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Biotransference was the process by which the organic Necrontyr race were transformed into the mechanical immortal Necrons.[1]


The Necrontyr were a people born on a radiation-blighted world, and as such lived short and painful lives. Despite this, they managed to expand across the stars and developed an envious hatred for the nigh-immortal Old Ones. In the war that followed, the Necrons were facing total defeat until Szarekh, the Necrontyr Silent King, was approached by one of the C'tan. Known to history as the Deceiver, this C'tan promised immortality and power at the expense of their organic forms. After months of debate, the Triarchs eventually approved to go forward with the C'tan's plan to shed their organic bodies for immortal mechanical forms known as Necrons.[1] However not all of the Necron Dynasties willingly went along with the plan. Some, like the Khansu Dynasty, had to be forced.[2]

Under the oversight of Szeras, colossal biofurnaces roared day and night, consuming bodies of weak flesh and replacing them with enduring forms of living metal. As the cyclopean machines clamoured, the C’tan swarmed about the biotransference sites, drinking in the torrent of cast-off life energy and growing ever stronger. The Necrons that emerged were devoid of free will, bound to their masters through command protocols. Few Necrons retained independent personalities or sentience. Only the high-ranking nobles had been given the extensive circuitry to retain their previous personalities.[1] Others, such as Triarch Praetorians or Lychguards, were programmed with new loyalties and instincts to fit their intended role. It has been suggested that the destructive madness of Necron Destroyers may be a subconscious imperative driven into them during Biotransference.[1a] Base Necrontyr children were converted into Necron Warriors.[3]

As Szarekh watched the C'tan feast on the energy of his people, he finally realized he had been betrayed. Though now immortal and eventually victorious over the Old Ones, the Necrons had effectively traded their souls. Szarekh bided his time until the Old Ones were destroyed before striking, using his command protocols over the Necron race to lead his people in revolt. The Necrons focused the unimaginable energies of the living universe into weapons too powerful for even the C’tan to endure. The C'tan were defeated and scattered into shards. After defeating the C'tan, Szarekh ordered the Necron race to sleep and rebuild themselves until they were ready to rise again against newer races such as the Eldar, destroying the command protocols that bound them to him. After some sixty million years of slumber, the Necrons have again begun to rise.[1]

In the modern era, many Necron Dynasties resent biotransference and see it as a mistake. They seek out new races that could provide suitable host bodies for organic forms. Some, like the Nephrekh Dynasty, have reversing Biotransference as their primary motivation.[1]