelocks hanging from his head, his black hair stood in natural spikes. His large eyes appeared mischievous, his ears were pointy, and he had dark greyish blue wings. ⎠] He was equipped with a large greatsword, intended for larger players, such as «Imps». ⎡]

    On June 23, 2025, Kirito changed his previous spiky hairstyle into his old SAO style due to Yui complaining about it being hard to sit on the spiky hair. ⎢] Later, he also acquired a new coat and switched his greatsword to a new long sword, ⎣] with an extra one in his inventory. ⎤]

    On December 28, 2025, ⎢] he obtained the «Holy Sword Excalibur», and used it as his second weapon when dual wielding, ⎣] but only in extreme cases, as he promised himself not to use the sword for personal gain. ⎥]

    Gun Gale Online

    Kazuto's avatar in Gun Gale Online belongs to the rare «M9000» series. It is an avatar that many male players dream of having, due to its feminine appearance. Kazuto's avatar in Gun Gale Online is both shorter and more slender than his spriggan avatar in ALfheim Online. ⎦] Although the two avatars share the same black hair and eyes, his hair now flows down to his shoulder blades, while his eyes are larger and shinier. ⎦] The innocently bewitching gaze from his eyes, framed by long eyelashes, was so different from his previous avatar that Kirito himself momentarily forgot that he was looking at himself when he inspected his appearance for the first time. ⎦] The avatar also has pale white complexion and red lips. ⎦] These characteristics often allow others to confuse him as being female. This often causes great confusion to people, such as Sinon. He is equipped with a 5.7mm «FN Five-Seven» handgun and «Kagemitsu G4» photon sword.


    Legion Appearance

    The Chaos Space Marines of the Death Guard often wear the antique Mark III Iron Pattern of Power Armour as it was particularly useful in providing enhanced protection in the toxic environments that the XIV th Legion preferred to fight in.

    Legion Colours

    Pre-Heresy

    An obsolete iteration of the XIV th Legion's Badge the Dusk Raiders' storm grey battle-plate and blood red right shoulder and arm colour schemes re-emerged on unidentified Loyalist Astartes during the Horus Heresy.

    As the Dusk Raiders, the XIV th Legion's armour was an unpainted storm grey. The entire right vambrace, gauntlet and shoulder plate (sometimes both) were painted the deep crimson of drying blood, which signified the XIV th Legion's status as the "red right hand" of the Emperor's justice.

    After their Primarch Mortarion took command of the XIV th Legion, the newly redubbed Death Guard began wearing ivory-grey unpainted ceramite, save for a few murky-jade coloured markings.

    Pre-Heresy Tactical Markings and Heraldry

    • Death Guard Helm Variations - The use of vertical helmet stripes to denote seniority is believed to have originated with the Legion's re-organisation as the Death Guard, and became common as a mark of veterancy and tactical command.
    • Death Guard Legion Armour - Battle damage that did not compromise a Legionary's Power Armour systems was retained as a mark of honour by Death Guard Astartes.

    Post-Heresy

    Post-Heresy Death Guard iconography the triple skulls echo the sigil of their patron Chaos God, Nurgle.

    After their acceptance of Nurgle as their patron, the Death Guard's armour has taken on a sickly green appearance. Plague Marines are known for having many boils, sores, and open wounds visible on their bodies, and the more mutated often sport tentacles or the trademark single horn commonly seen on daemonic minions of Nurgle.

    The helmets of Plague Marine Power Armour often resemble old-fashioned gasmasks, particularly those of Russian or German make during the two World Wars, in reference to the poison mists of Mortarion's homeworld, Barbarus.

    Mortarion, with his pale skin, huge scythe and hooded robes, bears a great resemblance to classical representations of the Grim Reaper, the embodiment of Death himself.

    Icons of the Plague God Nurgle, commonly utilised by the Death Guard to denote their allegiance to their patron god.

    The uniforms and heraldry of the Death Guard are redolent of disease and decay. From the vectoriums of the Plague Companies to divergent Plague Marine warbands that long ago broke from their parent Legion, all can be easily identified by the filth that encrusts their armour, the rot and rust that clings to them, and the foul Nurgle iconography emblazoned on their heavy plate.

    Ever since the last days of the Horus Heresy, the Death Guard have retained their uniform colours of leprous green and verdigrised brass. Though many of the Legion's vectoriums have adopted their own foul panoply, vast swathes of the Death Guard still march to war clad in these same grim hues.

    The tri-lobed rune of Nurgle and the sigil of the Plague Fly can be seen much in evidence on the armour of the Death Guard Legionaries, proclaiming their allegiance to the God of Plagues and their dedication to spreading his vile contagions.

    Legion Badge

    The once-noble iconography of the Death Guard was despoiled when the Legion fell to Chaos. All that it once stood for was cast aside and replaced by the dark and terrible sigils of Nurgle. Since those days, the Death Guard have typically displayed the tri-lobed rune of the Plague God and the debased, Death Guard triple-skull design upon their armour to honour their dark patron.

    The Dusk Raiders' Legion badge was a black skull halved, with a setting black sun on the other side, centred on a field of deep crimson.

    This icon symbolised the XIV th Legion's original given epithet of the "Dusk Raiders," a consequence of their use of the ancient tactic of conducting major ground attacks at the fall of night.

    Once the Dusk Raiders were unleashed upon their foes, nothing would stay the Legion's hand.

    After the Legion was reunited with its Primarch Mortarion before the Horus Heresy, the newly renamed Death Guard's badge was a green skull within a sunburst icon.

    After the Heresy, when the Death Guard accepted the Plague Lord as their patron Chaos God, the Legion has chosen to wear multiple different variants of the Mark of Nurgle, or a corrupted version of the original Death Guard badge, as their new Legion badge.


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