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(Basic information about Tyranids (history/planetary assimilation))
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Revision as of 07:58, 23 June 2005

The Tyranids are an alien race from another galaxy whose sole purpose seems to be the consumption of bio-mass. They are divided into Hive Fleets that operate independently from one another. Each Hive Fleet has a "hive mind", controlled by the Norn Queen, who generally resides in one of the Tyranid ships. The Norn Queen oversees all tactical operations and determines the path of evolution for the Tyranid species in that Hive Fleet.


First contact with the Tyranids occurred on the Explorator Base Tyran, from which the Tyranids are named. Researchers on Tyran had logged reports of worlds being destroyed for many years until Inquisitor Kryptman began to notice a pattern. In 745.M41, Kryptman took a ship to Tyran, but received a report from the world mid-transit; Tyran had been destroyed by the alien menace it had watched for so long. Kryptman arrived on the now-barren planet, determined to learn the truth. After searching, he managed to uncover a data codex buried 3,000 meters below the surface.

Later that year, the Tyranids attacked Ultramar, and thanks to the warnings of Inquisitor Kryptman (and help from Planetary Defense Forces, the Imperial Fleet, and a Titan Legion), the Ultramarines were able to defeat the Tyranids of Hive Fleet Behemoth at the Battle for Macragge.

Planetary Assimilation

Generally, contact with the Tyranids occurs when a Hive Fleet invades a system for the purpose of harvesting its bio-mass. A Hive Fleet contains an enormous number of Tyranids, and they are brought to bear against resistance in the most efficient manner possible. Below is a general outline of a typical Tyranid planetary assault (in particular, this data is collected from the Tyranid invasion of Dalki-Prime):

  • Day 00: Initial mycetic spores are dropped, generally containing Lictors or Genestealers. Infiltration force led by a synapse creature of some kind; reproduction of Tyranid creatures likely begins immediately.
  • Day 09: By day 9, Tyranids will have expanded to around 200 km from the drop point, and will likely present a significant threat to PDF troopers and resident Imperial Guard.
  • Day 13: Tyranids will have expanded to 700 km from the drop point; may begin infesting local water sources.
  • Day 37: Tyranids control area within 2000 km radius of the drop point; basolithic infestation to 5000 km radius.
  • Day 48: Tyranid population growth skyrockets, with population doubling approximately every 2.5 days.
  • Day 50: Main Hive Fleet arrives, craft generally numbering around 1.5 billion. Psychic contact with planet is cut off by the shadow of the Hive Mind. Any attempts to escape are quickly stopped by the Hive Fleet.
  • Day 51: Primary consumption of bio-mass begins (resistance has generally been eliminated by day 51). Brood ships land, releasing Ripper swarms, which consume organic material and deposting them at the reclamation pools. Capillary towers (and the Brood ships) send the material into orbit. Any remaining surface life is eliminated by Gaunts.
  • Day 80: Ripper swarms board the Brood ships and return to the Hive Fleet. The hive ships descend into the upper atmosphere and begin collecting it. Reduction in atmospheric pressure causes oceans to boil away, which are also collected. Lack of oceans causes plate tectonic shifts, dramatically increasing volcanic activity. Upon completion, the Hive Fleet reenters the Warp, in search of fresh prey.