Elites, or the Sangheili, are the more intelligent race of the Covenant troops and are the more battle trained. The Elites are, as their name implies, elite warriors in battle. They consist of the highest ranked officers in the first two games as well as the novels. Only the high ranking elites are permitted to wield the deadly Energy Sword. Elites are 7 feet tall, and their armor signifies their rank.
In combat the Elites have significant shields protecting them. In campaign mode in particular, the enemy Elites in difficulties above Normal have more shields, and their shields recharge quickly when damaged or depleted.
Elites also come in differing varieties, including Honour Guards, and others.