"Because, Lord Admiral, the governor of Pavonis reported that the Gallant currently approaching us was destroyed with all hands five years ago!"
A Mimic Engine is a device used on the spacecraft of the Dark Eldar that employs holographic and other unknown technologies to allow them to assume the apparent dimensions and appearance of enemy voidships. This ability allows Dark Eldar raiders to sneak up on their prey unseen. Dark Eldar spacecraft using a Mimic Engine are able to mimic Imperial, Eldar, Ork, Chaos and Tau voidships, but not Tyranid or Necron vessels, so the Mimic Engine has no effect against the vessels of either of those species. A Dark Eldar voidship equipped with a Mimic Engine can usually approach very close to an enemy before the threat is realised, and usually opens fire or attempts a boarding action before the other vessel realises the true nature of the intruder.
Some Rogue Traders in the Imperium of Man has also been known to make use of similar Mimic Engine devices. These Imperial-acquired Mimic Engines replace the vessel’s plasma drive with an artefact of deceitful xenos craftsmanship. By modifying its resonant harmonics, the vessel can change the signal output of its engines to resemble those of another Imperial or xenos craft. An unnatural seeming node of bone-like structure is also mounted on the ship’s bridges, which connects directly to the Mimic Engine and is part of the overall stealth system. Though such a device is a clear sign of heresy, the deception is of immense value to vessels that must travel through xenos-infested systems.
- Battlefleet Gothic - The Pirate & the Alien: Eldar & Dark Eldar Vessels, pg. 54
- Rogue Trader: Hostile Acquisitions (RPG), pg. 74
- Ultramarines Omnibus: Part One (Novel) by Graham McNeill