Along with the new Space Marines Anti-Aircraft tanks, the only other truly new unit are the Centurions, both as Centurion Assault Squad and Centurion Devastator Squad.
Centurions didn’t get much love from the community when the first pictures hit, but it seems quite a few (though probably not all) people are coming around to them.
So, starting with the Centurion Devastators, how should they be equipped on the table?
#1 – Centurion Devastator Basics
The background for Space Marines Centurions is pretty spot-on.
Centurion Devastator Squads are long-range specialists who pound enemy positions with salvos of heavy weapons fire. A Centurion Devastator Squad’s only real weakness is its lack of speed, for whilst they can outgun entire squads of enemy infantry, they are easily outpaced by fast-moving elements of a foe’s strike force.
To start with, Centurions are obviously slow (and Purposeful), tough and bristling with weapons. Their main challenges are the problem of moving them around (cost-) efficiently (Land Raider or bust… no deep-striking these guys) and, possibly, the lack of an invulnerability save, both of which mean Centurion Devastators should look carefully at the range they operate in.
Centurions also aren’t cheap. With a few weapon options, you are quickly looking at 250+ points.
#2 – Weapon Options
Centurion Devastators have both a “primary” and a “secondary” weapon (and can fire both, thanks to Decimator Protocols).
Their secondary weapon are hurricane bolters, which can be upgraded to the ever-versatile missile launchers (no Flak missiles though).
Their primary weapon, however, is where it gets interesting.
- Twin-linked Heavy Bolter
By default, Centurions come with Heavy Bolters, an iconic weapons of Warhammer 40K, and twin-linked on top.
A bare-bones Centurion “Dakka” Squad at 200 pts. or less will be mowing down light- and medium-armoured infantry left and right. It’s fun, but still feels like a slight waste of 200 pts. as (Heavy) Bolters aren’t usually in short supply in a Space Marines army.
- Twin-linked Lascannon
Arguably the weapon that suits the Centurions best. It has the longest range from all options, making a slow walk from the deployment zone hurt the least.
But… they are pricey, and you almost must take missile launchers for synergy. A 3-Centurion all-lascannons and missiles squad is just a Marine-and-a-half short of 300 pts.
A regular Devastator Squad with 4 lascannons, for all their differences to the tough Centurions, will get the essence of this job done nearly as well for half the points.
- Grav-cannon and grav-amp
I love the Grav-cannon, both visually (as seen on the Centurion by Miniature Miscellany above) and as a concept. Yet it seems to be the most difficult weapon to work with them.
It’s no-longer Twin-Linked, though lots of shots and re-rolls to wound (grav-amp) make up for that. More importantly, the grav-cannon is short-ranged, meaning smart opponents should be able to keep the obvious targets – Terminators, MCs, etc.. – away from them.
Imagine if Centurions could deep-strike, or at least drop-pod, jumping – say – a Riptide or Wraithknight with 15 AP2-shots that roll (and re-roll) to wound on their armour-save?
#3 – The Magic Omniscope
At the end of the day, I think a squad of Centurions with only one type of weapon will not be the ideal way to field them (which, btw, seems like good game-design).
- All-Bolters will work, but may be redundant in a Marines army.
- All-Lascannons will work, but doesn’t seem cost-efficient.
- All-Grav-cannons is potentially devastating, but will struggle a lot to catch worthy prey.
The magic ingredient, in my humble opinion (and against a lot of 40K-specialize-at-all-costs-wisdom) is the omniscope for the sergeant. It grants him Night Vision and Split Fire, allowing him to shoot different targets (with different weapons). This obviously works very well with a lascannon (making the most from Night Vision at long range), but may also work well with a grav-cannon too.
- A sample Centurion Squad – 230 pts.
2x Centurions with twin-linked heavy bolters and hurricane bolters
1x Centurion with twin-linked lascannon, missile-launcher and omniscope
I am still not sure if a Land Raider could work for them (though I think there’d be worthier cargo, including Terminators and, possibly, Assault Centurions).
#4 – Thoughts?
What do you think?
- How would you field Space Marines Centurions, if you’d field them?
- Which weapons do you think will work best?
- Land Raider or walking?
Leave a comment and let me know!