|This article is about the Inquisition campaign; for the Horus Heresy battles, see Shadow Wars.|
An intense paranoia drives the Adeptus Mechanicus to bury their secrets deep. When Inquisitors of a new order take their tithe of data-tapestries, they also unwittingly take the countermeasures that will unravel them. Aware of their mistake but unwilling to admit it, the Inquisition devises purge protocols that engage in an unseen battle with the self-replicating deletion-programs of the Cult Mechanicus. Though this shadow conflict flares up into several planet-wrecking wars before fading into obscurity, it still rages in secret to this day.
The term is also used by the Alpha Legion and came into use in the aftermath of the Horus Heresy, when the Legion's strength was fractured into numerous warbands. An Alpha Legion Shadow War erupts, when two lone operating Alpha Legion Marines, discover that their manipulative plans overlap with each others'. As both are unlikely to back down, a Shadow War begins to determine whose plans will be allowed to proceed. These are not conventional military engagement though, as they can range from a simple game of Regicide, to the manipulation of a sector wide engagement or even a straight forward battle between the forces they control. No matter what kind of engagement they take part in however, the loser of the Shadow War will be forced to relent and allow the winner's plans to proceed without any further interference on their part.
- 1: Codex: Cult Mechanicus (7th Edition) — The Quest for Knowledge
- 2: Warhammer World Event - I am Alpharius
- 3: Codex: Space Marines (8th Edition), pg. 53 — Successor Chapters