The Shade Elite is one of the primary components of Lord Brevon's army, often led into battle by said Warlord and Serpentine. They are creatures with a single shade encased in a mechanical battle suit and armed with an energy rifle. They first appear in the Opening Cutscene of Freedom Planet, deploying from the Absolution and attacking the Soldiers of Shuigang as well as several cutscenes afterward. They later appear in Jade Creek, where they are deployed by Serpentine's Gunship. They teleport in on teleport pads as the player character comes within a certain distance. The Shade Elite also appear in Battle Glacier and all four rounds of Final Dreadnought.

The Enemy attacks every few seconds by crouching and firing a long four-shot burst from its rifle, which can be blocked and deflected by Milla's shield. It will follow the player as far as they can reach until transitioning to the next area. If a Shade Elite takes a certain amount of damage, it will fall over and cannot be damaged between falling and stands back up, but will be defeated once they take the same amount of damage again. When playing Jade Creek as Carol, any Shade Elite she defeats will drop Gas Cans so that she can use her Bike Spin attack on the Serpentine's Gunship.

In Thermal Base, there is a unique Shade Elite encountered after jumping down a hole. It will try to push the player into a lava stream by using a wall. The player must attack the wall to knock back the Shade Elite, who will activate a detonator when pushed back enough, destroying it. After this, the wall turns into Crystal Shards and the player can progress.

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