The Order of Ixium was founded by the House of the Forsaken Lord Demandred. He grew tired of constantly employing outside mercenaries, and contractors, who could accidentally become privy to the nature of their employer. To his credit, this had already happened several times, requiring costly cover ups and black flag ops to discredit or assassinate their previous employees.
The Order of Ixium
To serve in the Order of Ixium was neither an honor, nor a goal. The men who served were all conscripted against their will. They were all of good health, with military and/or shadowrunning experience. These conscripts were subjected to personality modification, electro-encephalographic reprogramming, or even complete Psyche Transplant. The end product was something that looked and generally acted like a man, but was somehow both more, and less.
The reprogramming and unwilling nature of the Order of Ixium often undermined the overall effectiveness of the organization, as well as the typical shortfalls of psychotronic intimation. Ixium soldiers typically lacked initiative, never went above and beyond their tasks, and while they would sacrifice themselves if commanded, they wouldn't do so on their own. In combat, they demonstrated the same resolve. They wouldn't frighten or retreat, but they also generally failed to exploit breakthroughs, didn't employ intimidation tactics, and were more effective as cannon fodder and meat shields rather than the elite soldiers the House of the Forsaken had hoped for. The tenure of the Order of Ixium would be bloody, but relatively brief.
The most striking piece of equipment employed by the Order of Ixium was the Armis. It was technically nothing more than a relatively cheap fascia, and was more employed to remove the humanity of the wearer than to feed them tactical information. The Armis did have a rebreather and basic optic enhancement (polarized for anti-glare/anti-flash bang, low light vision, thermoscopic), but these were basic functions. The Armis was permanently affixed to the wearer, and did cause long term psychological damage. This was considered trivial compared to the mental trauma inflicted on the Ixium soldiers by their abduction and mind rape training.
The standard Ixium Order uniform consisted of a black tunic style reflex suit. This suit offered moderate protection from hand to hand combat and concussive weapons, but offered little real protection from military weaponry. The suits would be marked discretely so that individual Ixia could be identified, even if only by rank. If serious action was expected, the order had Trooper Armor. This armor was resistant to low and middle level military gear, but offered little protection from high energy weapons or hypersonic weapons. The Ixium armor was simple in appearance and relatively effective, but was uncomfortable to wear, and only the intimated and mind altered soldiers of the order could bear to wear it for any measure of time.
The Order was seldom heavily armed, and most of the gear they carried was non-lethal, and more for subdual and abduction rather than fighting actual combat. They favored stun batons, nausea batons, TASERs, flash bang grenades, and chemical weapons like Squirt Guns.
The second downfall of the Order of Ixium came from how it was organized, and how it was used, as the two didn't match. In structure and equipment, the Order was on par with armored police, or security contractors. The House of the Forsaken used the Order as if it were a mercenary unit. When going toe to toe with other mercenary and paramilitary security forces, the Order was generally beaten. They did manage a few wins, but these were as often a matter of numbers, rather than superior skill, gear, or tactics. Losses for the Order typically ran high, and rather than gaining experience, most Order members were green.
Seeing the general failure of the Order of Ixium, Lord Demandred financed a final gambit in an attempt to rescue his Order of Ixium. The Templar Ixium were power armor equipped order members. They would trade their conventional trooper armor and reflex suits for relatively mundane power armor suits. These suits boosted their strength and durability in combat, and the Lord made a point of equipping them with pulse rifles, plasma grenades, and a pair of Leopard class Carry-all transports. These would be the elite of the elite soldiers, the irresistible mailed fist of the House of the Forsaken.
Demandred's Gambit proved to be the end of the Order of Ixium. Within a span of three weeks, both of the carry-alls were destroyed, claiming the lives of all onboard, 250 Ixian soldiers, 23 House crewmen and staff for the ships, as well as Lord Demandred, Lord Aginor, and 30 some odd members of their entourages. The Huntsman crashed after a catastrophic engine failure. Three weeks later, the Wild Hunt was intercepted by the HERA cruiser Evandre. Rather than surrender to a search and potential seizure, the Wild Hunt attempted to engage the Evandre with its limited weaponry. The Evandre, a Federation destroyer refitted and sold to New Themyscira, quickly destroyed the hostile carry-all.
End of the Order
After the destruction of the Wild Hunt and the death of both Lord Demandred and roughly half of all Order members, the House of the Forsaken decided to no longer follow Demandred's idea for his iron faced warriors. The remaining members of the Order of Ixium were moved to mundane roles, reprogrammed for other purposes, or were euthanized.