The royal guards, some also referred to as the E.U.P. (Earth, Unicorn, Pegasus) Guard of the Protective Pony Platoons, are various groups of armored stallion ponies or gargoyles that serve various members of royalty. They act as bodyguards, ceremonial guards in festivities, soldiers, and chauffeurs on several occasions. The guards are generally shown wearing extremely serious expressions and usually don't speak, but when they do, their voice is provided by Jayson Thiessen, Andrew Francis, or Peter New. Their cutie marks are obscured by their uniforms.
The unicorn guards first appear in the show's title sequence, standing at the feet of Princess Celestia's throne. Their next appearance is in The Cutie Mark Chronicles. Set in Twilight Sparkle's flashback, eight gray unicorn guards play fanfare for Princess Celestia as she comes on stage and raises the sun for the Summer Sun Celebration. The guards remain expressionless throughout the ceremony. They stand at the aisles of the theater in Hearth's Warming Eve.
They have more active roles in two episodes: One guards the VIP balcony and allows Rarity to enter it at the Wonderbolts race in the episode Sweet and Elite; the color of his magical glow is green.
Unicorn guards appear in It's About Time wearing different uniforms, featuring helmets with flowing crests and redesigned armor. They patrol the Canterlot Archives and one of them, who recognizes Twilight Sparkle, unlocks the restricted "Star Swirl the Bearded" wing for her, even though at first she tries to avoid them and dreads being discovered sneaking about but finds herself eventually cornered.
Princess Celestia's guards
In Friendship is Magic, part 1, a pair of the more commonly seen white-coat Pegasus guards chauffeur Twilight Sparkle and Spike from Canterlot to Ponyville in a flying chariot. Their following appearance is in Friendship is Magic, part 2. When Mayor Mare commands three of them to stop Nightmare Moon, the latter strikes them with lightning bolts to swat them away. The guards later draw the royal chariot into town at the end of the episode. They briefly appear in Swarm of the Century, driving Celestia's flying chariot, and in Sonic Rainboom, accompanying Celestia in her spectator box at Cloudsdale's stadium.
They make their only speaking appearance in A Bird in the Hoof, where they guard the princess and search for her pet bird Philomena. Two guards stand on duty at the entrance to Sugarcube Corner where Celestia is staying. They are pestered by Rainbow Dash who tries to elicit a response from them, but they remain stoic and silent. Soon after, they hinder Fluttershy's entrance until Twilight confirms she's allowed inside. Later, a guard notifies Celestia that the mayor seeks an audience with her. Even later, two guards are sent to inform Twilight that the Princess's bird is missing, and they continue looking for the bird throughout the episode. The episode ends with the bird tickling the guards and making them laugh at Rainbow Dash's request.
Many Pegasus guards of multiple colors appear in the season two finale.
Hearth's Warming Eve guards
The Pegasus guards featured in the Hearth's Warming Eve pageant share the same design as Celestia's Pegasus guards, but they have a different color scheme and a lightning bolt emblem instead of a star-shaped emblem.
Princess Luna's guards
Princess Luna's guards chauffeur Luna's flying carriage in Luna Eclipsed. Luna's guards have dark gray coats, bat wings, tufted ears, and cat-like vertical slits for pupils. They wear lavender-colored armor. One of Luna's guards is referred to as a "cool looking Pegasus" in a post by Gameloft's My Little Pony mini-site and My Little Pony game Facebook page, and one of Luna's guards is also referred to as a Pegasus in the file name of a Castle Creator and Card Creator game asset both on the websites of both Hasbro and The Hub.
Earth pony guards
Two of the royal guards seen overlooking the station in A Canterlot Wedding - Part 1 have no wings or a horn, marking them as Earth pony guards. Another Earth pony guard appears in The Crystal Empire - Part 1, informing Princess Celestia about the return of the Crystal Empire. This marks the first time in the series that a royal guard has removed his helmet, confirming at least for the guard in question that the crest on their helmet matches their mane color.
Crystal Empire guards
First appearing in the movie My Little Pony Equestria Girls, these Crystal Ponies serve as the royal guard for the Crystal Empire. The Crystal Earth pony guards are similar to the Canterlot Earth pony guards except most of them have the exclusive crystal sheen effect and wear armor with more decorative details. In the episode Three's A Crowd, a Crystal Pegasus guard appears alongside Flash Sentry. Two Crystal Earth pony guards appear in Equestria Games, escorting Spike to meet Princess Cadance when he arrives in the Crystal Empire for the titular sporting event.
Shining Armor is introduced as the captain of the royal guard in A Canterlot Wedding - Part 1. He is the older brother of Twilight Sparkle and husband of Princess Cadance. Caramel, Cherry Fizzy, Noteworthy, and Meadow Song serve closely to Shining Armor in A Canterlot Wedding - Part 2.
Flash Sentry is a new character who appears in the movie My Little Pony Equestria Girls. He first appears as a Pegasus royal guard who greets Twilight Sparkle upon her arrival at the Crystal Empire castle. In the alternate world, Twilight encounters his human counterpart, and the two develop a crush on one another. When Twilight returns to Equestria, she blushes upon meeting her world's Flash Sentry again.
Flash's Pegasus counterpart makes a non-speaking appearance in Three's A Crowd. In Twilight's Kingdom - Part 1, he has a minor speaking role, introducing the duke and duchess of Maretonia to the Crystal Empire.