Custodian Armour is an advanced form of highly sophisticated, Artificer-wrought Power Armour utilised exclusively by the ancient Legio Custodes and the present-day Adeptus Custodes, the elite guardians of the Emperor of Mankind. Finely-wrought, Custodian Armour was customised exactly to task, and was produced without any regard to the consumption of resources or rarity of components or lore required; to arm and outfit the Custodians to the optimum, nothing was spared. This supremacy was evident from the auramite-alloy-reinforced armour the Custodian Guard wore, each a planet's ransom in worth.
In the 41st Millennium, the panoply of the Adeptus Custodes represents the pinnacle of the armourer's art. Far more sophisticated than production-model Space Marine Power Armour, Custodian Armour is still fashioned with rare auramite alloy such as that used for the armour the Emperor Himself wore in battle, rather than the standard ceramite used in all other forms of Imperial Power Armour. Each suit is unique to the Custodian who wears it, as it is customised to its user, a suit of master-crafted battle-plate in the Custodes' traditional golden colour, each a work of art in its own right and highly individualised after the fact by its user. Custodian Armour is also fitted with arrays of proximity sensors and Refraction Field generators to further enhance its formidable defences.
Uniforms and Heraldry
Each Custodian's armour and weapons are crafted specifically for them by hand. Thus, each suit is an individual work of exceptional craftsmanship with its own unique flourishes and decorations. Yet all Custodians maintain certain standardised elements to their wargear that help them to quickly identify one another's place both on and off the battlefield. The numbers below correspond to the image at right.
- The right shoulder guard of a Custodian's armour depicts the Imperial Aquila, a sigil of eternal vigilance and a sign of the Custodian's mandate to enact -- by force if necessary -- the will of the Emperor Himself.
- The gems set into each Custodian's armour are individually mined from deep beneath the surface of Terra and hand-cut by skilled artisans. Their colouration is flawlessly precise, an art form in its own right, not only across the Custodian's armour, but across that of his entire Shield Company. When a Custodian switches from one such organisation to another, the stones will be carefully extracted from his armour and replaced with those of an appropriate colour if needs be.
- The colour panels on the Custodian's left shoulder guard show clearly to which Shield Company or Shield Host they belong. The latter organisational tier takes precedence for these purposes. This colouration will often match the Custodian's tabard, along with any robes he may wear.
- All Adeptus Custodes armour is made from the incredibly rare substance known as auramite. Its natural colouration is a lustrous gold, a hue entirely appropriate for the Emperor's personal guardians. However, through closely-guarded alchemical processes, auramite can be tinted, or its colour changed altogether on a molecular level. It is a painstaking and costly process, but considered far more suited to the Custodians' importance than simple repainting.
- The haft or hilt of a Custodian's weapon -- in this case a Guardian Spear -- is sometimes worked -- or, in many cases, reworked -- to match the colouration of their armour. This is not standard amongst all Shield Companies, however.
- Codex: Adeptus Custodes (8th Edition), pg. 22-23, 26
- The Horus Heresy - Book Seven: Inferno (Forge World Series) by Alan Bligh, pp. 119, 242